Friday, January 28th 2022

Today's Reviews

Cases
CPU Coolers
Graphics Cards
Headphones
Motherboards
Mouse
SSD

EVGA Introduces E1 Gaming Rig

With the launch of the EVGA E1, EVGA is once again taking extreme gaming to the next level by setting a statement with our new gaming rig. The E1 will be extremely limited and available to EVGA Members only.

Back in 1999 when EVGA first was founded, graphics cards were basic. EVGA was the first to introduce Heat Pipe Cooling and iCX Technology along with 4-Way SLI bringing more benefits to gamers. In 2012, EVGA introduced its first Power Supply. Through quality and features EVGA has become a top choice for Power Supplies when gamers are building their systems. E1 continues the tradition of top tier hardware for gamers.
Thursday, January 27th 2022

Today's Reviews

Cases
Graphics Cards
Monitors
Mouse
SSD
PSUs
1st Player SFX 750 W Platinum Review

1st Player SFX 750 W Platinum Review

The 1st Player SFX 750 W is competitively priced, which ensures a high performance per dollar ratio. Build quality of this fully modular PSU is good, making this compact power supply a decent product at a fair price overall. The included seven-year warranty also ensures peace of mind.
Cooler Master MM731 Review

Cooler Master MM731 Review

With the right-handed ergonomic MM731, Cooler Master goes all-in: 59 g without holes, PixArt PAW3370 sensor, optical main button switches, and paracord-like charging cable, along with up to 72 hours of battery life in 2.4 GHz mode and 190 hours using Bluetooth, all for just $89.99.

BIOSTAR Launches Company's First NFT Collection

BIOSTAR, a leading manufacturer of motherboards, graphics cards, and storage devices today, announces the launch of their very first NFT collection.

BIOSTAR gears up to launch its first-ever NFT collection, celebrating its long-standing contribution to blockchain technology through dedicated motherboard solutions.

BIOSTA's signature motherboard mascots, RENA and AMY, take center stage with them as the main attraction on BIOSTAR's first 20 highly collectible NFT's. With each NFT limited to only 10 copies, NFT enthusiasts and fans should seize the opportunity fast to snag up a piece of this rare collection.

NVIDIA "GA103" GeForce RTX 3080 Ti Laptop GPU SKU Pictured

When NVIDIA announced the appearance of the GeForce RTX 3080 Ti mobile graphics card, we were left with a desire to see just what the GA103 silicon powering the GPU looks like. And thanks to the Chinese YouTuber Geekerwan, we have the first pictures of the GPU. Pictured below is GA103S/GA103M SKU with GN20-E8-A1 labeling. It features 58 SMs that make up for 7424 CUDA cores in total. The number of Tensor cores for this SKU is set to 232, while there are 58 RT cores. NVIDIA has decided to pair this GPU with a 256-bit memory bus and 16 GB GDDR6 memory.

As it turns out, the full GA103 silicon has a total of 7680 CUDA cores and a 320-bit memory bus, so this mobile version is a slightly cut-down variant. It sits perfectly between GA104 and GA102 SKUs, providing a significant improvement to the core count of GA104 silicon. Power consumption of the GA103 SKU for GeForce RTX 3080 Ti mobile is set to a variable 80-150 Watt range, which can be adjusted according to the system's cooling capacity. An interesting thing to point out is a die size of 496 mm², which is a quarter more significant compared to GA104, for a quarter higher number of CUDA cores.

TEAMGROUP T-FORCE Debuts the Latest PCIe Gen5 SSD: Leaping Into a New Era of SSDs with Groundbreaking Technologies

To meet the demand for high-speed storage driven by big data, TEAMGROUP is utilizing its years of experience in computer storage solutions to launch the newest PCIe Gen5 SSD this year. In light of the generational advancements of PCIe 5.0, the company is actively committed to developing products using cutting-edge technologies. With its expertise in R&D and dedication to product excellence, the company is excited to enter the next era of SSD storage solutions and to deliver spectacular new products to the world.

