Friday, August 14th 2020

Today's Reviews

Cases
CPU Coolers
Gaming PC
Graphics Cards
Headphones
Keyboards
Motherboards
Mouse
Notebooks
Processors
SSD
Crucial P5 1 TB M.2 NVMe SSD Review

Crucial P5 1 TB M.2 NVMe SSD Review

Crucial's P5 M.2 SSD is finally a design for the high-end NVMe market. The drive uses a completely new controller made by Micron we've never seen before. While synthetic results are just alright, the real-life performance numbers in our Crucial P5 review paint a much better picture.

Micron Also Announces Development of HBMnext

Continuing from the Micron tech brief we shared earlier, a new interesting prospect for the future of ultra-bandwidth solutions is being called simply HBMnext. It's very likely this is only a working title for a next generation HBM memory interface, whether it is a mere evolution of HBM2e or HBM3 proper. The jump in memory speed from HBM2e to HBMnext is being placed at the 0.8 Gbps level, with an actual rate of 3.2 Gbps - which is higher than the improvement from HBM2 to HBM2e (0.4 Gbps, from 2.0 Gbps to 2.4 Gbps). Users shouldn't expect to see HBMnext on any products soon, though; it's only expected to launch come 2022.

Micron Confirms Next-Gen NVIDIA Ampere Memory Specifications - 12 GB GDDR6X, 1 TB/s Bandwidth

Micron have spilled the beans on at least some specifications for NVIDIA's next-gen Ampere graphics cards. In a new tech brief posted by the company earlier this week, hidden away behind Micron's market outlook, strategy and positioning, lie some secrets NVIDIA might not be too keen to see divulged before their #theultimatecountdown event.

Under a comparison on ultra bandwidth solutions, segregated into the GDDR6X column, Micron lists a next-gen NVIDIA card under the "RTX 3090" product name. According to the spec sheet, this card features a total memory capacity of 12 GB GDDR6X, achieved through 12 memory chips with a 384-bit wide memory bus. As we saw today, only 11 of these seem to be populated on the RTX 3090, which, when paired with specifications for the GDDR6X memory chips being capable of 19-21 Gbps speeds, brings total memory subsystem bandwidth towards the 912 - 1008 GB/s range (using 12 chips; 11 chips results in 836 GB/s minimum). It's possible the RTX 3090 product name isn't an official NVIDIA product, but rather a Micron-guessed possibility, so don't look at it as factual representation of an upcoming graphics card. One other interesting aspect from the tech brief is that Micron expects their GDDR6X technology to enable 16 Gb (or 2 GB) density chips with 24 Gbps bandwidth, as early as 2021. You can read over the tech brief - which mentions NVIDIA by name as a development partner for GDDR6X - by following the source link and clicking on the "The Demand for Ultra-Bandwidth Solutions" document.

GoodOffer24 Discounts on Genuine Windows 10 and Office 2019 Rolls On

GoodOffer24 extends its Software Deal on genuine, globally-valid software, helping you build a powerful home office on the cheap. Get Genuine, globally-valid Windows 10 Pro for 10.39€. Businesses can buy Genuine Windows 10 Enterprise LTSC for 9.86€ a pop, and upgrade their infrastructure while minimizing their capex. Got a couple of PCs at home? Pick the Windows 10 Pro twin-pack for 15.39€. Office 2019 Professional Plus is the most powerful productivity suite in the market, powering home-office and home-learning experiences par none. Get it for 30.09€. Combine Windows 10 Pro and Office 2019 Professional for just 36.39€. Also check out great deals on Office 2016, Windows 10 Home, and various other software bundles.

Don't forget to apply the TechPowerUp-exclusive coupon code TP30 at check-out to avail the prices you see here.

Buy Windows 10 Pro for 10.39€ | Buy Windows 10 Enterprise LTSC for 9.86€ | Buy Windows 10 Pro 2-pack for 15.39€ | Buy Windows 10 Home for 10.31€ | Buy Office 2016 Professional Plus for 30.79€ | Buy Windows 10 Pro + Office 2016 Professional for 38.49€ | Buy WIndows 10 Home + Office 2016 Professional for 39.69€ | Buy Office 2019 Professional Plus for 30.09€ | Buy Windows 10 Pro + Office 2019 Professional for 36.39€

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 "Ampere" Alleged PCB Picture Surfaces

As we are getting close to September 1st, the day NVIDIA launches its upcoming GeForce RTX graphics cards based on Ampere architecture, we are getting even more leaks. Today, an alleged PCB of the NVIDIA's upcoming GeForce RTX 3090 has been pictured and posted on social media. The PCB appears to be a 3rd party design coming from one of NVIDIA's add-in board (AIB) partners - Colorful. The picture is blurred out on the most of the PCB and has Intel CPU covering the GPU die area to hide the information. There are 11 GDDR6X memory modules covering the surrounding of the GPU and being very near it. Another notable difference is the NVLink finger change, as there seems to be the new design present. Check out the screenshot of the Reddit thread and PCB pictures below:
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 PCB NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 PCB NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 PCB
More pictures follow:

Fortnite Gets Kicked Out From Google and Apple App Stores, Epic Games Files a Lawsuit

Today, Epic Games has decided to file a lawsuit against both Apple and Google after both companies removed Fortnite form their platform app stores (Google Play and Apple App Store). Firstly, Apple has decided to remove the Fortnite app to form its App Store because the game violated the company's policy that all in-game payments must go through the Apple App Store system, instead of them being processed directly. That means that Apple can also apply its 30% cut on all the payments made in-game. After Apple has revoked the Fortnite app, Epic Games has decided to file a lawsuit that aims to fight the company's monopoly and make the iOS platform more developer-friendly. Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney said that Epic will not seek or accept any special deal that Apple may offer, but rather wants to fight for all developers.

Just hours after Apple decided to pull the Fortnite game from its App Store, Google has also removed the game from its Google Play Store. Google's Play Store policy about in-app payments says that all games must use Google Play in-app billing if they want to process payments, so Fortnite was pulled from it as well. In light of that move, Epic Games has also filed a lawsuit against Google on the same terms. The company wants to fight both Apple and Google in court and make them be more developer-friendly, especially Apple. We have to wait and see how the case progresses. Being that Apple is almost a $2 trillion company, it can surely afford lots of good lawyers, just as Google will. We want to express our support for Epic Games for going in the right direction, as we do need more open ecosystems.

Sid Meier's Civilization VI Officially Ported to Android Devices

Sid Meier's Civilization VI is the latest turn-based strategy in the series launching back in 2016, the game has made its way onto various platforms including Windows, macOS, Linux, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, iOS, and now Android. The game is available through the Google Play store as shareware with a 20 USD fee to play past turn 60, "Rise and Fall" and "Gathering Storm" expansions are also available for 30 USD and 40 USD respectively. There are a variety of scenario packs also available for 5-9 USD, this pricing is consistent across mobile versions.

The game has received mixed to positive reviews mainly due to compatibility issues, the game requires a modern device to run smoothly especially in the late game. The animations have been simplified or removed along with the addition of a 30fps frame rate cap to help improve performance which given the genre is fine.

BIOSTAR Announces B450NH Mini-ITX Motherboard

BIOSTAR, a leading brand of motherboards, graphics cards, and storage devices, today proudly announces the B450NH Mini-ITX motherboard. Designed based on AMD's B450 single chip architecture, the new B450NH motherboard from BIOSTAR is sleek and convenient, coming in a Mini-ITX form factor suitable for builds with smaller footprint that saves desk space as well as being easy to move around.

The BIOSTAR B450NH motherboard carries AMD's AM4 socket built to support the latest and greatest AMD Ryzen CPU / APU range, with features like PCIe M.2 32 Gb/s delivering 5 times faster bandwidth under lower latency compared to SATA III 6 Gb/s further enhancing the potential of this amazing motherboard. Suitable for many applications like casual content consumption or gaming, the B450NH motherboard is packed with all the essential tools to be a great platform for many applications with features like the capability to support up to 64Gb of DDR4 RAM on 2DIMMS with 4000 MHz OC capability.

