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July 2008
ISP-Level Internet Filtering in Australia (44 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 31-July-2008  05:48:30 (GMT +10) - by Agg

The Federal Government has declared recent trials of ISP-level internet filtering in Australia a success. ACMA said a range of filtering products were tested on network performance, effectiveness in identifying and blocking illegal and inappropriate content, and their customisation capabilities.

However, Electronic Frontiers Australia have labelled it a failure. “Leaving aside the serious privacy and free speech implications of mandatory ISP-based Internet filtering, the government’s own trial shows that ISP-based filtering can cause serious performance degradation and is not accurate enough to be forced upon people who don’t want to use them,” said EFA Chair Dale Clapperton.

The System Administrators Guild of Australia has strong concerns also. In 2008, less than one third of the traffic carried by a typical Australian ISP's backbone is HTTP. The most prevalent means of distributing online content, including the content unsuitable for minors which Senator Conroy claims to want to address, is BitTorrent (a peer-to-peer networking protocol). Short of blocking peer-to-peer and instant messaging systems outright, none of the systems tested were able to filter these protocols.



Sponsor Specials (0 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 31-July-2008  04:59:19 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Remember to keep an eye on our Sponsor Specials Forum if you're shopping around. In there our many sponsors have discounts and specials on video cards, office chairs, headphone amplifiers, GPS receptors for cameras and a range of general components. Worth a quick look. :)


Thursday Afternoon Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 31-July-2008  03:55:46 (GMT +10) - by DiGiTaL MoNkEY

Cooling:
Spire CoolFlow III CPU Cooler on XSReviews.
Thermalright TRUE Black 120 on PC Perspective.
SunbeamTech Freezer CPU Cooler on Virtual-Hideout.
Xthermal BTF Series Fans on DriverHeaven.

Storage:
Synology Disk Station DS508 NAS on Hexus.
Maxtor OneTouch 4 Mini 320GB on TechGage.
Sans Digital MS1U Media Saver on ASE Labs.
iStarUSA T5F-SS Mobile Rack on HardwareLogic.

Graphics Cards:
Galaxy GeForce 9500 GT 512MB on Guru3D.
Gigabyte 9800 GT Zalman Edition on TweakTown.
HIS GeForce HD 4870 512MB on Bjorn3D.
Nvidia GeForce 9500 GT 256MB on PC Perspective.
Leadtek WinFast GeForce 9500 GT on TweakTown.

Gaming:
Top Spin 3 (Wii) on IGN.
SoulCalibur IV (360) on EuroGamer.
Devil May Cry 4 (PC) on HookedGamer.
Sins of a Solar Empire (PC) on BoomTown.
Major League Eating (Wii) on IGN.
Geometry Wars: Retro Evolved 2 (360) on IGN.

Miscellaneous:
Logitech Pure-Fi Mobile on Trusted Reviews.
Lubix Stereo Bluetooth Headset on Overclockers Club.
D-Link DGL-4500 Xtreme N Router on SharkyExtreme.
Razer Piranha Gaming Headset on Hardware Secrets.



Wednesday Night (19 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 30-July-2008  11:27:27 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Lots of people are talking about a proposal that people's iPods could be searched by Customs. It suggests criminal sanctions for infringements on a commercial scale. Discussion in the forum here.

NASA are celebrating their 50th anniversary at the moment. They also have a huge image archive for searching and browsing.

Sniper spotted some mini HTPCs from Dell. The funky little PC comes in six different styles – five shiny plastic varieties and a bamboo sleeve that was first seen as a concept earlier in the year.

HWSecrets have a 250GB HDD roundup. We compared the performance of nine mainstream 250 GB SATA-300 hard disk drive models from Seagate, Samsung, Western Digital, Maxtor and Hitachi. Is there a big performance difference among them? Is it worthwhile to pay a little bit more and get a drive with a bigger buffer? If so, which is the fastest 250 GB in the market? Check it out!

PC Perspective compared tiny platforms. The VIA Nano processor, formerly known as Isaiah, is finally benchmarked and tested against the Intel Atom platform. Which of these two budget processors and systems is going to be the best value? Which truly offers the better power efficiency? HotHardware have their take on the battle also.

Didz spotted some pics of Pipe Networks' new submarine cable. The landing station doesn't look much, but capacity of 1.92 terabits per second will be coming in here soon to be dispersed across the nation.

Symon sent in this article about evolving circuits. As predicted, with each breeding cycle the offspring evolved slightly, nudging the population incrementally closer to the computer's pre-programmed definition of the perfect individual.

Richard Branson and Burt Rutan have unveiled their space tourism craft, thanks Mindy. The aircraft - WhiteKnightTwo - was rolled out for invited guests and media at an early morning (local time) ceremony in the Mojave desert, north of Los Angeles, at the headquarters of aerospace firm Scaled Composites.

From jim_beam_au: Can’t see any chatter about vmware esxi being free now. It’s the embedded version. Going to OEM’s as well, but a free download for end users. Seems to be the same version as what was sold for US$500. Discussion here.

Dan reckons your laptop is lying to you. What, you might wonder, does a "bar" of signal mean on a mobile phone? And while we're at it, five bars out of five on the "battery" display must mean there's still at least 80% of the charge left, right? Wrong.

EpHeSuS sent in this fantastic contraption timewaster. Similar physics sandbox idea to another recent timewaster, I think.



Wednesday Morning Reviews (2 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 30-July-2008  00:42:09 (GMT +10) - by DiGiTaL MoNkEY

Motherboards:
MSI P45D3 Platinum LGA775 board on HardwareZone.
Asus M3N78 Pro AM2+ board on Overclockers Club.

Displays:
Panasonic Viera 50" Plasma TV on Trusted Reviews.
Acer AL2002W 20" LCD Monitor on Benchmark Reviews.
Epson EMP-TWD10 LCD Projector on Trusted Reviews.
Samsung 2053BW 20" LCD Monitor on InsideHardware.

Storage:
Maxtor BlackArmor 160GB External on Digital Trends.
Thecus N5200B PRO NAS Enclosure on Overclockers Online.
OCZ Core SATA 64GB Solid State Drive on Guru3D.
QNAP TS-209 Pro II NAS on PC Reviews.

Graphics Cards:
ECS GeForce 8800 GT 256MB on phoronix.
Visiontek Radeon HD 4870 512MB on OC Cafe.
BFG Tech GeForce GTX 280 OCX on HardOCP.
MSI Radeon HD 4850 512MB on FudZilla.
AMD Radeon 4870 X2 Preview on Bjorn3D.
BFG GeForce GTX 260 896MB on Hardware Canucks.

Gaming:
Beijing Olympics 2008 (PS3) on TweakTown.
Guitar Hero: On Tour (DS) on Trusted Reviews.
NCAA Football 09 (PSP) on GamePyre.
Civilization Revolution (360) on GamingNexus.
Guitar Hero On Tour (DS) on GamingNexus.
Soulcalibur IV (360 & PS3) on DriverHeaven.

Miscellaneous:
Turtle Beach X3 Xbox 360 Headset on TechGage.
D-Link DGL-4500 Xtreme N Router on BCC Hardware.
Advent 4211 Netbook on Trusted Reviews.



Interesting Forum Threads (5 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 29-July-2008  09:44:56 (GMT +10) - by DiGiTaL MoNkEY

Remember we also have the live forum view which can be quite a cool thing to keep an eye on during the busy times.

What type of CPU do you Overclock? in Overclocking and Hardware.
Bought Something New and Want To Share? in Overclocking and Hardware.
Nuclear power can cut emissions & maintain supply in Current Events.
Your Photo of the Week (27 July 2008) in Photography, The Gallery.
The Big firewall of China is successful here in Current Events.
GPU Folding on Nvidia 8, 9 and 260/280 cards in Distributed Computing.
Starbucks chain 'bailing out' of Australia in Current Events.
ATI Radeon HD 4000 Series Discussion in Video Cards and Monitors.
Sonny Bill walks out on Bulldogs in Sport, Fitness and Health.
5 Most Worthless Uni Majors in Career, Education and Finance.
What happened to professional IT? in Business & Enterprise.
OCZ Core SSD 2.5" Coming to Australia in Storage & Backup.
E8600 Retail Processors are here! in Intel Hardware.
Post a Humorous Picture MkII in The Pub.
The BIG Apple iPhone 3G Discussion in Mobile Phones.
Xtreme Cooled Case Gallery in Extreme Cooling.
How To Video: PC Cable & Wire Management in Modding.
Show Me Your Guitars (Photos) in Musicians.
Black holes and Causality in Science.



PCDB Entries (6 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 29-July-2008  07:28:43 (GMT +10) - by DiGiTaL MoNkEY

Some PCDB entries worth a look..

   

   

Remember, you can view the top-voted PC's for the following criteria: Looks, Functionality, Effort, Ingenuity and Overall. The latest gallery entries are here.



Tuesday Afternoon Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 29-July-2008  03:11:00 (GMT +10) - by DiGiTaL MoNkEY

Memory:
G.Skill F2-8800 Pi Series CL5 4GB Kit on techPowerUp.
Kingston HyperX DDR2 PC2-9200 2GB kit on CPU3D.

Chassis:
Thermaltake VH6000BWS Armor+ on Hardware Logic.
Raidmax Iceberg Mid Tower on Virtual-Hideout.
Thermaltake M9D Mid Tower Case on R&B Mods.
Lian Li V1010 Mid Tower Case on NinjaLane.

Cooling:
ZEROtherm Nirvana NV120 CPU Cooler on TweakTown.
Asus Lion Square CPU Cooler on FrostyTech.
Cooler Master Hyper Z600 CPU Cooler on DriverHeaven.
Gelid GC-1 Thermal Compound on TweakTown.

Storage:
WD Caviar Blue SE16 640GB on InsideHardware.
Samsung 64GB SATA Solid State Drive on ExtremeTech.
CineRaid Quad-bay SATA RAID Device on Think Computers.
Kingston DataTraveler 2GB on Overclockers Online.
IronKey Secure Flash Drive on Trusted Reviews.

Graphics Cards:
Evga GeForce GTX 260 896MB on Overclock IA.
Leadtek PX 9600 GSO Extreme 384MB on TweakTown.
Sapphire Radeon HD 4870 512MB on t-break.
Palit GeForce GTX 280 1GB on Motherboards.
Sapphire Radeon HD 4870 512MB on ASE Labs.

Input:
Wolfking Trooper MVP Gaming Mouse on I4U News.
OCZ Alchemy Series Elixir Keyboard on Club OC.
Man & Machine UCool Keyboard on I4U News.

Miscellaneous:
Steelseries Siberia Headphones on MetkuMods.
Evga UV Plus+ UV16 USB Video Adapter on Legit Reviews.
Toshiba Satellite A300D 15" Notebook on Inside Hardware.
Socket SoMo 650 Semi-Rugged PDA on Trusted Reviews.



Tuesday Morning (9 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 29-July-2008  00:33:45 (GMT +10) - by DiGiTaL MoNkEY

Just a reminder that the distributed computing forum has been made public and accessible by this quick link: www.ocau.com/dc

PCWorld sat down with Justin Rattner, Intel’s chief technology officer, to talk about what may be coming in the next 40 years. At Intel Corp. , just passing its 40th anniversary and with a myriad of chips in its historical roster, a top company exec looks 40 years into the future to a time when human intelligence and machine intelligence have begun to merge.

Hot Hardware has the latest details from Intel about their new 'System on a Chip' processors. The products actually consist of new System on a Chip designs that integrate a Pentium M core, with a Memory Controller Hub (MCH), I/O hub (ICH), and in some cases specialized security, TDM, and data path acceleration engines, which have been dubbed Intel QuickAssist Technology.

Bit-tech gets hands on with the latest game previews from Electronic Arts; Facebreaker and Red Alert 3. With hardcore fans lamenting some of the recent instalments after Westwood’s acquisition by Electronic Arts and others citing the console ports as signs of an impending apocalypse. Can this latest instalment in the Red Alert franchise restore the series to glory even in the eyes of the elitist hardcore?

Digit-Life compare top dual and quad core processors from Intel and AMD. Even though we state repeatedly that these top products differ very much, and their comparison makes little sense, our readers still want to know the truth, no matter how bitter it is. Well, here is your bitter truth as it is..

Legit Reviews has published Part 2 of their energy saving motherboard comparison from Gigabyte and Asus. We set both kits to the same voltage in the review to be fair, but our audience thought this was a mistake and so did Gigabyte who sent a number of concerned e-mails and even a number of phone calls trying to get in touch with us, so we take another look to find out which is more efficient.

Dell has issued a system update for notebooks that are affected by Nvidia’s recently announced video problems affecting mobile GPUs (graphics processing units). A list of notebooks and links can be found here.

Mindy sent in details of a new search engine is called "Cuil" (pronounced as "Cool") and is being run by Anna Patterson (Creator of TerraGoogle), Russell Power and Tom Costello, all of whom are former Google employees. Check it out here.

Karl stumbled upon an internet browser plug-in called PicLens. It transforms your browser into a full-screen, 3D experience for photos and videos across the web.



Monday Morning Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 28-July-2008  00:13:53 (GMT +10) - by DiGiTaL MoNkEY

Motherboards:
MSI P45 Platinum LGA775 board on Motherboards.
Asus Maximus II Formula LGA775 board on HardOCP.
ASRock X48TurboTwins-WiFi LGA775 board on BCCHardware.
Asus P5QL-E LGA775 board on Overclockers Club.

Cooling:
Tuniq Tower 120 CPU Cooler on MikhailTech.
Thermalright TRUE Black 120 on Virtual-Hideout.
Cool IT Systems Nvidia SLI Cooler on techPowerUp.
Xigmatek & ZEROtherm CPU Coolers on X-Bit Labs.
Asus Triton 85 CPU Cooler on bit-tech.

Graphics Cards:
Sapphire Radeon HD 4870 512MB on Overclockers Club.
XFX GeForce GTX 260 XXX Edition on Motherboards.
Asus EN 9800GTX TOP 512MB on HotHardware.
HIS Radeon HD 3650 512MB on Motherboards.
XFX GeForce GTX 260 XXX Edition on Hardware Secrets.

Power Supply:
Rosewill RX630-S-B Xtreme 630W on TweakTown.
CoolerMaster UCP Series 900W on FudZilla.
NZXT Performance Power 800W on Pro-Clockers.

Gaming:
Wall-E (PC) on bit-tech.
Devil May Cry 4 (PC) on IGN AU.
Soul Calibur 4 (PS3) on 1UP Gaming.
Battlefield Bad Company (360) on GamesXtreme.

