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May 2006
Interesting Forum Threads (10 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 31-May-2006  13:02:15 (GMT +10) - by Agg

A quick snapshot of what's happening in the forums:

Home networking questions before new house is built in Newbie Lounge.
Gave my box a good clean & this was the result... in Overclocking & Hardware.
nforce 590 promoting nvidia only GPU's? in Overclocking & Hardware.
Partitions and you in Storage, Backup & Memory.
2GB RAM and Pagefile in Storage, Backup & Memory.
MacBook Pro Owners Club in Apple Hardware.
Anatomy of a well-intentioned Linux troll in Other Operating Systems.
Updated: Cluster half finished in SMP & Clustering.
How much does/did your server cost? in SMP & Clustering.
Poll: Is Windows XP secure enough? in Windows Operating Systems.
Firefox OCAU Menu Extension in Graphics & Programming.
Conroe BENCHMARKED at 5GHz! in Intel Hardware.
New toy: D950ES. 12-17 multi!! in Intel Hardware.
Audigy 2 ZS Platinum vs X-fi xtreme music in PC Audio.
World of Warcraft Free 10-Day Trials in Games.
Swiftech MCP 350 Plexi Mod (LARGE pics) in Extreme Cooling.
HELP! How to flush GPU BLOCK in Extreme Cooling.
Kayl Black Frozen SS arrived - pictures inside! in Extreme Cooling.
Russian Hacker threatens to take down the Internet in Current Events.
Bizarre Kookaburra mating ritual? in Photography.
5D pictures are really something else! in Photography.

Wednesday Morning Reviews #2 (2 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 31-May-2006  03:23:40 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Enermax Laureate External 3.5" HDD Enclosure on ExtremeOC.
Vizo Luxon HDD Enclosure on XSReviews.
Lite-ON SOHW-1673U EZ-DUB External DVD Burner on AByteApart.
Vantec NexStar 3 eSATA USB2.0 HDD Enclosure on FutureLooks.
Scythe Quiet Drive Internal HDD Silencer on Pro-Clockers.
Seagate Barracuda 7200.10 HDD on TechReport.
OCZ Mini-Kart USB2.0 1GB Flash Drive on OCClub.
1GB Verbatim Store'n'Go U3 Smart Drive on HWZone.il.
Buffalo 4GB Flash Drive on OCrCafe.

I-StarUSA S-8 Storm midtower on ClubOC.
Thermaltake Aguila on ThinkComputers.
Sunbeam Silent Storm on TechPowerUp.
iCute 0508 turbine case on DansData.
Lian Li PC-V800 HTPC case on OCrCafe.
Arctic Cooling Silentium T2 on Techgage.

Audio / Visual:
TerraTec Noxon 2 Audio Player on BIOSmag.
Panasonic TH-65PV500B 65in plasma TV on TrustedReviews.
LG RZ-32LZ55 32in LCD TV on TrustedReviews.
Pioneer PDP-436SXE 43in Plasma TV on TrustedReviews.
Sennheiser PC160 Gaming Headset on TrustedReviews.
iRiver U10 1GB Flash Portable Media Player on ExtremeMHz.
Sling Media Slingbox personal video broadcaster on XYZComputing.
Altec Lansing AHS615 Gaming Headset on ThinkComputers.

Wednesday Morning Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 31-May-2006  03:05:19 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Power Supply:
Mushkin Enhanced 650w on MaxitMag.
OCZ GameXStream 700W on NeoSeeker.
SilverStone ST60F 600W on Bjorn3D.
Silverstone Zeus 750W on PCPerspective.
Thermaltake TR2-430W on HWSecrets.
I-Star TC620PD3 620W on ClubOC.

Revoltec Light FX and Lightwriter funky fans on Driverheaven.
Scythe Ninja Plus heatpipe CPU cooler on ARP.
Enermax Warp 120mm fan on ExtremeOC.
Bluegears b-ice 120mm fan on ThinkComputers.
Spire VertiCool II CPU cooler on Techgage.
BlueGears 120mm b-Ice & b-Cool Temp Display Fans on Virtual-Hideout.

Video Cards:
Gigabyte GV-NX76T256D-RH (GeForce 7600 GT 256MB) on HWZone.
Inno3D GeForce 7600GST on LegionHW.
XFX GeForce 7900GT 256MB XXX Extreme Edition on MaxitMag.
Sapphire X1800GTO on NeoSeeker.
Connect3D Radeon X1900GT on PureOC.
Connect3D Radeon X1900GT on TrustedReviews.

Uh, Outage #2 (7 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 31-May-2006  00:33:13 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Yes, well, seems the issue with the database server was slightly more serious than first thought. :) I ended up having to go to the datacentre (2 hours drive away) to troubleshoot the machine. The end result is that we seem to have had some memory go bad. It's difficult to pin down the exact cause of server issues like this, so fingers crossed, but this RAM definitely has some issues so won't have been helping. So we're down to only 6GB in BBQ now. :) Anyway, apologies for the downtime.

Opportunity of a Lifetime! (47 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 30-May-2006  14:48:23 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Here's an opportunity that doesn't happen every day. We've been informed of a strictly limited promotional item - the only one in existence - being offered for sale on eBay. It's a piece of memorabilia that you'll treasure and show off to your friends and family. Ladies and Gentlemen, I humbly present to you, an iRock USB keypad.. signed by Sciby. THE Sciby, of podcast fame. Sciby of drunken voicemail fame. Sciby of "OCAU's Sexiest Member" fame, as voted by our members for the last thousand years or so running. And now you can own something that's he's not only touched, but scribbled his name on. Twice.

Click for the eBay auction!

auction not affiliated or endorsed by ocau in any way. ocau receives no payment for this promotion, but possibly a free beer at some undisclosed future time. not suitable for the pregnant or elderly.

Submit news! (5 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 30-May-2006  14:32:17 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Did you know that most of the interesting news you read on our news page is actually gathered by our readers? If you find something interesting in your wanderings, email a link and a few words about it to news@overclockers.com.au and you might see your name in lights too. :)

Outage (21 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 30-May-2006  13:47:49 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Database server hiccup.. we now return to to your normal idle surfing. :)

SiSoft Sandra 2007 (6 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 29-May-2006  17:17:26 (GMT +10) - by Agg

SiSoftware in the UK have released the latest version of their popular benchmarking and system information program, SiSoft Sandra 2007. There's 4 new benchmarks, 4 updated benchmarks and a lot of added hardware support. I've updated our mirror page with full info and links:

Click to go to OCAU's mirror page!

OCAU Frappr (1 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 29-May-2006  15:11:46 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Thetron has started a Frappr Map for OCAU members. Basically this lets you highlight your location on Google Maps and see other people's locations. There's discussion in this thread. If you're after more Google Maps stuff, check out the huge list of Australian locations in the Wiki.

OCAU Podcast Episode 8! (2 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 29-May-2006  03:18:29 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Episode 8 of the OCAU Podcast is up! In this episode we mostly focus on the "game" Second Life, but of course chat about a few other topics. As requested I've included about 10 mins on OCAU's first month of existence, and we also have a very nice prize from Arena PC to give away! You'll have to listen to the podcast to figure out how to win though. :) Overall sound quality is a lot better this time too.

You can grab this week's episode via iTunes here (you might need to subscribe (free!) in iTunes before you can see the new episode), or download the file direct from our server:

Normal quality copy (14MB) here.
High quality copy (45MB) here.

If you prefer the raw RSS feed, you can get that here, or an XML version here.

Discussion of Episode 8 in this thread, thanks!

Monday Morning (6 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 29-May-2006  02:59:39 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Chris sent in this watercooling PSU. Not just a watercooled PSU (there's a couple of those already) but a watercooling system based around the system's PSU. Digital Cowboy Japan has come to the rescue with the Water Cowboy DC-WCP450, a 450 watt ATX power supply which has a built in radiator, pump and tank. The unit has a 12cm angular fan which cools both the power supply and the radiator.

ZDNet report on a benchmark tool built into Vista which seems to need a little work. The critique is that the current version of the Windows System Performance Rating feature could be "misleading", Brad Goldberg, general manager for Windows at Microsoft, said in an interview at the Windows Hardware Engineering Conference (WinHEC) in Seattle.

APC meanwhile say 64-bit driver issues will be less of a problem with Vista than WinXP. Another Microsoft spokesman said the company was currently being let down by some hardware vendors in specific categories, such as printers, wireless networking, SATA and storage. They also have some info about Vista's SuperFetch technology and Samsung's hybrid flash/hard drives.

If you're a fan of Mythbusters, or at least a fan of Kari from Mythbusters, you'll be a fan of this FHM page (which probably isn't safe for work), thanks thetron. Video, too. Mmm, science.

Thetron also spotted this downloadable video of a "4 Corners" story about nuclear power in Australia. Speaking of which, browca04 sent in this article about possibly using Mount Gambier for a nuclear power station, and there's a lengthy forum thread discussing this issue here.

TheTechZone report on some new laptop battery technologies. Micro fuel cells can use such fuels as alcohol or methanol and offers ten times the power of conventional batteries using only 1/20th the weight. Perfectly suited for laptops or notebook computers.

Skit has an article about some annoying calls. They now prank your mobile with one ring then hang up. This has been happening for at least a few months before Christmas. Most people will call the number back to find out who they missed. These people are then greated with a recorded message saying they have won! and then requests them to dial a $2.50/min number for further details. What amazes me about that page is the comments from people who Google for missed call numbers! Never even thought about doing that.

ByteSizedReviews checked out a few CrossFire motherboards. Although ATi recently released its RD580 chipset (Radeon Xpress 3200), it plans on continuing its RD480 (Radeon Xpress 200) products as the "mainstream" crossfire solution.

XYZComputing have pics and info about eBook readers. A proper digital book should fit the form factor of a normal paperback, though will replace the pages with memory and the cover with a display. While this is a simple enough concept, actually making a feasible product has been extremely tough.

BTXFormFactor continue their Microprocessor History article with Part 2. If (like me) you don't remember Part 1, you can brush up here.

From Jared: I just noticed that you can download episodes of McLeod's Daughters. Not that i'm interested in that but when they start offering more shows it could be good. Nice one Channel Nine!

XbitLabs compared some professional graphics accelerators from ATI and NVIDIA. Today we are going to talk about those graphics cards that are intended not for gaming needs, but for serious work. We managed to get our hands on a few new solutions from Nvidia and ATI from the Quadro and FireGL series.

Bjorn3D had a chat with a few people from NVIDIA about the new nForce 5 chipsets. what is the planned lifespan of the nForce 500 series? As long as folks love it. We are still selling nf3.

DriverHeaven have a DirectX 10 overview article. Staff member Pete Grass was at the recent ATI press briefing in London regarding DX10. He has written an overview of the technology which is interesting reading.

Murray noticed that Western Digital have quietly upgraded some features of their 36GB and 74GB Raptor hard drives. Among the performance updates are increases in 'Buffer To Disk' sustained transfer rates of 84MB/sec up from the previous models' 72MB/sec as well as lower overall average seek times. The updated 36GB and 74GB Raptor models are also 3 dBA quieter in the idle state.

Saturday Evening (5 Comments) (link)
 Saturday, 27-May-2006  19:44:18 (GMT +10) - by Agg

HardOCP have an article about pre-overclocked GeForce 7900's having reliability issues. What seems to be happening the most are problems associated with playing F.E.A.R., Oblivion, or using the 3DMark06 testing suite, but issues are certainly not limited to this. 7900 cards have been artifacting and/or locking up while playing games. This sometimes happens when the card is installed the first day, or it might happen a month later.

Sciby spotted an article about a game of Tringo within the MMORPG "Second Life". We've actually been looking at Second Life this week and will have a discussion about it on the next podcast. Games inside games; worlds inside worlds. We've finally entered the Matrix, it seems -- and it's a hell of a lot of fun. Some more Second Life info here.

The first new skyscraper on the site of the old World Trade Centre in New York has been opened. We've come a very long way," said Silverstein, who built the first 7 World Trade nearly 20 years ago and has struggled to rebuild destroyed office space at the 6.5-hectare site for more than four years.

DigitalGrabber explain the difference between WiFi and WiMax. WiMax can handle virtually all the same protocols Wifi can including VOIP. African countries are now going to start deploying WiMax networks instead of cell phone networks. Disaster zones can also utilize WiMax giving them the ability to distribute crisis information quickly and cheaply.

Shane sent in an article on the American "Car and Driver" website about Ford's Australian lineup. Somehow, Australia has become the place to find the quintessential American muscle sedan.

VIA Arena have an interesting article about the language of IT websites. The IT industry might be just a teenager but many of the old school IT journalists are not far off middle age. Has the language all grown up?

FiringSquad checked out how NVIDIA and ATI chipsets fare on the new AM2 platform for AMD CPUs. ATI’s decided to stick largely with their tried and tested Xpress 3200 platform first launched in March, while NVIDIA’s come up with a new nForce chipset that’s a little more revised in comparison to the competition.

PCWorld share what they think are the 25 Worst Tech Products of all time. Microsoft Bob better have made it to their list. We sought the worst of the worst--operating systems that operated badly, hardware that never should have left the factory, applications that spied on us and fed our data to shifty marketers, and products that left a legacy of poor performance and bad behavior.

Some snippets from Murray: flash-based portable PC's from Samsung, a robot brain interface and an invisibility cloak!

Saturday Evening Reviews (1 Comments) (link)
 Saturday, 27-May-2006  18:03:58 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Sytrin KuFormula VF1 Plus VGA cooler on Virtual-Hideout.
Zalman CNPS9500-AM2 CPU cooler on FrostyTech.
SilverStone NT06 CPU cooler on PCModdingMy.
Jetart VC3600 VCool GPU cooler on XSReviews.
AMD OEM Dual Core CPU Cooler on TweakNews.

Video Cards:
HIS X1800 GTO IceQ3 Turbo 256MB VIVO PCIe on BonaFideReviews.
Sapphire Toxic X1900XT watercooled card on TBreak.
Palit GeForce 7600GS on PinoyPC.
Asus EN7900GT TOP/2DHT/256M/A on PCStats.
HIS Radeon X1800GTO IceQ3 Turbo on ViperLair.
Leadtek PX7900GT-Extreme 256MB on AuphanOnline.
Inno3D GeForce 7900 GTX 512MB on HWZone.

