Assassin's Creed Brotherhood Ships
Ubisoft sent out a press release announcing the PC edition of Assassin's Creed Brotherhood is now available in North America. The critically acclaimed single-player experience of Assassin's Creed is back and better than ever as Ezio returns in an epic struggle against the powerful Templar Order. Now a legendary Master Assassin, he must journey into Italy's greatest city, Rome, center of power, greed and corruption to strike at the heart of the enemy. Defeating the corrupt tyrants entrenched there will require not only strength, but leadership, as Ezio commands an entire Brotherhood that will rally to his side. Only by working together can the Assassins defeat their mortal enemies.
And for the first time, Assassin's Creed Brotherhood offers a never-before-seen multiplayer layer. Players can help the Templars by using Abstergo to train in the art of Assassination to eliminate the Assassins once and for all. Players can choose from a wide range of unique characters, each with their own signature weapons and assassination techniques, and match their skills against other players from all over the world in different game modes.
Assassins Creed Brotherhood for the PC are available at retail stores and for digital download in two different versions:
Standard: Main game + Abstergo Project Update 1.0 and 2.0 and The Da Vinci Disappearance: $49.99 [Retail and Digital]
Digital Deluxe Edition: Main game + Abstergo Project Update 1.0 and 2.0 and The Da Vinci Disappearance + 2 multi-player characters + 2 singleplayer maps + 1 skin + additional multimedia content: $59.99 [Digital Only]
Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo 1.8 GHZ or AMD Athlon X2 64 2.4GHZ
Video Card: Nvidia 7900 256 MB or ATI Radeon X1950 256 MB
Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo E6700 2.6 GHz or AMD Athlon 64 X2 6000+ or better
Video Card: GeForce 8800 GT or ATI Radeon HD 4700 or better
Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo E6700 2.6 GHz or AMD Athlon 64 X2 6000+ or better
Video Card: GeForce 8800 GT or ATI Radeon HD 4700 or better
Sound: 5.1 sound card
Peripherals: Keyboard, mouse, joystick optional (Xbox 360 Controller for Windows recommended)
* This product does not support Windows
How Crytek doomed Crysis 2's PC version
DarReviews has published an interesting article called 'How Crytek doomed Crysis 2's PC version'. Here's an excerpt:
For starters, the game doesn't support DX11. Although Crytek stated that they will address that via a patch, this is not what you, me and every PC gamer out there want to. PC gamers don't want gimmick DX11 effects. As the game is not developed with the DX11 in mind, we won't get the tessellation results of (let's say) the Unigine 'Heaven' Benchmark. We are certain that when the DX11 patch gets released, Crytek will be stating how gritty those PC gamers are for pirating their game and how disappointed they are as they did what PC gamers asked for. This is not the true however.
As Crytek stated in the past, the PC version development would not be hurt by the console versions. Then how come there isn
ASUS Rampage III BLACK EDITION photo's
Roughly two weeks ago at CeBIT ASUS showed off an all new Rampage III BLACK EDITION motherboard. We just received a unit for review and I could not leave you guys hangin in there without showing some photo's.
The R3E Black Edition comes with an 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.
The Rampage III Extreme Black Edition has the same core specs as its predecessor. However, it introduces a new ROG Thunderbolt expansion card. According to Asus, the audio provided by Xonar gives sound quality that is four times better than a regular sound card. On the other hand, the networking portion of the card optimizes the gaming traffic more efficiently than the standard Windows network stack. The design of the heatsinks and VRMs are also redesigned
Palit GeForce GTX 550 Ti Sonic review
Today we'll be putting the GeForce GTX 550 Ti Sonic from Palit to the test, armed with a new cooler we expect no noise and decent temperatures. The the card comes factory overclocked as well, and not a little. We'll have a deeper look in the product gallery of course. As stated this card comes factory overclocked, from 900 towards 1000 MHz. Extremely high frequencies... but get this, we'll bring this card towards a whopping 1100 MHz today. Let's have a peek at what the GTX 550 Ti has in store for us.
Read the review here.
Corsair Windowed Side Panel Kit Graphite Series 600T
Corsair announced the availability of a windowed side panel for their award-winning Graphite Series 600T PC case.
The replacement side panel features an impact-resistant acrylic plastic clear window for showing off components when the case is closed. The customer has the further option of replacing the window with the included mesh insert that matches the look of the mesh grilles on the front and top of the case. The mesh side panel doesn't just look good - it includes mounting points for adding up to four 120mm fans for improved cooling performance.
