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Archive for November, 2020

The Story of Steamroller, CPU Benchmark, and FX

A terrible cry of despair could be heard around the world when AMD announced they would not be developing their steamroller cores into the FX CPU line up. If that wasn’t bad enough, leaked road maps showed us no future for the flagship series making it very hard to believe that AMD cares about high end at all. This is a dark time in the CPU world in that AMD fans have lost all hope and Intel can have a monopoly on the high end. But maybe there’s a glimmer of hope which might bring vibrant competition in the future. If you haven’t heard of cpubenchmark.net, go there, and let’s take a stab at what the future might hold for hardware enthusiasts. If you ever plan to purchase a new processor and know you have a limited budget, CPU Benchmark should be the first place you go to. They have performance graphs of almost every chip on the market showing overall performance, overclocking, single thread performance and even power to performance ratio. While the website does its own testing, they also pull their benchmarks from thousands of users who buy the software to bench their own systems giving a convenient average score to help users decide on a chip. This will help you find a good range of chips to sort through, then you can look at more specific reviews to make the best decision. It was from these charts that something interesting appeared about the new Steamroller chips, specifically the A10-7850K. When compared to the previous flagship APU, (the A10-68...



Nanoxia Deep Silence 5 Mid-Tower Case Review

Nanoxia Deep Silence cases are well known in Europe and designed for both cool and quiet performance. Today will be looking at the Deep Silence 5 Mid-Tower chassis. This innovative case is part of a new line of future products, whose objective is to offer the perfect symbiosis of ideal system cooling and sensationally low noise levels in one package. The focus was always on two requirements: minimize noise and minimize system temperatures. It is also designed especially for the use in high-end PC- and gaming systems. The side panels and roof are fitted with specially designed, noise reducing insulation materials to help minimize and absorb any noises. The solid front doors also use sound absorbing materials that contribute significantly to the most effective noise reduction achieved by Nanoxia. Also responsible for the quietness of the case are the three pre-installed Nanoxia fans of the brand new DS-Series. This most recent Nanoxia fan-series features a new impeller design, optimized for the best possible mix of silence and cooling capacity. Read on to see what else the Nanoxia Deep Silence 5 may have to offer.



Raidmax RX-1000AE Power Supply Review

Power supplies in the 1000W still offer plenty of power to those who will predominantly run multiple graphics cards in their systems, but that doesn't mean these units need to cost a fortune. Indeed, there is a considerable market for those enthusiasts who are of more modest means, and still want plenty of power. This is where the Raidmax 1000AE 1000W might offer a solution. It's a kilowatt unit that's very reasonably priced at only $150. Frankly, that's a steal of a deal, and if you want a power supply that's partly modular, sleekly styled, and won't break the bank, you might want to have a closer look at this Raidmax unit.



Razer Launches World’s First Keyboard Mechanical Switch Designed for Gaming

Thursday, 06 March 2014   RAZER LAUNCHES WORLD’S FIRST KEYBOARD MECHANICAL SWITCH DESIGNED FOR GAMING   Tested by top eSports athletes globally, the all-new Razer™ Mechanical Switch has been designed and engineered in-house from the ground up for gaming vs. traditional mechanical keyboard switches designed for typing      CARLSBAD, Calif. – Razer™, the world leader in entertainment devices and software, today announced the launch of the world’s first mechanical switch designed by Razer specifically for gaming – the Razer Mechanical Switch.   While traditional mechanical switches were originally designed for typing, the all-new Razer Mechanical Switches have been designed and engineered from the ground up for gaming. In order to achieve that, Razer decided to go back to the drawing board to completely re-engineer the traditional mechanical switch.   After extensive research, Razer’s multi-award winning engineers identified the optimal actuation distance for a gaming switch to a fraction of a millimeter and reduced the distance between the actuation and reset point by almost half to allow for faster, more precise gaming commands when compared to standard mechanical switches. Furthermore, the all-new Razer Mechanical Switches are made using an ultra-precise manufacturing technique that, along with gold plated contact points, result in a lifespan of up to 60 million key strokes.   While Razer scientists and engineers design...



