Hardware Giveaway
Wednesday, October 23rd 2019

Today's Reviews

Cases
CPU Coolers
Graphics Cards
Keyboards
Memory
Motherboards
Mouse
Multimedia
Processors
PSUs
SSD
ADATA XPG Spectrix S40G 1 TB M.2 NVMe

ADATA XPG Spectrix S40G 1 TB M.2 NVMe

The ADATA XPG Spectrix S40G is the first M.2 SSD with adjustable RGB lighting effects. It not only looks great, but performs well, too. Thanks to 3.3 GB/s read and 2.3 GB/s writes, delivered real-life performance is comparable to the fastest NVMe SSDs on the market.

Razer Introduces the Tetra Headset

Razer today released the Razer Tetra, an ultra-lightweight chat headset with pro-grade microphone for crystal-clear team communication on all platforms including PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, PC and mobile devices.

The Razer Tetra is a single-ear console chat headset, designed for gamers wishing to enjoy their home audio set-up but still communicate with their teammates. Lots of gamers have an extensive surround sound speaker system set-up to enjoy immersive movie and game audio, and while many use a headset for game sound and communications, some prefer the big sound experience from their media systems. With today's multiplayer games, communication with teammates is key. The Razer Tetra delivers crystal-clear communications even in the loudest of audio set-ups. The cardioid microphone is tuned for a focused voice-pickup range, reducing ambient noises from the sides and back, giving superior voice clarity over traditional chat headsets. An in-line volume control gives gamers full access to all important settings during the battle at the touch of a finger, with a volume slider and mic-mute function to tune the audio during play.

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1660 SUPER Launching October 29th, $229 With GDDR6

NVIDIA's GeForce GTX 1660 SUPER, the first non raytracing-capable Turing-based SUPER graphics card from the company, is set to drop on October 29th. Contrary to other SUPER releases though, the GTX 1660 SUPER won't feature a new GPU ship brought down from the upwards performance tier. This means it will make use of the same TU116-300 as the GTX 1660 with 1408 CUDA cores, not the 1536 CUDA count of the GTX 1660 Ti. Instead, NVIDIA has increased performance of this SUPER model by endowing it with GDDR6 memory.

The new GDDR6 memory ticks at 14 Gbps, which gives it an advantage over the GTX 1660 Ti model which will still cost more than it. When all is said and done, the GTX 1660 SUPER will feature memory bandwidth in the range of 336 GB/s, significantly more than the GTX 1660 Ti's 288 GB/s, and a huge differentiating factor from the 192 GB/s of the GTX 1660. Of course, the fewer CUDA core resources compared to the GTX 1660 Ti mean it should still deliver lower performance than that graphics card. This justifies its price-tag set at $229 - $20 higher than the GTX 1660, but $50 less than the GTX 1660 Ti.

ASRock Announces Update to Three of Its X299 Motherboards: X299 Creator, X299 Steel Legend and X299 Taichi CLX

ASRock is proud to announce the sequel to its popular X299 line of motherboards by updating not one but three models which includes the X299 Creator which is targeted at content creators, the X299 Steel Legend for mainstream users, and the X299 Taichi CLX which has all the bells and whistles of a high-end desktop motherboard. These new motherboards are set to enter the peak of an Intel-based market and provide uncompromised power and specs for every user.

AOC Launches the AG273QX Gaming Monitor: 27" VA, 2560 x 1440, 165 Hz, FreeSync 2, HDR 400

AOC today launched the AG273QX, a flat panel gaming monitor (meaning there is no curve, which makes sense due to the usual 16:9 aspect ratio). The AG273QX sports a 27" diagonal with a VA panel, sporting a resolution of 2560 x 1440 and a 165 Hz refresh rate. This refresh rate is mated with support for AMD's FreeSync 2, which makes an appearance due to this monitor also being HDR capable - though at the lowest end of the spectrum, with its HDR 400 certification. With its 1 ms response time, this monitor seems to have all the claims to fame. Sadly, it only sticks to the Adobe sRGB color space with 99% coverage - no DCIP-3 here.

