Time for the news. Well tomorrow is my birthday, another year older, oh well just another day to me. Anyway these week I’ve got the Orb TV, another mouse, media player and another printer coming for review for you. Be sure to stop by and read those. For now though read the news from around the world.
Kingston SSDNow V100 128GB SSD Review @ Legit Reviews
Article URL: http://www.legitreviews.com/article/1556/1/
"Priced at $240 for the drive and desktop upgrade kit, the Kingston SSDNow V100 128GB SSD falls in the middle of the pack in terms of price in comparison to its peers. It’s available in 64GB, 128GB and 256GB capacities with notebook and desktop upgrade kits available for all three sized drives as well. The 128GB desktop bundle version we received offers read speeds topping out at 250MB/s and writes at up to 230MB/s and is covered by a three year warranty…."
QUOTE: "2010 was not only SandForce’s break out year, but the year in which SandForce became an industry leader. In order to do that, SandForce needed to engineer a product that was innovative and offer a significant increase in performance to the competitions products, while doing so at a lower cost. That is exactly what SandForce managed to do.
Today SandForce is launching two new consumer products designed to build upon the success of the SF-1200. The SF-2200 will be the successor for the high end enthusiast market, and the new SF-2100 will occupy the quickly emerging mainstream SSD market. We have a lot of information to share with you today, so let’s get started."
OCZ Technology RevoDrive 50GB PCI Express SSD
Quote: The RevoDrive is a single expansion card that is effectively two SSDs (each with its own controller) coupled to an onboard RAID controller (configured in RAID 0) that uses a PCI Express interface to providing blazing fast transfer rates. The sample provided for review is a 50GB unit rated for quite impressive read speeds of up to 540MB/s and write speeds of up to 450MB/s.
OCZ Vertex 3 240GB @ PureOverclock
Review URL: http://www.pureoverclock.com/article1222.html
“OCZ is known for their SSD innovations, and the Vertex 3 looks to be another in a long line, sporting the new SandForce controller and promising big performance increases to what was already an impressive product in the Vertex 2 predecessor. Today we’ve got the Vertex 3 in a 240GB capacity. Big and fast; we love that combination.”
SandForce SF-2000 Series SSD Overview @ Benchmark Reviews
DESCRIPTION: Less than one year ago SandForce gained control of the consumer solid state drive market with their SandForce SF-1200 SSD Processor. This technology replaced the previous generation of Barefoot SSDs designed around South Korean-based Indilinx, Inc. While popular themselves, Indilinx Barefoot MLC SSDs lacked proper NAND management and performance dramatically degraded over time. SandForce DuraClass technology paired to TRIM support in Windows 7 has helped with this concern, but it was their RAISE technology that provides RAID-like protection for single SSD computer systems paired to AES-128 automatic data encryption that put them on top. Now preparing to ship their second generation of SSD processors, Benchmark Reviews takes a look at the differences.
OCIA.net has posted their preview of the OCZ Technology Vertex 3 Solid State Drive.
"What we didn’t know at the time (although assumed all along) was that OCZ was also working on consumer level Vertex 3 drives based on a brand new SandForce controller, the SF-2281. The next-generation SandForce controller in OCZ’s Vertex 3 consumer grade drive operates across the SATA 6 Gbps interface and is reportedly good for up to 550MB/s read, 525MB/s write at up to 60K IOPS 4k Write. Today we will be taking a look at a beta engineering sample of the new consumer grade Vertex 3 SSD in a 240GB capacity."
OCZ Vertex 3 SandForce SF-2000 Based SSD Preview:
Just last week, we offered a glimpse of what OCZ has in store for the enterprise SSD market with a preview of the Vertex 3 Pro. Without giving away all of the juicy details, the Vertex 3 Pro essentially buried the competition and offered performance that was significantly better than any current-gen solid state drive. As we mentioned though, the Vertex 3 Pro is an enterprise-class drive, and as such, it sports a price tag outside of the realm of your typical PC enthusiast. OCZ did hint that the “non-Pro” version of the Vertex 3 was coming soon, however, and stated that it would be priced “significantly lower”.
OCZ Vertex 3 240GB SSD Review @ HardwareHeaven.com
"Just about a year ago OCZ released their latest high performance SATA SSD, the Vertex 2 which was based on SandForce’s latest controller. That drive was a huge success, surpassing the performance of its main competitor at the time, drives based on Indilinx controllers. Today we see the successor to that product launch, the Vertex 3 which runs on SandForce’s latest controller and we have a 240GB sample on our test bench to find out how it compares to products currently on the market in a selection of real world and synthetic tests."
