AMD Pre-Announces Bristol Ridge APUs – Claims 50% x86 Improvement

After launching Excavator with Carrizo last year, we’re getting the next iteration based on the same architecture. Dubbed Bristol Ridge, the new lineup features an improved DDR4 memory controller among other things. Today, we’re only getting the notebook side of the launch, with the desktop chips and platform to launch later in the year. AMD is touting some major gains over their Kaveri Steamroller APUs launched in 2014. The reason for the pre-announcement is HP outing Bristol Ridge with their new  Envy x360 notebook at GTC.

According to AMD, Bristol Ridge improves x86 performance by nearly 50% over Kaveri/Steamroller. This is pretty good given that Excavator actually features less L2 cache. Even compared to Carrizo, Bristol Ridge manages to post a 10% improvement due to the DDR4 memory controller. AMD’s IMC performance has generally been good but not amazing and hopefully, there will be even more improvements for Zen’s DDR4 controller.

On the graphics side, there are significant gains up to 18% in some cases. This is even with the iGPU portion staying constant. This is all probably due to the use of DDR4 which is a god improvement over DDR3. As we all know, AMD’s APUs are highly reliant on good memory bandwidth in order to feed the iGPU and CPU portions at the same time. With good memory, the APUs can see massive gains in gaming performance. Hopefully, we’ll get more benchmarks that aren’t dubious leaks.

Cloud-Compatible Pen-and-Paper Notebook Can be Reused After Microwaving

Have you ever had to compromise between traditional pen-and-paper work and digital organisation? Do you find yourself having to scan documents in order to store them alongside computer records, or just have an ever-increasing stack of notepads? Thankfully, a new cloud-compatible pen-and-paper notebook is aiming to bridge the gap between traditional paperwork and digital storage.

The Rocketbook Wave looks like a normal notebook, with the only unusual addition being a series of symbols at the bottom of each page. Once you’ve filled in a page – writing, drawing, or doodling – using a Pilot FriXion pen, you can use the Rocketbook phone app (available for Android and iOS) to scan and upload the page through the built-in camera to your desired cloud storage service, which includes Dropbox, Evernote, OneNote, Google Docs, and e-mail.

The symbols at the base of each page can be assigned to different services, so all you need to do is put a cross over the symbol that represents the service you’d like to use; for example, if you’ve assigned the diamond symbol to upload to your Evernote account, then a cross over the diamond will upload your document direct to Evernote.

The Rocketbook app uses your smartphone’s camera to detect, crop, and enhance every image that is scanned before it is uploaded, so there is no need to post-processing of scanned images.

But what happens once you’ve filled your Rocketbook Wave? Well, thanks to the thermochromic ink used by Pilot FriXion pens, the whole book can be erased by exposure to microwaves. Simply pop your Rocketbook Wave in the microwave until the logo on the front turns white, and the book is fresh for use again.

The Rocketbook Wave Kickstarter has already demolished its $20,000 goal, raising $144,436 in pledges with 52 days remaining.

Win an MSI GE62 and Limited Edition GT Omega Gaming Chair!

As one competition ends, we’re right back and ready to rock with an even bigger one! We’ve teamed up with the awesome people at MSI and GT Omega Racing to give you all a chance to win an incredible prize bundle. Not only can you win a powerful gaming notebook, but you’ll also get a comfy gaming chair to sit in too!

The MSI GE62 is well equipped, featuring a 15.6″ display, Core i7 processor, GTX 960M graphics, SteelSeries keyboard and so much more; this is a great device for gaming at home and on the go. The GT Omega Racing Chair is a little special too, featuring a custom MSI theme that’s so rare, you can’t actually buy one anywhere, making this competition that little bit more exciting.

We want to say a massive thank you to both MSI and GT Omega for putting up these prizes. I’m sure you’re all eager to win, so hit up the link below and get your entries in. Good luck!

ENTER HERE

Black Friday is in Full Swing with MSI Notebooks

There’s so many technology deals worth mentioning today that some can get washed out. MSI Notebooks are some of the best on the planet and very rarely go on offer. This year, however, multiple retailers have different models on offer with savings of up to £200! Here is a quick Top 5 round-up:

1. MSI GE72 Apache from AmazonUK for £1099. This is available with Amazon Prime for next day delivery also.

  • Processor: Intel Core i7 6700HQ
  • Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 950M
  • RAM: 12GB DDR4 Memory – 2133Mhz
  • Storage: 1TB HDD + 128GB SSD
  • Screen Size: 17.3” Full HD – 1920 x 1080
  • Operating System: Microsoft Windows 10

2. MSI GT72S Dominator Pro from OverclockersUK for £1,679.99.

  • Processor: Intel Core i7 6700HQ
  • Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980M
  • RAM: 16GB DDR4 Memory – 2133Mhz
  • Storage: 1TB HDD + 256GB NVMe PCI-E Gen3 SSD
  • Screen Size: 17.3” PLS G-Sync Full HD – 1920 x 1080
  • Operating System: Microsoft Windows 10