FreeSync 2 HDR means this monitor supports low-latency HDR tone mapping, and LFC (Low Framerate Compensation). AOC are pushing this as a 3-side frameless design, which means that the display should go all the way towards the bezels. If you want to carry this monitor to LAN parties, there's a carrying handle, and the monitor also sports double headset holders in the design. There's an RGB lighting ring on the back of the panel. Connectivity-wise this monitor sports a 4x USB 3.0 HUB, 1x Headphone out, and video inputs are taken care of by 1x VGA, 1x DisplayPort 1.2, and  1x HDMI 2.0. The AOC AGON AG273QX will be available in November 2019 at an MSRP of £439 / €489.

Fractal Design Introduces the Ion SFX Gold PSUs in 550 W and 650 W Capacities

Fractal Design today introduced the Ion SFX Gold PSU - a modular, high-performance power supply that brings the enhanced cable flexibility and superior output quality of the critically acclaimed Ion series to the SFX-L form factor.

The diminutive footprint of the Ion SFX houses a surprisingly large 120 mm fan for better airflow and quieter operation - partly thanks to its semi-passive Zero RPM mode that ensures the fan spins only when needed. The Ion SFX Series also features Fractal Design's revolutionary new guru UltraFlex DC cabling, an extremely high strand-count wire with specially formulated insulation affording all the efficiency and current capacity of competing products but with significantly less bulk. UltraFlex cables bend and twist effortlessly to eliminate the inherent hassles of traditional rigid power supply wiring to make installation and cable-routing easier than ever before.

Intel files an Anti-trust Case Against SoftBank-owned Tech Firm

Intel filed an anti-trust lawsuit against Fortress Investment Group, a firm owned by Japan's SoftBank, over alleged malpractices with their patents. Intel alleges that the company stockpiled patents to make a living out of IP disputes with other companies, including Intel. The complaint filed with the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California in San Jose alleges that Fortress bought up over 1,000 U.S. technology patents, some of which include patents from NXP Semiconductors. It's now using these patents to get Intel to pay up a royalty on every processor sold since 2011. SoftBank bought Fortress in 2017 for USD $3.3 billion as part of a massive takeover of the tech world. One of SoftBank's other priced possessions include ARM.

The lawsuit alleges a motive behind Fortress's behavior. "One way in which Fortress has tried to turn around its performance and justify SoftBank's investment in it is through increased speculation on patent assertions," the lawsuit says. Intel accused Fortress of patent-trolling, alleging that the company's move to soak up tech patents constitutes anti-competitive behavior as it's driven by the idea that the patents would cost less than what other tech companies would pay up to avert an IP lawsuit.

Pull the Plug on Unity Engine Telemetry with This Utility Under Development

Unity Engine powers a lot of games across platforms. The game engine includes a telemetry module that dials home every few minutes (depending on the game), pushing usage data and crash reports (if any). Some games, such as "Kerbal Space Program," allow you to opt-out from this telemetry, but even then the engine is known to dial home at game startup and at longer intervals, with far less amount of data.

TechPowerUp Forums member by the night and software developer by the day "R-T-B" created a nifty utility that can modify your game to completely strip it off Unity Engine telemetry, called UnityAnalyticsKiller. "Stop spying on my kerbals," reads the utility's GitHub page, describing UnityAnalyticsKiller as a game library replacement along with a ReadMe with some basic instructions. You can also inspect its source and build it by yourself if you're curious. R-T-B invites gamers and developers to test the utility and offer feedback in the TechPowerUp Forums thread here.

DOWNLOAD: UnityAnalyticsKiller by R-T-B

Intel 10 nm Ice Lake is Alive: Server and Desktop Support Added to the Linux Kernel

There were many rumors about Intel's 10 nm CPUs, many of them indicating that Intel will not manufacture 10 nm CPUs for desktop users, due to the 10 nm manufacturing process being in a bad shape. Those rumors were later countered by Intel, claiming that 10 nm is doing very well on improving yields and that we will see desktop CPUs based on the new node very soon.

