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News Archives for December 2010

Coby Electronics Unveils KYROS 7" Android Tablet

Posted: December 1, 2010 @ time: 12:14AM
Author: premiumgfx

Coby Electronics today unveiled its new value-conscious tablet, the Coby KYROS Tablet MID7015. The Kyros features a 7" 800x480 resistive touchscreen, 4GB of internal flash memory (expandable up to 16GB via a built-in micro SD card slot) and wireless 802.11b/g connectivity - all powered by the Android 2.1 OS. The new tablet will enable consumers to access the internet, check email, play music and movies with the option to output Full HD (1080p) or 720p picture to a HDTV using a mini-HDMI cable. Other connectivity features include a 3.5mm headphone jack, a microphone port, a built-in speaker and a USB 2.0 port. Of course, a vast range of apps will be available to download using the AppsLib application but the Kyros will also include the Aldiko E-book app pre-installed among others. The Kyros tablet runs on a Telechips TTV8902 800MHz processor backed by 256MB of DDR2 memory, which will both be powered by a 3200mA rechargeable Li-poly battery. The Coby Kyros MID7015 is available immediately from major retailers at a suggested retail price of $249.99, positioning it perfectly as an attractive consumer item this Christmas break.


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Asetek Launches Liquid CPU-Coolers for PCs with 92mm Fans

Posted: December 1, 2010 @ time: 12:59AM
Author: premiumgfx

Asetek has launched its latest liquid CPU-cooling offerings; three new coolers with 92mm exhaust fans. The new coolers aim to provide quiet, efficient and effective cooling in a variety of demanding situations where space matters such as compact gaming rigs, servers and workstations. The new line-up consists of the Asetek 545LC, a single exhaust port, single CPU-cooler, the 565LX, a dual exhaust port, single-CPU cooler and the behemoth 585LX a dual exhaust port, dual-CPU cooler. All coolers are rated to run at 26dB and have a 50,000 hour expected lifespan. The Asetek 565LX and 585LX are available immediately to system builders, which means that they will only be available in pre-built systems. Additionally the Asetek 545LC is scheduled to be available later this month, in mid-December. Either way, I'd expect to see system builders such as BOXX Technologies releasing systems using the new coolers in the coming months.


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Hardware Roundup: Wednesday Edition

Posted: December 1, 2010 @ time: 06:08AM
Author: Nemo

Our middle of the week roundup picked up reviews on several video cards including the ASUS GTX 580 and the PowerColor Radeon HD 6850 PCS+. Also in the mix is a look at SLI and CrossFireX performance of several cards. For our audiophiles we have a look at a set of speakers from Teufel and another review on the Corsair HS1 USB Gaming Headset. Enjoy your reading and we'll see you back here again tomorrow.

Cases
BitFenix Survivor Gaming Case @ Tweaknews

Cooling
Akasa Venom Heatsink @ Frostytech
Coolink Corator DS Heatsink @ Frostytech

Media Players
Roku XD Media Player @ Techgage

Memory
8GB G.Skill Ripjaws 2000MHz DDR3 Memory @ Benchmark Reviews

Notebooks
Apple 13" MacBook Air @ HotHardware

Speakers/Headphones
Teufel CB 200 Speakers and Amp @ XSReviews
Corsair HS1 USB Gaming Headset @ ThinkComputers

Video
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 580 SLI Benchmarking w/ ASUS ENGTX580 @ Legit Reviews
Paired up: The latest GPUs @ Tech Report
PowerColor Radeon HD 6850 PCS+ @ Neoseeker


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Noctua Offers Free Mounting Kit for Future Socket 1155 Motherboard Owners

Posted: December 1, 2010 @ time: 01:25PM
Author: bp9801

The Intel Sandy Bridge processors will be using a new socket, LGA1155, as opposed to the current LGA1156 socket. Noctua has confirmed that the mounting holes for both are identical which means that its LGA1156 coolers will be compatible with LGA1155 provided you have the NM-I3 SecuFirm2 mounting kit. If you do not have that kit for your Noctua cooler and are getting a new LGA1155 motherboard, then Noctua will offer you a mounting kit free of charge. Everyone who owns an older Noctua cooler will be able to contact Noctua and ask for the new NM-I3 SecuFirm2 mounting kit provided you have documentation saying you own an older cooler and a new LGA1155 motherboard or CPU. If you own the NH-C14, NH-D14, NH-C12P SE14, NH-U12P SE2, or NH-U9B SE2 then you already have the NM-I3 SecuFirm2 mounting kit and won't need the upgrade. All the older coolers don't have that mounting kit so you are included in the free upgrade. The NM-I3 SecuFirm2 mounting kit is compatible with all Noctua coolers produced from 2005 to the present.


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Verizon Announces 4G LTE Network, Pricing

Posted: December 1, 2010 @ time: 02:21PM
Author: bp9801

It certainly didn't take Verizon long to get its 4G LTE network rolled out. All indications pointed to a launch by the end of the year, and if you've watched any TV lately, you've no doubt seen the commercials touting it launching this December. Well, it is officially December and Verzion has just announced its 4G LTE network will be rolling out on December 5th. Verizon is touting speeds up to ten times faster than its current 3G network which means a 5 to 12Mbps download and 2 to 5Mbps upload, though as of now you need to shell out for a 4G LTE USB modem to access it. That is, provided you live in one of the areas with the new network launching on the 5th, which is most major cities (Chicago, Los Angeles, New York City) and over 60 major airports. There will be more cities added in the future, so if you aren't in the area now you should be before long since the 4G LTE network will reach the size of the current 3G one by 2013. Don't worry, the 4G LTE modems are backwards compatible with the 3G network, so if you pick one up now to get in on it early, you'll still be able to access the Internet just fine. As for pricing, Verizon will have a $50 a month plan for 5GB or $80 a month for 10GB. There is a $10 fee for each gigabyte you go over, which isn't too bad. Verizon is planning on talking about 4G LTE phones at CES, so it appears we'll have to wait until early January to learn which ones will take advantage of it.


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VisionTek Killer HD 5770 NIC Combo Card Arrives

Posted: December 1, 2010 @ time: 03:31PM
Author: bp9801

During Computex, PowerColor and Bigfoot Networks partnered up to combine an HD 5770 with one of Bigfoot's Killer NICs. Now, it is VisionTek's turn as its Killer HD 5770 will be hitting shelves shortly. VisionTek's offering pairs an AMD HD 5770 with a Killer E2100 networking card to create a new hybrid model. The HD 5770 still has the 1GB of GDDR5 memory and presumably stock clocks for the core and memory. The ports on the card change a little, as you will find two DVI, one HDMI, and the Ethernet port to take advantage of the Killer NIC part. With this card, you should be able to get great gaming performance as well as great networking performance, so now your online gaming won't suffer due to a high ping time or latency. There is still a Crossfire finger up top so you should be able to pair this with another HD 5770 to get a huge boost to games. The NIC portion has a 400MHz processor which will help to minimize performance impacts due to any connection change, plus Bigfoot is throwing in its software suite to ensure you get the most lag-free gaming possible.

The VisionTek Killer HD 5770 should be launching early this month with an expected price of $199.99. Its a small savings compared to buying each one separately, but the combo card is a great alternative if you are short on PCI-e sockets.