Xe HPG is Real, Intel's Gaming GPU Releases in 2021, without HBM

Intel on Thursday at its 2020 Architecture Day event announced a high performance gaming variant of its Xe graphics architecture, which it calls Xe HPG. The Xe architecture is designed to scale between tiny iGPUs and mobile discrete GPUs as Xe LP, up to scalar compute processors under Xe HP, and beyond to HPCs and supercomputers, under Xe HPC. The combination of the client graphics feature-set of Xe LP, with the scale of Xe HP, results in Xe HPG. Intel is designing Xe HPG for a third-party semiconductor foundry, and hopes to debut it in 2021.

In our older graphics detailing the Xe LP, we tried to explain just how easy it is for Intel scale up the iGPU to a discrete GPU SoC. This is done by simply dialing up the Xe slices, and dropping in dGPU ancillaries such as a PCI-Express host interface and memory controllers for the prevalent client-segment discrete graphics, namely GDDR6. There will be additional components, such as ray-tracing hardware. Intel is gunning for DirectX 12 Ultimate logo compliance, and ray-tracing forms a big part of that.
Thursday, August 13th 2020

Intel "Willow Cove" Core, Xe LP iGPU, and "Tiger Lake" SoC Detailed

A lot is riding for Intel on its 11th Gen Core "Tiger Lake" system-on-chip (SoC), which will launch exclusively on mobile platforms, hoping to dominate the 7 W thru 15 W ultraportable form-factors in 2020, while eventually scaling up to the 25 W thru 45 W H-segment form-factors in 2021, with a variant that is rumored to double core-counts. The chip is built on Intel's new 10 nm SuperFin silicon fabrication node that enables a double digit percentage energy efficiency growth over 10 nm, allowing Intel to significantly dial up clock speeds without impacting the power envelope. The CPU and iGPU make up the two key components of the "Tiger Lake" SoC.

The CPU component on the "Tiger Lake" processors that launch in a few weeks from now features four "Willow Cove" CPU cores. Coupled with HyperThreading, this ends up being a 4-core/8-thread setup, although much of Intel's innovation is in giving these cores significant IPC increases over the "Skylake" core powering "Comet Lake" processors, and compared to the "Sunny Cove" cores powering "Ice Lake" a minor IPC (although major net performance increase from clock speeds). The "Willow Cove" CPU core appears to be a derivative of the "Sunny Cove" core, designed to take advantage of the 10 nm SuperFin node, along with three key innovations.

Intel 10nm SuperFin Process Goes up Against TSMC 7nm

Intel on Thursday made several technological disclosures about its latest silicon fabrication process, the 10 nm SuperFin. With this, the company is changing the nomenclature of its node refinements, away from the ## nm++ naming scheme (with each "+" denoting a refinement, or internode), to a more descriptive naming scheme. The new 10 nm SuperFin node is the first refinement of the company's 10 nm node that debuted with the company's 10th Gen Core "Ice Lake" processors last year, and promises energy efficiency in the ballpark of 7 nm-class nodes by competitors TSMC and Samsung. While past generations of internodes (refinements) delivered energy efficiency improvements of around 3-5%, 10 nm SuperFin offers the kind of improvements expected from a brand new node, according to Intel.

The 10 nm SuperFin node is composed of two key innovations, the SuperMIM capacitor and a redesigned FinFET transistor. The new SuperMIM (metal insulator metal) capacitor offers a 5x increase in capacitance compared to devices in this class. The redesigned FinFET introduces a new barrier that reduces via resistance by 30%. Combined, the 10 nm SuperFin node affords chips a V/F curve comparable to a die-shrink to a whole new silicon fabrication node, without any change in transistor density. The first product built on 10 nm SuperFin is the upcoming Core "Tiger Lake" processor addressing the client-segment. The company is already working on enhancements of this node relevant for data-center processors.

Embracer Group Acquires Metro Exodus Developer 4A Games, Other Developers

Embracer Group, parent company of THQ Nordic, has been on a roll of IP and developer embracings in the past years, and has now added quite the independent heavyweight to its belt. 4A Games, best known for the Metro games franchise, has been acquired by the group. 4A Games will undoubtedly continue work on another installment of the Metro franchise, which has the original author of the novels the games are based on, Dmitry Glukhovsky, attached to the project as writer. In addition to 4A Games, Embracer Group has also acquired DECA Games, New World Interactive, Palindrome Interactive, Pow Wow Entertainment, Sola Media, Rare Earth Games, and Vermila Studios.
"With the acquisition of 4A Games, Saber Interactive is locking-up one of the best indie studios in the industry with the potential and capacity to take on another AAA project and are also internalizing the value of existing and future IPs into the Group. Saber solidifies its position as a leader in the CIS and Ukrainian game developer market. Combining our technology and capabilities with 4A Games presents tremendous opportunity for growth and expansion."

Matt Karch, CEO Saber Interactive and Director of the Embracer Board

Microsoft's New Windows Update Allows GPU Selection According to Workload

Microsoft's future update to Windows 10 will add a GPU-aware selector that allows both the OS and the user to adaptively select the best GPU for each usage scenario. The preview release of Windows 10 build 20190 features this in two ways. First is an OS-level layer that automagically selects the best GPU for the task at hand between installed options (let's assume, an Intel iGPU and your discrete GPU). For web browsing or productivity it's expected the OS will switch to the less power-hungry option, whilst for gaming and its all-cylinders philosophy, it would launch the discrete option.

However, if you're not much into ceding that kind of control to the OS itself, you can override which specific GPU is activated for a specific application. This change is made via the Settings panel with a drop down menu in Graphics Settings. This feature should be a particular boon for laptops that don't feature a power-saving technology that enables this kind of behavior, but there are some other usages for power users that might come in handy with this OS-level integration.

Razer Relaunches the Left-Handed Naga Gaming Mouse

Razer today has "relaunched" the Razer Naga, a southpaw gaming mouse the company had previously released and then discontinued back in 2014 due to a "lack of demand", as the company put it at the time. The updated Razer Naga has been especially geared for MMO gaming, featuring 12 programmable buttons on the rodent's right side for easy thumb access, as well as two additional buttons below the wheel (in addition to the usual left and right click buttons, with the wheel offering another three input options besides scroll). this means the mouse features a total of 19 programmable buttons.

The new Naga features Razers' in-house Razer Focus+ Optical, which means a maximum of 20,000 CPI, maximum speed of 650 IPS and a maximum 60G of acceleration. Razers' in-house mechanical switches make an appearance, as well as support for 5 different profiles. The mouse comes in at 3.84 ounces (109 grams) and offers support to the usual Razer software such as Razer Synapse and Razer Chroma RGB products. The mouse is also supported by the Xbox One. The Razer Naga Left-Handed Edition carries an MSRP of $99.99,

Update Aug 15th: Razer reached out to us and confirmed that the price is $99.99, not $89.99 as originally written in our post.

Total War Saga: Troy to Be Free on Launch Day via EPIC Games Store

(Update 13AUG2020: The game is now available for free on the EPIC Games Store platform, so make sure to go there and add it your basket STAT.)

Here's EPIC kicking up its free game offerings up several notches at once. Sega and Creative Assembly, developers of the user and critically-acclaimed Total War videogames, have announced that their latest release on that series, titled Total War Saga: Troy, will be available on launch day, August 13th, when it launches exclusively on EPIC Games Store. Based on Homers' Illiad, "A Total War Saga: TROY focuses on the historical flashpoint of the Trojan War, bringing the conflict to life as never before."

A caveat: the game will only be available for free in the first 24 hours following launch. Any claims after that will be met with the games' real price-tag. How's that for EPIC Games Store exclusivity deals? Check the games' trailer and confirmation of this promotion after the break.

Intel Delivers Advances Across 6 Pillars of Technology, Powering Our Leadership Product Roadmap

At Intel, we truly believe in the potential of technology to enrich lives and change the world. This has been a guiding principle since the company was founded. It started with the PC era, when technology enabled the mass digitization of knowledge and networking, bringing 1 billion people onto the internet. Then came the mobile and cloud era, a disruption that changed the way we live. We now have over 10 billion devices connected to supercomputers in the cloud.

We believe the next era will be the intelligent era. An era where we will experience 100 billion intelligent connected devices. Exascale performance and architecture will make this intelligence available to all, enriching our lives in more ways than we can imagine today. This is a future that inspires and motivates me and my fellow Intel architects every day.

