AMD Next-Gen FX-Series CPUs released Q3 2012
In the third quarter of the following year, AMD seems to prepare the introduction of its next-generation FX-Series processor, code named Vishera, which is expected to make the transition to the Piledriver cores as soft-pedia reports today:
When compared with the first-generation Bulldozer cores, that are used for the current FX-Series processors, Piledriver is expected to bring a 10-15 percent increase in performance/Watt, as AMD revealed right after the launch of the FX-8150 & Co.
The added performance will come from IPC improvements like structure size increases (about one third of the total performance), and power optimizations that reduce the overall consumption of the CPU.
The latter will also enable AMD's Piledriver core to reach higher frequencies at a constant TDP. Vishera CPUs will continue to be manufactured by GloFo using the 32nm process and will include 4 Piledriver modules for a total of eight processing cores, which is less than the 10-core that were expected from the now canceled Komodo chips.
The good news is that Vishera will use the same AM3+ socket as AMD
More AMD Tahiti 7900 pics surface
Not long after the first pictures of AMD's Tahiti leaked website VR-zone have a more detailed shot of Tahiti's PCB, which reveals more details. The 12 memory chips are clearly visible, confirming the 384-bit memory bus. It also offers a first glimpse at the Tahiti die.
The card most likely features 1.5 GB GDDR5. The 5+1 phase PWM is also visible. Most importantly, we get the first glimpse of the Tahiti die. It is rotated by 45 degrees and covered by a partial heatspreader. However, the die itself is exposed to the heatsink. Tahiti is a big chip - at first glance a similar size to Cayman. However, it is still visibly much smaller than NVIDIA's previous flagships, GF100/GF110 or GT200/GT200b, so AMD continues to dismiss NVIDIA's big die strategy.
The card features 2x CF connectors as well as the dual BIOS switched introduced with the HD 6900 series.
There is a crucial difference from the previous one - this sample consists of 2 x 6-pin PCI-e connectors, as opposed to the 8-pin + 6-pin configuration previously captured. This could suggest that this is either an advanced production ready sample, or Tahiti Pro, or HD 7950, which should feature a lower TDP than Tahiti XT / HD 7970. This card thus has a TDP somewhere between 150W and 225W.
Hitachi 4TB HDD spotted in stores
Under SKU code HDS5C4040ALE630 and probably part of the Deskstar 5K series, the 4TB drive has yet to be announced by Hitachi but it can be found on sale in Japan, priced at 26,800 yen (~ US $ 345 / 259 Euro).
Hitachi's 4 TB hard drive has 32 MB of buffer memory, a SATA 6.0 Gbps interface and makes use of the CoolSpin technology, which means its four platters operate at around 5900 RPM.
Corsair Performance Pro 256GB SSD review
Corsair made a wise decision as well, they will not stick to just one SSD based controller, and as such they just launched the Performance Pro series SSDs. In 128GB and 256GB capacities these drives will be unleashed just before the Christmas season is starting.
This SATA3 version as such will deliver speeds of up to 515MB/s of bandwidth in read performance and a very nice 440 MB/sec in write performance (sequential).
Honestly, after I managed to do the first series of tests I was still a little flabbergasted, this SSD is incredible. Read the full article here.
Intel to Halt LGA 1366 CPUs, Including Core i7-990X
Intel announced that by the end of the next year it will halt shipments of a wide series of 900-series processors, including the six-core i7-990X.
The chip maker has announced its decision through a Product Change Notification (PCN) document and covers five Core i7-900 series processors using the LGA 1366 socket.
The chips in question are the box and tray versions of the Core i7-980, i7-960, i7-950, i7-930 as well as those of the Intel Core i7-990X Extreme Edition.
Customers can place orders for these chips until June 29 of 2012. The last shipments of tray CPUs will be sent out towards those who have placed orders on December 7, 2012, while boxed processors will be shipped as long as supplies last.
