Friday, April 17th 2015

Today's Reviews

Cases
Cooling
Desktop PC
Graphics Cards
Headphones
Motherboards
NAS
Notebooks
SSD

Seagate Technology Reports Fiscal Third Quarter 2015 Financial Results

Seagate Technology plc. today reported financial results for the third quarter of fiscal year 2015 ended April 3, 2015. For the third quarter, the Company reported revenue of approximately $3.3 billion, gross margin of 28.7%, net income of $291 million and diluted earnings per share of $0.88. On a non-GAAP basis, which excludes the net impact of certain items, Seagate reported gross margin of 28.9%, net income of $357 million and diluted earnings per share of $1.08. For a detailed reconciliation of GAAP to non-GAAP results, see the accompanying financial tables.

During the third quarter, the Company generated approximately $374 million in operating cash flow, paid cash dividends of $176 million and repurchased approximately 12 million ordinary shares for $706 million. Year to date, the Company has returned approximately $1.4 billion to shareholders in dividend and stock redemptions. Cash, cash equivalents, restricted cash, and short-term investments totaled approximately $2.6 billion at the end of the quarter.

ASUS Announces that All its Z97 and X99 Motherboards Support NVMe

ASUS today announced that it is the world's first motherboard brand to support all NVM Express (NVMe) storage devices via a simple UEFI BIOS update and optional ASUS Hyper Kit expansion card.

The free UEFI BIOS update enable all ASUS X99 and Z97 motherboards to be compatible with the latest NVMe storage devices, including those with PCI Express (PCIe) and M.2 (PCIe) interfaces. All ASUS X99 motherboards are also compatible with the latest 2.5-inch NVMe SFF-8639 solid-state drives (SSDs), via the exclusive ASUS Hyper Kit expansion card - for ultimate data-transfer bandwidth up to 32 Gbit/s.

AquaComputer Announces New Water-blocks for NVIDIA GTX Titan X

As of now Aqua Computer offers six different water blocks for the NVIDIA GTX TITAN X graphics card. The kryographics for GTX TITAN X is CNC-milled from a 10mm thick high-purity electrolytic copper block and entirely made in Germany. The GPU, RAM and voltage regulators are covered by the block while the GPU area features a micro structure with a 0.5mm grid. All relevant areas are also covered by the flow path of the cooling liquid to provide an excellent cooling performance.

The contact surface of the base is high gloss polished. To gain the last bit of cooling performance the kryographics for GTX TITAN X allows using thermal grease instead of thermal pads for the RAM chips. For an easy installation the block comes with preassembled distance pieces so the screws can be tightened as far as they will go to achieve an optimal contact pressure. The block can be used with regular G1/4" fittings and the connection terminal offers threads into both directions. The regular connection terminal can be also exchanged with the optional kryoconnect adapters which can be used for SLI setups.

Razer BlackWidow Tournament Edition Chroma Keyboard Now Available

Razer announced availability of its flagship compact gaming keyboard, the BlackWidow Tournament Edition Chroma. It's essentially a BlackWidow Tournament Edition, the company's popular numpad-free mechanical gaming keyboard, but the company's swanky new Chroma multi-color key backlit system. The Chroma system, configurable using Razer Synapse software, lets you color-code individual keys over the full RGB palette, and even lets certain games color-code them for you (eg: cop-chases in GTA V cause the function keys to flash police strobe lights). Under the hood, the BlackWidow features Razer's in-house designed mechanical switches, designed for over 60 million keystrokes. Available now in US and Canada, exclusive to Best Buy and Razer Zone, the Razer BlackWidow Tournament Edition Chroma is priced at US $140.
Thursday, April 16th 2015

Today's Reviews

Cases
Graphics Cards
Headphones
Memory
Mouse
Networking
Processors
PSUs
SSD
Storage

AMD Reports 2015 First Quarter Results

AMD today announced revenue for the first quarter of 2015 of $1.03 billion, operating loss of $137 million and net loss of $180 million, or $0.23 per share. Non-GAAP operating loss was $30 million and non-GAAP net loss was $73 million, or $0.09 per share.