Trust Launches Four New Affordable True Wireless Headphones and Earbuds

Leading value-for-money digital lifestyle accessories brand, Trust Electronics Ltd, is pleased to introduce its newest launches, the Nika Touch and Primo Touch Bluetooth Wireless Earphones, and the Tones and Eaze Bluetooth Wireless Headphones. The new launches offer the ultimate true wireless experience for an incredibly affordable price.

Combining great sound, an extra-long wireless range, portable charging capabilities and a premium, on-trend design, the Nika Touch offers a fantastic listening experience that is ideal for those who are always on-the-go. With a wireless range of 10 metres and Bluetooth 5.0, the earphones make listening to music or taking calls as convenient as possible, without the risk of losing connection. The earphones provide up to 6 hours of playtime from a single charge, however the carry case included with the earphones gives on-the-go charging, making the total playtime of the earphones up to 16 hours; ideal for long working days and traveling. With a stylish design, a secure silicone fit, touch controls and a built in microphone, the Nika Touch is a fantastic option for those looking for an affordable, ultimate true wireless experience.

ASRock A520M Pro4 Motherboard Pictured, A520 Platform Lacking PCIe Gen4 Confirmed

Here's the first picture of an ASRock A520M Pro4 Micro-ATX Socket AM4 motherboard based on AMD's upcoming A520 entry-level chipset that succeeds the A320. The picture reveals a spartan, well laid out motherboard that appears to cover all the segment essentials needed for entry-level builds using AMD's Athlon 3000 processors, or Ryzen 3000 and 4000G processors. Among its segment first features are the inclusion of two M.2 slots, from which one is wired to the AM4 socket, and includes an SSD heatsink. The board also features an M.2 E-key slot so you can add a WLAN card (provision for rear-panel antennae also offered). USB connectivity includes a type-C port on the rear panel. Surprisingly, the only display output is a D-Sub. Perhaps there are variants of this board that come with HDMI or DP.

Another striking detail from this VideoCardz-sourced picture is the printed marking near the top M.2 NVMe slot (wired to the processor) which reads "PCIe Gen 3 x4." On AMD B550 based motherboards, ASRock marks this as "PCIe Gen 4 x4." This is a confirmation of the AMD A520 platform being segmented from the B550 with lack of PCI-Express gen 4.0 support. The lack of gen 4.0 ancillaries could slim the bill of materials for motherboard manufacturers, letting them sell motherboards based on the A520 around the $50-$70 mark. This shouldn't be a problem for people with Athlon 3000G, Ryzen 3000G, or even new 4000G, as none of these processors offer PCIe Gen 4.

Turtle Beach Launching Updated Gen 2 Versions of The Stealth 600, Stealth 700 Headsets

Turtle Beach is launching updated Gen 2 versions of their Stealth 600 and Stealth 700 headsets. Like the previous iteration, these will be available in console-specific designs (with design language and connection types paired specifically for Xbox or PlayStation systems). The Stealth 600 will also be available in a simple white version for a more neutral approach to gaming. Connection-wise, the PlayStation version connects via a specific USB wireless adapter; the Xbox version connects directly to console or PC via Microsoft's proprietary connection and wireless receiver kit.

The headsets see a redesigned mic and button layout; the mic now completely recedes into the outside of the ear cup, as if it were a perfect jigsaw fit. The controls, instead of being disperse, are now neatly lined up around the outer edge of the left ear cup, and the Micro-USB charging port is now a USB-C one. Sound hardware wise both headsets are identical; the Stealth 700 justifies a higher price-tag through the usage of an all-black design with plush, leather-like ear pads. it also offers the ability to connect to devices via Bluetooth in addition to the actual game source, so users can listen to more than just in-game audio while playing. The Turtle Beach Stealth 600 Gen 2 will cost $99.99 (the PlayStation version is already available, with the Xbox one being releases come September 20th. The Stealth 700 will be more expensive at $149.99 and will release for both platforms on September 20th. Each headset will be compatible with their respective current and next-gen systems.

Lenovo Delivers Outstanding Q1 Performance and Strong Growth

Lenovo Group (HKSE: 992) PINK SHEETS: LNVGY) today announced Group revenue in the first quarter of US $13.3 billion, up almost 7% year-on-year (up 10% year-on-year excluding currency impact). Pre-tax income grew 38% compared to the same quarter a year earlier, to US $332 million, while net income also increased by 31% year-on-year to US$213 million. Basic earnings per share for the first quarter were 1.80 US cents or 13.95 HK cents.

"Our outstanding performance last quarter proves that Lenovo has quickly regained momentum from the impact of the pandemic and is capturing the new opportunities emerging from remote working, education and accelerated digitalization," said Yang Yuanqing, Lenovo Chairman and CEO. "While the world continues to face challenges, Lenovo is focused on delivering sustainable growth through our core businesses as well as the new services and solutions opportunities presented by our service-led intelligent transformation."

Alphacool Introduces Eisfluegel Aurora Flow-sensor and HDX Pro Air M.2 SSD cooler

Alphacool presents the HDX Pro Air cooler for M.2 2280 SSDs. M.2 SSDs are enjoying increasing popularity. The extremely fast read and write processes ensure a noticeably faster working performance than normal mechanical hard drives and even standard SSDs can offer. However, the controller chip quickly becomes very warm and after about 60 seconds of continuous load, many M.2 SSDs start to overheat, which leads to a massive performance drop. This is prevented with the Alphacool HDX Pro Air M.2 SSD cooler. The solid aluminium cooler fits on single- and double-sided M.2 SSDs. Despite the larger heat sink, the cooler fits on M.2 slots underneath a graphics card without colliding with them.

Now available, the new Alphacool Aurora Eisfluegel high flow flow sensor. The small compact flow sensor is equipped with 8 addressable digital RGB LEDs for optimal illumination. The speed of the Eisfluegel flow sensor is read out via a normal 3 or 4-pin fan connector. With the help of monitoring software can determine the exact flow rate. With the Eisfluegel Aurora flow sensor a flow rate between 70 and 300 L/h can be determined. The Eisfluegel Aurora can either be mounted with M3 screws or mounted at any position in the case with the included Velcro mat. Alternatively, Eisfluegel is so light that it can be mounted freely suspended between two hoses or HardTubes.

Samsung Aims to Become Number One Android AP Vendor by Joining Forces with AMD and Arm

Samsung Electronics has reportedly laid out a plan to become the number one Android application processor (AP) vendor in the industry with its plan to join forces with AMD and Arm. The report of Business Korea indicates that Samsung wants to use both company's knowledge and IP to produce the best possible silicon. In early November of last year, Samsung has decided to shut down its division responsible for making custom CPU designs, and to start licensing IP from Arm. Also last year, Samsung has announced a strategic partnership with AMD to use its RDNA graphics processors in smartphones.

So Samsung plans to license IPs from both companies and just put them in SoC that will be up to the task to deliver the best performance, as the company predicts. The CPU is reportedly going to be based on Arm's Cortex-X custom design that should deliver high-performance Samsung wants. In the past, the company had some problems with the heat-management of its CPUs as they were designed a bit inefficiently. To cover everything, Samsung also plans to increase the number of employees working on a neural processing unit (NPU) and make a good performing NPUs as well, to combine with the rest of IPs.

Ubisoft Launches Hyper Scape With GeForce NOW Promotion

Ubisoft has recently released their free to play battle royale style game Hyper Scape on console and PC. The first-person shooter offers a unique twist in the crowded market with heavy Twitch integration which affects the outcome of each match. The games technical test appeared to be a major hit topping the Twitch viewership charts for the day but has quickly dropped to just 11,000 viewers far below the likes of Fall Guys, Fortnite, Apex Legends, and PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds.

Ubisoft has partnered with NVIDIA to release the game on GeForce NOW with free bonus content for subscribers. GeForce NOW members can now claim an exclusive GeForce NOW Hyper Scape content pack which includes a Season One Battle Pass Token, three rare skins, and epic Boxer Shuffle Emote. This content pack is valued at ~25.00 USD. Ubisoft has considerable experience in the Esports sector with Rainbow Six Siege so it will be interesting to see if they can create that same global phenomenon with Hyper Scape.

