Tech News

  • ASRock X299 Taichi @ techPowerUp

    Looking back at the X99 launch I can see and feel a major difference in the level of excitement surrounding the new X299 platform.  Things are just down.  I think some of that might be the lack of quality reviews from respected websites followed by a lack of available product.

    TechPowerUp has posted a review of the ASRock X299 Taichi which, if I remember correctly, is their mainstream gamer'esq motherboard line that everyone loves because of the price.

    The ASRock X299 Taichi comes with a fresh look that's still familiar. Boasting support for Intel's latest Skylake-X processors, the board features dual LAN, integrated Wifi, three M.2 ports and outstanding audio performance. Yet again ASRock manages to impress!

    The board does look pretty darn pimp and even has some gears to show you how much work it can do.  (you know cause that is a thing)

    oh and this

    On Monday, the 19th of June, at approximately 6:45 PM, there was a knock on my door. I was lying on the living room floor with my legs up on the seat of my office chair, sleeping. You see, I'm kind of between houses right now, with my worldly possessions strewn across two cities. My supple leather couch that I love to melt into is at the OTHER house, not this one, so I had to deal with it.

    Uhh,  I'm not sure if that is a good thing or just some asshat trying to tell the world how exclusive and cool they thing they are.  Either way, I Like it big grin smile!

  • Intel Core i7 7740X processor review @ Guru3D

    The Core i7 7740X was a highlight processor of Computex 2017 due to some of the insane overclocking numbers the large quad core processor could turn out.   While on the subject of cores, most tech YouTubers got all triggered on the quad core nature of the Core i7 7740X which simply tells me they are scraping for subject matter.

    For this test we'll review the quad core Core i7 7740X from Intel. Yes this is Kaby Lake -X, the more affordable processor that you will need to seat on a X299 motherboard. Albeit limited towards dual-channel memory, the processor does a good job, as well as it being tweakable towards 5.2 GHz on all cores.

    I have one of these processors in the lab and with any luck will be pushing it to its limit alongside my delidded Core i7 7700K that loves to clock.

  • EVGA GTX 1080Ti Kingpin Edition Seen in the Wild!

    Ever since the announcement of the EVGA GTX 1080Ti Kingpin edition during Computex 2017 enthusiasts have been eagerly awaiting the release of the coveted new graphics card that not only promises to up your social status among your friends on Twitter but also is guaranteed to deliver 2000Mhz+ overclocking support.

    On July 3rd EVGA released the following photo to their twitter account proving that the KPE is real.

    I might have mentioned this before but when Pascal launched "last year" it created a buying frenzy for the new platform and a HUGE void in the enthusiast community that was once filled with overclocking.  I’m not talking about casual overclocking either but extreme overclocking with liquid nitrogen and TONs of excessive voltage.  

    The launch of the EVGA Kingpin edition marks the resurgence of overclocking on the NVIDIA platform.  Granted the GPU won’t scale like the 980Ti but anything north of 2000Mhz is a huge improvement,

  • The Day Crypto Mining got Bigger than Gaming

    When searching out Podcast topics for our July episode I stumbled across something rather exciting that I normally would have 100% ignored, Cryptocurrency.  More specific GPU mining for Ethereum.  Much like with the Bitcoin craze some 4'ish years ago people have started paying attention to Ethereum and as you can imagine the price started to rise.

    However, unlike Bitcoin which is no longer cost effective to mine, the Ethereum system is still new enough that you can mine using GPUs and trade them for a decent amount of cash.  In turn this has created a worldwide shortage of gaming video cards much like it did with Bitcoin back in the day.

    There is one difference though.  With this craze ASUS has decided to sell a specialized video card dedicated to crypto mining.  This new product is basically a video card with a specalized GPU and no video output.  That keeps the card cheaper and removes it from the second hand market where someone might repurpose the card for gaming.  As you can imagine this is a pure calcuation card similar to the NVIDIA tesla used in super computers and installs similar to a PhysX card in any high-end gaming right..

    What really amazes me is how crazy people get when it comes to "get rich quick" schemes.  I will admit this craze ihas GPU manufactureres making loads of money but, at the expense of gamers and enthusiasts who actually want to use the product for what it was intended.  This in turn creates shortages followed by price hikes and angry consumers. 

