Pete Hines on Fallout 3 PC DRM protection
It's the most controversial topic of this gaming year as far as Guru3D is concerned, and I'm glad it receives so much attention as game-developers really do need get more aware of how we (the gamers and people that actually spend money on purchasing that product) look at this forcefully installation or root-kit viral like software.
Here's a much better example of developer awareness. Over at ShackNews they conducted an interview with Bethesda's Pete Hines as he talks about a big title to be released soon, Fallout 3 PC. What kind of DRM will be included on the Fallout 3 disc? Will the PC version suffer from console interface holdovers a la Oblivion? Is the company optimistic about supporting the PC platform in the future? Here's an excerpt:
Similar question in the sense that it's an issue that can be overblown. What kind of copy protection will be included on the PC version of Fallout 3?
Pete Hines: Pretty similar to what we did for Oblivion, which was--we basically don't do any--we do the mildest form possible. I actually don't know if I even want to get into what it is that we exactly do, but we try to be really noninvasive when it comes to that stuff. [ed- Oblivion employed a simple DVD check.] And it is a pain in the ass--it is a pain in the ass that we have to do it at all in the first place. But when you spend tens of millions of dollars, we don't think it's right to just put something out there and let everybody do whatever they want and pass it around. And to have to support all of that--which is often the unspoken thing that nobody really wants to point to. You can argue all day whether or not somebody would have bought a copy of a game they pirated, but you can't argue, and you will never win the argument that I'm not having to provide tech support for those folks. Because I know for a fact that we are. We catch those folks all the time, where we're providing support for somebody who turns out didn't actually pay for the game and just downloaded a copy.
Did you put a lot of work into optimizing the PC version, and accounting for people with older machines?
Pete Hines: Yeah, we've been working with folks like Nvidia and having them do compat testing and optimization stuff, and looking at how the game plays on Nvidia cards. We've been doing some stuff with Alienware, specifically testing on different configurations of their machines. So we are trying to do our due diligence on the PC and make sure it runs as advertising. But the problem on the PC, it's just not--you have a 360, you have the same thing that everyone else has. When you talk about a PC, how much RAM you have, do you have the right video card driver, the right sound card drivers, are you running all kinds of applications in the background that are eating up memory or trying to interrupt the process of the game and makes the game crash--you don't have any of those problems on the 360 or PS3. So we try as much as we can for account for everything that we can account for, but the killer is all the variables you have no control over. I don't even know if I have the right drivers for anything on my home PC. It's something that you have to spend a bit more effort as a consumer.
ECS Elitegroup A790GXM-A mainboard review [Guru3D]
A mainboard in the sub 140 USD range, yet ECS style - with a bucket load of features like integrated graphics, HDMI connector, passive cooling, 8-channel sound, dual GigE Ethernet, Crossfire ready ... and decent tweakability.
Overall for the money these motherboards is just very interesting, and the performance and power-consumption, really amazing.
Click here to read this review.
EVGA released nForce 790i SLI FTW Digital PWM
EVGA took the original overclockers dream; The EVGA 790i SLI FTW; and made it even more extreme with the addition of Digital Power Management (Digital PWM - Pulse Width Modulation), improving upon the voltage stability and efficiency. I
n addition, the EVGA 790i SLI FTW Digital PWM includes solid state capacitors, an 8-Phase Power design, on-board all ferrite core chokes, an enhanced enthusiast BIOS, Vdroop control and much more.
According to EVGA this boils down to:
- Improved voltage stability.
- Improved voltage efficiency.
- And most importantly, improved overclockability!
- Innovative chipset fan design directs airflow away from the graphics card.
- Reach extreme overclocking speeds supporting 1600MHz FSB and beyond.
- 8 phase power design for superb stability and performance.
- Solid state capacitors and ferrite core chokes allow for better overclocking and stability.
- Convenient layout with on-board Clear CMOS, Power, and Reset buttons.
- Friendly system BIOS features with easy to use overclock and voltage settings.