"Building great products, driving deeper customer relationships and simplifying our business remain the right long-term steps to strengthen AMD and improve our financial performance," said Dr. Lisa Su, AMD president and CEO. "Under the backdrop of a challenging PC environment, we are focused on improving our near-term financial results and delivering a stronger second half of the year based on completing our work to rebalance channel inventories and shipping strong new products."

ViewSonic Introduces New Line of Ultra HD Monitors

ViewSonic Corp., a leading global provider of visual solution products, introduces its new line of Ultra HD monitors. The VP2780-4K is ViewSonic's flagship Ultra HD monitor designed with a professional grade panel and connectivity; the VG2860mhl-4K is designed for commercial and enterprise applications featuring a flexible ergonomic stand; and the VX2475Smhl-4K brings multimedia to life from video games to action-packed movies. Building upon its award-winning display heritage, ViewSonic's new Ultra HD monitors meet the needs of demanding gaming enthusiasts to color-critical design professionals.

"With more UHD content now available and consumers showing increased interest of using Ultra HD displays at work and at home, ViewSonic is harnessing two decades as a leader and innovator in displays to deliver a complete portfolio of Ultra HD monitors," said Kenneth Mau, senior product marketing manager at ViewSonic Corp.

Rapoo Announces VPRO V800 Mechanical Gaming Keyboard

Rapoo, one of the world's leading manufacturers of peripherals in the wireless segment and the first manufacturer of products featuring 5 GHz wireless technology, holds an impressive 42% market share in China. Today, it proudly launches its new V800 Backlit Mechanical Gaming Keyboard. VPRO Gaming Labs, Rapoo's dedicated specialist department backed up by a 120-strong R&D team and one of Asia's most cutting-edge production facilities, has revised the V800 specifically for the European market - and now the final details about the V800 Backlit Mechanical Gaming Keyboard are ready for release.

The V800 has ultra-durable switches thanks to VPRO Gaming Labs choice of yellow Kailh switches from Kaihua Electronics. These advanced switches ensure keystrokes feel the same throughout their life span of up to 60 million operations. With a 2 mm activation point and 50 g operating force the keys offer an ultra-fast response speed, even in the heat of battle. But this isn't the only area where VPRO Gaming Labs' focus is on offering maximum quality: Both the materials as well as the finish meet the highest standards. Among the revisions made for the European market, the keyboard has a matt coating. This non-slip material offers more grip and is less prone to finger marks. All five dedicated macro keys (G1-G5) on the left-hand side of the keyboard can also be customized for lightning-fast access to macros.

Koolance Announces its GeForce GTX TITAN X Water Block

Koolance announced availability of its GeForce GTX TITAN X water block, the VID-NXTTNX. This full-coverage water block is made of nickel-plated copper, with a POM-acetal top, stainless steel inserts, and nickel-plated brass fittings. Weighing a little over 1 kg, the block cools all components on the obverse side of the PCB, including the GPU, the VRM, and the memory chips. The VID-NXTTNX is priced at US $129.99. To cool memory chips on the reverse side, Koolance is separately selling a functional back-plate of its own, the ACC-PLTNXTTNX. This 1 kg back-plate is made of copper, and features heat dissipating ridges. It's priced at US $34.99.

ASUS Republic of Gamers Announces GR6 Gaming Desktop

ASUS Republic of Gamers (ROG) today announced the ROG GR6 ultra-compact desktop, a console-inspired 2.5-liter PC with supreme gaming performance. GR6 is powered by a 5th-generation Intel Core i5 processor and NVIDIA GeForce GTX 960M graphics for Full HD gaming. It features 8GB of DDR3L memory (upgradable to 16GB), and hard disk or solid state drives (SSD). GR6 also has built-in 802.11ac Wi-Fi and comes pre-installed with Windows 8.1. GR6 features a matte-black finish, Mayan-inspired detailing, and a pulsing ROG logo. It is ideal for gaming in the living room or bedroom, and is portable enough to take to LAN parties.

