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PCI-SIG Releases PCI Express M.2 Specification Revision 1.0

PCI-SIG, the organization responsible for the widely adopted PCI Express (PCIe) industry-standard input/output (I/O) technology, today announced the release of the PCIe M.2 Specification Revision 1.0 to its members. A next-generation form factor for ultra-light and thin platforms, the latest M.2 architecture increases design flexibility to support high-end performance and enhanced data rates for power-constrained platforms. In addition, it enables the higher integration of functions onto a single form factor module solution.

As a natural progression from PCIe Mini Card and PCIe Half Mini Card, the smaller M.2 form factor is designed to meet future market requirements for applications in thin mobile platforms, such as tablets, portable gaming devices, smartphones and devices requiring SSDs. Its extensible design provides scalability for multiple technologies and host interfaces, including Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, SSD and WWAN.

Axiomtek Announces New 18.5-inch PCAP Panel Computer

Axiomtek presents a new 18.5 WXGA TFT widescreen fanless multi-touch panel computer, the GOT3187W-832-PCT. It comes with the extraordinary easy-to-deploy modulized design which allows easy deployment and maintenance. The 18.5-inch projected capacitive multi-touch screen further enhances mutual interactive experience. The sleek panel computer uses Intel Atom Cedarview processor D2550 at 1.86 GHz with Intel NM10 Express chipset, offering an excellent balance between high graphics performance and low power consumption. The GOT3187W-832-PCT with a sleek ID and advanced touch experience is ideal for using in a variety of commercial and industrial applications such as the self-service kiosk in retail and control panel of machine in automation field.

Axiomtek develops a modulized design for the new GOT3000 series fanless touch computer to save operator cost & time, and further increases the possibility of additional function extension said Virgil Hsu, Product Manager of Product Marketing Division at Axiomtek. Moreover, this sleek touch panel computer offers a PCI Express Mini Card slot and a fixed rotational WLAN antenna (optional) available for wireless network connection in real time.

Audio Precision ASIO Driver Bypasses Windows Audio for Direct Testing of Pro-Audio IO

Audio Precision, the recognized standard in audio test, today demonstrated its new ASIO driver, used to bypass Windows audio when testing pro audio PC interfaces connected by USB, Firewire or PCI.

ASIO is a PC audio driver technology developed by Steinberg Media Technologies GmbH (and since adopted across the pro-audio industry) that allows audio software to communicate directly with connected audio hardware with extremely low latency, high channel count and bit-transparent transfer of data.

PCI-SIG Celebrates 20 Years of PCI I/O Leadership, New Technology Innovations Ahead

PCI-SIG DEVELOPERS CONFERENCE – PCI-SIG, the organization responsible for the widely adopted PCI Express (PCIe) industry-standard input/output (I/O) technology, today announced new updates to meet the evolving demands of a variety of computing markets from high-performance storage to ultra-thin and light mobile devices. Increased performance and new form factors frame the organization’s unique focus as it delivers new, innovative technologies built upon the 20-year legacy of the Peripheral Component Interface (PCI).

This year also marks 10 years of PCI Express specification development. As a leading standards organization, PCI-SIG is now turning its focus to driving I/O technology forward through advancements in PCIe-attached storage, new form factors and performance enhancements for the PCIe specification.

Fusion-io Powers Seven New Gen 2 HP IO Accelerators

Fusion-io today announced that it is enabling high performance database and virtualization solutions with seven new Fusion-powered HP IO Accelerator products for the industry-leading HP ProLiant and HP BladeSystem platforms. Integrated into HP ProLiant Generation 8 (Gen8) servers, the new HP IO Accelerators can boost application performance to address organizations' growing requirements to cost-effectively accelerate data-intensive applications.

To enable enterprises to cost-effectively enhance their data infrastructure, one or more HP IO Accelerators can be easily integrated within servers according to application and organizational needs. The HP IO Accelerators sit inside the server, directly on the PCIe bus with CPUs and Memory, rather than external to the server in a storage array being accessed over much slower links. The IO Accelerators boost applications by bypassing traditional storage controllers and unlocking trapped compute cycles.

