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November 2015
Monday Morning (16 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 30-November-2015  06:25:50 (GMT +10) - by booj

The Raspberry Pi has always been a popular hobbyists platform. Now there's a new version, the Pi Zero, which is expected to go for an insane $5 (USD). Raspberry Pi has been making small, affordable computers for a while now, but it’s just gone and made things insanely cheap. Its latest miniature computer, the Pi Zero, will cost just $5.

Do you need more RAM? Samsung might have something for you. The company has developed a 128Gb DDR4 module. Samsung today announced that it has started mass production of 128GB DDR4 modules built using 'through silicon via' (TSV) technology. This is an industry first at this capacity; Samsung introduced the world's first 3D TSV DDR4 DRAM (64GB) back in 2014. It is claimed that the new memory modules represent both a breakthrough in capacity and in energy efficiency.

LiFi, a new method of data transmission that uses light pulses instead of radio waves (WiFi) has been successfully tested in Estonia. It requires a light source, such as a standard LED bulb, an internet connection and a photo detector. It was tested this week by Estonian start-up Velmenni, in Tallinn. Velmenni used a li-fi-enabled light bulb to transmit data at speeds of 1Gbps. Laboratory tests have shown theoretical speeds of up to 224Gbps.

USB. The ubiquitous interface is almost 20 years old. Here's a look at the history of USB, what it replaced, and what has failed to replace it.

OLED displays look fantastic, but still face some technological hurdles such as blue OLED lifespan, so it's great to see LG investing heavily in OLED technology. South Korea's LG Display said it will invest more than 10 trillion won ($8.71 billion) to build a large plant to make panels using organic light-emitting diode (OLED) panels, raising its big bet on the ultra-clear display technology.

Rumors indicate that Apple may drop the venerable 3.5mm headphone jack from its upcoming iPhones in favor of a lightning port.

The Space resource and utilization act is drawing critics. U.S. President Barack Obama signed legislation on Wednesday providing a framework for space companies to mine ore from asteroids and other bodies, but legal critics are worried the measure could lead to violations of international law.

Today's time waster comes courtesy of metamorphosis. How quickly can you get all the coins?

Monday Morning Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 30-November-2015  06:11:16 (GMT +10) - by booj

Motherboards & CPUs:
Intel Pentium G4400: Benchmarking A ~$60 Skylake Processor on Phoronix.
Haswell-E X99 Micro-ATX Motherboards on ocaholic.
ASRock Z170 Extreme7 on Anandtech.

Thecus N4310 4-Disk Linux NAS on Phoronix.
Patriot Blast 240GB SSD on NikKTech.
Western Digital Black WD6001FZWX 6TB Hard Drive on APH Networks.
Lexar JumpDrive M20i 32GB OTG iOS Flash Drive on TweakTown.

Enermax ETS-T40fit CPU Coolers on TweakTown.
ID-Cooling Frostflow 240L CPU Liquid Cooler on TweakTown.

Portable & Prebuilt:
OnePlus 2 Smartphone on Techgage.
ECS LIVA X2 Mini-PC on Legit Reviews.

Input etc:
TteSports Poseidon Z RGB Mechanical Gaming Keyboard on eTeknix.
SteelSeries Rival 100 Gaming Mouse on Hardware Canucks.

TP-LINK Touch P5 AC1900 Wi-Fi Gigabit Router on Madshrimps.
Sharp GX-BT7 2.1-Channel Wireless Bluetooth Speaker on TweakTown.
Thermaltake Suppressor F31 Silent Mid-tower on eTeknix.
AK RACING Nitro Gaming Chair on NikKTech.
AMD Radeon Software Crimson Editon Detailed Briefing on TechARP.

Misc Pics (53 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 27-November-2015  14:22:30 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Thanks to Matthew and David this week!

Friday Morning Reviews (1 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 27-November-2015  06:31:27 (GMT +10) - by booj

ASUS Maximus VIII Ranger on ocaholic.
Gigabyte Z170X-UD5 on Modders-Inc
Gigabyte's Z170X-Gaming G1 on The Tech Report.

Seagate Game Drive for PlayStation 1TB on TweakTown.
Synology DS715 2-bay NAS on Techpowerup.
SanDisk Extreme 500 240GB USB 3.0 Portable SSD on TweakTown.

Input etc:
MSI Interceptor DS200 Gaming Mouse on ThinkComputers.
G.Skill KM780 RGB Mechanical Gaming Keyboard on eTeknix.
Corsair STRAFE RGB on Vortez.
Tesoro Excalibur Spectrum RGB Mechanical Gaming Keyboard on NikKTech.
iClever Foldable Wireless Keyboard on Technology X.

Be quiet! Silent Base 600 on Guru3D.
Phanteks Enthoo Pro M Mid-Tower on TechnologyX.
Jonsbo UMX3 Case on ocaholic.
NZXT H440 New 2015 Edition & Hue+ on Vortez.

Lenovo Yoga 900 on HotHardware.
Nvidia Shield Android TV on eTeknix.

Gigabyte GTX 980 Ti Waterforce Xtreme Gaming 6 GB on Techpowerup.
ID-Cooling IS-VC45 SFF CPU Cooler on TweakTown.

