Star Wars: Battlefront Beta Graphics card VGA performance benchmark review
We showcase the Star Wars: Battlefront Beta with a graphics card VGA performance and benchmarks review. The game is to be released later this year, yet there starting at with an open beta. In this beta we have a first impression of the game, as well as the ability to have a quick peek at its performance. (article update October 9th: GTX 980 SLI results/FCAT added). You can read the article here.
Discrete GPU sales slowed down in Q4 2010
Jon Peddie Research released a report about the discrete graphics card market in Q4 2010. Unit shipments came in at 72.8 million units, a drop of 2.5 million units compared to the year before due to a shift from the low-end segment to embedded CPU graphics and the shift in marketshare to laptop and tablet devices.
NVIDIA captured 60.8 percent of the discrete GPU market in Q4 2010, a gain of 2.1 percent vs Q3 2010, while AMD lost the same amount of marketshare. Here's the PR:
Jon Peddie Research (JPR), the industry's research and consulting firm for graphics and multimedia, announced estimated graphics Add-In Board (AIB) shipments and sales' market share for Q4'10.
Overall shipments of graphics AIBs for the year, 2010 came in lower than the recession year 2009 at 72.8 million units compared to 75.3 million for 2009 - a disappointing result given the enthusiastic start of the year. Shipments in Q4 2010 did not exceed Q3 as expected. Nvidia increased its shipments by 4.1% from Q3, while AMD declined -4.8% for the same period.
And in terms of market share, market leader Nvidia increased its share by 3.6% from Q3, while AMD's market share declined -5.2% for the same period. On a year-to-year basis AMD increased its market share by 12.6% while Nvidia lost 6.2% of market share.
The AIB market is fueled at the high-end by the gamer, small in volume (~3m a year) but high in dollars (average spend for an AIB ~$300.) The volume comes from the mainstream. And GPU-compute is adding to sales on the high end. The workstation market is about the same size as the gamer, but much it is characterized by higher average selling prices (ASPs).
For the year the AIB market hit $17.2 billion, up 0.8% from 2009 showing a gradual rise in ASP.
The decline in unit shipments of desktop AIBs is due to two factors - the erosion of the low end (Value segment) by the Integrated Processor Units (IGPs) and embedded CPU graphics (e.g., AMD's Fusion, and Intel's Clarkstown), and the shift in market share to notebooks, laptops, and tablet. However, that is being somewhat offset by the increase in sales of AIBs for GPU-compute, and by the use of two or more AIBs in high-end gaming and workstation systems.
Battlefield 3 GDC leaked footage Gameplay with Earthquake
Steam Guard is now Beta
Valve has rolled out a new security service for Steam users who want to protect their accounts from unauthorized logins or being stolen outright. Steam Guard is available for beta testing and anyone can opt into it through Steam's Settings panel. With Steam Guard, an extra step of authorization is needed whenever you attempt to login to your account from an unrecognized PC. A code is sent over to the e-mail address linked to the account, which must be entered into Steam before you're able to login and authorize the new PC. Steam Guard will also notify you if there are login attempts being made from unauthorized PCs.
Steam - As a beta participant, once you've verified your email address with Steam, Steam Guard becomes available for your use and is enabled for your Steam account by default.
With Steam Guard enabled, anyone attempting to login as you from an unrecognized computer must first provide additional, one-time authorization. A special access code will be sent to your contact email address, and this code must be entered into Steam before your first login on an unfamiliar computer is complete. You will also be notified if any login attempts from computers other than those you've authorized occur. Steam Guard essentially acts as a form of "User Rights Management," where you as the user have greater control over access to your stuff.
"Account phishing and hijacking are our top support issues," said Gabe Newell, President of Valve. "With Steam Guard, we've taken a big step towards giving customers the account security they need as they purchase more and more digital goods."
