The worst may be over in terms of slumping PC sales that have made headlines throughout the past year. HP, the second largest PC supplier in the world, reported a 4 percent jump in PC sales compared to last year en route to posting a $28.2 billion quarter for its fiscal period ended January 31, 2014. That's actually a 1 percent decline in net revenue compared to the same quarter a year ago, but still higher than Wall Street was expecting.
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.
New GX V3 series from Cougar boast 80 Plus Gold certification
Gamers are a demanding bunch, and if you're a PC component or peripheral maker, you better bring your A-game or risk being called out for gimmicky features. Cougar, a name you don't hear too often in the U.S., thinks its new GX V3 power supply family makes the cut. These units are being billed as high-end PSUs specifically for gamers, which starts with 80 Plus Gold level efficiency.
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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.
Hard drive makers only recently began announcing 5TB capacity HDDs, but it looks like LaCie will be the first one to bring 5TB of external storage to market. LaCie announced today the availability of 5TB (7200 RPM) hard drive capacities in its 5big Thunderbolt, 2big Thunderbolt, and d2 Thunderbolt series of external storage solutions. And in case you're wondering, the answer is yes, the 5TB capacity LaCie is touting comes in single-drive configurations.
New drivers from Nvidia boost performance up to 19 percent
As Nvidia often does when releasing new graphics cards, there are new WHQL-certified drivers to download. According to Nvidia, the recently released GeForce 334.89 drivers offer double-digit percentage performance gains in some titles (up to 19 percent) for GeForce 400, 500, 600, and 700 series GPUs (compared to GeForce 332.21 WHQL). The drivers also add a few new SLI profiles.
Never heard of Feenix, you say? The company is a relative newcomer to the field of PC peripherals and appears to be trying to make a splash by combining elegant designs with premium crafted components. Fleshing out a limited (but growing) catalog of peripherals is the Aria, which Feenix claims is a "studio grade" headphone and microphone combination. Let's take a peek at the specs.
Mark Zuckerberg makes a major play in the mobile messaging arena
One thing is certain, Facebook isn't the least bit afraid to throw obscene amounts of cash at startups and services that have proven themselves in the public eye. It's a rather long list that includes Instagram ($1 billion), FriendFeed ($47.5 million), ConnectU ($31 million), and several others, though Facebook just announced its largest acquisition to date -- $19 billion for WhatsApp.
"PC is where I'm going to wind up. That's where the community is."
Former Epic Games design director Cliff Bleszinski has expressed the possibility of developing games again. In an interview with Gamasutra, Bleszinski revealed that he was thinking of starting a new studio with its focus being on the PC platform.