Thecus N5810PRO 5-Bay UPS NAS (16 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 25-November-2015  13:39:22 (GMT +10) - by Agg

I've taken a look at the Thecus N5810PRO, a 5-bay network-attached storage unit. It's got a few unusual features that make it interesting, such as a built-in UPS, five Ethernet ports, HDMI connectivity and the fact that it's basically a full Intel-based Linux PC under the hood. Check it out:

Click for the review!

Wednesday Afternoon Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 25-November-2015  13:36:01 (GMT +10) - by booj

Graphics Cards:
ZOTAC GeForce GTX 980 AMP! on Technology X.
Gigabyte GeForce GTX 950 Xtreme Gaming on ocaholic.
Gigabyte GeForce GTX 980 Ti Extreme Gaming WaterForce on Guru3D.
Asus Radeon R9 380X Strix on Anandtech.

Kingston HyperX Predator 240GB M.2 PCIe SSD on Hardware Asylum.
ASUSTOR AS1004T 4-bay NAS on Madshrimps.
Intel SSD 750 1.2TB PCIe on ocaholic.
Synology DiskStation DS1515 5-Bay NAS on Big Bruin.
QNAP TS-563 NAS on Modders-Inc.
HyperX Savage USB 3.1 Flash Drive on Legit Reviews.

Lian Li PC-O8 on Vortez.
SilverStone ML08 Mini-ITX Slim Case on Benchmark Reviews.

SilverStone Tundra TD02-Lite AIO Liquid CPU Cooler on NikKTech.
Thermaltake Riing LED RGB Fans on ThinkComputers.
CRYORIG C7 on Techpowerup.

iClever Bluetooth Wireless Speaker on TechnologyX.
Astro A40 TR + Mix Amp Pro & Mod Kit Multi-Format Pro Gaming Headset on eTeknix.

Zotac Steam Machine (Zbox NEN SN970) on Hardware Heaven.
EMTEC Power Connect Portable Charger on APH Networks.

Wednesday Morning (4 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 25-November-2015  05:16:57 (GMT +10) - by booj

Think Computers have a guide on custom water cooling. The first part will cover designing your loop. While we understand you must be excited to get going on building, you must first take your time and carefully decide how you want your loop to connect and flow. After we’ve decided on our loop design we will go over some of the most popular parts and components for bringing your dream system to life.

A small Irish based drug company is set to 'buy' US giant Pfizer. In what’s called a “reverse-inversion,” Allergan, a small Dublin-based drug company that makes products such as Botox, will technically buy the US-based pharmaceutical behemoth Pfizer, which makes products such as Viagra and Lipitor. The $160 billion merger, officially announced Monday, will allow Pfizer to move its executive offices to Ireland, thus lowering its tax rate, while also morphing into the world’s largest drug maker. Seems legit..

A Vietnamese Australian man with the phonetically awkward name of Phuc Dat Bich is taking matters into his own hands after repeatedly being blocked by Facebook. The man has taken the unusual step of posting a picture of his passport on social media after being repeatedly blocked by Facebook. The unfortunately named Phuc Dat Bich - whose name is actually pronounced Phoo Da Bic - posted the image after the tech giant banned him several times.

AMD have released a revamped software/driver package they call the AMD Radeon Software Crimson Edition. There's plenty of coverage from the big sites including The Tech Report, techPowerUp, Hot Hardware and Anandtech.

Yahoo has been running a test that prevented some people from accessing email on their Yahoo Mail accounts because they were using ad blocking software. Some people who logged into their Yahoo Mail accounts last week were greeted with an ultimatum: “Please disable Ad Blocker to continue using Yahoo Mail.”

It seems that Canon has had enough of grey imports into the US. Canon USA has filed lawsuits against a number of camera gear retailers in an attempt to stop the sale of gray market camera gear. Canon claims that gray market products infringe upon its US trademark for the Canon brand. In addition to seeking the shutdown of the gray market dealers, Canon is also asking for the profits earned by those dealers from selling gray market goods. Thanks Scootre.

aftahours let us know about Microsoft's decision to remove the stand alone November update for Windows 10. If you want the November update for Windows 10, you can no longer use the Media Creation Tool to get it—Windows Update is the only option.

Finally, big congratulations to Mark Webber on winning the FIA World Endurance Championship alongside co-drivers Timo Bernhard and Brendon Hartley!

Monday Morning Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 23-November-2015  02:17:12 (GMT +10) - by booj

Gigabyte Z170X-UD5 on OCC.
ASUS Maximus VIII Extreme on ocaholic.
ASRock Fatal1ty Z170 GAMING K6+ on techPowerUp.
EVGA Z170 Classified on TweakTown.

SilverStone ECM20 m.2 Adapter on Benchmark Reviews.
Seagate Enterprise NAS 8TB SATA III HDD on NikKTech.
Understanding M.2 RAID NVMe Boot and 2/3x M.2 NVME RAID0 Tested on The SSD Review.

Video Cards:
ASUS Radeon R9 380X STRIX on TweakTown.
Asus R9 380X Strix OC on LanOC Revews.
Sapphire Radeon R9 380X Nitro Video Card on Legit Reviews.

Thermaltake Suppressor F31 Case on ThinkComputers.
Thermaltake Suppressor F31 on TweakTown.
In Win 805 Computer Case on APH Networks.
Thermaltake Core X9 Stackable E-ATX Chassis on eTeknix.

Power Supplies:
Rosewill Photon and Quark 550W PSU on Modders-Inc.
Deep Cool DA500 Aurora 500W Power Supply on eTeknix.
EVGA SuperNOVA 650W and 750W Platinum Power Supply on PC Perspective.

