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Archives > 2008 > Feb
Friday, February 29, 2008
Extending Ubuntu's Battery Life
"Last week when traveling to Europe for FOSDEM and other business meetings, I had picked up a new 9-cell battery for a Lenovo ThinkPad T60. While an additional three battery cells will noticeably extend your battery life, you can also extend your battery life by taking a few simple steps to optimize your Linux desktop that will also reduce your power consumption and heat output. In this article are a few simple steps to take in order to extend your notebook's battery life on Ubuntu."

More information can be found here.
ATI CrossFireX Preview - Triple CrossFire Benchmarking @ Legit Reviews
"In March, ATI will be releasing CATALYST 8.3 drivers, which now offer support for CrossFireX in both DirectX 9 and DirectX 10 applications. For now only the Radeon HD 3800 series of video cards will support 3-way or 4-way CrossFire in compatible PCs. ATI has stated in the open that performance still has a ways to go and that over the next few months performance is only going to get better. The driver team at ATI is cranking away on CrossFireX and as you will see in this article they are off to a great start..."

More information can be found here.
NVIDIAs shady trick to boost the GeForce 9600 GT @ techPowerUp
"When we first reviewed NVIDIA's new GeForce 9600 GT we noticed a discrepancy between the advertised core speed and the frequency reported by the clock generator. After further investigation we can now answer what causes this."

More information can be found here.
3-Way NVIDIA SLI Review - GeForce 8800 GTX x 3 @ Legit Reviews
"NVIDIA’s 3-way SLI indeed works but at the price of entry, it had better. The problem however is that in this instance it is based on technology that is approaching the end of its life. The 8800 GTX and Ultra have all but been replaced by the 8800 GTS 512MB and the 9000 series cards have already started to launch. The Quad SLI launch of the 9800GX2 is imminent and should undercut the cost of either Triple GTX’s or Ultra’s and perform on par or better. So really the only way this is going to be of benefit to anyone is if you’ve already got a 680i or 780i and a pair of GTX’s or Ultra’s..."

More information can be found here.
Complete GeForce 8800 GS/GT/GTS Voltmodding Article posted @ techPowerUp
"Our latest voltmod article contains detailed instructions how to modify the GeForce 8800 GS/GT/GTS for higher voltages to increase the overclocking potential. Included modifications are GPU Voltage, Memory Voltage, Reverse Memory Voltage and Overcurrent Protection."

More information can be found here.
Leadtek WinFast PX9600 GT Extreme @ Bjorn3D
"Leadtek honored us today by allowing Bjorn3D to review a brand new, just released, Nvidia 9000 series card, more specifically the WinFast PX9600 GT Extreme. One thought popped into my mind when I heard we were going to be reviewing this, 'Why are they releasing a 600 series card first and not an 800 series like all the previous releases, as in the 8800?' My opinion is that they have there eyes set and ears open to the people out there that aren't enthusiasts but are instead weekend gamers that can't afford the enthusiast cards or don't want to pull multiple one hundred dollar bills out of there wallets, or purses (for all you lady gamers). Join me as we take a closer look at the brand new WinFast PX9600 GT from Leadtek."

More information can be found here.
bit-tech News: Mod of the Month - February 2008
"If you read this monthly feature or even this site regularly, you know that I have a soft spot for the Mac G5 case. So sleek, so sexy, so...perforated. Honestly, how many of us say"

More information can be found here.
bit-tech News: The Sea of Grey
"It's clear that Nvidia had really struggled to compete with the Radeon HD 3850 ever since its launch and, in fact, it was the first time it has struggled to compete with AMD for some time. Nvidia didn't know what to do with the Radeon HD 3850 256MB when it launched, because the GeForce 8800 GT 256MB was taking longer than expected to get to market. I was even offered a BIOS that would disable 256MB of memory on one of our GeForce 8800 GT 512MB reference cards, just so that Nvidia didn't look as bad. This was something I turned down –"

More information can be found here.
I4U: Microsoft Wireless Laser Mouse 7000 Review
"This wireless mouse is rechargeable and includes a charging base. The mouse also has shortcut buttons for Windows Vista. As with the 6000, when you accelerate the mouse pointer with the Microsoft Wireless Laser Mouse 7000 via the software you give up some accuracy for the sake of smaller hand movements. The scroll wheel is smooth scrolling and lacks any click. This makes it easier to scroll long pages by flicking the scroll wheel. However, I found that I hit the scroll wheel often be accident making the page jump around a bit."

More information can be found here.
Thursday, February 28, 2008
LG CU515 Review @ Digital Trends
"The LG CU515 is a fine phone with fast Internet access, versatile email and a decent camera."

More information can be found here.
Apevia X-Jupiter Jr. G Type @ techPowerUp
"The Apevia X-Jupiter Jr. is a very cool looking case at a very low price point. This means you can expect a flashy exterior with a traditional interior, making it a great budget LAN party case. The case comes features a door with integrated LCD temperature display and is available in a wide range of colors."

More information can be found here.
Cooler Master Cosmos S
"Back in August we looked at the Cooler Master Cosmos 1000, which was a very well designed EATX chassis that ultimately received our Editor's Choice Award for its excellent build quality, stylish design, and its feature-set. Just a few days ago, however, Cooler Master had unleashed the Cosmos S chassis. The Cosmos S RC-1100 is based upon the Cosmos design, but features a new racing theme, touch-sensitive panel, and various other improvements. The RC-1100 is meant to be the"

More information can be found here.
Tuniq Miniplant 950W Power Supply Review @ Bigbruin.com
"The Tuniq Miniplant 950W power supply winds up being interesting for not being particularly different. The Miniplant name may be misleading since it isn't smaller than normal, but just standard size. With so many high powered power supplies being sold with oversized housings, getting one of these units into your case may be hit or miss. With the Tuniq Miniplant you know that if a standard ATX power supply will fit, that this 950W unit will fit, too."

More information can be found here.
bit-tech News: Performance Mainstream Graphics Update
"There are a lot of great products in the performance mainstream sector that all appear to hit price points that are so finely balanced that it's hard to quantify which is better value for money. Indeed, it was one thing that cropped up during my initial GeForce 9600 GT testing and it was what prompted me to write this article. Could it be that there are maybe too many good products in this segment? On one front, this is obviously a good thing for the consumer, but has it got to the stage where the consumer is actually left in uncertain waters because there is no definitive answer to the '//what graphics card should I buy?' question."

More information can be found here.
Vizo sata Saturno 2.5 hard drive caddy Review @ XtremeComputing
"Moving onto the end of the Saturno we find all the necessary connections and buttons. There is the usual USB and power connections but this also has a connection for e-sata, as mentioned before, plus this caddy is capable of one touch backup of either certain files or the whole of your boot disk, which would be VERY useful if the worst should happen."

More information can be found here.
I4U: Belkin N1 Vision Wireless Router Review
"The coolest feature of the Belkin N1 Vision wireless router is the built-in LCD display that shows information about the router at a glance. The screens show date and time, download speed, connected devices, traffic from connected devices in the past 24 hours, upload and download speeds, and a pictorial representation of your network that makes it easy to tell where problems with your connection are happening."

More information can be found here.
Wednesday, February 27, 2008
Logitech Z Cinema PC Speakers Review @ Digital Trends
"The Logitech Z Cinéma speaker system adds some advanced features like a remote control and 100% digital sound."

More information can be found here.
XFX 8800GTS vs. Gainward 8800GT 1024MB Review @ Metku.net
"As a conclusion I have to say I'm impressed by the performance of the G92 core. The difference between the GTS and the GT 1024 MB was surprisingly small though, only a couple of frames per second in both average and minimum."

More information can be found here.
Rosewill RX81-MP-SC-SLV @ Bjorn3D
"I have reviewed plenty of external and internal enclosures here at Bjorn3D.com. I have seen enclosure with some combination of USB, eSATA, and/or FireWire 400 connector. Today, we are going to take a look another enclosure which takes the connector to another level by incorporating FireWire 800. The Rosewill RX81-MP-SC-SLV (man that’s a mouthful for an external enclosure), will be the focus of today’s review. This is a 3.5’’ SATA to 1394a/b, USB, and eSATA enclosure."

More information can be found here.
Noctua NH-U12P Heatsink @ techPowerUp
"On the heels of the successful NH-U12F CPU heatsink, Noctua has released a newer, more compatible version called the NH-U12P. This version has more clearance below the fins, making it easier to install on many motherboards. It comes with the new, ultra-quiet NF-P12 fan and a tube of the new NT-H1 thermal compound."

More information can be found here.
bit-tech News: Imperium Romanum
"For all this criticism though, //Imperium Romanum remains a decently enjoyable game that is pretty standard and by-the-numbers, but fun in spite of that. Is //Imperium Romanum the type of game which you absolutely must go out and buy? No, far from it. It's not even the type of game that you'll end up replaying or getting massively involved in. Yet, if you do fancy a go at a fun and solid strategy game with a focus on micromanagement and not exploration then you could certainly do a lot worse. It's a verdict that is strongly grounded in my past experience of Roman-themed strategy games too because, while //Imperium Romanum hasn't turned me back onto this most classic of genres, it has certainly entertained me enough while I played it."

More information can be found here.
bit-tech News: Zalman ZM-FG1000 FPSGUN Gaming Mouse
"Gaming mice are probably the most important peripheral hardcore gamers can invest in, so cost is not usually an issue if the gains are noticeable. What Zalman is asking you to do though is to buy into an idea, a concept – one that may or may not work according to how well you adjust and how big your hands are. Comparing the FPSGUN to the likes of a Razer or SteelSeries mouse though might be considered a little unfair, as essentially you are limited to using the FPSGUN for FPS games. So, even if you did invest ?35 in the FPSGUN, you would still have to stick with your old mouse for everything else – for us, this ruins any of the value and attraction the design could have ever had."

More information can be found here.
Zalman ZM-DS4F Dual Speaker Headset/Headphones Review @ Tweaknews.net
"I can definitely say these headphones would be a fine upgrade from a pair of earbuds included with mp3 players. They are light, durable, and music sounds crisp and clear no matter how loud the volume is. The fold up design allows for portability and the $30 US price tag won't break the bank either."

More information can be found here.
I4U: Ziszor Handheld Paper Shredder Review
"This small shredder allows you to shred all those junk mails you get that could be used to steal your identity if they fell into the wrong hands. The compact size of the Ziszor handheld shredder is designed so it can be taken with you on the road for shredding on business trips and you can carry it around the home for shredding documents when needed. The device is powered by four AA batteries that are included. Plastic bags are included to catch the shreds and reduce the mess."

More information can be found here.
Tuesday, February 26, 2008
Intel Core 2 Duo E8500 Processor Review @ Legit Reviews
"The Intel Core 2 Duo E8500 that we specifically looked at in this article did very well in the benchmarks and consistently beat the AMD Phenom 9600 Black Edition quad-core processor. This goes to show how well the Wolfdale core has been developed and also how bad of a position AMD is in when it comes to processors. When it came to overclocking, the 45nm Wolfdale processors do great and hitting 500MHz FSB is easily possible, which means 2GHz DDR3 memory kits can be finally released and companies like Corsair Memory have already launched such products..."

More information can be found here.
bit-tech News: Thermaltake Toughpower QFan 650W power supply
"We like this PSU, but only to a certain extent -- it's certainly a solidly built unit with awesome efficiency and it's virtually silent for just about everyone that will buy this kind of unit. The modular connectors work well, however the cable choices could be far better in more than one case. In addition, the branding is overpowering to the point of grotesque -- having that in a case will only make us feel like an ad-whore rather than letting the PSU speak for itself. Even though it's nice to see a variation in colour---the white fan in particular---we're not wildly in love with the whole look. The QFan design, while very quiet, is nullified by the stupid piece of plastic screwed under half of it. It's not like the unit gets hot, but it makes a super-large 14cm fan quiet pointless if the airflow is being forced out where it was supposed to be sucked in from! I'm not entirely sure still if it's //that revolutionary either -- it's essentially a shroudless fan rather than one with specifically clipped edges from the likes of a Noctua NF-P12 fan, which, to us at least, seems significantly technically superior. Regardless the power supply seems to work well, and even if it is a multi-rail design, the spread of rails and their weighting is sufficient to cover the 600W+ out of the total 650W they can push between just three out of four. But the question is: is it worth it over the likes of Corsair, PC Power and Cooling, Seasonic or Tagan in the same price range? It's difficult to say and it will come down to a personal preference of looks and package. An educated guess would tell me that most people will still go for the tried and tested Corsair HX620W, or the Seasonic M12 (which are virtually the same thing!) if they are looking for modular connectors. If you are tempted by a Thermaltake though -- at least we can say you'd get a good deal with this Toughpower QFan 650W model."

