50 best Android apps 2014 and more
Posted on: 03/03/2014 02:51 PM

Here a roundup of the latest reviews and articles:

AMD FirePro Graphics Group Test
Beats Pill XL review: Dr. Dres newest speaker is supersized and super loud
CASECOM CL-86 HALCONES Full Tower Case Review
Corsair Vengeance Gaming Gear From Digital Storm
Gigabyte G1.Sniper Z87 Motherboard Review
Hands-on review: Archos 64 Xenon
Juiceful 3-in-1 Key Chain for Micro USB Devices Review
Memory Scaling On The AMD Kaveri A10-7850K APU
OCZ Vector 150 240GB Review
PC Specialist Vanquish 230XT Gaming System Review
Toshiba 1TB (MQ01ABD100H) 2.5'' SSHD Review
Ubuntu 12.04 vs. 14.04 LTS Benchmarks On Amazons EC2 Cloud
Updated: 50 best Android apps 2014

AMD FirePro Graphics Group Test
AMD’s FirePro W-series arrived towards the end of 2012, but they still pack a punch. The fact that these cards remain competitive over a year after release is testament to the strength of the architecture. We had the opportunity to pit three of the top models against each other – the W5000, the W7000 and the W9000. These range in price from under £400 to nearly £2,800 – and are aimed at quite different markets.


Read full article @ KitGuru

Beats Pill XL review: Dr. Dres newest speaker is supersized and super loud
Back in 2012, Beats unveiled its diminutive Pill wireless speaker in a bid to steal the Jambox's thunder. Since then, its main rival hasn't exactly been standing still: Jawbone has released two more Bluetooth speakers, including the well-received Big Jambox. Not to be outdone, Dr. Dre & co. recently began selling a super-sized version of their own: the $300 Beats Pill XL. As the name suggests, it is indeed a larger version of the original and it packs a much larger punch in the sound department as well. The list of features is nearly identical too, with NFC, dual 3.5mm jacks, a heavy dose of bass and more than a day's worth of battery life. Heck, you can even use the speakers to charge your phone, should the need arise.

But let's be honest: Bluetooth speakers come a dime a dozen these days. It's not uncommon for press releases on six, seven, eight models to hit our inboxes in the course of a week. Given that the market's so saturated, has Beats done enough to stand apart? And what of this new form factor? Does the increased bulk make the Pill XL too big for its britches? Let's find out.


Read full article @ Engadget

CASECOM CL-86 HALCONES Full Tower Case Review
My Grandmother always used to joke about neighbors who try to “keep up with the Joneses”. She was talking about the kind of people who are always trying to one up other people, the kind of people who are followers and not leaders. There are, of course, a lot of people who live like that and are always watching what someone else has instead of appreciating what they, themselves, have. This can be seen in just about any fad or trend. You can see people who genuinely love some new product and buy it for themselves. You can also see the people who do not really know any better and just go and buy the same kinds of things, as though it were a competition.

Look at cars, as an example. For the longest time, people have competed with each other using their vehicle as a status symbol. That kind of activity has influenced car manufacturers to the point that the similarities between one car model and another are almost silly. In my lifetime, I have seen the trend go from ever larger family sedans, then the SUV gained in popularity, and the size of sedans shrunk back to normal, and now we can see the pendulum swinging the other way, with entries like the Prius and Smart car. The same thing can be seen in the computer world with the types of cases being released. For a while, cases got bigger and bigger and even the components seemed to be growing in size as a direct relation to their power. Recently, we have seen the pendulum swing the other way and the popularity of small and even micro cases has skyrocketed. That being the case, I am glad that plenty of options still remain for the PC builder who needs or desires a large, full tower chassis, like the CL-86 HALCONES from CASECOM TECHNOLOGIES.


Read full article @ HiTech Legion

Corsair Vengeance Gaming Gear From Digital Storm
Corsair is a well-known brand at this point in the PC DIY sector and as a natural progression in an attempt to meet the total solution package for end users they have started to make a move into many extra markets beyond just DRAM where they first started. As a result they have moved into things such as core components (Case, Power and Cooler) along with now progressing into gaming peripherals.