3. MSI GP62 and GP 72 Leopart from CCLonline for £629.99 and £649.99 respectively.

  • Processor: Intel Core i5 4210H
  • Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce GT 940M
  • RAM: 8GB DDR3 Memory – 1600Mhz
  • Storage: 1TB HDD
  • Screen Size: 15.6”/17.3” Full HD – 1920 x 1080
  • Operating System: Microsoft Windows 10

4. MSI GP72 Leopard Pro from Scan Computers for just £679.99.

  • Processor: Intel Core i5 4210H
  • Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 950M
  • RAM: 12GB DDR3 Memory – 1600Mhz
  • Storage: 1TB HDD
  • Screen Size: 17.3” Full HD – 1920 x 1080
  • Operating System: Microsoft Windows 10

5. MSI GE62 Apache from Save on Laptops for £899.97.

  • Processor: Intel Core i7 5700HQ
  • Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 960M
  • RAM: 16GB DDR3 Memory – 1600Mhz
  • Storage: 1TB HDD
  • Screen Size: 15.6” Full HD – 1920 x 1080
  • Operating System: Microsoft Windows 10

Tim Cook Describes Microsoft’s Surface Book as ‘Deluded’

Apple’s CEO, Tim Cook appears to be on the warpath of late and becoming quite outspoken about the PC platform and Microsoft’s hardware endeavors. Only yesterday, he described PCs as ‘pointless’ and an outdated premise compared to the iPad Pro. There’s a huge sense of irony here as the term PC refers to computer hardware, and Apple’s role involves creating their own operating system for heavily restricted PCs. These remarks have made Tim Cook look extremely foolish, and I cannot understand his bizarre thought process.

Microsoft’s Surface Book is certainly one of the most impressive hardware reveals I’ve seen for some time. However, Tim Cook disagrees and made some fairly disparaging remarks about the device during an appearance at an Irish college. He criticized the product and said:

“It’s a product that tries too hard to do too much,”

“It’s trying to be a tablet and a notebook and it really succeeds at being neither. It’s sort of deluded.”

For all Apple’s posturing about their “really good” relationship with Microsoft, Tim Cook isn’t speaking on amicable terms and behaving in an appalling manner. It’s hilarious to think the iPad Pro is a different, more streamlined device than the Surface Book. If anything, the Surface Book has even more potential and I believe it’s probably the best piece of hardware Microsoft has designed. I’m not entirely sure what’s going on with Apple and Tim Cook, but it seems the company’s aggressive attitude is coming to the forefront.

Origin PC Unveils EVO15-S Gaming Notebook

Origin PC is synonymous with creating some of the most stylish gaming notebooks on the market. Today, the company announced the EVO15-S which utilizes Intel’s latest Core i7-6700HQ, 16GB DDR4 RAM, dual 128GB M.2 SSD boot drives and a GTX 970M 6GB graphics card. Additionally, the display measures 15.6 inches, and opts for an anti-glare coating. The end-user can select between a 1920×1080 panel or upgrade to a 4K eDP wide angled resolution.

Other notable features include a 1TB secondary storage drive, Killer E2400 networking, USB 3.1 Type-C connector, capable of connecting dual 4K 60Hz displays and support for 15W of charging power. The notebook also comes with free lifetime 24/7 after-sales phone support in the USA.  This impressive specification is housed in a remarkably thin form factor.

The unit measures only 0.78 inches thick and weighs 4.36 lbs. This makes it a very powerful and surprisingly portable notebook. Another interesting addition is the ability to add a custom engraving or unique colour scheme. This level of customization is bound to appeal to the enthusiast demographic.

Origin PC have decided to implement a visually stunning multi-colour backlit keyboard and premium 2.1 audio solution. Apparently, the battery is capable of powering the device up to 4 hours. Sadly there’s no current word on the system’s price, but this should be revealed quite soon.

HP and Disney Create a Star Wars Themed Laptop Like No Other

When it comes to fandoms, then the Star Wars fans will probably be one of the biggest groups around and also one where the ages span from very young to very old. With a new Star Wars movie just around the corner, the merchandise deals begin to roll in and we get all sorts of Star Wars branded items. One of them comes from HP that teamed up with Disney to produce this special edition version of their 15.6-inch Pavilion laptop.

The special edition Star Wars laptop is wrapped in a special Empire skin and the trackpad got the X-Wing targeting computer pattern. The LED lit keyboard looks really sweet and gives a nice contrast to the grey laptop. The customized theme comes with the Aurebesh font and a best of all, your trashcan is now a Death star while sounds such as R2D2 and lightsaber swooshes provide the right sound ambiance.

