System Builder Marathon, Q2 2013 and more
Posted on: 06/19/2013 10:33 AM
Here today's reviews and articles, including System Builder Marathon, Q2 2013, BlackBerry Q10 (AT&T) Review, Microsoft Responds on Fake Xbox One E3 Demo Story, OCZ Vertex 450 256GB SSD Review, and Snapdragon 800 (MSM8974) Performance Preview: Qualcomm Mobile Development Tablet Tested
System Builder Marathon, Q2 2013: $1300 Enthusiast PC @ Tom's Hardware
Our mid-range System Builder Marathon configuration gets a larger budget so that we can fit it into a mini-ITX enclosure. How does it compare with last quarter's less-expensive machine? We run our complete benchmark suite to find out.
Read more: System Builder Marathon, Q2 2013: $1300 Enthusiast PC @ Tom's HardwareASRock Z87 Extreme4 Motherboard @ Hardware Secrets
The ASRock Z87 Extreme4 is a mid-range socket LGA1150 motherboard targeted for the "Haswell" processors (fourth-generation Core i3, Core i5, and Core i7 processors). Let's see what this motherboard has to offer.
Read more: ASRock Z87 Extreme4 Motherboard @ Hardware SecretsLightDims LED Dimming Sticker Review @ Legit Reviews
Do you have really annoyingly bright LEDs on your PC case or cable set top box? Is your digital nightstand clock is overly bright and blinding you at night? Stop using your electrical tape or permanent marker to make these LEDs dim or completely dark! LightDims has a very simple yet genius solution to dim those pesky LEDs down! LightDims are a thin film-like material with an adhesive on the back. Think of them as a sticker-sized â€œwindow-likeâ€ tint that you can remove at will. You can stick them just about anywhere...
Read more: LightDims LED Dimming Sticker Review @ Legit ReviewsCorsair Carbide Series Air 540 Cube Case Review @ KitGuru
Unique is a word that is reserved for only a few companies in the case market today. With a split-chamber design and cube shape, does Corsair's Carbide Series Air 540 create a spark that could relight the flame of innovation for the chassis market?
Read more: Corsair Carbide Series Air 540 Cube Case Review @ KitGuruBlackBerry Q10 (AT&T) Review @ TechReviewSource.com
There's nothing like the BlackBerry Q10. It's a messaging monster. If you're one of those "keyboard people," the Q10 is the answer to your prayers: a well-built, modern smartphone with the best physical keyboard you can get your thumbs on.
Read more: BlackBerry Q10 (AT&T) Review @ TechReviewSource.comMSI GTX 770 Lightning 2 GB @ techPowerUp
MSI's GeForce GTX 770 Lightning uses a completely re-engineered PCB design with a large dual-fan cooler. The card is also overclocked out of the box, which gives it an extra performance advantage.
Read more: MSI GTX 770 Lightning 2 GB @ techPowerUpTt eSPORTS Shock Headset Review @ HardwareHeaven.com
Today we'll be taking a look at the value orientated SHOCK gaming headset a model which is available in a number of different colours, from Blasting Red and Dynamite Orange to Sunfire Yellow and Military Green. The model we will be looking at is the Marina Blue version; hopefully it delivers same high level of performance we have come to expect from other Tt eSPORTS products.
Read more: Tt eSPORTS Shock Headset Review @ HardwareHeaven.comLG Optimus G Pro from AT&T Review @ HotHardware.com
Upon first glance of the LG Optimus G Pro, it's easy to draw comparisons to Samsung's Galaxy Note II. The two phones are strikingly similar. Both feature massive 5.5-inch displays along with rounded edges and a physical Home button below the screen. When placed side-by-side, the two phones appear to be nearly identical in size. However, upon closer examination you'll notice the Galaxy Note II is slightly taller and wider than the Optimus G Pro. Technical specifications reveal the Galaxy Note II weighs slightly more than the Optimus G Pro as well, but the difference is so small you'll hardly notice.
In terms of actual hardware specifications, the differences between the Samsung Galaxy Note II and the Optimus G Pro are more obvious. Samsung's phablet runs on a 1.6GHz quad-core Exynos 4412 processor while the Optimus G Pro features a 1.7GHz quad-core Snapdragon 600 processor. You'll also notice a difference in resolution between the 5.5-inch displays: The Galaxy Note II features a Super AMOLED display with a resolution of 1280 x 720 while the Optimus G Pro features an IPS display with a significantly higher resolution of 1920 x 1080. Unlike some phablets on the market today, the Optimus G Pro doesn't have a built-in stylus.
Read more: LG Optimus G Pro from AT&T Review @ HotHardware.comMicrosoft Responds on Fake Xbox One E3 Demo Story @ NgoHQ
Galit Motai, PR Manager at Microsoft Israel, has sent us a response on this story. "We have a variety of Xbox One development kits with built-in functions for different applications, including kits that look like PCs. At this stage - months before launch - our teams and partners are focusing on games' development and the best gaming experience, not on physical look of the kits. At this period and until launch, you may see a variety of different physical cases that do not reflect of what's running inside.
Read more: Microsoft Responds on Fake Xbox One E3 Demo Story @ NgoHQMSI's Z87-GD65 Gaming motherboard reviewed @ The Tech Report
MSI's Z87-GD65 Gaming delivers Creative-enhanced audio and a Killer NIC for just $180. We take a closer look at how it stacks up against other Haswell contenders.
