Is it time to start taking Biostar seriously in power user circles? We'll need to spend some more hands on time with the company's products to answer that question, but in the meantime, Biostar continues to release intriguing motherboards aimed at select groups, such as gamers, overclockers, Bitcoin miners, and even those worried about lightning strikes. Biostar's newest motherboard, the Hi-Fi B85Z5, is for budget buyers who want high-quality onboard audio.
The Revo One RL85 mini PC that Acer first showcased at this year’s Consumer Electronics Show in Vegas is about to hit store shelves, albeit only in Europe. The RL85, as is apparent from its understated yet elegant design, has been crafted to seamlessly fit into any contemporary living space, of which it requires only about one liter. More importantly, the 6-by-4-by-4-inch PC appears to be no slouch in the specs and the value-for-money departments either.
The recently concluded Pwn2Own contest—a lucrative hacking competition held as part of the annual CanSecWest conference—saw all four major internet browsers get their soft(ware) underbellies exposed. Three of the ten browser bugs exposed at the two-day event were in Firefox, which emerged as the second-most pwned browser at the event behind Internet Explorer. But there’s one area where Mozilla has clearly left its competitors behind.
OEMs are currently required to allows users to manually disable UEFI Secure Boot
Microsoft courted controversy when it emerged, in the lead-up to Windows 8’s release, that OEMs were required to enable Unified Extensible Firmware Interface (UEFI)Secure Boot by default in order to have their systems certified for use with Windows 8. Widespread fears that the security feature would have the effect of locking out other operating systems were allayed when another requirement surfaced: “A physically present user must be allowed to disable Secure Boot via firmware setup.” However, the same may not be true when Windows 10 arrives later this year.
The latest MacBooks don’t support Windows 7 installation via Boot Camp
It has now been more than five years since Windows 7—the most widely used desktop operating system out there—first walked into our lives, promising to right Vista’s many wrongs. Although it has carried the workhorse mantle previously associated with XP pretty well, the OS is proving to be more durable than Microsoft would like. The Redmond-based company would, of course, like nothing more than for all the Windows 7 users out there to move to Windows 8/8.1 or the forthcoming Windows 10 en masse. But it’s not alone as even its arch-rival Apple apparently thinks the OS has overstayed its welcome.
So you might have heard that Nvidia released their GeForce GTX Titan X video card yesterday. It's the fastest single-GPU card on the planet (though not the fastest single card, because of the dual GPUs in the Titan Z and the Radeon R9 295X2). Maybe most people would be satisfied with the benchmarks of a single Titan X, but we're not most people. So we called a guy who knows a guy, and we acquired a second Titan X. The things we do for you people!
UPDATE: We located a third Titan X, and we discovered that we need to upgrade our CPU! This is fun.
We slapped the lot of them in our trusty GPU benchmarking machine, sprinkled some unicorn dust on it, and went to town with some 4K benchmarks, also doing the GTX 980 in SLI for good measure. Can you dig it?
Two magazine issues ago I wrote an article indicating that you were part of the Maximum PC crew. It wasn’t a joke. I really do believe that our readership very much guides us in a fashion that’s congruent to us guiding you on the next hardware upgrade. And so the emails started coming in.
Long emails, short ones, rants, suggestions, I’ve read them all. I’ve been trying to respond to all the emails sent to me, but between the enormous workload at publication and getting back to the feedback, I’ve admittedly been falling behind in replies—I promise I’ll get back to you eventually though, if you have written in.
Could the world use yet another browser? Sure, if security is at the forefront of your mind. At the annual Pwn2Own hacking contest that took place this week, Internet Explorer, Firefox, Chrome, and Safari all fell prey to remote code execution exploits by the second day. Not to make a mountain out of a mole hill, this isn't unusual, as every year hackers gather at CanSecWest's conference to show off their skills for prizes.
You've probably at least heard of Supermicro, a well established player in the server and workstation markets. Supermicro also dabbles in small form factor (SFF) cases, but as far as full fledged gaming PCs go, options are few and far between. Nevertheless, Supermicro is getting ready to expand its limited gaming system lineup with a rig built around Intel's Haswell architecture that will be upgradeable to Broadwell-E.
AMD claims that Nvidia G-Sync technology can negatively affect FPS
Shore up your homes everyone, it appears that another battle is about to be waged between AMD and Nvidia consumers. The resulting storm is going to be over AMD’s FreeSync and Nvidia’s G-Sync technologies. While AMD announced that four new monitors with FreeSync support are now available, it didn’t stop there. The company went on to claim that Nvidia’s G-Sync can negatively affect a game’s FPS.