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Cooler Master Releases NVIDIA Limited Edition Cases

Posted: December 1, 2010 @ time: 10:33PM
Author: Nemo

Cooler Master has a line of computer cases that have been well received, and for good reason too. When OCC reviewed both the HAF X and the CM 690 II Advanced, we found a lot to like with the HAF X earning an Editors' Choice award. Now Cooler Master has announced the results of collaboration efforts with NVIDIA with new limited edition versions of both the HAF X and CM 690 II Advanced cases. The HAF X has received NVIDIA SLI Ready certification and is recommended as a superior cooling chassis when installing up to three NVIDIA GTX 480 graphics cards in SLI.

"These new limited edition cases represent the culmination of our collective efforts. Cooler Master and NVIDIA engineers worked tirelessly to improve thermal designs in order to best cool NVIDIA GTX 480 graphics cards in a triple-SLI setup”, said Bryant Nguyen, Product Marketing Manager at Cooler Master, as he conveyed his excitement. "We look forward to seeing enthusiasts push the limits of their graphics cards within our cases."

The HAF X limited edition has a stylized side window along with new bold color accents and a NVIDIA SLI certified VGA fan duct equipped with a Blade Master industrial fan. These new features serve to enhance an already impressive list of features we saw in our review such as USB 3.0 support, 360mm liquid cooling support, huge 200mm+ fans and SATA hot swap bays. The CM 690 II limited edition also got new color accents and a custom side panel with window featuring NVIDIA claw logo detailing. Other standard features include a modular hard drive bay, large graphics card and power supply support and space for two 240mm liquid cooling radiators.


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BitFenix Introduces Colossus Venom and Colossus Window Chassis

Posted: December 2, 2010 @ time: 01:20AM
Author: premiumgfx

BitFenix today introduced two new versions of its Colossus full-tower chassis, the Colossus Venom and Colossus Window. The Colossus Venom maintains the features of the original Colossus such as USB 3.0 connectivity and a secure storage compartment, but also enables consumers to choose between green or red lighting, simply by pushing a button. The Colossus Venom is based on a demo Colossus which included green lighting at GamesCom 2010. BitFenix decided to make the green variant a reality after receiving overwhelming support from its fans. The Colossus Window trades in the original Colossus' USB 3.0 support, PWM fan controller and LED switching for two extra USB 2.0 ports and as the name suggests, a clear side-window.

BitFenix Product Manager, David Jarlestedt went on to say "after releasing [the] Colossus, BitFenix fans from around the world offered their own personal suggestions on some new and interesting modifications for the full tower, and Colossus Venom and Colossus Window are the results of that feedback."

The Colossus Venom edition will be available in black (with red and green LEDs) while the Colossus Window will be available in black (with red or green LEDs) and in white (with blue LEDs). The Colossus Venom and Colossus Window will retail for approximately US$169 and US$149 respectively. BitFenix did not disclose any information regarding the availability of the new chassis.


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Hardware Roundup: Thursday Edition

Posted: December 2, 2010 @ time: 05:07AM
Author: Nemo

If you're looking for a way to mount 2.5" drives in your case, you should check out the Patriot Convoy 425XL SAS/SATA RAID enclosure that makes use of existing 5.25" bays to mount up to four 2.5" drives and supports various RAID formats using its built-in controller. In cooling, we have another opportunity to examine the Arctic Cooling Freezer 11 LP low-profile CPU cooler. You can read all the articles in today's roundup by using the included links shown below.

Cooling
Arctic Cooling Freezer 11 LP CPU Cooler @ ThinkComputers

Memory
Patriot Viper Xtreme DDR3 2000MHz Kit @ Neoseeker

Notebooks
Acer Aspire 1551 11.6-inch Notebook @ Legit Reviews

Software
Tech Tip: Speed Up Firefox by Loading Tabs On-demand @ TechSpot

Speakers/Headphones
Audio-Technica ATH-A700 Headphone @ [H]ardOCP

Storage/Hard Drives
Patriot Convoy 425XL SAS/SATA RAID Enclosure @ Benchmark Reviews

Video
GIGABYTE Radeon HD 5670 @ Madshrimps


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OCC Christmas Contest 2010 Has Begun

Posted: December 2, 2010 @ time: 05:58AM
Author: Nemo

It's that time of year again, time when most boys and girls straighten up their acts for Santa. Quite frankly, we here at OCC don't care whether you've been naughty or nice, we're going to give away presents anyway. A lot of them as a matter of fact. That's just the kind of Santas we are. The list of prizes is long and it's still growing but we can tell you that there will be two complete AMD computer systems up for grabs:

  • Dual core or Quad CPU's (supplied by Bosco)
  • Gigabyte 880GMA-UD2H Motherboard (supplied by Gigabyte)
  • 4GB of Mushkin Radioactive Memory (supplied by Mushkin)
  • Radeon HD 6850 XXX Edition Video Card (supplied by XFX)
  • 40GB SSD (supplied by Mushkin)
  • Seagate 640GB Momentus (supplied by Seagate)
  • Cooler Master HAF-X Case (supplied by Cooler Master)
  • V6GT CPU Cooler (supplied by Cooler Master)
  • LG DVDRW (supplied by Bosco)
  • 800 Watt PSU (supplied by Mushkin)
  • Inferno Gaming Mouse (supplied by Cooler Master)

There are many more prizes, too numerous to mention here, but you can find out more details in the OCC Christmas Contest 2010 forum thread. The contest is open to all OCC forum members worldwide and you have to follow a few simple steps to enter:

First, you must be a member of the forums.

Second, send an email to [email protected]. In that email you must do the following:

  1. List your OCC forum name
  2. List your name, address, postal code and phone number. (This is for shipping if you win.)
  3. List your full system specifications
  4. Tell us who your favorite manufacturer for computer hardware is and why.
  5. Tell us your least favorite manufacturer is and why.

For items 4) and 5) you don't have to write a long paragraph, just a sentence or two unless you want to write more.

You can check out the current list of prizes and complete contest details in the OCC Christmas Contest 2010 forum thread. The contest begins December 1st and will end on the evening of December 24th. Good Luck!


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The $10,000 Newegg Shopping Spree Holiday Sweepstakes

Posted: December 2, 2010 @ time: 11:37AM
Author: El_Capitan

For those lucky enough to be in the United States and Canada, Newegg.com is having a "Get it. Give it. Gift On!" Holiday Sweepstakes with over $35,000 in prizes and a grand prize of a $10,000 Newegg Shopping Spree. Each week will have a new set of prizes:

Week 1 (12/1 - 12/5): Microsoft Zune 32GB HD MP3 Player with Monster Beats by Dr. Dre Headphones

Week 2 (12/6 - 12/12): 2 ASUS GeForce GTX 480 (Fermi) Video Cards

Week 3 (12/13 - 12/19): ASUS N71JQ-X1 17.3" Notebook

Week 4 (12/20 - 12/24): Samsung 46" LCD HDTV and Microsoft Xbox 360 Kinect Bundle and Sony Playstation 3 Move

Don't forget to sign up every week to be eligible for that week's prize! Good luck, and Happy Holidays!