Miscellaneous:
IconBIT HD360W Multimedia Player on X-Bit Labs.
Asus M70Sa 17" Multimedia Notebook on TechGage.
Samsung HT-BD2 Blu-ray HT System on Trusted Reviews.



Geek Food (8 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 27-July-2008  03:35:36 (GMT +10) - by Agg

I just wanted to point out some truly amazing baking going on in the forums. ... I don't think I've ever said that on the news page before. Anyway, now you're hungry, check these out from the Geek Recipes forum:


BFM made 1337sagna
accompanied by bird-stares

Snagage made Taiwanese
Sweet Plum Chicken

Deluxe mushrooms on toast
is Amfibian's latest


bevros has white chocolate
and macadamia biscuits

as well as Olive &
Feta-crusted lamb roast

while kombiman made stew
with beef and coopers stout


pugsley is marinating
steak in beer

while username_taken prefers
bourbon marinade with his

and Dink's pancakes
contain bacon!



Sunday Morning (2 Comments) (link)
 Saturday, 26-July-2008  15:32:11 (GMT +10) - by Agg

There seems to be some kind of TF2 Stupidity thing going on tonight (Sunday).. check it out if TF2 is your thing, I guess. :)

Nigel sent word that Optima is under administration. ASX-listed PC assembler, Optima, has appointed voluntary administrators to several of its business units. The news comes just days after share trading in the company was suspended.

WD's recent VelociRaptor was of course a 2.5" HDD in a 3.5" frame. Well, now they've released the 2.5" version, report TechConnect. Aimed at the enterprise segment, the 2.5-inch Mini V-Raptor has a SATA 3.0 Gbps, a 1.4 million hours MTBF (mean time before failure), 16MB of buffer memory and is basically the same thing announced in April, but without the IcePack.

Over on the Ubuntu Forums, someone reckons Foxconn have been making their boards incompatible with Linux on purpose, although from the sounds of things they're fairly keen (now) to get it sorted out. Interesting read anyway.

Frostytech have updated their top heatsink rankings. Quickly find your way to the current Top 5 heatsinks according to FrostyTech. The first pair of lists is for Intel Heatsinks, broken down by lowest temperature and quietest operation. The second set of lists are for AMD Heatsinks. Lifespan indicates if the heatsink is new, old or end of life.

Agent spotted this article about supercooled quantum computing. Last year the company had a 16-qubit quantum computer that founder and CTO Geordie Rose claimed was the most powerful quantum computer ever built and the first ever to run commercially-relevant applications. This year it has 28 qubits, it can recognise photos of famous landmarks – and you might soon be able to use it over the Web.

DriverHeaven have a roundup of Inno3D 9600 GSO, BFG 9600 GT & BFG 8800 GT video cards. Each card will be tested at a minimum of 1680x1050 on a selection of gaming and media tests and we shall also take a look at the thermal performance and overclocking potential for those who want to squeeze a little more value out of their purchase.

PCPerspective look at what seems to be a rights battle over the C-Media 8788 chip. ASUS and Auzentech have different variations on the story, and our analysis looks at many theories, but it looks like the real loser in this story is the consumer.

Internode have quite a ranty editorial about the R18+ games debate, or one journalist in particular. Thursday night on the ABC's program Q&A, where the audience are given the opportunity to ask a group of politicians questions on any topic, Independent Senator Nick Xenophon, Nationals Senator Barnaby Joyce and Labor Senator Mark Arbib were asked a question from a "random person in the audience" regarding the lack of an R18+ rating for video games in Australia.



Saturday Morning Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Saturday, 26-July-2008  00:32:36 (GMT +10) - by DiGiTaL MoNkEY

Processors:
AMD Phenom X4 9350e on bit-tech.
Intel Core 2 Quad Q9300 on Trusted Reviews.

Cooling:
Thermaltake BigWater 780e on Hardware Secrets.
Scythe Zipang 140mm CPU Cooler on MadShrimps.
Thermalright Ultra-120 Extreme on Pro-Clockers.
Noctua NH-C12P CPU Cooler on Hardware Canucks.

Storage:
iStar T5F-SS SATA Hard Drive Rack on OCIA.
Super Talent MasterDrive 60GB SSD on PC Perspective.
Western Digital VelociRaptor 300GB on X-Bit Labs.
PQI Cool Drive U350H 8GB on TechwareLabs.
Tagan Icy Box IB-285StU-B USB Enclosure on Bjorn3D.

Graphics Cards:
Sapphire Radeon HD 4870 512MB on Hardware Secrets.
AMD Radeon HD 4850 and 4870 on RegHardware.
Asus Trinity Tri-GPU HD 3850 Preview on HotHardware.
PowerColor HD4870 512MB on Overclock3D.

Power Supply:
Seventeam Thundering 1000W on jonnyGURU.
Hiper Type M Mk II 780W PSU on Pro-Clockers.

Gaming:
Beijing 2008 (PS3/360) on DriverHeaven.
Flatout: Headon (PSP) on GamingNexus.
Space Invaders Extreme (DS) on Trusted Reviews.
Age of Conan (PC) on Gamepyre.

Miscellaneous:
Asus Eee PC 901 Notebook on t-break.
Nokia 6220 Classic Mobile on Trusted Reviews.
Razer Mako 2.1 Speaker System on ThinkComputers.
Panasonic DMP-BD50 Blu-ray Player on Trusted Reivews.



Friday Night (2 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 25-July-2008  09:08:21 (GMT +10) - by Rezin

The GO3 Electronic & Entertainment Exhibition is being held at the Perth Convention Exhibition Centre next Friday thru Sunday. The GO3 Electronic & Entertainment Expo brings to Perth the latest in technology, communication, electronic games, in-car technology, communication, education & training, home audio & lots more. … Entry is FREE!

Hynix Semiconductor (manufacturers of SRAM, DRAM, FLASH and other semiconductor devices) has annouced that they will be closing their US plant. The closure is part of efforts to shift production to more modern 300-mm wafers. … Park said average prices of memory products had dropped more than 50 percent due to oversupply and weaker than expected demand. Thanks Eric!

IGN Australia chatted to Chris Scholz and Graham Fuchs from Shaba Games, developers of Spider-Man: Web of Shadows. What we're trying to do most is -- again -- make the city interactive. To me the place we really wanted to put our money was "action -- reaction". As Graham was saying, if you punch a guy into a storefront you want to see shattered glass go up, you want to be able to pick up the things on the street and hock 'em, and really interact.

PC Perspective have updated their Hardware Leaderboard. Our HWLB is a one-page solution to finding our recommendation for system builds at various price points. This month the Dream System gets GTX 280s, AMD's GPUs make a return to the high-end and mid-range recommendations and the VelociRaptor pretty much takes over everything.

TweakTown have published the first of a two part guide looking at how you can choose the best speaker system for your needs. When selecting a new speaker system for your swish new gaming rig, PS3 or XBOX360, the choice can be somewhat daunting for the average punter. However, with some understanding of what is out there, things can be de-mystified quite fast.

The Tech Report check out Nvidia's nForce 750a SLI chipset. A lack of high-end Phenom processors ultimately tanked the appeal of Nvidia's nForce 780a SLI chipset, but its little brother, the 750a, brings the same MCP silicon and HybridPower trickery to $150 motherboards.

Tech ARP have updated their Intel Core 2 Performance Comparison Guide. Specifications are all well and great, but can you really tell how much faster is one processor from another? Both Intel and AMD are trying to do just that with their model numbering scheme. But with over 30 SKUs, the Intel Core 2 family of processors has become a confusing bunch of numbers.

Guru3D put the GeForce 9800 GTX+ in SLI through its paces. The first GeForce 9800 GTX+ arrived here like a week and a half ago, and although at first I'd figured that the card could not make that much of a difference, that proved to be a bit of a paradox. … The minute that review was posted I started receiving email, emails asking us to test this product in SLI and then compare it with AMDs Radeon 4850 HD in Crossfire.



Friday Midday Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 25-July-2008  02:38:44 (GMT +10) - by DiGiTaL MoNkEY

Memory:
Kingston HyperX PC3-14400 2GB Memory Kit on TweakTown.
Aeneon XTune DDR3 1600 4GB Kit on Overclockers Online.
OCZ Reaper HPC PC3-12800 DDR3 4GB Kit on Pro-Clockers.

Chassis:
Thermaltake Armor MX Mid Tower on Tweak News.
Hiper Osiris Mid Tower on Hardware Canucks.
NZXT Khaos Mid Tower on Hardware Secrets.
Lian Li Tyr PC-X2000 Full Tower on techPowerUp.

Cooling:
Coolermaster GeminII S on FrostyTech.
Nexus Real Silent PWM Fans on Tech Reviews.
Cooler Master Hyper Z600 on InsideHW.
Nexus HOC-9000 Heatpipe Cooler on FrostyTech.

Storage:
CRU DataPort USB/SATA Dual Drive RAID on TechwareLabs.
Super Talent Pico 8GB Flash Drive on Pro-Clockers.
Tagan Icy Box IB-3218 USB JBOD External on Bjorn3D.
Vantec NexStar MX Raid Edition on Pro-Clockers.

Graphics Cards:
VisionTek HD 4870 512MB on TheTechLounge.
Palit Radeon HD 4870 512MB on TheTechLounge.
Zotac GeForce 9600 GSO 384MB on TweakTown.
XFX 9800 GTX Black Edition on Trusted Reviews.

Input:
Logitech Quickcam Vision Pro on ASE Labs.
Mighty Mouse 5 Waterproof Mouse on I4U News.
Razer Lycosa Gaming Keyboard on DriverHeaven.

Power Supply:
Zalman ZM750-HP 750W PSU on PC Perspective.
BFG Tech LF550 550W PSU on jonnyGURU.
Koolance 1300W Liquid Cooled PSU on HardOCP.
Glacialpower GP-AL 650W PSU on MikhailTech.



PCDB Entries (0 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 24-July-2008  11:34:03 (GMT +10) - by DiGiTaL MoNkEY

Some PCDB entries worth a look..

   

   

Remember, you can view the top-voted PC's for the following criteria: Looks, Functionality, Effort, Ingenuity and Overall. The latest gallery entries are here.



Need a Tow? (22 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 24-July-2008  06:36:48 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Gibbon sent in this large pile of pics titled "Need a tow?" I can almost hear Jeremy Clarkson saying Oh, that's not gone well...

           

           

           

Hmm, I really need to find some decent gallery software for this kind of news post.



Thursday Afternoon (13 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 24-July-2008  04:03:37 (GMT +10) - by DiGiTaL MoNkEY

Rezin has updated his Greasemonkey scripts for the OCAU Forums, adding some handy features to enhance your experience. Feel free to suggest any modifications to these scripts, or a new script with features that other members may find useful too.

Games Radar list 100 of the lamest game-industry clichés. From the rambling screeds of the most pretentious critics to the half-literate scrawling of pre-teen forum posters, the common threads - once you know enough to spot them - make almost every piece of coverage read like it was written by the same guy.

HWiNFO32, the well-known hardware information application, has been updated and made free for all to download. HWiNFO and HWiNFO32 are professional hardware information and diagnostic tools supporting latest components, industry technologies and standards. Both tools are designed to collect and present the maximum amount of information possible about computer's hardware.

ABC expands its online presence with iView, a new online streaming platform allows users to watch TV shows on the internet. The free service includes a channel featuring the ABC's flagship news and current affairs programs. Six channels will be available to anyone with a broadband connection and will allow viewers to watch news, programs, cartoons, documentaries and arts.

A Japanese software company is stepping up the international promotion of its Sleipnir Web browser in the hope of capturing a 5% share over the next few years of a market dominated by Internet Explorer and Firefox.

TweakTown analyse the new ATI Catalyst 8.7 drivers and how they perform under XP and Vista. As we roll towards the end of the month, I have to admit we were a little worried when we hadn’t seen the latest Catalyst release. No doubt AMD have been extremely busy working on the latest HD 4870 incarnation; the X2.

Microsoft research has developed a competing technology to LCD, which it claims will provide brighter, cheaper screens and display perfect black colour. Microsoft researchers believe that there is still room for improvement and they feel that their telescopic pixel innovation may lead the way to displays with much higher contrast ratios and brighter colours.

Overclock3D get busy with two XFX GeForce GTX 260 XXX Editions in SLI. Their can be no doubting the ATI 4870 is a fantastic card for the money. The XFX GTX260 XXX on the other hand has a very slight performance advantage but for that slight advantage you are paying a premium. The decision therefore would perhaps be decided on how much you value that little extra performance.

Tom’s Hardware take you on a pictorial tour of Gigabyte, covering the Manufacturing process of some of your favourite motherboards and graphics cards. Gigabyte Technology a Taiwan-based manufacturer of computer hardware products best known for its motherboards. In addition to the design and manufacture of motherboards hosting AMD and Intel processors, the company also makes graphics cards built around the ATI Technologies and NVIDIA GPUs.

Digital Trends have published a quick guide to setting up your Sony Playstation 3 as a media hub. My digital media was scattered among various drives, computers, and discs. I wanted seamless central control over all of it, so I decided to use my Sony PlayStation 3. Now I can view or listen to all my photos, videos, and music via my TV screen, no matter where they are.



Thursday Afternoon Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 24-July-2008  03:10:20 (GMT +10) - by DiGiTaL MoNkEY

Processors:
Intel Core 2 Duo E7200 on TechARP.
Intel Core 2 Quad Q9300 on Overclockers Club.

Chassis:
Thermaltake Armor+ VH6000BWS on Big Bruin.
NZXT Tempest Mid Tower on Pro-Clockers.
Antec Three Hundred Case on Hardware Secrets.
Lian Li Tyr PC-X2000 Case on bit-tech.

Cooling:
Xigmatek Achilles CPU Cooler on FrostyTech.
ZEROtherm ZEN FZ120 CPU Cooler on CPU3D.
Themaltake DuOrb and MaxOrb on Icrontic.
Vigor iSurf II HDD Cooler on Legit Reviews.
Thermalright TRUE Black 120 on Virtual-Hideout.

Displays:
Asus VW223B 22" LCD Monitor on Trusted Reviews.
LG 52LG5000 52" LCD TV on Trusted Reviews.
Samsung SyncMaster 245B 24" LCD Monitor on CPU3D.

Graphics Cards:
ATI Radeon HD 4850 512MB on Trusted Reviews.
XFX Geforce GTX 260 640MB on FudZilla.
Palit Geforce 9600 GSO Sonic 768MB on MikhailTech.
Sapphire Radeon HD 4870 512MB on Hi-Tech Reviews.

