Archive for September 2009

nVidia GT300's Fermi architecture unveiled

Graphics Cards 1673 Published by Hilbert Hagedoorn 0 ImageAn interesting tidbit of info just surfaced on the web through Bright Side of News, regarding NVIDIA's upcoming GT300 chip (high-end graphics card part. I'll do the blunt copy/paste here:

 nVidia GT300 chip is a computational beast like you have never seen before. In fact, we would go as far out and state that this is as closest as GPU can be to a CPU in the whole history of graphics technology. Now, time will tell whatever GT300 was the much needed revolution.

Beside the regular NV70 and GT300 codenames [codename for the GPU], nVidia's insiders called the GPU architecture - Fermi. Enrico Fermi was an Italian physicist who is credited with the invention of nuclear reactor. That brings us to one of codenames we heard for one of the GT300 board itself - "reactor".
When it comes to boards themselves, you can expect to see configurations with 1.5, 3.0 GB and 6GB of GDDR5 memory, but more on that a little bit later.

GPU specifications
This is the meat part you always want to read fist. So, here it how it goes:

  • 3.0 billion transistors
  • 40nm TSMC
  • 384-bit memory interface
  • 512 shader cores [renamed into CUDA Cores]
  • 32 CUDA cores per Shader Cluster
  • 1MB L1 cache memory [divided into 16KB Cache - Shared Memory]
  • 768KB L2 unified cache memory
  • Up to 6GB GDDR5 memory
  • Half Speed IEEE 754 Double Precision

As you can read for yourself, the GT300 packs three billion transistors of silicon real estate, packing 16 Streaming Multiprocessor [new name for former Shader Cluster] in a single chip. Each of these sixteen multiprocessors packs 32 cores and this part is very important - we already disclosed future plans in terms to this cluster in terms of future applications. What makes a single unit important is the fact that it can execute an integer or a floating point instruction per clock per thread.

TSMC was in charge of manufacturing the three billion transistor mammoth, but it didn't stop there. Just like the G80 chip, nVidia GT300 packs six 64-bit memory controllers for a grand total of 384-bit, bringing back the odd memory capacity numbers. The memory controller is a GDDR5 native controller, which means it can take advantage of built-in ECC features inside the GDDR5 SDRAM memory and more importantly, GT300 can drive GDDR5 memory in the same manner as AMD can with its really good Radeon HD 5800 series. The additional two memory interfaces will have to wait until 28nm or 22nm full node shrinks, if we get to them with an essentially unchanged architecture. You can expect that the lower-end variants of GT300 architecture will pack less dense memory controller for more cost efficiency, especially on the memory side.

Ferni architecture natively supports C [CUDA], C++, DirectCompute, DirectX 11, Fortran, OpenCL, OpenGL 3.1 and OpenGL 3.2. Now, you've read that correctly - Ferni comes with a support for native execution of C++. For the first time in history, a GPU can run C++ code with no major issues or performance penalties and when you add Fortran or C to that, it is easy to see that GPGPU-wise, nVidia did a huge job [via bsn].

Radeon HD 5870 prices and deals

Graphics Cards 1673 Published by Hilbert Hagedoorn 0

Well, I wasn't expecting the Radeon HD 5870 to be on stock this good. Shortly after launch. But if you are interested in this brilliant graphics card, here are a few deals I found, cheapest card was spotted at $379.99 :

The Radeon HD 5850 will go on Sale this Friday.

ASUS to offer sub 99 USD P55 motherboard

Generic News 1994 Published by Hilbert Hagedoorn 0

ASUS is preparing a new P55 motherboard that will address the 'budget' market. It is the P7P55 LX. Supporting socket LGA 1156 processors, the P7P55 LX is intended to be priced even lower than the P7P55D LE (under 100 EUR).

It's all a little basic  like the 5 phase CPU power circuit. You do however gain the latest ASUS extra's like MemOK, ExpressGate, and TurboV.