Feel free to discuss it in the forums.


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Toshiba Launches Two New Netbooks, One with Harman Kardon Sound

Posted: December 2, 2010 @ time: 01:45PM
Author: bp9801

Most people don't ask for anyone to turn the volume up on their netbook due to the usually less than stellar quality of the speakers on netbooks. Toshiba wishes to change all of that with one of two new netbooks it is launching, as that model comes with a Harman Kardon sound system. The netbook in question is the Toshiba mini NB520 which H/K has packed in some speakers that are two watts each, which you can clearly see on the palm rest area. According to H/K, those are the smallest tweeters it's ever put in a laptop, not just a netbook. The NB520 is also rocking an Intel Atom N550 processor, 2GB DDR3 memory, 250GB hard drive, a 10.1 inch 1024x600 LED-backlit display, and a supposed ten hours of battery life. Say that Harman Kardon sound system doesn't interest you, well Toshiba has you covered with the other new netbook, the NB500. It is a more barebones package as it lacks the sound system and only packs an Atom N455 processor, though the price of it will be less than the NB520.

No word on price was announced for either model, but both are expected to ship in the first quarter of next year.


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Flash Gets Sandboxed on Google Chrome

Posted: December 2, 2010 @ time: 05:38PM
Author: CheeseMan42

Adobe Flash Player has been a target of a large amount of attacks on computer systems. Adobe and Google have worked together to create a sandbox for the Flash plug-in for Chrome. By sand boxing Flash, hackers will have a much harder time taking advantage of exploits to take over systems, or do other malicious activities. Windows users can grab the "dev" build of Chrome, but users should remember that it isn't the current, stable version of Chrome. The upgrade was based on the code already used to protect HTML and Javascript, but significant work had to be done. Although it is currently limited to Windows, the two companies plan to bring the sandbox to Max OS X and Linux in the future. The feature is expected to be released in the stable version of Chrome by mid 2011. It is always good to see companies working to benefit the users of its products.


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One Year Anniversary Of The Passing Of Verran

Posted: December 3, 2010 @ time: 01:08AM
Author: Bosco

One year ago today we lost OCC staff member Verran to his battle with Cancer.

This year was rather tough for me not having him around. Meeting his family and speaking at his memorial was a great honour for me that I will never ever forget. Keeping Ryan's memory alive is what gave me the courage to speak at his memorial which is something I might not have been able to do otherwise.

The memory of Verran/Ryan has kept my drive going for OCC over the past year, OCC and myself will continue to honour my friend who is very much missed by everyone. I really miss you buddy.

Tribute Thread


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Corsair Extends Force SSD Series

Posted: December 3, 2010 @ time: 01:14AM
Author: premiumgfx

Corsair today extended its Force 2.5" SSD series with the launch of two new models, the F90 and F180. As reflected by their model numbers, the F90 has a 90GB capacity and the F180 has a 180GB capacity. Both drives are based on the Sandforce SF-1200 SSD processor enabling read speeds of up to 285MB/s and write speeds of up to 275MB/s through the SATA II (3.0Gb/s) interface, along with a 4K random write throughput of up to 50,000 IOPS. In addition the F90 and F180 support the ATA TRIM command allowing maximum performance throughout the lifetime of the drive.

Corsair's VP of Memory Products, Thi La said that "Corsair’s Force Series of SSDs have become extremely popular with enthusiasts and gamers, and with these two new capacities we can offer our customers greater flexibility to choose the capacity that best suits their budget. The 90GB and 180GB capacities neatly fill the gaps in the current family, which now ranges from 40GB all the way to 240GB."

The F90 and F180 available now for a suggested retail price of US$189.99 and US$399.99 respectively.


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Hardware Roundup: Friday Edition

Posted: December 3, 2010 @ time: 06:03AM
Author: Nemo

If you automatically think of cooling when you hear the name Zalman mentioned, you'd probably be thinking about its line of heat sinks like the new CNPS9900 MAX reviewed here today. But Zalman has just recently branched out into solid state drives and we picked up a pair of reviews on the new drives in today's roundup. For the gamers out there we have a couple of input devices including the Razer Nostromo Game Board and Mad Catz's CoD: Black Ops Stealth mouse.

Cooling
Zalman CNPS9900 MAX @ Bjorn3D

Input Devices
Razer Nostromo Game Board @ XSReviews
Mad Catz Call of Duty: Black Ops Stealth Mouse @ Benchmark Reviews

Gaming
Killzone 3 Beta Overview @ ThinkComputers

Mobile
Samsung Galaxy Tab @ HotHardware

Motherboards
GIGABYTE GA-X58-USB3 Motherboard @ Legit Reviews

Operating Systems
VPS: What It Is and How It's Useful @ Techgage

Storage/Hard Drives
Zalman N Series 128GB SSD @ Bjorn3D
Notebook hard drives square off at 7,200 RPM @ TechReport
Zalman S-Series 128GB JMicron SSD Solid State Drive @ Tweaknews

Video
GeForce GTX 580 vs. GeForce GTX 460 1GB SLI @ [H]ardOCP
ATI Radeon 6850 Videocard @ Rbmods

Miscellany
PCPer Podcast #131 @ PC Perspective


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Samsung Sells One Million Galaxy Tabs

Posted: December 3, 2010 @ time: 01:47PM
Author: bp9801

Well, it certainly didn't take long for Samsung to sell a ton of Galaxy Tabs. Just a short while after announcing it had sold over half a million tablets, the company has just announced it has sold one million Galaxy Tabs worldwide. The Galaxy Tab has been sold by all four major carriers in the U.S. and each one has marketed it pretty well. There is no word on exactly how much of that one million figure is just from the U.S., likewise it is unclear whether the one million is sold to consumers or just units shipped to retailers and the like. At any rate, with having sold 600,000 just the other week it is impressive to see an additional 400,000 sold in that short time. I suspect the recent holiday shopping had something to do with that figure. Samsung is expected to hit 1.5 million Galaxy Tabs sold by year's end, and somehow I don't think there will be a problem reaching that number.


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Sony Designs a TV with a PlayStation 2 Built In

Posted: December 3, 2010 @ time: 02:49PM
Author: bp9801

Sure, the current generation of consoles is all the rage but there is one problem with them. Not all of the consoles can play older games. Sure, the Wii can have play GameCube games, the Xbox 360 can play most Xbox games, and the PlayStation 3 can play PS1 and some can play PS2 games, but all the games aren't guaranteed to work on the current consoles. The PS3 Slim, the one typically sold, can't even play PS2 games so what is a gamer to do with their stack of PS2 games? Trade them in at a store for a measly amount of credit? Well, you could, or you could buy a new Sony TV that has a PS2 console built right in to the base. The Sony Bravia KDL-22PX300 LCD TV has a large base that conceals an entire PlayStation 2 console, meaning you won't have to ditch all your older games if you have already upgraded to the PS3. The TV is a 22" model with a 720p resolution, plus it has four HDMI ports so you can connect virtually any device to it you wish. You can even plug in an Ethernet cord or Sony's wireless dongle to access content over your network.

Currently, the TV is only available in the UK for £200, but hopefully it will see a release in the US as well.


