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[H] Enthusiast Archives: May 2005Archive Listing

Tuesday May 31, 2005

[H]ardNews 11th Edition

MSI 661FM3-V Micro-ATX:

PCStats says that the MSI 661FM3-V Micro-ATX motherboard would be a great choice for someone building a workstation PC. I’d imagine that a lot of you could find good uses for a relatively small LGA775 motherboard like this. A cheap file / movie / MP3 server for your home comes to mind.

While it's lack of dual-channel memory support hurts it in some benchmarks, it's an affordable and stable platform for a budget office system, which is probably the position it's best suited for too.

HiS Excalibur X850XT & X850XT-PE:

The good news is that the HiS Excalibur Radeon X850XT is quite the overclocker and can achieve X850XT-PE rather easily. The bad news is, the HiS Excalibur Radeon X850XT-PE is reviewed side by side with the X850XT in OcPrices’ latest review.

The HIS iX850XT Turbo card is without doubt the best value X850 XT card I have seen. Thanks to the included iTurbo program, HIS can guarantee that it will run at full Platinum Edition clock speeds without issue.

[H]ardNews 10th Edition - Blair's Tech Ed.

NextFest 2005:

If you are going to be in the Chicago area on June 24th – 26th, might I suggest you check out NextFest 2005? Wired has all the news and a complete preview.

Building on the success of last year's NextFest in San Francisco, we'll offer more than 100 exhibits about the future of exploration, entertainment, transportation, science and medicine, communication, design, defense, and ­imagination (a pavilion dedicated to developments by NextFest sponsor GE).

BrickFest 2005:

While we are in the fest-ive mood, all you Lego freak…..building block enthusiasts can head to Arlington, Virginia for BrickFest 2005!

BrickFest 2005 is a gathering for Adult Fans of LEGO® (AFOLs) from around the world in Washington, D.C. Anyone who enjoys building with these versatile blocks is invited to join the fun! See who's attending. August 12-14th, 2005 at George Mason University in Arlington, VA. 9:00am-8:00pm

Witty Worm Fest 2005:

O.K. there isn’t a Witty Worm fest…I got all caught up in the whole “fest” thing. Researchers did however track down “patient zero”. The legwork it took to track this back to the source is impressive.

The computer used to kick-start a global worm outbreak in March 2004 has been traced using crucial kinks in its code. The same technique could, in future, help law enforcers pinpoint those responsible for distributing viral code across the internet, researchers say.

[H]ardNews 9th Edition

Music Industry Tailed Sharman Boss:

A year ago, we had the RIAA kicking in doors and conducting raids on pirates. Now we have the Australian music industry conducting surveillance on the owner of Kazaa. What the?!?! Now that is just freaky.

Michael Speck, a representative of Music Industry Piracy Investigations, told a federal court hearing on Tuesday that the antipiracy unit had been "tailing" Nikki Hemming's premises on a "continuous basis" for several months until 11 a.m. on May 24. The unit conducted the surveillance as part of its efforts to determine who controlled the peer-to-peer software Kazaa.

[H]ardNews 8th Edition

Sapphire Radeon X850XT-PE AGP:

Lost Circuits has the AGP version of the Sapphire Radeon X850XT-PE on the grill for a round or two of benchmarks. The overall review is positive, though the review does make note of the noisy cooler and lackluster users manual. For more information you can see our ATi X850XT-PE AGP review here.

Too bad that corporate marketing initially overlooked that fact but to give credit where credit is due, high-end graphics cards with AGP interface to retrofit the existing systems are back with a vengeance. One example is Sapphire's RADEON X850XT.

ABIT Fatal1ty AN8:

Oc Tools has just reviewed the nForce4 Ultra powered ABIT Fatal1ty AN8 motherboard. You can see our review here for comparison purposes.

This board performed like magic in the 2 weeks that we tested it. Both at stock and overclocked settings, the Fatal1ty AN8 never showed any sign of weakness. Stability wise, this board has exceeded our expectations.

Computex Day #1:

While the today’s news is dominated by the announcement of ATi’s CrossFire, we can’t forget that there is a lot of Computex 2005 Day #1 coverage out there as well. We will add more coverage of the show from around the web as it comes in. Here are a few links to get you started:




Hardware Zone

On the motherboards side, ASUS was showing their new AN8 nF4-SLI board that is a fanless design using heatpipes and doesnt have any SLI switch onboard. ASUS also informed us that this board will overclock as well as DFI boards. They also showed their ATI chipset board featuring dual x16 slots for CrossFire.

[H]ardNews 7th Edition

[H]ardForum [H]appenings:

Welcome to [H]ardForum [H]appenings! The super hot thread of the day is on our ATi CrossFire preview. Read the preview and feel free to leave your thoughts here. The [H]ardFolding contest is in full swing, all you need to do is start folding for the [H]orde and try to win some cool stuff. Besides, it is a good cause. There are a ton of really good deals on processors, laptops, monitors and video cards in our For Sale & Trade forum. Remember, you can buy, sell and trade in the forum…something you can’t do at your local brick and mortar store. Deal of the Day is this Razor Diamondback Plasma mouse for $40. Runner up in the DotD department is this 160GB WD hard drive for only $30 after rebates. If you don’t mind rebates, that is a great deal. As always, if you have something you want to see here in the [H]ardForum [H]appenings post, let me know. In the mean time…get your butt in the forums, we’ll see you in there.

[H]ardNews 6th Edition

Online Cheaters Editorial:

Gamers Hell has an editorial about online cheaters posted that most of you should be able to relate to. The author of the editorial wonders why online cheating seems to be tolerated and why others are so reluctant to do anything about it.

