Hardware Giveaway
Friday, September 24th 2021

Today's Reviews

ASUS Republic of Gamers Announces Moonlight White Gaming Peripherals

ASUS Republic of Gamers (ROG) today announced an all-new gaming peripherals lineup that channels the minimalist feel of monochrome through a striking Moonlight White color scheme. The ROG Strix Scope NX TKL 80%, tenkeyless mechanical RGB gaming keyboard, ROG Strix Impact II ambidextrous gaming mouse, ROG Strix Go Core gaming headset and ROG Cetra II Core in-ear gaming headphones are all now available in North America in this stunning colorway.

ROG has a long history of weaving Aura Sync into a huge ecosystem of devices to let gamers shine a light on their personalities through their gear - but many players also seek a minimalist look. That's why the ROG color palette is expanding to include the Moonlight White series, providing a commanding counterpart to the signature red-and-black color scheme.

The New Chip Shortage is Passive Components

If you thought that the chip shortage was bad, then the building shortage of passive components, such as capacitors, resistors, inductors and so on, is going to have you in tears. Due to lockdowns in Malaysia and Indonesia, where most of the well known Japanese aluminium capacitors are made, the factories of Chemi-Con, Nichicon and Rubycon have been shut down for most of July and August. The three companies together control some 50 percent of the capacitor market and it's expected that the current situation in Malaysia will lead to a reduction in capacitor shipments by 30 to 60 percent.

At the same time, the increased demand for everything from computer parts to renewable energy technology has ramped up demand for these components. Some of that business has been picked up by Taiwanese and Chinese manufacturers, but whereas in the past you could get your order in some four to six weeks, the lead times are now three to six months and that's if you're lucky. DigiTimes is reporting that several Taiwanese component makers have seen a YoY revenue growth of 20 percent or more for the first half of this year.

NAND Flash Market Will See Falling Quotes and 0-5% QoQ Declines in Contract Prices for 4Q21, Says TrendForce

The latest analysis of the NAND Flash market from TrendForce finds that shipments have been below expectations for consumer electronics such as smartphones, Chromebooks, and TVs during this second half of the year. At the same time, demand remains sluggish for retail storage products including memory cards and USB drives. Data centers and enterprise servers represent the only applications that show relatively strong demand. With the inventory level of the demand side steadily rising, the procurement momentum of NAND Flash buyers will become more constrained going forward. The gradual weakening of demand is also relieving the shortage of NAND Flash controller ICs. Taking account of these factors, TrendForce forecasts that quotes for NAND Flash products will begin to fall in 4Q21, and NAND Flash contract prices will register QoQ declines of 0-5% for that period.

TechPowerUp GPU-Z v2.42.0 Released

TechPowerUp today released the latest version, 2.42.0, of TechPowerUp GPU-Z, the popular video subsystem information, diagnostic, and monitoring utility for PC enthusiasts and gamers. The latest release adds support for several new GPUs, including Intel Core "Alder Lake-S" iGPU, "Tiger Lake" server iGPU; GeForce RTX 3060 based on "GA104," RTX 3050 Ti Laptop, T1200 Mobile, GRID K340, M30, and Q12U-1. Support is also added for Radeon Pro W6800X. With this release, we're adding the ability to tell a "lite hashrate" (LHR) GPU from one that isn't. On RTX 30-series graphics cards with LHR silicon, the GPU codename field will include "(LHR)." For example, "GA102 (LHR)." Support is also added for resizable-BAR on Radeon RX 5000 series (when used with the latest drivers).

TechPowerUp GPU-Z v2.42.0 also makes it easy to collect sensor logs from your graphics hardware. Simply start it with the command-line argument "-log" followed by a filename, to log to that file. Several other issues were fixed, including application crashes when taking screenshots, a rare crash in the PCIe render test, a crash on some systems when preparing resizable-BAR support. The Radeon HD 5000 series from 2009 now displays the correct (ATI) logo. EVGA iCX sensors readings are more accurate. Radeon RX 6000 series (RDNA2) GPUs now correctly show DirectX 12_2 feature-level compatibility. Grab GPU-Z from the link below.

DOWNLOAD: TechPowerUp GPU-Z 2.42.0

ViewSonic Launches 28-inch 150 Hz 4K Monitor with PS5 Support

ViewSonic's new VX2882-4KP seems to be the 4K gaming monitor for those looking for a no-nonsense design, as it could be mistaken for a Dell office monitor. That said, not everyone is keen on the over the top designs some gaming monitors of late have featured, so it's nice to see something a bit more normal here, especially for those that use their PC for more than just gaming.

Unfortunately the only stand-out spec is the 150 Hz refresh rate, which lands somewhere between most 144 Hz 4K monitors and the two or three that can do 160 Hz. It's not an overclock setting in this case, as it's the official refresh rate of the VX2882-4KP. ViewSonic went for an IPS panel here, although it only has a brightness of 300 nits, which is not as impressive as much of its competition, neither is the HDR10 rating.

EKSA Rolls-Out The E910 5.8GHz Wireless Gaming & Music Headset

EKSA, the leader of the best performing headsets for gaming, is pleased to announce the launch of their next generation line of gaming headsets. Today marks the release of the all new E910 5.8 GHz Wireless Gaming & Music Headset. Nothing on the market even comes close to the features incorporated into this new headset.

Founded by hardcore gamers for hardcore gamers, the EKSA R&D Team spent two years researching the market and put together the best elements into their headsets. A company spokesperson explains, "Besides 7.1 surround sound gaming headset for immersive gaming audio (Especially for FPS games), we have also developed the ultralight gaming headset and the ENC headset with advanced AI (Artificial Intelligence) algorithm & Deep Learning speech de-noising technology."

XGIMI Expands Versatile Halo Series With Smarter Halo+ FHD Portable Projector

XGIMI Technology Co., Ltd., a leading global projection equipment manufacturer, today announced the launch of their new Halo+ FHD Smart Portable Projector (Halo+). Building on the success of the Halo projector, released in Fall 2020, Halo+ now offers smarter setup functionality using XGIMI's own suite of Ai-powered image correction & stabilization technology, a more powerful and brighter LED (900 ANSI lumens), enhanced custom Harman Kardon speakers and a longer battery life. Halo+'s sleek, minimalist design is as comfortable in the bedroom as it is in the office, game room or powering backyard movie nights. Halo+ is unapologetically meant to be a smarter, class-leading projector for the most demanding users and surroundings with easy plug and play capability making movie time anywhere, anytime. Halo+ is now available on Amazon and XGIMI's website.

Halo+ has been optimized for immediate use with added intelligence, making setup a breeze and maximizing performance right out of the box. XGIMI's X-VUE and Intelligent Screen Adaption (ISA) technology combined with XGIMI's industry-leading Vertical and Horizontal Auto Keystone Correction offers users the ability to set up Halo+ from almost any angle and in almost any environment. Halo+ requires no manual focusing and will intelligently optimize screen size and avoid on-wall obstacles like light switches or pictures. Halo+'s fast-boot feature achieves the perfect image within 10 seconds, simply point and play for ideal viewing, instantly, from anywhere in the room. Onboard Android TV allows access to thousands of apps, screen mirroring and content syncing across devices.

Innodisk Announces Industrial-Grade PCIe 4.0 SSDs for 5G and AIoT Infrastructure

5G and AIoT need more speed and more capacity. And PCIe 4.0 delivers, doubling the speed of PCIe 3.0 and providing the much-needed performance boost to keep pace with innovation and industry trends. Not only speed and capacity, but tolerance of wide-range temperature is also crucial. Consumer-grade products aren't tough enough to withstand the high temperatures of outdoor and industrial settings, so Innodisk is introducing the first industrial-grade PCIe 4.0 SSDs built to handle those challenging conditions.

PCIe 4.0 increases the maximum capacity to 4 TB, doubles the bandwidth, and raises the speed to 16 GT/s which is twice that of PCIe Gen3. Although third-generation PCIe offered only modest speed increases over the popular SATA III for storage applications, it did provide the much sought-after advantages of full forward and backward compatibility. PCIe 4.0 retains that coveted compatibility while also adding noticeable speed increases.