Today we have a chance to look at a full gaming gear set from the team at Digital storm which is now a partner with Corsair, so the gear you see here today are all available as accessories to the high-end systems offerings from the team at Digital Storm.


Read full article @ Bjorn3D

Gigabyte G1.Sniper Z87 Motherboard Review
"I'm a poor student," my friend once said, "but I still want a good gaming computer for $700." "That simply is not possible," I replied, thinking that even a decently good gaming computer would mean a dedicated video card, somewhat decent processor, good amount of RAM; you know the drill. I thought to myself that if he had gotten most of the parts, it would easily exceed his budget, not to mention we have not added the cost of the operating system yet. I then asked myself whether it is even worth building a new gaming computer when one claims to be a "poor student". Let me put it this way, you can run to your local electronics store, and pick up a decent laptop for much less cash if you are merely looking to complete your schoolwork. What I'm trying to say is, if one doesn't have the resources to obtain luxurious items, why strive to get them in the first place? On the bright side, as years have passed, technology generally became cheaper. I remember back in the days when desktops and laptops first hit the market, everything costs a fortune. If you ask me, I would much rather spend that money on daily living expenses, haha. Fast forwarding ahead a decade, if you recall, the original G1.Sniper I have reviewed back in 2011 cost roughly $430 at press time. Unless you are a real enthusiast and are awfully loaded, that motherboard was quite pricey for most people. Fast forward a bit more to today, what we have here at APH Networks is Gigabyte's G1.Sniper Z87 motherboard priced at a seriously affordable $170 at press time, which is about two-fifths the cost. Yet, Gigabyte claims they have packed quality parts in it such as high performance Creative sound with Nichicon MUSE ES audio capacitors and a dedicated network processor. Will this be the savior for "poor students" who desire what an expensive gaming computer provides without the cost associated with one? Keep reading to see what we have in store today!


Read full article @ APH Networks

Hands-on review: Archos 64 Xenon
Archos has unleashed a beast in the 64 Xenon. With its 6.4-inch display, this is a phablet to put the HTC One Max and LG G Pro 2 to shame.That is, if bigger is always better. In the case of the Xenon, I'd argue that's not the case.This behemoth will prove slightly too unwieldily for most hands, and it feels like removing some of the unnecessary excess bezel would go to some way to fixing that problem.But if you don't mind a phone that will demand both hands to use, there are some solid positives - including the £199 (around US$335, AU$375) price tag.That 6.4-inch HD IPS display has a 1280 x 720 resolution, the same as the Archos 50c Oxygen's 5-inch screen.


Read full article @ Techradar

Juiceful 3-in-1 Key Chain for Micro USB Devices Review
Up for review today I’ve got a handy little gadget from our friends over at GearZap called the Juiceful 3 in 1 key chain for micro USB devices but that name isn’t quite what it is. This little gadget is three things obviously as its name implies, first it’s a 16gb flash drive, then it’s a 1000mAh emergency battery for micro USB devices and lastly it can act as a charge and sync cable for your phone. It’s small and portable so you can easily attach it to your keys or just toss it in a bag and it’ll be there when you need it. Read on to learn more...


Read full article @ TestFreaks

Memory Scaling On The AMD Kaveri A10-7850K APU
AMD’s Kaveri APUs are dependent on system memory. The easiest way to explain this dependency is by thinking of the GPU on the Kaveri APU as a graphics card, but with one significant difference – on its own it has no video memory. The video memory the Kaveri GPU uses is your system memory, or RAM. In the case of Kaveri APUs the CPU and GPU parts both share the system memory resources equally as part of the hUMA process, though the GPU is more performance-dependent on this memory bandwidth than the CPU is. In effect what this means is that as you increase your system memory frequency Kaveri APUs have more bandwidth available to them and thus perform better.Taking your system RAM from 1866MHz to 2400MHz has the same effect on the Kaveri GPU as would overclocking a DDR3 graphics card by the same amount.AMD has really pushed the benefits of memory scaling for Kaveri and as I’ve already alluded to above these benefits are primarily realised by applications and processes than use the GPU. So this memory scaling article will be focusing largely on the gains in GPU related performance, though we will consider CPU performance and power consumption as well.


