Items tagged with Haswell

Although Intel isn’t quite ready to take the wraps off of its updated Haswell-based processors (codenamed Devil’s Canyon) or its next-gen Broadwell-based processors, the company is at the ready with a brand new chipset that ups the ante in terms of features and overall performance. Intel’s 9-series chipset isn’t quite as extensive as previous families (there are just two options at this time), but the new capabilities it brings to the table will be welcomed by everyone from hardcore overclockers to IT types and business users. We tested a quintet of Z97 based motherboards from MSI, EVGA, and Gigabyte, using Intel’s current flagship Haswell-based processor, the Core... Read more...
Although Intel isn’t quite ready to take the wraps off of its updated Haswell-based processors (codenamed Devil’s Canyon) or its next-gen Broadwell-based processors, the company is at the ready with a brand new chipset that ups the ante in terms of features and overall performance. Intel’s 9-series chipset isn’t quite as extensive as previous families (there are just two options at this time), but the new capabilities it brings to the table will be welcomed by everyone from hardcore overclockers to IT types and business users. Z97 Based Motherboard From Gigabyte, EVGA, and MSI We tested a quintet of Z97 based motherboards from MSI, EVGA, and Gigabyte, using Intel’s... Read more...
Owning a MacBook Air just got a little more affordable thanks to Apple's latest refresh, which also feature faster Haswell processors to boot. Each model is $100 less expensive than before, with cost of entry into the MacBook Air club starting at $899. That gets you the 11-inch model with an Intel Core i5 dual-core processor clocked at 1.4GHz (and up to 2.7GHz Turbo), 4GB of RAM, and a 128GB solid state drive (SSD). The refreshed MacBook Air models sport the newest 802.11ac Wi-Fi standard, up to 12 hours of battery life, and Apple's iLife and iWork apps pre-installed. They also run the latest version of Mac OS X (Mavericks). However, it's the price points of each model that Apple really seems... Read more...
Two years ago, Samsung launched its Series 9 ultrabook and proved the company could design a thin and light notebook that is both beautiful and powerful. Since the launch, Samsung has unified its Windows PCs under the ATIV brand and continues to innovate and build on the popularity of the Series 9. The new Samsung ATIV Book 9 Plus features an aluminum uni-body design and incorporates an all new Windows 8 optimized touchscreen which wasn’t available with the previous model. Instead of simply adding a touchscreen for Windows 8, Samsung cranked up the resolution by including a QHD+ (3200 X 1800) panel with 350nit SuperBright technology that’s reinforced with Gorilla Glass. The ATIV Book... Read more...
Intel's Haswell 4th generation Core series processors with Iris Pro Graphics (formerly known by the code name Crystal Well) offered the promise of more robust integrated graphics performance, since we first laid eyes on the Gigabyte-built device we're showcasing here today, back at CES 2014 in Las Vegas earlier this year. The Gigabyte BRIX Pro is a tiny 4.5-inch square "brick" of technology, if you will, and it's powered by an Intel Core i7-4770R quad-core processor with integrated Intel Iris Pro Graphics 5200. This CPU actually boasts the fastest, most powerful Intel graphics engine we have tested to date, so this should be an interesting ride to say the least. Let's have a look... Gigabyte... Read more...
Mini PCs are big business these days, whether you consider devices like Valve's Steambox initiative, ASUS' Chromebox, Zotac's ZBox line or Intel's own NUC (Next Unit of Computing) mini PC. In fact, Intel has gone on record, projecting mini PCs like this have shipped over a million units in 2013 and are projected for strong growth this year as well.  So what's the attraction? Obviously there are a number of use cases for this class of device, whether it be as a home theater PC, a strategically placed and aesthetically pleasing family or office PC or even as an arguably (or not) more versatile alternative to console gaming.  Regardless, the form factor itself has taken the market... Read more...
Intel used the backdrop of the Game Developers Conference currently taking place in San Francisco to make a handful of interesting announcements that run the gamut from low-power technologies to ultra-high-end desktop chips. In addition to outing a number of upcoming processors—from an Anniversary Edition Pentium to a monster 8-core Haswell-E—Intel also announced a new technology dubbed Ready Mode. Intel described Ready Mode as a “capability that takes advantage of new power-saving states in Intel’s 4th gen Core desktop processor, combined with software and board level optimizations, which enable OEM desktop computers that are instantly ready and always connected while... Read more...
