Best Business Laptops - May 2013 and more
Posted on: 05/17/2013 11:44 AM
Here a roundup of today's reviews and articles, including Best Business Laptops - May 2013, Intel Core i7-3970X Sandy Bridge-E CPU Review: Intel's Flagship 6-Core, Tech21 Impact Snap with Cover Case for iPhone 5 Review, Gallium3D Continues Improving OpenGL For Older Radeon GPUs, and Beginners Guides: Crash Recovery & The Blue Screen of Death
Best Business Laptops - May 2013 @ Anandtech
It’s been a couple of weeks since our last “best laptop” article, mostly because I had concerns about recommending anything with AMD’s Richland and Intel’s Haswell processors right around the corner. At this point, it looks like Haswell is going to be a relatively small portion of Intel’s shipments for the near term, with a heavy focus on higher performance quad-core parts and Ultrabooks—basically, a focus on the more lucrative markets. AMD’s Richland APU on the other hand will be a drop-in replacement for Trinity that offers slightly faster CPU and GPU performance, but nothing earth shattering. That leaves plenty of room for laptop recommendations for the next several months, and today we’re going to look at the business sector.
Let’s first start by discussing what it means to be a business laptop. My take is that a business laptop needs to offer three things. First, it should be easy to service, so anything with an integrated battery or with memory and/or storage that can’t be upgraded is out. Second, warranty support needs to be there, and this mostly means that I’m going to look at larger OEMs, specifically Dell, HP, and Lenovo—sorry, but in my experience as an IT professional, those three brands account for roughly 90% of all business laptops, and for the most part that’s with good reason. (Most of the remaining 10% comes from businesses either using Apple products or else trying to cheap out and get by with consumer laptops; since I already cover those areas elsewhere with these guides, we should be okay.) Finally, features and build quality are important—this can include security features like TPM, remote management solutions, better materials, etc. All things being equal, the laptop with the better features/quality (and/or the lower price) wins out.
Read more: Best Business Laptops - May 2013 @ AnandtechNoctua NH-U14S Review @ Vortez
Noctua are a mainstay in the cooling segment and are highly regarded as cooling specialists in their field. Having already reviewed many of their products we are already accustomed to the quality that are associated to the brand name. Today however, we are looking at a new product to join the U-Series.
The NH-U14S is a step-up from the notorious NH-U12P. The U14S utilises a single tower design which has been engineered for maximum memory clearance and is the first cooler within the U-Series to feature a 140mm cooling fan. It’s been a while since we have seen a new addition to this series and so we are enthusiastic to what lies ahead.
Read more: Noctua NH-U14S Review @ VortezNZXT FZ-200 Airflow Fan Series 200mm fan @ Modders-Inc
The new NZXT FZ-200 Airflow Fan Series 200mm fan promise an increase of over 15% more airflow than their previous 200mm fans and are supposed to be able to have more airflow than multiple 120/140mm fans throughout your gaming or enthusiast rig, which should lessen noise considerably.
Read more: NZXT FZ-200 Airflow Fan Series 200mm fan @ Modders-IncIntel Core i7-3970X Sandy Bridge-E CPU Review: Intel's Flagship 6-Core @ HotHardware
It's no secret that Intel is readying processors based in its Haswell microarchitecture. The new chips are due to be released in the not too distant future and feature a number of noteworthy enhancements, including a much more powerful integrated graphics core.
When Haswell arrives though, it will supplant current Ivy Bridge-based processors, which target more mainstream market segments than the product we'll be showing you today. For the foreseeable future, Intel's big dog remains Sandy Bridge-E, the monstrous six-core beast which utilizes the X79 Express chipset and socket LGA 2011.
Prior to the arrival of Haswell, we figured it would be a good idea to show you just what Intel's current flagship desktop processor could do. That processor is the Core i7-3970X...
Read more: Intel Core i7-3970X Sandy Bridge-E CPU Review: Intel's Flagship 6-Core @ HotHardwareTech21 Impact Snap with Cover Case for iPhone 5 Review @ TestFreaks
For today’s review we will be looking at an iPhone 5 case from a company called Tech21 whose product focus is impact protection for your mobile devices. They use a technology called Impactology, which is supposed to evenly disperse the energy from an impact. A material called D3O is the secret to their products is actually used by the military for its impact protection on the battlefield.
