Intel and Nvidia headed for licensing stand-off
The story is that Intel and Nvidia are currently negotiating technology licenses for Nehalem, Intel's next-generation desktop CPU due out at the end of this year. As we were told from multiple desktop vendors who wish to remain nameless, Intel wants to license SLI from Nvidia for its Nehalem chipsets, and if Nvidia won't, Intel will withhold the license that would enable Nvidia to support Nehalem's memory controller, and thus Nehalem, on its own chipsets.
We have no official confirmation from Nvidia on this, and Intel's statement from PR manager Dan Snyder is vague, but it lends credence to the story:
"There is a disagreement between Intel and Nvidia as to the scope of Nvidia's license from Intel to make chipsets compatible with Intel microprocessors. Intel is trying to resolve the disagreement privately with Nvidia and therefore we will not provide additional details. It is our hope that this dispute will be resolved amicably and that it will not impact other areas of our companies' working relationship."
Intel has been after SLI support for its chipsets for years, but has thus far only been able to build it into its ultra high-end Skulltrail motherboards, seemingly a one-off. With SLI available across all of its chipset lines, Intel would be able to sell motherboards that support both AMD's and Nvidia's multigraphics card technologies. Right now Intel boards (with the exception of Skulltrail) only support AMD's CrossFire.
Nvidia, on the other hand, has kept SLI close, often citing compatibility and certification concerns as the reason why no other chipset vendor has been able to offer SLI-capability. But if Nvidia loses out on Nehalem for its next-generation chipsets, the high-end desktop market will become more fragmented than it's been in years. Nvidia has been able to offer SLI-supporting chipsets for both AMD and Intel processors, but if this split happens, on one side we'll have Nehalem and CrossFire-based systems, the other will offer SLI (and possibly CrossFire, if hacks used in the past continue to work) and AMD CPUs.
In light of this rumor, Nvidia's recent marketing push encouraging upgraders to pick a graphics card before a quad-core CPU takes on new significance. If Nvidia knows high-end PC gamers will have to make a choice later this year, better to plant the seeds in its favor early. Intel probably has less to worry about, because gamers who demand SLI with a fast Intel processor can still use Nvidia's NForce 790i chipset, which supports the current generation of Intel Core 2 Extreme chips.
UPDATE 5:48pm PT - Intel released an additional statement after this blog was posted. "We are not seeking any SLI concession from Nvidia in exchange for granting any Nehalem license rights to Nvidia," the company said.
Computer designed to read thoughts from brain scans
MediaDefender Launches DoS Attack on Legit TV Website
Jim Louderback, CEO of internet TV network Revision3, is considering legal action against anti-piracy firm MediaDefender after an internal investigation revealed it to be the source of a Memorial Day weekend Denial of Service attack against Revision3
eVGA water-cooled GeForce 9800 GX2
So if you have a lot of money to burn, dig gaming and water-cooling .. chances are pretty big that you are going to like this product. Earlier this month we already told you about the GeForce 9800 GX2 Hydro Copper 18 waterblock.
EVGA decided to release is as an actual card. The e-GeForce 9800 GX2 Hydro Copper 18 comes with that waterblock, will offer 1/2'' and 3/8'' fittings and should provide efficient cooling for the two G92 chips, the VREG, I/O chip and memory. Though that will be 100% dependable on your radiator and tubing of course.
A tad dissapointing is the fact that the new card has default frequencies - 600 MHz for the G92 GPUs, 1512 MHz for the 256 Stream Processors and 2000 MHz for the 1024 MB of GDDR3 memory.
I'm pretty sure availibility will be limited, yet the e-GeForce 9800 GX2 Hydro Copper 18 is in stock and costs $699, you do get a lifetime warranty warranty with it though.
But dang .. yummie ...
Computex: The Prologue
So ladies and gentlemen, I just wanted to touch base and let you guys know that Guru3D will be attending the Computex in Taiwan next week. In collaboration with Point of View technology we'll travel half way around the globe where we'll arrive on Monday.
Starting around that timeframe say late Tuesday we'll try and bring you the latest info on the hottest products at the exhibit. Pretty much any big player in the hardware industry will be present at Computex which makes it a great opportunity to have a browse. Computex this year will be especially interesting as the TAITRA organization has opened up a completely new facility (TWTC Nangang), 5 kilometers away from the original TWTC buildings. The interesting part is that both location will be used actively meaning that visitors will have to travel in-between buildings (5 km away), rather unusual.
Anyway, just a quick heads up on what to expect next week. We are looking forward bringing you some good info & photo's on this event, which we'll present to you in the same style as our CeBIT articles.
The Computex 2008 landing page can be found here, be sure to keep an eye on it as the good stuff will be posted here >> http://www.guru3d.com/category/computex2008/
Again expect that landing-page location to be updated after Monday/Tuesday.
GPU-Z 0.2.3 Download
- Fixed NVIDIA GeForce GTX 260/280 (GT200) support. Everything is working and tested now
- Removed bogus 190
ATI Catalyst 8.6 Windows XP/Vista Beta download
AMD is preparing a brand new Catalyst driver for its Radeon graphics card series. Users, don't have to wait much as a beta version of the new Catalyst 8.6 has found its way online.