While definitely important, Intel
AMD Tahiti Radeon HD 7900 Photo Surfaces on web
It was on the Beyond 3D forums that a photograph emerged of what is most likely the Radeon HD 7970, based on a 28nm GPU.
The first Southern Islands 28nm GPUs will be launched in January, 2012 (next month) and should be given attention during CES (Consumer Electronics Show).
Moving back to the device in the photo, it has 12 memory chips, which implies a memory interface of 384 bits, something that AMD or ATI GPUs never showed before.
Also, the SIG approved 6-pin + 8-pin configuration of cables powers each of the two adapters, which implies that any one of those things can consume up to 300 W. Interestingly enough, the PCB has all it needs for two 8-pin connectors too (up to 375W of power).
Zalman sells Radeon HD 6000 cards
It's that TPU reported it otherwise I would not have know it, apparantly Zalman has entered the graphics card market with a Radeon HD 6870, Radeon HD 6850 and Radeon HD 6770. Pretty tame cards though, with no custom coolers or other exclusive features.
The company is now an AMD Radeon add-in board (AIB) partner, and started its lineup off with some upper-mainstream models. It makes perfect sense for Zalman to enter this business, as it holds some expertise with high-end graphics card cooling solutions. Zalman can source PCBs from any of the major foundries such as PC Partner, Hightech Information Systems, or TUL, and assemble its coolers on top of them.
Left 4 Dead Fan Film Teaser
Bill Gates Might Return To Microsoft?
A article from Fortune surfaced just today (12/8), discussing the possible rumor of Bill Gates returning to the helm of Microsoft. According to Fortune a prominent chief executive heard from someone close to Gates that he might be contemplating such a move.
The company's stock price has been a thorn in Ballmer's side for a decade. At the end of 1999, Microsoft's best year for market price, shares were at almost $60. When Ballmer took over as chief executive in January 2000, the stock was still over $50. With the burst of the tech bubble, Microsoft's stock dropped steeply and hovered around $25 area through much of the decade, excepting a short rally above $35 in late-2007 and a dip under $20 during the 2008 financial crisis. Ballmer dumped much of his stock during the decade and Bill Gates gradually left daily operations. (Gates' last full day was in June 2008.) During that time, the stock stayed flat as competitors such as Oracle (ORCL) and Apple (AAPL) saw huge gains in their share price.
Could Gates goose the moribund stock price? Possibly. Any CEO turnover tends to jumpstart improvement in a company's stock price, says Jarrad Harford, finance professor and chair at the University of Washington's Foster School of Business in Seattle. According to Harford, investors anticipate the company's value under new management even before the executive actually takes over. (New CEOs have about a year before his or her imprint needs to be visible to investors.) "There's a lot of frustration among investors with Steve Ballmer," adds Ed Maguire of CLSA Asia-Pacific Markets. "Some is merited, some may not be. But there's certainly a perception that Ballmer is responsible for the under-performance of the stock."
Analysts say that whoever is in charge at Microsoft will face serious headwinds -- even Gates. Under Ballmer, the company picked itself up after the disastrous Windows Vista, launching Windows 7 successfully. Now, it is preparing Windows 8, which the company hopes will launch it into tablets. But it must draw developers to its platforms and duke it out with with Amazon (AMZN), Apple and Google. "There are very few examples of where returning founders had to come from behind in their certain market," warns Kirk Materne of Evercore Partners, which carries out investment banking services for Microsoft. "Gates was great at Microsoft when Microsoft was the dominant player." Even Gates, Materne warns, would face challenges.
Jagged Alliance: Back in Action video
X3: Albion Prelude Announced
Developer Egosoft has announced X3: Albion Prelude, a new add-on that promises to bridge the gap between 08/09's X3: Terran Conflict and the upcoming X Rebirth. The X3: Terran Conflict add-on is planned to launch on December 15 for the PC and Mac.
- Bridging the gap between X3:Terran Conflict and the upcoming X Rebirth
- Improved user interface
- New Stock Exchange feature
- A huge war and lots of new missions and ships!
