New Hitman Teaser Trailer Released and Beta Phase Announced

The upcoming Hitman (2016)  game is highly anticipated and slightly delayed and it is one of the very few games these days that I’m actually considering to pre-order to be able to play it on day one. Square Enix released a new teaser trailer and announced when the beta testing of the game will launch at the same time.

With the upcoming holiday and all the shopping going on, they surely don’t want to miss a chance to sell a few more games and as such the timing is perfect. Why? Because pre-orders will get guaranteed access to the upcoming beta testing of the game. With the way that they worded it, we can assume that there will be other methods to gain access to the beta, but those haven’t been revealed yet.

The new trailer teases the beta mission which puts Agent 47 20 years back into the past. This mission is the first time that Agent 47 meets his long-time handler Diana Burnwood, at least that we as gamers get to see. The mission takes place in a top-secret ICA recruitment and training facility and that is about the information we get now.

The Hitman beta will launch on February 12th for PlayStation 4 and one week later on the PC, on February the 19th.

NZXT Announces the New S340 Special Edition PC Case

If you are planning a black and green PC build or you just are a Razer fan, then NZXT’s newest special edition chassis might be just the right fit for you. NZXT just announced the new S340 Special Edition PC case and it looks as awesome as we’ve come to expect it from NZXT. It is also a durable chassis, made of 90 percent steel.

This isn’t just a normal NZXT S340 chassis in a new colour scheme, it also brings new features along with it. One of them being a cable management bar that avoids separating the front inlet and the remainder of the housing, allowing complete control of cables for a refined appearance and cooling optimised through better air circulation.

The NZXT S340 has a pretty compact form factor and allows you to create a pretty powerful setup with its dimensions of 445 mm height and 432 mm length. No need to put a giant block next to your desk if smaller can do it.

The chassis allows for water cooling setups with 280mm radiator support at the front and it comes with two 120mm FN V2 fans at the top and rear. The integrated PSU shroud will keep those unpleasant cables out of sight and creates an overall cleaner look in the chassis.

Special Edition Features:

  • Front panel featuring back-lit triple-headed snake logo
  • Cable management bar with triple-headed snake logo
  • Green power LED
  • Green under-glow LED with rear on/off switch
  • PCI slot base cover for a flush look and funneled airflow
  • Signature green USB 3.0 ports
  • Tinted window panel
  • Matt black finish

Common S340 Features:

  • 360 degrees of steel casing surrounding the all-steel chassis
  • Grommet-less cable management bar keeps cables tidy with ease
  • Full 280 mm radiator support in the front
  • Compact form factor coming in two inches below competing mid towers
  • Detailed design and engineering with tons of small touches
  • Very easy to build in for new and experienced users alike
  • Integrated PSU shroud for an ultra-clean build
  • Fully filtered intakes
  • Includes 2x 120 mm FN V2 fans, top and rear

The price of this special edition S340 NZXT chassis is set to £69.99 ex VAT / €99.99 ex. VAT. We will, of course, have a review of this chassis ready for you shortly, so stay tuned.

Prison Architect v1.0 Launch Date Revealed

Prison Architect is a game that has had a very long and public development phase that is about to come to an end thanks to the announcement of Prison Architect version 1.0 and its launch this October.

The two main people behind this simple yet extremely fascinating game are Mark Morris as Producer and Chris Delay as Designer. Every month like clockwork they’ve released a new alpha version for the ones that bought one of the early access packs. The game has been on sale quite a few times already and this has been going on for a little over 35 months now. There have been exceptions due to “family addition”, where the fans had to wait an extra month for the next version as well as a new video each time.

And while the game is great, I have to admit that I’ve almost enjoyed the 50 minute long videos even more. Mark and Chris do a voice over the video where they show the new features and what else they’ve done, or as they describe it themselves: “Our audience expect a and ready, badly edited, long rambling discussions and bulls##t – and the occasional new feature.”

For now Alpha 35 is the newest version and this game has already come a long way from the very basic sandbox building game without many features and lots of bugs. It has become a very challenging game that can keep you occupied for hours and hours on end and I personally can highly recommend it, that is if you like building games.

Design and build your own prison, manage the finances and rehabilitation as well as all the prisoners needs, such as food, sleep, and hygiene. Deal with riots and catch escaping prisoners as well as gangs. Hire personal and create a beautiful place, or not. The choice is really yours, but you’re also the one that has to deal with what the prisoners do as a result of their treatment.

Prison Architect is truly a prime example on how early access should be handled. Create an almost working base and then continuously and regularly update with bug fixes and new features while you listen to your early backers and try to create the game that they really want. Well done guys, I for one can’t wait to get the “final” version to play.

