Sennheiser launches two new headsets for Xbox

X 320

Sennheiser, one of the most respectable company in the world of audio has recently announced two headsets aimed at Xbox gamers with the X 320 and the X 2.

The X 320 and X 2 are the company’s first entries in the gaming headset business, and to start off they divided the product into two categories; high quality without a budget and with a budget.

The X 320 is the top-of-the-line in the series with amplified stereo sound with bass boost to make gaming more immersive and more realistic all in a closed environment with the around-the-ear headset.

The professional grade microphone equipped with noise-cancelling makes sure that only the gamer is heard, and while an in-line volume control allows for individual adjustments, the microphone can be muted by simply raising the boom arm up.

X 2

The X 2, on the other hand, is more for the cost-conscious gamers who don’t want to compromise quality. While it is a step down from the X 320, the single-sided headset still features the Sennheiser-quality sound with light and comfortable design to allow for hours of gameplay.

Once again you find a high-quality microphone with noise canceling technology, in-line control with mute switch (unlike its big brother).

They both come with a two year warranty and are available now. Price wise you’ll find the X 320 to be at $149.95 while the X 2 is at $29.95.

For more information, please refer to the official product page.

Source

Inno3D joins the bandwagon with its latest GTX 560 Ti featuring 448 cores

After seeing more than couple of companies announcing a 448 CUDA cores limited-edition version of the GTX 560 Ti, Inno3D has announced its arrival at the ‘party’ with the GTX 560 Ti 448SP HyperCore graphics card.

Same story as the most recent companies, it features 448 CUDA cores with slightly overclocked speeds and a customized cooler.

Inno3D has added slightly more personality though with an in-house GF110 board design in addition to the custom design single-fan cooler.

Once again we find the 40nm based GF110 GPU with 448 CUDA cores and 1280MB of GDDR5 memory over a 320-bit wide interface. Clock speeds are 760 MHz core and 1520 MHz CUDA cores (compared to 732/1462 MHz) although this manufacturer seems to keep memory clock speeds at reference specs with 950 MHz (3.80 GHz effective).

Same as the others when it comes to availability, the Inno3D GTX 560 Ti 448SP HyperCore graphics card will be available in limited quantities in select North American and European markets.

Source

PCI Express 4.0 in development

PCI Express 3.0 is relatively new, we currently at the stage where PCI-E 3.0 cards are not really even available on the market and PCI-E 2.0 is still the standard for the mainstream.  The company PCI-SIG who make the industry standard connector that is the PCI Express ports have announced they are developing and progressing well with the PCI Express 4.0 interface. PCI-E 3.0 is double the bandwidth of PCI-E 2.0 and so in a logical fashion PCI-E 4.0 is double the bandwidth of PCI-E 3.0. Meaning a PCI-E 4.0 4X slot has the same bandwidth as a PCI-E 2.0 16X slot which is an impressive feat and should mean that bandwidth will no longer be an issue with regards to multi-GPU configurations like it is currently on the Gen2 slots. Although that said currently we very rarely saturate the bandwidth of the PCI-E lane itself it is more the PCI-E controller on the processors and motherboards that is the issue.

PCI-E 4.0 will produce 16GT/s and be physically the same as PCI-E 3.0 (and therefore PCI-E 2.0). There is also a big question “what do we need all this extra bandwidth for?” and currently we do not really have anything that requires that much bandwidth but in future it may be practical. All that said PCI-E 4.0 won’t arrive until 2014 at the earliest and the production costs of it will not differ at all to that of the current PCI-E 2.0 lanes. PCI-SIG also hint that they are working on ways to extract more power efficiency out of PCI-E lanes and meet the “power, cost and compatibility” goals of the future.

Source: Press Release

3Dconnexion announces a 3D mouse

3Dconnexion has recently announced a new product with a unique design and particular application; the SpaceMouse Pro.

Specially designed for professionals working with 3D applications this new mouse is set to revolutionize the way users work with them (3D applications that is). Through various features, the SpaceMouse Pro gives a more intuitive way to interact with 3D content resulting in enhanced control and improved design quality.

“3D mice revolutionize the way people interact with digital 3D content,” said Antonio Pascucci, vice president of products, 3Dconnexion. “We are committed to developing products that meet the needs of 3D users. SpaceMouse Pro provides a professional 3D navigation experience, enabling users to better understand their 3D content, while its new advanced ergonomic design ensures a comfortable working experience.”

To maximize the efficiency of the user, 3Dconnexion is using its patented six-degrees-of-freedom (6DoF) sensor to allow for greater control and simultaneous pan, zoom and rotate actions.