If the Star Wars laptop isn’t enough for you, then you’ll also be able to get a Star Wars themed wireless mouse and a laptop sleeve that will cost you an extra £26 each.

The Star Wars goodies don’t stop here and HP also loaded it with the Star Wars Command Center that will allow users to browse through behind the scenes photos, storyboards, artwork, classic photos, and design documents. A grand total of over 1100 images from the past 40 years of Star Wars.

The hardware in itself isn’t bad, but it isn’t spectacular either. You get a Full-HD 1080p display, an Intel i5 or i7 CPU, up to 12GB RAM, and up to 2TB storage. The basic model will cost you £461 over the £362 that it would cost without the Star Wars theming which is quite a bit more. You do however get a one-year membership for Fandor included, with access to a library of indie movies.

Thank You TechRadar for providing us with this information

Gigabyte P34W v3 Gaming Laptop Review

Introduction


The Gigabyte P34W v3 is touted as “the world’s lightest GTX 970M gaming laptop” and exemplifies how portable modern gaming laptops can be whilst offering an impressive level of graphical prowess. After growing up with a number of 17″ behemoths that almost weighed the same as my Desktop; it is staggering how far technology has come. From the outset, the P34W v3 looks more like a fashionable ultrabook designed for basic tasks instead of an enthusiast-grade laptop. However, don’t be deceived by its slim design; the P34W v3 packs an enormous punch with an Intel Core i7-4720HQ, 8GB of RAM and GTX 970M. This combination provides a stellar 1080p gaming experience without requiring a bulky setup. The question is, have Gigabyte made too many concessions in a bid to reach a compact form factor?

Specifications

  • Name: Gigabyte P34W v3
  • Case: Gigabyte ABS and PC Chassis with Aluminium Lid
  • Processor: 4th Gen. Intel Core i7-4720HQ (2.6GHz, 3.6GHz Turbo)
  • System Memory: Transcend TS1GSK64W6H – 8GB Memory Module 1600MHz DDR3L Unbuffered Non-ECC CL11 204-pin SO-DIMM
  • Main Boot Drive: Lite-On LMT-128L9M-11 MSATA 128GB
  • Additional Storage Drive(s): WD Blue WD10JPVX 1TB 5400 RPM 8MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 2.5″ Internal Notebook Hard Drive
  • Graphics card: NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 970M GDDR5 3GB
  • Battery: Li-polymer 15.2V, 16.25h, 4030mAh
  • Optical DriveNone
  • Wireless:  Intel dual-band Wireless-AC 7260 2×2 mini-PCIe card
  • OS: Windows 8.1 64 Bit
  • Display: 14″ 1920×1080 AVHA
  • Weight: 1.81kg
  • Dimensions: 340(W) x 239 (D) x 20.9 (h) mm
  • Warranty: 2-year Global Warranty
  • Price: £1187 as configured Delivered.

Packing and Accessories

Gaming laptops incur a rather hefty price tag which means the packaging and presentation should be impeccable. In this case, the P34W v3 was sent without any bubble wrap, additional boxes or reinforced padding. I wouldn’t be too concerned though as this particular unit is a second-hand press sample and shouldn’t reflect the retail version.

Once the top flap has been removed, you can access the interior packaging which contains a cardboard section for the power cable and adapter. This is constructed from fairly thick-grade cardboard and protects the cables pretty well. Additionally, the laptop is hidden underneath a rectangular foam cutout which adds a luxury feel. Gigabyte decided to position the accessories on top of the cushioning foam to allow for easy removal.

The laptop is bundled with a soft and luscious protective bag which adopts an understated but classy appearance.In terms of accessories, the P34W v3 includes a user’s manual, warranty card, felt cleaning cloth, power adapter, power brick, and selection of software. The user’s manual is 12-pages long and contains clear diagrams to help you setup the device. It does seem rather silly though to provide a drivers disk considering the laptop doesn’t have an optical drive. This shows a lack of thought because many laptops require a disk to enable network functionality before downloading additional drivers. I hope Gigabyte take this feedback on-board and put the data on a USB flash drive in the future.

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Aorus Laptops at Computex 2015

Computex 2015 – I have to be perfectly honest, I did not personally know of Auros before today. But I wished I did as they make some incredible portable systems that don’t leave many wishes open. Behind the name is a more familiar brand that we all know, and that is Gigabyte.

The systems range from 13-inch to 17-inch screen sizes and come with everything from SLI setups, high-pixel count displays, fast storage, and even with live streaming engines.

MSI Display a Range of Gaming Notebooks @ Computex 2015

Computex 2015 – We stopped by the MSI booth today to get a closer look at the notebook division. The MSI Gaming notebook series offer some of the best possible gaming experiences that money can buy; some even being the best we’ve ever seen at eTeknix.

Even though the models on show are only fitted with GTX 950M graphics units, they still pack a punch when combined with the 1080p screen.