    Or, angry hardware reviewers who can't get their hands on a MSI lightning Z because demand is so high that they don't need to spend money on doing hardware reviews.  That alone has made me want to boycott GPU mining however the hardware enthusiast in me finds it interesting to see the elaborate systems people have put togehter even if it won't play Crysis.  

    I found several sites talking about Ethereum

    Web Articles
    - Ethereum Mining Spurring Growth For AMD And Nvidia
    - Something called Ethereum is suddenly all over the news
    - Nvidia, AMD Planning GPUs for Mining Cryptocurrency
    AMD and Nvidia Creating Cryptocurrency Mining GPUs
    - AMD and NVIDIA go after Bitcoin miners with new video cards
    - ASUS MINING-P106-6G

  • Adesso AKB-636UB Typewriter Keyboard @ techPowerUp

    OMG, how many times is this keyboard design going to be "white boxed?"

    At CES 2017 I saw two companies with thsi keyboard on display and since my review of the AZIO MK Retro Mechanical Keyboard I have seen 3 more from various companies. 

    Granted I "might" have seen this one before but still.

    Adesso has a typewriter-inspired USB mechanical keyboard now, with round keycaps, a black and silver trim, and Outemu Blue clicky switches. Priced below $100, this also has novel twist-style feet to appeal to typists both old and new.

    Still comes with blue switches and yet from a different company.  Maybe if we wait long enough someone will release this retro design with a Cherry brand. wink smile

  • MSI announces GeForce GTX 1080 Ti Lightning Z

    OMGOMGOMG big grin smile

    Legendary Lightning strikes again!

    MSI is proud to officially announce the latest of its legendary LIGHTNING graphics cards. Built to be perfect, the new GeForce® GTX 1080 Ti LIGHTNING Z combines cutting edge new technology with proven features such as TRI-FROZR design with TORX 2.0 Fans, SuperPipe technology and Military Class 4 components. The GeForce® GTX 1080 Ti LIGHTNING Z is nothing short of an engineering masterpiece.

    Unmatched Thermal Design
    MSI Torx Fan 2.0MSI’s reputation in thermal design is well-known to be excellent. The improved TRI-FROZR design on the GTX 1080 Ti LIGHTNING Z utilizes two 10cm and one 9cm TORX 2.0 Fans combining the advantages of both traditional fan blade and dispersion fan blade, generating huge amounts of airflow while remaining virtually silent. Two 8mm SuperPipes transfer heat much faster to the fins, enabling up to a whopping 700W of heat dissipation.

    Mystic Light Sync with Brilliant RGB Effect
    MSI’s Mystic Light enables you tocustomize the RGB effects of your hardware to give your system a different look whenever you feel like it. Using the MSI Mystic Light software, you can even synchronize colors and effects of your graphics card, motherboard, case-fans and peripherals. Give yourself or the audience a show!

    Dual BIOS and Enhanced Power Design
    The special LN2 BIOS on the card provides extreme overclockers more capibility for overclocking records without special hardware modifications. By removing restrictions, the full potential of the graphics card is unlocked. The enhanced power design contains more power phases than other models to ensure plenty of power is available for record-breaking performance. LIGHTNING’s custom 10-layer PCB is fitted with 14 phases for GPU and 3 phases for Memory to ensure power delivery can handle the most extreme loads.
    MSI Dual BIOS with special LN2 BIOS
    Military Class 4 Components

    Military Class 4 Components
    Equipped with Military Class 4 components, the MSI GTX 1080 Ti LIGHTNING Z is built to deliver the best quality and stability. The components have gone through rigorous testing by a third-party laboratory to satisfy the MIL-STD-810G standard. Featuring DrMOS 60A power phases, the highest rated available ensuring plenty of power. Hi-C CAP cores, Super Ferrite Choke, and Solid CAP, each aspect of the LIGHTNING Z ensures the best possible performance.

    On-board and in control
    With MSI's exclusive OC kits you're in complete control of the GTX 1080 Ti LIGHTNING Z. V-Check points allow you to accurately measure GPU, Memory and PLL voltages. Multiple Temp Monitor checks the real-time temperatures of the GPU, Memory and PLL while Quadruple Overvoltage allows you to overvolt those same components in order to achieve higher clock speeds.