Five QuickView keys offer easy access to 12 view combinations through a single touch along with easy to reach keys such as four large and fully customizable Intelligent Functions keys place right at the fingertip for quick access while an On-screen displays gives visual feedback on the assignments. Additionally, the Keyboard Modifiers expands the control of the user providing Control, Shift, Alt and Esc keys for convenient access.

All these features brought into an ergonomic design to ensure balanced and comfortable workflow thanks to the full-size, soft-coated hand rest and the fifteen large, tactile easy-to-locate buttons.

Compatibility is provided with the support by a multitude of systems including Windows (7, Vista, XP), Mac OS (10.4.6 or later), Sun Solaris (8 SPARC, 10 x84/x64) and Linux (Redhat Enterprise Linux WS 4, SuSE 9.3 or later).

The SpaceMouse Pro comes backed up with a  three year warranty and is available for the price of $299.

For more information please refer to the official product’s page.

Source: Press Release

Noctua introduces new PWM fans

Enlarging its portfolio of premium quality quiet fans, Noctua today announced PWM versions of its renowned NF-P12, NF-B9 and NF-R8 fans. Having received more than hundred awards and recommendations from the international press, the classic NF-P12, NF-B9 and NF-R8 fans helped to found Noctua’s reputation as a top-tier manufacturer of premium grade quiet cooling components. The new PWM versions build on the proven designs and feature Noctua’s novel NE-FD1 IC for fully automatic control and ultra-low power consumption.

“Our customers have been asking us for PWM versions of our fans for a long time, but the available PWM fan driver ICs simply weren’t up to our quality standards”, explains Mag. Roland Mossig, Noctua CEO. “With our NE-FD1, we’ve now got our custom-designed IC that allows us to build PWM fans that consume less power and remain quieter at low speeds.”

Most conventional PWM fan driver ICs put out square signals that cause sudden torque impulses. These impulses can cause minute deformations of the entire fan structure which lead to audible “clicking” noises that are especially noticeable with many common PWM fans running at slower speeds. Adopting Noctua’s Smooth Commutation Drive (SCD) technology, the custom designed NE-FD1 PWM IC slows down the slew rate of the output signal in order to give a smoother, less sudden torque impulse. This way, PWM switching noises can be effectively suppressed and the fan runs even quieter, especially at low speeds.

Noctua’s NE-FD1 IC was not only fine-tuned for superior quietness, it has also been carefully optimised to allow for ultra-low power consumption. As a result, the new PWM models consume 25-40% less power than their non-PWM counterparts.
All models come with Low-Noise Adaptors, 30cm cable extensions and 4-pin y-cables that allow to connect a second PWM fan to the same fan header for automatic control. Equipped with Noctua’s signature SSO bearing and topped off with a 6 years manufacturer’s warranty, the NF-P12 PWM, NF-B9 PWM and NF-R8 PWM are a proven premium choice for the highest demands.

Price and Availability
The new PWM models are available immediately at a recommended retail price of EUR 19.90 / USD 24.90 (NF-P12 PWM), EUR 17.90 / USD 21.90 (NF-B9 PWM) and EUR 14.90 / USD 18.90 (NF-R8 PWM).

For more information, visit the product pages of NF-P12 PWMNF-B9 PWM, and NF-R8 PWM. To learn more about Noctua NE-FD1 PWM IC, visit this page.

Source: Press Release

Intel Atom D2550 launch planned for Q1 of 2012

Intel has already introduced a few parts from the Cedar Trail platform and many more are set to come. In Q1 of next year Intel will launch the Atom D2550 processor, The D2550 is manufactured on the 32nm process using Sandy Bridge architecture. Impressively it packs two cores at 1.86GHz with 1MB of L2 cache and supports Intel’s Hyperthreading technology meaning you get 4 threads. In terms of graphics you get the Intel HD 2000 graphics integrated onto the chip (running at 640MHz) so it makes an ideal Netbook processor.

The processor supports these technologies:

  • MMX instruction set
  • SSE
  • SSE2
  • SSE3
  • Supplemental SSE3
  • EM64T technology
  • Execute Disable Bit
  • Hyper-Threading technology
It is based off the BGA559 package and so is a very small processor due to the small number of pins measuring in at just 2.2cm by 2.2cm. It supports DDR3 memory in a single channel configuration with speeds up to 1066MHz and up to 4GB in quantity. And if all that was just too good for you then the 10W TDP is even more impressive.
Source: CPU World

 

Intel to subsidise Ultrabook prices

ASUS, Acer and Toshiba are all witnessing Intel’s rather rare generosity. Intel is providing a $100 subsidy to each Ultrabook they produce which is intended for them to pass on to the consumer as a price drop. Although, it is a long and bureaucratic process so it could take a while for the benefit to be passed onto the consumer. The price drops are expected to happen in the first quarter of 2012 so they won’t fall in time for the Christmas period but for the period thereafter. Expect prices to fall 5-10% which could give Ultrabooks that competitive advantage over MacBooks and tablets.

