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CPU & Motherboards

AMD Ryzen: Best Motherboard and Overclocking Update

AMD Ryzen is still fresh and the landscape has a lot of changes coming, but we have an idea of some great motherboards that have top notch performance. We also pushed the limits to see if we could blow up a CPU. Good news! We haven't yet!!!



Gigabyte Kills it at Computex 2017

Gigabyte has done a great job with motherboard designs in recent years. The Aorus X299 Gaming 9 won the Best Choice Gold Award at Computex by setting several records, including overclocking ones. If performance isn't enough, the sheer beauty should make anyone say take my money!



Threadripper is AMD Responding to Intel Responding to AMD

That title is fun right? Yesterday AMD had it’s Financial Analyst Day which turned out to be quite the product announcement. Zen was a pretty disruptive release and it seamed to prompt Intel to add more core options to their X299 platform releasing sometime this year. It looks like AMD doesn’t want to be outdone though, so they’re releasing a monstrous 16 core, 32 thread chip that will thoroughly compete with Intel’s enthusiast offerings, but there might be some slightly disappointing news from yesterday as well. Technical details are pretty scarce right now, but PCWorld as an excellent slide showing the major highlights of yesterdays event. We only know the core and thread count of Threadripper for the time being, but seeing as how it’s based on Zen architecture, it will most likely have super competitive TDP and multi-threading performance numbers. AMD also announced Epyc, which looks like it will have 32 cores and 64 threads. This is completely designed for the enterprise market though, since it appears to have lower clockspeeds as well. The other fun announcements were related to Vega, but gaming seems like a minor focus in comparison to the professional uses mentioned during the FAD. This where things get a bit murky. It’s looking more and more like AMD isn’t releasing a card that directly tackles the GTX 1080 Ti initially. While Vega, labeled Frontier Edition, has high levels of compute power, Raja had a straightforward menti...



Latest X299 Response to Ryzen Indicates AMD has a Great Release

Ryzen has been out for a bit now and it looks like Intel is scrambling to show it up. AMD jumped such a huge chasm of performance that it seems impossible that they can be competitive again. However, their latest CPU architecture performs well, and has great power efficiency.



Corsair One Shakes Up PC Gaming

Corsair is releasing a fully built gaming PC? Let me go over to Newegg and see how much cheaper it would be if I built it my….. Huh. Normally, we don’t cover pre-built systems because we believe in the rewarding experience of building our own. While that never changes, there are times that a fully built system can catch our eyes though. Let’s face it, occasions arrive where we need to recommend a good pre-built system, or even want something compact to use in place of carrying our main rigs to things like LAN parties. What really surprised me was the fact that I could MAYBE match the price of this Corsair One system if I built it myself. While I’ll list the full details in the press release below, I mainly want to cover the specs of the base system. The MSRP starts at $1,799.99 and here’s what you end up with. The processor is the locked version of the 7700, but it still has a 240mm Corsair cooler on it. Of course you can expect Corsair Vengeance for the RAM and a Corsair PSU, but they also include one of their Force 240 GB SSDs. There’s also a terabyte HDD for additional storage. The big bonus is the fact that this system includes a solid gaming graphics card in the form of a GTX 1070. When the marketing claims VR ready, they mean that in a solid way. At this point, when I was mirroring these components on a Newegg list, I was having a hard time matching the MSRP that Corsair is offering in the One series. When you top off the final pr...



Should you use all AMD for your Next Build?

The debate of AMD vs Intel vs Nvidia is an age old one that will probably never cease. As long as there’s innovation in the PC market, there’s bound to be a new top dog in the fight. Intel still has the IPC lead in processing and Nvidia is killing it in performance and energy efficiency with their GPUs. So why, when given a sizeable budget and asked by my friend to build a PC, would I go all out with an AMD base? Check out the video for the full answer because the Red side seems to be offering one of the best, non-compromised experiences we’ve ever seen from them. As always, remember that experiences vary and feel free to add your thoughts to the equation by heading over to the PureOC forums!



Intel’s Response to 7700K Overclocking Makes Us Laugh (and cry a little)

Oh, Intel! Couldn’t you at least PRETEND you care a little for your enthusiast customer base? It looks like complaints about the 7700K having heat issues went farther than even I knew. If reports are true, some users have tried de-lidding, running at stock, and placing their CPUs under liquid to still see spikes go up in the 90s with minor tasks. I have to say I can believe it though, but it’s Intel’s response that is almost laughable, at least until you think about the true ramifications. I finally got a hold of a 7700K so I could review a couple of Z270 boards during CES. I’ve complained a number of times about the abnormally high temps, especially since I like to test overclocking on a day-to-day use, rather than simply going for the absolute highest clockspeed possible. In my testing, I would see massive temperature swings during idle periods, but didn’t think too much of it because they weren’t quite as extreme as what other users are reporting. In short, while the cheap thermal interface material between the chip and the heat spreader is a big part of the problem, it could be something to do with the architectural design as well. Intel finally decided to give an official response to the reports and while some of this can be expected, the whole package is kind of hard to swallow. They basically say that the chip is designed to run this way, to adjust dramatic changes in fan speed by using your motherboard fan curves, and that they...



AMD Ryzen 5 1600X and 1500X CPU Review

With Ryzen 5, AMD has introduced the perfect mid-range CPUs for amazing performance at a great price. The 1600X has 6 cores and 12 threads for heavier workloads, while the 1500X will save a few dollars for raw gaming performance. Ryzen may not overclock to high frequencies, but it's still a fun platform to play with.



MSI Z270 Gaming Pro Carbon Motherboard Review

A lot of Z270 motherboards perform better by small margins, but it's hard to find an Intel board that offers more features than what MSI does at this price. The Gaming Pro Carbon looks great, has nice lighting effects, and overclocks pretty nicely. This might be the best overall Z270 motherboard.



