Motherboard prices expected to increase 10% by next quarter
Thanks to increasing world market prices of copper, the major retail motherboard manufacturers are looking at increasing their motherboard prices by about 10 percent or so come April. This is bad news for Intel, as this will end up coinciding with Intel's launch of its Ivy Bridge processors and the new 7-series chipsets as vr-zone reports:
The price of copper has increased by over US$600 per tonne in only a few weeks' time and even though motherboards only use a few hundred grams of copper, the increased cost per tonne is still going to have an adverse effect on motherboard pricing. It's also likely lead to increased costs of other computer components such as high-end graphics cards which use 10 layer PCBs.
On top of everything else, wages in China are going up which is further helping to increase the cost for the motherboard makers. Even so, according to Digitimes, Asus is expecting to see an increase in motherboard shipments by 10 percent, with Gigabyte expecting an increase of as much as 20 percent in the first quarter of this year, compared to the same quarter last year.
Update: We were contacted by Gigabyte with regards to this story and the company stated that it is not expecting any increase to the pricing of its motherboards and the information posted on Digitimes is incorrect as far as Gigabyte is concerned. Gigabyte is expecting to launch its next generation of LGA-1155 motherboards at similar price points as its current LGA-1155 motherboards, depending on the feature set on offer. The company is also expecting to see improved performance of the new motherboards compared to its current range of LGA-1155 models.
Age of Empires Online: Celts Preview
Sandra 2012 SP1c - 18.28 download
SiSoftware Sandra remote analysis, benchmarking and diagnostic features for PCs, servers, PDAs, smart-phones and networks.
- GP (GPU/APU) Benchmarks: optimisations for APUs, both current AMD and future Intel when using complex kernels that overwhelm them. APU mode can run different kernels on CPU & GPU part, selecting the best for each device.
- Dedicated high-performance GPUs will still execute the "heavier" kernels which allow better compute core utilisation but are too large for APUs.
- File System Benchmark: reduced run-time and test file size while maintaining score quality (i.e. similar margin of error). You can test slow drives even on systems with large disk caches (i.e. large memory)
- Ranker: is finally operational after over 1 month outage due to server transfer gone wrong; most benchmark results have been restored. With 41 benchmarks and over 200,000 scores in popular benchmarks the total number or scores is somewhat large.
- Cache/Memory Latencies Benchmark: here is a public article detailing our methodology on measuring cache/memory latencies, why, what and how is measured, and how our results relate to manufacturer results.
Radeon HD 7950 Overclock Guide
We take a Radeon HD 7950 overclock it the normal way and then voltage tweaked. So that way we will demonstrate not one, but two maximum overclock conditions alongside TDP, heat, noise and performance levels.
You will notice that if you go for long lifespan a long-lived card that overclocking the old fashioned way will not disappoint. A good GHz on the GPU (default = 800 MHz) is certainly something you can achieve. However voltage tweaking will bring you towards another level alright, roughly 1150 MHz.
Read our article right here.
MSI Z77A-GD65 Ivy Bridge Motherboard Surfaces
Check out MSI's Z77A-GD65 motherboard for Ivy Bridge processors, it was shown at this year
CM Storm Trooper gets limited time price cut
Cooler Master celebrates its 20th anniversary by dropping the price of the CM Storm Trooper case from the original launch price of $189.99 to $149.99, for a limited time. Cooler Master, an industry leading chassis, thermal solution, peripheral, and accessory manufacturer today announces an exciting new offering as part of its ongoing 20th anniversary celebration.
As a part of Cooler Master
AMD reveals APU and discrete graphics roadmap
AMD revealed an updated APU and discrete graphics card roadmap yesterday at the company's Financial Analyst Day.
You can see two new System On Chip architectures, code named Kabini and Temash. Interesting is seeing AMD's next generation Sea Islands GPU architecture.
In AMD's x86 arsenal, the Trinity APU (aka the 2nd gen A Series) is made on 32 nm process technology, and features DirectX 11 graphics, two/four Piledriver cores (Piledrive is said to deliver 25% better performance than the Stars cores found in Llano APUs), and a TDP that can go as low as 17 W on mobile parts.
No information was given beyond the Sea Islands code name, expected debut is in 2013. Check out the slide:
PowerColor LCS HD 7970 with waterblock
PowerColor teases its upcoming LCS Radeon HD 7970, a liquid cooled card with a waterblock from EK.