It no longer shocks me when someone jumps into the air and shoots at the wall, only to have the projectile somehow end up in the middle of my forehead. I think most of us have come to accept things like this. But isn’t that a problem? Isn’t using hacks bad news? When did it become ok for us to just accept it and not care about it anymore?

E3 Aftermath:

Bytesector is sure to re-ignite a few flame wars with the opinions expresses in their E3 Aftermath article. The article declared the PS3 the "most impressive next-gen" console despite the fact that no real world performance data is even available on the Cell processor and NVIDIA openly admitted the PS3 GPU hasn’t been taped out yet and is still in development. Nintendo was also heavily criticized in this article for what was called the “poorest showing in its history”. Agree? Disagree? Read the whole article and see what you think. Here is a quote:

Overall, I think the PlayStation 3 was the most impressive next-gen of the show, with its processing and graphical prowess. Meanwhile, the Xbox 360 looks inferior compared to the PS3.

[H]ardNews 5th Edition

AMD Interview:

PCPerspective just posted an interview with three AMD executives from Computex. The PCP crew managed to get some very interesting information on several subjects including dual core processor prices, DDR2 memory support and even the current model number system. Here is a juicy bit of information from the interview:

When the topic of having a single core FX processor came up, one of the AMD representatives indicated that some "leading titles" out by the end of the year would see some good performance gains on dual core processors and thus we may see a move from single to dual core FX processors sooner than originally thought.

JEDEC Memory Standards Interview:

DigiTimes has another interview posted today, this time it is with Desi Roden a former chairman of the board for JEDEC and currently executive vice president at Inphi, a privately-held fabless electronic-components company. New JEDEC memory standards are “on the way”:

What is the current status of the DDR2-800 specification? When do you expect this specification to be finally ratified by JEDEC?

DDR2-800 is on its way and will become widespread, especially with the shift in DRAM technology to 90nm. The timeframe is mostly driven by fab timing and the availability of controllers and systems to support DDR2-800, which will possibly arrive at around the end of 2005 or beginning of 2006.

[H]ardNews 4th Edition - Mods & Ends


Titan Vanessa L-type Heatpipe HSF @ A1-Electronics - 24oz Budweiser Reservoir @ Box Gods


Ultra X-Connect 500W PSU @ PC Modding Malaysia - Hiper Type-R Modular Blue Line 580W PSU @ XtremeResources - Matrix Orbital MX610 @ Creative Mods

Cases & Modding:

Aspire X-Navigator ATXA8NW-AL/500 @ Driver Heaven - BTX’plained @ XYZ Computing - Customizing the BIOS Boot Logo @ Hardware Secrets - Antec P180 ATX Case @ SilentPC Review

[H]ardNews 3rd Edition

ATi Interview:

The fine folks over at DigiTimes managed to corner ATi’s CEO Dave Orton at Computex and ask him a handful of questions. The subjects covered range from graphics cards to the Xbox 360 to motherboard chipsets. Here is a quote from the interview:

Concerning chipsets, how serious is the chipset project for ATI, and what is your market breakdown in the chipset segment?

The chipset business is very serious for ATI and it is an area that we see strong growth potential. Currently, we ship more chipsets for the Intel platform than for the AMD platform, as our original focus was on the notebook market, where Intel processors have a larger market share. We also expect big things moving into the PCIe market, as we have the industry’s only complete DirectX9 integrated notebook and desktop lineup for both the Intel and AMD platforms. We work with all of the industry leaders, with our three largest customers being Asus, Gigabyte and MSI.

[H]ardNews 2nd Edition

ATi CrossFire Multi-Graphics Processor Preview:


The Tech Report





Gaming Nexus

Hardware Secrets


Driver Heaven



ATi Announces CrossFire Multi-Graphics Processor Platform:

ATI Technologies Inc. is revolutionizing gaming with the introduction of CrossFire™, the ultimate gaming platform. The CrossFire platform has been designed to give gamers the best performance and more flexibility and game compatibility than any other multiple graphics processor platform. It combines the power of ATI's Radeon® Xpress chipsets for Intel and AMD processors, a standard Radeon® graphics processor and a Radeon® CrossFire Edition graphics card to bring massive performance and image quality to gamers.

[H]ardNews 1st Edition - Press Releases

AMD Announces Availability Of The Athlon 64 X2:

Completing the world’s only broad dual-core client and server processor line-up, AMD (NYSE: AMD) today announced the immediate availability of the AMD Athlon™ 64 X2 dual-core processor. The AMD Athlon 64 X2 dual-core processor is poised to deliver an experience unmatched in the industry, targeting prosumer and digital media enthusiasts, as well as those who run many software applications simultaneously. These new processors, designed for desktop and desktop-replacement notebooks, shatter the hourglass icon by delivering performance improvements of up to 80 percent on select digital media and productivity applications compared to single-core AMD Athlon™ 64 processors.

AMD Announce Industry Wide Motherboard Support:

Following the introduction of the world’s first dual-core AMD64 processors, including the first x86-based dual-core server and workstation processor, AMD announces close alignment and support from the world’s premier motherboard manufacturers. AMD and partners have shown a sustained commitment to AMD64 technology with dual-core support for the world’s highest performing x86-based 32- and 64-bit processors. A significant advantage to AMD’s approach is that the Dual-Core AMD Opteron™ and AMD Athlon™ 64 X2 dual-core processors are designed to work cooperatively with existing AMD64 939- and 940-pin processor-based motherboards with a BIOS update, resulting in easy system implementation and deployment.

Monday May 30, 2005

[H]ardNews - Computex Day 1

Computex Highlights Day 1:

Below are some of the things that caught our eye on the first walk through of Hall 2 this morning at Computex. The pictures are labeled with tidbits of information. Worth mention is a video card from MSI that fits BOTH PCIe and AGP interfaces as well as NVIDIA SLI inside an SFF computer from Shuttle.