TEAMGROUP is releasing its first PCIe Gen5 SSD under its gaming sub-brand T-FORCE as part of the CARDEA series. It is capable of maximum sequential read speeds of over 13,000 MB/s and write speeds exceeding 12,000 MB/s, and together with a maximum storage capacity of 4 TB, it will be the highest performance PCIe Gen5 flagship SSD on the market when launched. The T-FORCE PCIe Gen5 SSD will support the latest NVMe 2.0 and will be enhanced using proprietary technology to improve durability and product lifespan. The new hardware and support will enable its Gen5 SSDs to fully meet the needs of the gaming computing market, video streaming, augmented reality (AR), virtual reality (VR), and other next-gen digital domains. TEAMGROUP plans to mass-produce T-FORCE CARDEA series' PCIe Gen5 SSD in 2022 Q3, and will also launch a variety of efficient cooling solutions for the PCIe Gen5 SSD. Together with its global motherboard manufacturing partners, TEAMGROUP will continue to refine specifications and technologies of the latest generation of SSDs to meet market demands and provide consumers around the world with a stable and rapid storage experience.

G.SKILL Releases Extreme Low Latency DDR5-6400 CL32 Memory Kit

G.SKILL International Enterprise Co., Ltd., the world's leading manufacturer of extreme performance memory and gaming peripherals, is delighted to announce the launch of an extremely low-latency, high-speed DDR5-6400 CL32 32 GB (2x16 GB) memory kit under the Trident Z5 family memory series, designed for the latest 12th Gen Intel Core desktop processors and Intel Z690 chipset motherboards.

Dedicated to developing ever-faster memory modules, G.SKILL is launching an ultra-low latency DDR5-6400 CL32-39-39-102 memory kit at 1.40 V with 32 GB (2x16 GB) kit capacity. Equipped with exceptionally tight timings, this extreme memory specification represents the next step of the Trident Z5 family flagship performance. The screenshot below shows this memory kit validated on the Intel Core i7-12700K processor and ASUS ROG Maximus Z690 Hero motherboard. The DDR5-6400 CL32 32 GB (2x16 GB) memory kits under the Trident Z5 and Trident Z5 RGB series is available now via G.SKILL worldwide distribution partners.

Steam Deck Officially Arrives on February 25th to First Customers

Valve's highly anticipated handheld gaming console, Steam Deck, officially arrives on February 25th. According to the newest information from Valve, the company plans to start sending our Steam Deck units to customers who first pre-ordered their units on February 25th, and the arrival time should be three days. That means that on February 28th, customers will have Steam Deck in their hands. Regarding press units for reviewers, the company has already started shipping review units to select media partners. The review embargo for Steam Deck is also set to February 25th, so that marks the date when we can see the full potential of AMD's custom Van Gogh SoC.

As a general reminder, the Van Gogh SoC features four Zen 2 cores with eight threads, running at a 3.5 GHz frequency. The graphics side is powered by eight RDNA2 CUs clocked at 1.6 GHz, meaning that the chip can support some decent handheld gaming. The base model starts at $399, while the top-end configuration costs up to $649, carrying more extensive memory/storage options.

Intel Reports Fourth-Quarter and Full-Year 2021 Financial Results

Intel Corporation today reported fourth-quarter and full-year 2021 financial results. The company also announced that its board of directors approved a cash dividend increase of five percent to $1.46 per share on an annual basis. The board declared a quarterly dividend of $0.365 per share on the company's common stock, which will be payable on March 1 to shareholders of record as of February 7.

"Q4 represented a great finish to a great year. We exceeded top-line quarterly guidance by over $1 billion and delivered the best quarterly and full-year revenue in the company's history," said Pat Gelsinger, Intel CEO. "Our disciplined focus on execution across technology development, manufacturing, and our traditional and emerging businesses is reflected in our results. We remain committed to driving long-term, sustainable growth as we relentlessly execute our IDM 2.0 strategy."

Rambus Delivers PCIe 6.0 Controller for Next-Generation Data Centers

Rambus Inc., a premier chip and silicon IP provider making data faster and safer, today announced the availability of its PCI Express (PCIe ) 6.0 Controller. The PCIe specification is the interconnect of choice across a broad landscape of data-intensive markets including data center, AI/ML, HPC, automotive, IoT, defense and aerospace. Optimized for power, area and latency, the Rambus PCIe 6.0 controller delivers data rates up to 64 Gigatransfers per second (GT/s) for high-performance applications. In addition, the controller provides state-of-the-art security with an Integrity and Data Encryption (IDE) engine that monitors and protects PCIe links against physical attacks.