OCZ Vertex 3 Pre-Release SATA 3 SSD Review – RAID 0 Becomes Pointless @ The SSD Review
OVERVIEW:A quick search on the internet defines Goliath as being of colossal power or achievement. As much as we are going to introduce you to a new age in solid state drives with this pre-release review of the OCZ Vertex 240GB SATA 3 SSD, the name is as suitable for SandForce as it is for this drive itself. Quite frankly, the results pulled from this SSD were completely unexpected.
SandForce Unleashes SF-2200 Processors For Blazing SSD Performance at 500MB/s @ The SSD Review
OVERVIEW: This morning, SandForce officially releases their SF-2200 series processors to manufacturers which are capable of parallel transfer speeds of 500MB/s read and write. It is hard to believe that SandForce only opened their doors just over a year ago and their impact has changed the way we are looking at solid state drives today. Earlier this year, I made a statement that I believed SandForce to be in a position to equal those who have made such great impact on computer technology before them, most noteably Intel and Microsoft. I will stand by that and after reading a bit of what we have to offer, you just may understand why.
OCZ Vertex 3 240GB SATA 3 6Gbps SandForce SSD Preview @ Legit Reviews
Article URL: http://www.legitreviews.com/article/1552/1/
"Overall, the Vertex 3 240GB drive is a beast. While we’ve seen better performance in OCZ’s own RevoDrives, those are PCI-E based and set up in a RAID configuration. Even then, the Vertex 3 bested the original RevoDrive in a number of tests. The combination of the SandForce SF-2281 controller and the SATA III 6Gbps interface has really taken the SATA based SSD to a new level. With 550MB/s reads and 525MB/s writes, it sets the pace for the crowd of drives that are sure to follow…."
QUOTE: "I didn’t think we’d ever see anything too fancy from the company, though, but over the years we’ve seen the Ballistix series which has grown to include a few different series’ within that. The latest is the Smart Tracer modules that carry that LED Tracer lighting, but in a smart way. We say ‘smart way’ as the company has introduced the new Memory Overview Display software (or M.O.D). We’ll get into this soon, but let’s first have a closer look at the actual kit of RAM we’re dealing with.
Externally the Ballistix Smart Tracer doesn’t look any different to the normal Tracer stuff. We’ve again got two modules for our P67 platform that comes in at 2GB each. Timing wise, we’ve got an 8-8-8-24-1T @ 1.65v setup at 1600MHz DDR (or PC3-12800). These run at the same speed as the Patriot 8GB kit we recently looked at, except they’re slightly more aggressive on the timings front. With the speed being quite low compared to some other kits we’ve looked at, we knew getting to the default timings wouldn’t be an issue."
OCZ RevoDrive 80GB
We all know that SSDs can drastically increase system performance. In fact, here’s a great idea: why not set up two SSDs in RAID, and get some great performance? In reality, there SATA 3Gbps bandwidth causes some limitations. Though most platter drives barely saturate SATA II, SSDs are fast enough that they approach, and can often exceed the throughput offered by SATA II’s 3Gbps. The next generation SATA 6Gbps should alleviate this bottleneck, though the drive is still being limited to only 6Gbps of bandwidth, which can easily being saturated by SSDs once the storage manufacturers transition to 6Gbps bandwidth this year. This is where moving to a higher bandwidth such as PCI-E comes into play.
OCZ is trying to gain greater ground with their PCI-E based SSDs. In fact, those following the company know that it is shifting focus from system memory to solid state drives starting in 2011. Looking at OCZ’s current product line up, we can see how serious OCZ is about this issue. A quick browse through the company’s website shows that it has SSDs designed for almost every single segment of the market with controllers based on SandForce and Indilinx.
QUOTE: "They are finally here, a moment I’ve anticipated since June 2010. Back in June we shut down a booth at Computex to take a sneak peak at a prototype Marvell 88SS9174 SSD controller. At the time we didn’t fully realize just how special this new controller was, since we were blinded by record setting sequential data transfer rates. Those of you that read this site often already know that the Marvell 88SS9174 is the same controller in the Crucial RealSSD C300, but we have to go a little deeper to differentiate the old from the new. The C300 uses the 88SS9174-BJP2, a first generation SATA 6G controller that is known for its high sequential and IOPS performance, but has less than average garbage collection capability. The new 88SS9174-BKK2 is the new second generation SATA 6G controller used in the Corsair Performance 3 Series.
