EKWB Releases EK-RAM Monarch Liquid RAM Cooling Modules

You might already have your graphics card and processor coupled into your liquid cooling setup, but what about your memory? While memory isn’t a thing that’s obvious to add to your custom loop right away, there can be good reasons to do so. To name one: Parts of your system that otherwise wouldn’t run hot might start to do so because of the lack of airflow generated by the fans from traditionally cooled equipment such as CPU and GPU coolers.

Liquid cooling for memory isn’t anything new as such, but EKWB just released a new version of the EK-RAM Monarch cooling modules where the existing black variant is now also available as a Nickel plated version. The EK-RAM Monarch Module is a heatsink adapter which allows virtually any DDR-SDRAM memory module of any generation to be liquid cooled – but it also requires the EK-RAM Monarch series water blocks to go on top.

Each heatsink consists of two separate plates with the memory module sandwiched in between. The heat transfer between the memory module and aluminium heatsink adapter is ensured by the use of an enclosed thermal pad. Each set of EK-RAM Monarch Modules contains two adapter heatsinks that are made of CNC machined high-quality aluminium and feature either a nickel finish or a black anodized finish.

The EK-RAM Monarch modules are available now through EK’s own webshop and their partner reseller network. A nickel plated set of two modules will set you back €34.95 while the black version is a little cheaper and only will cost you €29.95. Both prices include VAT.

Besides the above-mentioned reason of missing airflow in the memory area, adding liquid cooling to your memory will also allow you to overclock them higher while still retaining a stable system. While memory overclocking won’t result in as big a real-world difference as other parts such as CPU and GPU, it might be just what you’re missing to grab those last couple of benchmarks points and beat your friends results. Maybe you’ll also just do it for aesthetic reasons – the modules do look awesome.

Lian-Li PC-X510 WX Mid-Tower Chassis Review

Introduction


Lian Li, the chassis’ industries own masters of aluminium chassis design, are back once again. Lian Li have a rock solid reputation for exceptional build quality and design, just look at some of the other Lian Li chassis’ reviews we’ve done here at eTeknix for example; DK-01 Desk, PC-T80 Test Bench, PC-V359 Cube, PC-A79 Full Tower, PC-Q30 Mini-ITX, PC-CK101 Train, PC-TU100 Mini-ITX, PC-90, PC-B12 and PC-7HX! Time and time again Lian Li have won awards from us here at eTeknix, as well as from many other sources all around the world. So with that in mind, I’ve got pretty high expectations of the new Lian Li chassis, the PC-X510 WX and with a retail price close to £350, it looks set to be something pretty special.

Lian Li released the following product tour video, although it’s certainly not the best in terms of presentation, so don’t feel bad if you start to skip through some of it. However, it does give us a nice look at the overall size of this chassis, and it’s certainly quite tall for a “mid-tower”.

It’s very well equipped, with a decent amount of storage bays for 2.5″ or 3.5″ drives, with the obvious omission of 5.25″ drive bays, although that’s hardly uncommon these days.

The reason for the super tall design? The X510 uses multiple chambers to better control heat and airflow. There’s a smaller section at the base for the PSU, which is semi-connected to the main chamber for the motherboard while there is also a separate chamber at the top just for storage drives.

Built from vast amounts of black brushed aluminium and finished with tempered glass on the left side panel, the X510 certainly looks impressive. As well as clocking in at a massive 620mm high, a consequence of that chambered design, but on the plus side, it’s not very long, so shouldn’t take up too much floor space.

The glass panel is held in place by thumb screws, should you need to remove it for any reason, although the only one I can think of is so that you can give it a good clean.

There’s a few cut-outs on the aluminium panel, behind which you’ll find a dust filter, giving ample airflow to the front fans without spoiling the clean looks of the front panel.

The right side panel is another massive slab of black brushed aluminium and it’s far prettier than my pictures could ever capture. There’s also more ventilation here, giving even more airflow to the front mounted cooling; you can also see the fans through the mesh if you look carefully.

The front panel looks stunning, with a curved top edge that gives it a more flowing and sleeker design, with only a small Lian Li logo towards the bottom for branding.

A closer look at the top right corner, you’ll also find two small LED lights set into the aluminium; these are for power and HDD activity.

Around the back, we get a good indication of just how tall this chassis really is, looking about 50% taller than your average mid-tower design.

At the top, there’s a single 120mm fan exhaust for the storage bay compartment, as well as the master control dial for the built-in fan speed controller.

Further down, we have yet another 120mm fan exhaust, which features a cut-out and grommet system below it that’ll be great for some water cooling configurations.

Eight expansion slots, each fitted with a reusable and ventilated cover.

Finally, we have the PSU mounting plate, which comes fitted with thumbscrews, allowing for quick and easy installation and removal of the power supply.

The top panel is nice and sleek too, and comes with dual 120mm fan mounts, although they’re fitted with aluminium covers which will help reduce noise from the system if you’re not using the mounts.

Towards the front, a slide back cover that hides the main I/O, as well as a gorgeous mechanical button for the master power control.

Slide it back and you’ll find four USB 3.0 ports, although an adaptor is included to convert them to USB 2.0 if your motherboard can’t support all four as USB 3.0.

On the base, you’ll find four large feet that give great ground clearance to the PSU air intake, which comes fitted with a washable dust filter that can be slid out to the side of the chassis for easy maintenance.

Even the feet are aluminium, with a lovely finish to them and firm rubber grips on the base to prevent is sliding around on harder floor surfaces.

BitFenix Nova Mid-Tower Chassis Review

Introduction


BitFenix is back again, this time with their lovely Nova chassis. The Nova is BitFenix’s latest effort from the budget-friendly end of the market, promising great features at a price that is sure to leave your wallet or your bank balance happy. If you’re not trying to cram huge amounts of hard drives, multiple radiators and more into your system, then it is unlikely that you need much more than what the Nova offers and we’re eager to see just how much you get for your money here.

“Bitfenix Nova delivers style, performance, and silence at an incredibly competitive price. Whether you plan to build a basic office, home or gaming system, Novas simplistic design, aluminum badge, color options and optional window side panel mean it will blend in perfectly. Long air vents running along the sides of its front, hidden behind sleek mesh strips, provide plenty of airflow to cool the system. And as a result allowed us to keep Novas Top and Front panel completely closed to block fan-noise from escaping the enclosure, and dust from building up inside.”

Equipped with room for mini-ITX to ATX motherboards, room for a good size CPU cooler, large graphics cards, an ATX PSU and a decent amount of hard drives, the Nova is certainly a capable chassis. There’s also room for a couple of 120mm fans in the front and a 120mm in the back, although on the rear 120mm fan comes pre-installed.

The side panel features a huge window that runs almost the full height of the chassis, giving you a perfect view to show off your new build. Don’t like windows on your chassis? There’s a solid panel version available too. The black paint job is pretty standard stuff, but blends well with the plastics of the front panel and if black isn’t your thing, there’s also a white version available.

The right side has a blank panel and just like the left, it’s held in place by two thumb screws. The sides of the front panel have a strip of ventilation, allowing for indirect airflow that should help reduce noise from the front fans.

The front panel is plastic but is very nicely finished. There’s a single 5.25″ drive bay cover at the top and a small BitFenix logo; overall it looks smart enough to be placed in a home or office.

At the top of the chassis, you’ll find all the usual power controls, as well as two LED indicators and a pair of USB ports; one USB 2.0 and one USB 3.0.

