Lexar Launches Compact Professional XQD 2.0 USB 3.0 Reader

Moving on to camera equipment that doesn’t use the more-or-less default SD or micro SD cards creates an issue with most portable systems, you can’t just slide the memory card into your notebook and transfer the files over for backup or editing. Most portable systems such as notebook and ultrabooks feature SD card slots, but what if your equipment uses QXD cards instead? That’s when you need an external card reader and Lexar just introduced the Professional XQD 2.0 USB 3.0 Reader which is designed to aid professionals in quickly transferring files from XQD 2.0 cards to computers and not take up a lot of space.

Lexar already has the impressive Workflow XR2 reader, but this one is a more compact version that’s better suited for people with limited space on the go. It can easily slip into a pocket or bag, and offers a simple plug-and-play design with a USB 3.0 connector so content can be securely transferred on the go. Whether you capture photos in the RAW image format or record 4K video, this card reader will have your files transferred in no time.

“Given the rapid growth and widespread appeal of 4K video, we realised it was essential to create a reader for XQD 2.0 cards that provided professionals with a way to transfer great video and photo content without the wait time,” said Steffi Ho, product marketing manager, Lexar. “The Lexar Professional XQD 2.0 USB 3.0 Reader supercharges post-production content transfer, no matter what you’re shooting.”

Lexar backs the Professional XQD 2.0 USB 3.0 Reader with an impressive 5-year warranty and it comes with an MSRP of £29.99. Availability is expected in late April.

Feature Highlights

  • Provides professional-level high-speed transfer of RAW images and 4K video files
  • Accelerates workflow, leveraging SuperSpeed USB 3.0 technology
  • Designed for use with XQD 2.0 cards
  • Compact, portable design for photographers and videographers on the go
  • Five-year limited warranty

Lexar Releases A Bunch of New Flash Products

Lexar released a bunch of new flash-based products and we naturally also want to update you on these. While HDDs are the go-to medium for NAS and SSDs for the PC systems, we shouldn’t forget about our portable storage and mobile devices.

The drive pictured above is the first of Lexar’s new flash drives and it is actually an SSD, just an external one. We have previously reviewed Lexar’s Professional Workflow SSD in the same form factor and that is compatible with the Workflow drive dock system, and this new Lexar Portable SSD is compatible to that system too despite not being from the Professional Workflow series.

The compact and durable drive reads with up to 450MB/s and writes with up to 245MB/s, making it quick and easy to take your files on the go. The LEDs on the front work as capacity meter and the drive is available as 256GB and 512GB models. Since it’s a full-fledged SSD, the drive supports NTFS, FAT, and exxFAT without any trouble. The Lexar Portable SSD will be available in Q1 2016 with MSRPs of £120.99 (256GB) and £200.99 (512GB), a more than fair price.

The second new Lexar product is the 1800x microSD card with impressive speeds that hold up to even the most demanding tasks. The Lexar 1800x is available as 32GB, 64GB, and 128GB models and it leverages Ultra High Speed II (U3 technology) to provide you with the best experience. The card is capable of speeds up to 270MB/s read speeds and is designed for high-speed capture of extended lengths of 4K, 3D, and 1080p full-HD video and high-quality images.

Lexar’s Professional 1800x microSD UHS-II cards are already available with an MSRP of £65.99 (32GB), £109.99 (64GB), and £219.99 (128GB).

The next new Lexar product is quite ingenious. Whether you’ll want to call it a 3-in-1 drive or an Apple Lightning charging cable with built-in flash storage, you’d be right. The JumpDrive C20i is all that and also a USB 3.0 flash drive at the same time, completing the 3-in-1 scenario. The drive can read with up to 95 MB/s and write with up to 20 MB/s for easy expansion of your iPhone or iPad memory. The new JumpDrive C20i flash drive will be available in Q1 of 2016 and have MSRPs of £28.99 (16GB), £39.99 (32GB), £56.99 (64GB), and £79.99 (128GB).

The last new Lexar drive is a little more traditional and it is called the JumpDrive S45. The tiny nano-styled drive is designed for a plug-and-stay setup with its low profile. It is capable of speeds up to 150MB/s reading and 45MB/s writing and be available in capacities up to 128GB. An impressive capacity for a nano-drive. Depending on the capacity, the JumpDrive S45 comes in different colours: Orange, Blue, Teal, and black. Along with the JumpDrive S45, you also get the EncryptStick Lite software for 256-bit AES encryption of your content. The flash drive has MSRPs of £7.99 (16GB), £10.99 (32GB), £18.99 (64GB), and £28.99 (128GB) and will be available in Q1 2016.

Lexar Professional Workflow Card Reader and Drive Hub Review

Introduction


There are many ways to get your data from memory cards to your system, server, or other memory cards, but it is far from all of these ways that are equally great. One of the best solutions for this comes from Lexar in the form of their Professional series Workflow card readers, portable SSDs, and storage drive hubs. Lexar provided me with a full set of these readers and a drive hub for reviews and today I’ll be showing you what they can do.

We’ve previously already reviewed the very affordable and compact Workflow DD512 portable USB 3.0 SSD and that is just one of the many options you have in this series. No matter what memory card type you use, you’ll find a reader for it and best of all, you can easily hook them up by simply plugging them into the drive hub.

Let us first talk a little about the drive hub itself, The Lexar Professional Workflow HR1. This is a four-bay drive hub that connects through a single USB 3.0 cable and comes with an external power supply to make sure that you got the optimal performance to all four readers at the same time.

While an external power supply can a little annoying, it is necessary to ensure a proper power supply to all four connected devices. The included AC adapter isn’t large and it won’t be a power hog either with its 20W maximum power consumption.

There is a second model available that also features a Thunderbolt 2 connection that will be particularly useful for Mac OS users on their iOS based systems. Whether you’re a pro photographer or videographer or an adventure seeker using a sports camcorder or aerial camera, it’s easy to create your custom workflow setup.

Thunderbolt 2 technology gives photographers and videographers the power to quickly transfer 4K video and other large media files at up to twice the speed of Thunderbolt and up to four times the speed of USB 3.0 devices. With a hub, you can easily copy and move files from one memory card to another, or back them up on a portable SSD that fits right into the hub next the card readers.

