AMD takes a $950m hit in Q2
AMD has bitten the write-downs bullet and will take an $880m
impairment charge on parts of its ATI Technologies acquisition in its
second quarter results.
The struggling chip vendor revealed the massive write-down in an SEC filing today, which also disclosed a series of comparatively small charges which will nevertheless swell its total write-offs for the quarter to the end of June to $948m.
AMD said the $880m charge came on good will and assets associated with the handheld and DTV units of its ATI Consumer Technologies Business, which it said had not performed to expectation. It said the write-offs would not require any actual cash spending.
However, it will be paying out real cash to the workers it is currently getting rid of as it tries to claw its way back to breaking even. The company will take a $32m restructuring charge in the second quarter, which will mainly cover the cost of dumping staff. It expects further costs as it continues to axe workers, but said these will not be material.
At the same time, it will incur
Obama bloats Vista by 11MB
That's an awful lot of megs, to be sure - just how many words are we talking about here? Microsoft explains:
Hold on - that's 56MB so that Vista avoids Obama/Osama hilarity and correctly identifies the former governor of Montana? The mind boggles.
The words "Friendster," "Klum," "Nazr," "Obama," and "Racicot" are not recognized when you check the spelling in Windows Vista and in Windows Server 2008.
Seagate release 1.5 TB Hard Disk
The 7200.4, as the name suggests, targets the high-performance end of the magnetic drive market, and ships with 16MB of cache.
As for the 7200.11, it'll slot in at the top of that product family. The main difference between the new 1.5TB drive and the 1TB ST31000340AS already available is their platter density. Both disks are four-platter designs, but the 1TB drive uses four 250GB platters, while the new 1.5TB is apparently using four 375GB platters. 375GB seems a bit odd for a platter size, but we've seen multiple manufacturers pushing above 250GB in recent months; Samsung's new 1TB Speedpoint F1 drives now use three 333GB platters instead of the original 4x250GB configuration the drive first shipped with.
The Seagate Barracude 7200.11 will spin at 7,200RPM, and connects via the SATA I interface to achieve 3Gb/s transfer rate as well as a sustained data rate of up to 120MB/s. Of course, the 1.5TB will probably cost a whole chunk of the layman?fs salary, which is why Seagate has other choices for the budget conscious in the form of 1TB, 750GB, 640GB, 500GB, 320GB, and 160GB varieties, accompanied by cache options of 32MB and 16MB.
Well, the Barracuda hard drive will target desktop users, so where does that leave us notebook totters? Thankfully Seagate engineers also have this group in mind, introducing a couple of 2.5?? 500GB hard drives under the Momentus line. These will be available in 5,400RPM and 7,200RPM variations, accompanied by 8MB of cache and 16MB of cache respectively. Both drives will feature free-fall sensor technology to prevent data damage when dropped by parking the heads off the disk whenever it detects any changes in acceleration equal to the force of gravity, all within 3/10ths of a second.
Rambus sues NVIDIA for patent infringement
Rambus Inc. (NASDAQ: RMBS), one of the world's premier technology licensing companies specializing in high-speed memory architectures, today announced it has filed suit in the United States District Court for the Northern District of California against NVIDIA Corporation for patent infringement.
The lawsuit alleges that a number of NVIDIA products with memory controllers for SDR, DDR, DDR2, DDR3, GDDR, and GDDR3 SDRAM infringe 17 Rambus patents. The accused products in the complaint include chipsets, graphics processors, media communication processors, multimedia applications processors and other products from at least six NVIDIA product lines. Rambus is seeking injunctive relief barring the infringement, contributory infringement, and inducement to infringe the Rambus patents, as well as monetary damages.
PowerColor working on 2GB Radeon HD 4850
I'm .. really not sure why you'd need 2Gb of memory on your garphics card at this timeframe, but PowerColor is developing such a product none the less. The card has 2GB of on-board (framebufffer) memory which is four times more than normal. The card will obviously be equipped with a 55nm, 800 Stream Processors-boasting RV770 GPU clocked at 665 MHz (625 MHz stock) and 2000 MHz-clocked memory, and CrossFireX support.
Download: CoreTemp 0.99.1
Intel and AMD published detailed, public information about the "DTS" (Digital Thermal Sensor), which provides much higher accuracy and more relevant temperature reading than the standard thermal diode sensors do. (How it works).
This feature is supported on all Intel Core and Core 2 based processors as well as the whole AMD's Athlon64 line of CPUs. For a full list of supported CPUs see the CPU Support List.
Core Temp also has a logging feature, allowing a user to easily record the temperature of his processor(s) over any period of time, then the data can be easily transferred into an excel datasheet for easy graphing.
Core Temp works on Windows 2000, XP and 2003 (both 32bit and 64bit versions). Windows Vista 32bit is fully supported.
The 0.99.1 update comes with quite a few changes including:
Fix: Layout when using upto 125% DPI.
Fix: Layout problem and extra systemtray icons with Phenom.
Fix: Potential crashes while saving a register dump file.