More information can be found here.
bit-tech News: Sins of a Solar Empire
"Stardock and Ironclad are to be congratulated on many levels. Not only have they successfully created a game that merges the best parts of RTS and 4X games, they've also managed to create a game that doesn't require you to upgrade your PC to be able to run it. What's more, Stardock should be praised for not including any copy protection with the game. In their own words, the idea is to"

More information can be found here.
I4U: NEC PlasmaSync 60XC10 60-inch Plasma HDTV Review
"The TV is capable of being used for HDTV and can play Blu-ray or HD DVD movies thanks to HDCP capability. However, the lack of multiple HD inputs limits the usability yin a home theater setting without resorting to HDMI switches. The lack of internal speakers could be an issue for some users, however most home theater owners buying a 60-inch plasma will likely already have a speaker system in place."

More information can be found here.
Monday, February 25, 2008
Mtron MOBI 3000 2.5-Inch 16GB SSD MSD-SATA3025 @ BmR
"Solid State Drives are not for everyone. Similar to the evolution towards DDR3 system memory, a gradual replacement of the Hard Disk Drive (HDD) by the Solid State Drive (SDD) is going to move very slow. The cost of purchase for SSD's is the primary cause, since most drives cost more than an entire computer system. Other factors include the restricted bandwidth available to flash-based SSD's. But what if the price was within reach? What if the data throughput was comparable? This is where Benchmark Reviews comes in to answer the tough questions, as we test the Mtron MOBI 3000 2.5-Inch 16GB SSD MSD-SATA3025."

More information can be found here.
Sony alpha DSLR-A200 Review @ Digital Trends
"For $699, you get a 10MP digicam, built-in image stabilization, anti-dust circuitry and 3 frames-per-second shooting out of the A200."

More information can be found here.
Review: Glacial Power 550W PSU @ GideonTech.com
"Glacialpower was kind enough to send over their 550W power supply, the GP-PS550BP. With an intelligent and silent design, it should provide great performance with some peace and quiet. I'll crack open the PSU to take a look inside as well to see what it's made of. With 550 Watts of power, it can power just about any mid-range PC you can piece together and possibly more."

More information can be found here.
Biostar GeForce 9600 GT 512 MB V9603GT52 @ techPowerUp
"Biostar's new GeForce 9600 GT follows the specifications of the NVIDIA reference design to the letter. Even the cooler is unchanged. This does not have to be a bad thing. The card should be available earlier than any "special" models and also come without a price premium for overclocking you can do yourself."

More information can be found here.
Vaja i-Volution SP - Leather Case for Apple iPhone Users
"With the Vaja i-Volution case installed, the Apple’s iPhone is still quite functional. The front flap opens enough to let you use the phone or touchscreen easily. Even though the flap was out of the way enough for me to hold the phone up to my ear, sometimes the flap would brush my face and become irritating. Ideally, for me, I was able to use the phone with my favorite Bluetooth headset without opening the flap at all..."

More information can be found here.
Bgears b-Envi Micro Case ay Modders-Inc
"Bgears has burst onto the case modder/enthusiast scene with some pretty innovative products. With the new b-Envi Small Form Factor (SFF) case, Bgears tosses its hat into the ring and wants to spar with the other manufacturers in a crowded case market for the SFF crowd. Does this case have what it takes to make your friends b-Envious? I think you will find this to be a special case in many ways, so... step on through and learn about one of the best kept secrets in town!"

More information can be found here.
Cooler Master Cosmos S Full Tower Case Review @ Bigbruin.com
"Cooler Master really included many new features that I would expect to become a standard with high end computer cases, like the very cool touch sensor that replaced the standard power button. When building a high end computer system many user's focus on the internal components and not on the case, but with the Cosmos S arriving in March, the case should become a high priority."

More information can be found here.
bit-tech News: Lian Li Armoursuit PC-P80 chassis
"The Lian Li Armoursuit PC-P80 is, despite the garish Spiderman look of this particular review sample in my eyes, a rather attractive proposition as a case. The overall design is simple, functional and to-the-point on the basic, non-branded model and the addition of fans all over the case means that the cooling performance is excellent... providing you can live with the noise (or kit the case out with rheostats). There are only a few drawbacks to the PC-P80 in fact, though some of them are worryingly fundamental. For example, missing screws and the lack of a manual is a pretty basic error -- one an accomplished manufacturer like Lian Li should never make and that doesn't bode well. The look of the case for this ATI model is also pretty dividing -- you either love it or hate it, with very little middle ground for customers to sit in. This design isn't for the faint hearted at all, but ATI fanboys will lap it up. Still, if a cool running PC is what you're after and you happen to think the Armoursuit PC-P80 looks as good as it runs then there's absolutely no reason not to go for it. Although the recommended retail price for the basic model is £250 ($399), which is kind of steep in our opinion -- the fact that Xcase has the standard version on pre-order for £199 (inc. VAT) makes things a little bit easier to stomach though. The ATI version shown here is even more expensive, at around about £299 -- ludicrously expensive? Perhaps, but the PC-P80 does have an awful lot going in its favour to justify the cost."

More information can be found here.
Gigabyte GA-EX38-DS4 @ Bjorn3D
"Currently, the high-end motherboards are fairly similar her in terms of performance and features. Unlike old motherboards where they differ from each other in terms of overclockability, amount of ports, bundles, and features. Current motherboards seem to be performing so close to each other that often motherboards with same chipsets will have performance less than 5% from each other. In order to differentiate themselves among other boards, motherboard manufactures are starting implement different approaches. Asus is probably the most ambitious with their motherboard bundle and avant-garde chipset cooling and designs. MSI, on the other hand, tries to stands out by incorporate Audigy onboard audio. Gigabyte is doing something slightly different than either Asus or MSI. They have decided to produce greener motherboard with their latest DES motherboard family. In fact, Gigabyte is commented to the “greener” products as many of their current line-up of products (graphic !"

More information can be found here.
bit-tech News: Gigabyte's GA-EP35-DS4 motherboard
"All things considered, even though the Gigabyte GA-EP35-DS4 performs very well and fits well into a price niche we can't really recommend it ¨C its only advantage over the significantly cheaper GA-EP35-DS3R is CrossFire, and it screws that up so much with its subpar layout that it becomes a net feature loss, not a gain. If you really want CrossFire, get the MSI P35 Platinum because it not only keeps up with the DS4 in all areas, it has a better layout and costs around 25 percent less! The MSI P35 Platinum shows that it can not only match the EP35 power saving efforts, without needing funky software, but it's also been doing so since June last year. In addition, the Gigabyte solution doesn't adjust the front side bus and auto-overclock under load, like the Asus EPU. I think it's a great effort from Gigabyte ¨C we're always massively in favour of energy efficiency, but the current system needs to be greatly refined. Unfortunately the Gigabyte GA-EP35-DS4 doesn't do it for us, but don't discount the whole EP35 range, because we'd certainly give the GA-EP35-DS3R some serious attention instead."

More information can be found here.
Uberclok Reactor Gaming PC Review @ Digital Trends
"The Uberclok Reactor is overclocked, super powerful and extremely quiet. This is one of the best gaming systems out there."

More information can be found here.
ZOTAC GeForce 8800 GT 512MB AMP! HDMI Video Card @ BmR
"When you think of discrete graphics, your probably don't think low-end. It's very common, as with most things we can buy, for people to immediately shoot for the stars. In the video card world, this usually means discussing only the best money can buy, and this is the start of a bigger mistake. Very recently NVIDIA released their newest addition to the GeForce family: the 9600 GT. While it offers solid performance for the lower mid-range of discrete graphics, NVIDIA's 9th generation of video cards has only one offering thus far. Essentially, the latest is by far not the greatest. Since the remaining heavyweights are soon to be replaced by the upcoming GeForce 9800 GTX and 9800 GX2 in just another month, there seems to be a gaping hole left in the new lineup. This is where the market will continue to cling onto the tried and true mid-range solution: the GeForce 8800 GT. Not so long ago here at Benchmark Reviews, we offered a very unique comparison of the GeForce 8800 Graphics Performance: GT vs GTS vs GTX. In this article, it was shown that a more affordable 8800 GT could easily beat an overclocked 8800 GTS and compare to the far more expensive 8800 GTX. Well now we can do one better because ZOTAC offers an 8800 GT that not only directly competes with the 8800 GTX, but it goes places nobody else in the 8800 series can: HDMI digital audio and video output."

More information can be found here.
Sunday, February 24, 2008
ATI/AMD's Open-Source Plans
"Starting off the X.Org talks at FOSDEM 2008 was AMD's John Bridgman, who has been leading the AMD GPG open-source efforts. John had talked briefly about the history of their open-source efforts for the R500+ series and the evolution of AMD GPU hardware. Among the interesting comments made were that TexturedVideo/X-Video support for the R500/600 may be coming quite soon, DRM and Mesa work forthcoming, open-source multi-GPU CrossFire support is on the road-map, and they will be re-releasing R200 programming documents. The RV620 and RV635 documentation is expected in the near future."

More information can be found here.
Saturday, February 23, 2008
Hiper Anubis @ NordicHardware
"Many companies are now offering cases with a lot of clever features, but few are complete. Some are too far out, some could've used some more work, some are simply hideous. Some are just way too expensive, and some are simply lacking quality or distinguishing features. Hiper has attempted to avoid all of these traps, and here we will see if they've succeeded in doing so."

More information can be found here.
I4U: Cooler Master Cosmos S PC Case Review
"The side panels of the Cooler Master Cosmos S are easy to remove and require no tools. To remove either side panel all you need to do is press an eject button on the back of the case. The panels pop off the sides and are easy to remove. Inside the case the drive bays are tool less as well. The same locking rails are used in the Cooler Master Cosmos S that owners of the Cosmos are familiar with."

More information can be found here.
bit-tech News: Cooler Master Cosmos S
"The Cooler Master Cosmos S is an attractive and sleek case that looks even better than the standard Cosmos, holding its own in the higher end of the market when it comes to look. If the Antec P182 is just a little too plain for your tastes then the Cosmos S is an acceptable compromise between that and a Cooler Master Stacker 830 Custom. Looking at the Cosmos as a whole, it’s clear to see that the re-design has mainly focused on improving the look and accessibility of the chassis rather than making the fan cooling capabilities more powerful. That’s a mixed blessing obviously, but to us the benefits of this door-less and funkier design (that looks great in champagne grey) outweighs the unimproved fan cooling. It's also worth bearing in mind that the Cosmos S seems more aimed at watercoolers too – there’s room for a self contained radiator and so forth in the top. Simply put, the Cosmos S isn’t the best case we’ve ever seen and there are other chassis’ out there that can outpunch it in most areas – but we like the overall aesthetic and, if you’re a watercooler, it could be seen as great value for money (especially compared to the Silverstone TJ-07). However, when you consider that the Cosmos S is 25 percent more than the original Cosmos and doesn’t improve cooling performance, you have to ask whether that extra cost is worth it. We love the thought that has gone into the case’s design and some will definitely see value in the improvements made—especially on the watercooling front—but it’s not for every man and his dog."

More information can be found here.
Friday, February 22, 2008
A-DATA Classic C701 2 GB USB Flash Drive @ techPowerUp
"The new Classic series from A-DATA keeps the trusted and true design of traditional flash devices. The new C701 is aimed at the budget user, looking for simple and cheap flash storage."

More information can be found here.
Super Talent Project X DDR3-1800 @ Bjorn3D
"Introducing the Project X DDR3-1800 memory modules from Super Talent. Designed by a company known for producing some of the best RAM in the industry you can be sure you are protected for years to come as they include a lifetime warranty. What's that you say? You want more? What if I told you this RAM costs significantly less than many slower performing kits on the market? Interested yet? I know I am."

More information can be found here.
Noctua NT-H1 heat paste Review @ XtremeComputing
"I seem to be testing a lot of thermal pastes lately, so it will be nice when I have a roundup of the major performers (which after today should be most of them!) The NT-H1 paste from Noctua is a relatively new entry to the thermal paste market, so let’s take a look Noctua’s offering to the market."

More information can be found here.
Samsung Juke Review @ Digital Trends
"Don't get Juked by the Samsung Juke, the phone looks neat but has cheap speakers and a poor camera."

More information can be found here.
Thursday, February 21, 2008
QNAP TS-109 Pro SATA Gigabit NAS @ Benchmark Reviews
"Network Attached Storage (NAS) is slowly emerging as a single storage unit that could be easily attached to your home or business network, and could be accessed easily over your local area network. Today at Benchmark Reviews we have the QNAP TS-109 Pro Turbo Station All-in-one NAS server. QNAP TS-109 Pro comes with laundry list of features and the ability to expand the storage capabilities through the on-board USB and eSATA ports. Please read on to explore the performance and capabilities of TS-109 Pro as we compare it to the previously tested NAS products from other manufacturers."

More information can be found here.
bit-tech News: G94: Nvidia's GeForce 9600 GT 512MB graphics card
"Nvidia's GeForce 9600 GT 512MB is a great performer, as long as it hits the right price point. If it doesn't, there's even more of a reason to buy the GeForce 8800 GT than there ever was before -- it just goes to show how great that product really was for gamers. Thankfully, there are a few partners and retailers out there willing to charge what the card should ship at instead of what they'd like it to be in order to cash in on the sales rush at launch. Simply put, don't pay any more than £130 for a GeForce 9600 GT -- regardless of whether it's a standard card or one with a factory overclock."