Sony Xperia Z5 on Techspot.
Huawei SmartWatch on Legit Reviews.

G.Skill Ripjaws MX780 RGB Laser Ambidextrous Gaming Mouse on eTeknix.
Patriot Memory Viper 4 DDR4-3400 8GB Dual-Channel Memory Kit on TweakTown.

Sunday Night (9 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 22-November-2015  22:59:16 (GMT +10) - by booj

Researchers have crafted flexible electronic circuits inside a rose. Eventually such circuitry may help farmers eavesdrop on their crops and even control when they ripen.

Playstation 2 emulation is apparently coming to the Playstation 4. “We are working on utilizing PS2 emulation technology to bring PS2 games forward to the current generation,” a Sony representative told WIRED via email. “We have nothing further to comment at this point in time.”

It appears that Steam sales will no longer include flash or daily sales. the article also apparently confirms the dates of the Steam Autumn and Winter sales. Valve will not run any flash or daily deals during its Steam autumn or winter sales, Eurogamer can confirm. Steam's autumn sale will run from next Wednesday, 25th November at 6pm UK time until Tuesday, 1st December at 6pm UK time.

The recent terrorist attacks in Paris have EU leaders planning a crackdown on Bitcoin and other anonymous online payment methods. A week after the attacks in Paris, home affairs ministers from European Union countries are due to gather in Brussels on Friday 20th November for a crisis meeting to discuss methods of strengthening the region’s response to terrorism. One crucial item on the agenda is a planned crackdown on virtual currencies and anonymous payments made online and through pre-paid cards.

The Netflix business model is looking stronger than ever. Some 51% of American internet users say they used the site to watch movies or TV shows over the past 12 months, according to a survey conducted by RBC Capital Markets, representing an all-time high.

The 30th anniversary of Microsoft Windows passed on the 20th of November. Check out this visual history of the ubiquitous OS.

Australia's internet site blocking laws could be in for a test. Though not in the way that was expected. A small Australian ISP has received a demand that it block access to an overseas website or face legal action in the Federal Court. If the case goes ahead, it would be the first time Australia's site-blocking laws would be used and tested in court.

Misc Pics (45 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 20-November-2015  14:21:08 (GMT +10) - by Agg


Friday Morning Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 20-November-2015  02:09:41 (GMT +10) - by booj

AMD R9 380X Graphics Card reviews:
Sapphire Radeon R9 380X NITRO 4GB on Guru3D.
Asus Radeon R9 380X Strix 4GB on Techpowerup.
AMD Radeon R9 380X on Techspot.
XFX Radeon R9 380X DD on Hardware Heaven.
XFX Radeon R9 380X DD on Neoseeker.
AMD Radeon R9 380X on The Tech Report.
AMD Radeon R9 380X on Hot Hardware.

Cooler Master MasterCase 5 on Benchmark Reviews.
Anidees AI4 on Techpowerup.
Akasa Plato X Slim Fanless Chassis i5/i7 NUC Chassis on eTeknix.

Enermax Liqmax II 120s on Modders-Inc.
Cryorig M9i CPU Cooler on TweakTown.
Reeven Hans RC-1205 on OCC.

Mushkin Blackline DDR4-2800 8GB Memory Kit on ThinkComputers.
GSKill TridentZ 3466Mhz CL16 DDR4 Dual Channel Memory on Hardware Asylum.

Patriot Memory Viper V360 7.1 Virtual Surround Sound Headset on TweakTown.
Linksys LCAB03VLNOD 1080p 3MP Outdoor Night Vision Bullet Camera on NikKTech.
Corsair Gaming Scimitar RGB MOBA/MMO Gaming Mouse on eTeknix.
AMD FX-8320E vs. Intel Core i3-4360, Core i3-6100, Core i5-4430 on Techspot.

Wednesday Evening Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 18-November-2015  19:42:44 (GMT +10) - by booj

Motherboards & CPUs:
ASUS ROG Maximus VIII Impact on TweakTown.
Gigabyte Z170X-Gaming 7 on Vortez.
ASUS Maximus VIII Impact on ocaholic.

Turtle Beach Ear Force PX24 Multi-Format Gaming Headset on eTeknix.
KIDZ GEAR Bluetooth Headphones on TechnologyX.
Cooler Master CM Storm Pitch Pro Gaming Earphones on Techgage.
Feenix Aria Audiophile Gaming Headphones on TweakTown.
ThermalTake Cronos Go Gaming Headset on Modders-Inc.
Sennheiser Momentum M2 IEi In-Ear Headset (iOS) on TechnologyX.

Lian Li PC-Q10WX on ocaholic.
IN WIN 805 Mid-tower Computer Case on Madshrimps.
Phanteks Enthoo Evolve ATX Galaxy Silver Edition on Modders-Inc.

Samsung 950 PRO M.2 256GB SSD on Guru3D.
Crucial BX100 250 GiB SSD on Hardware Secrets.
Toshiba Canvio Desk 4TB USB 3.0 Desktop External Hard Drive on NikKTech.

Input etc:
Thermaltake Poseidon Z RGB Keyboard on Benchmark Reviews.
G.SKILL RIPJAWS MX780 Gaming Mouse on Legit Reviews.
ROCCAT KOVA 2016 on Vortez.
Cooler Master Barebones Novatouch on LanOC Reviews.

