Hello World! Sorry for the lack of updates lately, but I’ve got two sick children so I’m not getting much done in terms of work these past few days.
If you didn’t notice though we’ve changed things around a bit to a slightly different format of how things are going to be posted. For 2010 we’re going to be focusing on a limited number of product categories for review which we think will appeal to our audience and we’re going to try to do more articles like tips and tricks and how to types of things, along with our longer, more comprehensive ones as well.
We’re going to be posting the news every 2-3 days, and only a select amount that corresponds to our new focus. Any news that doesn’t quite fit with our focus will be posted in our forums in the news section HERE.
We’re going to be doing something similar with the Press Releases about new products that we receive as well, and any others will be posted to the Press Release section of our forums which is located HERE.
So let’s check in with our friends and see what they’ve wrote about and reviewed over the last few days:
RAID 0 Stripe Sizes Compared with SSDs: OCZ Vertex Drives Tested @ Madshrimps
We all know that two is better than one, we have dual core CPUs, dual GPU video cards, and if you really want to get the most out of your storage, a set of SSDs in RAID will boost your performance noticeably. We tested 6 different RAID stripe sizes and 3 different RAID configs in 4 different storage benchmarks, some synthetic, others real world operations. More than 1200 benchmarks results summed up in a few charts.
Seagate Barracuda XT Review @ Digital Trends
"When computer technology takes a step forward, it is sometimes better to stick with the status quo and let someone else help the industry recoup their R&D investment. When video cards first jumped from the AGP slot to PCI Express, for instance: PCI Express videocards didn’t deliver enough of a performance boost to justify buying a whole new motherboard. We could be seeing the same scenario unfold with the next generation of hard drive interface, known as SATA 6Gb/s – but since Seagate’s 2TB Barracuda XT currently is the only hard drive you can buy today that uses the new standard, it’s impossible to know. Theoretically, the SATA 6Gbps delivers twice the throughput of the previous standard, SATA 3Gb/s (as you’ve no doubt guessed, six gigabits per second compared to three gigabits per second); in the real world, it didn’t matter much which interface we connected the Barracuda XT to."
Proware Technology MiniEPICa Series EP-m501-AA DAS Enclosure @ TweakTown
"Proware Technology started R&D back in 1986 and has been involved in the storage product scene ever since. The company has earned several design wins that were turned into products sold under other household recognized labels. In 2006 Proware went public and launched their EPICa series of products. Since then the company has manufactured everything from small network devices to massive 42-bay rack mount drive solutions. Recently Proware Technology shifted their attention to 2.5 inch form factor solutions and has shown great innovation as a leader in this emerging field.
Today we are looking at the Proware Technology miniEPICa Series EP-m501-AA, a small DAS enclosure that uses up to five 2.5 inch drives. Proware, Seagate and other storage industry leaders have been pushing for products that use 2.5 inch drives since early 2006 and the technology has now trickled down to the consumer level. Smaller drives mean an enclosure can be made smaller and cheaper or for the enterprise market you can add more hard drives in the same amount of space."
QNAP TS-119 Turbo NAS Review @ XSReviews
Backing up and making sure your data is extra safe, is something people have been doing since the first digital storage device failed and someone realised they’d just lost a few bits of information. However, now with people having thousands of photographs, extensive movie and music collections, backup storage has never been more pertinent.
CRU-DataPort SecureDock 500GB Encrypted Enclosure Review at CCE Reviews
Quote: The CRU-DataPort SecureDock is definitely a unique product. This is not your average external hard drive enclosure! Offering both USB 2.0 and eSATA connectivity, the SecureDock manages to do what it says and does so extremely quickly as our testing shows – especially if you use the eSATA interface. In terms of encryption, the device is very easy to use. There is no software to install and everything is seamless. The lock-and-key system and mini-USB style security keys work well as well. My favorite feature has to be the fact that you can use any SATA hard drive with the SecureDock; you’re not limited to just the 500 GB unit that comes with it.
Overclockers.com: SSDs, TRIM, and Available Disk Space
There is a lot of discussion on forums about the impact of available disk space on SSD performance. A pertinent question was raised; At what point does drive utilization impact SSD performance? Running some quick tests, the results proved rather insightful. … These test results demonstrate that drive performance is not directly related to available disk space – performance is relatively equivalent between a drive that’s half full and a drive that’s almost completely full. … So if drive utilization is just a bit of seasoning in the SSD performance cuisine, why are people seeing the advantages they are seeing from over provisioning/short stroking? The improvements they are leveraging are a direct result of how TRIM/GC is implemented at the firmware/OS level. This implementation limits the drives performance relative to the amount of available disk space which can be utilized for TRIM/GC. More available space, lends itself to more efficient TRIM/GC operation, thereby improving real world performance.