Marvel Reveal New Spider-Man Actor

For sometime there has been speculation and rumour regarding who would take on the role for the next lineup of the Spider-Man movie’s, with popular actors such as Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield who have previously played both the roles of Spider-Man there is a lot of high expectation.

Today Marvel announced the young actor who will take on the new persona of Spider-Man, 19 year old English actor and dancer Tom Holland, not the most famous or desirable of all the possible actors on the list. In 2012 he played a role in The Impossible alongside Ewan McGregor and Naomi Watts, He also just recently finished filming In the Heart of the Sea with avengers’ Chris Hemsworth.

If Tom Hollands sudden rise to fame isn’t enough to prove to you that he could play Spider-Man, his Instagram videos have footage of him performing acrobatics should seal the deal. Check out a video below!

Tom Holland surely has the acrobatic technique to leap over obstacles or stop evil doers in their tracks, be sure to check out the various videos of his flips and jumps to reassure yourself that the portrayal of Spidey is in the right hands (or legs).

Aside from revealing the final choice for the role; it also revealed the director Jon Watts is set to join the crew. So far this lineup is starting to take form very nicely, finally now that Spidey is back in Marvel’s hands.

Do you think Tom Holland can do the web slinger justice?

Thank you to MoviePilot for providing us with this information.

CRYORIG Releases the H5 Ultimate CPU Cooler

Air cooling is still used in most systems despite the ever-growing user base for liquid all in one solutions, and CRYORIG has just released their newest take on a CPU cooler. The new CRYORIG H5 Ultimate is built on the foundation of the popular CRYORIG H5, but kicks it up a notch with a bigger fan and higher TDP rating.

The new H5 Ultimate is using the larger XF140 fan that increases the TDP from 160 to 180 Watt and putting the proprietary Hive Fin system to work. The XF140’s airflow rating comes in at 76 CFM, which is around 17% more than the smaller H5 Universal. This kind of cooling performance is more than enough for almost all modern CPU platforms.

The H5 Ultimate features the acclaimed MultiSeg mounting system and fin structure with turbulence reduction system that makes it the strongest single tower solution CRYORIG has up to date and one well worth considering in my opinion. The black top plate for the heatsink gives the CPU cooler a great finish.

The H5 Ultimate is scheduled to be released this summer with an MSRP set at $46.99 USD in North America and €39.99 Euros in Germany. Other regions may vary in price and availability.

Zotac Announce Two New Broadwell Mini-PC

ZOTAC has announced two new nano sized mini-PCs based on the new Intel Broadwell processors in their M-series. The two new systems are the ZBOX MI522 nano and ZBOX MI542 nano, and they pack a lot of features and power in a very compact form factor thanks to ZOTAC’s years of experience in the field and Intel’s new 14nm chips.

“We are always forward looking and pleased to introduce the latest technology into our mini-PCs so our users can enjoy all the innovations that come with the times. By integrating the new Intel Broadwell CPUs into our new M-series, we are enabling users to get the best of both worlds in terms of speed and power efficiency,” reveals Jacky Huang, Director of Product Management, ZOTAC International.

The only difference between the two models is what processor they use. The ZBOX MI522 is using a Intel Core i3-5010U running at 2.1GHz and the ZBOX MI542 is using a Intel Core i5-2500U with a 2.2GHz core and 2.7GHz boost speed. They both feature two DDR3 SO-DIMM slots for a total of up to 16GB RAM and one 2.5-inch bay for a SATA3 HDD or SSD.

ZOTAC packed quite a few connections into this tiny 127mm x 127mm x 45mm unit. It comes with dual Gigabit Ethernet, four USB 3.0 ports, one USB 2.0 port, 3-in-1 card reader, 3.5mm stereo jacks for audio and HDMI and DisplayPort for up to 4K resolutions. The mini-PCs also feature 802.11ac Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.0.

ZOTAC also created Plus models of both these mini-PCs, where you get them pre-packed with a 500GB drive and 4GB RAM, ready to use. Availability should be soon, but no word on pricing yet.

SilverStone Introduced SUGO SG13 Mini-ITX Case

SilverStone has created some great Mini-ITX cases over the years and the new SUGO SG13 looks to equally impressive. The tiny 11.5 liter sized case can still accommodate a lot of components, such as AIO water cooling and graphics cards up to 265mm.

The SG13 can hold standard sized ATX power supplies, as well as a Mini-DTX or Mini-ITX motherboard. It also supports dual slot cards making it perfect for graphics cards, even long ones of up to 265mm. The case supports both 120mm and 140mm single fan AIO coolers, effectively allowing you to put a high-end gaming machine into this tiny enclosure without the risk of running into clearance or heat issues.

