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VR-Zone Tech News for the Geeks 2012 Issue 3
 

VR-Zone Tech News for the Geeks 2012 Issue 3

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A monthly roundup of VR-Zone.com Technology News covering facebook, google, apple, baidu, social media, PC, gadget, geek, technology, intel, microsoft, AMD, NVIDIA, ARM, Samsung, iphone, android, ...

A monthly roundup of VR-Zone.com Technology News covering facebook, google, apple, baidu, social media, PC, gadget, geek, technology, intel, microsoft, AMD, NVIDIA, ARM, Samsung, iphone, android, internet

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    VR-Zone Tech News for the Geeks 2012 Issue 3 VR-Zone Tech News for the Geeks 2012 Issue 3 Document Transcript

    • March 14th, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneVR-Zone.com | Tech News for the Geeks! VR-Zone | Stuff for the Geeks is a bi-weekly publication covering the latest gadgets and stuff for the geeks.Star Wars: The Old Republicfree to play this weekendSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/star-wars-the-old-republic-free-to-play-this-weekend/15248.htmlMarch 14th, 2012 Get out your lightsabers and blasters,because Star Wars: The Old Republic, BioWares first foray This is unlikely to happen, however, as Tesco has alreadyinto the world on MMORPGs, will be free to play this blamed the situation on an IT error. It said it would cancelweekend. all of the purchases in question and refund any money paid.Tesco will not honour sales This is not the first time Tesco has made a mistake like this.after 50 pound iPad offer In January 2011 a glitch saw 36 cans of lager go on sale for £11, resulting in the store calling the police to keep order asblunder the shop was crowded with people looking for bargain beer.Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/tesco-will-not-honour-sales- A similar problem in October saw Terrys Chocolate Orangesafter-50-pound-ipad-offer-blunder/15247.html retail for a mere £0.29.March 14th, 2012 As the shops slogan goes, “Every little helps.” Unfortunately offering an unbeatable deal in error and then taking it away does not help at all.Supermarket chain Tesco has refused to honour sales ofApples popular iPad tablet after it accidentally listed the Teen wins Intel award forprice on its website for £49.99 rather than £499.99. breast cancer researchSupermarket chain Tesco has refused to honour sales of Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/teen-wins-intel-award-for-breast-Apples popular iPad tablet after it accidentally listed the cancer-research/15246.htmlprice on its website for £49.99 rather than £499.99. March 14th, 2012Tesco Direct made the pricing blunder on its website for theiPad Wi-Fi 4G 64GB black model and only spotted the errorafter numerous sales went through. A US teenager has won the top prize of $100,000Customers thought it was their lucky day, with many from the Intel Science Talent Search competition for hisscrambling to purchase the tablet computer for a tenth of groundbreaking research on breast cancer, which couldits retail cost. News spread like wildfire across the internet, revolutionise treatment.eventually crashing the Tesco website as everyone tried to A US teenager has won the top prize of $100,000grab what they thought was a bargain. from the Intel Science Talent Search competition for his groundbreaking research on breast cancer, which could revolutionise treatment.While this is an obvious error it is still a mistake on the partof Tesco, not its customers, so its understandable why manyfeel it should honour the price. 17-year-old Nithin Tumma, from Fort Gratiot, Michigan, was awarded the prestigious first place honours from the 1
    • March 14th, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneIntel Foundation after he discovered that certain proteins stores past midnight like M1, so do save the hassle ofin cancer cells could be inhibited to slow their growth and queueing.decrease their malignancy. Giadas Uni-box is a split-The potential benefits of this finding include thedevelopment of a more direct, targeted, effective and less level computer Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/giada-s-uni-box-is-a-split-level-toxic treatment for breast cancer, a goal that many scientists computer/15244.htmlhave been working on for some time. March 14th, 2012 We saw a preview of Giadas Uni-box just ahead of CeBIT and at the show we got a couple of minutes of hands on time with it and theres a reason for the unusually two-tone chassis design, as the Uni-box is made up from two different PCBs. In fact, the main motherboard was never intended forTumma is first in his class of 332, is a varsity tennis player the Uni-box and as such were looking at something of a bi-and does volunteer work for the Port Huron Museum, where product here that worked out to be an interesting product inhe initiated a restoration program for historical and cultural its own right.landmarks, showing that his contributions to society extend We saw a preview of Giadas Uni-box just ahead of CeBITbeyond his scientific research. and at the show we got a couple of minutes of hands on time with it and theres a reason for the unusually two-toneTumma was not the only teen to win awards. Andrew Sushko chassis design, as the Uni-box is made up from two differentand Mimi Yen, both also 17, won second and third place PCBs. In fact, the main motherboard was never intended forrespectively for their developments in tiny motors and the the Uni-box and as such were looking at something of a bi-study of the evolution and genetics of microscopic worms. product here that worked out to be an interesting product in its own right.“We invest in America’s future when we recognize theinnovative achievements of our nation’s brightest youngminds,” said Paul Otellini, President and CEO of Intel.“Hands-on experience with math and science, such asthat required of Intel Science Talent Search finalists,encourages young people to think critically, solve problemsand understand the world around them. Rather than simplymemorizing facts and formulas, or repeating experimentswith known outcomes, this competition engages students inan exciting way and provides a deeper level of understandingin such important but challenging subjects.”SingTel and StarHubannounce new iPad to retailin stores on 16 MarchSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/singtel-and-starhub-announce-new-ipad-to-retail-in-stores-on-16-march/15245.htmlMarch 14th, 2012 Giada will offer the Uni-box with a range of CPU options, although the base option which is likely to be the most common one includes a Celeron 857 which isnt exactly a With M1 Limited announcing performance CPU. That said, Core i3, i5 and i7 options willyesterday that the new iPad will hit the stores on 16 March, be available, although as you mightve guessed, the Uni-boxit is only expected that the other two telecommunication uses mobile CPUs which are relatively costly.companies, SingTel and StarHub, would follow shortlywith their own announcements. However, both SingTeland StarHub will not have the iPad launch at their retail 2