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Hardware Roundup: Weekend Edition

Posted: December 4, 2010 @ time: 11:46AM
Author: Nemo

We have a set of reviews that shouldn't take you too long to peruse this weekend. Included are a couple of editorial articles on GPU process technology and manufacturing and one with thoughts concerning smartphones. AMD's 6-core Phenom II X6 1075T processor gets examined along with the Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi Titanium HD sound card. Enjoy your reading and we'll see you back here on Monday!

Cooling
Scythe SCRT-1000 Rasetsu Heatsink @ Frostytech

CPUs
AMD Phenom II X6 1075T 6-Core Processor Performance @ Legit Reviews

Manufacturers
We’ve Been Bamboozled! Process Delays Hit GPUs @ PC Perspective

Mobile
Thoughts on the smartphone revolution @ PC Perspective

Sound Cards
Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi Titanium HD @ Madshrimps

Miscellany
Screwpop 4-in-1 Keychain Tool @ Legit Reviews


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ZOTAC Launches Two AMD-Based Mini-ITX Motherboards

Posted: December 5, 2010 @ time: 12:50AM
Author: premiumgfx

ZOTAC has launched two new AMD-based mini-ITX motherboards, the M880G-ITX WiFi and the 880G-ITX WiFi. The M880G-ITX WiFi is based on the M880G chipset and includes a built-in AMD Turion II Neo K625 dual-core processor running at 1.5GHz, making it the world's first AMD mobile-on-desktop platform. This is coupled with with ATI Radeon HD 4200 series integrated graphics, two DDR3-800 slots, six SATA 6.0Gb/s connectors and up to six USB 2.0 ports. The other model, the 880G-ITX WiFi is built on the 880G chipset and features an AM3 socket supporting CPUs with a TDP of up to 95W. This is backed by an ATI Radeon HD 4250 GPU, two DDR3-1333 slots, four SATA 6.0Gb/s connectors and up to eight USB 2.0 ports. Both variants feature one PCI Express x1 slot (occupied by WiFi card), two USB 3.0 ports, Gigabit ethernet, six-channel HD audio and 802.11n support. Outputs supported by both boards include HDMI, dual-link DVI and VGA (via an included adapter). The built-in ATI graphics solutions in both boards include DirectX 10.1 support, Shader Model 4.1 support, OpenGL 2.0 support and ATI Avivo HD technology, for a visually immersing entertainment experience. ZOTAC did not disclose any details regarding availability or pricing of the new mini-ITX motherboards, although I'd expect them to be available soon to take advantage of the increased holiday trading.


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Chrome OS Netbook Expected to Launch this Week

Posted: December 5, 2010 @ time: 08:13PM
Author: CheeseMan42

All signs are pointing to a December 7 reveal of the Chrome OS from Google, along with the first netbook to feature the OS. The Chrome Web Store is expected to open that day, and Google is holding an event to make an announcement on something. The netbook is expected to be a very limited release, with only about 65,000 units being manufactured. The OS itself is said to still be in a beta state, and won't be ready for consumer use anytime soon. Also, Chrome 8 was recently released, and that version of the browser supports web apps. Chrome OS will make full use of these apps, and the release of them seems like another indication that the OS will finally be unmasked. Stay tuned for further developments this week.


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Hardware Roundup: Monday Edition

Posted: December 6, 2010 @ time: 05:27AM
Author: Nemo

It's the beginning of a new week and we're back with more reviews from around the Web. We have another review on the Corsair H70 liquid cooling system for those looking to add water cooling to their system with a minimum amount of fuss. We also have a pair of keyboards to look at today with the Logitech K750 Wireless Solar keyboard and Razer's BlackWidow mechanical gaming keyboard. You can check out all of the reviews in today's roundup by using the links posted below.

Cooling
Corsair H70 CPU Liquid/Water Cooling System @ Tweaknews

Input Devices
Logitech K750 Wireless Solar Keyboard @ Legit Reviews
Razer BlackWidow Mechanical Gaming Keyboard @ Benchmark Reviews

Memory
Silicon Power XPower DDR3 2000 2 x 2GB Dual Channel RAM @ Bjorn3D

Mobile
Colin’s Travel Tech @ ThinkComputers

Prebuilts
Asrock Vision 3D HTPC @ TechSpot

Power Supplies
Thermaltake Toughpower Grand 750W PSU @ [H]ardOCP


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Google Nexus S is Official, Launching Middle of December

Posted: December 6, 2010 @ time: 02:49PM
Author: bp9801

The phone had been rumored for a while, and now Google is formally unveiling the successor to the Nexus One smartphone, the Nexus S. The Nexus S is being made by Samsung and will be similar to the current crop of Galaxy S phones. The Nexus S features a 4 inch, WVGA touchscreen, triband HSPA with AWS support (no mention of HSPA+ though), a five megapixel camera with LED flash, NFC, a gyroscope, 16GB of built-in storage, and 512MB of RAM. Powering everything is a 1GHz Cortex A8 Hummingbird processor which is different from the rumor of a dual-core CPU, but should still be plenty powerful for our uses. Google mentions the Nexus S' "contour display" which means the front is not entirely flat; rather it curves inward slightly to give a unique side profile. The Nexus S will be running stock Android 2.3 (Gingerbread) and will be the new flagship phone for Google since it retired the Nexus One for everyone but developers. If you're wondering what the NFC is doing in there, well, that stands for Near Field Communications and it will let you read other NFC tags. A possible use would be to pay for subway tickets simply by waving your Nexus S over the proper pad.

The Nexus S will be available December 16th from Best Buy in the US for $199 on a two-year contract through T-Mobile or $529 unlocked. In the UK, it can be bought from Carphone Warehouse or Best Buy UK on December 20th.


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The Great Steam Treasure Hunt

Posted: December 6, 2010 @ time: 05:30PM
Author: CheeseMan42

Steam is following up on its recent Thanksgiving sale with The Great Steam Treasure Hunt. This promotion runs from now until December 20th, just in time for the Holiday sale, which will hopefully return. Every two days Steam will reveal four new objectives to be completed. In order to win the grand prize, gamers will need to complete any ten of the objectives and log in on December 20th. The grand prize is 100 free games chosen by the winner, leading to more games than can be played. Additionally, for every two day cycle of objectives, Steam will be giving 20 users the top five games on their wishlist. For Team Fortress 2 players, there are also hats available at 5, 15, and 28 objectives completed. It also appears that the games associated with the objectives will be on sale each day. Todays objectives are found in R.U.S.E., Poker Night at the Inventory, and Chime. Keep up to date and discuss your progress in the forum thread.


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Google Maps for Mobile 5 Shown Off

Posted: December 6, 2010 @ time: 10:58PM
Author: bp9801

At the D: Dive Into Mobile Conference today, Google's Andy Rubin showed off the new Maps app for mobile phones. Google Maps for Mobile 5 is the official name of it and it brings a slew of new features to all phones that use it. Rubin actually showed off the new version on a prototype tablet from Motorola running Honeycomb (Android 3.0) but the new Maps app will work on more than just that. The biggest change is that the map is shown in 3D vectors rather than boring flat shapes for over 100 cities. The images will scale without no rendering slowdown and quite frankly look terrific. What's more is that you can now use two fingers to tilt and rotate the maps in addition to pinch-to-zoom and basic movement. Google says the new vectors provide for a much faster experience and load quite fast, which brings us to the next new feature of Maps for Mobile 5, offline caching. That's right, now you can bring up maps when you have no data connection since it will be stored on your phone. The app will keep the most recent and frequently visited files on location and it will even be able to reroute while offline. You will still need to go online to alter the route, but if you go off-track while offline then you will be easily redirected back.