Today we’re going to take a look at the latest version of the XPS 13. This updated version has not been redesigned, but it does include a new, larger capacity battery (55WHr compared to the previous 47WHr battery). And along with Intel's 4th generation Haswell Core series processor for more efficient computing, Dell claims the new XPS 13 can deliver up to 11 hours of wireless web browsing on a single charge. Other key updates for this iteration of XPS 13 includes an optional 13.3-inch touch-enabled 1080p display and Windows 8.1. Review: 2014 Dell XPS 13 Ultrabook Delivers With Exceptional Battery Life Like previous versions of the XPS series, the 2014 version of the XPS 13 features machined... Read more...
Dell aims to give users a premium mobile experience with the company’s XPS line of laptops. Not long ago, we had some hands-on time with Dell’s XPS 15 and really liked it. Last year, we also took a look at the 2013 version of Dell’s XPS 13. Here again, we had many positive things to say of Dell's top shelf ultralight 13-inch machine. Today we’re going to take a look at the latest version of the XPS 13. This updated version has not been redesigned, but it does include a new, larger capacity battery (55WHr compared to the previous 47WHr battery). And along with Intel's 4th generation Haswell Core series processor for more efficient computing, Dell claims the new XPS 13 can... Read more...
It could be said that Lenovo's ThinkPad X1 Carbon series cuts through the stuffy corporate facade, offering something for the conference room or coffee shop with a sleeker physique and sports car-like good looks.  The original ThinkPad X1 Carbon was initially released back in 2012 and at the time, its carbon fiber-infused chassis offered a rare combination of build quality and light-weight durability that Lenovo could still call a "ThinkPad" but with a style and feel all its own. New for 2014, Lenovo has completely revamped the ThinkPad X1 Carbon, from the 4th generation Intel Haswell Core series processor under its hood, to its new higher density carbon fiber-filled polymer skins, a higher... Read more...
In terms of brand recognition, Lenovo's ThinkPad probably has some of the best "brand equity" of just about any notebook line in the history of Windows PCs.  A favorite among IT managers for their rugged reliability, especially in business environments, Lenovo's ThinkPad brand, previously acquired from IBM, helped propel the company towards the number one PC market share position that it enjoys today.  Over the years, the ThinkPad has evolved dramatically as well, shape-shifting from squarish, utilitarian designs of the past, to new innovative, mechanically-gifted incarnations like the ThinkPad Yoga we recently reviewed.  And while even these newer ThinkPads are usually "dressed... Read more...
The Dell Latitude E7440 is not quite as sexy as some of the sleek ultrabooks out there, but it’s also not as square as most business notebooks we've been subjected to over the years. The Dell Latitude E7440 thus continues a trend we’ve been noticing lately of companies gussying up their business-class laptops, while maintaining a professional look so as not to distract in the conference room. It’s tough trying to straddle two worlds with a product line, offering a business notebook with consumer features to entice end users, but Dell has been doing as good a job of it as any company. Primarily, that’s because it’s been rolling out a ton ultrabooks, and the slim and... Read more...
The Dell Latitude E7440 is not quite as sexy as some of the sleek  ultrabooks out there, but it’s also not as square as most business notebooks we've been subjected to over the years. The Dell Latitude E7440 thus continues a trend we’ve been noticing lately of companies gussying up their business-class laptops, while maintaining a professional look so as not to distract in the conference room. It’s tough trying to straddle two worlds with a product line, offering a business notebook with consumer features to entice end users, but Dell has been doing as good a job of it as any company. Primarily, that’s because it’s been rolling out a ton ultrabooks, and the... Read more...
Way back in May 2012 (yeah, that was darn near two years ago now), Samsung rolled out a Chromebox--a compact desktop running Google’s Chrome OS. A year later, Google was touting Chromeboxes as ideal for kiosks, and now we’re seeing a spate of Chromeboxes designed for use by both individuals and businesses that portend a new wave of thin client-type cloud computing. ASUS just announced a Chromebox of its own, and HP has one in the works, too. ASUS promise at least two iterations, one with an Intel Celeron chip and one with an Intel Core i3, and HP will have a pair, too. Both will have Intel Haswell processors; one, called HP Chromebox for meetings, will actually rock a Core i7 chip,... Read more...
