Friday, May 25th 2018

Today's Reviews

Cases
Cooling
Desktop PC
Headphones
Motherboards
Notebooks
Processors
SSD

Streacom Announces the DA2 Compact Case

Streacom is pleased to announce the DA2 compact case. Whilst there are compact cases on the market that do a great job of cramming high performance components into a super tiny space, they tend to focus on being "the smallest" and in doing so suffer from limited cooling, poor versatility and a generic uninspirational designs. With the DA2 we created a case that focuses on cooling performance and compatibility, whilst still being true to the size principles of small form factor and incorporating our minimalist design and premium construction ethos.

There are lots of examples of what makes this case different, but beyond just the specification or features there is a fundamental difference in the approach that drives everything we produce. Being one of the few small independent manufacturers on the market, we do not depend on OEM facilities and shared tooling, nor do we suffer from the bureaucracy of larger organizations. This means we are not trapped in any specific design path and have the freedom to explore a different approach, which is why our products are genuinely different.

MSI Announces PRO 24X Series Ultra Slim All-in-One Desktops

MSI, the pioneer and global leader enabling Professional industry, introduces today the brand new All-in-One PC, PRO 24X Series, with an incredibly ultra-slim design measuring only 6.5 mm thick. As slender as a ballpoint pen, its simple metallic slim stand elegantly complements the Ultra-slim display while its brushed metal patterning on the rear cover provides a stylish and contemporary design. The PRO 24X Series is equipped with IPS Grade Panel which instantly optimizes the screen colors and brightness to ensure that users can enjoy every scene at its best, and with an incredibly narrow 2.2mm ultra-slim bezel, it blends seamlessly into any workspace and helps users to focus on their professional tasks.

For a traditional All-in-One PC, it might be very difficult to upgrade the hardware, but with the MSI Easy Maintenance Design, maintaining or upgrading your 2.5" storage on the PRO 24X will not be a nightmare anymore. Furthermore, with Intel CoreTM i3 above processor, the PRO 24X supports Intel Optane technology which provides an unparalleled combination of high throughput, low latency, high quality of service, and high endurance. However, if users would like to enjoy a blazing fast system boot up and insanely quick loading of applications and data, this stylish model also supports one NVMe PCIe M.2 SSD.

Steam Link App for iOS Rejected by Apple

Apple approved the Steam Link app for release. On Weds, May 9th, Valve released news of the app. The following morning, Apple revoked its approval citing business conflicts with app guidelines that had allegedly not been realized by the original review team. Valve appealed, explaining the Steam Link app simply functions as a LAN-based remote desktop similar to numerous remote desktop applications already available on the App Store.

Ultimately, that appeal was denied leaving the Steam Link app for iOS blocked from release. The team here spent many hours on this project and the approval process, so we're clearly disappointed. But we hope Apple will reconsider in the future.

Patriot Viper Launches Brand New RGB DDR4 Series Memory Kits

PATRIOT, a global leader in performance memory, SSDs, gaming peripherals and flash storage solutions today announced the immediate availability of its new VIPER RGB Series Performance DDR4 Memory Kits. PATRIOT's VIPER RGB Series memory modules are designed for users who are obsessed with maximizing hardware performance without compromising stability. The VIPER RGB series are fully optimized for the latest Intel and AMD platforms and matched with a stunning heat shield design. VIPER RGB series offers RGB illumination control through a software application without additional cables to maintain an aesthetic look and stunning visuals.

The new heat spreader design is made from high-quality aluminum and designed to offer excellent thermal dissipation to maintain greater stability under heavy loads. In addition, VIPER RGB series memory is built with a customized PCB to guarantee good signal integrity for stable gaming while also offering increased overclocking potential. The memory ICs featured in VIPER RGB Series undergo a proprietary sorting process to retain strict quality standards and reliability on the latest Intel and AMD platform motherboards.

Be Quiet! Anounces System Power U9 PSU Series

Be quiet!, the market leader in PC power supplies in Germany for twelve consecutive years*, introduces its System Power U9 series of power supplies with 400 to 700 watts into the North American market. The product line offers 80PLUS Bronze level efficiency up to 89 percent, providing solid performance and an extensive feature set. All this, combined with a great price-performance ratio, makes this power supply series a perfect component for system builders.

