Radeon HD 4850 & 4870 get Pixelated
I guess it's save to say that once you lure in staff members from the Inquirer I guess that infects the entire staff, Tom's hardware slowly seems to have joined the bandwagon of trash journalism by releasing photo's and information regarding ATI's upcoming Radeon 4000 series. The photo's and information are on the loose everywhere, I guess there's no point then to keep the info covered for us either then.
These are the Radeon HD 4850 and 4870. Apparently these two series 4000 series cards will be powered by the RV770 chip which is built using the 55nm process and offers 480 Stream Processors. Both cards will feature a 256-bit memory interface PCI-Express 2.0 support, CrossFireX, Unified Video Decoder (UVD) 2 and DirectX 10.1.
The Radeon HD 4850 will be equipped with 512MB of GDDR3 memory and is reported to cost you merely $229 to $249 (not bad).
Above you can see the Radeon HD 4870 the new product reaching the high-end segment, this card will utilize one RV770 chip paired up with a pretty fun number of framebuffer, 1024 MB of GDDR5 memory. The HD 4870's price tag is proclaimed to be around the $329 to $349 margin. Both Radeon HD 4800 cards are said to be ready for a mid-June release. I guess the closer we get to Computex, the more info we'll find on these cards.
WildTangent's St. John Declares Consoles Dead, Claims PC Renaissance
Trainz: The Complete Collection trailer
Paradox Interactive unveiled a new trailer of Trainz: The Complete Collection. This compilation includes Trainz Railroad Simulator 2004 & 2006, Trainz Routes 1, 2, 3 and 4, Trainz Ultimate Collection, and Trainz Paintshed.
This train simulator game will be available for the PC on June 10.
NASA's Phoenix Spacecraft Reports Good Health After Mars Landing
All trekkies gather please. A NASA spacecraft today sent pictures showing itself in good condition after making the first successful landing in a polar region of Mars.
The images from NASA's Mars Phoenix Lander also provided a glimpse of the flat valley floor expected to have water-rich permafrost within reach of the lander's robotic arm. The landing ends a 422-million-mile journey from Earth and begins a three-month mission that will use instruments to taste and sniff the northern polar site's soil and ice.
"We see the lack of rocks that we expected, we see the polygons that we saw from space, we don't see ice on the surface, but we think we will see it beneath the surface. It looks great to me," said Peter Smith of the University of Arizona, Tucson, principal investigator for the Phoenix mission.
Radio signals received at 4:53:44 p.m. Pacific Time (7:53:44 p.m. Eastern Time) confirmed that the Phoenix Mars Lander had survived its difficult final descent and touchdown 15 minutes earlier. In the intervening time, those signals crossed the distance from Mars to Earth at the speed of light. The confirmation ignited cheers by mission team members at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif.; Lockheed Martin Space Systems, Denver; and the University of Arizona.
As planned, Phoenix stopped transmitting one minute after landing and focused its limited battery power on opening its solar arrays, and other critical activities. About two hours after touchdown, it sent more good news. The first pictures confirmed that the solar arrays needed for the mission's energy supply had unfolded properly, and masts for the stereo camera and weather station had swung into vertical position.
Read - Phoenix mission page
Read - NASA live video feed
Read - NASA Mission Control liveblog
Adlink launches ExpressCard-to-PCI Extension System
I swear .. just buy a PC man. The Adlink ECS-8582-4S extension system enables a laptop computer with an ExpressCard slot to remotely manage and control PCI devices installed in an extension chassis. ExpressCard technology leverages the features of PCI Express bus but in a small form factor for laptop computer usage. With ECS-8582-4S, laptop users can easily plug an ExpressCard host adapter into the laptop, and then cable it to an extension chassis up to 7 meters away. The extension chassis is capable of accommodating four half-size PCI cards with built-in power supply.
The Adlink ECS-8582-4S extension system operates in 32-bit/33 MHz configuration with 132 MB/s full PCI bandwidth and comes with comprehensive hardware and software transparency. PCI cards installed in the extension system behave and work as if these are directly installed into the host system, requiring no additional drivers or software installation.