Corsair RMx Series 1000 W PSU on techPowerUp.
AOC Q2577PWQ 25? IPS Monitor on eTeknix.
HTC One A9 on HotHardware.
Alienware Steam Machine on ThinkComputers.
Zotac GeForce GTX 980 Ti AMP Extreme 6GB on techPowerUp.
Patriot Memory Viper 4 DDR4-2800 16GB Dual-Channel Memory Kit on TweakTown.
DEEPCOOL Gamer Storm Gabriel Low-Profile CPU Cooler on PC Perspective.

Wednesday Morning (9 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 18-November-2015  11:39:49 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Computing pioneer Gene Amdahl recently passed away. Whenever you draw cash from your bank, take out insurance, book a flight, or shop in a large department store, the transaction was probably handled by an IBM mainframe originally designed by a former South Dakota farm boy, Gene Amdahl, who has died aged 92. Amdahl’s System/360 mainframes, announced in 1964, transformed IBM, and transformed computing. They became such an essential part of large-scale data processing that most Fortune 500 companies are still using them 50 years later.

NVIDIA have revealed details of their new Pascal GPU. As always, the Pascal GPU will be manufactured in Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC), using the brand new 16nm FinFET process. This process is much more than a simple number, since it marks the shift from planar, 2D transistors to the FinFET i.e. 3D transistors. This shift required that the engineers make lot of changes in the thought process, and should result in significant power savings.

PCPerspective checked out Intel Speed Shift. Without a doubt, Intel Speed Shift technology has improved the ability for the Intel + Windows platform to respond to user interaction dramatically. Though it will be most easily discernable with touch screen configurations, the same technology will apply to mouse based control. Intel has been oddly quiet about the inclusion of this feature with the new Windows 10 v10586 update and I can't quite understand why - the only reason might be questions about proper platform support for Speed Shift in the EFI of currently shipping systems.

Huawei have been demonstrating a fast-charging battery. During a battery conference in Japan over the weekend, the number one smartphone manufacture in China, Huawei showed off its new smartphone battery which is capable of being charged 10 times faster than current batteries on the market. They were advertising a 3000mAh lithium-ion battery that was capable of being charged to nearly 50% in just five minutes and a 600mAh battery that was capable of nearly 70% in just two minutes.

Back to NVIDIA, with Phoronix reporting on the Jetson TX1 board. As a recap, the NVIDIA Jetson TX1 is comprised of four ARM 64-bit Cortex-A57 CPU cores (max frequency of 1.91GHz) and four Cortex-A53 low-power cores, 4GB of LPDDR4 memory with 25.6GB/s of memory bandwidth, and has a 256-core Maxwell graphics processor capable of 1 TFLOP/s. The Tegra X1 is a very nice upgrade over the Jetson TK1 with the Tegra 1 predecessor that was 32-bit ARM and using a Kepler graphics processor.

The Oxford Dictionaries Word of the Year 2015 is.. an emoji. Not the word "emoji", but an actual specific emoji. That’s right – for the first time ever, the Oxford Dictionaries Word of the Year is a pictograph, officially called the ‘Face with Tears of Joy’ emoji, though you may know it by other names.

Monday Night Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 16-November-2015  21:15:51 (GMT +10) - by booj

Motherboards & CPUs:
ASUS Z170I PRO GAMING (LGA 1151) Motherboard on eTeknix.
Gigabyte Z170X-UD5 TH on TweakTown.
Intel Core i7-6700K Stock versus 4.8GHz Overclocked on ocaholic.

Kingston USB 3.1 HyperX Savage 128GB on OCC.
Crucial BX200 960GB Solid State Drive on eTeknix.
Samsung USB 3.0 16GB and FIT 32GB Flash Drives on PureOverclock.
ASUSTOR AS1002T Network Attached Storage on APH Networks.

G.SKILL Ripjaws SV710 Virtual 7.1 Headset on OCC.
Logitech G633 Artemis Spectrum RGB 7.1 Surround Sound Headset on Techgage.
Corsair VOID Stereo Gaming Headset on Madshrimps.
Ozone Blast 4HX PC Gaming Headset on eTeknix.
CM Storm Pitch Pro In-ear Headset on techPowerUp.

Input etc:
Logitech G633 Artemis Spectrum on Vortez.
Cooler Master Storm Quick Fire Rapid-i Mechanical Keyboard on APH Networks.
SteelSeries Rival 100 Mouse on Vortez.

LiteHawk QUATTRO NEON Quadcopter on ModSynergy.
Phanteks Enthoo EVOLV ATX Chassis on TechnologyX.
DeepCool GamerStorm Assassin II CPU Cooler on NikKTech.
Google OnHub by TP-Link AC1900 Wireless Router on TweakTown.

Sunday Night (2 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 15-November-2015  23:48:38 (GMT +10) - by booj

One of the major differentiating features on modern motherboards is the included networking solution. Many of today's 'gaming' motherboards include the Killer NIC. Hot Hardware interview Rivet Networks, the owners of the Killer technologies to talk about the past, the present and the future of the Killer NIC.

Fallout 4 is generating a lot of internet hype. Guru3D take a look at how the game performs on the many tiers of modern hardware.

The NSW police are in trouble for what appears to be illegal surveillance of a private user's Facebook page. After four months of illegal police surveillance on a closed Facebook page, Rhys Liam Halvey was arrested and charged with three counts of using a carriage service to offend police and a further three counts of publishing an indecent article....But all six charges have now been withdrawn and dismissed. In ordering costs against police, Magistrate Brown described the conduct as "reprehensible" and the charges as "trivial."