Gabe demonstrated further development of Steam Guard today at the CeBIT computing trade show in Hannover, Germany. In addition to email-based authentication, Steam Guard will soon offer other forms of secondary authentication, such as Intel
Liquid Cooling and Overclocking the GTX 580 with Danger Den
The folks at Danger Den shipped out their most shiny nickel plated GTX 580 cooling block, and we will put that to the test. We'll have a look at the product, the installation, temperatures before and after.
We'll review the DD-GTX 580 liquid cooling block, as an extension to that we'll show you how to install the product and then look into cooling performance and everything related. that That allows an an overclock to nearly 1 GHz.
Check out this Guru3D review right here.
CeBIT 2011 - Point of View
There's no CeBIT without a visit to the good folks of Point of View, originally this NVIDIA partner had only a focus at Graphics cards, over the years that changed with their MOBI line of netbooks and other small stuff. Next to graphics cards last year they also started selling tablets, the first introduction was their 7" MOBII series that reached the market with incredible prices.
At CeBIT this year their focus was on the latest Tegra 2 based model, the Mobii TEGRA Tablet 10.2''. Tagged under 400 EUR these tablets offer a lot for the money. Armed with a Dual core Cortex A9 - 1 GHz processor and NVIDIA Tegra 250 chipset it is certainly one impressive product running Android 2.2 (I think it was). The Mobii TEGRA Tablet 10.2'' tablet has 512 MB DDR2 + 512 MB NAND and comes with the usual suspects like WiFi 802.11 b/g, HDMI Graphics output, a 1.3M Pixel webcam, a USB 2.0 port and a 3300 mAh battery. All that at just over 700 grams.
Next to that Point of View also has announced their latest TGT series graphics cards, in the photo gallery you'll spot the all new 873 MHz POV/TGT GeForce GTX 580
CeBIT 2011 - Patriot
This year Patriot was present at CeBIT as well, showing off their latest and greatest in technology. Amongst the products on display is the soon to be launched Javelin series NAS unites, armed with more features and a faster processor this device will be a competitive NAS unit within its price range.
Equipped with four drive bays that support standard 3.5-inch drives -- up to 12TB of storage capacity is achievable when equipped with four 3TB SATA or SAS drives. The Patriot Javelin supports RAID levels 0, 1, 5, 10 and a hot-spare drive for enhanced storage efficiency whether performance or redundancy is needed.
Some features are 4 x 3.5-inch drive bays, supports SATA & SAS HDDs, eSATA external expansion, 2 x USB 2.0 ports, 256MB, DDR2-800 RAM, 128MB flash memory (for OS), DLNA compatible, Remote media playback (via browser or Android/iOS app) and much more.
On display also was a series of SSDs and of course also the Wildfire SSD, Sandforce 2000 based with read/write performance over 500 MB/sec.
Good to see here as well where the first real USB 3.0 flash disks, in capacities of up-to 128Gb for example the Magnum will become available with 200 MB/sec read and 110 MB/sec write performance. That's just kick'ass for a USB stick
Have a peek at the photo's we took at CeBIT right here.
CeBIT 2011 - OCZ Technolgy
The next stop at CeBIT 2011 is OCZ Technology, recently they of coursed introduced their new Vertex 3 and Vertex PRO SSDs. which we both reviewed here at Guru3D.com
These are amongst the fastest SSDs on the globe with the new SandForce 2000 series controllers and pushing ridiculous numbers up-to 550 MB/sec over the SATA 6G interface. Obviously these products where the key focus of their booth.
You'll also pot the latest Z-Drive R3 RM84 PCIe SSD, the new ZX series power supplies, and sure a little focus on corporate products as well. The Helios for example is a SAS based SSD running over an LSI SAS 6GBps controller.
Glued shut to the you'll see a 3.5" version of the Vertex 3 SSD but also a really tiny 1.8" form factor Vertex 3 which still is available in a 256GB volume size crunching and writing 60K IOPS on random 4K files. Very sexy stuff.
