ATI Radeon HD 4670 review [Guru3D]
AMD's ATI today unleashes the Radeon HD 4670. A nice little card that packs some decent punch in the value minded consumers. The Radeon HD 4680 will roughly offer you last year's mid-range performance at 79 USD.
With that amount of performance the card will allow you to flick on 4xAA and 16AF and still play modern games at 1280x1024 and maybe even 1600x1200. And for you as a gamer on a budget, is an immensely interesting fact for your feature and framerate budget.
We have a full review on this product. You can find this Guru3D article here:
ELSA slips info on GeForce GT 206 and GT 212
Thanks go out to our colleagues from Techpowerup for spotting this one on SanhaoStreet. Apparantly ELSA was showing some slides at a meeting in the headquarters in Shenzhen, China reveals what look like NVIDIA's future graphics processors (GPU).
During a press event where its consumer graphics plans were discussed, ELSA published a slide that shows two future GPUs from NVIDIA, codenamed GT206 (55nm) and GT212 (45nm). These GPUs are positioned to succeed current flagship GPUs GTX 260 and GTX 280 respectively. The slide shows a graph with launch time on the x-axis and performance projection on the y-axis.
Time scales show that GT206 comes out towards the very end of this year, and GT212 comes out sometime in Q1, 2009.
Well, we can't wait for sure, bring them on.
Download - Realtek HD Audio 2.03 driver
- Vista WHQL Supporting: ALC882, ALC883, ALC885, ALC888, ALC889, ALC861VD, ALC660, ALC662, ALC663, ALC260, ALC262,ALC267, ALC268, ALC269, ALC272
- Windows 2000/XP WHQL Supporting: ALC880, ALC882, ALC883, ALC885, ALC888, ALC889, ALC861VC, ALC861VD, ALC660, ALC662, ALC663, ALC260, ALC262, ALC267,ALC268, ALC269, ALC272
- HDMI Device WHQL Support: ATI HDMI Devices
- OS Supporting: Microsoft WindowsXP, Widnows2000, Vista x86/x64
- Pack with Microsoft High Definition Audio UAAV1.0a(5013)
- Fix the potential risk that audio driver can't be installed completely under Vista
Download - Click here.
Microsoft's first BlueTrack mice confirmed
Apart from size, both of the five-button mice differ only in their charging methods: the Explorer uses a lithium-ion pack and powers up through a charging cradle, while the portable Explorer mini uses a pair of AA batteries and a mini USB receiver that tucks into the base itself when on the road.
The company positions the BlueTrack mice as high-end devices and will sell them through Best Buy alone at prices of $100 for the desktop peripheral and $80 for the notebook version. The new models will be available in November.
NEC 22-inch MultiSync EA221WM LCD display
Nexus FLC-3000 HSF Nehalem CPU cooler
New Guitar Hero World Tour trailers
I find it unbelievable how popular this game is. Activision released a couple of new Guitar Hero World Tour trailers. This new music game will be released in late October for the PS3, Xbox 360, Wii, PS2 and DS platforms. Check out the Billy Corgan trailer.
Trailer: Lord of the Rings Online: Mines of Moria Flythrough
It is the original dungeon crawl: The Black Pit that inspired a million Dungeons & Dragons adventure modules and acted as the template for every party that ever trudged into the depths of an underground world, torches at the ready. It is Moria and while the perilous journey of Frodo and his friends through the ruins of Khazad-dum takes up only a small portion of The Fellowship of the Ring, Tolkien's tantalizing glimpse of forgotten chambers and mysterious caverns where nameless horrors and fabulous treasures wait has fired imaginations ever since.
AMD intros three new triple core processors
AMD has added three new processors to its desktop line-up, including AMD
ECS GeForce 9800 GTX+ Hydra SLI review [Guru3D]
Guru3D today published a review on the ECS GeForce 9800 GTX+ Hydra SLI. With this kit basically you'll receive two pre-modified GeForce 9800 GTX+ products and a water-cooling kit that is supplied by Thermaltake. It's in fact the Thermaltake big water series that you can slide into you 5.25"drive bay easily.
Pretty much the only thing you need to do is connect four tubing connections, fill her up, connect some wiring ... and you are good to go. That's 15 minutes tops to get a gaming performance level better than the GeForce GTX 280.
That is a pretty easy yet high performance SLI watercooling solution folks ... don't miss the article.
Read article: click here.
Download: SiSoftware Sandra 2009 (freeware version)
SiSoftware Sandra 2009 has been released and it includes remote analysis, benchmarking and diagnostic features for PCs, servers and networks.
SiSoft Sandra 2005 Guru3D.com edition - SiSoft Sandra (the System ANalyser, Diagnostic and Reporting Assistant) is an information & diagnostic utility.
It should provide most of the information (including undocumented) you need to know about your hardware, software and other devices whether hardware or software.
It works along the lines of other Windows utilities, however it tries to go beyond them and show you more of what's really going on. Giving the user the ability to draw comparisons at both a high and low-level. You can get information about the CPU, chipset, video adapter, ports, printers, sound card, memory, network, Windows internals, AGP, ODBC Connections, USB2, 1394/Firewire, etc.