Miscellaneous:
Samsung Steel Mobile on Trusted Reviews.
Asus P750 Windows Mobile Smartphone on Reg Hardware.
Trendnet Wireless-N Gigabit Router on X-Bit Labs.
Creative Zen X-Fi 16GB on Hardware Zone.
Kingston DataTraveler HyperX USB storage on InsideHW.



Wednesday Night (7 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 23-July-2008  11:16:26 (GMT +10) - by Agg

We're a little late reporting on this, but the Internet Industry Association has released a code of practice for Australian ISPs and content hosts. This is related to the legislation changes earlier this year. I haven't really digested it yet, but there's more info here and here, with discussion here.

PCStats have a beginner's guide to diagnosing bad memory. Does your Windows-based PC crash for no apparent reason? Well OK, mine does too, but does yours crash often? At random times? With Nasty blue Screens of Death? If the answer is "yes", you may very well have a memory problem.

Techgage report on the HOPE 2008 conference that occurred recently. The seventh HOPE conference was held this past weekend in NYC and I was there to take in the numerous talks. Such subjects covered were lock picking, Wikipedia's evils, YouTube, FOIA, hardware hacking and a lot more. Special talks were also given by Steven Rambam, Steven Levy, Adam Savage and Jello Biafra.

From g@z: I got this emailed to me today, dunno how recent it is. According to myepg, it appears that a TV station are trying to make it illegal to use an Electronic Program Guide to program any device to record a TV show. This means it would be illegal to look in the paper, see what’s on TV and then set your Media PC or any other device to record it. Fight the power and sign the petition here.

From DriverHeaven: We have released the final version of the popular DH Mobility Modder. this application now support almost every mobile chipset that ATI have released to this date. The final version is the end product of 2 years solid work and development from our coders. You can download this application for free over here.

HWZone looked at the ASUS Eee Box Nettop. Check out our hands on of the ASUS Eee Box, the first nettop to have made its way to our labs. Stay with us as we get our hands on action with this Intel Atom based nettop that may change the world of cheap miniature computing.



LG X100 Review (4 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 23-July-2008  04:19:59 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Ikariya has written up an impressively detailed review of LG's X100 ultra-portable notebook. Still much more expensive than say an EeePC, but when you think of the possibility of a device with a 10.6" screen that may nearly compete with a full-size laptop, there is a certain cool-factor to that. Its weight is even supposed to be the same as an EeePC at just over 1kg. So, I pulled out my wallet and went for it. Here is what I found after 1 week of putting it thru its paces...


click for the review!



Wednesday Morning Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 22-July-2008  22:55:07 (GMT +10) - by DiGiTaL MoNkEY

Memory:
G.Skill Pi PC3-12800 DDR3 4GB Kit on CPU3D.
Corsair XMS3 DHX 1600MHz 4GB Kit on LegitReviews.

Motherboards:
MSI P45 Platinum LGA775 board on NeoSeeker.
EVGA nForce 750i SLI FTW LGA775 board on bit-tech.
Gigabyte GA-EP45 DS5 LGA775 board on CPU3D.

Chassis:
Moneual Labs MonCaso 972 HTPC on OCIA.
Lian-Li PC-V1010 Aluminum on TechPowerUp.
Thermaltake M9 Mid Tower Case on NinjaLane.
Moneual Labs MonCaso 972 HTPC on Overclockers Club.

Cooling:
Xigmatek HDT-SD964 CPU Cooler on Tech-Reviews.
Thermaltake MaxOrb EX on Legion Hardware.
NZXT Sentry LX Fan Controller on TweakTown.
OCZ Vendetta 2 CPU Cooler on MadShrimps.

Displays:
InFocus IN83 DLP Projector on Trusted Reviews.
Acer P243W 24" Widescreen LCD Monitor on phoronix.

Storage:
OCZ Core Series SATA 64GB SSD on Benchmark Reviews.
Sans Digital MS2UT+ Black RAID Enclosure on ASE Labs.
SilverStone TS01 SATA External HDD Enclosure on OCIA.
EagleTech N-Series Pro HDD Enclosure on Virtual-Hideout.

Power Supply:
OCZ EliteXStream 800W PSU on Overclockers Online.
Gigabyte ODIN GT 800W PSU on TechWareLabs.

Gaming:
Final Fantasy IV (DS) on GameSpot.
Battlefield: Bad Company (Multi) on AusGamers.
Summon Night: Twin Age (DS) on GamingNexus.
Insecticide: Episode 1 (PC) on DriverHeaven.
Nintendo Wii Fit (Wii) on Digital Trends.



OCAU Wiki (0 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 22-July-2008  11:32:33 (GMT +10) - by Agg

OCAU's Wiki continues to grow, full of interesting info. Here's some recently new, updated or busy pages:

iPhone
SPORE
Linux Newbie Guide
Time Wasters
Aquariums
Vista Compatability List
Numerical Analysis
Programs and Links for Overclockers
Playstation Network IDs
Photo Printing Vendors
Team Fortress 2 Roll Call
RAID
Network Troubleshooting
Nlite Tutorials
MythTV



Photography Gallery (0 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 22-July-2008  07:02:43 (GMT +10) - by Agg

More recent shots from our Photography Gallery forum:















Early Tuesday Morning Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 21-July-2008  16:13:36 (GMT +10) - by Rezin

Power Supply:
Coolmax CUQ1350 on Pro-Clockers.
OCZ 780W ModXstream on Overclock3D.
Kingwin 1000w Mach 1 on Overclocker Cafe.

Motherboards:
ASUS P5E64 WS Professional on ThinkComputers.
ASRock P45R2000-WiFi on OCWorkbench.
Gigabyte GA-X48-DQ6 on Virtual-Hideout.

Graphics Cards:
Radeon HD 4870 X2 on Guru3D.
HIS HD 3650 512MB IceQ Turbo on HardwareLogic.
Leadtek Winfast GTX-260 on Bjorn3D.
VisionTek ATI HD 3870 X2 OC on Ninjalane.

Portable:
Toshiba Satellite M300-S1002X notebook on Digital Trends.
Apple iPhone 3G on TrustedReviews.
Apple iPhone 3G on AnandTech.
Flip Video Ultra digital camcorder on The Tech Zone.

Gaming:
WALL.E (PS2) on GameZone Online.
Unreal Tournament 3 (X360) on GameZone Online.
SimCity Societies Destinations (PC) on GamingHeaven.

Miscellaneous:
Microsoft LifeCam VX-5000 WebCam on Benchmark Reviews.
OCZ NIA Brain-Computer Interface on HotHardware.
BreathKey Digital Breath Alcohol Tester on Techware Labs.



Monday Evening (4 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 21-July-2008  08:08:02 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Wayne spotted this article about the godmother of electronic music. Derbyshire studied piano and mathematics at Girton College, Cambridge, and in 1962 joined the BBC Radiophonic Workshop, which had been created in 1958 to supply the latest technological sounds. It was meant to be a three-month secondment, but she stayed for 10 years.

XbitLabs report on a push from Seagate and Micro to standardise SSDs. “The industry needs to adopt more comprehensive standards for solid state drives to accelerate global acceptance of SSD products at optimal performance levels, for the greatest benefit to consumers,” said Mian Quddus, chairman of the board of JEDEC.

Wired check out the world's fastest electric vehicle, from Shelby Supercars. We know that at least one 500-HP electric motor is planned. SSC is exploring a twin-motor configuration that would yield twice the power while still emitting zilch. Rear-wheel drive and all-wheel drive variants also are on the table. Still some time until details are finalised though, it seems.

VooDoo sent in these cool pics of a giant crane going up. The crane is designed to travel on four or five trailers depending on its configuration and local road regulations. The Ilshofen job did not require additional counterweight so its was delivered on four trailers. There's more giant crane stuff in this thread in the forums.

HP have shattered the excess packaging world record by using 17 boxes to protect 32 sheets of paper, thanks Shawn. We've just had an email from a shaken Stephen Strang who this morning took delivery of a very, very large box from HP.

InsideHW have a roundup of seven 780G chipset motherboards. Popularity of this chipset is shown in accessibility of motherboard based on it, superb integrated graphics and few more useful options. This kind of systems are great for multimedia computers because 780G will provide for this type of machines enough performances and of course, like any ATi, good display of colors.

Timewasters from Matt: the last stand and the last stand 2. Not sure if we've seen those before, but they sound familiar. There's quite a few people playing this web-based problem solving game at the moment, with discussion in this thread.



Monday Afternoon (0 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 21-July-2008  03:06:56 (GMT +10) - by DiGiTaL MoNkEY

Internode has become the first national ISP in Australia to offer IPv6 to their customers. Internode's core network is now running IPv6 natively, and we now connect to many peers and upstreams directly over IPv6. IPv6 is the next generation Internet Protocol, primarily with longer IP addresses (128 bit vs 32 bit for IPv4) to overcome the pending shortage (perhaps as soon as 2011) of IPv4 addresses.

OCIA take a look at NVIDIA's Hybrid SLI technology, which is set to greatly reduce the power consumption of modern day computers while idle. Today we find nVidia and AMD/ATI competing on a new graphics front, combining a hybrid mix of integrated motherboard graphics chipset commonly found in low-cost mainstream computer systems with that of a more traditional separate discrete graphics card.

Tech ARP have published a guide covering RAID technologies and configurations. RAID is a computer concept that has been around for over twenty years. Since then, changes in technologies and use of computers have made RAID more popular in mainstream applications. Computers and hard disk drives become faster, smaller, and less expensive.

Hot Hardware have a quick comparison between the upcoming OCZ Core Series of SSD's and Western Digital VelociRaptor. The following are some quick numbers from HD Tach and PCMark Vantage that should give you a taste of both synthetic and semi real-world performance with the OCZ Core series, versus what might be the only SATA drive on the market today that can keep up with top notch SSD performance, the WD VelociRaptor.

Bit-tech compare pre-overclocked GeForce GTX 280 and 260 video cards from Asus, BFG and Zotac. Claiming performance increases of up to 12 percent, we decided to put these warranty covered overclocks to the test, and see just how much extra performance you get by paying extra for that bit more juice.

Digit-Life updated their i3DSpeed performance charts of popular graphics cards. The i3DSpeed project is dedicated to informing you about performance of a large number of graphics cards under Vista and in a wide variety of scenarios.

The following news is from AirQ: Last week, Kodak launched the first ever 50-megapixel camera sensor. The sensor, which produces an array of 8,176-by-6,132 pixels, further closes the gap between traditional film and digital photography. For professional photographers the new sensor will enable photographs to be taken at an unprecedented level of detail.

There is still a long ways to go before any of this is meaningful, but an international team of researchers has shown that it can control the quantum state of a single electron in a silicon transistor--even putting the electron in two places at once. Their discovery could help pave the way toward a practical quantum computer.

Scientists in Spain have developed an environmentally friendly cooling technology that does not harm the ozone layer. The research team has designed and built an absorption chiller capable of using solar and residual heat as an energy source to drive the cooling system.



Monday Morning Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 21-July-2008  01:54:05 (GMT +10) - by DiGiTaL MoNkEY

Processors:
AMD Phenom X4 9850 Black Edition on FutureLooks.
AMD Phenom X4 9350e on Trusted Reviews.

Memory:
G.Skill Pi PC2-8800 DDR2 4GB Memory Kit on DriverHeaven.
Mushkin Ascent PC3-12800 DDR3 4GB Kit on Hardware Canucks.

Motherboards:
ECS GF8200A Black Series AM2+ board on Big Bruin.
Evga nForce 750i SLI FTW LGA775 board on X-Bit.
Asus M3N78 PRO AM2+ board on Bjorn3D.
ECS GF8200A Black Series AM2+ board on Motherboards.

Cooling:
Asus Lion Square CPU Cooler on HardOCP.
OCZ Vendetta 2 CPU Cooler on Tech-Reviews.
Kingwin RVT-9225 CPU Cooler on AnandTech.
Nexus LXM-8200 CPU Cooler on Tech-Reviews.

Graphics Cards:
Inno3D GeForce 9800 GTX OC Edition on Guru3D.
Visiontek Radeon HD 4870 on Overclockers Club.
Zotac GTX 280 1GB AMP! Edition on TheTechLounge.
Asus EAH 3650 256MB TOP on Hardware Logic.
PNY XLR8 GeForce 9800 GTX OC on FiringSquad.

Input:
Wolfking Warrior XXtreme Gaming Keyboard on OC3D.
Cyber Snipa PWNAGE Desktop on TweakTown.

Miscellaneous:
Acer Aspire One Netbook on HardwareZone.
Plustek OpticFilm 35mm Film Scanner on FutureLooks.
BlueAnt Wireless Z9i Bluetooth Headset on Legit Reviews.
Samsung Q45 HSDPA Notebook on Trusted Reviews.



Late Sunday Night (1 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 20-July-2008  13:54:44 (GMT +10) - by Agg

There's a 160GB hard disk drive roundup on HWSecrets. I didn't know they were even still making 160GB HDD's! :) Of course there is the option of buying a 250 GB or bigger model, but on this review we decided to focus on the low-cost market, leaving models with higher capacity for a future round-up (you can count on it!).

HWZone meanwhile have a trio of GeForce GTX 260 video cards and some passive HDD coolers from Scythe and Titan are compared on MadShrimps. In this article we take a closer look at three solutions from Titan and Scythe which aim to cool your HDD without fans; two of these products, Titan TTC-HD90 and Scythe Himuro also help reduce noise.

Dan has his 200th letters column posted. In this edition: Yet another plug-in "power saver", magic spark plugs, the anatomy of a "data entry" scam, and hydrogen-power claims examined.

Wayne noticed that there were more entries in the periodic table of videos uploaded a few days ago. Quite a cool way to learn about some of the more obscure elements in the form of short videos.

Sniper spotted an interesting article about SSD's lasting longer than servers very soon. Samsung Electronics and Sun Microsystems said on Thursday that they had collaborated to develop a single-level-cell (SLC) NAND flash memory device for use in solid state drives that offers much higher endurance levels than any other flash memory device on the market today.

Anthrox sent in some pics of an extremely dusty PC. Found this PC at work a few months ago it had been running a few years in a manufacturing environment the hdd finally died.

Panasonic have a giant touchscreen on display. The dully named Digital Wall might not do multi-touch, but the size of the thing makes it a must-see if you ever get down there.