KIOXIA CD7 Series PCIe 5.0 SSDs Belt Out 14 GBps Sequential Transfers

Presenting at the China Flash-Market Summit, KIOXIA unveiled its plans to leverage PCI-Express 5.0 to double SSD performance over the current generation. In typical 4-lane U.2 and M.2 connections, PCI-Express Gen 5 enables an interface bandwidth of 16 GB/s per direction (comparable to PCI-Express 3.0 x16). This means that accounting for interface overheads, typical PCIe Gen 5 SSDs will dance around the 11-15 GB/s (sequential) range. KIOXIA unveiled the CD7, a prototype enterprise SSD in the 2.5-inch EDSFF E3S form-factor with U.2 PCI-Express 5.0 x4 interface. This drive, the company claims, offers up to 14 GB/s sequential transfers, more than double the performance of the current CM6 series drives that leverage PCI-Express Gen 4.

KIOXIA said that its first PCI-Express Gen 5 SSDs will begin shipping in Q4-2021, although it didn't mention if this was mass-market, or to select customers. The first enterprise platforms to leverage Gen 5 won't arrive before mid-2022, with Intel's Xeon "Sapphire Rapids" processors that feature PCI-Express Gen 5 support. KIOXIA sounded optimistic about the future growth in performance of SSDs. "Today, Moore's Law is technically dead in both the CPU and DRAM, but it still works at the PCIe clock rate," the company said, adding ""2015 [was] be the third generation of PCIe, 2019 is the fourth generation, and 2022 will be the fifth generation. Even if people spend a lot of money, they can't double CPU nodes to improve system performance, but buying Gen 5 SSD instead of Gen 4 SSD can greatly improve system performance."
Thursday, September 23rd 2021

Today's Reviews

Lexar Hades OC RGB DDR4-3600 2x 16 GB Review

Lexar Hades OC RGB DDR4-3600 2x 16 GB Review

Lexar's first attempt at a brand-new line features an RGB LED light bar and high-density memory kits backed by a well-known company with a strong foundation in the flash memory market. Join me as we dive face first into this memory kit in hopes of finding gold.
Quick Look: Cleer Roam NC True Wiress Earbuds Review

Quick Look: Cleer Roam NC True Wiress Earbuds Review

Cleer Audio has always emphasized value for money in its products, with a lot of Bluetooth headphones and ear buds on the market already. Today, we examine its least expensive set yet with the Roam NC ticking off features such as active noise cancellation, Bluetooth 5.2 support, integrated microphones, a first-party app, and more, all for a low price!

BitFenix Intros Prodigy M ARGB 2022 and Prodigy M 2022 Cases

BitFenix on Thursday released the latest updates to its iconic Prodigy M line of Micro-ATX cases. As their names suggest, the new Prodigy M ARGB 2022 and Prodigy M 2022 are differentiated by factory-fitted ARGB-illuminated fans with an included ARGB controller, on the Prodigy M ARGB 2022. What's common, is an all new modular rear-panel, which lets you mount either a rear exhaust fan, or a pair of vertical expansion slots, to better show your graphics card off. The layout also allows the PSU and drives to be arranged in different locations to make room for where you want your graphics card.

BitFenix has tested the new Prodigy M 2022 series to support high-end graphics cards such as the GeForce RTX 3090 and the Radeon RX 6900 XT, with the case offering clearance of up to 33.9 cm. With add-on cards in their conventional location, you get room for CPU coolers up to 19 cm in height. There are other feature-set touchups, such as reinforced handles, and a USB-C front-panel port, The overall dimensions of the case remain consistent with the Prodigy M series.
The slide-deck follows.

Razer Launches the Kaira X Gaming Headset, Wolverine V2 White, and Charging Dock

Razer, the leading global lifestyle brand for gamers, today announced several new additions to its expanding console range with the Kaira X for Xbox and Kaira X for PlayStation, the Kaira and Kaira Pro for Xbox White, and Wolverine V2 White Edition. Also launching today is the Razer Universal Quick Charging Stand for Xbox, in a range of vibrant colors that perfectly match official Xbox Wireless Controllers.

"With the new Kaira X, gamers now have even more choice when it comes to picking their perfect Razer headset for either Xbox, PlayStation or PC," said Alvin Cheung, Senior Vice President of Razer's peripherals business unit. "And with the vibrant new range of colors on the Kaira X and charging stands, and the sleek white colors on the Kaira, Kaira Pro, and Wolverine V2, gamers can be as bold and bright as their hardware."

GIGABYTE Expands Workstation Product Portfolio for AMD Ryzen Based Products

GIGABYTE Technology,an industry leader in high-performance servers and workstations, today announced two new W-series workstations, W771-Z00 for AMD Ryzen Threadripper PRO processors and W331-Z00 for AMD Ryzen processors, as well as a WRX80 chipset motherboard, MC62-G40, and a TRX40 chipset rack server, G182-C20. Remote work and a high level of compute for 3D design or engineering are driving factors for these new professional products.

Today's engineers and power users are focused on high demanding workloads and require a powerful workstation to enable them to work effectively and efficiently. The W771-Z00 coupled with a top-tier processor from the AMD Ryzen Threadripper PRO family, such as the 3995WX with 64 cores 128 threads, make this the most powerful workstation to date. The motherboard for this workstation is the MC62-G40. Based around the AMD WRX80 chipset, the W771-Z00 shares high-end features that are typically only found in servers.

EU Commission Pushing Forward with Unified Electronics Charger Standard and Unbundling of Chargers

What can only be called a long running drama, the EU has once again put its foot down when it comes to chargers for various consumer electronics devices, although it's mostly about smartphones and regular old mobile phones these days. The whole thing took off some time in 2009, although back then, it was a voluntary effort and according to today's press release by the EU Commission, we're down from 30 to three "competing" standards (micro USB, lightning and USB-C), but apparently that is still not good enough.

As such, the EU Commission has now decided that USB-C is the answer to their prayers and it'll now be an enforced standard for a wide range of devices if they're to be allowed to be sold in the EU. We doubt this will go down well with many device manufacturers, Apple being the obvious one here, even though the company has been slowly transitioning to USB-C on its tablets, none of its phones are using USB-C today. The following device categories are affected: smartphones, tablets, cameras, headphones, portable speakers and handheld video game consoles.

TEAMGROUP Announces Several New Product Lines: DDR5, AIO CLCs, Portable SSDs, and More

At the COMPUTEX 2021 Virtual Expo in May, TEAMGROUP presented the core value underlying its new products in 2021: "Chill the Heat, Feel the Speed, Make it Big", representing cooling, DDR5, and large capacity, the three major focuses TEAMGROUP builds its new products and design concepts around. Tonight at 10 PM (GMT+8), everyone is sincerely invited to the TEAMGROUP Online Launch Event 2021 via official website, Facebook Page, and YouTube channel as it again takes the three focuses to the next level with its powerful new technical capabilities and innovative technologies. To celebrate the event with the world, TEAMGROUP will give away a Gaming Desktop PC and other prizes worth up to $7,000 USD. Make sure to stay tuned for the TEAMGROUP Online Launch Event 2021.

In recent years, TEAMGROUP has been focusing on developing diverse cooling solutions and applying unique materials to the SSD of the Gaming product line, T-FORCE. Inspired by the four natural elements of wind, fire, water, and earth, TEAMGROUP has utilized four exclusive components of cooling to T-FORCE gaming products. The wind element can be found in TEAMGROUP's CARDEA A440 Pro M.2 PCIe SSD as further improvements are made on existing aluminium fin thermal conductivity technology for fluid ventilation and more effective cooling performance. The impressive read/write speeds of the CARDEA A440 Pro are also approaching the defined maximum speeds for Gen4 x4 by PCI-SIG at an outstanding 7,400/7,000 MB/s.

AlphaCool Intros Eisblock Aurora for GALAX and KFA2 RTX 3080 Ti and RTX 3090 Cards

The Alphacool Eisblock Aurora Acryl GPX GPU water cooler is now available for GALAX and KFA2 Geforce RTX 3090/3080 TI HOF graphics cards. More performance! To gain more cooling performance, the cooler was made to sit closer to the components that need to be cooled. Alphacool also uses thinner yet more effective thermal pads. Additionally, the thickness of the nickel-plated copper block has been reduced from 7 mm to 5.5 mm and the water flow within the heat sink has been optimized. The result of this development process is that all important components such as voltage converters and V-RAM are cooled much better and more effectively by the water, leading to a significant increase in performance.