    • March 14th, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone NTT Docomo unveils SH-06D NERV special edition Android smartphoneThe two halves of the Uni-box are connected via a PCI Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/ntt-docomo-unveils-sh-06d-nerv-Express interface and that is how its possible to have things special-edition-android-smartphone/15242.htmllike the DisplayPort and DVI connector on the lower half March 14th, 2012of the Uni-box. The interesting thing here though is thefact that Giada also sells the motherboard on its own andits called the NI-HM65T. The motherboard measures amere 120x128mm and it sports a single SO-DIMM slot, onemSATA slot and a half-size mini PCI Express slot. NTT Docomo in Japan has unveiled the special edition Android smartphone that will launch in June, in conjunction with the "Evangelion: 3.0 You Can (Not) Redo" movie. The SH-06D NERV will be showcased at the NOTTV booth at the Anime Expo 2012 (held at Makuhari Messe in Japan) during the weekend, 31 March and 1 April.To the right of the motherboard is an extension PCB thatGiada will offer that adds additional USB ports, a secondHDMI port, a DisplayPort, headset jacks and a couple ofSATA ports. The company can also make custom PCBs forsystem integrators for the NI-HM65T and we might beseeing a wide range of devices based on this motherboardin the future from various companies. We were told thatthe original concept for the motherboard was some kind of The "Eva mobile" was extremely well received when it wasmedia player/streaming TV service STB for China, but we first launched in 2009. And this year, NTT Docomo haswerent told what that product is called, only that it was co- come up with the second "NEXT series SH-06D NERV"developed with Intel. special edition phone, manufactured by Sharp, and will be launched in conjunction with the movie "Evangelion: 3.0 You Can (Not) Redo" in June. The Evangelion: 3.0 You Can (Not) Redo is a Japanese animated film directed by Kazuya Tsurumaki and Hideaki Anno, and is the third of four movies released in the Rebuild of Evangelion tetralogy, based on the original anime series Neon Genesis Evangelion. The SH-06D NERV special edition model reproduces the view of the world in the movie with the same concept of "government paramilitary organization NERV". The body 3
    • March 14th, 2012 Published by: VR-Zonedesign, built-in content, as well as user interface are made Next up we have the very odd looking TD-W8968 which isto reflect the world of "Evangelion", and is supervised by an all-in-one ADSL2+ modem, router and 802.11b/g/n Wi-the color studio production company. The picture that has Fi access point with a USB 2.0 port for printer or storage/been released only shows the the rear panel of the phone - media sharing. We’re not sold on the looks, but the TP-Linkthe NERV logo, as well as the FeliCa mark. (FeliCa is the representative we spoke to said that it had been popular withcontactless RFID smart card system used in Japan). Details its customers.on pre-orders and other information have yet to be released.The price is rumored to be slightly higher than the originalSharp SH-06D, though the special edition smartphone willonly be available in limited quantity. The SH-06D NERV willbe showcased at the NOTTV booth at the Anime Expo 2012(held at Makuhari Messe in Japan) during the weekend, on31 March and 1 April.TP-Link shows off new line ofrouters and more at CeBITSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/tp-link-shows-off-new-line-of-routers-and-more-at-cebit/15241.htmlMarch 14th, 2012Routers may not be the most exciting piece of hardwarearound, but TP-Link has come up with some new designsthat look a lot more attractive than its current range ofproducts. Besides improved looks, the company has alsoadded much improved performance to some of its upcomingmodels.TP-Link has a bit of an odd mix of new products and starting The next device is a new venture for TP-Link in some ways, asat the bottom of sorts we have the TL-MR3040 which is a the TD-VG3631 offers all the functionality of the TD-W8968,new portable router that has a built in battery which can but adds a second USB 2.0 port and more importantly, it’s abe used to either power a USB 3G modem, or charge USB VoIP gateway with two FXS ports and one FXO port whichdevices. It only sports 150Mbps Wi-Fi, but there’s at least a allows for regular phones to be attached to it so they can beWAN port as well as a USB port, so it can be used to share a used with VoIP services. The TD-VG3631 features a morewired hotel connection as well as operate as a 3G router. business like design, although we’re once again not sure we think it’s an improvement. 4
    • March 14th, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone The difference between the models are fairly minor, as the TL-WDR3600 is a 300/300Mbps router, whereas the TL- WDR4300 adds 450Mbps support on the 5GHz band and finally the TL-WDR4900 offers speeds of up to 450Mbps on both bands. The company is also offering similar models with built in ADSL2+ modems, but we didn’t catch the model names on those. The final new product on display was the TL-NS210, TP- Link’s first NAS which features a 1.2GHz Marvell processor, space for two hard drives, three USB 2.0 ports with the front port offering direct copying of files via a button and a Gigabit Ethernet port. On the software side the TL-NS210 offers a built in web server as well as the regular media and file sharing features you’d expect from a NAS.Moving on we got three new routers in the same series thatall sports the same design and this time around TP-Link hasdone a much better job, albeit our pictures aren’t the bestthanks to a lot of reflections in the Perspex that was shieldingthe routers from the visitors at the show. The new models arecalled the TL-WDR3600, TL-WDR4300 and TL-WDR4900and all three models sport simultaneous dual-band 802.11nsupport, two USB 2.0 ports and a full set of Gigabit Ethernetports on both the LAN and WAN side. When we quizzed TP-Link about 802.11ac products the company said it will be offering them in due time, but it’s early days yet and they feel that it’s more important to focus on its current range of products. We have a feeling it might not be that long to wait before we see the first 802.11ac devices in the market, but it’s likely that the cost will be fairly high at the start and as such people will stick with 802.11n for quite a while still. 5
    • March 14th, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone and then cooled by an external cooling system outside of theBostons Hardcore LSS 200 building. In fact, the heat could actually be extracted andblade server is oil cooled used to heat other parts of the building. Apparently there’sSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/boston-s-hardcore-lss-200-blade- an 80 percent energy saving – in terms of cooling costs – andserver-is-oil-cooled/15240.html a 40 percent cost saving – again in terms of cooling cost –March 14th, 2012 to use a system like this over a traditional air cooled server room. There are of course some major drawbacks of this otherwise superior cooling solution, as for one it’s difficult to clean the components inside the blades, although as each blade is hot- swappable, this isn’t a concern for the customer. Then it’sWe’ve seen a fair few whacky cooling solutions over the the fact that each rack will be heavier than an air cooledyears, but a server cooled by mineral oil is a new one to rack thanks to the oil and extra plumbing needed, so currentus, even though it’s hardly a new idea in itself. Boston was server rooms are often unsuitable for retrofitting for thisdemoing a small unit of its Hardcore LSS 200 blade server type of cooling. Finally it’s quite a complex install due to thesolution at CeBIT which uses custom made enclosures for plumbing requirements for the coolant, again making this anthe slim-line Super Micro blade motherboards, but things unsuitable technology in many current installations.are a lot more complex than that.The idea behind the Hardcore LSS 200 is that current serverrooms are anything but ideal, as they rely on large openspaces with cool air being blown in at floor level and ventedout at ceiling level, not exactly and elegant solution and it’shard to get the cool air to reach the servers in the racks. TheHardcore LSS 200 on the other hand means that there’s noneed for the air conditioning and on top of that, the servercan be packed much denser. However, for a new server room installation, especially in hot and humid countries where a lot more energy is required to cool down and potentially dehumidify the air; this is an excellent solution in the right circumstances. We should mention that the technology was developed by LiquidBlade and not Boston, but Boston has the competence to build installations based on the technology and the Hardcore LSS 200 is a custom solution from Boston based on LiquidBlade’s technology. Just on case our poor description of how it works wasn’t clear enough, have a look at the video and you’ll get a clearer idea of what the advantages of this technology are.Why you ask? It’s because each blade is connected to what OCZ Octane 512GB SSDcan only be described as a plumbing system for the mineraloil, where cool oil enters each of the blades in a rack and Reviewis then being circulated by a small pump inside the blade. Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/ocz-octane-512gb-ssd-The hot oil exits the blade and the oil from all of the blades review/15238.htmlare extracted out of the server room via a pipeline system 6
    • March 14th, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneMarch 14th, 2012 • Max Read: up to 480MB/s • Max Write: up to 330MB/s • Random Write 4KB: 26,000 IOPS • Random Read 4KB: 35,000 IOPSIt was a year ago when OCZ decided to acquire Indilinx, amajor designer and manufacturer of SSD drive controllers, NCSoft reveals pre-orderrevealing the company’s medium-to-long term business planto focus a large percentage of their operations on the SSD details for Guild Wars 2 Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/ncsoft-reveals-pre-order-details-for-drives market. Today we are going to examine the fruits of guild-wars-2/15236.htmlthat merger by testing and reviewing the Octane, the first March 14th, 2012Indilinx-based drive which found its way into our labs afterIndilinx was acquired by OCZ.It was a year ago when OCZ decided to acquire Indilinx, amajor designer and manufacturer of SSD drive controllers,revealing the company’s medium-to-long term business planto focus a large percentage of their operations on the SSDdrives market. Today we are going to examine the fruits of NCSoft has revealed details of its pre-order offers for thethat merger by testing and reviewing the Octane, the first Limited Collectors Edition, Digital Edition and DigitialIndilinx-based drive which found its way into our labs after Deluxe Edition of its highly-anticipated Guild Wars 2Indilinx was acquired by OCZ. massively multiplayer online role-playing game. NCSoft has revealed details of its pre-order offers for theManufacturer features and specifications Limited Collectors Edition, Digital Edition and Digitial Deluxe Edition of its highly-anticipated Guild Wars 2 • Available in 128GB, 256GB, 512GB, and 1TB capacities massively multiplayer online role-playing game. • Interface: SATA 6Gbps / Backwards Compatible 3Gbps Anyone who pre-orders will get a guaranteed entry into all • 512MB Onboard Cache beta weekend events, a three-day headstart when the game • Indilinx Infused™ launches, and a Heros Band in-game item, which offers +2 to a variety of stats. • TRIM Support • Background Garbage Collection Support The Digital Edition will feature just the core game and will • Boot Time Reduction Optimization thus be considerably cheaper than other offerings. • AES and Automatic Encryption • SMART Support The Digital Deluxe Edition will feature the game and a • Proprietary Indilinx Ndurance™ Technology number of bonus in-game items, such as the Summon Mistfire Wolf Elite Skill, Rytlock Miniature, Golem Banker, • Low-Latency Seek Time: 0.06ms Read; 0.09ms Write Chalice of Glory (which gives a one-time boost to Glory for • Slim 2.5" Design PvP gear), and a Tome of Influence (giving a one-time boost to influence for guild features). • 99.8 (L) x 69.63 (W) x 9.3 mm (H) • Lightweight: 83g • Operating Temp: 0°C ~ 70°C • Ambient Temp: 0°C ~ 55°C • Storage Temp: -45°C ~ +85°C • Low Power Consumption: 1.98W active,1.15W standby • Shock Resistant up to 1500G • RAID Support • MTBF: 1,250,000 hours • 3-Year Warranty • Compatible with Windows XP, Vista, 7 (32/64 bit), Linux, Mac OSX The Limited Collectors Edition includes all of the above and some real-life items, such as a 10-inch statue of Rytlock, a 112-page “making of” book, a custom art frame, an art512GB Max Performance portfolio with five prints, and a soundtrack CD. 7
    • March 14th, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneAll of this does not come cheap though, as the current pricetag is £129.99 ($205). Prices for the digital versions werenot revealed, but they should be considerably cheaper, giventhere wont be any physical product to ship. Users alsoneed to take into consideration the lack of subscription feescompared to other MMOs.Players can begin pre-ordering the game on 10 April.Marketing firm causesoutrage over using homelessas wireless hotspotsSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/marketing-firm-causes-outrage-over-using-homeless-as-wireless-hotspots/15235.htmlMarch 14th, 2012 The phrasing on the t-shirts alone drew considerable criticism, as it made the homeless people into objects, like a piece of furniture or an electronic device that can be cast aside. Some saw humour in the event, joking that their Wi-Fi hotspots kept wandering out of range of their devices, thusA marketing firm has caused controversy over the hiring of ruining their trades.homeless people to carry mobile Wi-Fi devices at an internetconference in return for small donations.A marketing firm has caused controversy over the hiring of Others thought the idea was ingenious, as it raised questionshomeless people to carry mobile Wi-Fi devices at an internet about how we treat homeless people. One person highlightedconference in return for small donations. how it made them question their feelings about those living in shelters or on the streets.BBH Labs gave 13 volunteers from a homeless shelter Wi-Fidevices, business cards, and a t-shirt bearing their name and Many of the volunteers themselves had no problems with thea message, such as: “Im Clarence, a 4G Hotspot.” project either, with one calling it “an honest day of work and pay.”The volunteers got $20 a day for their work and were allowedto keep any donations made by those who attended the Source and Image Credit: New York Timesconference. BBH Labs called its Homeless Hotspots project a NVIDIA Adds Windows 8 to“charitable experiment,” but with such paltry payments andthe objectification of fellow human beings it is not surprisingthat some were dismayed by the idea. its Drivers Stack Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/nvidia-adds-windows-8-to-its- drivers-stack/15232.htmlSome onlookers labelled the marketing move as “exploitive,” March 14th, 2012with one person describing it as something from a “darklysatirical science-fiction dystopia.” Others pointed to thehuge divide between the haves and have-nots at the events,with many touting their expensive devices and connecting tothe free Wi-Fi offered by the homeless volunteers. After AMD released its Catalyst beta drivers for Windows 8 Consumer Preview, we didn’t have to wait on NVIDIA for too long: the company added Windows 8 to its regular driver update portfolio. Windows 8 Consumer Preview is turning to be the most popular beta program yet, with over a million downloads in the first 24 hours. It will be interesting to see can Microsoft reach 10-15 million downloads in the first month, but in order for that to happen - the companies need to offer new drivers. AMD was the first company out the door to offer a beta version of its Catalyst drivers for Windows 8 Consumer Preview, but NVIDIA came out with a very interesting 8