Thanks to the Linux kernel mailing list (LKML), we now know that support for Ice Lake desktop and server CPUs has been added. A Patch titled "Add more CPU model number for Ice Lake" has many details about variants of Ice Lake with names like Ice Lake X for server Xeon CPU, Ice Lake D for Xeon D CPUs, Ice Lake L for mobile, and regular Ice Lake for desktop series of CPUs. This confirms Intel's claims that Ice Lake is on its way to desktop and server users in the near future. Possible launch date on these CPUs would be sometime in 2020, when Xe graphics cards are launched in July/August, so Intel could bundle both processors on the same 10 nm node.

Intel Gemini Lake Refresh Coming This November

Intel is preparing to debut its next generation Pentium Silver and Celeron "Gemini Lake Refresh" low-power processors in November 2019. The latest company roadmap slide detailing low-power SoC rollout, sourced by FanlessTech, pinned their launch sometime between week 45-47 (November). These are two key variants of this silicon, J and N. The J variant targets low-power desktops and AIOs, while the N variant targets notebooks, tablets, and other portables.

"Gemini Lake Refresh" SoCs are built on Intel's latest 14 nm node, and pack up to four "Goldmont Plus" CPU cores, and the same Intel UHD graphics, but offer significantly higher clock-speeds on both the CPU cores and the iGPU. Leading the pack is the Pentium Silver J5040, clocked at 2.00 GHz with up to 3.20 GHz boost. This chip succeeds the J5005, which ticks at 1.50 GHz with 2.80 GHz boost. The table below details the other J and N series models with the clock-speeds and core-counts.
Tuesday, October 22nd 2019

Today's Reviews

Cases
Cooling
CPU Coolers
Gaming PC
Graphics Cards
Headphones
Keyboards
Mouse
Networking
Notebooks
Storage
Zowie S2 Black

Zowie S2 Black

Zowie finally released the acclaimed S series with their signature black matte coating. In this review, we'll see what else may have changed under the hood, and whether this PixArt PMW3360-equipped mouse is worth your money in today's market.
InWin 309

InWin 309

The InWin 309 clocks in at a hefty $250 dollars and does not really offer too much out of the ordinary when it comes to the internal feature set. However, the four InWin aRGB-equipped EGO fans are the main focus, and the impressive 144 LED 8x18 matrix front panel is not only cool to look at, but also well implemented and highly functional.

Razer Announces Raptor Monitor: 27" IPS, 2560 x 1440, 144 Hz, HDR 400, AMD FreeSync

Razer announced their intro into the monitor market with the Raptor. The Raptor is a 27" diagonal monitor sporting an IPS panel with a 2560 x 1440 resolution. That many pixels tick along at a rate of 144 Hz and 1 ms response time - which is made fluid and jitter-free with recourse to AMD's FreeSync. Additionally, the panel sports the lowest available HDR certification in the form of HDR 400, with brightness levels of 420 nits.

Razer is quoting a 95% coverage of the DCI-P3 color gamut on the "edge-to-edge" monitor. The Raptor also features support for Razer's Chroma and a RGB LED on the base of the aluminium stand, which incorporates a built-in CNC cable management solution running through the back. The Razer Raptor can now be pre-purchased for $699.

Xiaomi Launches Mi Surface Display Gaming Monitors

Xiaomi, the China-based electronics juggernaut that has carved itself into most markets with its aggressive price/performance ratios, has just announced two new gaming monitors in its new Mi Surface Display lineup. First up is a 34", 21:9 UltraWide monitor with a resolution of 3440 x 1440. This one also carries a 144 Hz refresh rate monitor with support for AMD FreeSync (which might also mean it is G-Sync compatible). This same panel offers a 1500R curvature, which is somewhat treated as a must in larger diagonal 21:9 monitors, and Xiaomi is quoting a 5 ms GtG response time, which, paired with the 144 Hz refresh rate, should be more than enough for all but the most seriously competitive gamers.

Color coverage is being quoted at 121% of the sRGB color gamut. The bezels are reportedly around the 2mm mark in the 34" model. The stand and the monitor's connection is ensured by a magnetic clasp. The 34" monitor is being joined by a 1080p, 24" monitor as well, of which there were no additional details being shared. Connectivity details also weren't shared at time of writing. Xiaomi's new Mi Surface Display 34" is priced at 2,499 Yuan (around $352).

