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AMD Ryzen Threadripper Motherboards to be Showcased on July 25th

AMD is organizing the "Meet the Experts" webinar, which will focus on AMD's upcoming Ryzen Threadripper motherboard designs and offerings from AMD partners. As we inch closer to AMD's HEDT X399 platform launch, we've gotten confirmation from AMD on Threadripper's specs and pricing. However, the actual motherboards where you're expected to sit your awe-inducing 12 and 16-core processors have largely been absent from the show.

And since AMD knows that processors without a motherboard don't really equate to anything much, the company has invited ASUS, Gigabyte, MSI and ASRock to detail at least some of their X399 motherboards. So far, the motherboards we have some info are the GIGABYTE X399 AORUS Gaming 7 (which has 5x PCIe x16 slots, no PCIe x1 slots, and 3x M.2 slots in an ATX form-factor); the ASUS X399 ROG ZENITH EXTREME (EATX, 4x PCIe x16 slots, 1x PCIe x1 slots, and 2x M.2 slots); the ASROCK X399 Professional Gaming (ATX, 4x PCIe x16 slots, 1x PCIe x1 slots, and 3x M.2 slots); and finally, the ASROCK X399 TAICHI, which counts with the usual ATX form-factor, and offers 4x PCIe x16 slots, 1x PCIe x1 slots, and 3x M.2 slots. All of these seem to be marketed toward gamer enthusiasts, though we'll see some increasingly workstation-geared motherboards closer to or after the launch.

Source: Videocardz

Microsoft Decreasing Windows 10 Updates Downtime in Fall Creators Update

If you're a standard Windows user, you probably find Windows updates something of a pain - especially when they force you to reboot your PC after they're installed. But imagine you own a business that constantly has its machines up and running, but also requires the latest security upgrades; each minute of downtime for installing such updates is lost revenue. Because of that issue, which companies brought to Microsoft's attention over the years, the company is streamlining its update process, decreasing the amount of update steps that need to be taken offline (which means less time waiting for the machines to become available to use following an update.)

Logitech Acquires ASTRO Gaming for $85 million

In a move that is sure to increase Logitech's portfolio and cadre of available designs for its products, the Switzerland-based company has snagged up ASTRO Gaming for a cool $85 million. That both ASTRO and Logitech both have some of their more recognizable strengths in the same market - the headset one - didn't seem to faze Logitech's board. This probably means the company is looking to further lock-in the headset market through overwhelming quality and attractiveness of its headsets.

A Steamroller Among PC Games Stores: Steam Increases Growth, Updates Incoming

In an internal presentation, Valve, the company which simply won't give us Half Life 3, made a pretty interesting presentation on its growth and plans for the future. During the independent games showcase Indigo 2017, which took place in the Netherlands this past June, Steam revealed it had achieved a record 14 million concurrent users, up from a 2015 peak of (comparatively) just 8.4 million. Some other interesting statistics include an average of 33 million daily active players; 67 million monthly active players; and around 26 million gamers who made new purchases since January 2016.

North America seems to represent the bulk of Steam sales, with around 34% of sales through the market occurring way over that side of the ocean. Next comes Western Europe, with 29% of the sales pie, followed by Asia, which achieves a grand total of 17%. Next come the Russian Territories, Oceania and Latin America, which account for 5%, 4%, and 3% respectively. We'll just assume the remaining 8% come from Eastern Europe, the African Continent, and those researchers in Antarctica. Jokes aside, this shows monumental growth for the company, which should only increase provided the continued growth of the PC gaming market. Steam certainly has features games appreciate already - the growth speaks strongly for this. So now Valve only has to not ruin it, and keep on adding incremental features.

Microsoft Wants in on the Summer Sales: Announces "Ultimate Game Sale"

Summer is getting known more by the amount of game sales than by days spending creating a sunny side up on your skin. After GOG's Summer Sale and Steam's Summer Sale (which is still going strong until July 5th, to the woe of many households), Microsoft has just announced the "Ultimate Game Sale", which is striving to be the game sale to end all others.