X-ES Supports 3rd Generation Intel Core i7 Processor Across Product Line

Extreme Engineering Solutions, Inc. (X-ES) is supporting the 3rd generation Intel Core i7 processor across eight industry-standard form factors -- COM Express, 3U VPX, 6U VPX, 3U CompactPCI, 6U CompactPCI, VME, air-cooled PrPMC/XMC, and conduction-cooled PrPMC/XMC. The XPedite7470 3U VPX Single Board Computer (SBC) and XCalibur4401 6U CompactPCI SBC are the first products available from X-ES to support the 3rd generation Intel Core i7 processor.

3rd generation Intel Core i7 processors provide higher performance and lower power compared to 2nd generation Intel Core i7 processors. 3rd generation Intel Core i7 processors also include Intel HD Graphics with DirectX 11, supporting OpenGL 3.1 and OpenCL 1.1.

Cougar Announces Solution ATX Mid-Tower Chassis

COUGAR today announced global availability of their latest middle tower PC case focusing on attractive design and convenient every-day usage features at an affordable budget price point. The COUGAR Solution comes entirely black coated outside and inside, the honey-comb and mesh hybrid intake design creates a solid, rugged look with optimized ventilation characteristics.

As COUGAR is specifically targeting demanding enthusiast users and gamers, powerful high-end setups are always a major focus of attention when designing PC cases, power supplies or cooling fan solutions. Therefore, the COUGAR Solution offers a broad range of ventilation upgrade potential with up to 8 installable fans. But ventilation is more than just about fans. In order to optimize internal airflow, the COUGAR Solution has been created with a sophisticated, yet easy to use cable-routing in mind. The cable routing does not only ensure a clean inside of your system, but moreover allows your components to stay cool. In turn this also ensures a longer product life span.

SB-E: Enthusiast Full 8 Core Dual Socket Monsters On The Way Early 2012

The latest Sandy Bridge-E 6 core processors have just been released, to excellent reviews. However, the architecture is designed for 8 cores, so these current i7-3960X & i7-3930K processors actually contain those 8 cores, but with two turned off in order to enable them to fit within a manageable 130 W power envelope. Hence there's quite a bit more potential to be released and soon. Therefore, anyone looking to invest in the premium-priced SB-E platform right now, should note that these processors are at the initial C1 stepping and have the VT-d hardware virtualization issue and PCI-E 3.0 compatibility uncertainty. The VT-d problem will be a real show stopper where hardware acceleration of a virtual machine is a must, so it shouldn't be ignored.

VR-ZONE brings us news that the fully unlocked SB-E 8 core chips will be released as the long awaited Xeon E5 family of processors, which will be built on the C2 stepping, solving the above issues. However, being 8 core, these will be very power hungry indeed, consuming around 150 W at just 3 GHz with all 8 cores active and 20 MB of L3 cache. At 2.5 GHz though, the new processors are expected to fit within the 95 W power envelope.

Xigmatek Midgard II Gaming Chassis Released

The successor of the popular Midgard Mid-Tower is getting ready to step up to the plate. Xigmatek has once again managed to fill the Midgard II with a long list of unique features for the demanding PC enthusiast. Just to name a few: USB 3.0, a rubberised surface by the name of "Leather Touch", a hot-swap bay in the top, room for up to eight fans and a 280 mm radiator - all for an unbelievably low price!

When Xigmatek presented the original Midgard in 2009 as their first chassis, it managed to capture the hearts of PC users all over the world. The reviewers praised it, the users loved it. This secret behind its continuing success is quite simple: at the time, the Midgard was at the top of its game in terms of technical aspects by offering eSATA, hard drive trays and screw-less installation methods along with the possibility to route water cooling out the back of the chassis.

ZOTAC Announces GeForce GT 520 in PCI and PCIe x1 Interface Variants

ZOTAC International, a leading innovator and channel manufacturer, today expands the value GeForce GT 520 lineup with new PCI and PCI Express x1 form factors for users with pre-built systems that have limited expansion capabilities. The new ZOTAC GeForce GT 520 PCI and PCI Express x1 graphics cards breathe new life into older systems by delivering a performance punch and new video capabilities.

“Upgrading your graphics card is the easiest way to boost your system performance and gain new capabilities. The new ZOTAC GeForce GT 520 PCI and PCI Express x1 graphics cards shows that you can experience good graphics without upgrading the rest of your system,” said Carsten Berger, marketing director, ZOTAC International.