AMD Announces Integration With Microsoft's Secured-Core PC Initiative

In today's world, computer security is becoming very important due the exponential increase in malware and ransomware attacks. Various studies have shown that a single malicious attack can cost companies millions of dollars and can require significant recovery time. With the growth of employees working remotely and connected to a network considered less secure than traditional corporate network, employee's computer systems can be perceived as a weak security link and a risk to overall security of the company. Operating System (OS) and independent hardware vendors (IHV) are investing in security technologies which will make computers more resilient to cyberattacks.

NVIDIA Releases GeForce 440.97 WHQL Game Ready Drivers

NVIDIA today released the latest version of its GeForce Software suite. Version 440.97 WHQL comes game-ready for "Call of Duty: Modern Warfare," and "The Outer Worlds," including SLI support for the latter on "Turing" GPUs. SLI support is also added for "The Darwin Project." The drivers also introduce G-SYNC support for OpenGL and Vulkan games and applications.

Among the bugs fixed are crash-to-desktop (CTD) on FIFA 19 and FIFA 20; random flickering in "Apex Legends," CTD on "Star Wars: Battlefront II," an application crash with "Growtopia," missing objects in "Tradesmen," flickering in the character-selection screen in "World of Warcraft," a ghosting effect when moving the brush tool in Cinema 4D; a game crash with "Shadow of the Tomb Raider" in DirectX 12 mode, color corruption in "Forza 4," and problems with boosting GeForce GTX 970M. Grab the drivers from the link below.

DOWNLOAD: NVIDIA GeForce 440.97 WHQL
The change-log follows.

Kingston Revamps microSD and SD Card Lineup with Canvas Select Plus

Kingston Digital Europe Co LLP, the Flash memory affiliate of Kingston Technology Company, Inc., world leader in memory products and technology solutions, today announced it is shipping the new Canvas Select Plus microSD and SD card lineup. With the addition of Canvas Select Plus, Kingston moves to replace the original Canvas Select card lineup with new higher-speed, higher-capacity models making them essential for smart phones and digital cameras.

Kingston's Canvas Select Plus line of Flash memory cards are built to maximise the user experience with faster speeds, more reliability and higher capacities up to 512 GB. Canvas Select Plus helps move high-quality content faster as it reaches Class 10 UHS-I speeds up to 100 MB/s, perfect for heavy workloads such as loading apps faster, transferring high-resolution photos, and recording and editing full length HD videos.

Future AMD GPU Architecture to Implement BFloat16 Hardware

A future AMD graphics architecture could implement BFloat16 floating point capability on the silicon. Updates to AMD's ROCm libraries on GitHub dropped a big hint as to the company implementing the compute standard, which has significant advantages over FP16 that's implemented by current-gen AMD GPUs. BFloat16 offers a significantly higher range than FP16, which caps out at just 6.55 x 10^4, forcing certain AI researchers to "fallback" to the relatively inefficient FP32 math hardware. BFloat16 uses three fewer significand bits than FP16 (8 bits versus 11 bits), offering 8 exponent bits, while FP16 only offers 5 bits. BFloat16 is more resilient to overflow and underflow in conversions to FP32 than FP16 is, since BFloat16 is essentially a truncated FP32. The addition of BFloat16 is more of a "future-proofing" measure by AMD. Atomic operations in modern 3D game rendering are unlikely to benefit from BFloat16 in comparison to FP16. BFloat16, however, will pay huge dividends to the AI machine-learning community.

New NVIDIA EGX Edge Supercomputing Platform Accelerates AI, IoT, 5G at the Edge

NVIDIA today announced the NVIDIA EGX Edge Supercomputing Platform - a high-performance, cloud-native platform that lets organizations harness rapidly streaming data from factory floors, manufacturing inspection lines and city streets to securely deliver next-generation AI, IoT and 5G-based services at scale, with low latency.

Early adopters of the platform - which combines NVIDIA CUDA-X software with NVIDIA-certified GPU servers and devices - include Walmart, BMW, Procter & Gamble, Samsung Electronics and NTT East, as well as the cities of San Francisco and Las Vegas.