Featuring the 8.500 display driver, the Catalyst 8.6 for both the 32 and 64bit version of Windows Vista & XP comes with support for almost everything released since the days of the Radeon 9550 plus a few cards and IGPs that haven't been released just yet.
Mind you that this is a Beta driver, use it at your own risk. We have a discussion thread open on these drivers right here.
Microsoft urges users to stop using Safari
Microsoft's security team is advising users to stop using Apple's Safari browser pending investigation into a quirk that allows miscreants to litter their desktop with hundreds of executable files.
Windows users who visit a booby-trapped site with Safari could be forced to download and execute malicious files with no prompting, Microsoft says. The "blended threat" is a result of the default download location in Safari and the way the Windows desktop handles executable files.
The Microsoft advisory suggests users "restrict use of Safari as a web browser until an appropriate update is available from Microsoft and/or Apple."
The recommendation comes a week after researcher Nitesh Dhanjani reported that Apple's browser doesn't seek user permission before downloading certain types of files. Even when encountering malicious iframes - a common occurrence these days even on the most trustworthy of sites - Safari obediently does what it's told to do, including downloading a file hundreds of times.
Apple's security pros, upon learning of the so-called carpet bombing vulnerability, said they didn't see it as a significant threat. A researcher in Cupertino wrote to Dhanjani that it may get fixed at some point down the road as "a further measure to raise the bar against unwanted downloads," but said it could take a quite a while, if ever, for that to happen.
Apple's unfortunate refusal probably explains why Microsoft's security arm has resorted to the unusual recommendation. We can't remember the last time Redmond counseled users to avoid installing a mainstream product for security reasons. Apple representatives didn't respond to a request to comment for this story.
And before any Mac users decide this is an issue they can safely ignore, remember this: While Microsoft's recommendation obviously is limited to Windows users, Dhanjani says the carpet bombing scenario can play out on OS X, too.
AMD to ship Radeon HD 4850 near $200 mark
It seems that AMD has begun shipping its first Radeon HD 4000-series video chipset. The ATI Radeon HD 4850 is purportedly already on its way to card manufacturers and stores, and will represent a significant boost to the clock speed of the earlier, mid-range 3850 without affecting its heat; the core speed jumps from 670MHz to 800MHz while still occupying a single card slot.
Pricing is still a contentious point, those who claim to be aware of AMD's plans say. The company may wait until the day of the announcement itself to set a price and has given itself a price range between $179 and $219 for a stock card with 512MB of video memory. A last-minute price choice will purportedly let AMD meet an expected June 18th real-world launch without having to adjust costs ahead of time.
The uncertainty over the pricing and the launch date also likely reflect a same-day release of NVIDIA's upcoming GeForce GTX, which will initially target the high end but should create pressure on AMD to make its lower-cost cards more affordable.
Higher-end cards from AMD, including the Radeon HD 4870 and the 4870 X2, are expected to ship later in the summer.
Nvidia's Gelato Pro 2.2 free for download
Nvidia Corporation decided that Gelato Pro 2.2 rendering software needs to be free and released it as such,
Gelato is a GPU-accelerated, final-frame renderer for the creation of high-quality computer-generated images. The software was initially developed to render film and broadcast visual effects and animation but now it can simply be used with 3D software applications, CAD, industrial design, and architecture.
"NVIDIA Gelato Pro 2.2 software is extremely powerful GPU-accelerated rendering software and we are excited to support the creative community by making it freely available," said Dominick Spina, senior product manager, Digital Film Group, NVIDIA. 'Now all artists and designers with NVIDIA Quadro graphics cards can enhance their production pipelines with Gelato Pro
Video: Spore Character Creation HD video
A new video was released on thatwhat will be rather popular game, Spore.
Spore is a simulation game created by Will Wright that allows players to control various life forms from the cellular to the galactic level. Want to see how to create new vermin in Spore? Well this video will show you how my man.
Art Lebedev shows prototype Optimus Popularis
Art Lebedev Studio who we all know from the Optimus Maximus keyboard has shown the first prototype of the Optimus Popularis. This little brother of the first model comes with eleven special keys which seem to be OLED, the rest of the keys look fairly normal. Which quite honestly might be an excellent compromise between functionality, aesthetics and obviously the price.
Art Lebedev did not release any other details about this product other then showing a picture, though they suggest .. it's a completely different principle that is being applied to this keyboard. We can't wait, let's just hope it's not tagged with a gicanticus pricus.
Far Cry 2 - 100 Hours of gameplay
Players looking forward to shooting their way through Far Cry 2's 50-square kilometers of African wilderness best set aside the better part of a few weeks (at least!) to do so. Varying reports suggest it could take as long as 100 hours (for compass-be-damned wanderers, no doubt) to complete the game's single player campaign alone.