More information can be found here.
EVGA, Palit and XFX GeForce 9600 GT Video Card Review @ Legit Reviews
"The NVIDIA GeForce 9600 GT series has proven itself to be a very solid mainstream graphics card with a suggested MSRP between $169-$189. Obviously, many of the board partners will have overclocked versions at higher price points and the EVGA and Palit cards that we reviewed today are examples of this as both are priced over $200. After using these three GeForce 9600 GT video cards it's clear that 512MB is the sweet spot as it is ideal for higher resolutions that require larger frame buffers. All of the cards did great and it was interesting to see the GeForce 9600 GT 512MB cards beat up on the overclocked GeForce 8800 GT 256MB at higher resolutions..."

More information can be found here.
I4U: XFX 9600 GT Video Card Review
"Today is the launch of the NVIDIA 9600 GT. This is the latest mid-range video card from NVIDIA. We are looking here at the XFX 9600 GT video card that runs stock clock speeds. In the end I was impressed with the performance of the XFX 9600 GT given its stock clock speeds and low price. The XFX 9600 GT may well be the next big thing in affordable and attainable graphics performance from NVIDIA."

More information can be found here.
Zotac GeForce 9600 GT Amp! Edition @ techPowerUp
"Today NVIDIA announced their new GeForce 9 Series. The first product is the GeForce 9600 GT, based on the new G94 GPU. Zotac's AMP! Edition comes overclocked straight out of the box for a little bit extra performance. This can bring the card very close to the GeForce 8800 GT in performance."

More information can be found here.
ECS A770M-A (V1.0) AMD 770 Motherboard Review @ Bigbruin.com
"The ECS A770M-A (V1.0) AMD 770 motherboard should not be overlooked by anyone looking to build a reliable, low cost system around the latest AMD processors. Those in the market for a highly configurable, overclocking motherboard should keep shopping, but if you want modern features and solid performance right out of the box, this is a good choice."

More information can be found here.
bit-tech News: Advergaming and Other Horror Stories
"Virtual worlds are also a popular target for advertisers. In //Second Life a number of companies have purchased land within the game to establish a permanent presence. You can buy products from retailers like Nike and Amazon. Apparently Starwoods Hotels and Resorts built a digital replica of a hotel they were planning to build in real life to see the reaction from people. You have to wonder about this logic though -- if companies think they can garner useful information from people's online choices they may be in for a nasty shock, after all, gaming is about escapism and most people frequently do things in games that they would never do in real life. There are all sorts of fantastical predictions about the amount of ad spending there will be in future games, but so far despite claims it will reach $2 billion by 2011 it remains far short of this target. There's a suggestion that this revenue could be worth $1 per game to publishers -- which is certainly enough to catch their attention. Still I think I'd be willing to spend an extra $1 on the game to get it without advertising. Personally I don't mind advertising when it's bundled into something free as they have to pay for it somehow but when you are already paying a premium price for something it's cheeky to just bombard your customers with adverts regardless."

More information can be found here.
NesteQ E²CS 500W @ NordicHardware
"It's dubbed E²CS, which is short for "Enhanced Easy Connecting System" and the entire series is supposed to have +80% power efficiency, which will satisfy the tree huggers. The E²CS is ranging from 400 to 750W via 450, 500 and 600 Watt versions, and we've been handed the 500W version with the part no. E²CS 5001.""

More information can be found here.
I4U: Fanatec Porsche 911 Turbo Wheel for PC & PS3 Review
"Today we are checking out one of the coolest racing wheels for PC and PS3 that you can get your hands on, the Fanatec Porsche 911 Wheel. This wheel looks just like it was ripped from the interior of a 911 turbo and put on your desk. Setting the Fanatec Porsche 911 Turbo Wheel up is easy. The shifter can connect to either side of the wheel and slides onto two metal bars. The H-pattern shifter isn’t as slick feeling as the shifter on the Logitech G25, but the Fanatec shifter is usable and fun to play with. Paddle shifters are mounted behind the racing wheel as well."

More information can be found here.
Wednesday, February 20, 2008
Tutorial - Add Color and Animation to your Engravings by Metku.net
"Most of the engravings today are done to a single sheet of acrylic but there is no reason why one couldn't use several of them. Added layers give some interesting possibilities like adding different colors to the design, make the design feel more 3D and finally, they enable animation."

More information can be found here.
Canon EOS 40D Review @ Digital Trends
"There's no mistaking the EOS 40D for one of the zillions of point-and-shoots or entry-level D-SLRs like the Nikon D40 or Canon Rebel XT."

More information can be found here.
Zalman ZM-NC2000 Notebook Cooler @ techPowerUp
"The Zalman NC2000 is a notebook cooler made of a solid aluminum sheet and black plastic bottom. Two fans cool the entire underside of the notebook and can be manually adjusted as well to find the perfect balance between cooling and fan noise."

More information can be found here.
Evo-G Mouse Bungee at Modders-Inc.com
"Corded mouse users from all over have at one point in time had to have cursed their corded mouse because the cord was caught on something. Well the Evo-G Mouse Bungee is designed to prevent any unwanted mouse movements that are caused by the longer cords."

More information can be found here.
Paragon Hard Disk Manager 2008 Suite @ Bjorn3D
"Paragon Hard Disk Manager 2008 is a program suite from Paragon that promises to make everything around the hard drive easy. It can defrag your hard drives, make it easy to take an image and restore it and even make sure that any data you want removed stays removed. After using it for over a month my personal feeling is that this is a great toolkit for both novice and experienced users. Read on to find out why."

More information can be found here.
A-DATA Sport S702 2 GB USB Flash Drive @ techPowerUp
"A-Data continues to innovate the USB Flash Drive segment with new and unique designs. The Sport series features a sturdy metal frame with rubber padding, to make it durable for use during outdoor activities. A-Data's Sport S702 will sure go well on any key chain."

More information can be found here.
bit-tech News: Penumbra: Black Plague
"Black Plague is a radically different game to //Overture in terms of pacing and style, but at the same time in manages to incorporate many of the same themes and plot elements. In truth, / /Black Plague feels more like a professionally produced game, for both better and worse. While //Overture was a decidedly indie effort that seemed to thrive on its rough edges and unusual delivery, //Black Plague is a game that has a more shiny, refined and polished feel to it all the way through. It’s clear that Frictional has taken on board some of the major complaints about the games too – / /Penumbra: Black Plague introduces collectable items to extend replayability, more solutions to puzzles along with characters and narrative that are more fully fleshed out and realised. On the down side, like many professional games, the ending feels a bit rushed and those parts that still reek of indie stand out now as being all the rougher against the polish of the majority. Still, we reckon there’s a good five or six hours of chilling, puzzling gaming in here and the price isn’t likely to break the bank. With an intriguing mix of ideas and a stunning presentation and design that doesn’t at all hint at the diminutive two-man team behind the series, / /Penumbra: Black Plague is easily the most impressive break-out game of recent years and belongs in the catalogue of every hardcore gamer who prides himself on his cult-games collection. It's not for everyone - hence my hours of wrestling over whether it's an eight or a nine – but it is superbly put together despite the flaws and deserves mentions as another laudable effort from the diminutive team at Frictional Games."

More information can be found here.
Bgears b-Tarantula 650 Watt PSU at Modders-Inc
"Bgears has been hard at work to bring new products to their line over the last year. Today we are going to take a look at one of their latest power supplies. The Bgears b-Tarantula 650 Watt."

More information can be found here.
Tuesday, February 19, 2008
ASUS P5K-E WiFi-AP Motherboard Review @ TheTechLounge
"You wouldn't know by looking, but Intel's a little new at the chipset business. It's not that they haven't been doing it for decades, but just that they've never made a business out of it. Until recently. Intel's 975X did well; i965 blew doors off hinges. And, though it's a little long in the technospheric tooth, i965's footprint is almost too big to fill. Without presuming that its successor, P35, is shiny and better, I've tested what looks like a crowd-pleaser: Asus' P5K-E WiFi- AP. For less than $150, it's priced right where everyone can reach it, and comes with the right amount of flash to nab attention from the rest."

More information can be found here.
Benchmark Reviews Grand Opening Mega-Contest Announced
"All you have to do is post your prize choices in this thread, you'll be qualified for our random drawing prize. It's as simple as that. You can stop there, cross your fingers, and wait for March 1st. But why leave your chance of winning to a random drawing? Benchmark Reviews has more than a few bugs in our site after the move, and several images have gone missing. With each qualified submission, you will receive an entry into the top prize drawing. The top entrants with the most qualified submissions on March 1st will get to choose their prize! Good luck!"

More information can be found here.
Cowon A3 Review @ Digital Trends
"Cowon's A3 PMP seems to have it all, a gorgeous display, broad file format, AV recording and more."

More information can be found here.
OtterBox 7030: Durable Notebook Case
"Leading up to the Consumer Electronic Show (CES) last month in Las Vegas, we received many invitations to check out various booths, receptions, other displays, and even a Gulfstream G5 flight out to the San Fernando Valley. One of the booth invitations we received was from a company known as OtterBox. Their booth had consisted of various protective cases for PDAs, iPods, phones, and GPS devices. We had initially written off Otterbox as a company of little interest to our Linux readers seeing as they just manufactured cases for consumer electronic devices. However, that was before we had noticed the OtterBox 7030. The OtterBox 7030 is a notebook case that is not only waterproof but also crushproof, can even be dropped up to a meter with your notebook inside, and of course is engineered to prevent any damage to the laptop itself. Keeping in mind we are the ones that boil USB flash drives and use motherboards to open beer bottles, we have our hands today on the OtterBox 7030. Is this polypropylene chassis able to protect a notebook inside when it's being used as a winter sled?"

More information can be found here.
Zalman ZM-MFC2 Multi Fan Controller Review
"Zalman introduced its ZM-MFC2 multi fan speed controller last year at CES, and the reason we're reviewing it today are three-fold. For starters, the Zalman ZM-MFC2 digitally monitors four fans to +/- 10RPM and displays that data in real time on a nice multi-coloured backlit LCD display. With it, you can set any speed from 60RPM to the maximum supported by the fan with a turn of the dial, for three 3-pin fans and one PWM fan."

More information can be found here.
HIS Radeon HD 3850 IceQ3 TurboX 512 MB @ techPowerUp
"The HIS Radeon HD 3850 IceQ3 comes with a high end dual slot cooler, 512 MB of fast GDDR3 memory and increased clocks at a price tag of $199. This winning combination gets very close in performance to the much more expensive HD 3870 and can even surpass it when overclocked."

More information can be found here.
XIGMATEK 1283 CPU Cooler @ techPowerUp
"The Xigmatek HDT-S1283 is a massive cooler with just as big 8 mm heat pipes. With the heat pipes actually making contact on the CPU this cooler shows us something different in the way of keeping your CPU cool. The cooler is in a line of products from Xigmatek making its way into the rigs around the world."

More information can be found here.
Devil May Cry 4 @ Bjorn3D
"It is that time again, yep demons are on the prowl, the morning dew is saturated with the blood of the innocent and we are in need of a hero. Am I talking about Lindsay Lohan getting her drivers license back? No nothing that perverse or scary as I wouldn't do that to you. Instead Capcom is here to supply the many Devil May Cry junkies with another “fix” by means of Devil May Cry 4. Let us take a look at the Xbox 360 version to see if DMC4 can live up to the hype."

More information can be found here.
bit-tech News: Corsair's TX750W power supply
"Corsair is onto another winner with the TX750W, as it has proved itself to be an awesome PSU. It's clearly far from the best cooling design available, but it has the best components we've tested to date. What makes the deal even sweeter is the fact that the Corsair TX750W is even cheaper than some of its competitors too. At £88.60 (inc. VAT), it's cheaper than the PC Power & Cooling 750W Silencer, which costs £95.66 including VAT. In contrast, the Enermax Infiniti 720W now looks seriously expensive at £128.23. Even the Gigabyte Odin GT 800W PSU is significantly more expensive at nearly £125. There are a few 750W units for less, but we honestly wouldn't bother looking much further than the TX750W. In fact, it’s questionable whether units that cost more than the TX750W are worth considering over this unit at the price that Corsair is asking for it. The HX620W is a good £18 cheaper, but it's also 130W less powerful and modular so there's still a clear differentiation between the two styles that are clearly designed to suit different markets. Unless you've got your heart set on a modular unit, the Corsair TX750W manages to undercut many 650-700W units on price, while clearly not skimping on quality!"

More information can be found here.
OCZ 64GB SATA 2.5" Solid State Drive OCZSSD64GB @ BmR
"Benchmark Reviews has been hard at work trying to ride the wave of innovation into the next big technology. While Solid State Disks can now finally promise the best of both worlds (speed and capacity), they are still extremely expensive. OCZ is very well known for their drive towards high performance, yet in this article you will see a different side to them with their SSD product line. We have tested and used the new OCZ 64GB SATA Solid State Drive OCZSSD64GB, and we're ready with the results."

