We can’t say that there’s a huge cross-section of buyers who want a gaming laptop but refuse to touch Intel components. Whatever the size, MSI likely has that group sewn up with the official unveiling of the GX60 following a stealth appearance at Computex. The 15.6-inch portable is built as showcase for AMD’s latest mobile technology: it revolves around a 2.3GHz, quad-core A10-4600M processor using the Piledriver architecture as well as a Radeon HD 7970M to feed its 1080p screen at full speed. Thankfully, the PC is more than just a marketing vehicle and carries some of the gamer-tuned parts that we’ve seen in other MSI rigs, such as dual SSDs in a RAID stripe, a low-lag Killer networking chipset and a heavy-duty SteelSeries keyboard. Buying a GX60 may prove to be the real obstacle — in keeping with most MSI introductions, there’s no mention of a price or ship date, and none of the usual suspects have it in stock as of this writing.
Nettops have slipped a bit out of vogue, but Shuttle is keeping the flame alive for those who like their desktops tiny and hushed. The XS35V3 and XS35GTA V3 have moved on to more contemporary Cedar Trail-era, 2.13GHz Atom D2700 processors that keep the power draw to a fanless 27W, even when everything is churning at full bore. That limit might get tested with the GTA variant, which brings in Radeon HD 7410M graphics for a lift to 3D performance, but neither mini desktop will exactly make the power company beg for mercy. Either is a barebones kit with the laptop-sized hard drive, optical drive and OS left to the buyer — if you don’t get them at the same time, you’ll have only the HDMI, VGA, USB and card reader to keep you company. Europeans are currently the only ones getting a crack, where it costs €172 pre-tax ($214) for the XS35V3 and €233 ($290) to get its faster GTA cousin.
HP has been very eager to take the Envy line in an Ultrabook direction, leaving performance hounds a bit wanting. Much to their (and our) relief, the full-fat Envy 15, Envy 17, and Envy 17 3D have all made the leap to Intel’s latest round of Ivy Bridge processors. Along with the 2.3GHz to 2.7GHz quad Core i7 chips we all know and love, the Envy 15 and regular 17 can get a dual 2.5GHz Core i5 to keep the price slightly closer to Earth. All of them ship with an equally upgraded AMD Radeon HD 7850M to give games that extra jolt of energy, and you won’t find one with less than 6GB of RAM and a 750GB hard drive. Should you like the Envy’s current formula and just wish it had that much more oomph, you can pay a post-discount $1,100, $1,250 or $1,530 to bring one to your door.
Who knew a “p” packed so much punch? Just weeks after Lenovo cut loose with a boatload of new machines, the outfit has quietly slipped out an even newer model tailored for gamers. The 14-inch IdeaPad Y470p looks just about like the existing Y470, but swaps out the middling NVIDIA GeForce GT 520M for a far more potent Radeon HD 7690M. (For those wondering — yep, that’s the same chip in HP’s new Envy 15.) There’s also a 2.2GHz quad-core Core i7 processor, 8GB of RAM, an optional 1TB HDD, JBL speakers and a native 1,366 x 768 screen resolution. The unit tips the scales at 4.85 pounds with a six-cell battery, which is supposedly good for up to four hours of usage (in presumably ideal conditions). Other specs include a Blu-ray Disc drive, a two-megapixel webcam, HDMI out and USB 3.0. For now, at least, it looks as if eager beavers can get one headed their way for as low as $799, but the more specced-out models are reaching well over $1,200.
A fresh contender for your blow-out 2012 Olympic gaming rig: AMD’s first 28nm GPU, the Radeon HD 7970. It’s scheduled to arrive on January 9th, priced at $549 — nearly $200 more than its direct ancestor, the 6970. Then again, this newcomer packs some supremely athletic specs, including a 925MHz engine clock that can be readily OC’d to 1.1GHz, 2,048 stream processors and an uncommonly muscular 384-bit memory bus serving 3GB of GDDR5. At the same time, AMD hopes to make the card more practical than the dual-processor 6990 by bringing the card’s power consumption down to less than 300W under load and a mere 3W in ‘long idle’ mode, and promising quieter cooling thanks to improved airflow and a bigger fan. We’ll have to wait for benchmarks in January before we hand out any medals, but in the meantime NVIDIA’s forthcoming 28nm Kepler GPU might want to step up its training schedule.
