Reviews

Date: Sep 15th 2005
Author: W1zzard
In: Video Cards
NVIDIA nForce4 Update Presentation

This 26-page presentation from NVIDIA talks about their new nForce4 variants, called GeForce 6150 and GeForce 6100. Both have integrated VGA. The new high-end dual PCI-Express x16 part is also briefly mentioned.

8.2
Date: Sep 14th 2005
Author: W1zzard
In: Motherboards
ABIT AL8

ABIT has engineered the AL8 for Intel Socket775 to be a good compromise between features, performance and price. Apart from the standard features, the motherboard has Gigabit Ethernet, an extra SATA controller, 8 Channel Audio and ABIT's uGuru. We also found out why other reviewers could not overclock past 220 FSB and describe how to fix it. Our best result was 4568 MHz @ 326 FSB.

8.6
Date: Sep 12th 2005
Author: Steven B
In: Cases
Lian-Li PC-65B

Featuring a sleek and chic brushed aluminum shell the Lian Li PC-65b is all anyone could wish for in a mid tower. With the ability to remove the motherboard and PSU in just a couple seconds. Lian Li is known for their elegant and classy cases, they are designed and built to carry on the motto: a purchase you'll never regret.

7.9
Date: Sep 8th 2005
Author: W1zzard
In: Watercooling
Thermaltake Aquabay M3

Thermaltake's Aquabay M3 watercooling reservoir is mounted in one 5.25" drive bay. It has a water level indicator and comes with all accessories required for installation. It was designed to go with Thermaltake's watercooling, but works with other systems as well. Its incredible price of about $25 makes it a great accessory for watercooling owners.

9.2
Date: Sep 5th 2005
Author: //mAr
In: Memory
Crucial Ballistix Tracer DDR PC4000

Unlike all other memory manufacturers who merely buy DDR-chips and solder them on PCBs of other manufacturers, Crucial builds their own memory chips and PCB. On the Tracer PC4000 you will also find unique leds for a good look. Although Crucial/Micron is not very known for overlocking RAM we will do an xtreme overclocking test with high voltages and try to determine if they are a good alternative to sticks with Samsung TCCDs or low latency modules like Winbond UTT BH-5/CH-5.

8.2
Date: Sep 4th 2005
Author: W1zzard
In: Memory
OCZ EL DDR PC-4800 Platinum Elite

OCZ has released the PC4800 Elite Edition in reply to user's claims that their 4800 Platinum modules used Samsung TCC5 chips instead of TCCD. OCZ guarantees that only Samsung TCCD chips are used on the PC-4800 Platinum Elite, but at a higher cost. These modules are specified to run both 2-2-2-5 and 2.5-4-4-10 timings. At the CL2.5 setting up to a whopping DDR600.

7.8
Date: Aug 28th 2005
Author: W1zzard
In: Watercooling
Thermaltake Aquabay M1

Watercoolers often wonder: "How much water do I have in the system?", "Is my flow rate ok?". Thermaltake's Aquabay M1 watercooling reservoir with fill level and flowrate indicator will help you answer this question. It is mounted into two 5.25" drive bays and is compatible with any watercooling system.

8.5
Date: Aug 17th 2005
Author: W1zzard
In: External HDDs
Thermaltake Muse 3.5" HDD Enclosure

If you are a person who is (physically) moving a lot of data around, you have only a few options: USB stick, notebook or USB HDD. A notebook is quite expensive, big and heavy and USB sticks might not provide enough capacity for you. With the Thermaltake Muse 3.5" external HDD enclosure you can put your old IDE harddisks back at use. It supports fast USB2.0 transfers with speeds of up to 480 Mbps.

7.0
Date: Aug 11th 2005
Author: W1zzard
In: Motherboards
ECS RS400-A

ECS has built the RS400-A motherboard around ATI's RADEON XPRESS200 chipset for the Intel LGA Socket 775 platform. Keeping cost down was a driving factor during development of this board. It can be used with DDR1 or DDR2 memory modules. Also available are slots for PCI-Express x16 and AGP. This board looks like an upgrader's dream, but does it offer the performance enthusiasts want?

8.6
Date: Aug 2nd 2005
Author: W1zzard
In: Memory
OCZ DDR2 PC2-4200 Value Pro

OCZ has geared their DDR2 Value Pro towards "mainstream desktop users". We had the DDR2 PC2-4200 Value Pro modules on our testbench and were surprised by how far we could overclock this memory. Close to DDR2-750 at stock voltage is certainly not mainstream. Timings could also be tightened from 4-4-4-8 to 3-3-2-4. Great results, especially if you consider the price of $120 for a 2x512MB kit.

9.2
Date: Aug 1st 2005
Author: //mAr
In: Memory
Mushkin DDR Redline XP4000

After the success of the old "BH-5" PC3500 LVL2, Mushkin tries to continue the success story with the new Redline XP4000. They select the best Winbond UTT CH-5 and use them on these modules to have a big clearance above the specifications. The modules offer 250 MHz with tightest timings of 2-2-2, but require active cooling. We test these sticks at up to 3.5V and see how far they go.

8.0
Date: Jul 31st 2005
Author: W1zzard
In: CPU Coolers
Thermaltake Golden Orb II

Quite some time ago Thermaltake produced the Golden Orb CPU Cooler. Now the successor Golden Orb II is released for Socket939 and LGA775. It features a huge heatsink with a nice looking gold-fin design and two blue LEDs which light up the cooler during operation. Is it as cool as it looks?