Interesting Forum Threads (0 Comments) (link)
 Saturday, 19-July-2008  10:47:58 (GMT +10) - by Rezin

Not much to do tonight? Some of these threads may interest you:

Shine a laser perpindicular to ground in Science.
No phone connected in unit block, whose responsibility? in Lifestyle.
Exploding PSU Warning: Corsair Lab Fun in Overclocking and Hardware.
Advice - RAID or Raptor in Storage & Backup.
How much would you save if you turned all appliances off vs. leaving them on standby in Electronics.
Whats the point of 8x phase over 16x phase? in Electronics.
Figuring out ohms of a speaker cab in Musicians.
Rate the PC of the person above you and suggest next upgrade! in Overclocking and Hardware.
Acquiring ADSL2+ in a Multi Dwelling Unit in Networking, Telephony and Internet.
Your Apple Desktops [Pic Thread] in Apple Hardware & Software.
Tips for creating website to be maintained by noob in Graphics and Programming.
32bit vs 64bit in Windows Operating Systems.
[MOVIE] The Dark Knight (2008) in Entertainment (TV, Movies, Music, Books, etc).
Bought Something New and Want To Share? Show it Off Here! | 56k No! | in Overclocking and Hardware.
Bought something new and want to share? Post it here. in Photography.
e2180 vs 5000+ in Overclocking and Hardware.
huge mobile crane built on site in Motoring.
2008 German GP Thread - Race live on 10HD in Motoring.
The Great Big iPhone Competitors Thread in Mobile Phones.
Shellshock 2 Banned in Games.
Let's Talk Film - Developing for Newbs in Photography.
KOTOR Sequel is Bioware Secret MMO in Games.
[SD]Black holes and causality in Science.
The War on Photographers in Photography.
Terminator 4 (Terminator Salvation: The Future Begins) in Entertainment (TV, Movies, Music, Books, etc).



Saturday Afternoon Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Saturday, 19-July-2008  03:01:42 (GMT +10) - by DiGiTaL MoNkEY

Memory:
Corsair XMS3 DHX 1600MHz 4GB Kit on TweakTown.
CSX Diablo PC3-16000 DDR3 2GB Kit on Overclockers Club.
Patriot PC2-9200 DDR2 2GB Kit on Elite Bastards.

Motherboards:
ECS P45T-A Intel P45 LGA775 board on Virtual-Hideout.
Gigabyte EP45-DQ6 LGA775 board on Pro-Clockers.
Sapphire Pure RS780G Hybrid AM2+ board on Hexus.

Storage:
OCZ SSD 32GB Solid State Hard Disk on OC3D.
Western Digital VelociRaptor 300GB on FutureLooks.
Ineo NA307 & NA302UE HDD Enclosures on Hardware Canucks.
Sans Digital MobileSTOR RAID Enclosure on TechWareLabs.

Power Supply:
Akasa Power Xtreme 1200W on DriverHeaven.
OCZ EliteXStream 1000W on PC Perspective.
SilverStone Decathlon 850W on Pro-Clockers.

Gaming:
Supreme Ruler 2020 (PC) on GamePyre.
Guitar Hero: Aerosmith (PS3) on DriverHeaven.
LEGO Indiana Jones (Multi) on FiringSquad.
Overlord: Raising Hell (PS3) on BoomTown.

Miscellaneous:
Nokia E71 Mobile Smartphone on RegHardware.
Samsung P2JAB 4GB MP3 Player on ThinkComputers.
Canon EOS 450D Digital SLR on Trusted Reviews.



Forum Projects (0 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 18-July-2008  11:13:37 (GMT +10) - by Agg


youngpro has triple-SLI
and liquid nitrogen

Terminatus is converting an
iMac to a PC

Clippit made some ghetto
driving pedals for his PC


hikeven has been modding
his sound card

Dodge M4S checked out the
Cooler Master Hyper z600

Slov built a custom
aluminium gaming PC



Team OCAU Pushing 2.5 Million Points Per Day! (10 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 18-July-2008  06:20:46 (GMT +10) - by DiGiTaL MoNkEY

OCAU's Folding@Home team has surpassed another milestone, contributing over 2.5 Million points in a day. They have also been out-producing the [H]ardOCP team in the last 4 weeks, and starting to eat into their 138 Million point lead.

The Nvidia GPU folding client has made a massive difference to the points generated and the scientific knowledge gained. The team is looking for 200 new 8800GT (or greater) cards to fold on, if you are ready to start, then check out this thread for instructions. Don't have a GPU to spare? Folding@Home works on your CPU as well!

If you would like to help science to learn about diseases like Cancer, Alzheimer's Disease, Parkinson's Disease, Huntington's Disease, Osteogenesis Imperfecta - possibly help find a cure for it and put OCAU back in the number one spot - then drop by the Distributed Computing section and see how you can be a part of it.

Go OCAU, Team 24!



Friday Afternoon Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 18-July-2008  05:36:44 (GMT +10) - by DiGiTaL MoNkEY

Motherboards:
XFX nForce 750a SLI LGA775 board on Bjorn3D.
Gigabyte GA-EP45T-Extreme LGA775 board on HardwareZone.
ECS P45T-A Intel P45 LGA775 board on OCWorkbench.
Gigabyte GA-MA790FX-DS5 AM2+ board on SharkyExtreme.

Chassis:
Thermaltake Armor+ MX Mid Tower Case on CPU3D.
Hiper Osiris Aluminum Case on TechPowerUp.
Tagan Black Pearl WCR Case on TweakTown.

Displays:
BenQ G2400W 24" LCD Monitor on OverclockersClub.
Sharp Aquos LC-42XL2E 42" LCD TV on Trusted Reviews.
LG Flatron L206WU 20" LCD Monitor on bit-tech.

Graphics Cards:
Palit GeForce 9600 GT Sonic 1GB on CPU3D.
Nvidia GeForce 9800 GTX+ 512MB on Hexus.
Force3D Radeon HD 4870 on InsideHardware.

Power Supply:
Sigma SP-700 700W PSU on HardOCP.
BFG Tech ES Series 800W PSU on bit-tech.
Cooler Master Silent Pro 700W on TechReviews.

Miscellaneous:
Sony Cyber-shot DSC-H50 on Trusted Reviews.
Apple iPod Nano Third Gen on Hardware Secrets.
TekNmotion Pulsar SX Gaming Headset on TechPowerUp.
Motorola ROKR E8 Music Phone on RegHardware.



Friday Morning (5 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 17-July-2008  23:43:03 (GMT +10) - by DiGiTaL MoNkEY

AMD had yet another disappointing quarter, announcing a loss of $1.189 billion including a $920 million write down of ATI operations. In addition, it announced that its board of directors elected President and COO Dirk Meyer as the company’s chief executive officer. Discussion on the forum.

Vr-Zone get busy with a graphics slugfest comparing ATI’s Radeon HD 4850 in Crossfire, HD 4870, and HD 4870 Crossfire configurations against NVIDIA’s GeForce GTX 260 and GTX 280. It's a good thing that AMD/ATI managed to stage a comeback in the graphics world. If not for them, we would be seeing nothing but absurdly high prices on NVIDIA's high-end cards. The RV770 has proved its worth against the aging G92 and the new GT200 architectures.

X-bit Labs continue with part ten of their 19" LCD Monitor roundup. This roundup covers 10 widescreen LCD monitors with 19-inch matrix and 16:10 aspect ratio’s from a variety of solution from Acer, ASUS, BenQ, LG, NEC, Samsung and ViewSonic.

ExtremeTech roundup 8 gaming headsets from a variety of companies and price points. We have reviewed a huge number of headsets over the years. Some offer sound to die for, and others are so tinny and bland they should simply die themselves. We present to you eight PC gaming headsets in this roundup.

Only one day to go until Intel marks its 40th anniversary, when it introduced its first PC microprocessor. A bit of history for you: Intel's original business plan was only 165 words long, contained three typos, and was intentionally vague to avoid attracting competitors too soon. By the end of 1968, Intel had raised less than $3 million in funding, as well as leased an office in Mountain View, Calif., hired close to 30 employees, and recorded $2,672 in annual revenues. Today, Intel has close to 82,000 employees and reported $9.5 billion in revenues for the second quarter.

Legit Reviews has Day 1 and Day 2 coverage from the E3 Media & Business Summit hosted by the Entertainment Software Association. Legit Reviews is there to bring you some show coverage. The 2008 E3 is an invitation-only event that offers you an inside view of the gaming industry, so read on as we show you what is going on at the event with this our initial coverage.

MadShrimps compare two Intel P45 motherboards, the MSI P45 and Asus Maximus II Formula. Before we actually make the change to the Nehalem series, we have a look at Intel's latest push in technology as they gave the P35/X38 chipset a few new updates, making it the best performing chipset for the S775 CPU: the P45 and X48 chipsets.

Some random timewasters: Bubble Elements Earth, Quadrato and Rome Puzzle.



Thursday Morning Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 17-July-2008  00:49:36 (GMT +10) - by DiGiTaL MoNkEY

Memory:
Adata PC2-6400 DDR2 4GB Kit on ThinkComputers.
Crucial Ballistix PC3-16000 DDR3 2Gb Kit on CPU3D.

Chassis:
Antec Three Hundred Case on HotHardware.
Tagan A+ CS-Monolize Case on Overclockers Club.
Thermaltake Sword M Case on PC Perspective.
Chieftec Aegis CX-05B Mid Tower on TechWareLabs.

Cooling:
Scythe Orochi CPU Cooler on TechReviews.
Sunbeamtech Core-Contact Freezer on bit-tech.
OCZ Vendetta 2 CPU Cooler on Hardware Canucks.

Storage:
Patriot Xporter XT 4GB Flash Drive on TechwareLabs.
Western Digital 150 GB Raptor X on TechArp.
Western Digital Passport 250GB USB on ASE Labs.
HP Media Vault Pro mv5020 on Trusted Reviews.

Input:
Saitek Eclipse 2 Keyboard on TechReviews.
Steel Series Ikari Mouse on TechReviews.

Power Supply:
BFG Tech LS680 680W PSU on jonnyGURU.
Coolmax CUQ-1350B 1350W on CPU3D.
Tuniq Miniplant 950W PSU on XSReviews.

Gaming:
NCAA Football 09 (360) on GameSpot.
Ferrari Challenge (PS3) on DriverHeaven.
Age of Conan: Hyborian Adventures (PC) on SI.
Unreal Tournament III (360) on DriverHeaven.
Secret Agent Clank (PSP) on Trusted Reviews.



HyRax1's Ubuntu Guides (0 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 16-July-2008  11:06:19 (GMT +10) - by Agg

I just noticed that HyRax1 has been posting some really great guides for all kinds of things involving Ubuntu. Worth a look if you're using this popular operating system:

HowTo: Use a Bluetooth headset with Ubuntu Hardy
HowTo: Get Internet via your Bluetooth-connected mobile phone with Ubuntu Hardy
HowTo: Make a bootable USB stick version of the Ubuntu Hardy LiveCD
HowTo: Sync your Evolution contacts with your Nokia N95 via Bluetooth on Ubuntu Gutsy
HowTo: Encrypt specific directories (not whole filesystems) in Ubuntu
HowTo: Pair your bluetooth phone with Ubuntu for file transfers etc



Wednesday Evening (22 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 16-July-2008  10:02:07 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Apparently an IT admin's tantrum has locked up the City of San Francisco's network, thanks AirQ. According to the office of San Francisco District Attorney Kamala Harris, Childs made changes to the city's Fibre WAN (wide area network), allegedly rendering it inaccessible to administrators. He also "set up devices to gain unauthorized access to the system," the DA's office said in a statement.

BenchMarkReviews consider the best CPU cooler performance for Q2 2008. After publishing the first quarterly comparison article of the series, our methodology was adjusted to include test results with both reference and performance cooling fans. A follow-up article comparing the Vendetta 2 vs TRUE vs HDT-S1283 was later published using the new methods, and the results more accurately illustrated the performance an overclocking enthusiast might receive compared to someone who buys the product and uses it in the stock form.

Phil spotted more Centrino 2 info on Intel's site. The next-generation chipset is 55 percent smaller than previous generations, enabling more innovative notebook designs. When combined with more readily available standards based components, Intel® Centrino® 2 processor technology offers the freedom and flexibility needed for innovative mobile solutions. InsideHW have their thoughts posted as well.

XFX have very kindly decided to give some cash back to early adopers of their GTX 280 and GTX 260 video cards who got stung by the early price drops, but sadly they're only extending the offer to USA and Canada. Boo.

Bit-Tech have a TF2 Sentry case mod, following up on the earlier dispenser mod. These two Valve-inspired mods are both absolutely jaw-dropping and the attention to detail and the level of devotion which has clearly gone into building these life-sized replicas is absolutely stunning.

Phoronix checked out OpenSolaris 2008.11. While OpenSolaris 2008.05 is only two months old, work at Sun is already underway in preparing for the second OpenSolaris release, which will be known as OpenSolaris 2008.11 and has been codenamed Jericho. OpenSolaris development packages for this next release, which are currently based upon Solaris Nevada Build 93, are now available through an IPS update along with early ISO spins.

Tweaktown look at overclocking your brain using a "gamer's pill". These are no ordinary supplements I’m soon to discover, they contain a little extra to help you focus and be able to concentrate more. Now, I’m a world class sceptic when it comes to the herbology department and I looked at the bottle like it actually contained snake oil.

Corsair have a somewhat amusing video of mystery "budget" PSUs going pop. Buying a cheap PSU is a false economy. Buying a high quality PSU from an industry-leading manufacturer such as Corsair is the only way to ensure that the product performs as advertised, and it is the only way to ensure that a PC will operate stably and reliably. Well, they would say that. :) But cheap PSUs are definitely something to avoid.

Here's some video card reviews: BFG's 8800GT OCX and 9600GT OCX on BootDaily, ASUS EN9600GT SILENT on Tweaktown and Leadtek WinFast GTX 280 on Bjorn3D.



Wednesday Afternoon Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 16-July-2008  03:02:27 (GMT +10) - by DiGiTaL MoNkEY

Memory:
Crucial Ballistix Tracer DDR2-800 4GB Kit on ThinkComputers.
Patriot Viper DDR3-1600 4GB Kit on Virtual-Hideout.

Motherboards:
Asus Maximus II Formula LGA775 board on HotHardware.
Evga nForce 750i FTW LGA775 board on HardwareLogic.
Gigabyte EP45-DS4 LGA775 board on Legion Hardware.
MSI P45 Platinum LGA775 board on FudZilla.

Chassis:
Antec Mini P180 Case On TechReviews
Thermaltake Xaser VI MX on Overclockers Club.
Thermaltake Armor+MX Mid Tower on Modders-Inc.