Multi-channel music format - MT9
Korean computer engineers are introducing a new digital music format that has separate controls on the sound volume for each musical instrument, such as guitar, drum, base and voice -- an ideal tool for music lovers of different tastes as well as karaoke fans.
The new format, which has a file extension format of MT9 and a commercial title of Music 2.0, is poised to replace the popular MP3 file format as the de facto standard of the digital music source, its inventors say.
The MT9 technology was first conceived by Electronics and Telecommunications Research Institute (ETRI) and is being shaped into commercial use by venture company Audizen. It was selected as a candidate item for the new digital music standard at a regular meeting of Motion Picture Experts Group (MPEG), the international body of the digital music and video industry, held in France late April.
``We made presentations to the participants and they were all surprised to see it. They immediately voted to make it a candidate for the digital music standard,'' said Ham Seung-chul, chief of Audizen. He is expecting it will be formerly selected as an international standard in the MPEG forum's next meeting to be held in Germany June.
The distinctive feature of MT9 format is that it has a six-channel audio equalizer, with each channel dedicated to voice, chorus, piano, guitar, base and drum. For example, if a user turns off the voice channel, it becomes a karaoke player. Or one can turn off all the instruments and concentrate on the voice of the main singer as if he or she is singing a cappella.
Ham says that the music industry should change its attitude to the market as music is becoming a digital service, rather than a physical product. MT9 is the ideal fit for the next generation of music business because it can be used for multiple services and products, such as iPhones, PCs, mobile phones and karaoke bars, he says.
Samsung Electronics and LG Electronics are both interested in equipping their mobile phones with an MT9 player and their first commercial products are likely to debut early next year, he said.
If selected as an international format, the MT9 technology can earn big for both Audizen and ETRI, a governmental research institute. ETRI said that it holds three international and six domestic patents for the technology and is planning to file two more this year.
The MT9 files are served in an album package. Audizen is currently selling a limited choice of albums at 2,000 won to 3,000 won on its Web site. More albums are being recorded in the format and even very old albums, such as Queen's or Deulgookhwa's, can be made into MT9 files if they have a digitally re-mastered music source, Ham said.
Unlike other digital formats exclusively used by big companies such as SK Telecom, Audizen allows users to copy the MT9 files, making it a more attractive format. ``It's like having a CD or cassette tape. Once you buy it, you can lend it to your friends. We don't want to be too fussy about DRM (digital right management),'' he said.
Samsung breaks transfer speed barrier on 256GB SSD
Samsung announced today that it has developed the world
GPU-Z v0.2.2 download released
GPU-Z is a lightweight utility designed to give you all information about your video card and GPU.
- Added support for variants of i945G, Q35, G31/G33, G84, G92, G96, GT200, G86M, G84M, C79
- Improved RV770 and GT200 detection code
- Updated NVIDIA temperature reading code
- Fixed updater getting stuck during refresh
- CrossFire on Vista64 now reported with note "unsure", instead of just "unknown"
- Added mini graph to sensors
- Screenshots are uploaded as PNG now
- Added crash report error handler
- Updated G70 number of ROPs
- Added PCI Vendor Point of View
- Improved S3 Chrome 400, S20, S18 and S8 detection
Download - click here
Brazilian Beetles Hold Key to Faster Computers
For decades, scientists have dreamed of computer chips that manipulate light rather than electricity. Unlike electrons, photons can cross paths without interfering with each other, so optical chips could compute in three dimensions rather than two, crunching data in seconds that now takes weeks to process.
For now, though, optical computing remains a dream. The chips require crystals that channel photons as nimbly as silicon channels electrons -- and though engineers have been able to imagine the ideal photonic crystal, they've been unable to build it.
Enter a beetle known as Lamprocyphus augustus. In a study published this week in Physical Review E, researchers at the University of Utah describe how the inch-long Brazilian beetle's iridescent green scales are composed of chitin arranged by evolution in precisely the molecular configuration that has confounded the would-be fabricators of optical computers.
By using the scales as a semiconductor mold, researchers hope to finally build the perfect photonic crystal.