"The rapid advancement of AI/ML and data-intensive workloads requires that we continue to provide higher data rate solutions with best-in-class latency, power and area," said Sean Fan, chief operating officer at Rambus. "As the latest addition to our portfolio of industry-leading interface IP, our PCIe 6.0 Controller offers customers an easy to integrate solution that delivers both performance and security for advanced SoCs and FPGAs."

Huntkey Releases 100 W GaN Fast Chargers to Satisfy Users' Multiple Charging Needs

Huntkey Group, a leading power supplies manufacturer, held the Fast Charging Standards and New Product Launch Conference On December 22, 2021. At the conference, Huntkey has signed the safe fast charging technology cooperation framework agreement with China Quality Certification Centre (Shenzhen Branch), which represents that CQC will jointly promote safe fast charging industry standards with Huntkey in the future. Huntkey also released 100 W GaN fast chargers and aimed to satisfy users' multiple charging needs.

Generally speaking, the product quality can be divided into from low to high, aerospace-grade > military-grade > industrial-grade > consumer-grade, and Huntkey is one of the pioneers in upgrading the quality of consumer-grade products to aerospace-grade.
Wednesday, January 26th 2022

Today's Reviews

Game Controllers
Graphics Cards
Headphones
Keyboards
Motherboards
Networking
Notebooks
Processors
ASUS GeForce RTX 3050 STRIX OC Review

ASUS GeForce RTX 3050 STRIX OC Review

The ASUS GeForce RTX 3050 STRIX OC is the flagship RTX 3050 from ASUS. Its large triple-slot, triple-fan cooler ensures amazing temperatures and whisper-quiet noise levels. What makes the card stand out is the biggest factory overclock and highest power limit of all the RTX 3050 cards we review today.
EVGA GeForce RTX 3050 XC Black Review

EVGA GeForce RTX 3050 XC Black Review

With the GeForce RTX 3050, NVIDIA has released a new card targeted at entry-level gaming, with support for DLSS and ray tracing. Compared to the Radeon RX 6500 XT, the RTX 3050 runs much faster and offers considerably improved RT performance.
Palit GeForce RTX 3050 StormX OC Review

Palit GeForce RTX 3050 StormX OC Review

Palit's GeForce RTX 3050 StormX OC is a highly compact RTX 3050 variant that's only 17 cm long, so it'll fit into a lot of ITX cases. Despite the compact looks, the card still offers a small factory overclock, and achieves very low temperatures with good overclocking potential.
Gigabyte GeForce RTX 3050 Gaming OC Review

Gigabyte GeForce RTX 3050 Gaming OC Review

Gigabyte's GeForce RTX 3050 comes with a medium-sized overclock paired with a large triple-fan, dual-slot thermal solution that achieves good temperatures and lets some airflow through the card. Unlike many other RTX 3050s, Gigabyte includes a metal backplate with their card for added protection.

Phanteks Launches Eclipse P600s and Evolv X Matte White Edition Cases, Along with Gen4 PCIe Riser Cables

Phanteks announced the launch of the new Eclipse P600s and Evolv X Matte White Edition along with the Gen4 PCI-e Riser Cables. Its stunning all-new matte white look makes the Evolv X and Eclipse P600s a perfect combination for color-themed builds while maintaining a wide range of flexibility and premium materials.

Evolv X & Eclipse P600S Matte White Edition
The Evolv X and Eclipse P600s are mid-tower cases that offer dual system capabilities, massive storage, and extensive water-cooling support. The Evolv X features a 3 mm aluminium exterior with hinged clear tempered glass, improved airflow, smart spacing, and additional mesh elements. The P600s, a hybrid forged between silent and high-performance chassis. Designed with an effective soundproofing panel and Phanteks' new high-airflow fabric, the Eclipse P600s offers the full potential of two opposites, minimum noise, and maximum airflow. Whether it's a high-end water-cooling build, professional data storage system, or even a dual-system PC, both cases can accommodate your desired configuration thanks to the effective interior design that utilizes the space efficiently.

EU Court Withdraws €1.06 billion Intel Antitrust Fine

Remember that €1.06 billion antitrust lawsuit that Intel was slapped with by the European Commission back in 2009? It's ok if you don't, but it involved Intel being accused of "market malpractice, by influencing computer hardware manufacturers to postpone and/or cancel launches of their products that use CPUs made by its rival AMD" based on our own reporting from 2009. As these thing goes, Intel appealed to a higher court and that higher court handed back the case to the lower court who has now withdrawn the fine and the judges went as far as to say "The (European) Commission's analysis is incomplete and does not make it possible to establish to the requisite legal standard that the rebates at issue were capable of having, or likely to have, anticompetitive effects,".