Microsoft has rolled out Windows 10 for the Xbox One. Coverage on many sites including Anandtech. Today the New Xbox One Experience began rolling out, and with it comes a big change in not only the look and feel of the Xbox One’s Dashboard, but it also brings Windows 10 to Microsoft’s gaming console. The new update brings about a big shift in the user interface, as well as some very anticipated features.

Metamorphosis sent in an article from Arstechnica that shows the SteamOS still has some way to go to catch up to Windows 10 in terms of performance and efficiency. All that said, right now, it seems that choosing SteamOS over a Windows box means sacrificing a significant amount of performance on many (if not most) graphically intensive 3D games.

Users of Beats Music will need to take note that Apple will be shutting down the service on Nov 30th after acquiring it earlier for a cool $3 billion. Apple announced on Thursday that it would shut down Beats Music, a move that comes less than six months after the premiere of Apple Music. All Beats Music subscriptions will be canceled on Nov. 30, but those who move to Apple Music will quickly discover that the $10-a-month streaming alternative incorporates many of Beats’ features.

This one goes firmly in the rumor category. Reports from China indicate that Intel may release a 10 core/20 thread processor for it's X99 platform. Interesting..

Astronomers have spotted what they believe to be the most distant object ever seen in our solar system. The dwarf planet, known for now simply as V774104, is more than 100 times farther from the sun than we are. Astronomers aren't sure what it's doing out there, but they're hoping follow-up studies of its orbit will teach them more.

Misc Pics (31 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 13-November-2015  14:58:58 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Thanks to Matthew and Martin this week!

Friday Morning Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 13-November-2015  10:09:12 (GMT +10) - by booj

Motherboards & CPUs:
ECS Z170 Claymore Motherboard on Legit Reviews.
MSI Z170I Pro Gaming AC on ocaholic.

Kingston HyperX Fury DDR4-2666 16GB Memory Kit on OCIA.
G.SKILL Trident Z DDR4-3200 16GB Dual-Channel Memory Kit on TweakTown.
Patriot Viper 4 DDR4-3400 8GB Memory Kit on ThinkComputers.

Zotac Premium Edition 240GB SATA III SSD on TweakTown.
4 TB Western Digital Blue Solid State Hybrid Drive (SSHD) on TechARP.
Inateck FD2008C USB Type-C External Drive Enclosure on Legit Reviews.
Zotac Premium Edition 240GB Solid State Drive on ThinkComputers.
QNAP TS-451+ & QTS 4.2 NAS on techPowerUp.
Kingston HyperX Predator M.2 PCIe G2 480GB SSD on NikKTech.
ADATA SP550 SATA III (120GB, 240GB & 480GB) SSD on TweakTown.

Input etc:
Rantopad FF Gaming Mouse and MAX Aluminum Pad on Madshrimps.
IOGear IKON Gaming Keyboard on OCC.
Zalman ZM-K700M keyboard on Guru3D.

Noctua S Series CPU Cooler on PC Perspective.
Seasonic Platinum Series SS-1050W Snow Silent PSU on ocaholic.
NZXT GRID+ V2 Digital Fan Controller on Benchmark Reviews.
AMD R9 Nano 4GB (HBMv1) CrossFire on eTeknix.
ECS LIVA X2 Mini PC on Neoseeker.

Thursday Night (1 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 12-November-2015  23:52:36 (GMT +10) - by Agg

TechSpot have a Z170 mobo roundup (with USD pricing). Launched alongside new Skylake processors are accompanying motherboards using the Intel Z170 chipset that go from $100 right up to $500 for the Gigabyte Z170X-Gaming G1. Having that said, most capable Z170 motherboards can be had for around $200 to $250 and today we'll be looking at six options in this bracket.

Google meanwhile want to make their own chips, according to rumours, due to dissatisfaction with current providers for Android. The problems aren't just with Qualcomm. For a while, Nvidia was tipped to be Qualcomm's performance-oriented competitor. But the company couldn't make its chips small enough and cool enough for many smartphones, and couldn't secure design wins. Google visibly tried to buoy Nvidia up by using its K1 chip in the Nexus 9 tablet, but that didn't help.

Google have also unveiled TensorFlow. Today we’re proud to announce the open source release of TensorFlow -- our second-generation machine learning system, specifically designed to correct these shortcomings. TensorFlow is general, flexible, portable, easy-to-use, and completely open source.

Phoronix looked at Intel Skylake graphics performance in Windows 10 vs Ubuntu. As it's been a while since my last Windows vs. Linux graphics comparison and haven't yet done such a comparison for Intel's latest-generation Skylake HD Graphics, the past few days I was running Windows 10 Pro x64 versus Ubuntu 15.10 graphics benchmarks with a Core i5 6600K sporting HD Graphics 530.

NASA is hiring astronauts! But you have to be a US citizen. Now that's just not cool. In anticipation of returning human spaceflight launches to American soil, and in preparation for the agency’s journey to Mars, NASA announced it will soon begin accepting applications for the next class of astronaut candidates. With more human spacecraft in development in the United States today than at any other time in history, future astronauts will launch once again from the Space Coast of Florida on American-made commercial spacecraft, and carry out deep-space exploration missions that will advance a future human mission to Mars.