There are quite a few card readers available, among them the Workflow UR1 three-slot microSDHC/microSDXC UHS-II reader, the Workflow SR2 SDHC/SDXC UHS-II  reader, the Workflow CFR1 CompactFlash reader, and the Workflow CR1 CFast 2.0 card reader that I’ll be stocking my drive hub with today. All card readers are available with USB 3.0 or Thunderbolt and USB 3.0 to match your needs and drive hub.

The modular design allows you to easily swap card readers and storage drives depending on your needs, without the hassle of extra cables for each drive and the at times difficult connection access. Do you need four SD card readers at the same time? No problem. Do you need up to 12 micro SD cards at the same time? That’s no problem either. As you see, the choices are many and they are yours.

Feature Highlights:

  • Transfers images and video from multiple memory cards at once
  • Hubs leverage Thunderbolt 2 or USB 3.0 technologies for high-speed transfer of RAW images, high-res photos, and HD, 3D, and 4K video
  • Readers support today’s latest card formats—SDHC/SDXC UHS-I and UHS-II, CompactFlash UDMA 7, XQD
    2.0, CFast and CFast 2.0 (Thunderbolt or USB 3.0), and microSDHC/microSDXC UHS-I and UHS-II
  • Innovative, modular design
  • Use the card readers with a hub or on the go
  • Two-year limited warranty on hub and readers

DXT Mouse 2 Wireless Ergonomic Vertical Mouse Review

Introduction


We see a lot of mice here at eTeknix, and they certainly come in all shapes and sizes, but the DXT Mouse 2 is by far one of the most unique. While we love a great gaming mouse, packed with programmable buttons, RGB lighting and other crazy features, sometimes practicality wins out. The DXT is a vertical mouse, with the buttons on the side to provide your hand and wrist with a more natural resting position, helping eliminate stress and wrist pain, a common issue for a lot of people who use computers for many hours a day.

There are two models available, wired and wireless, and we have the wireless model at our disposal today. As you can see, it’s quite a compact unit, with an ambidextrous design and for those who like an easy setup, it’s plug and play ready.

There may not be a lot of features here, but all the basics are covered and there’s even a four level DPI adjuster for the optical sensor, giving you 500, 1000, 1500 and 2000 DPI options.

  • Read the launch story for this product.
  • The world’s first ambidextrous ergo mouse.
  • Can be used right- or left-handed (instantly switchable).
  • Compact (ideal for laptop users).
  • High-precision vertical mouse design, well suited to detailed work.
  • Fits most hand sizes.
  • Designed by UK ergonomist/physiotherapist team.
  • The wireless version now features an on/off switch to prolong battery life.
  • Now with enhanced finish and quality.
  • New zinc base plate to increase weight and stability.
  • Maximum resolution increased. Options are now 500, 1000, 1500 and 2000 dpi.

The packaging is nice and compact, with a few simple details on the front. Most notable, this is the light touch version, with lighter use switches.

There’s a few pictures on the box, but otherwise, it’s pretty straightforward, so let’s get it out the box and take a look.

In the box, you’ll find a collection of documentation, a USB charging cable, USB dongle for the wireless connectivity and a protective soft carry pouch.

As you can see, this really is no ordinary mouse, the left and right mouse buttons, as well as the scroll wheel are almost 90-degrees compared to most desktop mice. There’s a nice mixture of well finished plastics on DXT, giving it a nice weighted and premium feel. Despite looking completely sideways, it’s actually quite nice looking and well designed.

The scroll wheel is nice and large, set into the body of the mouse and it’s got a light tactile bump when rotated, as well as a soft rubber grip for added control.

The back of the mouse is scooped out, giving it a nice ergonomic thumb rest, while the base of the mouse is wider, giving it excellent stability.

At the rear, you’ll find a small switch for moving from left to right-handed mode, as having it the wrong way would result in inverted mouse Y axis.

There’s also a micro-USB charging port here, so no need to worry about replacing the batteries. I gave it a full charge when I opened the box and a week later, with a few hours use each day and its still going strong.

On the base, you’ll find four small slipmats, which provide a really good amount of glide, it works well on harder cloth surfaces, but just as well on soft mouse mats too. There’s an optical sensor in the middle, a master power switch to save battery and a small button to toggle the DPI level.

The mouse is surprisingly small, but since you don’t need to rest your palm on it, it doesn’t need to be as big as most mice. You’ll also notice it’s symmetrical, so it’s just as comfortable to use in either your left or right hand.

The mouse supports a fingertip grip, similar in feel to a claw or fingertip grip on most other mice, giving you light and nimble control that is great for small hand movements and precision work.

Having your wrist at this angle certainly takes a lot of strain off your hand and if you suffer from CTS and many other arm/wrist/hand pain conditions, while also acting as a preventative tool for those who would like to avoid similar issues.

The optical sensor in the DXT is quite good, I wasn’t expecting much from it if I’m honest, but as you can see, the readout is pretty clean and smooth. There’s certainly a slight dose of angle snapping and/or straight line correction going on, but it’s quite acceptable on a mouse that isn’t designed for gaming and can be beneficial when working in CAD, office and image editing software.

There’s no doubt that the mouse is comfortable to use, but it certainly takes some getting used to.  Drawing these charts did prove a little difficult, especially since I was using a normal desktop mouse for most of the day before it, and many years before that. However, after a bit of practice, it starts getting a lot easier and damn is it comfortable! I personally suffer from wrist pain and have to take regular breaks to prevent it getting too bad, and while this mouse won’t cure that for me, it does allow me to work a lot longer before the pain becomes an issue and it has been slowly improved over a few days of use.

The left and right mode switch is great too, as I am an ambidextrous user and being able to quickly switch between left and right is simply awesome for me. Of course, not everyone is comfortable using both left and right handed modes, but it’s nice that lefties aren’t left out of day-to-day use of the DXT

The sensor DPI mode switch on the bottom can be a little fiddly to reach and does involve you lifting the mouse to change, but since this isn’t a gaming mouse, there’s rarely a need to make rapid changes between DPI modes. Overall, the DXT is a joy to use, even if it does have a little bit of a learning curve to get use to effectively click and scrolling sideways.

AOC Q2577PWQ 25″ IPS Monitor Review

Introduction


I’ve never really been a fan of buying a monitor, I tend to only look at three key aspects; screen size, resolution and the overall appearance. While that is generally a good way to choose a monitor, there are a multitude of other features that require your attention depending on your intended use.

If you are a gamer or avid video editor, the response time and refresh rates would be of key interest to you to ensure that there is little input lag from your input device and that there is little screen tearing. Professional photograph editors may be less interested in those features, where the contrast ratio, brightness and available colours are more important.

