GeForce GTX 550 Ti review MSI Cyclone II OC
Today we'll be putting the N550GTX-Ti from MSI to the test, armed with the new Cyclone II cooler we expect no noise and excellent cooling. The full SKU name is N550GTX-Ti Cyclone II OC, as the card comes factory overclocked as well. We'll have a deeper look in the product gallery of course. As stated this card comes factory overclocked, from 900 towards 950 MHz. Extremely high frequencies .. but get this, we'll bring this card towards a whopping 1100 MHz today. So yeah, let's have a peek at what the GeForce GTX 550 Ti has in store for us.
Read the full review here.
KFA2 Galaxy GTX 550 Ti LTD OC WHITE review
KFA2 Galaxy GTX 550 Ti LTD OC WHITE review
In this review we'll have a peek at the warmongers from KFA2 (Galaxy), they unleash this cute little beastly looking GTX 550 Ti LTD OC White edition graphics card. And to make it even more special, they slapped all components on a sexy white PCB again. Armed with that atypical looking cooler you'll learn that this product makes no compromises, you will not hear it, it will not run hot and it even comes factory clocked at a full GHz, quite amazing as GPUs seem to slowly pass that weird 1 GHz threshold.
Read the full review here.
Intel ships a 4.4GHz Xeon X5698
CPUOver at World's keen eyes spotted that Intel has quietly been shipping a Xeon X5698 with a frequency of 4.4GHz:
In the middle of last year, when Intel produced pre-production parts for the next refresh of Xeon 5600-series, they also made several quite interesting Xeon samples. The most distinguishing feature of these chips was very high clock frequency. Even the slowest Xeon microprocessor from that group was clocked at 4 GHz, and the fastest one reached 4.66 GHz. One of these samples made into production, and started shipping earlier this year. The processor was released as Xeon X5698, and, at 4.4 GHz, it's the fastest Intel production CPU ever.
Intel Xeon X5698 is built on Westemere microarchitecture, and, with a couple of notable differences, shares many features with other Xeon 5600 chips. One of the differences, extremely high core frequency, we already mentioned above. This model has only two active CPU cores, and we believe that 4 other cores on the die are disabled. The processor comes with 12 MB L3 cache, HyperThreading, and works in socket 1366 motherboards. Intel X5698 has OEM part number AT80614007314AA, and S-spec number SLC32. We suspect that this SKU will be shipped only in OEM systems.
For the sake of history, we included information on all "special" Xeon samples, produced in 2010, in the table below:
OEM part number
Specifications of four AMD FX processors surface
X-bit Labs reports specifications of AMD's first four Bulldozer desktop processors. These FX-series chips will be available in eight, six and four core editions with TDPs ranging from 95W to 125W.
The primary family of AMD FX-series central processing units (CPUs) will feature two eight-core models, one six-core flavour as well as a quad-core version. The chips will support dual-channel DDR3 1866MHz memory, will support Turbo Core dynamic acceleration technology and will come in AM3+ form-factor and will have 125W and 95W TDP. The second "wave" of Bulldozer chips will also include four microprocessors and will improve performance of the initial breed of CPUs.
The intrigue remains about exact clock-speed of Bulldozer chips. Based on estimations, frequencies of such chips may be as high as 3.50GHz. What should be noted is that modern CPUs can include units that work at different clock-speeds and the highest one will hardly determine actual performance.
Japan crisis not expected to have major impact on wafer market
DigiTimes reports foundries don't expect the Japanese earthquake disaster will cause significant disruption for the silicon wafer market because alternatives are available if necessary.
With the impact of Japan's massive earthquake disrupting production at silicon wafer supplier Shin-Etsu Handotai (SEH), major pure-play foundry chipmakers Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) and United Microelectronics Corporation (UMC) have both said that they are capable of activating alternatives if necessary.
SEH's parent company Shin-Etsu Chemical has revealed that operations at several production sites, including SEH's Shirakawa plant in Nishigo Village, Fukushima Preference, remain closed due to the quake's impact which has shutdown electric power supply in the area. A restart of operations can only begin after a safety inspection of equipment and the facilities, Shin-Etsu said, without disclosing any timeframe.
Operation Flashpoint: Red River Bio Trailer
Game releases for the coming week March 14 March 21
Also of note this week is the new first person shooter Homefront for PC, Xbox 360 and PS3. The story for Homefront was written by the screenwriter behind Apocalypse Now and takes place in a near-future USA after an invasion by a United Korea under the rule of North Korea.