We look forward to seeing what else MSI will bring out in the future for the gaming notebook series. We will keep you updated with any news and events from the rest of Computex 2015.

AMD Announce Carrizo Notebook APU

Earlier this week, we were invited to participate in a conference call with AMD. In the last few weeks, AMD has enticed into strict deadline shrouded calls that promised to show off the new technologies ready for the upcoming Summer show season; namely Computex and E3. As we already know, AMD are hosting a dedicated event at E3 to potentially unveil the new Radeon 300 series graphics cards, but what about the upcoming Godavari/ Kaveri Refresh and Carrizo APU’s?

Last week we took a call regarding the Godavari/ Kaveri Refresh APU series, being headed by the flagship A10-7870k. On Monday, we took a call regarding Carrizo APU line-up. Godavari is aimed for the desktop enthusiast market, where Carrizo will be notebook orientated. The notebook sector has a huge potential consumer base of around 63 million, with around 2/5’s of those consumers generally aiming to spend between $400-$700. The 6th generation (Carrizo) will be aimed to tackle new trends set by our current media requirements. Consumers have the pre-conception that desktops are the central hub of the home and the media services, however, in a recent survey it was found that notebooks were the second-largest platform for media-streaming with TV’s being first and tablets being third.

The 6th generation APU’s offers what most consumers are looking to achieve with a notebook.

The Carrizo processors feature a completely redesigned architecture to optimise power efficiency and provide more performance. This means that during gaming in huge titles such as DOTA2, League of Legends, etc.. you can see an increase in performance compared to the 5th generation APU’s and also have longer playing time.

Some key features that really interested me were the HEVC/ H.265 hardware decode, HSA 1.0 and hand gestures. Even though hand gestures have been featured on notebooks before, never have they been implemented at this price point. HSA 1.0 helps with AMDs Looking Glass, this feature scans through all discoverable pictures and videos and uses facial recognition to sort them into categories.

NVIDIA Announce New G-Sync Notebooks

NVIDIA, graphics giant has announced a new range of G-Sync enabled notebooks. This finally brings what desktop users have had to the mobile gaming market.

This might sound bizarre, but enabling G-Sync on notebooks was ‘a doddle’ considering how easy the implementation process is compared to a conventional desktop tower and monitor. The reason being, in a notebook, there is now scaler module. The scaler in traditional monitors is used to allow for different inputs with different input resolutions, i.e. a graphics card could natively want to display at 1080p, but another input source could want to display at 720p. Most users wouldn’t normally consider this as we can change the resolution while in the operating system to whatever we want up to the graphics card or monitor limit.

The panels used will only be those tested specifically by NVIDIA and given a pass mark; these will then be allowed to carry the G-Sync branding. They will always be synchronised due to a direct panel to GPU connection and they will feature a 75Hz refresh rate.

At the time of writing this article, there was only a small range of G-Sync notebooks available and we could see more during Computex. They will all feature at least a GTX 970M and have a resolution of up to 4K.

More information of these notebooks will be made available during Computex from each of the manufacturers.

FSP Announced Notebook Power Adapter With Built-In USB 3.0 Hub

FSP Group has some great power supplies, although they’re mostly used as OEM models by system builders. But they range from off-size tiny and specialized ones onto full-fledged ATX power supplies for high-end systems. This time around they bring out something a little different that very well could be considered the most powerful USB hub.

Okay, all the power isn’t really used for the USB hub, but it’s rather a universal power supply for notebook and ultrabook users and it has a built-in USB 3.0 hub.

There will be two models of the new NB H series of power supplies, the NB H 110 with 3 USB 3.0 ports and a 110W total output and the smaller version called the NB H 65 with two USB ports and 65W power output.

One could argue that it’s an irrelevant feature as one just could get an over-the-counter random USB hub, but when you’re on the go you want to have as few devices with you as possible. Having the power supply and USB hub in one saves you half the load and space in your backpack or purse.

The NB H 65 and NB H 110 are scheduled to be available in stores this October 2015 for the suggested retail price of €54.99 and €69.99 respectively.

MSI Introduces Prestige Notebook Series

Work and fun don’t have to be separated when using MSI’s new Prestige notebook series. The sleek and silver designed notebook got its inspiration from boutique fashion and high-precision instruments and packs a lot of power on inside the great look chassis.

The Prestige series is powered by the Intel fourth generation Core i7-4720HQ processors and comes with either a GTX950M or GTX960M graphics card. The notebook delivers true-to-life image quality close to 100% of the sRGB scale with MSI True Color Technology, allowing you to share your work with co-workers and more without the risk of potential color distortions.