Chinese Fabs Attracted Over 100 TSMC Veteran Engineers Since 2019: Report

A Nikkei investigative report uncovered that two Chinese semiconductor fabrication firms, namely Quanxin Integrated Circuit Manufacturing (QXIC), and Hongxin Semiconductor Manufacturing Co (HSMC), have poached over 100 veteran semiconductor engineers from TSMC since last year. Both firms are recipients of government funding under China's ambitious plan of complete electronics hardware industry independence by 2025. Both firms were floated as recently as 2017, and began hiring specialist engineers and executives with connections across the semiconductor industry, from TSMC. The two began development of a 14 nm-class FinFET node that would support manufacturing of a wide variety of electronics components, including SoCs, ASICs, transceivers, and storage products.

Nikkei estimates that in a span of a year, Taiwan lost more than 3,000 semiconductor engineers to various start-ups in the mainland, including large semiconductor fabs. Sources in TSMC tell the Japanese publication that the company is "very concerned" about the flight of talent toward China, although it didn't believe that there is any immediate danger to the company's output or technological edge. The source advocated a national-level strategy by various Asian governments to retain talent, not through coercion, but by offering better incentives and pay than the Chinese firms flush with public investment.

PlayStation 5 DualSense Controller Receives 56% Battery Capacity Boost over DualShock 4

The DualSense controller is the official controller for the upcoming PlayStation 5 console and features various improvements over it's incumbent the DualShock 4. The DualSense controller features improved haptic feedback, adaptive triggers for L2 / R2, a new "Create" button to replace "Share", and an integrated microphone array. In a new hands-on leak of the controller, we can see the reported battery capacity of 1560 mAh which represents an increase of 56% over the DualShock 4's 1000 mAh battery. The DualShock 4 pales in comparison to the Xbox One Controller with a capacity of 4200mAh from its 2 AA batteries. The jury is still out on whether or not this capacity increase will offer a tangible battery life improvement considering all the new features.

Intel Releases mOS - Custom Operating System for HPC

Intel has been focusing its resources on data center and high-performance computing lately and the company has made some interesting products. Today, Intel has released its latest creation - mOS operating system. Created as a research project, Intel has made an OS made for some extreme-scale HPC systems, meaning that the OS is created for hyper scalers and ones alike. The goal of mOS is to deliver a high-performance environment for software with low-noise, scalability, and the concept of lightweight kernels (LWK) that manage the system.. Being based on the Linux kernel, the OS is essentially another distribution, however, it has been modified so it fits the HPC ecosystem the best way. The mOS is a product in the pre-alpha phase, however, it can already be used in supercomputers like ASCI Red, IBM Blue Gene, and others. Intel is aiming to develop a stable release by the time the Aurora exascale system is ready so it can deploy mOS there.
Wednesday, August 12th 2020

Today's Reviews

Cases
CPU Coolers
Headphones
Monitors
Motherboards
Mouse
Notebooks
Processors
PSUs
SSD
Abkoncore A660 Review

Abkoncore A660 Review

Although the lighting is reminiscent of the Logitech G303, the Abkoncore A660 has a shape similar to the Logitech G203 or G305. Equipped with PixArt's PMW3325, Omron switches for the main buttons, and full software customizability, at just $20, the A660 is particularly interesting for those on a budget.

QNAP Launches Single-port 2.5 GbE PCIe Card for NAS and PC

QNAP Systems, Inc., a leading computing, networking and storage solution innovator, today launched the QXG-2G1T-I225 PCIe network card. Providing single-port 2.5GBASE-T connectivity that supports 2.5G, 1G, 100 Mbps and 10 Mbps network speeds, the QXG-2G1T-I225 is a PCIe 2.0 x1 card that can be installed in a QNAP NAS or a Windows /Linux PC. Existing CAT 5e cables can be used with the QXG-2G1T-I225 to provide an immediate upgrade to 2.5 GbE networking. The QXG-2G1T-I225 also supports Windows Server 2019 and provides efficient server management with support for Intel Teaming (Link aggregation), PXE, Intel AMT, Wake on LAN, and VLAN.

"The QXG-2G1T-I225 represents QNAP's commitment to providing affordable 2.5 GbE solutions. By using existing CAT 5e cables, users can immediately benefit from 2.5 GbE by pairing their QXG-2G1T-I225 with a 2.5 GbE switch and NAS." said Stanley Huang, Product Manager of QNAP, adding "2.5 GbE provides immediate benefits to both home and business users across a wide range of applications - including gaming, multimedia, virtualization, backup, and general everyday usage. QNAP's 2.5 GbE solutions represent the easiest and most wallet-friendly way to adopt high-speed networking."

Xe-HPG is the Performance Gaming Graphics Architecture to Look Out for from Intel

Intel appears to have every intention of addressing the performance gaming segment with its Xe graphics architecture. According to information leaked to the web by VideoCardz, Xe-HPG (high performance gaming?) represents a product vertical dedicated to the gaming segment. Among the other verticals are Xe-HPC (high performance compute). The Xe-HPG graphics architecture is being developed for a 2021 market launch. It will feature all the client-segment staples, including a conventional PCI-Express interface, and GDDR6 memory instead of HBM. Intel may also eye DirectX 12 Ultimate logo compliance. Intel's Xe discrete GPU and scalar processor development is already de-coupled with Intel's foundry business development, and so the company could contract external foundries to manufacture these chips.

As for specs, it is learned that each Xe-HP "tile" (a silicon die sub-unit that adds up in MCMs for higher tiers of Xe scalar processors), features 512 execution units (EUs). Compare this to the Xe-LP iGPU solution found in the upcoming "Tiger Lake" processor, which has 96. Intel has been able to design scalar processors with up to four tiles, adding up to 2,048 EUs. It remains to be seen if each tile on the scalar processors also include the raster hardware needed for the silicon to function as a GPU. The number of tiles on Xe-HPG are not known, but it reportedly features GDDR6 memory, and so the tile could be a variation of the Xe-HP. Intel SVP and technology head Raja Koduri is expected to detail the near-future of Intel architectures at a virtual event later today, and Xe-HPG is expected to come up.

GIGABYTE and Northern Data AG Agree to Develop HPC Data Centers

GIGABYTE Technology, an industry leader in high-performance servers and workstations, today is announcing a partnership with German based Northern Data AG, one of the world's largest providers of High-Performance Computing (HPC) solutions, to develop distributed computing in Northern Data's data centers. These data centers with GIGABYTE built HPC servers will be located in the Nordics and managed by Northern Data.

GIGABYTE has more than 30 years of engineering expertise and success stories in the development and production of server solutions that cover a myriad of uses from AI servers to GPU dense servers to scientific computing servers and more. The success that GIGABYTE's servers and workstations have had attributes to the quality and resiliency inherent in the development of manufacturing processes, while also listening to customer needs to produce best-fit solutions.

Samsung Announces Availability of its Silicon-Proven 3D IC Technology

Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd., a world leader in advanced semiconductor technology, today announced the immediate availability of its silicon-proven 3D IC packaging technology, eXtended-Cube (X-Cube), for today's most advanced process nodes. Leveraging Samsung's through-silicon via (TSV) technology, X-Cube enables significant leaps in speed and power efficiency to help address the rigorous performance demands of next-generation applications including 5G, artificial intelligence, high-performance computing, as well as mobile and wearable.

"Samsung's new 3D integration technology ensures reliable TSV interconnections even at the cutting-edge EUV process nodes," said Moonsoo Kang, senior vice president of Foundry Market Strategy at Samsung Electronics. "We are committed to bringing more 3D IC innovation that can push the boundaries of semiconductors."

Qualcomm Could Deliver Chips to Huawei

In the ave of the news that Trump administration has forbidden TSMC to have Huawei as its customer, Huawei seems to be exploring new options for sourcing the best performing mobile processors. As the company has turned to the Chinese SMIC semiconductor factory, it still needs a backup plan in the case of Chinese semiconductor manufacturing flops. So to combat US sanctions, Huawei will use already made chips form the US company - Qualcomm. By sourcing the processors from Qualcomm, Huawei is losing some benefits of customs design like better system integration, however, it will gain quite powerful mobile processors. As Qualcomm is known for providing the fastest processors for Android smartphones, Huawei has ensured that it remains competitive. Qualcomm is reportedly now negotiating with the US government about delivering the chips to Huawei, and if it is allowed, Qualcomm will gain a big customer.

