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Gigabyte Teases with Another G1-Killer X58 Motherboard Poster

As reported last month, Gigabyte has been working on a premium motherboard brand targeted at high-end gaming PCs, rivaling the Republic of Gamers (ROG) series from ASUS and Big Bang/XPower from MSI. One of the first products in this lineup is called "G1-Killer", and as it turns out is a socket LGA1366 motherboard based on the Intel X58 chipset. Gigabyte continues to tease us with new "cutout" pictures of the upcoming product. The latest poster shows a portion of the motherboard revealing the heatsink over the southbridge area, which is shaped like a 5.56 magazine, with even a round sticking out. One can also faintly see the six memory slots, four PCI-Express x16 slots, eight SATA ports (probably six 3 Gb/s and two 6 Gb/s). Said to be unveiled at CES 2011, the G1-Killer range is expected to start at US $299.

New JEDEC UFS Standard Offers Promise of Ultra-Fast Device Performance

JEDEC Solid State Technology Association, the global leader in the development of standards for the microelectronics industry, today announced that it is moving towards publication of the next-generation flash memory standard, Universal Flash Storage (UFS). Major progress achieved at recent JEDEC committee meetings provides visibility on the anticipated UFS interface, which has been designed to be the most advanced specification for flash memory-based storage in mobile devices such as smart phones and tablet computers. Developed to help address the ever-increasing demand for improved device performance, UFS has been designed to initially enable data throughput of 300 megabytes per second (MB/s), and support command queuing features to raise the random read/write speeds. The standard will be finalized for public use within the next three months.

An explosion of data-intensive applications for mobile devices is driving the need for versatile storage solutions, and currently available flash storage options might not have the span to match overall system performance planned for future generation platforms. UFS will provide a dramatic change in architecture to increase performance while maintaining the benefits of low power consumption offered by existing solutions such as e•MMC.

Fatal1ty-branded LGA1155 Motherboards in the Making

Leading professional gamer Fatal1ty has branded all kinds of PC hardware, including peripherals, headsets, sound cards, graphics cards, and even motherboards made by erstwhile Abit. Motherboards with the Fatal1ty branding are making a comeback, this time under the charge of ASUS. It is reported that a new manufacturer is designing some socket LGA1155 motherboards based on the Intel P67 chipset using the Fatal1ty branding. The company will show off its latest motherboards at CES 2011, which will also be the time when Intel unveils its 2011 Core processor family. Socket LGA1155 processors, coupled with Intel P67 platform is the key segment that targets gamers.

UPDATE: The board in question is made by ASRock, it's called Fatal1ty P67. It features a high-end VRM, 3-way NVIDIA SLI/CrossFire capability, a high-grade 16-phase digital CPU VRM, a unique USB port that automatically steps up polling rate of gaming mice, THX audio, four SATA 6 Gb/s, and two USB 3.0 ports. Fatal1ty detailed the board himself, in the TweakTown article linked below.

Intel 2011 Core Series Desktop Processor Roadmap Surfaces

Having turned its most profitable quarter, Intel is banking on its vast lineup of the 2010 Core processors, which will be updated towards the end of the year. By 2011, Intel will have a new series of second generation Core i7, Core i5, and Core i3 processors, based on a brand new architecture, and built for new sockets and chipsets. A roadmap of the same reached sections of the European media, which shows the company to be almost ready with a full-fledged lineup of desktop processors covering most price-points, by 2011.

The new architecture on which these processors are based is referred to by Intel as "Sandy Bridge", key features of which include the inclusion of the new Advanced Vector Extensions (AVX), a more advanced instruction set than SSE, to accelerate complex applications. AVX aside, there's Turbo Boost technology 2.0 that comes with even smarter algorithms to automatically manage clock speeds of individual processor cores to maximize performance within the processor's TDP envelope, AES-NI, which is a more manageable hardware data encryption instruction set, and processors with integrated graphics (IGP) controllers will have even faster ones, because Intel will be relocating the IGP and memory controller to the same die as the processor cores, this IGP is referred to as Intel "GT2" graphics.

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 480 Reference Design Card Final Design Pictured

Many would be familiar with these pictures of a generic graphics card based on NVIDIA's GF100 GPU which was spotted at this year's CES. A company slide sourced by DonanimHaber reveals the final iteration of NVIDIA's reference design GeForce GTX 480 graphics accelerator, and what it looks like from the outside. A set of slightly more recent pictures showed its cooling assembly from inside. The protruding heat pipes intrigued us as they were inconsistent with the cooling assembly on the card NVIDIA showed off at CES, which we then believed to be the top-end GTX 480 part. The company slide confirms what the cooling assembly looks like when it's all put together.