Google promises that most phones from the original Motorola Droid to recent phones will support these new features provided the phones can support 3D rendering and more advanced multitouch inputs. Oddly enough, the Nexus One will not be able to utilize all the features since it lacks some of the multitouch requirements, like for rotating. The phones that will currently support all the new features of Maps for Mobile 5 are the Motorola Droid, Droid 2, Droid X, HTC Droid Incredible, Evo, G2, and the Samsung Galaxy S line, including the new Nexus S. Google Maps for Mobile 5 should be going live over the next few days.


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NVIDIA Introduces GeForce GT 540M Laptop GPU

Posted: December 7, 2010 @ time: 02:23AM
Author: premiumgfx

AMD recently revealed its 6500M and 6300M GPUs and today NVIDIA followed suit, introducing the GeForce GT 540M laptop GPU. The GT 540M is NVIDIA's first 500-series graphics solution for notebooks. The new GPU is based on the 40nm manufacturing process with a core clock speed of 672MHz and shader clock speed of 1344MHz, along with 92 processor cores. The GPU is backed by up to 1.5GB of either GDDR5 or GDDR3 128-bit memory clocked up to 900MHz. Of course, DirectX 11, OpenGL 4.1, PhysX, 3D Vision, NVIDIA Optimus technology and CUDA support come included as standard. OEMs will couple the GT 540M with the Intel 32nm dual-core "Arrandale" CPUs to provide value for mainstream consumers before the release of the upcoming "Huron River" platform next year. The NVIDIA GT 540M GPU is available now from Acer in China with a world wide release following in January 2011.


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Hardware Roundup: Tuesday Edition

Posted: December 7, 2010 @ time: 05:52AM
Author: Nemo

Today's hardware roundup is a bit light as many hardware sites  posted reviews on the new AMD Phenom II X6 1100T CPU. We do have a review on the Antec LanBoy Air modular case for those wanting something different in a chassis. In the media world we picked up reviews on the ASUS O!Play HD2 HD media player and a 23" monitor from LG. Be sure to check out the roundup on the AMD Phenom II X6 1100T processor and we'll see you back here tomorrow.

Cases
Antec LanBoy Air Modular Case @ ThinkComputers

Media Players
ASUS O!Play HD2 HD Media Player @ Legit Reviews

Monitors/TVs
LG W2340 23" Monitor @ Rbmods

Miscellany
HotHardware's Two and A Half Geeks Video Webcast - 12/6/2010 @ HotHardware


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Hardware Roundup: AMD Phenom II X6 1100T Edition

Posted: December 7, 2010 @ time: 06:22AM
Author: Nemo

AMD's first six-core processor, the Phenom II X6 1090T, came out in April with a clock frequency of 3.2GHz and a boosted frequency of 3.6GHz. AMD added the Phenom II X6 1075T processor back in September with a clock frequency of 3.0GHz and a boost frequency of 3.5GHz and a TDP of 125 watts. Now, here it is just a little over two months later and AMD has issued a refresh to its six-core lineup with Phenom II X6 1100T. This refresh takes the core clock speed to 3.3GHz stock with a Turbo Core speed of 3.7GHz. Like the 1075T and 1090T, the 1100T sports 512KB of L2 cache per core (3MB total) and 6MB Shared L3 cache and supports either DDR2 or DDR3 memory and uses the AM3 socket. The 1100T is also a Black Edition processor with an unlocked multiplier.

AMD Phenom II X6 1100T @ OCC
AMD Phenom II X6 1100T Black Edition CPU @ HotHardware
AMD Phenom II X6 1100T Black Edition CPU @ TechSpot
AMD Phenom II X6 1100T Black Edition @ Neoseeker
AMD's December 2010 CPU Update: Phenom II X6 1100T Comes Calling @ PC Perspective
AMD Phenom II X6 1100T Black Edition CPU @ Legit Reviews
AMD Phenom-II X6-1100T Processor @ Benchmark Reviews
AMD Phenom II X6 1100T: Last Phenom II Six-Core Processor @ Bjorn3D


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Google Unveils the First Chrome OS Laptop, the Cr-48

Posted: December 7, 2010 @ time: 04:30PM
Author: bp9801

Remember how Google decided to hold a conference on short order and how many rumored it'd be for a new netbook running Chrome OS? Well, they were all right as Google has officially unveiled the first Chrome OS laptop, the Cr-48. Google will distribute the laptop through its Chrome OS Pilot Program which is kind of like a public beta in that you have to apply for it. There are a limited number of Cr-48 laptops to go around for it, but retail models from Acer and Samsung are expected to launch during the middle of 2011. Google is also doing a number of small promotions to give away the laptop to interested users and businesses which will then provide feedback to Google, but as of now, there is no way to buy the laptop.

Now, on to the nitty gritty, the specifications. The Cr-48 has a 12.1 inch screen, a full sized keyboard, an oversized clickpad, a Qualcomm Gobi 3G chip for data usage on Verizon in the US with your choice of carriers internationally, 802.11n dual-band WiFi, integrated webcam, and flash storage. Google claims the Cr-48 can last over eight hours during usage and last over eight days on standby. The keyboard foregos a Caps Lock key and has a Search key in its place while the Function keys up top have been replaced with various action keys. The action keys control forward and back, the sound, brightness, and whether or not you see one window or several, among others. As for the looks, there are no logos or emblems of any kind on the laptop, it is just solid black. As for the Cr-48 name, well, that refers to an isotope of the element chromium.

I expect we will hear more about this laptop and Chrome OS in general, but consider this laptop a beta test for the finished product. Like I said, we can expect retail Chrome OS laptops from Acer and Samsung during the middle of next year.


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MPAA Going After Universities

Posted: December 7, 2010 @ time: 06:50PM
Author: CheeseMan42

The Motion Picture Association of America, or MPAA, has decided to focus its sights on universities in the country. The goal is likely to cut off a larger number of pirates than by going after individuals. The MPAA hopes to use the Higher Education Opportunity Act of 2008 to persuade the schools to cut off file sharers from network access. The MPAA can't do anything to enforce the law, but can attempt to convince lawmakers to threaten to pull federal funding from the school. Part of the HEOA is that universities take steps to curb piracy and copyright infringement. The MPAA is following in the footsteps of the RIAA, which has already started to send letters to some schools. Some of them have tried to fight back to protect students and said that they couldn't track students based on IP addresses.