The European Commission has said it will study the new judgement and will consider its next steps, but it seems unlikely that they'll be able to bring this case to court again, without some additional proof of wrongdoing. The end result of this is also likely to make it tougher to bring cases like to court in the future for the European Commission, as they will have to provide more detailed cases where they prove that things like MDF and rebates to their customers cause real, anti-competitive damages to other companies in the same line of business, in this case AMD. The case can still be appealed to the CJEU, so this 13 year saga might still not be over.

Crytek confirms a new Crysis game is in development - Crysis 4?

To everyone in our amazing Crysis community, and to all fans of the franchise all around the world: we have a special announcement to make, just for you. It's something you have been asking us for a long time, so it's now finally time to confirm - yes, the next Crysis game is happening! We are so pleased and excited to bring this news to you, and we really can't wait to reveal more details about what lies ahead.

Right now the game is in the early stages of development so it will be a while yet, but we wanted to bring you the news at this time as we are so hyped for the future, and to let you know that we will be listening to our community. Crytek has a proud history of working with our community to develop the games you want to play. Crysis is incredibly important to so many people - it's beloved by gamers everywhere, and some of those working in the industry today are doing so because of the original game - so we want to make sure the next instalment in the franchise lives up to all of your expectations. Make sure to join our socials and get involved!

Tachyum Selected for Pan-European Project Enabling 1 AI Zettaflop in 2024

Tachyum today announced that it was selected by the Slovak Republic to participate in the latest submission for the Important Projects of Common European Interest (IPCEI), to develop Prodigy 2 for HPC/AI. Prodigy 2 for HPC/AI will enable 1 AI Zettaflop and more than 10 DP Exaflops computers to support superhuman brain-scale computing by 2024 for under €1B. As part of this selection, Tachyum could receive a 49 million Euro grant to accelerate a second-generation of its Tachyum Prodigy processor for HPC/AI in a 3-nanometer process.

The IPCEI program can make a very important contribution to sustainable economic growth, jobs, competitiveness and resilience for industry and the economy in the European Union. IPCEI will strengthen the EU's open strategic autonomy by enabling breakthrough innovation and infrastructure projects through cross-border cooperation and with positive spill-over effects on the internal market and society as a whole.
Tuesday, January 25th 2022

Today's Reviews

Cases
CPU Coolers
Keyboards
Memory
Motherboards
Mouse
Notebooks
Processors
Speakers
Intel Core i3-12100F Review - 5.2 GHz OC with an Asterisk

Intel Core i3-12100F Review - 5.2 GHz OC with an Asterisk

Core i3-12100F is the most affordable quad-core Alder Lake CPU from Intel. In our review, we test with DDR4 and DDR5 to see whether it has what it takes to build a lean work PC or cost-efficient gaming machine. Thanks to BCLK overclocking, we even managed to overclock it to 5.2 GHz all-core.

Khronos Releases Vulkan 1.3 Graphics API Specifications

Today, The Khronos Group, an open consortium of industry-leading companies creating advanced interoperability standards, announced the latest updates to Vulkan, the cross-platform 3D graphics API and its ecosystem. The Vulkan 1.3 specification was released today, incorporating and mandating proven, developer-requested extensions to make that functionality consistently available across all supported platforms.

The Vulkan Working Group is developing a public roadmap to provide guidance on when and where more advanced Vulkan functionality will be supported. The Vulkan Roadmap 2022 milestone for mid-to-high-end hardware defines features beyond Vulkan 1.3 that will be available starting this year. Vulkan profiles will be introduced, with tooling, in the February 2022 Vulkan 1.3 SDK to precisely specify, manage and use sets of API capabilities. Profiles will be used to communicate functionality requirements for roadmaps, markets, platforms, and hardware and software developers.

be quiet! Expands Pure Power 11 FM Series with 850 W & 1000 W Models

be quiet!, the German manufacturer for premium PC components, is expanding its Pure Power 11 FM power supply range with two high-wattage models: 850 W and 1000 W. Pure Power 11 FM is aimed at mainstream computer users who appreciate the versatility of modular cables and 80 PLUS Gold efficiency up to 93.9 percent. The new high-wattage options are specifically aimed at value-oriented PC systems with high-end graphics cards.