The photo's of Helios and Deneva SSD products, pretty much is Vertex 3, yet intended for corporate usage. And be sure to check out the new IBIS XL, it might look huge in that 5.25" drive bay but that fracker has 4 TB SSD storage at rates of 1800 Mb/sec and up to 1700 MB/sec in writes (!)
Check out the photo gallery here.
CeBIT 2011 - MSI
Some component manufacturers had huge booths at CeBIT, MSI was one of them displaying the latest and greatest motherboards, graphics cards, laptops and on and on.
Of course one of the most eye-catching things was the presence of a Radeon HD 6990, which is yet to be launched. We took some photo's of this dual-GPU beast of a graphics card. If you look closely it feds of two 8-pin PEG power headers and seems to be really lengthy. More on all that next week though in our full coverage of this product.
On display at the graphics card segment lots and lots of videocard with the latest trends and cooler. most of them, we already reviewed. But amongst the lineup in the photo-gallery you can spot cards like the 560 Ti HAWK, 6950 Twin Frozr III 'power edition', the GTX570 Twin Frozr III 'power edition' and the hotty of hotness, the GTX580 Lightning.
On the motherboards side of things there was lots to be seen, but here as well ... we reviewed quite a bit already. You'll spot the Big Bang Marshall with B3 stepping chipset, the Brazo AMD based E350 mATX solutions, some new entry level H61 (Sandy bridge) motherboards and of course the Z68A-GD80 motherboard of which the Intel Chipset still is under NDA, hence the lack of specs available.
Have a peek at the photo gallery.
CeBIT 2011 - Inno3D
We quickly hopped by Inno3D as well for a quick meeting. Inno3D is placing more focus on the European market this year and that's good news for us alright.
Amongst the NVIDIA GeForce based products on display was a GTX 580 HAWK, the 3 GB model of this card comes with a custom cooling solution which looks pretty snazzy really. And for once, it's not an Arctic Cooling based cooling solution, completely custom.
You'll also spot a GTX 570 on a small PCB in the photo session, but most of all you'll like the iChill series GTX 580 which is water-cooled, have a good look at that. And then based on CoolIT solutions cooler, a liquid cooling setup based off their product on a GTX 580. have a good peek at that product as it just looks awesome. It resembles a lot of ideas and innovation that we got used to know with BFG. This one will be called the iChill Black series.
You can find the photo gallery here.
CeBIT 2011 - Enermax
Always good for new gear at any tradeshow is Enermax. Enermax launches their MaxRevo PSUs, extremely high-quality, extremely high wattage .. and sure .. they will probably also be extremely expensive. Available in 1200 / 1350 and 1500W sizes these puppies reach a 94% Efficiency at 230V, though Gold certification level.
Enermax also revealed its prototype EXX900, which has already achieved the coveted 80 PLUS Platinum certification. Another topic of this year's CeBIT was the new EU norm ErP Lot 6, which have a review ready on scheduled in the next two weeks.
Enermax presented its revolutionary prototype PSU as well, the EXX900, that already complies with the requirements of the 80 PLUS Platinum certification. Its technical design is the basis for the development of forthcoming Enermax PSU generations.
On the chassis side of things there have been some refreshes as well. You'll spot the new Hoplite, ECA5020 Full Tower which is a really nice prototype and then there is the new SpineREX chassis, an ATX full tower as well with some pretty decent aesthetics.
Enermax is entering the CPU cooler market as well this year, they will come out with some patented designs that show promising airflow and this top notch cooler. The pictures you will see are based on prototypes, none of them have final names and specs. They sure do look great though. One of the coolers even has 10mm (!) thick heatpipes.
Check out the full photo gallery here.
CeBIT 2011 - ECS
The next exhibitor we had a meeting with was ECS, as always focused on quality performance parts at a reasonable price.
They had a log of good stuff on display motherboards mostly, in fact a lot of the P67 gear was already reviewed by us, or is pending a review. The prominent lineup available was their H67 and P67 series motherboards of course but also sneaked into retail last week are the new low-cost H61 that will offer you kickass performance at a great price. Though not overclockable products really.