Fix: Core Temp icon wasn't showing in About box.
Fix: Menu shortcut keys were not available for all menu items.
Fix: A few old unnoticable bugs.
Add: Initial Intel Nehalem support.
Add: Initial support for AMD's Griffin cores - Untested.
Add: Improved Intel Atom support.
Add: Support latest AMD K8 CPUs.
Add: Support for HyperThreaded CPUs. Core Temp will only display the physical cores and average load on each core.
Add: Support for Pentium E5000 series.
Add: Display core and thread count per CPU.
Add: GUI Adjustments of Temperature offset and G15 applet via the Settings window.
Add: Create a screenshot function. Access from "Options" menu or by F9 shortcut.
Add: Shortcut key for register dump file: F7.
Add: Update register dump output: APIC ID, CPU number, Core number, Thread number.
Change: Move all settings to the ini file out of the registry.
Change: Rename ini file to CoreTemp.ini.
Change: Temperature offset adjustment works for AMD CPUs as well.
Change: Atom Tj.Max adjusted for more accurate readings.
Change: Cleaned up code a little bit.
OCZ's Elixir gaming keyboard surfaces
We already showed it in our Computex, but OCZ is releasing a line of keyboards, among them gaming keyboards. This is the Elixir gaming keyboard. Measuring 20" (W) x 7.87" (D) x 1.14 (H), the new USB 2.0 keyboard has nice slim design, keys featuring 100% rubber-coatings membrane tactile switches.
The Elixir comes with 10 Blue Macro keys which can be customized via the included software and 7 Internet hot keys and 8 Media keys, the Elixir has a suggested retail price of just $29.99. Which is a surpizingly okay price.
Trailer: Velvet Assassin
There's one more trailer I anted to show you today, check out Velvet Assassin which is coming to the PC and Xbox 360 courtesy of GameCock and Replay Studios.
Inspired by the story of British secret agent Violette Szabo, players take control of Violette Summer, a beautiful spy deep behind enemy lines with no support or official backing from the British Government
Trailer: Max Payne: The Movie 'Debut'
Age of Conan goes digital download
"The time has come to download the most brutal, savage and sexy online game"
"Start your career in the merciless universe of King Conan and join the hundreds of thousands that are already playing one of the most exciting MMOs ever created!"
Report: all NVIDIA G84 and G86 chips are faulty
The ongoing rumors and gossip about this topic is getting more and more serious. Inquirer or not (as this is a pretty bold claim), despite NVIDIA's statement, the Inquirer reports all, not just a select batch, of the company's G84 and G86 chipsets used in GeForce 8400M and 8600M graphics cards are suffering from heat-related failures due to an unidentified substrate or bumping material used to help make the video hardware.
They all share the same application-specific integrated circuit (ASIC), which is the source of the problems, in both notebook and desktop PCs. The chips have been failing since last year, and earlier this month has budgeted $200 million for repairs.
According to the report, NVIDIA itself is officially keeping quiet about the specifics related to the problems, sticking to a story about a batch of now-discontinued parts that used a different and faulty bonding process. The report goes on to say the problem causes failures sooner when the number of heat cycles increases, which is why laptops equipped with the affected parts are seemingly failing at higher rates. The company's claims that only HP products are affected also doesn't hold much water, the source says, as Dell and ASUS PCs with the affected chipsets are likewise failing.
Finally, NVIDIA is accused of knowing about the problem for well over a year and not taking any effective actions to address it. The fix NVIDIA is providing to users is a driver that will keep the fans of PCs on to help manage the thermal issue, although critics say such a solution will prolong the inevitable failure and shorten the battery life of notebook models.
I feel strongly that NVIDIA should open up and be transparant about this issue. People need to be able to identify the problem at hand so that if needed they can take appropriate action.
Silicon-Power releases DDR2 800 ECC Unbuffered DIMM 2GB
Silicon Power?fs DDR2 800 ECC Unbuffered DIMM 1GB meets JEDEC (the Joint Electron Device Engineering Council) standards and undergoes rigorous laboratory tests to ensure the highest performance and reliability.. Besides, it is recognized for its outstanding performance and excellent compatibility and is backed by lifetime warranty. Silicon Power?fs DDR2 800 ECC Unbuffered DIMM 2GB is the most trustworthy choice for all consumers.
- l High compatibility and stability
- l Module bandwidth: 6.4GB/sec
- l Compliant with JEDEC standard
- l Lifetime warranty
- l 100% tested to ensure the highest performance and reliability
- l 240 pin
- l Speed(Mbps)?F800
- l PCB layer?F8 layer
- l VDD/VDDQ?F1.8V ?} 0.1V
- l CL: 5
- l Module bandwidth: 6.4GB/sec
Albatron releases low-profile PCI GeForce 8 cards
Oh yeah, read that again ... PCI based graphics cards, not PCIe. Not a bad idea actually. Albatron released a threefold card deck today, the PCI8600GT-256X, PCI8500GT-256X and PCI8400GS-256. Low-profile GeForce 8600 GT, 8500 GT and 8400 GS cards feature active cooling, 256MB of on-board memory and offer DVI and TV-Out connectors.