Currently manufacturers are struggling to meet the recommended $1000 price limit by Intel. Material costs for the Ultrabooks amount to in the region of $640 and then including distribution and marketing costs among other things and the cost is closer to $940. Add Intel’s $100 subsidy bringing the costs down to $840 per Ultrabook and manufacturers can breathe a little easier and pass on a $50-$75 reduction onto the consumers. Although, Intel may expect $100 price drops in which case ASUS, Acer and Toshiba will still have to operate within tight margins of about $40-$60 per product.

Source: Digitimes

Crackdown Developers new game isn’t Crackdown 3

Ruffian Games, the developers of the console Crackdown series, has gained a new contract for a high budget triple A title. While what it will be is unknown, we know it won’t be Crackdown 3, and it will be for all platforms.

Beyond the revolution that the new title will be a multi-platform offering, everyone seems to know that this project is in addition to Crackdown 3 (which is apparently in development). Work on this new title will be done by a second team at the studio as hiring continues for this project.

While the original ads placed by the studio confirmed the new project, they have since been changed to make them more generic as to what these positions will be working on. Expect to hear more on this nearer the E3 period.

Source: Fudzilla

Huge Source Engine Performance Update Relased

Despite its small size, this is by far the best optimization update TF2’s seen so far.

Most everyone is reporting massive FPS gains, in some cases double, halved memory usage and instant alt-tabbing in full-screen. No more crashing, and people that couldn’t even run the game without a rock bottom low quality config can now run it at decent settings. Apparently they’ve also optimized multicore rendering.

The changelog is short and sweet, and doesn’t say much, but the effects of this update are huge.

  • Dramatically improved the dynamic model loading system’s memory usage, performance, and stability
  • Reduced memory usage on systems running Windows XP, Windows Vista, and Windows 7
  • Improved alt-tab handling under Windows Vista and Windows 7

Source: TF2 Blog

The Witcher 2 Pirated over 4.5 Million times

The Witcher 2 has been illegally download at least 4.5 million times, developer CD Projekt has estimated.

In an interview with PCGamer, CEO Marcin Iwinski explained that it was impossible to be exact, but added that his estimation was most likely lower than the actual number

“I was checking regularly the number of concurrent downloads on torrent aggregating sites, and for the first six to eight weeks there was around 20-30k people downloading it at the same time.

Let’s take 20k as the average and let’s take six weeks. The game is 14GB, so let’s assume that on an average not-too-fast connection it will be six hours of download. Six weeks is 56 days, which equals to 1344 hours; and with six hours of average download time to get the game it would give us 224 downloads, then let’s multiply it by 20k simultaneous downloaders.

The result is roughly 4.5 million illegal downloads. This is only an estimation, and I would say that’s rather on the optimistic side of things; as of today we have sold over one million legal copies, so having only 4.5-5 illegal copies for each legal one would be not a bad ratio. The reality is probably way worse.”

That’s some serious calculations there for working out piracy, and the sad thing is that the real number is probably a lot higher.

Iwinski said that “DRM does not work” with the reasoning that “however you would protect it, it will be cracked in no time.”

Source: PCGamer

Thermaltake unveil the MS-I snow edition

Thermaltake, the leader and pioneer brand in PC thermal solutions, a worldwide designer and supplier of high-performance components to the PC gaming hardware market, with “delivering the perfect user experiences” as our mission. This winter, Thermaltake has prepared Commander MS-I Snow Edition to take on a gratitude mission of thanking our fans for the support throughout the year of 2011 as well as with a new suit to blend into the snowy battlefield for e-Sports enthusiasts.

Thermaltake Commander MS-I Snow Edition
Thermaltake Commander MS-I has made a huge blast since its first present in July 2011. This winter, with its determination and consistency, Commander MS-I is suited up with a brand-new snow look to move its way through a snowy battlefield. The Commander MS-I Snow Edition is equipped with extra-long VGA support which will hold some premium weapons (graphic cards) in the market, such as nVidia GTX590 and AMD Radeon HD6990 with ease, cable management and 12cm blue LED fan to enhance air mobility (ventilation), USB2.0 and USB 3.0(internal 19pin) front I/O slots allow direct data transfers during combat situation, and 9 drive bays grant with maximum magazine (HDD, optical drives) storability so you will never run out of resources.