We will be looking at the Impact Snap with Cover Case for the iPhone 5. This is a minimalistic hardshell case with a leather front cover that protects the phone’s front screen while giving the case a more sophisticated appearance.
Read more: Tech21 Impact Snap with Cover Case for iPhone 5 Review @ TestFreaksKingston HyperX Beast 16GB 2133MHz Memory Kit Review @ Bigbruin.com
Today we review the latest HyperX desktop memory offered from Kingston, which they have dubbed "HyperX Beast." This 2x8GB kit has XMP profiles rated at 2133MHz and 1600MHz to let users get up and running at either high speeds and decent timings, or at more mainstream speeds with tigther timings and lower voltage.
The Kingston HyperX Beast 2x8GB kit is rated with two separate XMP profiles. The first is the top rated speed of 2133MHz with CL11 timings at 1.6v. The second rating is at 1600MHz with CL9 timings at 1.5v. Perhaps the reasoning behind the multiple XMP profiles is to target a consumer who has a lower cost PC now, but has plans on upgrading rather soon.
Read more: Kingston HyperX Beast 16GB 2133MHz Memory Kit Review @ Bigbruin.comLenovo IdeaPad Z400 Touch Review @ TechReviewSource.com
The Lenovo IdeaPad Z400 is a desktop replacement that hopes to bring some of the touch-friendly features of today's smaller Ultrabooks along with it. It has a 14-inch touch display, an optical drive and strong performance, but the keyboard could be better and the battery isn't removable.
Read more: Lenovo IdeaPad Z400 Touch Review @ TechReviewSource.comHow to Install NVIDIA Drivers @ OCC
An easy step by step guide on how to update and install your NVIDIA Drivers
Read more: How to Install NVIDIA Drivers @ OCCOCZ Vertex 3.20 240GB Solid State Drive Review @ OCIA.net
The key difference this time around, however, is the selection of MLC NAND. As the name indicates, the Vertex 3.20 uses 20nm MLC NAND compared to the larger 25nm / 34nm variants found on the original Vertex 3. It's part of a market-wide push for smaller flash across the board. That aside, everything else under the hood remains virtually the same although LSI now owns SandForce.
Read more: OCZ Vertex 3.20 240GB Solid State Drive Review @ OCIA.netSunrise Charm3 & Dragon2 Ear buds @ techPowerUp
Sunrise is known for their high end ear buds. Today, we will take a good look at their two most recent offerings--namely, the Charm3 and Dragon2 ear buds. Both come with a big bundle and are competitively priced.
Read more: Sunrise Charm3 & Dragon2 Ear buds @ techPowerUpASUS ROG Orion Pro Gaming Headset Review @ OCC
Having completely disposed of the Vulcan ANC headset from ASUS, I honestly expected - and was ready to - hate this headset as well. However, I was completely blown away by the ROG Orion Pro headset. It was beyond my expectations in sound, depth, and overall performance/ease of use. I wanted to hate them after the Vulcan ANC headset had disappointed me so much, but I just couldn't. The sound quality and depth of songs just left me in awe with the Orion Pro headset. These little guys will be travelling with me next week for work and have a nice little home here at my gaming computer for late night battles with my friends. I honestly can't put too many words with this headset; the sound is just remarkable for the price and comfort. They just seem surreal.
Read more: ASUS ROG Orion Pro Gaming Headset Review @ OCCMad Catz M.O.U.S.9 Wireless Mouse @ NikKTech
A nice looking, feature rich and wireless compact mouse is one of the things i always wanted to "marry" with my notebook but to date i haven't been able to find the ideal one. Microsoft and Logitech have released quite a few (some of which with good specifications) but none of those actually peaked my interest (nor caught my eye for that matter), at least not enough for me to actually pack one of them with my primary Toshiba Qosmio notebook. I did consider using the excellent wireless R.A.T.9 by Mad Catz a while ago but its size along with the external battery charging bay were a bit too much for use with a notebook. Well it seems that Mad Catz also thinks the same way as i and so they just launched the M.O.U.S.9 Wireless Bluetooth Mouse which looks a lot like the R.A.T.9 but takes less space, is more battery efficient and is much lighter.