Each new power supply in the System Power U9 line-up is built with the latest technology and available at a competitive price, maintaining the quality and reliability expected from a premium brand like be quiet! All models are 80PLUS Bronze certified and feature improved voltage regulation thanks to System Power U9's DC-to-DC technology. In every System Power U9 model, be quiet! implements a full range of circuit protection, including over temperature protection (OTP), while a temperature-controlled high-quality 120-millimeter fan constantly cools the power supply at a low noise level.
Thursday, May 24th 2018
Upcoming Hardware Launches 2018 (Updated)

Upcoming Hardware Launches 2018 (Updated)

This article serves as a continuously updated summary of currently known leaks and official announcements regarding upcoming hardware releases in 2018 and beyond. We cover and keep track of Intel Cannon Lake, AMD Zen 2, NVIDIA Turing, and NVIDIA Ampere, and more.
G.SKILL Ripjaws MX780

G.SKILL Ripjaws MX780

If you like customization and modularity in your peripherals, then the G.SKILL Ripjaws MX780 is definitely worth checking out. It offers a fully ambidextrous design with interchangeable side panels and a height-adjustable back panel for maximum comfort.

MSI Announces "Game Without Compromise Campaign" in Partnership With Intel

Born to fulfill gamers' satisfaction, MSI and Intel team up to offer gamer a game software pack bundle which includes up to eight games available such as Warhammer: Vermintide II and X-Morph you must not be missing. By purchasing a selected Intel 300-series motherboards and desktops from MSI, we grant you a free $180 plus software pack. The bundle starts from May 1st to June 30th.

Apexgaming Announces the X-Mars Tempered Glass Gaming Case

Apexgaming , a worldwide leader in manufacturing gaming cases, power supplies and computer peripherals, today announces its reddot winner the flagship X-Mars full-tower E-ATX gaming chassis. Inspired by the Greek god of war, Ares Mars, the Apexgaming X-Mars is a full-tower gaming chassis stands out with its unique exterior design and highly expandability. The materials processed are steel, brushed aluminum and tempered glass, giving the X-Mars a pronouncedly masculine appearance. The case offers an abundant space that can accommodate up to fourteen 120mm fans, one maximum 480mm radiators, graphic cards with a length up to 432mm, 28mm wide spacey room for cable routing behind M/B tray as well as sufficient capacity for up to eleven 3.5" drives or fourteen 2.5" drives.

Apexgaming Unveils Hermes Mid-Tower Gaming Case

Apexgaming, a worldwide leader in manufacturing gaming cases, power supplies and computer peripherals, today announces its reddot winner the Hermes mid-tower E-ATX gaming chassis. The Apexgaming Hermes is a revolutionary Mid-Tower gaming case providing passionate gamers with the flexibility to assemble a gaming case according to their individual preferences. The two front panels can be separated to make different combinations. In additions, panels made from various materials and colors are available for creating infinite possibilities for an individual gaming case.

The case offers ample space for up to seven 120mm fans, one maximum 360mm radiator, seven expansion slots. Furthermore, 12" x 13" E-ATX motherboard and graphics cards up to 432 mm in length can be installed. This great flexibility in the internal space arrangement gives gamers/builders outstanding choices to arrange their hardware for best performance.

Acer Launches Two Premium 13-inch Chromebooks Designed for Business Use

Acer today introduced two new premium Chromebooks designed for business use - the Acer Chromebook Spin 13 and the Acer Chromebook 13. Both models feature a stylish and durable all-aluminum design and a full HD+ 13.5-inch display in a 3:2 aspect ratio. The new Acer Chromebooks are powered by 8th Gen Intel Core processors providing exceptional performance and battery life for productivity on the go.

The convertible Chromebook Spin 13 (CP713-1WN) has 360-degree hinges for use as a tablet, notebook, display, or in tent-mode. It comes with a Wacom stylus (for pen input) that can be conveniently stored in the device slot. The Acer Chromebook 13 (CB713-1W) opts for the traditional notebook design for keyboard-heavy tasks.

Acer Debuts First 15-inch Convertible Chromebook

Acer today introduced the Acer Chromebook Spin 15 (CP315-1H), the industry's first convertible Chromebook with a 15.6-inch display. The large touchscreen display pairs with the convertible 360-degree design to deliver a powerful and portable Chromebook with first-rate entertainment and productivity capabilities. In addition, Acer is launching a new Chromebook 15 (CB315-1H/1HT) line that pairs a large 15-inch display and long 14-hour battery life at a budget-friendly price.

"Acer has led the Chromebook market with a wide range of form factors, sizes and designs to meet the needs of our customers, and we're expanding our line with new exciting 15-inch models today," said James Lin, General Manager, Commercial & Detachable Notebooks, IT Products Business at Acer. "Acer's new Chromebooks with large 15-inch Full HD displays are ideal for collaborating on projects for work and school, enjoying streaming media and running the latest apps. Plus, the Acer Chromebook Spin 15 is the company's first to combine a large 15.6-inch display with a convertible design, so customers can use the device in different modes."