For more information, visit the product page.

Source: Press Release

Creative introduce HN-900 Noise-Cancelling Headphones

Creative Technology Ltd today announced the new Creative HN-900 noise-canceling headphones, a set of full-size active noise-canceling headphones that can reduce ambient noise by up to 85% and comes with a detachable cable with in-line microphone for voice communication on the iPhone.

Shut out the din in the air cabin or make clear voice calls on the iPhone with the Creative HN-900 noise-canceling headphones. The concealed microphones in the ear-cups pick up surrounding noises and these are electronically negated, effectively reducing the noise by up to 85%. With the absence of unwanted sound, the finely-tuned 40mm Neodymium drivers allow details of music or entertainment to be revealed.

The Creative HN-900’s audio cable also comes with an in-line microphone and switch for a convenient one-click call function for voice communication on the iPhone. This cable can be detached from the headphones and the noise-canceling feature turned on – great for times when users want a quiet and peaceful rest. If the headphones run out of battery power, they can still be used in the passive mode without the noise-cancellation function.

The Creative HN-900 is a solid performer, ensuring a quiet backdrop for users’ entertainment and communication needs.

Key Features of the Creative HN-900 Noise-Canceling Headphones

  • Effective ambient noise reduction by up to 85%
  • The headphones cable comes with gold-plated plugs that are compatible with iPhone, iPad, iPod and most media players for music support. The detachable cable also comes with in-line microphone and switch for a convenient one-click call function for voice calls on the iPhone
  • Powerful 40mm Neodymium magnet drivers produce superior music listening experience & voice calls
  • Dual-mode usage allows the headphones to serve as active noise-cancellation function for up to 40 hours by a single AAA alkaline battery or in passive mode without power
  • Comes with airplane adapter for in-flight entertainment
  • Compact flat-fold design ideal for business trips and vacations

Technical Specifications of the Creative HN-900 Noise-Canceling Headphones
Headphones:

  • 40 mm Neodymium magnet drivers
  • Frequency Response of 20Hz ~ 20kHz
  • Noise Reduction Level of -18dB (85%)
  • Impedance of 290ohms*
  • Sensitivity at 1kHz of 100dB/mW*

Microphone:

  • Type of Omni-directional
  • Frequency Response of 100Hz ~ 10kHz
  • Impedance of <2.2kohms
  • Sensitivity at 1kHz of -38dBV/Pa

General:

  • Cable length of 1.5m detachable with inline microphone
  • Battery life of up to 40 hours from 1 x AAA alkaline battery. Duration may vary depending on temperature and condition of use
  • Product weight of 168 grams

* Specifications measured in active Noise Cancellation mode
Pricing and Availability
The Creative HN-900 noise-canceling headphones will be available at the online store at creative.com/shop in Asia and authorised dealers in Asia from end Nov 2011 onwards at the suggested retail price of US $99.99.

Source: Press Release

Battlefield 3 Ships 12 Million Copies

The EA chief financial officer Eric Brown has announced Battlefield has sold 8 million copies.

Speaking at the Baird Technology Conference, Eric Brown revealed that EA has managed to sell 5 million during its first week on sale in October, and that the publisher has now shipped 12 million copies of the game to retailers, 2 million more than it shipped for launch week.

However, on what platform these sales were made is unknown, no specific platform sales data was provided.

We can be sure that pretty much none of these sales were from Iran though, due to its recent ban in the country.

Source: CGV

Trendnet announces 200mbps powerline adapter

TRENDnet, a best-in-class wired and wireless networking hardware brand, today announces the availability of the 200 Mbps Powerline AV Adapter with Bonus Plug, model TPL-307E, and the 200Mbps Powerline AV Adapter Kit with Bonus Plug, model TPL-307E2K, which comes with two TPL-307E adapters. These high performance Powerline adapters network computers, televisions, and other devices using existing home or office electrical lines.

The TPL-307E replaces the bulkier TPL-304E series and features a compact product housing, built in electrical outlet, embedded power saving technology, and an advanced electrical noise filter which boosts performance by reducing background electrical signal interference.

The 200Mbps Powerline AV Adapter with Bonus Plug works with any electrical outlet, creating a secure high speed building-wide network. A minimum of two adapters are required to create a Powerline network. Consumers don’t lose the use of an outlet with the TPL-307E;a bonus electrical socket is built into the front face of the adapter itself. Connect one adapter to your network and plug another adapter into any outlet on your electrical system for instant high speed network access.