Displays:
Samsung SyncMaster 245T LCD Monitor on bit-tech.
Hyundai 22" BlueH HM22D LCD TV on Trusted Reviews.
Planar PD8150 DLP Projector on Trusted Reviews.

Storage:
Silicon Power Ultima 150 Flash Drives on ViperLair.
Seagate Cheetah 15K.6 450GB SAS HDD on ClubOC.
Crucial 32GB Solid State Drive on DriverHeaven.
Eagle N-Series Pro External HDD Enclosure on OCC.

Graphics Cards:
Diamond Radeon HD 4850 512MB on FudZilla.
Asus & Zotac GTX 260 OC Editions on t-break.
ATI Radeon HD 4870 512MB on Digit-Life.
Sapphire Radeon HD 4870 on Benchmark Reviews.



Tuesday Evening (0 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 15-July-2008  13:17:38 (GMT +10) - by aftahours

A heap of sites have got their hands on the new HD 4870 X2, which is essentially AMD taking two of the RV770 cores and whacking them on one PCB, so essentially I suppose it's the power of a pair of those running Crossfire on one board. Heaps of info here on Legit Reviews, Tech Report, and PC Perspective.

Looks like we won't be seeing any more SoundMAX sound cards integrated into motherboards anymore, as they have decided to cease development of new PC audio codecs in order to focus on other markets. More info here.

The OSXReality team have a heap of must have iPhone Games posted up. Since the debut of the App Store, there has been a flood of generic puzzle games and a good number of racing games. The accelerometer based steering for racing games is now becoming the norm, is this all iPhone gaming will consist of? Racing and puzzle games galore? Not if these guys have anything to do with it, check out these hidden gems.

Pretty interesting article posted on OCIA.net, about how much electricity your computer, printers, speakers etc are using and how much it costs per year.

Apparently Centrino 2 was announced recently, shortly after the 5th anniversary of the original Centrino mobile platform. Legit Reviews, Hot Hardware and PC Perspective lets us know what exactly is being updated.

Tech Report have compared seven 2.5-inch mobile drives (mechanical and SSD drives).

Legion Hardware have a Complete Crossfire Chipset Comparison posted up. By simply firing up 3Dmark Vantage we found that the new X48 chipset was able to provide 17% more performance than the older P35 chipset when using two Radeon HD 4850 graphics cards in Crossfire mode. More over, the X48 was less than a percent faster than the P35, which was just a percent faster than the X38 chipset. These numbers would not exactly have X38 owners rushing out to pick up an Intel P45 or X48 motherboard.

Guru3D have looked at BFG's Geforce 9800GTX H2OC. Which, yes, is a card that comes overclocked and watercooled. Full review here.



Tuesday Afternoon Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 15-July-2008  03:47:47 (GMT +10) - by DiGiTaL MoNkEY

Memory:
A-Data Vitesta DDR3-1600 2GB Kit on TweakTown.
Kingston HyperX DDR3-1600 2GB Kit on Virtual-Hideout.

Motherboards:
Asus Maximus II Formula P45 LGA775 board on OC3D.
Asrock Penryn1600SLIX3-WiFi LGA775 board on MadShrimps.
GigaByte GA-X48T-DQ6 LGA775 board on ThinkComputers.

Cooling:
ZEROtherm Zen ZF120 CPU Cooler on Pro-Clockers.
Xigmatek Porter N881 Chipset Cooler on DSM.
Coolink Chipchilla Chipset Cooler on TechPowerUp.
Noctua NT-H1 Thermal Paste on Overclockers Club.

Storage:
Verbatim 500GB USB2 External HDD on CdFreaks.
OCZ Rally2 32Gb USB Stick on MadShrimps.
Super Talent Pico-C 8GB Flash Drive on TweakTown.

Graphics Cards:
Sapphire Radeon HD4850 on Hi-Tech Reviews.
Diamond Viper Radeon HD 3870 on Hot Hardware.
ATI Radeon HD 4850 512MB on Digit-Life.
Sapphire Radeon HD 4850 512MB on CPU3D.

Miscellaneous:
iRiver Lplayer 8GB MP3 Player on RegHardware.
Samsung Instinct Mobile on Digital Trends.
Lubix UBHS-NC1 Stereo Bluetooth Headset in BigBruin.
Jabra BT8040 Bluetooth Headset on Blue Tomorrow.



Early Tuesday Morning (6 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 14-July-2008  15:48:41 (GMT +10) - by Agg

If your stats in Battlefield: Bad Company were recently erased, perhaps DICE and EA think you've been naughty. Players were said to be exploiting the game play mechanics to pad their stats over honest players, and over 3,000 of these stat padders have had their stats reset.

Apprently the world's oldest blogger, a 108-year-old lady originally from Broken Hill, died recently. Since early last year, she had written about 70 entries on her life experiences and posted them online, receiving feedback from all over the world.

Chemistry fans will enjoy these youtube videos of the periodic table. This channel will feature a video about each element on the periodic table.

There's a quick little page here on getting classic Mac System 6 working on your Nintendo DS. For whatever reason. :) Finally, turn on the DS and select MiniVMacDS. It will boot the disk images. From there, install (minimal) System 6 onto the blank disk image.

TechWareLabs cover deciphering Windows processes using Process Explorer. Having trouble figuring out what process or application is causing your machine to slow down? Want to take a shotgun to the process eating up 90% of your CPU but you can't figure out how? Our resident windows guru Jack explains you how to use a simple program to find out what is causing your computer to slow down and get rid of it.

Dan wants to chat about video cards. Someone went and asked me what the best current video card is, and in about three thousand words I think I may have found it. Or, at least, caused enough confusion to cover my escape.

Tweaktown consider the current state of Solid State. In our recent reviews, TweakTown has documented just how quickly the technology has come down from the clouds and landed right in the laps of enthusiasts. For users, the only thing that has held back wide spread adoption of solid state drives has been the enormous costs associated with the innovative technology.

Willy sent in a very strange timewaster, which involves girly slapping fights. Slightly more traditional is this quite fun totem destroyer from Matt.



Photography Gallery (0 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 14-July-2008  04:00:54 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Check out these recent threads in our Photography Gallery forum:

















Monday Afternoon Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 14-July-2008  03:31:55 (GMT +10) - by DiGiTaL MoNkEY

Memory:
Kingston 4GB DDR2-1066 HyperX Kit on TechwareLabs.
Mushkin Enhanced PC3-14400 2GB Kit on HardwareLogic.
OCZ Platinum PC3-16000 DDR3 2GB Kit on NeoSeeker.

Motherboards:
Gigabyte GA-EP45-DS3R LGA775 board on CDRinfo.
Asus Maximus II Formula LGA775 board on TechSpot.
Sapphire PI-AM2RS780G AM2+ board on Hardware Secrets.

Cooling:
SilenX IXC-120HA2 IXTREMA Heatsink on Hi-Tech.
Thermalright IFX-14 CPU Cooler on Big Bruin.
Xigmatek HDT-SD964 CPU Cooler on CPU3D.
Gelid Solutions GC-1 Thermal Compound on OCIA.

Graphics Cards:
VisionTek Radeon HD 4870 on Legion Hardware.
PowerColor HD 4850 512MB on TheTechLounge.
Nvidia GeForce GTX 260 on Trusted Reviews.
BFG Tech GeForce 9600 GT OCX on HardOCP.
Zotac GeForce 9800 GTX AMP! on X-Bit Labs.

Gaming:
Assassin's Creed (PS3) on R&B Mods.
Final Fantasy IV (DS) on IGN.
Metal Gear Solid 4 (PS3) on TechLounge.
Golf: Tee It Up (360) on IGN.
Buzz! Quiz TV (PS3) on Trusted Reviews.

Miscellaneous:
HP TouchSmart IQ506 PC on HardwareZone.
Nokia E71 Smartphone on Trusted Reviews.
Onkyo TX-SR576 AV Receiver on Trusted Reviews.
Aten CS1782 DVI KVM Switch on ExtremeTech.



Monday Morning (0 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 14-July-2008  00:26:35 (GMT +10) - by DiGiTaL MoNkEY

DriverHeaven has published the first preview of the upcoming AMD/ATI Radeon HD4870 X2. So what of a product to compete with the GTX 280? Well that is why we are here today, in the last day or so ATI supplied us with an early sample of the R700 giving us the opportunity to see how it compares to cards which are already on the market. Discussion on the forum.

Trusted Reviews have a go at installing Windows Vista on the MSI Wind. Contrary to popular opinion here, that I'm not the only one wanting to persuade Vista to run on a netbook, I'm going to tell you all how to do it, and whether it's worth the effort.

Shacknews Interview id Software's John Carmack and Marty Stratton. Recently I had a chance to talk with id Software co-founder John Carmack, as well as executive producer Marty Stratton. While the theme of the talk was Quake Live, we also covered topics ranging from the state of PC gaming to the potential of iPhone development.

Tom's Hardware compare 500GB notebook drives from Samsung and Hitachi. Although both drives have their strengths and weaknesses, it appears to us as if both manufacturers raced to the 500GB capacity point and jeopardized the balance among performance, capacity and energy efficiency somewhere along the way.

E3 2008 (formerly known as Electronic Entertainment Expo) is just around the corner, starting July 15th-17th in Los Angeles. You can find pre-E3 trailers and news coverage from the event on GameSpot, IGN and GameTrailers.

TechArp have updated their desktop graphics card comparision guide. Currently covering 355 desktop graphics cards, this comprehensive comparison will allow you to easily compare 18 different specifications for each and every card. We hope it will prove to be a useful reference. We will keep this guide updated regularly, so do check back for the latest updates.

The Tech Report have an interesting podcast covering the recent video card releases from AMD and Nvidia, as well as the PR shenanigans during these releases. We consider the pros and cons of the GeForce GTX 260 and 280 and the Radeon HD 4850 and 4870. In the tech news section, the editors cover the iPhone release, financial troubles for Nvidia, and the latest iteration of the Eee PC from Asus.



Interesting Forum Threads (0 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 13-July-2008  11:10:20 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Another quick snapshot of (some of) what's going on:

Deneb ES superpi screenshots in AMD Hardware.
Does windows wear out your hard disk faster? in Other Operating Systems.
Installing XP Pro w/SP3 onto a SATA drive in Windows Operating Systems.
Beware of the security update in Windows Operating Systems.
Fallout 3 Banned, stupid government! in Games.
Does RAM keep info when it is unplugged? in Newbie Lounge.
2yo-proof case in Overclocking & Hardware.
Greening the Data-Centre in Enterprise Computing.
highpoint 2320 RAID5 and few other tests (WD6400AAKS, ST31000340AS) in Storage & Backup.
World's smallest case mod? in Modding.
Controlling radio signals from PC in Electronics.
The BIG Apple iPhone 3G Discussion in Mobile Phones.
Tour of my home studio in Musicians.
Fish from vietnam in Geek Food.
QLDAF: Bayfish Trip (many pics) in Pets & Animals.
Parents' fear of needles brings back measles in Current Events.
Jack Thompson (anti-gaming zealot) recommended for permanent disbarment in Current Events.
Your Perfect 10 Car Garage in Motoring.
Can anyone identify grey cargo plane with black stallion on tail in The Pub.
20km charity run - please donate generously in The Pub.



Saturday Afternoon Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Saturday, 12-July-2008  02:22:23 (GMT +10) - by DiGiTaL MoNkEY

Motherboards:
ECS P43T-A2 Intel P43 LGA775 board on Pro-Clockers.
Biostar TPower I45 LGA775 board on Trusted Reviews.
Asus P5E3 Premium WiFi-AP @n LGA775 board on Phoronix.
ECS GF8200A Black Series AM2+ board on Hardware Secrets.

Chassis:
Moneual MonCaso 972 HTPC Case on 3DGameMan.
Lian Li Tyr PC-X500 Mid-Tower Case on Hardware Secrets.
NZXT Rogue Mid-Tower Case on Hardware Logic.

Displays:
Samsung 2263UW 22" LCD Monitor on Overclockers Online.
Sony KDL-32XBR6 32" LCD TV on Digital Trends.
Samsung SP-A400B Projector on RegHardware.
Hitachi UT42MX70 42" LCD TV on Trusted Reviews.

Graphics Cards:
BFG Tech 8800 GT & 9600 GT OCX on PC Perspective.
Force3D Radeon 4850 & 4870 on Guru3D.
Force3D Radeon HD 4850 on Legion Hardware.
BFG Tech GeForce 8800 GT OCX on HardOCP.
Zotac Geforce GTX 280 AMP! Edition on RegHardware.

Power Supply:
SilverStone Decathlon 800W on Phoronix.
Thermaltake Toughpower 1000W on Bjorn3D.
PC Power & Cooling 750W on ViperLair.
SilverStone Decathlon 700W on DriverHeaven.

Miscellaneous:
Razer Piranha Gaming Headset on TechWareLabs.
Sennheiser PC 350 Headphones on Digital Trends.
Nokia 6220 Classic Mobile on HardwareZone.
LapLogic AeroGel Extreme on Virtual-Hideout.
Pioneer Elite X-Z9 Stereo System on Digital Trends.



Saturday Morning (2 Comments) (link)
 Saturday, 12-July-2008  00:00:05 (GMT +10) - by DiGiTaL MoNkEY

Bit-tech compare no less than 11 cards over 450 tests, including the Nvidia GeForce GTX 280, GTX 260, 9800 GX2, 9800 GTX, 9800 GTX+, 8800 GT and AMD Radeon HD 4870, 4850, 3870 X2 and 3870; to find out what 2008's definitive graphics upgrade should be!

Legit Reviews compare energy saving motherboard technologies from Gigabyte and Asus. If there is not a major difference in the performance of the boards, then something else has to set it apart. These days users will look at price, bundle (including games), overclocking (for the enthusiast) and now, power consumption.

AnandTech has published a Mobile Buyer's Guide, ranging from entry-level notebooks all the way to high-end solutions. Considering most applications outside of gaming and high-end computing rarely come close to taxing even a two or three year old PC. With the laptop boom come many choices, and hopefully this guide has provided a bit more insight into what options might make sense.

Tom's Hardware analyse the Intel P45 chipset, while also pitting it against Intel’s own X48, X38 and P35 chipset based motherboards. The P45 is a transitional product that makes limited sense, It is not worth purchasing a P45 platform system, unless you insist on PCI Express 2.0 and want to avoid forking out the money for an X48 motherboard or a platform based on Nvidia’s nForce 790i Ultra SLI.