The cooler is highly ventilated, with vents all over the cooler's shroud. There are vents on the top, on the sides, apart from the usual obverse fan air intake. To increase its intake, the PCB is further cut to help draw air from the reverse-side of the PCB. The cooler's four large (we reckon 8 mm thick) heat pipes protrude about a centimeter out of the card's periphery, increasing its height by that much. The cooler itself respects the 2-slot thickness limit which is most conventional. A table in the slide also confirms some details we already know: the card has 1536 MB of GDDR5 memory across a 384-bit wide interface. It has a TDP of under 300W, which a recent report reveals to be a hairbreadth under 300W, at 296W. Power is drawn in from an 8-pin and a 6-pin PCI-E power connector. The card is 10.5 inches long, the same length as its reference-design GeForce GTX 280. The card supports 3-way SLI. It will be unveiled on the 26th of March.

OCZ Portable USB 3.0 Storage Device Gets Named

OCZ Technology has been working on a storage solution that takes advantage of the USB 3.0 SuperSpeed interface for a while. It's just got a little closer to seeing the light of the day at CeBIT. The OCZ Enyo is a device that's roughly the size of a compact portable HDD that you can carry in your pocket, except that it's a flash-based device, and uses USB 3.0. The Enyo offers data storage in three capacities (variants): 64 GB, 128 GB, and 256 GB. It measures 56 x 120 x 10 mm, and relies on the USB 3.0 interface for power and connectivity. Being a flash-based solid state storage device, it is expected to have high transfer speeds, and inherently, the incentive of low access times and higher durability since it lacks moving parts. Back in January, on the occasion of CES, in a preview by LegitReviews, working prototypes the device was found to offer read-write speeds of 188.2 MB/s (read) and 130 MB/s (write). CAD drawings of the Enyo with its logo emerged.

Thermaltake Input Devices, New Power Supplies and Cases

We also got a chance to drop by the Thermaltake suite at CES. They have quite a few new items on display. Let us start with the input devices. The Challenger and Challenger Pro gaming keyboards come with onboard memory, one or two USB 2.0 ports respectively and a small cooling fan, which clips onto the top edge of the part. They will also offer a gaming mouse called "Black" with up to 4,000 DPI in combination with a weight system and a pair of headsets (not pictured).

Pinetrail Meets Discrete Graphics at Zotac

Zotac is trying out a new nettop design which makes use of discrete NVIDIA GT218 graphics processor with the second generation Atom platform (codenamed Pinetrail). By design, the Intel NM10 chipset which drives the new processor does not give out a PCI-Express x16 link, which leaves a lot to be learned about how Zotac goes about putting its ideas in motion. The company has displayed a non-functional prototype at this year's CES. The discrete graphics will give the nettop sufficient power to display 1080p graphics (which the platform can't, without an external HD video decoder). Zotac may place this as a successor to its MAG series nettops.

Verbatim MyMedia Server shown at CES

We posted their press release here, but have now managed to get a few more infos for you. The unit will only ship in silver, comes with a 3.5" SATA hard drive and sports multiple USB connectors in the back along with a network jack. It has the same foot print as an AppleTV, but is slightly taller, while the casing seems to be made of aluminum. Besides that, we snapped an image of an external hard drive with an LCD screen. While this may not be anything out of the ordinary, the technology used in the display allows it to function just like eInk. It does not require any power to change the state of the screen, so that you will always know how much free space is available, even when it is not connected.

MSI Demos Three New Industry-First Concept PCs at CES

MSI, a leading manufacturer of computer components and systems, has unveiled three new concept products at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) that the company believes will redefine the way consumers will interact with digital information in their homes.:

1. 3D All-in-One PC - Continuing to lead the industry in All-in-One product features, MSI has developed the world's first 3D All-in-One PC. Wearing comfortable wireless 3D glasses, users can have the ultimate life-like gaming experience and 3D HD movie experience from the comfort of home with system's stunning 24-inch display.

EVGA Dual LGA-1366 Motherboard Pictured with Chipset Cooling

EVGA showed of its almost-ready dual LGA-1366 high-end workstation motherboard at the ongoing CES event. The motherboard pictured sports a component cooling covering all its vital areas except for one of the CPUs' VRM areas, it gives a fair idea about what the final product could look like. The board itself was detailed earlier.