PowerColor's watercooled card also 2048 Stream Processors, a 384-bit memory interface, 3 GB of GDDR5 VRAM, DVI, HDMI and dual mini DisplayPort outputs, plus DirectX 11.1 capabilities, CrossFireX support, and a PCI-Express 3.0 interface.
There is no info onn the card's clocks frequencies yet but they should be higher than on stock models, as well as the price.
World of Tanks - Update 7.2 Trailer
Ghost Recon: Future Soldier - Single Player Video
Leaked Benchmark of Intel Core i7 3770K
Intel's most CPU from the upcoming Ivy Bridge collection is going to be known as Core i7 3770K and has been benchmarked, apparently. The benchmarking results that have made their way to the Internet originate with OBR-Hardware, which is not the most reliable of sources TBH.
That said, OBR-Hardware claims to have tested the upcoming central processing unit on a Z68 chipset motherboard loaded with a new UEFI/BIOS that included Ivy Bridge support. The processor was an engineering sample that used the C0 stepping and was clocked at 3.5 GHz, while the Turbo Boost upper limit was 3.9 GHz.
Long story short, the tests showed a superiority of about 9% compared to the Core i7 2600K and, by extension, a likely improvement of 6-7% over the Core i7 2700K. For those that want more specifics, the tests included both single-threaded and multi-threaded benchmarks.
It bears noting that Ivy Bridge was never about extra performance in terms of raw processing might, hence the arguably modest rise in computing scores. Instead, Intel chose to focus on making the graphics side better, while reducing the die size and power requirements. While featuring the Intel GMA HD IGP (integrated graphics processor), the TDP (thermal design power) of Ivy Bride will be 18W below that of Sandy bridge (77W instead of 95W).
Nevertheless, even if this leak shows somewhat similar results to previous reports, Intel's in-house projections are a bit more ambitious. On that note, the Ivy bridge SKUs working at 65W (low-power CPUs) will probably have much higher frequencies than their SB counterparts, which also consume 65W.
The exact results are on the adjoining table but, as stated above, don't put too much stock on them just yet. Certainty will reign only after the units launch in April, alongside Z77 motherboards.
Update - they have taken the content down "because of good relationship with Intel"
Retailer Pulls Asus Transformer Prime
Clove, the first retailer to start selling the Transformer Prime in the UK, has just announced that it decided to pull the Asus quad-core tablet from its offer, due to availability problems and an outstanding number of technical issues.
The retailer made its decision public in a post on its official blog:
Zalman Z11 and Z11 Plus Mid-Tower Cases
Zalman is about to release two new 'high performance' PC cases, the Z11 and Z11 Plus mid-towers.
The new chassis have a good four exposed 5.25-inch bays, one 2.5-inch bay, five 3.5-inch drive trays and tool-free mounting, an acrylic side window, an anti-vibration rubber stand for the PSU, two pre-drilled holes for watercooling tubes, and four fans - one 120 mm spinner with blue LEDs in front, another one on top, a LED-less 120 mm model at the back, and two 80 mm fans on the side.
Measiring in at 260 (W) x 498 (H) x 525 (D) mm, they weight 7.3 kg, and have a steel structure, a black paint job, and support for ATX and micro ATX motherboards, as well as for graphics cards up to 290 mm long.
The Zalman Z11 includes an I/O panel with four USB 2.0 ports and has a recommended price tag of 69.90 Euro, while the Z11 Plus offers two USB 2.0 and two USB 3.0 ports, and costs 79.90 Euro. Both are expected to become available in about two weeks.
Is anyone else reminded of Darth Vader somehow ? Look at the pics :)
Titan Sibera TTC-NC55TZ(RB) CPU Cooler
Titan Technology shows their Siberia CPU Cooler, the TTC-NC55TZ(RB). The cooler has an asymmetric aluminum fin tower design, which cools other hot components on the motherboard along with the CPU. The design consists of a nickel-plated copper base, from which five copper heat pipes pass. One end of these heat pipes pass through an aluminum fin stack that propagates along the plane of the motherboard, while the other passes though a stack that propagates perpendicular to this plane.
The stack that's along the plane of the motherboard is the larger of the two, and is ventilated by a 140 mm fan. The perpendicular stack is ventilated by a smaller 120 mm fan. The 140 mm fan spins at 700 ~ 1,800 RPM, pushing 34.78 ~ 89.43 CFM of air, with a noise output of 8.3 ~ 28.8 dBA.
The heatsink measures 200 x 130 x 162 mm (WxDxH), weighing 755 g. All sockets, including LGA2011, LGA1366, LGA1155/LGA1156, AM3+/AM3/AM2+/AM2, and FM1 are supported. It is priced at 6,980 JPY (US $91.6).