TRENDnet adapters connect automatically to each other over a secure encrypted signal with no CD installation required. For additional security, press the Sync button to change existing encryption keys. Use up to 6 Powerline adapters to network devices in different rooms without running new cabling. LED displays convey device status for easy troubleshooting and advanced AES encryption secures your network. Embedded power saving technology lowers power consumption by up to 70% in standby mode-resulting in measurable power savings, given that the device is always on.

The 200Mbps Powerline AV Adapter with Bonus Plug, model TPL-307E, comes with a three year limited warranty and is currently shipping to TRENDnet’s online and retail partners.

The MSRP for the TPL-307E is US $69.00.

The 200Mbps Powerline AV Adapter Kit with Bonus Plug, model TPL-307E2K, comes with a three year limited warranty and is currently shipping to TRENDnet’s online and retail partners.

The MSRP for the TPL-307E2K is US $129.99.

Source: Press Release

Sapphire Radeon HD 6970 FleX Battlefield 3 Edition Graphics Card Review

With lots of rumours about AMD and Nvidia releasing new cards in 2012, we find a lot of graphics card manufacturers clinching on to the life of the current cards and trying to spice things up to give a breath of fresh air to an already old card.

The 6970 isn’t exactly old, as it’s still very current, but with a fast paced industry like this one, technology is old before its even been released. This is down to the manufacturer’s starting the thought process on its sucessor already, even at the early stages, and that’s a good thing, as it keeps the tech fast moving and invites new things to be brought to the table.

To give a certain range of cards a slight edge, we see vendors giving it an overhaul in terms of cooling, or giving a slight bump to the clock speeds or even adding their own technology to the PCB, or sometimes even doing a combination which is what we’ve seen with the FleX series of cards from Sapphire.

FleX offers a custom Vapor-X cooler design, as well as incorporating their technology which offers a FleXible solution to multiple monitor configurations, especially with Eyefinity being the new hot way to game at the moment.

Today we’re looking at a 6970 FleX card with a difference, as it includes the fancy Vapor-X cooler, the FleX technology, but is overclocked too and even comes with Battlefield 3 to get you gaming in no time. You can’t really ask for much more, especially on a high-end card, much like this one.

We’re really interested to see how this limited edition card performs in our tests, as from the offset, it seems to offer the whole package.

Frozen Synapse sells over 300K

The popular Indie PC Game, Frozen Synapse has sold over 300k copies, which is a “best case scenario” according to the developers “Mode 7”

Designer Paul Taylor explained that the studio had set itself a goal of selling 100,000 copies within a year of launch “without a significant marketing spend”. They managed to beat their target in 5 months.

As if the sales themselves were not enough, they also gained $135,000 in profits from the paid Beta. What’s more, is that according to the developers, the majority of the sales were at a discounted price.

With the game selling for $24.99, direct revenues via its own site so far total $300,000, before third party stores such as Steam are included.

The game cost $140,000 to make, with three full time staff members, one long-term contractor and a few freelancers.

“Frozen Synapse has been a success for Mode 7, both for us personally and for the company,” wrote Taylor.

Source: Gamesbreif

Intel to launch 10W Celeron 807UE

Intel has been squeezing its Sandy Bridge architecture for the most power efficient chips it can get. Intel has probably reached the barrier on “acceptable” performance levels now with the 10W Celeron 807UE. The Celeron 807UE packs only a single 32nm Sandy Bridge core with just 1MB of L3 cache. With only 1GHz of processing power the Celeron 807UE will be by far the slowest Sandy Bridge processor made but being within a thermal envelope of 10W it certainly has an outright monopoly in the Ultra low power segment.

This Celeron isn’t a desktop processor, it uses a BGA socket which is for mobile processors and consequently it has less pins than Sandy Bridge as it uses less bandwidth. It will support Intel 64 and VT-x virtualization. Surprisingly the 10W processor also packs Intel HD Graphics with a base frequency of 350MHz and Turbo frequency of 800MHz which is impressive given the 10W envelope it has. It will probably have a 1000K quantity price of about $100 per unit so expect it to start showing up soon in ultra low power mobile devices like compact netbooks or tablets in the near future.

Source: CPU World

Dead Island Banned in Germany

Dead Island has been banned from sale in Germany. It’s no surprise to developers however:

“This isn’t unexpected, Germany has its unique regulations regarding video games and violence and the industry can only comply.”

There was no explanation as to why the game was banned, but we can only assume it due to the graphic violence, which is similar to that found in other games of a similar genre, such as Left 4 Dead.

Germany’s Federal Department of Media Harmful to Young Persons (the BPJM) classified Dead Island as “List B”.