Besides great visual experiences, the Prestige notebooks focus on a great audio experience. MSI adopted the Nahimic sound technology on their new notebook series that is said to give a great sound experience with 360° sound, improved clarity of dialogue, and increased bass. It also boosts the microphone with a constant volume and noise reduction as well as the new HD Audio Recorder feature that enables you to enjoy studio quality sound. MSI partnered with Dynaudio to equip the notebook with top-notch audio speakers and also added their own Audio Boost technology.

Another nifty feature added to the Prestige series is the ability to switch power profiles by hardware buttons by use of the new Shift feature. You can switch between sport, comfort, and green. The Non-glare coating on the display reduces eye strain and increases the comfort while reading on the available 15.6” FHD 1980 x 1080 or 4K and 17.3” FHD 1980 x 1080 display options.

Other hardware specification include up to 16GB 1600MHz RAM, up to 256GB M.2 SSD and 1TB HDD and a BD Writer. You also get several USB 3.0 and 2.0 ports, HDMI 1.4 and mini DisplayPort 1.2 connections. Networking is covered by a Gigabit Ethernet controller and 802.11ac WiFi as well as Bluetooth 4.0.

Intel Drops Power Connector in New Skylake Based Star Brook Notebook

Intel demonstrated their newest prototype Star Brook notebook at the IDF spring session and the differences over the current generations stand out right away. The most prominent change is the lack of a dedicated power connector that otherwise has been there since the dawn of mobile PCs. It is only Apple’s most recent MacBook that got rid of the dedicated power port.

The new Intel prototype works in the same way, by taking advantage of the new USB 3.1 connector that can provide up to 100W of power. A system like this only needs a 65W power adapter, so the 5V 20A provided by the new USB standard is more than enough. The good thing is that Intel added two of these ports and not just one, still allowing you to connect other devices without the need for a hub or adapter.

The rest of the specifications are pretty much as it was expected, an Intel Skylake processor and a 12.5-inch screen with 2560×1440 resolution, but the notebook is only 20mm thick and weighs less than 1kg. That’s portable!

The Star Brooks notebook that was shown is just a prototype so far and its main intention is an inspiration to manufacturers for their own versions based on the new processor generation, but I like what I see.

Thank you EXPreview for providing us with this information

Huge Range of ASUS Notebooks @ CeBIT 2015

ASUS, one of the biggest players in the consumer technology industry, never fails to deliver. What started out as a humble motherboard manufacturer has now turned into a dominant name throughout the market. Asus has been in the notebook PC market for a little while and what we saw today a small range of its’ offerings. We were a little more surprised with the Smart Watch on display. A very understated piece, but this felt good in hand and reacted well when used.

Along with the notebooks and smart watch, we saw a little of ASUS’ network offerings, we know how good they are, in fact I’m currently using the RT-AC68U router which we using in our motherboard network testing because it is that good. However, I do want to see a ROG version, a nice red detailed with the ROG logo would set one of their routers off.

We look forward to see what ASUS brings to the table in the future, with smart watch competition heating up and tablets becoming a more dominant portable use, will we see many more notebooks from ASUS? Any news of events from ASUS, we will keep you updated.

The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt GeForce GTX Bundle Now Available

NVIDIA has previously indicated that they will be shipping a copy of the most anticipated RPG game of the year, The Wither 3: Wild Hunt, along with select graphics solutions. For those who are not familiar with the game, The Witcher titles are excellent storytelling RPGs, with a lot of branching quests and morally ambiguous choices.

In the latest title, NVIDIA made sure that the game uses advanced graphics. By ‘advanced graphics’ we mean that CD Projekt Red, The Witcher’s developer, has teamed up with NVIDIA to add its new techniques and the latest effects in order to bring fantastical scenes to life with the help of NVIDIA GameWorks effects, including HBAO+, HairWorks, and PhysX.

NVIDIA is apparently giving a copy of the title bundled with its “Undeniably Epic” GeForce GTX 980, 970 or 960 graphic cards, for both desktop and notebook solutions. A list of retailers can be found here.

Source: GeForce

MSI GT80 GTX 980M 8GB SLI Titan Laptop Review

Introduction


There are few things more exciting than reviewing a gaming laptop that you know has a reputation to live up to. Naturally, when the courier dropped off the GT80 Titan I couldn’t wait to get my claws into it. It has a specification list that puts most desktops to shame and has been paraded by MSI for a couple of months now as their latest and greatest flagship gaming laptop, promising nothing but the best for followers of MSIs “Dragon Army”. In preparation for meeting this monster in person, I had a brief look around the MSI website and was impressed to see just how much has been crammed into this machine. There were the usual claims of speed, “ultimate performance” and the likes, but below this was a tech spec list long enough to possibly justify these claims and had me wide-eyed with interest from the off.

I decided to leave to the official blurb behind and just dive in, as to not be influenced by big claims or rose-tinted glasses, so let the unboxing begin!

