First spied at CES earlier this year, ViewSonic has begun shipping its VPC100 All-in-One PC in the U.S. Billed as being eco-friendly, ViewSonic says the VPC100 uses about 50 percent less plastics and requires roughly 45 percent less power than a traditional computer.
The spec sheet screams nettop and consists of an 18.5-inch LCD display with a 1366x768 resolution, Intel Atom N270 processor (1.6GHz, 533MHz frontside bus), 1GB of DDR2 RAM, 160GB hard drive, four USB 2.0 ports, WiFi, Super Multi DVD writer, and Windows XP.
The VPC100 is available now with an MSRP set to $599, an street pricing hovering around $550.
Finally, here’s a 3D gaming solution that doesn’t send us headfirst into a vomit bag. GeForce 3D Vision is Nvidia’s attempt to revive stereoscopic 3D, a century-old technology that has never been implemented successfully in PC gaming (despite many headache-inducing efforts in the late ’90s). Along with wireless shutter glasses and an IR emitter, this $200 kit comes with the promise that you’ll be able to enhance your existing library of DirectX games by turning them into true 3D experiences—if you’re running a GeForce 8800 GT or better videocard. And for the most part, the promise is delivered —but not without some serious issues.
This partnership is a huge shot in the arm for Intel - which has been waiting for its chance to gain real traction in the mobile phone market - as it has found a huge customer for its mobile chipsets in the form of Nokia. Intel has also agreed to acquire a Nokia HSPA/3G modem IP license from Nokia. On the software front, they have resolved to give a push to open-source mobile Linux software projects.
SanDisk today unveils what it claims is the world's fastest 32GB SDHC card, the 32GB SanDisk Extreme, boasting read and write speeds at up to 30MB/s.
"The market for entry to mid-level DSLR cameras is growing, and SDHC is becoming the de-facto card format for these devices," said Susan Park, director, retail product marketing, SanDisk. "Our card's 32GB of storage and upt to 30MB/s read & write speeds enable DSLR users to shoot without worrying about storage or speed limitations."
The new card meets the SD Association's new Class 10 specification, and according to SanDisk, exceeds the requirement for today's high definition (AVCHD) video recording. The sustained write speed is enough to store 160 minutes of full HD 1920x1080 pixels at a 24MB/s data transfer rate.
The SanDisk Extreme SDHC 32GB cards will start shipping to "major retailers" in August with no word yet on price. In addition, the current 4GB, 8GB, and 16GB capacity SanDisk Extreme SDHC cards will be upgraded from Class 6 to Class 10, also in August.
Following an influx of solid state drives aimed at both the high-end and mainstream market, for awhile there it looked like SSDs might actually give traditional hard drives a run for its money. But as it turns out, money remains the issue, and higher per gigabyte costs will keep SSDs from being a threat to HDDs in 2009, and the same will probably hold true in 2010, memory makers say.
In the mobile sector, SSDs will close out the year with only a 1-1.5 percent penetration rate, and less than 10 percent in the low-cost PC segment, according to data by DRAMeXchange.
But it's not all gloom and doom for SSDs. Memory makers say the upcoming transition to 30nm and lower nodes will push NAND flash prices down, while some remain hopeful that Windows 7 will change the storage landscape.
Microsoft must surely be hoping to raise the bar higher with its Windows 7 OS. However, a hacker is more interested in figuring out the lowest depths Windows 7 can plunge to. Whatever you believe you know about the bare minimum specs required to run Windows 7 may actually be exaggerated, greatly exaggerated. A hacker on the Windows Club’s forum, who is only known by his cyber pseudonym hackerman1, has done the unthinkable by successfully installing and running Windows 7 on a Pentium II system. The rig boasts a primeval 266 MHz Pentium II processor, 96 MB of SDRAM memory and a 4 MB graphics card. Hackerman1 now wants to repeat the feat using a 166 MHz Pentium I processor and 1 MB video card.
First shown at CES earlier this year and more recently at CeBIT, OCZ this week officially announced the Sabre OLED gaming keyboard, a plank the company promises will be "affordable."
"The OCZ Sabre Keyboard offers the best of both worlds when it comes to OLED technology and a truly functional yet affordable gaming keyboard," commented Eugene Change, VP of Product Management at OCZ.
Nine OLED keys sit on the left side of the Sabre, each one user-programmable and capable of converting digital images or text into icons. Furthermore, the Sabre's proprietary software makes it possible for the OLED keys to change their icons and command tiers on the fly based on whatever application is running. Fire up your favorite FPS, for example, and the icons and macros change to whatever was programmed.
Other features include "glowing amber LEDs", blue side lighting, 128MB of onboard flash memory, "super tactile, low-noise key feedback," and a 5-10 degree tilt design.
In an effort to help save R&D costs for its own-brand motherboards, Intel will release ODM (Original Design Manufacturer) orders to Taiwan-based motherboard makers, with the first orders belonging exclusively to Foxconn, DigiTimes reports.
As it currently stands, Intel ships between 4-5 million units annually, but although the chip maker is reportedly looking to cut back, the company did say it will continue to design and develop motherboards, as well as closely cooperate with industry players in the motherboard market.
If it turns out to be true, the big loser in the new deal is Pegatron Technology, an Intel OEM partner which will stand on the sidelines for these new orders. Adding salt to the wound, Asus, Pegatron's biggest client, is looking to increase its outsourcing to other companies as well.
According to Rick Bergman, AMD’s Senior Vice President for Platforms, he and his crew are looking to beat Nvidia to the world of DX11.
According to Bergman, “We want to supply hardware to Microsoft and software developers so they can make DX11 games on our hardware first.” This would put AMD ahead of Nvidia, something that hasn’t happened for several years, thanks to Nvidia’s dominance in the DX10 market. “We were kind of fighting from behind, but with DX11 it feels like we’re ahead this round.”
Despite reports that very few game titles would take advantage of DX11, Bergman is keeping up his enthusiasm. Reportedly, he knows of a handful of independent software vendors that are working “eagerly” to release games.
SSD technology continues to mature, both in price per gigabyte and performance. On the latter front, Super Talent's new MasterDrive SX SSDs come equipped with 128MB DRAM of cache, which the company claims delivers "exceptional" write speeds.
"We developed the MasterDrive SX series to offer extreme reliability at an aggressive price point that makes sense for mobile professionals and enthusiasts. Moreover, these drives boast power efficiency and write speeds that few SSDs can match," said Super Talent Director of Marketing Joe James.
Available in 64GB, 128GB, and 256GB capacities, the latter two sport 220MB/s and 200MB/s read and sequential write speeds, respectively (the 64GB checks in with 200MB/s and 120MB/s read and write speeds), while all three models sip just half a watt of power in read mode and 0.15W while idle.
No MSRP information has yet been made available, but street pricing for the 64GB and 128GB have currently settled in at around $173 and $336, respectively. No word yet on availability for the 256GB model.