Crucial M500 960GB and more
Posted on: 10/09/2013 11:13 AM
Here a roundup of today's reviews and articles, including Crucial M500 960GB, Toshiba HG5D Series SATA M.2 SSD Review (512GB), NZXT H630 Review, iPhone 5C vs iPhone 4S head to head review, and Samsung Series 9 SB970 WQHD LED Monitor Review
Crucial M500 960GB @ PureOverclock
We’ve said for quite some time that the biggest performance increase you’ll see in a system upgrade these days it moving to a Solid State Drive. The improvements of an SSD, in our opinion, are nothing short of astounding. So scintillating is the difference that you’ll wonder how you ever survived without one.
So it comes as no surprise there are increasingly more options available from various manufacturers to address various needs. Controller tech, speeds, and storage sizes are the golden trifecta of SSD success. And today we’re looking at the Crucial M500 960GB drive that is poised to address all three.
Read more: Crucial M500 960GB @ PureOverclockASRock Z87E-ITX Mini-ITX Motherboard @ Custom PC Review
With Intel’s focus shifting towards power efficiency rather than maximum performance at all costs, it’s becoming increasingly unnecessary for gamers and enthusiasts to purchase bulky and cumbersome giant cases with giant motherboards with tons of cooling capacity. This is why over the past couple generations of Intel CPUs, a number of motherboard manufacturers have begun embracing the mITX formfactor, which has traditionally been reserved for low power systems.
With that said, today we’ll be reviewing out the ASRock Z87E-ITX motherboard, which as you may expect is a mITX formfactor motherboard based off Intel’s Z87 chipset. This is one of ASRock’s latest motherboards and despite the fact that it’s based off a 17cmx17cm size, the motherboard is very full featured sporting a full PCIe x16 slot for your high powered graphics, six phase DrMOS digital power delivery system, a whopping six SATA 6Gb/s ports, Intel Gigabit LAN, 802.11 AC WiFi, mSATA support, and more!
Read more: ASRock Z87E-ITX Mini-ITX Motherboard @ Custom PC ReviewFractal Design ARC XL Review @ OCC
With a good amount of pros I am only going to focus on what really sells the product to me. First up, water cooling, need I say more? This chassis is amazing with its vast options for any sort of configuration you can think up. It does have its limits when setting up push/pull or thick radiators though. Next, my favorite topics: internal cables and cable management. I am sure people are tired of my complaints involving cable lengths. All this is solved now with a company that actually thought ahead! Fractal Design's choice to include 1" (26mm) of space behind the motherboard tray was also a great idea. This alone really pushes the case towards stardom. I cannot count how many times the only option I have is to tie all the loose wires and have them block an air intake fan.
Read more: Fractal Design ARC XL Review @ OCCMotorola Droid MAXX @ LanOC Reviews
Here in just a few months it will have been two years from when Motorola introduced their Razr MAXX. That length of time is significant for a few reasons. First, most of you know that a lot of people run on two year contracts for their phones so a lot of the original Razr MAXX owners will be on the market for replacements here at the start of the year. Two years is also important because it wasn’t long before the original MAXX was introduced that Google purchased the company for a whopping 13 Billion dollars. In that time as well things have changed in the phone market. Sure the iPhone is still around but who would have thought that Blackberry would still be around and that the phones that were once so powerful and huge are now considered slow and normal in size. What a perfect time for Motorola to introduce its third MAXX phone. This time the they dropped the Razr name all together and just went with the Droid MAXX and its smaller battered brother is called the Droid Ultra. I’ve been using the MAXX for a while now and today I’m going to tell you a little about my experience.
Read more: Motorola Droid MAXX @ LanOC ReviewsSteelSeries Flux In-Ear Pro Headset @ MEGATech
A little while back, we posted a review of the SteelSeries Free Touchscreen Gaming Controls. Today, we’re taking a look at another product offering from SteelSeries, this time geared more toward the audiophiles in the audience. It’s the SteelSeries Flux In-Ear Pro Headset and these little buds mean some serious business.
As the name implies, the Flux In-Ear Pro Headset is a marked step up from the much cheaper Flux In-Ear Headset. The most visible difference comes in the unique design, offsetting the earbud portion from the cord. They say that this balanced armature provides you with more accurate drivers, allowing you to “experience a new dimension to your sound.”
