Tuesday, April 13th 2021

Today's Reviews

CPU Coolers
Desktop PC
Headphones
Keyboards
Memory
Motherboards
Processors
PSUs
SSD

MSI Introduces the Optix MAG342CQ Monitor: 34" VA, UWQHD, 1500R, 144 Hz, 1 ms, Adaptive Sync

MSI has announced another entry into their Optix MAG monitor lineup. The MAG342CQ makes use of a big, 34" VA panel with UWQHD resolution (3440 x 1440) that offers up appealing specs for a gamer: 144 Hz refresh rate paired with a (rated) 1 ms response time and a comfortable, not too aggressive 1500R curvature. The inclusion of Adaptive Sync (which means support for variable refresh rate technologies) helps add to its gaming pedigree.

Brightness however takes quite a dive o this particular panel, as its typical luminance apparently sits at a mere 250 nits. Despite that, the VA panel enables a contrast ratio of 3000:1, with good color coverage (DCI-P3 89.48% / sRGB 112.2%). I/O is assured by 2x HDMI 2.0, 1x DisplayPort 1.2 and 1x earphone jack x1. No time to market or MSRP was available at time of writing.

Microsoft Announces Surface Laptop 4: Intel Tiger Lake or AMD Renoir APUs

Microsoft's hardware legacy stretches back more than four decades to the early days of personal computing. As Windows built and inspired new computing experiences, new Microsoft hardware accessories helped people interact with them. At this intersection of hardware and software, magical experiences are possible. This core belief is at the heart of every product we build at Microsoft, and it's especially true of our Surface products. For almost a decade, Surface has pioneered breakthrough experiences that immerse people in their creative flow, eliminating friction that often exists between people and technology.

Surface allows people to adapt to new ways of working and creating through innovative and versatile devices that offer premium design and performance, quality typing and trackpads, exceptional cameras and mics, and immersive touchscreen display technologies. From the student learning on their Surface Go or Surface Laptop Go, to the knowledge worker on their Surface Pro 7+, to the creative professional working on a Surface Book 3, these products now serve as a lifeline to connections, content and work. It's inspiring to consider all that can be achieved on a Surface.

PowerColor Quietly Outs Radeon RX 6900 XT Red Devil Ultimate

PowerColor quietly launched the Radeon RX 6900 XT Red Devil Ultimate graphics card. Not to be confused with the RX 6900 XT Red Devil Limited Edition, which is essentially an RX 6900 XT Red Devil with a few more accessories in the box; the new Red Devil Ultimate ships with higher factory-overclocked speeds. The default "OC" BIOS runs the card at 2235 MHz game clocks and 2425 MHz max boost frequency; compared to 2105 MHz game and 2340 MHz max boost frequency on the standard RX 6900 XT Red Devil. The silent BIOS of the Red Devil Ultimate runs it at 2135/2335 MHz, which is the same as the "OC" BIOS on the standard Red Devil.

HotHardware, which reviewed the card, reports that the Radeon RX 6900 XT Red Devil Ultimate is based on a higher bin of the "Navi 21" silicon. Our own sources tell us that this card is part of a new wave of RX 6900 XT custom-design graphics cards that AMD partners will be launching in the coming days, based on higher bins of the silicon, enabling both higher clocks on the tin, and better boost frequency sustainability.

be quiet! Introduces Fully Modular Pure Power 11 FM, Upgrades SFX and TFX Models

be quiet!, the market leader for PC power supplies in Germany since 2007, is announcing three new power supply series. The Pure Power 11 FM is a fully modular version of the Pure Power 11, available in 550, 650, and 750 watts and aimed at mainstream computer users who appreciate the versatility of modular cables and 80 PLUS Gold efficiency up to 93.9 percent. Fans of small form factor builds can now upgrade their systems with the SFX Power 3 or TFX Power 3, which offer high performance in compact SFX and TFX form factors.

At be quiet!, Pure Power stands for peerless dependability and a comprehensive feature set at a competitive price point. The Pure Power 11 FM series is no exception: by exclusively using fully modular instead of fixed cables, only cables that serve a purpose are installed, resulting in a smoother airflow, lower temperatures, and easier handling inside the case. Pure Power 11 FM comes equipped with black flat cables for all common connections and a black sleeved 20+4-pin ATX power cable. With two independent 12 V rails for signal stability and up to four PCI-Express connectors (two for the 550 W model), Pure Power 11 FM is fully suited for silent PC configurations, workstations or even gaming systems with a powerful graphics card.

Team Group TREASURE TOUCH External RGB SSD and T-CREATE Memory Bag Red Dot Design Awards

Products by leading memory provider TEAMGROUP have been recognized with well-known international design awards. At the start of this spring, TEAMGROUP's gaming sub-brand T-FORCE won Germany's Red Dot Design Award 2021 for its T-FORCE TREASURE TOUCH External RGB SSD, and its recently launched creator sub-brand T-CREATE also received the Red Dot Design Award 2021 for its T-CREATE Memory series, proving once again TEAMGROUP's strengths in design creativity and R&D.