Today we have the professional grade AOC Q2577PWQ. This monitor is one of the best-looking units I’ve seen with a brushed metal base and matching lower bezel on the monitor itself. The looks aren’t let down by poor features either, this monitor comes packing a very respectable 25″ 2560x1440p@60hz IPS panel and AOC’s own Flicker Free technology to give the best possible viewing experience.
Packaging and Features

The front of the box is very plain, focusing primarily on the logo, screen and key details regarding the monitor such as QHD and IPS panel type. The image displayed on the monitor itself leads itself to be desired more by the professional buyer than the general gaming enthusiast.

AOC kept the website clean with more professionalism for those looking for information. The key features that were outlined apart from the QHD and 3-Year warranty are AOC flicker free technology, integrated speakers and ergonomic stand.

 

Lexar Also Introduces Fastest XQD 2.0 Card and New Flash Drives

Lexar has even more in store for us today than the previously mentioned SDXC and CFast 2.0 cards, they also released the world’s fastest XQD 2.0 card, the Lexar Professional 2933x and also the 1400x XQD 2.0 card. New and faster cards also require a faster card reader and Lexar released the Professional Workflow XR2 XQD 2.0 USB 3.0 reader at the same time.

The Professional 2933x XQD 2.0 is the fastest XQD card on the market today, designed for use with the latest generation of high-definition camcorders and high-resolution DSLRs and it delivers read transfer speeds up to 440MB/s. The 1400X isn’t quite as fast but still delivers an impressive read transfer speed up to 210MB/s. Both of these new cards support PCI Express Gen 2 and USB 3.0 interfaces.

The MSRP for the Lexar Professional 2933x XQD 2.0 card is £479.99 (128GB), £255.99 (64GB), £139.99 (32GB) while the Lexar Professional 1400x XQD 2.0 cards will set you back £149.99 (64GB) and £96.99 (32GB)

The Lexar Professional Workflow XR2 XQD 2.0 USB 3.0 reader is compatible with both the Professional Workflow HR2 and Workflow HR1 stations, making it plug and play for those who have one. It is still a plug and play experience for everyone else. If you shouldn’t have one of the awesome Workflow HR, then you’ll just connect it with a normal USB 3.0 cable. The Lexar Professional Workflow XR2 XQD 2.0 USB 3.0 reader has an MSRP of £35.99 and will be available in October.

Memory cards aren’t the solution in every scenario and sometimes the more traditional flash drive is the better usage choice. Lexar also released two new 2-in-1 models, the JumpDrive M20c and the Lexar JumpDrive M20i.

The JumpDrive M20c is designed for the next-generation USB Type-C enabled devices and also features a normal USB 3.0 connector with backwards compatibility. The JumpDrive M20i is basically the same, but it is designed for use with iOS devices and comes with a Lightning connector instead of the USB Type-C. These flash drives enable users to easily offload and move photos and videos between smartphones and tablets and onto their computers.

The Lexar JumpDrive M20c leverages USB 3.0 performance with up to 150MB/s read and 60MB/s write speeds while the JumpDrive M20i provides read speeds up to 95MB/s and write speeds up to 20MB/s.

Both flash drives come with a three-year limited warranty. The new JumpDrive M20c USB Type-C flash drives have MSRPs of £16.99 (16GB), £21.99 (32GB), and £33.99 (64GB) and the new JumpDrive M20i have MSRPs of £39.99 (16GB), £54.99 (32GB), and £77.99 (64GB). Both will be available in October

Lexar Introduce World’s Fastest SDXC UHS-II and CFast 2.0 Memory Cards


There is no doubt that we all want smaller and faster storage for our gadgets. One of the areas where fast storage is a prime factor is video and photo capturing. With the ever-increasing Mega Pixels captured at ever-increasing frame rates, now also at 360 degrees and 3D, you need some serious storage to keep up. Lexar has been a busy little beaver and built a full row of new memory cards and flash drives that should satisfy those needs and that will become available for purchase later this year.

SD cards are one of the most used form factors when it comes to memory cards and Lexar’s new 128GB Professional 2000x SDXC UHS-II card would be great in any device. The Ultra High Speed II, UHS Speed Class 3 (U3) specification allows the 2000x SDXC card to quickly capture and transfers extended lengths of 4K, 1080p full-HD, and 3D video, as well as high-quality images. The new 128GB capacity card offers read transfer speeds up to 300MB per second and write speeds up to 260MB per second. The Lexar 128GB Professional 2000x SDXC UHS-II card will be available in October with an MSRP of £224.99, but that includes a lifetime warranty and lifetime copy of Image Rescue software.

“By delivering the fastest SDXC memory card with the highest capacity available on the market, Lexar is focused on providing professional videographers and photographers with the necessary tools to perform at new levels,” said Steffi Ho, product marketing manager, Lexar. “Demand for cinematography-grade video and images requires the ability to shoot, store, and transfer more content than ever on a single card, and the 128GB Lexar Professional 2000x SDXC empowers professionals to meet those demands.”

If the 2000x still doesn’t provide enough storage space and speed for you, then you’ll need to look at the CFast 2.0 card series of Lexar that just got two new additions, the Lexar Professional 3600x CFast 2.0 card and the Lexar Professional 3500x CFast 2.0 card. Both cards are perfect for 4K video and beyond with a performance of up to 540MB/s for the 3600x and 525MB/s for the 3500x.

The Lexar Professional 3600x CFast 2.0 card will be available in 256GB and 128GB capacities, and it is specifically optimised for ARRI cameras. The Lexar Professional 3500x CFast 2.0 memory card will be available in capacities ranging from 32GB to 256GB.

The Lexar Professional 3600x CFast 2.0 card has MSRPs of £739.99 (256GB) and £394.99 (128GB). The Lexar Professional 3500x CFast 2.0 card has MSRPs of £739.99 (256GB), £394.99(128GB), £213.99 (64GB) and £129.99 (32GB). That’s not cheap, but you get the best.

These are some serious memory cards and the fastest of their kind. Well done Lexar. How well do your current memory cards compare to these specs? Time for an upgrade?

Scuf Gaming 4PS Professional PlayStation 4 Controller Review

Introduction


It has been a few years since we reviewed a product from Scuf. We last saw their Scuf Xbox 360 Controller, which was pretty amazing, but let’s be honest, it’s a little out of date now and with new-er consoles already on the market, we figured we’d take a look at something a little more modern. We have in the eTeknix office today, the Scuf Gaming 4PS, a heavily modded PlayStation 4 controller designed for the competitive gamer, be that a pro gaer, or someone who just likes to give their friends a good thrashing.