AMP SaberTooth M1 Line of mSATA SSD Drives are Fully JEDEC MO-300B Compliant

Active Media Products, a leading manufacturer of small form factor SSDs and DOMs, today announced a new line of SaberTooth M1 mini SATA (mSATA) SSD drives for notebook upgrades that deliver transfer speeds up to 160 MB/sec, write speeds of up to 80 MB/sec, and are fully compliant with the JEDEC MO-300B mSATA specification.

mSATA is a new JEDEC standard for small form factor SSDs based on the ubiquitous SATA-II, 3Gbps interface. Measuring only 2.0 x 1.2 inches (51 x 30 mm) mSATA SSDs are extremely small and lightweight. This very small and low cost package is perfectly suited for netbooks, notebooks and other ultra mobile computing devices. mSATA drives use an existing mini PCIe connector, but with a modified SATA pinout.

GIGABYTE Announces Entire 6 Series Ready to Support Native PCIe Gen. 3

GIGABYTE TECHNOLOGY Co., Ltd, a leading manufacturer of motherboards, graphics cards and computing hardware solutions today announced their entire range of 6 series motherboards are ready to support the next generation Intel 22nm CPUs (LGA1155 Socket) as well as offer native support for PCI Express Gen. 3 technology, delivering maximum data bandwidth for future discrete graphics cards.

Wanting to provide maximum upgradeability to customers, GIGABYTE has enabled native support for PCI Express Gen. 3 across the entire range of GIGABYTE 6 series motherboards, including the recently launched G1.Sniper 2 motherboard, when paired with Intel's next generation 22nm CPUs. By installing the latest BIOS for their 6 series motherboards today, users can be assured they are ready to take advantage of all the performance enhancements tomorrow's technologies have to offer.

Thermaltake Announces Dr. Power II Universal Digital Power Supply Tester

Thermaltake Technology, a leading computer components and power solutions brand, is more than ever committed to create a uniquely innovative and adventurous enthusiasm of been "committed to creating the perfect User experience”. The New Thermaltake Dr. Power II Universal Digital Power Supply Tester designs for DIY enthusiast and PC gamers with a builder-friendly philosophy to enable you to test and diagnose the power supply’s condition before damage occurs. Further impressive features of the new Dr. Power II Universal Digital Power Supply Tester included oversized LCD panel that accurately shows the value of each specific power rails and sets the latest standard in fast, easy and accurate PSU Tester. With the innovative design and unique style, the Dr. Power II Universal Digital Power Supply Tester evokes the next-generation legendry and is the number one choice for PC DIY enthusiasts worldwide.

Stealth Introduces New Low Powered Mini PC for Embedded and In-Vehicle Applications

Stealth.com Inc., a leader in the industrial computer and peripherals market has released a new ultra small PC designed specifically for in-vehicle/mobile/embedded applications. Stealth's model LPC-125LPM is a rugged small form PC that operates in extreme temperatures and is energy efficient, drawing less than 20 Watts in operational power.

Housed in a rugged aluminum enclosure this energy efficient & versatile PC measures out at only 4.0" x 6.1" x 1.45" (102mm x 155mm x 37mm) or about the size of a deck of playing cards. The Stealth Mini PC weighs in at a mere 1.2lbs or 0.54kg. The PC operates from 10-26V of DC power making it ideal for DC powered applications typically found in vehicles and mobile applications.

AMD Paves the Way for the Next Gen. of Supercharged Desktop PCs with 9-Series Chipset

AMD today launched its 9-Series chipset line-up today, helping PC builders to develop next generation high performance desktop platforms. The company also unveiled its 2011 HD Tablet Platform, based on the AMD Z-Series Accelerated Processing Unit (APU), enabling vivid media display and content creation capabilities for the fast-growing market of Microsoft Windows-based tablets. These new AMD products are designed to enable more immersive digital experiences for the PC and tablet markets.

“As consumer appetites for more compelling, lifelike visual experiences increase, there is greater need for high performance, smooth, vibrant graphics as well as unparalleled computing power,” said John Taylor, product marketing director, AMD. “From tablets to desktops, AMD is making powerful computing accessible to everyone.”