Read full article @ eTeknix

OCZ Vector 150 240GB Review
Most enthusiasts have now embraced SSD technology and it is fair to assume that those who have may have experienced degradation of their drives over a period of time lowering the effect of that once blisteringly fast upgrade to one which is more akin to a mechanical hard drive. Ok, maybe not THAT slow but it will likely have slowed a good percentage. It is to this end that OCZ are marketing the Vector 150 as a drive that is built to combat this eventual slow-down. It is all very well being the fastest drive on the planet when you first hook it up to your machine but can it still compete with the field? Unlikely if it suffers from degradation to such an extent that it loses not only to the new releases on the market but also those it formally competed against.


Read full article @ Vortez

PC Specialist Vanquish 230XT Gaming System Review
When it comes to reviews we often see graphics cards, motherboards, chassis and many other components come through the office, but it has been a while since we reviewed all of these things together, which is why today we will be taking a look at something a little special, a £899.00 custom built gaming rig from PC Specialist. PC Specialist have a rock solid reputation behind them, a quick google will find you literally thousands of five star consumer reviews, reports and generally lots of nice things to be said about the team that work there. This is of course a good thing as with any industry, reputation matters and its that reputation that grabbed our attention, we want to see what all the fuss is about!

“Each and every one of the tens of thousands of computers and laptops we have manufactured has been custom built to our customers’ specifications. With our massive economies of scale we scour the world to bring you the best quality components from the biggest brands, such as Intel, AMD, Corsair and ASUS. When using our customer friendly and surprisingly easy-to-use website you’ll see how we concentrate our efforts around you and in turn provide an excellent service, excellent prices and excellent after sales technical support.”


Read full article @ eTeknix

Toshiba 1TB (MQ01ABD100H) 2.5'' SSHD Review
We could refer to the MQ01ABD100H 1TB hybrid from Toshiba as a 5400RPM drive on steroids, which offers 8GB NAND caching capabilities and offers a boost for data which is frequently accessed. The drive is also available at a lower capacity of 750GB while retaining the same 8GB of NAND cache.


Read full article @ Madshrimps

Ubuntu 12.04 vs. 14.04 LTS Benchmarks On Amazons EC2 Cloud
Our latest benchmarks of Ubuntu 14.04 LTS in its current development form come from testing it on Amazon's Elastic Compute Cloud.

More benchmarks of Ubuntu 14.04 LTS on Amazon's EC2 are to come when the release is near finalized for this next Long Term Support release. These weekend benchmarks are just some preliminary figures I did for reference purposes in looking at the current "out of the box" performance between Ubuntu 12.04 LTS and Ubuntu 14.04 LTS as of this week on Amazon EC2.

The Amazon EC2 c3.2xlarge instance type was used for both Ubuntu LTS releases and the stock kernels/compilers/settings were tested on each platform.


Read full article @ Phoronix

Updated: 50 best Android apps 2014
The Google Play app store has exploded in recent years, with a proliferation of apps that can cater to your every need. The problem is: there are just too many of them. Even with Editor's Picks, Featured and Best Selling, Top Paid and Top Free categories there to help you out with your downloading decision it's still a difficult task finding the best apps around.And that's why we made this list. Like you we want the best apps for our Android phones. The apps that are going to revolutionise functionality or, at the very least, offer something so great that it becomes one of the must-have apps that has to be downloaded whenever you get a new handset.The following apps are a mixture of paid and free ones and have been chosen by our Android experts. So, even if you do dip into actual cash for one of these apps, you are safe in the knowledge that it is a worthwhile purchase.


Read full article @ Techradar




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