Cougar MX300 Case review

Introduction We always want the best case for the best components on our next build right? Well, let’s be a little realistic here, we always can’t afford the best of the best and sometimes we settle for something to make budget. The question is, do we cut our budget for hardware or the chassis? Introducing the MX300 from Cougar, a mid tower case that offers a wide variety of hardware configuration, cooling support and custom configurations. We recently had the opportunity to review the sister chassis called the MX500. Does the new MX300 live up to the expected reputation Cougar has built or does it need some help? Before we dig in further, let’s read up on Cougar. COUGAR is particularly targeting enthusiast gamers who not only demand state-of-the-art PC chassis and highly efficient power supplies, but also want to express their dynamic gaming life style with reliable quality products. COUGAR therefore wants to provide these enthusiasts with best-in-class innovative and cutting-edge gaming products. COUGAR was founded in 2007 by a group of enthusiastic and professional people in Germany who felt PC hardware had changed very little over the past 20 years, most cases and PSU models remaining rectangular boxes, having the same boring looks and an internal layout with endlessly uncreative cosmetic variations and poor quality. Therefore, COUGAR wanted to provide gamers more stylish product concepts meeting strictest quality requirements. Now, COUGAR has develop...



World’s Thinnest Gaming laptop Now Features The World’s Highest Resolution 14-inch Laptop Display

Wednesday, 12 March 2014 WORLD’S THINNEST GAMING LAPTOP NOW FEATURES THE WORLD’S HIGHEST RESOLUTION 14-INCH LAPTOP DISPLAY Updated with the Next Generation NVIDIA GeForce GTX 870M, the Razer Blade is the Highest Power-Per-Cubic-Inch Laptop in the World CARLSBAD, Calif. – Razer™, the world leader in entertainment devices and software, today announced the latest Razer Blade now comes with the highest resolution 14-inch display available in a laptop. The stunning 3200×1800 touchscreen display features a record 5.76 megapixels, sharply exhibiting even the finest details and text with 262 pixels per inch. The Razer Blade’s state-of-the-art IGZO/IPS (Indium Gallium Zinc Oxide/In-Plane Switching) display panel technology provides unmatched color and image quality. The result is a 250 percent increase in contrast ratio over its predecessor, with high brightness LED backlighting optimized for outdoor use, wide viewing angles, and dramatically improved video propagation and response. The Razer Blade’s display minimizes color shift while maximizing uniformity to make gaming more beautiful than ever before possible. Blending retina-tearing clarity with ultimate functionality, the Razer Blade is also equipped with a 10-point capacitive multi-touch screen that works seamlessly with the new touch interface in Windows 8. “The Razer Blade sets the benchmark by which all laptops should be measured,” says Min-Liang Tan, Razer co-founder, CEO and creative director. “The...



Fractal Design launches a new case at CeBIT !

Launching the Node 804 The Node 804 is a Micro ATX chassis which focuses on cooling performance and maximum configurability, all packed in an interesting new form factor with an elegant design. The dual chamber layout separates hot running components from the cooler ones and allows unrestricted airflow over the motherboard, processor and graphic cards. The case comes with three Silent Series R2 120mm fans but can be upgraded with an additional 7 fans if desired. There are also plenty of options for placing water cooling components, tall heat sinks and hard drives. The flexibility of this case really gives the user the possibility to create their optimal system build. Key features Highly effective dual chamber case layout for best possible cooling. Minimalistic design with an elegant brushed aluminum front panel Unique hard drive mounting system, fitting up to 8 x 3.5″, 4 x 2.5” or up to 10 x 3.5”, 2 x 2.5″ drives HDD/SSD. Three Fractal Design Silent Series R2 120mm fans included with the case and space for an additional 7 fans. Excellent water cooling support with space for up to 4 radiators simultaneously. Maximum radiator configuration: 1x240mm,1x280mm and 2x120mm radiators.  All intakes feature removable dust filters providing a dust-free interior. Featuring a window side panel to show off your set up in style. Additional space in the front to mount a slim optical bay drive and 2×2.5″ drives. Fan controller included Five expansion slots that allow for ...



Zalman Reveals Mouse that could be Deceptacon in Disguise

If I had to give an award to a company with the coolest looking hardware, I’d definitely give it to Zalman. Obviously this is purely subjective, but Zalman’s designs are full of pure techno awesomeness (Thank you Po for that word!). It will come as no surprise that Zalman is still living up to that reputation with the new arrival of the Knossos ZM-GM4 Gaming Mouse. Looks aren’t everything though. Many hardware enthusiasts will overlook some performance and functionality if the aesthetics are just right, but this mouse doesn’t seem like it’s sacrificing either. As expected, it has numerous programmable buttons, an adjustable weight tuning system, durable Omron switches and a few more typical features; however, it’s the Transformer type feature that really grabbed my attention. The grip can be adjusted from three places to perfectly fit any hand! If the picture wasn’t enough to make this look like it belonged in a Michael Bay film, the video definitely tops it off showing full rotational views and the mechanical movements. I’m not totally sure whether this is just a new mouse release, or a Deceptacon plot to invade the homes of the world populous, but I can’t help wanting one. The style obviously won’t be for everyone. Also, without any pricing, it’s hard to determine a value. On the other hand, if you like everything on and around your computer desk to have that pure techno awesomeness flare, I’m s...



