Pretty soon you might be able to build a complete PC with nothing but OCZ-branded components and peripherals. Adding to the list of power supplies, RAM, USB thumb drives, videocards, coolers, and mice is OCZ's new Elixir keyboard. The keyboard kicks off OCZ's Alchemy line of gaming products, whch the company says "is designed to offer gamers quality gaming solutions that deliver both exceptional performance and value." Products in the Alchemy line will evidently target budget-minded gamers, and could potentially give Razer a run its money.
Getting back to the Elixer, the new keyboard claims a combination of ergonomic and sturdy design. Features include 10 blue macro keys with 3 user-programmable profiles, mode selection (standard PC or customized gaming mode), a pop-up menu shortcut, and eight multimedia keys. Rounding out the feature-set are membrane tactile keys with all rubber-coating and a USB port. The Elixer will carry an MSRP of $29.99, putting it in a good position to compete other similarly spec'd gaming keyboards at much higher price points.
It all sounds good in theory, but can OCZ pull off releasing quality gaming peripherals at budget prices?
In the future, tech analysts might look back at the Nintendo DS as being responsible for kicking off the touch-screen revolution. Since the DS's debut, we've seen Apple's iPhone take the mobile phone market by storm, Microsoft push its Surface technology, caught glimpses of touch functionality expected to ship with Windows 7, and now it appears dual-touchscreen notebooks may be on the horizon too.
OLPC talked about using dual-touchscreens it its next generation XO-2 laptop. At half the size of the original, former OLPC CTO Mary Lou Jepsen says the XO-2 will employ dual indoor-and-sunlight displays capable of providing "a right and left page in vertical format, a hinged laptop in horizontal format, and flat, two-screen continuous surface for use in tablet mode."
But OLPC isn't the only one working on a dual-touchscreen notebook. Hit the jump to see learn what V12 Designs has in store for 2010.
There’s a civil war brewing within the PC: Intel says the CPU is the head honcho while Nvidia argues that the GPU is boss. With its Deluge-i A2, Puget shows whose side it’s taking in this debate. This budget gaming box spends big on the videocard but skimps on the processor.
Did they side with the right team? Find out after the jump
The nascent ultra-portable market has been bristling with brimful of good news and has been extremely sprightly. But finally there is some bad news from the world of netbooks. Asustek has announced that it could only manage to ship 1.7 million of its Eee PC netbooks in the first half of 2008 and failed its own expectations by 300,000 units.
However, unperturbed and undeterred, Asustek is sticking to its target of 5 million Eee PC shipments in 2008. A shortage of Intel’s Atom processors is being held responsible for Asustek’s failure to meet its Eee PC shipping forecast. If the shortage persists than Asus might find it difficult to meet its shipping forecast for 2008. Moreover, it has got worthy competition in form of the MSI Wind which is a lot more enticing with its relatively cheaper, more value-for-money price tag.
AMD's stock fell by as much as 7 percent today following news the company would take a total of $948 million in charges in the second quarter. Most of the charges will come from a continuing deterioration in the goodwill value of its former ATI handheld and DTV units. For those who slept through economics class, a goodwill value is an intangible asset representing the difference between the purchase price of an asset and its fair market value based on repuation, established client base, and profitability.
Despite ATI's recent success in the graphics market, the $5.4 billion acquisition continues to cost AMD in write-downs since it was purchased in 2006. Last year, AMD took a massive $1.6 billion write-down for ATI's declining goodwill, just one of many financial and executive woes AMD has suffered since purchasing the graphics company.
A comparatively small portion ($32 million) of the total charges is going towards restructuring, mostly the result of severance payments paid in the second quarter that will continue through the rest of the year. The rest are being attributed to a declining value in other investments the company has made.
