OCZ has added a backlit keyboard to its Alchemy line of gaming peripherals, but this one comes with a twist. Unlike traditional backlit planks, OCZ's Illuminati lets users switch between blue or red LED backlit keys, erasing the fear that the decor at the next LAN party you attend might clash with your keyboard.
In addition to the user-selectable color scheme, the Illuminati comes equipped with rubber-coated keys, which the company claims will last for more than 5 million cycles. Gamers can also make use of 14 multimedia and internet hotkeys and a curved wrist wrest. What you won't find on the keyboard are any USB ports.
OCZ launched its Alchemy line last year in an attempt to offer gaming peripherals without the high prices that typically come hand-in-hand. The Illuminati is the third keyboard in the company's Alchemy series, with the Elixir and Elixir II having come before it.
To borrow from Jerry Maguire's 'You had me at hello' scene, Maingear's newest product announcement had us 'Core i7,' but lost us when the talk turned to the GPU. The new Prelude 2, as it's being called, combines Intel's Core i7 platform with a Samsung 22-inch LCD monitor and tops it off with Nvidia's 3D Vision Technology, and at under two grand, it sounds like an intriguing proposition. But sticking out like a sore thumb is the inclusion of Nvidia's mid-range 9800GT videocard.
"The fact that Maingear customers will have the ability to play games in 3D stereo is just awesome," said Ujesh Desai, general manager of GPU business at NVIDIA. "NVIDIA GeForce 3D Vision is taking the world by storm, and Maingear’s Prelude 2 is going to deliver a mind-blowing experience."
That "mind-blowing experience" will be delivered by Intel's Core i7 920 (2.66GHz) processor nestled into an Asus P6T X58 motherboard, 3GB of triple channel DDR3-1066 memory, a 250GB Western Digital hard drive with 16MB of cache, onboard audio, a 650W power supply, and Windows Vista Home Premium 32-bit all stuffed inside a Lian-Li enclosure.
To be fair, this is only a baseline configuration. The Prelude 2 offers plenty of customization options, including up to a 1200W power supply, up to two of the hard to find dual-GPU GeForce GTX 295 videocards, Intel's full lineup of Core i7 processors, liquid cooling, up to 12GB of Corsair XMS DDR3-1333MHz memory, up to four hard drives (including Intel's X25-M 80GB SSD, Western Digital's Velociraptor, and RAID 0), and a host of other goodies.
The Prelude 2 is available now from Maingear.com starting at just shy of $2000 (baseline configuration).
With Google having opened Android Market to paid apps, users of the fledgling mobile platform are eagerly looking forward to an inevitable rise in the number of apps. Google, on its part, is trying its best to offer more reasons for Android users to exult.
And exult they will on hearing that the Android Market will let users return any application within 24 hours from the time of purchase. Google has stolen a march on Apple’s App Store by espousing an application return policy.
Also, users will be allowed unlimited reinstalls by Google. If any dispute arises - including billing issues - between a user and a developer, the two parties will have to settle it directly as Google is not interested in playing arbitrator. Another thing Google is not interested in is porn. The Android Market policies expressly prohibit “nudity, graphic sex acts, or sexually explicit material.”
Shuttle has always been good about their barebone systems, and that trend doesn’t stop with the SX58H7. This beefy little scrapper comes ready for tons of power, by the means of Intel’s Core i7 and two video cards.
The SX58H7 comes with an X58 Express chipset, and 500 watt PSU, two PCI-Express 2.0 x16 slots, space for up to 16GB of DDR3 DRAM, and room for two SATA II drives. Should you be looking to hook yourself into the lifeline of data, there’s also two gigabit Ethernet jacks on the back.
It’ll run you about $611, which isn’t a pleasant price tag. But, if you’ve got some money burning a hole in your pocket, and want to put a lot of power in a small place, be sure to check this out.
Nvidia this week released new WHQL GeForce drivers for GeForce 6, 7, 8, 9, and 200-series owners. The new drivers, version 182.06, promise around a 10 percent performance increase in Fallout 3 at high resolution with AA, F.E.A.R. 2: Project Origin, Half Life 2 at high resolution with AA, the insanely entertaining Left 4 Dead at high resolution with AA, and Race Driver: GRID, also at high resolution with AA.
