Tech News

  • GIGABYTE Launches G1.Sniper Z87 Motherboard at Blizzcon 2013

    As the Official Motherboard Sponsor of Blizzcon 2013, GIGABYTE Unveils Latest G1.Killer Gaming Platform

    City of Anaheim ,CA, November 8th, 2013 – GIGABYTE TECHNOLOGY Co. Ltd., a leading manufacturer of motherboards and graphics cards, today announced the launch of its latest gaming motherboard the GIGABYTE G1.Sniper Z87 at Blizzcon 2013, one of the biggest US gaming events of the year. The GIGABYTE G1.Sniper Z87 combines our signature AMP-UP Audio feature set with Killer™ E2200 networking, gold hardware, ruthless performance and looks that could kill.

    ”The new G1.Sniper Z87 has PC gaming built-in to its DNA, an utterly compelling choice for any high performance PC built with fragging in mind,” commented Henry Kao, Vice President of GIGABYTE Motherboard Business Unit. “It’s fantastic to be here as the exclusive motherboard sponsor at Blizzcon 2013, and also have the opportunity to showcase our latest gaming platform to thousands of true hard core gamers.”

    The GIGABYTE G1.Sniper Z87
    The latest addition to the GIGABYTE G1-Killer series of gaming motherboards, the G1.Sniper Z87 motherboard, is packed with an exclusive range of features that make it a champion’s choice in the gaming arena.

    GIGABYTE AMP-UP Audio: Redefining Motherboard Audio
    The G1.Sniper Z87 motherboard features a range of unique features and technologies that are designed to give gamers more control over the game’s audio, a crucial aspect of the modern gaming experience.

    Exclusive Upgradable Onboard OP-Amp
    GIGABYTE motherboards are the world’s first to feature an upgradable onboard operational amplifier (OP-Amp). OP-Amps are commonly found in high-end audio equipment and offer not only amplification of the audio signal, but a superior audio experience generally. The motherboard’s OP-Amp is mounted on a socket which allows users to physically switch out and try different OP-Amps which offer distinct and nuanced properties that make the audio clearer, punchier and more life-like. Additional OP-Amps can be purchased separately to further expand audio capabilities.

    Featuring a gold plated USB 2.0 port, GIGABYTE USB DAC-UP provides clean, noise-free power delivery to any Digital-to-Analog Converter (DAC). DACs can be sensitive to fluctuations in power from other USB ports; this is why GIGABYTE USB DAC-UP takes advantage of an isolated power source that minimizes potential fluctuations, ensuring the best audio experience possible.

    Gain Boost
    To optimize the audio experience provided by the onboard OP-Amp, the G1.Sniper Z87 motherboard also features Gain Boost with onboard switches to select between 2.5x and 6x amplification modes depending on output device. Most OP-Amps are capable of providing a high-gain audio output that is ideal for high-end headphones and speakers that have higher impedance headroom.

    Creative Sound Core3D™
    The G1.Sniper Z87 features a dedicated Sound Core3D™ audio processor from Creative, a multi-core sound and voice processor offering high-performance hardware audio processing, with leading-edge audio technologies including the latest SoundBlaster software suite.

    Audio Noise Guard
    To help protect and insulate the Creative Sound Core3D™ audio processor and onboard amplifiers from electromagnetic interference (EMI), the GIGABYTE G1.Sniper Z87 motherboard features an audio noise guard that essentially separates the board’s sensitive analog audio components from potential EMI noise at the PCB level. LED trace path lighting illuminates to show the separation of the PCB layers.

    Nichicon Pro Audio Caps
    The GIGABYTE G1.Sniper Z87 motherboard uses the highest quality Nichicon MUSE ES series bipolar audio capacitors at each channel layout. These professional audio capacitors deliver the highest quality sound resolution and expansion to create a true Hi-Fi audio experience.

    Gold Audio Plated Hardware
    The GIGABYTE G1.Sniper Z87 motherboard uses top quality gold plated hardware for improved connectivity and long lasting durability for the USB DAC-UP port, DisplayPort and HMDI ports and audio connectors. Gold has superb signal conductivity and will not tarnish over extended periods of use. The Sound Core3D™ audio processor is also shielded by a gold-plated cover which eliminates electrostatic interference.

    For more information about the GIGABYTE G1.Sniper Z87 motherboard, please visit:

    To learn more about GIGABYTE G1-Killer series gaming motherboards, please go to:

  • Ivy Bridge-E Overclocking With EVGA And Corsair

    I did an article on overclocking the Ivy Bridge-E Core i7 4930K using an EVGA X79 Dark and was very impressed with the performance.  I suspect my chip isn't that good but LN2 results could improve and with the new BIOS images being released since then I'm sure my chip could do better..