Along with Germany's IF Design Award, Japan's Good Design Award, and the U.S.' IDEA Award, the Red Dot Award is one of the four renowned design awards. Known as the Oscar of product design, the Red Dot Award is highly regarded in the international design community. The number of entries for the Red Dot Design Award 2021 was higher than in previous years, totaling 7,800 products. The TREASURE TOUCH External RGB SSD and the T-CREATE DDR4 Series Memory represent the gaming and creator sub-brands of TEAMGROUP, respectively, and have both been honored with one of the most prestigious international awards for design.

Logitech and Baidu Brain Partner to Transform the Way We Work Using AI and Voice

Today Logitech announced a long-term partnership with Baidu Brain, beginning with the launch of its intuitive new Logitech Voice M380 Wireless Mouse with Speech Input in China. Designed especially for people who create large amounts of content, this innovative product lets you dictate with your voice, creating content two or three times faster than typing. The Logitech Voice M380 Wireless Mouse is powered exclusively by intelligent Baidu Speech technology* from Baidu Brain and features the comfort, performance and quality that users expect in a Logitech mouse.

"We saw an opportunity to leverage the power of Baidu AI to bring fast, accurate speech recognition to our customers and the result is pure magic—a mouse that allows you to instantly start dictating with your voice at the click of a button," said Delphine Donne-Crock, general manager of the creativity and productivity business group at Logitech. "We are thrilled to tap into Baidu's AI superpower for the launch of Logitech Voice M380, and we look forward to collaborating on future products and solutions that unleash everyone's productivity and creativity in the digital world."

Realtek Also Experiences Chip Shortage, Could Reflect Badly on PC Market

The global chip shortage is currently getting worse each day, starting from the tight supply of graphics cards and processors for consumers, spanning to even your internet router. Every piece of electronics now seems to be getting more expensive, as the semiconductor processors found inside them are very hard to source. The cause of that is huge demand coming from consumers, who require the latest generation of processors manufactured in overbooked semiconductor facilities like the ones from TSMC, UMC, Intel, Samsung, SMIC, etc. If manufacturers can't supply enough chips to satisfy the demand for companies that incorporate these chips in products' needs, the issue appears.

This time, we have another big player in need of more wafer capacity. Realtek, the maker of various ICs for multimedia and peripherals, is reportedly experiencing a chip shortage as well. According to the report coming from DigiTimes, the Taiwanese Realtek is fighting to keep up with the demand. The report raises concerns from laptop manufacturers like Dell, HP, and others who use Realtek's chips for various purposes in devices, like audio and LAN chips. Reportedly used in 70% of global laptop designs, Realtek's audio and LAN solutions are very much in demand. If the company cannot supply enough of those chips, manufacturers would be unable to ship products. According to the report, the delivery time of Realtek's chips has been extended to 32 weeks, which could cause massive delays with product shipments and cause some harm to the supply chain. It remains to be seen how the market responds to the extended delivery time, so we will watch it with caution.

NVIDIA and Global Computer Makers Launch Industry-Standard Enterprise Server Platforms for AI

NVIDIA today introduced a new class of NVIDIA-Certified Systems, bringing AI within reach for organizations that run their applications on industry-standard enterprise data center infrastructure. These include high-volume enterprise servers from top manufacturers, which were announced in January and are now certified to run the NVIDIA AI Enterprise software suite—which is exclusively certified for VMware vSphere 7, the world's most widely used compute virtualization platform.

Further expanding the NVIDIA-Certified servers ecosystem is a new wave of systems featuring the NVIDIA A30 GPU for mainstream AI and data analytics and the NVIDIA A10 GPU for AI-enabled graphics, virtual workstations and mixed compute and graphics workloads, also announced today.

NVIDIA Extends Data Center Infrastructure Processing Roadmap with BlueField-3 DPU

NVIDIA today announced the NVIDIA BlueField -3 DPU, its next-generation data processing unit, to deliver the most powerful software-defined networking, storage and cybersecurity acceleration capabilities available for data centers.

The first DPU built for AI and accelerated computing, BlueField-3 lets every enterprise deliver applications at any scale with industry-leading performance and data center security. It is optimized for multi-tenant, cloud-native environments, offering software-defined, hardware-accelerated networking, storage, security and management services at data-center scale.

Antec Readies Mercury V2 Line of AIO Liquid CPU Coolers

Antec is readying the new Mercury V2 line of all-in-one liquid CPU coolers, succeeding the original Mercury RGB series from 2018. The Mercury V2 comes with an updated pump-block design based, both internally, and aesthetically. Also updated, are the included 120 mm fans, which come with a 800-1,600 RPM speed range, 72 CFM air-flow per fan, and ARGB lighting. Unlike the original Mercury series, the new Mercury V2 debuts with 240 mm and 360 mm size variants, only. Among the CPU socket types supported are AM4, LGA1200, and LGA2066.