Around the back, there’s a single pre-installed 120mm fan, as well as seven expansion slots. As with many budget chassis, the expansion slot covers are a snap-off design, apart from the top one which is reusable.

Four sturdy feet with rubber grips give the chassis good ground clearance, and there’s also a small slide-out and washable dust filter for the power supply area.

COUGAR Launches New 450 Series Gaming Mouse and Keyboard

COUGAR already has a long list of great peripherals and now there are two more to add to that list with the announcement of the new COUGAR 450K gaming keyboard and the COUGAR 450M gaming mouse in two colour options.

The 450K mechanical gaming keyboard is built with hybrid mechanical switches that prove a tactile feedback and a durability similar to those of high-end mechanical keyboards. You also get anything else that you’re used to from a gaming keyboard such as programable macros, function remapping, and more.

The COUGAR 450K features a splash-proof design that both protects the keyboard from clumsy gamers as well as making it easier to clean. It is still an optical beautiful keyboard to look at.

The 450K also features a three-color backlight that will allow you to easily see which of the three gaming profiles stored on-board is currently being used, or just to match the rest of your setup’s lighting.

COUGAR 450K Gaming Keyboard Specifications

  • Key switch: Hybrid mechanical switch
  • Backlight: 3 Colours
  • Polling rate: 1000Hz / 1ms
  • Anti-ghosting keys: 26 Keys
  • Programmable Keys: 10
  • Cable Length: 1.8m
  • Dimension: 170(L) X 470(W) X 40(H) mm
  • Weight: 1kg (2.20 lb)

The COUGAR 450M gaming mouse comes in two colour options, white and black. It is powered by a 5000 DPI PMW3310DH optical gaming sensor with an adjustable resolution down to 50 DPI. The polling rate isn’t bad either with 1000Hz and 1ms. The durability should be ensured thanks to the use of OMRON gaming switches. The 8 programable buttons allow you to bind most function you’ll want onto the mouse and it features 512KB onboard memory for its profiles.

Its two RGB backlight areas are independent which means they can display different colours and add to the 450M’s visual attractiveness. Both new devices, the 450K and 450M, allow the user to manage their functionality with the COUGAR UIX System and work perfectly separately, together, and with other COUGAR peripherals.

COUGAR 450M Gaming Mouse Specifications

  • Sensor: PMW3310DH Optical gaming sensor
  • DPI: 50-5000 DPI
  • Polling Rate: 1000Hz / 1ms
  • On-board memory: 512KB
  • Profile LED backlight: 2 ZONE 16.8 million colours
  • Frame rate: 6500 FPS
  • Interface: Golden-plated USB plug
  • Cable length: 1.8m Braided
  • Dimension: 135(L) X 67(W) X 40(H) mm
  • Weight: 105g (0.23 lb)

Both 450K and 450M will be available at Caseking DE and Overclockers UK in December 2015 and in the rest of the world will be able to get it in Q1 2016. The COUGAR 450M will set you back £41.99 and the 450K will set you back £49.99. Both are budget friendly gaming prices.

SilverStone Release New RVX01 in the Raven Series

SilverStone collected a lot of praise for their Raven series and now the family got a new member, and while it is the ATX-sized Raven with the smallest footprint yet it is not the runt of the litter. The new Raven RVX01 comes in two versions, one with a side panel window and one without. The one without the window is only available in red but you can get the windowed RVX01-W in three colour options: red, blue, and green.

Despite the small footprint, the Raven RVX01 has room for a lot of hardware such as an ATX-sized motherboard and PSU, graphics cards with up to 348mm length, and CPU coolers with a height of up to 162mm (159mm in the windowed version). The cooling options aren’t bad either with three 120mm Air Penetrator fans pre-installed at the bottom of the case, 1200 RPM at 19.7dBA, and the option to mount another 120mm at the front and one at the top.

The Raven RVX01 has seven expansion slots for full usage of your ATX-sized motherboard options and comes with two front-IO USB 3.0 ports as well as two audio jacks for a headset or the last surround sound connections.

The overall measurements come down to 215mm width by 485mm height by 500mm depth and a total volume of 52.1 litres. If you already been convinced that this should be your new chassis then you don’t need to wait that long for it to become available. The Raven RVX01 should be available on December the 2nd for a suggested end-user price of $84.60 USD for the RVX01BR without window and $89.40 USD for the windowed RVX01BR-W with colour options.

The Raven signature features such as a motherboard that has been rotated 90 degrees for a top instead of rear IO panel and hidden cables as well as the stylish looking front, easy access, and positive pressure design.

Special Features:

  • Signature RAVEN styling touches
  • 90-degree motherboard mounting from legendary RAVEN RV01
  • Three 120mm Air Penetrator fans included for sublime vertical air cooling
  • Positive pressure design for excellent cooling/quietness and dust-prevention
  • Quick access filter for convenient maintenance
  • Support up to three sets of liquid cooling radiators

Thermaltake Suppressor F31 Silent Mid-tower Chassis Review

Introduction


Thermaltake is one of the biggest names in the PC component market, with a huge range of products that range from water coolers to power supplies. We’ve seen a lot of great products from Thermaltake over the years, and today we hope to see another great addition to their already featured packed range.

“The Suppressor F31 Window mid-tower chassis is the new addition to the Suppressor Series to the Thermaltake case line. Featuring the first chassis with 250mm wide and leading-edge sound reduction panels on all sides, expand your cooling options with removable panels for the perfect balance in silent operation and cooling performance. Supporting a range of motherboard platforms from Mini-ITX to ATX solutions, unrivaled liquid cooling expansion and expandability for all high-end GPU solutions users can expect an enthusiast built design they can trust.”

The Thermaltake Suppressor F31 is their latest full-tower, following on from their F51 chassis which launched earlier this year, designed with a relentless focus on silent performance. It’s been kitted out with thick panels, vast amounts of sound dampening materials, a front panel door and extensive air and water cooling support, giving you all the tools you need to build a power and super quiet system.

https://youtu.be/vkLnHc9Er5o

Equipped with extensive support for fans and radiators, a decent amount of storage, large graphics cards and more, the F31 is certainly a capable product; I can’t wait to take a closer look at this chassis, so let’s jump right in and see.

This chassis is closed up pretty tight, with lots of sound-dampening features to help keep your build as quiet as possible. There’s a very thick side panel on the left with an optional side panel fan mount. The fan mount has a magnetic exterior dust filter for easy maintenance.

Another thick panel on the right as well as more ventilation down the sides of the front panel to provide airflow to the front mounted cooling.

The front panel is just as bold as the rest of the design, with a thick door panel and a lightly textured finished. The design is a little boxey and bland, but I quite like the monolithic appearance.

At the top of the front panel, you’ll find HD audio jacks, power controls, dual USB 3.0 ports and dual USB 2.0 ports; that’s decent amount of connectivity.

A few magnets in the front panel help keep the door closed and to help further enhance the noise proofing, there’s a thick lining of sound dampening material on the back of the door.

There are two 5.25″ drive bays, each fitted with a quick-release tool-free cover.

The bottom cover clips out easily enough, allowing you to quickly clean the filter and access the front panel cooling mounts, where you’ll find a pre-installed 120mm fan.

On the top, you’ll find a full-length magnetic dust filter, which is easily removed and cleaned when needed.