More information can be found here.
Monday, February 18, 2008
LG Venus Review @ Digital Trends
"You don't need to go to outer space to visit Venus, just hit up your local Verizon store. Other than a fancy name this phone is pretty average."

More information can be found here.
11 Versions Of WINE (Windows Emulator) Benchmarked
"Last December we had published benchmarks of seven versions of WINE, which covered up through the WINE 0.9.50 release. We had used two versions of Futuremark's 3DMark suite for testing, and with that we had found the performance to be stable in some cases while in later WINE releases we had found some performance losses. With the WINE project on a consistent two-week release cycle, we are looking at the WINE 3D performance and this time going back with the past eleven releases."

More information can be found here.
I4U: Microsoft Wireless Laser Mouse 6000 Review
"Today we are looking at the Microsoft Wireless Laser Mouse 6000. This mouse wraps some features normally seen on portable notebook mice into a desktop mouse. The scroll wheel on the Wireless Laser Mouse 6000 is very good. In fact the scroll wheel is almost as nice as the Logitech Revolution line. The only downside to some may be that the scroll wheel on the Wireless Laser Mouse 6000 doesn’t click. No clicking does make it easy to flick the wheel for faster scrolling on long pages."

More information can be found here.
Sunbeam Acrylic HTPC Case @ techPowerUp
"Today we takes a look at the new Acrylic HTPC case from Sunbeam. Aside from the fact that this case is completely see-through and UV reactive, what really sets this case apart from other HTPC cases is that this case features a total of eight internal 3.5" bays. This feature makes it possible to have multiple terabytes of media storage directly in the HTPC itself."

More information can be found here.
Altec Lansing UHP336 In-Ear Earphones @ Legit Reviews
"Altec Lansing’s SnugFit design does indeed provide great noise isolation to the user. As we used our various MP3 players from Apple and Cowon, we found the UHP336 to be one of the better headsets we have had in our ear. For me personally, I wanted better base response for the headphones and was annoyed by the amount of adjustment I had to keep making to hold the headphones in the “sweet spot” of my ear canal. This is most likely due to the weight of the headphone and cord..."

More information can be found here.
HighPoint RocketRAID 3120 @ Bjorn3D
"You may ask with current motherboards carry a minimum of six to eight SATA ports, what is the need for SATA expansion cards? Well, it is true that for most users, the onboard SATA ports will be more than enough for the lifetime of the motherboard. However, in the corporate environment, these onboard SATA ports can be used up quite fast. Imagine that the eSATA will take up one port and with any RAID setup which consumes a minimum of two ports for RAID 0 or 1 and four ports for RAID 10 or 01, sooner or later, the need for extra SATA ports is inevitable."

More information can be found here.
EVGA e-GeForce 8800 GS 384 MB @ techPowerUp
"Even though the EVGA e-GeForce 8800 GS comes with just 96 shaders and 12 ROPs it can easily compete with AMD HD3850 and HD3870. The card offers great price/performance and is very very quiet. With up to 30% overclocking this card is every overclocker's dream being able to surpass the much more expensive 8800 GT when overclocked."

More information can be found here.
Maxtor OneTouch 4 Plus 1TB External Hard Drive Review @ Bigbruin.com
"Maxtor has a line of full-featured external hard drives, the OneTouch 4 Plus series, that offer a massive amount of external storage space and a suite of utilities to simplify the backup and recovery of your files. They have sent over the latest and largest unit for us to review, the Maxtor OneTouch 4 Plus 1TB External Hard Drive."

More information can be found here.
Ideazon Reaper Edge 3200DPI Gaming mouse Review @ XtremeComputing
"At times throughout this review I have referred to “my old mouse” and I think its time to come clean as to what mouse I was referring to, it was a Razer Copperhead. Compared to the Razer Copperhead the Ideazon Reaper Edge is slightly larger and slightly heavier which might put a few people off. But it is still just as accurate and easy to use."

More information can be found here.
Gigabyte GA-X48T-DQ6 DES X48 DDR3 Motherboard @ BmR
"Motherboards are at the heart of every computer, and their importance is central to stable system operation. No matter if you are a low-demand office worker who plugs away on letters or spreadsheets or if you are a high-performance hardware enthusiast who demands extreme framerates from your video games, one component alone will determine your ability: the motherboard. Because everything rides on the system mainboard, it must be based on a solid and dependable foundation. Gigabyte isn't a new name to the industry, and for years now they have offered some of the most reliable and stable motherboard sold. In fact, over the past year there really only seemed to be two realistic options for motherboard manufacturer's when you shopped for new hardware; and Gigabyte was one of them. In this article Benchmark Reviews challenges our reigning champion against the Gigabyte GA-X48T-DQ6 Ultra Durable 2 DES motherboard."

More information can be found here.
Sunday, February 17, 2008
bit-tech News: PowerColor Radeon HD 3850 Xtreme PCS 512MB
"AMD's partners haven't been afraid to play around with the Radeon HD 3850 to create cards that mix things up a bit – that's exactly what PowerColor has done here with its Radeon HD 3850 Xtreme PCS 512MB card. First and foremost, there's the clock speed increase, which takes this card to somewhere right in between the standard Radeon HD 3850 and Radeon HD 3870 cards at a price that's competitive. Not only that, but the card have twice as much video memory on-board—something that this class of card can definitely benefit from in many scenarios. And then there are the display output options. While they're not to my personal tastes as an avid multi-monitor user, they are different and it gives the user a choice on the market. That said, I can't help but feel PowerColor should have at least indicated that the card features native HDMI (instead of dual DVI) on the box, because from looking at the packaging alone, one would assume the card comes with dual DVI and a DVI-to-HDMI adapter. Clearly, that isn't the case though. In terms of competition for the PowerColor Radeon HD 3850 Xtreme PCS 512MB, there is currently Nvidia's GeForce 8800 GS 384MB, which hits roughly the same price point. This provides adequate competition for the Radeon HD 3850—it's faster in some cases, but quite a bit slower in others—but for the time being I'd probably opt for the Radeon HD 3850 with 512MB of vRAM. Those of you that follow the industry closely will surely know what's coming soon though, and we'll be answering that question when the time comes. PowerColor's factory-overclocked Radeon HD 3850 is a good buy at under £120 (inc. VAT) if you can live with the different display output configuration but, in saying that, I can't help but feel like I'm repeating myself over and over at the moment. I guess that's because the mid-range has never been as strong as it is today – there are just so many good purchases out there and that means it's a good time to be a PC gamer building a new system./*"

More information can be found here.
bit-tech News: Universe at War: Earth Assault
"Universe at War: Earth Assault isn't going to be to the liking of all RTS buffs and those who prefer historically themed or more serious flavours of strategy games will most likely have already found the way out. However, / /Universe at War does have some excellently balanced gameplay going for it and the interface is beautifully set out, proving always helpful and never a hindrance. Does the game have problems? Certainly. The graphics in cutscenes are a bit lacklustre, the game did prove to be very CPU intensive when we gathered a lot of units together on screen and at times even our new mighty gaming rig had to suffer a bit of slow down and the field of view is quite limited too. In fact, the FOV is probably the biggest problem -- not being able to zoom out very far really limits the tactical options available to players when the larger robots or Habitat Walkers lumber on-screen. That said though, / /Universe at War has a lot going for it, so if you can look past the campy B-movie plot and stomach some semi-awful voice acting then you may be pleasantly surprised at what you find beneath the rubble."

More information can be found here.
Saturday, February 16, 2008
Gigabyte X48T-DQ6: Linux On Intel's X48 Chipset
"While Intel's X48 Express Chipset is not due out until the middle of March -- after having faced a few delays reaching production -- the kind folks at Gigabyte have today provided us with the Gigabyte X48T-DQ6 motherboard. This motherboard is similar to the Gigabyte X38-DQ6 that we reviewed last October, but it employs the new X48 Express MCH and the revised feature-set that this chipset brings to the hands of enthusiasts. This is our first Intel X48 motherboard review and the world's first look at this new flagship chipset under Linux. In this review of the Gigabyte X48T-DQ6 we will be comparing it to Intel's current P35 and X38 motherboards."

More information can be found here.
bit-tech News: Watercooling Fluid Shootout
"But all of this was for one worthy goal – is there a fluid that reigns supreme? Does anything do water's job better than water? The numbers don't lie – nothing is better than pure, straight up water so far, at least where temperatures are concerned. But there are a couple fluids that perform just as well, and their side benefits of colouring, anti-corrosion and (most of all) non-conductivity make them well worth your time. Though temperatures are our primary concern, I've also made sure to note other aspects of each fluid that can have an effect on overall usability – colouring, bubble dispersion, and clean-up. So which ones are truly better than water, when you take all of this into account?"

More information can be found here.
I4U: ARTWIZZ SeeJacket Crystal for iPhone Review
"The SeeJacket Crystal is an interesting case that protects the iPhone on all sides including the touchscreen, which is subject to scratches and breakage. The SeeJacket Crystal has a plastic covering that goes over the front of the touchscreen to protect it. The screen coating isn’t as strong as the heavy acrylic of the case body."

More information can be found here.
Friday, February 15, 2008
Sunbeam Rheobus Extreme Fan Controller @ techPowerUp
"Sunbeam is well known for their four channel Rheobus fan controller. Recently, they decided to create a new version called the Rheobus Extreme which has six channels and can support up to 30 W per channel. Each channel has a clear knob that glows blue, and the brightness changes with the fan speed setting. We take a look at this new fan controller and put it to the test."

More information can be found here.
GIGABYTE 8800GT TURBOFORCE @ Bjorn3D
"Speaking of temperatures, the Zalman GPU after-market cooler on the 8800GT TurboForce is a godsend and certainly keeps the temperatures in the lowest range we've again seen on any stock 8800 series card. It averages 10 degrees Celsius cooler than any other card we've tested in this performance range. Even when this card was overclocked to a gargantuan level we only experienced a load temperature of 52 degrees Celsius, which is amazing!"

More information can be found here.
bit-tech News: The Curse of Genre
"The thing is, I do really wish we could throw off the genre limits and rediscover the freeform game design of the early years of gaming. Sometimes when we try, it falls apart terribly (//Trespasser), but often it works wonders. //Portal belongs in both the FPS and puzzle categories and is all the better for it. //Spore will hopefully create a whole new category, as did //The Sims. When you forget genres and just sit down and think"

More information can be found here.
bit-tech News: Sapphire Pure CrossFireX PC-AM2RD790 motherboard
"The first board we received had quite serious issues, and while we accept this happens sometimes things only half got better when we received a new board. At first the old board had serious overheating issues -- the aluminium heatsink would get far too hot and it would require active cooling otherwise our 125W AMD Athlon 64 X2 6000+ would lock up when it was running our benchmarks. Thankfully, this second board didn't suffer the same problems -- the heatsink gets warm, but now not to the point where it starts glowing red. What has remained is the finicky memory issues that cause"

More information can be found here.
I4U: Razer Boomslang Collector's Edition 2007 Gaming Mouse Review
"The design of the Razer Boomslang Collector’s Edition 2007 is wider and fatter than typical Razer mice. The feel in the hand is good, but certainly larger than typical mice. The section of the Boomslang with the buttons is wider with a roundish design making the base where your palm sits narrower than the top of the mouse. The two side buttons sit right at the junction of the palm area and rounded top. I found during use that the button on the left wide was very easy to activate accidentally."

More information can be found here.
Thursday, February 14, 2008
MSI K9A2 Platinum AMD 790FX Motherboard @ Viper Lair
"Going back to performance, at stock speeds, the K9A2 Platinum performed very well with the Phenom 9600 Black, despite the TLB issue which never affected us. The 790FX platform as a whole is quite solid and shows a lot of promise. Provided you're planning to stay closely within specifications, we think the MSI K9A2 Platinum AMD 790FX motherboard is a solid and reliable platform but the overclocking results surely vary depending on the processor you have."

More information can be found here.
NZXT Rogue mATX Gaming Case @ techPowerUp
"The NZXT Rogue is a very unique case. It combines the portability of a cube with the possiblity to install large graphic cards and high performance power supplies. A carrying strap is also included, to make carrying the black or silver cube - featuring either blue or red LEDs - to and from a LAN party as easy as possible."