Fresh design! The EisBlock Aurora Acrylic GPX cooler has been fundamentally designed to focus more on lighting than previous models. The addressable digital RGB LEDs are embedded directly into the cooling block. The lighting illuminates the entire cooling block and thus gives the cooler a very unique visual touch.

Sharkoon Announces SKILLER SGK3 Keyboard with Reactive Kailh Switches

Sharkoon Technologies is an international supplier of high-performance quality PC components and peripherals. Sharkoon now presents a new mechanical keyboard: the SKILLER SGK3 White. This is a keyboard which boasts long-lasting mechanical switches as well as a durable overall design. The white finish gives the keyboard an unobtrusive look, while the integrated RGB lighting can be customized using the downloadable software.

Responsive Kailh Switches
In order to suit different user needs, Sharkoon offers the SKILLER SGK3 White in different switch versions. The model with red switches is characterized by a linear switch characteristic without clicking noises or resistance and is therefore ideally suited for frequent gamers. For prolific writers in office settings and for casual gamers, the versions with the tactile blue or tactile brown switches are suitable options. With an operating force of 50 grams, all three types of switches actuate after only 1.9 millimeters.

Valve Steam Deck FAQs Shed More Light on the Hot New Portable Console

Valve today put out frequently asked questions (FAQs) that shed light on many aspects of Steam Deck, the elusive new portable game console. Steam Deck is one of the first mass-market handheld consoles based on the PC architecture (if you don't count the various smartphones based on Intel Atom chips), or x86-based tablets. It turns out that Valve engaged in some segmentation between the storage-based variants. All three capacity variants feature optically-bonded glass IPS LCD touchscreens with 10-point multi-touch, but the 512 GB variant has an additional anti-glare treatment.

Steam Deck combines Linux-based custom operating system, along with the Steam UI and DRM platform, although it is possible to play non-Steam games through the Proton translation layer software. You can add games to your library just like on Steam on desktop. The Steam software itself has a custom UI optimized for the console, which replaces the Big Picture mode of conventional Steam desktop. Just like on regular Steam, the Steam Deck console lets you launch and play a game without an Internet connection, unless the game requires it.

Genesis Launches a New Krypton 290 Gaming Mouse

The Genesis Krypton 290 is the model from the 200 series. In its ergonomic case you will find a 6400 DPI sensor, in-built memory for storing settings, as well as switches which provide effortless work for a long time. The set is complete with LED illumination with the signature PRISMO effect.

The Genesis Krypton 290 gaming mouse is a light (99 g) design with a symmetrical shape. The model is equipped with seven programmable buttons which can be configured with the use of the manufacturer's software. It also allows for recording of macros as well as changing the illumination settings and saving those options in the in-built memory. There are 16 million colors to choose from. The roller, logo on the top, as well as a LEDs running along the base are illuminated.

Microsoft Makes Mouse out of Ocean Plastic, Claims Environmental Creds

We're all for recycling here at TPU and it's good to see that more and more big corporations are getting involved, but we can't help but feel that Microsoft is making bigger claims than it really is in this case. The company unveiled a new mouse at yesterday's Surface event called the Microsoft Ocean Plastic Mouse, however, the mouse is only made with 20 percent recycled plastic, although it does apparently come from plastic fished out of the oceans or other waterways. The issue here is that it only contains a tiny amount of recycled plastic, so it's hard to credit Microsoft for doing something real for the environment.

The Microsoft Ocean Plastic Mouse looks tacky as well, especially the scroll wheel, which is not only extremely slim by the looks of it, but also looks fiddly to use. It's a very basic two button mouse, although the scroll wheel is apparently also clickable and it can be tilted for vertical scrolling. The mouse connects via Bluetooth and supports Bluetooth 4.0 and 5, as well as Microsoft Swift Pair technology. It has a claimed wireless range of up to 10 meters, although Microsoft put in a note that it's closer to five meters in an office environment. It runs off of a AA battery which is meant to be good for up to 12 months of usage. The packaging is made out of wood and sugarcane fiber and doesn't include any plastic. Microsoft will also accept your old mouse for recycling if you get one of these and will apparently even pay for the postage. The Microsoft Ocean Plastic Mouse retails for $25.

European Processor Initiative EPAC 1.0 RISC-V Test Chip Samples Delivered

The European Processor Initiative (EPI) https://www.european-processor-initiative.eu/, a project with 28 partners from 10 European countries, with the goal of making EU achieve independence in HPC chip technologies and HPC infrastructure, is proud to announce that EPAC 1.0 RISC-V Test Chip samples were delivered to EPI and initial tests of their operation were successful.

One key segment of EPI activities is to develop and demonstrate fully European-grown processor IPs based on the RISC-V Instruction Set Architecture, providing power-efficient and high-throughput accelerator cores named EPAC (European Processor Accelerators).

Last Chance to Win an ASUS ROG Strix RTX 3080 Ti LC with Asetek Liquid Cooling Tech

TechPowerUp, Asetek, and ASUS, brought our readers from the European Union a unique opportunity to win a mouthwatering ASUS ROG Strix GeForce RTX 3080 Ti LC graphics card. One of the fastest graphics cards you can have right now, the Strix LC uses all-in-one liquid cooling technology by Asetek, the market leader in liquid component cooling technology across the client and enterprise markets. You have mere hours to drop in your hat, and hope for the best. Hurry!

For more information, and to participate, visit this page.

GELID Announces BlackFrore CPU Cooler

Tech innovator GELID Solutions unveils the latest high-performance CPU Cooler for AMD and Intel CPU. The BlackFrore is a product of GELID Solutions GAMER product line. The BlackFrore comes with the advanced heatsink that carries 2 power heat pipes and features the Heatpipe Direct Contact (HDC) Technology to provide perfect thermal contact and facilitate heat transfer between CPU and the heat pipes. Additionally, the BlackFrore introduces the High-Class Black Electrophoretic Coating to guarantee top-grade surface finishing of the heatsink, create an exceptional look and feel and improve durability.

An improved 92 mm fan with the Smart PWM (Pulse Width Module) Control and airflow-optimized impeller compliments the heatsink. The newly designed impeller provides efficient airflow distribution over the heatsink and the intelligent PWM Curve technique constantly keeps the fans silent but accelerates speed whenever additional cooling is needed. The high-performance GC-Pro thermal compound and the all-in-one mounting kit for multiple AMD CPU sockets AM2, AM2+, AM3, AM3+, AM4, FM1, FM2 and for Intel CPU LGA 775, 1366, 011, 1155, 1156, 1150, 1151, 1200 sockets are all included too.

NZXT Announces C-Series Bronze PSUs

The new C Series Bronze power supplies offer stable and safe power to all types of builds. The new lineup of Bronze PSUs generates less heat, keeping your system running quietly and efficiently. Their reliable components make up a unit that is backed by a 5-year warranty—the NZXT C Series Bronze PSUs are here to get your build powered up without letting you down.

NZXT Refreshes Kraken Family of AIO CPU Coolers

NZXT announces the latest Kraken X, Kraken Z, and AER RGB 2 fans—n a sleek matte white. NZXT is taking the challenge out of achieving an all-white build. This family of white cooling products came directly from community feedback, allowing users to express themselves by giving them more options for the ideal build. The Kraken 120 has received some upgrades from previous models. It features an improved pump with a larger water reservoir, a refreshed look, and support for 5 V ARGB ecosystems.

NZXT Announces the H510 Flow Case

NZXT, a community-driven provider of PC hardware, software, and services is releasing a robust roster of products designed to give more flexibility to the PC gaming community. This launch introduces an H510 case optimized for airflow, all-white cooling options, and bronze power supplies. These exciting additions to the NZXT lineup are directly informed by user feedback, addressing interest in high-performance components with added customizability.