In concomitanza con l’uscita dell’attesissimo nuovo capitolo di Battlefield, sviluppato da DICE, Sapphire rilascia la scheda video Radeon HD6970 BF3 Special Edition, che offre in bundle un ticket per il download del gioco.
Le restanti specifiche prevedono il supporto al CrossFireX e 5 connettori video: due DVI, una HDMI e due mini DisplayPort. Gli appassionati dell’overclock potranno inoltre scaricare gratuitamente il tool Sapphire TriXX che permette il settaggio e il monitoraggio dei parametri di tensioni, frequenze e ventola. Il prezzo dell’offerta Sapphire non è stato al momento comunicato.
There’s no shortage of multitouch-friendly all-in-one desktops to choose from these days, but you can now add one more to the list: Lenovo’s new C325. This one packs a 20-inch 1600 x 900 display (also available sans multitouch in the basic configuration), along with a dual-core AMD E450 processor, integrated Radeon HD 6320 graphics, up to 8GB of RAM, a maximum 1TB hard drive, and a built-in DVD burner (no Blu-ray option, unfortunately), among other standard fare. It’s also available in your choice of black or white, with prices starting at $699. Check out the gallery below for a closer look.
Lenovo multitouch-friendly C325
At this point, NVIDIA’s Optimus switchable graphics are old hat, but AMD is relatively new to the game of packing dual GPUs in a single laptop. AnandTech decided to pit the two solutions against each other and, well, lets just say AMD doesn’t come out looking so great. The biggest problem appears to be stability. While performance is acceptable (though, not quite as good as it should be) the site had trouble getting four of the supposedly 16 supported games to switch between the integrated and discrete GPUs as advertised. Regular driver updates, not to mention a bit more testing, could solve the issues, but for now NVIDIA’s Optimus simply outclasses its AMD counterpart. Check out the video after the break and don’t forget to hit up the source link for all the details.
Sapphire amplia ulteriormente il suo catalogo di schede video con l’introduzione della nuova Radeon HD6850 Vapor-X Edition, caratterizzata, come suggerisce il nome, dal dissipatore proprietario Vapor-X. Questa caratteristica permette di mantenere frequenze operative di 800 e 4400 MHz per Core e Memorie, con la possibilità di effettuare ulteriore overclock senza problemi grazie alla componentistica selezionata e un VRM a 10 fasi.
Sapphire, produttore leader di schede video a chip AMD, presenta al pubblico la sua nuova scheda video Radeon HD6950 Toxic, la più veloce soluzione con chip Cayman Pro. Equipaggiata con un dissipatore full-cover Vapor Chamber dotato di generose prese d’aria sul pannello I/O, la Sapphire HD6950 Toxic vanta frequenze operative di 880 MHz per il Core e 5200 MHz per i 2GB di Memoria GDDR5.
Turns out those leaked shots we saw of Sony’s new VAIO Z laptop were right on the money as the company showed it off officially today for the European press. The specs reveal a 13.1-inch “ultramobile” notebook that comes in at under 1.2kg with a 2.7GHz Intel Core i7 processor, 256GB SSD, 8GB RAM, 1600×900 screen and sheet battery borrowed from the earlier VAIO S for up to 7 hours of computing. Onboard it features only Intel’s HD Graphics 3000 solution but the VAIO Z beats other ultralights with its Power Media Dock, which contributes the power of an AMD Radeon 6650M GPU with 1GB of dedicated memory connected via “the architecture codenamed Light Peak” — Sony can’t call it Thunderbolt — when more polygons have to be pushed. The dock sports one USB 3.0 hookup plus additional USB, VGA and HDMI ports, and a slot for either a DVD or Blu-ray drive. , but it is promised to ship by the end of July in Europe so if the full specs (included after the break) are appealing then you don’t have much time to save up.