More information can be found here.
Measuring Ubuntu's Boot Performance
"Last year leading up to the release of Ubuntu 7.04"

More information can be found here.
bit-tech News: Condemned 2: Bloodshot - Hands-on
"Condemned 2 is looking like a fantastic looking game which, as you can see from the screenshots, doesn't pull any punches when it comes to trying to creep out players. This is definitely a game for adult audiences only and the game is stuffed to the brim with filthy insults, blood and brutal, unrestrained fisticuffs. However, it's also got a cleverly delivered story in there too, both on a character-based and plot-based level. In terms of the series storyline / /Condemned 2 will see a whole lot of the mystery cleared up and Ethan will start to piece together the fragments and figure out what is happening to the world around him. Meanwhile, players will get deeply involved in Ethan's personal struggles and see him battle against the loss of his sanity and come to terms with his alcoholism. Certain additions to the gamestyle don't sit too well with us -- such as how the HUD will exclaim your combos, ruining the sense of immersion and horror, but there's still a lot to like about the game. Just looking at some of those screenshots is scary enough and the game is definitely one of the gutsiest thrillers we've ever played -- just sitting through the opening cutscene is like having scorpions crawling up your legs! Clearly horror and thriller fans are going to have at least one game to look forward to this year."

More information can be found here.
bit-tech News: More Spore - An interview with Thomas Vu
"*BT: You also worked on The Sims 2, which obviously has a massive appeal with girl gamers. Do you think you'll get the same success with Spore?* *TV:* Well, we hope so. Evolution is a topic which isn't really gender-based or relevant in the way / /The Sims was. If you think about //The Sims then it was very relevant in terms of what...well, everyone knows what a bathtub does and what a cooker does. With //Spore though, it's a little harder to make the gameplay relevant to people, but the core ideas behind it would appeal (we think) to female gamers too. The idea of customisation, sandbox gameplay -- the idea of making something, putting something into a world and then just seeing what happens. All the social networking tools in the game, the sharing of content is all very much like / /The Sims, but taken a lot further. It's hard to say though. We hope it'll do well, but we're waiting and seeing. We're definitely taking into consideration things like difficulty levels for different markets. Like for the creator systems -- it's likely that a lot of females will just want to make things and not even play the game. They might enjoy just sharing it with others."

More information can be found here.
Uncharted: Drake\'s Fortune @ Bjorn3D
"You play Nathan Drake, an Indiana Jones-like guy who says he is a descendant of Sir Francis Drake. The game follows Nate as he and his two friends hunt after a treasure they think that Sir Francis Drake found: the treasure from El Dorado. Throw in some bad guys, a few Nazi references and some mysticism and you got the story."

More information can be found here.
Wednesday, February 13, 2008
ATI Radeon HD 3870 + 3850 CrossFire - Mixing Video Cards @ Legit Reviews
"Having a mixed up CrossFire configuration performed better than expected and was able to near the performance level of other high end ATI CrossFire setups. This goes to show that ATI has made great improvements to their CATALYST drivers as taking an ATI Radeon HD 3870 and running it in CrossFire mode with an ATI Radeon HD 3850 was found to be stable and offered great improvements over a single card of either model. How many people will actually try this has yet to be seen, but this is an easy way to cut costs and improve performance..."

More information can be found here.
AMD Catalyst 8.02 Linux Driver
"Whether it is a big or small update, every month AMD releases a new Catalyst package for both Linux and Windows for their supported ATI Radeon products. Last month in the Catalyst 8.01 Linux driver the changes had just consisted of a few bug fixes and nothing more. Today the Catalyst 8.02 Linux driver has been released, and like last month, it's short on the change-log. The fglrx changes are very brief and the driver version is still in the 8.45 release stream and wasn't even bumped to 8.46.x."

More information can be found here.
Klipsch Image Earbuds Review @ Digital Trends
"Klipsch's first entry into the headphone market is in the new Image earbuds which are branded as the worlds smallest and lightest."

More information can be found here.
Sapphire HD 3850 1024 MB @ techPowerUp
"AMD's Radeon HD 3850 Series has been on the market for a while now. Add-in-Board Partners are constantly looking for ways to seperate themselves from the competition and that's why Sapphire has engineered a Radeon HD 3850 with 1024 MB of GDDR3 memory and faster core clock out of the box. But can a card like this really benefit from 1 GB of video memory?"

More information can be found here.
Scythe Zipang SCZP-1000 Ultra Low Noise Heatsink Review
"The number one question Frostytech readers ask us is "what's the best silent heatsink?" Much of the time, readers find themselves asking us this question after they've built a media center PC using the standard type of heatsink one normally finds in local computer stores. If you need a silent heatsink, and I do mean silent, the Scythe Zipang (SCZP-1000) is the next best thing to a passive block of aluminum (the only truly silent option). What makes the Zipang quiet is a 138mm wide fan that spins at a lazy 1000RPM."

More information can be found here.
Kingston DataTraveler HyperX 8GB USB Flash Drive @ Legit Reviews
"The Kingston DataTraveler HyperX USB Flash Drives have a read speed of 30MB/s and write speed of 20MB/sec so they certainly deserve the HyperX name as it is hands-down the fastest USB Flash drive that Kingston offers. The Kingston DataTravler HyperX USB Flash drive that we are looking at today is the 8GB version, but Kingston offers the drive with different capacities at various price points, so if you want a HyperX USB Flash drive you can pick from a 2GB ($54.99), 4GB ($99.99) or 8GB (189.99) capacity..."

More information can be found here.
I4U: Apple TV 2.0 with Movie Rentals Review
"I was very impressed with the quality of the rental service on the Apple TV. Once I choose the movie I wanted to watch the download began immediately. I expected a long wait while the film downloaded and buffered. To my surprise the movie was ready to watch in exactly 49 seconds according to my trusty stopwatch."

More information can be found here.
Eagle Tech ET-CS2LSU2-BK 2.5 Inch USB Drive Enclosure Review @ Bigbruin.com
"With a built in USB connector and leather trim, the Eagle Tech ET-CS2LSU2-BK 2.5 Inch USB Drive Enclosure has an interesting appearance that instantly sets it apart from a typical drive enclosure. This review will take a closer look to see what else it offers that might differentiate it from other similar devices on the market."

More information can be found here.
Thermaltake Bigwater 760i @ Bjorn3D
"enthusiasts know that water is inherently better than air when it comes to cooling our nuclear powered rigs. This is primarily due to water's capability to hold and transport more heat than air within the same volume of space. It is this property that has long allured users to take the plunge and stick water inside their machine regardless of the dangers. It is these same dangers that have kept water cooling on the fringe of mainstream acceptance. No one wants to deal with the reality of coming home to a dead machine only to realize the cause of the untimely demise was a leak in their water cooling loop. And so company after company has sought to solve this problem and devise a system so easy, a system so fool proof that it could rival the ease of air cooling while maintaining the benefits of water cooling. Not an easy feat to be sure. Enter Thermaltake, a company dedicated to cooling since 1999. With their vast amount of experience and R&D resources they stand ready to bri!"

More information can be found here.
bit-tech News: Spore - Hands-on Preview
"I actually got a chance to speak to some of the marketing people recently and I quizzed them about the future of Spore – pressing on whether we could expect to see a slew of new content on shelves soon after release. The reply was a stark awakening to the brilliant reality of //Spore in that I was treated to a kind of “//I don’t know” answer and an explanation of how that wouldn’t work with //Spore. You see, in //The Sims, new items can’t be easily created and the expansions can consist mainly of new furniture and so forth. In //Spore that doesn’t hold true and the future of the game seems to be grounded more in adding new tools to the game through expansions – ways to export and import creatures to Photoshop or Maya 3D. It’s not enough to simply give people a new building or two, because those can always be made by the community. To me, this attitude perfectly expresses how important / /Spore will be. Frankly though, even if the game doesn’t prove to be as redefining as I think it will be, then it’s still shaping up to be a fantastic game and clearly shows how even the most complex of tasks can be accomplished with enough persistence. / /Spore does have flaws in some regards and it’s plainly obvious that most players aren’t going to enjoy parts of the game. Personally, while I loved everything from the Creature Stage onwards, I did find the first part of the game—the Cell Stage—to be a little tiresome and pointless. I’ve nothing against simple arcade styled games at all, but there are titles that do that better than //Spore. //Spore’s strength though lies in that the game overcomes the personal loves and hates of certain people and frees players up totally. You can do almost anything you want with the tools on offer here and the game is totally open to let players skip to the parts they want. If all you want is the micromanagement and sense of control then Civilisation Stage is there for you from the get-go."

More information can be found here.
Samsung Beat Review @ Digital Trends
"The Samsung Beat is a music phone for those on a budget. While it offers up some good sound, it's lacking in other areas."

More information can be found here.
Tuesday, February 12, 2008
Asus Triton 77 Heatsink Review
"The ASUS Triton 77 heatsink is one of the latest processor thermal solutions to come from motherboard manufacturing giant ASUS. The heatsink is equipped with a Sunon MagLev 92mm vapo-bearing PWM fan which runs at a very quiet 2300RPM. Standing a moderate 125mm tall, the Triton 77 heatsink has five copper heatpipes spread across its curved array of nickel-plated aluminum fins, and weighs 505 grams. The bulk of this heatsink is elevated 55mm above the CPU socket for good component clearance."

More information can be found here.
Stylish Notebook Bags for Professional Women @ CoolTechZone.com
"Stylish notebook bags have been all the rage for professional women for the past few years. It's one of the few accessories that can paint a classy, tasteful image for a professional woman who's willing to have a great overall presentation and image. Unfortunately, however, a lot of designer notebook bags are expensive, and Kensington has a solution to take care of just that. Now, image doesn't have to cost hundreds of dollars for a tasteful, simple look."

More information can be found here.
2008: The Last Year for 720p TVs @ CoolTechZone.com
"Despite 720p TV's success in the market, some companies expect to discontinue their lower resolution displays by the end of 2008. Their reasoning? A lot of consumers, even the mainstream ones, are buying into higher resolution hype to future-proof themselves."

More information can be found here.
Touchscreen Phones Are Not Exciting @ CoolTechZone.com
"Now that every other cell phone maker is looking silly without a touchscreen display in its portfolio, a lot of them are labeling the touchscreen capabilities of the iPhone as a mere feature. Some of them even went as far as to call it one of the many features in a cell phone and completely ignored it as the feature of 2007."

More information can be found here.
Are Random Shell Scripts A Threat? @ OSWeekly.com
"After reading this post from the Ubuntu forums, I have to admit that running random code can be dangerous, even on a secure OS like your favorite Linux distribution. But does this mean that using shell scripts should totally be forgotten about? I tend to think not."

More information can be found here.
Fedora 8: Live CD Reviewed @ OSWeekly.com
"Earlier this week, I took a close look at the latest release of Fedora. Overall, Fedora 8 is a really solid distro. But there were specific areas that a lot of other reviews completely missed. In this piece, we will examine these more intimately to get a better understanding of Red Hat's new release."

More information can be found here.
What to Use in Linux: Open Or Closed Software? @ OSWeekly.com
"This is a question that has struck a lot of new Linux users. Should they use closed source software when the open source alternatives are lacking? Today, I will talk about some of the applications I use and the advantages that each of them present."

More information can be found here.
bit-tech News: Intel's Core 2 Extreme QX9770 processor
"To be frank, there's not really much to say because this puppy is a monster, but one that comes dripped in bling for a high price. With Intel dominating the high end it can charge precisely what it wants for its"

More information can be found here.
GMC K1 Muse MediaCentre Mid Tower Review @ XtremeComputing
"The Muse K1 case from GMC is so feature packed that it has made for my longest review yet, and even after this review there are still features of the case left un-shown. Before reviewing this case I wasn’t so keen on it. But since I have used it, it has really grown on me. The extensive feature set surprised me time after time, and I was pleasantly surprised on more than one occasion when I would enter a different mode on the software and find a new use for the buttons and display on the front of the case."

More information can be found here.
SOYO 47-Inch LCD 1080p HDTV MT-SYXRT4791AB @ Benchmark Reviews
"Don't let anyone have you believe that High Definition Televisions are the future. A more correct statement is that HDTV's are the present, the here and now, and have already been around for a few years. Unfortunately, not everyone is up to speed, and some are going to be very surprised by the changes in store ahead. You see, by the time this article is published there will be exactly one year remaining until D-Day hits and the transition to an all-digital terrestrial broadcast begins. In past articles Benchmark Reviews gave you specific instructionson how to survive this digital transition, which offered a guide on how to smartly buy your first HDTV. However, in this article we test one of the better alternatives for step-up consumers who want to enjoy full high-definition content without falling into the money pit. Benchmark Reviews has cleared a space atop the entertainment center to inspect the SOYO MT-SYXRT4791AB 47-Inch LCD 1080p Widescreen HDTV in this performance review."

More information can be found here.
Monday, February 11, 2008
I4U: Aluratek ADMPF311F 11-inch Digital Photo Frame Review
"If you are looking for a large screen digital photo frame that can be wall mounted or stand on a table, the Aluratek 11-inch digital photo frame is worth a look. The frame has a built-in card reader that supports CF, MS, SD, MMC, and XD format memory cards. Supported file formats include JPEG, MPEG, AVI, MP3, BMP, and WMA. A high speed USB port is also built-in. A wireless remote control is included to allow control of the images and video on the frame."

More information can be found here.
Optoma HD80 Review @ Digital Trends
"The Optoma HD80 adds 1080p goodness to your media room, just make sure to fine-tune it for best performance."