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PlayStation 3 Firmware V3.55 Launches, Brings One Fix

Posted: December 7, 2010 @ time: 09:01PM
Author: bp9801

There is a new PlayStation 3 firmware update today, v3.55, which is another mandatory patch. The only thing Sony says about it is that it is "a security patch." One can surmise it is pushed out as mandatory is due to all the hacks out for the PS3 and it is one way Sony can circumvent it. I have yet to turn on my PS3 today since it is finals time, but I am sure I will be greeted with the download when I do. Most people lament the mandatory patches since each one fixes a security flaw used by hackers to jailbreak the console, but Sony is always quick on the ball to correct the flaw. Then it usually doesn't take long before the hackers have jailbroken the console again and the cycle will just keep on repeating itself. At any rate, there is a new firmware update for the console which hopefully only patches a security flaw and doesn't hinder it in any way.


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Hardware Roundup: NVIDIA GTX 570 Edition

Posted: December 8, 2010 @ time: 04:16AM
Author: Nemo

Just in time for the holidays, NVIDIA has released its GTX 570 graphics card to join the GTX 580 card released barely a month ago. With the same benefits seen in the GTX 580 from the redesign of the GF 110 core, the GTX 570 promises better performance and power consumption than its GTX 470 predecessor while also outperforming AMD's top single-GPU card, the HD 5870. Priced at a MSRP of $349, the GTX 570 comes with 480 CUDA cores, 15 streaming multiprocessors, 60 texture units and 40 ROP units. The core clock speed is set at 732 MHz and the 1280MB GDDR5 memory is clocked at 1900MHz. Check out the reviews to see how this card performs and whether it can live up to its promises.
   
NVIDIA Geforce GTX 570 @ OCC
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 570 @ Neoseeker
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 570 1.25GB Graphics Card @ PC Perspective
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 570 Video Card @ Legit Reviews
Nvidia's GeForce GTX 570 graphics processor @ Tech Report
Gigabyte GeForce GTX 570 (1280MB) @ TechSpot
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 570 DirectX 11 GPU @ HotHardware
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 570 GPU @ Bjorn3d
Gainward GeForce GTX 570 1280MB Goes Like Hell Video Card @ TweakTown
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 570 Video Card @ [H]ardOCP
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 570 Video Card @ Benchmark Reviews


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Futuremark Releases 3DMark 11

Posted: December 8, 2010 @ time: 04:29AM
Author: premiumgfx

Futuremark has released the latest version of its 3DMark benchmark software, 3DMark 11. This new version brings many changes over it's predecessor, 3DMark Vantage, most notably DirectX 11 support. 3DMark 11 will extensively test the new features that DirectX 11 brings such as tessellation, compute shaders and multi-threading. The benchmark consists of six tests, including two tests of the "Deep Sea" scene, two tests of the "High Temple" scene, a Physics test and a combined test. Other features such as offline results management, benchmark looping, unlimited results storage online and online comparisons of results enable users to effectively compile and assess data to meet their needs. As always, 3DMark 11 will be available in three editions: Basic, Advanced and Professional. The Basic edition is free, while the Advanced and Professional editions are US$19.95 and US$995.00 respectively. All versions of 3DMark 11 can be downloaded from Futuremark's website. In addition Futuremark has posted various trailers of the new tests here. 3DMark 11 requires DirectX11, a DirectX 11 capable video card and Windows Vista or Windows 7 to operate.

Have you been benching with 3DMark11? Discuss the latest version of 3DMark and share results with our forum members here.


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Hardware Roundup: Wednesday Edition

Posted: December 8, 2010 @ time: 04:46AM
Author: Nemo

We have another look at the AMD Phenom II X6 1100T Black Edition CPU released yesterday. We also have reviews of GeForce GTS 450 and GTX 580 video cards. Be sure to also check out the GTX 570 roundup in today's news as well. In cooling, there's a trio of CPU coolers from Apack, Xigmatek and Prolimatech. Futuremark's 3DMark 11 benchmarking software is reviewed by two of our affiliates as well, so be sure to check out all of the articles linked below.

Cases
Xigmatek Asgard II Computer Case @ Tweaknews

Cooling
Apack Zerotherm ZT-10D Heatsink @ Frostytech
XIGMATEK Aegir SD128264 CPU Cooler @ Madshrimps
Prolimatech Super Mega CPU Cooler @ Madshrimps

CPUs
AMD Phenom II X6 1100T Black Edition CPU @ TweakTown

Software
A Look at Futuremark's 3DMark 11 @ Techgage
Futuremark’s 3DMark 11 Benchmarking Suite @ TweakTown

Speakers/Headphones
Mad Catz CoD:Black Ops 5.1 ProGaming Headset @ Benchmark Reviews

Video
Sparkle GeForce GTS 450 1GB Video Card @ ThinkComputers
MSI GeForce GTX 580 1536MB Video Card Overclocked @ TweakTown

Miscellany
TweakTown Holiday Buyers Guide 2010 @ TweakTown


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LittleBigPlanet 2 Beta Tester Recreates Wolfenstein 3D

Posted: December 8, 2010 @ time: 02:10PM
Author: bp9801

LittleBigPlanet was a highly ambitious game that let you create practically any side-scrolling level you wanted and share it with the world. Its sequel, LittleBigPlanet 2, looks to upstage the first game by letting you create virtually anything you want, even other games. LBP 2 is currently in beta right now and one such beta tester is a rather skilled builder. You see, he did nothing more than recreate Wolfenstein 3D entirely in LBP 2. The effect of it is a little weird, but well, it looks pretty darn close to Wolfenstein 3D to me. Since this is a closed beta and this is just one man's creation, I am sure we will see similar things created once the game ships. The content creators typically like to share tips and strategies for creating things in LBP so I am sure the Wolfenstein 3D recreation is just the first of many. LittleBigPlanet 2 will be hitting the PlayStation 3 on January 18th.


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NVIDIA SLI Licensed for Intel Sandy Bridge Motherboards

Posted: December 8, 2010 @ time: 04:38PM
Author: bp9801

Intel's Sandy Bridge series of processors is almost here and with that comes a new motherboard platform. We all know AMD Crossfire will work on it, but what about NVIDIA SLI? Well, NVIDIA just announced today that its SLI technology has been licensed by leading motherboard manufacturers for use on Intel P67 Express motherboards. The P67 Express boards will be necessary for the Sandy Bridge processors, and now boards from the likes of Intel, ASUS, Gigabyte, EVGA, MSI, and more, will have the capability of running NVIDIA SLI. All the motherboards will have support for single or dual NVIDIA cards in SLI, with ones having the NF200 chip capable of running 3-way SLI. The ASUS Maximus IV Extreme, first shown here, will be one such board with an NF200 chip so you will be more than capable of picking up three GTX 580s, or something similar, to run on it. The Intel Sandy Bridge processors and P67 Express motherboards are expected to launch early next year.


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Intel Looking to Break into Mobile Market

Posted: December 8, 2010 @ time: 06:38PM
Author: CheeseMan42

Intel has long been a power player in the desktop and server markets. However, its processors are a little too powerful to compete in the rapidly exploding tablet and smartphone market, where companies like Qualcomm are much more successful. Intel hopes to break into that market in the first half of 2011, according to CEO Paul Otellini. Manufacturers of 35 tablets have signed on to use the chips, including Dell and Asus. Calling the race to the market "a marathon, not a sprint," Otellini expects that Intel will break into the smartphone market in the second half of 2011. As a show of confidence, Intel has also resumed its stock buyback program and increased its quarterly dividend by 15%.