Update: Head over to the Sony UK site to configure one yourself — pricing starts at £1,434 ($2,294) with a Core i5 CPU, 4GB of RAM and no PMD. The dock is a £400 ($640) option with no optical drive included, while upgrading to a 1080p 13.1-inch LCD is a mere £40 extra.
Slowly, but surely, we’re starting to piece together what’s going on inside that mysterious white box known as the Wii U. IBM was a little coy about the multi-core CPU it was providing, but did tantalize us by mentioning the name “Watson” in describing some of its underlying tech. Now details about the custom Radeon GPU are starting to surface and, while certainly capable, it’s not exactly cutting edge. At its heart is a chip similar to the R770 found in AMD’s last-gen cards like the 4890 and, before you dismiss it, remember the PS3 and Xbox 360 are still capable of pumping out impressive visuals while packing five-year-old silicon (The 360 is essentially running a souped up ATI X1900). The custom core also supports Direct X 10.1 (Microsoft runs out of steam with Direct X 9) and Eyefinity-like multi-display tech for up to four SD video streams — though it’ll be up to Nintendo and developers to put that to good use. In case you’re still not convinced of the Wii U’s graphical prowess, Crytek has said its advanced CryEngine is “pretty much” up and running on Nintendo’s upcoming console — and, if it’s good enough for Crysis, it should be good enough for you.
What’s a chip maker to do after successfully hawking five million of its Fusion APUs? Why, expand the line, of course! A leaked slide deck from within the lairs of AMD is showing off quite a bit of the company’s upcoming roadmap, and while a good deal of it has already been made public in one way or another, there’s one term that’s causing all sorts of buzz — and for good reason. Desna is the name to know, a Z-Series APU that’s aimed squarely at the tablet form factor. To date, only a handful of chips have managed to slide into slates, and while we always reckoned that a version of Fusion could really give those ARM-based alternatives a run for their money, it wasn’t clear if AMD actually had one that would handle the power and heat requirements. Based on these sheets — dated this month, for what it’s worth — the Z-Series chip will offer Flash compatibility, DirectX 11 support and IE9 / HTML5 acceleration, and that’s just for starters. Head on down to the links below for the full skinny, but make sure you grab a cup of joe and unplug the line first. You’ll need a few, to say the least.
Qualche settimana fa ci eravamo occupati della Sapphire HD6670 che ora il produttore ripropone in una nuova versione completamente Fanless, parliamo della Sapphire HD6670 Ultimate distribuita con il coupon per il download del nuovo gioco CodeMaster Dirt3.
La Sapphire HD6670 Ultimate supporta le tecnologie Eyefinity e 3D ed è equipaggiata con 480 Stream Processor e 1GB di Memoria GDDR5 che opera a 4000 MHz; il core grafico si attesta invece a 800 MHz, un buon valore se consideriamo che la scheda è passiva. L’output video prevede DVI Dual-Link, HDMI 1.4a e DisplayPort.
Il produttore annuncia che contemporaneamente presenterà anche una nuova Radeon HD6570 Ultimate con sistema di raffreddamento a heatpipes, core clock a 650 MHz e 1GB di Memoria GDDR3 a 1800 MHz.
The heaviest of heavyweights in the all-in-one field has seen another update, another batch of new internals to liven up the aging (but still classy) chassis. Apple unveiled its latest iMac refresh last week, surprising nobody with a new selection of AMD Radeon HD graphics cards, quad-core Intel Sandy Bridge processors, and solid-state storage options, all designed to do one thing: go faster.
These latest iMacs are quite naturally the speediest yet, as you’d expect, but with the right configuration they can be properly quick. Faster internals plus Thunderbolt ports on the outside turn what’s supposed to be a family-friendly and eye-catching machine into an unassuming powerhouse that might just be quick enough for professional users. There’s a more important question, though: is this $1,999 system the right choice for you?