Microsoft's sale isn't restricted to a single marketplace, encompassing all platforms where Microsoft does gaming business: Windows Store, Xbox Store, and Windows store. This sale also encompasses hardware, so if you're looking for some, this might be your chance. You'll have to wait for June 30th to get a look at the deals (the sale starts on June 30th and goes on through until July 10th), but you should temper expectations. Microsoft says games on this sale will be available for up to 50% off, which while welcome, isn't that much of a steep discount as it is. If that makes you twitch your face in discontent, you might want to take a selfie, so you can participate on Microsoft's "Ultimate Game Face Sweepstakes".

Several Critical Ukrainian Targets Hit by "Petya" Ransomware, Fear of Outbreak

After last month's WannaCry outbreak (which persisted in its effects as recently as last week), we now have a new variant of ransomware infecting PCs across Europe. The outbreak seems centered in Ukraine, where several government facilities and critical pieces of infrastructure have been shutdown due to the attacks. The Ukrainian government seemed almost defiantly optimistic, posting this decidedly awesome response to twitter during the attack.

GTA V is Slammed with a Swarm of Negative Reviews Following Mod Tool Shutdown

Grand Theft Auto V's Steam entry has been swarmed with negative reviews following Take Two Interactive's decision to shutdown the popular modding tool OpenIV with a legal cease and desist letter. In just a weeks time, over 42,000 reviews have been published on the Grand Theft Auto V steam page, the overwhelming majority of them negative (only 13 percent were positive). This is in stark contrast to the games usual rating, which is generally positive. It appears to have had such an impact as to actually make the game's overall rating fall into steams "mixed" rating territory.

Samsung Announces the CHG70 and CHG90 QLED Monitors: HDR and FreeSync 2

Remember that post on Samsung's investment on 32:9 aspect ratio monitors? The company has just materialized them, with the announcement of their 2017 flagship FreeSync 2 supporting monitors, which come in two different models and three different sizes. Samsung announced a world's first, the CHG90 QLED monitor, which leverages its alien 49" towards displaying a 32:9 presentation. That's what Samsung is calling a DFHD (Dual Full HD) screen, with a 3840x1080 resolution. This panel supports FreeSync 2, HDR, wide 178-degree viewing angles, and the now usual 1800R curvature, with blazingly-fast 144 Hz refresh rates and 1 ms response times.

At the same time, Samsung also announced the somewhat more mundane CHG70 QLED monitor, which comes in at either 27" or 31,5". Whatever your choice of panel size, these are essentially the same specs-wise, and differ little from the CHG90: they offer WQHD resolution (2560x1440), HDR, FreeSync 2, wide 178-degree viewing angles, and the now usual 1800R curvature, along with blazing-fast 144 Hz refresh rates and 1 ms response times.

Thermaltake Shows Off New Products at Computex 2017

At Computex 2017, Thermaltake, the company which makes giantly oversized PC cases, took to the stage to continue doing what it does best. The Level 20 TItanium clearly is at the top of its class: a concept design chassis with a "don't touch me, don't photograph me" attitude which was nevertheless captured by intrepid reporters who like to live dangerously. This is a great looking case, and is sure to dominate any environment it finds itself in.

Cooler Master Showcases Portfolio of Mice and Keyboard Solutions at Computex

Cooler Master took to the stage on Computex 2017 showcasing its solutions for every gamer's needs, from the RGB-crazed one to the serious, twitch-shooter.

On to keyboards first, we have the Cooler Master Masterkeys PRO L RGB, which manages to fit both Cherry MX switches and a full RGB solution that can radiate 16.7 million colors. There's also on-the-fly macros and profile support, with the Fn key getting a whole lot of love. All in a sleek, minimalistic design, if you ignore the screaming LEDs. The Masterkeys PRO S is essentially the same, but lacking the number pad. The Masterkeys S, on the other hand, eschews the RGB lighting, lacks profile support and on-the-fly switching, and also ditches the number pad. The minimalistic design is somewhat destroyed by the bright, screaming, angry red WASD keys, but there's no denying you'll be hard-pressed to confuse them with other, non life-saving movement keys.