MSI Announces Vigor GK50 ELITE, Clutch GM08, and Vigor WR01 WRIST REST

MSI, leader in true gaming hardware, is proud to announce the VIGOR GK50 ELITE series Gaming Keyboard, CLUTCH GM08 Gaming Mouse and VIGOR WR01 Wrist Rest to provide more choices for mainstream gamers with a determination to win and a refined gaming design. Strikingly Sleek for Gaming - GK50 ELITE releases with two types of mechanical switches, Kailh Box white and Kailh blue. Both switches are clicky, meaning they have both a tactile and audible click when pressing. The box white switch offers better stability, a crisper typing experience, better durability at 80 million actuations and IP56 water- and dust resistance.

Xbox Series X Launches this November with Thousands of Games Spanning Four Generations

Today, we announced updates to Halo Infinite's launch timing. Our vision at Xbox and 343 Industries has always been to deliver the most ambitious Halo game ever for our fans, while also balancing the team's well-being. To do that, we will need some more time to finish the critical work necessary to launch Halo Infinite, which will come in 2021.

We have plenty to keep you busy until Chief arrives: there will be thousands of games to play, spanning four generations, when Xbox Series X launches globally this November and over 100 optimized for Xbox Series X titles, built to take full advantage of our most powerful console, are planned for this year. And with brand new console features like hardware-accelerated Direct X raytracing, framerates up to 120 frames per second, faster loading times, and Quick Resume for multiple games, playing will look and feel better, no matter which games you choose to play on day one.

Xiaomi Now an OLED Manufacturer, Announces the 55" Mi TV LUX Transparent Edition

Xiaomi today unveiled what it considers to be the third defining piece of technology for its 10th anniversary - the 55" Mi TV LUX Transparent Edition. As the name implies, and as Xiaomi will pridefully tell you, this is the world's first fully edge-to-edge transparent OLED display - the images are displayed on its transparent screen and thus appear to be "floating in the air" - taking a cue from most science fiction settings. Xiaomi has also taken this opportunity to announce that they've become the first China-based company in the world to produce transparent OLED TVs, as well as China's number one OLED Basic Module (OBM) manufacturer.

Intel "Tiger Lake" Leverages 10 nm+ SuperFin and SuperMIM Technologies

Intel's upcoming 11th Generation Core "Tiger Lake" processors introduce the company's first major refinement of its 10 nanometer silicon fabrication node, dubbed 10 nm+. The node introduces two key features that work to improve the power characteristics of the silicon, allowing Intel to yield more performance without raising power/thermals over the previous generation. VideoCardz scored a major scoop on 10 nm+, including the introduction of the new SuperFin transistor, and SuperMIM capacitor.

SuperFin is a redesigned FinFET, a nanoscale transistor, which offers increased gate pitch, yielding higher drive current, improved channel mobility, and an improved source/drain, yielding in lower resistance. The other key component of 10 nm+ is SuperMIM, delivering a 5 times increase in metal-insulator-metal capacitance. Intel is yet to put out energy efficiency gain numbers for the process, but promises a "dramatic increase in frequency" over the previous generation, which lines up with leaks of the Core i7-1185G7 shipping with significantly higher clock speeds.

JLab Audio Launches the GO Air £30 True Wireless Earbuds

The fastest growing major headphone brand, JLab Audio, continues to strive to be ahead of the curve with the UK launch of the JLab GO Air True Wireless Earbuds. Offering 20+ hours of playtime, custom EQ3 Sound, at an incredibly affordable RRP of £29.99/$29.99, GO Air is the smallest true wireless product JLab has ever created. The lightweight buds deliver clean, crisp, audio for the daily listener and features dual connect, incorporating dual microphones that allow the earbuds to be used individually while the other remains in the charging case. Designed to go anywhere, the GO Air and its case are compact and small enough to fit in any bag or pocket. Four colour options, black, white, navy and army green, are now available from John Lewis, Argos, Currys PC World and jlabaudio.com for £29.99.

"JLab's GO Air are the smallest and most affordable true wireless earbuds we've ever designed," said JLab CEO Win Cramer. "JLab is not slowing down when it comes to providing consumers with accessible, innovative options - and GO Air is a testament to our vision for making true wireless available for everyone. Don't be fooled by the price, while affordable, these earbuds pack a punch in both battery life, sound, and feature rich tech including our patented built-in EQ3 sound profiles."

Philips Launches the 279C9 Monitor: 27" 4K, IPS, 60 Hz, FreeSync, DisplayHDR 400

MMD announces the new Philips 279C9 LCD display, a 27" (68.47 cm) monitor. The Ultra HD Philips 279C9 monitor features a Zero Bezel design, which eliminates the surrounding frame resulting in an expansive picture and simultaneously enables seamless multi-monitor set-ups.

Nowadays everyone is used to work with multiple devices connected, which means that ports are a key feature that cannot be missed. The Philips 279C9 includes a USB Type-C connector, which allows users to transfer data at a super-speed and charge the laptop at the same time (up to 65 W). The monitor also features one DisplayPort, two HDMI and four USB 3.2 ports. The IPS panel chosen for this model gives extra-wide viewing angles of 178/178 degrees, allowing for a clear and bright image from almost every angle.

AMD "Cezanne" APU Spotted: Retains Renoir's iGPU, Updates CPU to "Zen 3"

AMD's 5th Generation Ryzen "Cezanne" APU sprung up on SiSoft SANDRA database, with big hints as to the areas where the company could innovate next. Apparently, "Cezanne" is a very similar silicon to "Renoir." It appears to feature the same iGPU solution, based on the "Vega" architecture. We're now learning that the iGPU even has the same core configuration, with up to 512 stream processors, and a likely bump in iGPU engine clocks over the Ryzen 4000 "Renoir" chips.

Much of the innovation is with the CPU component. Although the CPU core count is not yet known, the company is deploying its "Zen 3" microarchitecture, which sees all cores on the silicon sharing a large common slab of L3 cache. The "Vega" based iGPU should still perform better than the solution on "Renoir," as it's assisted by higher engine clocks, and possibly a higher IPC CPU component. In the SANDRA screenshot, the iGPU was shown bearing 1.85 GHz engine clocks, which amounts to a 100 MHz speed-bump compared to the engine clocks of the Ryzen 4000H and 4000U.

GIGABYTE Launches G34WQC 34-inch Ultra-wide Gaming Monitor

GIGABYTE TECHNOLOGY Co. Ltd, a leading manufacturer of motherboards and graphics cards, is excited to announce the first ultra-wide gaming monitor, G34WQC. The GIGABYTE series monitor has become a hot topic among media and gamers since its launch. The bigger-size screen category has received the most attention. For tailoring to the needs of a bigger screen market, GIGABYTE continues to develop and research this field. G34WQC is equipped with a native 1500R VA panel with 1440p resolution and 144 Hz refresh rate with 1 ms response time, offering the most immersive gaming feel.

For the color performance, the native 8-bit panel offers the splendid color, 120% sRGB wide color gamut and certified by VESA DisplayHDR 400, enriching the contrast of the picture quality. The fantastic specifications allow you to experience the grand visual pleasure in gaming and picture appreciation! This monitor also supports the well-loved classic GIGABYTE tactical gaming features such as Aim Stabilizer and Black Equalizer, offering you extra weapons on the battlefield! Not merely just having perfect gaming specifications, the bigger screen along with the 21:9 aspect ratio is also ideal for office and recreational use.

Huawei 24-Core 7 nm Kunpeng CPU Reportedly Beats Intel Core i9-9900K

Huawei is preparing itself against further United States government technology bans with the introduction of its ARM-based 7 nm Kunpeng 920 CPUs in desktop systems for the Chinese government and enterprise markets. The specific chip used in this upcoming computer is the Kunpeng 920 3211K CPU which features 24 cores clocked at 2.6 GHz paired with 8 GB DDR4 memory, 512 GB Samsung SSD, and an AMD Radeon RX 520 GPU. This specific configuration reportedly beats Intel's Core i9-9900K 8-core processor in multi-core performance, while single-core performance is not reported as it likely lags far behind the high clock speeds of the Core i9-9900K. The desktop runs a custom Linux derived UOS operating system and cannot run Windows 10.