You’ll also notice that under it, the fan mounts as closed off, meaning you can keep them in place for maximum noise dampening, or take them out to install extra cooling as required.

Four sturdy feet on the bottom give good ground clearance for the full-length, slide-out dust filter.

This filter gives clean airflow to the PSU ventilation, as well as any addition base mounted cooling.

Around the back, you’ll find the side panels are held in place with thumb screws, but also normal chassis screws. I just wish I noticed these extra screws when I struggled for a few minutes wondering why the flipping panel wouldn’t slide off; I have no idea why we need a second set of screws here, but you could always leave the removed if required.

At the top, there’s a single 120mm exhaust fan pre-installed, but there’s also the option to install 140mm cooling if required. The screw holes are elongated to allow more flexibility in the height of the fan/radiator mounting, as this could help prevent hardware conflicts.

There are eight expansion slots, each fitted with a metal reusable and ventilated cover. There’s also a routing grommet to the right, as well as plenty of extra ventilation.

The PSU mounting supports normal and inverted installation, of course, if you mount the PSU with the fan facing downwards, you can take advantage of the bottom dust filter.

Raijintek Styx Windowed Micro-ATX Aluminium Chassis Review

Introduction


We’re big fans of Raijintek here at eTeknix, time and time again they’ve delivered stunning products at very attractive prices and that’s something I’m hoping to see yet again with their latest product, the Raijintek Styx.

The Styx features the very popular Micro-ATX form factor, meaning it’s great for a compact gaming system or workstation, as it’ll hold a high-end motherboard, water cooling, an ATX power supply and two graphics cards, giving it a lot of room for everything from a budget build, right up to a high-performance gaming monster. It also features a range of colours, as well as aluminium construction, so there’s no doubt that it’ll look great in a wide range of environments.

“STYX, RAIJINTEK’s new aluminum Micro-ATX case in 2015, has a remarkable elegant appearance design and high compatibility with your PC system. STYX is compatible with regular/ standard ATX Power supply, max. 280mm VGA card, 180mm height CPU cooler. STYX provides best cooling solution, 120mm fan pre-installed at rear, optional 2*120mm fan on top /side, optional 120mm fan at bottom and max. 240mm radiator cooling on top/side. Moreover, STYX offer a drive bay for Slim DVD on side. Entirely black coated inside, aluminum color hair-silk anodized appearance, STYX satisfies not only your request of looking for elegant taste, but simultaneously satisfies the joy of installing a performing case.” – Raijintek

All the basics are taken care of, with room for a good amount of storage drives, as well as a slim ODD, graphics cards of up to 280mm and CPU coolers of up to 180mm.

Cooling support is great, but keep in mind that a top mounted radiator could conflict with a multi-GPU configuration, so be sure to doubt check compatibility before doing so.

Check out this brief introduction from Raijintek, which shows you some of the great features you can expect to find in their new Styx chassis.

The Raijintek Styx immediately impressed, with gorgeous brushed aluminium panels on all sides, giving it a sleek and premium look. The left side panel is a blank panel, as the motherboard is mounted inverted, so this would be the “rear” panel behind the motherboard. The side panels are held in place with four small screws on the side, not the easiest to get into in a hurry, but at least you don’t have the large screws sticking out at the back.

The right side panel has a lot more going on, with a slim ODD slot on the bottom-front edge, which is discrete enough that you may not have seen it, had I not mentioned it. There’s also a nice side panel window, which is positioned so that you can see the motherboard, CPU cooler and rear fan mounting.

The front panel looks just as gorgeous as the side panels, with a nicely placed power button with LED trim at the top and a small Raijintek logo at the bottom; I must admit, this would look great sitting next to a TV unit as a HTPC.

There is all kinds of stuff going on around the back! At the top, you’ll find two routing grommets, which can be used to expand the water cooling or simply as a cable passthrough. There’s also a PSU cable pass-through here, as the PSU mounts towards the front of the chassis. Below all that, you’ll find five ventilated expansion slot covers, which come fitted with a clip-on screw guard.

The top of the Styx improves on the (fairly) similar Metis Mini-ITX chassis design, adding a large filtered air vent, perfect for water cooling, fans, or just improving the passive airflow.

On the base, even more ventilation for bottom mounted cooling, as well as the very important PSU mounting space. There are four rubber feet, which will help reduce vibration, but also provide a nice bit of ground clearance for the PSU exhaust.

Sharkoon Released The BW9000 ATX Midi Tower

Sharkoon released a new chassis once again and I have to say right away that it’s my opinion that this is the best-looking chassis of theirs till date. The new BW9000 ATX Midi Tower comes with and without a side panel window and it is available in two colors as well: black and white.

The small tower only measures 49 x 21 x 48 centimeters (height, width, and length) but supports a full-sized ATX motherboard, ATX power supplies with up to 26cm length, and CPU coolers with a height of up to 16.5cm. Graphics cards can be up to 43cm long with one of the HDD cages removed and 29.3cm with the cage installed. Plenty of space for most hardware.

You can install up to five 3.5-inch or 2.5-inch drives and two more 2.5-inch drives in the Sharkoon BW9000. The case also has two external 5.25-inch drive bays for optical drives, fan controllers, or liquid cooling accessories. The BW9000 features great cooling abilities with a pre-installed 120mm fan at the back and two pre-installed 140mm fans in the front. You can mount an additional two 140mm or three 120mm fans at the top of the chassis and both the front and top supports the use of radiators (max 5.5cm top, max 6.5cm front).

All fan areas feature washable dust filters. The top has a magnetic dust filter, the bottom PSU area has a pop-out removable dust filter, and the front also features a removable dust filter which, however, requires the front panel of the chassis to removed. The top IO panel features two USB 3.0 and two USB 2.0 ports next to the obligatory two audio jacks for surround sound or headset connections.

As previously mentioned, the middle HDD cage can be removed to make space for longer graphics cards and all drive bays features tool-free installation. There are plenty of cable routing abilities in this chassis and there’s also a large CPU cooler cutout.

End customers will find the Sharkoon BW9000-W (Window version) available immediately for the suggested retail price of €69.90 from authorized retailers. The Sharkoon BW9000-V (Value version) is also available starting at €67.90.

Mad Catz Announces Weird Looking R.A.T.1 Mouse

Mad Catz has been on a role lately and released quite a few new products, but they’re far from done. The newest entry is a budget oriented and a very weird-looking mouse called the R.A.T.1. The R.A.T.1 features an innovative modular design as well as 3D printing and personalization options that enable users to truly make it their own.

The new Mad Catz R.A.T.1 is available for preorders now and it will ship in December. The price isn’t bad at all and this new funky looking mouse can be yours for just $29.99. The mouse features three core components: A tripod chassis, a sensor module, and an adjustable palm rest that users can customize to match their personal style and usage requirements. Due to the simple design, the mouse is ultra-lightweight but still made from the same materials used in Mad Catz’ tournament-grade mice.

The R.A.T. 1 comes with an adjustable 3500DPI optical Pixart PMW3320 gaming-grade sensor module. The module itself can be used without anything else as a very compact laptop mouse, making it even more useful. The R.A.T.1 is also the world’s first gaming mouse that empower users to use a 3D Printer to create their own customized Palm Rest. Owners of the R.A.T.1, can download 3D CAD files of the Palm Rest, create, print and share their own unique designs right from their home 3D Printer! The DPI is adjustable all the way down to 250 DPI and the R.A.T.1 features six programmable buttons.

