Reviews

9.0
Date: Mar 25th 2006
Author: W1zzard
In: Motherboards
ASRock 939SLI32-eSATA2

ASRock did it again. The 939SLI32-eSATA is the killer budget board of 2006. It comes with two PCI-Express x16 slots and supports NVIDIA's SLI. Other new features are Gigabit Ethernet and support for eSATA. Also the overclocking has been polished some, the dreaded 275 MHz limit is gone and there are more memory timings options available. With a CPU socket upgrade card this board can even run with AMD's upcoming AM2 CPUs.

Date: Mar 24th 2006
Author: W1zzard
In: Video Cards
The Product Stack

In this presentation ATI talks about "The Product Stack" which is one way to measure how much bang you get for your buck. There is a comparison of different price segments against what the competition from NVIDIA has to offer. Also there is a hint of "cable-free CrossFire mode" with upcoming Catalyst 6.5.

9.3
Date: Mar 23rd 2006
Author: W1zzard
In: Memory
G.Skill F1-4000BIU2-2GBHV

G.SKILL presented their new 2GB F1-4000BIU2-2GBHV DDR memory kit at Cebit. If you are looking for a well overclocking 2GB memory kit you should definitely take a look. Even though it comes with CL3 timings, it will also run at CL2 and CL2.5. It can do all its overclocking magic at only 2.6V so this may be a good choice for users of budget motherboards which do not offer allow voltage adjustments in the BIOS.

9.2
Date: Mar 22nd 2006
Author: W1zzard
In: Memory
OCZ EL DDR2 PC2-6400 Platinum XTC

OCZ has been a technology leader in the overclocker's memory business for quite a while now. Their new DDR2 PC2-6400 Platinum XTC kit comes with stock timings of 4-5-4-15 which we could tighten down to 3-3-2-4 and still get some serious overclocking out of the memory.

Date: Mar 21st 2006
Author: W1zzard
In: Tradeshows
Cebit 2006: Day 6

Our Cebit coverage ends with reports from SiS, Asetek, Foxconn, Primecooler, Scythe, Arctic Cooling and NVIDIA. The highlights here are definitely the NVIDIA Quad-SLI and slides from the NVIDIA press conference.

Date: Mar 20th 2006
Author: W1zzard
In: Tradeshows
Cebit 2006: Day 5

In this Cebit report we have coverage of ASUS, Gigabyte, Elitegroup and MSI. With those names you can bet you will see a lot of AM2 motherboards. Also nice were ASUS' leather-covered notebooks.

Date: Mar 19th 2006
Author: W1zzard
In: Tradeshows
Cebit 2006: Day 4

Today we have Day 4 of our Cebit experience with the latest products from Biostar, ASRock, Sapphire and DFI. The highlights here are the various AMD Socket AM2 motherboards and Sapphire's HDMI+HDCP+Audio video card solution. Sapphire also showcased their Blizzard VGA watercooling which is based on a Thermaltake design.

Date: Mar 18th 2006
Author: W1zzard
In: Tradeshows
Cebit 2006: Day 3

In this Cebit report you will find coverage of Albatron, Corsair, Tyan, Akasa and Powercolor. One highlight is Albatron's new i975 motherboard which is designed to run with two PSUs and comes with 10 SATA ports and 7-phase CPU power.

Date: Mar 17th 2006
Author: W1zzard
In: Tradeshows
Cebit 2006: Day 2

Our second day of Cebit coverage includes the companies GeCube, Sparkle, Sirtec, AOpen, Zalman and ABIT. Among the highlights are dual-GPU X1600 from GeCube, quad-12V rail PSUs from Sirtec and overclocking with Crotale at ABIT's booth.

Date: Mar 16th 2006
Author: W1zzard
In: Tradeshows
Cebit 2006: Day 1

This is our Day 1 coverage of Cebit 2006, the biggest electronics expo in the world. We have reports from the memory manufacturers A-Data, G.SKILL, Kingmax, OCZ Technology and Patriot.

9.2
Date: Mar 15th 2006
Author: Zebbo
In: Cases
Thermaltake Matrix VX

The Matrix VX is a new budget case from Thermaltake with a great amount of features borrowed from high-end cases. It is specifically designed for LAN party users with full aluminum, screwless drive installation, two 120mm fans for case ventilation, side panel with large transparent plexiglass and net weight only of 3.8kgs.

9.4
Date: Mar 13th 2006
Author: Steven B
In: Memory
Mushkin 2GB XP2-5300 3-3-3

Mushkin has been making performance memory for enthusiasts for a long time. Today we have their new DDR2 XP2-5300 memory on the testbench. This 2 GB kit comes with tight timings of 3-3-3. It can even run at impressive 1000 MHz when the timings are relaxed to 5-5-5. The elegant black heatspreaders add to the excellent impression this memory left.

7.8
Date: Mar 6th 2006
Author: D_o_s
In: Video Cards
Powercolor X1300 Hypermemory 2

Powercolor (Tul's graphic card division) is no newcomer to the graphic card segment. Over the years, it has built up a strong reputation, which it is constantly improving. In the past weeks, we were all able to notice that Powercolor started offering a "lifetime" guarantee on their X1900 series cards. Today, we take a look at the opposite side of the X1000 spectrum - the low end X1300. But perhaps low end is not the correct word. The card comes pre-overclocked to a massive 600 MHz compared to ATI's default of 450 MHz. Using HyperMemory technology the VGA memory can be expanded from 128 MB to 512 MB.

