OCZ Releases Firmware Fix for Vertex 3 and Agility 3 SSDs
Similar to A-data, Corsair and all other Sandforce 2200 series SSDs that are affected by firmware issues ranging from BSODs and BIOS detection errors to random freezes and RAID failures OCZ released a new firmware release for its high-performance Vertex 3 and Agility 3 drives.
First Intel Ivy Bridge Processor Pictures Surface
So its going to be a while before these puppies will be released (Q2 2012 actually), but some photo's of Ivy-Bridge processors have surfaced on the web. these are actually socket LGA 1155 based, similar to the current Sandy Bridge processors.
This batch is labeled QAX5, is a dual-core processor and packs 4MB of L3 cache memory. The 22nm based processor have a base frequency of 1800MHz that can turbo towards 2.4GHz and come with a TDP of 95W. The voltage of the two Ivy Bridge CPUs varies between 0.8 and 1.25 V.
It's not much too look at I know ... but click on the thumbnail to enlarge.
Windows 8 Release Date Hinted For Autumn 2012
Senate Bill Requires Consent For iPhone, Android Location Data
The Apple and Google location tracking controversy may soon be fully addressed in legislation. Ever since news of Apple?fs unencrypted storage of location data on iPhones broke, Senators Al Franken and Richard Blumenthal have been hot on their tails, summoning both Apple and Google for congressional hearings on the matter. Now the duo are submitting a bill that would require explicit consent for location data.
The bill is called the ?gLocation Privacy Protection Act of 2011?? and hopes to close any loopholes in the current federal law regarding location privacy. The proposed law will apply to both device manufacturers and app developers for smartphones and tablets.
?gOur laws do too little to protect information on our mobile devices,?h Franken said in a statement. ?gGeolocation technology gives us incredible benefits, but the same information that allows emergency responders to locate us when we?fre in trouble is not necessarily information all of us want to share with the rest of the world. This legislation would give people the right to know what geolocation data is being collected about them and ensure they give their consent before it?fs shared with others.?h
However, Apple has insisted that they do not track their customers location, and have issued an iOS update that has addressed most of the concerns. Google also responded saying that they require consent for every location service and allows users to shut them off.
EA: We did not pull Crysis 2 from Steam
A day after the PC version of Crysis 2 was pulled from sale from Valve's popular Steam download site, the sci-fi first person shooter's publisher Electronic Arts is now speaking out. In a statement to GameFront, EA stated that they had nothing to do with Crysis 2 being removed from sale from Steam:
AIDA64 updated to 1.80
FinalWire released an update of their AIDA64 Extreme Edition software, a streamlined diagnostic and benchmarking tool for home users; and the immediate availability of AIDA64 Business Edition software, an essential network management solution for small and medium scale enterprises.
The new AIDA64 update implements AVX-optimized benchmarks for the upcoming Intel Sandy Bridge processors, adds a brand new video encoding benchmark, and supports the latest AMD and nVIDIA graphics processors.
The new AIDA64 release further strengthens its solid-state drive health and temperature monitoring capabilities, and implements support for the latest graphics processors from both AMD and nVIDIA.
New features & improvements
- Support for the upcoming AMD Bulldozer and Llano processors
- FMA4 and XOP optimized 64-bit benchmarks and System Stability Test
- Optimized benchmarks for VIA QuadCore processor
- GPU details for AMD Radeon HD 6970M, nVIDIA GeForce GTX 560M
- Rivatuner OSD Server support
AMD Catalyst 11.6 WHQL driver download
AMM just released Catalyst 11.6 drivers.
The new catalyst WHQL drivers will bring with them support for AMD's new Fusion "Llano" A-series accelerated processing units (APUs), which embed AMD Radeon HD 6000 series GPU components. The drivers are WHQL-signed, but if you're particular about knowing what changes they bring, wait for the release notes.
AMD Steady Video
- Steady Video is currently an AMD exclusive feature based on AMD APP Technology
- By applying advanced algorithms behind the scenes, users do not have to deal with shaky or unstable video ever again!
- Capabilities scale with hardware and are end user controlled
- Image Stabilization brought to YouTube!