X3: Albion Prelude provides a welcome bridge from the X Universe we know and love to the X Universe that will be experienced in X Rebirth. This new adventure will also feature more than 30 new ships and stations. A new Stock Exchange feature will enable players to speculate in local markets in a bid to increase their wealth. With this will also come tools to monitor and analyse economic developments and progress. Users with high-end machines will also benefit from some improved graphical quality settings. It is important to note that X3: Albion Prelude will NOT feature savegame compatibility with X3: Terran Conflict.
For owners of the X Superbox, X3: Albion Prelude will be available as a free download on Steam, while for owners of X3: Terran Conflict it will be available at the 'add-on' price of �9.99. For players new to the series, X3: Terran Conflict and X3: Albion Prelude will be available for purchase as a bundle. Time your purchase right and you could enjoy substantial discounts in the Steam holiday sale too!
Battlefield 3 Gulf of Oman and Karkand Shaky cam vids
This is a shaky cam video recording of the Battlefied 3 Back to Karkand Expansion. Quality is horrible, but I don't think this trailer has been shown already. The recording was taken during an AMD presentation where EA gave some insights.
So this video is just for reference for the ones interested.
And here a shaky cam video recording of the Battlefied 3 Gulf of Oman Expansion, it's a level from the BF2 series yet certainly with different looks. Movie Quality again is horrible. The recording was taken during an AMD presentation where EA gave some insights.
EVGA Precision v2.1.1 Download
- Now EVGA Voltage Tuner application is included into EVGA Precision distributive. EVGA Voltage Tuner is accessible via advanced EVGA Precision properties as well as via shortcut in the Start menu. Please note that it does not share the profiling system with EVGA Precision, if you want the voltage to be applied on system startup please see the "About" tab.
EVGA On-Screen Display server has been upgraded to version 4.2.3. New version gives you the following improvements:
- Fixed vertex buffer overflow issue causing improper On-Screen Display rendering or crashing in Direct3D10 / Direct3D11 applications when too many items are selected to be displayed in On-Screen Display
- Updated profiles list
- Kernel mode RTCore driver has been upgraded to v1.6. New driver introduces RivaTuner-styled protected MMIO IOCTLs and removes outdated IOCTLs dedicated for some old and currently abandoned RTCore technology based applications (HIS iTurbo and RMClock)
- Now EVGA Precision restores default hardware automatic fan control mode when logging off from Windows
- Now EVGA Precision starts faster than before due to cached database access and optimized GPU context switching in profile load routine
- Now power users may enable optional single tray icon mode via the configuration file. When single tray icon mode is enabled, the primary application tray icon is being replaced with hardware monitoring tray icon(s) if monitoring in system tray is enabled and EVGA On-Screen Display server
SiSoftware SANDRA 2012 download available
SiSoftware are pleased to announce the launch of SiSoftware Sandra 2012, the latest version of our award-winning utility, which includes remote analysis, benchmarking and diagnostic features for PCs, servers, mobile devices and networks.
At SiSoftware we operate on a "just-in-time" release cycle: we add features as soon as available and do not wait for the release of major versions of our software to include them. We observe the industry, predict where trends are going, and devise new ways to measure performance. SiSoftware works with all major hardware vendors to ensure we can accurately measure, report and present results in the most accurate and informative way.
In preparation for Windows 8 and its brand-new METRO API running on .Net (as used on Windows Phone 7.x), we have updated our .Net benchmarks that can measure .Net CLR performance. A new METRO style interface is also included for Windows 8 users. The GPGPU benchmarks have been upgraded to General Processing (GP) benchmarks, able to fully test the new APU (CPU+GPU) processors.
Using statistical analysis tools against the 1 million+ benchmark results submitted to the Official SiSoftware Ranker, you can now certify* whether your tested device operates at peak performance. Based on the quality and variability of the results you can determine whether there are issues with the device that need to be addressed.
Key features of Sandra 2012
- 3 native architectures support (x86, x64, ARM).
