Underneath Origin PC's custom heat spreaders are HyperX modules
Boutique system builder Origin PC has teamed up with Kingston Technology to deliver a line of its own brand memory modules offered in the company's Genesis, Millennium, and Chronos desktops. Though the DDR3 memory kits bear Origin PC's name on the low profile black heat spreaders, they're essentially rebadged Kingston HyperX modules, only they've been factory tested and approved by both Kingston and Origin PC engineers.
Smaller size systems don't signal the end of overclocking
We still find full tower system sexy as ever, but there's a definite trend right now toward small form factor (SFF) rigs. Valve is partially responsible for the movement as it finds ways to encourage PC gamers to play in the living room via Big Picture Mode and Steam Machines, both of which are proving popular. Wondering what impact this trend will have on overclocking? No doubt trying to overclock in tightly packed systems becomes a bigger challenge due to higher temps, but it's not impossible -- just ask the folks at G.Skill who overclocked a set of Ripjaws SO-DIMM memory to DDR3-2600 speeds.
Video shows an inside look at Crucial's manufacturing process
It's not too often that system builders and related component makers pull the curtain back to reveal what goes on behind the scenes, but that's exactly what Micron did with its Crucial division. Crucial Ballistix memory is built entirely in-house and is designed and developed by parent company Micron. In a video recently posted to YouTube, Micron shows how its Crucial Balistix RAM is manufactured and tested.
Hynix is still trying to recover from a fire at one of its fabs
The DRAM market pretty much bottomed out a few years ago and has never fully recovered, though we've seen prices slowly rise from time to time. In most cases we're only talking about a few dollars difference for a memory kit, which isn't so bad except that it adds up over time. That trend is likely to continue throughout 2014 as SK Hynix struggles to fully resume wafer production at a fab that suffered fire damage in China.
Things you need to know to become a PC hardware expert
Knowledge is power, and when it comes to PCs that’s especially true, because only by knowing how your components’ specs actually affect performance can you get the maximum power you need for the type of computing you do—and avoid being seduced by features that sound impressive on the box but won’t do squat to improve your experience. Knowing your stuff has other benefits, too. An in-depth understanding of what makes all your parts tick enables you to better troubleshoot problems, upgrade in ways that make sense, and converse with other nerds in your own secret language. Turn the page to begin your crash course in PC spec-speak.
Note: This article was originally featured in the August 2013 issue of the magazine.
Over a dozen years of litigation finally comes to end
There's been no love lost between Rambus and Micron over the years. The two have been mired in litigation since 1990, which is when Rambus first sought license fees and threatened infringement lawsuits against memory makers who turned to the popular SDRAM standard over its own proprietary RDRAM spec. Rambus contended that its patents and inventions also applied to SDRAM, but as far as things are concerned with Micron, it's now a moot point.
We tackle the five most pressing problems in each major component category!
It’s happened to us all. You get home from a long day at work and you want to blow off some steam with an hour of gaming or maybe browsing the web, but when you tap your mouse button or punch the power switch, the unthinkable happens. You’re SOL.
Note: This article was originally featured in the July 2013 issue of the magazine.
Twice the speed, two times the density, and 20 percent less voltage
It’s been six years since DDR3 memory was adopted and it’s just about time to start moving over to DDR4. A Crucialpromo page for the company’s DDR4memory lists “late 2013” as a release date which means that we should be seeing the new modules by December.
G.Skill has quite the collection of world records to boast, the latest being the first quad-channel DDR3 memory kit to race past 4GHz. Intel's Ivy Bridge-E platform has only been on the market a week and G.Skill wasted no time testing the limits of the new silicon, along with its own brand memory kits. This time around it was again a G.Skill TridentX memory kit that achieved the record breaking frequency, which now sits at DDR3-4072MHz.
G.Skill went a little nuts today (not necessarily a bad thing, mind you) and expanded its RipjawsZ line with a whopping 15 new DDR3 quad-channel memory kits, all of which the company claims have been optimized for Intel's Core i7 processor line for socket LGA2011 and X79 motherboards (Ivy Bridge-E, in other words). The new kits range in frequency from 1866MHz (10-11-10-30 timings) to a blistering fast 2933MHz (12-14-14-35 timings).