"Our Graphite Series 600T case provides builder friendly, full-tower features in a mid-tower design, with an emphasis on style. PC enthusiasts often like to customize and show off their builds, and we're pleased to provide them a way to display their creativity and expertise." said Ruben Mookerjee, VP and General Manager for Components at Corsair. "Providing a mesh panel option with integrated fan mounts gives overclockers and performance fanatics an option for even more cooling performance."
The Side Panel with Window and Mesh inserts for the Graphite Series 600T is available for purchase from Corsair.com for $29.99 USD.
ASUS GeForce GTX 590 gets Unboxed
Chinese website pcinlife leaked the first pictures of a retail-grade ASUS GeForce GTX 590 graphics accelerator. The pictures also reveal a little bit about the card. It's a little longer than most NVIDIA GeForce cards released, including the GTX 295.
Check out the thumbnails.
MSI Z68A-GD80 motherboard gets pictured
We already photographed it at CeBIT this year but new pictures of the MSI Z68A-GD80 surfaed, a motherboard with Intel's Z68 chipset. This motherboard is expected to be released within a few weeks.
The Z68A-GD80 should be one of MSI's top of the range models, although it's possible that we'll see a Big Bang Z68 board from MSI and we'd expect at least two or three models below it. There isn't much missing on the Z68A-GD80, but strangely enough it's not as feature packed as the P67A-GD80 which seems like a step backwards.
The slot layout is identical of the two boards with three x16 PCI Express slots in a x16/dual x8 and x4 configuration, two x1 PCI Express slots and two PCI slots. However, MSI has dropped both of the USB 3.0 hubs of the P67A-GD80 and as such we're left with two rear and two front USB 3.0 ports, compared to six rear and four front for the P67A-GD80. On a more positive note MSI has moved one of the eSATA ports internally so there are now seven SATA ports and only one eSATA port which makes a lot more sense.
Eye of Sauron In Your Office!
Oh it's Mordor in your office my man .. hehe:
Nvidia to announce next gen graphics card on March 24th
Nvidia uploaded a very short video on their YouTube channel with the announcement of an upcoming
MSI Afterburner 2.2.0 Beta 1
MSI have been working hard on AfterBurner, today we release an updated Beta revision of Afterburner, this application successfully secured the leading position on graphics card utilities.
We're happy to see MSI Afterburner is leading the overclock applications, but where satisfied with what we have now, we plan to go one step beyond everybody!
MSI Afterburner 2.2.0 Beta 1 is ready, changes list includes:
- Added core voltage control for reference desing AMD RADEON 6990 graphics cards with VT1556 voltage regulators
- Added core, memory and auxiliary PEXVDD voltage control for custom design MSI N560GTX-Ti Hawk series graphics cards with uP6218+uP6262 voltage regulators
- MSI On-Screen Display server has been upgraded to version 4.2.0. New version gives you the following improvements:
- Added audio capture support to video capture engine. The engine supports stereo audio capture under Windows XP and both multichannel or downmixed stereo capture under Windows Vista and newer operating systems
- High-performance primary desktop video capture support for Windows XP and newer operating systems. Please take a note that currently desktop video capture is not supported under Windows Vista and newer operating systems with Aero Glass interface is enabled, please select classic interface to get it working if necessary (Aero Glass interface is now being automatically disabled by server when desktop screen capture is started and restored after finishing the capture.)
- Updated profiles list
- Changed current value and time rendering Z-order in hardware monitoring graphs renderer
- Added Simplified Chinese localization
VIA ART-5450 in-vehicle management
VIA Technologies announced the launch of its VIA ART-5450 embedded box PC system, designed to offer embedded developers the ideal system platform for today
Single-Slot, Slot-Powered Radeon HD 6850
Over at AFOX (an uknown manufacturer active in Asia) they launched unveiled a new AMD Radeon HD 6850 1 GB graphics card that actually has a a single-slot design and get this, it relies 100% on the PCI Express slot for its power.
The AF6850-1024D5S1 from AFOX features a red PCB, a black single slot cooler that covers all of the board's obverse side, and looks to feature a dense heatsink to which air is circulated by a blower.
The card clocks in at a 775 MHz core and 4000 MHz GDDR5 effective memory.
Now the math is simple, a 6850 is rated by AMD to have 127W typical max power draw and the PCIe bus delivers a theoretical maximum of 75W. That slot can push a little more, but that's way beyond specs alright. Well, spotted in Japan, the card is priced at 19,780 Yen, which converts to US $245.
France fines Google 100 000EUR over Street View privacy concerns
Well now, AFP reports France's data privacy regulator has fined Google 100,000EUR for collecting private information while gathering photos for its Street View service. CNIL, the National Commission for Information Freedom, explains it fined Google because the company gained unfair economic benefits by inadvertently capturing unencrypted private data including passwords and e-mails by picking up WiFi data via its Street View cars.