Ubisoft Montreal creative workhorse Clint Hocking offered us an apparently inadequate estimate when he guessed that the campaign could be completed in as little as 25 hours, before adding that to see it all "you're looking at a 100-hour play experience." And, speaking to CVG, producer Louis-Pierre Pharand landed his estimate somewhere in the middle, suggesting 50 hours of play time to completion. Regardless of the varying possibilities, it's reasonable to expect that the shooter's single player experience will be long, evidence that not all devs are drinking from the same fountain as Phil Harrison.
On top of the campaign, Eurogamer reports that the sequel to 2004's tropical island shooter will support up to 16 players in online multiplayer, which will focus on team-based gameplay rather than traditional deathmatch modes. Also missing from Far Cry 2 will be online co-op, though according to Pharand multiplayer games will support multiple classes, as well as persistent awards and experience, giving us plenty to look forward to when Far Cry 2 debuts this holiday season for the PC, Xbox 360 and PS3.
BFG Limited Ed. 9800 GX2 OCX
BFG is pretty busy expanding their product line for sure. Today they announce yet another product, and expect two more next week. BFG Technologies announced today the limited edition BFG NVIDIA GeForce 9800 GX2 OCX 1024MB PCI Express 2.0 graphics card, which is factory overclocked to the highest stable level to provide maximum performance in demanding 3D games and HD video applications.
Cannon PC to offer CableCARDs in its HTPCs
Cannon PC announced it will soon offer its Home- and Pro A/V-series HTPCs with dual and even quad CableCARDs installed. This allows them to record up to four individual standard- or high-def programs simultaneously, as each card will effectively act as a separate TV tuner, taking the place of a set-top box. Cannon PC took the opportunity to announce a direct OEM partnership with Microsoft as well, and all of the company's HTPCs use Microsoft's Windows Media Center as the multimedia interface.
The EX series pictured is just one of three PR A/V Series customizable HTPCs Cannon PC offers, and features a 12-inch HD touch-screen as the interface. Inside the case, room has been provided for 6TB of memory, with a 750GB Seagate Barracuda drive provided as standard equipment. Features common to all the company's offerings are USB and FireWire connections, front inputs and outputs, 28-in-1 card readers, eight-channel HD audio support, and dual NTSC and HDTV tuners. The brains include Intel's Quad or Dual core or Centrino processors, P35 Express chipsets, and ATI or NVIDIA graphics cards, with up to 8GB of RAM.
Prices for the EX series HTPC start at nearly $5,600, but do not include the dual CableCARDs, which will be available as options early in June via Cannon PC's website.
That's a seriously cool looking HTPC.
Valve anounces Steam Cloud
Wow ... this is very big-brother kind of behaviour ... Valve unveiled new features planned for an upcoming Steam update, including automatic driver updates for hardware and an integrated system requirements checker for games. This new system is going to be huge. Not just for Steam users, but for the PC game community as a whole, especially if other companies opt to roll out their own "Steam Cloud" like system.
15.11. Valve are announcing Steamcloud. Save games and configs are to be stored by the Steam back-end. Half-Life will be the first to do this, with Counter-Strike remembering your key config. Left 4 Dead will ship with this too. I
f you're offline it caches the data locally, and then uploads it as soon as it can. They will keep those save games forever. "You can uninstall Half-Life, then come back to it two years later and finally finish Xen." It will be free, to both developers and customers.
Some more info can be found on ShackNews:
Half-Life and Half-Life 2 will be the first games to support the service. User key mappings will also be saved in Counter-Strike, and Left 4 Dead will ship with the feature. If players are offline, the service will store the data and then add it to the network on the next connection. According to Valve, saved games and configurations will be stored forever.
Valve further noted that the service will be freely available to developers, and is set to launch in the "near future." The company also detailed plans for several new Steam systems, including a driver auto-updater and calendar functionality. Another feature in development is a system-requirement checker. The program will analyze your hardware and compare it to multiple games, estimating your performance and recommending upgrades.
Video: Google demonstrates Android
Google demonstrated its Android mobile phone software Wednesday at the Google I/O conference in San Francisco. The project, under development by Google and a number of partners in the Open Handset Alliance, is due to ship as open-source software when the first Android phones go on sale later this year. This is a view of the home screen, demonstrated by Steve Horowitz, Android's engineering director.
SanDisk Goes Extreme with Memory Stick PRO-HG Duo
SanDisk Corporation today introduced the fastest card in its Memory Stick product family: the SanDisk Extreme III Memory Stick PRO-HG Duo with read and write speeds of 30 megabytes (MB) per second.
The card, available in June in 4-gigabyte (GB) and 8GB capacities, is ideal for professional photographers and advanced amateurs who use Sony digital single-lens reflex (SLR) cameras.
SanDisk and Sony jointly developed Memory Stick PRO-HG Duo as an extension of the existing Memory Stick PRO format, to offer faster read and write speeds for PRO-HG capable Sony digital SLRs, point-and-shoot cameras and digital camcorders.
SanDisk is unveiling the SanDisk Extreme III Memory Stick PRO-HG Duo at the PMA Australia 2008 Imaging Technology Show, where the company is exhibiting at Stand 401 in the Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre from May 30 to June 1.