New modules in SANDRA 2009
Graphics (GPGPU) Processing: Benchmark the graphics performance of the graphics processors (GPGPUs). Such operations are used by specialised software, e.g. scientific software, image manipulation, video decoders/encoders, games that make GPU performance pretty important.
Graphics (GPGPU) Bandwidth: Benchmark the bandwidth of the memory of the graphics processors (GPGPUs) and the bandwidth of the bus that connects them to your computer. The speed at which the data can be sent to the GPGPUs, internally processed and the results sent back is as important as the processing power of the GPGPUs.
Video (GFX) Rendering: Benchmark the graphics performance of the video adapters (GFXs). Shows how your graphics processors handle rendering in comparison to other typical graphics processors. Such operations are used by all graphics software, image manipulation, video decoders/encoders, games and modern operating systems.
Video (GFX) Memory: Benchmark the bandwidth of the memory of the video adapters (GFXs) and the bandwidth of the bus that connects them to your computer.
Cryptographic Performance: Benchmark the cryptographic performance of modern processors that support hardware cryptographic engines. The most common algorithms, AES (AES128, AES256) for encryption/decryption and SHA (SHA1, SHA256) for hashing are supported.
Download - Click here
Spore is draconian DRM infested - Gamers Angry
The praised to heaven game Spore might be bothered by a lot of critisism after all, not from the reviewers this time yet from you guys, the people that spend the hard earned cash on. The game just started selling and at many e-tailers the overall review scores are extremely negative as Spore seems to have a draconian DRM (copy protection) enabled. If you like to read up or discuss this topic, we opened up a forum thread about it, click here and share your thoughts.
Here are some of the user feedbacks at Amazon:
See these older 5-star reviews from 2006 (two years before the game was released)? Well, they had a reason to be excited. Spore was supposed to be a revolutionary experience, combining multiple genres while concentrating on evolution and genetics.
Fast forward two years and here we have the finished product, ready to be installed on our hard drives.
First of all, the game incorporates a draconian DRM system that requires you to activate over the internet, and limits you to a grand total of 3 activations. If you reach that limit, then you'll have to call EA in order to add one extra activation. That's not as simple as it sounds, since when you reach that point EA will assume that you, the paying customer, are a filthy pirating thief. You will need to provide proof of purchase, reasons why the limit was reached, etc, etc (it has all happened before with another recent EA product, Mass Effect). EA, of course, is not obligated to grant you that extra activation or even provide that service. In a couple of years they might very well even shut down the general activation servers, because "it's not financially feasible" to keep them running. What you will be left with is a nice, colorful $50 coaster. And you will be required to pay for another copy/license if you want to continue playing.
This basically means that you are actually RENTING the game, instead of owning it. The game WILL stop to function in the future. That's inevitable, because even if EA keeps the activation servers going, there IS going to be a time when EA will simply cease to exist because of financial issues or federal laws (like most business eventually do).
Second, the game was dumbed down to oblivion. Evolution doesn't even matter anymore. You can add as many legs to a creature as you want, but it won't be any faster than a one legged creature with higher leg stats. "Creating" your creatures is pointless (cosmetic only, because everything is based on stats), and brings you about the same excitement as dressing up a plastic doll.
DRM is a show stopper. I doubt this game will work for me after a few years given my habit of new hardware purchases and system snapshots. Like others have said, this game is for rent not sale.
The EA Spore DRM is a bit reminiscent of the Sony root kit. It installs software that you definitely don't want or need. That software can work in superuser space, meaning it can do whatever it wants on your system. And there is no uninstall for it. In other words, by installing Spore, you install a piggy back Big Brother.
Please don't support this product. Great game. Lousy distributor.
I have long awaited purchasing this game. I have been slavering and drooling over videos since they were released. NOW I find out that there is simply no option to purchase this game, that it's a $50 rental or nothing else.
I won't rent my video games, EA.
The DRM on this thing is less friendly than my recent colonoscopy- You get three installs. That's it. No install returned for uninstallation, or anything else. You install it three times, then you're out $50.
No, thank you, EA.
I just got through a massive headache dealing with DRM for Adobe Photoshop CS3. I've dealt with massive headaches from DRM from Civ3 gold. All of this is on a very high end vista PC. Thanks, but no thanks. I was excited about the concept of this game for many months. That is until I found out about the DRM it uses. I will not buy software with DRM ever again, particularly if they limit the installs to something ridiculous like 3.
The DRM for the game utilizes securom which is essentially a virus that installs itself without warning when you install the game. There is no way to completely remove it without reformatting and it is constantly running in the background if not removed. Sucking up computer resources.
It also is overpriced. This is actually a RENTAL, not a bought game because it only lets you install 3 times. If you install over 3 times then you must call EA customer support and beg them to let you play the game you bought. Did I mention the call is not free? If you live outside the U.S. it will be a very expensive call.
