Oracle Virtual Box Virtual Machine Tips and more
Posted on: 03/19/2013 11:36 AM

Here a roundup of today's reviews and articles, including Oracle Virtual Box Virtual Machine Tips, Android MK809 II TV dongle Review, 7mm Slim SSD On a Budget, Why many GPU reviews are not fit for purpose, and Compression Performance: 7-Zip, MagicRAR, WinRAR, WinZip

Oracle Virtual Box Virtual Machine Tips @ PC Stats
As part of PCSTATS Guide to Vitualizing Windows 8 we have a collection of really handy tips for Oracle VitualBox. Up first is how to configure a network share between host and virtual machines. Next up is a tip to getting USB 2.0 thumb drives working in the virtual environment - there's some extra configuration needed for this which is not quite self-evident. Following that we have a tip for bringing back the start menu in Oracle VM's of Windows 8 - this is certainly handy when proofing installations for office-wide roll outs. Enjoy!

Read more: Oracle Virtual Box Virtual Machine Tips @ PC Stats

Android MK809 II TV dongle Review @
The MK809 II is an Android powered device that effectively turns any TV (with HDMI input) into an advanced Smart TV. The problem with most Smart TVs is their features effectively become obsolete in as little as a year of purchase as the TV manufacturers limit new features to new TVs, even on TVs with marketing such as “Software-upgradable for future services”. By using an Android set top box such as this MK809 II, the user gains access to a huge range of apps available on Android, far more than what’s available on most Smart TVs, including those that feature downloadable Apps.

Most Android apps that work on an Android Smartphone or Tablet will also run on the MK809 II, which means that if there is a music or video service anyone likes to use on their Android based Tablet, it will likely work fine on the MK809 II, allowing the user to take advantage of their large TV or sound system without wondering if the app/service will ever be made available for their so-called Smart TV. In fact, most Android Apps can be simply “side-loaded” from a SmartPhone or Tablet to this without any problem.

According to its specifications, it is preloaded with Android 4.1, features a Cortex A9 Dual Core CPU with Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connectivity, and supports Full HD (1080p) with its HDMI output, so we can expect similar performance to a typical Android Tablet with a Dual Core CPU. As it lacks multi-touch support and motion sensors, it will have compatibility problems with Apps that depend on these features, such as certain games and utilities that rely on two finger gestures.

Read more: Android MK809 II TV dongle Review @

Logitech T651 Rechargeable Trackpad for Mac Review @ Legit Reviews
Using the Logitech T651 Rechargeable Trackpad is not unlike that of the Apple Magic Trackpad or any trackpad on an Apple laptop. It supports gestures, taps, and clicks. Unlike Apple's trackpad which uses batteries, the T651 is rechargeable, so giving it a full charge is the first step upon opening and it takes two to three hours to get a full charge. The glass surface is slick yet tactile and feels very much like the Magic Trackpad and trackpads found on the varying MacBooks. So, those that are used to using them shouldn't really feel a difference...

Read more: Logitech T651 Rechargeable Trackpad for Mac Review @ Legit Reviews

Raidmax Cobra PC Case Review @
Raidmax has been around for quite a while, since 1988 in fact. I fell in love with their early designs and they were some of the first cases we reviewed when ThinkComputers started. Since then they have been going strong creating some very unique PC cases. Today we have one of their more budget-minded cases, the Cobra. Coming it at just over $70 this mid tower case offers a pretty cool design, support for 2.5-inch hard drives, two included 120mm cooling fans, USB 3.0 support and a nifty side panel window. Is this the next case for your build? Read on as we take a look

Read more: Raidmax Cobra PC Case Review @

Dell Inspiron 17-3721 Review @
The Dell Inspiron 17-3721 is a budget-priced Windows 8 laptop that offers an attractive 17-inch display, good performance and a comfortable keyboard. It does have below average graphics performance, but this isn't really meant to be a gaming notebook.

Read more: Dell Inspiron 17-3721 Review @

In Win D-Frame @ techPowerUp
In Win once more aims to create a unique chassis with an even more extraordinary approach than the H-Frame, as the D-Frame uses welded aluminum pipes and a die-cast metal core for an unbelievably cool and unique chassis of which only 1000 will ever be sold.

Read more: In Win D-Frame @ techPowerUp

ASUS Crosshair V Formula-Z Review: Cream of the Crop for AM3+
Over the past several years I have reviewed quite a few Asus products. The ones that typically grab my attention are the ROG based units. These are usually the most interesting, over the top, and expensive products in their respective fields. Ryan has reviewed the ROG graphics cards, and they have rarely disappointed. I have typically taken a look at the Crosshair series of boards that support AMD CPUs.

Read more: ASUS Crosshair V Formula-Z Review: Cream of the Crop for AM3+

Kingston V300 120GB, 7mm Slim SSD On a Budget @ Bjorn3D
Today we look at the new V300 Drive from Kingston which is a Sandforce based drive pointed at the value segment to get a sub $1/GB drive to the masses, now lets see what this drive has to offer. 

Read more: Kingston V300 120GB, 7mm Slim SSD On a Budget @ Bjorn3D

Why many GPU reviews are not fit for purpose @ HardwareHeaven
There are a huge number of review sites out there and to be frank they are filled with lazy writers who will do the minimum required to get an article out… and editors who only care about hits (money) and not the quality of the work. On occasion the same lazy writers are also the money focused editors and that is never a good mix. That’s before we even consider those who fabricate testing and plagiarise others work.Today we are going to look at GPU reviews specifically, taking a look at what WE feel makes for a quality review and why.