“With a gaming DNA derived from the award-winning R.A.T. PRO Series, the R.A.T.1 re-envisions what a gaming mice could be with its innovative modular design and unique customization options,” said Darren Richardson, President and Chief Executive Officer of Mad Catz. “The R.A.T.1 sets a new standard in design and personalization, appealing to both passionate gamers and casual users alike – allowing us to broaden the appeal of our R.A.T., range and drive our PC business into 2016 and beyond.”

The Mad Catz RAT1 mouse is available as a black and green model or white and red for those who want to mix it up a little bit.

 

MSI Launches Z170A SLI Plus Motherboard

MSI are one of the hottest names in the PC component market, having created some of the best graphics cards and motherboards of recent years, they’re a very popular choice for system builders. Their Pro series of motherboard get its final addition today, with the release of the all-black Z170A SLI PLUS, a board that takes many of the features we’ve seen in the stunning X99A SLI PLUS motherboard, but just a little more up to date.

“Offering an enhanced experience and the best in productivity and reliability the Z170A SLI PLUS motherboard has been configured to satisfy even the most demanding user.” – MSI

Equipped with USB 3.1 Type-C, Audio Boost, SLI and CrossFire support, Steel Armor PCI-E slots, Military Class 4 components, DDR4 Boost, Turbo M.2, Click BIOS 5 and more, there’s no doubt that this is a feature packed board that will appeal to many.

There’s no official spec sheet just yet, but given MSI’s track record, I have high expectations for this board. Prices in the UK are expected to be around £109 and retailers should have stock any time now, so keep a look out for them if you want to get one of the first batch.

Would you put the Z170A SLI PLUS motherboard into your next system build?

Call of Duty Black Ops 3 Storage Requirement Revealed

We’ve all been there, a brand new game has come out and your Steam/Origin/uPlay/Insert your chosen game utility here folder tells you to make some space, why? Because the new game you want is 40GB+ in size. Now Treyarch Studios has updated the Steam product page with the last piece of the system requirement puzzle, a large 60GB of storage space piece.

This isn’t a huge shock to the system, if you’ve been playing on the PC for longer than an hour you will know that most big titles will require anywhere from 30 to 60GB+ of storage space, just take a look at Grand Theft Auto V with a requirement of 65GB.

It’s not quite clear if the “NUK3TOWN” bonus map is included in that figure considering most of the customers for this game will likely have pre-ordered it, we’ll just have to wait and find out. For those that do not know, here are the system specifications direct from the Steam product page:

Do you think Black Ops 3 will impress the PC community with this new requirement or will it die off in the horde of zombie console gamers? Let us know your thoughts down in the comments.

Things Have Got a Whole Lot More ‘Realistic’ for Black Ops 3

Gone are the days of running around like a headless chicken, spraying bullets everywhere and ammo drops around every corner. We have been begging for harder game modes for years and slowly, but surely, the difficulty has increased.

The latest game to receive a harder game mode is the upcoming Black Ops III (3). Generally you can choose between easy/novice/hard/expert, but now the developers have introduced “Realistic”. Xbox Achievements Jason Blundell said: “[In Realistic] you have one point of life, so if you’re shot once, you’re dead. It completely changes the way you play the game. You all have to survive as a group. You end up respecting the level in a completely different way, and once gunfire opens up, everyone just drops to the ground, because if any one bullet hits you or a grenade goes off near you, you’re dead.”

The AI’s have also been given an update to “make independent decisions” and there will be “more types of AI than we’ve ever had before” said Blundell.

Will the AI receive a similar one-shot death rule, or are we going to have to stock up on ammo before each kill? Is it just me or does that sound more of a suicidal game mode rather than realistic? Surely realism would be you bleed out unless you have a direct headshot or something just as bad. Let’s find out when the game is finally released on November 6 2015.

Thank you to Gameranx for providing us with this information.

Bitfenix Released the Stylish New Nova Chassis

Bitfenix has shown us some beautiful PC chassis in the past and as it looks, they are far from done. Their newest chassis is the Nova that delivers style, performance, and silence at a competitive price point. Whether you want it black or white and with or without a window in the side panel, Bitfenix has you covered.

One of the first things that we notice on the Nova is the lack of air vents, or so it seems with the completely covered front and top covers. But thanks to a clever design with air vents hidden on the side of the front panel. behind a mesh filter, the Nova can draw plenty of fresh air while it keeps the pesky fan noises inside the chassis itself. This design should also decrease the amount of dust that will settle inside the chassis.

The difference between the two models, with and without a side panel window, is clear from the photos above and below. The large window allows you to show off your valuable components such as motherboard and add-in cards as well as the PSU. The last thing might be a deal breaker for some while it’s a win for others, the visible PSU. I personally prefer to hide mine as good as possible while others prefer to proudly present that very expensive and vital part of the system.

Bitfenix chose to angle the top of the front panel where the power button, reset button, USB connections, and audio jacks are located. This tiny detail can make a huge difference as it allows for better placement options. Whether the system is placed on the floor or next to you on your desktop, you’ll be able to easily reach them all.

The PSU area is covered with a removable dust filter to keep that part as dust free as possible, a very important factor for a chassis when it is placed on the floor.

The Bitfenix Nova has room for a full-sized ATX motherboard and comes with seven expansion ports. The wide chassis allows for graphics cards with a height of up to 140mm and length of up to 320mm, eliminating pretty much any compatibility issues from oversized cards. The power supply can be up to 220mm long and the CPU cooler can stand 160mm tall.

The Bitfenix Nova has three 5.25-inch drive bays, but only one of them is accessible from the front. That one also has tool-less fasteners for easy mounting of the drive. You can further mount up to four 3.5-inch drives and two 2.5-inch drives in the Nova.

The case supports two 120mm fans in the front and one 120mm at the rear. The rear exhaust fan can also be used for an AIO CPU cooler.

Bitfenix is releasing this beautiful chassis as an option that shouldn’t blow your budget but sadly didn’t announce any price yet. I’m sure that will follow shortly. Could this be your next chassis?

Phanteks Enthoo Evolv ATX Mid-Tower Chassis Review

Introduction


Phanteks are quickly becoming one of my favourite chassis manufacturers. The Enthoo range is one of the most capable enthusiast series on the market, which ticks all the right boxes for those who want a high-end system, with minimal or no fuss in terms of component compatibility, high-end build quality and flawless designs. The latest model, the Enthoo EVOLV ATX, offers support for (you guessed it) full-ATX and EATX motherboards, giving you more room for multiple graphics cards and a whole host of other devices.

The ATX feature all-aluminium construction with thick panels and a gun-metal finish, which certainly sounds like a winning combination. Add to this, quick release side panels, a modular hard drive system, radiator brackets, high-quality PH-140SP fans pre-installed and much more, and you’re well on your way to a stunning system build. So what are we waiting for? Let’s jump right in and take a look at what this chassis has to offer!

The first thing you’ll find is the Phanteks Accessory Box.

The box contains some cable ties, a few LED lights which can be used to change the colour of the front panel power LED, a screw box with all the screws you’ll need for your build, three 3.5″ drive trays and the user’s manual.