Corsair Twin2X2048-6400C4 on PCStats.
Corsair TWINX2048-3500LLPRO 2GB kit on HWSecrets.
OCZ EL DDR PC-4000 Gold GX XTC 2GB kit on HWSecrets.

VIZO Paragon 2.5" One Touch Backup HDD Enclosure on Virtual-Hideout.
Crucial Gizmo Overdrive flash drive on MaxitMag.

Audio / Visual:
Brando USB Sunglasses MP3 Player on Techgage.
LG 50PX4D 50in Plasma TV on TrustedReviews.
Canon PIXMA iP6220D printer on TrustedReviews.
NVIDIA DualTV MCE TV/FM tuner on HotHardware.

Input Etc:
Giganta Lazer 4 Mouse Mat on XSReviews.
Microsoft Wireless Laser Desktop 6000 on BigBruin.

Blood Money PC game on GamePyre.
Ubuntu 6.06 LTS Dapper Drake Linux distro on Phoronix.

Cases & PSU:
Lian Li G70B Aluminum Case on OCClub.
Thermaltake Armor Jr (video review) on 3DGameMan.
Muskin Enhanced 650W PSU on TweakTown.

Q3 ThermoHAWK 200 Infrared Thermometer on 3DGameMan.
GlobalSat GH-601 Outdoor GPS Watch on FutureLooks.
Apple MacBook Pro 15.4-inch 2.16GHz laptop on DigitalTrend.
ASUS A3Vc business notebook on Xbit.
Foxconn C51XEM2AA nForce 590 SLI AM2 motherboard on HWZone.

Friday Lunchtime News (3 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 26-May-2006  13:12:05 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Driverheaven checked out ATI Radeon X1900XTX overclocking, while TechReport compared some GeForce 7900-series cards on the nVIDIA side.

Tweaktown report on performance with the new ATI Catalyst 6.5 drivers. Apart from the performance improvements you can see below, Adaptive Anti-Aliasing has been added to the Radeon 9550 and above models. Originally Adaptive AA, which is a feature which adjusts its detail level depending on the performance, was only seen in the X1000 series of cards.

OCW looked at the relationship between CPU multiplier and memory speed on AM2. There is something that we would like to share with you regarding the CPU multiplier and actual memory speed of your RAM modules.

LegitReviews coupled Corsair's PC2-6400C3 with AMD's AM2 processors. Today we take a look at 667MHz versus 800MHz modules, different memory timings, and a 2GB kit versus a 4GB kit of low latency memory. We managed to increase DOOM 3 performance by nearly 19 percent as a result.

HWZone also examine how much DDR2 benefits AMD CPUs thanks to the new AM2 platform.

Kentang noticed that a Windows Media Player 11 Beta has been released. The interface has been revised somewhat, but it pretty much otherwise looks the same.

From Grrr: Seeing as you guys like to post some 'old' goodies every now and then, I'm sure its time for a Dremples revival. As you may remember, Dremples replaces your desktop background with pretty textures that swirl and blur. It has some options to customise it, add your own textures etc. Get it from here.

PCStats have their A64 FX-62 and X2 5000+ AM2 CPUs review posted, while Bit-Tech focus on just the AM2 FX-62.

Techgage see what life is like with 4GB of RAM. There may not be a need for that now, but it won't take very long until it's commonplace in enthusiast PC's. I take 4GB worth of top end DDR1 and DDR2 memory, and relate my overclocking and performance reports to you.

Dan takes the "cool toy" idea in an unusual direction with a mechanical centipede. Everybody wants an army of giant robot spiders, but it's just not practical for everybody to have one. It's a public order issue. I'm sure you understand.

Friday Morning Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 26-May-2006  02:26:31 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Audio / Visual:
Mirai T27004 27in LCD TV on TrustedReviews.
Bluetake i-PHONO BT450Rx Mini Bluetooth Stereo Headset on FutureLooks.
InFocus IN26 Business Projector on TrustedReviews.
Toshiba 27WLT56 27in LCD TV on TrustedReviews.
SICURO DEC-900 Laptop CardBus TV Tuner Card w/FM Radio/Video Capture on LaptopLifestyle.
Altec Lansing inMotion 9 (IM9) Portable Audio System for iPod on BonaFideReviews.
Samsung 970P LCD monitor on OCOnline.
JBL On Time - Time Machine Dock for iPod on TheTechLounge.
HP Scanjet 4890 Scanner on Techgage.

Foxconn 975X7AA Crossfire board on OCrCafe.
Gigabyte GA-M57SLI-S4 AM2 nForce 570 SLI board on OCW.
ASUS M2N32-SLI Deluxe AM2 nForce 590 SLI board on BIOSMag.
Foxconn C51XEM2AA AM2 nForce 590 board on NeoSeeker.
Epox 9NPA+ S939 board on DriverHeaven.

Disc Makers Pico Automatic CD Replicator on XYZComputing.
StealthSurfer II PrivacyStick flash drive with preinstalled software on ThinkComputers.

Spire Verticool II and DiamondCool II Corsair Nautilus 500 watercooling kit on VelocityReviews.
Cool IT Systems Freezone Peltier & watercooling kit on AVault.
Titan Robela H20 Cooled Case on MadShrimps.

Video Cards:
Sapphire X1600 PRO Crossfire cards on Bjorn3D.
HIS X1300 IceQ Turbo 256MB DDR2 AGP on LANAddict.
Connect3D Radeon X1800 GTO on ClubOC.

Power Supply:
Maxpoint/Enermax Whisper II 535W on Modders-Inc.
iStar STC-750PD2 750W on Virtual-Hideout.
LCG 350W & 500W on GamePyre.

Thursday Morning Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 25-May-2006  03:15:43 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Input Etc:
Zboard Fang Gamepad on Internode.
Enermax Aurora Aluminium Keyboard on Pro-Clockers.
Logitech G7 Laser Mouse on OcClub.
Enermax Aurora & Crystal Keyboards on 3DGameMan.

OCZ 2GB Platinum Edition PC4000 Dual Channel DDR500 on BonaFideReviews.
SyncMAX PC2 5400 on OCrCafe.

Thermaltake Armor Junior midtower on BigBruin.
ThermalTake Matrix VX VD3000 on FastLaneHW.

MSI MegaBook S271 Turion64 X2 laptop on LegionHW.
Samsung Q1 Ultra Mobile PC Origami PC on TrustedReviews.

More AM2 Coverage:
nForce 590 SLI and XPress 3200 - AM2 Battle on PCPerspective.
AMD Socket AM2 Motherboards Special on AMDBoard.
Athlon 64 FX-62 and Athlon 64 X2 5000+ CPUs on SharkyExtreme.
NVIDIA nForce 500 Chipset Family on HWZone.
AMD Athlon 64 X2 5000+ and FX-62 CPUs on HWZone.

Battlefield 2 Patch v1.3 (4 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 24-May-2006  18:04:14 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Fwoar let me know that there's a new Battlefield 2 patch out, v1.3. You can grab the 460MB Full Patch or the 86MB v1.22 to v1.3 patch from AusGamers.

Wednesday Afternoon (20 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 24-May-2006  16:12:07 (GMT +10) - by Agg

A recent study reckons that video games don't lead to violence. At least one study argues that make-believe violence helps children 'conquer fears and develop a sense of identity', as gruesome fairytales once did. Games are good, games are bad, I wish they'd make up their minds. All this indecision makes me want to shoot someone, or run them over in my car.

Intel's Woodcrest CPU, which is a Xeon based on the Core microarchitecture, is examined in detail by TechReport and also 2CPU. Woodcrest, or the Xeon 5100 series processors, will have 4mb of dynamically shared L2 cache. Having this type of shared cache allows each core to use as much cache as it needs to handle the operations associated with its thread.

HWSecrets follow up on their switching power supplies article by looking inside an old Apple II PSU. Designed by Rod Holt, it doesn’t differ a lot from power supplies used on current-day PCs, as we’ve seen on our Anatomy of Switching Power Supplies tutorial. We disassembled it to show you how it worked.

We have seen this before, but in case you haven't seen it, it's pretty cool. A multi-input touchscreen is under development. This becomes extremely useful, because it will allow be able to accomidate multiple users simultaneously, which would be extremely useful for larger interaction scenarios such as interactive walls and tabletops. Cool video.

Hexus have a Radeon Xpress 3200 shootout between the ASUS A8R32-MVP Deluxe and Sapphire PURE Crossfire PC-A9RD580. These are CrossFire boards for S939 CPUs. Speaking of which, they also checked out a prebuilt CrossFire / A64 FX-60 PC from UK vendor MESH.

Bit-Tech have a cool case mod, the Weapon of Mass Destruction. Must be fun unloading that thing from your car at LAN parties. :)

GamersGallery have some gargantuan Halo 3 screenshots from Xbox 360. 6400x3600 resolution apparently..?!

ArsTechnica have an article about eMusic. In the 18 months since the relaunch of eMusic, the company has clawed its way to the number two position among digital download services (this does not include streaming music). Pakman claims that eMusic has 12 percent of the market compared to Apple's 61 percent, and that his company has now sold more than 60 million songs.

From Primax: Just dropping in some new news, at least two new World of Warcraft servers for Oceanic players will be going live on a new site on May 30th, according to Blizzard here. These servers are rumored to be based in Australia, which will be the first time Australian MMO players will be able to get low ping goodness. :D

Pet Portraits Thread (0 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 24-May-2006  14:34:07 (GMT +10) - by Agg

We're close to a Total Cute Overload in the Photography Forum:

Pic by srn, click for the thread!

Quite a few nice pics of people's cats, dogs, snakes etc in that thread. :)

OCAU Podcast Episode 7! (14 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 24-May-2006  04:56:27 (GMT +10) - by Agg

This week's OCAU Podcast episode is slightly delayed and doesn't contain any interviews. Instead, we've gone back to our earlier "geeks sitting around talking about stuff" mode. Sciby, Wolfy and I waffle on about a range of topics including CeBIT Sydney, Live Anywhere, Vista Requirements, Network Neutrality, Spore, Google Maps and various other things.

Sound quality isn't the best in this episode unfortunately, as despite our usual sound-levels testing I ended up really loud and everyone else really quiet. I've (mostly) fixed it in post-production (hence the delay), so it's not the best, but bearable.

You can grab this week's episode via iTunes here (you might need to subscribe (free!) in iTunes before you can see the new episode), or download the file direct from our server:

Normal quality copy (10MB) here.
High quality copy (43MB) here.

If you prefer the raw RSS feed, you can get that here, or an XML version here.

Discussion of Episode 7 in this thread, thanks!

More AMD AM2 Coverage (1 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 24-May-2006  01:08:24 (GMT +10) - by Agg

AMD AM2 Heatsink Compatibility List on MadShrimps.
AMD Launches The Socket AM2 Platform on LegitReviews.
ASRock AM2NF4G-SATA2 Preview on Phoronix.
AMD AM2 5000+ CPU on NeoSeeker.
AMD AM2 FX62 and NVIDIA nForce5 Launch on GamePyre.
AMD Athlon64 X2 5000+/FX62 CPUs on Motherboards.org.
Socket AM2 and Athlon 64 X2 5000+ Preview on NordicHW.
Socket AM2 Chipsets Collide on TechReport.
NVIDIA nForce 500 Chipset on TechPowerUp.
ASUS M2N32-SLI Deluxe on PCModdingMy.
ASUS M2N32-SLI Deluxe Wireless Edition on OCW.
AMD AM2 product line (AM2 X2 5000+) Evaluation on PlanetX64.
AMD's AM2 Platform on LostCircuits.

Wednesday Morning Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 24-May-2006  00:57:50 (GMT +10) - by Agg

PrimeCooler Aqua Ready 1 watercooling kit on A1-Electronics.
Noctua NH-U9 and NH-U12 CPU coolers on OCOnline.
Scythe Mine CPU cooler on Techgage.

Digital TV Tuner Mini-Roundup on TrustedReviews.
Plusdeck2c PC Cassette Deck on ThinkComputers.
Viewsonic VA2012w 20.1" Widescreen Monitor on UKGamer.

Video Cards:
Gigabyte GeForce 7600GS on LegionHW.
XFX GeForce 7600 GT 256MB PCI-E XXX Edition on TheTechLounge.
ASUS 7800GT Top Silent /2HDTV on XbitLabs.
ASUS EN7800GT Silent on Motherboards.

Icy Dock MB452UK-B USB 2.0 External Enclosure on BigBruin.
VIZO SHE-250 2.5"*Enclosure on OCModShop.

Power Supply:
Cooler Master iGreen 430W on TweakNews.
Xion PowerReal 2.01 600W on Hard-H2O.

SyncMAX PC2 5400 on OCrCafe.
Super Talent T800UX2GC4 PC2-6400 on LegitReviews.

Creative Mouse HD7500 on UKGamer.
Sunbeamtech Zorro case on Virtual-Hideout.
Netgear RangeMAX 240 wireless router on DigitalTrends.

AMD's AM2 Arrives! (1 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 23-May-2006  17:02:58 (GMT +10) - by Agg

AMD have officially unveiled their much-awaited Socket AM2 platform, with two new CPUs and DDR2 support. As part of AMD’s ongoing commitment to deliver leading technology for desktop PCs, AMD (NYSE: AMD) today announced the immediate availability of the AMD Athlon 64 FX-62 dual-core processor, the world’s ultimate processor for PC enthusiasts, and the AMD Athlon 64 X2 5000+dual-core processor compatible with AMD’s new socket AM2 platform. Socket AM2 from AMD is designed to enable next-generation platform innovations such as AMD Virtualization and high-performance, unbuffered DDR2 memory to the award-winning AMD64 architecture.

General coverage on AMDZone, Bjorn3D, DailyTech, DriverHeaven, Guru3D, HardOCP, HotHardware, HWSecrets, Hexus, PCModdingMy, PC Perspective, PCPop, Phoronix, Planet3DNow, T-Break, Viperlair and XbitLabs.

Hexus reckon that Intel's Conroe spanks an AM2 FX-62, while Xbit look a closer look at the effects of DDR2-800 on AMD CPUs and Bjorn3D checked out the NVIDIA nForce 590 chipset. Hexus also looked at two pre-built FX-62 systems, from Scan and Evesham in the UK.