At be quiet!, Pure Power stands for peerless dependability and a comprehensive feature set at a competitive price point. The new additions tot he Pure Power 11 FM series are no exceptions: 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, up to six PCI-Express connectors, and power output options now ranging up to an impressive 1000 watts, Pure Power 11 FM is fully suited for silent PC configurations and even gaming systems with a high-end graphics card.

BIOSTAR Announces New B660 & H610 Series Motherboards

BIOSTAR, a leading manufacturer of motherboards, graphics cards, and storage devices today, introduces the new B660/H610 series motherboards designed to run the latest 12th Gen processors from Intel. Leading the charge into 2022, BIOSTAR introduces yet another set of user-oriented motherboards. Keen on showcasing their superior technology and product design, BIOSTAR unveils three of the best mid to entry level motherboards imaginable, designed targeting business and casual users.

Following their predecessor's success, the new B660MX-E, H610MX-E, and the H610MH are the best bang for buck micro-ATX motherboards entering the new year, with stylish design, great features, and brand support catering to the masses. Running on a seamless cohesion with Intel 12th generation processors, packing all the quintessential features and connectivity options, these motherboards are an excellent choice for HTPC builds and business-oriented systems.

Electronic Arts & Lucasfilm Games announce new Star Wars titles from Respawn Entertainment

Electronic Arts Inc. and Lucasfilm Games are joining forces to continue delivering all-new, world-class gaming experiences set within the beloved Star Wars galaxy. Respawn Entertainment, best known for their work on Apex Legends, Titanfall and Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order, is leading the development and production of these new projects. Vince Zampella, Group GM and Founder of Respawn, will oversee this new phase of EA's relationship with Lucasfilm, building on Respawn's award-winning history in game development and expertise in telling compelling Star Wars stories.

Game Director Stig Asmussen and his team at the studio are already working on the next game in the action adventure Star Wars Jedi series, and are joined by two new teams working to deliver additional unique Star Wars gameplay experiences across multiple genres. Leading the development of Respawn's all-new Star Wars first-person shooter game is Peter Hirschmann, Game Director at Respawn, who has a long and accomplished history with the Star Wars franchise. The third title is a Star Wars strategy game developed through a production collaboration with the newly formed studio Bit Reactor, helmed by games industry veteran Greg Foerstch. Respawn will produce the new Star Wars strategy game while Bit Reactor leads on the development of the title.

NVIDIA Arm Deal Said to be Over According to Bloomberg

It appears that NVIDIA is getting ready to give up on its acquisition attempt of Arm, at least if news coming via Bloomberg is correct. Due to a paywall we can't access the original story, but the reason for the possible end to the deal seems to be issues related to getting government approval. The US$40 billion deal has rubbed many of Arm's partners the wrong way as well, as they don't trust NVIDIA to continue to license future Arm based processor cores to them, had the deal gone through.

At the same time, Arm has tried to convince the UK government that it will suffer terribly if NVIDIA isn't allowed to buy them, as the company claims to have lost ground to Intel and RISC-V over the past year. What's also rather bizarre, is that Arm is claiming Qualcomm is one of its competitors, despite Qualcomm being one of its licensees. On top of that, Arm also claims that "Architectural licensees do not use Arm's CPU designs. Arm architectural licensees create their own proprietary CPU designs using their own engineering teams", as part of their reasoning as to why its customers are their competitors. We suggest reading the EE Times article linked in the sources below for more details with regards to the claims Arm has filed with the UK government. The deal with NVIDIA might not be quite over as yet, but it looks like Softbank might have to consider other alternatives for Arm, if it really falls through.

Price Drop of NAND Flash Products for 1Q22 Expected to Taper to 8-13% QoQ Decline, Says TrendForce

NAND Flash prices for 1Q22 are expected to decline by 8-13% QoQ, compared to TrendForce's previous forecast of 10-15% QoQ, primarily due to PC OEMs' increased orders for PCIe 3.0 products and the impact of the lockdown in Xi'an on PC OEMs' price negotiation approaches. To mitigate potential risks in logistics, NAND Flash buyers are now more willing to accept a narrower decline in contract prices in order to obtain their products sooner. However, as the Xi'an lockdown has not noticeably affected the local fabs' manufacturing operations, the movement of NAND Flash contract prices going forward will likely remain relatively unaffected by the lockdown.