This case introduces a much-anticipated addition to NZXT's lineup of H510 series cases. The H510 Flow offers improved ventilation with the addition of the perforated front panel and observes NZXT's well-known design DNA.
Wednesday, September 22nd 2021

Today's Reviews

XGIMI Halo+ Projector Review

XGIMI Halo+ Projector Review

The XGIMI Halo+ is a new and improved version of the original Halo, which was launched in 2020. While it looks the same, it sports better sound, is slightly brighter, and has longer battery life while also improving on the setup and software user experience.
NZXT H510 Flow Review

NZXT H510 Flow Review

The NZXT H510 Flow is based on the original H510, but offers a re-engineered front panel to solve the issue of airflow and thermal performance that was the Achilles heel of the original variant. Besides that, the case stays true to the same design and tooling, giving us a little blast from the past with hopes of remaining relevant today—two years later.
NVIDIA DLAA Anti-Aliasing Review - DLSS at Native Resolution

NVIDIA DLAA Anti-Aliasing Review - DLSS at Native Resolution

The Elder Scrolls Online is the first game to support NVIDIA DLAA (Deep Learning Anti-Aliasing). In this mini-review, we take a closer look to compare the image quality and performance offered by DLAA and TAA anti-aliasing, and also compare the results against what DLSS can achieve.

NVIDIA RTX 30 SUPER Series Specifications Rumored

The NVIDIA RTX 30 SUPER series is expected to be announced by the company early next year in January at CES 2022. We have now received a list of rumored specifications for the upcoming family from kopite7kimi who correctly revealed the RTX 30 series. The list includes four desktop cards with the RTX 3060 SUPER, 3070 SUPER, 3080 SUPER, and 3090 SUPER. The RTX 3060 SUPER is listed as featuring 5632 CUDA cores paired with 12 GB of GDDR6 memory which is a considerable increase from the 4864 CUDA cores and 8 GB of memory found on the RTX 3060 Ti.

The RTX 3070 SUPER appears to feature less of an upgrade with the core count remaining at 5888 and the memory capacity at 8 GB however this will be upgraded from GDDR6 to GDDR6X. The RTX 3080 SUPER will receive 8960 CUDA and 12 GB of GDDR6X memory compared to the 8704 cores and 10 GB memory on the RTX 3080. The new flagship consumer card will be the RTX 3090 SUPER with an extra 256 CUDA cores for a total of 10752 and 24 GB of GDDR6X memory. These specifications are only rumors with the leaker stating that they doubt some of them so we will have to wait for further leaks until we can know with certainty.

Microsoft Takes a Leaf out of Acer's Book with the Surface Laptop Studio

The new Surface Laptop Studio features what Microsoft calls a boundary-pushing design, yet we felt like we'd seen the easel before. Lo and behold, Acer ConceptD 3 Ezel launched last year with a very similar design and HP launched the similar Spectre Folio in 2018. Not to belittle Microsoft here, as they have designed a much slicker hinge mechanism than Acer, while seemingly also improving upon the materials used and unlike HP's Spectre Folio, this is a "full fat" laptop and not a glorified tablet.

The Surface Laptop Studio is a strange looking machine, as it has an overhang, something I never expected to see on a laptop and although it appears to have been designed to allow for better cooling, there's just something about it that irks me. Yes, it makes it appear thinner than it really is and Microsoft uses the overhang to tuck away and charge the optional Surface Slim Pen 2 underneath, but it just looks odd for a lack of a better word. Oddities aside, it should be Microsoft's most powerful Intel powered laptop to date and it even packs a discrete NVIDIA GPU.

Microsoft Takes Second Stab at Android with Surface Duo 2

There's no doubt that Microsoft's first attempt on an Android phablet was a disaster, not only as a device, but apparently also so in terms of the sales volume, since it was originally priced at an insane US$1,399.99. Even though it's retailing for a more sensible US$699.99 now, it doesn't seem to have made it much more popular. That didn't stop Microsoft from launching the Surface Duo 2 today and it looks like the company has learnt from some of its mistakes with the original device, but the question is if it'll be enough.

Feature wise, Microsoft has updated the displays and we're now looking at two slightly larger and higher resolution 5.8-inch displays with 1344x1892 resolution, that combine into an 8.3-inch surface with a 2688x1892 resolution, when combined. The displays are still using AMOLED technology, but now they're using a variable refresh rate of up to 90 Hz. The CPU has been given a bump to, from a Snapdragon 855 to a Snapdragon 888, while Microsoft also threw in an additional 2 GB of RAM for a total of 8 GB of the LPDDR5 flavour. The Surface Duo 2 still starts out with 128 GB of storage, but Microsoft added a 512 GB SKU in addition to the 256 GB SKU.

Is the New Old Already? Far Cry 6 Raytracing Exclusive to PC Version, PS5 and Xbox Series Left Out

Stephanie Brenham, Team Lead Programmer for Ubisoft's upcoming AAA Far Cry 6, recently spoke to WCCFTech on the upcoming Far Cry installment. Stephanie went into some detail regarding the graphics and performance options, and an interesting fact that surfaced was that neither Sony's PS5 nor Microsoft's Xbox Series consoles will feature ray tracing enabled on their respective versions of the game. Apparently, ray tracing will be a PC-exclusive feature, as console versions of the game are targeting higher render resolution and more fluid framerates over expensive graphics options such as ray tracing. And even on PC, it'll be a hybrid form of it, and not a full implementation: ray tracing is supported for both shadows and reflections, but Ubisoft opted for a hybrid approach here, marrying traditional rendering with ray tracing so as to improve performance in mainstream PC hardware.

"Ray tracing is a PC-only feature," Stephanie Brenham said. "On console, our objective has been to take advantage of new hardware capabilities, optimizing performance targeting 4K and achieving 60 FPS." This does somewhat fall in the face of performance expectations set by both Sony and Microsoft; both companies made (and still make) extensive use of ray tracing support on the marketing campaigns for their consoles. However, as we've seen in the past, enabling ray tracing comes with severe performance penalties in even the latest and greatest PC hardware (sometimes not to best effect, even), which still outclasses even the latest consoles' powerful innards (compared to their predecessors, of course).

Gigabyte's Z690 Motherboard SKU Names Leak

Once again, the Eurasian Economic Commission has provided us with a look into a wide range of upcoming motherboard models and this time it's Gigabyte's Z690 lineup. The company appears to be reading no less than 17 DDR5 models and 10 DDR4 models, which is simply a massive amount of motherboards. There are two models that caught our eye, firstly the Aorus Tachyon, which continues HiCookies overclocking SKU from the current Z590 Aorus Tachyon and secondly the Aorus Elite Stealth, which may or may not be a passively cooled board, suggesting the Z690 chipset might be coming with active cooling.

We'd hazard a guess and say that not all SKUs will be available at launch, since it's unlikely that there will be a demand for this many different models. A few other noteworthy mentions here include the Z690M Aorus Elite DDR4 (with or without Wi-Fi), which seems to be a higher-end mATX model and it looks like we're getting three Mini-ITX models with the Z690I Aorus Ultra, the Z690 Aero D and the Z690I A Ultra DDR4. Also gone is the Vision name, as it has been replaced with Aero, a brand Gigabyte has used for some of its AMD boards. Time will tell what actually lands in the various markets at the end, as it might be that some of these SKUs are region specific as well.

Trust Gaming Launches the GXT 255+ ONYX Professional Microphone

Leading value-for-money digital lifestyle accessories brand, Trust Electronics Ltd, is pleased to introduce its GXT 255+ ONYX professional microphone with arm. The GXT GXT 255+ ONYX professional membrane microphone with cardioid record pattern allows users to stream content smoothly in the highest and purest sound quality, making it ideal for podcasts, vlogs, voice-overs, music recording or streaming on YouTube, Twitch and Facebook. The Trust Gaming GXT 255+ ONYX Streaming Microphone is available from Amazon for £174.99. Currently on pre order with availability from the 25th Sept.

With a cardioid audio pattern, a shock mount, zero-latency monitoring and a steel boom arm included, the Trust Onyx Professional Microphone delivers everything required for studio-quality audio recording. Plus, the adjustable LED lighting ring with six colours, brings quality recordings to life. Recording is instant and effortless with the Onyx thanks to its simple USB connection. A hub with one additional USB port is also included for extra convenience.

ADATA XPG Unveils CRUISER Super Mid-Tower Chassis

XPG, a fast-growing provider of systems, components, and peripherals for Gamers, Esports Pros, and Tech Enthusiasts, today announces the XPG CRUISER super mid-tower chassis. The CRUISER is a full-size E-ATX chassis that supports E-ATX motherboards with dimensions (H x W x D): 493 x 234 x 466 mm (19.40 x 9.21 x 18.35 in). It also sports XPG's Exoskeleton design and a host of other great features gamers and PC enthusiasts will love. They include versatile I/O ports, such as a high-speed USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-C connection, a removable dust filter, and three XPG VENTO 120 ARGB fans, to name a few.