More information can be found here.
Scythe Shuriken SCSK-1000 Heatsink Review
"The Japanese manufacturer Scythe has introduced a low profile, sub-70mm tall heatsink for Intel and AMD processors tailor made for low profile computers. If you've got a low profile PC and are looking for that extra cooling edge, this might be just what the doctor ordered. The Scythe Shuriken (SCSK-1000) heatsink features copper heatpipes, high density stacked aluminum fins, a copper base and a low profile 12mm thick 100mm Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) fan."

More information can be found here.
AMD Phenom 32-bit vs. 64-bit Linux
"Since publishing our Linux review of the AMD Phenom 9500 on the Spider platform a month ago, we have continued in our investigation of this first AMD desktop quad-core processor that has been very problematic with Ubuntu 7.10 Linux. Fortunately though this support isn't stagnate and a better picture is painted when using the latest development builds of Ubuntu 8.04"

More information can be found here.
Noctua NH-U12P CPU Cooler - The Sound of Silence @ Legit Reviews
"Noctua derived its name from the Greek mythology. The little owl, Athene Noctua, is the symbol of the Greek goddess Athene, who represents wisdom, science and strategy. She has a marked preference for the most clever among the Greek heroes, like Odysseus, who endure their adventures by the use of savvy consideration instead of mere force. It is the owl’s silent flight that Noctua keeps in mind with their fan design..."

More information can be found here.
Moneual Labs M775 Mid Tower Professional Series Case Review @ Bigbruin.com
"The Moneaul Labs M775 Mid Tower Professional Series Case is what you would expect to find on the lower end of the spectrum. It includes only the basics of a computer case, lacking the innovative features that we like to see. While it doesn’t manage to pack in things like tool-less drive bays or removable cages, the M775 does have its only little nifty qualities."

More information can be found here.
PowerColor HD 3650 512M GDDR3 Xtreme PCS @ Bjorn3D
"Over the last few months, NVIDIA has been enjoying the high-end graphic card market with their current 8800 series. AMD was unable to compete with NVIDIA with their HD 2900 series but the situation is getting better with the introduction of the HD 3800 series. Although AMD is still not able to take the performance crown away from NVIDIA, its latest HD 3850 is performing fairly close and their upcoming card may very well steal the crown away from NVIDIA."

More information can be found here.
UniBlue ProcessScanner Software Review @ Tweaknews.net
"This free utility is a good starting point for troubleshooting a slow system or one that is suspected of being infected with a virus or spyware. A quick scan results in a well organized list of all processes running and their associated security threat level. Knowledge is power, and being aware of malicious processes is the first step in preventing future infections and keeping a PC running smoothly."

More information can be found here.
bit-tech News: Zotac GeForce 8800 GT 512MB AMP! Edition
"There is a lot to like about Zotac's GeForce 8800 GT AMP! Edition -- the heatsink has some subtle improvements that help to keep the temperature comparable with a standard-clocked GeForce 8800 GT at noise levels that are going to be inaudible in a chassis. It's also the fastest GeForce 8800 GT we have tested to date and, from looking around, there doesn't seem to be any 8800 GTs clocked faster than this -- at best, there are equals out on the market. That maybe explains the overclocking problems we encountered. At these elevated clock speeds, the Zotac GeForce 8800 GT AMP! Edition often rivals the more fully featured GeForce 8800 GTS 512MB in the performance stakes---something it manages to do with just a single slot cooling solution. That's an impressive feat in and of itself. CCL Online appears to be the only place selling this card at £182.64 (inc. VAT) -- a price point that makes it a worthwhile purchase. Other places have been asking for between £195 and £200 -- at this price, the card is too expensive. The problem is that now you can pick up BFGTech's GeForce 8800 GTS 512MB OC for under £200 (inc. VAT), it's hard to recommend Zotac's GeForce 8800 GT 512MB AMP! Edition if the two are comparably priced. The reason for this is that the 8800 GTS's superior shader horsepower is likely to outlast the Zotac 8800 GT AMP! Edition's higher fillrates and slightly higher memory bandwidth. That said, the fact that one UK-based retailer is selling this card at a competitive price is a good enough reason to recommend it but on the provision that you don't pay much more than CCL's £182.64 asking price for it. Of course, the GeForce 8800 GTS's dual slot cooling solution is no good if you've got a case---like a Shuttle XPC---that demands a single slot card. In that scenario, Zotac's GeForce 8800 GT AMP! Edition is a good choice at a higher price, but you'll need to make sure your chassis has enough airflow to keep this card's temperature under control over extended gaming sessions."

More information can be found here.
Sunday, February 10, 2008
Motorola RAZR2 V8 Review @ Digital Trends
"The Motorola RAZR2 includes improvements over the previous version including 2GB of internal memory."

More information can be found here.
bit-tech News: The Secrets of PC Memory: Part 4
"For better signal quality at higher speed grades, DDR3 adopts a so called"

More information can be found here.
Saturday, February 9, 2008
I4U: OCZ Rally 2 Turbo 4GB Flash Drive Review
"If you are looking for a fast flash drive with lots of storage space the Rally 2 Turbo is a great choice. The drive is also thin enough that it easily fits into a crowded USB hub. OCZ promises lofty read and write speeds for the OCZ Rally 2 Turbo 4GB. The read speed is up to 35MB/s and the write speed is up to 30MB/s. In testing I used HD Tach to test the read and write speeds of the OCZ Rally 2 Turbo 4GB. I saw a read speed of 32.8 MB/s and a write speed of 29.9MB/s, both of which are within a fraction of what OCZ promises speed wise."

More information can be found here.
Friday, February 8, 2008
HeadRoom Total BitHead Portable Amp&DAC @ techPowerUp
"The HeadRoom Total BitHead portable amplifier and DAC is a great combination of both a USB audio codec and a headphone amplifier that will drive most high end cans on the market today. The HeadRoom Total BitHead sells for only $149.99 which can be considered a steal for such a product."

More information can be found here.
Presidential Primary Give Away @ Bigbruin.com
"Our latest contest is centered on the US Presidential election process. In order to enter, all you have to do is vote for one of the candidates featured in the Bigbruin.com Presidential Primary. Unlike the real deal, anyone can vote as long as they are registered on the Bigbruin.com forum. You don't have to be a resident of the USA, over 18, or anything else like that. The prize is a Rosewill RX81-CW-US-SLV eSATA/USB 3.5" Drive Enclosure, as seen in the recent Bigbruin.com review. And just as you don't know exactly what you'll get in any Presidential candidate, you might wind up with something a little extra with this election, too!"

More information can be found here.
Auras SMF-660 TwinW Intel Heatsink Review
"The Auras SMF-660 heatsink is a compact Intel heatsink that weighs just over 400 grams, stands 108mm tall, and hides its lone fan quietly away. If you've been faced with the problem of an ill-fitting processor heatsink for a compact PC chassis, take comfort that sub-150mm tall CPU coolers do indeed exist. Auras ship the SMF-660 heatsink with a 92mm PWM fan that scales in speed from 1200-2100RPM with compatible motherboards."

More information can be found here.
Leadtek 8800 GT 256MB aka G92 @ Bjorn3D
"There are three important factors that make GeForce 8800 GT a better run for the money. First and foremost, the GPU is manufactured using 65 nm process, thus making it a smaller and cooler chip. The second change involves the way G92 communicates with the rest of the components; PCI Express 2.0 which in my opinion is more of an evolution than revolution (sort of like AGPx4 -> AGPx8). The last thing that has been overlooked when looking at enthusiast SKUs is VP2 or Visual Processor which takes care of HD video decoding."

More information can be found here.
bit-tech News: The Secrets of PC Memory: Part 3
"When users overclock their computer memory, they are literally compressing the size of the Data Eye and changing the waveform at multiple levels by running at a higher frequency and as a result, more data can be transmitted over a set period. However, this takes away pre-established safety margins. It's a"

More information can be found here.
I4U: Insignia Sport 2GB Video MP3 Player with Bluetooth Review
"The integrated Bluetooth technology allows users to pair wirelessly to other Bluetooth devices for listening to music from the player. Sound quality is very good and easily on par with my iPhone and the plethora of SanDisk Sansa players I have tried over the years. The ear buds have a nice long cable so you can move around without snagging the cord. You can save data on songs you hear over FM frequencies if the station broadcasts RDS data."

More information can be found here.
Thursday, February 7, 2008
Microsoft Mobile Memory Mouse 8000 Review @ Digital Trends
"This wonder mouse includes 1GB of flash memory so it doubles as a thumbdrive, and recharges through the USB port."

More information can be found here.
Defining The Phoronix Test Suite
"It's going on four years that we have been providing benchmarks under Linux at Phoronix, and through this time the process has evolved as more applications have come about that gauge Linux system performance and meet our criteria for use in hardware reviews. While our internal process is continually refined, we have received requests for creating a Linux benchmarking manifest so that interested parties are able to easily reproduce our tests for comparative purposes and know everything that's involved. With that said, we are now working to establish the Phoronix Test Suite that will consist both of detailed documentation defining our hardware benchmarking protocols and free software that automates much of this work."

More information can be found here.
Asus Triton 75 Heatsink Review
"The fangs at each corner of the Triton 75 bring a smile to our intrepid engineers' face; pointy strips of aluminum dangle like a canines teeth over each Intel retention clip and lie in wait for unsuspecting fingers! Should we really expect anything different from the Asus Triton 75 heatsink though? With errant design elements that hamper the user experience and do nothing to improve thermal performance, the Asus Triton 75 is an example of what not to do. On top of that, the Triton 75 fails as a heatsink for processors with a 150W power rating. And yet, the Triton 75 is not a complete write off..."

More information can be found here.
Sunbeamtech Tuniq 3 Mid Tower ATX Case Review @ Bigbruin.com
"Sunbeamtech is a manufacturer of computer components that has been around for a while, and they have sent a large number of items to Bigbruin.com for review over the years. They are also the parent company of a line of higher performance components that they have decided to brand under a different name... Tuniq. This review will be focused on a chassis from Sunbeamtech's Tuniq series, the Tuniq 3 Mid Tower ATX case."

More information can be found here.
bit-tech News: Devil May Cry 4
"All of this makes it pretty damn hard to score. On the one hand there's a good game. On the other hand there's an enjoyable movie. Both are passable on their own if you're into those types of things, but fusing them together has ruined both. Is //Devil May Cry 4 fun to play? Yes, it is. I enjoy playing it. I like cutting my way through baddies and collecting demon blood, expanding my character and waging a one-man war. I've even come to appreciate the anime-styled presentation, floppy hair and big swords -- it's not something I'm proud of, but //Castlevania will do that to a man. Because the cutscenes get in the way of the game and vice versa though, the whole unfortunate mess is bought tumbling down. Boiled down to its core; the stark reality is that no matter what the fanboys say, //Devil May Cry 4 is just a game of two decent, but unremarkable halves being added together. Sure, there's a decent romp in there if you want it and the game has plentiful cleavage and blood -- but if you're after a game in which you can invest your time then there's other titles in this genre that can deliver more."

More information can be found here.
Wednesday, February 6, 2008
World-exclusive: PowerColor passive HD3870 SCS3 @ techPowerUp
"The PowerColor HD 3870 SCS3 Edition is a completely passively cooled Radeon HD 3870. This makes the card an excellent choice for a quiet Media PC computer. What is really amazing is that the passive card runs up to 25?C cooler than the reference design which uses a fan."

More information can be found here.
Solaris Express Developer Edition 1/08
"In addition to Project Indiana Developer Preview 2, Solaris users can now rejoice over the next release in the Solaris Express Developer Edition family. SXDE 1/08 is the quarterly update to Sun's next-generation Solaris Operating System that is built from the latest OpenSolaris Nevada technologies. This first SXDE release of 2008 brings a host of new features for the developer such as NetBeans 6.0 and the GlassFish v2 application server. Even for those that aren't developers, SXDE 1/08 brings new features further down on the Solaris stack such as the Sun xVM virtualization server with support for libvirt, support for the Intel 4965 wireless chipset with 802.11n capabilities, and a variety of new services."

More information can be found here.
Razer Lycosa Gaming Keyboard @ techPowerUp
"The Razer Lycosa Keyboard is the company's first input device with the flat key type - similar to that of notebooks. Those never tend to be the best for gaming, but Razer has managed to eliminate any shortcomings with a perfect pressure point and rubber coated keys."

More information can be found here.
ASUS EN8800GTS TOP @ Bjorn3D
"Just over a year ago or an eon when we're talking computer technology, NVIDIA® introduced the beginning of what might well be the longest running series of graphics solutions in history; the 8800. Initially the 8800 GTX reference card took center stage in November of 2006 and totally rocked the gaming world by being the fastest card the world had seen up until this time. In what most would call brilliant business strategy NVIDIA® then began to fill in the void created beneath the 8800 GTX with many different iterations of both lesser and overclocked cards all then based on their 90nm fabrication process also termed the G80."

