Monthly Archives: October 2008

12

If you’re looking for a P45 motherboard, the MSI P45 Diamond is an excellent choice.  The Intel chipset (Eagle Lake) based motherboard is laced with incredible features, and is compatible with most LGA775 processors, like the Intel Core 2 Quad, Core 2 Extreme, Core 2 Duo, Pentium Celeron Dual Core, and Celeron. The image below showcases the boxing:

MSI P45 Diamond Motherboard Box

General Features Included

The physical dimensions of the product are 9.6 x 12 inch, and it is designed to exhibit compatibility with most current LGA775 processors. Here is the list of other general features one can expect from the motherboard.

  • Dual-core and quad-core support
  • The product is endowed with an 8-pin ATX12V connector, along with a 24-pin main power connector and 4-pin ATX12V connector
  • The motherboard supports dual-channel DDR3 RAM technology (up to 8GB)
  • Up to 2000FSB
  • Two PCI-e 2.0 x16 slots
  • Most importantly, the onboard audio device is a Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi Xtreme Audio

Advanced Features Available

MSI has always made an effort to offer innovation and advanced features in their products, including motherboards. The latest product P45 Diamond motherboard is no exception.

  • The motherboard boasts “Green Power” for the highest level of efficiency compared to rival products
  • The Northbridge features an advanced, 2-phase power design
  • Hi-CAP, the conductive polymerized capacitors, are also implemented in the design
  • A high definition, surround sound audio system is provided that offers 7.1 channels of audio output
  • Networking support is provided via Fast Ethernet, Gigabit Ethernet, and a Realtek RTL8111C network adapter
  • The BIOS enables ACPI 2.0 as well as DMI support

Circu-Pipe cooling has always been the trademark of MSI motherboards, however MSI has implemented a new liquid 2in/2out NB waterblock for enhanced cooling with this latest release.

Intel’s ICH10R Southbridge offers as many as 12 USB 2.0 ports and 6 SATA 3.0 ports. Also, server-class DrMOS is provided for impressive power efficiency, low temperatures, and enhanced stability with extreme overclocking. The design is able to maintain a working temperature that is as much as 16 degrees C lower than Mosfet-based options.

XpressCool technology is included in the design to offer zero noise and effective heat dissipation. RapidBoost is another new feature that is designed to help in achieving the highest overclock possible.

The packaging includes a large number of cables, including six SATA cables, three SATA power cables, an eSATA converter kit, and IDE and FDD cables. A backup CD and user manual are also provided.

The MSI P45 Diamond sells for about $275 through most sources.

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Patriot Viper Triple Channel DDR3 RAMIt’s now Patriot’s turn to release their tri-channel DDR3 memory kits for Intel’s Core i7/Intel X58 Express Chipset. 3GB and 6GB capacity kits are available featuring the award-winning Viper heat shields.  All models are engineered to offer an attractive balance of speed and latency while maintaining the lower voltage requirements of the X58 platform.

 

Available Models:

  • 3GB PC3-12800 – Viper Series Low Latency Tri-Channel Kit
    1600MHz (3 x 1GB) 8-8-8-24
     
  • 6GB PC3-12800 – Viper Series Low Latency Tri-Channel Kit
    1600MHz (3 x 2GB) 8-8-8-24
     
  • 3GB PC3-12800 – Viper Series Enhanced Latency Tri-Channel Kit
    1600MHz (3 x 1GB) 9-9-9-24
     
  • 6GB PC3-12800 – Viper Series Enhanced Latency Tri-Channel Kit
    1600MHz (3 x 2GB) 9-9-9-24
     
  • 3GB PC3-10666 – Viper Series Low Latency Tri-Channel Kit
    1333MHz (3 x 1GB) 7-7-7-20
     
  • 6GB PC3-10666 – Viper Series Low Latency Tri-Channel Kit
    1333MHz (3 x 2GB) 7-7-7-20
     
  • 3GB PC3-10666 – Viper Series Enhanced Latency Tri-Channel Kit
    1333MHz (3 x 1GB) 9-9-9-24
     
  • 6GB PC3-10666 – Viper Series Enhanced Latency Tri-Channel Kit
    1333MHz (3 x 2GB) 9-9-9-24

The Viper series tri-channel RAM kits provide Intel’s latest XMP options for the Core i7 processors, which enable quick and easy overclocking with Intel’s X58 Express chipsets.