The new 88SS9174-BKK2 is a different animal, one that was built out of necessity. It is hard to imagine that in 2011 we are still talking about TRIM support, or more specifically the lack of TRIM support. This far in the game TRIM shouldn’t even be a checkbox or considered a feature. TRIM is as essential to the solid state experience as the gas pedal or head lights are to your car. The reality is that a long string of failures, miscalculations and ignorance has led to us still talking about TRIM and companies like Corsair looking for ways to keep performance high when TRIM is not available. A SSD controller’s ability to cleanse itself of deleted data is called garbage collection. If you are driving your car down an alley full of half empty boxes you need to slow down to move the boxes out of your way. If that alley was already cleared and the boxes were removed, you can put your foot on the floor and go as fast as you needed. Both TRIM and garbage collection remove the half e mpty boxes, stack them neatly on the sides, compress them into a flat pile and allow you to move freely."
Crucial Ballistix DDR3-1866 6GB Triple Channel Memory Kit Review @ ThinkComputers.org
Quote: “A little while ago we took a look at a 4GB dual channel Ballistix kit from Crucial. Today Crucial has sent us a 6GB triple channel kit of Ballistix and we are very eager to see how it performs. This 6GB kit runs at 1866MHz with timings of 9-9-9-24 at 1.65V. Just like the other kit we took a look at this kit features XMP profiles, Crucial’s new Ballisitx heatspreaders and on-board temperature sensors and monitoring software. Let’s check them out!"
G.Skill Ripjaws-X 4GB DDR3-2133 @ PureOverclock
Review URL: http://www.pureoverclock.com/article1221.html
“Today we’re looking at a flagship set of G.Skill Ripjaws-X DDR3-2133 modules. They look great, run fast, and have tighter CL8 timings. Let’s find out if G.Skill has produced another winner with these Ripjaws-X modules. And as an added bonus, we’ve got G.Skill’s new memory cooling fan to look at as well.”
OCZ’s RevoDrive and Vertex 2 120GB SSDs.
" Today we have the opportunity to benchmark a pair of mainstream SSDs from OCZ’s Vertex 2 and RevoDrive ranges. These are separate products and quite different implementations of the SSD concept, but we’re going to examine them both in this article. So, let’s see what each variant has to offer!"
Direct Link: http://www.overclockers.com.au/article.php?id=939877
: Thermaltake BlacX 5G USB 3.0 Docking Station
Review Link : http://www.bayreviews.com/computers/18256-thermaltake-blacx5g-usb3-dock
Quote : "In this review of the Thermaltake BlacX 5G ST0019U SATA HDD Docking Station, we look at the differences in access speed between a StarTech PEXUSB3S2 PCI-e USB 3.0 controller card and an Intel ICH10 USB 2.0 Controller. What does USB 3.0 do for hard drive access speeds? USB 3.0 vs USB 2.0, who will ultimately win the battle using a Western Digital SATA 6Gb/s hard drive? Read On To Find Out!"
Audio / Video:
Boxee Box Review
"Feeling stifled by the narrow scope set-top boxes like Apple TV, but not quite ready to start stuffing circuits into a box to build your own home theater PC? D-Link pushes forth an unlikely solution with the funky and curiously geometric Boxee Box, which promises the control and flexibility of a desktop program packed into a standalone box. While it somehow manages to fall a little short of both, plenty of digital entertainment gurus will still find plenty to like in its imperfect middle ground."
Link to the review: http://www.digitaltrends.com/media-streamer-reviews/boxee-box-review/
Dell have always had a reputation for creating some of the finest monitors on the market. While they do make a wide array of panels for the mass market audience, they have always focused on the high end technology. Their U2410 has received a lot of critical acclaim, earning a top award on KitGuru, and they have also recently released the U2711, a 27 inch panel which features IPS technology.
Both of these panels offer 10 bit colour depth capabilities, helping to target the discerning graphic design industry. Today we are looking at the latest U3011 panel, the class leading 30 inch screen with all the bells and whistles.
MEElec HT-21 Portable Headphones
"Not content to stick with in-ear models alone, MEElec has now introduced their first traditional headphone model with the HT-21 Portable Headphones. It is billed as a budget-priced portable headphone which promises high-quality sound, durable construction and a comfortable fit. How does it stack up in the already crowded market of portable headphones? Let’s find out."