Discussion in this thread in our AMD Hardware forum.

Tuesday Morning Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 23-May-2006  03:08:55 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Audio / Visual:
Sapphire 512MB Ivory Digital Audio Player on Hexus.
Sony Walkman NW-A3000 on BIOSMag.
Hitachi 42PD9700 42in Plasma TV on TrustedReviews.
Roadmaster USA VRFM8 MP3 FM Modulator on BigBruin.
Altec Lansing MX5021 speakers on BonaFideReviews.
DISH Network ViP 622 HDTV DVR on DigitalTrends.
NEC PlasmSync 42XR4 42in Plasma Screen on TrustedReviews.
Vivadi Saturn HD50 50in Plasma &*Media Center on TrustedReviews.

iStarUSA S-8 Storm on Virtual-Hideout.
CoolerMaster Centurion 523 on ThinkComputers.
Lian Li PC-G70B-CW on FastLaneHW.

Zalman 9500AT LGA775 CPU cooler on Techgage.
Zalman VF900-Cu VGA cooler on PCApex.

Mouse Etc:
Giganta Lazer 4 mousepad on Pro-Clockers.
Logitech G7 Laser Cordless Mouse on FastLaneHW.
XTracPads Hybrid mousepad on TechFear.

Evesham SilverEDGE 200NHR 1RU prebuilt server on TrustedReviews.
Intel Pentium D 960 LGA775 dual-core CPU on HWZone.
ASUS PhysX P1 GRAW Edition 128MB PCI physics card on HWZone.
Vantec NexStar 3 eSATA/USB 2.0 3.5" External HDD Enclosure on HardCoreWare.
eVGA 7800GS CO SuperClocked AGP video card on MadShrimps.

Google Maps with more Australian detail (18 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 22-May-2006  04:03:30 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Thetron noticed that Google Maps has been updated with street level maps of major Australian and New Zealand cities. In fact, it's even got street names for the rural area where I live.

I also noticed that there's more detail in some of the satellite photos of Australia now too. For example Sydney's CBD used to be very blurry, but now you can clearly see landmarks like Centrepoint Tower and the MLC Centre, not to mention the Sydney Opera House. There seems to have been an additional level of zoom added to the interface, although I haven't found anywhere that can use it.

Remember, we have a huge list of Australian Google Maps Locations in the Wiki. I imagine that page will become even bigger now!

Monday Morning (5 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 22-May-2006  03:49:00 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Technical issues have delayed this week's podcast, sadly.. so here's some regular news.

MadShrimps have a low-to-midrange PCIe video card roundup. In this roundup we compare seven different video cards which don't cost you an arm and a leg.

HWSecrets peek at the innards of switching power supplies. In this tutorial we will explain you how switching power supplies work and we will provide a journey into the PC power supply showing you its main components and what they do.

Loop Goose spotted a Radeon X1600 with HDMI. The card uses a small PCB and can fit in just about any case including a home entertainment PC. It sports a VGA connector, HDMI out and SPDIF in. I think I saw something similar at CeBIT Sydney, will have to check my notes.

I'm not sure if two heatsinks constitutes a roundup, but Motherboards.org have compared the Big Typhoon and Mini Typhoon CPU coolers from Thermaltake. What remains to be seen, however, is if this little brother is still big on performance, just like family tradition implies he is.

Stuart sent word of the world's first Open Movie. Not only would the movie be made using Open Source software, but the contents themselves were to be Open as well: all of the digital assets and production files are released under a Creative Commons license, allowing everyone to see how the movie was made, make changes to it and create a new, derived movie.

Futurelooks spotted a laser turntable. Time to dig out all those old LP's! According to ELP, this machine is so cool, it can even play "Warped and Damaged Records". They claim that "In some cases, the LT plays even broken records when all the pieces are placed on a tray without tape or glue".

From Flect: An Internet-based computer game that puts players in the army boots and black trench coats of Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold as they kill Columbine High School classmates is attracting attention and sparking controversy. Seems a bit uncool.

SharkyExtreme have their monthly Value Gaming PC buyer's guide posted. Finding the best system components for a value gaming system is more difficult than simply picking the top hardware money can buy, and it entails some concession on the part of the buyer.

From White Rhino: There's a bit over a week left to vote for the April Iron Photographer and entries are open for the May competition: "Something Fishy".

Sunday Morning Reviews (1 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 21-May-2006  03:47:49 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Power Supply:
Cooler Master Real Power 550W on DriverHeaven.
OCZ GameXStream 700W on LegionHW.
Thermaltake ToughPower 550W (video review) on 3DGameMan.

Epson Stylus Photo R2400 on TrustedReviews.
Samsung SPP-2020 on Bytesector.

Video Cards:
S3 Graphics Chrome S27 including MultiChrome on Hexus.
Asus EAX1600XT Silent/TVD/256M/A on PCStats.

XG Viper 2 on Techgage.
Thermaltake Armor Jr on Bjorn3D.
SilverStone LC20B-M HTPC case on ThinkComputers.

Portable & Mini:
Dell Latitude D620 laptop on TrustedReviews.
Apple MacBook Intel-based laptop on ArsTechnica.

Mouse Etc:
Logitech G15 Gaming Keyboard on OCIA.
Logitech Cordless Desktop MX 5000 Laser on BlueTomorrow.
Razer Armadillo cable weight on Phoronix.
Logitech MX610 Left-Hand Laser Cordless Mouse on Virtual-Hideout.

FrontX front-panel ports on PCApex.
Magellan RoadMate 760 GPS on TheTechZone.
OCZ 1GB Mini-Kart USB Flash Drive on RojakPot.
ASUS AGEIA PhysX P1 physics accelerator card on LegitReviews.

Saturday Night Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Saturday, 20-May-2006  23:55:31 (GMT +10) - by Agg

VIZO Sleet DDR Cooler on RBMods.
Cooler Master Blue Ice Pro northbridge cooler on HWZone.
nPowertek TTIC NPH K8-1 CPU cooler on FrostyTech.
Zalman VF-700Cu LED Ultra Quiet VGA Cooler on TweakNews.
AeroCool Dominator Cooler on Pro-Clockers.
Thermaltake Hardcano 13 fan controller on Techgage.
Antec Laptop Cooler on OCClub.

Audio / Visual:
Helios HVD2085 HD DVD Player on BIOSMag.
Soundgraph iMON VFD mini-screen on TechPowerUp.
JVC LT-26DX7BJ 26in LCD TV on TrustedReviews.
Asus PW191 19in Widescreen LCD on TrustedReviews.
Super Talent 2GB MEGA Screen MP3/FM Recorder/Player on BigBruin.

Foxconn 975X7AA-8EKRS2H i975X LGA775 board on PCStats.
ASRock AM2NF4G-SATA2 (GeForce 6100 + nForce 410) on HWZone.
ASUS N4L-VM DH Core Duo motherboard on TweakTown.
MSI K8N Diamond Plus nForce 4 SLI x16 S939 SLI board on Viperlair.

LG3D LiveCD v2.5 (Project Looking Glass) on Phoronix.
Crysis Preview on MaXit.

Dell and AMD? (0 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 19-May-2006  14:00:41 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Dell's stock price has jumped on the news that they will use AMD processors in some high-end servers in future. Dell will also introduce new AMD Opteron processors in our multi-processor servers by the end of the year offering a great new technology to our customers at the high-end of our server line.

Dell systems have been exclusively Intel-based until now, although their recent aquisition of Alienware (who use both Intel and AMD CPUs) has partly paved the way. More info here and here, thanks to all who sent those in.

Discussion in this thread in our AMD Hardware forum.

E3 Wrapup (1 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 19-May-2006  13:30:56 (GMT +10) - by Agg

DigitalTrends have their E3 wrapup posted, while the E3 laptop scene is covered on LaptopLifestyle. VH's focus on day 2 was hardware & cooling, with day 3 and more on HotHardware.

Bit-Tech checked out the Spore preview (which is still amazing), while ThinkGaming checked out a smaller RPG from an indie developer.

PC-Perspective cover E3 from a PC Perspective as you'd expect. Futurelooks wonder what Microsoft brought to E3, in the absence of any real Vista happenings.

SimHQ take a look back at E3 for this year, while FiringSquad finish up their coverage (and ours) with a booth babes video and a Top 10 list from this year's show.

Friday Morning (0 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 19-May-2006  03:25:10 (GMT +10) - by Agg

ATrueReview looked at some SLI/Crossfire Ready PSUs from Aerocool, Cooler Master and Thermaltake, while TrustedReviews have a 14-way PSU group test. For many, it’s the same state of confusion as the day you first walk into Starbucks to discover there are 192 different ways of ordering coffee.

Here's an interesting convective watercooled PC that uses no fans (almost) but more importantly no pump. The dip in the tube at the upper right turned out to be a problem. Everything worked fine until I stressed the CPU. The increased flow from the CPU side stalled the flow from the power supply and trapped the hot coolant in this loop.

Xbitlabs experimented with overclocking an Intel Core Duo CPU. Overclocking proved to have significantly raised the performance of this mobile dual-core processor so that we could place it on the same level with the fastest Intel Pentium Extreme Edition and AMD Athlon 64 FX processors.

HWZone have an AMD Turion 64 X2 Performance Preview. Get a socket change, a new dual-channel DDR2 memory controller, double the processing cores, improved power management and you have a recipe for the new Turion 64 X2 processor. Read on as we take MSI's S271 Turion 64 X2 Mobile Technology pre-evaluation notebook for a quick spin.

Cyrax83 found this Astronomy Picture of the Day Archive over at NASA, with pictures going back more than 10 years.

HWSecrets have an article about AMD's A64 architecture. An in-depth look on how CPUs based on AMD64 architecture work, like Athlon 64, Athlon 64 X2, Athlon 64 FX, Turion 64, Opteron and some Sempron models.

PenStarSys meanwhile have some thoughts on AMD's Energy Efficient CPUs. Energy Efficient processors are based on a 65 watt TDP (the max wattage these processors will ever suck up), which means that really only the X2 4800+ is going to get anywhere near that number, while the lower clocked versions will of course run cooler and more efficiently.

We've missed the first episode, but toe2toe sent this in recently: Anyone mildly interested in old cars and adventure will love a four part series that is showing on ABC. I thought I'd send this news in as my brother was one of the mechanics on the expedition - the guy with the big hair and beard. For more info, check the ABC website here. Sunday nights at 7:30pm apparently, and there was some info on JJJ today about it too, sounded interesting.

Interesting Forum Threads:
IBM to shatter Moore's law with 300GHz Crystal computer in Overclocking & Hardware.
OCAU 3DMark03 Top 10 (Classes) in Video Cards.
Macbooks Announced in Apple Hardware.
GTA:SA Multiplayer OCAU Server in Games.
Clipsal StarServe Stuff in Audio Visual.
A discussion in Technological Singularity in Current Events.
Trip report: first ever shoot in RAW in Photography.
Macro Photography and How I Fixed Flash in Photography.
Nursing Students in Careers, Education & Finance.
A few shots from the Ferrari Gallery in Modena in Motoring.
Off to the Nurburgring in Motoring.
OCAU Idol! in The Pub.

Friday Morning Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 19-May-2006  02:23:52 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Audio / Visual:
Sagem HD-L26TP2 26in LCD TV on TrustedReviews.
Panasonic Viera TH-42PX60B 42in Plasma on TrustedReviews.
Acoustic Energy Aego M Speakers on TrustedReviews.
DLO TransDock Micro for iPod on ThinkComputers.
Sennheiser HD435 Headphones on DigitalTrends.
Apple iPod Nano mp3 player on TheTechLounge.
X-Micro MusePod audio/video player on HWSecrets.

ECS MVP PA1 Rev 2.0 LGA775 board on FutureLooks.
Gigabyte GA-G1975X G1-Turbo LGA775 board on HotHardware.
ASUS P5WD2-E Premium LGA775 board on Motherboards.

Scythe Samurai SCSM-1000 Heatsink on Frostytech.
Evercool VC-RHC GPU Cooler on Techgage.

OCZ Mini-Kart Ultra Slim USB 2.0 Flash Drive on Tweaknews.
Seagate 7200.10 750GB HDD on ClubOC.
AMS Venus GoGo 2.5" OTG Enclosure on Virtual-Hideout.
Western Digital WD5000KS 500GB HDD on XYZComputing.

Thermaltake Eureka on NeoSeeker.
Zalman HD160 Home Theatre Case on SilentPCReview.

Thermaltake PurePower 600W PSU on A1-Electronics.
SuperTalentr 2GB 1GHz DDR2 memory kit on Bit-Tech.
Vizo Gemini Wireless Mouse on RBMods.

Thursday Evening (6 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 18-May-2006  19:11:57 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Murray found a disturbing article about an anti-virus firm throwing in the towel after a prolonged battle with a Russian spammer named PharmaMaster. In a statement Tuesday, Israel-based Blue Security said it can no longer "take the responsibility for an ever-escalating cyber war through our continued operations".

Nick sent in a slashdot story about why the recent DART spacecraft failed in its mission and crashed into the satellite it was supposed to rendezvous with. Investigators blamed the collision on faulty navigational data that caused the DART spacecraft to believe that it was backing away from its target when it was actually bearing down on it.

TheTechZone ponder how things will look, looking back from 2057. Like many industries, the music industry had to die before it could be re-born. Lets face it, any organization that sees its own customers as potential criminals is definitely on the way out.

Murray also spotted this hybrid drive from Samsung, which uses traditional hard drive technology and solid-state flash memory. This cuts down on the amount of disk activity -- typically the new drive spins only a few seconds every 10 or 20 minutes -- which means battery life is extended by between 8 per cent and 10 per cent, according to Samsung's measurements. Just a big buffer, I guess?

ArsTechnica interviewed Jeff Green from Computer Gaming World Magazine, about the difficulties of making a print magazine that can compete with the internet.

Chris spotted a Wired article on the alleged illegal US Government spying recently unveiled by an AT&T whistleblower. In 2003 AT&T built "secret rooms" hidden deep in the bowels of its central offices in various cities, housing computer gear for a government spy operation which taps into the company's popular WorldNet service and the entire internet.