More information can be found here.
The Future of iPod Accessories: Cars, Cars, Cars @ CoolTechZone.com
"Now that the market is proliferated with a multitude of iPod accessories, what's the next step for iPod accessory makers? Why, cars, of course. We had a talk with Kensigton at CES 2008 where the company was showcasing an entire product line for cars for the famed music player. None of the accessories we saw on the show floor, whether from Kensington or anyone else, were overly complex for obvious reasons. It was mainly adapters, holders, FM tuners or a mixture of all three. Nice, simple and to the point."

More information can be found here.
2008: The Future of GPS Devices @ CoolTechZone.com
"GPS devices have really picked up in sales over the last couple of years. They are getting more accurate with updated device revisions and precise mapping capabilities, the prices are dropping substantially and there are specific models that cater to targeted needs of consumers. These trends are expected to continue for the most part in 2008."

More information can be found here.
2008: The Future of Tablet PCs @ CoolTechZone.com
"At CES 2008, a few companies were still touting Tablet PCs, but they were more realistic about the future than previous years. Unlike Bill Gates and Microsoft's vision of Tablet PC taking over the mainstream market, companies said they don't expect that to happen anymore, at least not for quite sometime. In fact, they expect Tablet PCs to be a niche tool for a select few fields, such as medical and legal."

More information can be found here.
bit-tech News: Halo 3 and The Art of Repetition
"Let's take //Halo 3, and, before I actually say anything about //Halo 3, I should make a disclaimer digression. I had put up some articles about repetition in games on my blog, and how I felt that repetition is sometimes a good thing (more on that later), and may have implied that aspects of the //Halo 3 campaign could have benefited from some more repetition, and I ended up with some comments that went something like this:"

More information can be found here.
Why OS Pricing Matters @ OSWeekly.com
"The iPhone has been a huge hit here in the United States, and while it may not be entirely true, it certainly feels like there are two groups of people here: those who have iPhones, and those who want iPhones. I still tell people that the iPhone has been the best technology product that I’ve ever purchased, and I don’t see that changing for quite some time, if ever. Black Friday is the biggest shopping day of the year in the US, and judging by the amount of people that I saw milling about the iPhone table in the Apple Store, the iPhone will continue to deliver impressive sales figures."

More information can be found here.
Using Ubuntu to Bust Movie Pirates: Fair or Not? @ OSWeekly.com
"There are two things that bother me about this article. The first is pirating any copyrighted content. The second is using the tools designed to make computing affordable for all to catch people breaking the law. At the same time, the MPAA, the group that has utilized this Xubuntu to catch movie pirates, has made their stance clear: they are in no way violating anyone's privacy rights."

More information can be found here.
Porting OS X to Cheaper PCs: Possible? @ OSWeekly.com
"Ever since Apple’s hardware made the jump to Intel processors, there’s been an active community involvement in getting the Intel version of OS X to run on the standard personal computers that the majority of users have. Let’s face it, Apple’s hardware is nice and shiny, but despite the price drops, it’s still more expensive than most of the budget options that are in the market. Adventurous users have been able to successfully install previous versions of OS X on their current computing rigs, and now that Leopard is available, the work continues for version 10.5."

More information can be found here.
OS X: Intel Market Share Keeps Rising @ OSWeekly.com
"A lot of us are still clinging on to our PowerPC Macs, and I’d still be 100 percent PowerPC if my iMac didn’t die. Due to this hardware failure, I upgraded and purchased one of the newer Intel iMacs, and as you can imagine, I’m very happy with it. If and when my PowerBook dies, I’ll also be in the market for a MacBook. What can I say, sometimes I can only force myself to upgrade when it’s out of necessity."

More information can be found here.
bit-tech News: The Club
"Don't be fooled by the guns and the explosion -- it's been made clear to us over the course of this review that The Club isn't actually a third person shooter at all. Really, it's a very cleverly disguised beat-em-up; //Tekken with all the regular moves left out and just the special combos remaining. The whole game feels like / /Soul Calibur in the twenty-first century and the proof is in the short character biographies, the combo-centric gameplay and the booming voice that yells"

More information can be found here.
NZXT Cryo LX Aluminum Notebook Cooler @ Benchmark Reviews
"Anyone who owns a laptop knows how hot they can get. To help remedy that problem manufacturers are now coming out with some well made and thought out solutions. The NZXT Cryo LX Aluminum Notebook Cooler is touted as the first notebook cooler to feature triple 120mm adjustable fans and a full 3mm aluminum frame. But will it do the job? The NZXT Cryo LX Aluminum Notebook Cooler is one of many new coolers on the market, and Benchmark Reviews tests to see if it sets itself apart from the crowd."

More information can be found here.
Tuesday, February 5, 2008
Rosewill RX81-CW-US-SLV eSATA/USB 3.5" Drive Enclosure Review @ Bigbruin.com
"Rosewill seems to have a hard drive enclosure for just about all common drive sizes and interfaces, with configurations to meet the needs of just about any user. This review is going to take a look at one of their newer models, the RX81-CW-US-SLV, an enclosure designed for a 3.5" SATA hard drive that connects via eSATA and USB 2.0."

More information can be found here.
BlackBerry Curve 8320 Review @ Digital Trends
"The Blackberry Curve 8320 for T-Mobile offers users a comfortable keyboard, 2MP camera and T-Mobile@Home compatibility."

More information can be found here.
Zalman CNPS8700 LED Low Noise Heatsink Review
"Got a noisy computer? If you've finally decided to take some action and replace a loud heatsink for something quieter, and cooler-running, take notice of the Zalman CNPS8700 LED heatsink. Based on the proven "flower heatsink" design, the CNPS8700 LED is an extension of that concept. This all copper heatsink utilizes two looped copper heatpipes and hundreds of thin copper fins set around a quiet 2300RPM 105mm internally illuminated fan. The heatsink is compatible with socket 775 Intel and socket 754/939/940/AM2 AMD processors."

More information can be found here.
I4U: Viewsonic DF88W 8-inch Digital Photo Frame Review
"The Viewsonic DF88W 8-inch Digital Photo Frame has an 8-inch TFT active color matrix LCD with a 7.32-ich viewable image size. The screen resolution is 800 x 480 and the contrast ratio is 300:1. Viewing angles are 130 degrees horizontal and 110 degrees vertical with brightness of 250 cd/m2. A built-in card reader is compatible with CF, SD, MMC, MS and MS Pro memory cards. Supported video formats include M-JPEG1, MPEG2, and MPEG4. Supported audio format is MP3."

More information can be found here.
Intel SkullTrail Preview - Dual Core 2 Extreme QX9775 Processors @ Legit Reviews
"When it comes to performance the Intel Skulltrail platform is hands down the fastest platform that we have ever looked at. With the dual 3.2GHz Core 2 Extreme QX9775 quad-core processors in the system it consistently outperformed the other test systems in multi-threaded tests that could take advantage of the eight cores. The only two areas that the Skulltrail platform didn't shine was in memory bandwidth and gaming. The DDR2-800 FB-DIMMs just don't provide the memory bandwidth needed to compete with DDR3 memory kits and it shows where memory bandwidth does come into play. When it comes to gaming it's not the fact the board is only PCI Express 1.0, it is because the games are not optimized to run on eight cores. In reality many games are designed to run on just three cores as many games are now written with consoles in mind..."

More information can be found here.
Fedora 9 Alpha Preview
"On this Super Tuesday here in the United States, Red Hat has this morning released the first and only alpha release for Fedora 9. This ninth Fedora release, which has been codenamed Sulphur, will ship in April and go head-to-head against Ubuntu 8.04 LTS"

More information can be found here.
bit-tech News: Home Theatre PC motherboard shootout
"If you're after a system today, we'd still go for the inexpensive MSI K9AGM3-FIH. It's a perfect interim solution because it's very cheap and comes with a good balance of features. There's also the fact that the AM2 CPU will drop into an AM2+ socket should you want to get one of the newer IGP boards coming in the near future, as these are all likely to feature full-HD video decode offloading. Everything you need is there and while it's not perfect, the video quality on offer is acceptable. We're genuinely surprised at the outcome – we didn't ever expect the AMD 690G to last anywhere near this long as our preferred choice, however the MSI seems to have got it right with its K9AGM3-FIH as it remains the best solution for the time being."

More information can be found here.
I4U: Saitek Cyborg Command Unit Review
"The device is like a small keyboard with 21 keys and three shift states allowing you to bind lots of commands to the device. If you are a gamer who travels often to LAN parties, this is an excellent device for you. To change shift modes you slide an analog switch on the upper left corner of the Saitek Cyborg Command Unit. As you change modes the backlighting color of the gamepad changes to so you know what mode you are in at a glance. The backlighting changes through green, red, and yellow colors."

More information can be found here.
Monday, February 4, 2008
Seagate Barracuda 7200.11 ST31000340AS 1TB Hard Drive @ Viper Lair
"The biggest change from the 7200.10 to the 7200.11 is the increase in platter size. We mentioned there will be a few capacities offered, but we can sum it up by saying that there will be 3; 500GB, 750GB and 1TB. If you're shopping for the 1TB version, another change from the previous model is the doubling of cache from 16MB to 32MB. The 500GB and 750GB will only ship with 16MB. As the name implies, the Barracuda spins its drives at 7200rpm, allowing for a sustained transfer rate of 105MB per second."

More information can be found here.
ASUS P5K-E/WIFI-AP @ NordicHardware
"Here we will take a look at one of the boards based on the P35 chipset, ASUS P5K-E. This is card positioned in the middle of the P5K lineup. It doesn't have as many fancy features as the Extreme/Deluxe flavors, but isn't as stripped down as the cheapest models. To be honest, do you really need two network cards and heatpipe cooling for the southbridge??"

More information can be found here.
LG Voyager Review @ Digital Trends
"The LG Voyager's mission is to unseat the iPhone as the hottest touchscreen handset out there, and it gets close."

More information can be found here.
Thermalright Ultra 120 Extreme Heatsink Review
"The Thermalright Ultra-120 Extreme heatsink is a continuation of the Ultra-120 series, only with a little more muscle and a couple extra heatpipes. It's predecessor has remained at the top of Frostytech thermal test results for both AMD and Intel platforms basically since we tested it, so we're especially interested to see how the Ultra-120 Extreme model handles. Like the Ultra-120 that came before it, the Thermalright Ultra-120 Extreme applies fairly simple concepts to yield a well performing tower heatsink that doesn't have to generate much noise to get the job done."

More information can be found here.
NZXT Rogue SFF Gaming Case Review
"During its existence, the shape and the size of the PC-case have gone through many evolutions. One of the newer designs is a cube. Case design has much to do with personal preference, so it's good to see variety on the market as many find the cube shape to be very practical."

More information can be found here.
Antec Veris Fusion 430
"Home theater PCs are a growing market. More and more people are looking for a device that can drive their entire home theater. For many, the HTPC is the solution; however, most do not want a clunky computer intruding into their living room. Who wants a Cooler Master Cosmos towering over everything in their living room? Thus over the years, many companies have offered PC cases designed specifically for the task of housing a Home Theater PC. We've looked at other HTPC cases in the past, such as the SilverStone Milo series and the Lascala LC20M, but today we will look at the Antec Veris Fusion Black 430, which is also referred to as the Fusion Black v2."

More information can be found here.
bit-tech News: Sapphire Radeon HD 3870 512MB Atomic
"Sapphire's Radeon HD 3870 512MB Atomic is a ground breaking product in many respects, but sadly where it falls short at the moment is on the performance side of things. From what we understand, since the launch of the Radeon HD 3870 X2, the RV670 chips are suffering from even higher demand than they were before. This has resulted in the prices of the standard cards increasing slightly, and bringing them more into line with Nvidia's GeForce 8800 GT. This is a problem for AMD/ATI, because the chip just isn't fast enough---even when it's overclocked like Sapphire's excellent example we have here today. Hopefully, we'll see the price come down again very soon because that's ultimately having an effect on the price of the card we're reviewing here today. Sapphire says that the card should be hitting a £165-170 price point, but retailers are currently asking customers to pay up to £200 (inc. VAT), which puts it almost on price parity with the appreciably faster GeForce 8800 GTS 512MB! The cheapest we've found the card for is £188 (inc. VAT) on Dabs, which is on the expensive side, but it sounds easier to stomach than the £200 other retailers are expecting customers to pay for this graphics card. Sapphire was quick to point out that the card is a limited edition---more of a technology showcase if you will---than a card it expects everyone to rush out and buy. What we can take away from this though is the fact that there has been some true innovation here---something that we don't see all that often from add-in board partners. The technology that Sapphire has showcased here is nothing short of awesome -- it not only looks good on paper, but also works incredibly well in practice as it managed to knock ten degrees off the load temperatures of a reference Radeon HD 3870! What's more impressive though is the fact that Sapphire's card is running at much higher clock speeds than the reference card."