“List B” contains the names of “youth-endangering media”. Media on “List B” cannot be sold anywhere in Germany, and anyone caught doing so is punishable by law.

Looks like the German gamers will have to fulfill their zombie slashing needs elsewhere.

Source: Eurogamer

Gigabyte embraces 448 core GTX 560Ti with a Windforce Cooler

Gigabyte along with Zotac and MSI has announced its 448 core variant of the GTX 560Ti. The GV-N560448-13I card is based on Gigabyte’s own GF110 PCB comprised of ultra durable components. They have also equipped it with Gigabyte’s high performance Windforce cooler which for this card consists of a large vapour chamber with copper heat pipes and aluminium heat sinks as well as three 80mm fans. Nvidia reference clock speeds are maintained in this card but as you might expect there is significant headroom to change the 732MHz Core /1464MHz CUDA /950MHz  Memory (3800MHz effective) configuration. This card obviously packs 448 CUDA cores compared to the old GTX 560Ti which had 384. And it uses, like the GTX 570, 1280MB of VRAM across a 320bit bus.

These cards will be available in limited quantities, in the US, Canada, UK, Germany, France, Russia, and the Nordics. It will be priced at around $300.

 

HD 7000 to be revealed on December the 5th

According to sources from Scandinavia AMD’s HD 7000 series will be released on December the 5th. Before you get too excited the initial launch is only to be comprised of mobile GPUs and maybe some low end GPUs. It has been indicated that the launch will consist of 28nm fabrication graphics units. In keeping with the “London” codename, AMD will launch the “Thames” and “Seymour” mobile GPUs at an event in London on December the 5th. Another idea is that AMD could also unveil some of its next-generation GPUs based on the GCN architecture, which would be AMD’s biggest leap in GPU architecture since the Radeon HD 2000 series.

Source: NordicHardware

OCZ Technology Launches Talos 2 Enterprise Solid State Drivers, up to 1TB

OCZ, a leading provider of high-performance solid-state drives (SSDs) for computing devices and systems, announces the Talos 2 Serial Attached SCSI (SAS) SSD Series, the follow-up to the high performance, high capacity Talos Series previously available only in a 3.5 inch form factor.

With capacities up to 1TB now available in a compact 2.5-inch form factor, Talos 2 offers increased I/O performance and scalability in enterprise storage environments. Talos 2 leverages OCZ Virtualized Controller Architecture 2.0 technology which implements an intelligent complex command queuing structure with unique queue balancing algorithms to provide exceptional performance. Talos 2 SSDs deliver superior random transactional performance at up to 70,000 4K IOPS and features improved mixed workload (75% read; 25% write) performance with up to 42,000 8K IOPS.

Unlike many SAS SSDs, the Talos Series is dual-ported to offer superior data integrity and increased performance, along with delivering a robust enterprise feature-set including DataWrite Assurance Protection in case of sudden power loss. Talos 2 also includes the option to enable T10-DIF (Data Integrity Field), allowing for the insertion of 8 bytes of additional data during transfers to ensure complete data integrity.

“The Talos 2 SAS solid state drives expand on the original series by offering enterprise customers superior performance, reliability, and density all in a compact footprint,” said Ryan Petersen, CEO of OCZ technology Group. “The Talos 2 enterprise SSDs are optimized for the most demanding storage systems and provide clients with an easy to deploy solution that vastly improves application performance over traditional SAS based HDDs.”

To address the complete spectrum of applications, Talos 2 SSDs are available in 100GB to 1TBcapacities, in MLC, eMLC, and SLC NAND configurations. OCZ is now sampling Talos 2 to strategic customers and the drives will be made available to SMB and enterprise clients through OCZ’s global business-to-business channel.

 Source: Press Release

Total War Shogun 2: Fall of the Samurai Announced

Sega has just announced that Fall of the Samurai, a standalone expansion for Shogun 2, will be released in March 2012. The expansion, being regarded as a “huge upgrade” to the original game, will include six new playable clans who will need to fight off the foreign powers of America, Britain and France

On top of that, an improved campaign map is also being shown, along with new building and technology trees including railways and naval bombardments. Brand new units and abilities will also added. On the land side of things, thirty nine new units are introduced including Gatling guns, US Marines and British Royal Marines. While, 10 new ship types will make their appearance, including Ironclad class battleships, steamers and torpedo boats, which a player can use  in land battles to call in extra artillery strikes.

If that was not enough, there are three new agent types, four new historical scenarios, new siege-battle mechanics and a large but not yet detailed upgrade to multiplayer.