    It has been a while since I personally have setup a bench, rolled up my sleeves and built a test system with top-shelf components, a fresh OS install and some overclocking mojo. However, Intel's recent release of Ivy Bridge-E gave us a hankering to do just that. We've been testing a lot of tablets, smartphones and Ultrabooks but there's a satisfaction with building a high performance system from the ground up, that you just don't get from pre-built devices...

    EVGA recently took the wraps off a new high-end X79 motherboard dubbed the X79 Dark and its black PCB with red accents, as it turned out, matched quite nicely with Corsair's Vengeance Pro series memory and H90 water cooler. But we needed stable clean power too, so we enlisted an EVGA SuperNOVA 1000 G2 power supply to offer up the juice.  All told, with an OCZ Vertex 3 Max IOPs SSD for storage, we ended up with quite a test platform to explore the out limits of clock speed with Intel's Core i7-4960X Ivy Bridge-E six-core processor.

    I do hate it when hardware reviewers claim that they don't use top shelf components and then set out to do an overclocking article.  Not to mention their 3.6Ghz overclock?  WTF??  At least I was able to hit 5Ghz+ and prove that IVB-E can be a viable overclocking platform.

  • Lamptron FC-10 fan controller review

    I was one of the first sites to feature a review of a Lamptron fan controller and for the most part they were always 100%.  The thing I liked most about them was that the company kept trying to improve the design and would often ask me what I thought of certain designs.

    Many years have passed since they fell off the map but, they continued to create fan controllers and the FC-10 is quite nice and looks like it should be in a Metro game.

    It's been over ten years since I've last reviewed a Lamptron product on DV Hardware! Back then the company was primarily known for its CCFL products, but now Lamptron is best known for its fan controllers and some of its other modding products. The subject of this review is the Lamptron FC10 Special Edition, a unique four-channel fan controller that uses vintage Nixie tubes!

    I still think there is a market for fan controllers and hope companies like Lamptron continue to build them.

  • Tracking f-bombs via twitter around the world

    The nice thing about the webby tubes is how you can find a post, say on facebook, and follow it to a legitimate website, say, and read an amazing story about a website that tracks when and where people type the word fuck on twitter.

    Fiddlesticks! Fracking! Fudge! Nope, not THAT F-word. We're talking about the saucy verb that was supposedly first used in "Flen flyys," a circa-1475 poem that mocked friars for their alleged extracurricular activities with other men's wives. (Seriously, look it up on Wikipedia to spice up your small talk at parties and wedding receptions.)

    The site maps in real time whenever the F-word is dropped on Twitter. America and Britain are leaders in cursing online, according to the interactive map, with New Yorkers tagged as the biggest offenders.

    Techgage noticed that leaving the website running proved that the US East Coast and California are the biggest offenders along with a large portion of the UK.  Seems fitting since those are English speaking countries (even though a vast majority may refuse to speak it)  Strangely enough large parts of Canada and Australia (also English speaking countries) only recorded a handful of f-bombs.

  • Samsung Roadmap - With lots to show

    We all know that big companies spend a good portion of their profits on plans for the future.  Sometimes those plans are well thought out and other times they are like the imac.  Either way it is good to see what companies have planned for the future and by the looks of it Samsung is setting the bar high.

    On the General Outlook
    A fun tidbit on slide 3 -- Samsung wants to make $400B USD by 2020.  That's more than double Samsung's 2012 haul of 201T Won ($189.6B USD).  Slide 5 shows Samsung expects OLED and SSD to be the fastest high-tech growth places from 2012-2017.  Samsung also expects modest growth in smartphones and "smart TVs", slowing by 2017.

    When considering the products they sell, how do they figure what the lifespan will be.  (this speaks to innovation and R&D money.

    Product replacement schedule/lifetime:
    Mobile -- 1.8 years
    Note PC -- 5.0 years
    TV -- 7.0 years
    Refrigerator -- 14.0 years
    Washer -- 15.9 years

    As you can imagine they have timed their product cycle to be about the "buy up" period for American mobile device plans.

    DailyTech has the slides posted, be sure to check them out.

  • NVIDIA GTX 780 Ti Launch Day

    The great thing about being NVIDIA is that they always have something available to take on the competition and today they have launched the world’s fastest GPU the GTX 780 Ti(tan)ium.  When this card was announced figured it was nothing more than an overclocked GTX Titan with a 700 series name badge.  However, final specs uncovered that it was so much more.

    GTX 780 Ti comes with 2880 CUDA cores (more than Titan) 7000Mhz memory modules (Faster than Titan) and a 875Mhz Core Clock (Quicker than Titan) which makes this card, at the lowest level, a powerhouse of parallel processing.

    Web Reviews
    - NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780 Ti: Taking GK110 To The Max @ HotHardware
    - NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780 Ti Performance Review @ Hardware Canucks
    - Nvidia GeForce GTX 780 Ti review: Titan killer!
    - Nvidia GTX 780 Ti @ LanOC Reviews
    - NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780 Ti Graphics Card Launch Review @ HardwareHeaven
    - NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780 Ti 3 GB @ techPowerUp

    I suspect there will be more reviews throughout the day so we'll be checking the inbox for more goodness.  Althought right now I'm curious to see what EVGA is doing with the GPU

  • Free Games with GeForce GTX 780 Ti and Discount on SHIELD

    This is a great promotion from NVidia.