GIGABYTE Unveils AORUS Gen4 AIC Adapter Just in Time for TRX40

Just in time for AMD's 3rd generation Ryzen Threadripper processors and the AMD TRX40 chipset, GIGABYTE launched the AORUS Gen4 AIC Adapter, an add-on card that converts a PCI-Express 4.0 x16 upstream link to four M.2-22110 slots with PCI-Express 4.0 x4 wiring, each. This isn't the first card of this kind, but is certified to work with PCIe gen 4.0 SSDs. The TRX40 platform provides at least two PCI-Express 4.0 x16 slots, from which one can be allocated to your graphics cards, and the other to a fast storage solution like this, so you can use your motherboard's NVMe RAID features. The card is backwards compatible with older generations of PCIe.

The card features a large copper heatsink that cools the drives under the airflow of a fan. The PCB of this card features a PCI-Express 4.0 x16 interface, four M.2-22110 slots with PCI-Express 4.0 x4 wiring, each, and a controller that uses eight thermal diodes to sense drive temperatures and accordingly adjust the speed of the 50 mm lateral-flow fan that pushes air through the heatsink and out of the rear panel. The card also has four LEDs that provide link+activity indication. It meets the electrical specification of PCI-Express gen 4.0, and features gen 4.0 re-drivers. An aluminium alloy shroud and back-plate with brushed-metal finish and diamond-cut edges make for the rest of it. We expect this card to be priced around USD $130. A credible source tells us that the card will also be included with some of GIGABYTE's premium TRX40 motherboards.
Monday, October 21st 2019

Today's Reviews

Accessories
Cases
CPU Coolers
Graphics Cards
Headphones
Memory
Monitors
Motherboards
Mouse
Mousepads
Networking
PSUs
SSD
Cooler Master MP510 Mouse Pad

Cooler Master MP510 Mouse Pad

The MP510 is a unique mouse pad from Cooler Master. It features a highly durable Cordura fabric as its top material, which is a smooth nylon blend. It has a splash-proof surface, stitched edges, and a logo that glows in the dark.

EK Unveils EK-Quantum Momentum Monoblock for ASUS Crosshair VIII Hero

EK, the a premium liquid cooling gear manufacturer based in Europe, is releasing an AMD AM4 socket based monoblock belonging to the Quantum Line of products, the EK-Quantum Momentum ROG Crosshair VIII Hero D-RGB. This monoblock is engineered specifically for the ROG Crosshair VIII Hero motherboard. The addressable D-RGB LED in the monoblock is compatible with ASUS Aura Sync RGB control, thus offering a full lighting customization experience for every single diode at any given time.

This is a complete all-in-one (CPU and motherboard) liquid cooling solution for Ryzen AMD processors and the monoblock is compatible with the X570 based ROG Crosshair VIII Hero motherboard. This monoblock uses the latest generation of EK cooling engine used on the Quantum Lineup to ensure the best possible CPU cooling while not reducing flow to other components. This water block directly cools the AMD4 socket type CPU, as well as the voltage regulation (MOSFET) module. Liquid flows directly over all critical areas, providing the enthusiasts with a great solution for high and stable overclocks. Like with every EK monoblock, the EK-Quantum Momentum ROG Crosshair VIII Hero D-RGB features high flow design and it can be easily used with the system using weaker water pumps or lower pump speed settings as well. The Momentum monoblock also comes with sophisticated D-RGB (addressable) lightning which connects to a standard 3-pin 5 V D-RGB header.

TerraMaster Announces F5-422 5-Bay NAS Featuring 10GbE LAN

TerraMaster, a professional brand that specializes in providing innovative storage products, including network attached storage and direct attached storage, is announcing today the availability of its new storage solution for SME, professional and power users. The TerraMaster F5-422 features a powerful hardware configuration to bring excellent performance where it matters; for professionals and SME applications looking to maximize shared storage. Thanks to the introduction of the 10 GbE LAN, the TerraMaster F5-422 can deliver data faster. Backed by TerraMaster's latest TOS operating system, the F5-422 delivers an excellent feature set to any use. The TerraMaster F5-422 has an MSRP of $599.99 USD.