    Availability
    The GeForce® GTX 1080 Ti LIGHTNING Z is expected to be available in July.

    Specifications

    Core Clock
    1721 MHz / 1607 MHz (Lightning Mode)
    1695 MHz / 1582 MHz (Gaming Mode)
    1582 MHz / 1480 MHz (Silent Mode)
    Memory Clock
    11120 MHz (Lightning / Gaming mode)
    11016 MHz (Silent mode)

  • Intel X-Series Launch Day

    Core i9 marks a turning point in Intel marketing from a "We will NEVER" to a "Hey that is a good idea"  And this isn't so much platform, cores or pissing off snoflake youtubers but simply expanding a product family to include more diversity.

    Diversity is good, or so they say.

    Web Reviews
    - Core i9 7900X processor and MSI X299 Gaming Pro Carbon AC review
    - MSI X299 GAMING PRO CARBON AC Review @ Vortez
    - Intel Core i9-7900X And Core i7-7740X CPU Review: Skylake X and Kaby Lake X Debut
    - Intel Core X Series i9-7900X and i7-7740X @ LanOC Reviews

    I'm sure more reviews will come forward as time goes on.

  • GIGABYTE Launches Pre-Orders for X299

    Bonuses For X299 AORUS Motherboards Available From Select Retailers

    City of Industry, California, June 15th, 2017 – GIGABYTE TECHNOLOGY Co. Ltd, a leading manufacturer of motherboards and graphics cards, launches its pre-order campaign for the latest X299 AORUS Gaming Series Motherboards. Unveiled at Computex, the highly anticipated Intel platform boasts even more cores than its predecessor with future CPUs that introduce 18-Cores in a single package. To reward pre-order customers GIGABYTE is offering promotions at many retail stores and online retailers.



    X299 AORUS Gaming Motherboard Pre-Orders
    With pre-orders beginning on June 19th, GIGABYTE launches its pre-order site for end-users and all to see. In order to partake in the pre-order promotions, users must purchase a board between June 19th to June 25th. Consumers who pre-order will automatically receive one of the following: a HyperX Cloud Headset, a Steam Code Voucher, or CPU bundle discounts.

    “We want to reward our loyal fans that have been waiting eagerly for our X299 AORUS Gaming Motherboards,” said Henry Kao, Vice President of GIGABYTE’s Motherboard Business Unit. “With the enthusiast platform becoming more accessible for users, we want to invite those who are hesitant in moving from a mainstream or entry platform with these promotions. Thus, offering additional value for our motherboards that already provide quality and performance.”

    With the high-demand for the X299 AORUS Gaming Motherboards, this promotion is only valid during the pre-order timeframe and while supplies last. Be sure to visit the pre-order page for more information

  • Cooler Master MasterCase Pro 6 Review @ Bjorn3d

    One of the most difficult decisions you'll make when building your PC is "What case defines my build and reflects me as a user?".  In the early days that decision was pretty simple, pick a beige box and install hardware, it didn't matter what box you picked because they were all beige.  These days there is a wealth of "pre-mods" and custom designs and it can sometimes be tough to know which case is right for you.

    In a sea of gaming PC cases, there are very few that pull the sleek, minimalistic look that many have come to love. I think for me it all started back with the Voodoo Omen that I really started to like cases that were simple, yet did an amazing job housing a powerful system. It seems like some at Cooler Master have the same affinity for a simple design integrated with some forward thinking internal design options. Cooler Master’s  FreeForm™ modular system is aimed at giving users a new level of flexibility when building their systems. We will see just what the MasterCase has to offer in this review.

    If I was to be honest the Cooler Master MasterCase 6 is kind of "meh".  It's basically a MasterCase 5 with a bunch of popup panels to give you better airflow.  Problem is bumping the panels can cause them to break loose since they are only held on with four magnets.  It is a great case but, is also an acquired taste.