- Enabled through the AMD Vision Engine Control Center
- AMD Steady Video is supported on the following products:
- AMD Raedon HD 6000 Series when used in combination with an AMD CPU
- AMD E-450 and E300
- AMD A8, A6, and A4 series
- Supported in the following 3rd party players: Adobe Flash player, Windows Media player, Cyberlink PowerDVD, Corel Win DVD, ArcSoft TotalMedia Theater
- Decode Acceleration of MPEG-4 part 2 content
- AMD has enabled decode acceleration of MPEG-4 part 2 content in Microsoft video player applications (through MFT support) for all AMD Radeon 6000 Series
- The AMD Radeon HD 6900 Series and AMD Radeon HD 6800 Series of products will see the following performance gains:
- Dirt 2
AMD Trinerty APU rears its head
AMD officially unveiled its next-gen Fusion chip, Trinity, which will replace the current APU, Llano, in 2012. Trinity uses the Bulldozer APU and will drop next year; until then, of course, there
ASUS GTX 580 Matrix Platinum review
We received that big'ass Republic of Gamers (ROG) MATRIX GTX 580 graphics card from ASUS. The Republic of Gamers MATRIX GTX 580 Platinum graphics card is powered by an extensive 19-phase VRM circuitry that draws power from two 8-pin PCI-Express power connectors. The card will come with two BIOSes, so should you mess one up you have a failsafe by pressing a button. Something interesting is on-the-fly fan RPM control, check the photo's later on for that feature.
Read the entire article here.
EK stops Nickel-Plated Water Block Production
Water-cooling major EK Waterblocks (EKWB) halted the production of nickel-plated copper water blocks. The company received several complaints from users about the nickel plating to be of substandard quality, and corroding away much faster. Nickel plating itself is supposed to work as a corrosion-resistant coating over copper. Nickel plating gives the surface of the block a chrome-like lustrous shine. EKWB, after conducting its own tests, blamed silver coils and copper sulphate additives, anti-algae agents used in public water supply. A weak defense, considering people use distilled water (battery water) in their loops, or coolants that are formulated to be less corrosive than tap water on metallic parts of the loop.
A RRTech forum member conducted a wide range of tests including microscopic imaging of a water block, revealing what he alleges to be substandard quality of nickel plating, rather than corrosion caused by bad coolant. Meanwhile, EKWB halted production and sales of nickel-plated copper water blocks.
In its latest statement, EKWB says: "As EK is looking for lasting solution for nickel plating issue (concerning corrosion because of silver coils and copper sulphate additive) we decided to halt sales of nickel plated products till solution is found and tested. Our resellers were advised to halt sales too. We cannot put users into position, that we replace products and corrosion starts again on new product. Hopefully we will find an answer and tested solution in short while. We will update you as soon as we have any news. However, If customer insists on buying EK nickel block, we offer a customer full 24 month warranty on material, manufacturing and corrosion."
AMD debuts A-series Llano APUs
AMD (NYSE: AMD) announced the next generation in mainstream consumer computing with the availability of the new high-performance AMD Fusion A-Series Accelerated Processing Units (APUs). Enabling truly immersive computing experiences in consumer notebooks and desktops, the AMD A-Series APUs enable brilliant HD graphics, supercomputer-like performance and over 10.5 hours of battery life[ii].
In an increasingly digital and visually-oriented world, consumers are placing ever-higher priorities on multitasking, vivid graphics, lifelike games, lag-free videos, and ultimate multimedia performance. To meet these needs, the AMD A-Series APUs combine up to four x86 CPU cores with powerful DirectX
AMD FX-Series Processors Turbo Up to 1GHz over Base Frequency
The AMD Turbo Core 2.0 technology made its release earlier yesterday when the company officially released its first accelerated processing units based on the Llano architecture for Laptops.
According to a slide by Donanim Haber, this technology enables AMD's upcoming FX-Series processors to increase their operating speed by as much as 1GHz, when only half of the cores are active.
This slide that was presented, uses an eight-core CPU to demonstrate how Turbo Core 2.0 works, but this technology will also be available in AMD's quad-core and six-core processor models. As a result, the company officially announced that the first Zambezi FX CPUs won't arrive until August or September of 2011.
