ASUS Z87 Motherboard Roundup October 2013 and more
Posted on: 10/16/2013 08:58 AM
Here a roundup of today's reviews and articles, including ASUS Z87 Motherboard Roundup October 2013, Sapphire Radeon R9 270X Vapor-X Video Card Review, SilverStone Tundra TD02 & TD03 Review, Corsair Force LS 240GB SSD Review, and Radeon R9 290X Pitted Against GeForce GTX TITAN in Early Review
ASUS Z87 Motherboard Roundup October 2013 @ HardwareHeaven.com
For some time now ASUS haven't been shy to release a wide range of boards for each socket/CPU. In fact some of their product families are well into the double digits in terms of different models. Size, features, price, performance... all can be tweaked to offer a range that meets the needs of every consumer. And that goes for the high end boards too, under the Republic of Gamer branding. So today we take a look at what they offer there in the form of the Maximus VI Extreme (ATX), Hero (ATX), Gene (mATX) and Impact (mini-ITX).
Read more: ASUS Z87 Motherboard Roundup October 2013 @ HardwareHeaven.comCorsair Force LS 240GB SSD Review @ Guru3D
Corsair has released the Force LS series SSD, and we review it. This is the arrival of the new 19nm MLC based Force LS series for consumers. The LS line of solid-state storage units is actually a bit faster than most high-end drives made of NAND chips (Toggle) yet, is intended as the more affordable SSD series within the Corsair lineup. The SSDs are rated with a whopping 560 MB/s sequential read (530 MB/sec write) speed running over the all too familiar SATA 6.0 Gbps connection interface. Interesting, however, is a relatively unknown controller, a Phison controller is being used. And as our results will show you, Phison can compete just fine with Marvell and Sandforce/LSI. The LS makes use of the normal 2.5-inch form factor and has a thickness of 7mm. TRIM is supported, of course.
Now, we've been testing NAND Flash based storage ever since the very beginning. And I've stated it a couple of times already, it really is surprising to see where we have gotten. The SSD market is fierce and crowded though. While stability and safety of your data have become a number one priority for the manufacturers, the technology keeps advancing in a fast pace as it does, the performance numbers a good SSD offers these days are simply breathtaking. A 450 to 550 MB/sec on SATA3 is the norm for a single controller based SSD. Next to that the past year NAND flash memory (the storage memory used inside an SSD) has become much cheaper as well. Prices now roughly settle just under 1 USD per GB. That was two to threefold two years ago. As such SSD technology and NAND storage has gone mainstream. The market is huge, fierce and competitive, but it brought us where we are today... nice volume SSDs at acceptable prices with very fast performance. Not one test system in my lab has an HDD, everything runs on SSD while I receive and retrieve my bigger chunks of data from a NAS server here in the office. The benefits are performance, speed, low power consumption and no noise. You can say that I evangelize SSDs, yes Sir .. I am a fan, an SSD addict if you will.
With capacities of 60 GB, 120 GB and 240 GB, and respective prices of $70 / €60, $110 / €100, and $200 / €175, respectively. But nuff said, have a peek and let's start-up the review shall we?
Read more: Corsair Force LS 240GB SSD Review @ Guru3DSapphire Radeon R9 270X Vapor-X Video Card Review @ Benchmark Reviews
The latest AMD Curacao XT-based video cards are poised to supply the market with plenty of graphics power and added value for mainstream gamers especially as Battlefield 4 readies for launch with realistic DirectX 11 special effects. Sapphire, the leading name in AMD Radeon desktop products, have released their own Radeon R9 270X complete with an exclusive second-generation Vapor-X lightweight vapor-chamber cooling system. Sapphire further improves upon the AMD reference design by incorporating dual UEFI and BIOS firmware support, long-life 5000-hour capacitors, and Black Diamond electronic chokes. In this article Benchmark Reviews tests the Sapphire Radeon R9 270X Vapor-X, which sells online for $219 and features a 1100 MHz factory-overclocked UltraHD 4K resolution-ready graphics card with 1280 Stream processors and support for the upcoming DirectX 11.2 API.