Tech-Hounds continue their Looking Past the Present article, seeing what the GeForce 7900 series offers in terms of longevity. Even in old games, where the GeForce 7900GTX is faster in frame rates, it progressively lost more frame rate than the Radeon X1900XTX with higher resolution and AA / AF.

AuphanOnline cover iPod resurrection, while PSP repair is covered on TrustedReviews.

Bit-Tech have an interesting car wheel PC mod posted. So I was standing in my local tyre store and I got chatting to the guy I know who works there. He asked me what was keeping me busy these days and I explained to him the whole concept of case modding.

Thursday Morning (12 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 18-May-2006  03:58:04 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Techgage have an interview with Solid State Networks. Who? Solid State’s primary goal is to provide a "lightweight, portable, high performance core technology based on the BitTorrent protocol for use in the next generation content delivery systems."

Sam found more info on the Warner Brothers and Bittorrent partnership. Taking the attitude that if you cannot beat them, join them, Warner becomes the first tinseltown studio to turn to the previously feared peer-to-peer technology to help distribute its products.

Thetron spotted these photos of Google Australia's offices in Sydney. Current search terms scroll down the wall in Google Australia's reception, as they famously do in the search giant's global head office.

SharkyExtreme interviewed Terry Makedon from ATI. In the latest in a series of interviews with industry sources, we've got ATI's Terry Makedon answering questions regarding Catalyst drivers, CrossFire, PPU calculations, Windows Vista support, and much more.

From Decker, an interesting read about load-balancing in Apache. Wonder how long it'll be until we need to play around with this stuff.

PCMech have a mild rant about the many confusing naming schemes used by various manufacturers at the moment. With graphics cards, there seem to be no rules on how many prefixes can be made up. For ATI, the generally accepted performance order (from best to worst) is: XTX, XT PE, XT, XL, GTO, GT, Pro, Vanilla, SE. For nVidia, it's Ultra, GTX, GT, Vanilla, SE/XT, then LE. Are mainstream consumers expected to remember all that?

Another interview, this time Lite-On's Jelmer Veldman on Hexus. Find out just how big Lite-On is in the optical disc hardware market, and find out about their take-on of BenQ's optical manufacturing.

Whoops. TheInq report that Ferrari F1, sponsored by AMD, were caught using an Intel-powered laptop at a recent race.. thanks Nick.

From BuzzPuppy, about MS Office soon recognising "bogan": I saw this and it was too good to pass up. Yeah, I know we can add it to our custom dictionaries and the like but to have our terms recognized it absolute GOLD! All they need to do is add words such as "ful-sik" and we’re set to show off our multi-culturalism ;)

DriverHeaven have yet another interview, with Daniel Taranovsky from ATI. I currently work in the discrete desktop business unit, and my responsibilities centre around ATI’s high-end products (X1900 family and CrossFire).

Genesis spotted some Australian-themed AMD products.. well, CPUs codenamed "Brisbane", anyway. The earliest partner roadmap from May claimed we would see 65nm Brisbane Athlon 64 processors in Q1'07

Thursday Morning Reviews #2 (1 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 18-May-2006  02:47:28 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Audio / Visual:
Transcend T.Sonic 310 mp3 player on TheTechLounge.
Fujifilm FinePix S5600 digicam on TrustedReviews.
Philips 32PF5520D 32in LCD TV on TrustedReviews.
Acoustic Authority iRhythms A-211 Speakers on TrustedReviews.
Fujitsu P63XHA40 63in plasma TV on TrustedReviews.
i-mate JAMin mp3 player on TBreak.
Kensington Digital FM Radio &*FM Transmitter for iPod on XYZComputing.
Sony Walkman NW-E003 mp3 player on BIOSMag.
Logitech Z4 2.1 Speakers on Modders-Inc.
Sennheiser PC30/PC160 Headphones on Pro-Clockers.

Power Supply:
FSP VGA Power video card PSU on XbitLabs.
SpirePower Rocketeer V 500W Modular on PCApex.

SilverStone Temjin TJ-07 on SilentPCReview.
SilverStone Temjin TJ-08 (video review) on 3DGameMan.
Antec Minuet 300 Piano Black Slimline Case on Virtual-Hideout.

ASRock 939SLI32-eSATA2 S939 SLI board on OCInside.
ABIT AN8 32X S939 board on NordicHW.

IOGear BOSS 120GB Home/Office Network Server Appliance on ThinkComputers.
Seagate Barracuda 7200.10 750GB hard drive on Techgage.

ASUS AGEIA PhysX Physics Processing Card on XSReviews.
Hawking Technology HBB1 Broadband Booster on HardCoreWare.
Yoga4Dudes DVD on TheTechZone.
Logitech V400 Laser Cordless Mouse on Virtual-Hideout.
ITC METABOX 730u laptop on DigitalReviews.

Thursday Morning Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 18-May-2006  02:23:03 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Mushkin XP2-6400 1GB on TechPowerUp.
G.Skill F1-4000BIU2-2GBHV 2GB PC4000 kit on DriverHeaven.
OCZ PC2-8000 Platinum Edition XTC 2GB on ClubOC.
Corsair 2GB TWINX2048-4400PRO on Techgage.
Buffalo FireStix FSX1000D2C-K2G PC2-8000 DDR2 on PCStats.

Video Cards:
Galaxy GeForce 7600GS 256MB on Guru3D.
HIS X1600 Pro IceQ Turbo single and CrossFire on Bjorn3D.
XFX 7600 GS Extreme Edition on LegitReviews.
PowerColor Radeon X1900GT on LegionHW.
Connect3D Radeon X1800 GTO 256MB on BonaFideReviews.
EVGA e-GeForce 7900 GT CO SuperClocked on XbitLabs.

Arctic Cooling Accelero X1 VGA cooler on BigBruin.
Corsaor Nautilus 500 external watercooling kit on BigBruin.
PrimeCooler 3.5" HDD Cooler on A1-Electronics.
Zalman CNPS9500 LED CPU cooler on TweakNews.
Zalman VF900-Cu GPU heatsink on GruntVille.
Gigabyte 3D Rocket Cooler-Pro PCU22-VG CPU cooler on Frostytech.
Scythe Ninja Plus CPU cooler on ThinkComputers.

The Wrong Guy (5 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 16-May-2006  17:11:09 (GMT +10) - by Agg

You may have already seen this via this Pub thread, but it's a funny story for those who missed it.

Turns out the BBC grabbed the wrong person from the lobby of their studio and hurriedly prepared him for interview. Instead of being Guy Kewney, an IT journalist, it was Guy Goma, from the Congo. You'd be hard pressed to find two less-similar looking people.

The best part is that the "wrong Guy" put on a brave face (after an initial look of sheer terror) and carried out the interview as best he could. We've mirrored the file here.

The full explanation from the "right Guy" is here and a more detailed story here, thanks Shaun. Note that the "wrong Guy" isn't a cabbie as many places initially reported, but an IT graduate who was at the BBC for a job interview.

Motoring on OCAU (0 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 16-May-2006  17:02:04 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Bit of a petrolhead? OCAU has a hugely busy Motoring Forum, with subforums for people's Project Worklogs and the more Technical Topics. We even have a dedicated motoring news page called OCAU: Drive.

If two wheels is more your style, check out the OCAU Motorcycle Club forums, which use a separate login to the main OCAU forums.

Tuesday Afternoon Reviews (3 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 16-May-2006  13:18:21 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Scythe Shogun Low Noise Heatsink on FrostyTech.
Thermaltake Aquabay M4 on TechPowerUp.

ASUS M2N32-SLI nForce 590 SLI AM2 board on HWZone.
Gigabyte GA-8N-SLI Quad Royal LGA775 Quad-SLI board on PCStats.
ECS 945G-M3 and C19-A SLI motherboards on HotHardware.
ECS C19-A SLI LGA775 SLI board on Phoronix.
ASrock AM2NF4G-SATA2 AM2 board on OCWorkbench.
Epox MF570 SLI AM2 board on MadShrimps.
DFI LANParty UT CFX3200-DR CrossFire board on Sudhian.

Video Cards:
HIS X1300 IceQ Turbo and Dual DVI on OCOnline.
Powercolor X1900GT on OCWorkbench.

Audio /Visual:
Earphone Roundup on UKGamer.
D-Link DCS-900 Internet Camera on PCMech.

Seagate 750GB Barracuda 7200.10 HDD on RojakPot.
ICY DOCK eSATA external HDD enclosure on Bjorn3D.

Ultra ULT31664 1GB PC3200 on Motherboards.org.
Corsair Twinx2048-4400Pro on LegionHW.

Sony Ericsson W810i mobile phone on HWZone.
Alienware Aurora 7500 prebuilt high-end gaming PC on DriverHeaven.
Silverstone Zeus ST56ZF 560W PSU on TechTastic.

Monday Night Mini Reviews. (0 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 15-May-2006  22:34:38 (GMT +10) - by INerTIal

Video Cards
Chaintech GeForce 7300 GS 256MB DDR2 on Hardware Zone.
Galaxy GeForce 7600 GS 256 GDDR3 on Hexus.
Budget graphics cards compared on Tech Report.

Antec Performance CPU Cooler on Virtual-Hideout.
BlueGears b-ice 120mm cooling fan on Pro-Clockers.
Corsair Cool GPU and VGA Water Blocks on Think Computers.

ABIT AN8 32X on XBit Labs.
ASUS N4L-VM DH s479 Intel Core VIIV ready board on XBit Labs.
Foxconn 975X board with overclocking on Bit-Tech.

Mushkin PC2-6400 DDR2 on 3D Game Man.
Aspire X-QPack on techPowerUp.
LG VX9800 Mobile phone on Desigh Technica.
OCZ 2x1024MB Platinum XTC Dual Channel PC-3700 Kit on OCIA.
Speedlink Medusa 5.1 ProGamer Headset on RB Mods.
UberSoldier PC Game on think Computers.
EPSON Perfection 4490 PHOTO Scanner: Impeccability Check on XBit Labs.

OCAU Podcast Episode 6! (15 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 15-May-2006  01:55:11 (GMT +10) - by Agg

This week we interview BlueSmurf, creator of the GTR PC and the Imperator Star Destroyer PC. We also have the usual chit-chat covering PhysX, Wii, PS3 and various other topics.

You can grab this week's episode via iTunes here (you might need to subscribe (free!) in iTunes before you can see the new episode), or download the file direct from our server:

Normal quality copy (9MB) here.
High quality copy (37MB) here.

If you prefer the raw RSS feed, you can get that here, or an XML version here.

Discussion of Episode 6 in this thread, thanks!

Sunday Afternoon #2 (6 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 14-May-2006  16:28:44 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Zillions of people sent in news that converting CD's to mp3 would become legal under proposed copyright laws for Australia. More info here. The changes are part of a major overhaul of copyright laws to be announced today by Attorney-General Philip Ruddock in response to millions of Australians who effectively break the law every time they reproduce copyright material for personal use.

Lots of people also sent in this Ctrl+Alt+Del Comic.. some strong language, but funny stuff.

Here's an interesting one about using computers to read non-verbal human communication. Using nothing but these simple, nonlinguistic clues--and analyzing conversations that lasted between five minutes and just over an hour, depending on the experiment--the researchers were able to calculate the likelihood of a given outcome with an average accuracy rate of almost 90%.

One`` found a blog about why Sony's new controller doesn't vibrate, while Nintendo's does. So if Sony were to incorporate vibration into a new controller before the old lawsuit was over, the judge would almost certainly call a halt to all sales of the PS3 until the issue was resolved.

This is a little old but I missed it earlier.. turns out playing World of Warcraft really can be dangerous. If your neighbour is a gun-toting loony, that is.

Interesting stuff on NordicHW: A few overclockers have come across Merom-based processors and they've been ravaging the OC scene completely obliterating a lot of the previous world records with many of the most popular benchmarking programs. Merom kills 3DMark 2001 - Far beyond 60,000 points! Merom on a crusade! The SuperPi killer - Merom.

Sudhian checked out life at the low end of graphics card performance. Despite what review sites cover, there is a market for low end graphics cards which typically don't receive as much fanfare as the latest and greatest products.

Phoronix have a tour of Bon Echo Alpha 2, a development pre-release of Mozilla Firefox 2.0. Rather than simply providing screenshots or the release notes for this feature-filled release, we have independently examined most of the changes, and today at Phoronix we have some details to share in regards to these newly implement features.

A few people have complained about this and here's a blog ranting about the BF2 Euro Force order system. Strong language as you might expect! Because after I used your system I can only assume that you don’t actually want to generate any online revenues as you have the most cumbersome, restrictive, tedious and problematic online order systems that I have ever used.

Trekkies can prick up their Vulcan pointy ears at the news of a new Star Trek game called ST: Legacy. Imagine Star Fleet battles, one on one, many on many, single player, internet, and lan play, from all five Star Trek Generations in one game.

Sunday Afternoon (4 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 14-May-2006  15:47:26 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Paul noticed these DVD-detecting sniffer dogs now being used. More info here and here.

LegionHW looked at overclocked gaming performance from an Intel Pentium D 805 and a P4 630. This article will compare both processors at their standard frequencies and of course their maximum stable overclocked frequency using air-cooling. Keeping in mind the P4 630 does cost roughly $30 US more, is it worth purchasing when the Pentium D 805 is now readily available?

HWSecrets have a guide to making an infrared transmitter for your PC. I remember trying to make one of these work years ago, no joy.. maybe I should read this article. Any user who knows how to use a solder iron can assemble it.

Beyond3D have an interview about Enemy Territory: Quake Wars. "Huge bright outdoors" and "32 player matches" are likely not the first thoughts that come to mind when one talks about the DOOM 3 engine but Splash Damage and id Software are planning to change this perception with Enemy Territory: QUAKE Wars.

XYZComputing checked out a few Bluetooth headsets. XYZ Computing's Joe Selim takes a look at the BT800 and JX10 from Jabra and the Voyager 510s and Discovery 640 from Plantronics.

Mad Mike found a new place to live for budding evil masterminds. Note also that "all underground buildings need to be remodeled to new use", so you'll need to dig deep for a new monorail and set a bit aside for a lick of paint. Or you could always buy New Zealand on ebay.

Tweaktown posted their thoughts on nVIDIA's Quad SLI. When it comes to buying these cards for your own Quad SLI system, you really would be stupid to purchase them if you’re using anything less than a 30" LCD monitor.