MSI Unleashes Domination with the Help of NVIDIA

Geronimo was one of fiercest Native American Warriors known today. He led numerous successful raids, eluded capture many times, and became one of the greatest pillars in trying to preserve the Native American way of life. It seems fitting then that MSI has named one of it’s newest gaming notebooks after the tribe Geronimo came from. These deadly new instruments are powerful, while remaining super efficient, and much like the Warrior in battle, these devices plan on taking no prisoners. Please welcome the MSI GT Dominator and the GE Apache Gaming Notebooks! The phrase “Gaming laptops” almost seems like an oxymoron. Gaming brings in the sense of power draining, but laptops need battery efficiency. This leaves a delicate balance for a manufacturer to straddle because if the device is powerful, it has to stay plugged in lest it die in an hour. On the other hand, if there isn’t any useful hardware, the gaming experience suffers. This is where the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 800M series GPUs come in. If you haven’t already guessed, this is Maxwell architecture. The GTX 750 Ti already showed some impressive performance for remarkable power consumption. These mobile GPUs are primed to follow that lead so that, combined with Intel Haswell technology, a gaming experience can still have a decent battery life. If that was the only exciting thing about these laptops though, it would only be a matter of time before that became the mainstay of every gaming noteboo...



Apacer’s SFD 25A Cloud-Based SSD Overcomes Bottleneck of Big Data Access

  Apacer’s SFD 25A Cloud-Based SSD Overcomes Bottleneck of Big Data Access     According to IDC research, business data storage has expanded continuously at a compound annual growth rate of 3.9%. Global data storage is estimated to expand 50 times larger at the year of 2020. Therefore, how to employ “Information Lifecycle Management” (ILM) has become a must-know in developing cloud-based storage technology and big data structure. The concept of Information Lifecycle Management is to store application system and a company’s most heavily accessed data (certain trivial operations such as searching for e-mails and updating database etc.) in the SSD with the fastest response speed as On-Line storage. The secondary information can be stored in low-priced traditional hard disks as Near-Line storage. As for backups and archives, they can be stored in lower-cost storage media, such as magnetic tapes, as Off-Line storage. Through automatizing the Information Lifecycle Management, the company can reduce over 40% of its Total Cost of Ownership (TCO). The structurehighlights the balance between information value and storage costs. According to this management structure, corporate demand for storage capacity and transmission speed of SSD will be expanded gradually. For this reason, Apacer has launched a high-end cloud-based SSD – SFD (SATA Flash Drive) 25A, which surpasses SATA 2.0 interface SSD of enterprise server. With adoption of SATA 3.0 transmission in...



Cambridge Audio DacMagic XS Review

Introduction As we all know, digital audio has been around for awhile and is practically a standard on most of our audio devices. Unfortunately, there are still select motherboards out there that don’t offer a digital output, so we’re stuck using an analog connection and laptops that only offer an analog audio jack. Cambridge Audio has the solution with their DacMagic XS. It’s a pocket size device that connects via any USB port and converts the audio to a digital signal.   Before we get started, let’s see what Cambridge has to say about it. Listening to music on your computer is brilliant – instant, easy access to all your digital files and a world of streaming services, internet radio and video sites. The cheap headphone output of a typical laptop or computer is simply not good enough to get the best from your headphones. The DacMagic XS USB DAC / Headphone Amp is an instant upgrade to any computer’s sound output. It connects quickly and easily to any USB port and allows you to hear your favourite music and movies with every drop of detail, exactly as the artist intended.



