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[H] Enthusiast Archives: August 2005Archive Listing


Monday August 29, 2005

[H]ardNews 8th Edition

Adventures In Overclocking:

Doc Overclock and the crew at Motherboards.Org take a little adventure in overclocking today and lay out step by step what it takes to get where you want to go.

To those of us who have been on the scene long enough, Overclocking is a way of life - can you really say you've lived until you've run the red line? It's in this spirit, this need for speed.

1GB Compact Flash Round-Up:

PCStats has a handy 1GB compact flash round-up featuring cards from Crucial, Kingston, Centon, IBM and SanDisk.

In this roundup of 1GB CompactFlash cards, PCSTATS will be testing out four CF memory cards of various speeds, as well as a 1GB IBM Microdrive hard disk, with an eye to comparing their performance in digital cameras as well as various data transfer tasks.

[H]ardNews 7th Edition

ECS Editor�s Day:

For those of you who never look above the news headlines, we have just posted our coverage of ECS Editor�s Day event. There is a lot of really good information, pictures of the facilities at ECS and coverage of the presentations given by Intel, AMD, ATI, and NVIDIA.

ECS recently invited us to participate in their first Editor�s Day. Of note, ECS answers the SLI call and promises motherboard upgrades without replacing the motherboard itself! Read on to learn all about the �New ECS.�

Shuttle XPC SD31P SFF:

If you are looking for a dual-core ready small form factor PC, this Shuttle XPC SD31P SFF review at Futurelooks is for you.

So could the Shuttle SD31P be a total computing solution for your "Digital Lifestyle"? Well, if you work with graphics, edit video, rip and encode MP3's (another thing where the Dual Core processor comes in handy), and want to get the process moving along a lot faster while having other applications open at the same time, the SD31P, with a Dual Core processor, is definitely a system you should consider.

HIS Radeon X800GT IceQ II Turbo:

MVKTech seemed pretty impressed with the HIS Radeon X800GT IceQ II Turbo they just reviewed. Basically the review says that you can expect good performance, great cooling and an overall a good value for your money.

Our experience with HIS and the X800 GT IceQ II Turbo product was top notch and the X800 GT IceQ II Turbo was easily installed and configured in our system. The performance was quite a surprise.

Sapphire Pure Innovation PI-A9RX480:

Hexus has one of those red and white socket 939 Sapphire Pure Innovation PI-A9RX480 motherboards on the test bench today. While it isn�t a nForce4 Ultra killer, it does perform well across the board and sports some good looks for all you case modders and fans of white PCB.

With the mix of RX480 northbridge and SB450 southbridge, SAPPHIRE has added its own mix of design flair and an enthusiast-friendly BIOS to create a motherboard which is strong in most areas.

[H]ardNews 6th Edition - [H]ardForum [H]appenings

[H]ardForum [H]appenings:

Welcome to the Monday edition of [H]ardForum [H]appenings. Let�s take a minute and get caught up on the popular case mods going in the forums right now. The DOOM III: Project Mars Citycase mod has been updated! The mod is in its final stages and looks amazing. Bonzanego's Project: MorningStar is coming along nicely as well. And finally, the Project: Batman Begins case mod has been updated and they have added a webcam for you to watch the progress of the case assembly. Those of you who have completed their systems and just want to show them off, I suggest the post a picture of your rig thread. I would also check out the show off your water cooled system thread here too. Moving on to hardware, do you have a NVIDA 7800 GTX based card? Jump into this thread and have your card compared to others. For your Deal of the Day, I suggest hitting NewEgg Hot Deals thread for some great deals. Runner up in the DotD department is this Antec Neopower PSU for $65. Pretty nice deal but you better get in on it while the getting is good! Our For Sale & Trade forum is second to none. If you want to buy sell or trade anything on the internet, this is the place to do it. As always, have fun and we�ll see you in the forums!

[H]ardNews 5th Edition

Gaming On Movie-Style Screens?

How about a gaming center that allows you to game it up on screens that range from 17 inches to 13 feet? Would you pay to play at a gaming center that offered huge screen gaming? Listen to this one:

Then there's the "half-pipe," which features a screen that is 20 feet wide and 12 feet high. Another creation is a sphere, which is 20 feet in diameter and eventually will offer a 360-degree wraparound gaming effect. The gamer sits inside the sphere on a robot that rumbles, banks, and spins out, providing many of the same effects as a flight simulator.

BBC To Sell MP3s?

Get this, the publicly funded BBC wants to start selling MP3s like the big names in the tech industry are currently doing. What is up with that? Would you guys here in the states buy music from PBS?