XPG's Exoskeleton design is a visual language unique to XPG. It maintains XPG's signature balance between airflow intake efficiency and ARGB aesthetics. The XPG CRUISER's front glass panel enhances airflow intake while allowing the included XPG VENTO 120 ARGB fans to shine through the front of the chassis. For convenience, a magnetic dust filter on the top of the chassis is detachable for quick removal and hassle-free cleaning.

Intel's Beast Canyon NUC Appears in Retail With a Steep Price Tag

We've already covered the Intel Beast Canyon NUC in quite some detail over the past few months and it's finally available to buy, that is if you have more money than sense, as the starting price on Amazon for the barebone version is no less than US$1,769.95. For this, you get an Intel Core i9-11900KB CPU, a 650 W 80+ Gold PSU and of course the chassis itself. We did find it for slightly less elsewhere online, but even at that US$1,599 price point, it seems like a pretty bad deal to us.

Amazon is also offering a range of customization options, starting at US$1,839.95, which includes 16 GB of unspecified DDR4 RAM and a 250 GB Samsung 980 SSD. The maxed out configuration, which doesn't come with a dedicated GPU, tops out at US$3,139.95 with 64 GB of RAM and a pair of 2 TB Samsung 980 Pro SSDs. These prices do include Windows 10 Pro pre-installed and configured. Not sure about you, but this looks like a terrible deal to us.

Playstation 3 Emulator RPCS3 To Implement AMD FSR Upscaling Tech

AMD's Fidelity Super Resolution (FSR) tech is being implemented in RPSCS3, one of the foremost emulators for Sony's Playstation 3. The emulator allows PC users to play otherwise PS3-exclusive games via software emulation. The nature of this emulation, however, leads to a couple important aspects. One pertains to performance: emulating non-existent hardware is one of the most resource-hungry workloads one can think of, and is highly dependent on the emulator's coding quality. Another is that since this is a software solution, it does allow to changes in maximum render resolution, for example, or the addition of visual effects or other modifications to the rendering pipeline. One limitation of this approach is that game support has to be added almost manually, checking and correcting the emulators' behaviors according to the software being played.

AMD's FSR tech been received with a rather enthusiastic response. This is in part due to its open source nature, but also because of its apparent ease of implementation and its higher compatibility with graphics cards new, old, and from the competition - unlike NVIDIA's DLSS, which requires specific hardware (Tensor cores) to be present in the GPU chip, locking it to only the latest NVIDIA products. This nature of FSR has led to its integrationn on the RPCS3 emulator, promising a relatively easy to implement performance and image quality increase compared to the original rendering pipeline, including 4K upscaling. Check after the break for a video of the tech in action (spoiler: the quality difference isn't nearly as close as what the thumbnail implies).

Intel Core i9-12900K "Alder Lake" Beats Ryzen Threadripper 2990WX at Cinebench R23 nT

An alleged Intel Core i9-12900K "Alder Lake-S" sample is shown beating the 32-core AMD Ryzen Threadripper 2990WX HEDT processor at AMD's favorite benchmark, Cinebench R23, in its multi-threaded (nT) test. At this point it's not known whether the i9-12900K is overclocked, but the CPU-Z instance in the screenshot reads 5.30 GHz, which could very well be the processor's stock Thermal Velocity Boost frequency. The sample scored upward of 30000 points, putting it above the Threadripper 2990WX reference score in Cinebench.

The 2990WX is based on the "Zen+" microarchitecture, and released in 2018, but is a 32-core/64-thread chip that should have ripped through this rendering workload. The i9-12900K, on the other hand, has eight "Golden Cove" performance cores that have HyperThreading, in addition to 8 "Gracemont" efficiency cores that lack HTT. This benchmark was run on Windows 10, which lacks awareness of the Intel Thread Director, a hardware component that optimizes utilization of the two kinds of CPU cores. Windows 11 is known to feature better awareness of hybrid core architectures. The i9-12900K sample is possibly installed on a Gigabyte Z690 AORUS Ultra motherboard, and has 32 GB of DDR5-5200 memory (two modules, logically four 40-bit channels).

DRAM Prices Projected to Decline by 3-8% QoQ in 4Q21 Due to Rising Level of Client Inventory, Says TrendForce

Following the peak period of production in 3Q21, the supply of DRAM will likely begin to outpace demand in 4Q21, according to TrendForce's latest investigations (the surplus of DRAM supply is henceforth referred to as "sufficiency ratio", expressed as a percentage). In addition, while DRAM suppliers are generally carrying a healthy level of inventory, most of their clients in the end-product markets are carrying a higher level of DRAM inventory than what is considered healthy, meaning these clients will be less willing to procure additional DRAM going forward. TrendForce therefore forecasts a downward trajectory for DRAM ASP in 4Q21. More specifically, DRAM products that are currently in oversupply may experience price drops of more than 5% QoQ, and the overall DRAM ASP will likely decline by about 3-8% QoQ in 4Q21.

Although WFH and distance learning applications previously generated high demand for notebook computers, increasingly widespread vaccinations in Europe and North America have now weakened this demand, particularly for Chromebooks. As a result, global production of notebooks is expected to decline in 4Q21, in turn propelling the sufficiency ratio of PC DRAM to 1.38%, which indicates that PC DRAM will no longer be in short supply in 4Q21. However, PC DRAM accounts for a relatively low share of DRAM manufacturers' DRAM supply bits, since these suppliers have allocated more production capacities to server DRAM, which is in relatively high demand. Hence, there will unlikely be a severe surplus of PC DRAM in 4Q21. It should also be pointed out that, on average, the current spot prices of PC DRAM modules are far lower than their contract prices for 3Q21. TrendForce therefore expects an imminent 5-10% QoQ decline in PC DRAM contract prices for 4Q21, with potential for declines that are even greater than 10% for certain transactions, as PC OEMs anticipate further price drops in PC DRAM prices in the future.

HP Announces Pair of New USB-C Monitors for Productivity

Slowly but surely, USB-C seems to be gaining popularity with the display makers and HP's most recent offerings, the U32 4K HDR monitor and the M34d WQHD curved monitor both feature USB-C ports with DP Alt mode and 65 W power delivery. As the product name implies, the U32 sports a 3840x2160 pixel resolution at 60 Hz and the M34d comes in at 3440x1440 pixels, although here you get a variable refresh rate of 48-100 Hz.

The U32 comes with a 31.5-inch 10-bit (8-bit + FRC) IPS panel with what we presume is a peak brightness of 400 nits and a contrast ratio of 1000:1. Connectivity consists of a DP 1.2 port, an HDMI 2.0 port, the aforementioned USB-C port, three USB-A 3.2 Gen 1 ports (aka USB 3.0) and a 3.5 mm headphone jack. The U32 uses an external power brick, so there's also a barrel plug type power jack.

Intel to Break Ground on Two New Leading-Edge Chip Factories in Arizona

With its IDM 2.0 strategy, Intel is committed to investing in manufacturing capacity to support the surging global demand for semiconductors. The company recently announced plans to build two new leading-edge chip fabs at its Ocotillo campus in Chandler, Ariz. The new factories will support expanding requirements of Intel's products and provide committed capacity for foundry customers.

On Friday, Sept. 24, Intel CEO Pat Gelsinger will be joined by government and community leaders for a groundbreaking ceremony to celebrate the largest private-sector investment in Arizona history: a $20 billion project that will bolster U.S. semiconductor leadership and help bring geographical balance to the global supply chain.

Intel Processors Selected to Power Next-Gen DOE Supercomputers

The U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE's) National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) selected next-generation Intel Xeon Scalable processors (code-named "Sapphire Rapids") to power the supercomputers used within NNSA's Life Extension Program for mission-critical efforts in stockpile stewardship. The NNSA's Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory awarded a subcontract to Dell Technologies to supply the Intel-powered computing systems that will be deployed at the NNSA's Tri-Labs (Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Los Alamos National Laboratory and Sandia National Laboratories).