The chipset cooler design borrows heavily from single-slot graphics cards. A monolithic baseplate covers the northbridge Intel 5500(?), ICH10-class southbridge, and the two NVIDIA BR-03 bridge chips. The heatsink becomes taller over one of the CPU sockets' VRM area. Air is drawn in from the round intake, and pushed out near the expansion slots. the gaps between the expansion slots will do their part in directing the hot air away.

MSI Shows off R5870 Lightning and R5850 Cyclone

MSI is ready with two new custom-design graphics cards based on the ATI Radeon HD 5800 graphics processors: the R5870 Lightning and R5850 Cyclone. The R5870 Lightning, as expected features a Twin-Frozr II dual-fan VGA cooler designed by MSI on a custom-designed PCB which makes some high-grade components, specifically in the card's VRM area (12-phase PWM, dual 8-pin PCI-E power input), to make it fare better at overclocking. Other notable features include v-check points and 1 GB of GDDR5 memory across the GPU's 256-bit wide memory interface. Connectivity cluster resembles that of the AMD reference design, retaining Eyefinity technology support. The R5850 Cyclone, on the other hand, uses the familiar Cyclone GPU cooler MSI used in the past on some Radeon HD 4800 series graphics cards. MSI designed its own PCB here too, but with a few smart cost-cuttings, although the quality of the components used isn't affected. The two will be out in this quarter.

ASUS Rampage III Extreme Smiles for the Camera

One of ASUS' premier offers for this year's Consumer Electronics Show (CES) event is a new high-end socket LGA-1366 motherboard, the Republic of Gamers (ROG) Rampage III Extreme. The board succeeds the Rampage II Extreme which launched over an year ago along with Intel's then new Core i7 series processors. The new model based on the Intel X58 Express + ICH10R chipset, comes with four well spaced out PCI-Express 2.0 x16 slots, a new set of overclocking enhancements such as the ROG connect which lets you control the motherboard's overclocking from any Bluetooth and Java enabled mobile phone, SATA 6 Gb/s and USB 3.0 connectivity using ASUS' innovative PCI-Express 2.0 bridge implementation, and a more powerful CPU VRM to keep the board stable with bleeding-edge settings.

The board features an enhanced CPU VRM which is now powered by two 8-pin ATX connectors apart from two 4-pin Molex connectors. Some of these could be redundant and needed only for electrical stability. The CPU and memory power circuitry makes use of super-ML capacitors for cleaner power delivery. Voltage readouts are located next to the DIMM slots for accessibility. The motherboard makes use of slimmer component heatsinks that look to be made of the ceramic composite which the TUF Sabertooth P55 motherboard uses.

Samsung Launches New Slim External DVD Writer for Laptop and Netbook Market

Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd., a worldwide leader in digital consumer electronics and information technology, announced today it will display a prototype of its new slim external DVD writer, the SE-S084D optical disk drive (ODD) at the Treasure Island Hotel in a private product display room during CES 2010. Featuring a more compact footprint and lighter weight than competitive offerings, the new DVD writer also delivers high-performance with a USB power source to eliminate electrical outlet requirements.

"Because netbooks are designed for ultra mobility, they aren't typically equipped with optical disc drives, which can potentially make booting from a CD or playing a DVD movie a problem," said John Suh, director of OMS sales and marketing, Samsung Semiconductor, Inc. "But with the lightweight, portable SE-S084D Optical Disc Drive, you have the perfect on-the-go, stand-alone. And thanks to its USB BUS power source, you can write at maximum speed with no outlet in sight."

MSI Introduces Notebooks Based on Newest Members of Intel Core Family Processors

MSI G-Series and C-Series of laptop computers have reached a new apex in their evolution. The first NBs equipped with Intel's new generation Calpella platform to be shown at CES 2010, both series come with Intel's most advanced family of New Core processors and Microsoft's Windows 7 operating system. They also come with cinema-class screens coupled with top-end Surround Sound for maximum audiovisual enjoyment.

CoolIT Announces Four New Innovations with Advanced Liquid Cooling

CoolIT Systems, leaders in advanced liquid cooling technology announced today 4 new products set to revolutionize the computer cooling industry yet again. Following the huge success of the CoolIT Domino that hit the market by storm in 2009, CoolIT have wowed visitors at this year's Consumer Electronics Show, Las Vegas, Nevada with even more innovative, affordable and leading-performance advanced liquid cooling products.