GPU Market: Miner Interest Waning, Gamer Interest Increasing - Jon Peddie Research

Jon Peddie Research, the industry's market research firm for the graphics industry, has updated it's quarterly Market Watch report. Overall, the report finds the crypto-currency market is continuing to influence the PC graphics market, though its influence is waning. Market watch found that year-to-year total GPU shipments increased 3.4%, desktop graphics increased 14%, notebooks decreased -3%. GPU shipments decreased -10% from last quarter: AMD decreased -6%, Nvidia decreased -10%, and Intel decreased -11%.

AMD increased its market share again this quarter benefiting from new products for workstations, and crypto-currency mining, Nvidia held steady, and Intel decreased. Over three million add-in boards (AIBs) were sold to cryptocurrency miners worth $776 million in 2017, and an additional 1.7 million were sold in the quarter.

Acer Announces 15-inch Swift 5 Notebook

Acer today announced its new Swift 5 notebook designed for users who want superb portability, solid performance, and a touch of style. With a 15-inch display, the elegant chassis weighs less than 1 kg (2.2 lbs), ideal for people always on the go. The Swift 5 is powered by Windows 10, the latest Intel Core processors and features exceptional performance and battery life that lasts through the workday.

"There's been great feedback on Acer's amazingly light 14-inch Swift 5, and we are now pushing the limits with the 15.6-inch model," said Jerry Hou, General Manager, Consumer Notebooks, IT Products Business, Acer Inc. "We've kept the weight under the 1 kg mark by using ultra-narrow bezels and a marginally larger chassis."

QNAP Unveils the QWA-AC2600 Wireless Adapter

QNAP Systems, Inc. today released the new QWA-AC2600 wireless adapter that can provide increased flexibility in NAS deployment and potential NAS applications. The QWA-AC2600 is a 2.4/5 GHz dual band dual concurrent (DBDC), 4 x 4 multi-user MIMO (MU-MIMO) PCI Express (PCIe) wireless adapter, equipped with two Qualcomm QCA9984 NICs, that supports speeds up to 2533 Mbps.

Joan Hsieh, Product Manager of QNAP, said, "The QWA-AC2600 wireless adapter can turn Ubuntu/Linux PCs or compatible QNAP NAS into wireless access points or base stations, providing more flexibility in usage and more potential applications. Multiple QWA-AC2600 adapters can be installed into a single Ubuntu/Linux PC or QNAP NAS for flexible deployments and performance expansions without the clutter of network cables."

Acer Unleashes New Predator Helios 500 Notebook

Acer unveiled two new Predator Helios gaming notebooks today at the next@acer global press conference in New York. They include the exceptionally powerful Predator Helios 500, featuring up to 8th Gen Intel Core i9+ processors, and the Predator Helios 300 Special Edition that includes upgraded specs from its predecessor and a distinctive white chassis. Both feature VR-Ready performance, advanced thermal technologies, and blazing-fast connectivity.

"We've expanded our Predator Helios gaming notebook line in response to popular demand from gamers seeking extreme performance on the go," said Jerry Kao, President of IT Products Business, Acer Inc. "The Predator Helios 500 and Helios 300 gaming notebooks feature Acer's proprietary thermal technologies and powerful components that, coupled with our award-winning software, deliver unparalleled gaming experiences."

NVIDIA Releases GeForce 397.93 WHQL Drivers

NVIDIA today released GeForce 397.93 WHQL "Game Ready" drivers. The drivers come with optimization for "The Crew" closed beta and "State of Decay 2." SLI profiles are either added or updated for "DRG Initiative," and "Star Wars: Battlefront II." The drivers also introduce CUDA 9.2 support. In addition, the drivers also address a number of bugs.

You now no longer need to close Steam to enable/disable SLI. A "Wolfenstein II: TNC" bug that causes the game to freeze in the Roosevelt area, is fixed. A critical issue is fixed on machines with both "Pascal" and "Kepler" GPUs installed, in which the driver fails to load. Green flickering noticed in "Far Cry 5" when using HDR on non-native screen-resolution, is fixed. Grab the drivers from the link below.
DOWNLOAD: NVIDIA GeForce 397.93 WHQL

The change-log follows.

Philips 436M6VBPAB Monitor Gets DisplayHDR 1000 Certification

MMD, the leading technology company and brand release partner for Philips monitors, is proud to announce its recently launched Philips 436M6VBPAB was confirmed by Video Electronics Standards Association (VESA) as the first display to be officially certified for the DisplayHDR 1000 specification, capable of delivering a profoundly new viewing experience, thanks to striking brightness, deeper contrast and vibrant colours. The new Philips Momentum Line has already been honored with the Computex d & I Award 2017 by IF and Red Dot guru award: Product Design 2017 for its eye-catching and innovative design. It now proudly includes among its achievements the world-renowned VESA DisplayHDR 1000 and UHDA certification, which confirm MMD's commitment to delivering innovative products capable of satisfying even the most demanding segments of the market.

