XFX Pro850W Black Edition Fully Modular Power Supply Review

Introduction & Packaging


Today we’ll be taking a look at one of the latest power supplies from XFX, a PRO850W Black Editon unit designed for high-end gaming systems and workstations. It ticks a lot of the right boxes that most people are looking for when buying a PSU, as it comes from a well-known and trusted brand name, offers plenty of power for a dual GPU configuration, 80 Plus Gold efficiency, fully modular cables, Japanese capacitors and more.

The unit comes well equipped with high-end features, which means I’m expecting nothing short of excellent performance from it. It promises high-end thrills and performance, so that’s exactly what it has to deliver in our tests. So let’s stop beating around the bush and take a closer look at what this unit has to offer, before firing it up on our load tester.

The packaging is very nicely designed, with a clear image of the PSU on the front, as well as a quick run down of the main specifications.

Around the back, a more detailed explination of the general design, such as the SolidLink Connectors that keep the interior of the PSU neat and tidy; this helps greatly with airflow and cooling.

In the box, you’ll find the usual power cable, some mounting screws and the user manual.

Plextor M6e Black Edition PCIe 256GB SSD Review

Introduction


It is always a pleasure to get an SSD in for review, and even more when it is a high-performance PCI-Express based M.2 SSD. We’ve previously had a look at the Plextor M6e and today it’s time to take a closer look at the brand new Plextor M6e Black Edition PCI Express SSD with 256GB capacity. This drive doesn’t just promise to be a high-performing SSD, but it is also a beauty to look at.

The Plextor M6e Black Edition supports PCI Express Gen II x2 and can achieve sequential reads up to 770 and writes up to 580 MB/s. Random speeds aren’t without either and the M6eBE broke through the 105K/100K IOPS barrier. The SSD also comes with native 256-bit AES encryption to keep your data protected.

Speed isn’t everything, reliability is just as important. The M6eBE supports both S.M.A.R.T and TRIM to keep everything running smoothly. It has also been exposed to Plextor’s Zero-Failure Zero-Error standard where it’s rigorous tested using the world’s most advanced SSD testing facilities – FLEXSTAR testing chamber. The M6e Black Edition provides extreme reliability with an MTBF calculated at 2.4 million hours. To back up this statement, the drive comes with a five-year warranty.

Plextor thought about people without the latest and most modern systems as well and retained the backwards compatibility through AHCI support. The M6e Black Edition is bootable through both UEFI and legacy BIOS. It is however strongly recommended to use UEFI if your system supports it, it will after all cut your boot times in half.

The high-performance cooling fin design doesn’t just help to cool your new SSD, it also looks very gorgeous. While cooling of such an SSD usually isn’t a great issue, it can be very wise in several scenarios. If you got bad airflow in your case or the SSD sits nudged between a couple high performing GPUs, then you’ll want the extra cooling that this great looking card has to offer. The PCIe card features a default SATA power connector in the event that your PCIe slot can’t deliver the stable and needed power supply required. The card has a 2-pin header for lighting cues and five LEDs, three yellow for power and two blue for activity. It is Half-Height, Half-Length (HHHL) and would fit well with low profile brackets, although none are included.

 

At the heart of the Plextor M6e Black Editon, we find the latest generation dual-core Marvell 88SS9183 SSD controller chip and Toshiba’s A19 synchronous toggle NAND flash memory as well as 512MB DDR3 cache.

I haven’t even had this drive connected to my system for benchmarks yet, and I already love it. It looks so sleek with the black PCB, black bracket, black SSD, black cover, and red cooler. The finish is superb on everything from solder points to the metal coating. When we couple that with the amazing specifications, we know that the Plextor M6e Black Edition is one heck of a Solid State Drive.

We had a first look at the PlexTurbo software in our Plextor M6 Pro review, and now the software has been improved even more; now reaching version 2.0. PlexTurbo is a RAMDisk feature, but it is also a lot more and comes with three main advantages.

The first is the clear performance boost by using up to 4GB system RAM (max a quarter of the total) as cache. The application will write the data simultaneously on the cache as well as on the SSD but instead of rewriting the entire file, it compares for changes and only replaces those instead of everything. At the same time, the cache is used for quicker access to frequently used data.

The second benefit is the extended life expectation due to the reduced unnecessary rewriting of redundant data. The third and last benefit over most other RAMDisk software is the safety against power loss. There won’t be any data loss in case of a sudden power failure because the data is written simultaneously to both the cache as well as the SSD

The presentation at CES 2015 showed us speeds over 8000 MB/s. This of course depends on memory as well as processor speed, so we won’t get quite that far; it will still be interesting to see how well it performs in our own benchmarks.

Possible Plextor M6e Black Edition PCI-Express SSD Spotted

Companies are busy updating their sites to be ready for CES and enthusiasts are just as busy scouting those pages for possible hints on future products. So were our friends from TweakTown and they found what could hint a new PCI-Express based SSD from Plextor.

Digging on Plextor’s homepage, they found the hint seen below, an M6e BK in the Half-Height Half-Length category. This could very well be a Black Edition of the Plextor M6e PCIe SSD that we took a look at almost a year ago, just better optimized and tuned for that extra bit of power.

The image seen at the top is one dug up after the initial hint on Plextor’s own page and might not represent the actual product. It does however fit the description very well, just as it wouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone that Plextor might have an ace or two up their sleeves. I’m sure we’ll know a lot more when CES starts.

Thanks to TweakTown for providing us with this information

Images courtesy of TweakTown

Galax Annouces GeForce GTX 970 Black Edition

Galax, or Galaxy as they are known in the EMEA region, has launched its latest graphics card in the form of the GeForce GTX 970 Black Edition. The 19cm long PCB is covered with an aluminium fin stack heatsink and the card uses two 80mm fans to keep everything cool.

The card comes factory overclocked with a speed of 1126MHz and with a boost speed of 1266MHz. Like on most GTX 970 cards the memory frequency hasn’t been touched and runs at 7GHz.

The new Galax GTX 97 Black Edition graphics card should be available now for a price of €319.90 with VAT.

Thanks to TechPowerUp for providing us with this information

Images courtesy of TechPowerUp

Athlon X4 860K CPU Available Starting Next Week

Those who run a dedicated graphics card have no need for the built-in GPU counterpart that’s offered from within the APU’s, and AMD of course has it covered for them too. The newest addition to the FM2+ CPU lineup; the Athlon X4 860K CPU, will start shipping next week according to a tweet from AMD’s VP of Sales, Roy Taylor.

The new Athlon X4 860K CPU follows the same recipe as all the other current Athlon CPUs, but kicks it up a notch. It is a quad core running at 3.7 GHz with a turbo speed of 4 GHz. If this still isn’t enough and you’d like more power than it delivers right out of the box, you’ll be happy about it being a Black Edition. The unlocked multiplier allows for easy overclocking on most motherboards. The AMD X4 860K has 4MB cache (2 x 2MB) and supports up to 2133 MHz memory, like its current brothers.

It drops right into the FM2+ socket and comes with a TDP of 95 watt and a 3-year warranty. Overclockers UK has the new AMD CPU listed for pre-order at a price of £67.99 inc VAT; a great price for this CPU.

Thank you AMD for providing us with this information

Image courtesy of Overclockers UK