Tom's Hardware has also released Part 4 of their CPU Cooler Charts 2008, focused on low-cost CPU coolers. In no other class of components are the differences between individual products as pronounced as they are with CPU coolers. After all, the prospective buyer can't tell what kind of cooling performance to expect just from looking at a cooler, let alone its retail box.

Albatron Technology recently unveiled three new PCI graphics cards at Computex 2008. You read it right - PCI and not PCI Express! The PCI8600GT-256X, the PCI8500GT-256X and the PCI8400GS-256 are all VGAs that retrofit Nvidia’s recent GeForce 8 Series graphics onto older PCI technology; a great option for some HTPC's.

Display maker AOC has recently shown off a new 22" LCD Display that has a media player built into the monitor itself, without the need to use a PC when displaying photos, video’s and even music with its built-in stereo speakers. The 2230Fm supports MPEG-1, 2, and 4 video formats. The supported audio format are too numerous to list, but they include MP3, WMA, WAV, OGG, FLA, and M4A. Supported photo formats include JPG, TIFF, PNG, BMP, and GIF images with resolutions up to 8000x8000 pixels.

Now, just to round-up some gaming related news: No PS3 Price Cut Planned for This Year, Says Sony on PhysOrg. Mega Man 9 Coming To 360 & PS3, Mega Man 1 & 2 for Wii on IGN. No Far Cry 2 Demo Planned on EuroGamer. Atari Announces 360-Exclusive 'Race Pro' on VG247. Operation Flashpoint 2: Dragon Rising Trailer on ShackNews. Cliff Bleszinski Interview: Gears Of War 2 on CVG. Too Human Hands-On Preview on AusGamers.



Friday Night Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 11-July-2008  11:36:59 (GMT +10) - by Rezin

Motherboards:
Gigabyte GA-EP45 Extreme on OCWorkbench.
ASRock P43R1600Twins-WiFi on OCWorkbench.
Gigabyte GA-M78SM-S2H on Overclockers Club.
XFX nForce 790i Ultra SLI on TweakTown.

Graphics Cards:
Palit GeForce GTX 280 1GB on Techgage.
ASUS EAH4850 Radeon HD 4850 on OCWorkbench.
EVGA GTX 260 at 666MHz on Fudzilla.

Cases:
Antec Twelve Hundred ATX on Futurelook.
Apevia X-Supra Blue Special Edition on techPowerUp.
Zalman GS1000 on bit-tech.

Memory & Storage:
Corsair Dominator CM3X1024-1800C7DIN DDR3 on t-break.
Super Talent MasterDrive MX SSD on Benchmark Reviews.
A-DATA 16GB Turbo Compact Flash on techPowerUp.

Miscellaneous:
Alienware Area-51 m15x laptop on bit-tech.
Cooler Master Ultimate Circuit Protection 900W PSU on techPowerUp.



Friday Afternoon (0 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 11-July-2008  02:57:28 (GMT +10) - by DiGiTaL MoNkEY

Seagate unveiled the Barracuda 7200.11, the first 1.5-terabyte desktop hard drive to hit the market. The Barracuda 7200.11 hard drive combines proven PMR technology, components and expert manufacturing to provide 1.5TB of reliable storage for mainstream desktop computers, workstations, desktop RAID, gaming and high-end PCs storage. Discussion on the forum.

Massive Entertainment has released a free trial client for World in Conflict, allowing gamers to participate in the online multiplayer with those who have purchased the game at retail. Running from today, July 11 until July 22 2008, the trial will allow everyone to jump online and check out the multiplayer portion of the game on the same servers as owners of the retail game. Download it on AusGamers.

X-bit Labs have published a comprehensive 1TB hard drive roundup, comparing a variety of makes and models. There are the highs and lows of the tested drives but the most important point about them is the price factor. The price of a 1-terabyte drive has lowered by a half since the moment they hit the market – all thanks to the competition.

During the past few months, a group of specialists, along with other security experts, have discovered approximately 800 vulnerabilities in anti-virus products. Contrary to their actual function, the products open the door to attackers, enable them to penetrate company networks and infect them with destructive code. The positioning of anti-virus software in central areas of the company now poses an accordingly high security risk. Thanks AirQ!

After much anticipation, the Apple iPhone 3G has been released in Australia and around the world. In line with its release, iTunes 7.7 is available for download, MobileMe has been launched, the iTunes App Store is online and iPhone firmware 2.0 is available. Discussion on the forum.

A group of Australian university students have triumphed over 200,000 students from 100 nations to achieve first place in Microsoft’s 2008 Imagine Cup competition. The competition, which is now in its sixth year, is designed for students from around the world to showcase their talents and create an innovative solution to a real world problem. Thanks AirQ!

IGN AU take a look at the reasoning behind the banning of Bethesda's anticipated RPG, Fallout 3. The two page document outlines the classification board's reasons for refusing to classify the game for Australians; specifically, the intrinsic use of 'Chems', which are thinly-disguised narcotics that can be used during the game for various stat-modifiers. Discussion on the forum.

A new ultrafast optical switch on a chip could help speed up the internet in Australia by more than 6,000 per cent, say researchers. Professor Eggleton and colleagues say they have developed an optical switch that can eliminate of one of the bottlenecks in Australia's internet infrastructure. But for the Australian home user to benefit fully from such a switch, we will have to wait until fibre optics go directly to the home.



Thursday Afternoon Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 10-July-2008  05:32:46 (GMT +10) - by DiGiTaL MoNkEY

Motherboards:
Zotac nForce 790i-Supreme LGA775 board on X-Bit Labs.
ECS A740GM-A AMD740G AM2+ board on Digit-Life.
Sapphire PI-AM2RS780G AM2+ board on Overclockers Club.
Gigabyte GA-EX38-DQ6 LGA775 board on Club Overclocker.

Chassis:
Antec Three Hundred Case on Virtual-Hideout.
Raidmax Iceberg Case Mid-Tower on Hardware Secrets.
Thermaltake Armor+ MX Mid-tower on Legit Reviews.

Cooling:
Coolink GFXChilla VGA Cooler on Legit Reviews.
Kingwin Heat-Pipe Direct Touch CPU Cooler on HardOCP.
OCZ Vendetta 2 Heat-Pipe Cooler on Pro-Clockers.

Graphics Cards:
Asus GeForce GTX 260 TOP 896MB on OC3D.
ATI Radeon HD 4850 Crossfire on CPU3D.
Nvidia GeForce GTX 280 SLI on T-Break.
Asus EN9600GT TOP 512MB on X-Bit Labs.

Power Supply:
Etasis ET850 850W PSU on TechwareLabs.
Silverstone Zeus 1200W PSU on AnandTech.
Cooler Master 550W PSU on TechwareLabs.

Portable Devices:
Asus Lamborghini VX3 12" Notebook on Trusted Reviews.
Asus Eee PC 901 Notebook on NeoSeeker.
Asus Eee PC 1000 Notebook on Trusted Reviews.



Thursday Morning (4 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 9-July-2008  21:53:45 (GMT +10) - by DiGiTaL MoNkEY

Google has announced a new 3D virtual world called 'Google Lively'. The world is similar to Second Life, or the upcoming 'Home' for the Playstation 3. Users can create their own 3D "rooms," and deck them out with furniture and other accoutrements, in addition to being able to add themed music to complete your personalized virtual space in Google Lively; as well as being able to stream photos and video.

TechArp updated their Intel Core 2 processor performance roundup. In this article, we will be comparing the performance of the Intel Core 2 processors in five benchmarks - two game-based benchmarks and three application benchmarks. We hope to add on more and more results as we get hold of additional Core 2 processors over time.

Metku Mods shared their thoughts on the latest gamer cases from Antec. Earlier we reviewed the P180 Mini from the P1-family and now two cases from the range of Gaming Cases have arrived to our review. The cases this time are the 300 and the 1200, both of which follow the theme set by the earlier 900 model.

Bit-tech published an article comparing 2, 4, and 8GB memory configurations. With the increased availability and decreased price, enthusiasts are faced with a new question: is a 4GB kit or even an 8GB kit worth the cash splash over a basic 2GB? What scenarios warrant the extra memory? We find out!

They also had a chance to review the MSI Wind U100 notebook. Despite doing the obligatory review already, Bit-tech couldn't help themselves from taking apart the sub-notebook to see what's inside.

DriverHeaven review the latest factory overclocked GeForce GTX 280's from Asus and XFX. We will be putting them head to head in a variety of tests including gaming at 2560x1600. In addition to this we will also take a look at how each of the cards compares to various other products which are available on the market, including the Geforce GTX 260, and Radeon 4870.

I recently stumbled upon a company called Hybrid Medical Animations, and found myself blown away by the amazing 3D medical animations they had created. You can find the demo reel of their work here, or you can just check out their website.

This week the Escapist presents the latest episode from Zero Punctuation where Yahtzee reviews 'LEGO Indy'. Yahtzee is a British-born, currently Australian-based writer and gamer, when he isn't talking very fast into a headset microphone he writes a column for PC Gamer.



Wednesday Midday Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 9-July-2008  02:29:51 (GMT +10) - by DiGiTaL MoNkEY

Memory:
Aeneon XTune PC2-1142 DDR2 2GB Kit on TweakTown.
G.Skill PI PC3-12800 DDR3 4GB Kit on Hardware Canucks.

Motherboards:
Intel DX48BT2 LGA775 board on Motherboards.
Asus Maximus II Formula LGA775 board on CPU3D.
ECS X48T-A Black Edition LGA775 board on Guru3D.

Cooling:
CoolJag Programmable LED Fan on Overclockers Online.
Silenx Ixtrema CPU Cooler on Overclockers Club.
Gigabyte G-Power 2 Pro CPU Cooler on bit-tech.

Storage:
Sharkoon SATA Quickport Dock on Velocity Reviews.
Silicon Power 64GB SATA SSD on Benchmark Reviews.
Super Talent MasterDrive MX 60GB SSD on TweakTown.

Graphics Cards:
ATI Radeon HD 4870 Crossfire on DriverHeaven.
Evga 8800 GT 512MB Akimbo Edition on HardOCP.
Evga GeForce GTX 260 FTW Edition on Overclockers Club.
Gigabyte 9600 GT 1GB Turbo on Legion Hardware.
BFG Tech 9800 GTX H2OC WC Edition on HardOCP.

Miscellaneous:
HTC Touch Diamond Mobile on RegHardware.
Acer Aspire X3600 Desktop PC on Hardware Zone.
Hiyatek Laptop Cooling Pad on Big Bruin.
Asus M70SA-X2 17" Notebook on Digital Trends.



Wednesday Morning (0 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 8-July-2008  15:49:30 (GMT +10) - by Rezin

The next few are from AirQ, with the first looking at the U.S. Army's use of virtual training simulators. All of this is aimed at two major things. First, getting new soldiers familiar with how to work together as a team before they ever set foot on a real-life training battlefield. And second, getting the recruits to that point without having to use any ammunition, which can be quite expensive.

Pioneer have developed a read-only Blu-ray compatible disc that can hold 400GB of data over 16 layers. Pioneer invented a disc structure that can reduce crosstalk from adjacent layers, resulting in a 16-layer optical disc that can playback high-quality signals from every layer. … Each of the layers can hold 25 GB of data, the equivalent of one singel Blu-ray disc layer.

Sharp have unveiled an LCD TV which consumes only about a third of the power of a similarly-sized LCD TV. According to Sharp the television uses so little power it can even be run in areas not connected to an electricity grid, using a solar cell about the size of the television itself.

The last from AirQ is an article on the RACV's ranking of the most stealable cars. RACV chief engineer Michael Case said: "Clearly there are big differences in the results. But the fact that some manufacturers do particularly well shows you can include all the features needed for theft protection. You can discuss this article here. Thanks AirQ!

techPowerUp have an interview with Alex Mei from OCZ Technology. While most consumers know OCZ as a memory manufacturer the company was previously a heatsink and video card manufacturer before I joined. During my time here we evaluated a number of areas that we believe we could innovate and add value, and followed up with many diverse introductions, but we always stayed focused on high-end solutions.

Techgage look at three motherboards using the Intel X48 chipset. With so much X48 selection on the market, choosing the right board can be tough. To help make the choice easier, we are taking a look at three such boards all at once, ASUS' DDR2 Rampage Formula and also the DDR3 ECS X48T-A and Intel's DX48BT2.

t-break put an NVIDIA GTX 280 SLI setup through its paces. From past experiences, we've seen that SLI or Crossfire add quite a bit of overhead (SLI especially) and doubling the GPUs certainly doesn't result in doubling the performance- far from it actually. We already had nVidia's reference card and thus, when we received the ASUS GeForce GTX 280, we wanted to see how fast can it get with an SLI setup.



Interesting Forum Threads (0 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 8-July-2008  12:18:03 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Bored? Check these out:

[Team.AU] E8500=6128MHz, Biostar P45 + Corsair PC10000 in Intel Hardware.
Fudzilla: AM3 chips will work in AM2+ socket in AMD Hardware.
AMD’s Physics Secret Revealed: It’s Havok.. in Video Cards.
Why all PC enthusiasts owe thanks to ATI in Video Cards.
Hypothetical ATI + Nvidia + PhysX in Video Cards.
Ultimate Linux Router in Other Operating Systems.
HowTo: Use a Bluetooth headset with Ubuntu Hardy in Other Operating Systems.
Poll: What web browser do you use? in General Software.
DLP projectors - rainbow effect in Audio Visual.
small electronics project/ prop in Electronics.
Using cheap eBay GPSs for other things in Electronics.
OCAU Server Upgrades in Business & Enterprise Computing.
Call of Duty 5 - World At War in Games.
Golden Axe - Beast Rider in Game Consoles.
Apple iPhone 3G Discussion: Australian Launch 11th July 2008 in Mobile Phones.
Beef and Guinness (Coopers Stout) Stew in Geek Recipes.
Aussies may get limitless downloads in Current Events.
Most stealable cars? How does yours rate? in Motoring.
Kids from school who were picked on - where are they now? in The Pub.



Tuesday Evening (5 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 8-July-2008  08:04:11 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Hans Reiser has apparently led police to the location of his wife's body. Reiser, known in programming circles for his ReiserFS file system company, testified for 10 days during his trial during which he was scolded by the judge for giving often-rambling answers and for arguing with the prosecutor. Teddybear spotted this related Wiki page.

A judge recently ordered YouTube to turn over all user histories to Viacom. Viacom wants the data to prove that infringing material is more popular than user-created videos, which could be used to increase Google's liability if it is found guilty of contributory infringement. Discussion in this thread.