Active Media Products Ships 64GB PATA Mini PCI-E SSD Upgrade for Dell Mini 9

Active Media Products, a leader in DOMs and small form factor SSDs, today announced a new 64GB Mini PCI-E SSD designed specifically for Dell Inspiron Mini 9 upgrades that delivers substantially more storage space and dramatically faster performance than the Mini 9's default drive, as shown in the benchmark results below.

The SaberTooth AA SSD scored about 100% faster than the default SSD in Read speeds, and up to 9x faster in write speeds. The SaberTooth AA is one of the first available 64GB upgrades for the Mini 9, making it the highest density storage solution in this form factor. "This SSD answers the demand from many netbook users for bigger and faster storage options. We were able to reach the 64GB density by using the newest high capacity flash chips," stated Active Media Products VP of Sales, Jerry Thomson.

SPARKLE Announces GeForce GTX 580 Thermal Guru Graphics Card

SPARKLE Computer Co., Ltd., the professional VGA card manufacturer and supplier, today announced the SPARKLE GTX580 Thermal Guru Graphics Card with Effective Own Design Cooler, the ultimate DX11 3D monster from SPARKLE, which delivers intense performance and premium cooling effect for gamers who demand the best.

The SPARKLE GTX580 Thermal Guru Graphics Card is the latest new addition to SPARKLE’s GTX 580 Series. Its core and memory clock are 772 and 4008 MHz respectively. Designed specifically for gamers who demand the best, the SPARKLE GTX580 Thermal Guru Graphics Card is built with NVDIA GeForce GTX 580 GPU. Based on 40nm processor and advanced GDDR5 memory technology, it consists of ground-breaking features including Microsoft DirectX 11 and NVIDIA PhysX which lead to incredibly immersive HD gaming experience and unrivaled performance.

PCI-SIG Finalizes PCI-Express 3.0 Specifications

The PCI-SIG finalized the specifications of PCI-Express 3.0 bus, the latest version of PCI. Like PCI-Express 1.x and PCI-Express 2.x, PCI-E 3.0 is designed to be backwards-compatible with devices that use older versions of the bus. Keeping up with the major version trend, PCI-E 3.0 doubles the theoretical bandwidth. PCI-Express 3.0 can push 1 GB/s per lane, per direction, double that of PCI-E 2.0. A PCI-Express 3.0 x16 slot would hence have its cumulative bandwidth at 32 GB/s.

Apart from pure bandwidth increases, PCI-Express also uses the new 128b/130b data encoding scheme, which reduces protocol overhead significantly, allowing near-100% utilization of available bandwidth. To put this into perspective, PCI-Express 2.0 had a data-rate of 5 GT/s, but with its overhead, could only effectively transfer 4 GT/s. The new scheme allows utilization of all 8 GT/s of the bandwidth PCI-Express 3.0 has, resulting in a data-rate of 1 GB/s per lane, per direction. The PCI-E specification document is available to PCI-SIG members. It is expected that the first PCI-Express 3.0 compliant devices will come to be in 2011.

Sunbeamtech Announces Rheosmart Family of Fan Controllers

Sunbeamtech announced its Rheosmart family of single and multiple channel fan controllers. There are three parts, the Rheosmart PCI, Rheosmart 3, and Rheosmart 6. The Rheosmart PCI isn’t a PCI addon card, but just a fan controller board that occupies an expansion slot on the back of your case. It lets you control one fan channel with up to 30W of power, and also lets you select between PWM and voltage methods. The Rheosmart 3, as the name suggests, is a 3-channel controller, and occupies a 3.5” exposed drive bay. Lastly, there’s the six-channel Rheosmart 6, which occupies a 5.25” bay. PWM method lets the controller auto-adjust speeds based on system temperatures, under the motherboard’s control. Sunbeamtech did not give out pricing.
More pictures follow.

Intel Expands Intel Atom Processor-Based Platform to SOHO Storage Devices

Intel releases its first storage-optimized Intel Atom processor-based platform for the growing home and small office/home office storage markets. New single- and dual-core chip options provide performance scalability and flexibility and run on Microsoft Windows Home Server and Linux operating systems. Leading storage vendors LaCie, LG Electronics, QNAP, Synology and Thecus plan products based on the new Intel Atom processor-based platform. Intel Atom processors also introduced for embedded applications are ideal for multiple market segments including print imaging, digital security surveillance and industrial.