NVIDIA Announces New Professional Ampere Graphics Cards

NVIDIA today announced a range of eight new NVIDIA Ampere architecture GPUs for next-generation laptops, desktops and servers that make it possible for professionals to work from wherever they choose, without sacrificing quality or time. For desktops, the new NVIDIA RTX A5000 and NVIDIA RTX A4000 GPUs feature new RT Cores, Tensor Cores and CUDA cores to speed AI, graphics and real-time rendering up to 2x faster than previous generations. For professionals on the go needing thin and light devices, the new NVIDIA RTX A2000, NVIDIA RTX A3000, RTX A4000 and RTX A5000 laptop GPUs deliver accelerated performance without compromising mobility.

For the data center, there are the new NVIDIA A10 GPU and A16 GPU. The A10 provides up to 2.5x the virtual workstation performance of the previous generation for designers and engineers, while the A16 GPU provides up to 2x user density with lower total cost of ownership and an enhanced virtual desktop infrastructure experience over the previous generation.

AMD Launches Ryzen 9 5900 & Ryzen 7 5800 OEM Processors

AMD has quietly launched two new Zen 3 processors for the OEM market with the Ryzen 9 5900 and Ryzen 7 5800. The Ryzen 9 5900 is a 12 core 24 thread processor with a base clock of 3.0 GHz and a max boost clock of 4.7 GHz along with a TDP of 65 W. The clock speeds were lowered due to the 65 W TDP with a base clock is 700 MHz lower than the 5900X while the boost clock is only 100 MHz slower. The Ryzen 7 5800 is an 8 core 16 thread processor with a base clock of 3.4 GHz and a boost clock of 4.6 GHz along with a TDP of 65 W. The base clock is reduced by 400 MHz and the boost clock by 100 MHz compared to the 105 W TDP 5800X. The Ryzen 9 5900 is only ~5% slower than the Ryzen 9 5900X despite a 61.5% lower TDP and reduced clock speeds according to UserBenchmark results. These new processors are now shipping in systems from various integrators such as the Alienware Aurora Ryzen Edition.
Monday, April 12th 2021

Today's Reviews

Accessories
Cases
CPU Coolers
Graphics Cards
Headphones
Keyboards
Memory
Monitors
Motherboards
Mouse
Processors
SSD
Upcoming Hardware Launches 2021 (Updated Apr 2021)

Upcoming Hardware Launches 2021 (Updated Apr 2021)

This article serves as a continuously updated summary of currently known leaks and official announcements regarding upcoming hardware releases in 2021 and beyond. We cover and keep track of developments for Intel Alder Lake, AMD Zen 4, NVIDIA's future Ampere cards, new AMD Radeons, DDR5 memory, Intel's next Xe GPU, chipsets and more.
Thermaltake W1 Wireless Keyboard Review

Thermaltake W1 Wireless Keyboard Review

Thermaltake revamps their peripherals lineup in 2021 with an emphasis on clean aesthetics and function over bling. The new W1 Wireless embodies this fully with no backlighting or software support while offering good build quality paired with three connectivity modes: USB, 2.4 GHz, or Bluetooth 4.2.
Corsair MP400 2 TB Review

Corsair MP400 2 TB Review

The Corsair MP400 is one of the fastest QLC-based SSDs we've reviewed so far. With its 2 TB capacity, it offers plenty of space for all your apps and games, and achieves real-life performance that's comparable to many TLC-based SSDs.

Spire Announces Eagleforce 80 Plus Certified Power Supplies

Spire is releasing a new series of powerful and dependable 80 PLUS certified ATX power supplies. The EagleForce ATX power supply series aimed at the pc enthusiast en pc gamer. Equipped with selected all high-quality components, supplying optimal power under the most demanding circumstances. The EagleForce units are compliant to the 2.31 version Intel specification standard with advanced circuit design, including better grade A components supporting the newest Intel & AMD dual core & quad core micro-processors.

Auto-thermal fan control, maximizing the air cooling performance whilst maintaining reduced sound levels. Energy sufficient and compliant with the Active Power Factor Correction (APFC) Energy Star & 80 PLUS certified standards. As well as ErP 2013 Lot6, which guarantees that your PSU will use less than 1 W on system standby and lower than 45% transferring efficiency on 5 V standby. Housed in cool black powdered coated enclosures and backed by 2 years manufacturer warranty.

Bizarre/Interesting Tech on Crowdfunding Platforms: CharaChorder Lite Multistroke Keyboard

Hey remember this thing from CES last year? I left my meeting with CharaChorder quite impressed by also with a lot of questions, and wanting answers that I am still curious about. Fast forward an year and some change, and it appears that the CharaChorder is actually up for sale somewhat? The render there is different looking from the original retail renders, and there is a 2-month lead time as well, but this has not stopped the company from putting up a more relatable keyboard form factor on Kickstarter.