    • March 14th, 2012 Published by: VR-Zonerelease today; as of today, the company added Windows 8 toits driver stack. This means that every new release of driversfor GeForce and Quadro boards will be simultaneouslylaunched for both the actual Windows 7/Vista and theWindows 8 Consumer Preview. The case follows recent announcements by Facebook of a plan to go public later this year for a whopping $5 billion. The timing is particularly significant as Yahoo also sued Google before it went public in 2004. Google settled with a transfer of 2.7 million shares, a move which Facebook could also do, though analysts believe it will be more difficult to get money from the social network.According to Bryan Del Rizzo, NV PR, the drivers arejust a quick update to 295.73 drivers, adding support forBlacklight: Retribution. You can read more about it on the Yahoo is facing mounting financial difficulty as it strugglesofficial GeForce page. to remain relevant in a digital age where rivals are quickly advancing new technology and services, leaving the once dominant internet portal in the dark. Layoffs and a boardYahoo sues Facebook over reshuffle have failed to rescue the company and even aalleged patent infringement payout from Facebook will only be a temporary boost until the company starts attracting customers again.Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/yahoo-sues-facebook-over-alleged-patent-infringement/15234.htmlMarch 14th, 2012Yahoo has sued social networking giant Facebook over thealleged infringement of 10 of its patents. ARM announces "worlds most energy-efficient"The patents in question relate to messaging, news processorfeed generation, social commenting, advertising display, Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/arm-announces-world-s-most-preventing click fraud and privacy controls, which targets a energy-efficient-processor/15233.htmlnumber of important features in Facebooks service. March 14th, 2012 The 32-bit processor uses just 9µA/MHz on a low-cost 90nm LP process, a third of the energy used by existing 8-bit or 16-"Facebooks entire social network model, which allows users bit processors, while providing a huge boost to performance.to create profiles and connect with, among other things,persons and businesses, is based on Yahoos patented social The chip is aimed at devices like home appliances, medicalnetworking technology,” Yahoo claimed. monitoring, metering, lighting, and motor control devices, areas that are increasingly becoming known as “the Internet of Things.” All of these can benefit from the low-cost, low-Facebook responded by describing the lawsuit as puzzling, power, and high performance offered by the new Cortexsince Yahoo has not made any attempts to settle out of chip.court. It said it was disappointed that a longtime businesspartner resorted to litigation. Interestingly it never deniedthe allegations. 9
    • March 14th, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone When considering the purchase of a PC chassis, cases from well known Taiwanese manufacturer Lian Li will often come up for consideration. They offer a whole range of models covering everything from the smallest mini ITX cases to huge full tower cases and everywhere in between. Of course Lian Li offer a variety of Micro ATX cases for different target markets. Here for review we have the PC- V600F, the primary design goal of which is to fit the largest components available into the smallest possible case while keeping compromises to a minimum. It is available in the black color we have here as well as silver or red.The CPU also comes with a number of new features,such as a single-cycle IO to speed access to GPIO andperipherals, improved debug and trace capability, and a two-stage pipeline to reduce the number of cycles per instructionand improve Flash accesses, which further reduces powerconsumption.The Cortex-M0+ employs a model that is particularlysuitable for the C programming language and it featuresbinary compatibility with existing Cortex-M0 processorstools and RTOS. It is also compatible with other ARM The PC-V600F is compact even by mATX case standards.software for Cortex processors. Looking at the dimensions, a height of just 390mm is asFreescale and NXP Semiconductor have already agreed small as it is reasonably possible to make a mATX caseto licence the Cortex-M0+ processor, and considering the without major compromise. At just 190mm wide its alsofact that 50 companies licensed the previous Cortex-M0 thinner than youd expect, so much so that there isntprocessor, we can likely expect to see many other firms show space at the back for a standard 12cm exhaust fan. Lian Litheir support. presumably opted not to use a 80mm fan for noise reasons. The PC-V600F may be small for a mATX case, yet it can takeLian Li PC-V600F Case an oversized PSU, a very long dual or triple slot graphics card and up to five 3.5" and two 2.5" drives within its compactReview frame.Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/lian-li-pc-v600f-case-review/15201.html SpecificationsMarch 14th, 2012 Model PC-V600F Case Type Mini Tower Chassis Dimensions (W) 190mm x (H) 390mm x (D) 470mm Front Bezel Material Aluminum Color Black / Silver / Red /Lian Li have long been held in high regard in the field of Black ( Internal Black )PC case manufacturing. The PC-V600F mATX chassis we Side Panel Aluminumhave for review is the latest incarnation of their popularPC-V600 series, although it bears little resemblance to the Body Material Aluminumoriginal. This lovely looking little case promises a nice blend Net Weight 5 KGof features and a compact size. Lets see if it can meet our 5.25" Drive Bay (External) 2high expectations. 3.5" Drive Bay (External) NoneIntroduction HDD Bay 3.5” HDD (Sata hot swap) x 5 / 2.5” HDD x 2 10
    • March 14th, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneExpansion Slot 4Motherboard Micro-ATX / Mini-ITXSystem Fan (Front) 120mm LED Fan x 2System Fan (Top) 140mm Fan x 1System Fan (Rear) NoneI/O Ports USB 3.0 x 2 / e- SATA x1 / HD Audio Four small rubber feets at the bottom to keep the boxMaximum Compatibility VGA Card length: 370mm grounded during a user-induced earthquake.. PSU length: 240mm CPU cooler height: 150mmASUS Xonar Essence OneReviewSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/asus-xonar-essence-one-review/14935.htmlMarch 14th, 2012In a market flooded with muddy onboard audio codecs andlaughable "multi-core" DSP effects devoid of actual audio On top of the Essense One, we see the iconic gold "Chime offidelity, ASUS is thankfully one of those companies who have Tiger" totem which also appears on the other Xonar familyinvested quality engineering with the intent of the faithful of sound cards.reproduction of PC audio. Today we take a look at theirflagship S$699 sound card - the Xonar Essence One USBDAC & headphone amplifier.Aesthetics and ConnectivityThe Xonar Essence One has a brushed metal faceplatewith blue LED indicators, silver push buttons (power,upsampling, input selection and mute) and large rheostats/knobs (headphone and speaker volume) at the front. Thereis also a 1/4" headphone out jack which when plugged canstill be driven simultaneously with the speakers. Blue LEDs when switched on. Note that it does take up a considerable amount of space on most desks (261.33 x 230 x 60.65 mm).At the back, we see a variety of input and output options.Besides the usual RCA L/R outputs to connect to 2.0/2.1speakers, the box also includes balanced XLR connectorswhich allows for extended cabling distances. In additionalto the computer USB input, there is the capability to handleCoxial S/PDIF and TOSLINK digital links. A 115/230vvoltage selection switch (why no auto switching?) is alsopresent and the Xonar One takes a ubiquitous C14 powerinlet. 11
