CD Project vs. File-Sharers Follow-up
CD Projekt has not denied sending letters to German gamers demanding nearly 1000 euros for allegedly pirating role-playing game The Witcher 2. The company told Eurogamer: 'As you know, we aren't huge fans of any sort of DRM here at CD Projekt RED. DRM itself is a pain for legal gamers - the same group of honest people who decided that our game was worth its price, and went and bought it. We don't want to make their lives more difficult by introducing annoying copy protection systems.'
'Moreover, we always try to offer high value with our product - for example, enhancing the game with additional collectors' items such as soundtracks, making-of DVDs, books, walkthroughs, etc. We could introduce advanced copy protection systems which, unfortunately, punish legal customers as well. Instead, we decided to give gamers some additional content with each game release, to make their experience complete.'
'However,' CD Projekt added, 'that shouldn't be confused with us giving a green light to piracy. We will never approve of it, since it doesn't only affect us but has a negative impact on the whole game industry.
"We've seen some of the concern online about our efforts to thwart piracy, and we can assure you that we only take legal actions against users who we are 100 per cent sure have downloaded our game illegally.'
AMD Shipping 28nm GPUs
Advanced Micro Devices said on Tuesday that it had begun to ship its next-generation graphics processing units (GPUs) made using 28nm fabrication process at Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company's fabs for revenue. The company is projected to formally unveil its future graphics products at the Consumer Electronics Show early in 2012.
"We are ramping 28nm [products] with TSMC in Taiwan and shipping the products here and now. We are very excited about the products," said Rory Read, chief executive officer of AMD, during IT Supply Chain conference organized by Raymond James.
For AMD, which promised to be the first to market with 28nm GPUs for a number of times this year, it is a good news to start not only producing such graphics processors at TSMC, but also to initiate revenue shipments of the parts. While we do not know for sure, it is very likely that PC makers will be able to start shipping systems featuring Radeon HD 7000-series "Southern Islands" chips shortly after CES next month.
The next generation of standalone graphics processors from AMD and Nvidia will feature considerably improved performance per watt and while they will still belong to the DirectX 11 generation, they will bring support for numerous new features and capabilities only possible with tangibly improved performance and refined architecture.
MSI X79A-GD45 (8D)
MSI unveiled their eight DIMM version of its X79A-GD45 motherboard released last month.
The updated motherboard is called X79A-GD45 (8D) and obviously supports LGA2011 (Sandy Bridge-E) processors, and. With the 8 DIMMs the board could handle up to 128 GB of RAM (!)
The X79A-GD45 (8D) features Military Class III components (DrMOS II, Hi-C CAP, Solid CAP, Super Ferrite Choke), the mentioned eight (DDR3-2400) memory slots, two SATA 6.0 Gbps and four SATA 3.0 Gbps ports, plus three PCI-Express 3.0 x16 and two PCIe 2.0 x16 slots.
MSI's board also comes with one PCIe x1 slot, Gigabit Ethernet, four USB 3.0 ports (two on the back plate, two via a header), 7.1-channel audio, Click BIOS II (UEFI), and the OC Genie II overclocking function. The X79A-GD45 (8D) has yet to be priced but since its quad-DIMM sibling costs 195 Euro, we're thinking it will go over the 200 Euro mark.
AMD Allows Custom Radeon HD 7950 Designs
HIS Radeon HD 6450 with 2 GB and PCIe x1 Interface
Suited for compact systems, HIS' new card features a low-profile design, a blue PCB, a passive cooler, 160 Stream Processors, a 64-bit memory interface, GPU and memory clocks of 625 MHz and 1000 MHz, respectively, and three display outputs - D-Sub, dual-link DVI and DisplayPort. No word on pricing just yet.
Cooler Master kills Choiix brand name
Cooler Master sends word that it will no longer use the Choiix brand name starting January 1, 2012. Basically, all Choiix branded products will be renamed to Cooler Master. The company doesn't provide much details on why they're making the chance, but my guess is it's because few people know Choiix, while Cooler Master is a much more recognizable brand.
EA preps browser-based C&C Tiberium Alliances
EA announced Command & Conquer Tiberium Alliances, a new HTML5 browser-based MMO developed by German game studio Phenomic. A release date is unknown, but gamers interested in testing the game can sign up for the beta test over here.
Command & Conquer is officially following other big franchises like Battlefield, Need for Speed and Warhammer to join the rapidly growing Play4Free family with the announcement of Command & Conquer Tiberium Alliances. Tiberium Alliances is an all-new MMO-Strategy game set in the Command & Conquer Tiberium Universe. It is made by the German developer Phenomic and covers a new space for the C&C franchise -- Free 2 Play Browser Games!