Specifications

  • Name: MSI GT80 Titan
  • CPU: Intel Core i7-4980HQ @ 2.8GHz (up to 4.0GHz Turboboost)
  • RAM: 32GB 1600MHz DDR3 (8GB*4)
  • SSD: 4 x 256GB PCIE SSD
  • HDD: 1TB 7200RPM
  • GPU: 2 x NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980M 8GB in SLI
  • LAN:10/100/1000/Gigabits Base T (Killer)
  • WLAN: Killer 802.11a/b/g/n/ac Built-in Bluetooth V4.0
  • Monitor: 18.4″1920 x 1080 Anti-glare LED backlit
  • Keyboard: SteelSeries Red backlit mechanical keyboard with Cherry MX Brown Switches
  • I/O: 5x USB3.0, 1x HDMI, 2x Micro Displayport, SD Reader, Mic-in, Headphone-out, line-in, line-out, 1x 1Gb LAN, Optical Out
  • Webcam: FHD Webcam
  • ODD: BD-RW (6x)
  • Battery: Built-in 89 W/h lithium-Ion
  • OS: Windows 8.1
  • Dimensions: 45.6 x 33 x 4.9 cm
  • Weight: 4.5Kg (w/ Battery)
  • Warranty: 2 year collect and return, 1 Year Global
  • Price: £3499.99 Inc VAT

The box comes loud and proud with the MSI logo on it.  Now I know this laptop is big, but this box is huge. On opening it we see why, there are extra goodies in there too, I spy a backpack!

Removed from the outer box and separated from the backpack, this still weighs quite a fair amount

When you lift the lid of the outer box you are immediately presented with a rather nice black envelope sealed with an MSI sticker; we’ll open this in the next section

You can immediately see the laptop on the left in a protective bag and there is a cardboard section on the right which houses the power supply.

When you lift the laptop out of the box, there is a whole host of goodies waiting for you underneath

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Asus ROG G751JY-T7051H Gaming Notebook Review

Introduction


With every incarnation of Next-Gen mobile GPU releases there is always a high-end selection from each major manufacturer vying for the title of “World’s Fastest Laptop”, “Ultimate Portable Gaming Notebook” or similar, and Asus is no stranger for aiming for this accolade. Their Republic Of Gamers (or “ROG” as more commonly known) series is specifically designed towards this area, and has put out regular revisions of its G-Series laptops since the launch of the G70 in 2008. Fast forward to 2014 and we have the G751 series, aimed the highest point in the market in terms of price and performance, using the latest Intel Haswell CPU and the Nvidia GTX 980m GPU based on the new Maxwell architecture.

There was a point in time where most manufacturers could get away with purchasing the latest Clevo OEM motherboard and cramming it with the latest hardware and then shipping it out – though Asus was one of the few at the time to take thermals into account and actually create a custom cooling solution that helped gamers get the most out of their the high-end hardware. Add some aggressive looking “Stealth Fighter” design choices and you have the ROG series in a nutshell.

As an owner of gaming laptops over the years including the Asus G73 back in the day, I have high hopes going into this review that Asus have delivered a monster of a machine capable of gaming till my eyes go square. After briefly looking over the hardware specifications I am looking forward to pushing the G751 to its limits, while hopefully being met with a tremendous gaming experience that will keep me glued to my seat over the New Year. As a laptop pushing the £2000 boundary, this represents a significant investment and therefore we have high expectations going into this review.

Specifications
  • Name: Asus G751JY-T7051H
  • CPU: Intel Core i7-4860HQ @ 2.4GHz (up to 3.4GHz Turboboost)
  • RAM: 32GB 1600MHz DDR3 1.35w (8GB*4)
  • SSD: 512GB PCIE SSD
  • HDD: 1TB 7200RPM
  • GPU:NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980M 4GB
  • LAN:10/100/1000/Gigabits Base T
  • WLAN: Integrated 802.11a/b/g/n/ac Built-in Bluetooth V4.0
  • Monitor: 3″1920 x 1080 Anti-glare LED backlit
  • Keyboard: Chiclet Red blacklit Asus ROG branded
  • I/O: 4x USB3.0, 1x HDMI, 1x VGA, 1x Thunderbolt, SD Reader, Mic-in, Headphone-out, line-in, line-out, 1x 1Gb LAN, FHD Webcam
  • ODD: BD-RW (6x)
  • Battery: 8-Cell 6000mAh 88w/h
  • OS: Windows 8.1
  • Dimensions: 41.6 x 31.8 x 5.3 cm
  • Weight: 8kg with battery (10.6lb)
  • Warranty: 2 year Global Warranty, can be extended to 3 for an extra £65
  • Price: £1999.99 Inc VAT

Packaging & Accessories

The notebook box provides a decent amount of protection to the laptop inside, and both the machine itself and accessories have an extra layer of protection in that they are inside in thin foam bags. Having said that though for a laptop of this value, it would have been nice if it had been shipped inside a padded box for extra protection, in the same way the PC Specialist Cosmos 2 was packed.