    • March 14th, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneAccessories and documentation included with the DAC (USBcable not in picture). Being positioned as an audiophile classproduct, ASUS could have bundled a thicker power cord witha better AWG rating as audio purists will testify the effectsof resistance on the "energy" of the sound output. When connecting the device to a host over USB it will operate as a USB HID keyboard while simultaneously getting a battery recharge.Elecom unveils the TK-PBL042BK ProjectionKeyboard in JapanSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/elecom-unveils-the-tk-pbl042bk-projection-keyboard-in-japan/15231.htmlMarch 14th, 2012A Japanese company by the name of Elecom is one of thefirst out the gate to introduce a projection keyboard tomarket. The TK-PBL042BK wireless projection keyboardsimply requires nothing more than a flat surface and its hostto carry either USB or Bluetooth connectivity, which means The device itself measures only 38.0 x 29.0 x 75.0 mm andiOS and Android will natively support it. weighs in at a mere 77g without the rechargeable battery (said to provide up to two hours of continuous use).A Japanese company by the name of Elecom is one of thefirst out the gate to introduce a projection keyboard tomarket. The TK-PBL042BK wireless projection keyboardsimply requires nothing more than a flat surface and its hostto carry either USB or Bluetooth connectivity, which meansiOS and Android will natively support it. 12
    • March 14th, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneThe source has indicated that the K-PBL042BK will arrive inearly April. Elecom has priced it at 28,875 JPY which worksout to around US $352.The final stable build ofFirefox 11 arrives todaySource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/the-final-stable-build-of-firefox-11-arrives-today/15230.htmlMarch 14th, 2012 The new Sony Xperia sola claims to incorporate the companys proprietary technology to offer users premium entertainment they want. It features a unique "floating touch" navigation that allows users to browse the web, andLittle more than two months after Mozillas final build of its their home screens by hovering their finger above the screen,"Firefox 10" web browser came out, the official stable version without actually touching it. The smartphone is also NFC-of FireFox 11 is now right on our doorstep with the launch enabled and comes with two NFC Xperia SmartTags in thetaking place a little later today. box, which can be personalized with up to 10 commands.Little more than two months after Mozillas final build of its Powered by a 1GHz dual-core processor, the Xperia sola"Firefox 10" web browser came out, the official stable version sports a crisp 3.7-inch Reality Display with Mobile BRAVIAof FireFox 11 is now right on our doorstep with the launch Engine, xLOUD and 3D surround sound audio technologytaking place a little later today. to deliver superb multimedia experiences. It also comesThe final build of FireFox 11 will bring with it a fair chunk with fast capture that allows the phones built-in camera toof new features and performance improvements including activate from sleep in just over a second with a single keysupport for the SPDY protocol, meaning that all pages are press.loaded on SSL with SPDY resulting in speedier and more Comes in black, white and red, the Sony Xperia sola willsecure attributes. be available in Q2 this year, initially with Android 2.3Some other additions include built-in migration tools to Gingerbread. And upgradeable to Android 4.0 ICS duringmake it much easier to port bookmarks and preferences summer 2012. Pricing details not available at press time.across from Googles Chrome browser, a new Add-OnSynchronization tool allowing users to synchronize add-ons between syncd PCs, a stack of more useful developer- Apples new iPads run aoriented tools and last but certainly not least, the inclusion higher bill of materials, offerof Adobe Flash support on devices running Android 2.3 andearlier. Mozilla has said that Flash support will arrive for better value Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/apple-s-new-ipads-run-a-higher-bill-Android 3.0+ running devices in a later release. of-materials-offer-better-value/15229.htmlKeep an eye out here for the stable build of Firefox 11 folks. March 14th, 2012It will likely pop up within the next 8 hours or so.Sola joins the ranks in SonyXperia family Its been revealed that Apples bill of materials (BOM) on theSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/sola-joins-the-ranks-in-sony-xperia- new iPad is heftier than some may have previously thought;family/15228.html this despite Apple keeping its latest range of tablets at theMarch 14th, 2012 same respective price points as their predecessors. Its been revealed that Apples bill of materials (BOM) on the new iPad is heftier than some may have previously thought; this despite Apple keeping its latest range of tablets at the same respective price points as their predecessors.The Sony Xperia S was announced in Singapore last week, The 16GB 4G version of the latest iPad is estimated to be USand today, the company has introduced the new addition $310 which is substantially higher than the 16GB iPad 2 (USto the Xperia range of smartphones - the Xperia sola. The $270). The biggest factor in the higher cost of build wouldAndroid smartphone features "floating touch" navigation inevitably be due to the higher res (2048 x 1536) screen,for web browsing without touching the screen, Near Field estimated to come in at about US $70 alone (about $20Communication (NFC) to launch apps and other actions via higher than the iPad 2s). Then theres other factors like theXperia SmartTags, and sports a Reality Display with Mobile bulkier battery (US $8 higher), the US $5 dearer camera andBravia engine for brilliant image display. the A5X processor at US $28 (close to double that of the A4 used in the first-gen iPad). 13
    • March 14th, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneThe lower margins as a result of the increased BOM equate Square Enix will release the game outside of Japan orto a 6% dip from 57% for the original iPad to 51% on the even an English version of it.new model. So if youre thinking iPad pricing is still way tooinflated, at least you can rest assured if you pick up a third-gen model youre literally getting better bang for your buck Sony Singapore introducesversus its predecessors. Alpha 57 with 12fps continuous shooting and FullM1 Singapore to offer new HD 50p recordingiPad on 16 March Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/sony-singapore-introduces-alpha-57-Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/m1-singapore-to-offer-new-ipad- with-12fps-continuous-shooting-and-full-hd-50p-recording/15225.htmlon-16-march/15227.html March 14th, 2012March 14th, 2012 The new iPad was unveiled last week,which features a high resolution Retina Display, A5X Sony Singapore has announced the Alpha SLT-A57, theprocessor, 5-megapixel iSight camera and supports 4G LTE. successor to the Alpha SLT-A55, which boasts 12fpsSingapore telecommunication company, M1 Limited, has continuous shooting and Full HD 50p (PAL) recording. Theannounced that the mobile device will retail in M1 stores on SLT-A57 will be retailing in Singapore next month.16 March, this week.Final Fantasy III comes toAndroid, only in Japan thoughSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/final-fantasy-iii-comes-to-android-only-in-japan-though/15226.htmlMarch 14th, 2012Final Fantasy