It’s a ThinkPad. No, it’s a Yoga! No, it’s...a ThinkPad Yoga. Lenovo has melded two of its popular laptop design approaches together to create a sort of hybrid ultrabook, bringing together elements of its workhorse ThinkPad lineup and multi-mode capable Yoga notebooks. It has the work-friendly keyboard design of the new generation of Lenovo ThinkPads, yet it also has that innovative hinge flexibility and multimode configurations of the Yoga series. Lenovo Thinkpad Yoga: A Yoga Dressed For Business The result is a laptop that’s either a more utilitarian, thicker version of the Yoga or a much cooler version of the ThinkPad. It sort of depends on if you’re a glass-is-half-full... Read more...
We've all got our heads in the so-called cloud these days, and if you want to go all-in, Google's Chrome OS is the go-to platform. Interestingly enough, your options on the hardware side are expanding beyond Chromebooks and into the realm of mini PCs, potentially attracting a new category of customers in the process. That's what is ASUS is hoping for with the introduction of its new compact Chromebox, a NUC-like system running Chrome OS. "The ASUS Chromebox offers the simplicity, security and speed of Chrome OS in the most compact and powerful Chrome device to date," said Felix Lin, director of product management, Google. "Perfect for home, the classroom or the office, Chromebox is designed for... Read more...
Although the market for them is relatively small, we love to check out elaborate, no-holds-barred gaming PCs from time to time--you know, the kind of system that costs about the same amount as a serviceable used car. As fun as it is to check out an ultra high-end gaming rig, we also do it to gauge the user experience and to see just how much better it is (or isn't) versus a mainstream PC. But how great is the experience, really? The answer needs to be darn near perfection, because – let’s face it – a midrange gaming desktop is going to give you a pretty solid gaming experience (and look good doing it) without inflicting nearly the same damage to your wallet. Though the phrase... Read more...
Although the market for them is relatively small, we love to check out elaborate, no-holds-barred gaming PCs from time to time--you know, the kind of system that costs about the same amount as a serviceable used car. As fun as it is to check out an ultra high-end gaming rig, we also do it to gauge the user experience and to see just how much better it is (or isn't) versus a mainstream PC. But how great is the experience, really?  The answer needs to be darn near perfection, because – let’s face it – a midrange gaming desktop is going to give you a pretty solid gaming experience (and look good doing it) without inflicting nearly the same damage to... Read more...
Usually when a PC vendor sells machines running an older operating system, it means that they’re trying to clear out inventory, but that is not the case with HP and its current promotion of Windows 7 PCs. On HP’s welcome page, the main banner says “Back by popular demand” above a deal describing how you can configure a new HP PC with Windows 7 and get up to $150 off. First of all--that’s a pretty good deal. If you’re in the market for a new PC, you might want to jump on that. Second, this is not just an inventory flush of old hardware. The deal applies to PCs running 4th-gen Intel Core (Haswell) processors, and the two notebooks among the five PCs in the promotion--the... Read more...
If you’ve ever worked in a professional environment for an extended period of time, chances are you’ve used an IBM-come-Lenovo ThinkPad at some point. Their simple black rectangle designs with the little red dot on the keyboard are downright iconic... To that end, the latest notebook in the T-series, the Lenovo ThinkPad T440s, is one of the company’s slimmest and lightest to date (save for the X1 Carbon series). It weighs in at 3.5lbs (without the extra battery) and is under 0.8 inches at its thickest point. So is the ThinkPad T440s the same old business laptop with a slimmer profile and a couple of chassis tweaks, or is it a true evolution of the T-series? Lenovo Thinkpad T440s... Read more...
If you’ve ever worked in a professional environment for an extended period of time, chances are you’ve used an IBM-come-Lenovo ThinkPad at some point. Their simple black rectangle designs with the little red dot on the keyboard are downright iconic, but although Lenovo has made smaller refinements on the exterior design of some models, they have been evolving the guts and feature set of these machines to true ultrabook-level hardware. To that end, the latest notebook in the T-series, the Lenovo ThinkPad T440s, is one of the company’s slimmest and lightest to date (save for the X1 Carbon series). It weighs in at 3.5lbs (without the extra battery) and is under 0.8 inches at its... Read more...
Zotac is one of the first names we think of when the topic of mini PCs comes up, and with good reason. The PC and graphics card maker has been kicking out potent Zbox systems since seemingly the beginning of the time, and lest you think the company will slow down a tick in 2014, guess again. Zotac announced today at CES the release of its new Zbox Nano ID67 Series of tiny systems with 4th Generation Intel Core technology inside. This is a logical pairing, considering the effort Intel put into making its Haswell architecture run more efficient than preceding releases like Ivy Bridge and Sandy Bridge. One could argue that mobile form factors like laptops and mini PCs like the Zbox line are biggest... Read more...
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