Here's that slide:
Patriot AMD Black Edition Ready G2 Series Memory Kits
Patriot Memory announces new G2 series, AMD Edition memory kits for the next-generation AMD 9-series platforms. The new Patriot Memory G2 series, AMD Edition memory kits are the perfect match for enthusiasts seeking to extract every ounce of performance available from the AMD 9-series platform.
Available at speeds of 1333 MHz to 1600 MHz, the Patriot Memory G2 series, AMD Edition let users pick the perfect speed for their applications. Low and enhanced latencies are available with the Patriot Memory G2 series, AMD Edition for the perfect balance of ultra-fast system responsiveness and overclocking headroom to maximize overall system performance.
"AMD has done an outstanding job catering to the do-it-yourself crowd and the next-generation 9-series platform should be no different. Our Patriot Memory G2 series, AMD Edition modules are the perfect fit for the adventurous overclocker and users seeking system performance," says Les Henry, Patriot Memory
Intel 710/720 SSD Series Performance Leak
In Q3 this year Intel will very likely release their solid state drive line-up with two new 700-series SSDs. Intel will introduce only two 710-series drives, a 100GB and a 200GB model, both using a SATA 3Gbps controller paired together with 64MB of DRAM cache, softpedia reports the following on this:
"The drives will be able to achieve sequential read/write speeds of 270MB/s and 210MB/s respectively, while Intel rates their 4K random read/write performance at 36K/2.4K IOPS (input/output operations per second).
While these speeds aren't a huge improvement over those achieved by the X25-E (the X25-E actually beats the upcoming drives when it comes down to 4K random writes), 710-series SSDs use MLC NAND Flash, which should make them significantly less expensive than their predecessors and also boast hardware AES 128-bit encryption.
Users who want more speed will be able to opt for the 720-series Ramsdale SSD, which is Intel's first such drive to use the PCI Express interface.
This will be available in a 200GB and a 400GB version, is built using 34nm SLC NAND Flash, includes 512MB of DRAM cache and also sports AES-256bit encryption. Sequential read/write performance is rated at 2200MB/s and 1800MB/s respectively, while Intel estimates that the SSDs will also be able to deliver 180K/56K random 4K read/write IOPS.
Ramsdale drives also received an impressive bust in endurance and Intel states that these units should be good for up to 36PB of 8K random writes, depending on the model chosen. Both the 710 and the 720-series SSDs include Intel's Power Safe Write Cache technology, which protects the drives against power outages.
Click on the spec sheet below for all the juicy details.
Google reveals Search by Image, Voice Search and more
Google announced several new search features as dv-hardware reported today. The Android Voice Search app is heading to the desktop with the arrival of Voice Search and the search giant has also developed a new reverse image search tool that helps you identify pictures. Interestingly, Google isn't doing face recognition, probably due to privacy concerns. Both features will be available natively in Chrome and in Firefox via an extension.
Also new is Instant Pages, a feature that will prerender results when Google is confident you're going to click them. Instant Pages is available in the latest developer version of Chrome.
We want to help you save some of that time as well, so today we took the next step for Google Instant: Instant Pages. Instant Pages can get the top search result ready in the background while you
Need for Speed The Run - Death from Above
Free-to-Play Games on Steam
Steam News announces the arrival of free-to-play games on Steam, check it out.
Valve, creators of best-selling game franchises (such as Counter-Strike, Half-Life, Left 4 Dead, Portal, and Team Fortress) and leading technologies (such as Steam and Source), today introduced support for Free to Play (F2P) Games on Steam with the launch of five F2P games.
Available immediately, the launch titles are Spiral Knights, Forsaken Worlds, Champions Online: Free for All, Global Agenda: Free Agent, and Alliance of Valliant Arms (AVA).
Beginning tomorrow (Weds) with Spiral Knights and concluding Sunday with AVA, each of the five launch titles will offer exclusive in-game content to those who try the "F2P game of the day" on Steam. In game transactions in all of the titles will be supported by Steam's micro-transaction backend system that is available to Steamworks partners and currently used in Valve's Team Fortress 2.
New ASRock Motherboards Based on AMD 9-Series Chipset