First impressions of this chassis are very good, the gun-metal finish on those thick aluminium panels is a sight to behold. It has a smooth texture to it, with just a little bit of sparkle, giving it a mysterious and very premium quality vibe. The left side panel features a large window, giving you a great view of the interior and there’s an extra bit at the bottom showing off the interior logo and the front 2.5″ HDD mount, great for showing off your new drive.

The right side panel is the same shape but obviously doesn’t feature the window section. Both sides have the same ventilation at the top edge, providing airflow to any top mounted cooling, as well as some passive airflow to the chassis in general.

The front panel is certainly unique, with that bold, yet understated appearance. There’s a pair of large cutaways on the sides, allowing extra airflow the front mounted cooling, as well as a small LED light towards the bottom for the master power indicator.

Tucked away at the top, you’ll find a small flip-up cover which hides the main I/O.

Behind it, you’ll find a pair of USB 3.0 ports, HD audio and the reset button.

The cut away towards the bottom allows a little more airflow, but also acts as a handle; just grab it and pull to remove the front panel cover.

The front panel is mounted using four durable pegs which lock the heavy metal panel very securely in place. Behind it, there’s a huge filtered panel which should do an amazing job of blocking any dust from getting in the system and it’s also easy to access and maintain when it gets a clogged up.

The filter pulls away and behind it, you’ll find two very high-quality 140mm Phanteks fans. The front mount will support 120/140 width hardware, as well as 280/360mm tall radiators.

There’s lots of ventilation around the back, around the edge of the top panel, behind the motherboard and to the sides of the expansion slots.

The rear fan is another high-quality 140mm Phanteks fan and comes with elongated universal screw mounts for 120/140mm fans/radiators.

There’s some extra mounts on the ventilation too, which could come in handy for custom water cooling hardware.

The PSU can be mounted normal or inverted, but it’s certainly better with the fan pointing down, as you can utilise the bottom fan-intake vents.

There’s even a slide out dust filter for the PSU to keep everything running on clean air.

The top panel is nice and flat, with just a stylish little power button located towards the front.

The feet on the chassis are nice and side, giving it added stability and there are four tough rubber grips to prevent it from sliding around on harder surfaces. There’s good ground clearance too, which will help with directing airflow to the PSU air intake.

Thermaltake Launches Full Range of Pacific RL and R Series Radiators

We’ve already had a peak at some of these new radiators that Thermaltake just launched, but not all of them. And there are a lot. Thermaltake has officially launched the full range of Pacific RL and R Series radiators, designed for the most demanding and hardcore enthusiasts.

The Thermaltake Pacific RL & R Radiator are designed without compromise and with high-quality German aerospace-grade materials and constructed with zinc, a powerful anti-corrosion agent. The manufacturing process is one of the most important aspects on a radiator. It has to be exceptional to create a flawless unit that has the same cooling properties over the entire surface. The manufacturing process is using high-temperature brazing at 1022℉/550℃ to make sure that they do.

Integrated G1/4 threads make it easy to install and compatible with most current liquid cooling equipment while rigid connections ensure that they are and stay leak-resistant.

There is a total of 17 different specifications to choose from and there’s even a white series. No need to paint it yourself if you want something else than black.

The only thing left to do now, is to pick the Thermaltake Pacific RL or R radiator that fits your current or future setup best and get building.

Lian Li Announced the PC-V33 Cube Case

Lian Li announced another gorgeous chassis and this time it isn’t a large desk shaped one but rather a practical cube shaped chassis. As it always is from Lian Li, the new PC-V33 is a full aluminium chassis that offers a lot of room inside for your components and comes in three different versions.

You can get the new Lian Li PC-V33 in black, in silver, or in black with a tempered glass side panel. The case is built with a sturdy construction, comes with dust filters and easy accessibility to everything thanks to the hinge on the front, allowing the case to swing open for full access.

You can mount motherboards with a size from mITX to full-sized ATX and the case has 7 expansion ports. When I said that there was a lot of room inside the chassis for all your hardware, I meant that. You can mount graphics cards with a length of up to 330mm, CPU coolers with a height up to 190mm, and pretty much any power supply with the 300mm clearance for that.

The front fan intake has a magnetic dust filter and allows for up to two 120mm fans or a single 240mm radiator to me mounted. There is another 120mm fan at the rear of the chassis for exhaust. Storage is the only thing you can’t mount a lot of, but still sufficient. You can add up to four 3.5-inch or 2.5-inch drives of your choice on the rubber mounted brackets.

The rear has room for an optional RGB light controller and you get two front USB 3.0 ports and HD audio jacks. The PC-V33 will be available in early October at Overclockers for the MSRP of GBP 159.90 while the PC-V33WX comes a little later and will be available in early November for MSRP of GBP 189.90.

https://youtu.be/yNHJxtm08vo

Antec ISK 310-150 Mini-ITX Chassis With Built-in 150w PSU Review

Introduction


Just a few months ago, we took a look at the rather fantastic and affordable Antec ISK-110, which features a 90w built-in PSU and room for a mini-ITX motherboard. It was perfect for mounting on the back of your monitor, making it a very compact and space-saving desktop system that is ideal for offices; I should know, I’m using one for my spare workstation and it’s brilliant! Today we’ll be taking a look at something a little higher up the price and specification range, the Antec ISK 310-150, much like its little brother, it comes with support for a mini-ITX motherboard and it’s fairly small, although still bigger than the ISK110. It also features a built-in PSU, but the maximum power has been upped to 150w, giving you much more headroom for a high-end CPU or APU based system.

“Mini-ITX is the next “big” thing. And now, Antec introduces the ISK 310-150, designed exclusively for Mini-ITX motherboards. With three drive bays, a quiet 80mm TriCool fan, and a 150-watt power supply, the ISK 310-150 can handle many of the tasks of a traditional PC, in a fraction of the space. Plus, its stylish, silver front bezel will fit in perfectly with your existing multimedia components. From petite desktop options to silent home theater, Antec’s ISK 310-150 is an epic case of mini proportions.”

As you can see from the specifications, it’s not the most capable chassis in the world, but it is quite a compact design after all. There’s room for a few hard drives, a slim ODD and you’ll certainly want a low-profile (or stock) CPU cooler.

The chassis comes bundled with quite a few accessories to get all your components installed, with screws, cable ties, power cable and one of the cooler parts, a vertical desktop mount.

The ISK310-350 is pretty heavy, that much is immediately apparent when you take it out of the box and this is due in no small part to the built-in and pre-installed PSU. There’s a good amount of ventilation down the left side, and even a little extra on top to help keep things cool.

Down the right side, we’ve got even more ventilation, as well as a pre-installed 80mm TriCool fan. This fan is connected to a three-speed fan controller on the rear of the chassis.

The front panel is easily the star of the show, a thick piece of aluminum and while that does add extra weight, it adds a lot more to the overall appeal. There’s a range of connectors on the front, covering all the basics, a nicely designed power button and a slim ODD drive bay (drive not included) with a flip down front, helping to maintain those clean front panel looks.

To the rear, you’ll find that three-speed fan controller, with room for another should you install an additional TriCool fan (sold separately). There’s a 3-pin power connector for the included power cable and of course, the motherboard I/O cut-out, with room for a half-width expansion card.

WD Announces 6TB Sized Red Pro and Black HDDs

Western Digital just announced the expansion of the portfolio with not just one, but two 6TB drives. Actually, that’s not entirely true as there’s also new 5TB drives in the announcement, making it four new drives in total.