Tuesday Night Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 10-November-2015  23:40:54 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Input Etc:
Razer Mamba mouse on OCAholic.
RANTOPAD MT Aegis Mechanical Keyboard on BenchmarkReviews.
Cougar 200K keyboard on OCAholic.

WD Purple 6TB Surveillance Hard Drive RAID on eTeknix.
QNAP TS-563 5-bay Affordable Quad-Core Business NAS on MadShrimps.

Audio Visual:
G.Skill RipJaws SR910 7.1 channel headset on Guru3D.
Tt eSPORTS ISURUS PRO headset on Vortez.
Scosche SportclipAIR Wireless Earbuds on ThinkComputers.
Patriot Viper V360 Gaming Headset on APHNetworks.

Thermaltake Core P5 Review: Wall-Mountable Open Frame Chassis on TechSpot.
Raidmax Viper GX II on OCClub.
Be Quiet! Silent Base 600 Mid-Tower on PCPerspective.
Cooltek Jonsbo UMX2 Mini-ITX on NikKTech.

Fallout 4 Review: Brave New World game on Tweaktown.
Silverstone Tundra TD02-LITE CPU cooler on TechPowerUp.
ASUS Maximus VIII Extreme (Intel Z170) Motherboard on Tweaktown.

Forum Projects (1 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 9-November-2015  21:24:27 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Catching up on some interesting projects and reviews from people in the forums:

AMD2400 tried the NZXT GRID+
and Corsair Link Commander Mini

Tomma Liu checked out the

002 reviewed the Cooler Master
Quick Fire XTi Mechanical KB

zeropluszero reviewed the
Gigabyte Z170X-SOC Force MB

Imfaceroll reviewed the
MSI Z170A Krait Gaming MB

scuzzy unlocked 8 more ports
in an 8-port DLINK SAN

one80 is building a
very tidy X99 ITX system

Ratzz is building a WC PC
into the CM MasterCase Pro 5

while STUdog is using
the Tt Suppressor F51

Monday Evening (12 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 9-November-2015  19:06:21 (GMT +10) - by Agg

A few people sent in the sad news that games.on.net are shutting down after 13 years of operation, with the official announcement here. Today I regret to announce that the games.on.net website and forum will be shut down on 30 November 2015. News and other content will no longer be posted from this point onwards. Following a review of the website and a cost-benefit analysis, it has been decided that games.on.net does not fit into the future plans for the iiNet Group. iiNet would like to extend their thanks to all of games.on.net’s community of readers, players, downloaders and lurkers alike for all their support over the years. Discussion from here.

Microsoft's unlimited OneDrive storage is, err, no longer unlimited. It turns out that if you offer unlimited storage to people, a few of them actually take you at your word and trust that you are truly offering unlimited storage, and then they start using it. Explaining the backtracking, the new blog post complains that a small number of paying customers were using OneDrive to store backups of multiple PCs and large collections of movies and TV shows. Some of these outliers used more than 75TB of space, which Microsoft says is 14,000 times the average (putting the average OneDrive user at about 5.5GB). More here.

Police in Sydney busted a big dope-growing operation, but the most shocking thing from a geeky perspective was the horrifying cable management of the setup. 653 plants were found and seized, and two men were arrested. They have since been refused bail and are scheduled to appear in court today. They’re being charged with a range of offences, including allegedly stealing the electricity required to run the abominable power board.

HWSecrets rounded up a few CPUs to see if a high-end one is really needed for gaming. One of the most common questions any computer expert is used to hearing is if it’s worth it to spend more money investing in a high-end CPU when you are building a gaming computer. Today, we will test if a high-end processor can bring more performance in games (i. e., frames per second) than a mainstream or even a basic one.

Kombiman spotted this interesting thread with a video about early PC audio. Rich Heimlich is a big name in parts of the gaming industry. He created the first ever QA company Top Star, authored "Sound Blaster: The Official Book", and also happens to be the voice of the first ever sports announcer in a PC game. The folks creating Beep: A Documentary History of Game Sound recently interviewed Heimlich about the early days of PC game audio, and how Creative's Sound Blaster card became as big as it did.

If you're in Adelaide and want to meet up with some other OCAU peeps, check out this thread!

Monday Afternoon Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 9-November-2015  14:16:06 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Portable & Prebuilt:
Cyberpower Zeus Mini EVO I-970 Gaming PC on eTeknix.
Benchmarking Intel's Skylake-U Series Core i7 Processor For Laptops on HotHardware.
Two Weeks with the iPhone 6s: An Android user's perspective - Part 2 on TechSpot.

Audio Visual:
Turtle Beach Ear Force Stealth 420X on HWHeaven.
Creative Sound Blaster E-MU XM7 Bookshelf Speakers on Tweaktown.
Optoma HD28DSE 3D Projector on GamingNexus.

Video Cards:
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980 Ti vs. GTX 960 SLI on OCAholic.
AMD Radeon Fury X PCI-Express Scaling on TechPowerUp.
The Case for the AMD Radeon R9 Nano - Powerful Gaming in Small Spaces on PCPerspective.

TP-Link Powerline Starter Kit on HWHeaven.
D-Link Powerline AV2 1000 HD Gigabit Passthrough Starter Kit on NikKTech.
GE Plug-in Smart Switch Z-Wave Module Outlet on GeekInspector.