Microsoft Project xCloud Beta now Live for Xbox Game Pass Ultimate Subscribers

Microsoft Project xCloud is set to officially launch next month on the 15th of September however Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscribers can access an early beta version starting today. The beta will only be available on Android devices via the Google Play Store or Samsung App Store due to Apple banning the program as we've previously reported.

Microsoft Project xCloud beta includes over 100 launch titles that can be played with an Xbox Wireless Controller or supported Bluetooth gamepad. A select number of games including Hellblade: Senua's Sacrifice and Gears 5 can be played via touch control and Microsoft expects more games to receive touch support over time. Microsoft Project xCloud beta is now live in 22 countries and will run for one month until xCloud is officially launched.

NUVIA Phoenix SoC is 40-50 Percent Faster Than Zen 2 for a Third of Power

Last year, in November of 2019, a startup company called NUVIA Inc. broke out of the stealth mode and decided to reveal itself to the public. Focused on "re-imagining silicon", the company is led by some of the brightest minds in the semiconductor industry. Some people like Gerard Williams III, the CEO of the company, previously served as a chief CPU architect at Apple and has spent over 10 years at Arm before that. Others like Manu Gulati and John Bruno serve as senior vice presidents of silicon and system engineering respectively. Together, their people are forming a company full of well-known industry names. Of course, there are more and you should check out this page.

NUVIA Inc. promises to deliver only the best performance and "re-imagine silicon" as they say. Today, we got some bold claims from the company regarding the performance of their upcoming Phoenix SoC. Using Geekbench 5, the company has provided some simulated results of how the Phoenix SoC will perform. Being that it runs on Arm ISA, the SoC can run at very low power and achieve good performance. NUVIA has run some simulations and it expects its Phoenix SoC to be 40-50% faster in single-threaded performance than Zen 2/Sunny Cove at just a third of the power, 33% of the percent of power to be precise. In the graph below, NUVIA has placed its SoC only in 5 W range, however, the company said that they have left the upper curve to be disclosed at later date, meaning that the SoC will likely compete in high-performance markets and at higher power targets. While these claims are to be taken with a grain of salt, it is now a waiting game to see how NUVIA realizes its plans.
NUVIA Inc. Logo NUVIA Phoenix SoC Performance

Halo Infinite Delayed Until 2021

343 Industries have recently announced that Halo Infinite will be delayed from a November 2020 launch to a as of yet unknown 2021 launch date. This comes as a major blow to the Xbox Series X which was planned to have Halo Infinite as a headliner launch title. The team explained how COVID-19 had introduced new development challenges and that the extra time will allow them to complete critical work on the game. Hopefully this delay will bring a better, more polished Halo title.
Chris Lee 343 Industries Studio Head
The decision to shift our release is the result of multiple factors that have contributed to development challenges, including the ongoing COVID-related impacts affecting us all this year. I want to acknowledge the hard work from our team at 343 Industries, who have remained committed to making a great game and finding solutions to development challenges. However, it is not sustainable for the well-being of our team or the overall success of the game to ship it this holiday.
Tuesday, August 11th 2020

AOC Releases New 34" CU34G2X Curved Frameless QHD Gaming Monitor

AOC, a worldwide leader in monitor display technology, today releases a striking new 34-inch QHD curved frameless gaming monitor, the AOC CU34G2X. The AOC CU34G2X is part of AOC's new G2 series and is available on Amazon for $449.99 starting August 11, 2020.

Closer to the Action
Gamers will relish a pro-grade experience through this 1500R curved design allowing users to take full advantage of peripheral vision, and offering deeper immersion without distortion. Its VA panel along with 3440x1440 resolution puts users in the middle of the action.

Samsung Display Commercializes New Variable Refresh Rate Tech for Mobile Device Power Saving

Samsung Display Company today revealed new display technology that features a remarkable power-saving function for mobile electronics, being commercialized for the first time in Galaxy Note 20 Ultra 5G flagship smartphones. The display company has now successfully commercialized its low-power OLED adaptive frequency technology, which can curtail the operating power of a phone's display by as much as 22 percent over existing smartphones now in general use.

"High-definition video streaming and gaming are expanding their capabilities in line with 5G commercialization, creating a widespread need for display panel technologies that can enable greater power savings," said Ho-Jung Lee, Vice President of the mobile display product planning team for Samsung Display. "Our Adaptive Frequency display technology is expected to considerably enhance the user experience by calibrating refresh rates in line with the requirements of a specific application and therein more precisely allocating available power. This will free up time for other smartphone operations," Lee added.

TEVET and RADX Introduce New Trifecta-SSD 32 and 64 TB Single-Slot, COTS PXIe SSD RAID Modules

TEVET, a premium test and measurement (T&M) supplier and RADX Technologies, an industry leading developer of modular, COTS, T&M solutions, today announced new 32 and 64 TB Trifecta-SSD COTS PXIe SSD RAID modules. The new models are the first NVMe SSD RAID modules supporting up to 7 GB/sec sequential read/write performance and up to 64 TB in a single PXIe hybrid or CPCIe slot. Manufactured in the USA by RADX and distributed exclusively by TEVET, Trifecta-SSD modules are available in 4, 8, 16, 32 and 64 TB capacities, with pricing that is typically over 2x more cost effective than other SSD RAID modules.

EK Launches One Plexi and One Acetal Monoblock for the GIGABYTE Z490 AORUS Master

EK, the premium liquid cooling gear manufacturer, is releasing its first of many Momentum Monoblocks for Intel Z490 chipset-based motherboards - the EK-Quantum Momentum Aorus Z490 Master. This monoblock is specifically engineered in Plexi and Acetal versions for the Aorus Z490 Master motherboard from Gigabyte. The addressable D-RGB LED in the Plexi monoblock is compatible with Gigabyte RGB Fusion 2.0 control and offers full lighting customization for every single diode at any given time. This is a complete all-in-one (CPU and motherboard) liquid cooling solution for Intel Socket 1200 Series Processors. The monoblock is covering the entire VRM section of the Aorus Z490 Master motherboard.

This monoblock boasts the latest generation Velocity cooling engine, used on the EK Quantum Lineup, to ensure the best possible CPU cooling without reducing flow to other components. It cools the CPU, as well as the voltage regulation (MOSFET) module. Liquid flows directly over all critical areas, providing the enthusiasts with an excellent solution for high and stable overclocks. Like with every EK monoblock, the EK-Quantum Momentum Aorus Z490 Master D-RGB features high flow design and can be easily used in systems with weaker water pumps or lower pump speed settings. The Plexi version of this monoblock also comes with sophisticated addressable D-RGB lightning, which connects to a standard 3-pin 5 V D-RGB addressable header which is called D_LED (Addressable LED Strip Headers) on the Aorus Z490 Master.

Intel Optane Persistent Memory DAOS Solution Sets New World Record

Intel Optane persistent memory (PMem), in combination with Intel's open-source distributed asynchronous object storage (DAOS) solution, sets a new world record, soaring to the top of the Virtual Institute for I/O IO-500 list. With just 30 servers of Intel Optane PMem, Intel's DAOS solution defeated today's best supercomputers and now ranks No. 1 for file system performance worldwide. These results validate the solution's delivery as having the most performance of any distributed storage today. They also demonstrate how Intel is truly changing the storage paradigm by providing customers the persistence of disk storage with the fine-grained and low-latency data access of memory in its Intel Optane PMem product.

"The recent IO-500 results for DAOS demonstrate the continuing maturity of the software's functionality enabled by a well-managed code development and testing process. The collaborative development program will continue to deliver additional capabilities for DAOS in support of Argonne's upcoming exascale system, Aurora," said Gordon McPheeters, HPC systems administration specialist at the Argonne Leadership Computing Facility.

TechPowerUp ThrottleStop 9.2 Released

TechPowerUp has today released an update to widely popular ThrottleStop software made by Kevin Glynn. Used as a tool to "monitor for and correct the three main types of CPU throttling", the new ThrottleStop software received a major update that brings a heap of new features and improvements. Starting off, one of the biggest changes in the new version 9.2, is that the tool finally restores Windows 7 compatibility, which was unavailable for that OS in the previous version 9.0. Now, the tool also brings a few more options to the table like a new TS Bench feature that allows for random MHz testing, adds support for devices that use connected standby, and fixes base clock MHz reporting when using Core Isolation.