"We haven't been able to manufacture materials at the nanometer resolution. We knew the ideal structure, but we couldn't make it," said study co-author Michael Bartl, a University of Utah chemist.
Bartl's team stumbled across L. augustus by sheer luck. Study co-author Lauren Richey, now a Brigham Young University undergraduate, studied beetle iridescence for a high school science fair project. She asked BYU biologist John Gardner, also a co-author of the study, to examine L. augustus with his lab's electron microscope.
When the researchers scoped the scales, they noticed something strange: No matter the angle of viewing, the scales always appeared in the same shade of green.
That's unusual for iridescent surfaces, which derive their color from light refracted through semi-transparent layers. Further study revealed that the quality came from the scales' molecular arrangement, which had the same pattern as the atoms of carbon in a diamond.
Diamonds themselves are too dense to serve as photonic crystals, but researchers long ago identified their configuration as perfectly suited for manipulating light in a three-dimensional space.
"You can take the light, criss-cross it and it doesn't interfere. It allows you to build more complex and compact architectures," said Paul Braun, a University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign photonic crystal specialist. The crystals' transmission purity would also eliminate waste heat generated by traditional electron-based circuits. That heat is a limiting factor on traditional microchip capacities.
Laboratory attempts at mimicking diamonds have been largely unsuccessful. Braun said that researchers at Sandia National Laboratories came close, but each crystal took a painstaking month to build.
"They're almost impossible to fabricate," said Zhong Lin Wang, a Georgia Institute of Technology material scientist. Wang developed photonic crystals based on the scales of butterfly wings, but they didn't possess the elusive diamond form. "If this beetle has an arrangement like diamonds, that's truly unique."
Bartl said that optical computer chips won't actually run on beetle scales. Instead he plans to use the scales as a mold, replacing chitin with semiconductor material.
"This could motivate another round of serious science," said Braun. "If there's an easy way to create the diamond structure, that's going to expedite progress in the field."
"Optical computers could do in a second what now takes days or weeks," said Bartl. "And we're providing the materials."
Photoshop Tech demo shows GPU & physics accelleration
GPU acceleration is one of the most significant trends in today hardware industry, opening the doors to an entirely class of software running desktop. What will be possible is fascinating to see on a monitor, nut it is not tangible, if you just hear about it. It appears that the next Photoshop will be one of the first mainstream applications that will tap into the GPU for a speed up. And, at least from what we have seen during a first demonstration, the progress is simply stunning.
We have been saying it for a while now, mainstream applications need GPU acceleration to ring in the next major evolutionary step in software development. Far too long we have been stuck in a cycle of programming that relies on increasing clock-speeds, brings acceleration with new CPUs and a slow-down with new software releases. Even if Photoshop supports multi-core CPUs, it is one of those applications that always are very time intensive to use and especially if you are a professional user and work with huge images, then you are very familiar with
Proposed Treaty Turns Internet Into a Virtual Police State
Leaked documents are one of the banes of modern western politics. They reveal exercises and actions being proposed that are generally objectionable to the public. Such a leak occurred with the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) which seeks to turn the internet into a virtual police state.
The end of game piracy?
Speaking at yesterday's Wedbush Morgan Securities annual Management Access Conference, the Atari founder suggested that game piracy will soon be a thing of the past thanks to a new chip.
"There is a stealth encryption chip called a TPM that is going on the motherboards of most of the computers that are coming out now," he pointed out.
"What that says is that in the games business we will be able to encrypt with an absolutely verifiable private key in the encryption world - which is uncrackable by people on the internet and by giving away passwords - which will allow for a huge market to develop in some of the areas where piracy has been a real problem."
Bushnell thinks that piracy of movies and music, however, is probably unstoppable because "if you can watch it and you can hear it, you can copy it."
"Games are a different thing, because games are so integrated with the code. The TPM will, in fact, absolutely stop piracy of gameplay.
"As soon as the installed base of the TPM hardware chip gets large enough, we will start to see revenues coming from Asia and India at a time when before it didn't make sense."
Thanks to Daftshadow for pointing this out.