Read more: SteelSeries Flux In-Ear Pro Headset @ MEGATechToshiba HG5D Series SATA M.2 SSD Review (512GB) @ The SSD Review
Known as the HG5d Series of Toshiba solid state drives, the cSSD (or client SSD) can be found in PC systems worldwide, however, is not available through retail sales. The HG5d cSSD family is comprised of 2.5" notebook, mSATA and M.2 form factor SSDs with capacities of 60, 128, 256 and 512GB. All speak to low power consumption, three-year warranties applicable only to manufacturing partners, and all take advantage of Toshiba's newest 19nm Toggle Mode 2.0 MLC memory. The M.2 family of the HG5d cSSD is a SATA M.2 SSD and listed performance is variable, depending on capacity. Our sample 512GB M.2 SSD can reach 534MB/s read and 482MB/s write with 90KIOPS read and 35KIOPS write. 128 and 256GB capacities have the same read performance but write speeds are listed at 471MB/s with read IOPS a bit lower at 80K.
Read more: Toshiba HG5D Series SATA M.2 SSD Review (512GB) @ The SSD ReviewSilverStone Strider Gold 650W Power Supply Review @ OCIA.net
Within the last decade we've seen the 80Plus certification become a widely accepted standard and further expanded into Bronze, Silver, Gold and Platinum levels as efficiency improves. Combine lower hardware power requirements with more efficient power supplies and we start to see what had been a steady upward trend in power supply size begin to level off and perhaps even decline. Where 750W or 850W may have once been the norm, we're now seeing units in the 500W to 650W range become more popular.
Read more: SilverStone Strider Gold 650W Power Supply Review @ OCIA.netAMD ATI Radeon Chips Comparison Table @ Hardware Secrets
A table comparing the basic technical specs of all AMD ATI Radeon graphics chips available on the market, from the Radeon 9200 to the Radeon R9 290X. Updated to include the Radeon HD 8000, R7, and R9 series.
Read more: AMD ATI Radeon Chips Comparison Table @ Hardware SecretsNZXT H630 Review @ Vortez
NZXT’s passion in the computer chassis market has been proven by the success they have had in the Phantom and Switch series to name just a few. Today we are to look at a new chassis from one of their ranges which specifically tackles the issue of noise.
The H630 is classified as an ultra-tower – having support for XL-ATX, E-ATX and enough space to maintain brilliant cable management practises. NZXT have furnished the side and top panels with high-density noise damping material in a bid to keep noise levels to a minimum but will it really work?
Read more: NZXT H630 Review @ VortezAMD Radeon R9 270X & R7 260X Review @ Neoseeker
I think we can all agree that the 7xxx series GPU from AMD had a phenomenal run with the ability to achieve some very nice overclocks, and in my opinion will be sorely missed when they are phased out. With that said we can get on to why we are here today. AMD fans rejoice, the wait is finally over as we introduce several new GPUs including the R7 260X and the R9 270X. While the new boards do not feature new silicon, they are still based on AMD's award winning GCN architecture and carry all of the bells and whistles such as ZeroCore Power and PowerTune technolgies. The exception to this rule is the R7 260X, the worlds first discreet GPU to utilize a programmable audio pipeline.
With the R7 260X and the R9 270X, AMD is poised to aim for the top in terms of both price and performance. The R7 series is targeted at the individual who is looking for an all around cost-effective GPU, while the R9 series is designed for those looking to see AMD hammer the competition. Here is the best part: regardless of which series you choose to roll with, your pocket book can breathe easy with prices starting at $139 for the R7 260X 2GB model with the R9 270X priced at $199. Of course the final retail pricing will depend on the amount of GDDR5 the board is equipped with.
Read more: AMD Radeon R9 270X & R7 260X Review @ NeoseekerCrytek WARFACE Interview with Joshua Howard (Executive Producer) @ HardwareHeaven.com
Kaeyi Dream recently visited Crytek Studios and had chance to interview Joshua Howard (Executive Producer) on the upcoming title WARFACE.Crytek WARFACE Interview with Joshua Howard (Executive Producer) @ HardwareHeaven.comMach Xtreme Technology MX Express Driverless PCIe 2.0 x2 SSD Review @ The SSD Review
Today, we are going to provide you with a bit of an exclusive look at a more consumer directed variation of a new driver-less PCIe SSD, the recently announced Mach Extreme MX-Express driver-less PCIe 2.0 x2 SSD. The MX-Express is a LSI SandForce driven PCIe SSD, available in 128, 256, 512 and 1TB capacities and has listed speeds of 800MB/s for both read and write data transfer, with up to 100,000IOPS. Warranty for the MX-Express is 2 years and availability is much more prevalent in Europe than North America, although we did find availability with My Digital Discount in the USA.