"Liquid cooling is the future" remarked Geoff Lyon, CEO, CoolIT Systems. "The advantages of CoolIT's liquid solutions far outweigh any air-based or competitive liquid cooling product, and at CES this year, we're here to prove that".

CoolIT ECO A.L.C
First up is the CoolIT ECO A.L.C CPU cooler which breaks a world record for the ultimate price/performance cooling benchmark.

AMD Unveils World’s First DirectX 11 Compliant Mobile Graphics

AMD today introduced its lineup of next-generation DirectX 11-capable ATI Mobility Radeon Premium graphics, including ATI Mobility Radeon HD 5870 graphics, the highest performance graphics for notebooks in the world.1 The entire family of DirectX 11-capable graphics consists of ATI Mobility Radeon HD 5800, ATI Mobility Radeon HD 5700, ATI Mobility Radeon HD 5600 and ATI Mobility Radeon HD 5400 series graphics. This top-to-bottom family of Direct 11-capable notebook graphics introduces compelling new features including ATI Eyefinity multi-display technology, bringing powerful visual gaming and computing innovation to the notebook PC. Notebooks featuring the new graphics technology are previewed at the 2010 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in the VISION Experience Center, located in the Grand Lobby (GL-8 and GL-10) of the Las Vegas Convention Center.

"Six months ago AMD claimed the title of undisputed technology leader in desktop graphics, and now we also offer powerful mobile graphics processors for notebooks to go with our market leadership in that segment," said Rick Bergman, senior vice president and general manager, Products Group, AMD. "Once again, AMD changes the game both in terms of performance and experience. AMD innovations now give notebook users full DirectX 11 support, eye-opening ATI Eyefinity technology, superb HD multimedia capabilities, and ATI Stream technology designed to help optimize Windows 7 notebook performance."

LaCie Reveals New Server Technology For Small Businesses with Windows Home Server

LaCie demonstrates a new network storage server based on the Microsoft Windows Home Server platform. The product will be shown for the first time at the CES. This server leverages the success of LaCie's award winning 5big Network, which features five user-replaceable drives, Gigabit Ethernet, and data protection support for data integrity. The technology demonstration shows that by combining Microsoft and LaCie technologies on a single platform, small business users can enjoy a seamless interface to automatically back up computers to a single server. The server secures their backup both locally and remotely by automatically copying their critical data to the cloud, using LaCie's Wuala technology.

"LaCie's network server offers an exciting design and provides plenty of storage options with terabytes of capacity and the ability to back up data from local computers and to cloud-based services," said Leslie McGuire, Director of Windows Server Marketing at Microsoft. "We're pleased to have LaCie join us as a Windows Home Server partner."

OCZ Technology to Showcase Cutting-Edge SSDs and other New Products at CES 2010

OCZ Technology Group, Inc., a worldwide leader in innovative, ultra-high performance and high-reliability memory and flash-based storage as an alternative to hard disk drives, plans to unveil an array of next-generation solid state drives (SSDs) along with other premium hardware at the 2010 International Consumer Electronics Show to be held January 7-10, 2010, in Las Vegas, Nevada. With its finger on the pulse of emerging and booming markets, OCZ's impending line of SSDs is designed to optimize entire businesses as well as the computing experiences of everyday consumers.

"For this year's Consumer Electronics Show, OCZ continues to build on its lineup of SSD solutions designed for enterprise-class applications," commented Ryan Petersen, CEO of OCZ Technology Group. "We are uniquely positioned as the leading developer of SSDs, which we believe will ultimately replace traditional hard drives. In addition to our robust lineup of 2.5-inch solid state drives, we will be launching new drives at CES with interfaces that include SAS and PCI-E. These interfaces make it easier than ever for enterprise clients to replace expensive-to-maintain, traditional storage media with a higher-performing and more reliable solution."

EVGA Dual LGA-1366 Motherboard Pictured

The recently surfaced high-end dual socket LGA-1366 motherboard is pictured in full, without its cooling assembly. The picture reveals quite a bit about EVGA's new monstrosity. To begin with, the motherboard is neither ATX, nor EATX in the truest sense. Like the recently announced X58 Classified 4-way SLI which was based on the "XL-ATX" form-factor, this motherboard seems to be 13.58 inches (344.93 mm) long, and about as wide as EATX (330 mm, 13 inches), or maybe a little more.