The energy-efficient platform consists of the Intel Atom processor D410 single-core or D510 dual-core and the Intel 82801IR I/O Controller, and delivers the processing performance and input/output (I/O) connectivity required to meet the throughput demands of leading storage vendors such as LaCie, LG Electronics, QNAP, Synology and Thecus.

Home server and SOHO network-attached storage (NAS) devices based on the new Intel Atom processor- based platform act as centralized hubs that organize, manage, protect and share documents, photos, videos and music throughout the home and small office. This makes it possible to keep digital content safe and available anytime, anywhere.

PCI-Express 3.0 Hits Backwards Compatibility Roadblock, Delayed

PCI-SIG (Special Interest Group), the organisation responsible for development of PCI specifications announced that generation 3 PCI-Express (PCI-E 3.0), is off its target launch time from late-2009 to Q2 2010. Although work on the bus is almost finished, there seems to be problems with implementing backwards-compatibility with older generations of PCI-E. Assuming PCI-E 3.0 is standardised in Q2 2010, one can expect implementing products (motherboards and expansion cards supporting PCI-E 3.0) only by a year later.

PCI-E 3.0 packs features that overcome the bottlenecks of PCI-E 2.0, such as the removal of the 8P/10b encoding scheme that added at least 20% data overhead for the 5 GT/s PCI-E 2.0, reducing it to 4 GT/s effective. At 8 GT/s the new bus will have effectively twice the bandwidth.Source: TechConnect Magazine

ASUS Unveils New Xonar HDAV1.3 Slim Sound Card

ASUS, a leading producer of home theater PC (HTPC) solutions, today added a new member to its HDAV family: the ASUS Xonar HDAV1.3 Slim sound card. The CES-award winning Xonar HDAV1.3 Series of audio cards has been credited for revolutionizing the world of HTPC by offering the world's first and only solution to bitstream true Blu-ray audio on the PC platform, and this new offering is no different.

ASUS Xonar Essence ST Audio Card with World’s First Precision Audio Clock Tuning

In its search for the purest essence of sound, ASUS have broken the boundaries with the newest soundcard on the market, the Xonar Essence ST. This PCI card is the world’s first audio card to incorporate precision clock tuning to minimize audio jitter, bringing the user a clearer, crisper listening experience. The Xonar Essence ST card can also be upgraded to 7.1 channel output with the use of the Xonar H6 multi-channel extension board, which will be sold separately in the near future.

The Xonar Essence ST is capable of achieving an industry-leading 124dB SNR (Signal-to-Noise Ratio) in signal clarity and offers a built-in headphone amplifier to obtain the best performance out of any available pair of headphones. Thanks to ASUS’ exclusive Hyper-grounding and EMI Shield design, even the most demanding audiophile will be satisfied with the unprecedented sound quality.

Novac Places 2.5 inch HDDs in Expansion Card Slots

In case you have completely run out of 3.5", and 5.25" drive bays to cram in the last of your hard drives, and have a few slots next to your RAID card left, you would probably like this enclosure. Novac designed what it calls "PCI mounting kit", that uses one expansion card slot to hold a 2.5" HDD. What's more, it even provides a door that allows users to add or remove the drive from behind the case, without having to remove it. This perhaps is also its biggest USP, as 2.5" drives, especially SSDs, are very pocketable. Novac plans to sell this for about $36 a piece.

Source: TechConnect Magazine

Albatron Launches Three PCI Low-Profile GeForce 8 Video Cards

If you're on the market, looking for a card that will work on most of today's PCs, you'd be surprised to know that Albatron is launching a trio of new PCI low-profile graphics cards. Yes they are PCI, not PCI-Express compatible and they are part of the GeForce 8 generation. The cards are dubbed PCI8600GT-256X, PCI8500GT-256X, PCI8400GS-256, and represent GeForce 8600 GT, 8500 GT and 8400 GS respectively. The first two cards come equipped with GDDR3 memory, 128-bit interface and HDMI connectivity while the PCI8400GS-256 makes use of GDDR2 chips, a 64-bit interface and has no HDMI. All three cards come with 256MB memory, DVI and TV-Out connectors.

Source: Albatron
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