News for December 31st 2010

TestFreaks Data
Galaxy S6 Cases on Amazon


Hello, Hello! Happy New Years Eve! When I was younger New Year’s Eve meant going out, partying, and getting drunk, not anymore, I’m more than happy to stay home. If you’re going out though, and I’m sure a lot of you are, please be careful and don’t overdo it. Have fun but just be safe about please, we’d like to see you back for the new year. I just got a cool bag for review, it’s a laptop bag yes, but it’s much more. That’s all I’ll say right now, just check back late next week for that review and you’ll see what I mean. For now check out the news, there’s a few contests/giveaways this week so check them out for a chance to win some good stuff.


Storage Related:

TechwareLabs Review: Silicon Power – Xpower 4GB RAM Kit

Quote: Today we will be looking at the Silicon Power X Power Dual Channel DDR3 2133Mhz Ram Kit. This is available in both dual and triple channel configurations. This is the fastest kit that Silicon Power currently offers and I am excited to see what this baby can do. Follow us as we give the X Power the juice to see how it survives.
LINK: TechwareLabs Review: Silicon Power – Xpower 4GB RAM Kit


I-NA215U USB 3.0 enclosure and I-NPC01 USB 3.0 card.
SNIP:The I-NA215U Plus is an external hard drive enclosure released by Ineo Technology, which represents an optimal combination of compact and efficient. While equipped with the USB 3.0, which is able to support any 2.5” SATA laptop hard drive or solid state drive, it has an extremely compact and light casing made from a combination of polycarbonate and ABS (acrylonitrile butadiene styrene polymer). This material composition provides impact and heat resistance, with a lighter weight than aluminum. The casing has a unique design, including the transparent lid and blue LED light on top. The entire external design is very compact, with dimensions of 138 x 81 x 15 mm. It is, by far, one of the lightest 2.5” SATA enclosures available. On the inside, the casing has three way rubber padding to protect the hard drive and absorb vibrations.


Zalman ZM-MH200 U3 USB 3.0 Dual HDD Docking Station Review @

Review URL:

Quote: “Today’s storage needs are not that of what was required a few years ago, files are increasing larger in size. Whether it is movies, games, music, or pictures there is need for faster and larger drives. Most importantly with these growing demands comes the need for better access to that data, including higher speeds of transfer and ease of swapping drives between computers to share that data. This is where Zalman’s USB 3.0 HDD docking station comes into focus, it primary function to utilize the newest USB 3.0 technology to help users gain access to their data in one of the fastest ways po ssible, while still allowing the options for swapping and raid functionality should it be needed or required."


Kingston 32GB Micro SDHC Card
Quote:  The bottom line is that the Kingston 32GB Micro SDHC card is definitely worth considering if you want to add as much storage space to your tablet PC, smart phone, or other mobile device as is physically possible. 32GB Micro SDHC cards are not all that common yet, and the Kingston unit is a leader in terms or price and speed rating.

== has posted their review of the LG Hitachi 8x Blu-Ray Burner WH08LS20.  "Blu-ray Disk or BD has been around for nearly a decade, but it has really taken off in popularity the last few years. With the explosion in sales of progressively lower-priced LCD and Plasma HDTVs, and the end of the format war with HD DVD, Blu-ray has firmly established itself as the new standard for high definition video. While initially very expensive, just as DVD-R and CD-R were in their infancy, BD-R drives have recently hit the sub-$100 level, and blanks can be had for about a buck a piece when purchased in bulk. The LG WH08LS20 combo drive from fits this category, and is the subject of our review today."

Direct Link:


Hardware Canucks is pleased to present our review of the new Western Digital Caviar Green 3TB Hard Drive.

Article URL:

Quote: As media files balloon in size and high definition content moves towards the mainstream, consumers’ storage needs have expanded by leaps and bounds.  Hard drive manufacturers have been trying to keep up with products sporting higher and higher capacities.  Western Digital is now pushing the limits with their new Caviar Green 3TB and has come up with some unique features which allow their newest product to break previous thresholds.


Mach Xtreme MS-DS 120 GB SSD


Brief:Mach Xtreme is a fairly new player to the memory and storage market. Their new MX-DS 120 GB SSD is based on the popular SF-1222 chip from SandForce which means it delivers leading performance without breaking the bank. In our review we test how it fares against other SSDs using SandForce and other controllers.