Each LGA-1366 socket is wired to six DDR3 DIMM slots for triple-channel memory, and is powered by an 8-phase digital-PWM circuit. Each socket further has a 3-phase power circuit for its DIMM slots. The CPU VRM for each socket takes input from an 8-pin ATX, and what appears to be a 6-pin +12V (PCI-E?) connector. The motherboard further takes power from a 6-pin PCI-E power connector apart from the usual 24-pin ATX power connector. Some of these inputs may be redundant and needed only for additional electrical stability to support competitive overclocking.

VIA Group Launches World's First USB 3.0 Hub Controller

VIA Technologies, Inc., a leading innovator of power efficient x86 processor platforms, today unveiled the VIA VL810 SuperSpeed Hub Controller, the industry's first integrated single chip solution that supports the higher transfer rates of the new USB 3.0 specification.

USB 3.0 (also known as SuperSpeed USB) allows for a maximum data transfer rate of up to 5Gbps, or ten times the throughput available to USB 2.0 based devices. Other enhancements provide for improved interaction between device and host controller, including important advancements in power management.

EVGA Prepares High-end Dual-LGA1366 Motherboard

EVGA is keeping up its streak of releasing high-end motherboards for processors based on the new Intel Nehalem architecture, with a new dual-socket monstrosity. Slated for CES 2010, not much about this high-end workstation motherboard has been revealed beyond the picture below. From the looks of it, probably EVGA is making a high-end, overclocker-friendly dual LGA-1366 motherboard based on the Intel 5500 "Tylersburg" chipset with the usual ICH10R southbridge. Existing LGA-1366 processors that support dual-socket operation which includes Xeon 5500 series may work on it. Probably, a future high-end Intel Core family CPU is released that is capable of dual-socket setups, too. The picture reveals two LGA-1366 sockets, each powered by an 8-phase digital PWM circuit. Each socket is wired to six DDR3 DIMM slots supporting triple-channel memory for that socket. More this CES.

Thermaltake Ready with Frio CPU Cooler

Thermaltake seems to have finished development of its new high-end CPU cooler, the Thermaltake Frio. Designs of this cooler surfaced as early as in June this year, originally slating it for Computex 2009. After some development delay, it has finally taken shape with the disctinct black+red color scheme the company's Level 10 case comes with. The design consists of a CPU contact block from which five seemingly 8 mm heatpipes arise, conveying heat to a dense aluminum fin array which has largely rectangular fins. The array is cooled a 120 mm fan. There is provision to install one on either sides, that rotates at speeds between 1200 - 2500 rpm. The cooler supports all current CPU sockets, including LGA-1366, LGA-1156, LGA-775, AM3/AM2+. The cooler is now slated for CES 2010.

MSI Unveils New Refined Wind U Series Netbooks

The 2010 International Consumer Electronics Show (CES) officially kicks off on January 7 in Las Vegas! MSI's formidable achievements in R&D and design will be out in force. In addition to ultra-thin and stylish designs, the much talked about and yet to be released 2010 iF Product Design Award winning netbook, the Wind U160, will be unveiled at CES.

Embodying MSI's flawless and exquisite craftsmanship, the Wind U Series notebooks have not only won countless awards, they've also repeatedly achieved success in the market, with over one million in worldwide sales to date. MSI continues to innovate and uphold its concept of insisting on the best by infusing these concepts into the impressive MSI Wind U Series. Many of these high-quality, exquisite notebook models will be on display at CES, including the Wind12 U200, the U230, the all-new U135, and the iF Product Design Award winning ultra-thin and stylish U160 netbook. With a beautiful and stylish appearance, the U160 features MSI's distinctive Chiclet keyboard, Color Film Print Technology, an artistic and ultra-thin fuselage, and all new software upgrades. In addition its hardware has also been fully upgraded. Featuring the latest generation Intel ATOM N450 processor and Windows 7 OS, the all new elite product series is sure to once again capture international attention and capitalize on market opportunities.

DisplayLink to Adopt USB 3.0

DisplayLink, the company behind USB-based display controllers has disclosed plans to release a display chip during the upcoming CES event next month, that runs on USB 3.0 SuperSpeed interface. The new chip will make use of the increased bandwidth (up to 4.8 Gbps vs. 480 Mbps of USB 2.0), to transmit higher-resolution videos. The current USB 2.0 based DisplayLink chips are able to transmit display of 3D games at 60 fps and HD video at 26~27 fps. The new USB 3.0 based chip will be able to do the same faster, without any flickering, said Dennis Crespo, executive vice-president of marketing and business development at DisplayLink. The DisplayLink technology involves using the system's graphics hardware to drive multiple display-heads, by transmitting display across USB.
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