Read more: Mad Catz M.O.U.S.9 Wireless Mouse @ NikKTechMSI Radeon HD 7790 TurboDuo OC Review @ Guru3D
We test and review the MSI Radeon HD 7790 OC edition, also known under SKU code R7790-1GD5-OC incl FCAT Frametimes. The new graphics card is intended to boost a little more performance into entry-level gaming. The MSI HD7790 OC clocks in at 1050 MHz on the boost engine, packed with custom cooling and two heat pipe direct touch technology.
So if you draw up a pie chart then you'd be surprised that the biggest chunk of the market for graphics cards is entry level. Obviously that makes a lot of sense as OEMs love to include the cheapest card available in a PC. But considering the price level, many people that do not have or want to spend heaps of cash to play a game might pick up one of these cards. I mean think back a year or three, I really liked the Radeon HD 5770 at the time. You know what? Here is a little history lesson on AMD's lineup over the years. It was October 2009 when ATI released the Juniper GPU, you know the product as the Radeon HD 5770. It has been one of the best selling graphics cards for ATI-AMD evah, for the very simple reason that for not a lot of money you received a product with 800 shader processors. So for a price just above entry level that made a thing or two possible, gaming at 1600x1200 became a viable reality and next to that a grand feature set was introduced (Eyefinity etc). Later on the 5770 got refreshed as the 6770, which mostly was the same product. Last year, in February 2012 AMD released a product developed under the GPU codename 'Cape Verde', the graphics cards derived from that GPU were the Radeon HD 7750 and 7770 One GHz Edition. That was not a refresh, it was a completely new GPU based on their GCN architecture. Interesting was that with less shader processors AMD was able to make these products faster. They benefited from the GCN architecture but also had a trump card at hand, as this was the first ever reference card that was clocked at 1 GHz - hence AMD gave all these cards a 'GHz Edition' extension. The 28nm node allows them to place a good 1.5 billion transistors onto the GPU's 123 mm2 die, and that made the card a good 25% faster.
Read more: MSI Radeon HD 7790 TurboDuo OC Review @ Guru3DPatriot Supersonic Magnum Flash Drive @ Benchmark Reviews
With the advent of affordable solid state drives and the SuperSpeed USB 3.0 interface, we have seen a drastic increase in the size and speed of flash drives. Patriot is one of the companies leading the way on both speed and size with its Supersonic Magnum line, which we will be looking at today. The Supersonic Magnum flash drive is 256GB flash drive with a read speed of 250MB/s and a write speed of 160MB/s. In this review Benchmark Reviews will be verifying the speed of the Patriot Magnum Supersonic and compare it to two SATA-II SSD's.
In previous years, the only way to carry over 16GB of data was to carry around a 2.5" or 3.5" external drive. These drives were prone to damage and when combined that with their larger size, I was always leery of using them for anything critical. Then the SSD revolution started and the sizes on flash drives increased dramatically over the course of 3 years but we were still limited to a mere 480Mbps of USB 2.0 making files transfers slow and time consuming. With the mass adoption of USB 3.0 though this problem became a thing of the past, which brings us to where we are now with the Patriot Supersonic Magnum 256GB flash drive which is rated for 250MB/s read and 160MB/s write speeds making it extremely useful for transferring large files.
Read more: Patriot Supersonic Magnum Flash Drive @ Benchmark ReviewsGallium3D Continues Improving OpenGL For Older Radeon GPUs @ Phoronix
Curious to see how the performance of the open-source ATI/AMD Linux graphics driver is evolving for aging hardware, a new round of OpenGL benchmarks were carried out on the once-popular ATI Radeon HD 4870 "RV770" graphics card. The performance was compared between the Mesa 7.11, 8.0, 9.0, 9.1, and 9.2-devel Git releases from an Ubuntu Linux system to see how the performance has changed for this driver in the past two years.