I’m really looking forward to testing this, I loved the last Scuf controller we tested, so I have high hopes for this new one, so let’s just jump right in and take a look at what you get for your money.

Please note that Scuf controllers are customizable to a great extent, the design and features of this controller were pre-picked by ourselves to represent a typical Scuf controller, while also showing all the available options you may want on your own. The controllers aren’t cheap, as this is a stock controller, extra hardware, time taken by a skilled craftsman to create the controller and a few extra bonuses. However, you know the saying “you get what you pay for”.

Our controller came with an added surprise, the Scuf Gaming Player’s Pack. Think of it like an add-on accessory kit of bonus goodies, because that’s exactly what it is. The controller box is nicely designed, a far cry from the box that the old Scuf controller came in!

Inside the box, you’ll find a quick run down of the features, such as the extra grips, custom handles, precision thumbsticks and more.

Under that, you’ll find the controller is carefully protected in a custom cut foam padding; an expensive controller deserves good packaging.

In the bottom of the box, I found some Scuf Fangs, these stick onto the rear triggers for extra reach and there’s also a clip/strap.

Frist impressions of the controller are extremely promising and its design is very unique; no doubt about that. The blue digital camo appearance looks stunning and also has a light grip texture to it that feels very comfortable to the touch, especially compared to the standard plastic feel of the stock controller.

Here you can see how the design is printed onto the top part of the controller, not the bottom. All the standard stuff is still here too, so you’ll find your headset connectors located on the bottom edge.

There’s an extra grip on the left and right bottom sides of the controller.

Things are pretty standard around the back.

On the underside, there are some major changes going on. First we’ve got those very tough rubber grips on the back, so there’s virtually no chance of this thing slipping from your grip. Then, of course, the Scuf Pro paddles on the back. These are customizable on the Scuf website to your favourite button configurations, you could have jump or melee for example, meaning you never have to take your thumbs off the sticks while gaming. The small logo between the paddles can be used to remap the paddles with the EMR feature and the tag that came included in the box.

Their custom shape makes them easy to control and they sit comfortably behind your finger tips.

There’s also a little grip texture on their tips, adding even more control and stability to the extra buttons.

There are a few stick configurations available from Scuf, we’ve gone for a Concave long on the left and a Dome Long on the right. You can also choose to keep the stock sticks if you want, or short, medium and long stem versions of the two types we have installed here. We’ve also gone for the all black buttons, which look pretty slick.

Both sticks are really nice quality, feel stunning and really smooth to control.

So what about that extra box of goodies we received? In that, you’ll find a new cable, carry case, nd a tube of Gamer Grip.

 

the cable is of a very high quality, with a thick braiding, durable connectors and it’s nice and long at 10ft, perfect for those who like to sit back from their system.

Gamer Grip is an interesting extra, it’s antiperspirant for your hands! I don’t suffer from sweaty hands while gaming, so this isn’t much use to me, but I know people who do and it certainly couldn’t hurt to have it in your gaming tool kit.

The carry case is stunning, perfectly crafted to fit the 4PS controller and keep all the buttons nice and safe.

The custom shape provides a snug house for your new premium grade (and priced) controller.

The soft interior should also help protect against scratches.

Overclockers UK Enters the eSports Arena

Overclockers UK is well-known for the online shop full of great hardware and gaming systems, but they aren’t content with just supplying all the gaming components, they want to part of it. Not surprising when you have a company basically made up of gamers and for gamers, those who want the best and most out of it.

They have now formed their own professional League of Legends team in order to take on the online gaming community. Team Overclockers UK is sponsored by Cougar and will be competing in the Challenger Series and various tournaments with the aim to qualify for LCS, the biggest eSport league in the world. Being heavily involved in eSports, streaming and gaming internally with members of the staff, a professional eSports team was the next natural step.

The Overclockers UK team consists of the following people:

  • Marek “Libik” Kręgiel (Team Captain)
  • Kuba “Kubon” Turewicz
  • Wojciech “Tabasko” Kruza
  • Rafal “TakeFun” Górniak
  • Pawel “Celaver” Koprianiuk
  • Fryderyk “Veggie” Kozioł (coach)

The next match is on June the 30th against Team Dignitas and the reverse match will be played the next day, on Wednesday the first of July. The next team they’re up against will be Denial eSports on the 7th and 8th of July.

NVIDIA Announce Quadro M6000, Titan X for Pro’s

So it’s not all gaming performance and show-stopping specifications; NVIDIA has announced their newest Quadro professional graphics card, the M6000. This is basically the Titan X, but for professional users; business professionals, not pro gamers.

“It features the newest installment in Maxwell lineup called GM200. Just like TITAN X, it has full chip with 3072 CUDA cores, 192 TMUs and 96 ROPs. The boost clock is rated at 1114 MHz with the memory clocked to 6.6 GHz. Quadro M6000 has 12GB GDDR5 memory across 384-bit interface. Unlike TITAN X, Quadro M6000 is equipped with one 8-pin power connector, but TDP is rated at the same Wattage of 250. Quadro M6000 is kept in black colors, but NVIDIA decided to add some green flavor to distinguish workstation from gaming interpretation of Maxwell GM200. It doesn’t seem like NVIDIA is currently planning to replace other Quadro models (like K5200). The GM200 architecture is much slower in double precision computing, so not everyone may appreciate this change coming from Kepler.”

Who else thinks that the black and green case would be better suited to the gaming series? I guess professional users like to showboat their graphics cards more.

Lexar Professional 3400x CFast 2.0 Cards Now Available

Lexar announced immediate availability of the Lexar Professional 3400x CFast 2.0 cards. The new cards enable professional cinematographers to quickly capture high-end, cinematic quality video and dramatically accelerate post-production workflow with read transfer speeds up to 510MB per second.

“Our Professional 3400x CFast 2.0 card offers content creators the right storage solutions to keep up with the demands of 4K and beyond cinema-level videography,” said Adam Kaufman, director of card product marketing, Lexar. “With industry-leading write performance and capacities, we are excited to know that the next generation of content will be captured on Lexar memory cards.”