- Total War: Shogun 2 Limited Edition
ENERMAX SpineRex chassis
ENERMAX is pleased to announce the launch of SpineRex, a new flagship gaming tower for enthusiasts: Full-drive bay design, front-accessible hard disk cages, quick-release bay covers; handy tool-less rails offer flexibility, scalability, and pleasant system building experiences. User may also find its spacious interior that makes installation of high-end graphic card and massive hard disk storage possible.
- Full drive bay design and modular HDD cages for utmost flexibility and scalability
- Top slide cover functions either as air flow adjustment or dust shield
- Independent light controls for front and side color-changeable fans
- Bottom mounted PSU slot with rubber stands and dust filter supports two orientations
- Dust filters for side monster fan, and meshed bay covers
- 4 openings with rubber grommets for water cooling system
- Easy installation:
- Flip-open design for quick system maintenance
- Quick release bay covers
- Rails for both ODD and HDD installation
- Cutouts on M/B tray for quick CPU cooler maintenance and neat cable management
- Thumbscrews for add-on cards installation
- Supreme cooling performance:
- Front 2x12cm Blue/Red combo-LED VEGAS fans
- Side 1x25cm Blue/Red combo-LED fan with LED & speed control
- Top 2x14/12cm exhaust fan (optional)
- Rear 1x12cm exhaust fan (optional)
SpineRex brings more fun and functions to cooling. Made of oversized mesh, SpineRex provides outstanding cooling performance to keep most hardcore components cooled. Pre-installed filter behind mesh can effectively prevent dust from accumulating. A slide cover on top plays either dust shield or airflow adjustment. Speed control for side 250mm monster fan allows users to cope with dynamic cooling requirements. The pre-installed two 120mm combo-LED Vegas fans with ENERMAX
OCZ acquires Indilinx
It's no secret that OCZ likes SSD technology and places all focus on that. Big news -- they just announced that they will purchase Indilinx, known from their great SSD controllers. The company faded away a little after SandForce really kicked in. This will allow OCZ to make theor own proprietary SSD controllers if they choose to do so. Here's the PR:
OCZ announced it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Indilinx Co., Ltd, a privately held fabless provider of flash controller silicon and software for SSDs.
Indilinx is headquartered in South Korea and currently sells its line of flash controllers to SSD manufacturers and Tier One OEMs for use in a broad array of products addressing multiple markets, including embedded and industrial as well as laptops and PCs. Indilinx controllers have been deployed within OCZ's SSD products since December 2008, and are currently featured in the Z-Drive series of PCIe-based SSDs. Indilinx's technology is expected to enable OCZ to expand its presence into the embedded, hybrid storage, and industrial markets.
OCZ will gain substantial intellectual property from Indilinx including approximately 20 patents and patent applications related exclusively to the business as part of the transaction. For example, the acquisition is expected to extend OCZ's capabilities with advanced controller technology including Tinkerbell
New update for 3DMark Vantage v1.1.0
FutureMark released an update to 3DMark Vantage to fix problems and add a couple of requested features. One interesting fact is that the Basic edition is now free to use and the trial has been removed.
Release Notes for 3DMark Vantage v. 1.1.0
- Trial Edition has been removed
- Basic Edition is now free
- Added display scaling to improve display compatibility
- PPU acceleration of the CPU tests is now disabled by default
- Re-compiled with Visual Studio 2010
- Updated the SystemInfo component to version 4.0
Advanced and Profession Edition only
- Added option for manual GPU Count selection to the Advanced tab.
- Added Scaling Mode selection to the Advanced tab, choose from centered or stretched.
- Results tab now shows the individual scores for each of the six tests.
Professional Edition only
- Demo audio now works when running from the command line.
- Image Quality tool now handles unexpected parameters correctly.
- Image Quality tool now works correctly with the reference rasterizer option.
We are hosting both the updated full version, and a smaller to download Patch which you can use to upgrade your currentinstallation with.DOWNLOAD
GeForce GTX 590 features Surface
Over at the xtremesystems forums apparently a slide on the GeForce GTX 590 found its way to the web. It looks like a board-partner presentation slide showing some information (though limited) on the upcoming flagship product from NVIDIA.
The slide does confirm some of the rumors like full shader processor count, dual-slot design and 3 GB of graphics memory. The slide also notes a 12 layer PCB (which is a lot really) combined with a 10-phase power design. Typically that would be 8+2 for memory.
