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[H] Enthusiast Archives: August 2004Archive Listing

Tuesday August 31, 2004

[H]ardNews 11th Edition - Blair's Tech Ed.

TSMC Vs. China Restrictions:

TSMC’s chairman, Morris Chang, is trying to get China to ease restrictions on chip processing and technology. Good luck Morris, you’ll need it.

Morris Chang, chairman of Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC), said yesterday that he is lobbying the Taiwan government to permit local chipmakers to process wafers with technologies down to 0.18-micron in China.

Better Nanometre Patterns:

The gist of this article is that better nanometre pattern development “…could allow the semiconductor industry to reach its goals as specified in the technology road map”. Sounds promising.

The new writing method, dubbed "thermal dip pen nanolithography," represents an important extension for dip pen nanolithography (DPN), an increasingly popular technique that uses atomic force microscopy (AFM) probes as pens to produce nanometre-scale patterns.

Tiny Finnish Projector:

Ready for this? Photon vacuum technology maximizes the amount of photons sent to the target from the light source in a minimum space. What does that mean? Smaller and more efficient projectors…I think.

Upstream Engineering, a Finnish developer of advanced optical technology for tiny projectors, has received seed money to finance development of the technology for use in commercial products.

[H]ardNews 10th Edition

VeriSign Suing ICANN Again:

What is that old saying? Something about "At first if you don’t succeed…", well it looks as though VeriSign is taking that saying to heart and is now suing ICANN again for the right to be able to redirect unsuspecting web-surfers that put the wrong URL in their browsers. Last week VeriSign was smacked down by the federal courts, now they are taking it back to state court. Honestly, I don’t know why VeriSign is pursuing this as hard as they are. Personally I can’t think of one person, outside of VeriSign, that likes being redirected to an advertisement page after mistyping an internet address.

VeriSign made good on a promise and took to state court its crusade against the organization that oversees the Net. In a filing dated Aug. 27, VeriSign took the case that had just been dismissed in federal district court and amended it for a hearing in the California superior court in Los Angeles County.

[H]ardNews 9th Edition

Sapphire Toxic X800Pro ViVo:

Beyond3D has the Sapphire Toxic X800Pro ViVo in house for a round or two of benchmarking madness. People that want ViVo goodness with their X800Pro should check out this review.

Beyond the cooling system, and the obvious PCB colour change, the rest of the board appears to adhere to the ATI reference design. Removing the heatsink from the board reveals Samsung 1.6ns GDDR3 RAM, which should be capable of a maximum operating speed of 600MHz.

PowerColor Radeon 9250:

While most of us focus on the mid to high end video cards, there is a market for cards like the PowerColor Radeon 9250. Most of us really don’t expect much from a card that retails for under $50, if you just need a basic video card, this might be what you are looking for.

The Powercolor Radeon 9250 retails for just $47 US, and does not come with much else other than a driver CD, CyberLink DVD software suite, a S-Video-to-composite converter, composite-to-composite cable and a half height mounting bracket. For $47USD, that's not bad!

PowerVR For Console Gaming:

Imagination Technologies is demonstrating advanced hardware graphics support for the OpenGL ES API on its PowerVR MBX embedded graphics core at the Khronos Developer University event in London on September 1st. The event at London’s Ibis Hotel, Earl’s Court will feature a keynote speech by Jon Peddie of Jon Peddie Research and a wide portfolio of presentations, including two from PowerVR.

[H]ardNews 8th Edition

ATITool Update:

The handy-dandy ATITool ATi GPU overclocking tool has been updated to version 0.0.22. Windows 2000/XP/2003 (both 32 & 64 bit version supported). The download is a tiny 860k so grab it if you need it, try it if you haven’t. Changes included are:

No limits overclocking. Finding maximum core and memory overclock by rendering into a Direct3D window and scanning the output for visual artifacts. Artifact scanning mode for non-ATI cards - use together with a 3rd party overclocking utility. Loading a predefined clock profile on Application/Windows startup. Hotkeys that can be used any time to load clocks from a profile. 3D application detection (Direct3D 8, Direct3D 9, OpenGL) to overclock your video card only when required.

[H]ardNews 7th Edition

ASUS A8V Deluxe:

The team at the Tech Report have the ASUS A8V Deluxe on the test bench in their self described “benchmarking sweatshop”. Though the TR review staff had a few minor concerns about the board, overall they felt it was a good bargain. You can see our recent review of the A8V here for comparison purposes.

The A8V Deluxe's street price hovers around $140, which is a pretty incredible deal, all things considered. With 8-channel audio, Gigabit Ethernet, 802.11g Wi-Fi, Firewire, support for four Serial ATA and six ATA devices, and plenty of RAID options, the A8V Deluxe is a steal.

ASUS Extreme AX600XT/HTVD:

If you are building a new HTPC box this ASUS Extreme AX600XT/HTVD PCI-Express card can do decent gaming, has ViVo capabilities and has HDTV support built right in.

ASUS put together a comprehensive packaging that covers a wide audience, depending on what you need. For gamers, the ASUS Extreme AX600XT/HTVD provides very good performance with many of today's popular titles, without sacrificing image quality in doing so.

Gigabyte 8TRS350MT:

Speaking of HTPCs, the Radeon 9100 Pro IGP powered Gigabyte 8TRS350MT motherboard with its TV-out and 5.1 sound would be a good candidate for a slim-line entertainment PC.

Gigabyte have done a fantastic job putting this board together. The board not only looks great, but for a uATX board the layout could not get much neater. It is good to see Gigabyte being quick to support this ATi chipset, although the adoption would only seem natural given the two companies relationships.