DOWNLOAD: TechPowerUp ThrottleStop 9.2
TechPowerUp ThrottleStop 9.2
The change-log follows.

SiFive Secures $61 Million in Series E Funding Led by SK Hynix

SiFive, Inc., the leading provider of commercial RISC-V processor IP and silicon solutions, today announced it raised $61 million in a Series E round led by SK hynix, joined by new investor Prosperity7 Ventures, with additional funding from existing investors, Sutter Hill Ventures, Western Digital Capital, Qualcomm Ventures, Intel Capital, Osage University Partners, and Spark Capital.

"Global demand for storage and memory in the data center is increasing as AI-powered business intelligence and data processing growth continues", said Youjong Kang, VP of Growth Strategy, SK hynix. "SiFive is well-positioned to grow with opportunities created from data center, enterprise, storage and networking requirements for workload-focused processor IP."

Tachyum Demo Shows Prodigy Will Be Faster Than NVIDIA and Intel Chips

Tachyum Inc. today announced that it has successfully completed a demonstration showing its Prodigy Universal Processor running faster than any other processor, HPC or AI chips, including ones from NVIDIA and Intel. This is the latest of many recent milestones achieved by Tachyum as the company continues its march towards Prodigy's product release next year.

Tachyum demonstrated how its computational operation and the speed of its product design, using an industry-standard Verilog simulation of the actual Prodigy post layout hardware, is the superior solution to current competitive offerings. Not only does Prodigy execute instructions at very high speeds, but Tachyum now has an infrastructure implemented for automatically checking correct results from the Verilog RTL. These automated tests check Verilog output for correctness compared to Tachyum's C-model, which was used to measure performance, and is now the 'Golden Model' for the Verilog hardware simulation to ensure it produces identical, step-by-step results.

NETGEAR Announces Orbi LBR20 4G LTE + Wi-Fi AC Router

NETGEAR, Inc., the leading provider of mesh WiFi systems that power today's smart homes and small businesses, has combined the capabilities of the popular and award-winning Orbi Tri-band Mesh WiFi system with 4G LTE Advanced cellular connection to provide an alternative when traditional wired internet - cable, fiber or DSL - connections are limited or unavailable.

This latest Orbi Mesh WiFi solution by NETGEAR comes in the form of the Orbi 4G LTE Advanced WiFi Router (LBR20), the industry's first tri-band mesh system with LTE-A Cat 18 modem technology, which is perfectly suited for those who experience limited or no access to traditional wired broadband or require a network connection for limited time frames. It offers an opportunity for reliable network access for rural areas and mountainous regions with limited options for traditional wired internet connections. Also, ideally suited for those who have vacation homes in remote locations where year-round connectivity is not a requirement, the Orbi 4G LTE Advanced WiFi Router (LBR20) has the flexibility to provide internet access when needed.

Intel Core i3-1115G4 Tiger Lake CPU Surfaces on SiSoftware Sporting An Incredible Base Clock

Database spelunker TUM_APISAK has brought to the surface another revealing entry regarding Intel's upcoming Tiger Lake CPUs. Discovered in SiSoftware's database entries, the Intel Core i3-1115G4 has reared its head sporting a mightily impressive base core clock set at 3.0 GHz. Compare this to the Ice Lake-based Core i3-1005G1, which while making use of the 10 nm process itself, only managed to run on a 1.2 GHz base clock. This increase speaks to Intel's refinement of the 10 nm manufacturing process (even sporting its well-known woes) and the usage of the new Willow Cove architecture core that will power the i3-1115G4.

Whilst still being a 2-core, 4-thread processor (ehrm), the new i3-1115G4 based on Tiger Lake sports a number of improvements on both its CPU and GPU core design. The new architectural improvements baked into Willow Cove are aided by an L3 cache boost from 4 MB to 6 MB, and its GPU is expected to make use of Intel's Xe graphics, featuring 96 EUs (compared to the 64 EUs in Ice Lake's 12th Gen graphics). It remains to be seen exactly how competitive Tiger Lake will be compared to AMD's current (and future) Ryzen offerings, but these are some encouraging leaks.

Alphacool Introduces New NexXxoS ST25 Ultrathin Radiators

Alphacool today joins EKWB and XSPC (and Dazmode, before) in launching ultra thin sub-30 mm thick radiators for PC watercooling. Labeled the NexXxoS ST25, these are 25.5 mm thick and are the same radiators as those used in their Eisbaer LT CPU AIO coolers. These radiators are compatible with copper/brass/nickel loops, with copper fins and coolant channels, a steel housing, and brass threads on the two BSP G1/4" ports aboard the radiator. The core uses 15 FPI fins, which we speculate are the same fin geometry as with their other NexXxoS radiators with a louvered surface and ~25-30 µm in thickness. The NexXxoS ST25 is only available in 120 mm sizes for now, with prices ranging from 31.99€ for the ST25 120, to 39.47€ for the ST25 240, and 58.49€ for the ST25 360, with all prices inclusive of VAT.

Amazon Renames Twitch Prime as Prime Gaming

Amazon Prime Gaming is the new name for Twitch Prime, the new program offers the same benefits first introduced with Twitch Prime back in 2016. Amazon Prime Gaming which is included with an Amazon Prime membership offers free in-game loot every month for a variety of titles including League of Legends, Apex Legends, Grand Theft Auto Online, FIFA20, and DOOM Eternal. Prime Gaming also comes with a collection of free indie games that can be downloaded through the desktop app. Amazon Prime subscribers will continue to receive Prime Status on Twitch which includes a free channel subscription, and virtual chat items. Amazon Prime gaming is now available in over 200 countries.

EA Access is Coming Soon to Steam

EA is preparing to launch its game subscription service EA Access on Steam. The EA Access service grants access to a library of over 70 EA games, this is the first time the program will be available outside of the company's Origin launcher. The game subscription service will cost 4.99 USD per month or 29.99 USD per year and includes major titles from the Battlefield, Need for Speed, Plants vs Zombies, and STAR WARS Battlefront series. Program members will also receive a 10% discount on all EA games & DLC along with a 10 hour early access period for certain new titles. This will be the fourth platform to receive the program after the PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and the Origin client.

AMD RDNA 2 "Big Navi" to Feature 12 GB and 16 GB VRAM Configurations

As we are getting close to the launch of RDNA 2 based GPUs, which are supposedly coming in September this year, the number of rumors is starting to increase. Today, a new rumor coming from the Chinese forum Chiphell is coming our way. A user called "wjm47196" known for providing rumors and all kinds of pieces of information has specified that AMD's RDNA 2 based "Big Navi" GPU will come in two configurations - 12 GB and 16 GB VRAM variants. Being that that is Navi 21 chip, which represents the top-end GPU, it is logical that AMD has put a higher amount of VRAM like 12 GB and 16 GB. It is possible that AMD could separate the two variants like NVIDIA has done with GeForce RTX 2080 Ti and Titan RTX, so the 16 GB variant is a bit faster, possibly featuring a higher number of streaming processors.

Team Group Launches T-FORCE Vulcan G SSD

TEAMGROUP today announced the T-FORCE VULCAN G Gaming Solid State Drive. With SATA interface and 3D NAND flash memory, the read and write speeds can reach up to 550 MB/s and 500 MB/s, which offers 4 times faster read/write speed than traditional hard drives. It also supports SLC caching and Windows TRIM optimization commands, making it the best choice for upgrading your gaming PC!

The T-FORCE VULCAN G Gaming Solid State Drive has a minimalist design. The T-FORCE logo is printed with a unique diamond cut pattern for a sophisticated and sleek look. It is also available in capacities of 512 GB and 1 TB, and uses SATA interface and 3D NAND flash memory chip, making it 4 times faster than traditional hard drives in read and write speeds. With up to 550 MB/s and 500 MB/s, gamers will experience a significant performance jump.