The box is well designed, with carry handle and angled sides reminiscent of the laptop’s aggressively edged design. Upon lifting the lid of the box you are greeted with the line “In Search of Incredible” on the inner lid, and the system itself wrapped inside its afore-mentioned sleeve. The power supply is located in a compartment to the right of the system, and the accessories are stored in a compartment that is revealed under the laptop once it has been lifted from the box.

Included is a power supply, UK 3 pin plug with kettle connection to the power supply, an Asus branded cable tidy wrap, manual, quick start guide, warranty card and cleaning cloth.

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GPU-Z

Samsung’s New Super-Fast SSD Consumes Nearly Zero Power in Standby

Samsung has revealed its new solid state drive, the SM951, designed to be a high-performance, low-powered PCIe for notebooks and workstations.

The small SM951 – its dimensions of 80mm x 22mm are around 1/7 the size of a 2.5-inch SSD – can pack in as much as 512GB storage.

Using a PCIe 3.0 interface, the SM951 can perform at speeds of up to 2.15GB/s read and 1.55GB/s write, four times as fast as a SATA SSD. Through a PCIe 2.0, speeds are still an impressive 1.6GB/s read and 1.35GB/s write.

Remarkably, while hitting such accelerated speeds, the SM951 uses 50% less power than the nearest SSD, and only consumes 2mW when in standby mode.

Samsung plan to release the SM951 PCIe SSD later this year.

Source: Digital Wack

Acer Announced Aspire V17 Nitro Notebook with RealSense 3D Camera

 

Acer announced the new Aspire V 17 Nitro notebooks that feature the advanced Intel RealSense 3D camera. With a camera that can understand and respond to natural movements in three dimensions, Aspire V Nitro will take their owners to a new level of navigation. It also enables 3D scanning, 3D model generating and then printing on a 3D printer, or sharing on social media for that matter.

“Acer believes three-dimensional computing offers unlimited potential for both professional and consumer uses,” said Jerry Kao, President of Acer Notebook Business Group. “Business applications include 3D modeling, mapping, and architectural design, while the most popular consumer uses will likely include augmented reality gaming, and simple PC navigation and control.”

Acer V 17 Nitro notebook models include large 17.3-inch Full HD IPS displays and are powered by a 4th Generation Intel Core i7-4710HQ quad-core processor and the Nvidia GeForce GTX 860M graphics. They also come with up to 16GB of memory, 128GB or 256GB solid state drives, and up to 1TB of hard disk storage.

Of course the newest 802.11ac wireless networks are support with dual band antennas on both the 2.4GHz and 5GZ frequencies. It also includes Acer Dustfender to clear out build-up dirt inside the system to keep it longing stable and silent for a long period of time. Four built-in speakers provide Dolby Digital Plus Home Theater sound and depending on model they come with either Blu-ray or DVD drives.

The new Aspire V17 Nitro notebooks with 3D camera will become available throughout January with varying prices depending on configuration.

Thanks to Acer for providing us with this information

Images courtesy of Acer

15.6-Inch Chromebook Unveiled by Acer

After a strong showing for Chromebooks – the family of netbooks that carry Google’s Chrome operating system – over the recent Holiday season, Acer has announced the release of a new Chromebook with a 15.6-inch screen, making it the largest of its kind. Acer was the second-highest selling manufacturer of Chromebooks last year, according to statistics gathered by IT researchers Gartner, and the company is showing its intent to continue that success in 2015.

The Acer Chromebook 15 has a fifth-generation Intel Celeron chip, a 1080p display (1920×1080 resolution), an 802.11ac WiFi and Bluetooth LE, plus USB 3.0, USB 2.0, and HDMI ports. The 4.85lb computer has an eight-hour battery life.

Prices for the Acer Chromebook 15 start at $250, with either 16GB or 32GB SSD on-board storage and up to 4GB RAM. No release date has yet been announced, though more information may be forthcoming at this year’s Consumer Electronics Show that starts Monday in Las Vegas.

Source: Wired

Schenker Is Betting on Desktop CPUs in Their XMG Laptops

Where most manufacturers tend to go ever smaller and compact when it comes to portable devices, one company is daring to go in the other direction. The german newspaper Leipziger Volkszeitung is reporting that the notebook manufacturer Schenker is betting on desktop CPUs in their gaming laptops.

Just cause you want to have a mobile gaming system doesn’t mean you want to compromise on the power you have available. Schenker seems to know that and on top of the added performance potential from desktop CPUs, the use of them also allows for future upgrades with new or better processors.

Having a desktop processor in a laptop will increase the size and weight, that’s a given. A better and bigger battery is required and so is the amount of copper to cool the desktop processor. This results in a system that weighs about 3.4KG and has a height of 35mm. While this might be much today, it isn’t that long time since a normal laptop had those measurements.