Acer Outs Nitro 50 Series Desktops, Nitro VG0 and RG0 Series Monitors

Acer today unveiled new Nitro Series gaming desktop PCs and monitors that expand its Nitro product family, designed for outstanding casual gameplay at affordable prices. The new Acer Nitro 50 Series desktops and Nitro VG0 and RG0 Series monitors easily handle demanding processing and graphics requirements for both content creation and consumption.
  • Powered by up to 8th Gen Intel Core i7 processors and NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 GPUs, Acer Nitro 50 Series desktops offer performance that exceeds the needs of casual gamers and can easily handle graphic-intensive tasks.
  • Sleek and stylish, the new Acer Nitro VG0 and RG0 series monitors both earned 2018 Red Dot Design Awards.
  • They feature AMD Radeon FreeSync and up to a 1 ms Visual Response Boost to deliver smooth and tear-free gameplay.
Wednesday, May 23rd 2018

Today's Reviews

Cases
Cooling
Graphics Cards
Keyboards
Monitors
PSUs
Speakers
SSD
Cougar GX-F Series 750W

Cougar GX-F Series 750W

We test the strongest member of Cougar's new GX-F line - the model with a capacity of 750 W. The GX-F750 is fully modular, uses a quality fan, and has good overall performance.

Battlefield V Revealed: 1942 Reimagined

EA-DICE released the first reveal trailer of "Battlefield V." The reveal shows a slice of what appears to be actual in-game footage. The game re-imagines events of WWII, after the series' excursion with WWI. It portrays a pitched battle somewhere in Europe with British troops fighting Nazis. There's also the depiction of female soldiers, hinting at the possibility of strong female characters, or even a female protagonist (as opposed to second-fiddle female NPCs in the likes of Battlefield 4 campaign). There are no technical details of the game, but it appears to leverage DirectX 12 API with even more features than Battlefield 1. Battlefield V is slated for release on October 19, 2018. It's open to pre-orders on Origin.
The official trailer follows after the break

NVIDIA GeForce "Volta" Graphics Cards to Feature GDDR6 Memory According to SK Hynix Deal

NVIDIA's upcoming GeForce GTX graphics cards based on the "Volta" architecture, could feature GDDR6 memory, according to a supply deal SK Hynix struck with NVIDIA, resulting in the Korean memory manufacturer's stock price surging by 6 percent. It's not known if GDDR6 will be deployed on all SKUs, or if like GDDR5X, it will be exclusive to a handful high-end SKUs. The latest version of SK Hynix memory catalogue points to an 8 Gb (1 GB) GDDR6 memory chip supporting speeds of up to 14 Gbps at 1.35V, and up to 12 Gbps at 1.25V.

Considering NVIDIA already got GDDR5X to run at 11 Gbps, it could choose the faster option. Memory remains a cause for concern. If 8 Gb is the densest chip from SK Hynix, then the fabled "GV104" (GP104-successor), which could likely feature a 256-bit wide memory interface, will only feature up to 8 GB of memory, precluding the unlikely (and costly) option of piggy-backing chips to achieve 16 GB.

Arctic Intros AMD-friendly Alpine Passive AM4 CPU Heatsink

When Arctic launched the Alpine 12 Passive earlier this week, we wondered why the company couldn't make it AM4-friendly by simply aligning its mount-holes for the AMD socket. Its answer is the new Alpine Passive AM4. This heatsink is slightly bigger than the Alpine 12 Passive, measuring 99 mm x 99 mm x 70 mm (as opposed to 95 mm x 95 mm x 69 mm), and has rectangular mount holes corresponding to the AM4 socket.

The bump at the base appears to be more pronounced, too. If that's not all, it's also heavier, at 557 g, versus 508 g of the Alpine 12 Passive; and yet, its TDP rating remains unchanged - recommended for 35W TDP chips, with 48W being the thermal limit. Your AMD Ryzen choices matching those requirements, for now, are limited to the Ryzen 3 2200GE and Ryzen 5 2400GE, with their TDP rated bang at 35W. The heatsink features a pre-applied slab of MX-5 compound. The heatsink could be priced around $15, and like its Intel-friendly sibling, is backed by a 6-year warranty.

NZXT Releases H200, H400, and H700 in Non-I Format

On the heels of the popular H-series cases, NZXT has announced the release of the H200, H400, and H700 in non-i format, sans the integrated smart device controller. NZXT is making the sleek, H-series design more accessible to the mainstream builder as the non-i versions will come at a reduced cost. The durable, all steel frames will be available in four color combinations, and will still offer the cable management system and simplified water-cooling installation for both AIO and custom loop configurations that were featured in the original i-versions.