HoJu spotted some info on sugar-powered rockets.. info here, here and here.

PCMech explain how disk encryption works. If you want your private information to remain private, you must take steps to keep it so.

Darkness sent in this Hellgate: London trailer. Scary stuff.. impressive CGI. 28MB zip.

TheInq found the top phrases to NOT search for, unless you like spam and spyware. More than 64 per cent of sites that are linked to this phrase will cause you some trouble, either with spyware or adware.

E3 Catchup (0 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 14-May-2006  14:44:31 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Virtual-Hideout have mass chaos & booth babes from Day One, while ThinkComputers focus on Saitek and Logitech. Hexus have a close look at Wii while Futurelooks have show floor pics. HotHardware have Day 1 coverage too, while a new Dell XPS system was found by PCPerspective and Hexus. NVNews interview Tim Sweeney about UT2007, while Anandtech report on Wii and Dell stuff too.

TheTechZone focus on the important stuff, with booth babes (despite having been banned, thanks Adam) from Day 2 and Day 3. Futurelooks checked them out too, here, as do PCApex.

Happy Mothers Day! (0 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 14-May-2006  13:56:08 (GMT +10) - by Agg

I know there's a few mums on OCAU, and hope you're all having a great day. As for the rest of you, don't forget to ring yours!

Today has something for the boys too, with lots of motorsport on TV. V8 Supercars, Formula One and MotoGP all on today and tonight!

Sunday Morning Reviews (4 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 14-May-2006  02:18:01 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Evesham Voyager C720DC GeForce Go 7900GTX laptop on TrustedReviews.
Dell Precision M90 laptop on BIOSMag.

Storage & Memory:
AData ShowMe USB Drive on TBreak.
OCZ 1GB Gold &*Platinum XTC PC2 5400 DDR2 Memory Kits on BigBruin.
Seagate Barracuda 7200.10 750GB HDD on GamePC, thanks Chris.

Antec Performance One P150 on FutureLooks.
Tuniq 2 midtower on Pro-Clockers.
Silverstone TJ-08 Micro-ATX on Virtual-Hideout.

Asetek WaterChill Xternal watercooling kit on DriverHeaven.
Spire VertiCool II and DiamondCool II CPU coolers on OCOnline.

Input Etc:
Razer Krait mouse on Phoronix.
Game O' 3D gaming mouse on TheTechZone.

Video Cards:
ASUS EN7600GT Silent on HWZone.
Powercolor X1900GT on OCWorkbench.

Audio / Visual:
Philips 20PF5320D 20in LCD TV on TrustedReviews.
Hitachi 42PD6600 42in Plasma TV on TrustedReviews.

ABIT AT8 32X Radeon Express 3200 board on OCWorkbench.
ASUS P5WD2-E Premium LGA775 board on ViperLair.

HP Colour LaserJet 1600 printer on TrustedReviews.
Mushkin Enhanced 650W PSU on MadShrimps.

Press Releases (25 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 12-May-2006  16:52:31 (GMT +10) - by Agg

BroNet announced that BFG's add-in card based on the AGEIA PhysX PPU is now available in Australia, distributed by BroNet. The BFG Physics Card is designed to make your gaming experience as authentic as possible by utilizing the laws of physics and putting them into place with the latest generation’s games to give the most ground breaking gaming experience yet. More info here, and see our earlier newspost for more info about this card.

DFI recently did well in an overclocking contest sponsored by ATI. The Champion player won with the newly released DFI LANParty UT CFX3200-DR motherboard, a true 2 x16 PCI-e solution for the ATI CrossFire Xpress3200 platform. More info here.

Gallery Serpentine have released a short video highlighting some new items in their 2006 clothing range. The video is 4MB and hosted on our server here. Possibly not work safe, I guess.

Plextor have some shock-proof portable drives. PX-SP Series come with a specially designed silicon jacket bumper that helps prevent the unit from crashing if it is accidentally dropped.

Thermaltake have their usual barrage of announcements, including an Extreme Spirit II northbridge cooler, Symphony mini watercooling for HTPC setups and an Aqua Brazing series of all-copper waterblocks.

XFX have announced a partnership with Fatal1ty, becoming the latest in a line of manufacturers to have Johnathan Wendel's branding on their products. Under the agreement, Fatal1ty will collaborate with XFX on the design and technical specifications of a series of graphics cards with a special focus on the needs of competitive PC video gamers. Future products will be designed for maximum performance and stability.

Sponsor Specials (1 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 12-May-2006  14:09:26 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Just a quick reminder to keep our Sponsor Specials Forum in mind when you're shopping around. Quite a few interesting deals in there at the moment, with more being added all the time.

Friday Arvo Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 12-May-2006  12:37:36 (GMT +10) - by aftahours

Lensbaby 2.0 on XYZ Computing
Xion PowerReal 600W v2.01 on Driverheaven
Saitek Pro Gamer Command Unit on GideonTech

Mobile Phone:
Bluetake i-Phono Bluetooth Headphones and USB Adapter on XYZ Computing
Samsung D600 Chrome Limited Edition on UKGamer
Samsung T509 Mobile Phone on Digital Trends
Bluetake Bluetooth Headset & Adapter on Techniz

ECS C19-A SLI (NVIDIA nForce4 SLI XE) on Hardware Zone
Abit Fatal1ty Professional AN9 32X Motherboard on Legit Reviews
Foxconn 975X7AA Motherboard on Ninjalane
eVGA SLI micro ATX motherboard on Shadow Entertainment

Thermaltake iFlash 12 variegated LED light fan on A1 Electronics
Thermaltake Tide Water on Madshrimps
ThermoHawk 400 Touchless Thermometer on Metku
Silverstone Nitrogon NT05 CPU Cooler on Rbmods
Dynatron T81 on A Byte Apart
Q3i ThermoHawk 200/400 Infrared Keychain Thermometer on Tweaknews

Aopen G325 Gamer-Cube on Technic3D
Shuttle SD36G5M XPC on Hot Hardware

IcyDock MB452 3.5" External HDD Enclosure on Virtual-Hideout
OCZ Mini-Kart 1GB on Phoronix
Samsung SH-S162L DVD+RW Burner on Techgage

eDimensional Audio FX Force Feedback Headphones on Overclockers Club
SilverStone Ensemble EB01 on Techgage

Powercolor X1800GTO on Tech Powerup
ATI Radeon X1800 GTO 256MB on The Tech Lounge

Friday Morning (4 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 12-May-2006  03:28:19 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Some more PhysX coverage on TechReport, GDHardware and Maxitmag. ASUS have unveiled their card, too.

Extremetech checked out the 750GB 7200.10 HDD from Seagate in only the 2nd review I've seen of this product. We obtained a pair of the 750GB drives from Seagate and dropped them into the latest iteration of our storage test bed. Let's take a look at how the new drives fared.

Anandtech have a pre-AM2 Mid-Range Buyer's Guide. However, the truth of the matter is that socket AM2 doesn't appear to be ready to add much in the way of performance. Basically, it will change memory types, there will be a couple new high-end processors, and later on we should also see some budget Sempron processors for the platform.

TechReport have a system guide also. Prices have dropped pretty steeply since last year, and we managed to lower the cost of our four recommended systems while fitting them with faster hardware, more memory, and extra storage capacity.

PCWorld have a bit more about the new Google services announced at their recent press day. Google will extend its vertical search, social bookmarking, and desktop searching capabilities with new and improved products it announced yesterday.

Here's a funny fake trailer for a Pac Man movie, thanks Marben.

HWSecrets have a guide to benchmarking with Quake 4. One of the best ways to benchmark the performance of your PC is running a heavy 3D game, since it will pull the maximum performance your video card, CPU, memories and hard disk drive can deliver. Quake 4 fits nicely in this role for PCs found on the market today.

TechArray compared a couple of joysticks from Logitech and Saitek. Today we take a look at the Extreme 3D Pro and Freedom
2.4 from Logitech along with the Cyborg Evo from Saitek.

This is kinda bizarre, an xbox controller controller using servos and stiff wires to press Xbox buttons, thanks daGriffin.

Techgage have been playing Auto Assault. For those unaware, AA is the first vehicular MMO on the market.. and it's very, very destructive.

Speaking of which, Digitaltrends have thoughts about the trouble with MMOs. You can hear us chat about MMOs and various issues in Episode 3 of the OCAU Podcast.

E3 2006 (1 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 12-May-2006  03:07:49 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Guru3D have some E3 2006 coverage posted. The E3 is the Electronic Entertainment Exhibit, it's the biggest gaming related exhibit in the world. The entire global press strikes down in LA for a couple of days to see feel and sniff on the latest games and gossip from Fragginwood. There's some booth babes on Futurelooks, too.

Shacknews have a pile of Electronic Arts screenshots from E3, including Battlefield 2142, Command & Conquer 3, SPORE, Crysis etc etc. There's some Unreal Tournament 2007 screenshots from the PS3 on ToTheGame, too.

TheTechZone have an E3 survival guide for beginners, as well as some booth babes of course. Futurelooks have day one coverage, while ThinkGaming looked at Will Wright's Spore presentation.

Nintendo Wii E3 Info (1 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 11-May-2006  17:32:58 (GMT +10) - by Agg

WindMinstrel has posted a mountain of information about Nintendo's new games console, the Wii. Loads of photos, games info, links to articles and videos and much, much more. Check it out in our Games Console forum!

Thursday Afternoon (22 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 11-May-2006  16:34:08 (GMT +10) - by Agg

CNet report that the PS3 will hit Oz on Nov 17, thanks Timbot. The system will come in two bundles -- a PS3 with a 20GB hard drive (confirmed RRP of AU$829) and one with a 60GB HDD (confirmed RRP of AU$999). As a comparison, the Xbox 360's core bundle retails for AU$499, while its upgrade bundle which includes a 20GB hard drive retails for AU$649.

Aftahours noticed what appears to be an attempt to cash in on the recently-released Tasmanian miners, by buying domain names of their actual names. While it was possible the registrations were legitimate, the body believed it was likely to have been an attempt at opportunism, Mr Disspain said.

Totally offtopic, but here's a fascinating read with incredible photos, detailing a trip around Africa by motorcycle.

Didn't take long for the illegal Apple clones to appear. Apparently they've caught on, selling such items as the "PowerPC G6 Macintosh", an "Apple G6 Macintosh-Clone Computer" with a 3.8GHz Pentium 4. Along with the fancy OSx86 compatible hardware, it comes pre-loaded with something the seller likes to call "Mac OSX-86 Apple MacOS X Tiger 10.4.3".

HWZone have a sneak-peek at some new HP notebooks. These new notebooks will all feature the latest Intel Core Duo processor, giving them a lot more computing performance with the same power efficiency of yesterday's Pentium M processors. Besides that, all of the five new models will be Microsoft Vista-capable and will also feature HP's Professional Innovations, which is a set of hardware and software solutions designed to enhance security, improve ease of use and better reliability.

AT&T are selling TV shows for laptops at their wireless hotspots. When hotspots at McDonald's Corp. stores are added later this month, the service will be available in 7,000 locations, AT&T spokesman Fletcher Cook said today.

A new supercomputer centre is to be commissioned soon, focussing on nanotechnology research. The CCNI system will be made up of massively parallel Blue Gene supercomputers, POWER-based Linux clusters, and AMD Opteron processor-based clusters, providing more than 70 teraflops of computing muscle. This will put CCNI among the top 10 supercomputing centers of any kind, and make it the most powerful university-based center in the world.

A Californian man who took control of 400,000 zombie PC's and rented them to hackers and spammers has been sentenced to five years in prison recently. Prosecutors called the case the first to target profits derived from use of "botnets," large numbers of computers that hackers commandeer through software and then turn into a "zombie" network that can be controlled by outsiders. The computers' owners are unaware that parasitic programs have been installed on their machines that allow outsiders to operate them.

HWSecrets checked out the Athlon 64 X2 4600+ (2.4 GHz) and Athlon 64 FX-60 (2.6 GHz) processors. Dual-core technology is finally a reality and the tendency is that all mainstream CPUs to become dual-core in a near future. But will average users really benefit from it? In this review we’ve got two CPUs running at the same clock rate, Athlon 64 3800+ and Athlon 64 X2 4600+ (both running at 2.4 GHz), and could see if there is a real performance gain for regular users.

Google has a new gadget, Google Trends. Interestingly, Perth is the second ranked city for "overclocking".

Thursday Morning Reviews. (1 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 11-May-2006  05:08:08 (GMT +10) - by INerTIal

Sytrin KuFormula VF1 GPU Cooler on Overclockers Club.
Thermalright Ultra 90 K8 Heatsinkon Virtual Hideout.
Noctua NH-U12 & NH-U9 Heatsinks on OCIA.

Video Card:
MSI GeForce 7600GS on Legion Hardware.
HiS Radeon X1800 GTO ICEQ3 on Guru 3D.

ABIT AT8 32X CrossFire on OC Work Bench.
Foxconn 975X7AA-8EKRS2 on OC Work Bench
ECS 945G-M3 (VIIV Edition) on Motherboards.org

Power Supply:
PC Power & Cooling Turbo-Cool 1KW on 3DGameMan.
OCZ GameXStream 700 Watt on Pro-clockers.
picoPSU 200 watt on Silent PC Review.

Hercules DJConsole MkII on UK Gamer.
Samsung YP-T8Z 1Gig Portable Media Player on Tweak News.
Samsungs SP50L7HXX 50in DLP TV on Trusted Reviews.
Sonos Digital Music System on Trusted Reviews.
Creative Zen Vision:M on Bjorn 3D.
Samsung Generation 2 SC-X210L Sports Camcorder Review - Part Two on Future Looks.

Aperture 1.1 professional-level RAW image processor on Arstechnica.
SiSoftware Sandra 2007 on NGOHQ.
Trend Micro PC-cillin Internet Security 2006 on Hardware zone.

Vizo USB 2.0 Lan Dock port expander on Think Computers.
HighSpeedPC Tech Station testbed on Legit Reviews.
Kingston DataTraveler Elite - Privacy Edition Encrypted USB Flash Drive on Legit Reviews.
SteelPad QcK+ Gaming mousepad on tech Powerup.
Seagate NL35.2 Series, ST3500641NS 500GB on Bjorn 3D.
ASUS S6F Leather-Clad Laptop on BIOS.