Ballistix Introduces the Tactical Tracer DDR4 Gaming Modules With RGB Capability

Ballistix has announced the DDR4 version of their Tactical Tracer memory modules, with the new memory type allowing for the usual DDR4 speeds, starting at 2,666 MHz. Since these share the same brains as the non-RGB tactical modules the company already distributes, one can expect timings (CAS latencies of 15 and 16), speeds and voltages (starting at 1.20V) to be in-line with previous offerings. These include the usual tactical Tracer specs, including XMP profiles, a black PCB, and customizable heat spreaders. The RGB lighting allows users to tailor the look of their memory according to their chosen rig color scheme, while offering at-a-glance temperature control (blue is cool, red is not.) All RGB features are controlled through yet another RGB controller software: in this case, the Ballistix M.O.D. (Memory Overview Display) software.

The customizable heat spreaders don't stop on the RGB lighting options, though; actually, Ballistix is offering a removable module for the heat-spreaders that users can customize by 3D printing substitute parts. The company is providing the 3D printer design files on its website, though you should be able to build upon them with your own. This is one of the most interesting features of these modules, though I wager we'll see a much higher 3D printing penetration once those little machines that can get their pricing further reduced (make no mistake - 3D printing is one of the most promising consumer technologies. Pricing information is currently unavailable, though Ballistix said the Tactical Tracer DDR4 RGB modules will be available in Q3 - with a limited lifetime warranty to boot.

Source: Crucial.com

Rosenblatt Securities: "Buy" Rating to AMD Stock, "Sell" for Intel

On the back of impressive performance, yield, and cost metric for AMD's market-warping Ryzen and server-shaking EPYC processors, securities firm Rosenblatt Securities' Hans Mosesmann has affirmed a "Buy" rating for AMD's stock, while saddling Intel with a seldom-seen "Sell". All in all, there have been a number of changes in Intel's market ratings; there seems to be a downgrade trend towards either "Hold" or "Sell" scenarios compared to the usual "Buy" ratings given by hedge funds and financial analysts - ratings which are undoubtedly affected (at least in part) by AMD's Ryzen and EPYC execution.

JPR: GPU Shipments Decrease -4.5% YoY; Desktop Decreases -13.5%, Mobile Rises 2%

Jon Peddie Research has released another of their interesting GPU market analysis, which the analyst firm pegs as currently gearing up to a strong Q3. However, this gearing-up comes on the back of a "moderate" quarter, which in reality means there was a seasonal decrease of -17.5% in overall GPU shipments compared to last quarter. This -17.5% decrease takes from a -25% decrease in AMD products, Nvidia decreased -26%, and -14% in Intel's products. This translates into a YoY decrease of -4.5% in overall GPU shipments, with a whole -13.5% in desktop platforms and the saving grace in the 2% rise in mobile GPU shipments. Overall discrete GPU market share is increasing compared to their iGPU counterparts, for the third consecutive quarter.

Intel showed the highest gain in the quarter, in a market that seems to have to have returned to normal seasonal cycles. This quarter was appropriately down (normally it is flat to down), and the Gaming PC segment, where higher-end GPUs are used, was once again the bright spot in the overall PC market for the quarter. JPR sets the tablet craze as ending, bringing much needed stability to the PC market, as users realize a tablet is useful for a lot of things, but can never replace a PC for performance, screen size, or upgradability.