The first two are from the WD Black line, a drive for performance users who need a lot of capacity that also performs amazingly. Previously the Black series was available up to 4TB, making many opt for another model with more capacity. Now there is no need for compromise anymore and the new drive is said to be up to 29% faster than the previous 4TB model. The drives combine a 7200 RPM spindle speed with 128MB cache, dual stage actuator technology and an integrated dual processor to deliver this great performance. The WD Black 5TB drive comes with an MSRP of $264 USD while the 6TB model will set you back $294, but you also get a 5-year warranty on the drive.

The second new series that gets an update is the WD Red Pro and that series is also getting both a 5TB and 6TB version. Just like in the Black series, the WD Red Pro series had only been available with up to 4TB capacity so far, making a lot of people opt for the 6TB Red variant instead. These drives also feature an enhanced design, WD’s NASware 3.0 technology, 128 MB cache and can deliver a performance of up to 214MB/s. The drives are certified for use in systems with up to 16-bays and come with 2 additional years on the warranty over the normal Red drives, making it 5-years in total. They are of course built with Vibration Protection, which is why they are suited for systems with so many drive bays. The 5TB version comes with an MSRP of $269 while the 6TB model costs slightly more at an $299 MSRP.

WD Black 5TB and 6TB Features:

  • Increased Reliability -StableTrac Technology (2 TB and larger models) secures the motor shaft inside of the hard drive to increase reliability and help reduce impact due to system-induced vibrations from other components. By stabilizing the platters inside, the WD Black drive results in more accurate tracking in a particular sector during read and write operations, optimizing performance and reliability.
  • Increased DRAM cache – The Dynamic Cache Technology improves caching algorithms in real time to allocate and optimize cache between reads and writes. This movement of cache for read data helps to reduce congestion and increase overall performance.
  • Efficient dual processing – A dual-core processor offers twice the processing capability as a single-core processor to maximize drive performance for faster read and write speeds.
  • Industry-leading 5-year limited warranty – Compared to standard hard drives, the WD Black drive endures more strenuous and aggressive internal testing over a longer period of time, resulting in it being backed by an industry leading 5-year limited warranty.

WD Red Pro 5TB and 6TB Features:

  • Up to 16 Bay Shock Protection – Equipped with a multi-axis shock sensor, the drive automatically detects subtle shock events and, along with dynamic fly height technology, adjusts each read-write function to compensate and protect the data, further protecting the drive in large 1- to 16-bay NAS environments.
  • NASware 3.0 – Exclusive advanced firmware enables seamless integration, robust data protection and optimal performance for systems operating in the demanding NAS environment.
  • Vibration Protection – Hardware vibration compensation technology monitors the drive to correct both linear and rotational vibration in real time, further increasing drive reliability and enabling high performance in higher vibration systems caused from drive to drive vibration as well as from the high speed fans used to cool the larger systems.
  • Longer Warranty Coverage – Complimenting WD Red drives at a 3-year limited warranty, WD Red Pro offers longer warranty coverage with a 5-year limited warranty.

Phantek Enthoo Mini XL Super Micro Tower Chassis Review

Introduction


A few months ago, I reviewed the gorgeous Phanteks Enthoo EVOLV Micro-Tower Chassis and I loved it enough to award it with our Editors Choice Award. This week, we’ve gone a lot further up the Phanteks range, to take a look at their mighty Mini XL Now, the world mini might not imply that this is a big chassis, but it certainly isn’t mini at all, and we’ll show you why that is in just a moment.

Features

Enthoo Mini XL includes 2 x 140mm fan in front and 1 x 140mm fan in the rear. Ability to upgrade to additional fans is possible. All fans included are Phanteks’ new redesigned and better performing SP series fans.

Appearance

  • Sandblasted aluminum faceplates with matte finish
  • Multi-color LED light strips
  • Stealth interior design

Cooling

  • Extreme cooling capacity
  • Support for up to 14x 120mm / 8x 140mm
  • Comes with 3 Phanteks premium fans
  • PWM fan hub plus 2x y-splitters allow for 8 fan connections* (11 fans max with additional y-splitters sold separately)
  • Extensive water cooling support. Provides up to 5 different installation areas for slim and thick radiators varying from single to triple (120mm and 140mm form factors). Clearance for push-pull fan configurations.

Functionality

  • Dual removable harddrive cages
  • 2x removable Drop-N-Lock SSD brackets
  • Fully equipped with dustfilters (1x top, 1x front, 2x bottom)
  • Removable top panel for easy fan installation and dust filter cleaning
  • Compartment for fan installation in top panel
  • Clean cable management using Phanteks’ preinstalled Hoop-N-Loop cable ties
  • Mod friendly structure uses screws NOT rivets
  • 10 color ambient lighting controller
  • 2x USB 3.0, microphone, 3.5mm audio jack

The Mini XL comes with support for Micro-ATX motherboards, despite being a little bigger than most mid-towers and almost as tall as some full-towers. It also comes with support, through the purchase of some additional brackets which I have at my disposal today, for mini-ITX motherboards. What’s important to mention is that this isn’t an either-or situation, as it’ll support both a Micro-ATX and a Mini-ITX motherboard simultaneously!

“The MINI XL introduces a new form factor, super micro ATX. With its unique power supply location, the Mini XL case has been redesigned with optimal cooling in mind. Resembling the Enthoo Primo, it offers extensive water-cooling possibilities and supports the thickest radiators in the market (80mm). The case brings modularity to a new level. Almost every single panel or bracket can be removed or relocated to serve different purposes. For the ones who desire even more, the Mini XL leaves options for additional upgrades. Pherhaps the most interesting one is the possibility to transform the MINI XL into a dual motherboard system.” – Phanteks

One of the biggest features of this chassis is its water cooling support and the best way to demonstrate this would be the video below. It’s obvious that water cooling enthusiasts are going to love this chassis!

In the box, you get everything you need to get you started, from hard drive and water cooling adaptor brackets, as well as a lovely mini component box for all the screws you’re ever likely to require.

First things first, I’m pretty sure this chassis is coated in some kind of military grade paint used for stealth jets. In a well-lit room with a camera flash for extra light, it still manages to look dark black; that’s not a bad thing, but it’s terrible for some of my photographs. The left side panel features two windows, the larger one on the left, then a smaller one on the right to show off two extra SSD mounts and the Phanteks logo on the inside of the chassis; a great way to show off your fancy SSDs.

The right side panel comes with two ventilated sections with magnetic dust filters on the interior. The one near the front can be used for cooling fans or radiators, or just passive cooling for the hard drive bays dependent on your internal configuration of choice. The section at the rear is for the PSU, which is side mounted in the top right of the chassis.

The front panel looks really cool, with a mixture of curved edges and bold shapes. You can see that the has an extended took to it, with the main section sort of floating from the bottom and right sides of the chassis, which comes with a ten colour LED light strip, further adding to that “floating” effect. This extended design means the chassis is quite wide, but that will help drastically with radiator support, as well as the dual motherboard configurations that are compatible.

Around the back, you’ll see all kinds of crazy things going on. There’s a PSU mount in the top left corner, a universal 120/140mm spacing fan and radiator mount on the right, then down at the bottom you have your Micro-ATX motherboard mounting. Now, it’s worth mentioning that the radiator panel as well as the small panel in the bottom right corner can be unscrewed completely, lifted out of the chassis and replaced with an alternative panel to allow you to install an SFX PSU and Mini-ITX motherboard on top of all the usual hardware; don’t worry, we’ll be doing that shortly.