Cirrus7 Intros nimbini Chassis for Intel Broadwell NUC

Building on the success of its Nimbus NUC case with a stackable laser-cut aluminium sheet design, Cirrus7 introduced the nimbini, for Intel's latest Core "Broadwell" NUC system boards. The case features the same aluminium sheet stack design, and its thick aluminium sheets double up as heatsink for the CPU and PCH. It's available as both a case, or as a complete DIY kit with Windows or Ubuntu pre-installed. This kit, however, comes with over 90 parts, and you have to manually put it all together. As a case, the nimbini is game for Intel's 28W "Broadwell" Core M chips with Iris Graphics i7. Cirrus7 is expected to start pre-orders later this months, shipping begins in May.

Source: FanlessTech

In Win Launches 503 Mid-Tower PC Chassis

In Win Development Inc., a leading innovator in PC design and winner of internationally renowned design awards, has today announced availability of its new 503 mid-tower PC chassis. Available either in black and red with red LED fan, or white and black with white LED fan, with internal matt black coloring and an extra-large window, the 503 perfectly matches modern PC component aesthetics and lets PC DIY builders easily view their creations. The strong, high-quality SECC steel chassis has a unique tempered glass front cover that slides downwards, revealing a single 5.25-inch bay. This creative design keeps the optical drive hidden when not required and mirrors the strong, clean lines of the overall chassis aesthetic.

Internally, ATX, micro-ATX and mini-ITX motherboards are supported with up to 7 expansion slots and as such the 503 accommodates high-end graphic cards up to 408mm long in high-performance AMD CrossFire or Nvidia SLI gaming setups. CPU heatsinks up to 170mm are also supported with up to 27mm of space behind the motherboard tray for ease of cable tidying; both spaces are more capacious than direct competitors.
Wednesday, April 15th 2015

Today's Reviews

Cases
Cooling
Graphics Cards
Headphones
Keyboards
Memory
Motherboards
Mouse
NAS
Notebooks
PSUs
Sound Cards

NETGEAR Intros Two Next-Gen Powerline Network Adapter Kits

NETGEAR, Inc., a global networking company that delivers innovative products to consumers, businesses and service providers, is launching two networking adapter kits for next-generation Powerline technology that deliver up to 1.2 Gbps of speed for improved video streaming and gaming. Introduced at the 2015 International CES trade show, the new NETGEAR Powerline 1200 Adapter Kit (PL1200) is available now in the U.S. and in Europe later this month, while its sister device, the Powerline 1200 + Extra Outlet Adapter Kit (PLP1200) will ship in May. NETGEAR powerline adapters offer easy, plug-and-play setup to bring wired Internet access using existing electrical wiring to any room in your home without running long wires or drilling walls to install Ethernet cables, and are especially useful for home theater and home security systems.

Building construction such as brick, as well as distance from the wireless router or gateway, can cause your home to work against your wireless network. Powerline technology is ideal for reliably extending your Internet connection through multiple walls and even at long distances to any room of your home to get the best network coverage possible. Compliant with the HomePlug AV2 standard, the two new NETGEAR Powerline 1200 adapters double the performance over previous generation Powerline adapters while delivering expanded whole-home coverage. Enabled by multiple simultaneous data streams (MIMO) with Beamforming technology, NETGEAR Powerline 1200 adapters deliver gigabit speed at even longer distances, ideal for 4K video streaming, lag-free online gaming, or whole-home video monitoring.

ASUS Announces TUF Trooper B85 Motherboard

ASUS today announced TUF Trooper B85, a rugged, high-value motherboard designed to withstand all conditions and heavy loading, and tested to exacting military standards for total protection to offer exceptional durability and long-term reliability. TUF Trooper B85 is certified by TUF engineers as a server-strength motherboard and is covered by a five-year warranty.

