In Win has been known to release some pretty unique PC chassis; their design team have some pretty creative ideas when it comes to its aesthetics and overall style. Of course, that's not always true. Sometimes we've seen some pretty questionable designs and wonder what they were thinking? This can be true of any manufacturer. Regardless, the are other times when we just get that WOW factor. Today, we are going to look at an In Win chassis that gave us that WOW factor at first glance. The In Win 901 mini-ITX chassis has a very sleek and elegant design. Its aluminum construction combined with tempered glass just screams sophistication. Lets break down the In Win 901 Aluminum mini-ITX Chassis and see if this classy design meets the build quality and functionality to match its initial WOW factor.
During our visit with Kingston at CES 2014 this year, we had a chance to sit down with them to talk about the new and up-coming flash memory cards that are designed for HD Media use. With the advancing and growing media recording industry, faster and more reliable flash memory cards are on high demand, especially those looking for high capacity to store everything on one card. With the standards of 1080p recording, Ultra HD 2160p and 3D/2K&4K resolutions on the horizon, the number of pixels on recording devices can no longer suffice with the slower and lower capacity memory cards. It has been a couple of months since the initial talk and today we finally got our hands on the Kingston 64GB SDXC Class 3 UHS-I U3 flash memory card. Kingston developed this particular card in three available sizes, 16GB, 32GB and 64GB. The last one will be the memory card we take a look at today. Kingston was also nice enough to send us the Kingston Mobile Lite G3 SD and Micro-SD card USB 3.0 reader as an extra bonus to be able to test the memory card today. With the speed advancements in the SDXC memory card, we wanted to make sure there are no bottlenecks.
AMD's APU series market has really picked up pace over the last few years. The most recent updates to their current road map, included the new FM2+ socket A88X based chipset and the Kaveri Processor. This has really generated a great deal of interest with many of today's budget conscious consumers. However, with no updates to AMD's enthusiast FX series chip road map, AMD's APU series is really the only new technology we are seeing at the moment from its consumer line. With that said, we are excited to see that AMD is starting to put more budget friendly APU technology out in the market and we are going to shed some light on what to expect. Today we are looking at a very new low-budget APU inspired motherboard. It includes the Kabini SoC processor (which runs the Jaguar APU Cores) on a Radeon HD8000 series graphics base, and it does it all in a tight nit space. At the beginning of the year, ECS (Elitegroup Computer Systems) announced this Kabini SoC processing unit which houses an AMD A6-5200 CPU. It also includes a Radeon 8400 GPU all in a small mini-ITX form factor APU combo. Today we got our nitty gritty hands on this tiny power house to put it to the test. We are excited to see what this Quad Core A6-5200 APU can do. Before we jump into the details of the ECS KBN-I/5200 motherboard, lets take a look at ECS (Elitegroup Computer Systems).
Biostar has been in the motherboard business since the early 80's. While they were not always the preferred brand that enthusiasts turn to, they have definitely improved in this arena in the last few years. We saw a big improvement in their motherboard sector with the Z77 chipset launch. Now that Biostar has had this chance to improve today's newer chipset, we are going to be looking at a budget friendly chipset on the B85N-3D motherboard. This motherboard was developed on the mini-ITX platform, and, while this isn't Biostar's flagship motherboard, we are here today to put this Small Form Factor (SFF) motherboard to the test. The popularity of Small Form Factor motherboards has been on the rise, and Biostar's B85N-3D has been developed for customers looking for an HTPC or Media platform with a focus around 3D audio support. Will this motherboard be able to keep up with some of the high-end mainstream motherboards? Let's dive in and find out.
Sometimes being located in Southern California can have its benefits, and we’re not talking about the weather here. California being one of the larger states in the US houses most of today’s PC hardware and software companies. One of these companies is Newegg, and if you haven’t heard of Newegg; we have to say… you need to stop hiding under that rock. Newegg is one of the largest electronics e-tailers in the nation today. If you have ever thought about building a PC or looking for some of today’s latest gadgets, the one place you have probably searched is Newegg.com. Newegg houses some of the largest range of products available today in stock in their inventory and its where most of us PC enthusiasts turn to for some of the geek shopping. Today, at spur of the moment I was notified by a good friend of mine from NZXT (thanks Eric!) that Newegg was hosting a launch party at their new hybrid center. Newegg’s “will call” is located in City of Industry and has housed a space for many local consumers to be able to pick up their online orders; this allowed some of us locals to pick up the items and save some shipping costs if the item isn’t shipped for free. However, the space here was previously pretty empty and houses some chairs and seating in the waiting area and a counter to pick up your packages. But that wasn’t good enough for Newegg and now they have opened the “Hybrid Center,” which has some of today’s latest ...