Source: Gameconnect

Zotac unleash their GTX 560Ti 448 core graphics card

ZOTAC International,  today unleashes the GeForce GTX 560 Ti 448 cores Limited Edition graphics card geared for the latest stunning Microsoft DirectX 11-enabled titles.

The ZOTAC GeForce GTX 560 Ti 448 cores Limited Edition graphics card delivers the performance and visual details gamers crave for an unmatched immersive gaming experience. Equipped with 448 lightning-fast shaders and 1280MB of GDDR5 memory, the ZOTAC GeForce GTX 560 Ti 448 cores Limited Edition graphics card packs a performance punch.

“PC gaming is a strong segment that continues to grow and now is the best time to upgrade for the latest DirectX 11 releases. With the ZOTAC GeForce GTX 560 Ti 448 cores Limited Edition, gamers can easily equip their PC to play the latest titles with ultra-quality settings up to 1080p – beyond what a console can deliver,” said Carsten Berger, marketing director, ZOTAC International.

The ZOTAC GeForce GTX 560 Ti 448 cores Limited Edition is NVIDIA SLI ready with dual SLI connectors. Up to three ZOTAC GeForce GTX 560 Ti 448 cores Limited Editions can operate together for up to 2.8-times the performance of a single card or unlock 3D Vision Surround technology for triple-display gaming.

It’s time to play with the ZOTAC GeForce GTX 560 Ti 448 cores Limited Edition.

Source: Press Release

New Rainbow 6: Patriots Details

 

More details regarding the recently announced new Rainbow Six game, entitled ‘Rainbow Six: Patriots’ have been released by Ubisoft.

Unprecedented narrative: Patriots’ storyline explores an ultra-realistic what-if scenario inspired by real events and characters. The game will allow players to experience events from multiple perspectives creating an unprecedented level of immersion.

A new threat for a new team: Terrorism has evolved and Team Rainbow must face an organized militia of home-grown insurgents. As the leader of a new squad, players will wrestle with difficult ethical decisions and determine if the doing-whatever-it-takes mentality is needed to stop the enemy.

Enhanced squad management: At the press of a button, the Rainbow squad will perform the most efficient and deadly tactic given the context of the situation. When extreme measures are required, or when players call for it, you can take full control of your squad to plan the perfect assault.

Evolved combat: The game’s combat techniques have been pushed to the next level with cover and weapon systems redesigned to accommodate every combat situation. New Rappel and Breach mechanics are now enriched with multiple new techniques including Wall & Ceiling Breach, Fast Rope Rappel, inverted ‘Aussie Style Rappel’, Infiltrate & Subdue, to name a few.

Intense multiplayer experience: Players will be rewarded for working as a team and mastering the game’s new features that enhance communication and tactical execution between teammates. Once such feature found in the pre-game online lobby is the Sandtable, a holographic display that helps acquaint players with the level maps before they jump into the action. This will help players strategically coordinate attacks and add a new dimension to squad tactics.

Surprise and overpower enemies: Utilize the game’s new Scan mode to strategically breach and infiltrate areas. This new tool will provide a thermal read on the situation, allowing you to determine the squad’s best course to overwhelm and defeat enemies.

This new installment for the series is said to be rather controversial, not quite shooting unarmed citizens, but something that’s a bit more daring than whats been seen in Rainbow Six before.

Regardless, this looks like it will be the best Rainbow Six yet to date. It’s scheduled for release on PC, PS3 and Xbox 360 in 2013.

Source: Press Release

Star Wars: The Old Republic – Cut Content

 

In an interview with Videogamer.com, Senior Environment Designer Mike Harnisch says that a large portion of content was cut from the final version of the game, because it would make it too long.

“The challenge was, how do I create this incredible planet that’s not going to feel after the tenth hour that you’re just sick of it? How are we going to delineate space?”

Rest assured however, he informs the community that the cut content won’t affect the story or the gameplay of the game, merely areas that were not needed were removed.

“We would say ‘Well, we want to move this interior here, and we want to do this, and we don’t really need this’. We were so ambitious, I think that we ended up building a lot of things that we didn’t necessarily need.”

Due to the nature of the cuts, its very unlikely that any players will notice areas or parts of the game which have been clearly cut and removed.

“It wasn’t anything that anyone will notice when you play the game, it’s just that from our standpoint everything is our baby.”