You will spot one PCI-Express 2.0 x16 (looks like two .. but the second one only is a x4 (!). Good enough for say PhysX or something else. Then two PCI-E x1, and three PCI. All six SATA 3 Gbps ports are assigned as internal ports. An additional controller provides an IDE connector. Integrated is also 8-channel audio with optical SPDIF output, and gigabit Ethernet make for the rest of the feature-set.

Paired with a Core i5 750 at 199 USD this might be a very sweet deal.

Click on the thumbnail for a large photo.

Sharp LX-Series HDTVs with 2m:1 contrast

Generic News 1994 Published by Hilbert Hagedoorn 0

Okay the contrast ratio's are really getting out of hand, of course they have to be dynamic contrast ratios. Sharp Japan have outed four new LX-series HDTVs, each boasting massive 2,000,000:1 contrast ratios.  The range starts from the 40-inch LC-40LX1 and tops out at the 60-inch LC-60LX1, with 46- and 52-inch models in-between; each offers Full HD 1920p resolution,

Radeon HD 5850 review (CrossfireX)

Review 567 Published by Hilbert Hagedoorn 0

Today we'll test and review the Radeon HD 5850, we'll check both the single GPU performance but also will check it out in CrossfireX multi-GPU mode. This card promises to go neck-on-neck with the 349 USD GeForce GTX 285 in terms of performance. The Radeon HD 5850 however comes with full DirectX 11 compatibility, Eyefinity and some sheer brutal rendering performance in both gaming and compute features.

It's everything the Radeon HD 5870 really is, just a slight notch slower but more affordable.

Check out the full twenty-two page article right here.

Making the All New Intel Core 2010

Processor 721 Published by Hilbert Hagedoorn 0

In this video, Intel engineers from the Technology and Manufacturing Group and computer chip design and test teams show and tell how they helped create Westmere, the codename for the world

Realtek HD Audio 2.34 Driver

Soundcard 105 Published by Hilbert Hagedoorn 0

The latest download of Realtek's HD audio driver version available for Windows XP and Vista, it runs under Windows 7 too.

The HD audio driver version for Realtek chips is available for download on our server. This download offers both the Windows XP and Vista binaries, the files contain drivers for the 32 Bit and 64 Bit versions. All Realtek HD audio chips, which are common on many motherboards and in notebooks, are supported.

Driver Package R2.34
    Realtek HD Audio Driver support all of Realtek HD Audio Codec .
    1. Vista/Windows 7 WHQL Supporting: ALC882, ALC883, ALC885, ALC888, ALC889, ALC861VD, ALC660, ALC662, ALC663, ALC665, ALC260, ALC262,ALC267, ALC268, ALC269, ALC272, ALC273, ALC887,ALC670, ALC275
    2. Windows 2000/XP WHQL Supporting: ALC880, ALC882, ALC883, ALC885, ALC888, ALC889, ALC861VC, ALC861VD, ALC660, ALC662, ALC663, ALC665, ALC260, ALC262, ALC267,ALC268, ALC269, ALC272, ALC273, ALC887,ALC670, ALC275
    3. HDMI Device WHQL Support: ATI HDMI Devices
    4. OS Supporting: Microsoft WindowsXP, Widnows2000, Windows Server 2003, Vista, Windows Server 2008, Windows7 - x86/x64
    5. Pack with Microsoft High Definition Audio UAAV1.0a(5013)
    6. Add/Fix
        1.) Driver :
            1. Customizations.

Download: click here.

Radeon HD 5850 review (CrossfireX)

Graphics cards 1021 Published by Hilbert Hagedoorn 0

Today we'll test and review the Radeon HD 5850; we'll check both the single GPU performance but also will check it out in CrossfireX multi-GPU mode. This card promises to go neck-to-neck with the 349 USD GeForce GTX 285 in terms of performance. The Radeon HD 5850 however comes with full DirectX 11 compatibility, Eyefinity and some sheer brutal rendering performance in both gaming and compute features. It's everything the Radeon HD 5870 really is, just a slight step slower but more affordable.