Amongst the motherboards shown in the gallery are the H61H2-M and H61H2-A. For different demands, ECS H61H2-M series and H61H2-I2 motherboards integrating IntelR HD graphics support HDMI output. ECS H61H2-M and H61H2-M5 support dual ports of USB 3.0 for users to experience the overwhelming transportation speed.
2nd Generation IntelR CoreTM Processors In LGA1155
4xDDR3, 2xUSB3.0, 4xSATA 3.0Gb/s
1xPCI-Ex16, D-Sub/HDMI/DVI port
2xDDR3, 4xSATA 3.0Gb/s, 2xPCI-E,
1xPCI-Ex16, D-Sub/HDMI/DVI port
2xDDR3, 4xSATA 3.0Gb/s, 1xPCI-E,
1xPCI-Ex16, D-Sub/HDMI/DVI port
2xDDR3, 2xUSB3.0, 4xSATA 3.0Gb/s
1xPCI-Ex16, D-Sub/HDMI/DVI port
2xDDR3, 4xSATA 3.0Gb/s, 1xPCI-E,
2xDDR3, 4xSATA 3.0Gb/s, 3xPCI-E,
1xPCI-Ex16, D-Sub/DVI port
Have a peek at the CeBIT photo gallery right here.
CeBIT 2011 - ASUS
The ASUS booth was just HUGE,. it literally took a big chunk of a CeBIT HALL, there where so many product on display that its hard to start even covering a few of them.
ASUS is working on WAVI Xtion technology, that hints quite a bit to Kinect alright. In a nutshell, the Xtion is a PrimeSense 3D depth camera built exclusively for PC, but with an important twist -- it connects to a pair of ASUS Wavi boxes, which wirelessly streams its data to your living room PC between your TV and a Windows PC over the 5GHz band. Oh, and should ASUS attract enough developers, it will even pull down applications from an Xtion online store.
Not just for gaming MIGHT it be interesting, but you can see yourself waving at the telly and by hand gestures pick out your favorite movie or music.
Another eye-catcher was something that you do not expect from ASS, BluRay player. These again will get a twist, they'll be HDMI 1.4a compatible thus allow 3D playback and will have it's full Dolbe / 7.1 channles audio .. but more interesting ASUS will be make the product a media-server as well, it will be able to stream your favorite movies from a source. The advanced models will go even further as they will get support for smartphone remote control - with compatibility for iPhone, Android, Windows Phone 7, BlackBerry and Symbian.
"Support for a wide range of video, audio, image and subtitle formats ensures the BDS-700 offers the highest degree of media compatibility available, adds Asus.
"Content can play directly from external storage devices via the included USB port, while Ethernet comes standard. High speed 802.11n Wi-Fi with DLNA support enables easy and cable-free media streaming across a network and from cloud-based content providers such as Netflix, YouTube, Pandora, Flickr and Picasa. Internet radio streaming is also available."
On the component side of things we got some stuff to cover as well, next to soundcards and headphones we also spotted (and have a photo) of an external Xonar Essence soundcard called the Xonar Essence One. ASUS has been relentless with its R&D and soundcard releases, putting out one high end card after another. The Essence models are considered the current undisputed kings of the Xonar series of soundcards.
Also on display was the Rampage III Black edition, It has a X58 chipset and the main novelty is ThunderBolt, a new expansion card from ASUS that integrates Xonar sound as well as BigFoot's Killer NPU. Basically, this means that the board sports a quartet of PCIe x16 slots capable of supporting three-way SLI or four-way CrossFireX, support for 24GB DDR3 at speeds of up to 2,200MHz and all the other high-end features you'd expect on a ROG board. Have a peek peek the gallery as it is a feast for the eyes.
In the gallery a wide variety of ATX and small form factors motherboards as well, Zacate seems to be popular with the AMD E350 Fusion APUs.