It has both USB 3.0 and audio connections on the front and the motherboard inside is mounted on standoffs for backside components. It has two internal drive bays for storage, one 3.5-inch and one 2.5-inch. The 3.5-inch bay can double up for two 2.5-inch drives if not needed.

The SG13 also has plenty of vents on all sides and the top to allow enough airflow to pass through this tiny case. The PSU length limitations are set to 150mm and the CPU cooler can’t be higher than 61mm.

The new SilverStone SG13 will be available at the end of February for an MSRP of €37.90.

Thanks to SilverStone for providing us with this information

Shuttle Lauches DS57U Broadwell based Slim PC

Shuttle has announced their DS57U Slim PC based around the latest Intel Broadwell platform. The base model comes with a 14nm Intel Celeron 3205U 1.5GHz dual-core processor that has a maximum TDP of only 15W. The graphics power is provided by Intel HD Graphics with both HDMI and DisplayPort for dual-screen setups.

There are three further models (SKUs) that provide more power and support for 4K/Ultra HD video playback, the DS57U3 (i3-5005U), DS57U5 (i5-5200U), and DS57U7 (i7-5500U).

The fanless unit would be perfect in any office or living environment and won’t gauge on the electricity bill either. It comes with a 65W power adapter which in itself keeps the running costs as low as a good old-fashioned light bulb. The DS57U is certified for 24/7 use and can easily be adapted to digital signage as well as thin-client.

The durable metal chassis houses four USB 2.0 ports, two USB 3.0, two serial COM ports (RS232, RS232/422/485), dual intel Gigabit Ethernet, b/g/n WiFi, a SD Card reader as well as MIC in, Line out and a clear CMOS button.

The system supports two DDR3L-1333/1600 SO-DIMM modules for a total of up to 16GB RAM. There is only one SATA slot for a 2.5-inch drive, but that should be sufficient for most areas of use. The 39.5mm thin unit is also VESA mountable.

No official word on pricing or availability yet. A single Austrian web shop has it listed for €224.24, but no availability date.

Thanks to Shuttle for providing us with this information

Ricoh Announces Development of Long-Awaited Full-Frame Pentax DSLR

Pentax fans have long been wanting a full-frame DSLR camera and they’ve been close before. Back in 2001 Pentax announced one, but it never made it to the market. Now Ricoh has answered the wishes and announced that they are developing exactly that.

The company didn’t share a whole lot of detail, other than to say that it will be compatible with DA lenses via a crop function and that it will be available by the end of 2015. The concept model pictured above will also be shown next week at CP+ in Japan where a lot more information are expected to be released.

The previous prototype that didn’t make it was developed at least to the point of being a semi-functional 6MP camera and it is a shame that it didn’t make it to the market as it looked pretty sweet for the time. Let’s hope the new one won’t suffer the same fate.

Thanks to DPreview for providing us with this information

TteSPORTS Introduced Updated Black V2 Laser Gaming Mouse

Tt eSPORTS is releasing an upgrade to the highly popular BLACK Gaming Mouse, the new BLACK V2 Laser Gaming Mouse. The upgrade includes a new sensor, new buttons, a better surface finish and extra grip, as well as an improved software experience.

The new BLACK V2 is using a 5700 DPI Avago ADNS-9500 Laser sensor with 4 programmable DPI levels per profile and an adjustable increment of 100 DPI, while an additional thumbs button has been added to give the mouse a total of 7 programmable buttons. The current DPI setting will be displayed by built-in light relays and the mouse wheel will flash when profiles are changed.

The new surface coating is said to bring an even “softer” touch than gamers are used to while the new hexagonal pattern at the thumbs area will provide better grip in extra hectic situation. TteSPORTS also took the time to revamp the software and give it a better user interface and added some features.

The new TteSPORTS BLACK V2 laser gaming mouse will be launched globally in middle of January at an MSRP of $49.99.

Thanks to TteSPORTS for providing us with this information

Images courtesy of TTteSPORTS

ASUS Announces Strix 2.0 Multi-Platform Gaming Headset

On Christmas Eve, ASUS announced the Strix 2.0 Multi-Platform Gaming Headset that is compatible with PC, Mac, PlayStation 4, smartphones, and tablets alike. The Strix 2.0 features large 60 mm drivers that should deliver some deep bass and clear sound for both gaming sessions and music listening. It also features a dual-microphone design with a detachable boom mic as well as in-line mic for when you’re on the go. To increase the portability more than just removing the boom mic, the Strix 2.0 features foldable earpieces and weighs just 320 grams.