Dubbed the CharaChorder Lite, it is a 60% keyboard that manages to squeeze in arrow keys in there too. But the most interesting thing here is no doubt the adoption of the company's patented "chorded entry" system that allows for chords and phrases to be typed in simultaneously, and not one one character at a time. I will reserve judgment on how easy it is to adapt to this system until I test a unit in person if possible, however the company is promising training modules for owners to help reduce the entry barrier. The CharaChorder Lite has already met its funding goals on Kickstarter, and comes available at a much more attainable price too compared to the original CharaChorder.

GIGABYTE AORUS Introduces 4K Tactical Gaming Monitors

Following the introduction of the world's first tactical gaming monitor in 2019, AORUS, GIGABYTE's premium gaming brand, goes 4K in full force, launching the world's first 32-inch (FI32U), 43-inch (FV43U), 48-inch (FO48U) 4K UHD tactical gaming monitors that sport HDMI 2.1 connectivity. The new 4K monitor lineup is ready to make a splash in ultimate gaming on a big screen.

NVIDIA Announces Grace CPU for Giant AI and High Performance Computing Workloads

NVIDIA today announced its first data center CPU, an Arm-based processor that will deliver 10x the performance of today's fastest servers on the most complex AI and high performance computing workloads.

The result of more than 10,000 engineering years of work, the NVIDIA Grace CPU is designed to address the computing requirements for the world's most advanced applications—including natural language processing, recommender systems and AI supercomputing—that analyze enormous datasets requiring both ultra-fast compute performance and massive memory. It combines energy-efficient Arm CPU cores with an innovative low-power memory subsystem to deliver high performance with great efficiency.

NVIDIA Announces New DGX SuperPOD, the First Cloud-Native, Multi-Tenant Supercomputer, Opening World of AI to Enterprise

NVIDIA today unveiled the world's first cloud-native, multi-tenant AI supercomputer—the next-generation NVIDIA DGX SuperPOD featuring NVIDIA BlueField -2 DPUs. Fortifying the DGX SuperPOD with BlueField-2 DPUs—data processing units that offload, accelerate and isolate users' data—provides customers with secure connections to their AI infrastructure.

The company also announced NVIDIA Base Command, which enables multiple users and IT teams to securely access, share and operate their DGX SuperPOD infrastructure. Base Command coordinates AI training and operations on DGX SuperPOD infrastructure to enable the work of teams of data scientists and developers located around the globe.

MSI Readies MEG Z590 Unify Series and Spatium M.2 NVMe SSDs

At a media event in China, MSI unveiled a handful new products it hasn't yet launched globally. These include the ATX MEG Z590 Unify series, and the new Spatium line of high-end M.2 NVMe SSDs. The company already launched the MEG Z590I Unify Mini-ITX motherboard, which will soon be joined by the larger MEG Z590 Unify and the MEG Z590 Unify-X, in the standard ATX form-factor. Both these Unify motherboards are targeted at professional overclockers, and are armed with powerful 16+2 phase CPU VRM solutions that use 90 A DrMOS, 8-layer PCBs, a trio of PCIe Gen 4 M.2 slots (possibly using PCIe segmentation of the x16 PEG slot); and the company's latest Audio Boost 5 onboard audio solution.

What sets the MEG Z590 Unify apart from the Unify-X is that the latter features just two DDR4 DIMM slots, or one DIMM per memory channel. This is the most desirable topology for memory overclocking (and a reason why memory OC records are usually set on Mini-ITX motherboards). Next up, the company unveiled the Spatium series of high-end M.2 NVMe SSDs. Available with a number of heatsink (options?), these drives take advantage of PCI-Express 4.0 x4 host interface, and come in capacities of up to 4 TB. They use 3D TLC NAND flash, and offer sequential transfer rates of up to 7000 MB/s reads, with up to 6900 MB/s writes.

ASUS Introduces Chrome Enterprise Devices for Modern-Day Businesses

ASUS today announced ASUS Chrome Enterprise devices, an exciting offering that combines the benefits of top-notch ASUS hardware with the business capabilities of Chrome OS. ASUS Chrome Enterprise devices are specifically built for business—enabled with Chrome Enterprise and housed in versatile, lightweight and robust ASUS Chrome devices to provide professionals with the tools they need to be effective and productive.

The lineup of ASUS Chrome Enterprise devices spans Chromebooks with clamshell and convertible designs and various form factors, as well as Chromebox models tailored to different business needs. With this offering, businesses can enjoy features such as zero-touch enrollment and Parallels Desktop for Chrome OS to optimize workflows for cloud-first devices.