0

Foxconn X58 Renaissance MotherboardContinuing with the recent announcements of X58 motherboards, Foxconn’s X58 Renaissance offering will boast truly remarkable features.  Like all X58 motherboards, it supports triple-channel DDR3 memory, Intel Bloomfield LGA1366 (Core i7) processors, ATI CrossFire X multi-GPU technology, ICH10-R southbridge, etc.  However, what makes this motherboard stand out is the unprecedented four PCI Express 2.0 x16 slots, fourteen USB 2.0 ports, and impressive overclocking capabilities.  Otherwise, the motherboard supports up to 24GB of DDR3-1333/1066/800 memory via the six DIMMs, 7.1 channel HDA audio with Dolby Digital Live and DTS connect support, and a 6-phase power circuit for the CPU.  This will be one to watch for, especially if you use multiple RAID cards that require x8 or x16 PCI Express slots, in addition to one or more video cards.  So far, this is the only X58 motherboard offering four PCI Express x16 slots.

1

EVGA X58 SLI FTW MotherboardThis week marks the introduction of several of the most anticipated motherboards for the upcoming Intel Core i7.  Today, EVGA has provided information on their new X58 SLI FTW motherboard.

The motherboard is, of course, based on the Intel(R) X58 Express chipset for the Intel(R) Core(TM) i7 processors. The EVGA X58 SLI FTW motherboard features 6 DIMM slots for triple-channel DDR3 RAM, 2-way and 3-way SLI support, enhanced VDroop control, and the EVGA E-LEET Tuning Utility for easy, yet powerful overclocking.  The motherboard will be released next month alongside Intel’s next generation platform

EVGA X58 SLI FTW Motherboard Specifications:

  • Supports Intel(R) Core(TM) i7 Processors
  • Intel(R) X58 Express Chipset with the ICH10R
  • 6 DIMM Triple-channel DDR3 Memory Slots
  • 2-way and 3-way SLI as well as CrossFireX
  • EVGA Enhanced VDroop Control
  • EVGA E-LEET Overclocking Utility
  • 10 SATA II 3.0GB/s Ports and 1 e-SATA
  • 100% Solid State Capacitors

6

Road MiceFour Door Media has introduced a line of fully-functional wireless computer mice for PC and Mac that are designed to look like muscle cars.  Automobile models available include the Ford Mustang GT, Chevy Corvette, Dodge Charger, and Chevy Camaro. Each model features different colors and decals as well as headlights. The models are available for $44.95 each, and more models will be released soon.

0

Shortly after the release of OCZ’s triple-channel DDR3 memory kits, Corsair has now officially announced their offerings.  The DDR3 RAM, specifically designed for Intel’s next-generation Core i7 processors, will be available in six different variations with capacities of 3GB and 6GB and speeds of 1333MHz, 1600MHz, and 1866MHz. The models and their corresponding prices are listed below:

Corsair Triple Channel DDR3 RAM
Model # Specification Price
TR3X6G1866C9DF 6GB, 1866MHz DOMINATOR Kit with Airflow Fan $475
TR3X3G1866C9DF 3GB, 1866MHz DOMINATOR Kit with Airflow Fan $250
TR3X6G1600C8D 6GB, 1600MHz DOMINATOR Kit $300
TR3X3G1600C8D 3GB, 1600MHz DOMINATOR Kit $175
TR3X6G1333C9 6GB, 1333MHz Kit $230
TR3X3G1333C9 3GB, 1333MHz Kit $120

The Dominator kits have more advanced, finned heatsinks, while the others have standard heat spreaders. The 1866MHz models provide higher clock speeds than any of the OCZ triple-channel kits, but Corsair does not state whether or not the kits maintain the 1.65V limit above which Core i7 processors may be damaged.

Corsair’s DDR3-1333 kits are immediately available.  The DDR3-1600 models will be soon released also. The DDR3-1866 kits, however, will be available shortly before the Core i7 official release, which is scheduled for November 17th.

1

H2O iDive Underwater Speaker and iPod CaseThe H2O iDive 300 is a speaker that works underwater and also features built-in housing specially designed to fit an iPod. Connection is done inside the speaker housing so that your iPod remains safe from the water.  The unit works with several current and previous model iPods.  The iDive is waterproof up to 300ft, making it a perfect solution for those who’d like to listen to music or watch video while scuba diving, free diving, or snorkeling.  The H2O iDive is designed to allow video playback to be conveniently seen underwater directly through the speaker.  The iDive 300 is being sold for $349.99, and is immediately available for purchase.

24

Many of you here are either involved with the marketing of a web site for another company or operate a web site or blog of your own.  For either case, being able to immediately see if a page is cached by Google would be invaluable.  That’s exactly what the Google Cache Checker extension for Firefox offers.