Thursday Morning (4 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 11-May-2006  03:50:47 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Bit-Tech have a X1900 GT face-off between Connect3D and Sapphire. The GeForce 7900 GT is a very good overclocker, while the Radeon X1900GT looks to be a bit of a mixed bag at the moment. If you're looking to overclock, we feel that the GeForce 7900 GT is the better deal if you find one at a good price.

TomsHardware got their Pentium D 805 to 4.1GHz, thanks Darren. We were quite amazed as the first performance figures emerged from our test labs: stable operation was possible at 4.1 GHz, and without even the need for substantial boosts to cooling!

Dan has more letters and five funky gadgets he thinks you might like.

Bigiain spotted this interesting article about fly-by-wire technology working its way onto motorcycles. Now the computer knows where the bike is, how far over it is leaned and what its state of acceleration or braking is. But even this is not enough, for every corner has camber that varies, surface grip that varies and possibly change-of-elevation, too, as in Laguna Seca's famed Corkscrew.

ArsTechnia report on a partnership between Warner Brothers and BitTorrent to provide downloadable movies on the internet. "We've always known peer-to-peer technology represents a huge opportunity for us," said Kevin Tsujihara, the head of Warner's entertainment operations. Though some might be inclined to doubt the sincerity of this statement, the collaboration with BitTorrent is not Warner's first P2P venture.

1up.com have an article on The Best Worst Ads for video games, thanks Aaron. Between their horrified expressions and his rictus grin there's clearly a story here that's waiting to be told, if only we were brave enough to hear it.

A timewaster from Pugsley_21: Not just one game this, but a whole herd of incredibly simple games. The twist is you have just four seconds to complete each one. Intense! It is pretty cool, but I was distracted by the Yahoo ad for "Mormon Sexy Girls". WTF?

More PhysX Coverage (3 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 10-May-2006  20:13:52 (GMT +10) - by Agg

A few more sites have released their AGEIA PhysX coverage, using the BFG retail card.
  • Bit-Tech say It's all very positive for the future but it is hard to recommend that anyone rush out to buy a PhysX card today.
  • HotHardware reckon every aspect of this product seems a bit premature as there are no real titles which can utilize the hardware today beyond a few subtle changes here and there in a handful of games.
  • PCPerspective are more positive, saying AGEIA seems to have set higher goals and intends to reach them in 2006. If they achieve that goal, then a BFG AGEIA PhysX card might find a comfortable place in your system.
  • Tweaktown note The other thing is the PhysX in GRAW feels as it’s been kind of taped on and not written from the ground up. When we get a chance to look at the card again we will try Cell Factor which is designed around the AGEIA technology to see just how it performs.
  • HardOCP sum up nicely: PhysX will live to be judged again another day as we hopefully see games that truly take advantage of the promises that Ageia makes about their hardware. Until then, save your PhysX pennies because the cards are not going to be getting any more expensive, unless of course they go the way of the Dodo.

Wednesday Evening Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 10-May-2006  19:28:23 (GMT +10) - by Agg

AMD GeodeNX DB1500 mini-ITX mobo+CPU on EPIACenter.
ASUS A8R32 MVP Deluxe on LostCircuits.
Foxconn 975X7AA-8EKRS2 i975X on OCWorkbench.
ECS C19-A SLI LGA775 LSI board on Virtual-Hideout.
VIA EPIA MII 12000 mini-mobo and CPU on Modders-Inc.

Audio / Visual:
Altec Lansing AHP612 Wireless Headphones on ThinkComputers.
Sony KDE-W50A12U 50in Plasma TV on TrustedReviews.
Sagem HD-D45H G4 T DLP TV on TrustedReviews.
Toshiba 32WLT66 32in LCD TV on TrustedReviews.
Loewe Xelos A26 26in LCD TV on TrustedReviews.
Bluetake BT400 G5 Bluetooth Headset on BlueTomorrow.
Cowon iAUDIO 6 multimedia player on ExtremeMHz.

TeamGroup Cronus Xtreem 2x1GB on EclipseOC.
Mushkin HP 3200 2GB Dual Kit on DriverHeaven.

Video Cards:
PNY Verto GeForce 7900 GTX on BIOSMag.
Sapphire Toxic Radeon 1900 XTX on Hexus.

Wednesday Midday Reviews (4 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 10-May-2006  12:21:12 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Bit of a news catchup day today, methinks.. here's some reviews to start with:

Sytrin KuFormula VF1 Plus GPU cooler on OCOnline.
Zalman VF900-Cu Dual Heatpipe VGA cooler on BigBruin.
Thermalright Ultra-90 CPU cooler on
Swiftech Mcres micro reservoir for watercooling on RBMods.
Aerocool XFire CPU cooler on ThinkComputers.
Thermalright HR-05 CPU cooler on A1-Electronics.
Spire DiamondCool II CPU cooler on Pro-Clockers.
Spire VertiCool II CPU cooler on Pro-Clockers.
Noctua NH-U9 and NH-U12 CPU coolers on BigBruin.
Corsair Nautilus 500 watercooling kit on TechFear.
Sytrin KuFormula VF1 GPU cooler on OCClub.
Noctua NH-U12 CPU cooler on NeoSeeker.

Kingwin Supernova HTPC case on ClubOC.
Antec P180B Performance One tower on Virtual-Hideout.
Gigabyte Poseidon on TBreak.
AeroCool ExtremeEngine 3.0 big-fanned case on NeoSeeker.

Seagate 500GB Barracuda 7200.9 hard drive on Techgage.
Newisys NA-1400 NAS Appliance network storage on SilentPCReview.
OCZ Mini-Kart 1GB flash drive on TechPowerUp.
Toshiba 120GB MK1234GSX 2.5" (laptop) SATA HDD on RojakPot.

Monday night odds and ends. (11 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 9-May-2006  00:52:56 (GMT +10) - by captainpotato

As is being reported on a wide variety of websites, Apple Computer has defended itself against Apple Corporation (record label of The Beatles) in the dispute brought against Apple Computer about its involvement in the music distribution business (in the guise of iTunes, naturally). Having said this, Apple Corporation is planning to appeal the verdict against it. In response, Steve Jobs has stated that he'd just like to offer Beatles' songs through iTunes. Why can't we all just get along?

Three people at the University of Toronto are working at bringing down the Great Firewall of China with a creation called Psiphon, which is going to be launched at the end of May.

Following on from the story a few days ago, it looks like the military has been spooked by the British hacker who was caught searching for information about the existence of UFOs: a 2000 British Government report states that UFOs are almost exclusively natural phenomena.

For those of us who like ancient ruins, this site has some nice satellite images of some sites once used for observing the sky.

Anybody who didn't study engineering (such as myself) may be interested in learning to how make supposedly the best paper aeroplane in the world. Well, that's what the site claims...

Monday Afternoon (8 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 8-May-2006  16:26:24 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Intel has officially dropped the Pentium name for its upcoming CPUs, with Merom and Conroe both being called "Core 2 Duo". The Core 2 architecture is a blend of earlier Intel architecture ideas, with some new features added in. It derives most of its microarchitecture from the Pentium M processors used in mobile PCs.

Timbot noticed this Gadgets Now and Then article which is interesting. Did you know that you have to carry around 54 RAZRs to carry the same weight as the BOSCH phone? Reminds me of our Time Warp Computer Pricing article from a while ago.

There's some new footage from that amazing Spore game.. discussion continues in this thread from a couple of months ago.

Smoken found this interesting computer desk/bed.. discussion in this thread. Bit pricey tho!

The Huygens probe has sent back some movies from Saturn's moon Titan. These movies were built thanks to the data collected by DISR on 14 January 2005, during the 147-minutes plunge through Titan's thick orange-brown atmosphere to a soft sandy riverbed.

Some PSU reviews: SilverStone Zeus 750W on Phoronix, Ultra-X Infinity 500W on Viperlair and Scythe Kamariki-2 550W on ThinkComputers.

Interesting Forum Threads:
AMD brings quad-cores to the roadmap in AMD Hardware.
Project p.max in Modding & Electronics: Worklogs.
Is it worth being a budget gamer? in Overclocking & Hardware.
Should Australia go nuclear? in Current Events.
Cold engine inefficiency - why? in Motoring: Technical.
Turtle keepers in Other Toys.
Had our mini International Beer Festival, pics & notes in Geek Food.
Working in the pharmaceutical industry in Career, Education & Finance.

New Major Sponsor (16 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 8-May-2006  03:17:04 (GMT +10) - by Agg

You may have noticed the logo in the last few days, but I'd like to officially welcome EYO Technologies as an OCAU Major Sponsor. They have committed to a long-term involvement with the site and we're very happy to have them.

For those who aren't aware, EYO are a Sydney-based retailer and distributor with an online and store-front presence in Padstow. They've been around for a long time - in fact, when I was first setting up OCAU I bought a few things from them. We also did some reviews for them very early on, so it's nice to have them back onboard now.

They join our other Major Sponsors:
Computer Alliance - A retailer based in Brisbane and online.
Altech Computers - A distributor with offices in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Perth.
Plus Corporation - A retailer based in Sydney and online.
BroNet - A distributor with offices in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane.

There's a list of all current OCAU sponsors here. Thanks to them all for helping make OCAU the success it is today!

Podcast Episode 5! (2 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 8-May-2006  02:39:49 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Monday morning means a new podcast episode, of course. This time we chat with OCAU member Chainbolt about a range of topics (even some PC stuff, briefly :) ). We also have a funny drunken voicemail from Sciby, (Grrr - Sciby) as well as the usual chit-chat about various things including 750GB HDD's and a "Hot Chick" CPU usage meter, etc.

You can grab it via iTunes here (you might need to subscribe (free!) in iTunes before you can see the new episode), or download the file direct from our server:

Normal quality copy (14MB) here.
High quality copy (60MB) here.

If you prefer the raw RSS feed, you can get that here, or an XML version here.

Discussion of Episode 5 in this thread, thanks!

Monday Morning (2 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 8-May-2006  02:19:43 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Apparently mods for games such as Battlefield 2 are being abused by terrorists to provide virtual training, thanks Daztay. SAIC executive Eric Michael said researchers suspected Islamic militants were using video games to train recruits and condition youth to attack US-led coalition forces in Iraq.

TBreak have an AM2 performance preview, covering the new socket from AMD. We managed to acquire a sample of the Athlon64 3500+ AM2 CPU and decided to quickly test a few of our standard applications. However, keep in mind that the numbers we’re posting are from a beta CPU using a beta motherboard with a beta BIOS.

Sniper spotted this HDD speed utility. Dunno if it's any good, try it and let me know.

Ben sent in this interview with the British hacker who is in the news lately for breaking into the US Army, Air Force, Navy, DOD and NASA computers.. to find out info about UFOs.

This story is a little old, but it's something I have ranted about occasionally. Activision have apparently been banned from using misleading scenes to sell games, thanks Matt. The adjudication, published today, is likely to send shockwaves through the industry as it focuses on the question of whether pre-rendered footage is an acceptable representation of a computer game.

Timbot spotted another display glasses technology. There's been a few of these over the years and none of them seem to have really taken off.. I wonder if this one will.

LegionHW wonder if it's worthwhile upgrading a budget AGP card. Those with Radeon X700 Pro graphics cards or the equivalent are limited to reasonably poor 3D performance in today’s newer gaming titles, so how well did the X1600 Pro improve this situation?

Xbitlabs compared Merom and Yonah in an overclocking duel. He managed to get hold of a Merom engineering sample: model T7400 (2.16GHz) with 4MB of shared L2 cache and 667MHz bus support.

Techgage have their thoughts about the AGEIA PhysX retail product. Ageia started out as a killer concept but now that concept is reality. Today we take a look at that reality and touch on what offers and what it will offer in the future.

Wes noticed ROCKbox, an open-source replacement firmware for various mp3 players. A Feature comparison can be found here.

PCMech checked out All Seeing Eye, an anti-spyware utility.. unfortunately, they didn't think much of it. As the security conscious internet user I am, I have a typical arsenal including Spybot, AdAware, Windows Defender, HijackThis, and ZoneAlarm.

AuphanOnline cover SED TVs, that they call "the plasma killer". First there was rear projection LCD, then DLP, then came Plasma. What's the next big TV technology just on the horizon?

Eroda sent in a link to Warhammer Online and there's a thread here in our Games forum. Unfortunately he provided no info about why this is interesting and I'm too sleepy to check it out in detail. :)

Cragv found this list of handy tools to have on a USB drive. These FREE programs do not require any installation and can be run directly from a USB drive. Keep some useful apps handy while on-the-go!

The PowerColor X1900 XT has been reviewed on XbitLabs. MadShrimps have a guide to overclocking the X1900 series, too.

RealWorldTech has info confirming Tukwila Intel's next Itanium to be Quad-Core. Montecito featured 27MB of cache, for two processors, while Tukwila is reported to have 6MB of L3 cache per core, or 24MB for each MPU.

Veteran Reporter dies at Gold Mine (0 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 7-May-2006  15:01:29 (GMT +10) - by aftahours

Veteran reporter Richard Carleton has died after suffering a suspected heart attack at Tasmania's Beaconsfield Gold Mine.

More information here.

There's a discussion on this in our forums here.

Sunday Morning Reviews. (1 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 7-May-2006  06:04:07 (GMT +10) - by INerTIal

Video Cards
Connect3D X1300Pro 512MB PCI-E on Club OC.
GeCube Radeon X1900XTX on Tweaktown.
HIS ATI Radeon X1300 on LAN Addicts.
HIS X1800GTO Turbo 256MB on 3D Game Man.
MSI Radeon X1800 GTO on Hardware Zone.
ASUS EAX1600XT Silent on Motherboards.org
Gigabyte ATI Radeon X1300 Pro on Club OC.
NVIDIA GeForce 7600 GT on Adrians Rojak Pot.

Asetek VapoChill Micro HSF on Tweaktown.
Antec Performance CPU Cooler on Club OC.
Zalman Vf900-cu GPU cooler on RB-Mods.
Aerocool Silver Lightning fans on Pro-clockers.
Corsair Nautilus 500 watercooling kit on Bit-Tech.
Antec Performance CPU Cooler on Bjorn 3D.