ASUS Intros ROG Swift PG27UQ Monitor with G-SYNC HDR

ASUS today introduced the Republic of Gamers (ROG) Swift PG27UQ, a 27-inch monitor with 4K Ultra HD resolution (3840 x 2160 pixels), a staggering 144 Hz refresh-rate, and support for NVIDIA G-Sync HDR. Under the hood is an IPS Quantum-Dot panel with DCI-P3 Color Gamut support, 4 ms response time, 178°/178° viewing angles, and 10-bpc (1.07 billion colors) support. 300-1000 cd/m² maximum brightness, and 20,000:1 static contrast ratio, make for the rest of the panel specifications.

The monitor features (and requires) DisplayPort 1.4 to sustain 4K @ 144 Hz with 10-bpc color. It also features HDMI 2.0. Also featured are GamePlus (OSD goodies), GameVisual (genre-specific display presets), a and 2-port USB 3.0 hub. The stand and the back-side of the display features RGB LED elements that can be controlled by Aura Sync RGB. The company didn't reveal pricing.

AMD Releases Radeon Software Adrenalin 18.5.1 WHQL Drivers

AMD today released Radeon Software Adrenalin 18.5.1 WHQL drivers. These are the first WHQL-certified drivers from the company for Windows 10 April 2018 Update, complying with WDDM 2.4, and support not just AMD Radeon discrete GPUs, but also Ryzen "Raven Ridge" APUs with integrated Radeon Vega graphics. The drivers support Microsoft PlayReady 3.0 DRM on "Polaris" GPUs.

Besides these features, Radeon Software Adrenalin 18.5.1 WHQL comes with optimization for "Ancestors Legacy," with up to 6 percent higher frame-rates at 1080p, measured with an RX Vega 56, and up to 13 percent higher frame rates on an RX 580 (8 GB) at 1080p. The update fixes HBCC not resetting to default value when "Restore Factory Defaults" option is used in Radeon Settings. It also addresses ReLive streaming to Facebook intermittently failing; Netflix users experiencing display corruption on "Polaris" multi-GPU systems, abnormally high game load times in "Destiny 2," and fixes for screen tearing observed on FreeSync displays with performance metrics enabled.
DOWNLOAD: AMD Radeon Software Adrenalin 18.5.1 WHQL

The change-log follows.

Phanteks Announces the New Eclipse P350X Case

Phanteks is introducing a new compact case to the Eclipse lineup, the P350X. The P350X brings new design with an amazingly affordable price. Clean interior design makes installation easy while the integrated Digital RGB lines on the exterior accentuates the case. The P350X offers high airflow capability, E-ATX motherboard clearance, liquid cooling support, and high-end configurations within the compact design. The case features integrated Digital RGB lighting profiles that allows you to personalize to your style. The P350X offers more capabilities than other midtowers without compromising the price. Phanteks Eclipse P350X will be available in two color options: Black and Black/White.

Samsung to Power Future High-Performance Computing and Connected Devices

Samsung Electronics, a world leader in advanced semiconductor technology solutions, today unveiled a series of new silicon innovations at the heart of future high-performance computing and connected devices. With comprehensive process technology roadmap updates down to 3-nanometer (nm) at the annual 'Samsung Foundry Forum (SFF) 2018 USA', Samsung Foundry is focused on providing customers with the tools necessary to design and manufacture powerful, yet energy-efficient system-on-chips (SoC) for a wide range of applications.

"The trend toward a smarter, connected world has the industry demanding more from silicon providers," said Charlie Bae, executive vice president and head of the Foundry Sales & Marketing Team at Samsung Electronics. "To meet that demand, Samsung Foundry is powering innovation at the silicon level that will ultimately give people access to data, analysis, and insight in new and previously unthought-of ways to make human lives better. It is imperative for us to accomplish the first-time silicon success for our customers' next-generation chip designs."

Plantronics Announces the BackBeat GO 600 Wireless Headphones

Plantronics, an audio pioneer and communications technology leader, today announced its Plantronics BackBeat GO 600 Series: wireless, over-the-ear immersive headphones featuring unique capabilities for people who put music first, at an economical price point.

To ensure music lovers can create the listening experience they prefer, BackBeat GO 600 comes equipped with dual equalization (EQ) modes, to allow the listener to easily alternate between 'Bass Boost' and 'Balanced' EQ. Balanced EQ mode is Plantronics' signature sound, which is tuned to be the most accurate possible representation of the source audio across all genres of music. Listeners can move between modes with a single push of a button - a feature not typically found on headphones in this price range. BackBeat GO 600 is slim and lightweight with an over-ear design and soft memory foam ear cushions that provide the ideal balance of comfort and isolation resulting in deep, rich sound with minimal distraction.