Here's a cool TF2 Dispenser Mod, thanks InTheFade. In the pictures below you can see for yourself just how gorgeously the Dispenser is when it's fully unveiled and put together.

We may not yet have flying cars, but perhaps we can have contact lens displays soon. Parviz argues that ironically, the current display sizes in mobile computers and phones hinder rather than help miniaturisation. "The display size is one of the main reasons that laptops, cellphones, PDAs, etc are not smaller today. If we move the display to a contact lens, we can significantly remove the physical constraints on mobile devices."

A few people sent in this amusing The Website is Down video. It shows why you should never trust reports from users. ;)

I couldn't find an official message, but a few places including this blog note that AVG are issuing a patch today, to stop the "fake traffic" issue we mentioned earlier.

From IntelInside: Tonight on SBS at 8.30pm have a program about Bill Gates the founder of Microsoft. It discusses how he's stepping down from the company to get on with giving away $25 billion through the charitable foundation he runs with wife Melinda and father William Gates Sr. Short-notice Update: Rezin says there's another one of interest: Discovery Science @ 7:30 AEST - Download: The True Story of the Internet. More info here.



Tuesday Morning Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 8-July-2008  00:21:16 (GMT +10) - by DiGiTaL MoNkEY

Processors:
AMD Phenom X4 9950 Quad-Core on Techware Labs.
AMD Phenom X4 9350e Quad-Core on Icrontic.

Chassis:
Antec Three Hundred Mid-Tower on Bjorn3d.
Tagan Black Pearl Case on Motherboards.
ThermalTake Armor+ MX Case on Think Computers.
Silverstone Kublai 3 Case on Pro-Clockers.

Storage:
Rosewill R2-RAID Enclosure & Controller on TechPowerUp.
Thecus N5200BR NAS Server on HotHardware.
Tagan Icy Box Enclosure on Hardware Canucks.

Graphics Cards:
Zotac GeForce GTX 280 1GB on FutureLooks.
Diablotek GeForce 8600 GT 1GB on OCIA.
Force 3D Radeon HD 4850 512MB on OC Cafe.

Power Supply:
Silverstone Zeus 1200W PSU on jonnyGURU.
Tuniq Miniplant 950W PSU on HardwareLogic.
Sigma Shark SP 635W PSU on HardOCP.

Gaming:
Battlefield: Bad Company (PS3) on GamePyre.
The Bourne Conspiracy (360) on bit-tech.
Unreal Tournament III (360) on GameSpy.
Alone in the Dark (PC) on Boom Town.
Super Smash Bros. Brawl (Wii) on Trusted Reviews.

Miscellaneous:
Apple TV 160GB on Spicy Gadget.
LapLogic AeroGel Extreme on Techware Labs.
Nokia 7900 Crystal Prism Mobile on Trusted Reviews.



Early Monday Morning (0 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 6-July-2008  15:13:02 (GMT +10) - by Rezin

From trevor68: The long awaited PC Demo for Frontlines: Fuel of War has been released early. Well not so much released as leaked! KAOS have rolled with the punches though and sanctioned its use. You can grab your copy now from GamingSA and servers are up awaiting the battle for oil to begin. You can discuss the demo here.

Hardware Zone looks at the differences between netbooks and notebooks. Factor in a keyboard, a LCD screen, hard drive, speakers and internet capability, the line between both machines becomes smudged despite our earlier statements to the contrary. The key difference the netbook offers is its smaller form factor and leaner hardware for longer useage periods, but is limited in its processing capabilities and is more optimal for simple Internet-based usage.

Tech ARP have updated their Desktop CPU Comparison Guide to include the Intel Core 2 Quad Q9650 & Q9400 processors, bringing the total to 655 desktop CPUs. There are so many CPU models that it has become quite impossible to keep up with the different models or even remember their specifications! Therefore, we decided to compile this guide to provide an easy reference for those who are interested in comparing the specifications of the various desktop CPUs in the market, as well as those already obsolescent or obsolete.

Neo323 noticed that the PDF format is now an ISO standard. "By releasing the full PDF specification for ISO standardization, we are reinforcing our commitment to openness", says Kevin Lynch, Chief Technology Officer at Adobe.

Madshrimps checks out a custom config tool for Crysis which allows you increase the in-game image quality and improve performance. The Cuban Ultima Doom Sword's CustomCrysisConfig allows you to automatically configure Crysis tailored to the performance of your system. What this means is that it goes further than the standard "low-medium-high-very high" settings found inside the Crysis in-game menu.

Overclockers Club attended the recent Gigabyte International Overclocking Tournament and were amazed at "how quick these guy got their hardware soaring." One contestant, Chris, had his CPU to 5.8GHz before the power circuit for his side of the tables tripped, cutting all power. The result was their hardware freezing over and damaging the motherboards and possibly the CPUs. They changed out boards and the next time he was only able to pull out 5.57GHz

If you're looking for an entry-level CPU and can't make up your mind between a Celeron, Pentium Dual Core and Athlon X2, this comparison by Hardware Secrets may help. Today we put together a review comparing the performance of entry-level CPUs on the USD 70 price range: Celeron E1400 (dual-core 2 GHz), Pentium Dual Core E2160 (1.8 GHz), Pentium Dual Core E2180 (2 GHz) and Athlon X2 4600+ (2.4 GHz). With this review we wanted to answer a simply question: which one is the best USD 70 CPU today?

Halo 3 fans might be interested to know that a new multiplayer map will be released today as a free download. A remake of the original Halo's Chill Out map, the revamp is known as Cold Storage. More details available here. Forum discussion here.



Forum Projects (2 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 6-July-2008  10:47:08 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Plenty going on, as usual:


Punster replaced the coolers
on his 2x HD4850s

issa2006 has been playing with
four VelociRaptors in RAID

dmandn checked out a free
mmo racing game


nickeax checked out the
Zoom H4 Handy Recorder

spankyofoz's got a brand new bag,
the Naneu Pro K3L for Camera/Laptop

Bismar wants to "tableticize"
an Eee PC for e-books


Jolly-Swagman built two PCs into
one custom cube case

fnp has a huge custom
file-server case

chronisis has one of the new
MSI Wind mini-notebooks



Saturday Evening Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Saturday, 5-July-2008  08:12:02 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Motherboards:
AMD 770X Motherboard Duel on Bit-Tech.
AMD 780G/780V/740G Integrated Socket AM2+ Chipsets on Digit-Life.
ASRock A780FullDisplayPort AM2 board on Tweaktown.
ASRock P43R1600Twins-WiFi Intel P43/ICH10R LGA775 board on OCWorkbench.
ASUS Striker II NSE Mainboard on Nvidia nForce 790i SLI LGA775 board on XbitLabs.
ASUS P5N-D LGA775 board on XbitLabs.
MSI P45 Neo3 LGA775 board on BIOSMag.
Gigabyte GA-MA74GM-S2H AM2 board on TrustedReviews.
Gigabyte GA-EP45T-EXTREME on HWZone.
DFI Lanparty UT X48 DDR3 LGA775 board on NinjaLane.
ECS P45T-A Black Edition LGA775 board on TBreak.
ASRock K10N780SLIX3-WiFi nForce 780a SLI AM2 board on ThinkComputers.

Video Cards:
ATI 48xx Architecture on InsideHW.
Sapphire HD 4850 on InsideHW.
ATI Radeon HD 4870 on TrustedReviews.
Asus EN9600GT Top/HTDI/512M Geforce 9600GT on PCStats.
Diamond HD 4870 512MB on TheTechLounge.
Gigabyte Radeon HD4870 (512Mb GDDR5) on CPU3D.
XFX GeForce 8800 GS & 8800 GS XXX on Bjorn3D.

Audio / Visual:
Symphonic Designs Tube Amplifier with iPod Dock on TechWareLabs.
XtremeMac Tango X2 sound card on Techgage.
Pinnacle PCTV nanoStick USB TV tuner on BIOSMag.

Misc:
SilverStone Nightjar 450W Zero dBA Fanless PSU (video review) on 3DGameMan.
Getway CarBook & Wibrain for the Deaf on VIAArena.
Dynapower USA TP-LINK (TL-WR543G) 54Mbps and (TL-WR642G) 108Mbps Routers on Virtual-Hideout.
Aten CS1782 DVI KVMP Switch on OCClub.
Navigon 2110 Max Sat-Nav on TrustedReviews.
Apple Wireless Keyboard on TheTechLounge.



Saturday Afternoon Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Saturday, 5-July-2008  07:34:11 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Storage:
Corsair Voyager GT 16Gb and Voyager 4Gb USB Sticks on MadShrimps.
n-Trance n-Tegrity Pro Biometric Flash Drive on ExtremeMHz.
Super Talent Pico-C 8Gb Micro USB Stick on MadShrimps.

Cases:
Thermaltake XaserVI Mx Case on RBMods.
InWin B2 Stealth Bomber on BigBruin.
SilverStone Kublai KL-02 on APHNetworks.
NZXT Tempest on Virtual-Hideout.

Mini and Portable:
Toshiba Satellite U300 notebook on InsideHW.
Dell Vostro 1500 on SpicyGadget.
Gateway P-6831FX Gaming Notebook on HotHardware.
ASUS Eee PC 901 mini laptop on DigitalTrends.
ASUS Eee PC 901 mini laptop on OCWorkbench.
MSI Wind - Win XP Edition mini notebook on TrustedReviews.
MSI Wind U100 on Bit-Tech.

PC Games:
Lost Planet: Colonies on DriverHeaven.
Galactic Civilizations II: Twilight of the Arnor on GamingNexus.



Early Saturday Morning (18 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 4-July-2008  14:26:28 (GMT +10) - by Rezin

Tech ARP have a look at a few motherboard & PSU combinations to see what would happen if the CMOS battery fails. Naturally, the CMOS data would be lost if the CMOS battery is dead / missing / malfunctioning and the power supply is turned off. However, things are not quite so clear-cut when the PC is merely powered off, with the PSU still active.

Guru3D have just released version 1 of their NV PhysX Tweaker. The NVIDIA PhysX driver once install will activate itself on the GPU, and can not be disabled. … This little NV PhysX Tweaker tool will allow you to actually choose to enable or disable the PhysX driver over the GPU and if preferred, the CPU.

Trev sent in this link which looks at Optus's pricing for the new Apple iPhone. OPTUS is the first telco out of the blocks with local pricing for Apple's new 3G network capable iPhone that hits the market next Friday. Customers buying the phone to use on Optus's pre-paid network will pay $729 for an 8GB iPhone or $849 for a handset with 16GB of storage.

Microsoft has signed an agreement to acquire Powerset, a company who's goal is to "change the way people interact with technology by enabling computers to understand our language." With an existing search infrastructure, incredible capital resources, unlimited data, a leading search team, and clear mission to revolutionize the search landscape, Microsoft can rapidly accelerate our progress in building semantic search technology and bringing it to full Web scale. Thanks Setia!

Hardware Secrets check out the main differences between the several DirectX versions released. If you, for instance, have a DirectX 9 game in your PC and a video card whose graphic chip is DirectX 8, when the game requests a command that DirectX knows your video card won't understand, it will make an emulation to execute the command. Of course this emulation is not perfect and the final result will be that the game won't have the same image quality as if it were run in a genuinely DirectX 9 hardware.

The Tech Report get comfy in a SumoSac bean bag chair to test its limits. Dubbed the SumoSac, this latest take on the iconic bean bag chair has also succumbed to the obesity epidemic, swelling generously on a high-carb diet of furniture-grade foam. So the SumoSac is bigger and cushier than the original Omni. But is it too much of a good thing?

If you're unsure of how to replace memory heat spreaders, TweakTown look at the pros and cons of three methods and then shows us how it's done. What we will do here is run through a step-by-step of removing the plain flat aluminum spreaders that come with most RAM modules and upgrading them with some Nexus HXR-550B Heat-Pipe memory coolers.

Overclockers Club take a tour of the ECS factory looking at the PCB production facility, the motherboard assembly plant and the testing and R&D floor. I saw firsthand how a motherboard goes from raw material to a packaged product, with several eye opening steps in between. I never knew how many steps were involved in producing the actual PCB itself, and it was quite evident in the length of that part of the tour. The assembly part was also quite intriguing, with a single motherboard going from start to finish in a matter of minutes.



Team OCAU Pushing 2 Million Points Per Day! (6 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 4-July-2008  11:08:13 (GMT +10) - by DiGiTaL MoNkEY

OCAU's Folding@Home team has surpassed a MASSIVE milestone, contributing over 2 Million points in a day. They have also been out-producing the [H]ardOCP team in the last 2 weeks, and starting to eat into their 140 Million point lead.

The nVidia GPU folding client has made a massive difference to the points generated and the scientific knowledge gained. The team is looking for 100 new 8800GT (or greater) cards to fold on, if you are ready to start, then check out this thread for instructions. The team is running a competition where you can win a Quad-core folding boxen. To enter, sign up here and get folding. Every 10,000 points will get you a ticket into the draw!




AVG vs The Internet (0 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 4-July-2008  07:54:31 (GMT +10) - by Agg

There's a bit of angst about lately, regarding AVG Anti-Virus 8.0 apparently generating fake traffic to websites as it pre-scans Google results on people's PCs. It seems to pretend to be a normal browser while doing this, which makes it difficult to block. More chitchat about it on Whirlpool. I've been recommending AVG for a while now as a good free Anti-Virus program, but perhaps Avast and Avira should be considered instead.

Discussion in our forum here.



Friday Afternoon Reviews #2 (0 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 4-July-2008  06:32:18 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Power Supply:
Tuniq Ensemble 1200W on OCClub.
Type R II 680W on Pro-Clockers.
Corsair HX1000W Modular Power on PCPerspective.
Sigma SP-700 700W on ThinkComputers.

Audio / Visual:
ASUS Xonar D2X sound card on Guru3D.
Samsung CLP-610ND Color Laser Printer on TweakNews.
Sony DSC-W130 Digital Camera on BIOSMag.
X-Rite ColorMunki Photo Spectrophotometer on FutureLooks.
Corsair HX1000W Modular Power Supply on PCPerspective.
LG 42PG6000 42in Plasma TV on TrustedReviews.
OtterBox iPhone Armor Case with Waterproof Headphones on OCIA.
iMetal iP-HS2 Isolation Headset for iPhone on I4U.
Samsung SC-HMX20C High Definition Digital Camcorder on TheTechZone.
SOYO 24 Pearl Series LCD Monitor on Bjorn3D.
Razer Piranha - Headphones on Modders-Inc.
Motorola H680 Bluetooth Headset on LegitReviews.
Lubix UBHS-NC1 Stereo Bluetooth Headset on ASELabs.
PowerColor AMD TV Wonder 600 PCIe x1 on TechPowerUp.
Sennheiser MX W1 Wireless Earphones on HWZone.
BenQ G2400W LCD Monitor on BIOSMag.
Pioneer DVR-560HX DVD/HDD Recorder on TrustedReviews.