ASRock 939SLI32-eSATA2 on Hardware Zone.
MSI K9N SLI Platinum Preview (socket AM2) on Madshrimps.

Case & Power Supply
Seasonic S12 600W on PC Stats.
Thermaltake Maxtrix VX Case on XYZ Computing.
Lian Li PC-201 Server Case on Overclocker Cafe.
Ultra Power Supply Tester on PC Perspective.

Storage & Memory
OCZ Platinum PC-3700 2GB on Driver Heaven.
TwinMOS Ultra-X 140x 4GB Compact Flash Card on Hardware Zoom.
Seagate 120 GB 2.5 inch Portable Hard Drive on Future Looks.
Western Digital Raptor X HDD on X-Bit Labs.

Panasonic VDR-D300 Camcorder on Design Technica.
Apple iPod Nano 2GB on Big Bruin.
Logitech mm28 Portable Speaker on Virtual Hideout.
Creative Labs X-Fi Fatal1ty FPS Sound Card on Hardcore Ware.
Philips 37PF9830 37in LCD TV on Trusted Reviews.

AMD Athlon X2 3800+ vs Athlon 64 3800+ on Pen Star Systems.
Rock's Pegasus 330 light weight notebook on BIOS.
Olivetti MY_WAY Photo Printer on Trusted Reviews.
Wolf Claw Devour FPS Shooter input Device on Driver Heaven.
Icemat 2nd Edition Mouse Pad on TechTastic.

Friday Afternoon #2 (21 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 5-May-2006  16:19:18 (GMT +10) - by Agg

eXemplar spotted an instant ice-cream vending machine! The company invented a computer-controlled vending machine that makes ice cream on demand from room temperature ingredients, flash freezing it in 10 seconds. Wonder if I can get one installed in my office..

HotHardware compared three CrossFire Xpress 1600 motherboards, the DFI RDX200 CF-DR, the Asus A8R-MVP, and the ECS KA1 MVP Extreme. Although these three motherboards feature the same chipset, they are quite different in a number of other ways.

TheTechZone have a video iPod guide. This guide is going to take over all the options you’ve got and how to convert absolutely anything and everything - DVDs, TiVo video, messy AVIs, muxed MPEGs and more to iPod compatible video.

They also cover setting up a dual-screen system. Well, after reading this article, you'll have all the knowledge you'll need to double your viewing pleasure. Now only will we show you the step by step, but we'll also show you the equipment to buy and the software to use. I said I'd never go back to one monitor.. but then I bought a 24" widescreen LCD. :)

Kim spotted these hybrid disks, with DVD on one side and High Definition on the other. It is easier to create a hybrid HD/DVD disc than Blu-Ray/DVD because of the differences in the formats. The backers of HD-DVD, including Intel, Microsoft and Warner, are hoping that this will prod consumers in their direction, thus avoiding another format war.

I have a couple of ancient webcams, but I was thinking of getting a newer one and putting my new fishtank on the web. :) Maybe I should read this digital webcam buyer's guide on DigitalGrabber. But before you buy a webcam, it pays to understand a little about how the technology of broadcasting images over the Internet works.

aftahours noticed this automatic graffiti machine.. interesting. Like a giant plotter. 7MB video tho, so dialuppers probably shouldn't bother.

From Martin: For those that haven't come up for air since Oblivion was launched: A beta patch here. If you are not experiencing any problems while running Oblivion, it is not recommended that you install this Beta Patch. If you do choose to install it, we strongly recommend you backup your save games and understand it may be necessary to re-install the game when the final patch is released.

Tweaktown have some first looks from Taiwan at things from the new "Universal ABIT" company created by USI's purchase of ABIT. Big things are about to happen at ABIT with not just motherboards but many other product segments. While ABIT have no plans to get back into manufacturing graphics cards, there will be plenty of other types of products to keep the crew at ABIT busy.

From Daztay: RE. to a link that Eazyduzit send in. I went and had a read... Linux is evil basically. After reading through most of the comments.. most thought it was a joke. Who knows..fun read. But it turns out her host runs linux not windows!!!!! An hour later I went back to the site ..page gone!!! Goto home page and there is a note "We are currently in the process of switching our hosting to Windows." That has topped if off ..HA HA :)

HWSecrets compare Intel's ViiV and AMD Live!, both standards for digital entertainment PC's. In this article you will learn the main specs for each platform and will see what you will be able to do with them.

HWZone have a preview of Gigabyte's AM2 boards, using the new AMD socket with NVIDIA's 5xx chipsets.

From OneArmedMan: are you properly filtering your outgoing network?? Find out. Info here and here. Note : does not work properly on XP Sp2 .. Sp1 is ok tho.

Friday Afternoon (8 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 5-May-2006  13:36:13 (GMT +10) - by Agg

From Scott: There is a metor shower happening this month with the best viewing tomorrow morning. More info here and here. In theory, in ideal conditions, under dark skies, up to 60 meteors per hour is possible (on the morning of Saturday May 6).

We've mentioned Seagate's 750GB hard drive a couple of times, but I think BigBruin have the first review of one, thanks Neil. The final formatted capacity of the 7200.10 was 698 GB. 52 GB was lost, which matches the typical percentage one can expect to lose when setting up a hard drive, but that number just seems higher given the massive size of the drive. I still use systems that don't even have 52 GB of space total!

HardOCP have an article about DirectX 10 & the Future of Gaming, thanks Gubblett. Since DirectX 10 is completely written from the ground up as a new API, a lot of the old overhead can be reduced.

PureOC have a 2x1GB DDR Memory Roundup, with kits from Corsair, Muskin and OCZ. Games such as Battlefield 2, F.E.A.R, Quake 4, and more recently Oblivion are setting an obvious trend that will only continue.

Lemming reminded me about the I am a Japanese School Teacher site, which I'm happy to see is still being updated! Hilarious stuff, but there's some strong language and it carries a severe time-suckage warning. :)

Xbit checked out a few high-capacity 2.5" hard drives. Today we would like to continue testing high-capacity 2.5-inch hard disk drives and within our today’s roundup we will introduce to you four new models from Samsung and Western Digital with 100GB+ storage capacities. We will not only compare them against one another but will also add up the results from our previous test session when we looked at the latest solutions from Seagate, Toshiba and Fujitsu.

GideonTech have their thoughts on the HD DVD vs Blu-Ray battle. If you've been watching this fight from the sidelines, confused by the differences between the competing standards, keep reading, and we'll explain some of the technical details behind the marketing hype.

Hexus cover the PhysX PPU. I chose to use GR:AW (pre-release code) for our first look at what a PhysX board will get you performance wise in a current game, using that to explain how the hardware is likely to shape up in the first generation of supporting titles that will mostly use effect-based physics to tack on extra visual effects.

Jaytech spotted this interesting video of sand reacting to sound. You probably want to turn your speakers down!

Friday Morning Reviews (1 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 5-May-2006  02:45:10 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Cases & Modding:
SilverStone TJ08 on OCOnline.
AC Ryan Modding Goodies of various kinds on 3DVelocity.

Power Supply:
SunbeamTech Nuuo 550W on OCIA.
Ultra X2 550W on Hi-TechReviews.

Audio / Visual:
Sharp LC-32GD7E 32in LCD TV on TrustedReviews.
LG 32LX2R 32in LCD TV on TrustedReviews.
RCA HD61LPW175 61-inch DLP TV on DigitalTrends.
DigiDock AC-2220 FM transmitter on RojakPot.

Swiftech Apex Ultra watercooling kit on Techgage.
Coolink Silent Saviour HDD cooler on A1-Electronics.
Thermaltake Big Water 745 on ThinkComputers.
Asetek WaterChill Xternal watercooling kit (video review) on 3DGameMan.

OCZ DDR2-1000 Platinum XTC EL on Phoronix.
Corsair XMS2-8500 on Bytesector.
Corsair TWIN2X1024-8500 PC2-8500 on NeoSeeker.

Kodak EasyShare V610 10 megapixel digicam on eCoustics.
Canon EOS 30D 8.2 megapixel digital SLR on eCoustics.

Input Etc:
Vizo Gemini Cordless Optical Mouse on Pro-Clockers.
Ripper XXL vs Corepad XXXL mousepads on Virtual-Hideout.

ASUS S6F leatherbound notebook on HWZone.
Toshiba Qosmio G20 notebook on TBreak.

ASUS N4L-VM DH microATX Core Duo motherboard on BIOSMag.
eVGA GeForce 7600 GS video card on PenStarSys.
Enermax Laureate HDD enclosure on XSReviews.

Thursday Afternoon (0 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 4-May-2006  16:31:25 (GMT +10) - by Agg

HWSecrets have a USB flash drive roundup. This time we brought five new models from Geil (David 100), Kingmax (Super Stick), Kingston (DataTraveller Elite and DataTraveller U3 Smart) and OCZ (Rally) and added them to our previous roundup, so we are comparing nine different USB flash drives.

aCe spotted this 7600GT shootout on VR-Zone. Today, we will be taking a look at seven different 7600GT graphics cards from six different manufacturers. The 7600GT will be the next card majority of the consumers will be looking to buy because it has a very affordable price tag. In effect, the 7600GT fills in the shoes of "6600GT" of the last Gen.

New Zealand have unbundled their local loop and forced Telecom NZ to separately account for various parts of its operation, thanks Sniper. This is something that has been suggested many times for Telstra in Australia. The Government says it has become increasingly concerned about the significant gap in broadband Internet performance between New Zealand and leading OECD countries.

Dan has more letters. Implausible antigravity, two kinds of pseudoscientific water, magical compression, a retail inquiry, another wine gizmo, car talismans, and someone very cross with me.

PC Perspective have some PhysX videos in Ghost Recon: Advanced Warfare and Cell Factor. We have a total of 4 videos from GRAW in order to demonstrate the differences in game play with and without a PhysX card installed. The Cell Factor video is also very impressive based on the compete interactivity the user has with the environment.

ArsTechnica ponder class-action lawsuits. Class-action lawsuits are common, especially when it comes to tech products. iPods, CDs, DVD rentals... you name the product and chances are someone has filed a class-action suit.

Phoronix have a GPU showdown in the newly-released Linux port of "X2 - The Threat". Today at Phoronix, we are performing a GPU showdown with a handful of popular graphics cards to see what reigns supreme as well as looking at what will be required to appropriately run the game with Linux.

3DVelocity compared LightScribe and LabelFlash, both technologies for burning labels onto disks.

Tech-Report looked at S3's MultiChrome dual-GPU technology. Like ATI and NVIDIA, S3 would be introducing a multi-card graphics capability, dubbed MultiChrome.

OCAU Merchandise! (27 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 4-May-2006  04:17:53 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Winter is well on the way, and with the good overclocking weather comes a renewed desire for hot coffee or soup to warm you up. What better vessel for your steamy delights than an enormous OCAU mug?

Click for OCAU merchandise!

Tshirts, polo shirts, stickers, stubby holders and case-badges on that page, too.

Thursday Morning Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 4-May-2006  03:56:03 (GMT +10) - by Agg

BlueGears B-Cool Fan on ThinkComputers.
Spire SP601B3 VertiCool II CPU cooler on Virtual-Hideout.

ASUS P5WD2-E Premium LGA775 board on LegionHW.
ECS KA1-MVP Extreme Xpress 1600 CrossFire board on PCStats.

Video Cards:
ASUS 7600GT Silent on ByteSizedReviews.
S3 Chrome S27 PCIe on PCStats.
Sapphire X1800XT Performance Edition on Modders-Inc.
HIS Radeon X1900 XT ICEQ3 on Guru3D.
ASUS Extreme Radeon X1900 XTX on ViperLair.
Leadtek WinFast PX7800 GT TDX Extreme 256MB on HWZ.

Audio / Visual:
Evesham Technology V32EMRO-ZE3 32-inch LCD TV on Hexus.
Plantronics Pulsar 590A Bluetooth Headset on LegitReviews.
Eizo FlexScan S2410W LCD monitor on TrustedReviews.
LG 32LX2R 32in LCD TV on TrustedReviews.
Logitech mm50 Portable iPod Speakers on XYZComputing.
Silverstone EB01 Premium Digital to Analog Converter for audio on ExtremeMHz.
Sony DCR-HC96 miniDV camera on DigitalTrends.

XGene Imperial 2.4G Wireless Keyboard+Trackball on FastLaneHW.
A-Data Vitesta DDR2-800 memory on TechPowerUp.

Xbox360 Compatability (0 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 4-May-2006  03:14:42 (GMT +10) - by Agg

This info from ddstohr: I am not sure if this has already been reported but recently I downloaded the March/April 2006 Xbox Backwards Compatibility update to my PC for my new Xbox 360 from Xbox.com.au. I downloaded the file 'default.xex' to my PC (around 3.7 MB), WinRared it to a separate file and then burnt it to a blank DVD.

After putting it into my Xbox 360, doing the update and re-starting the Xbox 360, I put in the old Xbox game 'Terminator: Dawn of Fate' and saw that it worked no probs. This game was on the list of official older Xbox titles that would work on the 360 after the update.

I then put in an old Official Australian Xbox Magazine demo disc with Star Wars Lego and the disc was recognised so I happily played Star Wars Lego on my Xbox 360!! Excellent graphics, reflections, etc!!! Sure it is only a demo but this game is not listed as being ready for the Xbox 360 yet!!

I then tried some more demos - Destroy All Humans - it worked!!! King Kong for Xbox - no worries again but crap graphics!! Need for Speed: Most Wanted - no worries but again crappy graphics compared to the Xbox 360. Of course some old Xbox demos did not work at all - Serious Sam II and Moto GP URT 3.

But now I will try out all my old Xbox demo discs to see what does work and what doesn't - it will be interesting if some newer Xbox games or demos not yet released for the Xbox 360 will work on my 360 over the coming months!!

Just spotted this, too. Bizarre. Anyway, if games console are your thing, check out our Games Consoles Forum.

Sketchup is now FREE thanks to Google (12 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 3-May-2006  03:28:02 (GMT +10) - by INerTIal

Recently Agg put my design thread up in the interesting forum threads section of a news post. A number of members have since asked me what program I used to do the renders I had up in that thread. I used a piece of software called "Sketchup" by @last software. I found this program a few years back and ended up paying for a copy of it, but now thanks to the awesome people at Google you guys can download it for free. It's an awesome piece of design software and will allow you to create and share designs with other people. It now has built into it the ability to upload and download models from Google's newly created 3D Warehouse. It also plugs in to Google Earth.