More information can be found here.
AutumnWave OnAir GT (USB HDTV Tuner) @ Bjorn3D
"A few months ago, I reviewed the VisionTek TV Wonder HD 650 PCIe. It is a great expansion card for desktop users but it has small limitation that it will only work with desktop. For the user who is always on the run or has committed to use their laptop as their primary PC, it is not an option. There is no shortage of TV tuners designed for laptop users from many desktop TV tuner manufactures. They come in different shapes and forms and connects through laptops via USB, ExpressCard, and PCMCIA. Despite the fact that the PCMCIA is quickly being phased out in laptops and is being replaced by the ExpressCard, you can still find some of these cards on the market specially for the old analog tuners. Whicheve card you choose ultimately depends on what expansion slots you have in your system."

More information can be found here.
bit-tech News: Audio FX Pro 5+1 Gaming Headset
"The Audio FX Pro 5+1 isn’t the best headset we’ve ever used and, because Ben Heck himself has pinned his name on it, that comes as a bit of a disappointment. On the other hand though, it isn’t the worst headset we’ve ever used either – it’s somewhere in between. The Audio FX Pro 5+1 ‘Heckset’ – a joke I’m making again in case you’re one of those annoying people who skips straight to the conclusion and missed my previous witticisms – seems to tick and skip all the boxes arbitrarily. It has good sound performance, but you often need to push the volume too high to make the best of it. It has funky extra features, but they don’t really add anything new. It’s got a cool oversized design but…well, actually the overall aesthetic is one thing we can’t begrudge. The headset may look a little contrived to some, but personally we kind of like the whole faux leather, old-school look. Price-wise it treads the line too. You can pick up headsets much cheaper but, considering the versatility and bragging rights, the price point is also justified. In the end the Audio FX Pro 5+1 isn’t going to blow you away – but it shouldn’t disappoint you either, so it’s a safe enough option for anyone in the market."

More information can be found here.
Sony VAIO NR160E/T Laptop Review @ Digital Trends
"Priced at under a grand available in three distinctive colors, the Sony NR series laptop is stylish enough to be shown off."

More information can be found here.
Sunday, February 3, 2008
SteelSeries Ikari Laser Gaming Mouse @ techPowerUp
"The SteelSeries Ikari Laser mouse is the first ever mouse to be designed by legendary mouse pad maker SteelSeries. The mouse features a 3200 DPI laser sensor and boasts a lift-off distance of only 1.8 mm. Coupled with some never before seen features this mouse is clearly a winner."

More information can be found here.
Review: Kingston HyperX PC2-9600 DDR2 2GB
"Kingston Technology released the first 1.2Ghz RAM kits to the public last December. I was able to get a set of the KHX9600D2K2/2G for some fast action 2GB of ram for my Core 2 Duo system. Knowing that the 975 chipset in my DFI Infinity 975X/G was going to limit the modules in the basic BIOS setup, I needed to overclock the system to take advantage of the speed."

More information can be found here.
bit-tech News: NiGHTS: Journey of Dreams
"Once you get past the frankly unusable Wii remote control method, NiGHTS: Journey of Dreams is an enjoyable enough game, although it doesn't really bring anything new to the table. It will take between five and six hours to complete the game with both characters, and while there's some replay value in trying to unlock the secret levels, there really isn't enough to keep you coming back. Too many of the levels follow the same format, and those that deviate are often boring and tedious, serving mainly to make the game worse, not better. Innovations and tweaks that could have made the game that little bit better, such as NiGHTS' additional abilities, the Wii control method or online play, are fumbled and at best seem tacked on. At worst they make the game unplayable. In reality, the game could probably have done with another six months development time, to spend some extra time with the level design, control and online play. Younger players may enjoy the sometime frenetic pace and bright colours. Fans of the original may want to indulge in a nostalgia fest. As for everyone else, I'd suggest you rent or borrow the game first before you commit your hard-earned cash -- otherwise / /NiGHTS might just put you to sleep."

More information can be found here.
bit-tech News: Zalman HD160XT Plus HTPC chassis
"While its looks are clearly designed by the gods themselves, it's not followed through into some of the core design aspects -- obviously someone made a list of every feature they could think of and someone else drew a kick ass looking case -- then the two were pressed together between someone's palms, hoping to get the ultimate PC case. It hasn't happened here with the Zalman HD160XT Plus -- it needs to be seamless and work without issue but it just isn't as we continually had to find ways around problems. It does a lot of good things and it will look a perfect complement to any home theatre setup -- I know because I've used the original Zalman HD160 as an HTPC case for the past six months, but I wouldn't ever consider upgrading, it's just not worth over twice the price. And while I love the full colour display with the huge potential it brings over a standard VFD -- it's just not as easy to use and customise as I'd like. By now, several years down the line since its first HTPC cases, we'd expect Zalman would have worked on not only its design but the package as a whole and for £400 we'd expect nothing less than perfection. Unfortunately this isn't the case."

More information can be found here.
Saturday, February 2, 2008
A Tour Of Sun's Project Indiana Preview 2
"A week ago we reported that a second preview release of Project Indiana, Sun's attempt at creating an operating system for the desktop based upon OpenSolaris and led by Ian Murdock, was on track to be released in the near future. Thursday afternoon that became true with the test image surfacing for Developer Preview 2 of Project Indiana, or what will formally be called OpenSolaris. Officially, this new release is known as the OpenSolaris Developer Preview 1/08 edition. The general availability release of Project Indiana is expected in March, but today we have up a tour of this new Indiana release."

More information can be found here.
bit-tech News: Rez HD
"One of the things that makes Rez so remarkable, assuming you ignore all the vibro-love and pretty colours, is the way it takes a genre commonly regarded as shallow and staid and turns it into something you'll be begging your friends to play. That alone means it's worth picking up, especially since it's only going to set you back 800 measly Microsoft points. Does / /Rez HD have flaws? Yes, of course it does -- mainly the difficulty curve, which is unreliable at times and jumps around more than a bunny tied to an electric fence. The brevity of the game may also bother some gamers who want to get real value for money but who aren't interested in the Score Attack mode. Still, despite that, / /Rez is a classic and important piece of video game history and the remastered HD version clearly belongs in the collection of any serious gamer. Now, with that said, you'll have to excuse me -- I've got a controller to go wipe clean before I give it back to the original owner."

More information can be found here.
PC Power & Cooling Silencer 610W PSU Review @ XtremeComputing
"PC Power and cooling have been around since before I was born, and are one of the oldest and best PSU brands around. It was with their reputation ahead of them that I came to testing their new PSU, the silencer 610W EPS12v. Why EPS and not ATX? Well the EPS is a higher classification standard that ATX is heading towards anyway, it basically means it has to have a 24pin motherboard connector and 8pin 12v aux power to the board/CPU. Don’t worry though as the Silencer is also ATX 12v compliant, so will work if you only have a 4pin aux 12v on your motherboard. Let’s see what treat PCP&C have got for us then."

More information can be found here.
Friday, February 1, 2008
Razer Piranha Headset @ techPowerUp
"The Piranha is Razer's newest effort to conquer the budget gaming headset market. It features a noise canceling microphone and a lot of other neat features that add to the value of the product which is sold at a mere $79.99."

More information can be found here.
I4U: Impact Acoustics 5-port HDMI Selector Switch Review
"The switch is HDCP compliant and outputs full 1080p video and audio signals. This is the perfect gizmo for connecting multiple HD components to your TV via HDMI. The Impact Acoustics 5-port HDMI Selector Switch has five HDMI inputs and one HDMI output. The switch is capable of outputting full 1080p signals and is fully HDCP complaint for use with Blu-ray and HD DVD players. Supported formats include 480i, 480p, 720p, 1080i, and 1080p."

More information can be found here.
bit-tech News: Tomb Raider: Underworld preview
"One of the biggest changes to the game however has been at a much more fundamental level – the structure of the levels themselves. In the past, //Tomb Raider has been like most games of the genre – run, gun, puzzle, solution, run, gun. Wash, rinse, and then repeat. Levels are structured to be extremely linear and Lara must overcome puzzles in a specific order. //Underworld changes that, harnessing what the developers are calling a new multi-level approach to the puzzles. The new structure is simple; there are fewer levels—only about eight apparently when we saw the game in action—but those levels are much, much larger and complex. It isn’t like //Legend where Lara is always moving forwards, it’s much more like the St. Francis’ Folly level in //Anniversary. The solutions to puzzles are often more than just a room away and aren’t just limited to grabbing the right coloured key. Puzzles require thought, understanding and a close attention to the story."

More information can be found here.
Sapphire Radeon HD 3650 512MB
"Last week AMD introduced the ATI Radeon HD 3400 and 3600 series, which are the new low-end graphics processors compared to the Radeon HD 3800 series. These budget graphics cards are branded as the Radeon HD 3450, 3470, and 3650 and are all available for under $100 USD. While they may be cheap, they are the first graphics cards to introduce support for DisplayPort. DisplayPort is the newest digital display interface standard, backed by VESA, and is direct competition to HDMI. DisplayPort has yet to be fully supported by the available Linux display drivers, but the Catalyst Linux driver already supports these new ATI graphics cards and there will be open-source support through the RadeonHD driver in the coming days. At hand today we have the Sapphire Radeon HD 3650 512MB graphics card as we deliver the first Linux benchmarks for this RV635 GPU."

More information can be found here.
Intel Releases 965/G35 IGP Programming Documents
"At the Linux.Conf.Au conference today, Intel has announced NDA-free programming documentation covering the 965 Express and G35 Express integrated graphics processors (IGPs). Intel's display driver has long been open-source, but up until now, they have not been releasing the programming documentation for these products to the public. This move comes months after AMD announced their new open-source strategy and began releasing register documentation on their R500 and R600 GPUs. These newly released documents by Intel even cover 3D and video programming for their IGPs."

More information can be found here.
bit-tech News: AMD's new RS780 IGP and SB700 pictured
"As you can see below, the chipsets are really tiny, although they're not quite as small as the discrete AMD 790 series - the good thing is that both still only require passive cooling. The north bridge is HT3.0 and AM2+ capable, and outputs include HDMI, DVI and even the new DisplayPort (with HDCP encryption to boot). Avivo support has been upgraded and should also mirror the capabilities of the latest Radeon HD 3000 series graphics cards . There are also various rumours about the IGP performance, whether it's faster or slower than what Nvidia has to offer may depend on the use of a local frame buffer, for which Gigabyte hasn't integrated here. In fact, we don't expect many, if any motherboard makers to use this option as they never have done before. However, with new Hybrid CrossFire support linking IGP to low end GPU, this may be set to change."

More information can be found here.
Thermaltake Muse X-Duo Raid @ Bjorn3D
"If you walk into a computer store today you are met with a large amount of different external storage solutions. It is now possible to expand the storage of your computer quickly and inexpensively without having to open up the computer and installing a hard drive."

More information can be found here.
Steelseries Ikari Optical Gaming Mouse Review @ Tweaknews.net
"With the exception of the size and the overly bright indicator LEDs, this is a very sound product. To spice up the pot a bit more, the price is also very reasonable for a high quality optical mouse. If you are used to large mice and want more of the same then don't hesitate to give the Ikari a look. It is a very solid and comfortable mouse to use, and a sheer joy to game with."

More information can be found here.
bit-tech News: BFGTech GeForce 8800 GTS OC 512MB
"We couldn't talk about the GeForce 8800 GTS 512MB without mentioning the alternatives---such as the GeForce 8800 GT and GeForce 8800 GTX---that are tentatively priced either side of the card we're looking at here today. Ultimately, the choice on whether you need to spend £150, £200 or £250 will depend on your requirements. 1680x1050 seems to be the optimal resolution for the GeForce 8800 GTS 512MB, but performance doesn't tail off too much at 1920x1200; therefore, if you're gaming on a higher-resolution screen, we'd recommend plumping for a GeForce 8800 GTX or Radeon HD 3870 X2. However, if you've got a 1280x1024 screen you should probably save the cash and opt for a GeForce 8800 GT. It's also worth mentioning that the GeForce 8800 GT is a pretty capable card at 1680x1050 as well -- although it's not as competent as the 8800 GTS 512MB, where it's around 15 percent slower on average. You're probably wondering why I've not mentioned the alternatives from ATI yet -- that's because there really isn't any alternative at this price point. The newly-released Radeon HD 3870 X2 typically retails for around £270 (inc. VAT)---some £65 more than the BFGTech GeForce 8800 GTS 512MB. And at the other end of the scale, the Radeon HD 3870 is available for around £130 (inc. VAT) -- that's about £65 less than the cheapest 8800 GTS 512MB and it's in a different performance class. So, BFGTech's GeForce 8800 GTS OC 512MB appears to have hit a price point that can't be matched by anything other than stock-clocked GeForce 8800 GTS 512MB cards and as such it earns a recommendation from us. However, it's important to make sure that it's going to be connected to a 1680x1050 or 1920x1200 display, as that will show the card in its best possible light. You can get away with running the BFGTech GeForce 8800 GTS 512MB on higher or lower resolution screens, but the benefits of the card aren't going to be quite so profound."

More information can be found here.
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