English link: http://rbmods.com/a-jays-four/
Swedish link: http://rbmods.se/a-jays-four-iphone-horlurar/
Quote: Jays is well known here in Sweden for their high quality earphones, they have now released a-Jays four which is a iPhone heaset/earphones. The question is; have they managed to combine both a headset and been able keep the sound quality of their previous earphones?
KitGuru has reviewed many of the AC Ryan Playon! products in the past and we have always been impressed with their pricing, user interface and build quality. Today we are looking at their new ‘full size’ Playon! HD 2 which contains a 1TB hard drive and delivers gigabit lan connectivity.
Edifier Sound To Go (MP250) Review
"No matter how much you pay for your laptop, the built-in speakers are likely to fall short of your expectations. One option is to buy a set of stationary desktop speakers, but isn’t portability one of the main reasons for buying a laptop? Edifier attempts to bridge the gap between quality sound and portability with its Sound To Go all-in-one micro speaker system, which is small enough to throw in a backpack, but sounds much bigger."
Link to the review: http://www.digitaltrends.com/pc-speaker-reviews/edifier-sound-to-go-mp250-review/
Antec SoundScience Rockus 3D 2.1 Speaker System Review @ Tweaknews
Article Url: http://www.tweaknews.net/reviews/antec_soundscience_rockus_3d_review/
"Antec’s Soundscience has made an impressive launch into the PC speaker market with the Rockus 3d 2.1 system. Not only can a buyer expect to hear sparkling high frequencies, clear midrange and tight bass response, the 3D sound adds a level of immersion to games and movies that other 2.1 systems cannot reproduce."
Auzentech X-Meridian 7.1 2G Review @ XSReviews
Review Link: http://www.xsreviews.co.uk/reviews/audio-cards/auzentech-x-meridian-71-2g/
Quote: "Auzentech have been around for a few years now and that’s a good thing; as well as being impressive. They entered the sound card game when it was all about Creative and they did so by simply taking a popular chip, the X-Fi, and throwing it on a board of their own with some nice tweaks. A winning formula. Now though, they’re branching away from these roots with the re-tooled X-Meridian 7.1, named the 2g. Packing a C-Media CMI8788 audio processor with support for plenty of connectors, a daughter board and replacable OpAmps; audiophiles look like they’re in for a treat. Let’s see if the rumours are true. "
‘iPhone 4 Game of the Week – Save Toshi DX’
The Full Article can be viewed at http://tbreak.com/tech/2011/02/iphone-4-game-of-the-week-save-toshi-dx/
‘iPhone App Review: Mobile Mouse’
The Full Article can be viewed at http://tbreak.com/tech/2011/02/iphone-app-review-mobile-mouse/
Sony VAIO S
Conclusion: “If environmental considerations are important to you then the fact that 85% of the plastics in the VAIO VPCS13V9E/B are made from recycled materials may well appeal. You’ll also like that the LED is mercury free. The plentiful RAM and large hard drive might make this laptop appropriate for small business users who lack networked services and carry all their data and applications with them at all times. But you’ll be stacking these factors up against a somewhat chunky, heavy build, relatively expensive price, plenty of unwanted software to remove and a battery which will need feeding in the early afternoon.”
BlackBerry Torch 9800: The Olympic Torch @ InsideHW
Research in Motion (RIM), the company behind the BlackBerry (BB) brand, has been one of the leading smartphone manufacturers for a while now. One of the main reasons for their popularity is the focus on the business environment, in both devices and services offered. A feature present in nearly all BB devices is the existence of a physical QWERTY keyboard with separate keys, and starting with the Storm line, RIM has also delved into the area of touchscreens. Torch is their latest product that unifies these two worlds within a single device, as well as providing the latest operating system (OS), version 6, with significant advantages…
, ‘Jabra Stone 2 Review’
The Full Article can be viewed at http://tbreak.com/tech/2011/02/jabra-stone-2-review/
Motorola Atrix 4G Smartphone Performance Benchmarks @ Legit Reviews
Article URL: http://www.legitreviews.com/article/1554/1/
"As you can see from the Quadrant benchmark result chart, the Motorola Atrix 4G dominated the other 1GHz devices that were all running Android 2.2 or 2.2.1! The Motorola Atrix was nearly 2.5x faster than the HTC Droid Incredible and the Samsung Epic 4G. The Motorola Droid X did a little better than the other single-core phones, but can you really call half the speed better? The Motorola Atrix 4G with the NVIDIA Tegra 2 processor was the only Android powered smartphone tested that was running a dual-core CPU and that certainly helped…"
QUOTE: "The second I pulled the EDGE-HD out of the package I fell in love with it. The small stature which comes in at 19.3cm tall, 14.8cm in length and a skinny 2.2cm in width makes for an extremely tiny PC that comes in at only 530 grams. Based around the Intel Atom D510 CPU which comes in at 1.66GHz, you find yourself feeling a little dirty looking at a Sapphire product that houses a 512MB NVIDIA ION 2 setup inside.
