Components

Creative Labs was instrumental in evolving PC audio with notable products, like the Sound Blaster 16, AWE 32, AWE64, Live!, Audigy, X-Fi, and Extigy, and algorithms like EAX technology. Most of its competitors through the last three decades, like Yamaha, ESS, Turtle Beach, Auzentech and M-Audio, evolved their product line-ups or faded into obscurity. There were acquisitions of Aureal and Sensaura technologies that further boosted Creative's technology portfolio, too. Sound cards seem passé nowadays, as motherboard manufacturers hop up high-definition audio codecs with higher quality op-amps, capacitors,... Read more...
The Samsung Portable SSD T3 was a compact, durable, lightweight, and fast external solid state storage device, that offered killer performance when it launched. The T3 has been out for quite a while, however, and Samsung has since released a few newer types of flash memory, which are better suited to low-power, portable storage devices. As such, the company decided to tweak the T3’s design, update it with newer 64-layer 3D V-NAND flash memory, massage the firmware, and the brand-new Samsung Portable SSD T5 was born.We’ve got one of the new Portable SSD T5’s on-hand and have some benchmarks to share... Read more...
Today is the day AMD's Radeon Technologies Group has been working towards for a long time. The official launch of the Radeon RX Vega is here, and it's now time for AMD RTG's moment in the spotlight. Advanced Micro Devices (NASDAQ:AMD) has been on a tear as of late; the desktop and server processor group executed successful launches of its Ryzen desktop processor, EPYC server platform, and finally the big bang last week with its Ryzen Threadripper enthusiast 12- and 16-core processors, which were met with high praise. Ryzen, EPYC and Threadripper are tough acts to follow, just ask Intel. So too... Read more...
AMD’s unrelenting attack on the desktop CPU market continues today, with the official launch of the company's beastly Ryzen Threadripper processors. If, by some cruel joke, you are unfamiliar with Threadripper, it is AMD’s premium, high-end, many-core desktop processor, that leverages the same Zen microarchitecture that debuted with the Ryzen 7 series a few months back. The flagship chip in the initial AMD Ryzen Threadripper line-up packs 16 physical processor cores and supports 32 threads through the use of SMT (Simultaneous Multithreading). To date, the largest number of cores supported on standard... Read more...
AMD's Ryzen series of next generation desktop processors have garnered a lot of buzz and praise around the web, but among the family of chips, none have created quite the stir as the company's Threadripper models of 16-core and 12-core processors.  While Ryzen helped propel AMD back to essentially performance parity with Intel Core series processors, Ryzen Threadripper offers the hope of surpassing even Intel's latest Core i9 Skylake-X family, with more core resources and PCIe connectivity at its disposal. As it turns out, our first hands-on experience with AMD Ryzen Threadripper wasn't afforded... Read more...
Adjustable sit-stand desks are all the rage these days, after some smart person in the healthcare field put two and two together to figure out that planting your backside in an office chair all day long is really not good for you, and in more ways than one. Adjustable height desks come generally in two variants, stand-alone models like the Autonomous Smart Desk 2 you see above and desktop risers that essentially convert a standard desk to sit-stand positioning capability. Pricing for the various model types out there range from the cheesy $149 versions, to north of $500 or so for premium, motorized... Read more...
We are neck-deep in testing AMD’s Ryzen Threadripper processors and their companion X399 motherboards, and will have a full review with benchmarks and overclocking posted soon. In the meantime, the media kit AMD sent with the processor samples was so over-the-top and customized that we just had to show it to you. Here is a quick unboxing video of the processors and Threadripper-related goodies that’s we’ve got in the lab. Unfortunately, time isn’t on our side with this launch, so we burned through this one, but we still think you’ll enjoy the hardcore geek-porn. And no, you can’t have that personalized... Read more...
AMD has officially lifted the veil on its new Radeon RX consumer graphics line-up, featuring the company's next-generation Vega GPU architecture. After months of architecture disclosures and rumors, we finally have real specifications and details on the actual Radeon RX Vega graphics card line-up, including pricing, and what AMD is doing to make the cards as attractive as possible for gamers.Initially, there will be four cards in the Radeon RX Vega line-up, the standard air-cooled Radeon RX Vega 64, a Radeon RX Vega 64 Limited Edition with stylized metal fan shroud, the liquid-cooled... Read more...
When Dell announced in June that its Alienware gaming division would be the exclusive OEM partner for pre-built 16-core AMD Ryzen Threadripper systems, we figured Alienware would have a jump on the rest of the OEM pack, but we never thought they'd have this much of a head-start. In fact, we have Ryzen Threadripper test kits still incoming from AMD, but Alienware beat them to the punch here with delivery of the all new Area-51 Threadripper Edition. So naturally, we fired-up this 16-core multi-shredding beast post haste to get a look at what it's made of and how she rolls. And let's just say, she... Read more...
AMD is officially launching its latest series of Ryzen processors today, the affordably priced Ryzen 3. As the branding suggests, Ryzen 3 will complement the previously launched Ryzen 7 and Ryzen 5 series of desktop processors, but will target lower cost, entry-level price points. Ryzen 3 isn’t your typical, entry-level processor, however. Ryzen 3 actually utilizes the same die as its higher-end siblings, but has fewer active cores and symmetrical multi-threading (SMT) has been disabled. Ryzen 3 processors feature quad-core configurations, however, they leverage the same socket and packaging, have... Read more...
Today, we are looking at a gaming monitor from Acer with a blazing-fast 240Hz refresh rate and NVIDIA G-SYNC support. The Acer Predator XB252Q gaming monitor speaks clearly to both media buffs and hardcore gamers who have a penchant for fluidity and triple-digit frame rates. This display offers a Full HD (1080p) native resolution and an ultra-quick 240Hz refresh rate to complement the uber-high frame rates possible with a modern, high performance gaming PC. Toss in an attractive set of connectivity options, ports, and a few other key bells and whistles and we have a formidable addition... Read more...
Dave Haynie, one of the chief engineers that worked on the Amiga back in its heyday, put it best when he said, “Amiga users make Macintosh users look like PC users”, in the Viva Amiga documentary that was released early this year. Those of us that were around when the Amiga initially debuted knew Commodore had something special on its hands. At the time of its launch, the Amiga was the most advanced personal computer money could buy – bar none. It offered multimedia features that were unmatched for many years, it was affordably priced (relatively speaking), and was the first personal computer with... Read more...
Intel announced its Xeon Scalable processor family based Skylake-SP a few weeks back, but today marks the official launch of the platform. These new processors feature a new microarchitecture versus previous-generation Xeons and Intel has revamped the naming convention and arrangement of the product stack as well. Whereas previous-generation Xeon processors carried version, class, and model number designations – for example, Xeon E5-2697 v4 – the Xeon Scalable processor family is now designated by Platinum, Gold, Silver, and Bronze categories, with a single model number.The new naming convention... Read more...
Much of the current excitement in the consumer storage space involves blazing-fast NVMe solid state drives, but there are still hundreds of millions (if not billions) of systems packing SATA hard drives that would benefit greatly from an SSD upgrade. As such, many manufacturers continue to introduce SATA-based offerings like the recently-launched Intel SSD 545s series, which feature newer technologies in an effort to drive costs down and capacities up. The Intel SSD 545s series is the first in the company’s SATA-based solid state storage line-up to feature 64-layer TLC 3D NAND. Though this first... Read more...
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