The publicly-funded broadcaster is testing software called MyBBCPlayer to let users download its TV and radio programing, and plans to use its powerful presence to take its place among Internet media giants like Google.

[H]ardNews 4th Edition

Cooling:

Thermaltake Aquabay M1 @ TechPowerUp - Thermaltake Golden Orb II @ Pro-Clockers - Zalman Reserator 1 Plus Fanless Watercooling System @ XYZ Computing - Mushkin Heatsink Preview @ Viperlair - Silenx iExtrema 92mm 14dBA Fans @ Techgage - Akasa EVO 120 @ nVnews - Titan L-Type Vanessa @ SDMLanReview

Etc.:

JBL On Stage iPod Music Player @ The Tech Zone - Microsoft Wireless Optical Desktop 5000 @ Hardware Pacers - Logitech G5 Laser Mouse @ Gaming Nexus - Portable Storage Guide @ HardCoreWare

Cases & Modding:

Silverstone LC14M HTPC Case @ DreamWare Computers

[H]ardNews 3rd Edition

Linux: 2.6.13 Kernel Released:

All of you alternative OS guys will be pleased to hear that Linus Torvalds has announced the release of the 2.6.13 Linux kernel.

Linus Torvalds announced the release of the 2.6.13 Linux kernel. "The most painful part of 2.6.13 is likely to be the fact that we made x86 use the generic PCI bus setup code for assigning unassigned resources," Linus began. "That uncovered rather a lot of nasty small details, but should also mean that a lot of laptops in particular should be able to discover PCI devices behind bridges that the BIOS hasn't set up."

Coffee = Health Drink?

According to this study, coffee delivers more anti-oxidants than cranberries, apples or tomatoes. Hell yeah, my daily 6 shot latte should ensure that I live forever!

Coffee might soon be considered a health drink following a study showing it is a surprisingly rich source of anti-cancer agents.

BitTorrent Out, eDonkey In:

Apparently BitTorrent is losing its popularity while eDonkey is making a comeback. Interesting story but I have to seriously question the claims made in this study that say 70% of all traffic is P2P related.

A new study by ISP network service CacheLogic suggests that file swappers around the world are converging on a new favorite technology, possibly in response to pressure by Hollywood studios.

[H]ardNews 2nd Edition

Free Tech Magazines & Publications:

We have a brand new batch of free tech publications for you guys (magazines / whitepapers) out today for you guys, all are FREE for the taking. First up we have Oracle Magazine which contains technology strategy articles, sample code, tips, Oracle and partner news, how to articles for developers and DBAs, and more. Next, BizTech magazine addresses critical technology issues facing small businesses as they strategically leverage IT to position their companies for growth. Followed by IDC Technology Assessment: Platespin. In this exclusive report, you will learn about what IDC is saying about the server consolidation market, as well as how PlateSpin products and solutions address your data center needs. Finally, Secure Online Data Transfer with SSL, This guide aims to provide an introduction to SSL security covering the basics of how it operates.

[H]ardNews 1st Edition - Press Releases

Velocity Micro PCs At Best Buy:

Best Buy has extended its technology offerings to include Velocity MicroT PCs in its stores today and online at BestBuy.com in September. Velocity Micro is a major player in the gaming PC space. This partnership represents the first push into retail for the upscale computer builder, which had previously sold systems exclusively through the company's website, www.velocitymicro.com.

"We are excited to provide our enthusiastic PC customers with a great retail partner to experience first hand the difference our computers offer in immersive game play and powerful multimedia capabilities," said Randy Copeland, President & CEO of Velocity Micro. "We want to give Best Buy shoppers an upscale computer selection to accompany the terrific service and advice they are accustomed to today."

MS Commends Authorities On Zotob Arrests:

Microsoft Corp. today commended Turkish and Moroccan law-enforcement authorities and the FBI for their prompt arrest of the individuals believed to be responsible for the creation and distribution of the recent Zotob and Mytob worms. Microsoft worked closely with law-enforcement agencies in the U.S. and overseas to provide investigative and technical support in the investigation. On Thursday, Aug. 25, law-enforcement authorities in Morocco and Turkey arrested the individuals believed to be the authors and distributors of the worms, less than two weeks after the worms were unleashed.