Gadget Advisor is proud to offer the free Google Cache Checker extension for Firefox.  The extension is lightweight, and high performance, residing conveniently in the statusbar.  It displays a checkmark icon if the current page is Google cached. If it is not, the extension displays a red X.  This makes it very quick and convenient to see if a page is Google indexed. For example, if you’re visiting a directory to see about submitting, you can see if the page you’re going to be submitting into is indexed. Or, pages for advertising, etc. Firefox Extension to Check Page for Google Cache

If you would like to post about the Google Cache Checker extension, please do not host the extension file on another server.  Instead, link to this page for downloading.

Download the Extension Here (original version for best performance)
Download the Extension Here (version that features cache date on tooltip)

As most here will know, GPU is short for graphics processing unit, a piece of hardware that is dedicated to rendering graphics. Years ago, when the personal computer first found its way into homes, dedicated GPUs did not exist. All graphics were displayed and manipulated by the CPU (the central processing unit). As a result, only primitive images could be displayed, without performance issues. It wasn’t until the 1980s that the first dedicated GPU was invented.

Having a dedicated GPU means that all graphics related processing can be offloaded to the graphics card, which can do a much better job at rendering graphics. The more efficient the GPU, the better the graphics display. In the 1990s, with the rise of the Windows operating system, 2D GPUs capable of high resolution rendering took the market by storm. As hardware and software applications continue to evolve, more powerful GPUs are needed to cater to the more demanding needs.

Modern games and software applications often require significant graphics processing power, mainly for 3D rendering and image/video processing. Such applications include 3D games and graphics/video manipulation software like Adobe CS4.

GPUs have now matured to the point that they can be used for processing other than visual.  The latest GPUs, including the GeForce 8, 9, and 200-series with a minimum of 256MB of local graphics memory, can accelerate such operations as video decoding, encoding, editing, audio encoding, image manipulation, and content creation.  This first came in the form of video decoding.  It would take at least eight Intel CPU cores to match the video decoding power of a single GPU using the NVIDIA PureVideo HD or ATI UVD decode engine in many cases.  With software designed to utilize the GPU for processing, the GPU is much faster than today’s dual-core and quad-core CPUs for other operations as well.  Another example is video encoding and transcoding.  An applications such as Badaboom can be accelerated as much as 400% using GPU processing.

Adobe CS4 is a modern image manipulation software used by many professional designers. The software started out as an image editing software, commonly known as Adobe Photoshop. Adobe Photoshop was used by many designers to edit 2D images – mostly photographs. Since then, Adobe has released a suite of image and video editing software. The whole suite of software is known as Adobe CS4. In the complete suite, you find new features that were not possible before the existence of 3D GPU.  In fact, with the CS4 release, Adobe has implemented full GPU acceleration to massively improve the performance of almost every operation.

For example, when using Adobe Photoshop CS4, you find that real-time zooming, panning, and rotation of even the largest image appears smooth and instantaneous. In other words, you will not see flickering as you would otherwise experience with a different video card or software application.

The differences are even more remarkable when you are using Adobe Premiere CS4. Adobe Premiere is one of the best video editing software solutions in the market. As special effects in videos such as blur effects or turbulent noise demand a lot more processing power, Adobe Premiere CS4 is able to take better advantage of nVidia’s GPU accelerating capabilities. The user will find it easier to add graphics and video effects to a video, thus speeding up the work flow dramatically.

As you can see, GPU acceleration is becoming well established as a “partner” of the CPU for many intensive tasks.  More and more applications will use GPU acceleration in the near future to offer significant performance increases and even power operations that were formerly not approachable with CPU power alone.   The popular TMPGEnc 4.0 XPress from Pegasys Inc. is one such application that is highly anticipated to utilize CUDA GPU acceleration.

0

Hardcore Computer Reactor Custom PCHardcore Computer is a manufacturer of high-end custom computers.  Their latest offering is the Reactor model.  The system boasts the current most powerful components, including a Core 2 Extreme processor, up to 8GB of DDR3 RAM, up to three GeFoce GTX 280 GPUs, Creative Labs X-Fi audio, Wi-Fi antenna options, CMOS battery and BIOS reset switches, and much more.  However, what makes this system stand out the most from other custom computer options is the fact that all the heat-producing hardware components are completely immersed in a custom dielectric fluid (Core Coolant).  Similar in concept to the fish tank PC touted by Puget Custom Computers, the Reactor indeed houses the CPU, motherboard, video card, memory, and power supplies with the actual fluid.  The Hardcore Reactor approach is more advanced, long-lasting, and available to the general public.  Hardcore Computer claims this patented technique results in 10x the heat dispensation of the best water or air cooling solutions on the market.  Pricing for the Hardcore Reactor starts at $4,500, with components being fully customizable.

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