Giada Relaunches N70E-DR mITX NAS Motherboard

Giada created the probably best mITX motherboard quite a while ago with the M70E-DR and now they’ve relaunched it in a third revision due to popular demand. The N70E-DR V3 mITX NAS motherboard bring 6 SATA ports, 1 mSATA, Dual Intel LAN, and HD graphics with HDMI out; and it does that with a TDP of just 17W. That makes this board perfect for home storage use, such as DIY NAS projects as well as video surveillance servers.

The CPU used in this third revision of the N70E-DR is an Intel Celeron 1037U dual-core with 1.8GHz and the aforementioned 17W TDP. That includes onboard Intel HD Graphics with both D-Sub VGA and HDMI out. No problem to turn a system with this board into a hybrid system with direct use as well. The board comes with six SATA ports, but only two of these are SATA3 due to the Intel HM77 Express chipset limitations. That should still be plenty for mechanical storage drives and that is the intended use. The added m-SATA socket allows you to add another drive or possible a wireless card of some sort if that is what you need.

The PCI-E x16 slot only runs at x4 speed, which is a little downside yet no deal breaker in my opinion. The dual Gigabit Ethernet ports are controlled by Intel’s 82574 controller and should provide a great connectivity. Other connections include a PS/2 port, two USB 2.0 and two USB 3.0 ports, a COM port, and two Audio jacks. The motherboard supports up to 8GB DDR3 SO-DIMM with a speed up to 1600 MHz in the single SO-DIMM socket.

Feature Highlights

  • 6x SATA ports (2x SATA III, 4x SATA II)
  • Native SATA RAID support: 0/1/5/10
  • 2x Intel Gigabit Ethernet Ports
  • Low power consumption – 17W TDP
  • Compact Mini-ITX form factor 6.7″x 6.7
  • Intel Celeron 1037U CPU with advanced Intel 22nm technology

So if you are planning to build a DIY NAS in the near future, make sure to take a closer look at the Giada N70E-DR V3 motherboard.

SteelSeries Siberia V3 Gaming Headset Review



Today is a great day, as I finally get to take a look at the latest entry in the ever-popular Siberia gaming headset series. The original Siberia was widely regarded as a great headset, the V2 was and still is thought of as one of the best price vs performance headsets on the market and now we’re at V3, will it continue the trend and be even greater than its predecessors?

As you can see from the specifications below, the V3 is equipped with all the basics. Good quality drivers, a unidirectional microphone and 3.5mm jack plugs; nothing extraordinary, but certainly everything you’re likely to need.

In the box, you’ll find a small booklet to help you setup the headset, although it’s not rocket science really. There’s also a 4-pole to dual 3-pole 3.5mm adaptor; the V3 is compatible with mobile devices and desktop systems.

The headset its self comes hard-wired with a 4-pole cable, perfect for hooking it up to your MP3 player, tablet, smartphone or any other 3.5mm compatible audio output.

The back of the drivers have a nice finish to them with a mixture of gloss and matte plastics that feel durable, but incredibly lightweight. There’s a pivot on the back of the ear-cup to help provide a closer fit over your ear.

At the back of the left ear-cup, you’ll find a small switch to mute the microphone, it comes with a raised section that makes it easier to find and toggle without having to take the headset off and look for it.

As with the previous Siberia headset, the microphone has a flexible boom and can be retracted back into the earcup; a nice solution to hiding the boom when you don’t need it, without having to resort to a detachable one.

The microphone looks pretty straight forward,  but the pull-out/push-away design, combined with the flexible boom makes it really easy to find a comfortable speaking position.

The headband is very similar to previous headsets in this range. Instead of a sliding headband, you have two fixed outer supports that help keep the headset clamped over your ears, while the soft inner section is sprung and will auto-adjust to your head size.

It’s a really cool design, but it also helps cut out a lot of unrequired materials, which in turn helps reduce the weight of the headset.

There’s very little padding here, but since the inner band moves outwards, it still very comfortable to wear; more so than most headsets with thick padding.

The springs are strong, but quite forgiving and it means you never need to adjust the headset; even when switching between users.

The headband design is durable but also very forgiving and you can put quite a lot of strain on it without any concern that it is going to break. This is good for those who plan to chuck the headset in their backpack and travel with it, as it’s certainly not going to break anytime soon.

There’s a soft leather padding on the ear cups that is comfortable to wear, but also provides a nice clean fit over your ears, blocking out a lot of unwanted external sound, whilst also keeping your personal audio from leaking.

Overall, a very nice looking headset with great build quality and a lightweight design.

Intel Released The Xeon E7 v3 Processor Family

We’ve seen and heard a lot about Intel’s mobile and desktop processors lately, but we shouldn’t forget that Intel also creates some of the best server processors in the world. They have just released the latest version of these monsters that come with up to 18 cores and 36 threads, 45MB cache and support for up to 12TB RAM in an eight-socket system.

The new Xeon E7 v3 processors move from the Sandy Bridge architecture to the Haswell but maintains the 22nm manufacturing process for now. We’ll have to wait a little longer for the 14nm versions and while these new chips already impress us, the future process could help with the current power consumption and 165W TDP rating. They are still the best performance per dollar for any business that needs this kind of power.