Anyway, the slide does not reveal much other then the semi-confirmed rumors out there, but I assume everybody likes pretty pictures.
Information About F@H V7 Client
Well fellow Gurus, today is a really nice day for our fellow Guru Folders. Below is the partial changelog for the anticipated V7 F@H Client that I have obtained from Dr. Vijay's Blog.
In short, if everything works out fine, we will have V7.1.18 available to the public for open Beta Testing once it has finished internal testing. An excerpt of the changelog:
v7.1.18: * More GPU whitelisting.
* Use OS logical CPU count instead of CPUID counts.
* Hide/restore any open dialogs with main FAHControl window.
* Don't allow opening more than one dialog via the sys-tray menu.
* Restore main window on preferences or about from sys-tray menu.
* Change configure dialog OK button to Save.
* Fixed AS hammering, #511.
* Fixed 'Waiting On' message problems.
* Use heartbeat to timeout FAHControl connections.
* Fixed damage to active client's config when adding new client. #536.
* Catch property save error on FAHControl close in Windows 2008.
* Disallow saving both config and address/port changes in FAHControl.
* Fixed CUDA driver version reporting. #571.
* Fix file and directory permissions in .deb and .rpm packages.
* Added volume icon for OSX DMG package.
* Hopefully fixed sidebar issue in DMG. #516.
* Fixed local FAHClient shutdown with 'Stop' button on Windows.
* Removed extra linefeeds from copied log. #428.
v7.1.17: * Really whitelisted some more GPUs.
v7.1.16: * Use core count not thread count for SMP autoconfiguration.
* Clear FAHViewer info when disconnected.
* Whitelisted some more GPUs.
* Removed ATI Mobility GPUs from whitelist.
* Fixed cpu core/thread/logical detection.
v7.1.15: * Print 'CUDA not detected' in info.
* Attempt to fix broken CUDA detection.
v7.1.14: * Ignore CUDA library exceptions.
v7.1.13: * Fixed problem with editing client in FAHControl when not connected.
* Fixed next-unit-percentage rounding error.
* Removed threading and polling in FAHControl.
* Created developer interface for FAHClient.
* Dropped follow log control.
* Fixed bug in connecting FAHViewer when no slot is selected in FAHControl.
* Added heartbeat between FAHControl and FAHClient.
* Added local client command in FAHControl preferences.
* Let FAHClient crash rather than catch unknown exceptions at top level.
* Added button to manually start and stop local client from FAHControl.
* Display error dialog if client authorization fails.
* Fixed slot popup menu actions bug.
v7.1.12: * Fixed --info printing for FERMI GPUs.
* Fixed Non-fermi CUDA reporting.
* Added new core exit codes for GPU cores.
* Include CPU threads in SMP default core count.
* Updated CPU count info display.
* Default next-unit-percentage to 99%.
* Added color for 'Finishing' state in FAHControl.
* Fixed bug in highlighting WU for selected 'Finishing' slot.
* Added warning in FAHControl about changing SMP CPU count mid run.
* Round the next-unit-percentage calculation to the nearest integer.
* Fixed arrow key movement in slot and queue list views in FAHControl.
* Updated FAHViewer icon and use in FAHControl.
* Fixed problem with selecting slots in FAHControl. #359
* Fixed potential problems with CPU count code on single core machines.
* Quit FAHControl on Window X in OSX.
* Remove 'Hide' toolbar button in OSX.
* Fixed crash in OSX on Apple keys.
* Added OSX dock menu items.
v7.1.11: * Fixed FAHViewer fullscreen problems in Windows.
* Show absolute path to log file in client fail popup.
* Fixed CPU counting for multiple physical processors.
* Fixed missing estimated credit field in FAHControl.
* Fixed bug with removing client from FAHControl.
* Fixed crash in FAHViewer when switching from Demo to Live data.
* Don't load Demo protein when connecting.
* Set environment variable to communicate gpu-id to GPU cores.
* Added list of known GPUs PCI vendor + device IDs including subvendors.
* Added support for loading a custom 'GPUs.txt' file in the run directory.
* Added 'gpu-index' for cases where GPU indexing does not match core's.
v7.1.10: * Fix Windows missing icons.
* Use different icon for FAHViewer.
* Go back to static linking of libexpat.
* Popup error message if local client exits in FAHControl.
* Fixed bug in auto-detecting multiple GPUs.