PC Shipments Show Continued Strength in Q1 2021 Despite Component Shortages and Logistics Issues, According to IDC

Global shipments of traditional PCs, including desktops, notebooks, and workstations, grew 55.2% year over year during the first quarter of 2021 (1Q21), according to preliminary results from the International Data Corporation (IDC) Worldwide Quarterly Personal Computing Device Tracker. While PCs remain in extremely high demand, the growth rate benefitted from the shortages faced in the first quarter of 2020 when the global pandemic began, resulting in an unusually favorable year-over-year comparison. PC shipments reached 84 million worldwide in 1Q21, a modest 8% decline from the fourth quarter of 2020. While sequential declines are typical for the first quarter, a decline this small has not been seen since the first quarter of 2012 when the PC market declined 7.5% sequentially.

Global Chip Shortage Takes Another Toll... Now Your Home Router?

The global supply of semiconductor processors has been at risk lately. Starting from GPUs to CPUs, the demand for both has been much greater than the available supply. Manufacturing companies, such as TSMC, have been expanding capacities, however, they have not yet been able to satisfy the demand. We have seen the results of that demand in a form of the scarcity of the latest generation of graphics cards, covering NVIDIA's GeForce RTX 3000 series Ampere, and AMD' Radeon RX 6000 series Big Navi graphics cards. Consumers have had a difficult time sourcing them and they have seen artificial price increase that is much higher than their original MSRP.

However, it doesn't seem like the situation will improve. According to the latest reporting from Bloomberg, the next victim of global chip shortage is... you guessed it, your home internet router. The cited sources have noted that the waiting list to get a batch of ordered routers has doubled the waiting time, from the regular 30 weeks to 60-week waiting time. This represents a waiting list that is more than a year long. With the global COVID-19 pandemic still going strong, there is an increased need for better home router equipment, and delays can only hurt broadband providers that supply routers. Taiwan-based router manufacturer Zyxel Communications, notes that the company has seen massive demand for their equipment. Such a massive demand could lead to insufficient supply, which could increase prices of routers well above their MSRP and bring scarcity of them as well.

Samsung Updating Odyssey G9 Premium Gaming Monitor - MiniLED Technology, First DisplayHDR 2000 Certification?

A listing has surfaced on Chinese website Taobao featuring what is being described as the 2021 update for the ultra-premium Samsung Odyssey G9 gaming monitor. It keeps the DNA of the Odyssey G9 - that means the 49" VA panel, 5120×1440 resolution and 1000R curvature remain. The devil, as always, is in the details; the new monitor is expected to feature a MiniLED backlight solution featuring 2048 dimming zones, which should enable a contrast ratio of 4,000:1 and an eventual, first-of-its-kind DisplayHDR 2000 certification by VESA. The current maximum under the standard stands at DisplayHDR 1400, so it's quite the jump for maximum HDR quality.

AMD Ryzen 7 5700G APU Pictured and Tested

We have received various leaks and benchmarks for AMD's upcoming Ryzen 5000G processors, these were all from engineering samples but we now have our first look at the retail 5700G. The AMD Ryzen 7 5700G features the model number 100-000000263 attributed to earlier rumors and has been tested in CPU-Z scoring 631 points in single-threaded performance along with 6782 points in multi-threaded, and in Cinebench R20 it scored 6040 points. The integrated Vega graphics lack any official drivers but GPU-Z reports a Vega 8 processor with 12 Streaming Multiprocessors and a base clock of 2 GHz. AMD is yet to officially announce any Ryzen 5000G processors so it is unclear how far away their launch is and whether or not they will be made available to the DIY market.

GALAX Readies HOF-branded DDR5 Overclocking Memory

GALAX on Facebook announced that it is developing its next generation of DDR5 memory modules targeted at overclockers. The modules are possibly made under the HOF (Hall of Fame) brand, as the announcement comes from the company's OC Lab handle that markets its HOF series products. The announcement also comes with pictures of trays of DDR5 DRAM chips made by Micron Technology. With major DIY gaming/overclocking memory brands announcing development of DDR5 memory products, one wonders where the platforms for these memory modules are. It's rumored that Intel's upcoming 12th Gen Core "Alder Lake-S" processor in the LGA1700 package could feature a DDR5 memory interface. AMD's first client-desktop platform with DDR5 would see the transition to the new AM5 socket.

Epic Games Lost $453 Million Running the Epic Games Store in 2019 & 2020

Epic Games lost $181 million and $273 million on the Epic Games Store in 2019 and 2020 respectively according to a recent court filing and expect a loss of $139 million this year. The court filing reveals several interesting details about the Epic Games Store including that Epic doesn't anticipate that the store will turn a profit until 2023 and that the 12% distribution fee charged is sufficient to cover operating costs. Epic Games has spent $444 million on securing exclusive titles for the store in 2020 alone, in this same period players spent $700 million on the store of which $265 million was spent on third-party titles. Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney defended this referring to it as a long-term investment into growing the business. The Epic Games Store currently has 160 million registered users with 56 million monthly active users and it seems like Epic has no plans to slow down.