The Ultimate Series of XMG gaming laptops with desktop processors is said to hit the market before the end of this year, so this might be just the right Christmas present for yourself.

Thanks to LVZ for providing us with this information

Image courtesy of LVZ

 

HP Returning to PC Gaming Hardware Market with Omen

Asus, MSI, Razer, PCSpecialist and many others have ultra high-end gaming notebooks on the market right now, but soon they’ll have an extra competitor in the form of the HP Omen. HP dropped out of the gaming market years ago, but their new notebook marks a shift in the companies goals.

The Omen is a 15.6″ laptop with an Intel Core i7 CPU, GeForce 860M graphics, 8GB of RAM, a 128GB SDD and a 1920 x 1080 display. Nothing overly fancy or innovative there, but it’s certainly going to pack enough performance punch to run high-end PC games.

It’s milled from a solid piece of aluminium, with tapered edges and a speaker grill down each side. The keyboard features red LED backlighting and six programmable function keys. The whole unit is just 20mm thick and weighs 4.68 pounds (2.1kg).

The Omen will be available from the 4th of November online and in retail stores a few weeks afterwards. Prices are expected to be $1,499 for the base model. It certainly looks gorgeous, but we’ll wait and see how it performs in benchmarks.

Thank you CNET for providing us with this information.

Images courtesy of CNET.

Meet MSI’s New GT80 Titan With Full Mechanical Keyboard

18 inches of beauty – MSI’s new GT80 Titan notebook contains a blisteringly fast GTX 980M graphics card and a fully mechanical SteelSeries keyboard. The Taiwanese technology manufacturer has just let slip details of their new champion product release aimed at the high-end gamer market. Unfortunately, the full technical specifications are not yet known, only the graphics card has been hinted alongside their inclusion of a Cherry MX Brown SteelSeries keyboard. We’re not talking about a generic laptop chiclet style keyboard with a ‘mechanical feel’ here – it’s a full-blown ‘mech’. We’ve also heard some further rumors of possible SLI graphics card integration, but they are  currently unconfirmed by MSI.

The first concern that comes to mind is weight limitations due to the high system specifications coupled with the full mechanical inclusion. Reported at 4.5 kg and 49.1 mm thick, now might be the time to start working out in the gym if you’re planning to travel with this hot piece of tech.

As far as the design goes, first impressions really makes us feel that most will have a love or hate relationship with this notebook – the extended plate above the mechanical keyboard can be viewed as unsightly, but possibly made up for by smooth red back-lighting on the keyboard.

As you can see in the above image, the keypad has been done away with and is now included within the touch pad, allowing for all the graphical goodness to be stored directly above the keyboard inside the chassis. Comparing this to most laptops you’ll see they have a full keyboard located above the keypad. Alongside this, due to the placement of the board you’ll notice this laptop has no where for you to rest your wrists whilst on the go.

Unfortunately, there isn’t really any more information to share about this product – keep your eyes peeled to eTeknix and we’ll be sure to release the information as soon as we see it.

Information thanks to Cowcotland
Image courtesy of Cowcotland

CyberPowerPC Fangbook III HX6 15.6-Inch Gaming Notebook Revealed

Eager to take your mobile gaming to the next level? Then you may want to check out the new Fangbook III HX6 15.6″ gaming notebook from CyberPowerPC. It comes equipped with the latest Intel Core i7-4700MQ processors, Nvidia GeForce GTX 860 M4GB  graphics and plenty of upgrade options for those who need even more power.

The processor is incredibly efficient, as it’s capable of dropping down to just 800Mhz when you’re browsing the web or playing Minesweeper, but dials up to 3.4GHz when you really need it.

The Fangbook III comes equipped with a 1080p LED display and a two megapixel HD webcam. It supports mSATA in addition to 2.5″ drives; it also comes equipped with a SATA 6.0Gbps 1TB hard drive as standard. There’s also three shortcut keys that allow you to spin up the cooling fans, adjust the backlighting and to underclock the CPU at the touch of a button.

The Fangbook III HX6 base configuration includes:

  • 15.6″ Full HD (1080P) LED Backlit IPS Panel Display
  • Intel Core i7-4700MQ Processor
  • NVIDIA GeForce GTX 860M Graphics Card
  • 8GB DDR3 Memory – Expandable to 16GB for Heavy Multi-tasking
  • 1TB 7200RPM SATA 6.0Gbps Hard Drive
  • 802.11b/g/n/ac WiFi + Bluetooth 4.0
  • Microsoft Windows 8.1
  • Measurements – 14.9″ x 10.3″ x 1.24″ at 5.9 lbs
  • Starting price is $1100

For more details, check out the official product page.

Thank you CyberPowerPC for providing us with this information.

Image courtesy of CyberPowerPC.