Read more: MSI's Z87-GD65 Gaming motherboard reviewed @ The Tech ReportOCZ Vertex 450 256GB SSD Review @ Hardware Canucks
OCZ’s Vertex lineup’s status as one of today’s preeminent SSDs may have been recently usurped by the high end Vector series but its evolution has continued unabated. The Vertex 3.20 was announced earlier this year and the Vertex 450 is its latest iteration, promising top shelf performance without breaking the bank. As a matter of fact, the 256GB version we are reviewing here only goes for about $230.
While the Vertex 450’s cost puts it into a hotly contested market. Drives like Corsair’s Neutron series, Crucial’s M500 and SanDisk’s Extreme series all but dominate this segment but OCZ has several tricks up their sleeves to ensure their continued dominance.
Read more: OCZ Vertex 450 256GB SSD Review @ Hardware CanucksASUS Z87-PRO Motherboard Review @ HiTech Legion
M. Night Shyamalan was the one in control, the man in the cockpit and the hitter at the plate. This is the same with any project big or small. One component failure might cause problems for the entire unit but that could also occur at random. Failure at the design and execution level is more egregious and should be identified. If "After Earth" is a motherboard, it would be one made of high-quality components but designed and crafted as if the maker didn't care and was going to jump off the roof by lunch break, hoping there aren't any nets installed to prevent his demise. What you need is a combination of high-quality components made by a motherboard maker with a high batting average. With the recent release of Intel's new Z87 platform, many enthusiasts will be looking at over three dozen different motherboard offerings but the most promising ones, on paper at least, will be those that come from a familiar and award winning line such as ASUS' Pro motherboard.
The ASUS Z87-Pro supports all the latest generation 22nm Haswell Intel LGA1150 Core processors. The Z87-Pro offers 12-phase DIGI+ power, ESD guards for the USB, LAN and video ports as well as fuse ICs for the DRAM, solid capacitors rated for 5,000 hours at 105C, and a stainless steel back I/O for an all-around protection and extended motherboard lifespan. In terms of connectivity, the Z87 Pro has the standard six SATA 6G ports from the Z87 chipset but also adds two more via an ASMedia 1061 controller, four USB 3.0 ports via the Intel Z87 chipset as well as four more USB 3.0 ports via an ASMedia 1042 in the top back I/O. Wirelessly, the ASUS Z87 Pro uses a dual-band Qualcomm Atheros Wireless-N module with Bluetooth 4.0 and comes with a 2TR2 antenna that uses gold-plated SMA connectors. For display output, the ASUS Z87 Pro supports up to 4096 x 2160 @ 24Hz via the HDMI, as well as the DisplayPort, and is also able to handle displays up to 1920x1200 @ 60Hz via the DVI-D or the VGA output ports.
Read more: ASUS Z87-PRO Motherboard Review @ HiTech LegionCooler Master Seidon 240M @ PureOverclock
AiO (all in one) CPU coolers have been around for quite some time now. These days just about every company is coming out with their own version and most of them typically look the same with only one or two distinguishing features. Then there’s the Cooler Master Seidon 240M. The Seidon on the surface seems like your typical 240mm AiO CPU cooler, but Cooler Master has added their own unique style to this unit. They were kind enough to send one out for me to put it through the wringer so I did just that! Let’s get to it shall we?
Read more: Cooler Master Seidon 240M @ PureOverclockSnapdragon 800 (MSM8974) Performance Preview: Qualcomm Mobile Development Tablet Tested @ Anandtech
We've written about Snapdragon 800 (MSM8974) before, for those unfamiliar, this is Qualcomm’s new flagship SoC with four Krait 400 CPUs at up to 2.3 GHz, Adreno 330 graphics, and the latest modem IP block with Category 4 LTE. Qualcomm is finally ready to show off MSM8974 performance on final silicon and board support software, and invited us and a few other publications out to San Francisco for a day of benchmarking and poking around. We looked at MSM8974 on both the familiar MSM8974 MDP/T, a development tablet used both by Qualcomm and 3rd parties to develop drivers and platform support, and the MSM8974 MDP phone, both of which have been publicly announced for some time now.
The tablet MDP is what you'd expect, an engineering platform designed for Qualcomm and other third parties to use while developing software support for features. Subjectively it’s thinner and more svelte than the APQ8064 MDP/T we saw last year, but as always OEMs will have the final control over industrial design and what features they choose to expose. Display is 1080p on the tablet and 720p on the phone, a bit low considering the resolutions handset and tablet markers are going for (at least 1080p on phone and WQXGA on tablets) so keep that in mind when looking at on-screen results from benchmarks. Read on for our full Snapdragon 800 performance preview.
Read more: Snapdragon 800 (MSM8974) Performance Preview: Qualcomm Mobile Development Tablet Tested @ AnandtechMad Catz Cyborg F.R.E.Q. 5 Gaming Headset @ Benchmark Reviews
Mad Catz is continuing to broaden their Cyborg hardware line-up and up next is the Cyborg FREQ 5 stereo gaming headset. It supports both PC and devices so it's not just your stay-at-home gaming headset. It includes both a USB and 3.5mm analog connection. Naturally the USB connection unlocks additional mic/audio adjustment capabilities. The Mad Catz FREQ 5 comes with 50 drivers for deep bass and crisp highs. It is the younger brother of Mad Catz's FREQ 7, which delivers surround sound at a slightly higher price range. Benchmark Reviews will be taking a look at how this stereo headset performs among its numerous competitors.
The Mad Catz Cyborg FREQ 5 inherits the same techy design as everything else in the product family and gives you an option of red, black or white colors. For Mac users, there's also a white/blue version. Mad Catz has never been shy when it comes down to design and they've nailed it with each product release.
Read more: Mad Catz Cyborg F.R.E.Q. 5 Gaming Headset @ Benchmark Reviews