TUF Trooper B85 incorporates many exclusive TUF features, including the military-grade TUF LANGuard Ethernet socket and TUF ESD Guards 2 to protect against electrostatic discharge. Based on the versatile Intel B85 Express chipset, TUF's newest addition also benefits from ultra-durable TUF Components, high-fidelity TUF Audio with physical shielding, and flexible temperature-management with TUF Thermal Radar Core.

Western Digital Announces WD Purple NV Surveillance Class Hard Drive Series

WD, a Western Digital company and storage industry leader, today introduced WD Purple NV, a purpose-built line of 3.5-inch, high-capacity 4 TB and 6 TB hard drives for the greater demands of scalable network video recorder (NVR) surveillance systems.

Compared with standard WD Purple drives, the new member of the WD's surveillance video recording family of drives, WD Purple NV, is designed for larger-scale network surveillance systems utilizing higher hard drive bay counts and greater numbers of attached cameras, which demand increased storage capacity and durability. The new drives' high capacities also enable long video retention periods for analysis and reference. WD Purple NV is also designed to withstand the demands of always-on digital NVR recording environments. It offers low power consumption and many advanced performance features typically reserved for higher end surveillance storage.
Tuesday, April 14th 2015

Today's Reviews

Cases
Cooling
Graphics Cards
Headphones
Keyboards
Monitors
Motherboards
Mouse
SSD

Samsung Now Producing Industry's First M.2 NVMe PCIe SSD for the PC Market

Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd., the world leader in advanced memory technology, announced today that it has started mass production of the industry's first NVMe PCIe solid state drive (SSD) which has an M.2 form factor for use in PCs and workstations. Samsung is also the first in the industry to announce that it has begun shipping NVMe SSDs to OEMs for the PC market. The new SM951-NVMe features the industry's most advanced performance figures, exceptionally low power use in standby mode and the most compact size of any NVMe SSD.

"Our new NVMe SSD will allow for faster, ultra-slim notebook PCs with extended battery use, while accelerating the adoption of NVMe SSDs within the consumer marketplace," said Jeeho Baek, Senior Vice President of Memory Marketing at Samsung Electronics. "Samsung will continue to stay a critical step ahead of others in the industry in introducing a diversity of next-generation SSDs, that contribute to an enhanced user experience through rapid popularization of ultra-fast, highly energy-efficient, compact SSDs."

Intel Reports First-Quarter Revenue of $12.8 Billion

Intel Corporation today reported first-quarter revenue of $12.8 billion, operating income of $2.6 billion, net income of $2.0 billion and EPS of 41 cents. The company generated approximately $4.4 billion in cash from operations, paid dividends of $1.1 billion, and used $750 million to repurchase 21 million shares of stock.

"Year-over-year revenues were flat, with double-digit revenue growth in the data center, IoT and memory businesses offsetting lower than expected demand for business desktop PCs," said Intel CEO Brian Krzanich. "These results reinforce the importance of continuing to execute our growth strategy."

Arctic Announces M1 Series CPU Coolers for AMD Socket AM1

Arctic announces the M1 and M1-Passive CPU coolers for AMD socket AM1. The Alpine M1 & Alpine M1-Passive replace the noisy stock cooler. Building a quiet PC system with a low budget? Yes it is possible! The Alpine M1 & Alpine M1-Passive were specifically designed for the AMD AM1 platform and are the ideal alternative to the noisy stock cooler.

The cooling performance of the whisper quiet Alpine M1 is more than sufficient to keep every AM1 CPU at bay by margin. An 80 mm low speed fan delivers the desired airflow and pressure without producing any audible noise. Even under full load it generates only 0.1 Sone which makes it twice as quiet as the stock cooler.

Corsair Force LS SSD Series Gets New 480GB and 960GB Variants

Corsair, a worldwide designer of high-performance components to the PC hardware market, today announced the release of the addition of 960GB and 480GB capacity models to the existing line of Force Series LS SSD drives. The new Force Series LS SSD models, like the previously announced 240GB, 120GB, and 60GB models, provide consumers a cost-effective way to upgrade their notebook or desktop PCs to faster, more reliable solid-state storage.