The new processor family already set 20 new performance world records across a broad range of mission-critical applications where it achieves a 40 percent average performance improvement compared to the prior generation. The processors support configurations with up to 32 sockets and comes with the industry’s largest memory capacity per socket as well as support for both DDR3 and DDR4 memory technology.

New security and reliability capabilities include increased cryptographic performance via the latest Intel Advanced Encryption Standard New Instructions (Intel AES-NI) and Intel Run Sure Technology that is a unique set of reliability, availability, and serviceability (RAS) features for the Intel Xeon processors.

The new Xeon family of processors contains 12 models for various segments including two high-frequency models that are designed for a subset of database applications requiring the fastest cores available. Starting today, the largest system manufacturers will begin announcing systems based on the new Intel Xeon E7 v3 family platform, including Dell, Cisco, HP, Bull, Lenovo, Oracle, Supermicro and many more.

Processors like these aren’t cheap at all and the prices you see below are when purchasing a quantity of 1000, so it’s unlikely that we’ll find many of these in homes around the world in the near future. They’re still some amazing chips and I wouldn’t mind having a couple myself.

Partial Xeon E7 v3 Specifications Reveal up to 18 Cores

The next and third generation Xeon E7 processors for servers are likely to launch next quarter and more information about these processors have now been discovered in an IBM Installation and Service Guide.

The new Xeon processors will be built on Haswell-EX cores and will incorporate improvements such as increased number of cores, larger L3 cache, new AVX and TSX instructions, along with support for DDR4 memory.

There will only be 12 SKUs in the new v3 series, including four E7-4800 v3 models and eight E7-8800 v3 models.

Xeon E7-4800 v3 line will be comprised of E7-4809 v3, E7-4820 v3, E7-4830 v3 and E7-4850 v3 that will have 8, 10, 12 and 14 cores respectively. The CPUs come with 20 MB L3 cache for the 8-core processor and up to 35 MB for the 14-core one. They will operate between 1.9GHz and 2.2GHz and fit into 115 Watt power envelopes.

Xeon E7-8800 v3 series will also have 16- and 18-core models, exceptions are the Xeon E7-8893 v3 with 4 CPU cores, 3.2 GHz clock rate, and 140 Watt TDP and the E7-8891 v3 with 10 cores and a clock speed of 2.8 GHz.

The 16-core Xeon E7 v3 models are E7-8860 v3 and E7-8867 v3. The 140W and 165W TDP processors are clocked at 2.2 GHz and 2.5 GHz respectively.

Xeon E7-8870 v3, E7-8880 v3, E7-8880L v3 and E7-8890 v3 will have incredible 18 CPU cores and 45 MB of level 3 cache. Frequencies start at 2 GHz for E7-8880L v3 and go all the way up to 2.5 GHz for the E7-8890 v3. The low-power E7-8880L v3 has 115 Watt TDP which means just over 6W per core.

Thanks to CPUworld for providing us with this information


New Range of SteelSeries Siberia Gaming Headsets Revealed

The SteelSeries Siberia has long been one of the most popular headset ranges on the market, offering a several high performance headsets for both the consumer and competitive gaming markets. Now SteelSeries are back with the latest range of products in the Siberia family.

“For us, Siberia is the definition of what gaming audio looks, feels and sounds like. When it was first introduced, Siberia delivered a sense of style that was unique to what was typically expected from gaming audio. It produced exactly what was, and is necessary – ‘forget-that-you’re-wearing-it’ comfort and great sound,” said Tino Soelberg, SteelSeries CTO. “The new Siberia family takes this foundation and extends it into a full product range that delivers an incredibly awesome audio experience for the gamer in everyone”

First up we have the Siberia V3, which features improved audio, new construction, new noise-reducing memory foam ear cushions and a single connection with included splitter; making the headset compatible with mobile devices as well as desktops.

The Siberia V3 Prism is the same as above, but also features a few extra features such as 16.8 million LED colour customisation via the SteelSeries Engine software.

  • Unlimited profile settings that can be saved and accessed from anywhere via SteelSeries CloudSync
  • Microphone Noise Suppression and Microphone Auto Compression technologies optimize voice communication automatically
  • Digital audio quality with custom EQ
  • ColorShift illumination effects and modes that can be set by the user, or triggered by game sounds and events

The Siberia Elite Prism features a slimmer microphone, an upgraded sound card, Dolby and Dolby Pro Logic IIx technology for vitual 7.1 surround, customisable illumination and audio, as well as the improved ear padding of the V3 and an upgraded modular cable system for use on PC, Mac, PS4 and mobile devices.

Finally we have the new RAW Prism, an economical, lightweight model for those on a tighter budget; while maintaining a good range of features such as audio profiles, illumination effects, built-in microphone, Mic Auto Optimization technology for clear audio and USB connectivity for use on PC, Mac and PS4.

The V3 will be available for $99.99, the V3 Prism for $139.99, the Elite Prism for $199.99 and finally the RAW Prism for $59.99.

Thank you SteelSeries for providing us with this information.

Images courtesy of SteelSeries.