Seagate Constellation 2TB Hard Drive @ LanOC Reviews
DESCRIPTION: The other day we took a look at Western Digital’s 2TB offering, it’s only fair that we see what Seagate has to offer as well. Seagate offers both the Barracuda XT and Constellation drives in 2TB capacities. Today we will be taking a look at the Constellation. In the past we have reviewed a 2 1/2 inch Constellation drive, I’m curious what four times the capacity and a larger form factor has done to its performance.
ARTICLE URL: http://lanoc.org/review/hardware/storage/2204-seagate-constellation-2tb-hard-drive
Insignia NS-CNV43 Review @ Digital Trends
"Didn’t get the GPS you wished for during the holidays? Best Buy’s private-label Insignia brand might not be top of mind when you go shopping, but its Insignia NS-CNV43 GPS navigation system is definitely worthy of consideration. It boasts a strong feature set, including a 4.3-inch touchscreen; Bluetooth connectivity; real-time traffic and weather conditions; Google search access; retail gasoline prices; and even automatic Twitter updates. If you like the Internet- and cellular-based features, you’ll need to sign up for a paid service plan after 90 days, though, with plans ranging from $5 for three days service to $99 for a full year."
TVs/Monitors and Video Related:
Samsung 46B6000 46inch LED TV Review at CCE Reviews
Quote: The LED TV Series 6 is not a true LED TV but only a backlit one with a standard LCD display, as opposed to CCFL backlit LCD TVs. While not a true LED TV, it is still very stunning. For the most part, colors are more vivid and the picture is more uniform, especially in black scenes. Even though the UN46B6000 doesn’t have the best viewing angle and costs much more than a CCFL backlit LCD TV, you’re spending money on a power conscious TV that delivers a phenomenal picture you can brag about.
Kworld TVBox HD HDMI Edition @ GeekInvaders.com
The TVBox from Kworld is one of the nicest systems I have tested today. It comes with all the right adapters and cables you could possible need to make this system work with your setup. The quality of the build is top notch and the ease of use is simple one of the best I have seen. I had my doubts about the quality of picture this system could provide me but soon after getting the TVBox HD setup and running, I was dead wrong and my jaw hit the floor with the amazing picture quality that this box was giving me on my LCD monitor.
Patriot Box Office Media Player @ Rbmods
HTPC is something that is getting into every house these days, but what if you don’t want a big computer by your TV? There are several small media players on the market that can stream the content to your TV so you don’t have to have a bulky computer hooked up to it.
3D TV: Is the World Really Ready to Upgrade? @ Digital Trends
Call us practical, jaded or simply a good, old-fashioned stick in the mud, but when it comes to consumers upgrading to 3D television anytime soon, we just don’t see the point. Much ado has been made about this new technology at CES 2010 by manufacturers such as LG, Sony, Samsung, Toshiba and Panasonic, with one in four consumers surveyed by the CEA saying they plan to buy a 3D TV within the next three years. However, while ESPN plans to roll the first official 3D sports network on June 11, and consumers are predicted to spend $17 billion on 3D TVs in 2018, per research firm DisplaySearch’s forecasts, we’re just not sold on the concept’s potential rapid consumer uptake."
Link to the feature:
IPEVO Point 2 View (P2V) USB Camera Review @ Revhardware
Though fortunately our good friends at IPEVO have come up with a nifty, possibly Pixar inspired webcam that takes care of all these problems, and offers much, much more! Going by the name of “Point 2 View” (P2V) this USB camera lets you do exactly that, point it where ever you like, to show just about anything, at almost any angle possible!
I4U News: Motorola Droid Android Smartphone Review
"Today I am going to look at what many think is the best Android smartphone of the breed — the Motorola Droid. The Droid was launched a while back to much pomp and fanfare and has done very well in the market for Verizon. If you are thinking about jumping the AT&T/iPhone ship, the Droid and Verizon could be the setup for you."
Nitrox iConn+ iPhone Case with Battery Review @ Bigbruin.com
Ever since the Apple iPhone was released on June 29, 2007, there have been a ton of accessories to hit the marketplace to go along with it. Recently, a relative newcomer to the iPhone accessory genre – Nitrox – was kind enough to send us a few of their current offerings for evaluation. In this review we take a look at the iConn+ iPhone case with battery.
LG Chocolate Touch Cell Phone Review @ BayReviews.com
Review Link : http://www.bayreviews.com/electronics/426-lg-chocolate-touch-vx8575-phone
Quote : "Touch screen phones are hitting the market left and right these days, but not all of them can provide the performance, features and ease of use that we all want and need. This LG Chocolate Touch VX8575 cell phone that I got for my wife was very cool at first but then got really frustrating really fast."
