Internal miscommunication at Nvidia led to confusion over the GTX 970's specs
Sometimes the tech world can be like a geek version of a soap opera, and this is one of those times. The main characters in this case are Nvidia and the GeForce GTX 970. If you're looking for a quick summary of events, it's this: Gamers noticed a slowdown in performance when games tried to access more than 3.5GB of memory on the GTX 970. This in turn led to Nvidia explaining a new memory architecture in the GTX 970, along with clarification of specs that were different than originally reported. In light of all this, there's a petition floating around demanding a refund for anyone who purchased a GTX 970, but to really understand what's going on, a deeper explanation is necessary.
We were intrigued with the potential of the NUC when it first came out -- here was this tiny box with fairly respectable hardware inside powerful enough to serve as a secondary PC or, for the right person, a primary system. There have been several follow-up models since then, but the best is yet to come. Intel has gone and updated its NUC product page with a new model that will be the first to feature a Core i7 processor inside.
The number of DDR4 memory kits is growing and will continue to do so as more people build (or buy) systems based on Intel's X99 chipset. One of the newest is Crucial's Ballistix Elite line, now available in DDR4 form as a single 4GB module and in 8GB (2x4GB) and 16GB (4x4GB) kits (Crucial says a 32GB kit is also available, though it's not listed on the company's web store yet). As both kits use essentially the same 4GB module, the performance ratings are the same across the board.
Quick, what's the first thing you think of when you hear "EVGA?" Most people would probably say graphics cards, followed by power supplies (or vice versa). Motherboards would have also been an acceptable answer, as would have Shield. But gaming mice? That's the type of last place answer that goes unanswered on Family Feud, yet it also represents EVGA's newest products. Specifically, EVGA just announced two new Torq series rodents, the X5 and X3, both designed from scratch for "hardcore gamers."
You probably already have at least a basic understanding of how a mechanical hard disk drive (HDD) works, but have you ever tried to explain it someone less savvy? It's a little more difficult than it seems -- there's a lot going on inside a hard drive. This is where infographics can come in handy, and eBuyer just sent us a rather neat one that takes a look at the various parts inside your typical HDD.
For the longest time, it seemed as though the monitor market was frozen in time. While CPUs and graphics cards became increasingly advanced and faster with each new generation, monitor makers were content to stick with Full HD 1080p panels of varying sizes for mainstream users, and 30-inch panels checking in at 2560x1600. Ah, but the landscape is changing, so don't be shocked if monitor makers test the market with bigger size and higher resolution displays.
Apacer exec expects another free fall in SSD pricing
Solid state drives may never reach the tantalizing price-per-gigabyte ratio that mechanical hard disk drives enjoy, though that's okay, we're willing to pay a premium for performance. However, that premium might not be finished shrinking. We already saw NAND flash memory pricing take a nose dive, which in turn led to more affordable SSDs, and now we hear that the cost of SSDs could drop even lower this year.
Asus and Gigabyte dominated the motherboard market in 2014, with Asus coming out slightly ahead of its rival for bragging rights. However, there's more at stake than bragging rights for second tier players. ASRock, Elitegroup Computer Systems (ECS), and Micro-Star International (MSI) all have new strategies for 2015 to help better compete with the big boys, though not all may survive.
There's a new desk on the market, though it's a bit smarter than your average contraption. Called the Stir Kinect Desk M1, it sports built-in electronics and a motorized platform that rises up and down to keep you from sitting on your rump all day long. Unless of course you'd prefer to sit for hours on end, then it will dutifully stay in place. Otherwise, there's some interesting functionality to play with.
It was a year ago that cloud backup firm Backblaze revealed some interesting data it had collected in regards to hard drive failure rates. For a number of reasons, trying to analyze the reliability of hard drive brands and models can be complicated, though when the dust settled, Backblaze determined that Hitachi brand HDDs were the best. With another year of operation under its belt, Backblaze has more data to share, though Hitachi remains a solid option.