While the BioWare Victory team is exclusively focused on C&C Generals 2 for 2013, you can sign up for the Tiberium Alliances Beta starting this week to shorten the wait. As the name Tiberium Alliances already suggests, it's more important than ever to form powerful alliances to fight the Mutants -- Choose your side as GDI or Nod and evolve the most powerful alliance on the planet.
AMD FX-6200 to be clocked at 3.8GHz
Turkish tech site Donanim Haber shows leaked slides that reveal AMD is getting ready to launch the FX-6200, a new six-core chip with a 3.8GHz clockspeed and 4.10GHz Turbo.
It features six cores, 6 MB total L2 cache, and 8 MB total L3 cache. Its TDP is rated at 125W. In a presentation to retailers sourced by DonanimHaber, AMD pitched the FX-6200 to have about 10% higher performance at Mainconcept HD to Flash conversion, than the FX-6100 (3.30 GHz nominal, 3.90 GHz max. turbo).
Earth Defense Force: Insect Armageddon PC Released
Thousands of giant insects and aliens once again ravage the earth, and only the Earth Defense Force can stop them. Defend the city of New Detroit against an infestation bigger and meaner than ever before. Destroy these monsters at all costs, even if it means turning entire city blocks into rubble! Enjoy raw arcade shooter satisfaction on a gigantic modern scale. Collect over 300 weapons: assault rifles, rocket launchers, energy weapons, sniper rifles, grenade launchers and more! Play with 4 upgradeable armor types: Jetpack, Battle, Tactical, and Trooper. Experience Massive replayability through arcade style scoring, tons of weapons to collect, and multiple difficulty levels in every game mode!
In addition, the game also features a six player Survival mode that pits a human squad against a nonstop onslaught of the largest enemies the aliens have to offer. New Detroit�s giant bug problem is unavoidable, and mankind�s last hope lies with the Earth Defense Force. Defend the world from the insect invasion, even if it means blowing up the entire city as part of the extermination process.
Earth Defense Force: Insect Armageddon and the soldiers are equipped better than ever in the latest cult classic iteration that follows in the footsteps of Earth Defense Force 2017 (Japanese Title �Earth Defense Force 3� developed by Sandlot), and Earth Defense Force: Insect Armageddon continues the rich history and hardcore fun of the series.
Heavy Fire: Afghanistan (PS3/Wii/PC) Teaser Video
3DMark 11 version 1.0.3
Futuremark have just released an update for 3DMark 11, the gaming benchmark for DirectX 11 PCs. The results produced by the new version of 3DMark 11 are compatible and comparable with results produced by earlier versions. This is a relatively minor update.3DMark 11 version 1.0.3 release notes
- Bullet physics library updated to 2.79 in order to improve compatibility with current and future CPUs and GPUs
- Manual GPU Selection option now available on the Help-tab
- Updated SystemInfo module to version 4.6 with improved compatibility with current and future hardware
- Improved error handling and messages
- A new
PC Buyers Guide Christmas 2011
Guru3D offers you their bi-annual PC Buyers Guide, this is the 2011 Winter edition. This article brings you a set of recommendations of products we feel are great components to build yourself a nice gaming rig. We go from low-end targated at gamers, to high-end for the enthusiast fragger.
We'll only cover the PC itself. Monitor, keyboard, mouse and speakers are not included. We do this for brevity's sake, as the monitor alone would require its own guide, especially if I were to cover LCD monitors.
We target a system intended for gaming primarily while not spending heaps of money.
Check out the guide right here.
NVIDIA Kepler Is On Track is sampled
Funny that when one Manufacturer is getting news (AMD R7000) that all of the sudden the competition becomes active with little news items as well. AMD will most certainly be the first graphics card maker to release a 28nm GPU series alright, in fact the first samples are beeing seeded to press already (yes us too).
Nvidia has recently disclosed that Kepler is on track and that they have already entered into the possession of the first 28nm chip samples.
Intel releases budget SBE Extreme Board DX79TO
The chaps over at vr-zone spotted that that Intel's Extreme motherboards are getting less and less extreme by every iteration and after a slight delay Intel's more affordable X79 motherboard, the DX79TO has arrived, but it fits more into Intel's lower-end motherboard ranges than in the extreme category in our opinion. In fact, the DX79TO is a feature stripped DX79SI, something we didn't quite expect, especially as the DX79SI wasn't exactly breaking new territory so to say.
Intel has gotten rid of the x8 PCI Express slot and in lieu of that you get a x1 slot. Gone is also the front USB 3.0 ports, the secondary Gigabit Ethernet port, two audio jacks and the optical S/PDIF out. The two lower heatinks appear to no longer be connected via a heatpipe, instead a piece of metal connects them and it's possible that Intel has removed the top PWM heatsink as it's missing in the manual, but still present in the product brief. Also missing is the bundled Wi-Fi/Bluetooth ad adapter that comes with the DX79SI.