The Strix 2.0 comes with a Y-adapter and a 1.5m braided-fiber extension cable with separate headphone and mic plugs for compatibility. Also included is a four-pole 3.5mm audio/mic combined connector enables Strix 2.0 to be used with smartphones, tablets, and PlayStation 4 gaming consoles.

The drivers have an impedance of 32-ohms, a frequency response of 20Hz to 20KHz, and a sensitivity of 98dB SPL. The microphone has a unidirectional pickup pattern, 50Hz to 16KHz frequency response and a sensitivity from -40 to +3dB.

Thanks to ROG for providing us with this information

Images courtesy of ROG

Asus Announced Xonar U3 External DAC

Shortly before Christmas, Asus announced the Xonar U3 external DAC. The U3 is the new little brother to the bigger U5 and the gaming-oriented U7 DACs and is desgned as a portable and compact solution.

The compact design brings some limitations along, most likely due to the limited amount of power that can a single USB port can deliver. The frequency response ranges from 20Hz to 20KHz at a sample rate of 48KHz and 16bit, a somewhat low setup for those who prefer high-quality uncompressed music. Looking from the other side, a portable solution like this will be a huge upgrade to almost any laptop or other portable computers.

The headphone amplifier has adjustable gain levels that can drive up to 150ohm headphones and headsets, which indeed is nice. The included DJ Mix tool and five pre-set audio modes all point towards the use of this DAC that must be creating podcasts while on the go.

While the specification might not impress everyone, the price of just £19.99 via Amazon might change those opinions. It’s a cheap and portable soundcard for people on the go that aren’t satisfied with their built-in solution.

Specifications

  • Signal-to-Noise Ratio (SNR): 100dB
  • Total Harmonic Distortion + Noise : 0.005% (-110dB)
  • Frequency response: 20Hz to 20kHz
  • Headphone impedance: Optimized for 32~150Ω
  • Interface: USB 1.1 or above bus compatible
  • Sample Rate and Resolution: Up to 48KHz @ 16bit
  • Connectivity: 1 x 3.5 mm jack analog out; 1 x 3.5 mm jack (Line-In/Mic-In combo); 1 x S/PDIF out (combo with analog out)
  • Operation system: Windows 10, 8, 7, XP (32/64bit)
  • Karaoke functions: Music pitch-shifting, vocal cancellation, and microphone echo effects with stereo mix recording (Wave and Mic-in) for online Karaoke or online DJ applications

Thanks to ROG for providing us with this information

Images courtesy of ROG

DeepCool Announce the New Landking Case

DeepCool announced the Landking mid-tower case, a case that on first look reminded me of one of my old Dell cases. Dell has created some great looking cases through the time (let’s not talk about the internals), but we’re here to take a look at the new DeepCool Landking that can hold anything from mITX to ATX motherboards, and plenty more.

The case has a matte gunmetal grey colouring with a design inspired from the automobile industry. There is plenty of cooling options and the case comes with four pre-installed 120mm fans and fan controller. All drives are mounted tool-less for the extra convenience and it has a hot-swap SATA port at the top.

The Landking has three external 5.25-inch and five internal 3.5/2.5-inch drive bays. Without any part removal, the case allows for graphics cards up to 280mm length and CPU coolers with a height of 165mm.

Features

  • Support ATX/MicroATX/MINI-ITX motherboards
  • With one HDD/SSD hot plugging (SATA) port at top panel
  • With one fan-speed adjusting switch, can control 3 fans at the same time
  • 4 fans pre-installed (one 120mm LED fan and three 120mm black fan)
  • 2x USB 3.0 +2x USB 2.0 Ports
  • Fashionable appearance originated from car design idea
  • Fashionable side-window
  • Tool free installation design for ODD and HDD
  • 8pcs expansion slots support 4 VGA Cards crossfire
  • With rubber buffer and dust filter for PSU
  • Wide CPU cut-out for CPU cooler mounting
  • Bottom loaded PSU for effective cooling and large inner space
  • Support cable management
  • Support 120mm Liquid Cooler installation at the rear side only

Thanks to DeepCool for providing us with this information

Images courtesy of DeepCool

FSP Reveal 400W Titanium Certified PSU

This FSP400-60AGTAA isn’t the first 80Plus Titanium certified power supply we’ve seen since the standard was introduced not long ago, but the FSP Group’s newest is the first to come with this certification at such a low wattage. FSP Group now brings true power efficiency to office and home computers.

Super Flower has received certifications for PSUs ranging from 600 to 1600 Watts, but none of these are on the market yet. So far, it is only Corsair that has a Titanium rated PSU on the market with the AX1500i PSU. Now PSP Group joins the two and becomes the next manufacturer to get the Titanium certification, but the first to get it for a 400W PSU.