[H]ardNews 6th Edition

[H]ardForum [H]appenings:

Welcome to Tuesday’s installment of [H]ardForum [H]appenings. I am totally amazed that the DOOM 3: Mars City thread has been viewed almost 400,000 times in 12 days. If you are thinking you have to be a “pro” modder to participate…no worries, we have folks doing their very first mod in the forums as well. I spotted this deal in the forums, how about a BFG 6800 OC + DOOM 3 + Far Cry for just $300. We have shown off every other “post your picture” thread, so why not a thread for all you car audio guys so you can show off your systems? As always, check out the threads I just posted, or jump in the forums with all those other [H] readers and start your own thread. We’ll see you in there.

[H]ardNews 5th Edition - Mods & Ends


Waffer PC AirCon PAC 400 @ A1-Electronics - Artic Cooling VGA Silencer @ JHawk's


Epower Lion 450 Fanless Enhanced PSU @ HTPC News - RIO Nitrus 1.5GB MP3 Player @ Fast Silicon - Smart Drive 2002 Enclosure @ TechTastic - MacPower Digital Doc 5+ Review @ TwistedMods

Cases & Modding:

Antec ARIA SFF PC @ Dark][Tweaker

[H]ardNews 4th Edition

Gateway To Debut BTX:

It would seem that Gateway will be the first company to roll out machines built on Intel’s BTX standard motherboards. Almost hard to believe that the ATX board is now almost 10 years old.

The Gateway 700GR is built on Intel's highly anticipated Balanced Technology Extended (BTX) architecture. While not made specifically for PC-enthusiasts, the system features an advanced cooling system that can handle high-speed processors as well as the fastest and most power-hungry graphics and add-in cards and hard drives.

Geek Horoscopes:

I guess the last day of the month is still a good time to get your August Geek Horoscopes out to you. Here is my favorite:

Sagittarius, Nov 22 - Dec 21:

Your parents refuse to buy you any school supplies. Don't feel bad, most parents of thirty-five-year-old basement dwellers do the same.

New iMac:

The new iMac should probably be called the iMonitor. Everything is built right into the flat panel for a zero foot print PC. Pretty slick looking, looks just like a tablet PC or a laptop on a monitor stand. One thing that I did notice that it is way more expensive than the old iMac. Thank Jim Downs for the linkage.

The entire computer, including a G5-based logic board, slot-loading optical drive, hard disk, speakers, and even the power supply — dwells inside the enchanting display. Modern living starts at $1299.

[H]ardNews 3rd Edition

GeForce 6600GT Pics:

For those of you interested, we thought we’d post a few pics of the GeForce 6600GT for your viewing pleasure. While the GeForce 6600GT preview was limited to a basic overview of the cards features, we now have the 6600GT in house for a real performance evaluation. Here are the pics:

News Image News Image

[H]ardNews 2nd Edition

AMD Demos Dual-Core Processors:

AMD is planning to demo its upcoming dual core processors on an HP machine that will use four for the dual core chips. No matter how you slice it…4 chip, eight-way SMP is pretty damn impressive.

AMD (NYSE: AMD) announces it is demonstrating the industry's first x86 dual-core processor. During demonstrations held at the company's Austin facilities, AMD is showing an HP ProLiant DL585 server powered by four dual-core AMD Opteron(tm) processors manufactured on 90nm silicon-on-insulator process technology.

VIA 2nd Quarter 04 Results:

VIA Technologies announced its 2nd quarter financials today. Things aren’t so great this time around for VIA with negative earnings per share.

VIA Technologies, Inc. today announced financial results for second quarter 2004. Net sales for 2Q’04 were NT$4,485 million. Net loss was NT$1,675 million; based on the current 1,324.154 million shares outstanding, earnings per share were reported as negative NT$1.26.

[H]ardNews 1st Edition - Press Releases

Intel’s 65 Nanometer Process:

A significant milestone in developing next-generation chip manufacturing technology has been achieved by Intel Corporation. The company has built fully functional 70-megabit static random access memory (SRAM) chips with more than half a billion transistors using the world's most advanced 65 nanometer (nm) process technology. The achievement extends Intel's effort to drive the development of new manufacturing process technology every two years, in accordance with Moore's Law.

Foundertech Selects ATi:

ATI today announced that Foundertech has selected the RADEON® 9100 PRO IGP as the platform technology for its new XINRUI T2000 desktop PC. Designed for home consumer use, the T2000 desktop PC provides users with a broad range of high performance components combined with the industry’s fastest integrated 3D graphics processor.

Winston Joins NVIDIA:

NVIDIA today announced that Michael G. Winston has joined the Company as Senior Vice President of Human Resources. Mr. Winston will be a member of NVIDIA’s executive team with responsibility for global human resources functions, including organization strategy, recruiting, employee relations, training and development, and compensation/benefits management. Mr. Winston will provide strategic guidance to the CEO and executive team on business planning and human capital issues.

Sony PSP Uses S3TC:

S3 Graphics, Co. Ltd., today announced an agreement with Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. and Sony Computer Entertainment America Inc., for its licensing of S3 Graphics’ S3TC texture compression technology. S3TC will be used in Sony Computer Entertainment’s PlayStation® Portable. “We are pleased to adopt S3 Graphics S3TC technology in PlayStation® Portable,” says Masayuki Chatani, Corporate Executive and CTO, Sony Computer Entertainment Inc.

Monday August 30, 2004

[H]ardNews 11th Edition

Caller ID Spoofing:

What the!?!? There is now a service that allows you to mask your phone number to make it appear that your number is something that it isn’t. If this isn’t lame, I don’t know what is. You’ve been warned.

Your Caller ID feature may no longer be telling the truth. This week, a company is launching technology that will make it possible for someone to choose what appears on phones that have Caller ID, the feature for displaying identifying information about an incoming call.