The first graphics card based on NVIDIA's mainstream D9M core has made an appearance on corporate roadmaps as the 9600GT. Reference specs for the 9600GT call for a 650MHz core clock, 1625MHz unified shader clock, and 900MHz memory clock. Best of all, the new mainstream offering will come with a 256-bit memory bus, up from 128-bit found on the 8600GT, giving the 9600GT 57.6GB/s of memory bandwidth. It's still unknown how many shaders or stream processors will show up on the 65nm D9M core, but NVIDIA did indicate DirectX 10.1, Shader Model 4.0, OpenGL 2.1, and PCI-E 2.0 support. Looking higher end, [H]ardOCP posted pics and specs of the GeForce 9800GX2, which will succeed the 8800 Ultra. Final specs are still up in the air, but think dual-GPUs, 1GB frame buffer, two PCBs, and 256 stream processors - tasty!
Hard Drives Profitable
Despite rock bottom pricing per gigabyte (500GB for $100? Yes please!), market research firm Isuppli has noted a return to profitability in the HDD sector. Hard drive shipments rose 19.6 percent in Q3 2007 to 138 million drives, with both Seagate and Western Digital showing strong gross margins. Senior analyst Krishna Chander attributes the growth to electronic gadgets, along with HDTVs driving the market for digital video recorders.
Overstock.com Co-Founder Resigns
Overstock.com co-founder Jason Lindsey resigned as CEO, president, and board member earlier this week after coming out of retirement in April 2006 to help rebuild the company. Lindsey expects to oversee special projects at Overstock on a part-time basis, as well as spend time on "outside ventures." But could there be more to the story? Lindsey checks in as the third board member to resign from Overstock in 2007, and the company hasn't posted a profit since late 2004.
Apple Sweetens to Blu-ray
It appears Apple is choosing Blu-ray over HD-DVD, with an announcement expected at this month's Macworld Expo as Apple outlines their high definition video strategy. American Technology Research analyst Shaw Wu said some Macs are set to ship with Blu-ray drives, but also noted there is "a smaller chance Apple may use a combo Blu- ray/HD-DVD drive to ensure full compatibility and not get involved in the format wars." Apple is currently a member of the Blu-ray Association, but has thus far observed the ongoing HD war from a distance.
Netflix and LG Go Streaming
Netflix got a boost of interest from movie watchers after Blockbuster's latest round of price hikes, and it looks to only get better for Netflix subscribers. With the help of LG Electronics, Netflix is gearing up to offer streaming movies directly to TVs through a set-top box. Limited amounts of streaming content are included in all of Netflix's rental plans, but there's a caveat - early speculation has LG putting the receiver into their pricey $799 Blu-ray/HD-DVD combo player.
WirelessHD Standard Ratified
While the high definition war wages on, the battle against HDTV cable clutter scored a victory. The WirelessHD 1.0 specification was ratified, which operates on the unlicensed 60GHz frequencies to transmit high definition signals to HDTVs. The MPAA said they will work with the WirelessHD group to ensure protected broadcasts stay secure. The ratification means that manufacturers can now concentrate on product development without worrying about interoperability.