Read more: Why many GPU reviews are not fit for purpose @ HardwareHeaven

Edifier Spinnaker e30 Speakers Review @ KitGuru
Our enthusiast audience may not have heard of Edifier but they have been around since 1996 basing their company motto on Passion for sound. The Spinnaker speakers have been awarded an Innovations Design and Engineering Award following months of product fine tuning by ex Wharfedale Production Manager Phil Jones. Today we are are looking at the Spinnaker E30 speakers with Bluetooth support.

Read more: Edifier Spinnaker e30 Speakers Review @ KitGuru

Cubitek Mini Cube Review @ Guru3D
The chassis market is a huge yet intriguing one. People are picky and want original things hence the massive choice you get in the stores. Lately cases have been shifting more towards high-end and stylish design here in Europe, because hey ... we all want something unique and special.

The latest trend however are small form factor computers, especially the Mini ITX form factor is becoming popular. In that mindset Cubitek started designing the the Mini Cube, which obviously is a Mini ITX chassis.

It is simple, yet stylish and even comes with modern features like USB 3.0 and cable management behind the MB tray. Next to that it is as light as a feather as the Mini Cube is made out of aluminum.

Read more: Cubitek Mini Cube Review @ Guru3D

SimCity Tested, Benchmarked @ Techspot
Going down the memory lane, I can remember two computer games being responsible for getting me so interested in PCs. The original Command & Conquer was the first around 1995. Running on the venerable MS-DOS, I spent quite a bit of time playing that game at the ripe old age of 9 on our pokey HP powered i486.

Shortly after that I discovered SimCity 2000. The first SimCity title, which was released back in 1989, was before my time so I never played or laid eyes on the original. At the time SimCity 2000 was incredible, it was extremely detailed and offered what seemed like endless hours of gameplay. Some five years later SimCity 3000 was released (1999) and again much of my childhood was spent playing it.

For reasons that I cannot recall I never got into SimCity 4 (2003). I know I played it but for some reason it just didn’t speak to me like the previous two titles. Then along came SimCity Societies and at that point I thought my days of enjoying the SimCity games were over and for the better part of a decade they were.

Read more: SimCity Tested, Benchmarked @ Techspot

Ineo Alienvibes W402 Speaker Review @ Hi Tech Legion
Next designers have to contend with size limitations. Let’s face it, no matter how good it sounds, very few people have the room to drop a pair of 1.5 cubic foot enclosures on their desk next to their monitor…and with 2.1 setups there really isn’t a need to. However, with staging and definition truly noticeable in most people’s hearing down to about ~100Hz, you need a midbass driver in your desktop satellites that can produce frequencies that low cleanly while letting your subwoofer handle the frequencies below that. Ideally, you would want a 4” or 5.25” driver handling these chores (in conjunction with a tweeter capable of handling frequencies at the mid’s upper frequency reproduction capabilities), but even proper enclosures for these are often too large for realistic desktop use. As a result, we often see 2” “woofers” used in computer satellites….the best description I have for this is “ugh”. This leaves either a huge hole between the sub and midwoofer or horrible midbass reproduction caused by either the sub or 2” driver attempting to reproduce frequencies it is incapable of. Another solution is multiple smaller drivers which will have enough surface area on the cones to capably reproduce frequencies far lower than a single driver of its size.

Read more: Ineo Alienvibes W402 Speaker Review @ Hi Tech Legion

Intel 335 Series 180GB SSD Review @ Hardware Canucks
Intel’s SSD 335 series is an interesting combination of new and old technology which focuses on delivering excellent performance for a relatively low cost. On paper its specifications nearly mirror those found on the 330 model it supersedes. Both drives are part of Intel’s budget orientated 3 series, they use an LSI SandForce SF2281 controller with custom firmware and boast literally the same performance numbers.

Read more: Intel 335 Series 180GB SSD Review @ Hardware Canucks

Oregon Scientific Boombero Wireless Speaker Review @ NikKTech
With summer just around the corner how many of you will storm online and retail stores alike to find a suitable portable wireless speaker for use when at the beach (or at the pool) so you can listen to all your favorite tunes from your smartphones? Personally i use wireless portable speakers a lot when I’m at the beach in the summer especially if there are many friends around so i really do think that such devices can be quite useful as long as you can find the right one to cover your needs. So currently in the market we have the usual Bluetooth enabled wireless speakers that require to be paired with a smartphone or tablet and NFA (Near Field Audio) wireless speakers that just require for the smartphone to be placed right next to the NFA sensor (the sensor location is always listed in the user’s manual). Now obviously each type has its advantages and disadvantages but it's worth mentioning that both also offer wired 3.5mm mini plug connections (most models) which can be used by people who don't want to use the extra battery required by Bluetooth connections or people who prefer the more classic way. One such device is with us today and more specifically the Boombero NFA Wireless Speaker by Oregon Scientific.

Oregon Scientific is a global brand and creator of electronic products for today’s lifestyles. Its innovative products are the combination of cutting-edge US technology and stylish European design that build a bridge between people and technology, helping them understand their environment and enhance their daily lives. Established in the US in 1989, Oregon Scientific is both the inventor and market leader for Smart Clocks and Home Weather Stations. These two principal areas of expertise remain at the center of Oregon Scientific’s core competencies. Besides the award-winning Time and Weather collection, Oregon Scientific has successfully developed four other lifestyle enhancing product collections : Sports and Fitness, Telecommunications, Digital Media and Electronic Learning collections.

Read more: Oregon Scientific Boombero Wireless Speaker Review @ NikKTech

Compression Performance: 7-Zip, MagicRAR, WinRAR, WinZip @ Tom's Hardware
We're taking a look at the the features, performance, and compression rates of four file archiving and compression tools: the free and open source 7-Zip, the heavyweight WinRAR, the old-school WinZip, and the lesser-known MagicRAR.

Read more: Compression Performance: 7-Zip, MagicRAR, WinRAR, WinZip @ Tom's Hardware

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