The top panel is vast, allowing huge amounts of ventilated airflow for a wide range of fan and radiator configurations as you saw in the video at the start of this review.

The front panel is tucked to the right side of the top of the chassis and comes with the usual power controls, two USB 3.0 ports and HD Audio jacks.

Instead of smaller feet, the chassis has two long feet that run the full length of the chassis, giving it extra stability; There are six tough rubber pads to help keep it firmly planted on your surface of choice. There are two dust filters that cover the full length of the chassis, and what’s really nice is that these filters can be removed from the left side of the chassis, making maintenance a much easier task.

MSi 970A SLI Krait Edition Motherboard Review

Introduction, Specifications and Packaging


The AMD 970 chipset is the mainstream offering of the AMD chipsets. It offers affordability with great features, with the ability to support a huge array of CPU’s thanks to the hugely popular AM3+ socket. The socket was first introduced back in October 2011 and offered the support of the newly released Bulldozer CPU’s. Despite the new CPU socket, many users decided to hang onto their AM3 motherboards as vendors were offering BIOS updates to support the new range of CPU’s.

The 900 chipset in particular features many of the same features as the 800 series and was primarily introduced to easily differentiate between the older AM3 socket (800 series) and the AM3+ socket (900 series). With the 900 series brought HyperTransport 3.1, NVIDIA SLI and AMD Overdrive for simplified overclocking. Since launch, it has undergone many updates such as PCIe 3.0 support, USB 3.0 support and most recently, USB 3.1 support.

So today we have the MSi 970A Krait Edition. Named directly after the Krait venomous snake, MSI based not only the logo, but the colour theme to it. The 970 chipset is the lowest of the 900 series, bringing affordable performance to everyone. MSI has taken this stable chipset and added the brand new USB 3.1 features, which enabled this motherboard to support USB speed of up to 10Gb/s; this is the world’s first AMD motherboard with USB 3.1 as standard.

There’s not very much new you can say about AMD, AM3+ or the 970 chipset, so let’s just jump straight into testing.

Key Features

Manufacturers nowadays need to find innovative ways to stand out from the crowd, MSi is no exception and has crammed a huge array of features into this motherboard.

  • Military Class 4
  • Military Class Essentials
  • OC Genie 4
  • Click Bios 4
  • NVIDIA Sli
  • USB 3.0
  • USB 3.1
  • SATA 6 Gb/s
  • Command Center
  • Fast Boot
  • Live Update 6
  • M-Flash

For more information on these functions, please visit the MSi 970A Krait Edition product page.

Packaging and Accessories

The Krait Edition is a relatively new addition to the MSi line up. The box is extremely plain with just the Krait snake on the front with the extremely identifiable white and black colour theme.

In the box we find very few accessories, the usual manuals and driver CD, I/O shield and 2x SATA 6Gb/s cables.

 

MSI Z97A Gaming 6 LGA 1150 Motherboard Review

Introduction, Specifications and Packaging


The Z97 chipset is undoubted the king of the consumer chipsets; featured in almost all pre-built systems from the likes of OverclockersUK and PC Specialist, it is a safe yet, powerful base for even the most formidable gaming computers. Thanks to the Z97 chipset being released on the ‘tock’ cycle of the Intel production, it features all of the best bits from previous generations along with more features such as SATA Express being more widely used and M.2 support becoming common among almost every motherboard.

MSi have taken the Z97 range with both hands and stamped it well, producing some of the best-looking and best-performing motherboards on the market. Even though they offer the highest quality in terms of components and performance, the price is very conservative, almost undercutting the comparable competition by 10%.

Today on the test bench, we have the MSi Z97A-Gaming-6 motherboard. The Gaming 6 is considering to be ‘middle of the road’ in terms of MSi branding, with the Gaming 3 and M being below and Gaming 7 and 9 being above. This motherboard is poised to offer the best performance at the best possible price, while offering more features than you could possibly ever need or use.

Key Features

Manufacturers nowadays need to find innovative ways to stand out from the crowd, MSi is no exception and has crammed a huge array of features into this motherboard.

  • Audio Boost
  • Military Class 4
  • Oc Genie 4
  • Click Bios 4
  • Sound Blaster Cinema 2
  • Total Fan control
  • Gaming Device Port
  • Smart Utilities
  • Command Center
  • ECO Center

For more information on these functions, please visit the MSi Z97A Gaming 6 product page.

Packaging and Accessories

The box follows a similar design to the rest of the gaming series. Black and red with the MSi Gaming dragon.

Inside the box is a huge amount of accessories; consisting of more manuals than I ever would have thought I’d need, cable labels, door hanger, 2x SATA 6Gb/s cables, I/O shield, MSi SLi brdge, MSi Gaming plaque, button header extensions and an audio power adapter.

 

Tesoro Lobera Spectrum RGB Mechanical Gaming Keyboard Review

Introduction


Tesoro may not be the biggest gaming brand on the market, but they’ve proven time and time again that they can deliver competitive products, that are uniquely designed and for a competitive price; more than enough to get me interested! A few months back, I reviewed the gorgeous Tesoro Lobera Supreme mechanical keyboard, and it was fantastic, so I’m happy to see another Lobera keyboard sitting on my test bench this week.

The new version of the Lobera comes with one key feature, RGB lighting. Colour customisation is all the rage this year, with many manufacturers offering revisions and new models featuring RGB LED keys; the Lobera Spectrum RGB I have in the office today uses Kailh RGB Black Mechanical Switches. As you can see from the image below, it comes with a choice of red, black, blue and brown switches.

“Lobera Spectrum is a top-notch programmable gaming keyboard with advanced backlighting features. It has a number of stunning illumination modes including audiomode which makes the LEDs flash to the beat. Its highly customizable illumination processor even lets set individual key colors and turn the backlighting on and off for each key. Mechanical key design creates solid tactile feel and rapid response for extreme gamers. High speed USB 2.0 hub with audio jacks offers easy connection for user’s favourite portable peripherals. 5 profiles, up to 300 macro keys can be defined by the user. Tesoro Lobera Spectrum is the ultimate choice for gamers.”

In the box, you’ll find a small collection of documents in a cardboard wallet, as well as a USB power cable; this cable provides the rear-USB ports with additional power.

The keyboard is hard wired with a thick braided cable.

The cable is a little cumbersome, but that’s because it provides USB and audio pass-through to the back of the keyboard; handy for quickly connecting your headsets and peripherals without having to go behind your computer.

The chassis of the keyboard is a little oversized, giving you a built-in wrist rest and also giving the keyboard a funky industrial-type design.

The chassis is plastic, but it has been nicely textured to give it some added flair.

The key caps are of a good quality and feature bold laser-etched letting; perfect for letting all that RGB light through!

Under the keycaps, you can see we’ve got the Kailh Black switches, with the RGB LEDs. The chassis of the keyboard is white, which will help better reflect the lighting for a cool under-glow effect. Also, there was no key-cap pulling tool included in the box, fortunately I had my own, but all mechanical keyboard should come with on as standard in my opinion.

The 6-key and N-key rollover can be switched over directly from the keyboard using FN-Shift and either the Ins or Del keys.

A full-size number pad, fairly standard stuff, but you’ll be glad to hear that every key on the keyboard is mechanical.

The arrow keys feature LED lighting controls.