Small form factor PC builds are among one of the more popular topics on many PC forums. Building affordable small form-factor power-house PCs has taken a huge leap forward recently as many manufacturers are starting to saturate the market with more small form factor hardware. Mini-ITX motherboards and small, yet powerful graphics card availability is on the rise. With that increased demand becoming more apparent, we are also starting to see other SFF (small form factor) accessories appearing on store shelves. With that said, today we are going to take a look at a Cooler Master Elite 110 chassis. This one is designed to meet those looking to build either a budget friendly or a powerful gaming PC in a tiny foot print. Just how much versatility and style can Cooler Master pack into the Elite 110?? Read on to find out!
Introduction In the world of custom PC Building, consumers and builders frequently ask what the best motherboards are for Gaming PC Builds. While these are always valid questions, some folks are looking to build a high end rendering or workstation PC. The Z87 series chipset has plenty of options from the budget friendly models to enthusiast gaming motherboards; however, workstation motherboards are not as readily available. That changes today. We are going to be looking at a motherboard from ASUS, one of the few manufacturers who created a Z87 chipset based WS (workstation) motherboard to meet this niche market. We have the ASUS Z87 WS on our test bench, and we are going to put this baby to through the ringer. As an interesting aside, one of the few features of this motherboard which immediately caught our attention is the available support of Quad SLI and Crossfire with 4 PCIe slots available. Not many Z87 motherboards offer this out of the box. There are also tons of other features that we typically don’t see with your “typical” Z87 chipset motherboard. Does this bode well for this unique new board? Read on to find out! Let’s get the review started by talking about the 8 Series chipset, but first here’s a quick word about Asus: Origin of the Name “Asus” ASUS comes from the last four letters of Pegasus, the winged horse in Greek mythology that represents the inspiration of art and learning. ASUS embodies the strength, cre...
Gaming headsets are one of the most popular peripherals today for most gamers. Whether you are a PC or console gamer you probably at one point had some kind of headset that you used and abused. Today we find that many manufacturers are developing a vast array of headsets for both gaming consoles like the PS3/PS4 and Xbox, and for PC users as well. However, It's not often you find a headset that can be used for both. While some do exist, your options are much more limited. So this brings us to today. We are going to be looking at a gaming headset that might bring the best of both worlds. We have in our hands today the Cooler Master CM Storm Ceres 500 Headset. The sleek look of the white and black aesthetics really makes a statement. The first overall impression of the Ceres 500 is very strong. Of course, at a glance feel and touch isn't enough for most of us. With the number of hours we spend in front of the TV or PC, we need to know it performs well, is comfortable, and has great durability for long heavy use. Let's dive in and see if the Cooler Master CM Storm Ceres 500 Headset ticks off all the boxes.
Small form factor PC builds have been very popular over the last few years and when it comes to cooling your processor with an mITX motherboard, we find very few low profile coolers on the market that perform well in small confined spaces. However, today we are going to be looking at a new lower profile CPU cooler that looks to fit the bill for not only great cooling, but also great aesthetic appeal. We have the DeepCool Gabriel CPU Cooler on the bench today and we have installed this massive low profile cooler into a very confined chassis to put the cooling feature to the test. DeepCool isn't as mainstream as some of the other manufacturers in the States, but our past experiences with DeepCool show they have released some very impressive coolers for both budget builders for high-end PC enthusiasts. Before we dive in and take a full look at the DeepCool Gabriel CPU Cooler let's talk about DeepCool.
MSI CES 2014 – Overview This year we had the opportunity to meet with MSI at CES 2014 Las Vegas. We were excited to take a glimpse at what we can expect from MSI this year, but before we go over that, let’s cover something else first. Over the last few years, MSI has taken a leap in marketshare. We have seen this with their Gaming Series, their MPower line of motherboards, and with their Gaming and Lighting Series graphics cards. Their recent release with the NVIDIA and AMD line up really sparked a lot of interested with fans, and we hope to see MSI continue this trend in 2014. Thanks to MSI for spending time with us at CES! Now, let’s have a look at what we saw from MSI at CES 2014. We will first star off with MSI’s Intel line up. The Z87 Gaming and MPower series motherboards have been well received by consumers during the launch of Haswell. One item in particular which that sparked our interest was MSI’s new mITX format Gaming Series Z87 chipset motherboard. With the popular and growing demand of small form factor builds recently, we weren’t surprised that MSI started growing their Gaming series line up. Here is a glimpse at what we saw. We were quite impressed with the features this board offers. It also has great aesthetic appeal, which it shares with its bigger brothers the Z87M Gaming and Z87A Gaming Edition motherboards. The fact that it was shrunken down in size and now offers an on-board Wifi Adapter was a pleasant surprise. We ...