Internet to run out of addresses 'within 3 years'
IF YOU thought it was hard finding the email address that some other john.smith hasn't already bagged, that's nothing compared with the difficulty you'll have getting an internet connection for your computer after 2011.
As of this month 85 per cent of the 4.3 billion available Internet Protocol (IP) addresses, which identify devices connected to the net, are already in use. Within three years they will all be used up, according to a report by the OECD. "The situation is critical for the future of the internet economy," it says.
The report urges governments and businesses to upgrade from the current version, IPv4, to IPv6, which effectively has an unlimited number of IP addresses. IPv6 has been available for more than a decade but service providers have been slow to adopt it.
Is ASUS developing Eee tablet PC ?
As it seems ASUS may have a tablet version of the Eee PC ready as early as June, says Australia's Current. Regional retail manager Emmanuele Silanesu says that the company is looking into a touchscreen device in a form other than "just a clamshell" and might make its debut at the industry benchmark Computex show, which starts June 3rd. Specifications aren't revealed, though ASUS has made a point of introducing past Eee PCs with low-power CPUs like the Intel Atom, built-in flash storage, and at least the option of Linux as its operating system.
This year's expo serves as the one-year anniversary of the introduction of the original Eee PC, making it a potential candidate for the launch.
Silanesu all the same cautions that the computer at its late development stage still holds a chance of being rebadged as a non-Eee PC model. Its role as a tablet is significantly different enough from existing models that it doesn't belong in the line, he says. ASUS has already said, however, that it's developing desktops and smart TVs under the Eee PC brand and thus is willing to expand beyond simple notebooks.
S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Clear Sky - Day-Night Transitions [movie]
Here's a new trailer that shows off the new Day/Night transitions in S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Clear Sky. As was shown also on a recent press presentation. Pretty cool stuff. Check it out guys. Pretty cool stuff.
Folding @Home GeForce Client Soon to be released
I noticed that some websites already spilled the beans, so let us be the ones to confirm it then. Guru3D right now is in America at an NVIDIA press event. On that event the guys from the Stanford University announced that a Folding @ Home client for NVIDIA GPUs will soon be available, CUDA driven.
An all new upcoming GeForce GPU utilizing this as well is proclaimed to be be three times faster in this application than ATI's Radeon HD 3870. The new GeForce will do slightly more than 500 mol/day, which is three times more than the 170 mol/day of the Radeon HD 3870. To get you an even better perspective ... that's five times more than the 100 mol/day of the PlayStation 3 ! And that thing can crunch data man.
If you didn't do so already, please join team Guru3D and let's fold away some nasty stuff. Our folding @home can be found here:
Our team number is 69411 and if you decide to purchase the soon TBA GeForce product, guys, promise me you'll use it to fold for us!
Hypersonic PC Avenger AG2 Ultraportable
Available in a choice of five colors that include pink and yellow, the Avenger AG2 can be had with traditional hard disk drives with maximum capacities of 250GB or else a 64GB solid-state drive where speed is more important than space. In a relatively unique choice, users can preload Windows XP or Vista but also buy the system without any operating system to install Linux or their own choice of software. The laptop weighs just over 1.8 Kilogram / 4 lbs.
A bare-bones AG2 starts at $1,054, and will start shipping on June 6.
- Up to Intel
Alienware refreshes Area-51 ALX with 4GHz CPU
Dell's Alienware segment has refreshed its top-of-the-line gaming PC, the Area-51 ALX. At the center is the option of a quad-core, 3.2GHz Core 2 Extreme processor, overclocked for even greater performance to 4GHz; to avoid corresponding overheating problems, Alienware has equipped all ALX computers with liquid cooling. Motherboards, meanwhile, can now be configured with up to 4GB of 1,600MHz Corsair DDR3 RAM.
Cooling may be particularly important in tandem with new video options, which give buyers the choice of two Radeon HD 3870 X2 cards in ATI's CrossFireX SLI mode, or two GeForce 9800 GX2 cards in Nvidia's Quad SLI format. Prices for the new ALX configurations are extremely high, however, beginning at $6,159 or $185 per month, and yes, that's without the inclusion of a monitor or speakers.