Today's news supports the NNSA's Advanced Simulation and Computing (ASC) program operated at the NNSA's Tri-Labs. The Commodity Technology Systems contract (CTS-2) awarded today will enable these three national laboratories to build more powerful, energy-efficient computing systems that will focus on performing extensive modeling and simulation capabilities in support of NNSA's stockpile stewardship program.
Tuesday, September 21st 2021

Today's Reviews

ROCCAT Kone Pro Air Review

ROCCAT Kone Pro Air Review

The Kone Pro Air is ROCCAT's first wireless Kone. Much like its wired sibling, it comes with PixArt's PAW3370 sensor, optical main button switches, and pure PTFE feet. At just 73 g, the Kone Pro Air is exceptionally light, and features both 2.4 GHz and Bluetooth connectivity, with more than 100 hours of battery life.
SanDisk Ultra 3D 4 TB 2.5" SSD Review

SanDisk Ultra 3D 4 TB 2.5" SSD Review

The SanDisk Ultra 3D is the most affordable 4 TB SSD available, currently selling for only $390. In terms of performance, it's nearly as fast as other high-end 2.5" SATA drives, and write speeds are sustained very well since there's no TLC write hole.

Seagate Intros IronWolf 525 M.2 NVMe SSD for NAS

Seagate today introduced the IronWolf 525, a line of M.2 NVMe SSDs for NAS applications. Built in the M.2-2280 form-factor, these drives take advantage of the PCI-Express 4.0 x4 interface, and come in capacities of 500 GB (model: ZP500NM30002), 1 TB (ZP1000NM30002), and 2 TB (ZP2000NM30002). What sets these drives apart is the endurance. Seagate claims 2,800 TBW for the 2 TB variant, 1,400 TBW for the 1 TB variant, and 700 TBW for the 500 GB. The drives are backed by 5-year warranties. Under the hood, the Seagate IronWolf 525 series combines a high-endurance variant of KIOXIA 96-layer 3D TLC NAND flash, with Phison E16-series controller.

In terms of performance, the 2 TB variant offers up to 740,000 IOPS 4K random reads, up to 700,000 IOPS 4K random writes; up to 5000 MB/s sequential reads, and up to 4400 MB/s sequential writes. The 1 TB variant does up to 760,000 IOPS 4K random reads, up to 700,000 IOPS 4K random writes; and up to 5000 MB/s sequential reads, with up to 4400 MB/s writes. The 500 GB variant is the slowest, with up to 420,000 IOPS 4K random reads, up to 630,000 IOPS 4K random writes, up to 5000 MB/s sequential reads, and up to 2500 MB/s sequential writes. Seagate did not reveal prices, but we expect these drives to eventually replace the IronWolf 510 series, with the 500 GB variant going for roughly $100, the 1 TB variant for roughly $180, and the 2 TB variant roughly $370.

HP Lists NVIDIA RTX 3080 SUPER in Upcoming Envy 34 PC

HP recently listed the NVIDIA RTX 3080 SUPER as one of the available options for their upcoming Envy 34 AIO-in-One PC before updating their site to remove the reference. NVIDIA is rumored to refresh its desktop and mobile GPU lineup early next year with the launch of RTX 30 SUPER most likely at CES 2022 in January. The current HP Envy 34 features an RTX 2080 Max-Q mobile card so any potential RTX 3080 SUPER option would also need to be a mobile variant considering the limited cooling capabilities of the AIO. The Envy 34 featured will go on sale next month for 1999 USD ruling out the possibility of it shipping with the RTX 3080 SUPER. While it is entirely possible that this was a simple mistake from HP it could be an indication that the PC will be upgraded to the SUPER model in the near future.

AMD Radeon RX 6600 Reviews Set to Release October 13th

The AMD Radeon RX 6600 is expected to launch in October after documents received by VideoCardz reveal that reviews for the card are set to be published on October 13th. The documents reveal that board partners who will be releasing cards for review will need to have informed AMD by September 15th and can begin shipping them to reviewers on September 29th. The AMD Radeon RX 6600 will use the Navi 23 GPU with 4 Compute Units disabled for a total of 28. This will give the card 1792 Stream Processors which will be paired with 8 GB of GDDR6 memory. The documents also show that AMD is not planning to release an RX 6600 reference card so no pricing information was included. We expect that the card will be shortly available after the listed review embargo is lifted on October 13th at 9 AM EST.

Cable Matters Launches USB-C KVM Switch With 8K or Dual 4K Video Support

Cable Matters, an industry-leading connectivity solutions supplier, today launched an innovative one-device keyboard, video, and mouse sharing switch for USB-C devices. The Cable Matters USB-C KVM Switch for 2 Computers with HDMI, DisplayPort, and 4x USB 3.0 Ports is the perfect space-saving accessory for managing multiple USB-C laptops or tablets in a single, unified workspace. The switch allows two computers or tablets to share a single set of monitors, a keyboard and mouse, and other USB peripherals. A built-in switcher button and wireless remote control enable seamless, fast device swapping.

"The Cable Matters KVM switch is the perfect productivity tool for work-from-home or hybrid workers," said Cable Matters President and CEO Jeff Jiang. "The KVM switch is ideal for remote workers wishing to use multiple devices for work and play at the same desktop." KVM switches of the past required connecting multiple data and video cables to each computer separately, reducing flexibility, portability, and compatibility. The Cable Matters USB-C KVM leverages the data and video transmission capabilities of USB-C to carry video and USB data over a single cable. Now, swapping devices is a breeze with only a single standard cable. The switch is compatible with a wide array of devices with USB-C video support, including laptops, smartphones, tablets, and desktops.

EVGA X570 DARK Motherboard Formally Launched

The EVGA X570 DARK brings the exclusive DARK experience to Team Red for the first time. This motherboard evolved through a comprehensive design overhaul to squeeze out the full performance of the legendary AMD Zen 3 processors. With a highly-efficient 17-phase digital VRM design, 10-layer PCB, and two built-in VRM fans, it's no wonder that some tried to fool you with DARK imitations.

Powered with unmatched multi-core performance and energy efficiency, the EVGA X570 DARK unshackles your PC with PCIe Gen4 support for the latest graphics cards and M.2 storage, lightning-fast 4800 MHz+(OC) memory support, two Intel 2.5 Gbps NICs, Wi-Fi 6/BT 5.2, plus an abundance of SATA 6 Gb/s ports and USB options. The search for the pinnacle of desktop PC performance is over: this is the way.

CORSAIR Launches New M65 RGB ULTRA Gaming Mice

CORSAIR, a world leader in high-performance gear for gamers and content creators, today announced the newest entries in its world-renowned M65 lineup of high-performance gaming mice: the M65 RGB ULTRA and, for the first time, the M65 RGB ULTRA WIRELESS. Combining the iconic shape and aluminium construction that has seen the M65 trusted by gamers for over a decade, these new mice add the latest in performance gaming technology to ensure you're ready to take on the highest level of competition.

Within their familiar frame, the M65 RGB ULTRA and M65 RGB ULTRA WIRELESS pack the most cutting-edge technology in a CORSAIR mouse to date. The 26,000 DPI CORSAIR MARKSMAN optical sensor offers incredible precision, customizable in single DPI steps. This is complemented by CORSAIR QUICKSTRIKE primary buttons, spring-loaded for zero gap between the left and right clicks and their optical OMRON switches for instantly responsive gaming. Those clicks are then transmitted to your PC with CORSAIR AXON 8,000 Hz hyper-processing in the M65 RGB ULTRA, or 2,000 Hz SLIPSTREAM WIRELESS in the M65 RGB ULTRA WIRELESS. The result is a mouse that registers and transmits your actions unbelievably fast, whether you opt for the wired or wireless version.

AMD Releases Radeon Software Adrenalin 21.9.2 Drivers

AMD today released the latest version of their Radeon Software Adrenalin drivers, guaranteeing the best possible experience for AMD GPU users. The latest driver revision introduces support for World War Z: Aftermath, and Amazon's New World MMORPG. Besides that initial game release support, the drivers also deliver an up to 13% performance improvement in Diablo II: Resurrected. This performance increase seems to solve a rendering bottleneck experienced with the RX 6700 XT graphics card at 4K resolution, with Very High settings enabled.