DO NOT BUY THIS, and if you do buy it keep in mind that you are renting it. Not buying it. Whats really ironic about this is the DRM hasn't even stopped the pirates as it was pirated a few weeks ago. And the pirated version doesn't have Securom or install limits which makes it a better version. EA shouldn't treat its consumers like trash if they want my money.
These are just a few of the feedback comments on the game. It looks like EA has got a nasty problem to deal with. Meanwhile the game was cracked only a couple of hours after its release.
Will the industry never learn that they are scaring away their own customers ?
New Intel Xeon 3.4 GHz processors
The 'refresh' pushes the quad-core Xeon 5400 series from its previous 3.2GHz limit up to 3.4GHz. The processor is tagged under the enw name Xeon X5492. Most interesting fact is that this new flagship processor has the fast new 1600 MHz front side system bus. Intel characterizes the processor as intended for performance-driven, full size workstations and servers with a peak 150W of power.
Other introductions trade speed for power savings. A next step down, the X5470, drops to 3.33GHz and a slower 1.33GHz bus while using a more modest 120W of power; a single low-power L5430 entry is aimed at very small-profile desktops and servers and consumes just 50W at its 2.66GHz clock speed, or just a fraction of what a 2.66GHz Xeon processor consumed two years ago. One dual-core Xeon 5200 update has also been added and sees the X5270 set a new high of 3.5GHz with a 1.33GHz bus and 80W of power.
All of the quad-core processors are shipping now and will be available in systems through several large PC makers, including Dell and HP, and range in large-batch prices from $562 for the 2.66GHz part to $1,493 for the 3.4GHz Xeon.
A dual-core 3.5GHz chip sells for $1,172 but will be available later this fall.
SiSoftware Sandra 2009 Interview with Adrian Silasi [Guru3D]
SiSoftware this week will release a new version of their popular application, Sandra. New in Sandra 2009, a handy system tool and analyzer, is GPU and in specific, a set Generic purpose GPU and GPU render tests. Next to that you'll also spot a test to measure framebuffer bandwidth.
Suffice that say, that's our cup of thee and therefore we wanted to fire off a small Q&A session at the lead programmer of SANDRA and Hardware Guru himself, Adrian Silasi. Topics involve SANDRA 2009, GPUs and compute API's like CUDA and CAL.
[Guru3D] With DirectX 11 slowly surfacing on that cyber horizon one fixed function in the pipeline will be Compute Shaders. Do you think CUDA and CAL will become a thing of the past once Microsoft opens up Compute Shaders through their API ?
[Adrian] On the Windows platform, judging by the past, it is highly likely that DirectX 11 will dominate, as supporting a single API is far better than supporting many vendor specific APIs. It is a pity DirectX 11 is not ready now; hopefully it will be out by the time other vendors (Intel, etc.) join the fray.
To read the entire interview - click here.
Trailer: New Fallout 3
ForceWare 177.98 XP and Vista
There's a new ForceWare driver available on the web (thanks laptopvideo2go) with revision build 177.98.
This driver is available for both Windows XP 32- and 64-bit versions and Windows Vista in 32-bit. This driver set is commonly distributed on many websites and it is receiving pretty good feedback. Bare in mind this to be considered a beta driver, use it at your own risk. NVIDIA does not officially support them.
There are several discussion open on these drivers in the Guru3D NVIDIA driver forums, check them here. Driver wise, pretty much any GeForce graphics card build in the last 3 years is supported. We have virus & pest checked these drivers and they are scanned as clean. If you decide to give these a try, please post your feedback in this Forceware 177.98 discussion thread.
This driver has a broad support for many GeForce graphics cards and definitely is the latest build available.
Steam - All id Games 50% Off, Clear Sky Delayed
I noticed on ggmania that this weekend's special deal on Steam offers up a great deal for id Software fans. Every id Software title on Steam is now 50% off! Word is: "This weekend only on Steam, id Software games are 50% off. This includes the id Super Pack for only $34.99 (over $200 worth of games). Or take 50% off individual titles such as Doom, Quake, Wolfenstein, Commander Keen, Heretic, and Hexen. Offer ends Monday, September 8."
In other Steam related news, S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Clear Sky is now officially delayed. This news comes just hours before the game was officially set to be released on the digital distribution platform, and days after news that retail stores would also suffer a delay. The new countdown places the release on the 15th of this month. If it's any consolation, gamers can now pre-purchase the game from Steam for $35.99. This price is a limited time offer, with the regular price being $39.99.
Eagle Consus I-Series SATA to USB review [Guru3D]
Face it, the internet opened up a can of options, and with the increasing bandwidth we get for downloading, we face storage issues. Games, movies and music we need HD space for. Next to that we like to be portable, take along games or music to friends and relatives, though institutions like the RIAA, BSA and what not don't like it, it's the reality of the era we life in.
Here in the EU, decent external storage solution here costs like 60 maybe even 80 EUR easily. Which is over a hundred USD. So when the company Eagle contacted me and asked if I wanted to look at some of their devices the first thing I did was look at their pricing ... and I was shocked (in a good manner).
We have a review right here.