Audio / Video:

Beginner’s Guide to HTPC Codecs, File Formats, Containers, Filetypes
DESCRIPTION: Codecs? File types? Oh my! If you have ever tried to watch a video you downloaded from the internet only to find it unable to be played (or maybe just audio but no video), then this is the guide for you! We’re going to try to do our best to cover most of the more common file types that are out there, and what they mean to you and your home theater experience. Before we get into the details, let’s cover the basics of the terminology. Codec is an acronym for compressing\decompressing. This technology is used to execute an algorithm to compress or decompress video or audio. An example of this is playback of your PVR recordings on your HTPC; when the file plays back your PC is decompressing, or decoding,  the MPEG-2 or H.264 video and MPEG-Audio or AC-3 audio contained in the file.





Mobile Related:

Mobility Digest Review: Otterbox Commuter Series for Dell Venue Pro

As promised, here’s my review of the Otterbox case for the Dell Venue Pro.  Otterbox is one of the premier makers of handset cases.  We’re going to take a look at the Commuter Series so that you can better decide if it’s worth trading your hard earned cash for it.  Before using Otterbox I had only used cheap plastic and silicone cases purchased via eBay.  I can say that this case is without a doubt in a whole different class than those cheap plastic ones.  But this is what I’d expect from a case that costs 5-10 times more.  The Otterbox case retails for $34.95 on the Otterbox site and can also be found on the Dell website for $34.99.


Toshiba’s Portégé R705 13.3" Ultraportable Notebook:

Toshiba’s 13.3" Portégé R705 is one of the sleeker, more potent ultraportables on the market today, and in general, we have always admired the Portégé design scheme. The R705 keeps a good thing going, with its 3.2lb. chassis and its rigid, high quality construction ensuring a solid feel throughout.


Samsung SF510 Notebook @ PureOverclock

Review URL:

“Packing an Intel Core i3 processor and some gorgeous styling, the SF510 is positioned as an all-around mobile system. But is Samsung’s jump into this tough industry segment successful? Will the pricing be a stumbling block? Let’s have a look at the Samsung SF510 and see how this notebook fares.”


Dell XPS 15 (L501X): Intel Core i7 840QM/2GB nVidia GT435m Review

While Dell release a plethora of machines over the course of a year, one of their latest releases caught our eye … the new XPS 15 (L501X). While the internal hardware is highly specified, we were actually quite intrigued by the moderate size of the chassis.

Dell offered us the high end Intel Core i7 840QM model with 2GB nVidia GT435m for review today, which is modestly priced at £1,319 (after a £149.00 savings offer).

Read the review here:


DeepCool N8 Notebook Cooler Review @

Review URL:

Quote: “It seems like there are a ton of notebook coolers out there, but you never know which one is going to work for you and which ones are just crap. Our friends at DeepCool make quite a few different notebooks coolers, there are over 20 on their website. They sent us over their N8 notebook cooler which is made of aluminum and has dual 140mm fans. Let’s check it out and see if it is the perfect cooler for your laptop."




Assorted Stuffs:

Pro Football Pick ‘Em Week 17 – Win a $50 Amazon Gift Card
Quote:  Are you ready for some football?  The Pro Football Pick ‘Em contest for NFL week seventeen has a $50 gift card up for grabs.


The Great Leica M9 Give-Away Contest! Win a Leica M9 Camera HERE.

EXCITING NEWS! If you are here reading this right now then YOU have a chance to win a black Leica M9 camera (VALUE: $6995). Yes, I said WIN, as in 100% give-away. The contest will be posted VERY soon, just working out the details but it will be 100% free to enter and EVERYONE and ANYONE will have a chance to win the camera.


Looking Back at 2010: The Year’s Most Relevant Tech Stories
With the year coming to a close it’s time to look back at some of the most relevant stories and product launches of 2010. We’ll do a brief recount of tech happenings in six categories: Desktop CPUs and Graphics, Hardware Devices and Components, Software, Gaming, Mobile Computing and The Web.