The Lexar Professional 3400x CFast 2.0 card is available in capacities from 32GB up to 256GB, enough to capture all your moments. It comes bundled with the latest version of Image Rescue software and is backed by a limited lifetime warranty.

The new Lexar CFast 2.0 cards come with some serious speed, but also a serious MSRPs of £874.99 for 256GB, £525.99 for 128GB, £289.99 for 64GB, and £142.99 for 32GB.

Thanks to Lexar for providing us with this information

Lexar Workflow DD512 USB 3.0 Solid State Drive Review

Introduction


Not all external storage drives are equally suited for every scenario and there are a lot of different drives on the market. Most of these are branded for the ultra durability or portability. There is a third kind of external storage drives, those that need to be practical as well as universal in their everyday usage.

Lexar has created a unique line of mobile storage products dubbed the Professional Workflow series and is based on the USB 3.0 connectors. The series consists of several card readers that support the newest and fastest memory cards, as well as storage drives with either 256GB or 512GB storage capacity. Today I’m taking a look at the Professional Workflow DD512 USB 3.0 storage drive with a capacity of 512GB.

One of the great things about this series of mobile storage options is the sturdy full sized USB 3.0 B-type connector, but also its universal module size. Every model in the series uses the same enclosure and the reason for this are the unique drive hubs that Lexar also created for this series. By using the Professional Workflow hubs, you can take 4 drives or card readers and just plug them into the hub for simultaneous backups and data transfers. Perfect for photographers, action junkies with their GoPro cameras or other people who have a lot of files on mobile storage.

There are two Lexar Professional Workflow Hubs available, a basic USB 3.0 model and a more advanced model that also features Thunderbolt 2 connectivity for up to 4 times the transfer speeds. Just plug the module into the hub and you’re ready to copy, store and backup your files. The hubs aren’t needed if you don’t want to invest in them as each module also features their own USB 3.0 connector. This is the only connector on the drive and it is also used when plugged into the hubs. The hubs future proof you, as you can swap out a module with a newer standard when it becomes available or needed.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hzVrqPxuiFQ

The Lexar Professional Workflow DD512 USB 3.0 storage drive that I’m having a look at today can deliver up to 450 MB/s while reading and up to 250 MB/s while writing and comes with a 2-year warranty. Before these drives are shipped out to us customers, Lexar has had them undergo extensive testing with more than 1,100 digital devices to ensure performance, quality, compatibility and reliability.

The Workflow DD512 storage drive has another unique feature that is located right on the front of the drive. It has six LEDs and five of these are used to show how full the drive is. Each LED represents 20% of the drive’s capacity and will in return allow you to see how full your drive is with just a glance and as soon as it’s plugged in. The last LED is used to show connection and activity.

OverclockersUK RENDA Workstations Now Available

Overclockers are one of the top computer retailers in the UK, they’ve already won many awards for their incredible 8PACK gaming systems, and now they’re hitting the professional market with their new range of RENDA systems.

RENDA is a culmination of OCUK’s expertise and the high demand for ultra-high performance workstations. The systems come with a wide range of configurability options, which come with automatically calculated prices, so no waiting for a quote on your specialist system.

RENDA  will boast Overclockers UK’s  speciality on a range of Frequency Enhanced Workstations, tweaking the system for extra performance and horsepower ultimately giving a more efficient system to complete hardcore tasks.”

RENDA systems are named after rendering and NDA; highlighting the fact that these systems will be ideal for the most demanding tasks possible, while also using the latest and greatest hardware. Equipped with a choice of NVIDIA Quadro, AMD FirePro graphics hardware, high performance ECC memory from Kingston Hyper X and high-end Asus motherboards.

“The Overclockers UK business team is available for companies or individuals interested in more information, which can be contacted business@overclockers.co.uk” said OCUK in a recent press release.

If you’re in an industry that requires high-performance computing, 3D design, sound/audio engineering and more, then RENDA is certainly worth looking into. All systems come with a five year warranty.

Thank you Overclockers for providing us with this information.

Professional CS:GO Players Caught Cheating and Banned

A shadow has been cast on the professional CS:GO gaming community as three players have been caught cheating in competitive play and received VAC bans last week. The outed players are Hovik “KQLY” Tovmassian, Simon “smn” Beck and Gordon “Sf” Giry.

Professional players or at least semi-professional, have been banned before, but it is rare that it happens on such a high-profile level. It doesn’t just cast doubt on past performances in tournaments, but also on the entire scene. There might be other similar and yet undiscovered cheats in the wild.

KQLY, probably the most prominent of the banned players, has issued some statements via his facebook page. He said that he used the third-party tool for a seven days period and that the programmer that had offered him the tool had ensured that “lots of professional gamers user it.” The tool in question has no visual display and the only way it can be detected is during installation. No visual indication can be found on the affected systems. The cheat allegedly connects through the steam workshop.

No doubt the shame must be high and I bet they’d like to crawl up into a hole and disappear right now. And it is really bad timing with Dreamhack starting this week. The Titan and Epsilon teams have been disqualified from this years Dreamhack Winter 2014 tournaments that has a price pool of $250,000.

Thanks to PC Gamer for providing us with this information

Image courtesy of PC Gamer

NEC Display Debuts New 32-Inch MultiSync PA322UHD Monitor

NEC has launched its newest flagship monitor aimed at the professional video and still-photographers who require the most accurate colours in their line of work. The new PA322UHD is a 32-inch Ultra HD 4K monitor with a resolution of 3840 x 2160 pixels.

The display uses wide gamut white LED backlight and an IGZO technology IPS-type LCD panel that delivers excellent image quality with low power consumption. It is capable of delivering 99.2 percent coverage of the Adobe RGB color space and 136.3% of the sRGB spectrum. The display has 140 pixels per inch and a typical response time of 10ms while displaying 1.07 billion colours. It does all that at a 120Hz refresh rate to reduce motion blur and the viewing angle is 176° in all direction.

The monitor has an 6-axis colour control for precise and simplified colour, colour temperature and saturation adjustment. It also has an Ambient Light sensor to adjust the backlight. The included stand allows for both landscape and portrait modes while the display automatically rotates the image when the physical display is rotated.

“The PA322UHD offers a high-resolution, color accurate solution that videographers, photographers and print production specialists can trust for almost every application,” said Art Marshall, Product Manager of Professional and Medical Displays at NEC Display. “These professionals will enjoy the higher pixel density and commercial-grade features in this cutting-edge display.”