Volume limit on MP3 players in the EU

Speakers 98 Published by Hilbert Hagedoorn 0

The European Commission has decided to set volume limits for MP3 players in all European Union member states, which means your Zune HD won't be able to output anything louder than 80 decibels under the default settings when the ruling goes into effect. According to Consumer Affairs Commissioner Meglena Kuneva, "It's easy to push up the sound levels on your MP3 player to damagingly loud levels, especially on busy streets or public transport.

And the evidence is that particularly young people -- who are listening to music at high volumes sometimes for hours each week -- have no idea they can be putting their hearing at risk. It can take years for the hearing damage to show, and then it is simply too late."

Microsoft -- no Windows 7 restrictions on netbooks

Generic News 1994 Published by Hilbert Hagedoorn 0

Microsoft announced that they have removed the netbook restrictions that previously prevented OEM and ODM from installing any version of Windows 7 on their netbook. The lifted restriction means OEM and ODM can install Windows 7 starter on a netbook, and that the three application restriction has been removed as per consumer's request.

"OEMs and ODMs have the choice to install any version of Windows on a netbook," a Microsoft UK spokesperson said. "[But] Starter is an entry version and doesn't have many of the consumer or business features. The three application limit isn't there anymore."

Windows 7 Starter and Home Basic variety only come in 32bit versions and are missing a variation of features from the higher end versions. Some of the features missing from Windows 7 Starter include:

  • Aero Glass
  • Taskbar Preview
  • Aero Peek
  • Desktop personalization
  • Fast user switching
  • Multi-monitor support
  • DVD playback
  • Support for domains and XP Mode
  • Windows Media Center

Home Basic also lacks some key Windows 7 features including Aero, Taskbar Preview, Internet Connection Sharing and some other features. Windows 7 Home Basic will not be sold in the US, Europe and other established markets, while Windows 7 Starter will be available through OEM.

Retail stores and manufactures will be able to strip some of the cost off their netbooks using Windows 7 Starter or Home Basic. Microsoft will now have two entry level SKU versions of Windows 7 in some markets [via neowin].

ATI Eyefinity review

Review 567 Published by Hilbert Hagedoorn 0

With the release of Radeon series 5800 comes a new feature. It's called Eyefinity. Eyefinity in short is having the ability to connect multiple monitors to your graphics card and create an extreme native resolution. It allows you to setup two to six monitors, combine them and make one massive screen.

Guru3D will put this to the test today as we combine three 24 inch Dell monitors and try out a good number of games. The idea is to create a much more immersive state of gameplay.  Especially for flight simulators , racing games and strategy games where you like to have a big field / area to play in it enhances visibility, this feature could just be really grand.

Wanna have a look ? We are going to show you some video's of ATI Eyefinity as well. Check out Guru3D's article right here.

Tuniq Propeller 120 CPU cooler

Cooling 272 Published by Hilbert Hagedoorn 0

More CPU cooling news today as Tuniq has released its Tuniq Propeller 120, an elegant CPU cooler inspired by the design of aircraft carriers.

The heatsink features four 8mm direct-touch heatpipes, aluminum fins and a 120mm MFDB (Magnetic Fluid Dynamic Bearing) fan with a max airflow of 90.65CFM and a noise level of 16-20dBA. Included with the kit is a tube of TX-3 thermal grease and also a fan controller to adjust the speed of the fan between 1000RPM and 2000RPM.

The Tuniq Propeller 120 CPU cooler took its visual inspiration from the mighty aircraft carriers. The four specially designed smooth-curving heatpipes are both aesthetically pleasing and highly functional.

The 120mm MFDB fan blows downward and is one of the best performing fans on the market; and when matched with the four specially designed heatpipes, the Propeller 120 is able to achieve the same top level performance of competing designs with eight heatpipes. We have also included the top performing TX-3 thermal compound and a fan controller to maximize performance and flexibility.