Stripping out all of those features makes the Intel DX79TO a really poor purchase, especially as it's listed for a retail price of around US$230 i.e. not much cheaper than the DX79SI which retails for around US$260, not to mention plenty of much more feature rich motherboards from Intel's motherboard partners. It looks like Intel decided it wasn't worth putting too much effort into its X79 motherboards, possibly due to the fact that Intel isn't expecting to sell a ton of them, but the DX79TO really is a lame duck that should never have been put into production.
Chrome 16 Goes Stable
An updated 'stable build of Google's excellent Chrome browser is now available to the masses and it offers one fresh feature - multiple profiles. This addition allows a single instance of Chrome to handle several user profiles and enable easy switching between them. This is great for shared PCs as it enables people to quickly access their bookmarks, apps, extensions, history, and other settings, but it's not really suited for those who like their privacy.
Beside multiple sign-in support, Chrome 16.0.912.63 comes with Sync enhancements and multiple bug fixes. This stable build is available for Windows, Mac OS and Linux.
NVIDIA Opens Up CUDA by Releasing Compiler Source Code
NVIDIA today announced that it will provide the source code for the new NVIDIA CUDA LLVM-based compiler to academic researchers and software-tool vendors, enabling them to more easily add GPU support for more programming languages and support CUDA applications on alternative processor architectures.
LLVM is a widely-used open source compiler infrastructure with a modular design that makes it easy to add support for new programming languages and processor architectures. It is used for a range of programming requirements by many leading companies, including Adobe, Apple, Cray, Electronic Arts, and others.
The new LLVM-based CUDA compiler, which is enhanced with architecture support for NVIDIA's parallel GPUs, is included in the latest release of the CUDA Toolkit (v4.1), now available to the public.
"Opening up the CUDA platform is a significant step," said Sudhakar Yalamanchili, professor at Georgia Institute of Technology and lead of the Ocelot project, which maps software written in CUDA C to different processor architectures. "The future of computing is heterogeneous, and the CUDA programming model provides a powerful way to maximize performance on many different types of processors, including AMD GPUs and Intel x86 CPUs."
Enabling alternative approaches to programming heterogeneous parallel systems for domain-specific problems and future programming models will help accelerate the path to exascale computing. By releasing the source code to the CUDA compiler and internal representation (IR) format, NVIDIA is enabling researchers with more flexibility to map the CUDA programming model to other architectures, and furthering development of next-generation higher performance computing platforms.
Software tools vendors can also access compiler source code technology to build custom solutions.
"This initiative enables PGI to create native CUDA Fortran and OpenACC compilers that leverage the same device-level optimization technology used by NVIDIA CUDA C/C++," said Doug Miles, director of The Portland Group. "It will enable seamless debugging and profiling using existing tools, and allow PGI to focus on higher-level optimizations and language features."
Antec European Availability Eleven Hundred Chassis
Antec, Inc. is proud to announce the Eleven Hundred, the newest member of the award-winning Gaming Series. The Eleven Hundred marks a new chapter in the Gaming Series with an all-new attractive design and a revamped lineup of expandability, cooling and convenience features. Gamers seeking the highest level of performance will want to take advantage of the Eleven Hundred
CD Projekt Allegedly Suing The Witcher 2 Pirates
CD Projekt has been hard at work sending thousand of emails to gamers who downloaded hit RPG The Witcher 2, demanding as much as $1,200 and threatening legal action against those who don't pay. After digging up some personal info on the pirates with the help of a torrent monitoring company, the emails began to fly.
Although this initially sounded quite reasonable, away from the spotlight the company followed in the footsteps of so-called copyright trolls, by signing up for a so-called pay-up-or-else scheme. CD Projekt hired a law firm and torrent monitoring company to track those who illegally downloaded and shared the game, and has been sending them hefty cash settlement proposals.
The price CD Projekt is asking through their lawyers is slightly higher than what gamers have to pay in stores, to say the least. Over the past several months thousands of alleged BitTorrent users in Germany were asked to cough up 911,80 euros ($1230) to pay off their apparent debt to the company.
As is often the case, these mass settlement schemes do not exist without collateral damage. Aside from targeting many people who indeed downloaded and shared the game without paying, CD Projekts lawyers are also wrongfully accusing people who have never even heard of the game.
After all, an IP-address doesnt identify a person, and Wi-Fi piggybacking is not unusual. But CD Projekt, who dont want to bug legitimate consumers with DRM, apparently take this collateral damage for granted.