Read more: Mach Xtreme Technology MX Express Driverless PCIe 2.0 x2 SSD Review @ The SSD ReviewGigabyte Z87M-D3H Review @ HCW
Valve have seemingly been owning our headlines for the past two weeks, with all the announcements and rumors about their push into PC gaming in the living room. If that doesn’t get you interested in Steam Machines themselves, maybe you are at least thinking of building a living room gaming PC. If that’s the case, you’ll probably be looking at small form factor systems based on mATX or mITX.. mITX platforms do exist that can accommodate high end hardware, but you give up a lot to get there. Right now, mATX is the easier way to build a small sized high end gaming PC.
It used to be that mATX automatically meant “budget” and therefore motherboards would have lower end features and cheaper components. That’s no longer the case, as the Gigabyte Z87M-D3H we’re looking at here is based on their ATX sized Z87X-D3H. Perhaps we’ll look at that board separately some time.
Read more: Gigabyte Z87M-D3H Review @ HCWGigabyte GTX 780 Windforce OC @ Bjorn3D
Here via the specs you can see that the Gigabyte model comes with a very high out of the box clock which gives it a definitive jump over the competition with over 1GHz boost clock where the ASUS we looked at recently only reached into the 941MHz in boost clock at default.
The Gigabyte GTX 780 Windforce OC graphics card comes to market at a street price of $649.99 directly from Newegg at the time of writing. This is right along side most of the 780 models with varying clock speeds but this card is right up with the best in speeds with just mere few MHz separating it from the top available.
Read more: Gigabyte GTX 780 Windforce OC @ Bjorn3DiPhone 5C vs iPhone 4S head to head review @ The Inquirer
We see if the old champion has anything left to offer its over younger, colourful rival
Read more: iPhone 5C vs iPhone 4S head to head review @ The InquirerXFX FXGS2LAYER Warpad Mousepad Review @ Hardware-360
Mousepads…. They aren’t something that many people think of often, even when they’re shopping for computer parts. We just start jotting down our list for CPUs, motherboards, memory, power supplies, and video cards. Most people don’t think of mousepads as an item that they are going to drop significant money on. So, why are many people wrong about this?
I know many hardcore gamers that still rock the $5 or free mousepad. Unless Grandpa is really cool then he likely has a free mousepad or something that he picked up for $5 from a trip that him and Grandma went on. I want to show you why spending a small chunk of that hard earned money on a mousepad is definitely worth it. Is the XFX Warpad worth it too?
XFX has been in the computer for over a decade. They’re a subsidiary of Pine Technology Holdings who has been around since the 80s. XFX has a substantial portfolio of computer products and experience. Their lineup of products mainly consists of AMD based video cards and that is what they are best known for but they branched out into motherboard, power supplies, and computer accessories a few years ago. So, let’s get on with it.
Read more: XFX FXGS2LAYER Warpad Mousepad Review @ Hardware-360Samsung Series 9 SB970 WQHD LED Monitor Review @ Tech Lobby
We take a look at the Samsung Series 9 SB970 WQHD LED Monitor. From the tiny, tight and well formed edges to the minimalistic bezel and glass sheeted front it looks like a winning masterpiece.
Read more: Samsung Series 9 SB970 WQHD LED Monitor Review @ Tech LobbyAMD Radeon R9 280X, R9 270X and R7 260X @ Hexus
AMD's add-in board (AIBs) partners have stood by impatiently as archrival Nvidia has launched four new desktop graphics cards over the summer. Based on the energy-efficient Kepler architecture, GeForce GTX Titan, 780, 770, and 760 have improved the green team's performance at the serious end of the market, with partners releasing a roster of retail cards in the GTX wake.
Announced on September 26, AMD has come back swinging with gusto. Six Radeon GPUs have been unveiled, providing much-needed impetus to partners, and AMD has seen fit to change the naming convention along the way. Quite a mouthful, the Radeon R9 290X, R9 290, R9 280X, R9 270X, R7 260X, and R7 250 cards are busy being packed into containers destined for your favourite retailers.
Now, while we'll get onto nomenclature in a moment, the R9 290X and 290 are being officially released at a later date. These are brand-new GPUs designed to compete against the ultra-powerful GeForce GTX Titan and 780 cards. The remainder, however, should be available from today onwards, meaning four new GPUs for the likes of Sapphire, Asus, MSI, et al, to get their teeth stuck into.
Read more: AMD Radeon R9 280X, R9 270X and R7 260X @ Hexus