LG LX120 @ Hardwarezone
LG’s latest netbook comes loaded with plenty of style and a very unique look and feel. Find out more.
URL : http://www.hardwarezone.com/news/view.php?cid=9&id=15478
Acer Ferrari One 200 review @ TBreak
Like the car it represents, this laptop will make eyes turn and engines burn.
The Full Article can be viewed at http://tech.tbreak.com/2010/01/acer-ferrari-one-200-review/
Imagining the Perfect Apple iSlate @ Digital Trends
"After attending CES earlier this month, it became clear that Apple’s iSlate tablet PC is going to come out about a year too early for the perfect match of technology and services. The good news is that will immediately be able to point us to the second generation of this product, but it also helps explain some of the rumors floating around about it. Let’s talk about the risks of this device, the hardware and features that we believe will be in it, and what the second generation device is likely to improve on this week as we speculate about the iSlate launch."
Link to the talk back:
Which New Tech Trends Will Take Off In 2010? @ Digital Trends
"Every January, a combination of rolled-over digits on the calendar year and the massive Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas get techie brains spinning about what’s to come in the months ahead. In 2008, smartphones were the talk of the town. In 2009, ultra-thin TVs with LED backlighting stole the show. This time around for technology enthusiasts, it’s, well, any number of hot up and coming trends. From the much-talked-about 3D TV to long-awaited rise of the streaming media box, here are the trends that many believe will define 2010, along with a healthy dose of reality that could cut many of them down to size."
Link to the feature:
Apple’s Tablet: Will it Rule the Tablet PC Market? @ Digital Trends
"Despite all the buzz over 3D TVs, eReaders and even Google’s Nexus One smartphone at this year’s Consumer Electronics Show, one item that didn’t even appear at the event itself managed to color the conversation surrounding all those that did: Apple’s rumored tablet, the iSlate. The company hasn’t said a peep about any such product, but fans have already steadfastly gathered hints on the new devicefrom pieced-together clues, mocked up photos of what it might look like, and pledged their intentions to buy one. In fact, we might be witnessing the very pinnacle of brand loyalty before our eyes."
Link to the feature:
Since CES has just finished we’ve had a lot of that type of new trickling in as well, so here’s the remainder of that:
And here’s a bunch from TechReport:
Gigabyte shows its latest motherboards at CES
EVGA CES showcase includes H55 and dual-Xeon motherboards
Zotac displays Mini-ITX mobos, barebones nettops, and mobile PCs at CES
Asus CES booth tour covers notebooks, nettops, speakers, mobos, and more
Intel details SSD plans for 2010
Plextor shows Marvell-based SSDs at CES
OCZ displays new SSDs, PSUs at CES
Super Talent demos USB 3.0 flash drive
Thermaltake trots out new cases, PSUs, and a USB 3.0 docking station at CES
and finally here’s some CES coverage from Hothardware:
Asus Extreme Design Contest Winner: Interview with Charles Wang:
For this contest Asus was looking to stir buzz and interest in the enthusiast do-it-yourself community for their new line of P7P55 Xtreme design series motherboards and of course they were looking to unload some pretty high-end gear on some very lucky people in exchange for that buzz. Asus reached out to HotHardware’s community members and asked what they would do with the Xtreme Design features on ASUS motherboards. They also asked what kind of Xtreme Design computer build they would put together if Asus supplied parts from sponsor partners: INTEL, NVIDIA, ANTEC, G.SKILL, RAZER, SAMSUNG.
NVIDIA Demos 3D Surround Gaming On GF100:
The NVIDIA booth was home to a mezmerizing setup that consisted of three projectors displaying a racing simulation across a single wide screen. The system consisted of two, soon to be released GF100 cards in SLI. We were told that one graphics card powered one of the projectors while the other GF100 powered the other two displays. That leads us to believe that NVIDIA’s Surround technology requires more than one GPU, but we’ll see if that’s the case at launch.
Close-up With Dell’s Alienware M11X Mini Gaming Notebook:
Dell was pre-announcing this machine that is soon to be released and for us at least, it was a proverbial show-stopper. The M11x is built on an 11.6-inch LCD form-factor and from what we could tell, it’s svelte, well-built, super stylish and rugged. You can think of it as a mini version of the M15x or M17x series but we think it’s just darling either way you look at it.
Though Ostendo CRVD panels have been around for a while now, in the upper press briefing rooms of AMD’s spread at CES, Ostendo had married not one but three of their CRVD Curved Displays up with a proverbial bad-ass gaming system built in a Thermaltake Level 10 case. Employing AMD Eyefinity technology with a Radeon HD 5870 graphics card pushing the pixels, the effect was completely "immersive" in the words of Ostendo Director of Marketing, Erhan Ercan.
We’d have to agree, hit the play button and kick your feet up…