fans would love this piece of news: SquareEnixs Final Fantasy III has come to Android devices. But thebad news is, the game is only available for Japan Androidusers. The mid-range Sony Alpha SLT-A55 digital SLR camera has garnered favorable reviews, and today, the company has unveiled its successor, the Alpha SLT-A57 that is built with enhanced features and performance. The Alpha SLT-A57 incorporates Translucent Mirror Technology which directs incoming light to the CMOS image sensor and the AF sensor at the same time, achieving full continuous autofocus during both still and video recording. You capture exactly what you see on screen, with the new high-resolution Tru-Finder which offers a wide viewing angle and 100% field of view; and allows for efficient framing, focusing and real-time preview. Combined with the 16.1-megapixel Exmor APS HD CMOS sensor and the latest BIONZ engine, the SLT-A57 claimsSquare Enix had launched their Android games marketplace to reproduce superb images with low noise across a wideapp late last year, which is available only in Japan, with ISO 100-16,000 range. The digital SLR camera also boastsgames including Dragon Quest, Crystal Defenders and Final high-speed 12 frames per second shooting with full-timeFantasy. Well, it looks like Final Fantasy III has now come to continuous autofocus (in Tele-zoom Continuous Advancethe Android Marketplace, but unfortunately, users outside of Priority AE mode), and full high definition 50p (PAL) videoJapan would not be able to get the game. The Final Fantasy with full P/A/S/M control. For those of you who are lookingIII for Android is retailing for 1,400 "points" through Square to get the Sony Alpha SLT-A57, it will be available in AsiaEnixs convoluted pricing system, which works out to 1,470 Pacific at all Sony stores and authorised outlets from Aprilyen (approximately US$18). There is no word as to whether 2012. Pricing details to be released closer to retail. 14
    • March 14th, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone Comes in three color options – sparkling black, winter blueHP unveils new Pavilion and ruby red; the g-series claim to offer enhanced audionotebook PCs with stylish experience with both design and functional elements. It has a chrome strip that borders the speaker which alsodesigns and enhanced serves as a visual cue for audio, while the exposed speakerfeatures bar provides better sound projection. The new HP Pavilion g4 and g6 will be available in Asia Pacific from 8 AprilSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/hp-unveils-new-pavilion-notebook- with a starting price of approximately US$499 and USpcs-with-stylish-designs-and-enhanced-features/15224.html $529 respectively.March 14th, 2012 Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich upgrade nowHP has a new Mosaic design approach, an extension to its available for SamsungMUSE (materials, usability, sensory appeal and experience) GALAXY S IIdesign philosophy, which focuses on improved usability and Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/android-4.0-ice-cream-sandwich-aesthetics to users. The Mosaic design was applied to the new upgrade-now-available-for-samsung-galaxy-s-ii/15223.htmlrange of Pavilion dv-series and Pavilion g-series of laptops March 14th, 2012that were announced today.HP Pavilion dv-series Samsung GALAXY S II owners rejoice! The Korean electronics manufacturer has announced that the Google Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich (ICS) upgrade is now available for the GALAXY S II smartphone.The new HP Pavilion dv4, dv6 and dv7 sport an infinitywaterfall edge, tapered chassis, slim top view and metalfinish on select models. Available in licorice black or carminered for the dv4, and midnight black for the dv6 anddv7 models, the dv-series come with soft-touch bottompanel and are easy to hold. For the Pavilion dv6 and dv7,the exposed speaker bar is integrated with the display,and magnifies the dv series’ Beats Audio experience byprojecting audio directly towards the user. The re-designedHP Pavilion dv4, dv6 and dv7 will be available in Asia Pacificfrom 8 April with a starting price of approximately US$699,US$749 and US$849 respectively.HP Pavilion g-series Even though Google Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich came to the Samsung GALAXY Nexus first, the company has promised that the upgrade will be made available for selected GALAXY smartphones such as the popular GALAXY S II. Well, the wait is finally over. Today, Samsung Korea announced Android 4.0 ICS software upgrade for GALAXY S II, starting in Europe - Poland, Hungary, and Sweden; as well as Korea and slowly rolling out to other markets. On top of that, Android 4.0 ICS software upgrade will also be made available for the GALAXY Note, GALAXY SII LTE, GALAXY R, GALAXY Tab 7.0 Plus, 7.7, 8.9 and 10.1 soon. Samsung will also provide Android 2.3 Gingerbread firmware upgrades for the GALAXY S, GALAXY Tab 7, GALAXY S Plus, GALAXY S SCL(Super Clear LCD), andThe redesigned HP Pavilion g4 and g6 feature curved, GALAXY W from end of March. The upgrades includebeveled edges with a bowl-shape keyboard deck and texturedtouchpad with bowl-set curvature which looked distinct. 15
    • March 14th, 2012 Published by: VR-Zonefeatures such as Face Unlock, Snapshot, Photo Editor and were not sure its the most intuitive UI out there. That said,others. it beats the budget Android media players from China that lacks any kind of UI at all. The Stick N1 supports HDMI 1.4 and will play just about any video and audio formats youValueplus shows off the throw at it, including Blu-ray, although were not sure aboutTizzBird Stick N1 at CeBIT 3D content. You can also use the standard Android UI and the Stick N1 supports user installed apps, although this isSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/valueplus-shows-off-the-tizzbird- apparently only via the TizzBird Appstore.stick-n1-at-cebit/15222.htmlMarch 14th, 2012Once in a while you run into the oddest companies at tradeshows and although Korean Valueplus isnt that odd in itself,as its a manufacturer of a wide range of Android poweredmedia players, but its retail branding which is TizzBird, israther odd. Still, the company has some interesting productsand its latest addition is the Stick N1, an HDMI adapter thatturns your dumb TV into a smart TV.Once in a while you run into the oddest companies at trade Other software features include support for NFS, Samba andshows and although Korean Valueplus isnt that odd in itself, uPnP and Flash support. Valueplus will also offer an iPhoneas its a manufacturer of a wide range of Android powered and Android app that allows you to use your smartphone asmedia players, but its retail branding which is TizzBird, is the remote control for the TizzBird Stick N1. Its the mostrather odd. Still, the company has some interesting products retail ready product of its kind weve seen so far, but we haveand its latest addition is the Stick N1, an HDMI adapter that a feeling that there will be a lot of competition in this marketturns your dumb TV into a smart TV. space this year with several other players working on getting their products out onto the market. Price wise the Stick N1 should cost around US$150 (S$185) when it launches later this year. Synology to launch updated 4-bay NAS products, draws less power Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/synology-to-launch-updated-4-bay-The TizzBird Stick N1 sports a Cortex-A5 based ARM SoC nas-products-draws-less-power/15221.htmlfrom Telechips which operates at 1GHz which has been March 14th, 2012paired up with 4GB of internal NAND flash and 2GB of RAMin a fairly small dongle that slots into the HDMI port of yourTV. The dongle also has a USB 2.0 port for external storagedevices or wireless keyboards and mice, a micro USB portfor power, a micro SD card slot and integrated 802.11n Wi-Fi. The company is also contemplating adding support for anRF remote, but this wasnt ready at the show. At CeBIT, Synology was demoing a pair of new NAS products, both being 4-bay units with a fairly similar external design, but the internal hardware is quite different between the two models. The company has not only revised the internals, but the two new models share the new re- designed enclosure as well which looks similar to the DS212 series, albeit larger due to the additional drive bays. At CeBIT, Synology was demoing a pair of new NAS products, both being 4-bay units with a fairly similar external design, but the internal hardware is quite different between the two models. The company has not only revised the internals, but the two new models share the new re- designed enclosure as well which looks similar to the DS212 series, albeit larger due to the additional drive bays.Valueplus has created a custom UI on top of Android 4.0 forthe Stick N1 and it was all very smooth in operation, although 16