Albatron Technology recently unveiled three new "PCI" graphics cards at Computex 2008. You read it right - "PCI" and not "PCI Express"! The PCI8600GT-256X, the PCI8500GT-256X and the PCI8400GS-256 are all VGAs that retrofit recent GeForce 8 Series graphics onto older PCI technology. These cards all offer a significant graphics boost along with dual monitor capabilities for an entire generation of integrated-graphics, PCI-only mainboards.
It's a little known fact that there have been millions of Mainboards mass produced in the last 7 years with AGP and PCI Express slots left off in favor of integrated graphics only. Although these mainboards have the traditional PCI-slots, they have been deprived of a chance to upgrade to the latest graphics technology which is almost exclusively for PCI Express these days. The best alternative to experience the latest graphics was for a complete systems overhaul - that is, until now.
Albatron has answered the call with its PCI based VGA cards featuring recent NVIDIA GeForce 8 Series graphics technology. These cards allow these mainboards a chance to make a significant jump from integrated graphics without investing time and money in a whole new system. As mentioned, these PCI graphics cards, with their multiple video adapters, can allow a system, with an integrated GFX mainboard, to configure dual monitors. But it can also give single-PCIe-VGA mainboards (can do up to 2 monitors only) a chance to add on a third or fourth monitor - who needs it you say? You'd be surprised at how you can make use of the extra real estate when you have 3 or 4 monitors. There are applications that can make use of more than 2 monitors such as flight simulation and tracking multiple stock exchanges. But from a more practical perspective, imagine watching a DVD in one screen, browsing the internet in another and doing your work on a third, all without shuffling between overlapping pages or searching your task bar for a program that you have open. Most recent VGA cards can get you dual monitors at best, but add on that third monitor with a PCI graphics card and you've got one very wide virtual panel.
Force3D Radeon 4850 & 4870 review
Force3D Radeon 4850 & 4870
We dropped their name already a couple of times yet with this article I'd like to introduce a new company called Force3D.
Force3D is a Hong Kong based company that opened it's doors earlier this year. Their focus is placed completely at AMD's ATI graphics solutions. Their timing could not have been better with the 4800 release, so today we'll review two of their 4800 series products, the Radeon HD 4850 and 4870.
Link towards article:
ECS G10IL netbook coming to the US, fights MSI Wind
Taiwan-based ECS is preparing to bring its netbook to the US market to compete with the likes of the ASUS Eee PC range and MSI's Wind netbooks. Unlike its other products, the G10IL will be the company's first netbook designed for business use exclusively instead of education. Only a 10.2-inch version of the G10IL will likely make it to the US market, also bringing with it optional and unique to the segment 3G support via the HSUPA and HSPDA mobile broadband networks, as well as EDGE.
The netbook will be renamed by the time it comes to the US, and will be offered with an 8GB SSD drive preloaded with Linpus Lite 9.4 Linux or with an 80GB HD drive with Windows XP. Other specs include an Intel Atom processor, 1 or 2GB of RAM, as well as a six-cell battery good for five hours.
The netbook will also be sold without mobile broadband to keep prices down, while 3G-capable models would likely be bundled with connection cards from data network carriers, said ECS vice president of sales Henry Kwan.
Whatever it will be named, a version of the ECS G10IL will be available for sale in white only this September, starting at $399.
Microsoft to announce DX11 within two weeks?
The big feature of DirectX 11 is Tessellation/Displacement while we also heard that Multithreaded Rendering and Compute Shaders are part of it. DirectX 11 also brings Shader model 5.0 but we don
Download: NVIDIA BIOS Editor 4.3 released (nibitor)
Click here to download.
EU accidentally orders ISPs to become copyright police
Part of the EU Telecommunications Package, agreed by MEPs on Monday,
could be interpreted to endorse cutting off P2P users after a written
warning or two, even though the author claims that was not the
The disputed text, which some are claiming is deliberately concealed within impenetrable legalese, states that national regulators - such as the UK's Ofcom - must promote "cooperation" between access providers and those "interested in the protection and promotion of lawful content".
This would seem to be beyond the provision of basic information, and could be interpreted to mean regulators have a responsibility to turn ISPs into law enforcement bodies policing the internet for copyright holders.
Arguments about the technical feasibility of such an action are irrelevant. It's not the law-maker's job to know how a law can be enforced, it would be up to the ISPs and copyright holders to work out who to accuse and what action to take, and up to the courts to decide if action was taken inappropriately.
More fundamentally, the question is if ISPs should take responsibility for the traffic they carry.
But one of the MEPs responsible for the text, Malcolm Harbour, was quick to explain that this is not the intended meaning at all:
"The interpretation ... is alarmist and scare-mongering and deflects from the intention which was to improve consumers' rights," he told the BBC. Harbour also found time to debate the text on Radio 5 (mp3 - first item), where he reiterated that the legislation has more innocent intentions, and promised to amend the text before the final vote in September if enough people found it misleading.