You can get Sketchup here. It is 100% free.

I highly recommend this program for anyone who is thinking about experimenting with CAD or just wants to play with "the MS-Paint of the 3D industry".

Wednesday Morning #2 (11 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 3-May-2006  03:23:05 (GMT +10) - by Agg

AMD is recalling 3000 Opteron CPUs, that may not work properly under "extreme conditions", thanks Peter and BT. More info here. It only affects certain single-core x52 and x54 Opterons when 3 conditions are met. These three simultaneous conditions are: the running of floating point intensive code sequences; elevated CPU temperatures; and elevated ambient temperatures.

Bit-Tech were lucky enough to play with a Quad SLI setup. Are four GPUs better than two? The results are somewhat surprising, as we discover that NVIDIA's flagship graphics system isn't really ready for the big time yet.

Meanwhile, TechPowerUp compared Quad-SLI and CrossFire. We had the chance to put two identical retail 7900 GX2 QuadSLI and X1900 XTX CrossFire systems right next to each other and evaluate them. One of the surprises was that often one 7900GX2 alone performed better than the Quad SLI pair at low resolutions.

Driverheaven checked out the current not-quite-top-end video cards, being the X1800GTO and 7600GT. We’re taking a look at both today to ascertain which gives you the best value and performance.

From Eazyduzit: I don't know if this has already been submitted but if it hasn't it's good for a laugh... or a cry. I don't know if it's satire, but I had a bit of a chuckle... others might too. Some of the follow on posts are gold.

NGOHQ have a rant about Creative's X-Fi. I've been using onboard sound for years and haven't heard much about this issue before. According to users in their forums, most of the effected consumers are STILL having issues with the X-Fi series.

Alex has a free PHP video tutorial for download on his site.. an hour or so long.

From Nick: I Don’t know if many of your readers still play counterstrike but I just thought I would send through information that the competition has already started for this year.* Website is www.eswc.com.au and this year they are playing Quake 4 and Counter-strike 1.6 with a qualifier in Brisbane, Perth and Melbourne this weekend I think.

From PW, about this PDF, which is a list of EVERY speed camera location in Victoria - just released by the Victorian Police Force, as the government has changed the policy about releasing the list. It's totally legal now.

Virtual-Hideout paid the Koolance factory a visit. Pretty much everyone has heard of Koolance and probably seen one of their dreamy machines cooling one serious gaming pc.

Usbmausii noticed that TDK are working on a 200GB Blu-Ray Disk. Though TDK couldn't compress four data layers per side, they did manage to make an extra layer on each side. The new 200GB from TDK has six layers for storage, an extra layer for each side.

TheTechLounge have a laser mouse roundup. Earlier in the year I was lucky enough to have gotten to play with 5 different laser mice from the likes of Microsoft, Razer and Logitech.

If you don't like Acrobat Reader, PCMech reckon Foxit Reader might be worth a look.

Phoronix tried NVIDIA's GeForce 6100 integrated graphics with new Linux drivers. Today we have taken the GeForce 6100 for another spin under Linux with the latest proprietary drivers to see how the integrated graphics are able to fair within a slew of gaming benchmarks.

Could water and nanowires be combined to form massive hard drives? NewScientist think so, thanks David. Jonathan Spanier, a team member from Drexel University, estimates that the wires could theoretically be used to make computer memory drives with a density of 10,000 terabits (1016 bits) of data per cubic centimetre. By contrast, current flash memory drives store about five gigabits (5 x 109) of data per cubic centimetre.

Wednesday Morning (3 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 3-May-2006  02:31:44 (GMT +10) - by Agg

MadShrimps have a CPU cooler roundup. Eight new heatsinks are compared to 21 other air cooling solutions from different manufactures. We have some promising entries from Spire, Aerocool, Scythe, Thermaltake and Tuniq for you today.

From MoJoMaN: Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter (Ghost Recon 3) has gone gold and the demo is available from GameArena and Fileshack.Quick as a flash comes a Tweak Guide for it.

I'm surprised I haven't seen this before.. it's an amusing Half-Life 2 comic.

Teddy spotted these hypnosis tests.. something a little different to do in your lunch-hour I guess.

TrustedReviews have an editorial about living in the past. So while all of you will be saving up for PlayStation 3s and Xbox 360s, I’ll be buying a PlayStation 2 and raiding eBay for second hand games.

BonaFideReviews and TheTechZone have their thoughts posted about Nintendo's "Wii" name for their new console. You can hear mine in our latest podcast.

Xbit played with a quad SLI system. Check out how a GeForce 7900 quad SLI performs against rivals in over 10 games.

Snippets from Wayne: Microsoft's Stock Plunges $32 Billion Dollars. New use for the Google Maps API, used to plot homicides in the New York area. Half Life 2: Episode 1 Preloading Next Week.

Phoronix checked out SMP in Quake 4. The major feature to come down the pipeline in Quake 4 v1.2.1 is Hyper-Threading Technology and dual-core support for the Linux binaries.

Gideontech have an article about Opterons and coprocessors.. interesting. The only current co-processor on the market which slots directly into a Socket 940 Opteron motherboard and uses the HyperTransport Bus is the DRC Coprocessor Module.

Wednesday Morning Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 3-May-2006  01:46:56 (GMT +10) - by Agg

ECS KN1 SLI Extreme (1.0A) S939 SLI board on DigitalReviews.
MSI K8N Diamond Plus S939 SLI x16 board on TweakTown.
ASRock 939SLI32-eSATA2 ULi M1695 on PCStats.
DFI LANParty UT CFX3200-DR Radeon Xpress 3200 board on TweakTown.
ECS Elitegroup C19-A SLI LGA775 SLI board on BigBruin.

Thermaltake Volcano 4005 CPU watercooler on ByteSector.
Sytrin KuFormula VF1 Plus VGA cooler on RBMods.
Corsair Nautilus 500 watercooling kit on NeoSeeker.
Corsair Nautilus 500 watercooling kit on XYZComputing.

VIZO Luxon 3.5" HDD enclosure on OCW.
Thermaltake eSATA SATA2 Muse 3.5" HDD enclosure on A1-Electronics.
Kingwin KF-25 Data Dock 2.5" HDD enclosure on Virtual-Hideout.

Cameras & Scanners:
Fujifilm Finepix F11 on TrustedReviews.
Plustek OptiCard 820 mobile colour scanner on BIOSMag.

Input Etc:
XTRAC Ripper XXL mousepad on OCClub.
XTRAC Ripper XXL mousepad on TechPowerUp.
Deck "The Legend" illuminated keyboard on PCApex.
PCXMods Mouse Grips stickers on XSReviews.

Lenovo 3000 C100 Notebook on TrustedReviews.

Battlefield 2: Modern Combat game on TrustedReviews.
Freespire Linux distro on TheTechZone.

GuardianBox GB25 network security appliance on TrustedReviews.
Globalsat Wireless Bluetooth Entertainment Pack on ThinkComputers.
Scythe KAMARIKI II 550 Watts Extra Silent PSU on MadShrimps.
Pioneer PDP-436XDE TV on TrustedReviews.
Kingwin Supernova HTPC case on OCrCafe.

Tuesday Afternoon Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 2-May-2006  17:27:26 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Audio / Visual:
Hauppage WinTV PVR-350 PVR card on Techgage.
JVC Su-DH1 headphones on DigitalTrends.
Mvox MV900 Speakerphone on TechFEAR.

Corsair 1GB TWIN2X1024-8500 on Techgage.
Corsair 2GB XMS-4400PRO on RojakPot.
OCZ EL PC-3200 Platinum XTC Edition 2GB on ThinkComputers.
Patriot Memory 2GB PC4000 ELK on OCOnline.

Video Cards:
HIS Radeon X700 IceQ AGP on HWSecrets.
Asus Extreme N6600GT on MadShrimps.
ASUS Extreme N7900GT on LegionHW.

Thermaltake Aguila on OCCafe.
Koolance PC4-1025BK watercooled server case on ExtremeMHz.
Antec Minuet 300 Slimline on ClubOC.
Thermaltake Eureka tower on HardCoreWare.
Antec Take 4 4RU rackmount case on Bjorn3D.
Maxtop CSX-CM03B midtower on BigBruin.

Power Supply:
Scythe Kamariki-2 550W on Bytesector.
ePower Tiger 550W on SilentPCReview.

OCAU Podcast Episode 4! (24 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 1-May-2006  22:17:09 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Episode 4 of OCAU's Podcast is now available. This episode features an interview with case-modding maestro Defyant, as well as the usual technology chitchat between myself and Sciby.

You can grab it via iTunes here (you might need to subscribe (free!) in iTunes before you can see the new episode), or download the file direct from our server here (16.4MB, 1:10:33 long). If you prefer the raw RSS feed, you can get that here, or an XML version here.

Edit: The first file I linked had some issues.. link updated now, different filename.
Edit 2: Right now we are the #1 "Top Subscribed Podcast" in the Technology section on iTunes!

Monday Morning (10 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 1-May-2006  03:00:48 (GMT +10) - by Agg

There's some preview info on MSI's K9N SLI Platinum motherboard using AMD's upcoming AM2 socket here on Pro-Clockers and here on HWZone. By the time Socket AM2 processors are launched in June, it is expected that DDR2-800 memory will not only be in good supply, but will come in at an attractive price, working well for AMD. Remember, Intel is also set to launch official support for DDR2-800 around the same time, so by the second half of this year, you can expect a high demand for DDR2.

One'' spotted this video of a scanner playing Fur Elise, which reminded me of a video of a (Honda?) F1gp engine playing "When The Saints Go Marching In" from a few years ago. I can't find it, can anyone else? I did find this Renault mp3 which is similar.

A British hacker was apparently looking for info on UFOs when he hacked into United States military computers, which may land him in jail. Joining our SETI@Home Team is a much safer way to look for little green men. :)

NewScientist have a few snippets on some interesting new patents, including an all-seeing screen from Apple. A large LCD screen filled with image sensors would be ideal for videoconferencing, Apple suggests, as participants would always appear to look straight into the "camera".

Here's an interesting tutorial on making realistic grass in Photoshop.. amazing result.

PCStats cover some common ways to kill your PC. In our reader survey, power issues accounted for over 30% of all dead-PC tales, and after working in a computer store for a few years I'm surprised it wasn't actually higher.

LegionHW walk us through an affordable upgrade for an older PC. The idea of the upgrade was also to future proof the system for upcoming operating systems that require DirectX 9 compliant graphics and 64-bit processors. This was obviously never going to happen with an original GeForce graphics card and a Pentium III processor.

Bjorn3D experimented with mixed vendor 7900GTX SLI. In other words, with ForceWare 81.94 and later, you can use a GeForce 6800 GT from manufacturer A with a GeForce 6800 GT from manufacturer B in your SLI system. Or, you could pair a Leadtek 7900 GTX Extreme with an XFX 7900 GTX XXX, which is just what we happen to be testing today.

Guru3D have an interview with ATI's Neal Robison. He's ATI’s global Director for Developer Relations and despite his very busy schedule we have managed to get Neal to agree to Q&A session. We talk a little about the afore mentioned features, gaming in general, consoles, and as we are both in this industry .. the future of gaming.

Some snippets from DVHardware: The next-generation Conroe, Merom and Woodcrest processors will be launched respectively in July, August and June. We also got some info on their performance per Watt ratings. Intel also shared details on its upcoming architectures. In 2007 we can expect the new 45nm Nehalem architecture and by 2010 the company plans the 32nm Geisher architecture.

From Mauzl: Just thought you'd like this for the news, its a new little game called Gridwars 2. It's very oldschool, and very intense to play.

Interesting Forum Threads:
5GHz on P XE 965 in Intel Hardware.
An interesting read :) in AMD Hardware.
New Mod I am planning. Bullet PC in Modding & Electronics.
REVIEW: VIA's first C7-based EPIA (EN15000) in VIA Hardware.
AGEIA PhysX results online in Video Cards.
Share trading for a living in Career, Education and Finance.

Monday Morning Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 1-May-2006  00:38:57 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Intel Pentium D 930 dual-core LGA775 CPU on NeoSeeker.
Intel Pentium XE 965 and 955 LGA775 CPUs on HWZone.

Corsair Nautilus 500 external watercooling on ViperLair.
Antec Performance CPU Cooler on ThinkComputers.
Spire Verticool II Heatpipe CPU Cooler on TweakNews.
Noctua NH-U9 & NH-U12 CPU coolers on Virtual-Hideout.
Thermaltake Mini Typhoon CPU cooler on TechPowerUp.
Jetart Storm 2 VC1000 CPU cooler on XSReviews.

Input Etc:
Mouse Grips stickers on Techgage.
Razer Copperhead Laser Gaming Mouse on CyberWizardPit.

Thermaltake Armor Jr. VC3000BWS on Pro-Clockers.
Cooler Master Centurion 534 on DriverHeaven.
CableMart CSMF425 budget case on Monster-Hardware.

Corsair XMS2-8500 DDR2 on RojakPot.
OCZ EL DDR PC-3500 Gold GX on Modders-Inc.
OCZ Platinum PC4000EB 2x1024MB kit on EclipseOC.
Patriot Memory PDC22G8000+XBLK Rev.2 DDR2-1000 on PCStats.
OCZ EL 2GB DDR500 Gold GX XTC on 3DXtreme.

Portable & Mini:
Sharp M4000 WideNote ultraportable on TechReport.
Scan "Isotope" SFF SLI gaming mini-PC on Bit-Tech.
Toshiba Satellite A100 notebook preview on HWZone.

Power Supply:
Seasonic S12-330 PSU Rev A3 on SilentPCReview.
NorthQ 4001EXT + 4775-400 PSUs on DriverHeaven.

Audio / Visual:
Apple iPod Nano mp3 player on XYZComputing.
Diamond XtremeSound 7.1 DDL sound card on TechSpot.
Sennheiser MX500, PX200 and PX250 Headphones on PDAToday.
Griffin RoadTrip, AirClick, iTrip for iPod nano, PowerBlock and EarThumps iPod accessories on PDAToday.


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