    • March 14th, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone The new NAS design is quite attractive, in as much as a NAS can be attractive, but wed expect these two new models to be fairly pricey considering the hardware inside them. Sadly we dont know the exact launch date, but both models shouldThe two new models are the DS412 and the DS412+ and arrive in the next couple of months.common features includes a front USB 2.0 port, two rearUSB 3.0 ports and a rear eSATA port. The DS412 sportsa single Gigabit Ethernet port whereas the DS412+ sportsa pair of ports. Both models also sport a pair of rear fansand Synology informed us that the new fans feature failoversupport, so in case one of the fans would fail, the speed ofthe second fan will increase to help cool the NAS box untilthe failed fan can be replaced.The DS412 is Synologys most power efficient 4-bay NASto date, as it draws a mere 3W in idle thanks to in parta new PowerPC based CPU. The DS412+ is intended formore advanced usage scenarios and sports an Intel Atomprocessor, most likely the D2500, but the company merelyinformed us it was one of the new models without going intodetails as the DS412+ hasnt been officially announced as yet. 17
    • March 18th, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneVR-Zone.com | Tech News for the Geeks! 3DMark 11 Xtreme Score: 6243 VR-Zone | Stuff for the Geeks is a bi-weekly publication covering the latest gadgets and stuff for the geeks.NVIDIA GeForce GTX 680 SLIPerformance PreviewSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/nvidia-geforce-gtx-680-sli-performance-preview/15273.htmlMarch 18th, 2012 Thats all for now. We hope to show you more benchmarks especially in overclocked, 3-way or 4-way configurationsWhat happens when you pair two Kepler GK104 boards when we get the cards officially next week.together when you get them from the stores next weekend?We take an exclusive preview... Original Source: Chinese VR-ZoneDisclaimer: Test results might or might not be indicative offinal retail performance, and is not supported or sanctionedby NVIDIA and their partners. As such, we will refrain from Mystery solved - Haswellmaking judgements or opinions. expected to up the graphics3DMark 11 Entry Score: 22878 ante further again Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/mystery-solved--haswell-expected- to-up-the-graphics-ante-further-again/15272.html March 18th, 2012 So, after all the guesses, it seems to be true: Intel will continue its rapid integrated 3-D graphics improvement into Haswell generation , with more GT3 options across both desktop and mobile - including UltraBook - markets. Further cause for Nvidia to worry on the entry level discrete segment...3DMark 11 Performance Score: 16860 Remember all the polemics over the Net, whether Haswell will offer the same substantial performance jump in 3- D from the Ivy Bridge, as Ivy Bridge is expected to give compared to the Sandy Bridge, or if it will just be a smaller incremental upgrade? Well, both are right... how? There are three distinct die choices here, it seems: one is the ULV focused dual core Ultrabook option but with up to GT3 graphics. The other is a mainstream desktop and mobile choice with 4 cores and GT2 graphics, just a bit faster than the best Ivy Bridge graphics - were talking 20% to 50% extra GPU performance here. Then, there is the king of the hill, the 4 core CPU plus GT3 GPU die with graphics further double as fast as the GT2, i.e. well over twice, possibly thrice, the Ivy Bridge speed. 1
    • March 18th, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone In summary, interesting times ahead this and next year... and thats even before weve seen the Ivy Bridge!Now, this die is likely to have a very very fancy extra externalcache option on a multi chip module too. Wait a second,aside from IBM Power7 superserver processors and such, New Intel Xeon E5 to offerwhy would anyone want to have a L4 cache, maybe evenan eDRAM based one? The answer could be in sharing the ultra-dense high speedsystem memory bandwidth resources between a powerful compute solutions - rightquad core CPU, what Haswell surely will be, and a powerfulGPU with compute capabilities too. from Intel itself Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/new-intel-xeon-e5-to-offer-ultra-To avoid such contention, having an additional large cache, dense-high-speed-compute-solutions--right-from-intel-itself/15271.htmlimplemented in a fashion similar to dedicated backside March 18th, 2012cache buses seen on the old Pentium III processors manyyears ago, helps satisfy more CPU memory requests inthat cache, leaving more memory bandwidth for the GPU.An exciting optional capability would be to designate aportion of that large cache as a scratchpad memory for GPUcompute and graphics usage - most high end GPUs do relyon internal directly addressable scratchpad memory besides The freshly launched Xeon E5 does break all thethe caches for such purpose. performance records in 2 socket X86 space, as seen by our Lennards server review as well. However, compute densityHow this extra cache connection would be implemented, we is critical to win large scale HPC contracts too. What did Inteldont know yet - but it definitely makes no sense to put it develop to fit all this stuff into the smallest space, withouton the usual DDR3 memory bus, since it would add lots of compromising the performance?unwelcome extra latency there. But, since the 4 core CPU The Socket 2011 Sandy Bridge EP Intel Xeon E5 processorsplus GT3 desktop and mobile graphics die will be different are fast, with 8 cores, 20 MB L3 cache, and plenty ofthan the standard 4 core plus GT2 graphics die, yet they all memory and I/O resources to boot. They also inherit ashare the same socket - it makes sense to implement the large installed base of previous generation Xeons across theextra L4 cache bus on the bigger die, and keep that L4 cache whole range of workstations and servers, from mini bladesconnection to the MCM multi chip substrate without it being to supercomputers.seen by the system at all. However, for the evaluation of high performance computing project platforms, especially medium to largeAs widely talked about, Haswell will be the first Intel supercomputers, the power and the density achievable playmainstream CPU in a few years, after the Westmere low end a big role too. We cant do much about the power here - theDC part with graphics die, to bring back MCM packaging into larger 416 mm2 dies required to fit all the features do takethe general desktop and mobile PC realm. So, the standard their toll, with the fastest