Sonnet Announces Dual-Slot 40Gbps Thunderbolt Card Reader for SxS PRO X Media

Sonnet Technologies today announced the SF3 Series - SxS PRO X Card Reader, the latest model in its family of professional media readers and the upgraded replacement for its popular original model in the lineup. The SF3 Series - SxS PRO X Card Reader features dual card slots and a dual-port 40Gbps Thunderbolt interface. Developed to support the requirements for shooting stable 4K video at high bit rates, SxS PRO X is the latest SxS memory card created by Sony for use as onboard recording media in some of their latest pro digital video cameras and camcorders.

Compatible with Mac and Windows computers, the SF3 Series - SxS PRO X Card Reader ingests footage from all SxS media at up to their maximum supported speeds. Designed for demanding workflows, SF3 Series card readers are built with rugged aluminium enclosures and dual 40 Gbps Thunderbolt ports, enabling users to stack and connect up to six readers in a daisy chain to their computers through a single cable and ingest footage from four, six, or more cards simultaneously.
Sunday, April 11th 2021

EK Launches Micro Static Extenders for the Quantum Torque Series

EK, the premium water cooling gear manufacturer, is extending the Quantum Line Torque fittings with micro static extenders. With these premium small-diameter interconnects, it will become very easy to overcome any limited space issues where inserting a fitting or another adapter is just not possible due to their diameter. Aesthetically they are a perfect match for the EK-Quantum Torque series fittings.

These static extender series consist of 8 different models with a varying finish and thread type. They are all CNC machined out of brass with high-quality EPDM O-rings for sealing. They can be tightened down by hand or a 9 mm Allen Key.
Friday, April 9th 2021

Today's Reviews

Cases
CPU Coolers
Graphics Cards
Headphones
Keyboards
Mouse
Networking
Notebooks
Other
Processors
PSUs
SSD
Neo Forza eSports NFP075 1 TB Review

Neo Forza eSports NFP075 1 TB Review

The Neo Forza eSports NFP075 M.2 NVMe SSD is powered by the combination of a Phison E12 controller and YMTC 3D TLC flash, and a DRAM chip is included, too. Performance results are excellent, matching the fastest PCIe Gen 3 drives in our test group, and pricing is good, too.
XGIMI Mogo Pro+ Projector Review

XGIMI Mogo Pro+ Projector Review

As the name implies, the XGIMI Mogo Pro+ is an updated, version of the Mogo Pro projector, providing automatic keystone correction in the same portable and compact battery-equipped package. The Mogo Pro+ is powered by Android with full access to the Google Play Store.
Quick Look: Lypertek PurePlay Z3 True Wireless Earbuds Review

Quick Look: Lypertek PurePlay Z3 True Wireless Earbuds Review

Lypertek is a relatively recent audio brand that recognizes the importance of value-driven products to break into the market. With the PurePlay Z3, we see an excellent set of true wireless earbuds with a neutral sound signature, good battery life with quick charging support, and easy controls for media playback on the go.

Intel's Upcoming Sapphire Rapids Server Processors to Feature up to 56 Cores with HBM Memory

Intel has just launched its Ice Lake-SP lineup of Xeon Scalable processors, featuring the new Sunny Cove CPU core design. Built on the 10 nm node, these processors represent Intel's first 10 nm shipping product designed for enterprise. However, there is another 10 nm product going to be released for enterprise users. Intel is already preparing the Sapphire Rapids generation of Xeon processors and today we get to see more details about it. Thanks to the anonymous tip that VideoCardz received, we have a bit more details like core count, memory configurations, and connectivity options. And Sapphire Rapids is shaping up to be a very competitive platform. Do note that the slide is a bit older, however, it contains useful information.

The lineup will top at 56 cores with 112 threads, where this processor will carry a TDP of 350 Watts, notably higher than its predecessors. Perhaps one of the most interesting notes from the slide is the department of memory. The new platform will make a debut of DDR5 standard and bring higher capacities with higher speeds. Along with the new protocol, the chiplet design of Sapphire Rapids will bring HBM2E memory to CPUs, with up to 64 GBs of it per socket/processor. The PCIe 5.0 standard will also be present with 80 lanes, accompanying four Intel UPI 2.0 links. Intel is also supposed to extend the x86_64 configuration here with AMX/TMUL extensions for better INT8 and BFloat16 processing.

Alphacool Introduces Four New Extremely Large Radiators

Alphacool introduces four new extremely large radiators. The first two radiators are for 180 or 200 mm fans and are a thickness of 86 mm. The 200 and 400 mm NexXxoS Monsta radiators offer a huge cooling surface. Both radiators have 7x standard G1/4" ports. 6 of the ports are for inlet/outlet and the 7th port is located at the end chamber and can only be used for filling, draining, or bleeding the radiator. The fin density has been reduced from 16 to 12 FPI to allow the use of lower static pressure fans and lower RPMs.