GIGABYTE Launches New S451-3R0 Storage Server

GIGABYTE has released a compelling new choice in storage servers with a unique combination of performance, capacity and flexibility: the S451-3R0. Powered by dual Intel Xeon Scalable processors and with a capacity of 36 x 3.5" + 2 x 2.5" SSD / HDD, the S451-3R0 provides the best balance of throughput and density, making it extremely suitable for block or object storage, streaming media and big data.

Dual Intel Xeon Scalable Processors
The S451-3R0 features dual Intel Xeon Scalable processors, with up to 28 cores per CPU, making it extremely suitable for storage applications where high performance or heavy workloads are required. Each CPU socket supports the highest CPU thermal design power requirement of 205W, as well as Intel's Omni-Path connection technology to eliminate CPU to network latency. Six memory channels per CPU with two DIMM slots per channel are supported for DDR4 memory. Maximum memory capacity will depend on your CPU model with a maximum of 1.5TB per CPU.

ASUSTOR Releases the All New AS1002T v2 and AS1004T v2 NAS

ASUSTOR Inc. today has announced two new NAS devices will be released; the AS1002T v2 and AS1004T v2. These new models are upgraded versions of the AS1002T and AS1004T and uses an upgraded CPU now at 1.6GHz, providing better read and write performance than the previous generation. In addition, the hard disk controller has been redesigned to allow a hard drive capacity of up to 12TB.

ASUSTOR product manager Johnny Chen said: "Compared to the previous generation, the write performance of the AS10 v2 series has increased by more than 20%, providing home users with a smoother and faster storage experience. In addition, ASUSTOR offers a number of energy-saving designs in protect the environment and save money. The NAS also can hibernate all day almost without consuming power, making it suitable for users who need a NAS for the long-term to create their own dedicated backup solution."

ADATA Unveils the UV240 USB Flash Drive

ADATA today launched the UV240 USB Flash drive, adding to its extensive range of portable storage devices. The UV240 works in USB 2.0 and is offered in capacities up to 64 GB. It features a convenient flip-cap capless design alongside a quick-slide mechanism for maximum usability.

ADATA remains committed to its USB Flash drive global leadership role and will continue releasing new models as market needs evolve. ADATA designers have long preferred USB Flash drives with no cap, as with such a design there is less clutter and fewer parts to potentially misplace. The UV240 utilizes a convenient flip-cap design, which does not only prevent you from misplacing the cap, it also allows it to be easily opened with the flick of a thumb. This intuitive design helps make the UV240 extremely satisfying to use on the go.

On the New Subscription Age, EA Acquires Game Streaming Service Gamefly

Seems like almost every industry is looking towards transitioning to a subscription model for its goods and services. Netflix may be the most iconic one such company, having acquired millions of subscribers that allow it to have a relatively stable, monthly influx of liquidity (yes, we can also count World of Warcraft on such a scenario). However, many other industries have taken to the same approach (think lootcrates, all kinds of crates, subscription services for online features, etc).

That said, few industries can take the same amount of data from their subscribers such as these media-consumption based ones, where an Internet connection is required, and user data - be it views or, the most interesting metric, engagement rates - are king in determining exactly what the user base expects and craves more of. Netflix's algorithms and view history have been responsible for the selection of its future investments. The base idea for the movie Bright, for example, was developed based on a mash-up of genres Netflix's algorithms indicated as the more captivating to the user base - and Netflix's sci-fi portfolio, for instance, has recently grown towards becoming the single biggest investment from the company, as users seem to gobble-up such content (I'm dully guilty as charged for that one sin as well, I have to admit).

COLORFUL Adds Two CN600S Solid-State Drives to Their Storage Offerings

COLORFUL Technology Company Limited, professional manufacturer of graphics cards, motherboards and high-performance storage solutions is proud to announce the addition of two new options for its CN600S line of solid-state drives. COLORFUL is adding the CN600S 240GB and CN600S 480GB drives featuring Intel 64-layer 3D NAND. Those looking for a cost-effective high-performance, high-capacity storage solution for low-profile applications including notebooks and other M.2 capable devices. The improved speed and capacity of the COLORFUL CN600S allows it to be used in a wider range of applications including gaming, professional use or HTPC.