According to the 80Plus certification, the PSU can perform at 90.02, 93.00, 94.18 and 92.73 percent efficiency (depending on load level) while being connected to an 110V outlet. This also means that it should perform at even better efficiency on a 230V outlet. It comes in a typical grey OEM design, is non-modular, and without cable-sleeves, which points towards a pure OEM product at first. But we can surely expect it to be launched as a new Aurum series as well.

Thanks to FSP for providing us with this information

Images courtesy of FSP

LG Introduces Music Flow Wireless Speaker Series

LG will be introducing their new Music Flow series of wireless speakers at CES 2015 in Las Vegas, consisting of the companies first battery-powered wireless speaker, normal speakers, and soundbars. The LG NP8350 is the company’s first wireless speaker with a built-in battery for easy portability from one room to another in the home, or on the go. The battery is pretty much what sets this one apart from the other ones, so anything else goes for them all.

The Music Flow series makes it real easy to create your personalized wireless home cinema. Each soundbar allows you to connect two speakers wireless (left and right) and each speaker allows the connection of another speaker with the dual band 2.4 and 5GHz WiFi connections. Just place your speakers where you desire, connect them, and immerse yourself in optimal surround sound. LG’s BP550 Streaming 3D Blu-ray Player or LAB550W SoundPlate can also both be connected to the Music Flow speakers to stream sound from any CD or a connected USB drive.

The Music Flow speakers further increase the convenience factor with the Android or iOS compatible mobile apps. When your phone comes within on foot of the speakers, they can take over the playback running on it. This means that when you get in the door while singing along to your favorite tune playing on your earpieces, you just place it near a speaker and they will take over. They also come with LG’s HomeChat feature that allows you to SMS text commands to your speakers or integrate it into your alarm system.

The lineup that will be presented includes the company’s first battery-powered Portable Wi-Fi Speaker; model H4 (NP8350) additional Portable Wi-Fi Speakers; models H7 (NP8740), H5 (NP8540) and H3 (NP8340); and upgraded Sound Bars; (models LAS950M, LAS851M and LAS751M).

Thanks to LG for providing us with this information

Images courtesy of LG

BenQ Announced RL2755HM 27-inch Monitor for Console Gaming

The next preview we’re getting from BenQ and their CES 2015 lineup is the 27-inch RL2755HM monitor. It is built with feedback from the professional gaming community and specifically engineered for FPS games such as Halo and Call of Duty, but also popular fighting games like Mortal Kombat.

It has an ultra-low input lag that renders action without ghosting or latency from mouse motions. It has a 1ms grey to grey response time but no word on resolution yet. The 24-inch predecessor only had 108op and it is likely that this one is the same as it is geared towards console gamers. The contrast is said to be 12 million to 1.

The RL2755HM has LED backlighting for that extra ambient feeling, built-in 2-watt stereo speakers, and dual HDMI ports “to provide full HD connectivity with gaming consoles.” But it also enables live streaming of gaming content without any risk of lag or delay via the monitors HDMI-out port. A cool feature for sure. Since console gamers don’t get any more than 60 fps anyway, the RL2755HM features a 60Hz refresh rate “tuned to match any console video output for seamless connectivity.”

I really don’t know if this monitor will be a hit with console gamers or not, if they’re passionate enough about their gaming to invest in a gaming monitor for the console they’ve already hooked up to their TV. But if they should be, then the BenQ RL2755HM seems like a great option.

Thanks to BenQ for providing us with his information

Image courtesy of BenQ

EVGA Announces Supernova 1600 T2 Titanium Power Supply

If you need a lot of power and it has to come at the best efficiency rating possible, then EVGA might have just the right thing for you with their new Supernova 1600 T2 80Plus Titanium rated 1600 watts power supply. This beast should give about any system all the power it can handle.

The Supernova T2 has a 96% efficiency (on 230volts) with the single 133.3A +12V rail design. It uses a superior vertical double layer main transformer, is built with 100% Japanese capacitors, and the intelligent 140mm fan only spins up on load thresholds. It comes with all the protections you could want in form of OVP (Over Voltage Protection), UVP (Under Voltage Protection), OCP (Over Current Protection), OPP (Over Power Protection), SCP (Short Circuit Protection), and OTP (Over Temperature Protection).

The fully modular PSU has one 24-pin ATX, two 8-pin EPS, nine 6+2 pin PCIe with an additional six 6-pin PCIe for a total of 15 PCIe power connectors, sixteen SATA, six Molex, and two Berg/Floppy connectors. Wow.