Mr. Fantastic Effects Done On Mac G5s:

Toronto-based Soho VFX had lobbied hard for the right to create Mr. Fantastic�s elastic effects for the movie �Fantastic 4.� But after a year of wringing squishy limbs through complex frames, the effects shop wondered at times if the character�s infinite reach might exceed its considerable grasp. �These shots on �Fantastic 4� were the most challenging we ever ran into,� says Soho VFX supervisor Allan Magled, in the same breath letting on that he would happily re-up for a sequel.

Sunday August 28, 2005

[H]ardNews 6th Edition

A Gracious Thank You:

Thank you to everyone who emailed me this weekend, with posts or just to say good job. Sorry if I didn't get back to you personally, but my spam filter is still in training. Thank you to Kyle, Steve and especially Chuck for helping me to make my first weekend on the job painless and smooth.

Die Spammer DIE!

Well they aren't spammers in the traditional sense, but man I've always loved that title. Five people were indicted in a spyware e-mail scam. You get can the nitty gritty here.

The cards, Lover Spy promised, deployed software to track everything that unsuspecting recipients did on their computers. About 1,000 people signed up before the FBI shut the company down in October 2003.

This is certainly a step in the right direction. Let's hope to see more of this in the near future.

War of Words Over DVD Format:

Apparently there is a bit of conflict in the story over the unifed format between Toshiba and Sony. Catch the full rundown in this article.

�The picture has been painted that Sony is open to discussions and it�s Toshiba that�s shutting the door,� said Mark Knox, advisor to the HD-DVD promotion division at Toshiba. �It is Sony that is not willing to negotiate evenly.�

Porn Site Sues Google:

And no I didn't get it backwards. I guess Google's image display is allowing people access to the sites *ahem* library shall we say. Check it out here.

Perfect 10 claims that Google is pretending to fulfil the function of an image search engine, but that in fact Google is displaying, free of charge, thousands of copies of the best images from many popular porn sites. Seemingly, Google's aim would be to draw more traffic to its site.

And don't anyone get any ideas! This post is purely for information purposes only!

[H]ardNews 5th Edition - [H]ard|ware Mania Sunday!

ASUS P5LD2 Deluxe WiFi-TV Mobo:

The guys over at HardwareZone have a nine page review up on this mobo. You can read their thoughts here.

ASUS certainly knows how to play to the tune of both PC power users and entertainment enthusiasts alike. ASUS' AI Life is an initiative towards modern home entertainment and in our opinion, the P5LD2 Deluxe represents its crux. Although the board was based on the mainstream Intel 945P Express chipset, ASUS has kept its feature list similar to what is available on their flagship P5WD2 Premium. The fact that these two boards literally share the same components and functions, comparisons become unavoidable and we think that ASUS has unwittingly created competition within its own line up. Let's look at a detail breakdown of what we mean by this.

Abit AW8 Mobo:

The staff over at Phoronix have some nice things to say about this incarnation of Abit. You can read the whole thing here.

Having not reviewed any Abit motherboard in nearly a year, we were completely ecstatic when this new sample arrived in our labs. Since the AW8 utilizes Intel's new flagship Chipset, the i955X (Glenwood), we had expected to encounter some problems along the way considering all of our recent Pentium D compatible motherboards had suffered from one Linux problem or another, but there were simply no software related problems! In addition, using a stock install of FedoraCore4, all components, including the Gigabit LAN controller and Abit AudioMAX, worked without any strenuous configurations.

Creative SoundBlaster X-Fi Xtreme Music Edition:

Primotech has the scoop on this card. Read the whole review.

Creative has long been known by many enthusiasts for its genuinely quality products, tarnished software sets, and somewhat �imaginative� marketing. I�ve sworn by the SoundBlaster and Audigy lines for years and sworn at the Nomad Zen Jukebox when we first launched. So, when I first caught wind of the company�s latest soundcard venture, code-named at the time �Zenith,� I was skeptical. That skepticism quickly turned to cynicism when the company went public with the �X-Fi� product line not too long ago. Because, lord knows we need more �X-anything� nomenclature.

DDR Roundup. 1Ghz and Beyond:

The X-bit Labs crew decided to get some top notch DDR2 from Corsair, Mushkin and OCZ. Then Just for kicks, they decided to push the stuff as hard as they could, and see where it would end up. Read the eleven pager now.

Using new overclocker-friendly modules of DDR2 SDRAM � Corsair TWIN2X1024A-5400UL, Mushkin XP2-6400 DDR2 and OCZ DDR2 PC2-8000 Platinum Enhanced Latency Dual Channel � we are going to check the performance of Pentium 4 systems with DDR2-1067 and DDR2-800 SDRAM. You will also see how memory frequency and timings affect the overall performance of a Pentium 4 platform.