Genius DeathTaker mouse targets gaming market
Peripheral maker Genius has revealed the DeathTaker, a new mouse aimed at MMO and RTS gamers. It's the company's first mouse targeted at gamers, the device offers nine buttons, built-in macro memory, a backlight with 16 million possible colors, adjustable X and Y axes, and weight management. Pricing in the US is $79.80, which seems kinda expensive for a newcomer.
The DeathTaker features an aggressive and sharply-detailed design with the all-important backlight, customisable through an entire 16 million colour palette. Bundled software, the Scorpion UI, allows gamers to customise five profiles with up to 55 macros for storage into the device's in-built memory. As well as allowing easy transfer to a different PC, Genius claims the in-built memory and CPU in the mouse prevents the macros being detected and blocked by games.
Those macros make use of the nine buttons spread out across the device's surface, each rated to a claimed 8 million clicks. Wired with a 1.8 metre braided cable for reliability, the mouse even includes a gold-plated USB connection for the difference that's likely to make.
Genius has also included what it claims is an 'in-built over-clocking SCGii engine,' which allows the sensitivity across the X and Y axes to be independently adjusted from 100dpi to 5,700dpi. The heft of the mouse is also adjustable, with six 4.5g metal weights included in the package.
Seagate sees profit nearly quadruple thanks to HDD supply crisis
WD's factories in Thailand were hit hard by the floods in October, this disaster almost cut the company's HDD production in half. Seagate on the other hand managed to keep its production pretty stable, the company suffered from component shortages but enjoyed much higher profit margins than usual as HDD priced skyrocketed as a result of a shortfall in global HDD supply.
Seagate Technology plc (NASDAQ: STX) today reported financial results for the quarter ended December 30, 2011. The company shipped 47 million disk drives and reported revenue of $3.2 billion, gross margin of 31.6%, net income of $563 million and diluted earnings per share of $1.28. On a non-GAAP basis, which excludes the net impact of certain items, Seagate reported net income of $581 million and diluted earnings per share of $1.32 for the quarter ended December 30, 2011.
For the six months ended December 30, 2011, the company reported revenue of $6.0 billion, gross margin of 26.0%, net income of $703 million and diluted earnings per share of $1.61. On a non-GAAP basis, which excludes the net impact of certain items,Seagate reported net income of $727 million and diluted earnings per share of $1.67. Seagate returned $151 million to shareholders in the form of a dividend and repurchased $191 million of Seagate ordinary shares which equates to approximately 13 million ordinary shares.
For a detailed reconciliation of non-GAAP to GAAP results, see accompanying financial tables.
Acquisition of Samsung's Hard Disk Drive Assets
Seagate announced on December 19, 2011 the closing of the acquisition of the hard disk drive business of Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. Related to this transaction, amortization of acquisition-related intangibles of $5 million (non-cash expense) is included in the GAAP basis net income for the fiscal second quarter and six months ended December 30, 2011. For Seagate's third fiscal quarter, which ends on March 30, 2012, it is expected that amortization of acquisition-related intangibles will be approximately $35 million.
Enermax DreamBass AP001 improves laptop audio output
Well, ehm Enermax is releasing the DreamBass AP001, a new USB device that seeks to improve the audio capabilities of your laptop. It's only for headphones and microphones though, it won't do anything for your internal speakers.
It's based on a VIA VT1620A USB 2.0 2-channel HD audio CODEC for stereo output with 24-bit resolution and 96 kHz sample-rate. It has a signal-noise ratio of 80~90 dBA, which is not much of a departure from most laptops' HDA CODECs, if it isn't for the MOSFET-based amplifier circuit packed into the DreamBass AP001, that's capable of 80Hz/+6dB Bass.
It has a 3.5 mm stereo jack and mic input. Enermax also has a variant called the AP001E, which includes earphones that have 10 mm drivers, 95 dBA SNR, and 32 ohm impedance. The DreamBass AP001 is priced at 3,280 JPY (US $43); the AP001E goes for 3,980 ($52.2).
ThermalTake Level 10 GT Call of Duty edition
ThermalTake demonstrated several upcoming products at the Taipei Game Show 2012. It includes new mice and new cases, with one of the most extraordinary products being the Level 10 GT Call of Duty Version. This case goes over the top with a military styling that includes a rocket launcher as a handle and a six barrel machine gun that can rotate once power is attached.
Thermaltake Group with the most avant-garde innovation and creativity in delivering the corporate mission of the