Intel Gulftown comes with tower HSF

Cooling 272 Published by Hilbert Hagedoorn 0

I guess even intel now ahs to admit that six CPU cores can make quite a lot of heat, especially for the consumer part. At IDF Intel showed the processor cooler for its upcoming six-core Gulftown processors.

As you can see this is a tower heatsink with four heatpipes, a large PWM fan, and a bolt-thru mounting kit instead of flimsy push-pins. It's unknown if Intel will ship this with all Gulftown processors, or only with the Extreme Edition models.  Different from the previous design, the fresh cooler employs tower design with horizontal blowing for enhanced airflow, and it features four copper heatpipes.

Als, no irritating Push-pin any more. It installs with screws.

Nvidia disables PhysX when ATI card is present

Graphics Cards 1673 Published by Hilbert Hagedoorn 0

Well for all those who have used Nvidia cards for PhysX and ATI cards to render graphics in Windows 7, that is about to change.

Since the release of 186 graphics drivers Nvidia has decided to disable PhysX anytime a non-Nvidia GPU is even present in the same PC. We do feel that Nvidia has shot themselves in the foot here.

In NVIDIA's defense, they have been saying ever since the beginning that they would not support the ATI / NVIDIA combo PhysX wise, it is now a little more definitive though.

Small advise to NVIDIA, PhysX will be a lost cause unless you guys get ATI onboard as well. This certainly isn't helping.

Thermaltake Contac 29 Multi-Socket Budget CPU Cooler

Cooling 272 Published by Hilbert Hagedoorn 0

Thermaltake, leading DIY thermal solutions brand, launches a multi-socket support budget CPU cooler, the Contac 29. The Thermaltake Contac29 offers excellent cooling performance and a formidable price point when compared with the current competition on the market. Its Direct Contact Technology allows the three 8 mm heatpipes to immediately touch the CPU and thereby maximize the cooling effect. The multi-socket support offers excellent compatibility and flexibility in the choice and upgrade of your processor. It supports all major Intel sockets such as the LGA1156, LGA1366 and older LGA775 models. As for AMD, sockets AM3, AM2+ and AM2 are supported.

The three u-shaped heatpipes transfer processor heat up into the aluminum heatsink fins. In a second step the preinstalled 120 mm PWM fan blows air over the layered fins to further increase cooling efficiency, while the specially curved fins prevent outside heat to intrude the dissipation area.

As the Contac 29 is equipped with full PWM functionality the fan speed control is taken care of by the motherboard which automatically adjusts the speed according to actual CPU load between 800 and 2000 RPM. Even at highest speeds potential noise development is kept at the lowest level by using Anti-vibration Soft Mounts that virtually eliminate movement of the fan.

If you want to further maximize cooling efficiency, Thermaltake has already included a second set of Anti-vibration Soft Mounts which you can use to install another 120 mm exhaust fan across the preinstalled in-take fan.

EK Water Blocks for Radeon HD 5870

Graphics Cards 1673 Published by Hilbert Hagedoorn 0

EK will be releasing a waterblock for the Radeon HD 5870.

The SKU name will be EK FCS5870 and it will keep the primary heat sources chilled down, including GPU, memory, and VRM. The first picture below shows a CAD drawing the design. The second one is a picture of the finalized copper block. FCS5870 is expected to be available in ten days or next weeks.

Mass Effect 2: Subject Zero clip

Games 1603 Published by Hilbert Hagedoorn 0

I loved the first Mass Effect and look forward to part two. This video reveals another of the characters in Mass Effect 2, BioWare's upcoming RPG sequel.

According to the trailer, her name is Subject Zero, and she appears to be an aggressive character in almost every way, including sexually, and also quite fierce. Mass Effect 2 is currently schedule for release in February of 2010.