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Google Looking for Chrome OS Testers

Posted: December 9, 2010 @ time: 01:32AM
Author: premiumgfx

Following the reveal of its Cr-48 notebook Tuesday, Google is now looking for Chrome OS testers as part of its pilot program. Each tester will receive a Cr-48 notebook from Google equipped with the Chrome OS and will be expected to provide detailed feedback to Google about the upcoming OS. But be warned, Google has said that the "Pilot program is not for the faint of heart," and reminded potential applicants that the Chrome OS is a "work in progress." Applicants must be at least 18 years old and live in the U.S. as Google currently cannot ship Chrome notebooks internationally "due to product certification requirements." Interested readers can sign up here under one of five categories named "business, education, non-profit, developer and individual." Just remember that applications close at 11:59:59 PM PST on December 21, 2010! Google will contact successful applicants after the closing date.


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Hardware Roundup: Thursday Edition

Posted: December 9, 2010 @ time: 06:36AM
Author: Nemo

We have reviews on three CPU air coolers today from Thermalright and ZEROtherm as well as a portable USB powered 120mm fan from Thermaltake. In storage-related items there's a review of the Thermaltake BlacX 5G USB 3.0 HDD Docking Station along with a review on the OCZ Enyo USB 3.0 Portable solid state drive. For those looking for some stocking stuffer ideas you can check out the Best PC Video Games 2010 Holiday Guide or any of the other reviews in today's roundup.

Cooling
Thermaltake USB Powered Mobile Fan 12 @ Legit Reviews
Thermalright Archon CPU Air Cooler @ [H]ardOCP
ZEROtherm ZT-560D and ZT-570D CPU Coolers @ TweakTown

Gaming
Best PC Video Games 2010 Holiday Guide @ Benchmark Reviews

Networking
BigFoot Networks Killer 2100 NIC @ XSReviews

Prebuilts
Quick Review: ASRock ION 3D 152B Intel Atom D525 HTPC with NVIDIA 3DTV Play @ TweakTown

Storage/Hard Drives
Thermaltake BlacX 5G USB 3.0 HDD Docking Station @ TweakTown
OCZ Enyo USB 3.0 Portable Solid State Drive @ ThinkComputers

Video
Asus ENGT430 Geforce GT 430 Videocard @ Tweaknews
The Shader Difference - GeForce GTX 580 at GTX 480 Clocks @ TweakTown


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Major Manufacturers to Drop VGA by 2015

Posted: December 9, 2010 @ time: 12:07PM
Author: bp9801

In this editor's opinion, it has certainly been a long time coming with the news that major manufacturers have decided to drop support for the VGA connection by 2015. A syndicate of companies including AMD, Dell, Lenovo, LG, and Samsung announced today that all will drop support for the VGA connection by the year 2015, signaling the end of an era for the venerable connection type. The VGA connection has been around for over twenty years so its shortcomings are well noted, however the syndicate cited that DisplayPort and HDMI offer increased power efficiency, smaller size, and support for greater resolutions were the main reasons it decided to drop VGA. AMD plans to take the initial step by dropping support for VGA in 2013, as well as DVI-I and low voltage differential signaling technology (LVDS). The syndicate does say that since most monitors today still make use of VGA, the connection won't entirely die by 2015 but that most PC manufacturers are on board to drop it over time. I see this as a good step for displays and graphics cards of all types as the move to a pure digital output/input will be beneficial to everyone involved.


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Intel's Light Peak Will Not Use Light at First

Posted: December 9, 2010 @ time: 05:13PM
Author: bp9801

Intel showed off its Light Peak technology at IDF last year. Light Peak has been described as the future of connections since it uses fiber-optics to carry any signal you want, whether it is for a display, a printer, or external storage devices. Intel envisions Light Peak as the only connection type future computers will use since it will replace them all, even USB 3.0. However, there is a bit of a snag as industry sources close to Intel announced today that Light Peak will not use light to carry information, at least at first. Practical realities have come in to play so a more conventional data stream, like copper wire, will more than likely be used in the initial batch. Light Peak is significantly faster than USB 3.0 as Light Peak can carry data at 10 gigabits per second in both directions at the same time. However, with the transition to copper in the initial wave the speeds should not be affected much at all. Light Peak is scheduled to appear in products as early as next year, more likely in the first half rather than the second. Sony and Apple are expected to be the first manufacturers to incorporate Light Peak when it does launch.


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Noctua Unveils New AMD Opteron Coolers

Posted: December 9, 2010 @ time: 09:01PM
Author: Nemo

Noctua has upgraded its lineup of CPU coolers for AMD Opteron servers and workstations. The two new coolers, NH-U12DO A3 and NH-U9DO A3, are equipped with two Noctua NF-P12 120mm or NF-B9 92mm fans to achieve improved quiet cooling performance and support AMD's socket G34 platform. The coolers are based on Noctua's NH-U series which have six heatpipes, a performance optimized fin stack and an enlarged contact surface suitable for socket G34 CPUs allow for further improved performance. The units make use of NM-A3 SecuFirm2 mounting system, which gives the NH-U12DO A3 and NH-U9DO A3 support for both Socket F and the newer G34 and C32 sockets. Both coolers can be installed rotated by 90° for added flexibility and to allow optimal positioning which can be especially critical on dual socket motherboards.


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Hardware Roundup: Friday Edition

Posted: December 10, 2010 @ time: 06:31AM
Author: Nemo

From a portability standpoint, the Cooler Master USNA95 notebook charger offers a slim design along with the ability to charge multiple devices which makes it a good candidate for road warriors and others on the go. Another Cooler Master product being reviewed today is the V6 GT CPU cooler. In storage we have a couple of solid state drives being reviewed including the Samsung 470 Series 256GB SSD and a SAS format SSD from SMART Modular. Be sure to check out all the reviews using the links provided below.

Cooling
Cooler Master V6 GT Cooler @ Tweaknews
Arctic Cooling Arctic MX-4 Thermal Paste @ ThinkComputers

Input Devices
SteelSeries 7G Mechanical Gaming Keyboard @ Benchmark Reviews

Media Players
WD's TV Live Hub media box @ Tech Report

Mobile
Cooler Master USNA95 Notebook Charger @ Neoseeker

Motherboards
ASUS Sabertooth 55i P55 Chipset Motherboard @ [H]ardOCP

Networking
Bigfoot Networks Killer 2100 Gaming Network Card @ Legit Reviews

Notebooks
Alienware M11x 11-in Core i7-640UM Gaming Notebook @ PC Perspective

Power Supplies
SilverStone Strider Plus ST50F-P 500W Power Supply @ TweakTown

Storage/Hard Drives
Samsung 470 Series 256GB SSD @ HotHardware
Iomega eGo 1TB USB 3.0 Portable Hard Drive @ TechSpot
SMART Modular XceedIOPS SF-1500 Powered SAS SSD @ TweakTown

Video
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 570 @ Techgage

Miscellany
Blu-ray Importing: December 2010 Buying Guide @ TweakTown


Complete Story


FCC Reports Finds Over Half the Nation's Broadband Connections are Not Broadband

Posted: December 10, 2010 @ time: 03:55PM
Author: bp9801

The FCC has just published findings from a recent report which are pretty interesting. In that report, the FCC found out that over half of the nation's broadband connections are not actually broadband. The report discovered that 68% of all the broadband connections in the US fall below the minimum of 4Mbps down and 1Mbps up which the FCC constitutes as being broadband. This means that the majority of the people in the US who have broadband really don't, at least by the FCC's standard. Looks like it is high time to get a national broadband plan in effect which gets everyone at least 4Mbps down and 1Mbps up. Also in the report are the group's findings on mobile broadband usage. In that, the FCC found that mobile wireless service subscribers and data plans with full internet access grew 48% in the second half of 2009. When you factor in all the connections with speeds over 200kbps, mobile wireless leads everything at 39.4%. Cable modems come in second at 32.4% while ADSL comes in third at 23.3%. However, connections over 3Mbps have cable modems squarely in the lead with a share of over 70%.