Input Etc:
Tt eSPORTS Challenger Go Gaming Keyboard on NikKTech.
Corsair Gaming Scimitar RGB mouse on HWHeaven.

Crucial BX200 SSD on HWHeaven.
SanDisk Ultra Fit 128GB USB 3.0 Flash Drive on APHNetworks.
Samsung 950 PRO 256GB RAID on Vortez.

Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 PC graphics performance on Guru3D.
Anno 2205: Performance Analysis on TechPowerUp.

Tjernlund M-6: Finding A Better Way To Cool The Benchmarking Server Room on Phoronix.
ASUS Maximus VIII Gene M-ATX motherboard on OCClub.
Silverstone Milo SST-ML08B Mini-ITX Gaming Chassis on eTeknix.
G.SKILL Ripjaws V DDR4-3000 16GB Dual-Channel Memory Kit on Tweaktown.

Misc Pics (41 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 6-November-2015  14:31:40 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Friday again! Looking forward to the MotoGP showdown this weekend..

Friday Morning Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 6-November-2015  07:22:40 (GMT +10) - by booj

Plextor M6V 256GB SATA III SSD on TweakTown.
Asustor AS6202T NAS on Legion Hardware.
Crucial BX200 SSD (480GB/960GB) on The SSD Review.
Seagate Backup Plus 4TB USB 3.0 Portable Hard Drive on NikKTech.
WD My Book Pro 12TB Thunderbolt 2 RAID Storage Unit on TweakTown.

In Win 805 Aluminium and Glass Mid-Tower on eTeknix.
Nanoxia Deep Silence 1 Rev. B on Techpowerup.
AZZA Nova 8000 Full Tower on Neoseeker.
SilverStone Kublai KL05-W on Modders-inc.

EK Predator 360 AIO (CPU & GPU) Liquid Cooling on Guru3D.
SilverStone Tundra TD02 Slim Liquid Cooler on Benchmark Reviews.
Monsoon Modular Reservoir System (MMRS) on Modders-Inc.

Portable & Prebuilt:
Zotac Zbox Magnus EN970 on the TechReport.
Samsung Galaxy Note5 on Techarp.
ECS LIVA X2 Intel Braswell Mini-PC on PC Perspective.

Noontec ZORO II Wireless Bluetooth Headphones on Legit Reviews.
iClever IC-BTH02 Bluetooth Headphones on TechnologyX.

Input etc:
Thrustmaster T150 Force Feedback Wheel on PC Perspective.
Xbox Elite Wireless Controller on Vortez.

MSI Z170A Gaming M7 on ocaholic.
Tech Armor ActivePower 12000 Mobile Power Bank on ThinkComputers.

Wednesday Morning Reviews (5 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 4-November-2015  06:06:30 (GMT +10) - by booj

Motherboards & CPUs:
Supermicro C7Z170-SQ on ocaholic.
EVGA Z170 Classified on Hardware Asylum.
SuperMicro C7Z170-SQ on Guru3D.

WD Purple 6TB Surveillance Hard Drive on eTeknix.
QNAP TS-251 High-Performance 2-Bay Prosumer NAS on eTeknix.
Crucial BX200 480GB SATA 2.5 Inch SSD on Legit Reviews.
Crucial BX200 on Vortez.

Input etc:
Corsair Strafe RGB MX Silent Red Mechanical Keyboard on eTeknix.
Corsair Gaming Strafe on ocaholic.
CMStorm QuickFire XTi Mechanical Keyboard on Benchmark Reviews.
Cooler Master Storm Quick Fire XTi Mechanical Keyboard on APH Networks.

Thermaltake Suppressor F51 on OCC.
BitFenix Pandora on TechnologyX.

Be Quiet! Shadow Rock LP CPU Cooler on Modders-Inc.
SilverStone Tundra TD03-LITE Closed Loop Water Cooler on APH Networks.

Creative Sound Blaster X7 External USB DAC on TweakTown.
SteelSeries Siberia 200 Headset on Vortez.
Audiofly AF56m In-Ear Headphones on ThinkComputers.

Portable & Prebuilt:
ASUS ZenFone 2 Laser (ZE550KL) Smartphone on TechARP.
ASUS Transformer Book T100HA on Vortez.

TP-LINK Archer CR700 DOCSIS 3.0 Cable Modem Router on TweakTown.
Amazon Fire TV (2015) Second Generation on HotHardware.

Tuesday Afternoon (0 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 3-November-2015  12:54:58 (GMT +10) - by Agg

AMD have retired their Catalyst Control Center, replacing the graphics driver control package with "Radeon Software Crimson Edition". Coverage on HotHardware and TechARP. AMD has been delivering graphics drivers for the past 20+ years, and during this time the graphics driver evolved way beyond the graphics device driver. Now we have user interfaces, libraries, tools, applications, packaged as what we call drivers. The software has morphed into a mini graphics Operating System. With the formation of Radeon Technologies Group, AMD has decided to call this mini graphics Operating System, Radeon Software.

Warner Bros are apparently giving up on Arkham Knight on PC, offering full refunds. Until the end of 2015, we will be offering a full refund on Batman: Arkham Knight PC, regardless of how long you have played the product. You can also return the Season Pass along with the main game (but not separately). For those of you that hold onto the game, we are going to continue to address the issues that we can fix and talk to you about the issues that we cannot fix.