The COLORUL CN600S is equipped with the SMI 2263XT controller, features a M.2 2280 design standard and is rated for transfer speeds up to 2 GB/s reads and 1.5 GB/s write performance. The SMI 2263XT uses the PCIe Gen3 x4 interface and can deliver 4x faster performance than SATA3 for reading, accessing and opening applications and games. The COLORFUL CN600 M.2 PCIe SSD is focused in offering the most compelling cost-benefit ratio in the market.
Tuesday, May 22nd 2018

Today's Reviews

Cases
Cooling
Graphics Cards
Memory
Motherboards
PSUs
Storage
ASRock Radeon RX 580 Phantom Gaming X 8 GB

ASRock Radeon RX 580 Phantom Gaming X 8 GB

ASRock is the first new player in the GPU market for a long time. We review their AMD-based RX 580 Phantom Gaming X, which is an overclocked custom-design variant. ASRock has optimized their card for low-cost, which matters a lot today due to prices being inflated by GPU mining.
NZXT H500i

NZXT H500i

The NZXT H500 and H500i present a smaller version of the H700 chassis, but employ the same steel construction. On top of that, the "i" variant features a built-in NZXT CAM module. With their retail-grade fans and well-executed features, the H500 cases are surprisingly affordable and have the potential to be favorites for both end users and system integrators.

NZXT Continues to Redefine the Modern PC Case with the H500 and H500i

NZXT, a leading provider of desktop components for PC gamers, today announces its all-new H500 and H500i, the latest addition to its highly acclaimed H Series PC cases. With the new H500 and H500i compact mid-tower models, NZXT continues its award-winning design language across even more form factors, so users do not have to compromise when building their perfect gaming PC.

Available in two models, the H500 and the CAM-powered H500i, each with a stunning tempered glass windowed chassis, provide an elegant and affordable solution to builders of all skill levels. Modern features include a simplified water cooling installation bracket, intuitive cable routing options, and quick-release SSD trays for building beautiful gaming PCs quickly and easily. The H500i also features the CAM-powered Smart Device, providing RGB lighting and digital fan control, and includes an integrated vertical GPU mounting bracket.

3D Headphone Startup Shut Its Doors After Raising $3.2 Million in Crowdfunding

In the business world, companies fail all the time, and startups are no exception either. Ossic is the latest startup to make the headlines after announcing over the weekend that the company is shutting its door. The audio startup had successfully raised $3.2 million through Indiegogo and Kickstarter campaigns to produce their high-end "3D sound" Ossic X headphones. The headphones, which costed between $199 to $299, incorporated special head-tracking technology to deliver surround sound in VR environments. Apparently, they were also capable of determining the shape of the user's ears and customize the sound profile to match the user.

Ossic had received over 22,000 pre-orders over the company's life. Unfortunately, the company only managed to produce 250 pairs of their Ossic X headphones and delivered around a dozen of them to Kickstarters. As the well has run dry, Ossic has no other alternative but to cease operations. Kickstarter backers are extremely angry - and with right as they will not receive their headphones or refunds. A Facebook group with over 2,500 members threaten to pursue a class action lawsuit against the company.

Say Hello to the Next Generation of Arduino Boards, Introducing FPGA Solutions

We're excited to kick off Maker Faire Bay Area by expanding our IoT lineup with two new boards: the MKR Vidor 4000 and the Uno WiFi Rev 2.

The MKR Vidor 4000 is the first-ever Arduino based on an FPGA chip, equipped with a SAM D21 microcontroller, a u-blox Nina W102 WiFi module, and an ECC508 crypto chip for secure connection to local networks and the Internet. MKR Vidor 4000 is the latest addition to the MKR family, designed for a wide range of IoT applications, with its distinctive form factor and substantial computational power for high performance. The board will be coupled with an innovative development environment, which aims to democratize and radically simplify access to the world of FPGAs.

Wi-Fi CERTIFIED EasyMesh Delivers Intelligent Wi-Fi Networks

Wi-Fi Alliance introduces Wi-Fi CERTIFIED EasyMesh , bringing efficient, self-organizing networks that deliver a broad footprint of uniform Wi-Fi service. Built on the promise of Wi-Fi CERTIFIED , Wi-Fi EasyMesh delivers a standards-based approach to deploying adaptable networks comprised of multiple access points from different vendors, extending uniform Wi-Fi coverage and enhancing performance throughout a larger service area than is possible with a single access point. Wi-Fi EasyMesh allows users and service providers to select interoperable devices across different brands to ensure fast, wide, and reliable Wi-Fi coverage.

Wi-Fi EasyMesh technology coordinates multiple access points into a unified and intelligent Wi-Fi network that autonomously aids all areas of the home to have complete Wi-Fi coverage. Access points organize themselves and establish high-performance Wi-Fi network connectivity with minimal effort required by the user. After the initial simple setup, Wi-Fi EasyMesh monitors network conditions and self-adapts as needed. Wi-Fi EasyMesh guides smartphones, tablets, and other user devices to the optimal access point, enabling a seamless experience, even when moving throughout the home. Wi-Fi EasyMesh networks accommodate a greater selection of devices across brands and are also extensible, making it easy for users to introduce new Wi-Fi EasyMesh access points into their network. Wi-Fi EasyMesh access points today will maintain interoperability with future Wi-Fi EasyMesh networks, providing an enhanced user experience for years to come.