Sunbeam Shakeup:

Xtreme Resources took some various Sunbeam products, and reviewed them for your viewing pleasure. From front panels to fans, this is a nice broad review.

Sunbeam Company, a true art innovator in the field of PC modification and accessories at all aspects, targets o�n providing the top quality and state of art computer products to high tech PC users. We dedicate outstanding high quality control as our number o�ne priority and deliver the products with the highest level of excellent performance, as well as the coolest innovation and an appearance that draws your attention.

Alienware Area-51 5300:

And finally today, the boys over at DriverHeaven take an entire Small Form Factor, and run it through the wash. Their thoughts on it can be read here.

Small Form Factor systems are continuing to grow in popularity, and rightly so, a well built SFF should in theory be more than capable in fulfilling all your computer needs with the minimum of noise and deskspace. We even published an editorial showing you how to create your own, however we know some of you don't either have time or the skills to do this and want a high end prebuilt system to your specifications .....

If you don't think you have the skills why not hop over to our Small Form Factor Systems forum, and learn the tricks of the trade from our SFF experts.

[H]ardNews 4th Edition - All New Stuff

New Worms:

Another day, more viruses to report. Make sure you read this and be aware of this. Make sure not to patch your box from anything that doesn't come directly from Microsoft!

A Trojan horse not connected to the Zotob blitz on vulnerable Windows 2000 PCs appears to be taking advantage of the scare by posing as a patch against the Microsoft bug.

New and Improved Internet:

It looks like the National Science Foundation is getting backing for a new, more secure version of what we know today. Read the full article here.

The National Science Foundation is backing a major initiative that could lead to a completely new internet architecture, with built-in security measures and support for ubiquitous sensors and wireless communications devices, among other things.

Betcha those "other things" have to do with pr0n..err...new forms of on demand media...ya.

New Self Driving Car:

You read it right. GM is planning on launching a self-driving car in 2008. You can read the whole thing here.

think KITT, people, but without the smarmy voice (well, we assume, anyway).

Now imagine being moving along at 55 in mad traffic. Then *WHAP* BSOD! Self driving car gets p3n'd. We'll just have to wait and see how "stable" that advanced computer is.

New Cute USB Flash Drive:

Yes, I said cute, just wait till you see this thing.

The first bunch of MimoBot drives, labeled the Cosmo Series, will debut on Sept. 9 at a coming-out party befitting funky flash drives. The fete will take place at Giant Robot New York and will feature MimoBot designer Yahid Rodriguez and DJ DB spinning tunes. Why didn't I get to go a party like that when I bought a flash drive that looks like a key chain?

I can see this becoming way out of control WAY fast.

New Hybrid Car Battery:

Ok now read this one. Be sure to pay close attention to how they endorse their new hybrid car batteries.

A recent marketing video from battery maker Valence Technologies makes its point with all the subtlety of a Jerry Bruckheimer film: Unlike the competition's, its batteries don't blow up.

Now, this has got to be the GREATEST pitch I have ever read. Buy our batteries, that way your green car won't EXPLODE when you're driving. Unless it blue screens, oh, wait...

[H]ardNews 3rd Edition

Tivo in The Black:

It seems as though Tivo has turned another profit in the second quarter. However, by the looks of this article, they may be in deep doo doo.

TiVo's plan, it seems, is to concentrate on adding subscribers at the expense of continued profitability. In much the same way as the mobile phone companies subsidize handsets in order to gain customers, TiVo plans to reduce the cost of the boxes, the prices of which they feel are a hindrance to better uptake in the market. Certainly, some customers feel the monthly charges on top of the cost of the box itself are too much to stomach.

I guess the jury is still really out on this one, only time will tell us what exactly is going to come out of it.

Microsoft Vs. Apple Vs. Google:

The author of this article makes the interesting observation that maybe it's Apple that MS should be worried about, and not Google at all.

What the heck Google is up to is a favorite topic of conversation this week in high tech circles. What's driving this is a combination of things including the new Google Toolbar, Gtalk, but most especially the company's announcement that it will shortly sell another $4 billion in shares. What does Google plan to do with all that money, people are wondering?

The Little Laptop Motor That Could:

Need some juice for your dying laptop battery? No problem! For "tens of thousands of dollars" you can have this snappy little laptop engine. Read here.

If you can't bear to be away from your laptop during that camping trip to deepest Borneo, help may soon be at hand. Lightweight generators powered by methanol are now on the market... for the rich, at least.

Wasn't the point of camping to get AWAY from technology anyways!?