Interview with Allan Campbell of KitGuru @ Benchmark Reviews

DESCRIPTION: Everyone has stories from the book of experience that is their life, with some more interesting than others. Allan Campbell operates, a website focused on reporting computer technology news and product reviews. KitGuru is an interesting endeavor, but it’s only the most recent chapter from the 39-year-old’s life that began with a career in the Ireland newspaper industry where he used hot metal typography, a dying art. Benchmark Reviews present our interview with Allan Campbell, beginning with a few chapters from other parts of his life…



Inside the Intel Sandy Bridge Microarchitecture
Here is a snippet: "Sandy Bridge is the name of the new microarchitecture Intel CPUs will be using starting in 2011. It is an evolution of the Nehalem microarchitecture that was first introduced in the Core i7 and also used in the Core i3 and  Core i5 processors.”


‘2010’s five surprises and disappointments in tech’
The Full Article can be viewed at


AMD Phenom 615E 2.5GHz CPU Contest Giveaway
DESCRIPTION: We hope everyone is having a safe and wonderful end to 2010. In celebration of not only this, but also continuing with the celebration of our new website (which continues to evolve), we have another fantastic giveaway for the new year. Courtesy of our friends at AMD, we have up for grabs a 2.5GHz from AMD’s PHENOM line of ATHLON II X4 processors, the Phenom 615E..


Fold with Kitguru (Team 196420) – feel good and win goodies

With 2010 almost at a close, it seems a good time to remind everyone that our very giving community started Folding only a very short time ago, and their progress has been phenomenal, even in such a short space of time.

When I initially announced that KitGuru had an official folding team I was offering a very nice prize to the top performer. On reflection I am going to give away 3 prizes now. Why? Well some users won’t have the powerful high end hardware to compete for top position, however I still want to reward those of our community who put hard work and their valued time into this. Therefore at the end of March, after I discuss with our folding moderator AgencyMan (aka Bruce) freebies will be given to the community.

Read the news here:


Interview with Anand Lal Shimpi of AnandTech @ Benchmark Reviews

DESCRIPTION: Benchmark Reviews has educated and entertained readers for almost four years already, which doesn’t seem like very long if you’re looking in from the outside. Operating from within this industry, I’ve already weathered a few harsh storms and learned several difficult lessons in only a short period of time. This helps to grow my respect for other webmasters and their experiences, as I’m certain they’ve each got interesting tales of their own to share. In this editorial, Benchmark Reviews is pleased to present our interview with the author and founder of Anandtech: Anand Lal Shimpi…




Gaming Related:

Thermaltake TT ESports Challenger Pro Gaming Keyboard Review @ Tweaknews

Speedlink Ferret Gaming Mouse @ Rbmods

Razer Naga Molten Special Edition MMO Gaming Mouse Review @

Review: A World of Keflings

Indie Review: Dogfight Sketch

XBox 360 can kill discs – John Lewis customer services speaks

Battlefield: Bad Company 2 – Vietnam Review (PC)

Thermaltake Challenger Pro Keyboard Review @ Ninjalane

Zowie EC2 Gaming Mouse

Tom Clancy’s H.A.W.X 2 Game Performance @ Benchmark Reviews



Quick Links:

CoolIT Systems ECO A.L.C. 240 CPU Cooler Review

Thermaltake Toughpower XT 875W and Toughpower 1200W Review at Overclockers Online

ASRock P55 Extreme4 LGA1156 ATX Motherboard Review

In Win Dragon Rider Full Tower E-ATX PC Case Review @ Legit Reviews

Gigabyte H55N-USB3 mini-ITX: Big Overclocks From A Small Board

MSI Radeon HD 6850 Cyclone 1GB Power Edition Video Card

TechwareLabs Review: Jetway HA12-LF Motherboard

‘MSI R6950 Twin Frozr II Review

Funky Kit: Overclocking Intel’s Sandy Bridge Core i7-2600K

Biostar TP67XE Motherboard @ Hardware Secrets

Corsair A70 CPU Cooler Review @ Hardware Secrets

Lian Li Pitstop T60 Benchtable Review on Technic3D

ECS Elitegroup P55H-AK LGA1156 ATX Motherboard Review 

Antec ISK100 Mini-ITX Desktop / HTPC Chassis

CoolerMaster Hyper 212 Plus CPU Cooler Review @

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