Destiny 2 Officially Confirmed for PC

Destiny. The game where you play as an intergalactic zombie animated by a pulsing light. The game where you listen to Nolan North's voice over the remains of Peter Dinklage's forays into such powerful wording as "That wizard came from the moon!" and "We've woken the Hive!". A universe worth at least a promise of $500 million dollars in investment. A Universe that has constantly evolved through updates to loot and some drastic gameplay alters throughout its overly long lifetime, married with carefully crafted gameplay and gunplay, satisfying powers, and the promise of an epic tale which ultimately falls flat (though your mileage may vary.) Difficulties with the game engine - probably holdouts from it Xbox 360 and Playstation 3 support - made the workflow for creating new content a reported nightmare for the developers, which impeded their ability to deliver their vision of content for a game that looked much more ambitious than it actually turned out to be.

Microsoft Ending Vista Support April 11th, Says Few Older Computers Ready for 10

Windows Vista, an OS that faced large amounts of criticism in life, is finally being laid down to die. Whether the criticism was fair, whether it was a victim of its own faults or the faults of simply being too ahead of its time (a question that is still being hotly debated to this day), it matters not now: it's done. On April 11th, Microsoft is ending Windows Vista support.

If you still happen to be using the OS, you may want to consider upgrading. Running an older, unsupported OS is not recommended for general security reasons. The latest bugfixes and exploit patches will simply no longer be issued, and Microsoft will have nothing to do with the OS from this point forward.

Windows 10 Build 15048 Brings Mixed Reality Support and Demo

The latest Insider build of Windows 10 (Build 15048 for the curious) appeared at first to be a simple bugfix release. But hidden inside was a neat little gem for Mixed Reality developers: Support for the technology complete with a demo.

For most of us, this means little. Attempting to run the demo without a pricey Mixed Reality developers kit will only unlock a simulation of the demo, not an actual Mixed Reality experience. You will also need to enable "Developers Mode" on Windows 10's settings panel to enable the "Mixed Reality Portal" that leads to the demo in the first place.

Mushkin Expands Its SSD Lineup with Helix: M.2 PCIe 4x, 3D MLC NAND, Up To 2 TB

Adding to their SSD lineup, Mushkin, which makes some really interesting, good price-performance ratio products has recently announced the upcoming availability of their Helix line of M.2 2280 SSDs. Based on Silicon Motion's SM2260 controller paired with 3D MLC NAND, Mushkin positions the Helix line as a premium, high-performance offering for desktops and laptops alike. Models will vary from a 250 GB entry-level offering thorugh a 2 TB high-end SKU, with the 2 TB version offering sequential read performance at up to 2.5 GB/s and write performance at up to 1.1 GB/s, when Silicon Motion's pseudo-SLC caching technology is used to its best effect.

Nanoxia Unveils Their New N.N.V. Series of Silent Fans

Nanoxia announces itself as the only brand in the PC industry allowed to make use of a specific piece of technology, employed by German car manufacturers to circulate air in the seat heating of their cars. This enables them to offer the first virtually vibration-free PC fan in the world.

You all know the effect what happens, when you connect a vibrating fan to a solid body - noise is generated. This is one of the main sources of fan generated noise. In order to counteract this effect, the user had to employ various forms of decoupling materials. With our fans of the Special N.N.V. series, this problem is solved once and forever. The new "No Vibrations" principle provides us with torques of a particularly pleasant nature.

Pure Base 600: be quiet! Expands Portfolio With Versatile ATX Case

be quiet!, the market leader in PC power supplies in Germany for ten consecutive years, introduces its newest ATX PC case, the multi-talented Pure Base 600. Designed and developed in Germany, the Pure Base 600 is flawless in its functional design and silent cooling while delivering a quality PC case at an attractive price. Built for cooling and performance, the Pure Base 600 includes two Pure Wings 2 case fans while also offering facilities for additional cooling products, including be quiet! water cooling systems and fans. be quiet! priced its Pure Base 600 case around an intelligent cost saving design that does not compromise functionality and noise reduction.

Lian-Li Showcases Numerous New Products at CES 2017

At CES 2017, Lian-Li showcased their latest, upcoming additions to their product lines: from a standing desk to numerous computer cases and an external RAID enclosure, there was something for every taste.