The 7mm-high Force Series LS SSDs can be installed into most desktop or notebook PC with a standard 2.5" or 3.5" drive bay (3.5" bays require optional adapter). The drives feature SATA 3 6Gb/s support for optimal performance with the latest systems, and are backward compatible with SATA revision 1.0 and 2.0 for maximum compatibility. A copy of the powerful Corsair SSD Toolbox software utility is included as a free download.

XFORMA Presents the MBX MKII Limited Edition PC Case

XFORMA, creator of premium PC cases and accessories, today announced that the MBX MKII Limited Edition case is in production and available to pre-order. A limited series of 250 MKII cases are offered for sale, and are being manufactured in cooperation with SilverStone Technology; a Taiwan based global leader in the PC industry.

With the MKII, XFORMA takes aim at the high-end segment of the market. "Conversations with our Customers over the years led us to conclude that there's legitimate interest in a precision-crafted, ultra-refined product like the MKII. Every other area of consumer electronics has a premium segment except desktop PC cases, and we're proud to introduce the MKII into this underserved segment of the market." -Charles Harwood, Founder of XFORMA.

QNAP Brings Improved Multimedia Entertainment with Kodi

QNAP Systems, Inc. today announced that its NAS officially supports Kodi (formerly XBMC) Entertainment Center. Users of x51, x53, x70, x71, x79 and x80 series NAS now can install Kodi in HD Station to enjoy an improved entertainment experience. As of version 14, XBMC has been renamed "Kodi". If users have XBMC v13 installed, they can install Kodi separately to use its beautiful unified interface to enjoy pictures, videos and music. Both versions can be installed to provide users with greater choice.

"Multimedia entertainment has become a major part of QNAP NAS, and we will continue to offer up-to-date applications and technology to provide our users with the best multimedia experience," said Ken Cheah, product manager of QNAP. QNAP will also rename XBMC v13 to "HD Player" in its HD Station platform. HD Player introduces a revamped user interface for more intuitive operations and integrates the QTS Media Library and user authentication for securing NAS data.

Be Quiet! Announces Shadow Rock LP CPU Cooler

be quiet!, the market leader in PC power supplies in Germany for nine consecutive years*, extends its cooler range with a new model in a smaller size: the Shadow Rock LP is characterised by its compact low-profile design and high cooling capacity, making it ideal for use in space-saving but powerful desktop systems and home theatre PCs (HTPCs).

The Shadow Rock LP has been developed with a focus on a perfect ratio of power to noise level. It can cope with a TDP of up to 130 watts despite its compact dimensions of 134 x 122 x 75.4 millimetre (L x W x H). Even then, it produces a maximum noise level of no more than 25.5 decibels. be quiet! achieves this through an optimal interaction between the numerous aluminium fins, four powerful 6 millimetre heat pipes and the Pure Wings 2 fan. The latter comes in a 120-millimetre PWM-version and has nine airflow-optimised fan blades and a durable rifle bearing. As a result, the manufacturer guarantees an optimal operating noise and long-term reliability.

AMD Releases Catalyst 15.4 Beta for Grand Theft Auto V

AMD released its latest driver with optimizations for the season't hottest game Grand Theft Auto V. Catalyst 15.4 is released as a Beta. The company is yet to launch a WHQL-signed driver this year. Catalyst 15.4 Beta adds game-specific optimizations for GTA V, and CrossFire profiles. It also adds CrossFire profiles for Dying Light, MGS V: Ground Zeroes, Sleeping Dogs: Definitive Edition, and Mortal Combat X. CrossFire profiles are improved for Battlefield Hardline, Far Cry 4, and Middle Earth: Shadow of Mordor. Grab the driver from the links below.
DOWNLOAD: AMD Catalyst 15.4 Beta for Grand Theft Auto V, for Windows 8.1/7 64-bit | Windows 8.1/7 32-bit

Cooler Master Announces GeminII S524 Ver.2 CPU Cooler

Cooler Master, a leading creator, innovator, and manufacturer of desktop components and peripherals today announces the availability of the GeminII S524 (Ver. 2) CPU and component cooling system in North America. The Cooler Master GeminII S524 Ver. 2 uses a top down cooling method to provide ample airflow to both the CPU and the surrounding motherboard IC chips. The GeminII S524 Ver. 2 also has the added benefit of having enough vertical clearance to support high profile performance memory DIMMs, allowing additional cooling to them as well.