Buyers who can't wait to unbox their swank Envy 133 notebook might find themselves taking pause for the occasion. And to ensure they do, Voodoo's Raul Sood plans to give the high-end laptop the white-glove treatment. Inside the box (which Sood likens to one you'd get from shopping at a Tiffany & Co.) the Envy will come wrapped in a microfiber polish sleeve stamped with the company's logo. Underneath, an assortment of accessories includes:
Voodoo Aura power connect with an additional removable cable (should the original fray over time)
HDMI to VGA Presentation Adapter
ESata optical drive with hideaway cable
Sood also includes a few more close-up shots of the carbon fiber Envy in his package-pimping blog, which show a pre-production engineering sample. Shipping Envys will trade the red logo for one in silver and chrome. You can order one now, and if HP Live Chat operator iCrzyMonkey isn't flinging poo, expect it to ship in August, bodacious box and all.
No matter how strong your cabling kung-fu might be, there's a pretty good chance that behind your home theater's assortment of receivers, set-top boxes, game consoles, and other electronic doodads sits a gnarly mess of wires. Most visitors never catch a glimpse of the clutter hidden behind your entertainment center, but you know it's there. Worse yet, you have to navigate through the wired jungle whenever you upgrade your A/V rack. You know that streaming Netflix player you're waiting to arrive from Roku? Get ready to wade through wires when it gets there.
Belkin believes it has a better way, and its FlyWire box looks poised to make cable clutter a thing of the past. Belkin's FlyWire HDMI box transmits both standard- and high-definition video anywhere in your home on the 5GHz band, and promises to penetrate through walls. And because FlyWire doesn't compress your video, Belkin claims its will even handle high definition gaming with aplomb. It even works with HDCP-compliant devices.
Look for FlyWire to spread its wings on retail shelves in October for $999 with IR backchannel capabilities, or $699 for an in-room solution sans IR.
For most enthusiasts, choosing a hard drive usually comes down to performance specs. This includes spindle speed, areal density, what size buffer it comes equipped with, and any special features like NCQ. But as solid-state drives (SSDs) start to trickle into the mainstream, expect to see a greater importance placed on the mean time before failure (MTBF) rating.
It'd be nice if hard drives could last forever, but like every other component that makes up your PC, hard drives eventually die. And it's never a pretty sight, either. Sometimes a HDD will give up the ghost without warning, leaving you frantically looking for ways to revive the drive long enough to extract your data (remember the freezer trick?). Other times you're given ample warning of an impending failure, typically in the form of unpleasant grinding noises, disk errors, an unusual clicking noise that wasn't present before, S.M.A.R.T. warnings, and other telltale signs that it's time to backup your data.
Learn more about MTBF ratings and how that translates into real-world life expectancy after the jump.
Insert your own 'size matters' joke, but jesting aside, UC San Diego's new scientific display system is one big mother. The Highly Interactive Parallelized Display Space (HIPerSpace) boasts a screen resolution of almost 287 million pixels, or more than 10 percent bigger than the second largest display, which checks in at 256 million pixels.
To make the display possible, it took 70 high-resolution Dell 30" monitors arranged in fourteen columns of five displays each. Each 'tile' in the multi-tile paradigm sports 2,560 x 1,600 pixels, bringing the combined visible resolution to 35,640 x 8,000 pixels. But before contemplating such a setup for the baddest TF2 gaming environment on the block, it would take an area capable of housing a 31.8 feet wide by 7.5 feet tall display, and one can only imagine the GPU horsepower needed to try and run a modern videogame. Instead, the HIPerSpace is being put to better use displaying large data sets, giving scientists the ability to explore space in real time, model the impact of seismic activity on structures, predict climate changes, analyze the structure of the human brain, and a bunch of other tasks that have nothing to do with WSAD.
Find out how many quad-core processors and Nvidia GPUs it takes to run the mammoth display after the jump.
You can change CPU sockets, dump PCI, and jettison legacy ports all day long, but nothing, absolutely nothing, pisses people off like moving to a new type of RAM. Luckily, there’s a fallback: dual-format RAM motherboards such as MSI’s P35 Combo Platinum board.
Hit the jump to read our review of this dual-format monster.