The PA322UHD monitor boost a long-range of connectivity options with two DisplayPort, four HDMI and two DVI-D ports. It also has a built-in USB3 hub with 2 up and three downlink connections that support DisplaySync Pro technology. The last mentioned allows you to connect your input devices to your monitor and use it as KVM switch for multiple computers.

This is also the first desktop display to feature an Open Pluggable Specification (OPS) compliant option slot for expanded input options, including the SB-04HC 3G/SD/HD-SDI and SB-01HC HD-SDI input cards available from NEC.

This monitor has so many functions and abilities, but another one worth highlighting is the picture-in-picture and picture-by-picture modes that can split your monitor in up to four full-HD images. It can also tilt, swivel and pivot as well as being wall-mounted with a VESA 100 x 100mm or 200 x 100mm compliant system.

These monitors wont come cheap as it has a MSRP of $2,999.00 USD. You will however get a Mini DisplayPort to DisplayPort cable, a normal DisplayPort cable and a USB 3.0 A to B cable included with the purchase. This monitor is backed by a 4-year warranty with 48-hour advanced exchange.

Thank you NEC for providing us with these information

Images courtesy of NEC

Lexar Has Introduced Us to the World’s Fastest SD Card

Lexar has the determination to bring their customers the best and fastest storage options, and as such they have just released the worlds fastest SD card; the Lexar Professional 2000x SDHC/SDXC UHS-II card. To complete their portfolio, Lexar also introduced two other SD UHS-II products; the Professional 1000X SDHC/SDXC UHS-II card as well as a new Professional Workflow SR2 card reader that supports the high-speeds that these cards can perform.

“UHS-II technology really raises the bar in terms of performance. The latest UHS-II additions to our Lexar Professional product portfolio provide users the ability to capture and offload work even faster, so they can get back to what’s important–capturing great images and video,” said Adam Kaufman, director of card product marketing, Lexar. “Our multi-line UHS-II product offering gets performance into the hands of any user at a great value and with the Professional 2000x card, it comes right out of the box.”

This is a card that you have to stop a moment at and just say “wow”. The Lexar Professional 2000x has no problem impressing anyone with its transfer speeds of up to 300 MB/s while reading up to 260MB/s while writing. That is very close to SSD speeds, and on a very tiny form factor. These cards will allow the user to capture 4K and 3D video with more frames than meets the eye, and of course anything below as well. Each Professional 2000x card comes with an included USB card reader that supports these speeds. The Professional 2000x card will be available in 32 GB and 64 GB capacity.

The little brother; the Professional 1000X, is aimed at photographers and videographers who want great performance at a more affordable price. While they aren’t as fast as the 2000x series, they still impress with speeds up to 150MB/s when reading and 95MB/s when writing. You’ll also get more size options on these cards, ranging from 16 GB all the way up to 256 GB.

To really complete the new UHS-II product portfolio, the Lexar Professional Workflow line has expanded to include the Professional Workflow SR2 reader; a SD UHS-II USB 3.0 reader. Other card readers available include Thunderbolt 2 connectivity and hub modes for multiple cards. So there is something to fit the many specific, but still different needs of as many customers as possible.

Of course, both of these cards are backwards compatible with older cameras and readers, where they’ll either perform at UHS-I or Class 10 speed depending on their connection. The cards also include the latest version of the Image Rescue software and come with a limited lifetime warranty.

All three new products will be available in Q4 with MSRP’s on the Lexar Professional 2000x of £135.99 (64GB) and £77.99 (32GB). The Lexar Professional 1000x card has MSRP’s of £400.99 (256GB), £128.99 (128GB), £71.99 (64GB), £40.99 (32GB), and £23.99 (16GB), while the Lexar Professional Workflow SR2 reader has an MRSP of £22.99.

Thank you Lexar for providing us with this information

Images courtesy of Lexar

Transcend Introduces the CFast 2.0 CFX650/600 Memory Cards for 4K Video Recordings

Transcend has just announced its latest addition to its memory card series, the CFast 2.0 CFX650 and CFX600, designed specifically to meed professional high-end 4K cinematography needs. The company has split the two into different sections and needs, having the CFX650 card featuring the fastest transfer speeds while the CFX600 features the highest storage capacity.

The company states that the CFX650/600 feature the next generation CFast 2.0 specification, having support for SATA III interface. The CFX650 is stated to boast the most remarkable read and write speeds, having the values marked as being 510 MB/s for read and 370 MB/s for write. If speed is not an issue in the current line of work, then the CFX600 is said to provide the highest capacity in order to capture all required 4K videos without worrying about how much free space is left on the drive, having a storage space of up to 512GB.

Both the CFX650 and CFX600 have support for the latest cameras and camcorders, providing 4K UHD resolution support (3840 x 2160 pixels) which offers 4x the pixel resolution compared to a normal Full HD 1080p video recording. Thanks to this, the resulting shots will deliver more vivid images with a wide-range of nuances and details. Transcend has stated that the “memory cards are fast enough to record high-resolution videos and meet the demands of high-speed 4K video recording”, while also increasing “the workflow efficiency of the professional cinematographers shooting high-resolution Full HD and 4K UHD videos”. In addition to the latter, the CFX650/600 come with a built-in ECC technology, providing automatic error detection and correction of transfer errors, enhancing overall reliability.

Transcend is said to throw in a free download of the company’s exclusive RecoveRx photo recovery software to all CFX650/600 customers, allowing them to effectively recover accidentally deleted or lost files from Transcend storage and multimedia products.

In terms of pricing, Transcend is said to have priced the 128GB CFX650 memory card at $499 and the 250GB at $949, while the CFX600 is stated to have the 128GB version priced at $249, the 256GB at $499 and the 512GB at $949.

FirePro W8100 Professional Graphics Solution Announced by AMD

AMD has just launched the AMD FirePro W8100 professional graphics card, bringing a new generation of AMD Graphics Core Next architecture as well as even grater workstation performance, which is dubbed to be 38x better than any other competing product on the market.

Featuring OpenCL, a best-in-class 8 GB of GDDR5 memory, 4.2 TFLOPS single-precision compute performance, 2.1 TFLOPS double-precision compute performance and of course OpenCL, the AMD FirePro W8100 is said to be designed for Media & Entertainment workflows, as well as engineering analysis and supercomputing applications.