At only 105mm/4.2" tall with a standard 25mm thick fan, the cooler will fit in the majority of desktop cases and even many smaller cases. You can learn more about the benefits of top down coolers at Cooler Master University.

Synology Unveils New DS1515 and RS815 NAS

Today, Synology America Corp. launched the new DiskStation DS1515 and RackStation RS815 for businesses and individuals who have outgrown rudimentary storage, and need enterprise features at an affordable price. Both multi-bay NAS run the award-winning DiskStation Manager 5.1 providing: remote access, scalability, unparalleled reliability, cross-platform file sharing, and 24/7 security solutions - all in an energy efficient, money-saving design.

"The DS1515 and RS815 offer excellent value for growing companies that need easy scalability, with on-the-fly plug and play expansions," said Synology Product Marketing Manager Jason Bonoan. "Plus, work groups can use these NAS with Cloud Station and sync their files when they are on the go."

Akitio Unveils the Thunder2 Quad Mini 12 TB Thunderbolt 2 SSD Storage Solution

Akitio today announced the availability of the new 12 TB Thunder2QUAD Mini Thunderbolt 2 portable storage engineered with 4K workflows in mind. With up to 22 hours of 4K video storage on tap (4096 x 2304, 29.97 fps, 8-bit ProRes 422 HQ) and available as an enclosure only or populated with up to 12 TB of storage (four 2.5" 3 TB SSDs), the Thunder2QUAD mini offers incredible performance and storage capacity with a tiny footprint.

The new QUAD mini features two Thunderbolt 2 ports for both storage and display and can reach speeds of up to 1,375 MB per second. With a size of just 3.75"x4.5"x7.5", the Akitio Thunder2QUAD mini is so small that it can easily fit into almost any bag or case for use in the field and the 12 TB version easily holds enough data for even the most demanding applications.

OWC Viper Pro Thunderbolt External SSD Premieres at NAB 2015

Other World Computing (OWC), a leading zero emissions Mac and PC technology company, announced today the arrival of the Viper Pro Thunderbolt external SSD. The OWC Viper Pro Thunderbolt External SSD is the pinnacle of fast, high-capacity, direct attached Thunderbolt 2 storage. Engineered to meet the extreme demands of content professionals, Viper Pro features dual Thunderbolt 2 ports and delivers extreme performance with sustained speeds up to 1350 MB/s.

Speed, Capacity and Flexibility. All in One. The Viper Pro Thunderbolt SSD will be available in two capacity options, 4 TB and 8 TB, which deliver versatile, pro-level performance for any workflow. With bandwidth to spare, not only does the Viper deliver big capacity and big speeds, it comes with the flexibility of Thunderbolt 2 connectivity and the power to use it comprehensively, supporting multi-stream, uncompressed 4K video and bus-powered daisy chains.

Kingston Digital Ships 960 GB Business-Class SSD

Kingston Digital, Inc., the Flash memory affiliate of Kingston Technology Company, Inc., the independent world leader in memory products, today announced the 960 GB KC310 solid-state drive, its largest business-class SSD. KC310 is a true HDD replacement as its large capacity allows users to store more data and applications. Powered by a Phison S10 quad-core, eight-channel controller, KC310 provides unsurpassed SATA Rev. 3.0 (6Gb/s) performance delivering high read/write speeds and IOPS.

KC310 is an ideal SSD for entry-level servers and datacenter hosting companies looking for more storage. The drive provides end-to-end data protection through Advanced SmartECC and Flash error code correction. Data can be rebuilt in the event of an error allowing for extended NAND durability and reliability. The addition of firmware-based power loss protection helps maintain data integrity as data is constantly moved to NAND to minimize the amount of time it stays in the cache.
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