Read more: Sapphire Radeon R9 270X Vapor-X Video Card Review @ Benchmark ReviewsThe AZiO Levetron Mech 5 Mechanical Gaming Keyboard Reviewed @ Futurelooks
There is a lot to be said about the benefits of a good gaming mouse for your PC. But one aspect that seems to be overlooked in these discussions, is the pairing of the right keyboard with that gaming mouse. It doesn’t matter how awesome your gaming mouse may be if your $15 keyboard can’t keep up. That’s why today we will be taking a closer look at a keyboard from AZiO called the Levetron Mech 5. While you struggle to say that name ten times fast, let’s see if it’s a good fit for that performance gaming mouse you’re considering or already own.
Read more: The AZiO Levetron Mech 5 Mechanical Gaming Keyboard Reviewed @ FuturelooksG.Skill TridentX F3-1600C7D-16GTX Review @ OCC
When it comes to overclocking the TridentX F3-1600C7D-16GTX modules, I was able to pull close to 300MHz more out of them by increasing the voltage to 1.65v and the timings to 8-9-9-24 for a final speed of 1895MHz. It is seemingly not a massive speed bump, but on a percentage basis it comes out to over 18% for nothing but time and a little testing patience to ensure that the overclock is stable. That is something many of the high speed modules I have tested have been unable to do when you get down to it. As one of the lower speed bins, this kit uses tighter latencies to deliver performance rather than all out speed. If you want higher speed bins, G.Skill is only happy to oblige, offering TridentX modules with speeds up to 3000MHz and capacities up to 32GB to fulfill your memory needs. Equipped with a lifetime warranty to go with the stunning good looks, the G.Skill TridentX F3-1600C7D-16GTX modules can give you the best of both worlds: performance and looks!
Read more: G.Skill TridentX F3-1600C7D-16GTX Review @ OCCSilverStone Tundra TD02 & TD03 Review @ Hardware Canucks
Remember back when pundits were saying that Intel’s new Tri-Gate transistor technology would result in cooler running processors? Well, that never happened and with the introduction of 22nm CPUs, suddenly enthusiasts found that instead of lower temperatures, heat is now concentrated into one small area. As a result, heatsinks that were once adequate were rendered ineffective overnight with overclocked Ivy Bridge, Haswell and Ivy Bridge-E processors routinely outstripping capabilities. This has led to a renaissance for All In One water cooling units and Silverstone’s Tundra TD02 and Tundra TD03 are the latest looking to capitalize.
The TD02 and TD03 represent Silverstone’s first foray into the water cooling market and they’ve been in development for over a year. More importantly, their designs were completely done in-house, unlike the countless CoolIT or Asetek-based models already on the market.
Read more: SilverStone Tundra TD02 & TD03 Review @ Hardware CanucksAMD Radeon R9 280X Video Card Review w/ ASUS, XFX and MSI @ Legit Reviews
When the AMD Radeon HD 7970 was introduced in 2011 it cost $549 and made short work of NVIDIA's GeForce GTX 580 video card. The AMD Radeon HD 7970 used the Tahiti GPU that has 2,048 stream processors built on the TSMC's 28nm process technology with 3GB of GDDR5 memory on a 384-bit bus. If someone would have told us back in 2011 that this video card would be re-branded and still being sold in 2014 we would have laughed, but here we are nearly two years later and that is exactly what happened. The AMD Radeon 200 series will be headed up by the Radeon R9 290X, but that flagship card has not been released just yet. The second fastest card is the AMD Radeon R9 280X and that is the re-branded Radeon HD 7970! Our friends at ASUS, MSI and XFX sent us retail cards for us to take a look at. Each of the cards are running at various clock speeds, so it should give us all a pretty good idea of what we can expect from the AMD R9 280X lineup. Read on to find out!
Read more: AMD Radeon R9 280X Video Card Review w/ ASUS, XFX and MSI @ Legit ReviewsCorsair Graphite 230T @ techPowerUp
The Corsair Graphite 230T aims to be a cool-looking chassis with functional features--all at a price segement that is simply the most sought after. Clocking in at 70 euros, has Corsair managed to deliver more than just cool looks in three different colors or is the Graphite 230T nothing but an empty shell?