Star Wars: The Old Republic is currently in a restricted Beta phase, but the NDA has been removed meaning anyone who plays it is free to post videos or images or story spoilers.  It will be released on the 20th of December 2011

Source: Videogamer

Eolize enhances its Mini-ITX case range

German brand EOLIZE announcing a new Mini-ITX Case. New EOLIZE SVD-NC12-02 Chassis comes from a upgraded SVD-NC11-02 Mini-ATX Case. EOLIZE improved the SVD-NC12-02 by adding a 120 mm axial fan and reworked flat front panel. It furthermore aims for private and corporate customers who are looking for solid and reliable NAS as well as Home Server chassis. It has much in common with a Barebone chassis and can be used as such but offers additional features such as Hot Swap Modules.

Both Hot Swap Modules are located behind the decently designed front door which are able to fit two either 3,5 inch (8,89 cm) or 2,5 inch (6,35 cm) drives such as HDD or SSD. One further 2,5 inch sized HDD/SSD may be mounted inside the SVD-NC12-02 Mini-ITX chassis. This drive can be used as a system drive to install an appropriate Operating System and additional Software. Additionally one 5,25 inch (13,3 cm) bay is located in the front giving enough space for a DVD, CD or Blu-ray drive as well as other commonly used bay accessory. SVD-NC12-02 Mini-ITX Chassis is furthermore equipped with an I/O panel in the front offering two USB 2.0 connectors, one Mic and one Audio-out connector.

To avoid heat accumulation appearing inside the Mini-ITX chassis one 120 mm and one 80 mm axial-fans were built-in. The 120 mm fan is located inside the front door to bring in fresh air from the outside as well as permanently cooling down the two Hard Drives mounted in the Hot Swap Modules. On the rear side one 80 mm axial-fan is mounted to exhaust the hot air created by various components inside the chassis. Hence creating a constant airflow avoiding any heat accumulation.

Similar to the formally announce EOLIZE SVD-NC11-2 Chassis, new SVD-NC12-02 Mini-ATX Chassis comes with a pre-mounted SFX Power Supply Unit rated with 300 Watts power output. To supply the hardware with required power it is equipped with one 24-pin ATX Connector, one 6-pin PCI-Express connector, two 4-pin P4 connectors, two 4-pin Molex and three SATA connectors.

All these features are allowing this chassis to be used for multiple purposes such as Barebone, NAS-, File- or even Home-Server for comfortable Data-Storage. EOLIZE SVD-NC12-02 Mini-ATX chassis is available for 99,00 EUR (incl. VAT/TAX) in the official EOLIZE Shop and can be purchased from other European Online Shops as of today.

Source: Press Release

MSI launches the 448 core GTX 560TI

Leading global mainboard and graphics card maker MSI today announces the release of the N560GTX-448 Twin Frozr III Power Edition/OC graphics card. This graphics card features the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 560 Ti chipset with 448 CUDA cores and 1280MB of 320-bit GDDR5 high-speed graphics memory. The N560GTX-448 Twin Frozr III Power Edition/OC supports MSI’s exclusive Triple Overvoltage and 6+1 Phase PWM design. The greatly improved overclocking potential and stability increases overclocking performance up to 29%! The highly acclaimed Twin Frozr III thermal design with 8cm Propeller Blades fan setup for 20% more air flow and 8mm SuperPipe technology is used for cooling. Fan noise of just 30dB at full load provides gamers the most silence user experience, while MSI Military Class II components are used to give the highest quality and stability. For gamers seeking overclocking potential, cooling and stability, the N560GTX-448 Twin Frozr III Power Edition/OC graphics card offers the perfect choice!

Power Edition architecture increases overclocking potential up-to 29%

The N560GTX-448 Twin Frozr III Power Edition/OC retains the Power Edition architecture with enhanced 6+1 phase PWM design to ensure stability during overclocking. Triple Overvoltage with Afterburner support means that GPU/Memory/PLL voltages can be adjusted to unleash the graphics card’s full potential and increases its overclocking capability up to 29%! Twin Frozr III Cooling: only 30dB under Full Load

The MSI N560GTX-448 Twin Frozr III Power Edition/OC graphics card features MSI’s exclusive Twin Frozr III dual-fan cooling solution and MSI’s innovative Propeller Blades technology which boosts airflow up-to 20% compared to conventional fan design. The dual 8cm temperature-controlled fan design, SuperPipe technology, nickel-plated copper base and high-density cooling fan setup, all work together to ensure maximum heat dissipation within the shortest amount of time! Noise is a stealthy 30dB under full load, providing gamers the most silence user experience.

Premium Military Class II components

MSI Military Class II components represent the highest in quality and stability. The military-grade components used for the N560GTX-448 Twin Frozr III Power Edition/OC includes Hi-C Caps with Tantalum for more precise power management, Super Ferrite Chokes (SFC) for 30% more power and Solid CAPs with up to 10 years of service life.

Source: Press Release