AMD also fixed four outstanding issues with this driver release. The CPU Additional Metrics section within the Performance tab should now show up for all users; compatibility error messages when trying to load a previously saved tuning profile should no longer appear; water should no longer spontaneously evaporate in Hitman III for RX 6000 series users; CPU Auto Overclock in Radeon Software should no longer be absent for users sporting an AMD 5000 series CPU alongside an RX 6000 series graphics card. Check after the break for the list of outstanding issues; as always, you can grab the drivers from the link below.
DOWNLOAD: AMD Radeon Software Adrenalin 21.9.2

NVIDIA Prepares to Deliver Deep Learning Anti-Aliasing Technology for Improved Visuals, Coming first to The Elder Scrolls Online

Some time ago, NVIDIA launched its Deep Learning Super Sampling (DLSS) technology to deliver AI-enhanced upscaling images to your favorite AAA titles. It uses proprietary algorithms developed by NVIDIA and relies on the computational power of Tensor cores found in GeForce graphics cards. In the early days of DLSS, NVIDIA talked about an additional technology called DLSS2X, which was supposed to be based on the same underlying techniques as DLSS, however, just to do image sharpening and not any upscaling. That technology got its official name today: Deep Learning Anti-Aliasing or DLAA shortly.

DLAA uses technology similar to DLSS, and it aims to bring NVIDIA's image-sharpening tech to video games. It aims to use the Tensor cores found in GeForce graphics cards, and provide much better visual quality, without sacrificing the performance, as it runs on dedicated cores. It is said that the technology will be offered alongside DLSS and other additional anti-aliasing technologies in in-game settings. The first game to support it is The Elder Scrolls Online, which now has it in the public beta test server, and will be available to the general public later on.
Monday, September 20th 2021

Today's Reviews

HarmonicDyne P.D.1 In-Ear Monitors Review

HarmonicDyne P.D.1 In-Ear Monitors Review

HarmonicDyne is Linsoul's second house brand, with an emphasis on headphones. Its latest product, the P.D.1, is actually a set of IEMs that boasts a hybrid setup of dynamic drivers and a planar magnetic driver which promises a lot with premium accessories, great build quality, and tuning we put through the paces today!
Zalman CNPS10X Performa Black Review

Zalman CNPS10X Performa Black Review

Zalman's CNPS10X Performa Black may be a mid-range air cooler, but its sleek design and all-black appearance give it a stealthy look for those that want a less flashy build. It also doesn't hurt that performance per dollar was quite the surprise.

EK Launches Quantum Power Bundle Magnitude X360 D-RGB

EK, launches EK-Quantum Power Bundle Magnitude X360 D-RGB. Ultimate fully addressable D-RGB customizable liquid cooling bundle, featuring EK's most advanced CPU water block to date. All the liquid cooling products in the bundle share the same premium design language and are geared towards users seeking the most powerful water cooling solutions on the market. The customer needs to select the appropriate CPU block for CPU socket, desired fitting finish/color, and fan. EK system will then automatically fill the cart with all the necessary components to assemble a water cooling loop.

Intel Arc Alchemist Reference Boards Offered to Partners

Intel Senior VP and GM of Graphics Group, Raja Koduri has recently been interviewed by Japanese site ASCII where he revealed some new details about the companies upcoming Arc Alchemist gaming graphics cards. The cards will be manufactured on the TSMC N6 process instead of Intel's 7 node due to limited capacity however he did confirm that future cards could be manufactured directly by Intel. Raja also confirmed that Intel was currently offering reference boards to their partners to develop custom Arc Alchemist cards. This reference board is likely the same one we saw in early leaks from Moore's Law is Dead and the design featured by Intel in their promotional videos. The board partners may use the same cooler design in their cards or create semi-custom solutions.
Raja KoduriPartners and I think there will be a differentiation of ODM, and that will lead to the ultimate customer interest

NVIDIA & AMD GPU Prices Up 7% Since August in Germany

The prices for NVIDIA Ampere and AMD RDNA 2 GPUs have increased 6% - 7% in Germany since August according to the latest report from 3DCenter. The report covers the period from January 2021 to September 2021 where prices reached 304% and 214% of MSRP for NVIDIA RTX 30 and AMD RX 6000 cards earlier this year before coming down to 150% and 153% respectively. We had hoped that this trend might continue downwards but these reductions have started to reverse with prices steadily increasing since early August. The latest period from August 29th to September 19th saw NVIDIA RTX 30 series prices increase from 159% of MSRP to 170% while AMD RX 6000 cards rose from 164% to 174%.

These price trends can be fairly closely attributed to the changes in supply as shown with the addition of an availability trend line to the graph in this latest report. The card which has experienced the largest price increase relative to MSRP is the AMD Radeon RX 6800 XT which now sells for double the recommended € 649 price at € 1299. The least affected card is the NVIDIA RTX 3080 Ti retailing for 26% above it's € 1199 MSRP at € 1511.

NVIDIA GeForce 472.12 Game Ready Drivers with Windows 11 Support Released

NVIDIA today released what is possibly its first official GeForce Game Ready driver with optimization for the release (RTM) of the Windows 11 operating system. GeForce 472.12 drivers come "game ready" for Windows 11, including a all the new graphics features introduced by the operating system. The drivers also pack optimization for "Alan Wake Remastered," including support for DLSS, which doubles frame-rates at 4K UHD. Also added is support for NVIDIA Reflex on "Deathloop," as well as the launches of "Diablo II: Resurrected," "Far Cry 6," "Hot Wheels Unleashed," "Industria," "New World," and "World War Z: Aftermath." The drivers also introduce CUDA 11.4.

NVIDIA also fixed a handful of issues. A stutter noticed in "Watch_Dogs Legion" with resizable-BAR enabled, has been fixed. A game crash with "Battlefield V" in DirectX 12 mode and HDR enabled, has been fixed. GPU clock speeds getting stuck at maximum with "Redshift3D" has been fixed. A bug with the upscaling factor setting in NVIDIA Control Panel, has been fixed. Grab the drivers from the link below.


HyperX Pulsefire Haste Gaming Mouse Now Compatible with NVIDIA Reflex

HyperX, the gaming peripherals team at HP Inc. and brand leader in gaming and esports, today announced the HyperX Pulsefire Haste gaming mouse is now compatible with NVIDIA Reflex. NVIDIA Reflex measures system latency - giving gamers an accurate measure of their system's responsiveness.

The NVIDIA Reflex Analyzer is a system latency measure tool in new NVIDIA G-SYNC Reflex displays. The tool detects clicks coming from the mouse and then measures the time it takes for the resulting pixel to change on screen. Now with Reflex, gamers can start a match with confidence, knowing their system is operating exactly as it should be.

Roccat Pro Line of Gaming Mice Support NVIDIA Reflex Latency Analyzer

ROCCAT, Turtle Beach's Hamburg, Germany-based PC gaming accessories brand, today announced that the Kone Pro, Kone Pro Air, and Burst Pro professional-grade PC gaming mice are compatible with NVIDIA's latency measuring system, Reflex. NVIDIA Reflex is a revolutionary suite of technologies that optimize and measure system latency to deliver the ultimate competitive advantage. NVIDIA G-SYNC displays with Reflex have the world's first and only system latency analyzer that detect clicks coming from gaming mice with Reflex and measure the time for the resulting pixels (weapon muzzle flash) to change on screen. PC gamers can start every match with confidence knowing their system is operating at the lowest possible latency.

When using ROCCAT's Kone Pro, Kone Pro Air, or Burst Pro mice in conjunction with an NVIDIA G-SYNC display with Reflex, gamers can measure and improve full peripheral and end-to-end system latency. There are only a limited number of PC gaming mice verified by NVIDIA to achieve this designation.

Semiconductor Market to Grow By 17.3% in 2021 and Reach Potential Overcapacity by 2023, IDC Reports

IDC expects the semiconductor market to grow by 17.3% in 2021 versus 10.8% in 2020. According to IDC, the industry will see normalization and balance by the middle of 2022, with a potential for overcapacity in 2023 as larger scale capacity expansions begin to come online towards the end of 2022. Growth is driven by mobile phones, notebooks, servers, automotive, smart home, gaming, wearables, and Wi-Fi access points, with increased memory pricing. IC shortages are also expected to continue easing through 4Q21 as capacity additions accelerate.

"The semiconductor content story is intact and not only does it benefit the semiconductor companies, but the unit volume growth in many of the markets that they serve will also continue to drive very good growth for the semiconductor market," says Mario Morales, Group Vice President, Enabling Technologies and Semiconductors at IDC.