The new Nova 1080 UT60 radiator is a thicker version of the Nova 1080 XT45 radiator. The enormous cooling surface is comparable to three 360 mm UT60 radiators. This makes it easy to cool more than 1000 W of excess heat with extremely quiet to silent spinning fans. This is equivalent to a 64 core AMD Threadripper of the latest generation and at least two GeForce RTX 3090 graphics cards.

ASUS to Release ROG Strix XG279Q-G GUNDAM EDITION Monitor - Likely in Asia Region Only

ASUS is seemingly finding success on its Gundam-customized products - particularly in Asia, where the franchise has more, and more fervent, adherents. The company is about to release a new gaming monitor on their ROG Strix line (part number XG279Q-G) which features aesthetics inspired on the famous anime series. This also means that it's likely this is only a regional release, and not a global one, which means that non-Asia users will have to find a way to import these monitors from resellers.

The ROG Strix XG279Q-G GUNDAM EDITION monitor features a 27" diagonal, and carries a "Fast IPS" panel with up to 170 Hz refresh rates and 1 ms response times. The monitor is G-Sync Compatible (which means it features VRR, also marketed as AMD's FreeSync in times past), features a 1000:1 contrast ratio, and typical brightness of 400 nits (with DisplayHDR 400 certification). ASUS' Extreme Low Motion Blur Sync (ELMB SYNC ) is present as well. There's support for ASUS' Aura Sync for RGB lighting elements on the back of the monitor. I/O is taken care of by 1x DisplayPort 1.2, 2x HDMI 2.0, a 2x USB 3.0 HUB, and 1x earphone jack. No word on pricing or availability (or select regional availability) were available at time of writing.

Once Again, NVIDIA CEO Jensen Huang to Showcase What's Been Cooking for GTC - From His Kitchen

Remember that time when NVIDIA CEO Jensen Huang pulled the company's HGX system (based on Ampere GA100) out of his own oven? Well, it seems we might be looking at something similar come GTC, which is set for April 12th. The event will again take place solely via online transmissions and announcements due to the still heavily-grassing COVID-19 pandemic, and NVIDIA teased a new kick-off presentation from its CEO - from his kitchen.

NVIDIA has usually taken GTC as an opportunity to showcase products not for the consumer segment, however, so temper your expectations. You should also likely temper your expectations regarding Huang taking enough RTX 30-series graphics cards form his oven to satisfy the incredible demand and stock issues we've been seeing with NVIDIA's latest and greatest. What we could be looking for (as an appetizer to this year's over 1500 presentations) are products focused on the professional computing markets, from quantum computing to AI, passing through RTX Ampere accelerators for professionals, NVIDIA Drive products, as well as Jetson announcements. NVIDIA did warn some surprises might be in store, but again, this doesn't mean these are surprises aimed at consumer gaming products. Catch up on NVIDIA's official announcement and a previously-released GTC retrospective video after the break.

GoodOffer24 Unveils Summer Promotion: Discounts on Genuine Software

GoodOffer24 is a global merchant of discount genuine software, celebrating the onset of Summer with great new deals on genuine software. Get Genuine Windows 10 Pro for just 12.17€, and Windows 10 Home for 11.71€. Stay productive, with Genuine Office 2019 Professional Plus for 34.99€. Better yet, combine Windows 10 Pro with Office 2019 Professional for 40.59€ and save even more. Check out other great deals on genuine older software, such as Office 2016, and their combinations with your preferred edition of Windows 10. GoodOffer24 uses a secure payment gateway to protect your transaction, and comes with a money-back guarantee if you're not satisfied with your purchase.

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ADATA XPG Wins Three Red Dot Awards for Product Design

XPG, a fast-growing provider of systems, components, and peripherals for Gamers, Esports Pros, and Tech Enthusiasts, today announcesthat three of its products have been awarded the prestigious 2021 Red Dot Award: Product Design. The three award-winning products include the GAMMIX S70PCIe Gen4 solid state drive, SPECTRIX D70G DDR4 memory, and SPECTRIX D50 Xtreme DDR4 memory.

"We are thrilled that three of our products have been honored by Red Dot as it affirms our commitment to not only deliver products with cutting-performance but also meaningful industrial designs," said Ibsen Chen, Product Marketing Directorat ADATA. "With our deep-rooted heritage and leadership in storage and memory products, it is fitting that among our three Red Dot winners is one solid state drive and two DRAM modules."

ViewSonic Introduces VX18 Series of Budget-Friendly Monitors

ViewSonic Corp., a leading global provider of visual solutions, introduces the latest line of budget-friendly monitors for home entertainment and gaming. The VX18 series of monitors will come in sizes from 24- to 34-inches, features adaptive sync technology, an ultra-fast 1 ms (MPRT) response time and refresh rates that range from 144 Hz to 165 Hz. Created for price-sensitive users looking for high performance features, the VX18 line of displays deliver great options for all types of entertainment applications.