Google's lawyer for privacy issues, Peter Fleischer, responds that the search giant is profoundly sorry for having mistakenly collected data from unencrypted wireless networks.
In addition to concerns about the photos taken, Google admitted in 2010 that its specially equipped cars taking the photographs were also picking up Wi-Fi data and had inadvertently captured unencrypted private data including passwords and e-mails.
CNIL, the National Commission for Information Freedom, said Google had pledged to erase all the private data, but that it had found "that Google has not refrained from using the data identifying Wi-Fi access points of individuals without their knowledge."
The regulator said it decided to impose the fine as this constituted "unfair collection" of information under French law and it had received economic benefits from the data.
HDD industry to face supply challenges due to earthquake
Though there's of course much more important and other concern in Japan, DigiTimes reports the HDD market will face challenges due to the earthquake in Japan, because of damage to plants of HDD maker Showa Denko and of HDD substrate makers Furukawa Denko and Kobe Steel.
The global hard disk drive (HDD) industry, already facing challenges from solid state drives (SSDs), cloud computing and limitation of vertical read-write technologies, is expected to face even more challenges resulting from the March 11 earthquake in northeastern Japan, which has severely damaged the plants of local HDD component makers including hard disk maker Showa Denko, and HDD-use substrate makers Furukawa Denko and Kobe Steel. These makers have all reported damage to facilities as well as injuries of employees and have shut down their operations pending further evaluation.
Showa Denko currently has about 25% share of the global hard disk market and in addition to its plants in Japan, the company also has plants in Taiwan and Singapore that can fill in for the suspended capacity at the damaged plants in Japan. Since Showa Denko's clients Western Digital and Seagate also have a portion of their hard disk supplies from in-house production, Digitimes Research believes that the hard disk market will not see any immediate shortages.
AMD: APUs will not challenge discrete graphics cards
AMD's Neal Robison, senior director of content and application support, told X-bit Labs that APUs will definitely challenge standalone CPUs and that processors without graphics cores may cease to ecist in the future. Additionally, he also revealed that APUs will only confront low-cost systems, they will not go head-to-head with discrete graphics cards.
But while APUs will confront low-cost systems, they will not challenge and will not become part of advanced personal computers with discrete graphics cards.
"I do not think that APUs will challenge discrete GPUs on anything, but on the lowest-end systems. When you look at adding a discrete GPU that enhances performance of the graphics side, it makes a huge amount of sense as it scales [performance] on a wide amount of applications because of the rich visual experience that everybody expects now when they are actually using their computing device," added Mr. Robison.
A good example of APU integration is this.
Sharkoon debuts three T series cases
First up is the T5 Economy, this model will retail for around 40EUR and includes five 5.25" bays, five tool-free internal 3.5" bays, a front 120mm fan with blue LEDs, and a front I/O panel with four USB 2.0 ports plus audio ports.
PCMark 7 Announced For Windows 7
Futuremark announced PCMark 7 today, a new benchmark offering complete PC performance analysis for Windows 7. PCMark 7 includes 7 separate test suites combining more than 20 individual workloads covering storage, computation, image and video manipulation, web browsing and gaming.
"Hardware innovations like solid state drives (SSDs), and new form factors such as netbooks and tablets are greatly increasing the range of PC performance available to businesses and home users," said Jani Joki, Director of PC Products and Services at Futuremark. "With so much choice available, PCMark 7 is an essential and easy to use tool to test and compare PC performance accurately and reliably across a wide range of usage scenarios."
PCMark 7 provides a set of 7 suites for measuring different aspects of PC performance with a high degree of accuracy. Overall system performance is measured by the PCMark Suite. The Lightweight Suite measures the capabilities of entry level systems and mobility platforms unable to run the full PCMark suite. Common use performance is measured by the Entertainment, Creativity and Productivity scenario suites. Component performance is measured by the Computation and Storage hardware suites. The Storage suite is ideal for testing SSDs and external hard drives in addition to the system drive.
A release date has not been announced though the official website states that PCMark 7 is coming soon.
MSI E350IA-E45 - AMD APU Fusion review
We peek at the cutest mITX motherboard from MSI today, have a look at some of its performance on the CPU and GPU side of things but most of all, we'll discuss features as what these products bring to the table is just downright impressive for the money as you'll notice DDR3 support, SATA-600 support, HDMI support, gigabit Ethernet, 8-channel audio support and then the integrated dual-core processor at 1600 MHz and in that processor embedded DX11 ready graphics core.
Check the review right here.