Although most people are looking forward to the Intel Nehalem CPUs, an upgrade that maintains the mPGA604 socket platform is very attractive for many in the server space. Additional cores and performance tweaks can have a significant impact with server operations. Intel's Xeon 74xx series processors, formerly known as Dunnington, pack a mighty benefit in just moving up from a quad-core processor to hex-core solution, having six cores on a single die. However, the enormous 12MB to 16MB L3 cache also helps to ensure all six cores can access high performance main memory a lot more effectively. The massive L3 also limits the "cache syncing" traffic required between CPUs, which has been an important bottleneck for prior Intel server platforms. Boasting a 10% to 20+% performance increase per core, two additional cores per CPU package, and an easy upgrade path that only requires a BIOS update, the newest Xeon 7460 is certainly worth consideration for those that would prefer a simple upgrade for now.
Intel is now shipping a dual-core model of the widely popular Atom netbook processor. The processor is ideally suited for netbooks, meeting both the low cost and low power requirements needed for the netbook market. The new Intel Atom Processor 330 runs at 1.6GHz, offers 1MB of L2 cache, and has an 8W TDP. The processor also utilizes the very affordable DDR2 667 RAM. Intel's Atom 330 ships as an integrated package, with the Intel 945GC Express chipset. The chipset features the integrated Graphics Media Accelerator 950 and Intel High Definition Audio solutions.
The Super Talent MasterDrive OX SSD features a new multi-channel SATA-II interface that offers enhanced read and write performance. The 2.5" drives use multi-level cell (MLC) memory, and provide speeds up to 150MB/s read and 100MB/s write. Available capacities include 32GB, 64GB, and 128GB, and prices range from $149 to $419. The update for the Super Talent single-level cell (SLC) PX series SSDs are available in capacities of 32GB or 64GB, and priced at $499 and $849, respectively. The drives boast 170MB/sec read and 130MB/sec write performance.
At the time of this writing, Elpida holds the crown for the fastest DDR3 modules at 2.5Gbps. The new memory modules have a specially engineered design that is based on a new copper interconnect process and circuit technology that enables faster speeds and an ultra-low voltage operation of 1.2V - 1.5V while conforming to DDR3 specifications.
The Dell Studio Hybrid is one of the smallest PCs on the market. According to Dell, the PC is 80% smaller than standard desktops and uses 70% less power than a typical system. The small design is quite nice, allowing for placement almost anywhere, and making portability a snap. The Studio Hybrid comes with 6 interchangeable color sleeves and a extra bamboo design. As for specifications, the Studio Hybrid offers up to 2.6GHz Intel processor, 4GB RAM, 320GB disk drive, and Sound Blaster Audigy HD integrated audio. Other features include an optional TV tuner, slot loading optical drive, wireless keyboard/mouse, and WiFi. Prices range from $499 to $2026 at the time of this writing.
The ioDrive from Fusion-io was announced quite some time back, with specifications and information on the product. However, Windows drivers were not available until recently, and the product was not readily available for purchase until today. DVNation has become the Internet's exclusive distributor for the ioDrive.
Blaze Media Pro is a powerful all-in-one audio and video converter for CD, MP3, WAV, WMA, OGG, MPEG-1, MPEG-2, AVI, WMV, MOV, Flash (SWF and FLV), iPod, PSP, 3GP, etc.; editor; recorder; CD/DVD ripper; audio, video, data CD/DVD burner for DVD, VCD, and SVCD; and much more. Joe Tex from Shareware Junkies has written a review for the all-in-one multimedia software that gives newcomers an idea of what to expect.
The most newsworthy feature of the HP Elitebook 6930p is no doubt the 24 hour battery life the notebook boasts. Battery enhancements and power-saving hardware selections have been combined to yield this milestone achievement. The new battery option is 12-cell, ultra-capacity, and each hardware option has been hand-picked for its battery saving benefit, including an Intel SSD for storage and the highly efficient HP Illumi-Lite LED display. Other specifications for the notebook include Intel® Core™ 2 Duo processor P8600 (2.40 GHz), 14.1-inch WXGA+ display, up to 4GB RAM, LightScribe DVD+/-RW SuperMulti with double layer support, ATI Mobility RadeonTM HD 3450 graphics, 2 MP Webcam, Intel 802.11a/b/g/draft-n wireless, and built-in broadband.
The Epson Artisan 800 is an all-in-one printer series recently launched that is packed with numerous impressive features. It offers WiFi fax, automatic document feeding, a 7.8" smart-touch panel, 3.5" LCD, and ultra high resolution photos. The Epson Artisan 800 will be available this month, with an estimated retail price of $299.99.
Amazon has officially launched a new Video on Demand service that offers no-hassle, cross-platform streaming movies and TV shows. The web site offers a clean and simple interface for easily streaming content to a PC or Mac. Amazon claims 40,000 movie and TV titles to choose from, both new and old content.