- Huge official hardware support through technology partners (Intel, AMD/ATI, SiS, VIA).
- 5 native virtualisation technologies support (Virtual PC 7, Virtual Server 2005, Hyper-V Server, VMware Server/ESX, VMware WorkStation/Player)
- 3 native GPGPU/GPAPU platforms support (OpenCL, DirectX Compute Shader/DirectCompute, CUDA).
- 4 native Graphics platforms support (DirectX 11.x, DirectX 10.x, DirectX 9, OpenGL 2.0+).
- 10 language versions (English, German, French, Italian, Spanish, Japanese, Chinese (Traditional, Simplified), Russian, Portuguese) in a single installer.
- Enhanced Sandra Lite (Eval) version (free for personal/educational use, evaluation for other uses)
Downloading - please click here.
EVGA X79 FTW LGA 2011 out
Announced in in mid-November was the EVGA X79 FTW motherboard (Intel
Intel to Retire Several Sandy Bridge LGA 1155 CPUs in 2012
Intel sends word that they plans to retire five Sandy Bridge LGA 1155 CPUs released earlier this year from its product lineup, including three Pentium processors and two second generation Core models built using the 32nm fabrication node.
The processors affected are the Core i5-2300 and Core i3-2100T, both tray and boxed, as well as the Pentium G840, G620 and G620T.
Customers can place orders for these chips until June 29 of 2012. The last shipments of tray Core i5-2300 and Core i3-2100T will be sent towards customers on December 7, 2012, while boxed CPUs will be shipped as long as supplies last.
Both the Core i5-2300 and the Core i3-2100T were part of the first Sandy Bridge chips released by Intel at the start of 2011 when the architecture became official.
In 2012 Intel will introduce a new series of processors based on the Ivy Bridge architecture so it needs to make room in its lineup for these upcoming SKUs.
After the Core i5-2300 and the Core i3-2100T will be retired from Intel
AMD Shows New A-Series Notebook APUs
Yesterday AMD quietly introduced seven new accelerated A-Series notebook APU's, featuring quad and dual-core designs.
Four out of the seven CPUs introduced by AMD are from the A8 and A6 series which means that they include four processing cores, while the remaining three are A4 chips with dual computing cores.
The fastest of these quad-core models is the A8-3550MX which compared to its predecessor got 100MHz higher base and Turbo Core speeds, making it the first Llano mobile processors to reach the 2GHz frequency (2.7GHz in Turbo mode).
However, the specs of the graphics core were left unaltered and the chip sports the same Radeon HD 6620G integrated GPU which operated at 444MHz.
The remaining APUs launched by AMD also take a similar approach and just increase their base and Turbo frequencies with 100MHz over those of their predecessors, while the rest of the specs are left unaltered.
As Hardcore Hardware reports, the only exception to this rule is the entry-level A4-3305M, which works at the same frequencies as the previous A4-3300M, but now gets a new graphics core and a smaller amount of cache memory (1MB vs 2MB in the A4-3300M).
The new GPU is actually less powerful than the one in the A4-3300M as it comes with just 160 shader processors in comparison with the 240 shaders installed in the previous model, but received a higher operating frequency (593MHz vs 444MHz) to make up for this setback.
No info regarding pricing was made public by AMD, but the new Llano chips are expected to start making their way into laptops by the end of this year.
Raptor Gaming M4 gaming mouse
Raptor Gaming Technology introduced the M4, a new mouse for right-handed gamers. The M4 features a 6000 dpi laser sensor, dpi is adjustable from 400 to 6000 and the mouse has an adjustable weight system. The mouse should be available soon in the EU for around 79.90EUR.
Raptor's new gaming mouse also has a Soft-Touch surface, six buttons, on-board memory to storing game profiles, a 2.5 meter cable, a gold-plated USB connector (500/1000 Hz polling rates are supported), and comes bundled with a wrist rest, the Raptor Mousebag XL, a weight bag with 16 weights (each weight is about 2 grams), and two sets of mouse sliders.