BIOSTAR Beats Everyone to the Punch with AM4 Mini ITX Boards

Wow! Biostar is getting pretty serious about their motherboards and if community response is any indication, they may have a huge win on their hands here. It looks like they released two versions sporting the mini ITX form factor in the X370GTN and B35oGTN. Based on the questions I’ve seen, it looks like several people will be excited to have a mini ITX board to pair with Ryzen and the fact that these belong to the Racing series is a nice bonus. The only mystery left is why Biostar chose to release two chipset versions of what appears to be the same board. http://www.biostar-usa.com/app/en-us/mb/result.php?model[]=879&model[]=878& If you follow the link above, you’ll notice I ran a comparison of the two boards. The only difference I can find is the chipset. Personally, I feel like several companies are missing out on the true opportunity of the X370 and B350 chipsets. B350 is like it’s bigger brother in almost every way, but it doesn’t multiple graphics card configurations. That’s the only major difference. What this means is that the B350 can offer quality overclocking and high end board features while still maintaining smaller form factors and better cost efficiency. In other words, X370 should only be on full ATX motherboards with the intention to Crossfire or SLI, while B350 should be more of the mainstream chipset, offering options for good overclocking, but also relegating itself to the mATX or mini ITX form factors. I’m su...



AMD Ryzen 1700 OBS Twitch Streaming Guide

Are you a gamer who’s looking into starting your own Twitch stream? We might have some info that will help you out. It turns out AMD’s Ryzen chips did a great job in game streaming, but there’s some settings that can help optimize that a bit. This isn’t a fully comprehensive guide, but it’s a great start to get your Overwatch matches on the web with some pretty good quality. Check out the video below for the details and if you happen to be one of those streamers who has some tips or tricks, feel free to post them in our forums!



AMD Ryzen 5 CPU Series: The Biggest Game Changer Yet!

April 11th is the official launch date of the Ryzen 5 series of processors from AMD. You’ve probably seen that we’re really happy with the Ryzen 7 release, but I think Ryzen 5 is a more disruptive force than 7 is. One slide pretty much says it all, which is why I wanted to showcase it below. We have 4 core, 8 thread and 6 core, 12 thread CPUs that range in price from $169 to $249. From what I’ve seen, a 6 core CPU is the best you can get for gaming before additional cores start going to waste. Can anyone say gamer’s choice? Below is the rest of the presentation from AMD. This will give you more details on what’s to come and help you make a final decision on if you should pick up one of these guys or not. (Hint, you probably should!) https://www.amd.com/en/ryzen



GIGABYTE Validates Quadro Support on Designer Boards

What happens when Gigabyte supports Quadro graphics design cards? They get a silver PCB of course! Outside of the Quadro support, it’s hard to say how this board differs so much from some of the Aorus Z270 gaming flavors. On the other hand, does it matter when you have a board that looks as amazing as this!?! Check out the full press release below for some more details and links to the website. GIGABYTE Creates a Solution Geared Towards Content Creators City of Industry, California, March 24th, 2017 – GIGABYTE TECHNOLOGY Co. Ltd, a leading manufacturer of motherboards and graphics cards, is proud to announce the addition of the Z270X-DESIGNARE to GIGABYTE’s 200 Series Family. The DESIGNARE motherboard, as the name implies, is geared towards the creative minds of content creators. This series of motherboards was first introduced in the Intel 100 Series Chipset to promote Nvidia Quadro graphics cards. By placing it through tried and tested benchmarks with real world environment settings, the DESIGNARE Motherboard is optimized for content creators of all levels. With the 200 series GIGABYTE has done it again and this time with a distinctive silver alloy PCB design and unique markings along the front and rear of the board. Just like its predecessor, the 200 series DESIGNARE Motherboard is fully validated and optimized for Nvidia Quadro graphics cards and high-performance graphics to ensure designers have nothing holding them back. “Content creators need a high-per...



GIGABYTE and Corsair Partner for RGB Fusion

Well, Gigabyte is the first, but are they really the “only?” Even if they are, I’m sure that will change shortly, but Aorus motherboards certainly deserve the honor of being the first to support Corsair’s RGB RAM modules. I’m still waiting for those RGB SSDs, but I love the looks of what’s happening here. Check out the rest of the press release below! GIGABYTE Validates Corsair Memory in its RGB Fusion Compatibility Site City of Industry, California, March 22th, 2017 – GIGABYTE TECHNOLOGY Co. Ltd, a leading manufacturer of motherboards and graphics cards, is proud to announce the introduction of RGB Fusion Ready memory from Corsair. RGB Fusion is available on many GIGABYTE and AORUS Gaming Series Motherboards. Whether you plan to use an Intel or AMD solution, RGB Fusion is the most feature packed and fully equipped lighting system on the market to date. “We are very excited to launch Vengeance RGB, a new product line that not only offers vibrant RGB lighting, but also serious performance. RGB Fusion from GIGABYTE is the first motherboard software to support lighting control for Vengeance RGB, offering another great lighting control option alongside Corsair LINK.” – Colin, Sr. Director, Corporate Marketing Only with GIGABYTE powered motherboards are users able to control their Corsair Vengeance RGB modules to illuminate in the same color and fashion as their motherboard. With many solutions out in the market, Corsair and GIGABYTE ...



AMD Ryzen 7 CPU Series Review: 1800X, 1700X and 1700

Ryzen has finally arrived! The 1800X and 1700X perform admirably, give users more cores and threads than ever before, and have some extremely competitive price points. The top CPU SKUs don't overclock quite as well, but the 1700 is a great value that can be set to much higher than it's base frequencies. Great job AMD!






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