TechPowerUp Forums Rewards—Win Steam Gift Cards Every Week & Every Month

TechPowerUp Forums is one of the leading tech communities on the web for gamers, PC enthusiasts, and everyday folk looking for answers to their tech problems. Our vibrant community has over 100,000 members, with more than 4.3 million posts between them. We want to give back to the community, by announcing the new TechPowerUp Forums Rewards. Already several weeks in the running as beta test, TPU Forums Rewards is an easy way to bag Steam Gift Cards, and possibly hardware prizes in the future, by simply participating in our discussion forums (where tech discussions happen).

The more posts you have, the more tickets (chances) you have. At the end of each week, the software randomly picks a winner (where your chances are higher with more tickets in play).

Microsoft's Windows PrintNightmare Patch Breaks Network Printing Functionality

As many of you are aware, Microsoft's Windows 10 operating systems have been infected with the recent PrintNightmare vulnerability, where the Windows Print Spooler service would perform improper file operations, and attackers had room to exploit that behaveour. As the vulnerability allowed SYSTEM-level (admin) privileges, the users would be left with a vulnerable PC that an attacker could access remotely and perform malicious code execution. Back on Tuesday of last week, Microsoft has issued the patch that attempts to stop this exploit from happening, however, it seems like the fix has broken the Network Printing functionality of Windows-based machines.

According to the BleepingComputer report, the Tuesday patch for Windows has left a number of PCs with a broken Network Printing functionality, where the OS is reporting different types of errors each time the request for Network Printing occurs. It is important to note that the issue affects only printers that are attached by a USB connector, and mainly HP, Konica Minolta, and Canon models are in trouble. So far, Microsoft has not fixed this issue so users are left to wait for another patch round.
Sunday, September 19th 2021

AU Optronics Announces 85-inch 4K 240 Hz Display Panel

AU Optronics has recently announced a new 4K 85-inch TV panel with a refresh rate of 240 Hz and support for Variable Refresh Rate technology according to a recent report from DigiTimes. The panel is reported to support HDR however no exact specification was specified and will cover 96% of the DCI-P3 color space. The display also features proprietary technology including an anti-reflective coating and unique surface structure design to reduce glare. We are unsure what type of Variable Refresh Rate technology the panel will support or how much and when it may be available. The panel is not currently listed on the AU Optronics website but has reportedly won the 2021 Ministry of Science and Technology Central Science Park Fine Manufacturer Innovation Product Award.

Intel Alder Lake T-Series 35 W TDP Lineup Revealed

The complete lineup of Intel's Alder Lake T-Series processors has recently been revealed by FanlessTech showing seven models ranging from the quad-core i3-12100T to the 16-core i9-12900T. These new processors are the low-power desktop variants of the upcoming 12th Generation Alder Lake hybrid family and are primarily designed for use in small form factor and fanless devices. Alder Lake introduces several advancements including PCIe 5.0, and DDR5 support in addition to a new hybrid design with a mix of high-performance and high-efficiency cores.

The 35 W TDP is a significant reduction from the 125 W and 65 W power budgets for the unlocked and normal variants of the processors and has resulted in a reduction in boost clocks. The flagship i9-12900T features eight high-performance and eight high-efficiency cores with a maximum boost-clock of 4.9 GHz paired with 20 MB of L3 cache. We also see that all the i3 and i5 models only feature high-performance cores with only the i7 and i9 getting additional high-efficiency cores. FanlessTech reports that these new processors should be available to purchase in early 2022, the complete lineup can be viewed below.

ZALMAN Intros Acrux Series Premium High-Wattage PSUs

ZALMAN today introduced the Acrux line of premium high-wattage PSUs. Offering full modular cabling, these come in variants of 1000 W and 1200 W. Both come with two 4+4 pin EPS, and while the 1000 W model offers six 6+2 pin PCIe, the 1200 W model does eight. Under the hood is a 100% Japanese capacitor design with single +12 V rails, 80 Plus Platinum efficiency, active PFC, DC-to-DC switching, and protections against over/under-voltage, overload, overheat, and short-circuit. Keeping things cool is a 135 mm fluid-dynamic bearing fan that stays off up to 1/3rd the PSU's rated load (within a thermal limit). You get full modular cabling. The company will start selling these two by late-September.

ASUS Updates the ROG Falchion Keyboard with Homebrew ROG NX Mechanical Switches

ASUS refreshed the ROG Falchion compact 65% mechanical gaming keyboard with homebrew mechanical switches. The keyboard originally launched in July 2020 with Cherry MX Red switches, and its replacement on the store shelves, the new ASUS ROG Falchion NX, features ASUS ROG NX Red switches. These offer 1.8 mm key travel, and 40 gf minimum actuation force. It retains the illuminated felt-touch panel along the left side that can be used either for scrolling (slide your finger), to cycle between macro maps, and as a battery indicator. The rest of the keyboard's design and feature-set remains the same as the original. ASUS is expected to formally launch the ROG Falchion NX around September 23, 2021.

Lian Li Launches PC-Q58 Stylish and Versatile SFF Case

LIAN LI Industrial Co. Ltd., a leading manufacturer of chassis and PC accessories, announces a new addition to its small form factor line up with the Q58, a compact case with enormous versatility. Available in black or white, the Q58 features split side panels made of mesh and tempered glass which can be interchanged to the user's look and cooling preference. At only 14.5 liters, the Q58 is compatible with an impressive list of hardware, with support for SFX and ATX power supplies, up to 280 radiators, 320 mm long and triple slot thick graphics cards, and still enough room for 4 SSDs.

The Q58 comes equipped with the necessary mounting brackets for both SFX and ATX power supplies, providing versatile cooling compatibility for powerful components. In both SFX and ATX mode, the Q58 supports Mini-ITX motherboards and large triple-slot GPUs of 320 mm in length. In SFX mode, the Q58 can support up to two 120/140 mm fans or 240/280 radiator at the top and a 120 mm fan at the bottom. In ATX mode, the Q58's cooling compatibility is reduced to one 120/140 fan/radiator at the top and a 120 mm fan at the bottom. All fan power and LED cables can be connected with a 5 V addressable RGB and PWM hub located at the rear of the case.

SilverStone Intros SETA Q1, a Mid-Tower Case with a Focus on Silence

SilverStone over the weekend introduced the SETA Q1, a premium ATX mid-tower case with a design focus on silence. The case attempts to achieve soundproofing without compromising on ventilation. You can go ahead and mount up to three 140 mm fans along the front panel, ditto the top panel, and one 140 mm at the rear; and SilverStone claims that the company's soundproofing innovations should significantly lower their noise. The front-panel features a sound-proofing chamber that works like a silencer. Its body panels are lined not just with sound-proofing foam, but also asphalt.

Inside, the SilverStone SETA Q1 offers room for motherboards up to SSI-EEB, E-ATX size, graphics cards up to 39.4 cm in length, CPU coolers up to 18.2 cm in height, and PSUs up to 25 cm in length. The case can hold up to two 3.5-inch drives, and four 2.5-inch ones through mounts. In addition to 7 conventionally-located expansion slots, you get two vertical ones. Front-panel connectivity includes two USB3 type-A ports, one USB3 type-C, and a headset jack. Measuring 232 mm x 493.5 mm x 490.7 mm (WxHxD), the case dry-weighs 11.64 kg. Available from October 2021 in parts of Asia, and November or December in North America and Europe, the SilverStone SETA Q1 will be priced around USD $220.

XFX Launches Radeon RX 6900 XT Speedster ZERO WB Graphics Card

XFX formally launched the Radeon RX 6900 XT Speedster ZERO WB, a graphics card it teased last month. The company's new flagship product, the Speedster ZERO WB is a graphics card with a factory-fitted full-coverage water-block, for those with DIY liquid-cooling setups. It appears to be based on an all new PCB with a more tuned-up 14+2 phase VRM setup than that of the air-cooled RX 6900 XT Speedster MERC 319, which pulls power from a trio of 8-pin PCIe power connectors.

Under the hood is a 7 nm "Navi 21" XTXH silicon, which is able to sustain 10% higher engine clocks than the standard "Navi 21," and XFX claims that it has unlocked overdrive slider limit (the de facto maximum overclock), beyond 3 GHz. Out of the box, the card comes with a maximum boost frequency of 2525 MHz, compared to 2250 MHz AMD-reference. The water block came about from a collaboration with EK Water Blocks, and combines a nickel-plated copper primary material with a slightly frosted acrylic top that's studded with addressable RGB LEDs. XFX didn't reveal pricing.
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