Graphics cards wise you'll see the Latest DirectCU II models but most eye catching has to be the new MATROX GTX580 Platinum that was on display. This beast comes with new novelties. The card has 16 power phases, which confuses us a little TBH, but well. The card will support ASUS TweakIt and you can change the voltage for GPU, memory and PLL .There are no definitive numbers on clock at the moment.
Also some new gaming gigabit routers are on display, Dual-band 5GHZ and 2.4GHZ speeds up to 450Mbps concurrently.
Last but not least you'll spot some photo's of Slate's, PADs and TABs from ASUS with the EP121 being the most impressive pad as it comes with a detachable keyboard, and an incredible screen.
Check out the full photo gallery right here.
CeBIT 2011 - Corsair
Next in line was Corsair displaying their latest Chassis, audio, and storage solutions. Obviously on display was the latest SP2500 series 2.1 Speaker set, and we listened to it, and that is an incredibly powerful and great sounding bass rich unit.
The digital signal processor and dynamic digital crossovers provide sophisticated processing and equalization effects for a listening experience that simply can
CeBIT 2011 - Cooler Master
CoolerMaster certainly had a lot on display, and also was showing some chassis that where under NDA, expect some seriously cool stuff in Q2 ! For the stuff that we actually can talk about we setup a photo gallery.
The gallery will show the new Silent M chassis series ready for mATX / ATX motherboards, affordable and in a completely black styled design. On display was also the new GX series power supplies with a 85% efficiency rating, and as prototype that have a power supply on display which is going to be called the silent PRO Hybrid PSU. This thing could end up with a Platinum certification as efficiency ramps up towards 94%
In the cooler segment you'll see the new low-budget two heatpipe based Vortex cooler, the new Hyper 412S series with aluminum cover, a Hyper 612S series cooler and what is very interesting, a all-in-one single 120mm radiator based liquid cooling setup that hints towards Asetek and CoolIT.
This product is not final and neither does not have a name, hence the A-L2 label at the moment. Be sure to check out the copper cooling block with what seems to be weaved layers of copper for optimal cooling.
Cooling wise you'll also notice the new and huge Gemini which is intended for the USA market, likely not Europe due to 'audible' reasons.
You'll also spot some new chassis, mouse's like the Spawn and Sentinel Z3ro G and a really cool Headphone set in the CM STORM series called Sirus.
Check out the full photo-gallery right here.
CeBIT 2011 - Intel Z68 motherboards
Over at CeBIT another eye catching product series that is yet to be announced is the high-end Intel Z68 motherboard chipset.
Intel has started production of their Z68 chipset this week along with other Cougar Point SKUs like H61 and Q65. All of them are based on the new B3 stepping therefore the SATA port 2-5 issue is fixed before they hit the market. Judging from the specs, it seems Intel has catered Z68 specially for enthusiasts which allows better processor overclocking, discrete graphics support and SSD caching capability.
Partners that had them on display are amongst others, MSI and ASUS, have a peek:
CeBIT 2011 - Radeon HD 6990 spotted
We'll start reporting from CeBIT today, lot's of stuff to see this year, and many manufacturers are there. Some eye catching stuff definitely is on display. Per manufacturer we'll post a news item that is going to link to a full photo-gallery.
I wanted to show you some items in a separate news-post as well, first the Radeon Radeon HD 6990 is on display at several AMD partners, amongst them MSI. The dual-GPU card is lined up to be AMD's 2011 flagship, and MSI proudly proclaims that it's "the most powerful" unit available, the card is to be release next week.
First Battlefield 3 gameplay video
Apple iPad 2
Apple launched its second-generation iPad official!
packed with a 1GHz dual-core A5 chip and, finally, cameras, both on the front and rear. The new CPU is said to be up to twice as fast, with graphics performance up to nine times better than on the original iPad, while power requirements have been kept the same. Battery life is, consequently, unaltered, with Apple promising 10 hours. Pricing, too, has been left unchanged, starting at $499 for a 16GB WiFi-only iPad 2 and stretching up to $829 for a WiFi + 3G SKU with 64GB of storage.