CPUs:
Intel Core 2 Duo E8400 Linux Performance on Phoronix.
AMD Phenom X4 In Real-Life Applications on Digit-Life.
AMD Phenom X4 9950 BE & 9350e on SharkyExtreme.



Friday Afternoon Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 4-July-2008  05:59:32 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Video Cards:
Diamond Radeon HD4870 on NeoSeeker.
PNY GTX 260 on I4U.
Sapphire Radeon HD 4850 on BenchmarkReviews.
Chaintech Apogee GeForce 9800 GTX on XbitLabs.
Visiontek ATI Radeon HD4870 512MB GDDR5 PCIe on Motherboards.org.
Point of View GeForce GTX 260 Assassins Creed Edition on TechPowerUp.
ATI Radeon HD 4870 512MB GDDR5 on HWZone.
Palit Geforce 9800 GTX (GDDR3) on CPU3D.
Sapphire HD3870 Ultimate on Pro-Clockers.
ATI Radeon HD 4870 On Linux on Phoronix.
ZOTAC GeForce GTX 280 AMP! Edition on BenchMarkReviews.
HIS HD 4870 512MB GDDR5 (video review) on 3DGameMan.
Gigabyte GV-RX387512H Radeon HD 3870 on Tweak.DK.
Sapphire 1024MB Radeon HD3850 on BigBruin.

Cooling:
ASUS Triton 85 CPU cooler on OCClub.
Scythe Orochi CPU cooler on HWLogic.
Glacialtech Igloo 5750 Silent CPU cooler on CPU3D.
Intel Core 2 Extreme Stock Cooler on MadShrimps.
ThermalTake ProWater 850i Liquid Cooling System on Virtual-Hideout.
Sunbeamtech Core Contact CPU cooler on Pro-Clockers.
Thermaltake DuOrb CPU cooler on FutureLooks.
SilenX iXtrema IXC-12HA2 CPU cooler on ThinkComputers.

Memory:
OCZ Flex-II PC2-9200 2GB Memory Kit on Tweaktown.
Crucial Ballistix 1GBx2 PC3-16000 on OCOnline.



Thursday Night (1 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 3-July-2008  12:53:21 (GMT +10) - by Agg

eBay have dropped their plans to force Australians to use PayPal or COD for their auctions. "While we disagree with the ACCC’s draft notice, we have decided to withdraw the notification to stop any further confusion and disruption among the eBay community," eBay Australia vice-president Simon Smith said in a statement.

After being considered forever lost for more than 80 years, a full version of one of the first science-fiction films ever, Metropolis, has been discovered in Argentina. The original version could only be seen in Berlin until May 1927 - from then on it was considered to have been lost forever. Those recently viewing a restored version of the film first read the following insert: "More than a quarter of the film is believed to be lost forever." More info about the film on Wikipedia.

I upgraded my PS3 to the new 2.40 firmware last night, with no problems, but there's been enough complaints that Sony has recalled the upgrade. "We are aware of a limited number of consumers experiencing an issue with installing firmware 2.40 on PlayStation 3," Sony said in a statement on the official PS3 support website. "In order to further assess the issue, we have temporarily taken the firmware offline for further testing."

Guru3D have a Radeon HD 4850 and 4870 CrossfireX performance test. Much like NVIDIA's SLI offerings, AMD's ATI solution can be paired and matched as well. So pretty much today we'll place several cards together in CrossfireX mode, first the cards paired (two) and then we'll for the sake of it see if we can pair three cards CrossfireX mixed, meaning 2x 4870 and one 4850.

Xandros has acquired Linspire, thanks Setia. While Xandros didn’t mention their total employee numbers Xandros CEO Andreas Typaldos claims Xandros to be the third largest Linux company in the world after the acquisition.

Tweaktown compared a couple of gaming headsets. Today we’ve got two gaming oriented headsets in hand from SteelSeries and Razer. Both headsets are equipped with built-in microphone booms and offer in-line switches to control volume and mute functions for the microphone.

From Crazynutt: Not sure if you've heard about this yet, but I only just did. Proposed 12Mbps fiber to the node network. The letters from the Queensland government and Google are quite good reads too. We have mentioned this before and there's been quite a bit of criticism of it. Still, an interesting summary of things from the ArsMasters.

Dan has more letters again. In this edition: The purpose of the page file, two very hot computers, and running engines from your CPU heat.



Interesting Forum Threads (0 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 2-July-2008  10:17:06 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Remember we also have the live forum view which can be quite a cool thing to keep an eye on during the busy times.

Wanting to save power in Overclocking & Hardware.
What the hell happened to professional IT? in Business & Enterprise Computing.
Omg phonebill in Networking, Telephony and Internet.
Let's play "find the leak" - a true story in Extreme Cooling.
Why is watercooling so addictive? in Extreme Cooling.
Dell Latitude D600 - Deconstructed with images in Portable and SFF.
Linux Mint 5 Elyssa in Other Operating Systems.
OCAU Forums Greasemonkey scripts in Graphics & Programming.
Prepaid Sales to require ID as of July 1st in Mobile Phones.
PS3 Firmware 2.40 RELEASED! | Trophy Support, In-Game XMB & Custom Tracks! in Game Consoles.
LF action/flight sim in Games.
Best guitarist to ever live in Musicians.
France to ban illegal downloaders in Current Events.
New police powers for World Youth Day in Current Events.
Complaints from the pros about my free photos in Photography.
My experiences with Liposuction and Tummy Tuck in Sport, Fitness and Health.
The 100 x 8800GT Countdown in Team OCAU.
Is Folding swaying your video card purchase? in Team OCAU.
How to: which combination of clients for my CPU + GPU rig? in Team OCAU.
Pink Shirt Day - Prostate Awareness in The Pub.



Wednesday Afternoon (35 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 2-July-2008  04:56:56 (GMT +10) - by Agg

You might have noticed I've been a bit quiet lately - on Saturday the 21st my wife and I welcomed our second child into the world, Charlotte Rolfe. All happy and healthy, but I wouldn't mind a bit more sleep. :) Thanks to Rezin and DiGiTaL_MoNkEY for their awesome work keeping the news page flowing. Speaking of news:

HWZone checked out the Phenom X4 9350e & 9150e energy-efficient CPUs. AMD has achieved a small milestone of being first to offer 65W TDP quad-core processors with their new Phenom X4 9350e and 9150e processors. However their low clock speeds could be trouble against Intel's fast dual-core offerings. Can AMD's new Phenom X4 still hold its ground?

Norbs spotted this article on ArsTechnica about overclocking Mac Pros. If you have a 2.8GHz or higher Mac Pro or Xserve, though, even a relatively modest 10 percent performance boost might be worth the time to try the tool and check for stability. Because the tool works via software, and not hardware, the changes can be reset after a reboot.

Dan has some musings about DRM. One of the three original home video cassette systems was created by a movie company. So they implemented a system to prevent you from watching rented movies more than once. The lesson of what happened next would seem to _still_ not have been learned.

On the storage side of things, Tweaktown looked at a 32GB 2.5" SSD from Samsung while BenchMarkReviews checked out a Gigabit SATA NAS from QNAP. There's also a hard drive dock on TechPowerUp.

Today's timewaster is magic pen from wahoo84. Discussion here.



Modders in Melbourne Herald Sun (7 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 2-July-2008  03:08:03 (GMT +10) - by Agg

You might remember this thread where Richard Conrad from the Melbourne Herald Sun was researching a story on the Melbourne PC modding scene. Well, his story is in today's issue of that newspaper, so you might want to grab a copy and check it out.

Failing that, here's some PDFs of the pages:

   

There's also a photo gallery on the Herald Sun website.



Sponsor Specials (0 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 2-July-2008  02:43:57 (GMT +10) - by Agg

It's been really busy in our Sponsor Specials Forum lately, with a few more sponsors coming onboard at the end of the financial year. Check out the threads in there, offering mini amplifiers, mini PC's, office chairs, CD keys, web hosting, coolers, hard drives, a range of components and even an entire PC retail business. :)


Wednesday Morning Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 2-July-2008  00:52:48 (GMT +10) - by DiGiTaL MoNkEY

Processors:
AMD Phenom X4 9950 and 9350e on LegitReviews.
AMD Phenom X4 9950 and 9350e on Hot Hardware.

Cooling:
Zalman Reserator XT Liquid Cooling System on HardwareLogic.
SilenX IXTREMA Pro CPU Cooler on Bjorn3D.

Displays:
Sharp Aquos LC-52X20E 52" LCD TV on Trusted Reviews.
Samsung SyncMaster 225uw 22" LCD Monitor on Trusted Reviews.
Soyo 26" LCD Monitor DYLM26E6 on Benchmark Reviews.

Storage:
Kingston Technology HyperX 4GB on TechwareLabs.
HighPoint RocketRAID 2640X4 SATA on TechwareLabs.
Pioneer BDC-SO2BK Blu-ray Drive on bit-tech.

Video Cards:
XFX GTX 280 XXX Edition 1GB on MetkuMods.
Sapphire Radeon HD 3870 Ultimate on ASE Labs.
Asus Radeon HD 4850 512MB On Overclock3D.
Diamond HD 4870 512 MB on TechPowerUp.
MSI Radeon HD 4850 512MB on CPU3D.

Input:
OCZ Neural Impulse Actuator on Tech Report.
Roccat Sense Mouse Surface on XSReviews.
Razer Lycosa Gaming Keyboard on BurnOutPC.

Power Supply:
Coolmax CUQ-1350B 1350W PSU on jonnyGURU.
X-Spice Kira CS 530W PSU on Hi-Tech Reviews.
OCZ EliteXstream 800W PSU on DriverHeaven.
Coolmax CUG-950B 950W PSU on CPU3D.



Wednesday Morning (3 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 2-July-2008  00:11:54 (GMT +10) - by DiGiTaL MoNkEY

Anandtech review AMD's Phenom X4 9950, 9350e and 9150e processors. Hot on the heels of the release of the Radeon HD 4800 series AMD has three new Phenom processors, unfortunately this isn’t an architectural change, and what we have today are two lower clocked and one higher clocked model.

Tom’s Hardware published an article comparing SSD’s Power Consumption. We looked at four different flash SSDs (Solid State Drives) and added a 2.5” 7,200 RPM conventional hard drive for the sake of comparison. We deliberately selected this hard drive as it delivers high performance and also requires more power than most other drives.

The Tech Report analyse the performance of Nvidia's GeForce 8300 chipset. For a few months now, AMD's 780G has reigned as the only integrated graphics chipset capable of handling high-definition video decoding. Now it has company in the form of Nvidia's new GeForce 8300, so let us find out how it compares!

Using data collected from Google Web searches and security firm Secunia, researches on Tuesday said "637 million Web users are surfing with outdated Internet browsers and therefore at greater risk of Web-based attacks." They did so in an effort to understand why so many recent attacks by criminal hackers have been aimed at the browser, and why those attacks have been so successful.

ExtremeTech have a quick write-up on the present and future of general-purpose computing on the GPU. Research into using the powerful parallel processing of GPUs has been going on for years. They call it "GP-GPU," for general-purpose computing on a GPU, and it's about ready for the mainstream. Here's some of what you can look forward to..

Auzentech has finally released to the public the long awaiting DTS Interactive/DTS Neo beta drivers for the X-FI Prelude soundcard. The drivers have appeared with an open letter from the president of the company outlining some existing bugs for DDL and a fix ETC. And of course, you'll need to be a registered member in order to access the download. Thanks Liam!

For those subscribed to internet service provider iiNet, they have increased the quotas on its range of ADSL plans yesterday for new and existing customers. The increases are quite significant for some plans, with a 50% bump in quota not uncommon. Some high end plans remain unchanged however, and one very popular plan (Home 5) only gained 5GB in peak (less than 10%). The entry level Naked DSL plan has also not seen any change.

Chris sent in word that Microsoft has released a patch for Vista users not wanting to run SP1. It includes a series of performance and reliability updates, which aren’t available via windows update at the moment. You can find the download links and details here.

A new version of the CPU-Z has now been released, as well as the latest instalment of GPU-Z. Both packed with multiple bug fixes as well as support for the latest hardware.



Tuesday Midday Reviews (1 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 1-July-2008  02:33:25 (GMT +10) - by DiGiTaL MoNkEY

Memory:
Kingston HyperX DDR3 PC3-12800 2GB Kit on BigBruin.
Corsair Dominator DDR2 PC2-9136 4GB Kit on Digit-Life.
CSX Diablo3 DDR3 PC3-16000 2GB Kit on OC3D.

Motherboards:
Gigabyte GA-MA790FX-DS5 AM2+ on NeoSeeker.
MSI P45 Platinum LGA775 board on OverclockersClub.
Asus P5Q3 Deluxe/WiFi-AP@n LGA775 board on t-break.

Storage:
RocketRAID 3120 PCIe SATA RAID Controller on ExtremeTech.
G.Skill 64GB SATA II SSD on Hardware Canucks.
Sans Digital CR2T RAID CF Enclosure on ExtremeTech.

Video Cards:
Asus Radeon HD 4850 512MB on Guru3D.
Foxconn GeForce 9800 GTX & GX2 on Digit-Life.
PowerColor HD 4870 512MB on Overclockers Club.
VisionTek HD 4850 512MB on Bjorn3D.

Power Supply:
Hiper Type-M 580W PSU on HardOCP.
ThermalTake Toughpower 1200W on ThinkComputers.
Zalman ZM850-HP and ZM1000-HP PSU's on AnandTech.
Kingwin 1000MA1S 1000W PSU on Virtual-Hideout.

Gaming:
Guitar Hero: Aerosmith (PS3) on EuroGamer.
Race Driver: GRID (360) on GamingNexus.
Ultimate Terrain X: Europe (PC) on BoomTown.

Miscellaneous:
Samsung Omnia Mobile Device on HardwareZone.
Canon EOS 450D Digital SLR on RegHardware.
Philips SHE9850 Noise Isolating Earphones on Trusted Reviews.



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MyGica ATV510B Enjoy TV



Thecus N5550



SiliconDust HDHomeRun Dual



Intel Haswell on MSI Z87 MPOWER



Corsair AX860i PSU