Microsoft Responds to Mantle with DirectX 12

DirectX hasn’t seen an update for a very long time. PC gaming on the other hand, has seen some very interesting changes over the past years, but more significantly in recent times would be the Steam Machine and AMD’s Mantle technology. These two offer a direct competition to Microsoft so it’s no surprise that they’ve had to find a way to respond and quickly. Without going into too much of the speculation that’s already out, it seems that DirectX 12 may well be a direct response to Mantle technology. The Steam Machine obviously offers competition, but it also requires that games be designed to run for a Linux based OS and is less likely to fill the niche for work at home procedures. Mantle could be much scarier for Microsoft, because if game developers design to it, there could be very little need to upgrade to a new version of Windows while still enjoying peak performance from the latest AMD graphics cards. To modestly explain why this works, Mantle allows more graphics processing to go straight to the GPU rather than having to use the CPU as the middle man. Still run Windows 7? No big deal because you have the latest AMD drivers with Mantle software. DirectX 12 hasn’t revealed details yet, but if it tries to garner the same kind of performance that Mantle does, it will be easier for Microsoft to pin it to newer versions of Windows, forcing consumers to upgrade in order to keep peak performance out of their hardware. While this all ma...



Rapoo 7100P Wireless Mouse review

Computer mice are such odd peripherals. So many variations to suit different personal preferences, resulting in a difficult time trying to guess which one is best for you. Having seen a decent number of mice in my days, suffice it to say I’ve seen both good and bad, and plenty in-between. Particular models become popular amongst users, making a name for themselves, and often taking on the established industry. One of the up-and-coming companies which seems to have a good understanding of what makes a good mouse, is Rapoo. Today we have a chance to review the Rapoo 7100P Wireless Mouse with adjustable DPI. Despite the difference in DPI, the other major difference is that this new product utilizes optical sensors rather than laser internals. This has several pros and cons, which we’ll discuss in more detail, but the overarching point to realize here is you get nearly the same mouse for less money. We’re certainly fans of getting good value, so let’s take a closer look at the Rapoo 7100P and find out if it's really is a bargain.



Dual Swing Door Full-tower PC case – Thermaltake Urban T81

  Dual Swing Door Full-tower PC case – Thermaltake Urban T81     Taipei, Taiwan – March 7, 2014 – Thermaltake, being an industry leader in computer chassis, thermal solutions, and power supply units today officially releasing the new adoption of the Urban with the new Urban T81 –Thermaltake presents an update of its Urban line with the new Urban T81 – an elegant, high-impact design. Beautifully architectured, the T81 is engineered for one solid purpose: To provide enthusiasts with the ability to build the highest performing systems while retaining a simple, elegant, and commanding appearance. It is not merely a PC chassis; it is an exemplar of modernist design. Dual Swing Door Design Inspired by automotive “suicide doors” , the T81’s novel door panels are an innovative and inspired design that sets it apart from any other chassis . Likewise, the front door panel’s brushed aluminum finish masks extrusive drives and devices, producing a unified aesthetic of modern sophistication.  Fully Modular Concept A highly customizable 5.25” & 3.5” drive bay enables users to freely interchange the 3.5” hard-drive cages to suit one’s need, or remove 5.25” & 3.5” drive bays to gain maximum interior space for maximum airflow or the addition of liquid cooling systems  Sleek I/O Port The sleek, brushed aluminum I/O port section provides two of the latest SuperSpeed USB 3.0 ports, along with four USB 2.0 ports. The integrated fan hub and...



Support Ending for XP, Microsoft Provides Free Transfer Tool

For those of you still running Windows XP, Microsoft would like for you to think about switching over to a newer Windows operating system. I know, XP still works just fine for many things, and still exceeds for some uses. However, come April 8th, Microsoft is ending their support for this iconic operating system. Soon, Microsoft plans to notify users of the operating system by pop-up on their desktop, providing users with a link to the end-of-support page. This page gives more in-depth information about what will happen on April 8th. Microsoft says the pop-ups will keep coming up on the 8th of every month after April, unless the message is disabled by the user. What is going to happen when support is dropped? Well, you will still be able to use your operating system just as you had been before, but Microsoft will not be releasing any more patches, system updates, or security updates. In a further attempt to persuade users to migrate to newer operating systems, Microsoft will be offering a free data migration tool to make your switch to Windows 7, Windows 8, or Windows 8.1 much easier. In order to provide this service to the public, Microsoft has teamed up with Laplink to produce the data migration tool named PCmover Express for Windows XP. Microsoft Senior Marketing Communications Manager, Brandon LeBlanc released this blog statement, “This tool will copy your files, music, videos, email, and user profiles and settings from your old PC to your new device, transferring a...






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