    Be sure to check out my review of the Cooler Master MasterCase Pro 6 available on Hardware Asylum dat cam. wink smile

  • Creative Unveils All-New Sound BlasterX AE-5 Audiophile-Grade Gaming Sound Card with World’s Best PC Headphone Amp

    The World’s First Sound Card with an Integrated RGB Controller also Features a PCIe Sabre-Class Gaming DAC will Premier at E3 2017 Los Angeles

    LOS ANGELES – 12 June 2017 – Creative Technology Ltd today announced at E3 2017 the latest addition to its Sound BlasterX Pro-Gaming Series, the Sound BlasterX AE-5. E3 is the world's premier event for computer, video and mobile games and related products, making it the perfect place to debut the next era of PC audio.  
     
    The sound card features the world’s best gaming headphone amplifier for PCs. The Sound BlasterX AE-5 delivers the ultimate audio performance with the full force of a 122dB
    32-bit/384kHz ESS Sabre™ DAC, a kick-ass custom-designed 600? discrete headphone amp, audiophile-grade components, and proprietary Sound Blaster audio enhancement technologies.


     
    Xamp Discrete Headphone Amp
    Delivering an industry-leading gaming headphone amplification experience, the on-board headphone amplifier is custom-built using discrete transistors and audiophile-grade WIMA® film/foil capacitors in a dual-amp design to satisfy the most demanding needs of today’s intense games and high-resolution audio. Experience the difference of a discrete dual-amp design as each audio channel is individually amplified to deliver pristine, uncompromised audio. Plus, the high heat resistance of the German-made WIMA capacitors greatly reduces noise and audio interference. The Xamp’s ultra low 1? output impedance also makes it perfectly capable of driving sensitive in-ear monitors as well as studio-grade headphones from 16? to 600?.
     
    122dB DNR Sabre-Class DAC with Industry Leading Audio Processing
    At the heart of the Sound BlasterX AE-5 sound card is the quad-core Sound Core3D audio DSP and a 122dB ESS Sabre-Class DAC that instantly boosts regular motherboard audio with up to 32 times more clarity. The premium audiophile-grade DAC with its high dynamic range indulges users with up to 32-bit/384kHz lossless playback and true audio fidelity for high-definition audio in games, movies, and music.
     
    Updated, refined and perfected through years of being the leader in sound processing, Creative’s AE-5 is feature-packed with the latest and greatest version of Creative’s award-winning audio processing and algorithms that improve music, movie and gaming experiences. The legendary Sound Blaster technologies provide fully customizable DSP-powered audio enhancements, crystal-clear vocal reproduction, in-game voice communication enhancements, 7.1 virtual surround sound and other advanced audio technologies.
     
    World’s First Sound Card with Integrated RGB Controller Powered by Aurora Reactive Lighting System
    The Sound BlasterX AE-5 card is the first sound card to feature a built-in RGB controller that comes with the Aurora Reactive Lighting System. A separate RGB lighting system could set a user back by at least USD 50, but now, this is built into the card itself with the AE-5: giving users amazing value and performance for their system. This also means that valuable space within a gamer’s desktop can be saved for other components.
     
    The RGB controller, powered by Creative’s very own Aurora Reactive Lighting System, not only lights up the card through the PCB, but also gives gamers the flexibility to build their dream gaming rig by connecting up to four LED strips to match the awesome sound with an awesome light show. The fully customizable Aurora Reactive Lighting System allows users to choose from multiple presets or program it with up to 16.8 million colors and various rhythms to choose from, using the Sound Blaster Connect PC software.
     
    All New Scout 2.0 Feature
    Scout 2.0 is an upgraded version of the Creative’s well-received Scout Mode feature – Scout 2.0 now also includes Scout Radar.
     
    Scout Radar is a smart companion that enables gamers to visualize and pinpoint their enemy’s position on a Scout Radar app with the user’s smart device, while Scout Mode lets gamers hear their enemies before they are seen.
     
    The all new Scout 2.0 feature is sure to give gamers that added winning edge.
     
    5.1 Discrete Speaker System Support
    The Sound BlasterX AE-5 comes with support for a full-fledged discrete 5.1 speaker set-up, enabling gamers to enjoy the full potential of surround sound in today's entertainment content.
     
    Pricing and Availability
    The Sound BlasterX AE-5 will be available in July 2017 on www.creative.com and at authorized dealers at USD149.99.
     
    Gamers in the US will be able to pre-order the Sound BlasterX AE-5 from Newegg, Fry’s, Micro Center and Creative websites beginning June 13, 2017, coinciding with the launch at E3.