The Saga Continues: Intel Addresses New Research for Side-Channel Variant 4 Attacks

Following Google Project Zero's (GPZ) disclosure of speculative execution-based side-channel analysis methods in January, Intel has continued working with researchers across the industry to understand whether similar methods could be used in other areas. We know that new categories of security exploits often follow a predictable lifecycle, which can include new derivatives of the original exploit.

Expecting that this category of side-channel exploits would be no different, one of the steps we took earlier this year was expanding our bug bounty program to support and accelerate the identification of new methods. The response to that program has been encouraging, and we are thankful for the continued partnership we have with the research community. As part of this ongoing work, today Intel and other industry partners are providing details and mitigation information for a new derivative of the original vulnerabilities impacting us and other chipmakers. This new derivative is called Variant 4, and it's being disclosed jointly by GPZ and Microsoft's Security Response Center (MSRC).

AMD and Fnatic Ink Landmark Deal to Extend and Expand eSports Partnership

AMD a leading manufacturer of high-performance computing, graphics and visualization technologies, and Fnatic, one of the world's top esports organizations, have announced a landmark esports partnership agreement that further expands AMD's engagement in competitive gaming. AMD will be Fnatic's exclusive hardware partner across four competitive gaming hardware categories: motherboards, GPUs, CPUs and laptops. In this third year of collaboration, the sponsorship will include AMD's top-tier brands, Ryzen and Radeon RX.

AMD Ryzen processors are designed for impeccable performance for the most ambitious gamers. Radeon RX Vega Graphics are for extreme gamers looking to run their games at the highest resolutions, highest framerates, and maximum settings. Radeon RX 500 series graphics cards are designed to play games at a smooth 1080p and beyond.

Razer Releases Revised Core X Enclosure for eGPU Solutions

Razer, the leading global lifestyle brand for gamers, today announced the Razer Core X, a Thunderbolt 3 external graphics enclosure for gaming-grade performance at a new value price. The Razer Core series of external graphics enclosures including the Core V2 and Core X are now compatible with Mac laptops with Thunderbolt 3.

Razer Core X
The new Core X transforms integrated graphics laptops like the Razer Blade Stealth into desktop-class gaming machines by adding an external graphics card. Gamers can also future-proof their gaming laptops or unlock VR-Ready experiences by boosting the performance beyond the current laptop's limits.

QNAP Introduces New QM2 PCIe Cards to Enhance NAS Performance

QNAP Systems, Inc. has extended the lineup of QM2 PCIe expansion cards with new models that support up to four M.2 SSDs slots on a single card. QM2 cards support either M.2 SATA SSDs or M.2 PCIe NVMe SSDs to enable SSD caching for boosted IOPS performance or to form an auto-tiering volume for optimal storage performance. QM2 cards also allow QNAP NAS users to maximize both storage capacity and performance by installing M.2 SSDs without occupying any 3.5-inch drive bays.

"When faced with a performance bottleneck, the random read/write speed of the hard drives in a NAS is one of the decisive performance factors," said Joan Hsieh, Product Manager of QNAP, continuing "QM2 cards can greatly boost the performance of QNAP NAS with PCIe slots, while the flexible configuration of SSD caching and I/O-aware Qtier all helps multiply NAS performance."

New Razer Blade is the World's Smallest 15.6-inch Gaming Laptop

Razer , the leading global lifestyle brand for gamers, today announced its all-new Razer Blade 15.6-inch gaming laptop featuring Intel's latest processor. The new Razer Blade is the world's smallest gaming laptop in its class, boasting more display area and performance features. The available 144 Hz refresh rate 15.6" Full HD (1920 x 1080) display of the new Razer Blade enhances gaming and entertainment viewing with full-frame fluid motion graphics and 100% sRGB color. Users can also step up to 4K (3840 x 2160) resolution with touch functionality and 100% Adobe RGB color support. Each laptop display is individually custom calibrated in production for amazing color accuracy out-of-the-box. Best-in-class 4.9 mm thin bezels flank the display, while retaining the ideal web camera placement at the top of the screen.

The world's smallest 15.6-inch gaming laptop measures as little as 0.66-inches thin and with a minimal footprint for ultimate mobility. The refined chassis is individually CNC milled from a single aluminum block to provide a sturdy yet compact design, and features a scratch resistant anodized black finish. Managing heat without sacrificing performance in such a small form factor is no easy task, but Razer innovated by utilizing vapor chamber technology for the cooling solution instead of the traditional heat pipes found in most gaming laptops. Beyond cooling the CPU and GPU, the vacuum-sealed vaporized liquid helps dissipate the heat generated from other components within the laptop.
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