Introduction The X79 based chipset motherboards have been out for quite some time now and with the recent launch of Intel Ivy-Bridge E chips, Intel didn’t do much at this time to improve the chipset. Some will say it’s not needed and some will advise against this and say go for the new release of the Z87 based chipset. While the Z87 base chipset did have great improvements for the newly release Haswell chips, we still see a strong stand from the X79 chipset. Today, we are going to take a look at a board from ASUS that has given the X79 chipset a revision which will push the limits and take full use on Ivy-B E. This is the new ASUS P9X79-E WS motherboard. What does WS stand for? Well this is designed to be a workstation motherboard for those serious video encoders or server and workload crunching. Of course, it makes for a great enthusiast’s motherboard too. While this P9X79-E WS (workstation) motherboard is not as mainstream as some of the newer Z87 chipset based boards, ASUS has put together some unique touches to offer better performance and features. Let’s dive in a talk more about what this X79 chipset based board can do.
When it comes to looking for fans for your PC, we know that the options are almost limitless. With the number of manufacturers and brands out in the open market, it can boggle your mind when it comes to finding the right one for your needs. However, today we are going to look at some uniquely designed fans from Phobya. The Phobya's NB-eLoop Bionic fans are uniquely designed in Germany and provide the highest standard of technology. The special Bionic fan blade rotor along with the NB-EKA 2 Drive and the NB NanoSLI 2 Magentic floating bearing are aimed to please enthusiasts looking for a superior product. These are not your normal $3 fas you can pick up at a local electronics store. These are specialized to provide the highest of performance satisfaction. Today, we get to put these on the test bench and show you how they perform in both noise levels (dB) and airflow (cfm). Let's dive in and take a look.
When it comes to graphic card cooling, aftermarket air coolers were the best option in the past. Also, unless you were going full water cooling, your options were pretty limited. Recently we have started to see a mass of AIO (all in one) water cooling products come to market giving users many more options for CPU cooling; however, up until now there have not been too many similar options for graphics card cooling. We have seen a few PC enthusiasts creating custom brackets to attach these all in one CPU coolers onto graphics cards, and we have even seen some users even using zip ties, but very few manufactured solutions exist. Sadly, in the long run, we find that many of those custom "homebrew" options were not too pretty and/or had diminished longevity. Today things might be shifting. There is a leading manufacturer that has been listening to its customers and actually produced a bracket using this exact idea. It's also designed to offer up greater reliability and aesthetic appeal for the PC enthusiasts. We would like to introduce you to the NZXT Kraken G10 AIO Cooling Bracket which we will review today. NZXT was also kind nice enough to provide us with an NZXT X40 aAIO cooler for testing as well. Read on to find out how this new product stands in the spotlight.
Introduction When it comes to processor cooling we have see many designs and platforms that are available at most finger tips. With the vast number of options available in the market, sometimes choosing the right one can be a task, though most of you will probably jump on the net and start doing a quick search on performance and aesthetics. We have seen many CPU coolers in recent years starting to get larger and larger to accommodate those who are looking for the ultimate in cooling. Especially for those who are going to be overclocking, most seem to think bigger is better. Then there are those who are looking for coolers that are smaller in size so they can squeeze it into a small form factor. Well today we are going to be looking at a cooler that has outstanding cooling in mind, packed into a slim profile. How well will this perform? Well… we are going to find out exactly that with the Titan Dragonfly 4 CPU Cooler. So without going into too much detail here let’s jump forward and take a closer look at what the Titan Dragonfly 4 CPU Cooler has to offer. Before we do that, let’s take a glimpse at who Titan is: TITAN TECHNOLOGY LIMITED was founded in Taiwan by a group of progressive engineers. With over 20 years of experience in manufacturing high-quality cooling devices, Titan has gained worldwide reputation for its achievements and expertise in the CPU cooling field. Titan’s headquarter is located in Taiwan with a branch office in Germany. The manu...
Introduction Has there been a time during a gaming session that you were wondering how your system is performing temperature-wise? How about how much of a load your system currently has on it? We as gamers are always looking at additional data to see how our newly built gaming system is performing. While we have seen many software-based widgets that can be used to view that information on your desktop, how about those times when you are in-game and don’t want to tab out of the session? Well today we are going to be looking at a little device from ColdTears Electronics called LCDSysInfo for GOverlay. What does this device do? Today we are going to put the GOverlay LCD to the test and show you what this convenient little desk top display can do. This has the ability to customize the data source you want to view, all at-a-glance on this 2.8″ LCD screen. Today we are going to put the software and hardware to the test today to see just how well this device can hold to its promise of total customization. Now without going into too much detail, let’s jump forward and get started.