Subject: General Tech, Mobile | June 1, 2012 - 10:24 AM | Tim Verry
Tagged: x11, ultrabook, u2442, u2440, notebook, gigabyte
Gigabyte, a company mostly known for its motherboard manufacturing, has announced a new lineup of small and lightweight notebooks. Among the new systems are the X11, U2442, and U2440 notebooks. Running Windows 7 and powered by Intel’s latest Ivy Bridge processors, the ultra-portables pack plenty of power.
The X11 is an ultra-lightweight 11.6” notebook at 975 grams and .3cm at it’s thinnest point (1.65cm at its thickest point). Constructed of carbon fiber, it was built using a woven diamond technique that resulted in it being lightweight while maintaining rigidity. It is powered by an Intel Ivy Bridge processor and 128GB SSD. It further comes with USB 3.0 and Bluethooth 4.0 connections. A 16:9 LED backlit display connected via an aluminum hinge is another feature of this laptop. Intel’s Rapid Start and Anti-Theft technologies and a Smart Recovery system are also built in.
For those that require dedicated graphics, Gigabyte has also launched a 14” notebook with NVIDIA GeForce GT 650M or GT 640M graphics cards. The U2442 weighs in at 1.57kg and ranges in thickness from 18.5-21mm. The computer also uses Intel’s Ivy Bridge processors, but the larger form factor has allowed Gigabyte to give the notebook a dual vent design for the GPU and CPU respectively. It also comes with a 1600x900 LED backlit display, backlit keyboard, and THX TruStudio Pro audio technology. The U2442 notebook further has a 128GB mSATA SSD paired with a 750GB hard drive as well as WiFi, USB 3.0, Bluetooth 4.0, and HDMI 1.4 connectivity. The “Champagne Gold” colored cover has a brushed aluminum texture that looks nice as well. No carbon fiber here, but it does look to be all aluminum.
Finally, the U2440 is designed to be less powerful–but more portable–than the U2442. This 14” notebook comes with an Intel Ivy Bridge processor, NVIDIA GeForce 630M graphics card, optical disc drive, 1TB mechanical hard drive, and a mSATA slot for SSD upgrades. The system has taken a downgrade on display resolution versus the U2442 with only 1366x768 pixels. It supports up to 8GB of DDR3 memory, 802.11n WiFi, and a 1.3 megapixel webcam. Further, the U2440 has 1 USB 3.0 port, two USB 2.0 ports, VGA, HDMI, RJ45, microphone input, and headphone output ports. The U2440 comes in a dark gray colored chassis with a brushed aluminum texture on the notebook lid.
As far as pricing and availability, the X11 carbon fiber notebook will be available in July with street prices ranging from $999 to $1299 USD. The U2442 will also retail for between $999 and $1299 USD, but it will be available sooner–towards the middle of June. The U2440 isn’t as light as the X11, or as powerful as the U2442 but it has both of those systems beat on price. The U2440 will have street pricing that starts at $699 USD before tax and will be available for purchase at the end of June.
They seem like interesting systems, and they look nice as well. What do you guys think of the Gigabyte notebooks?
Subject: General Tech | May 31, 2012 - 05:39 PM | Ryan Shrout
Tagged: skyrim, bethesda, trailer, video, canwehavethisnow?
Today, Bethesda released the trailer for the upcoming expansion for The Elder Scrolls V Skyrim, titled Dawnguard.
I want this - now. But Xbox 360 users will get it first. I don't like Xbox Skyrim gamers anymore.
That is all.
Podcast #204 - ioSafe soloPRO and Synology DiskStation 212+, NVIDIA news, the OCZ Agility 4 and more!
Subject: General Tech | May 31, 2012 - 03:53 PM | Ken Addison
Tagged: video, synology, ssd, podcast, ocz, nvidia, iosafe, diskstation, agility4
PC Perspective Podcast #204 - 05/31/2012
Join us this week as we talk about the ioSafe soloPRO and Synology DiskStation 212+, NVIDIA news, the OCZ Agility 4 and more!
The URL for the podcast is: http://pcper.com/podcast - Share with your friends!