- Extreme DDR3 speeds of 2000MHz and beyond
- NVIDIA SLI certified
- Intel socket 775
- 45nm CPU ready (Yorkfield & Wolfdale)
- 8 Phase power design
- PCI Express 2.0 support
- 2-Way and 3-Way SLI support
- 9 SATA-2 ports with support for RAID 0, 1, 0+1, 5, JBOD
- On-board buttons for CMOS/Power/Reset
- HD Audio - 7.1 Channel
Super Talent 128GB SSD breaks Sub $300 barrier
What $300 can get you these days for a dazzling fast hard drive? A 10k RPM 300GB VelociRaptor or you prefer a Solid State Drive with lesser capacity? Super Talent has introduced its most cost-effective pair of SATA-II SSD at affordable prices. The new MasterDrive LX series come in 64 and 128GB sizes and offer 3Gbps interfaces in a 2.5″ drive format.
Both NAND multi-level cell flash based memories are capable of read/write speed up to 100/40 MB/s. It also features Integrated ECC, wear leveling and bad bit management functions to improve the reliability and lifespan of these SSDs. Each unit has an expected MTBF of over 1 million hours. Shipping this week, the 64GB and 128GB model will be offered at $179 and $299 respectively.
Dell intros entry-level monitors, S1901WX and S1709W LCD
Dell has silently introduced two low end yet very affordable monitors at its online store. Both models feature a new rounded edge design with detachable stand, and 16:10 widescreen resolution of 1440
Panasonic 150-inch plasma TV prototype is HUGE
You know when you go to the local electronics store and see the biggest TV they offer and think,
TDK claims HDD recording density record
NVIDIA and ATI 40nm GPUs expected in Q2 2009
Surely it's the most easy assumption one can make, yet FUD Zilla claims it will take until Q2 2009 before NVIDIA and ATI can roll out their 40nm GPUs at TSMC.
"This is quite dangerous for Nvidia as they won't be able to prepare or react on ATI 40nm RV870 line and if Nvidia ends up slower than ATI's next generation, it will have a major impact on Nvidia as a graphics chip company.
Nvidia wanted to get its 40nm chips before ATI but TSMC simply won't be ready to do these chips before Q2 2009. Nvidia tried to shrink its two-year-old architecture behind G92 to 55nm and G92b or Geforce 9800GTX+ didn
Download: Crysis WARHEAD Benchmark Tool BETA 0.29
One of the Guru3D folks created this small utility to assist on benchmarking Crysis Warhead, much like Crysis Benchmarking tool which now has been updated towards verion 0.29
Requirements: Windows XP/Vista - Microsoft .NET Framework 2.0 - Crysis WARHEAD (not included). The benchmark tool contains 3 timedemos.
- 0.29 - 30/09/2008 -- Minor bug fixes
- 0.28 - 28/09/2008 -- Bug fix - FSAA = True is not a valid console command, fixed to use FSAA = 1 when using AA. Thanks wolf2009 for reporting it.
- 0.27 - 27/09/2008 -- Now compiled with .NET Framework 2.0 - Cosmetic bug fixes - Display resolution now shows only available resolutions from display driver.
- 0.26 - 26/09/2008 -- Internal build
- 0.25 - 26/09/2008 -- Added additional logic to disallow execution when user don't have write access to game's folders. The program cannot run if it can't create the custom config file to run the benchmark and save the benchmark return log.
Portugal (pt-PT) Windows localization now shows pt-BR localization.
Download - click here.
Nvidia GPU solder joints at a disadvantage over ATI, scientist says
The Women and Men of C&C: Red Alert 3
VidaBox RoomClientHD 1080p home media streamer
The folks at VidaBox have announced the RoomClientHD, a compact high-definition video streamer capable of receiving full 1080p and lossless audio from any of the company
TSMC talks about 28nm and 32nm fabrication proccesses
When you think about it for a second, how small can it actually get ? Taiwanese foundry TSMC unveiled information about its upcoming 32nm and 28nm processes and its challenges. The article reveals TSMC won't be able to offer high-k/metal-gate technology on its 32nm node, this offering has been delayed to 28nm.
Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. Ltd. (TSMC) has rolled out its 28-nm process and revealed a surprise: It has pushed out--or delayed--its initial high-k/metal-gate offering until 28-nm, putting it slightly behind its rivals in Chartered, IBM and Samsung. TSMC was originally supposed to have its high-k/metal-gate offering at the 32-nm node.
Silicon foundry giant TSMC (Hsinchu, Taiwan) also provided details of its yet-to-be-introduced 32-nm process. The 32-nm process is a cost-down version of its 40-nm technology, while 28-nm is considered by TSMC as a ''full-node'' offering. As expected, both the 32- and 28-nm processes make use of 193-nm immersion lithography, copper-interconnects, ultra low-k dielectrics, strained-silicon and other features.
At 28-nm, TSMC plans to offer two separate options for the gate stack: conventional silicon oxynitride (SiON) and a newfangled high-k/metal-gate technology. It will offer two 28-nm versions with high-k and metal gates: a low-power and high-performance technology.
But at 32-nm, the company will only offer a SiON for the gate stack, which appears to be a change in direction for TSMC.
Trailer: Damnation 'Verticality'
Codemasters is returning to the alternate history well for a much more radical title. Today, the publisher announced Damnation, a "shooter gone vertical" that will feature acrobatic-oriented gameplay focused on vehicular combat in "huge open environments." Said vehicles will include agile motorcycles and slower, armored means of conveyance. Damnation is bringing the shooter genre to new heights with its vertically skewed world, forcing the player to scale structures in order to meet their goal. Codemasters is going to publish the game for PC, PS3, and Xbox 360.
ATI Radeon HD 4550 512MB review [Guru3D]
This 80 shader cores based Radeon HD 4550 (GPU codename RV710XT) comes with an optional 256 MB GDDR2 or optional 512MB GDDR3 and will cost you .. 45 to 55 USD respectively. Seriously, my keyboard costs more money than that. So what can we do with a card of this 'caliber' ?
Let's find out, thy shall find the article at this URL:
Point of View going for AC as well
Graphics card manufacturer Point of View is jumping the band wagon as well when it comes to niche cooling on graphics cards, today they introduce their version of the GeForce 9800 GTX+ and it's equipped with an 'Arctic Cooling cooling solution'. Wow, say try and say that 10x after each other real fast.
POINT OF VIEW, well known for its range of NVIDIA based Graphics cards, is launching today the upgraded version of the GeForce 9800GTX+, lowering its temperatures and boosting overclocking possibilities.
The 55nm built GeForce 9800GTX+ is one of the better performing graphics cards on the market. The high performance and good pricing make it an excellent choice for gamers all over the world. To get even more performance out of the graphics card while pushing down the operating temperatures we
Corsair Introduces 64GB Portable USB Flash Drive
bloody hell, the flash industry is moving so fast. If you need some portable leight-weight storage, and LOADS of it then Corsair might have a nice alternative for you as they just expanded their Voyager line with a 64GB model.
The new 64GB USB Flash Voyager has enough capacity for a library of DVD-length movies and tens of thousands of high-resolution digital images.
Thanks to the 64GB USB Flash Voyager, users now have the ultimate solution for storing, transporting and backing up large amounts of personal and professional data. With storage capacity that just a year ago could only be found in hard drives, the 64GB USB Flash Voyager drive also provides the added ruggedness, water resistance and performance not found in storage drives utilizing rotating media.
Corsair 64GB USB Flash Voyager drives provide the capacity necessary to store complete seasons of your favorite TV shows or the entire contents of most notebook hard drives. These large density drives can also be used as portable back-up devices for critical or sensitive information. In addition, Corsair 64GB USB Flash Voyager drives are bootable, which means users can actually store full versions of operating systems and applications in order to quickly
Point of View to launch Philips amBX kit real soon
One more interesting press-releases from Point of View today for sure. This one I find very really cool! I've been following Philips for a while now as for gamers they are about to release an amBX kit. Philips is promoting amBX and quite honesty it's pretty awesome.
Incorporating a scripting language, software engine and architecture, amBX has been designed to deliver all-new player experiences through enabled devices such as LED colour-controlled lights, active furniture, fans, heaters, audio and video, which are all placed in the user