The F5-422 features a quad-core 1.50 GHz Intel CPU which has a boost clock of 2.30 GHz. 4 GB of DDR3 memory compliment the processor as well as built-in AES NI encryption. For maximum accessibility, the F5-422 features a 10 GbE port as well as 2x 1 GbE LAN, the F5-422 can be made available to a wide number of users without the bottleneck of traditional single LAN connections. The TerraMaster F5-422 is rated up to 670 MB/s write speeds and 650 MB/s read performance on a 5x 6 TB Seagate IronWolf RAID5 setup. Perfect for professionals like video editors working with 4K videos or others that need rapid access to large data with strict speed requirements.

Kingston Technology Also Releases Enterprise-Grade Data Center 450R SSD

Kingston Digital Europe Co LLP, the flash memory affiliate of Kingston Technology Company, Inc., a world leader in memory products and technology solutions, today announced it is shipping the Data Center 450R (DC450R) Enterprise SSD, a high performance 6 Gbps SATA SSD with 3D TLC NAND, designed for read-centric application workloads. This streamlined server SSD delivers on performance while providing exceptional I/O and latency predictability, a requirement now amongst Data Center Class SSDs. Built to Kingston's strict QoS requirements, the DC450R is designed to ensure performance consistency over a wide range of read intensive and read caching workloads.

Kingston's DC450R is designed for workloads that require 24/7 uptime and reliability, such as Content Delivery Networks (CDN), edge computing applications and a wide array of software-defined storage architectures. DC450R presents a specifically focused feature set that enables data centers to select the most cost effective SSD for their workloads. Businesses require results as they deliver on products, solutions and service level agreements (SLAs) and DC450R provides system builders and Cloud providers with a high performance, economical SSD standard they can count on.

Kingston Digital Introduces New KC600 SATA SSD

Kingston Digital Europe Co LLP, the flash memory affiliate of Kingston Technology Company, Inc., a world leader in memory products and technology solutions, today announced it is shipping the KC600 SATA SSD. Designed for use in desktop and notebook workloads, KC600 is a full-capacity SSD that provides remarkable performance. It comes in a 2.5" form factor using the SATA Rev 3.0 interface with backwards compatibility.

KC600 is optimized for functional system responsiveness with incredible boot, loading and transfer times. It supports a full-security suite that includes AES-XTS 256-bit hardware-based encryption, TCG Opal 2.0 and eDrive, allowing users to protect and secure their data. KC600 will be available in capacities up to 2 TB utilizing the latest 3D TLC NAND technology and has read/write speeds up to 550/520 MB/s, respectively. It is offered as both a stand-alone SSD or as a bundle kit which provides everything needed for an easy desktop or notebook upgrade installation.

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild Gets a VR Port

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is another addition in the Zelda universe that its fans enjoyed. Being playable on only on Nintendo Switch, and Wii U, so far its audience has been limited to people with access to one of the Nintendo's consoles. However, that is about to change. There is new port of the Zelda: Breath of the Wild, that runs on PC at 4K resolution, with unlocked framerate giving players possibility of achieving more than 60 frames per second, and is playable in VR.

Thanks to a YouTube channel BSoD Gaming, we have footage of Zelda: Breath of the Wild running in VR mode. With a PC powered by Intel Core i7 8700K and NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti graphics card, this Zelda game is running above 60 FPS at 4K resolution (around 80-100 FPS). VR mode is being handled easily due to the game being not so graphically demanding, so there will be plenty of people who should be able to experience VR mode without too much trouble.

AMD Ryzen 9 3950X Beats Intel Core i9-10980XE by 24% in 3DMark Physics

AMD's upcoming Ryzen 9 3950X socket AM4 processor beats Intel's flagship 18-core processor, the Core i9-10980XE, by a staggering 24 percent at 3DMark Physics, according to a PC Perspective report citing TUM_APISAK. The 3950X is a 16-core/32-thread processor that's drop-in compatible with any motherboard that can run the Ryzen 9 3900X. The i9-10980XE is an 18-core/36-thread HEDT chip that enjoys double the memory bus width as the AMD chip, and is based on Intel's "Cascade Lake-X" silicon. The AMD processor isn't at a tangible clock-speed advantage. The 3950X has a maximum boost frequency of 4.70 GHz, while the i9-10980XE isn't much behind, at 4.60 GHz, but things differ with all-core boost.

