Introducing the SSD Endurance Experiment and more
Posted on: 08/21/2013 11:45 AM
Here a roundup of today's reviews and articles, including Introducing the SSD Endurance Experiment, Riptide GP2 for Android Review, Dell XPS 27 Touch All-in-One Review, Patriot Gauntlet 320 Wireless External Hard Drive Review, and Top Smartphone Apps To Improve Home Security
Introducing the SSD Endurance Experiment @ The Tech Report
We all know that flash memory has a limited tolerance for write cycling, but what does that mean for SSD endurance? We're testing six SSDs to failure to find out.
Read more: Introducing the SSD Endurance Experiment @ The Tech ReportASRock Z87 OC Formula Overclocking Motherboard Review @ Ninjalane
ASRock isn't a name many of us associate with performance motherboards but for the past several years the company has been working hard to change that image. The quest started when the company attacked the gaming market with the help of a top tier gamer named Johnathan "Fatal1ty" Wendel. The brand has been extremely popular with gamers and helped pave the way to address the next performance segment, Overclocking. Similar to the Fatal1ty line of products ASRock pulled in the proven overclocker Nick Shih to help design and promote these motherboards, they even bear is signature.
In this review we will be looking at the new ASRock Z87 OC Formula motherboard. As the name suggests this is a Z87 enabled motherboard designed for overclocking, extreme overclocking that is. Of course as with many products in this segment the motherboard will perform equally well in a mainstream or gaming computer but has been specially designed to handle extreme temperatures, voltage and abuse.
Read more: ASRock Z87 OC Formula Overclocking Motherboard Review @ NinjalaneNZXT Phantom 530 Review @ Hardware Canucks
When it was first released back in 2010, NZXT’s original Phantom series caused quite a stir among enthusiasts. Not only did it boast a unique exterior design but the interior was both spacious and well laid out. Gamers loved it and a future classic was born. However, while that first Phantom case has aged quite gracefully, it is now beginning to show its age as newer cases have been launched that surpass its feature set while costing approximately the same amount of money.
Knowing their unique case was falling behind the competition and loosing sales to better-equipped rivals, NZXT is now launching the Phantom 530.
Read more: NZXT Phantom 530 Review @ Hardware Canucksbe quiet! Shadow Rock 2 CPU Cooler Review @ HiTech Legion
I have always held to the old saying “buy the best and you will never be disappointed”. It’s far too easy to try and save just a few dollars skimping on things, but it inevitably winds up costing more in the long run. Take something as simple as dishwashing liquid. The brand costing around a dollar may seem to offer a savings over the better brand’s equal amount costing $1.49, but, if it requires twice the liquid to do the same job….it winds up costing more to accomplish the same task. This goes for all types of items. You may save 25% on an item, but if it only has half the longevity of the higher priced item, your overall investment is 50% higher than buying the better piece in the first place.
This naturally goes in the opposite direction, as well. You may think you need the “best of the best” in every component, but often people get confused as to what is the “best” for their particular needs. Take CPU cooling as an example. Say you are building a gaming rig on a fixed budget. Your plan, since the rig is intended for gaming, is to focus on GPU as much as you can while running the CPU at stock speeds or with a small~mid OC. While you are designing your system, you pop a $100-120 air or AiO cooler into your cart. You are thinking this is a great choice because you are buying the best of the best. It also happens to be a pretty bad way to allocate funds on a fixed budget. There are a number of coolers in the $50 range that will do every bit as effective of a job in this scenario, and that savings can go towards a better GPU. While that may seem a small savings, it is literally the difference between a GTX 650 Ti Boost and a GTX 760, and that is a huge performance difference. The point being, when you are choosing your components, the best of the best is what matches your particular needs the best. In the case of a cooler, you are looking to balance performance, price and noise to fit your needs along with excellent build quality.
Read more: be quiet! Shadow Rock 2 CPU Cooler Review @ HiTech LegionRiptide GP2 for Android Review @ HiTech Legion
Anyone born after 1998 have most likely never been or even seen a video arcade in person before. They have all, unfortunately, died out as console games increased in popularity, but for a time they were ubiquitous and everyone would wait in line, quarters in tow, for their turn on the latest games. They survived for a while because it took some time before consoles caught up to the arcade level of graphics and eventually surpassed it. By the time consumer high-definition displays came out, major arcade game tournaments outside of Japan, such as the annual Evolution tournament in Las Vegas, have opted to use console games instead of a full-sized arcade cabinet. The social aspect of arcade gaming was something consoles could never replicate until online gaming came along. It wasn’t the same experience seeing your opponent eye-to-eye before you challenge him to a game, but online gaming instead allowed players to challenge a wider set of players beyond their local arcade. With online gaming, not only can players prove they are the best in their city, but can also test their skills against the best players around the world. Competitive gaming has evolved even further with the availability of gaming-capable tablets and portable consoles, such as the NVIDIA Shield. This allows racing games, such as Vector Unit’s Riptide GP2, to extend replayability beyond what is expected from a mobile game.
Riptide GP2 is the sequel to the fast-paced Riptide GP that came out two years ago. Riptide GP2 brings with it an all-new Vector Engine 4, which has also been optimized for Tegra 4 devices, delivering higher-resolution texture support, complex shaders, dynamic lighting and real-time shadows. Gameplay has been improved significantly over the original Riptide GP with the use of a career mode and integration with Google Play services for in-game achievements and statistics tracking. For gamers who want to test their racing skills, online gaming is now also available where you can invite up to three friends to join you in the water tracks. Riptide GP2 is available for $2.99 via TegraZone.com or via Google’s Play Store.