In addition, TrendForce finds that the daily number of new COVID-19 cases in Xi'an has recently undergone a noticeable drop, and the local government has also announced that that the emergency level has been downgraded. As such, Samsung's and Micron's local production facilities are returning to normal with respect to workforce and operational capacity. Samsung's local production base manufactures NAND Flash products, whereas Micron's local production base is responsible for the testing and packaging of DRAM chips as well as the assembly of DRAM modules. The impacts of the lockdown mainly relate to delays in the deliveries of memory products to customers. On the other hand, the event has not caused a tangible loss in memory production.

AnkerWork Launches B600 Video Conferencing Bar

AnkerWork, developer of unique conferencing solutions that enhance the hybrid work experience, today launched the AnkerWork B600, its first all-in-one video conferencing bar that combines a 2K camera, 4-mic array, dual speakers and smart LED light bar. The B600 was unveiled as a CES Award honoree during CES 2022 and is available for purchase starting today.

The AnkerWork B600 is a four-in-one remote communication and collaboration video bar that is designed to solve your work-from-home challenges by eliminating desk clutter, distracting sounds and poor lighting during meetings. The B600 seamlessly integrates four capabilities into a single device: a 2K conference camera, intelligent noise reduction microphone array, high-quality speakers, and built-in automated lighting. Equally ideal for using at home or at the office, the compact device mounts easily on an external monitor while helping you maintain a neat and tidy workspace.

Steam Breaks Another Record with 29.2 Million Concurrent Players

Just three weeks after having an all-time high number of 28 million concurrent players, Steam has managed to break another record and provide its services to 29.2 million gamers across the globe. According to the data from SteamDB, there were 29,201,174 concurrent gamers were utilizing Valve's Steam platform and playing their favorite game without realizing that they were breaking a world record. And of course, the highest contributor to this record are online multiplayer games such as Dota 2 and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, which achieved 900K and 787K active players in the last 24 hours. This shows an excellent trend for Valve's Steam platform, and we are just a shy away from seeing 30 million concurrent gamers playing "side by side."

Logitech Announces G413 Mechanical Gaming Keyboards

Getting the right kind of keyboard for the type of gaming you prefer can be the difference between an enjoyable experience and a miserable one. Gaming keyboards can be complex and confusing, but the Logitech G team and their new Logitech G413 SE Mechanical Gaming Keyboard and the G413 TKL (Tenkeyless) SE Mechanical Gaming Keyboard are designed to upgrade your gameplay experience without breaking the bank.

Our engineering and design teams carefully designed a gaming keyboard that delivers both precision and performance. These two new keyboards offer gaming-grade mechanical switches with extremely durable PBT keycaps that are wear, fade and shine resistant, at a low price. With a black-brushed aluminium-magnesium alloy top case as the keyboard's backbone, and white LED lighting, they will look great on your desk. Also, it uses low-carbon aluminium to reduce its carbon footprint, so it doesn't only look amazing, but is also much more sustainable.

G.SKILL and ASUS Sets New DDR5-8888 CL88 Overclocking World Record

G.SKILL International Enterprise Co., Ltd., the world's leading manufacturer of extreme performance memory and gaming peripherals, is thrilled to announce the achievement of a new overclocking world record for fastest memory frequency at DDR5-8888 CL88-88-88-88, in cooperation with ASUS. This amazing frequency speed was achieved by the extreme overclocker "lupin_no_musume" with G.SKILL Trident Z5 DDR5 memory, ASUS ROG Maximus Z690 APEX motherboard, and Intel Core i9-12900K processor. To see the moment this amazing overclocking world record was set, please click the following video link: https://youtu.be/OgQFbUOs6i8

DDR5-8888 CL88-88-88-88 - Pushing the Speed to the Limit
At the dawn of the DDR5 era, G.SKILL and ASUS have been constantly exploring the memory speed limitations of the latest Intel Z690 platform. Surpassing the previous DDR5-8704 world record in November 2021, a new memory frequency world record is achieved at DDR5-8888 under liquid nitrogen extreme cooling. The memory speed has been validated by CPU-Z. Please refer to the screenshot and validation link below: https://valid.x86.fr/qgvylc
Monday, January 24th 2022

Today's Reviews

Cases
CPU Coolers
Graphics Cards
Headphones
Keyboards
Motherboards
Mouse
Notebooks
Storage
XENNS UP In-Ear Monitors Review

XENNS UP In-Ear Monitors Review

Mangird is now XENNS, and builds upon its impressive Tea IEMs with the newer XENNS UP. It is a tribrid set employing seven drivers for a promised extended frequency response coupled with audiophile tuning and technicalities, as well as individually hand-painted face plates that make for a unique set each time.
DeepCool AK620 Review

DeepCool AK620 Review

DeepCool looks to assert dominance with its latest dual-tower air cooler, the AK620. Featuring an accommodating height of just 160 mm, it fits where other large coolers won't—all while packing serious performance with clean and stylish looks.

