We’ve seen this day coming for a long time. There was no way that Western Digital was going to sit back and let other manufacturers usurp the Raptor’s place at the top of the storage speed charts. Consider the rule of the speedy terabyte drives a hiccup on the timeline. The Raptor is back: upgraded, renamed, and… physically smaller.
To read our full review of the Velociraptor (not the preview we gave you before), hit the jump.
Despite falling hard drive prices, a weakened dollar, and other economic woes, Western Digital managed to post revenue of $8.1 billion and an operating income of $1.0 billion for fiscal year 2008. That represents a full-year revenue increase of 48 percent. It gets even better for the hard drive maker, who also posted a net income of $867 million, or $3.84 per share, marking a whopping 54 percent jump from one year ago.
In the report, Western Digital says that 63 percent of Q4 revenue came from non-desktop sources, while 37 percent came from hard drives configured into desktop PCs. By contrast, those numbers sat at 46 and 54 percent respectively one year ago.
"Fiscal 2008 was an outstanding year for WD, capped off with the strong fourth-quarter financial performance," said John Coyne, president and CEO. "Our outstanding financial performance demonstrates the efficiency and effectiveness of the business model that we have built and refined over the last several years, underpinned by our industry leading cost structure."
WD's financial performance is also indicative of of the growing mobile market, in which the company shipped 11.7 million 2.5-inch mobile drives.
NZXT, the company best know for its lineup of flashy enclosures, looks to expand its horizon by getting into the gaming peripheral market with its new Avatar mouse. The uniquely shaped rodent comes ready for both left and right handed gamers and sports a rubber grip to prevent slippage. NZXT says the "small, light form factor allows for faster and quicker movements," and the company bills the new mouse as being ergonomic.
The Avatar also comes equipped with a 7-button configuration and boasts a high 2600 DPI. Other features include:
40 inches/second max speed
15g max acceleration
6469 max fps
5.8MP per second
Up to 1000 USB reports per second
One of the more interesting marketing bullets, NZXT claims the 7 buttons will last for 5 million clicks, which sounds like a really, really long time. Available now, the new Avatar has been given an MSRP of $60, which works out to about $.000012 per click.
Rumors don't always turn out to be true, particularly in the tech wolrd, but that's not the case with last week's chatter regarding Nehalem's name change. Intel has since made it official, formerly branding the new architecture "Intel Core processor." Also true to rumor, the first products to come out of Santa Clara on the new silicon will be dubbed Core i7, which the company says is the first of several new identifiers to come as different products launch over the next year.
"The Core name is and will be our flagship PC processor going forward," said Sean Maloney, Intel's general manager, Sales and Marketing Group. "Expect Intel to focus even more marketing resources around that name and the Core i7 products starting now."
Antsy upgraders can look for the new processors in the fourth quarter of this year, with Extreme Edition variants identifiable by a separate black logo.
Any thoughts on Intel's decision to keep the Core nomenclature?
Asustek’s Eee PC mini-desktop has arrived on U.S shores. Its launch follows closely on the heels of Dell’s Studio Hybrid's arrival, which came out less than two weeks ago. The Eee PC box comes with Windows XP pre-installed, a 1.6 GHz Intel Atom, 1GB memory, 80 gigs of hard drive capacity, Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, Ethernet, built-in card reader, four USB 2.0 ports, a microphone-in and DVI-out.
As the tech world waits with abated breath for Intel's Nehalem architecture to crash the Core 2 party, we still don't know what name to put on the banners, but we might have a pretty good idea. It's not yet official, but according to the latest rumor, Intel will dub its newfangled Nehalem as Core i7, which would put to rest any speculation that the chip maker might drop the 'Core' designation in its new nomenclature.
For anyone that hasn't been reading Maximum PC on a regular basis (shame on you) or who have been living under a rock (you get a free pass), Nehalem is Intel's next big processor microarchitecture, representing the 'tock' in the company's tick-tock update cycle. Along with tri-channel DDR3 support, Nehalem will usher in Intel's move to an integrated memory controller and finally do away with the crowded front-side bus. Gordon Mah Ung covered the architecture in detail last week, and while you're brushing up on the nuances of Nehalem, be sure and check out what the first Nehalem system looks like.
Getting back to the naming scheme, we'll have to wait until hearing official word, but in the meantime, speculation is welcome. Do you like the rumored name change?
Given its small size, we didn’t expect maximum cooling performance from Arctic Cooling’s Alpine 7 Pro. And while the Alpine 7 Pro doesn’t set any performance records, in some situations it does match the capabilities of our cooler of choice, Thermaltake’s DuOrb. Given the sheer size difference between this 9x9x3cm cooler and the, well, monstrous DuOrb, the Alpine 7’s performance was a pleasant surprise.
Rarely do you see a 22-inch display float near the price points of superior 24-inch panels. It’s just unheard of, for a smaller display would have to offer some kind of fantastic upgrade over what we typically find in this size classification to be worth the additional cost. How about an extra dimension?
Zalman’s ZM-M220W is the company’s first 3D display and it’s every bit as expensive as some of the best midrange monitors we’ve tested. We appreciate Zalman’s attempt at breaking through the fourth wall using a 3D technology that’s far cheaper than what we’ve seen on similar displays. But we would still trade this extra dimension for a better-looking picture in a heartbeat.
Check out our full review of Zalman's 3D display after the jump!
If the $100 laptop wasn’t enough a team at Massachusetts Institute of Technology is working on building a computer for $12, targeting families in Third World countries. They are basing their design on the old Nintendo Entertainment System. The NES used a MOS 6502 processor similar to the Apple IIe and Atari 2600 although it was a customized version for the NES.
The 6502 was designed in 1975. It is an 8-bit processor with a 16-bit address bus and clock speeds around 1 or 2 MHz. It is sure to smoke my digital watch.
Just how far the project will go is uncertain. Nintendo still holds the copyrights to the NES.
It sounds like a truly worthy project! You can check it out here.
The NZXT Khaos looks like it would be a sleek addition to Maximum PC’s “best of” case club. We like how NZXT is attempting to bring an aesthetical refresh to case construction by toying around with the thick aluminum exterior of the chassis itself: curved edges and indented, grilled valleys add a modernistic look to the otherwise drab framework of a traditional rectangular case.