Read more: Riptide GP2 for Android Review @ HiTech LegionMSI GTX 760 HAWK 2 GB @ techPowerUp
MSI's new GeForce GTX 760 HAWK comes with several features for overclockers, like LN2 Dual-BIOS and voltage measurement points. For normal users the card has been heavily overclocked out of the box, making it the fastest GTX 760 we tested so far.
Read more: MSI GTX 760 HAWK 2 GB @ techPowerUpBooq Boa Squeeze 15” Laptop Backpack Review @ Test Freaks
Keeping with the back-to-school theme this week I’ve got another backpack for review today, this one is from Booq and it’s called the Boa Squeeze. Booq names their bags after snakes and this one is named after the Boa Constrictor obviously, but why? I think it’s because this bag is small but yet you can fit a lot of stuff in it, kind of like a Boa, it can eat things much larger than itself, it’s thin but much larger things can go in it. I don’t know if that’s true, just my thoughts on it. Anyway, the Boa Squeeze is a smaller style laptop backpack and by looking at it you wouldn’t think it would hold much but it’s deceiving in its design as you can fit up to a 15” laptop in it and a lot of other stuff like books and more for your school day. The bag is made from from polyester and nylon that is water repelling so you can take it out in most any weather and not have to worry about your things getting ruined. The Boa Squeeze is a high quality bag in my opinion so read on to learn more about it…
Read more: Booq Boa Squeeze 15” Laptop Backpack Review @ Test FreaksAttitude One Vintorez Review @ Vortez
Attitude One are a relatively new manufacturer on the block. Founded in 2012, the US-based company have in a few short months compiled a well-rounded range to include diverse peripherals such as 7.1 headsets, keyboards and now mice. The Vintorez utilises an outer shell with a shape identical to the Aula Manum, but the mouse has been adapted by Attitude One to include a rubberised surface and 3500 DPI optical sensor.
The Vintorez is Attitude One's first gaming mouse, joining other gaming peripherals such as the Makarov keyboard and Tunguska headsets. Set at around 30-35 Euros or £25-30, it occupies a low to mid-range price position against some of the most well-regarded brands in the business. The design takes cues from the best by including a 3200 DPI optical sensor, flaring main buttons two thumb buttons and rubberised non-slip coating. In a relative rarity at the price point it also incorporates customisable LED illumination and DPI settings; mainstream features for gaming mice at a relatively budget price point.
For all the headline features however it's going to be durability and comfort which will show just how good this mouse can be.
Read more: Attitude One Vintorez Review @ VortezDell XPS 27 Touch All-in-One Review @ HotHardware
Unless you're a gamer or a content-creation professional that requires a lot of computing horsepower, the latest crop of All In One PCs probably seem very attractive. AIOs tend to be quite the lookers, with sleek lines, large and crisp displays, touch capabilities--and of course, a small footprint.
We're starting to see AIOs with better and better specifications too, and although they won't be your choice of machine for pwning n00bs just yet, products like the Dell XPS 27 Touch offer very solid specifications in addition to a premium user experience and lots of ports for connecting peripherals, media cards, and more.
The Dell XPS 27 Touch is one of the first generational updates to an all-in-one that we've gotten our hands on, having reviewed the original Dell XPS One 27 last year. Thus, we get to see what sort of performance boost Dell's big and beautiful AIO gets from Haswell and an updated NVIDIA GPU.
Read more: Dell XPS 27 Touch All-in-One Review @ HotHardwareVantec 3-Port USB 3.0 Hub with Gigabit Ethernet Review @ Legit Reviews
Last month we took a look at the Diamond Multimedia UE3000 USB 3.0 Gigabit Ethernet Adapter and found it to be a simple way to add a Gigabit Ethernet port to a desktop or laptop PC. The one problem with this adapter is that it used up one of your computers USB 3.0 ports! We recently ran across another Gigabit Ethernet adapter, the Vantec 3-Port USB 3.0 Hub with Gigabit Ethernet Adapter, that looks very promising. This device plugs into a USB 3.0 port, but has three SuperSpeed USB 3.0 ports and a single Gigabit Ethernet port built-in. It also comes with a wall power adapter that allows you to charge USB devices without being hooked up to a PC!
Read more: Vantec 3-Port USB 3.0 Hub with Gigabit Ethernet Review @ Legit ReviewsPatriot Gauntlet 320 Wireless External Hard Drive Review @ TechwareLabs.com
So you have an Apple IOS based device or an Android and you find yourself spending more time managing your media and files on the device than enjoying the content. Constantly plugging the device in to sync, move, delete, and upload new media to enjoy? You like many mobile users have discovered the fatal flaw for many of these devices. . . storage space. There just isn't enough for all your stuff. Well the Gauntlet 320 aims to give you some breathing room and make that management easier. It serves to provide more storage on the go and without the need to plug your device in an upload new files because the Gauntlet 320 is wireless. No more syncing, no more decisions about what to save and what to toss. Sound interesting? But does it work?
Read more: Patriot Gauntlet 320 Wireless External Hard Drive Review @ TechwareLabs.comTop Smartphone Apps To Improve Home Security @ ThinkComputers.org
The FBI found that four houses are broken into every minute. You will want a high quality securitysystem to protect your home from intruders. However, you may not be able to afford many of the systems on the market. Fortunately, there are a number of great smartphone apps that can help improve home security. Here are some that you will want to consider using.
Read more: Top Smartphone Apps To Improve Home Security @ ThinkComputers.org