In terms of productivity, the FirePro W8100 is said to be the ideal professional-grade solution for 4K Computer Aided Design (CAD) and other applications dedicated towards video editing, colour correction, compositing, design visualisation and GPU-accelerated compute tasks. Thanks to its super-fast memory and vast capacity, users are said to be able to load large datasets or handle ultra-HD video frames on the GPU’s internal memory for processing purposes, resulting in reduced lag and improved overall responsiveness.

Users are also said to have the option to combine up to four AMD FirePro W8100 cards in a single system in order to have over 16 TFLOPS compute performance, in addition to increased productivity with up to four 4K display support and certified application performance with differentiated graphics features.

The FirePro W8100 is said to deliver support for increasing real-time 4K productivity with single-GPU and multi-GPU configurations from various system integrators, including Armari, CARRI, Colfax, Exxact, Mouse Computers, PSSC Labs, Scan International, Tarox, Versatile Distribution Services, Workstation Specialists and Wortmann.

AMD has stated that it will start shipping in July from SAPPHIRE Technology, AMD FirePro Ultra Workstation providers as well as major workstation providers.

Thank you TechPowerUp for providing us with this information
Image courtesy of TechPowerUp

AOC Q2770PQU 27″ PLS Monitor Review

Introduction


For content writers and image editors such as myself, having a large display with a high-resolution to work on and maximise our workspace is virtually a must have and whilst a 1920 x 1080 workspace is usable, it’s not ideal – especially when you’re referencing from a data sheet or a reviewers guide. There is of course the option to have two displays side by side and this is great as it does give you the capacity to view two separate items at once with loads of space to work in, but having even more space to work within is highly sought after – in short a 1920 x 1080 resolution doesn’t quite cut it for me these days.

Going up from a standard HD resolution does mean that we generally have to go up in a physical dimension as well and above 24″ the next step is 27″. At this point we move to the 2560 x 1440 and 2560 x 1600 set of resolutions and whilst there is only a small difference in the height of each resolution, surprisingly there is a bigger gap in the price. This is part of the reason why many users stick to the standard HD workspace. Fortunately for the professional user group the number of monitors coming to market sporting the slightly lower 1440 pixel height is quickly growing and with 4K panels appearing in growing numbers, the price associated with moving up from 1920 x 1080 is dropping at a steady pace.

The Q2770PQU is one of AOC’s latest creations and like a number of their other products it’s not short of any features. On top of the 2560 x 1440 resolution, the display boasts a 80,000,000 : 1 dynamic contrast ratio, 5ms GTG (Grey to Grey) response time, 300cd/m² brightness, a pixel pitch of 0.233 x 0.233 mm and a super wide viewing angle of 178° (horizontal & vertical) – all from a LED backlit PLS panel. Top this off with a set of built-in 2W speakers, DVI-D, VGA, HDMI and DisplayPort inputs, a height adjustable and rotatable stand and finally a pair of USB2.0 & USB3.0 ports and what you’ve got is one mouth-watering package.

Like the spec list, the accessory set is by no means short-staffed. A cable for DVI, VGA and DisplayPort connectivity is available along with a 3.5mm to 3.5mm audio cable and a USB3.0 host cable. A regional kettle lead is also bundled in with a CD and user manual to get you up and running.

Aside from the accessories, I will make a note that the box suggests that this is an IPS panel and not a PLS as listed. I can confirm that this is a PLS panel and any sources that list IPS are incorrect – all other listed specifications for this panel are correct – an error was made during the beta stages for this product that resulting in review samples having IPS printed boxes – all final production boxes and sources have been corrected.

New AMD Hawaii FirePro Card Accidentally Leaked

We’re no stranger to seeing hardware leaked before its official announcement, normally with the help of some industry insiders on some obscure forums. However it makes our job much easier when the company behind the product leaks the information all by its self. AMD accidentally posted an announcement about an upcoming Hawaii launch even, and while I’m sure many of you hope it was the 295×2 we reported on yesterday, it’s the first Hawaii based FirePro card from the red camp.

No specification were leaked which is a real shame, but on the plus side we know the hardware exists so you can expect more details to start flooding from AMD, either officially or via obscure leaks, especially now that people know what to look for. AMD will be running a webcast on March 26th with more details.

With Nvidia dominating the profession graphics market with a 4/5 market share, AMD are keen to make up on lost ground, something we expect they’re hoping to do with Hawaii based hardware as they target a 30% market share for this year.

Thank you Fudzilla for providing us with this information.

Image courtesy of VideoCardz.

 

More Information Available Regarding Asus’ New 28″ 4K Monitor At CES 2014

If you recall, last night I talked about how both Asus and Lenovo have both brought a 28″ 4K monitor to the market with a seemingly remarkable price tag of sub US$800. Well eager to find out a little more about this panel I decided to pop by the Asus suite in the Trump hotel to get a hands on look at what this monitor has to offer and to see if a 4K resolution in such a small frame size (relative to its resolution).

When it comes to clarity and colour definition, first impressions look amazing. I’ve seem some impressive displays in my life, but even when looking up close as we can see below, it is easier to pick up particles of dust than it is to see individual pixels with a high level of zoom on the camera lens. Apart from the fact that the image is moving – which is pretty obvious considering this is a video stream that it is displaying – if the image were to be left still, and a dummy screen placed beside it, I could probably go as far as saying that at a glance it would be hard to tell the two apart. This is the only real way in which I can describe how good the picture looks.

Looking a further in to the exact specifications of the PB287Q, we note that due to the ultra high resolution, this panel packs a whopping 157 pixels into every square inch of the IPS panel and it features the same Splendid display characteristics but with a bit more refinement, thus the Splendid Plus title. We also note that there are infact three display inputs with dual HDMI ports (both with MHL capability), a single full sized DisplayPort and a legacy VGA input for older display adaptors. The IPS panel offers a contrast ratio of 100,000,000:1 (yes that is one hundred million to one), a brightness of 300cd/m² and a pair of 2W speakers with 3.5mm analogue audio in/out also on hand for older systems.

Having read and now seen this screen first hand, I’m even more excited to hopefully get one of these panels in for review in the near future. Asus say that the panels should be on the market in the early to mid part of February and I’ll tell you what, it’s going to shake up the display line-ups that we are already presented with for sure.

Asus ProArt PA249Q 24″ AH-IPS LCD Monitor Review

There are many components within a system setup that are mandatory for the system to be usable or even perform for that matter,and these days there is so much focus from vendors to consumers alike about getting the best for the money and at the same time to avoid compromising on performance or quality. Take power supplies, they are a prime example of the obsession of most users and rightly so – I would not dream of putting a power supply in to a system where I thought the quality was not up to standard. After all, if that fails, then it can be ‘bye bye’ to your system and an expensive repair bill.