First, Lian Li's latest addition to their standing desk line of products: dubbed the DK-05, this standing desk allows the user to install two different systems (supporting E-ATX motherboards) at the same time, something that its predecessor was unable to do. Lian Li suggests that the chassis could house both a file server and a gaming computer, all within a rather striking exterior of tempered glass and brushed aluminum. The desk features a motorized height adjustment, with knobs on a small control panel on the right side of the desk that control both the height adjustment and the speed of the desk's 12 fans (six for intake, and six for exhaust duty). It also supports triple-slot radiators for augmented cooling capabilities.

AMD Confirms "Full Spectrum" of Unlocked, Overclockable Ryzen CPUs

AMD has seemingly confirmed that there will be more than just the fabled 8-core, 16-thread Ryzen CPUs we've only as of yet seen presented by the company. Come the expected Ryzen launch before the end of Q1 (which means, before the end of March), we should see more Ryzen CPUs than only 8-core solutions, though AMD still hasn't revealed exactly the core-count/configurations of the other CPUs on their product stack. Theoretically, AMD could follow the Intel path of simply disabling SMT (Simultaneous Multi-Threading, AMD's equivalent to Intel's Hyper Threading) and thus crafting another product, though this is pure speculation on my part. Whether or not AMD will include 4-core or 6-core CPUs on their product stack as well is as of now an unconfirmed, educated guess.

Cooler Master Unveils the MasterWatt Maker MIJ 1200 W Power Supply

At CES 2017, Cooler Master unveiled a limited edition of their MasterWatt line of power supply units: the MasterWatt Author ME 1200 W. As the name implies, this is a 1200 W power supply, rated at 80 Plus Titanium efficiency levels (which means >94% energy efficiency), though Cooler Master claims this PSU is able to achieve >95% efficiency levels. Built exclusively with Murata components, Cooler Master are presenting this one as the best power supply they've ever made, and they're therefore pitting it as a special, limited edition PSU, of which only a few thousand samples will be produced and sold: at an over $1000 price-tag.

Colorful Unveils its iGame Z270 Gamer Customization Motherboard

Colorful Technology Company Limited, professional manufacturer of graphics cards and motherboards, is proud to announce its latest motherboard for enthusiasts and gamers featuring the latest Intel Z270 chipset to support LGA1151 processors including the newly announced 7th generation Core processors from Intel with their new iGame Z270 Gamer. Customization motherboard. This latest products joins the family of iGame enthusiast and performance series of motherboards and graphics cards which focuses on not just the needs of gamers for a faster and robust system but serves as a canvas to promote their creativity and idea with great customization options.

G.SKILL Announces New DDR4 Specifications for Trident Z Series and Z270

G.SKILL International Enterprise Co., Ltd., the world's leading manufacturer of extreme performance memory and gaming peripherals, announces new high-speed DDR4 memory specifications designed for the latest 7th Gen Intel Core processors and Z270 motherboards under the extreme performance Trident Z series.

With 16GB (8GBx2) and 32GB (8GBx4) kits becoming the mainstream memory capacities in PC systems, 8GB-based kits are in greater demand for higher performance than ever. Upon the launch of Intel's latest Kaby Lake platform, G.SKILL bumps up the maximum frequency speeds to a blistering DDR4-4266MHz at CL19-19-19-39 for 16GB (8GBx2) kits and DDR4-4133MHz CL19-21-21-41 for 32GB (8GBx4) kits.

Steam and Linux on the PS4 - AMD's "Bonaire" GPU Register Reference Found

While trying to hack the PS4 in order to make it run Linux (in a bid to get Steam and possibly other programs running on the PS4's hardware), hackers hit a snag: they couldn't get the PS4's GPU to display any kind of output or process any kind of graphics. Like any good researcher would, when hit with a snag, the hackers turned to scouring the Internet in hopes of finding any kind of documentation that could help them harness the PS4's Pitcairn-based GPU.
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