The busy bodies at Intel released over half a dozen new Braswell SoCs and Broadwell CPUs ranging in price from $107 to $281, presumably in trays of 1,000 units (meaning retail prices will be a bit higher). Starting with Intel's Braswell lineup, the new parts are based on a 14nm manufacturing process and sport new CPU and GPU architectures that offer higher performance at the same or lower TDPs than Intel's previous generation SoCs.
Microsoft just expanded its Surface line with the Surface 3, a less expensive version of the Surface Pro 3 that's also smaller and less powerful. Other than size (10.8-inch display, 8.7mm thin) and weight (1.37 pounds or 622 grams), the physical design is the same as the Surface Pro 3, as both use premium materials and sport the adjustable kickstand that Microsoft is so fond of.
When it comes to storage, you typically have to choose between raw performance or oodles of storage space. If you value the former, a solid state drive is hands down the way to go. And if you need the latter, well, traditional hard drives with spinning platters are still the best option. But what if you could have both? Micron and Intel have made available 3D NAND flash memory that they say will enable SSDs to scale beyond 10 terabytes in 2.5-inch form.
After getting off to a slow start, Chromebooks finally began to grow in popularity as lower cost alternatives to Windows-based machines. And for a long while, Chromebooks represented the top selling laptops on Amazon. Now that Windows laptops can be bought for $250 or less, Chromebooks aren't as enticing, but what about 2-in-1 systems? We're about to find out as laptop makers ready 2-in-1 Chromebook models for a second quarter release.
We spoke with Razer about its Open Source Virtual Reality (OSVR) ecosystem at the Consumer Electronics Show a couple of months ago and were excited about the possibilities. Even more intriguing is the announcement that Leap Motion has partnered up with Razer to integrate its motion-tracking capabilities right into Razer's OSVR headset when it ships to consumers later this year.
MSI is laying claim to the world's first AMD motherboard with USB 3.1 support. The board in question is MSI's new 970A SLI Krait Edition, which sports a black and white tuxedo theme that would probably look pretty nifty inside a white theme enclosure. But behind the looks is a USB 3.1 interface that allows for transfer speeds of up to 10Gbps, double that of USB 3.0, and 20 times faster than USB 2.0.
Have you ever tried liquid cooling a graphics card? It's not the most difficult thing in the world, though between the water cooling loop and delicately removing the card's stock cooling solution, it can be a little intimidating. And then there's EVGA's new GeForce GTX 980 Hybrid with an all-in-one water cooling already installed. All you need to do is plug the card into your mobo, feed it power, and mount the single 120mm fan radiator.
This rodent isn't fazed by glass or glossy surfaces
The hype is high for Logitech's new MX Master Wireless mouse. Featuring a hand-sculpted design and a "Darkfield" laser, Logitech is billing the MX Master as "the new paradigm for precise, fast, comfortable computer navigation." Apparently the peripheral is particularly adept at working across multiple screens, devices, and operating systems, and of course it brings ergonomic traits to the table as well.
Don't look know, but Toshiba's OCZ Storage Solutions division just rolled out a new flagship SATA 6Gbps solid state drive, the Vector 180. It's an "enthusiast-class" SSD that's supposed to deliver rock-solid stability and performance to high-end consumer systems. Armed with an OCZ Barefoot 3 controller and in-house Toshiba A19nm MLC NAND flash memory, the Vector 180 series is rated to read and write files sequentially at up to 550MB/s and 530MB/s, respectively.
Building a quiet PC isn't as easy as it sounds. The process of putting the pieces together is mostly the same, unless you're custom installing noise dampening material and rubber grommets, but finding the right components can be challenging. This is especially true of the power supply -- if you don't want to trust your system to a fanless PSU, EVGA may have a serviceable solution.
EVGA today announced its Supernova 650 GS and 550 GS PSUs, both of which are supposedly "completely silent when under low loads."