On the RAM front we’ve got 2GB of DDR2 and storage comes in the form of a 2.5" 250GB SATA hard drive. Connection to your network comes in the form of both 10/100/1000 Mbps Ethernet and 802.11 b/g/n wireless. Inside the package there’s not a lot, but at the same time there’s everything you’ll need. We’ve got a stand, manual and power connector, while cable wise we’ve got a HDMI cable and HDMI to DVI convertor. We’ve also got a little Sapphire USB Pen Drive which carries with it the goodies you’ll need once you’re up and running."
Building a PC: with HotHardware and This Old Nerd:
In lieu of our regularly scheduled episode of Two and a Half Geeks this week, we decided to feature a rather lengthy video we put together with our podcast host, Iyaz, for his show This Old Nerd, detailing the steps necessary to assemble a system from start to finish. One of Marco’s incredibly cute daughters also makes a few surprise cameos throughout the vid if you pay attention to what’s going on in the background…
Five Free Must Play Games in the Chrome Web Store
Apps aren’t just for smartphones anymore. If you’re rocking out with Steve Jobs, you might have the Mac App Store, but what about something a little more cross-platform? For that, we can turn our attention to the recently launched Chrome Web Store. As you can imagine, this works within the Google Chrome web browser.
Edimax ES5500 G Gigabit Switch Review @ XSReviews
Review Link: http://www.xsreviews.co.uk/reviews/other-products/edimax-es5500-g-gigabit-switch/
Quote: "The easiest way to get yourself some faster network transfer rates is to throw a Gigabit switch into the mix. That’s what I’m looking to do today with the Edimax ES 5500G 5 port gigabit switch. Is it worth the money? Does it give good transfer rates? That’s what we’re here to find out. "
TechwareLabs Review: Sapphire Edge-HD Mini PC/HTPC
The Edge-HD has the potential to provide access to and playback all your media without sacrificing any of your ability to handle web surfing or touching up a power point presentation all done over your choice of outputs.
Logitech M570 Wireless Trackball.
While "ergonomic mice" have been hogging the limelight recently, the fact still remains that there was one peripheral that was, is and probably always will be the gold standard against which all ergonomic devices are measured: the trackball. The lowly trackball really doesn’t get as much credit as it deserves and most people think of "cheap arcade games" when they think of examples of trackballs. This really is a crying shame as nothing is more ergonomic and nothing is easier to use for extended periods than a good trackball. When it comes to manufactures of trackball’s one manufacture really stands above the rest and that manufacture is Logitech. Logitech has been making kick ass trackballs for decades now and their latest the M570 is not only an ergonomic trackball it adds additional buttons and useful wireless abilities into the mix. So how good is this new Logitech M570 trackball and does it live up to Logitech’s sterling reputation? Read on to find out in my full review.
Wesena ITX7 Mini-ITX HTPC Chassis Review @MissingRemote
DESCRIPTION: Historically one of the hardest parts about going DYI (do it yourself) with a small form factor (SFF) home theater PC (HTPC) has been finding a nice mini-ITX case that actually looks like it belongs in the A/V stack. Until recently enthusiasts have had to choose between “the cube” and killing the pig for a benchmark chassis like the OrigenAE M10; fortunately Wesena is set to alter this dichotomy with their all aluminum ITX7 enclosure. Offering a sleek look, space for a slot loading optical drive and a built in infrared receiver we have the opportunity to take a look at the first revision of an interesting new entrant in this space.
ARTICLE URL: http://www.missingremote.com/review/wesena-itx7
Thermalright Silver Arrow CPU Cooler @ Benchmark Reviews
PowerColor AX6950 PCS++ Video Card @ Benchmark Reviews
Corsair Graphite 600T Computer Case @ Benchmark Reviews