Mesa 7.11 was released in July of 2011 and every major release since then was benchmarked as of this week on the AMD Vishera system with the older Radeon HD 4870 graphics card installed. The releases in particular were Mesa 7.11.2 git-1bdf31e, Mesa 8.0.5 git-a8ff9a4, Mesa 9.0.3 git-3d80d54, Mesa 9.1.2 git-c3eb301, and Mesa 9.2 git-6390f7. The Linux kernel used throughout all of the testing was the Linux 3.10 Git kernel as of this week. While Radeon DRM kernel driver improvements have yielded performance gains for this driver, to simplify the testing with only changing out one variable, the kernel version was maintained the same. For a historical perspective on the evolution of the Radeon DRM driver, a separate kernel driver comparison may be warranted later.
Read more: Gallium3D Continues Improving OpenGL For Older Radeon GPUs @ PhoronixBeginners Guides: Crash Recovery & The Blue Screen of Deat @ PC Stats
In this article PCSTATS.com will walk you through the BSOD in many of its most familiar incarnations. We will not be exploring and cataloguing what each BSOD means, but rather providing a set of tools for troubleshooting that you can use to get around any Blue Screen Of Death, or constant crash issue. Just another step in PCSTATS' never-ending quest to save your hard earned cash from going to the computer repair shop.
Read more: Beginners Guides: Crash Recovery & The Blue Screen of Deat @ PC StatsKingston SSDNow V300 240GB SATA III SSD Review @ PC Stats
In this review PCSTATS will be testing the 240GB Kingston SSDnow V300 SSD - a 6Gb/s SATA III drive rated by the manufacturer for sequential read speeds up to 450MB/s and write speeds up to 450MB/s.
Read more: Kingston SSDNow V300 240GB SATA III SSD Review @ PC StatsLogitech G700s Rechargable Gaming Mouse Review @ HardwareHeaven.com
Logitech are now releasing an updated version of their award winning G700, the G700s which vastly changes the chassis material as well as the sensor used. Today we have this new hybrid wired/wireless model on our test bench to review.
Read more: Logitech G700s Rechargable Gaming Mouse Review @ HardwareHeaven.comSamsung Galaxy Note 10.1 review - A surprise @ Dedoimedo
Something rather unusual today: A long, thorough review of Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 tablet, covering specification, first boot configuration, look & feel, updates from Ice Cream Sandwich to Jelly Bean, privacy and security options and settings, on-device encryption, connectivity - Samba and over the Web sharing with Airdroid, multimedia playback - full HD video and MP3 music, applications, S Pen and related productivity technology, hand writing recongition and conversion to text, voice recongition, keyboard ergonomics, battery life, applications availability and default set, geeky stuff, overall impression, comparision to smartphones, future prospects, and more.
Read more: Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 review - A surprise @ DedoimedoASUS unveils Z87 Lineup @ Madshrimps
A while back Europes' media was invited to visit the lovely city of Amsterdam. At the Club Excellence, right in the heart of the popular neighborhood, the ASUS team unveiled it's new Intel 4th generation motherboard lineup. Based on Intel's Z87 chipset, the mainstream motherboard lineup got a complete overhaul in the looks department. Gold is the brand new 2013 theme, while being promoted as original, we have seen this color scheme before on several competitors boards. Look wise it seems a missed opportunity, but luckily there's more below the surface. The ROG lineup get's a new addition in the shape of the HERO version. Similar with the TUF series, were the Gryphoon mATX which sees the daylight. Sadly we are still under NDA, so remaining pretty limited to disclose most of the new innovative features. All we can do is list the basic specifications and leave you with some first impressions and event pictures.
Read more: ASUS unveils Z87 Lineup @ MadshrimpsCorsair M95 Gaming Mouse Video Review with Kaeyi Dream @ HardwareHeaven.com
Today Kaeyi Dream gets her hands on the latest Vengeance Gaming Series mouse from Corsair the M95.
Read more: Corsair M95 Gaming Mouse Video Review with Kaeyi Dream @ HardwareHeaven.comKingston 64GB microSDXC SDCX10/64GB @ Bjorn3D
Promised to deliver at least 10 MB/s, the 64GB Kingston microSDXC card packs plenty of storage space for your mobile devices. For a 64GB microSD expandable storage for your mobile device, it also priced quite competitively at $60, and the included SD adapter makes it versatile so that you can share it with other devices such as PC. Can the card deliver?
Read more: Kingston 64GB microSDXC SDCX10/64GB @ Bjorn3D