8.0
Date: Mar 3rd 2006
Author: W1zzard
In: Motherboards
ASRock 775XFire-eSATA2

ASRock is a subsidiary of ASUS and manufactures low-cost motherboards. The ASRock 775XFire-eSATA2 for Intel Socket LGA775 is based on Intel's i945 chipset and can run ATI Crossfire. Due to a lack of PCI-E lanes in the Intel chipset this is only possible in x16/x4, but this board costs only USD 80.

8.9
Date: Mar 1st 2006
Author: W1zzard
In: Motherboards
ASUS A8R32-MVP Deluxe

ASUS was the first motherboard manufacturer to have an ATI Radeon Xpress 3200 motherboard ready. Some retailers even got their shipment early and were selling boards before the official Xpress 3200 launch. It seems ASUS has learned from the A8R-MVP and improved their board in many ways. If all boards with RD580 will work as good as the A8R32-MVP, NVIDIA better starts worrying.

Date: Feb 28th 2006
Author: W1zzard
In: Other
ATI Tech Day Seville: Breaking the world record

ATI held their european Xpress 32000 launch event at Seville, Spain. While the marketing people were showing off presentations and gave out technical info, Finnish overclockers Macci and Sampsa set out to break the 3DMark05 world record using the new chipset, a pair of X1900XTX and dry ice. We bring you exclusive coverage of the nightly overclocking session.

Date: Feb 28th 2006
Author: W1zzard
In: Motherboards
ATI Crossfire Xpress 3200 Preview

ATI, the company that is most known of their powerful and quality graphic card solutions, released their first Crossfire mainboard chipset with the RD480. Today they present the new Xpress 3200 chipset. The most important feature is support for x16/x16 PCI-Express when running in Crossfire mode. There are also a lot of other interesting changes.

8.7
Date: Feb 19th 2006
Author: D_o_s
In: Video Cards
Mad Moxx X800 GTO² Burstfire

German video card specialist Mad Moxx has released a special edition of the Sapphire X800 GTO². The Mad Moxx X800 GTO² Burstfire comes premodded with 16 pipelines out of the box. To improve cooling an Arctic Cooling ATI Silencer has been installed on the card. For paying a small premium over the regular Sapphire card you can stay away from BIOS modding, aftermarket cooler installation and voiding your warranty.

8.0
Date: Feb 18th 2006
Author: W1zzard
In: Memory
G.SKILL F1-3200PHU2-2GBNS PC3200

G.SKILL is well known in the community for making high-quality memory products which perform good and are not too expensive. The F1-32000PHU2-2GBNS 2GB DDR-400 kit is going for around $160 - one of the best prices for a 2 GB kit right now. For such a bargain price you would usually expect slow CL3 timings on memory. However, G.SKILL specifies this memory as 2.5-3-3-6 at only 2.6V.

8.2
Date: Feb 10th 2006
Author: W1zzard
In: Motherboards
AOpen i945Ga-PHS

AOpen is offering a wide range of products, many of them geared toward living room multimedia. The dual-core capable AOpen i945Ga-PHS is a motherboard designed to be used for building a Media PC. Its outstanding feature is integrated VGA with analog, TV and HDTV output without the need of any addon card. This gives you everything to build a very low profile Media PC.

Date: Feb 9th 2006
Author: W1zzard
In: Video Cards
X1900 Launch Analysis by NVIDIA

After ATI's launch of the X1900 Series the people at NVIDIA sat down and took a close look at where the weak points are and where NVIDIA's lineup is superior. This presentation compares X1900 performance against the 7800GTX and in the second part of the presentation tells us why SLI is superior to Crossfire.

8.8
Date: Feb 8th 2006
Author: Steven B
In: Other
Swiftech MCX159-CU

Swiftech has always been known for their innovative cooling solutions. Today we will take a look at their 100% copper chipset cooler: the MCX159-CU. Its creative design allows for greater heat dissipation in even the tightest spaces, and on almost all motherboards. Not only does it cool well but the included 40mm fan is also remarkably quiet.

9.3
Date: Feb 6th 2006
Author: W1zzard
In: Cases
Thermaltake Eureka

Thermaltake is making a variety of products for computer enthusiasts: cases, coolers, power supplies, water cooling and other accessories. The Thermaltake Eureka is their latest full-tower case. It has a solid front door and is made from all aluminum with a brushed metal look. Sliding drive rails and tool free drive cages make installation easy. A removable motherboard tray completes the feature set of this high-end case.

8.6
Date: Feb 5th 2006
Author: W1zzard
In: CPU Coolers
Scythe Samurai Z

Japanese heatsink manufacturer Scythe has engineered a nice heatsink with the Samurai Z. It includes mounting accessories for Socket 478, 775, 754, 939 and 940. On all these platforms installation is very easy and can be performed without any tools. While the cooler can not offer the cooling performance of behemoth coolers, it can keep up well with the heat load of our test setup. In addition to that it is remarkably quiet.

8.9
Date: Feb 1st 2006
Author: W1zzard
In: Motherboards
ABIT AT8

ABIT is one of the most popular motherboard manufacturers for enthusiasts and gamers. Their products are full of innovations like UGuru or SilentOTES. The AT8 is the latest Crossfire capable board from ABIT and uses ATI's RD480 chipset. As southbridge the ULI M1575 is used. What makes this board even more interesting is its competitive price which will lie in the USD 120 range.