- iTunes - Subscribe to the podcast directly through the iTunes Store
- RSS - Subscribe through your regular
- MP3 - Direct download link to the MP3 file
Hosts: Ryan Shrout, Jeremy Hellstrom, Josh Walrath, and Allyn Malvantano
- 0:00:30 Introduction
- 0:00:50 Random Sound Card Discussion
- 1-888-38-PCPER or firstname.lastname@example.org
- http://twitter.com/ryanshrout and http://twitter.com/pcper
- 0:06:30 Take the PC Perspective Survey, win prizes!!
- 0:08:40 ioSafe SoloPRO and Synology DiskStation 212+ Review - Disaster-proof Networked Storage
- 0:18:38 Tegra 3 to see 30 devices this year, LTE support
- 0:20:25 NVIDIA claims GTX 680 sales outpacing GTX 580 sales
- 0:27:30 NVIDIA shows ASUS Zenbook Prime UX32VD
- 0:29:50 HP has 27,000 too many employees
- 0:32:00 Dell leaks Latitude 10 Windows 8 tablet
- 0:34:40 Dell promotes their "Copper" ARM-based servers
- 0:39:30 OCZ Launches Agility 4 based on Indilinx Everest 2
- 0:51:20 Intel shows you how to make a processor
- 0:54:00 Time for a GPU Stock Update?
- 0:57:00 Crysis 2 back on Steam? EA and Valve make up?
- 0:59:00 Hardware / Software Pick of the Week
- Ryan: Corsair Vengeance 2000 Wireless headset $149
- Jeremy: The best way to blow $10,000
- Josh: Faster Internets... Worth it! http://west.optimum.com/services/high-speed_internet/optimum_online_boost/
- Allyn: is lame
- 1-888-38-PCPER or email@example.com
- http://twitter.com/ryanshrout and http://twitter.com/pcper
Microsoft prepares Skype to be preinstalled on Windows 7 PCs They also ignore the latest version of Skype
Subject: General Tech, Systems | May 31, 2012 - 03:33 PM | Scott Michaud
Tagged: skype, OEM, bloatware, crapware
Just after their $99 Signature service has been announced, Microsoft has provided OEMs with a version of Skype to be pre-installed on Windows 7 PCs. I wonder if they will take it off again if you pay them?
Just… give me a minute…
So Microsoft hates bloatware unless it is theirs. OEM partners have been paid by software vendors to provide demos of products integrated and pre-installed for the end-user. Commonly you will see a few game demos, the Kindle software, an antivirus trial, and Skype. Earlier in the month Microsoft created a service at their retail outlets to scrub computers clean of the bloat for $99.
And now that they own Skype they desire for OEMs to integrate it with Windows 7…
Here’s my dotted line for your Signature.
More humorous is that they will integrate Skype 5.8 rather than the newer Skype 5.9. Granted, it is unsurprising that a company would be slightly behind in versions particularly since the latest dot-release is less than two months old. Skype has been known to be slightly less desirable as you increase in version number and as such makes me crack a smirk either way. The latest release in particular has allegedly been the cause of minor glitches in recent podcasts with TWiT studios recommending rolling back to 5.8.
If anything this makes me slightly curious about Windows 8.
Subject: General Tech | May 31, 2012 - 01:08 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: leak, nvidia, kepler, gt610, gt620, gt640
We will have to wait until the scheduled Computex release for verification but for right now Kitguru seems to have an idea of just what the lower end of NVIDIA's Kepler line will be like. They are not sure of the connectivity options, especially the number of displays a single card can manage but as far as the size of the memory interface, clock speeds and size of the cards Kitguru seems fairly certain they are at least close to the actual specs. Check out the whole list they published here.