In addition to double-digit performance boosts, Nvidia says its new drivers include full support for OpenGL 3.0 on GeForce 8, 9, and 200 series GPUs and automatically installs the new PhysX software (version 9.090203. The drivers also fix a bug in Vista 32-bit where GeForce 9800 GTX/GX2/GT/GTX+ and 8800 GTS/GT/GS owners experienced a system hang when switching between performance states.
After purchasing a Lenovo PC preloaded with Microsoft's Windows Vista, Emma Alvarado was shocked to learn she would have to pay $59.25 in order to downgrade to Windows XP. She's now taking the matter to court and has a filed a lawsuit against Microsoft.
"Microsoft has used its market power to take advantage of consumer demand for the Windows XP operating system by requiring consumers to purchase computers preinstalled with the Vista operating system and to pay additional sums to 'downgrade' to the Windows XP operating system," the suit alleges.
The suit is an interesting one, though probably an uphill battle for Alvrado to convince a judge that Microsoft is in the wrong. The software maker had originally intended for XP to go the way of the dodo bird at the end of June in 2008, but has since offered more than one stay of execution due to consumer demand. Both Vista Business and Ultimate come with downgrade rights, but it's up to the OEMs to decide if they want to offer it as an option, and if so, for how much. Pricing varies by OEM, which might make Alvarado's claim that Microsoft extended its XP cutoff date because of "tremendous profits" hard to prove in court.
Does Alvarado have a case? Hit the jump and give us your verdict.
We haven't seen a ton of innovation take place in the netbook market, which makes Gigabyte's upcoming TouchNote M1028 even more refreshing. The sleek-looking netbook boasts a convertible touchscreen and was being shown off at MWC in Barcelona.
The swivel-screen reportedly houses a 10-inch 1024 x 600 display. Outside of the display, Gigabyte's TouchNote M1028 sticks to the typical netbook blueprint, which calls for an Intel Atome N270 processor, 1GB of RAM, 160GB hard drive, WiFi, SD card slot, ExpressCard slot, three USB 2.0 ports, a 1.3MP webcam, and Windows XP Home.
Gateway continues to groove in the mobile market, this time with a new line of midrange laptops. Kicking off the company's new compact and lightweight TC series are the TC7306u (black) and TC7307u (burgundy) models.
Both notebooks sport the same internal configuration, which consists of an Intel Pentium Dual-Core Mobile T4200 (2GHz, 1MB, 800MHz frontside bus), 4GB of DDR2-667 memory, Intel GMA 4500M graphics, 8X DVD burner, 320GB hard drive, and Windows Vista Home Premium 64-bit. Other specs include a 14-inch 1366 x 768 (16:9) LED backlit display, 1.3MP webcam, WiFi (Draft-N), a multicard reader, and three USB 2.0 ports.
To the power users who will pooh-pooh the processor choice, Gateway says future configurations can include Intel's Core 2 Duo CPUs, as well as an HDMI port and up to a 500GB hard drive. Gateway further indicated that future models might also come equipped with a Blu-ray optical drive and Nvidia's GeForce 9300M graphics depending on demand.
Both the TC7306u and TC7307 are available now with an MSRP set at $650.
Microsoft Internet Explorer is steadily losing ground to other browsers, though there is no immediate threat to its crown. However, Microsoft would be hoping to stymie the slide with Internet Explorer 8.
All eyes are now set on the release of the finished product after a public RC (release candidate) was released on January 26th, 2009.
IE8 comes with the promise of greater performance and reliability. Some of its key features include visual search suggestions, private browsing, accelerators, web slices and monetization opportunities (for OEMs).
You should be excited about this. Like, sure-let’s-raise-and-drop-the-New-Year’s-Ball-again excited. If you don’t know why, here’s some homework.
Anyway, at today’s Valve DICE keynote, Gabe Newell announced that a series of Valve-penned comics are setting up shop on Valve’s Monopoly map, and – even better – that they will receive their Certified Fine Art status from the team responsible for Valve’s “Meet the” series of Team Fortress 2 movies.
Ahem. Apparently, the comic is meant to “excite customers about the company’s games outside of creating game content.”
Delightful. 2009 is now officially Best Year of the Century.