As you might have guessed already, a power supply like that won’t come cheap. And you’re right, it has a price tag of $449.99. It does however come with an outstanding 10-year warranty.

Thanks to TechPowerUp for providing us with this information

Images courtesy of EVGA

COUGAR 500K Gaming Keyboard Announced

Following in the footsteps of the 700K and 600K keyboards, Cougar announced they new 500K Gaming keyboard. The new keyboard targets gamers who either are on a budget or just likes membrane keyboards, but at the same time don’t want to miss out on the gaming features. It is one of the few real N-Key Rollover membrane keyboards on the market and by including all the pro gamer functions of the acclaimed COUGAR 700K, it should make a pretty good keyboard for gamers on a budget.

“When it comes to features and functionality, the 500K is the best membrane keyboard currently available. For a start, being an N-Key Rollover membrane keyboard it outclasses all the non-NKRO keyboards and competes directly with high end mechanical keyboards. Apart from doing away with the precision gap between membrane and mechanical keyboards, the 500K also includes a whole set of premium gaming-oriented features.”

Mechanical keyboard users probably won’t be convinced by this new release, but everyone might have a potential next keyboard here with the 6 fully customizable Gaming-keys as well as dedicated keys for recording macros, profile switching, backlight control, Windows-key hardware lock, and a detachable palm rest.

There is a clear error on the box image release and added above as it says it is a mechanical keyboard, and it isn’t. Just to point that out again. No word on price or availability at the time of writing.

Thanks to TechPowerUp for providing us with this information

Image compiled from TechPowerUp

Creative Launches Sound Blaster X7

Creative Technology is launching the Sound Blaster X7, their most powerful and technology advanced sound solution to date. The Sound Blaster X7 is designed to deliver great sound for gaming as well as entertainment and has a wide variety of connection options for different setups. It has a 24-bit/192 KHz sound resolution, a 127dB digital-to-analog converter (DAC), and an amplifier of 100W. The result is the best, clearest and most powerful sound experience for games, movies and music from Creative and the Sound Blaster X7 is already nominated in two categories for CES 2015.

Specification Highlights:

  • Burr-Brown (PCM1794) 127dB digital-to-analog converter (DAC) supports high-resolution audio playback of HD audio tracks up to 24-bit/192kHz when connected to PC/Mac, including 24-bit/88.2kHz and 24-bit/176.4kHz
  • Texas Instruments (TPA6120A2) 600Ω headphone amplifier is capable of driving audiophile-grade headphones, with full and detailed clarity
  • High power, high efficiency Texas Instruments Class D amplifier (TPA3116D2) delivers up to 100W power (2 x 50W @ 4Ω)* to passive bookshelf and tower speakers
  • Burr-Brown (PCM4220) 123dB analog-to-digital converter (ADC) delivers high quality, low noise analog line-in audio playback and audio recording of up to 24-bit/192kHz
  • Nichicon “Fine Gold” capacitors offer rich sound in the bass register and clearer highs
  • USB 2.0 Host connectivity allows direct streaming of high quality, lossless audio from Android and iOS devices
  • Asynchronous Mode USB Audio greatly reduces jitter and allows accurate high-resolution audio data transfer from the computer
  • Swappable op-amps for customizable tonality
  • ASIO support allows for reduced latency for a higher resolution audio experience
  • Gold-plated audio connectors create precise contact for low signal loss
  • *100W speaker output requires upgrade to high power adapter (24V 6A).
  • Supplied power adapter provides up to 2 X 38W @ 4Ω.

The Creative Sound Blaster X7 should become available sometime in December at an MSRP of $499.

Thanks to Creative for providing us with this information

Images courtesy of Creative

 

Xigmatek Announced The TYR-SD962 CPU Cooler

Xigmatec has announced their latest entry to the CPU cooler market in form of the TYR-SD962 CPU cooler. Týr was/is the Norse God of Law and Heroic Glory, and was the son of Odin. A Bold name for a small cooler, that however promises some good features for a budget oriented cooler.

The TYR-SD962 uses heat-pipes direct touch (H.D.T), where the two 6mm copper heat-pipes make direct contact with the CPU. The base in itself acts as a tiny heatsink and the fins are made from an aluminium alloy. The maximum TDP is 110W and without a fan mounted it weighs 310 grams and measures 85 x 65 x 121 mm.

The 92mm fan used is a fluid circulative bearing (FCB) fan with variable speed between 1200 and 2800 RPM. At maximum speed it can produce an airflow of 52 CFM while the noise levels are rated between 20 and 28 dBA depending on RPM.