"So far, nVidia’s launch of the Kepler range has gone smoothly. The only real hiccups have come with stock and the re-branding for some of the old 5xx cards into the 610 and 620. With the low and high ends sorted, focus for Bryan Del Rizzo moves to the mid-range and those pesky 7000 cards hanging out below £100. KitGuru spies hang around outside nVidia’s favourite KFC to see what can be overheard."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- One Of The New Valve Linux Employees Is... @ Phoronix
- Intel's Medfield finally tips up in Orange San Diego @ The Inquirer
- Boffins build all-silicon CNOT gate @ The Register
- Data logging directly to Google Docs (Google Drive) @ Hack a Day
- Samsung WB750 12.5 Megapixel BSI CMOS Sensor Wide-Angle Digital Camera Review @ ModSynergy
- NewerTech NuGreen Energy Efficient Flexible Neck LED Desk Lamp @ Nikktech
- Inside the Apple III @ Hardware Secrets
- Weekly Giveaway #27: Alpenföhn Matterhorn Pure Edition CPU Cooler @ eTeknix
- Win a unique Enermax Fulmo 'England' case for Euro 2012 @ Hardware.Info
Subject: General Tech | May 30, 2012 - 11:37 PM | Tim Verry
Tagged: windows 8, windows, software, release preview, operating systems, microsoft
Update: The Windows 8 Release Preview is now official. You can download the ISO images here. If you are following our installation guide, you will need to use the following CD Key to complete the installation: TK8TP-9JN6P-7X7WW-RFFTV-B7QPF.
According to The Verge, Microsoft fans will be getting a nice surprise tomorrow when the company releases the Release Preview of its upcoming Windows 8 operating system. What was first set to debut in early June, sources are indicating that Microsoft will officially release it tomorrow–a week early.
The Release Preview is Microsoft’s third official build for public consumption, following the Developer and Consumer previews respectively. This build is said to include hints at what the aero-less desktop will look like (though users won’t see the full UI changes until the final retail build) as well as built-in Adobe Flash in the Metro UI version of Internet Explorer. Although I can’t say I’m thrilled about the many changes in Windows 8, I’ll still be downloading the new Release Preview to give Microsoft another chance to make me like Windows 8 (hopefully they can). If you do download it, don’t forget about our Windows 8 Virtual Machine installation guide.
Will you be checking out the Release Preview?
In other Windows 8 news:
- Microsoft Taking out DVD Playback (codecs) in Windows 8
- Windows Media Center a Pro-only paid add-on
- Dell tablet running Windows 8 news
- Install Windows 8 In a Virtual Machine
Subject: General Tech | May 30, 2012 - 09:58 PM | Tim Verry
Tagged: quiet, pc case, noise cancellation, noctua, fans, air cooling
Enthusiast PC fan manufacturer Noctua has announced a partnership with RotoSub to produce fans with active noise cancellation technology. They two companies have already developed a prototype chassis fan that uses fan blade modulation and a series of stationary blades in addition to the moving fan blades to improve performance while keeping the noise down. The noise canceling fan prototype will be shown off at Computex 2012 in Taipei next month (booth J1312 in Exhibition Hall 1F).
In a recent press release, RotoSub and Noctua have announced a “strategic partnership” to develop and market a line of Noctua fans with a new noise cancellation technology from RotoSub. The technology in particular is called the RotoSub Acive Noice Control (R-ANC). It uses phase cancellation principles to cancel out the annoying hum (or whine in those smaller server fans that sound like jet engines) given off by the fans. The fans do this by slightly modifying how the blades spin using proprietary algorithms (hopefully they will release more information on exactly what is going on there), and by including physical features like the stationary set of fan blades behind the moving set of blades.
The prototype Noctua NF-F12 fan that will be on display at Computex 2012.
Mårten Oretorp, RotoSub CTO stated that the company is aiming to achieve 80% more airflow and 120% greater static pressure than the Noctua NF-F12 fan by incorporating the company’s ANC technology. Noctua is licensing the RotoSub technology, which is claimed to deliver better noise-per-performance ratios than can be accomplished by physical aerodynamic improvements alone.
Further, Noctua CEO Roland Mossig stated “it has always been our goal to push the boundaries of acoustic optimisation and this partnership will allow us to reinforce our technology leadership in the field of premium grade PC cooling equipment.”
RotoSub hasn’t detailed the algorithms but they do have hints of information on their page including a video demonstration of the fan and an animation that shows the “anti-sound” being generated by the fan itself to cancel out the annoying fan noises that it produces. The video can be seen below.
It is an interesting concept, and I hope that it works. While moving to watercooling has cut down on the number of fans I’m using in my desktop, it is still not anywhere near what I would call quiet. Stay tuned for more information once the prototype is shown off at Computex 2012.