When paired with 16 GB of dual-channel DDR4-3200 memory, the Ryzen 9 3950X powered machine scores 32,082 points in the CPU-intensive physics tests of 3DMark. In comparison, the i9-10980XE, paired with 32 GB of quad-channel DDR4-2667 memory, scores just 25,838 points as mentioned by PC Perspective. Graphics card is irrelevant to this test. It's pertinent to note here that the 3DMark physics test scales across practically any number of CPU cores/threads, and the AMD processor could be benefiting from a higher all-core boost frequency than the Intel chip. Although AMD doesn't mention a number in its specifications, the 3950X is expected to have an all-core boost frequency that's north of 4.00 GHz, as its 12-core sibling, the 3900X, already offers 4.20 GHz all-core. In contrast, the i9-10980XE has an all-core boost frequency of 3.80 GHz. This difference in boost frequency, apparently, even negates the additional 2 cores and 4 threads that the Intel chip enjoys, in what is yet another example of AMD having caught up with Intel in the IPC game.

GIGABYTE Threadripper TRX40 AORUS Motherboard Teased

AMD is going to launch its premium HEDT Threadripper CPUs, based on 7 nm manufacturing process, as soon as November 5th arrives. To prepare for the launch, manufacturers like GIGABYTE have been working hard to bring new CPUs to life, by integrating AMD's new chipsets into the new motherboard models. Dubbed "Castle Peak" and "Sharkstooth", the two new CPU variants will be accompanied by TRX40, TRX80 and WRX80 chipsets, each enabling additional features.

We now got a hold of the first picture of what appears to be GIGABYTE's AORUS motherboard based on TRX40 chipset. Coming in with the E-ATX form factor, this motherboard is similar in size with the previous X399 AORUS Xtreme model. It features four PCIe 4.0 x16 slots and eight slots that support four-channel DDR4 memory, so it is likely that TRX40 chipset is meant only for such configuration, with TRX80 and WRX80 chipsets being reserved for eight-channel memory configurations. Another thing to note is the presence of chipset fan, indicating that the TDP of these chipsets is high and it needs to be actively cooled in normal use cases. If you remember, plenty of X570 boards have a fan on chipset as well due to their TDP.
Sunday, October 20th 2019

SK hynix Develops 1Znm 16Gb DDR4 DRAM

SK hynix Inc. announced today that it has developed 1Znm 16Gb (Gigabits) DDR4 (Double Data Rate 4) DRAM. As 16Gb is the industry's largest density for a single chip, the total memory capacity per wafer is also the largest of the existing DRAMs. The productivity of this product has improved by about 27% compared to the previous generation, 1Y nm. It does not require highly expensive extreme ultraviolet (EUV) lithography, which gives it a competitive edge cost-wise.

The new 1Z nm DRAM also supports a data transfer rate of up to 3,200 Mbps, which is the fastest data processing speed in DDR4 interface. The Company significantly increased its power efficiency, successfully reducing power consumption by about 40% compared to modules of the same density made with 1Y nm 8 Gb DRAM.
Saturday, October 19th 2019

U.S. Legislators Including AOC Come Down Hard on Activision-Blizzard on Blitzchung Ban

Three Congresspersons and two Senators, in a letter to Activision-Blizzard CEO Robert Kotick, came down hard on the company's decision to ban and withdraw prize winnings of Hong Kong gamer Ng Wai Chung aka "Blitzchung." In the letter, the legislators unleashed scathing criticism of the company's decision to place its market-access to China above its expectations as an American business to spread the core American values of freedom and liberty around the world. Among these legislators are Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Congressmen Mike Gallagher and Tom Malinowski; and Senators Marco Rubio and Ron Wyden.

"Your company benefits from China's growing market for e-sports, along with an investment from Tencent, one of China's largest technology firms. As you and your company are no doubt aware, the Chinese government uses the size and strength of its economy to suppress opinion with which it disagrees. Last week alone, the Chinese government targeted Apple for hosting an app to help peaceful demonstrators evade repression and the NBA because one team's general manager tweeted in support of Hong Kong protests," the letter reads.
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