9.2
Date: Jul 30th 2005
Author: W1zzard
In: Motherboards
Sapphire PURE Innovation PI-A9RX480

When it comes to ATI video cards, Sapphire is one of the top, if not the number one manufacturer. After their tremendous success with video cards, they are now entering the motherboard business. Sapphire's PI-A9RX480 is based on the ATI RX480 chipset and is specifically developed to fit the needs of overclockers and enthusiasts. The BIOS shines when it comes to overclocking options. For example DDR Voltage can be selected up to 4.0 V.

8.5
Date: Jul 27th 2005
Author: W1zzard
In: Memory
OCZ EL DDR PC-3500 Gold GX

If you ask an overclocker "Best memory chips ever?" you will most probably get the reply "Winbond BH5". Unfortunately Winbond stopped production some time in 2003 and supply of these chips was running dry pretty fast. Now Winbond is back with their BH5 UTT and OCZ has built the PC-3500 Gold Gamer Extreme modules with it. The modules run at aggressive timings of 2-2-2-5 and offer a lifetime warranty for up to 3.1V memory voltage.

9.5
Date: Jul 23rd 2005
Author: W1zzard
In: VGA Coolers
Arctic Cooling ATI Silencer 5 Rev. 2

Video card cooling specialists Arctic Cooling have listened to the user's reports and released the ATI Silencer 5 Revision 2. This VGA cooler, which is designed to fit on ATI's X800 and X850 PCI-Express was built with high-performance in mind, while keeping sound levels at an acceptable level. We test the cooler against an X850 Pro which already has a big fan, a copper base and cools memory as well.

8.3
Date: Jul 19th 2005
Author: W1zzard
In: Motherboards
ECS KN1 SLI Extreme

At this year's Computex in Taiwan, ECS announced the big brother of the successful KN1 Extreme Motherboard - the ECS KN1 SLI Extreme. It is based on NVIDIA's nForce4 SLI chipset and aims at delivering an affordable SLI motherboard, while still having features like Dual Ethernet and IEEE1394. During all our testing the KN1 SLI showed excellent performance, but can it deliver the overclocking the enthusiasts want?

9.5
Date: Jul 14th 2005
Author: W1zzard
In: Motherboards
DFI LanParty UT NF4 Ultra-D

The DFI LanParty series is legendary among overclockers. We haven't seen any other board offer that many overclocking features. For example, being able to your run your memory at voltages of more than 3.3V is pretty unique. A well thought out components layout and little on-board switches make overclockers happy.

8.7
Date: Jul 7th 2005
Author: W1zzard
In: Motherboards
Albatron K8SLI

The Albatron K8SLI is a budget oriented Socket939 motherboard based on NVIDIA's nForce4 SLI chipset. While it has been designed with cost in mind, performance has not been left out. Innovative features like second BIOS on an external add-in card and automatic SLI switch make this board easy to use. Overclocking possibilites are good as well, we managed to reach a maximum FSB of 390 MHz.

7.4
Date: Jun 29th 2005
Author: W1zzard
In: Memory
OCZ EL DDR PC-3200 Titanium

OCZ is known as a memory manufacturer who produces high-end enthusiast memory. The recently released Titanium Line is more focused on stability of operation, than for overclockers. It features OCZ's Lifetime PowerSwap Warranty which is a unique feature to the Titanium Series. If your memory breaks at any time, you call up OCZ and they will send out a replacement via Fedex on the same day. Once you got your system up and running you ship the defective memory back to them within two weeks.

8.0
Date: Jun 12th 2005
Author: W1zzard
In: Motherboards
Albatron PX925XE Pro-R

Albatron has built a competitively priced motherboard, which is based on Intel's high-end i925XE chipset. It comes completely passive cooled, only the CPU fan is producing noise, making it a good Media PC motherboard.

9.0
Date: Jun 6th 2005
Author: W1zzard
In: Motherboards
ABIT Fatal1ty AA8XE

Abit, one of the top manufacturers for enthusiast motherboards, has asked the Pro-Gamer Jonathan Fatal1ty Wendel for ideas on making a top-notch gaming board. The Fatal1ty AA8XE is an awesome overclocking motherboard for Intel Pentium 4 LGA775, it offers loads of features geared towards the hardware enthusiast and gamers. We could overclock our P4 CPU by over 50% for a final clock of 4514 MHz @ 323 FSB.

Date: May 23rd 2005
Author: W1zzard
In: Other
Sapphire Factory Tour

We had the honor to be the first journalists to visit Sapphire's factory where most ATI video cards are produced. This report will take you through all stages of video card production and show many interesting details on how a video card is build.

7.5
Date: May 19th 2005
Author: W1zzard
In: Power Supplies
Thermaltake TWV500

Thermaltake has put together a nice package consisting of a PSU with modular cables, a 5.25" drive bay real-time Watts Viewer and an additional 120mm case fan.

9.0
Date: May 16th 2005
Author: W1zzard
In: Memory
OCZ DDR2 PC2-5400 Platinum EB

Right now, DDR2 is only available to the Intel Platform. The biggest drawback people are complaining about, is that DDR2 is running at slower timings than traditional DDR. That is why OCZ, who have always been designing products with the enthusiast in mind, came up with a memory that can run at 667 MHz but at tighter timings than the standard JEDEC Spec. The maximum clock we could get out of the memory at 2.4V was DDR726 at Timings of 4-2-2-8.

8.3
Date: May 14th 2005
Author: //mAr
In: Processors
AMD Athlon64 3800+ Venice

AMD has released a new revision of their Athlon64 S939, the code name is Venice. Venice is produced in 90nm, has 512KB Cache and is clocked betwen 1.8 GHz and 2.4 GHz. We test it against the Winchster and two Pentium4 systems.