What does the quality of a power supply have to do with a monitor I hear you ask? Well it is a notable fact that for a large percentage of users, so much focus is put in to the system and the graphics output, a consequent side step is made around deciding what screen is going to be used to display the graphics. Take a moment to think about it, you’ve spend the best part of £1500-2000 on your top end system, but then skimp out on a £100-150 panel, because it ‘does the job’ of displaying your top end system’s output. Doesn’t make a lot of sense really – does it?

Since LCDs have been around, the introduction of LED backlit panels vastly improved the quality of the image that we saw on the screen with better depth of colour and brightness to go with it. More recently, the IPS (In-plane Switching) panel has made the LCD screen even more clear and crisp with superior colour output as well as wider viewing angles and more importantly for gamers, a faster response time.

With nearly all users these days using LCD screens, getting the true colours out of the panel is nigh on impossible and whilst there are expensive calibration kits available that will assist in doing so, for a large number of the panels on the market, this is going to be a battle against the odds to get things just how they should be.  But why should we be looking for perfection? If you’re a graphic designer or someone who does a lot of photo or video editing, the answer is a no-brainer really, it makes a hell of a difference when getting the work right – first time.

Bringing that bag of challenges to the design table, the R&D team at Asus have been busy working away to get a panel to market that will tick all the boxes for graphics designers and gamers alike with a pre-calibrated panel that will give near perfect colour outputs whilst offering up a 1920×1200 resolution that will give some extra pixel real-estate to play around with over a 1080p panel. Bring forward the PA249Q a 24″ IPS panel that offers all this plus more, but the real question is, is Asus’ pre-calibration really that noticeable to the eye?

The PA249Q comes in a relatively colourful box, showing off the screen in both its portrait and landscape orientations. On the lower half of the box there are a number of logos, some which have a significant feature within this panel such as the Adobe RGB colour profiling, a supreme level of colour accuracy and a factory colour calibration.

 Before we move on to the panel itself, there are a number of accessories to sort  through, including VGA, DVI and DisplayPort cables, a USB3.0 lead, an EU power cable (although regional SKUs will have the required cables included), quick installation guide, Asus VIP notice and a CD with the manual on. Additional to these, there is a pack with Velcro cable ties in which is a welcome addition to keeping everything tidy behind the scenes and most importantly a dedicated report for the calibration of this particular panel.

Adobe Has Fun At The Bus Stop #CreativeDays

Yesterday Hypervocal published an article about Adobe – Creative Days. A group of people that have plotted a 14 day event to express creativity and expressiveness across Europe, the Middle East and Africa. There are only a few days left to check out this event. For more information on the next fun, and creative event, check out “Adobe Creative Day Nordics” an online event!

May

  • 21 Johannesburg
  • 23 Milan
  • 24 Istanbul
  • 28 Warsaw
  • 30 Moscow

June

  • 4 London
  • 7 Barcelona
  • 11 Paris
  • 11 Stockholm
  • 12 Berlin
  • 13 Amsterdam
  • 14 Zurich
  • 18 Cologne
  • 20 Munich

#CreativeDays from May 20 through June 20, might seem like a bit of a prank if you check out this video, but really it is much more than that. Artist Erik Johansson worked with Adobe to feature colorful advertisements on a sign at a bus stop. Johansson waited in a van close by while photographs were snapped of the unsuspecting, working his magic very quickly he was able to transform simple photos into works of art in just a matter of minutes.

Johansson showed off some amazing talent being able to bring us some great fun showing us some fun at “The Bus Stop”. Adobe is doing some amazing things, this is primarily to show off Adobe Creative Cloud, where with one membership you have access to every Adobe tool when you need it, using it with any device or anyone you chose!

If you’re an artist, creative professional, designer, developer, video professional, photographer feel free to join them to exchange ideas & inspiration.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BRAM8MpqIeA[/youtube]

Asus PA249Q ProArt 24″ IPS Monitor Overview Preview

Asus are one of the only brands in the market at the moment who really have the facility to delve into multiple areas and different product segments. It seems that every time they venture into another market, they seem to come up trumps with a fantastic reception from customers. With this in mind, they have been developing monitors for a fair few years now and even now, they are regarded as some of the highest-end, best monitors money can buy without going into the realms of the Dell UltraSharp series or Apple monitors.

Stemming from this success, they have created this beast of a monitor that we’re taking a quick look at today which is part of their ProArt series of monitors, featuring an pre-calibrated AH-IPS panel, 99% AdobeRGB colour representation and aimed at a specific market of designers and artists alike. With it’s 16:10 1920×1200 resolution it gives extra desktop estate when needed and is LED-backlit to give a crisp, clear picture.

It’s also packed full of connectivity options with native DisplayPort, HDMI, DVI and D-SUB VGA giving the user multiple choices and a big highlight of USB 3.0 functionality for those needing speed when using the likes of photoshop and large RAW image files.

The specifications from a first glance certainly seem impressive with some very nice viewing angles, PiP support and plenty of connectivity options, so lets take a quick overview of the monitor itself.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=64-5Gi3K21Y[/youtube]

Great first impressions from this monitor, and some really nice features for the budding artists in the market. A personal highlight for me comes with the USB 3.0 connectivity options, as USB 2.0 really is a bit of a dying breed now, especially with files getting much larger in size which Asus have clearly thought about, as this monitor is aimed at consumers and professionals who will obviously be dealing with large images such as RAW photos taken on a DSLR. I’m also very excited to see the ruler etched into the monitor frame, giving print professionals a nice guide to use when using the likes of Adobe Illustrator.

Overall, a very nice monitor from the initial unboxing and overview, and in the next coming weeks, we will be playing with its functionality to see if its the perfect device for the task its aimed at. Without expensive monitor calibration equipment, it’s hard to fully test a monitor, but with a subjective mind, we can hopefully show who this type of product is aimed at, and why it is suited perfectly for that job and task at hand.

Have Asus managed to make another award-winning product, in yet another product segment? If so, we can only assume good things for Asus to come in the near future, as they already have the motherboard and VGA component market pretty much sewn up which some elite products already in the market. Monitors and phones are just another stepping stone for them, and who knows; maybe world domination is next? Of course I kid, but we can only see more good things to come if this initial overview is anything to go by.