As sure as snow in winter or sun in summer, AMD has yet another refresh to its graphics card portfolio this spring. The Radeon HD 6790 is only a couple of misplaced digits away from the far more illustrious HD 6970, but you should be able to tell the two apart by another, altogether more significant spec: the new mid-tier card retails at $149. Predictably, its performance offers no threat to AMD’s single-GPU flagship, but the 6790′s 840MHz graphics and shader clock speeds plus 1GB of GDDR5 running at an effective 4.2GHz data rate don’t seem like anything to sniff at either. Reviewers agreed that it’s AMD’s slightly delayed answer to NVIDIA’s GTX 460, and with the latter card exiting retail availability to make room for the (oddly enough) less powerful GTX 550 Ti, AMD’s new solution looks set to be the better choice at the shared $149 price point. Alas, being limited to 800 Stream processors and 16 ROPs does expose the HD 6790 to being cannibalized by AMD’s own Radeon HD 6850 (which can be had for sub-$150 if you’re tolerant of rebates) and that turns out to be exactly what happens. A solid card, then, but one that would require an even lower price dip to make economic sense. Benchmarks await below.
Like a pesky video game villain that just won’t go away, Microsoft’s DirectX has been a mainstay of mainstream PC gaming pretty much since the inception. Its existence hasn’t been without its tensions, however, with notable graphics guru John Carmack of id Software ignoring it in favor of OpenGL — until last week when he finally acknowledged that Direct3D had outgrown its cross-platform alternative and was now the preferable API for PC game development. That’s all well and good, but plenty of game devs, says Richard Huddy, head of AMD’s developer relations team, don’t want any API at all. Huddy points out the sadly obvious fact that modern graphics cards can pretty much stomp any console hardware into the dirt in a straight fight and yet fail to show the full extent of their superiority in actual game visuals. He’d prefer to see developers given direct low-level access to the hardware, so they can maximize their own talents and really push things forward. Of course, the beauty of DirectX is that it’s a standard that every Windows game designer can code to, leading to predictable and more widely compatible (if not necessarily spectacular) results. For more on how the future’s shaping up, hit the links below.
Place your bets, folks, because this one’s gonna get ugly. On your left: a thunderous triad of AMD Radeon HD 6950 cards running in CrossFire. On your right: the terrorizing threat of triple NVIDIA GeForce GTX 570 in SLI. In the middle: a Tom’s Hardware tester just trying to stay alive. The winner? Well, as usual in these benchmark articles that sort of depends on what you’re doing, but in general it’s the AMD solution and its CrossFire barrage that comes out on top in terms of performance, cost, and even efficiency. But, that’s certainly far from the whole story. You’ll want to click on through to read about every agonizing blow.
If you’re scoring at home, NVIDIA currently holds the lead in single-GPU graphics cards with its GeForce GTX 580, but ATI’s dual-chip Radeon HD 5970 has been holding down the absolute speed crown for a good long while. Now, bearing the name of AMD Radeon HD 6990, its successor sidles up to the throne and demands attention as the fastest single expansion board you can plug into your shiny new motherboard. The 6990 boasts a massive 4GB of GDDR5, 3,072 Stream Processors, 64 ROPs, and an 830MHz core clock speed. A dual-BIOS switch will let you crank that clock up to 880MHz with a corresponding increase in voltage, but don’t expect to see much overclocking headroom above that.
Reviewers note, alongside their fawning assessment of the world’s best performance, that the HD 6990 is a massively power-hungry card (375W TDP) and one that makes quite a bit of noise while going through its herculean tasks. That’s in spite of a new vapor chamber cooling system that allegedly supports up to 450W of thermal output. If all this strikes you as a somewhat flawed execution, maybe you’ll join us in hoping NVIDIA’s imminently upcoming response, dubbed the GTX 590, will be able to offer a neater, more efficient assault on the extreme peaks of graphical performance.