* Removed 'gpus' option.
* Fixed bug which disabled adding slots via FAHControl.
* Changes to the GPU detection code.
* Changes to sample-config.xml.
* Minor textual tweaks.
FYI: For a more detailed changlog from 7.0.4 to 7.1.18, please visit the Blog.
HIS Radeon HD 6990 Crossfire review
In this article we'll be looking at an actual retail sample flown in with the speed of light by HIS technology. The card itself is 100% reference with a HIS sticker on it, as such many segments of this review will be similar to the reference review.
With one distinct difference, since we have two cards .. we can also look into CrossfireX performance, that's right .. four GPUs dominating your games. Will it be worth it ?
Check out the full Guru3D review right here.
EIZO 27 inch Self-Calibrating Monitor
Eizo announced the ColorEdge CG275W, a 27-inch monitor for professionals in prepress, digital photography, graphic design, video editing, post production, and other graphics fields.
The ColorEdge CG275W features a built-in calibration sensor for self-calibration. It becomes the second monitor in the graphics industry with this capability, following EIZO
AMD FX ''Zambezi'' Processor Box-Art Revealed
Check out the first box-shots of AMD's upcoming series of high-end desktop processors, under the FX series, referred to as "Zambezi" by the company, internally. Zambezi is based on AMD's newest Bulldozer architecture that improves instruction per clock-cycle (IPC), and packs the latest industry standard instruction sets.
" AMD designed two iterations of box-art each for its FX eight-core and FX quad-core processors, pictured below. The processors look to be shipping in cuboidal paperboard boxes, very much like AMD's processors already do. The art looks very "energetic" and makes use of the AMD "arrow" motif pointing in the top-right direction. The background in each iteration is distinct, one shows splashes of red (eight-core) or orange (quad-core), the other shows flow of red/orange.
It's interesting to note that all boxes denote Black Edition with its unlocked bus multiplier feature, leading us to speculate that unlocked multiplier could be standard issue with FX series processors. Also shown is the second generation TurboCore technology support, and AMD's claim to be selling the first eight-core processor [in the consumer market]. AMD's FX processors will be released to market in June " - [TPU]
NVIDIA BIOS Editor (NiBiTor) Version 6.0.1
NVIDIA BIOS Editor (also known as NiBiTor), got updated to version 6.01 by its developer. NiBiTor is a lightweight NVIDIA GeForce/Quadro BIOS file manipulation utility that lets to fine-tune your GeForce or Quadro graphics card at the BIOS-level. Version 6.01 packs updated GPU support, some minor fixes and a redesign to support as well unknown devices in some limited way. New GPUs supported by this version are:
- GeForce GTX 560
- GeForce GTX 460 SE
- Quadro FX3800M
- GeForce GTX 480M (updated support)
- GeForce GTX 460M (updated support)
"Well we have just released a new version of NVIDIA BIOS Editor (NiBiTor) software. NiBiTor is the original and definitive BIOS tweaker that supports the latest NVIDIA graphics cards, and which is updated on a regular basis. NiBiTor allows graphics card enthusiasts, or the hardcore overclockers to have full control over some advanced features and functionality found on firmware of supporting cards. And doing so users gain some extra performance, enable certain hidden features, tweaking memory latencies, provide extensive information, adapt bootup settings, changing fan speed options and/or get extra stability on their NVIDIA based graphics accelerators which will just give them that little extra value," adds the developer.
G.Skill Sniper Memory Series Aimed at Gamers and Case Modders
G.Skill, the worldwide leading memory designer and manufacturer, has announced the newest concept and development of new Sniper series designed specifically for PC gamers and modding enthusiasts. Extensive compatibility tests are conducted on a wide range of Intel and AMD platforms, which guarantee the best performance, quality and reliability for user
ASRock Bulldozer motherboard pops up
Tech site Akiba snapped pictures of the ASRock 890GM Pro3 R2.0, a motherboard designed for AMD's upcoming Socket AM3+ "Bulldozer" processors. The board uses the AMD 890GX chipset with SB850 southbridge and is sold in Japan for 11,800 yen, which equates roughly $144 at the current currency exchange rate.
The ASRock 890GM Pro3 R2.0 offers USB 3.0 with XFast USB support, SATA 6Gbps, eSATA, one PCIe x16 slot, one PCIe x1 slot, two PCI slots, four DDR3-1866 slots, Gigabit Ethernet and 7.1 channel sound.