The new Xigmatec TYR-SD962 CPU cooler supports Intel LGA Socket 755, 1150, 1155, 1156, 1366 and AMD AM and FM Sockets.

Thanks to TechPowerUp for providing us with this information

Images courtesy of Xigmatec

Toshiba Announces Two New Enterprise SSDs

Toshiba is expanding their line of enterprise SSDs with two new series, the HK3R2 where the R stands for read intensive operations and the HK3E2 where the E stands for Endurance (and value). Both drives are 2.5-inch, 7mm drives based on the SATA3 standard and will help Toshiba to cover a wider variety of usage scenarios.

Both the HK3R2 series and the HK3E2 SSDs are equipped with power-loss and end-to-end data protection features and come with Toshiba’s Quadruple Swing-By Code (QSBCTM) error-correction technology (ECC). The drives incorporate in-house designs on the controller and use Toshiba’s 19nm second-generation MLC NAND flash memory.

The Read-Intensive HK3R2 series is available in capacities of either 120GB, 240GB, 480GB or 960GB and is designed for read-intensive applications and workloads such as read caching, video streaming, and data storage. It has an endurance rating of one full drive writes per day for five years with a random 4KB enterprise workload.

The Value-Endurance HK3E2 series is available in capacities of either 200GB, 400GB or 800GB and is designed for mainstream enterprise applications such as exchange mail servers, web servers, database servers, indexing servers and data center storage workloads. It can stand up to three full drive writes per day for a five-year period with random 4KB enterprise workload.

Thanks to Toshiba for providing us with this information

Images courtesy of Toshiba

Raijintek Announces Core Edition of Their Morpheus VGA Cooler

Raijintek announced their new version of the Morpheus via a facebook post with a youtube video, the Black Morpheus Core Edition VGA cooler is presented. We’ve tested the original a while ago and it impressed with its ease to install and great cooling capabilities.

The new core edition is fully black-coated to give it that extra premium look and fit better in more black-oriented system builds. It has a mirror copper base and soldered aluminium alloy fins connected by 6mm heat-pipes. The heat sink itself weighs 515 grams and measures 254 x 98 x 44 mm.

The Morpheus Core Edition has a cooling capacity up to 360 watts TDP with its 12 copper heat-pipes and 129 fins. RAM and VRMs will be aided in cooling by the included 24 piece heat-sink set. It’s compatible with most modern graphics cards, including R9 290 and R9 270 series. The R9 280 or HD7970 cards need a shim to be compatible due to the chip design. Nvidia’s cards from 650 to 780Ti are supported as well.

You can mount two 120mm fans to the Morpheus, but they aren’t included in the packaging. This saves on initial costs and allows you the flexibility to chose the fans you’d like. No word on pricing or availability yet.

Thanks to Raijintec for providing us with this information

Images and Video courtesy of Raijintec

ANTEC Launches New Entry Level GX300 Gaming Chassis

Antec has presented their new entry-level gaming chassis dubbed the GX300. The Midi-Tower chassis is available in two versions, one with a window in the side panel and one without. The interior is all painted black and the entire chassis has well-rounded corners everywhere. The GX300 is a clean yet aggressive case with space for graphics cards up to a length of 400mm.

“At a very competitive price, the GX300 offers a lot of features and lets users be prepared for future upgrades”, explains Jerome Francois, Sales Director Europe at Antec. “It demonstrates the opportunity to create an up-to-date system with great airflow and space for the latest components.”

The top-mounted IO panel will give you direct access to the USB 2.0 and USB 3.0 ports, Audio jacks, the power button, and also a fan control switch with two speeds. It also features an illuminated LED indicator at the top. Inside there is plenty of room for cable routing and it has a generously sized cutout behind the CPU for easy cooler mounting.

Motherboards up to ATX are supported and you can add up to six hard drives in the tool-free drive bays. It can take two 120mm fans at the top, one at the rear and two more at the front for optimal airflow and cooling of your components. IT also has an elevated stand to further aid the cooling.

The GX300 is backed by a 3-year warranty and should be available now at an MSRP of just €59.00.