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Micron Embeds Error Correction on Flash Memory Chips

Posted: December 10, 2010 @ time: 07:25PM
Author: bp9801

Typically what makes up a good solid state drive is the controller it is running. Companies like SandForce make some of the best controllers and are often times drives using one are the only ones to consider. Controllers ensure the SSD can last a long time and that any bad cells are easily taken care of, among other things. Micron seems to be wanting to take away some of the responsibility from controllers by embedding error correction directly on the flash memory chips. The new chips are called ClearNAND and each one has a 24-bit error correction engine built right in. This means each chip will be able to focus on error correction which will leave the controller able to do other things, like delivering even more speed.

Micron says the new ClearNAND chips are available now in 25nm sizes and come in 8 to 32GB packages for Standard ClearNAND and 16 to 64GB for Enhanced ClearNAND. The difference between the two is that Standard ClearNAND is aimed at portable media players while Enhanced will see usage in computers.


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Arctic Cooling Releases Freezer 11 LP CPU Cooler

Posted: December 11, 2010 @ time: 03:34AM
Author: premiumgfx

Arctic Cooling has released its latest CPU cooler, the Freezer 11 LP. The Freezer 11 LP (low-profile) is designed for compact systems where silence is paramount. The new cooler measures 115x106x53mm (LxWxH) and weighs in at 255g, resulting in a low-profile footprint suitable for a variety of situations. Other features such as a 92mm PWM fan, two 6mm copper heatpipes and 50 aluminium fins enable a maximum cooling capacity of 90W. The Freezer 11 LP also includes a push-pin mounting system and pre-applied ARCTIC MX-2 thermal paste for clean and quick installation. The cooler supports Intel sockets 1155, 1156 and 775. The Freezer 11 LP will retail for US$19.90 (excluding VAT).


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Hardware Roundup: Weekend Edition

Posted: December 11, 2010 @ time: 10:27AM
Author: Nemo

For our weekend roundup we managed to turn up a couple of review articles on overclocked GeForce graphics cards that include the GTX 480 and the recently released GTX 570. If you've never seen a Joby GorillaPod you owe it to yourself to check out this handy little gadget that comes in different sizes. We also have another review on the Survivor mid-tower case from BitFenix.

Cases
BitFenix Survivor Mid Tower PC Case @ Legit Reviews

Gadgets
Quick Review: Joby GorillaPod Magnetic @ TweakTown

Input Devices
Nexus SM-7000B Silent Mouse @ Rbmods

Video
Overclocked GeForce GTX 480 Shoot-Out: MSI vs. Gigabyte @ HotHardware
Gainward GeForce GTX 570 1280MB Goes Like Hell Video Card Overclocked @ TweakTown

Miscellany
Podcast #132 @ PC Perspective
The Top 20 Films Unreleased on Blu-ray - Part I @ TweakTown


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Spike TV Video Game Awards Wrap Up

Posted: December 12, 2010 @ time: 09:45AM
Author: CheeseMan42

Spike TV held its annual awards show last night, giving out awards for the best games. Among the big winners were Red Dead Redemption for Game of the Year and BioWare for Studio of the Year. A full list of winners and awards can be found here. However, the bigger news of the night came in the form of game reveals and trailers. A number of games were confirmed, while many others were given an official release date. The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, Prototype 2, and SSX: Deadly Descents were confirmed by their respective publishers. Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception and Mass Effect 3 were given release dates taking place during the holiday season next year. Forza 4 and Resistance 3 will see the light in the Fall of next year. Additionally, Professor Hugo Strange was revealed as a villain in Batman: Arkham City.


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Hardware Roundup: Monday Edition

Posted: December 13, 2010 @ time: 06:32AM
Author: Nemo

Welcome back to another week of reviews and articles from around the Web. We have several cases for you to look at today with reviews on the Lian Li PC-V1020R full-tower case, the Thermaltake Element Q Mini-ITX chassis and the In-Win Ironclad full-tower case. There's also another review on Corsair's A50 CPU cooler. Also in today's roundup we have a chance to check out the Samsung's 470 Series solid-state drive, Corsair's new Vengeance memory kit and more.

Cases
Lian Li PC-V1020R Full Tower Computer Case @ Benchmark Reviews
Thermaltake Element Q Mini-ITX Chassis w/ 220W Power Supply @ TweakTown
In-Win Ironclad Full Tower Case @ Bjorn3D

Cooling
Corsair A50 CPU Cooler @ Tweaknews

Input Devices
Quick Review: HKS PS3 Racing Dual Shock Controller @ TweakTown

Memory
Quick Review: Corsair Vengeance Series PC3-12800 12GB Kit @ TweakTown

Mobile
PhotoFast IPADock - The Mother of all iPad Docks @ Bjorn3D

Storage/Hard Drives
Samsung's 470 Series solid-state drive @ Tech Report

Video
AMD Radeon vs NVIDIA GeForce: Desktop Graphics Last Stand @ Benchmark Reviews
AMD Catalyst Control Center Update: Catalyst 10.12 Preview @ PC Perspective


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Sony Announces New Lines of SDHC Memory Cards

Posted: December 13, 2010 @ time: 12:56PM
Author: bp9801

Sony has long stuck to its guns on the various formats, trying to ensure that its products have a proprietary storage medium that will only work on its devices. Well, times are changing as Sony has just announced new lines of SDHC memory cards that will work on products not manufactured by Sony. This means you can pop in a Sony SDHC card in your Canon camera or the like, so long as the product takes SDHC cards then the Sony ones will work. Its a big change from the company, but one for the better. There are three new lines of SDHC cards that are targeted at various level of camera enthusiasts. The first is the Essential Series which comes in 2, 4, and 8GB sizes, and are Class 4 cards. The next is the Experience Series, which adds 16 and 32GB sizes to the line while still running at Class 4 speeds. The final line is the Expert Series which are all Class 10 cards and come in 8, 16, and 32GB sizes. The Expert line is ideal for Full HD video recording and 3D pictures. Since a Class 10 card has transfer speeds up to 22MB/second, there should be no loss of data to it. All three series' cards also feature a memo space to write down what the card holds, though you will need some petite hand writing to accomplish it.

All three series of SDHC cards are expected to launch in January, though no mention was made of a price.


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