Akasa Announces Alucia H4 CPU Tower Cooler

Akasa, has released a brand new tower cooler to add to its premium line-up. The Alucia H4 is made up of a sleek, all-black heatsink and a high performance 120 mm fan with enough cooling power to tame CPUs with a 185 W TDP, such as Intel's Core i7 12700 at Turbo Power, or AMD Ryzen 9 5950X. The Alucia H4 heatsink features a eccentricity design, which is a mounting mechanism which allows for different heights of RAM clearance. Simply adjust the clips attached to the fan and mount the fan above any RAM modules. Work or play, bring on the heat with the Alucia H4 - with a maximum 185 W TDP, this premium cooler can be used with the vast majority of high-end CPUs!

The heatsink has four copper heatpipes with Direct Contact technology, which provides a high level of heat dissipation. Compatibility is not an issue, with the mounting kit included with the cooler, which can fit LGA2066/2011/1156/1155/1151/1150/1200 and AM4, and a future update is planned for LGA1700. Akasa's premium T5 Pro-Grade Plus thermal paste is also included in the package, allowing the best heat dissipation possible from the CPU.

Ceremorphic Exits Stealth Mode; Unveils Technology Plans to Deliver a New Architecture Specifically Designed for Reliable Performance Computing

Armed with more than 100 patents and leveraging multi-decade expertise in creating industry-leading silicon systems, Ceremorphic Inc. today announced its plans to deliver a complete silicon system that provides the performance needed for next-generation applications such as AI model training, HPC, automotive processing, drug discovery, and metaverse processing. Designed in advanced silicon geometry (TSMC 5 nm node), this new architecture was built from the ground up to solve today's high-performance computing problems in reliability, security and energy consumption to serve all performance-demanding market segments.

Ceremorphic was founded in April 2020 by industry-veteran Dr. Venkat Mattela, the Founding CEO of Redpine Signals, which sold its wireless assets to Silicon Labs, Inc. in March 2020 for $308 million. Under his leadership, the team at Redpine Signals delivered breakthrough innovations and industry-first products that led to the development of an ultra-low-power wireless solution that outperformed products from industry giants in the wireless space by as much as 26 times on energy consumption. Ceremorphic leverages its own patented multi-thread processor technology ThreadArch combined with cutting-edge new technology developed by the silicon, algorithm and software engineers currently employed by Ceremorphic. This team is leveraging its deep expertise and patented technology to design an ultra-low-power training supercomputing chip.

TSMC and UMC Implement Work From Home Rules Due to Spread of Omicron Variant in Taiwan

Up until a few weeks ago, Taiwan had been largely spared from local spread of the Coronavirus, but the Omicron variant has bypassed the defences that were set up to prevent the virus from spreading. Although the amount of verified cases are still comparatively very low, there's a cluster of over 100 cases confirmed in a free trade zone near the Taoyuan airport, which has so far mostly affected Askey, but other companies in the same free trade zone have had their staff tested and are waiting for the results. As a preventive measure, TSMC, UMC and other companies are already implementing working from home rules for staff that aren't critical to production.

TSMC already started what they call epidemic prevention measures last week and called off unnecessary face to face meetings, paused international business trips and limited local business trips, among other things. TSMC has also stopped all regional shuttle buses between its various locations in Taiwan, as well as local shuttle buses between plants, to help prevent any potential spread. The company is also said to have closed most of its staff facilities and even suspended its Chinese New Year party, which is one of the highlights for many workers in Taiwan, largely due to the giveaways that the companies are doing, in addition to any bonuses that are being paid around this time of the year. Time will tell if Taiwan can continue to stave off the virus, but to date, 73.2 percent of the population has taken two shots of vaccine, although the government is already pushing for a third dose, largely because most people have received the AstraZeneca vaccine which is considered as giving less protection against the Omicron variant. It should be noted that neither TSMC or UMC have any chip plats in Taoyuan, but TSMC does have a backed fab at the opposite end of Taoyuan.