Technical Specifications:

  • Chassis color: Black
  • 6 drive bays
  • 6 x 3.5” / 2.5” drive trays
  • Motherboards: Standard ATX, microATX, Mini-ITX
  • 7 expansion slots
  • Maximum graphics card size: 15.7” (400 mm)
  • Maximum CPU cooler height: 5.5” (140 mm)
  • Cooling System:
    2 x 120 mm top exhaust fan (Optional)
    1 x 120mm rear exhaust fan pre-installed
    2 x 120 mm front intake fan (Optional)
  • Front I/O ports:
    1 x USB 3.0 High Speed USB port
    1 x USB 2.0
    1 x Audio I/O (HD97)
  • Unit Dimensions: 485 mm (H) x 180 mm (W) x 475 mm (D)
  • Net Weight: 5.45 kg

Thanks to Antec for providing us with this information

Images courtesy of Antec

COUGAR Announces 600K Gaming Keyboard

Cougar got a lot of praise for their almost over-the-top aluminium structured 700K keyboard. But it was too much for some people, those who don’t want to have to install software to use extra functions and don’t need all sorts of extra keys. Those people have been heard and Cougar is now releasing the 600K keyboard that basically is a slimmed down to basics model, but it still maintains an edge over budget keyboards.

The Cougar 600K is an N-Key Rollover mechanical keyboard and will be available with all four types of Cherry MX Switches. There is no need to install drivers or set it up to start using it due to the pure approach to functionality. Connect it and your good to go.

“We knew that there were people who simply weren’t interested in the plethora of functions offered by high end keyboards but at the same time didn’t want to settle for a lower end one. For all those people, who just want a pure, high quality mechanical keyboard in a durable and elegant design, we created the COUGAR 600K,” said Lio Huang, Marketing Dept. III Director, COUGAR.

What it lacks in software features, it got as hardware features – something the “bigger” keyboards could learn a thing or two from. The hard turn-off of the Windows key is well-known and present, but the K600 also has allows for adjustment of the repeat rate of the keys, has lighting control for the WASD and Direction keys. Default multimedia keys are also present. For added convienience it also features a USB pass-through port.

No word on pricing, availability or other features yet, but we will keep you updated as the information emerges.

Thanks to TechPowerUp for providing us with this information

Image courtesy of TechPowerUp

Apacer Announces Two New SSDs with Improved ECC

Apacer Technology has launched two new ultra slim industrial SATA3.0 SSDs. The SFD18SH-M that complying with the JEDEC MO-297 standard and the mSATA H1-M that is compliant with the MO-300 standard. Both models are made under 1ynm process and are said to be extremely price competitive for their ultra slim appearance, high speed, and high stability

Both new drives are built with industrial grade flash chips, they are based upon the SATA 3 standard and come in capacities ranging from 16Gb to 256GB. The performance is rated to 515 MB/s for linear reads and 180MB/s for the writes, without any more specifications.

To enhance data security, Apacer improved on the ECC (error correcting code) capability and raised it to 72bit/1K bytes for both the SFD18SH-M and mSATA H1-M. This is quite a bit better than what we’ve seen up until now. The new DEVSLP power saving function has also been added to both models.

While these most likely aren’t SSDs that we ordinary users get to see, the important part here is the improvements on the ECC and that is something I hope will make its way from here and into the consumer and prosumer market.

Thanks to Apacer for providing us with this information

Images courtesy of Apacer

Super Talent Launches DuraDrive AT7 for in-Vehicle-Infotainment

Super Talent Technology announced its updated DuraDrive AT7 Solid State Drive built for approved automotive In-Vehicle-Infotainment (IVI) systems. While the drive is built for IVI systems, it doesn’t mean that it can’t be used other places. It just means that some aspects of the drive have been improved upon specifically to suit an automobile environment.

The DuraDrive AT7 can operate at temperatures from minus 40°C and up to plus 85°C with a humidity between 5% and 98%, withstand vibration up to 16G, and hold up to a 1500G shock impact. Other than that, it’s a pretty normal 2.5-inch SATA3 SSD that comes in capacities from 32GB and up to 1TB.

The details about the individual drives aren’t available yet and there are several varieties in the lineup as Super Talent uses both SLC and MLC NAND, but without specifying anything closer. The performance is rated up to 500 MB/s at reading, 400MB/s at writing, and the DuraDrive AT7 comes with a 1ms response time.

Thanks to SuperTalent for providing us with this information

Image courtesy of SuperTalent

 

Zowie Gear Releases Smaller FK2 Mouse

Zowie Gear has released a new mouse upon us and it’s a shrunk down version of the Zowie FK1 that scored great in our review. Not everyone has the same size hands, so it’s great to see some more variations in that area.

The FK2 mouse is developed for claw-grip usage and can work as both left and right-handed mouse with its two thumb buttons on each side. The DPI is adjustable in steps of 400, 800, 1600 and 3200 while the USB report rate is adjustable to 125, 500 and 1000 Hz. The lift-off distance is 1.5 to 1.8 mm and it should work with any operating system that supports plug’n’play USB devices.

The new mouse should be available within a couple of weeks are retailers around the world.

Thanks to Zowie for providing us with this information

Images courtesy of Zowie