The VX18 series of monitors include the VX2418-P-MHD, VX2718-P-MHD, VX2718-PC-MHD, VX2718-2KPC-MHD, VX3218-PC-MHD and VX3418-2KPC. Each monitor features adaptive sync connectivity, so displays can seamlessly synchronize the frame rate output between the graphics card and the monitor. This ensures a fluid gaming experience by eliminating screen tearing and stuttering. The VX18 monitors also come with the company's exclusive ViewMode presets, which offer enhanced on-screen performance for various entertainment applications such as watching/streaming movies, editing files or playing video games.

Silicon Power Unveils 7-in-1 Docking Storage Station

With all of today's mobile devices and peripherals available to users, it's faster than ever to run out of slots on a laptop. And, with newer laptops, a lot of those slots are hard to come by. Silicon Power (SP) is releasing the SU20, a 7-in-1 docking station, to give users the ability to expand their laptop connections with a plethora of options.

This complete solution gives Type-C laptops, notebooks, and tablets access to ports that have been eliminated on newer models. Connect to 1 HDMI port, 3 USB Type-A ports, 1 USB-C PD port, 1 SD card reader, and 1 microSD card reader all from a single Type-C input. The Type-C input supports passthrough charging to power your device without needing to sacrifice power for port expansion. Up to 5 Gbps of bandwidth via its 3 USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-A ports, plus 1 USB-C PD port (max. 60 W), yields quick data transfers between your device and peripherals.
Thursday, April 8th 2021

Today's Reviews

Cases
CPU Coolers
Graphics Cards
Keyboards
Memory
Motherboards
Mouse
Notebooks
Processors
SSD
Storage
Corsair Sabre RGB Pro Review

Corsair Sabre RGB Pro Review

Corsair joins Razer and EVGA with their first 8000 Hz polling mouse. Equipped with PixArt's PMW3392, the right-handed ergonomic Sabre RGB Pro comes with spring-loaded main buttons, a flexible cable, and 72 g lightweight construction while retailing at $59.99, the lowest of all 8000 Hz mice thus far.

Intel Xe-HPG DG2 GPU Engineering Sample Pictured

We have recently received pictures of any early engineering sample of Intel's upcoming DG2 GPU from YouTuber Moore's Law is Dead. The card features 512 Execution Units and will be the flagship model for Intel's upcoming Xe-HPG lineup reportedly targeting performance between the RTX 3070 and RTX 3080. The final product is rumored to feature a base clock of 2.2 GHz along with 16 GB GDDR6 memory and a 256-bit bus. The sample has a TDP of 275 W with 8 + 6 pin power connectors up from original targets of 225 W - 250 W.

The report also notes that Intel is still deciding between three cooler designs with the finished card potentially featuring a white shroud. Intel also appears to be working on a NVIDIA DLSS/AMD FidelityFX Super Resolution competitor codenamed XeSS which confirms support for hardware-accelerated raytracing and resolution upscaling tech. The card is unlikely to launch until Q4 2021 with wider availability in 2022, lower end 128 EU, and 256 EU cards will follow shortly afterward. The full report can be viewed below.

EK Launches Quantum Vector FE RTX 3080 and 3090 Backplates

EK, is launching separate backplates for the Special Edition high-performance GPU water blocks that were made for the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080 and 3090 Founders Edition graphics cards. The EK-Quantum Vector FE RTX 3080 and 3090 Backplates are available stand-alone due to many requests by users who wanted to make their blocks in one color instead of having a contrasting silver backplate on a black version of the water block and vice-versa.

This backplate provides additional passive cooling for the GPU core and the backside of the printed circuit board VRM section. Due to the small size of the card and the block itself, the ribbed backplate boasts an increased surface area for additional passive cooling power. It comes in anodized aluminium with a silver or black finish. The silver version is intended for the silver EK-Quantum Vector FE RTX 3080 water block, to make it an all-around silver enclosure, just as the black backplate is intended for the black EK-Quantum Vector FE RTX 3080 water block. By replacing the stock backplate with one of a different color, you get a truly monochromatic look.

Arctic Introduces Quiet Calm RGB Case Fans with Passive Mode

ARCTIC, today introduces two new semi-passive case fans. A special 0-decibel mode enables completely silent operation when power is not needed. The P12 PWM PST 0 dB fans are available in two different variants, with analog RGB lighting as well as digital A-RGB. Clever feature for silence lovers: The new semi-passive case fans switch to passive mode when the PWM signal falls below 10 %. This allows silent operation at low load while guaranteeing the highest performance when needed.

At full speed, the hydrodynamic sleeve bearing and the new, rubberized contact surfaces reduce noise levels to a minimum. Plus, form has been considered as well as function: twelve RGB LEDs and a transparent rotor provide even, rich illumination. Thanks to high static pressure, the P12 PWM PST 0 dB fans guarantee efficient cooling, even with increased air resistance. An integrated Y-splitter for fan and RGB connection also make them easy to combine.
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