Subject: Editorial, General Tech, Processors | May 30, 2012 - 06:42 PM | Scott Michaud
Tagged: Intel, fab
Intel has released an animated video and supplementary PDF document to explain how Intel CPUs are manufactured. The video is more “cute” than anything else although the document is surprisingly really well explained for the average interested person. If you have ever wanted to know how a processor was physically produced then I highly recommend taking about a half of an hour to watch the video and read the text.
If you have ever wondered how CPUs came to be from raw sand -- prepare to get learned.
Intel has published a video and accompanied information document which explains their process almost step by step. The video itself will not teach you too much as it was designed to illustrate the information in the online pamphlet.
Not shown is the poor sandy bridges that got smelted for your enjoyment.
Rest in got
My background in education is a large part of the reason why I am excited by this video. The accompanied document is really well explained, goes into just the right amount of detail, and does so very honestly. The authors did not shy away from declaring that they do not produce their own wafers nor did they sugarcoat that each die even on the same wafer could perform differently or possibly not at all.
You should do yourself a favor and check it out.
It's like Spore in space... even though that was in space too. Kinetic Void Kickstarter almost over but not at goal yet.
Subject: General Tech | May 30, 2012 - 02:18 PM | Scott Michaud
Kinetic Void is a PC single player space adventure game looking for funding on Kickstarter. They are currently at $47,000 out of their $60,000 goal with approximately 6 hours to go. If you have a 2GHz CPU and GeForce 8800 GPU or better and would like to back the project then do so like -- right now. You will only be billed for your pledge if they reach their $60,000 goal.
Update (5/30/2012): They're funded -- but if you want to keep donating to give them more development funds I'm sure they could use it.
Yet another awesome looking indie project is looking for crowd-funding.
There are probably a bunch of fans of space sims in our audience -- and I know there are a bunch of fans of PC games in our audience. Most of these games will only be possible with crowd funding and Kinetic Void is teetering on the edge of expiring. If you like it -- the next 6 hours is basically your last chance to back it so do not wait.
When I started writing this article it was at $46,000… so it’s possible. Hop to it if you want it.
The expected system requirements for the game is quite lean with just a 2.0 GHz CPU, 2GB of RAM, and GeForce 8800 GPU needed to play. They recommend a multi-core CPU which is still very reasonable these days to say the least. It is not the prettiest game but that is not the point.
$10-or-more will get you the full game when it is launched in late 2012 or early 2013 -- or if you spring for $20+ you can get Beta access as well.
But only if it is funded… so go to Kickstarter if it seems interesting to you.
Subject: General Tech | May 30, 2012 - 01:07 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: cunning stunt, carmageddon reincarnation
The game that was condemned by the Pope and used by the media as the posterchild for how violent video games should be strictly controlled is back thanks to the love of the original creators and help from a very successfull Kickstarter campaign. Soon you will be able to run amok among pedestrians, setting them on fire, zapping them with your Electro-Bastard Ray or even colliding into them with your car. They have a lot of work to do if they want this game to live up to its predecessors as this was the first game featuring damage to your car and physics processing to handle collisions. You have until June 6th to donate funds to the Carmageddon Reincarnation kickstarter, with a variety of rewards available depending on how much you donate ... $15 to get the game.
"Max Damage is back! Carmageddon: Reincarnation is going to reintroduce the gaming world to the original freeform driving sensation, where pedestrians (and cows) equal points and your opponents are a bunch of crazies in a twisted mix of automotive killing machines. It’s the racing game where racing is for wimps."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- The RPS Verdict: Diablo III
- Diablo III (PC) Game Review @ HardwareHeaven
- Pinky: Doom 3 Gets “BFG Edition”, Mounted Flashlight @ Rock, Paper, SHOTGUN
- Laptop Graphics Face Off: Diablo III Performance @ AnandTech
- Super Monday Night Combat - PC Review @ eTeknix
- DiRT Showdown (PC) Game Review @ HardwareHeaven
- Win TERA, the MMORPG hit PC game @ HEXUS
- Saw Red: Frozen Synapse Expands, Gains Co-op @ Rock, Paper, SHOTGUN
- Mad Riders (XBLA) Game Review @ HardwareHeaven
- Max Payne 3 PlayStation 3 @ Tweaktown