There's apparently a new Star Trek series on the way! “There is no better time to give Star Trek fans a new series than on the heels of the original show’s 50th anniversary celebration,” said David Stapf, President, CBS Television Studios.“Everyone here has great respect for this storied franchise, and we’re excited to launch its next television chapter in the creative mind and skilled hands of Alex Kurtzman, someone who knows this world and its audience intimately.” More official info here, with discussion here.

Closer to home, there's a new Chinese passenger jet, intended to rival Boeing and Airbus. The C919 -- a twin-engine, narrow-body aircraft seating up to 174 people -- is similar in size to the Airbus 320 and Boeing 737 series of jets, long the workhorses for airlines around the world. With a flying range of up to 5,555 kilometers (3,451 miles), it is designed to compete head-to-head with its Airbus and Boeing rivals, and said to easily cover popular business and leisure routes from China such as Shanghai to Singapore and Beijing to Bangkok. Discussion here.

TechSpot compared DX11 vs DX12 performance in the game "Ashes of the Singularity". Finally, we have what looks to be a very accurate means of gauging DX12 performance to see just what it means for the future of PC gaming. Recently Stardock provided gamers with Steam Early Access to Ashes of the Singularity, one of the first games to use DX12. This new real-time strategy game has been developed with Oxide's Nitrous engine and looks very much like Supreme Commander though the two games are in no way related.

Amazon mentioned drone deliveries a while ago, and now Google are getting in on it as well. Google says it expects to begin delivering packages to consumers via drones in two years, after a successful test flight in Queensland last year. David Vos, the executive in charge of Google's Project Wing, said internet giant Alphabet Inc, Google's new holding company, hoped to introduce drone deliveries in the US in 2017.

But if you want robot home deliveries without having to wait for FAA approval, maybe a little driving robot is the way to go. A new robot developed by one of the original founders of Skype could help reduce the price we pay for deliveries - and possibly make them free in the future. Starship drives autonomously to the shopper's doorway and then texts an alert message to announce its arrival. The low speed robot is designed to drive for a few miles from a local hub or a shop and can only carry small loads. The company is currently testing its prototypes and hopes to launch pilot services in the UK next year.

Monday Midday Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 2-November-2015  12:45:40 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Motherboard & CPU:
Intel Core i7-6700K Stock versus Overclocked on OCAholic.
BIOSTAR Gaming Z170X ATX Motherboard on LegitReviews.
Skylake Z170 Mini-ITX Motherboards on OCAholic.
GIGABYTE Z170XP-SLI (Intel Z170) Motherboard on Tweaktown.

Video Cards:
NVIDIA GTX 950 SLI on eTeknix.
XFX R9 380 4G Double Dissipation Black Edition on Bjorn3D.

Noctua NH-L9x65 Low-Profile CPU Cooler on NikKTech.

Power Supply:
Sandberg Powerbank 20000 For Laptop on NikKTech.
Chieftec SFX 500GD-C 500W PSU on eTeknix.
Maha Energy MH-C204U USB AA/AAA Charger Power Bank on ModSynergy.
Thermaltake Toughpower DPS G 850W on PCPerspective.

Input Etc:
Razer Mamba Wireless Chroma Gaming Mouse on MadShrimps.
Logitech Harmony Elite Review: The Ultimate Universal Remote? on HotHardware.
Corsair STRAFE RGB – Cherry MX Silent Keyboard on LegitReviews.
SteelSeries Stratus XL - Windows & Android on Vortez.
Razer BlackWidow Ultimate 2016 Edition keyboard on Bjorn3D.
Cooler Master Quickfire Rapid-i Keyboard on BenchmarkReviews.

Vantec DSH-M100U3 USB 3.0 Docking Solution on Tweaktown.
Areca Technology ARC-1883i Eight-Port 12Gb/s SAS RAID Adapter on Tweaktown.
ADATA Premier SP550 240GB Solid State Drive on ThinkComputers.
Promise Pegasus2 R2+ Thunderbolt 2 RAID Storage Unit on Tweaktown.
Mushkin Striker 480GB SSD on Bjorn3D.
Thecus W2000+ NAS on Bjorn3D.
Mushkin Atlas Vital 250GB M.2 SSD on Bjorn3D.
SanDisk Ultra Fit 128GB USB 3.0 Flash Drive on Tweaktown.
OCZ Trion 100 480GB on LanOC.

Portable & Prebuilt:
Gigabyte Brix S GB-BXi5H-5200 mini PC on Bjorn3D.
ECS LIVA X2 Mini PC (Braswell) on TechPowerUp.
ASUS ZenFone 2 Laser (ZE550KL) Smartphone on TechARP.

Akasa MAX MT Fanless NUC Chassis on eTeknix.
Silverstone Raven X (RVX01) on TechSpot.

Audio Visual:
Element Gaming Neon 300 PC Gaming Headse on eTeknix.
ASUS ROG SWIFT PG279Q G-SYNC Gaming Monitor: IPS At 165Hz on HotHardware.
HiFiMAN HE-400S Planar Magnetic Headphones on TechPowerUp.
Sound Blaster E5 USB DAC & headphone amp on Bjorn3D.

G.Skill Ripjaws V F4-3000C15D-16GVR 2x8GB DDR4 RAM on APHNetworks.
Kingston HyperX Fury 16GB DDR4 2666MHz on Bjorn3D.
Crucial Ballistix Sport 2400MHz 16GB Dual Channel DDR4 on Bjorn3D.


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