Intel Not Happy About BCLK Overclocking of 12th Gen CPUs, Warns of Damage

You may, or may not have noticed that in certain parts of the interweb, groups of people that are generally referred to as "Overclockers" have managed to get their cheap Celeron G6900's and Core i3-12100's to run at much higher clock speeds than Intel intended and now the company is unhappy about it, as they're anticipating that they're going to lose sales of more expensive CPUs. As such, Intel has issued a warning via Tom's Hardware
"Intel's 12th Gen non-K processors were not designed for overclocking. Intel does not warranty the operation of processors beyond their specifications. Altering clock frequency or voltage may damage or reduce the useful life of the processor and other system components, and may reduce system stability and performance."

Jokes aside, the lower end SKU's of Intel's 12th gen Alder Lake CPUs seem to be phenomenal overclockers, if you have the right motherboards. If the motherboard doesn't have an external clock gen, plus support for adjusting the BCLK on non-K CPUs, then you're not going to have much luck. This means, at least at the moment, that you're looking at fairly pricey Z690 motherboard, although there are rumors that we can expect the odd B660 motherboard that will get an external clock gen, with at least three models already reported to have BCLK adjustment support via beta UEFI updates. Pro Overclockers have already managed to hit speeds in excess of 5.3 GHz with the Celeron G6900 and that is only by adjusting the BCLK and the Voltage, which is no mean feat, as the CPU has fixed clock speed of 3.4 GHz, which makes this a 57 percent boost in clock speed. Intel is said to be looking into this unintended ability to overclock these CPU SKUs and is apparently looking at locking down this ability with a new microcode update in a future UEFI release.

Update: Added a screenshot from TPU's upcoming Core i3-12100F review, showing 5.2 GHz at 130 MHz BCLK.

Intel Arc Alchemist DG2 GPU Memory Configurations Leak

Intel's upcoming Arc Alchemist lineup of discrete graphics cards generates a lot of attention from consumers. Leaks of these cards' performance and detailed specifications appear more and more as we enter the countdown to the launch day, which is sometime in Q1 of this year. Today, we managed to see a slide from @9950pro on Twitter that shows the laptop memory configuration of Intel's DG2 GPU. As the picture suggests, we can see that the top-end SKU1 with 512 EUs supports a 16 GB capacity of GDDR6 memory that runs at 16 Gbps speeds. The memory runs on a 256-bit bus and generates 512 GB/s bandwidth while having eight VRAM modules present.

When it comes to SKU2, which is a variant with 384 EUs, this configuration supports six VRAM modules on a 192-bit bus, running at 16 Gbps speeds. They generate a total capacity of 12 GBs and a bandwidth of 384 GB/s. We have SKU3 DG2 GPU going down the stack, featuring 256 EUs, four VRAM modules on a 128-bit bus, 8 GB capacity, and a 256 GB/s bandwidth. And last but not least, the smallest DG2 variants come in the form of SKU4 and SKU5, feating 128 EUs and 96 EUs, respectively. Intel envisions these lower-end SKUs with two VRAM modules on a 64-bit bus, and this time slower GDDR6 memory running at 14 Gbps. They are paired with 4 GB of total capacity, and the total bandwidth comes down to 112 GB/s.

Samsung RDNA2 Xclipse 920 GPU 25% Faster Than Adreno 730 in Vulkan Benchmarks

The upcoming Samsung Exynos 2200 mobile processor that is set to feature in the S22 series of phones features an RDNA2 Xclipse 920 GPU designed in collaboration with AMD. This new GPU has surfaced in various Geekbench scores where it handily outperforms the Adreno 730 found in the flagship Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 1. The Exynos 2200 achieved an OpenCL Geekbench score of 9,143 points which is 50.7% higher than the OnePlus 10 Pro sporting a Snapdragon 8 Gen 1. The processor also performed impressively in the Vulkan benchmarks scoring an average of 8,556 points which places it between 17 - 25% faster. These synthetic benchmarks aren't always entirely reflective of actual performance and we have yet to see power and heat figures so we will need to wait until Samsung officially releases the S22 lineup on February 9th to determine if this will be the new mobile champion.
Sunday, January 23rd 2022

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