    From October 28th until December 31st, gamers who buy a GeForce GTX 780 Ti will receive free downloadable copies of Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag, Batman: Arkham Origins, and Splinter Cell Blacklist from participating retailers and e-tailers. So not only are you going to get the greatest gaming GPU on the planet, you’ll also get three great games that showcase the latest graphics technologies to go along with your GeForce GTX 780 Ti purchase.

    But that’s not all. In North America, participating retailers and e-tailers will also offer the Holiday Bundle with SHIELD, which includes all three games and a voucher for $100 off an NVIDIA SHIELD portable game console! Gamers must act fast though! This special offer expires November 21st.

    This is a huge value for anyone who was already planning to purchase a graphics card this holiday season.

  • AMD R9 290 Launch Day

    We have already seen the launch of the R9 290X and even reviewed an R9 270X which begs the question. "What will fill the middle ground?"

    It would seem that the R9 290 (notice no "X") will fit the bill nicely and, with a last minute drive update, comes with enough power to take on the GTX 780.  *shudder*

    Web Reviews
    - AMD Radeon R9 290 review: cheaper Hawaii vs. GTX 780
    - AMD Radeon R9-290 and 290 Crossfire reviews
    - AMD Radeon R9 290 Review: Hawaii Just Got Cheaper @ HotHardware
    - AMD Radeon R9 290 4GB Video Card Review @ Legit Reviews
    - AMD's Radeon R9 290 graphics card reviewed
    - AMD Radeon R9 290 4GB Review @ Hardware Canucks
    - AMD Radeon R9 290 Graphics Card Launch Review @ HardwareHeaven
    - AMD Radeon R9 290 4 GB @ techPowerUp

    I'm pretty sure a R9 290(X) killer is coming along, sadly since AMD finds my site offensive they have opted *not* to send me a sample and at 600 bones I don't want to afford a substandard GPU. 

    That is until the MSI Lightning edition comes around, it should clock like crazy!

  • EA Scraps Upcoming Command and Conquer Game

    I was talking with a friend about Battlefield 4 and we got on the subject of "crap game"  Basically the conclusion of our discussion was that we are both totally burned on COD (Call of Duty) because it was basically the same game over and over.  For me I loved COD 4 and both of the Modern Warfare games to follow but Black Ops ruined the franchise for me.  Along the same lines I loved Battlefield 2 and I was expecting nothing less when Battlefield 3 came out.

    Oh was I wrong.  Yes, I know Battlefield is a "multiplayer" game but under that assumption why bother including in a single player aspect??  Anyhow the reason I bring this up is because for Battlefield 3 I got an Alpha and Beta invite and was given an opportunity to voice some feedback about the game.  Sadly since they only offered a single multiplayer map and matchmaking was crap I wasn't able say much about the game that wasn’t already voice by someone else.  The real sad thing is based on my retail experience, DICE didn't change much either.

    Maybe that is because the game was "solid" in their eyes or maybe they didn't have the right people playing the Alpha like they did with Command and Conquer.

    Part of being in a creative team is the understanding that not all of your choices are going to work out. In this case, we shifted the game away from campaign mode and built an economy-based, multiplayer experience. Your feedback from the alpha trial is clear: We are not making the game you want to play. That is why, after much difficult deliberation, we have decided to cease production of this version of the game. Although we deeply respect the great work done by our talented team, ultimately it’s about getting you the game you expect and deserve.

    Over the next 10 days we will be refunding any and all money spent in the alpha. If you have a question about your refund, please contact

    Now, ^^ THAT ^^ isn't something you never hear a game development studio say and it took some balls that is for sure.

    Oh and back to Battlefield 4, I might buy it but only when it is on sale and if it comes with the expansions.  Of course if EA wants to push a key to my Origin account I'll be glad to give it a go and I might even write about it.

  • A Deuce of SSD Goodness from Custom PC Review

    Whoa check this out, Two SSD reviews at Custom PC Review!

    - PNY XLR8 Pro 240GB SSD @ Custom PC Review
    - Toshiba Q Series Pro 256GB SSD (HDTS325XZSTA)

    ’Toshibas competing product comes in the form of the Toshiba Q Series Pro, which we’ll be reviewing today. Toshiba appears to have modeled their SSD lineup off of Samsung’s highly successful 840 Series with Toshiba releasing their latest Q Series and the Q Series Pro SSDs. The Toshiba Q Series Pro offers greater performance in comparison to its vanilla sibling

    I'm no SSD expert but Toshiba has been rather popular in custom pcs for the past several months.  Call me a Crucial snob but of the SSDs I have I like my "M" drive the most.