Read more: Corsair Graphite 230T @ techPowerUpOoma Office: VoIP Small Office Phone System Review @ TechwareLabs
On the heels of the successful Ooma Telo home VoIP phone product, Ooma now offers a feature rich small office solution in the the Ooma Office product.
Read more: Ooma Office: VoIP Small Office Phone System Review @ TechwareLabsMSI Z87 MPower LGA 1150 Motherboard @ HardOCP
If you are in the market for a new LGA 1150 motherboard, make sure you read our evaluation of the MSI Z87 MPower motherboard before spending your hard earned money.
The "M" series motherboards from MSI have gained a lot of recognition recently being an upper quality not-so-high-priced motherboard for the computer hardware enthusiast. However while MSI brings us some of the best hardware you'll find on the current market seemingly goes a bit off course with firmware and software.
Read more: MSI Z87 MPower LGA 1150 Motherboard @ HardOCPSteelseries Apex Gaming Keyboard Review @ Funky Kit
Most people have a cheap Logitech or ... keyboard for 10 euros and some others have a keyboard of 100 euros, why buy an expensive keyboard if you just can buy a cheap 10 euro keyboard??? The more expensive keyboards have more and better features, better design and are more comfortable. You have 2 main category's of keyboards: Rubber dome switches and mechanical switches, The mechanical keyboards are always expensive and priced around 100 euro or more. then we have the rubber dome keyboards and are the cheapest, for around 10 euro you have one. But rubber dome keyboards with a lot of options like: lights, macro keys, independent media keys, USB hub,... obviously costs more. This isn't necessary but its great and fun to have such things.
Also the anti-ghosting feature is really nice BUT for people who just use there computer to check their mail or browse the web, its a waste of money to buy 'high-end' keyboards. They are made for gamers in particular, with all the features and cool things to win!
Read more: Steelseries Apex Gaming Keyboard Review @ Funky KitCooler Master Elite 130 Mini-ITX Case Review @ Hardware-360
Small form factor (SFF) cases are growing in popularity mainly because advancements in case design allows even the smallest cases to accommodate a closed-loop water cooler, large graphics cards and multiple storage options. Additionally, as Intel and AMD continuously shrink the die size of their processors less power is needed to run them, so even high-end processors such as the 4770K can be easily run on a Mini-ITX motherboard that will fit into the SFF case we are looking at in this review.
First lets start with a bit about Cooler Master. For anyone that doesn’t know about them (people who live in a cave) they are a company that has been around since 1992 and focus on cases, cooling and peripherals. They are also one company that has really delivered when it comes to SFF cases and today we are able to look at their latest Mini-ITX chassis; the Elite 130.
Read more: Cooler Master Elite 130 Mini-ITX Case Review @ Hardware-360Radeon R9 290X Pitted Against GeForce GTX TITAN in Early Review @ techPowerUp
Here are results from the first formal review of the Radeon R9 290X, AMD's next-generation flagship single-GPU graphics card. Posted by Chinese publication PCOnline.com.cn, the it sees the R9 290X pitted against the GeForce GTX TITAN, and GeForce GTX 780. An out-of-place fourth member of the comparison is the $299 Radeon R9 280X. The tests present some extremely interesting results. Overall, the Radeon R9 290X is faster than the GeForce GTX 780, and trades blows, or in some cases, surpasses the GeForce GTX TITAN. The R9 290X performs extremely well in 3DMark: FireStrike, and beats both NVIDIA cards at Metro: Last Light. In other tests, its half way between the GTX 780 and GTX TITAN, leaning closer to the latter in some tests. Power consumption, on the other hand, could either dampen the deal, or be a downright dealbreaker. We'll leave you with the results.
Read more: Radeon R9 290X Pitted Against GeForce GTX TITAN in Early Review @ TechPowerUpArctic S113BT Bluetooth Wireless Speaker with NFC @ Bjorn3D
Remember old times, when you had to plug a cable in the 3.5 mm headphone jack of your mobile device to the speaker in order to amplify the volume so that everyone at the party could enjoy music? Many IOS devices also utilize the 30-pin or lightning connector to pass the audio to the speaker.
Read more: Arctic S113BT Bluetooth Wireless Speaker with NFC @ Bjorn3D