Built-in profiles allow you to toggle through lighting modes and more.

Windows lock, always a welcome feature on a gaming keyboard.

As well as basic multimedia controls, which are great for listening to music while gaming.

Down the left and right sides, there’s an LED light strip, allowing you to further customise the look of your keyboard.

Around the back, you can see the cable is mounted off to the right. This is better than central mountings, as that often causes the cable to conflict with your monitor stand.

A small warning label is pre-installed.

Behind which you’ll find the USB and audio pass-through ports.

SilverStone Announced Fortress Z SFF Chassis

A little over a year ago, Silverstone introduced the revolutionary slim form factor case RVZ01 that was created by SilverStone’s RAVEN team, a case that exceeded and refined what a slim HTPC or console-styled PC could do.

Now Silverstone is ready with a follow-up chassis and the new line is called the Fortress Z and it is designed for enthusiasts that want a great looking small form factor chassis made of first class materials.

The FTZ01 utilizes a PCI-E riser and custom designed fans that in return allow you to use the biggest consumer graphics cards on the market and still maintain a superb air cooling. The case even supports liquid cooling, but you should pick the cooler with care as it won’t be all that fit.

The FTZ01 could be the perfect choice for those looking to build a premium, all-metal slim form factor PC with high-end components.

It will come as both a black and silver version, but people who are after the Silver need a little more patience. The Black FTZ01 will be available in stock on the 26th of May and the Silver version will be available on the 10th of July.

Designed for use in either vertical or horizontal orientation, it can be placed comfortably in any space-constrained environment that requires a powerful PC.

Special Features

  • Classic exterior built from aluminum unibody frame
  • Supports graphics card up to 13 inches
  • Mini-ITX motherboard & SFX PSU compatible
  • Maximum performance in slim form factor with support for liquid cooling*
  • Positive air pressure design for excellent cooling/quietness and dust-prevention
  • Fits in nearly any environment with horizontal or vertical orientation

Alpenföhn Announces Matterhorn Black & White Edition CPU Coolers

Alpenföhn is well-known for their great cooling products and they’ve expanded their lineup with the new Matterhorn Black and White Edition CPU coolers. The new coolers come with the WingBoost 2 Premium fans and will be available as fully black or white units to suit your setup the best. Especially the white one looks great and it’s nice to see more and more white hardware parts getting released, it’s a nice break from just black and metal.

This tower-type cooler features a monolithic fin-stack with trapezoid fins. It has six 6mm copper heat pipes painted to fit the rest of the unit in either black or white. It measures 138 x 100 x 158 mm and the heatsink weighs a little over 1 kg without the fans attached. The 4-pin PWM WingBoost 2 fans come in a 120mm size and spin between 500 and 1500 RPM. They can push up to 106 m³/h of air with a noise output ranging between 18 and 20 dBA.

The new cooler is compatible with pretty much any platform and socket ranging from Intel’s 775, 115x, 1366, 2011, and 2011-v3 to AMD’s AM2, AM3, FM1, and newer generations.

The Alpenföhn Matterhorn Black and White Edition CPU coolers are expected in stock at the end of April for a price of 52.90 at Caseking.

NVIDIA GeForce GTX TITAN X 12GB Graphics Card Review

Introduction


NVIDIA, the company that brought you the Shield and the original Titan graphics card has now released the newest iteration in the Titan series; the Titan X. Going by facts, figures and a few leaked performance graphs; this mighty graphics card should prove to be the cream of the crop, the best of the bunch and whatever other analogies you can think of. As we’ve previously seen with the release of the Titan graphics cards, they have always smashed the opposition. However, all this performance comes at a price; this particular card is going to set you back around $999 or £899 if you live in Blighty.

So, the Titan X…What’s new? Well firstly it’s a typical reference NVIDIA cooler, but this time it’s all black with minimal silver finishing, it keeps the green “GeForce GTX” logo up the side and a light up “Titan” logo in the usual spot. So how about specifications? I’ll let the table explain:

So it’s bigger, better, faster and more expensive; just as you expected. Let’s see if the extras really warrant the extra price tag, especially compared to the AMD powerhouse, R9 295×2. I predict a knock for knock between the two cards, with the Titan X taking the lead in games like Metro Last Light and Hitman Absolution, where SLI/ Crossfire isn’t 100% optimised.

So onto the box, a very “nothing to see here” approach it seems. NVIDIA has designed this box to be as minimalistic as possible, not even a whiff of a specification list to what’s inside. The exterior is all black with minimal silver details. The entire box is finished in matt, where the TITAN X logo is in a glossy finish. Looking directly at the box in dull light, it would be hard to tell that there is any writing at all. Due to this being a NVIDIA released card, there are no extras hidden inside the box.

The cooling shroud is the same as the recent reference design NVIDIA cards, however, this is majority black not silver, which I really like.

Along the top of the card, very reference like, just the Green GeForce GTX logo, SLI bridge connectors and a set of 8 and 6 pin power connectors.

Around the back of the card, things get a little disappointing, with such a premium product, it would have made sense to use a backplate, even if it was basic, just something to cover the PCB. All those RAM chips on the back might get a little toasty too, maybe hot to touch.

As with the recent NVIDIA reference cards, a simple metal bracket with 3x DisplayPort, 1x HDMI and 1x Dual-Link DVI.

Acer Rolls Out New Iconia Tab 10 Tablet

Acer has announced its new Iconia Tab 10 tablet recently, a device that comes with top performance at an acceptable price tag as it seems from the specs and recommended price set by the company.

Two versions of the Iconia Tab 10 have apparently surfaced on the market, one with a 10.1-inch WUXGA display, 2GB of RAM, 32 GB flash storage, the MediaTek MT8217 SoC and a 1.5 GHz Quad-Core Cortex-A7. The latter device is the more pricier version, coming with a price tag of $249.

The cheaper version is set at $199 and comes with a 1280 x 800 screen, 1 GB of RAM, 16GB flash storage, a 1.7 GHz SoC compared to the latter and a smaller battery, namely 5700 mAh, compared to the 5910 mAh from the first version.

Both models are said to support only Wi-Fi connectivity, so users wanting to see a 3G/4G version of the tablet would be extremely disappointed. Also, in terms of colour options, the tablets come in black and white choices.

Thank you NextPowerUp for providing us with this information

Vector Smartwatch Says it Can Offer a 30-Day Battery Life

The Vector Smartwatch has been revealed at the annual luxury watch fair in Switzerland. The company stated that it will release the watch in two variants, a Luna round face and Meridian rectangular face. However, the most interesting thing about it is not its appearance, but its battery endurance.

Vector has announced that its smartwatch battery can last for 30 days. This however, is subject to a lot of debate, since nobody can believe a smartwatch can last that long during prolonged use.

The company is said to have former Timex CEO Joe Santana and ex-Nike Designer Steve Jarvis on board and although they haven’t revealed much about the gadget, it is said to give the user the ability to display messages on-screen, dismiss them with a flick of the wrist and even works with IFTTT commands.

In terms of compatibility, the Vector is said to be able to pair up with iPhones, iPads, Android and Windows devices. The smartwatch is expected to be released late this summer and come with a $340 price tag for the Luna model with brown leather strap or black nylon and a $199 price tag for the Meridian black nylon strap.

There are other models featuring stainless steel straps, but expect the price to match the quality of the material.

Thank you Endgadget for providing us with this information