Dell Announces Latitude Chromebook Enterprise

Chrome OS has accelerated its expansion within businesses amid the shift to work from anywhere. The new Latitude 7410 Chromebook Enterprise, a 14-inch premium business laptop or 2-in-1 from Dell Technologies (NYSE:DELL), boosts productivity with on-the-go power, sophisticated security and fast connectivity features employees need. With the Latitude 7410 Chromebook Enterprise, Dell expands its Latitude Chromebook lineup - now offering a mainstream and premium option - to give companies more choice in devices without sacrificing enterprise-class scale, manageability and security. With EPEAT Gold registration, the Latitude Chromebook Enterprise joins the industry's most sustainable commercial PC portfolio with recycled materials, sustainable packaging, energy efficient designs and EPEAT Gold registrations.

"This is not just another Chromebook," said Rahul Tikoo, senior vice president, Commercial Product Group, Dell Technologies. "Our latest Latitude Chromebook Enterprise is designed equal parts for employees and IT managers adopting Chrome OS in the enterprise. Employees will appreciate its sleek design and collaboration features that help them navigate new work dynamics, while IT managers have the management and security features they expect when deploying devices in a corporate environment."

Thermaltake Intros TG-30 and TG-50 Thermal Compounds with Honeycomb Pattern Stencil Applicators

Thermaltake today rolled out the TG-30 and TG-50 thermal interface materials. Both appear to be silver particle-based viscous compounds, although the company did not put out their composition. Both the TG-30 and TG-50 come in 4 g syringes. The TG-30 offers thermal conductivity of 4.5 W/m-k, while the TG-50 offers 8 W/m-k.

A unique selling point with the two is the inclusion of a honeycomb pattern stencil and a tiny spatula, which lets you apply the paste onto your CPU IHS in a neat honeycomb pattern for a Thermaltake-recommended Z-height of the application, and uniform spread under pressure from the cooling solution. Thermaltake also includes two alcohol rubs for clearing out its compound from the IHS and cooler. The company didn't reveal pricing of the two.
Monday, August 10th 2020

Today's Reviews

Accessories
Cases
CPU Coolers
Gaming PC
Harddisks
Keyboards
Memory
Monitors
Motherboards
Processors
PSUs
SSD
Storage
Gigabyte Z490 AORUS Master Review

Gigabyte Z490 AORUS Master Review

Featuring 90 amp power stages and a trademark finned heat sink alongside Dual BIOS and Q-Flash, the Z490 AORUS Master from Gigabyte promises a feature-rich overclocking experience without compromising creature comforts. Let's see how it stacks up against the competition!

BIOSTAR Intros Racing Z490A-SILVER and Z490T-SILVER Motherboards

BIOSTAR today introduced a pair of Socket LGA1200 motherboards based on the Intel Z490 chipset, the Racing Z490A-SILVER (ATX) and Racing Z490T-SILVER (Mini-ITX). Both appear to be middle-of-the-market products positioned below the Racing GT EVO series from the company, competing with the likes of the ASRock Steel Legend and ASUS TUF Gaming series. Z490A-SILVER draws power from a combination of 24-pin ATX and 8+4 pin EPS power connectors, conditioning power for the CPU using a 12+2+2 phase VRM. You get a pair of reinforced PCI-Express 3.0 x16 slots (electrical x16/x4), two M.2-2280 slots with PCI-Express 3.0 x4 wiring, and connectivity that includes a 1 GbE interface pulled by an Intel i219-V controller, and a 6-channel HD audio solution based on the Realtek ALC1150 codec.

The Racing Z490T-SILVER Mini-ITX motherboard features a conventional 24-pin + 8-pin power input, a 7+2+1 phase CPU VRM, a pair of DDR4 DIMM slots, a reinforced PCI-Express 3.0 x16 slot, and connectivity that includes four SATA 6 Gbps ports, an M.2-2280 slot (SATA 6 Gbps + PCI-Express 3.0 x4 wiring) on the reverse side of the PCB, 1 GbE based on Intel i219-V, and preparation for Wi-Fi 6 (you drop in your own Intel AX200-series card on a CNVi slot). The comapny didn't reveal pricing.

Device IDs of Intel's USB 4.0 Host Controller and Strategy to Phase Out Type-A Revealed

Device IDs of Intel's upcoming line of standalone USB 4.0 host controllers leaked to the web, courtesy Hardware Leaks (@_rogame). The controller possibly comes in three variants, bearing device IDs 0x9A1B, 0x9A1D, and 0x9A13. The alleged Intel confidential document screengrab speaks of USB 4.0 and USB 3.2 support (no mention of USB 2.0/1.1), and USB Power Delivery 3.0.

With USB 4.0, the USB-IF (USB Implementers Forum, or the special interest group behind USB), appears to want to standardize the USB type-C connector, eventually phasing out the type-A connector. To that effect, the document leaves out mention of USB 2.0/1.1 backwards compatibility. USB 4.0 debuts with an interface bandwidth of 40 Gbps, or 8 times that of USB 3.0, or over 80 times that of USB 2.0.

Turtle Beach Introduces Work-from-Home and Online Learning Bundles

Leading gaming audio and accessory brand Turtle Beach today announced it has launched a customized selection of high-quality, affordable audio headsets, accessories, and bundles that can elevate any work- from-home or virtual learning setup to the next level. The key to Turtle Beach's Work and School from Home PC Headset bundles is the Atlas Edge - a powerful USB audio enhancer for Windows PCs that delivers amplified and customizable sound, Mic Monitoring to help keep loud talking to a minimum, plus immersive Waves Nx 3D Audio, and over 60 inches of extra cable length. Connect the Atlas Edge with other award-winning Turtle Beach headsets like the Elite Atlas, Atlas One, or Battle Buds, and voice chat will become crystal-clear, background noises are reduced, mobility is improved, and all-day comfort can make the work and learn from home situations more productive.

"Turtle Beach gaming headsets have absolutely helped people stay entertained and socialize with friends since March, they're also perfect accessories for working and learning from home," said Juergen Stark, CEO, Turtle Beach. "In addition to staying connected with friends and family, we also understand the importance of staying connected at work and at school, and this selection of great products for affordable prices will certainly help keep up with peers, coworkers, teachers, and classmates."

Angry Miao Releases CYBERBOARD, First Mechanical Keyboard with Custom LED Panel on Indiegogo

Angry Miao, a native digital vertical brand focused on revolutionizing desktop products, has made its debut into the desktop technology market with the CYBERBOARD, a custom cyberpunk mechanical keyboard and the first of its kind to feature a customizable LED panel. The CYBERBOARD was officially launched on Indiegogo today at 10 am PT. The limited edition comes with five exclusive color options - Cyber Grey, Industrial Yellow, Purple Haze, Vapor White, and Jungle Green - there are only 1,000 sets available worldwide. A 40% off deal will be offered to early birds.

"We believe that innovative products provide not only practical function, but also cultural and emotional values. We want to bring our radical design and concept to the community - that is, the world's first custom keyboard with a DIY LED panel," said Nan Li, Founder of Angry Miao. "In the process of refining the CYBERBOARD, we have constantly pursued the ultimate experience for keyboard enthusiasts, in order to bring a different product to the world while offering exceptional DIY fun and making our mark in the world. However, this is just a beginning. We will launch far more exciting products and a totally new brand line on Aug 26."

Custom-design NVIDIA Ampere Cards to Launch Alongside Founders Edition Cards

In signs of NVIDIA's upcoming GeForce Ampere graphics cards getting a brisk market launch across several SKUs, a Tweaktown report predicts that custom-design graphics cards based on the chips will launch alongside Founders Edition (de facto reference-design) cards. NVIDIA's add-in card partners are believed to be ready with their next-generation original designs that will debut with the new chips, with renders of the ASUS ROG Strix 3000-series cards having leaked in early June. Tweaktown predicts series reveal by September 9, followed by SKU announcements on September 17. AIC partners tell them that custom-design products can be expected within the month. The first major teaser could come out by August 31.

NVIDIA on Monday tweeted its very first web teaser of the new series, under the hashtag #UltimateCountdown. We predict DirectX 12 Ultimate to be central to NVIDIA's marketing, especially a play on the word "ultimate," (eg: the "ultimate ray-tracing performance"). It wouldn't surprise us if "Ultimate" is somehow integrated into the product branding itself (à la "RTX").
Loading more posts, please wait... Load more news posts