server part, the E5-2690, specedparts will have an option of integrating the PCH I/O bridge at 135W TDP at 2.9 GHz plus Turbo, of course.to the same package, saving quite a bit of board wiring andreal estate for ultra-compact mobile computing - and I dontmean just UltraBooks here. The density can be worked on, though - just figure out how to squeeze four memory channels as well as all those QPI and PCIe v3 lanes coming out of each CPU to the smallestTalking about the UltraBooks, having GT3-class graphics possible dual socket board layout, then engineer the coolinginside a Haswell UltraBook is definitely going to help the and power feed, not to mention the interconnect between thecause of true 3-D capable ultrathin Intel platforms, without boards, to squeeze many dozens of those into each 42U orresorting to additional discrete graphics. It doesnt help similarly tall compute rack.companies like Nvidia, who seemingly lost a big chunk of itsApple future Ivy Bridge MacBook Air GPU deployment, asGT3 Haswell would likely obliterate that market in the long Heres Intels solution - look how compact it feels comparedrun. Of course, GT3 graphics on an UltraBook doesnt need to a typical high-end PC mainboard:L4 cache and such enhancements, since only two CPU coreswill not compete much with it for the memory bandwidth.On the desktop side, Nvidia and AMD entry level discretegraphics are definitely to be badly affected by this evolution,and lots of it is to be felt with the Ivy Bridge already. Themidrange and high end GPU segments should go on as usual,though. 2
    • March 18th, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone Hell is very real, kids. The Darkness II was released by Digital Extremes and 2KA small, half width 6.4 inch by 17.7 inch board contains it Games earlier this year for the PC, PlayStation 3 and Xboxall - two CPUs with full bandwidth memory, three full x16 360. Building on the success of its predecessor in 2007, ThePCIe v3 slots, I/O riser connections for storage, as well as a Darkness II continues the story of Jackie Estacado and hiscombination of dual GigE plus Connect-X Infiniband QDR struggle with the demonic entity residing within him, known(40 Gbps) or FDR (56 Gbps) high speed interconnect. Quite as The Darkness. It has been two years since Jackie Estacadoimpressive, isnt it? helplessly witnessed the brutal murder of his girlfriend, Jenny, by the don of the New York mafia. Formerly aNow, two of these boards can easily fit into one 1U hitman with aforementioned mafia, he was targeted forrackmount server chasis, and of course, depending how assassination by the head of the criminal organization. Themuch space you need for other hardware, up to 40 of course attempts on his life and the subsequent murder of hiscould fit into a standard 42U rack. So, up to 80 high speed beloved Jenny unknowingly awakened an ancient unholydual CPU servers, each with ~360 GFLOPs dual precision power deep within him, the Darkness. Visually, they areFP peak performance and up to 256 GB ECC RAM, in just a pair of tentacles that talk and they grant him immenseone rack - or nearly 30 TFLOPs single rack cluster if you strength, regeneration and other supernatural abilities at alike it counted that way. Do keep in mind that, with at least grave price. With every life he took, he became perilously400W per node, such cluster would also need a good 30 kW closer to losing control of himself to them, or raher Theof power at the peak usage... but at least you can pack them Darkness.tight. The Darkness II begins when Jackie (the new don of the criminal organization) and his gang are assaulted at a restaurant. Grievously wounded in the surprise attack,Xbox 360 Review: The Jackie gives in to the temptations of The Darkness andDarkness II allows it to aid him in battle. You take control of Jackie, now imbued with the unholy abilities of The Darkness,Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/xbox-360-review-the-darkness-ii/15259.html as you attempt to fight your way out of the ambush. TheMarch 18th, 2012 game centers on Jackie as the main protagonist this time, as compared to the previous installment of the game that focuses on his personal vendetta to avenge his deceased partner. The Darkness II deals with his struggles to keep himself in control while using his them at the same time to stop a cult hellbent on stealing them from him. The story unfolds with the help of flashbacks, hallucinations"The Darkness 2" is the sequel to the first-person and narration from Jackie. They may appear bewilderingshooter game that was launched in 2007. And the plot and confusing initially, but the mystery slowly and artfullycontinues from the main protagonist, Jackie Estacado, who unravels as the game progresses. The story stays freshis struggling with the power of the Darkness and the death thanks to Jackie’s raw emotions – grief, regret, and anguish.of his girlfriend. So is the "The Darkness 2" as good as the You will feel keen to press on, wanting to find out more aboutfirst one? Read on. why you are being attacked, what the antagonist wants to do with your powers, and what plans does The Darkness have in store. Heres the game trailer of The Darkness II:- Using mobile phones while pregnant could make children hyperactive Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/using-mobile-phones-while- pregnant-could-make-children-hyperactive/15269.html 3
    • March 18th, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneMarch 18th, 2012 Sega is resurrecting some of its old Dreamcast titles byWomen who use mobile phones while pregnant could end making high-definition versions of the games for the Xboxup with hyperactive children, according to a recent study. Live Arcade and PlayStation Network. Sega is resurrecting some of its old Dreamcast titles by making high-definition versions of the games for the XboxProfessor Hugh Taylor of Yale University led a team of Live Arcade and PlayStation Network.scientists studying the effects of radiation from mobilephones on the development of unborn babies brains,revealing some unsettling findings. Ben Harborne, Associate Digital Brand Manager of Sega, revealed that the company may be re-releasing two classic Dreamcast games, Shenmue and Skies of Arcadia.As part of the tests pregnant mice were exposed to anactive mobile phone, resulting in offspring that sufferedfrom hyperactivity, anxiety and poor memory. Those who The games are two of the most popular and most oftenwere not exposed to this radiation were not affected in this requested, and while Harborne was reluctant to give a firmway. “yes” or “no” regarding their re-release, it seems increasingly likely that we will see these, and possibly other Dreamcast titles, on Xbox and PlayStation 3 consoles soon enough.Of course, since the study involved tests on mice, it cannotbe taken as conclusive when it comes to the effects of mobilephone radiation on human mothers and children, but thescientists believe that the results are likely to be the same. Sega previously confirmed a re-release of the Dreamcast skater title Jet Set Radio for the Xbox Live Arcade,Taylor claims that the effects are so strong that that it PlayStation Network and Windows for this Summer,might explain a growing rise in cases of attention deficit suggesting it plans to go through its back catalogue ofhyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Dreamcast titles and bring them back from the dead.However, Professor Eric Taylor of Kings College London The Dreamcast was Segas last forray into the world ofrefuted the claims that mobiles were linked to rising levels game consoles, releasing in 1998 to stiff competition fromof ADHD in children, so the jury is not necessarily out on Sonys PlayStation 2, Microsofts Xbox, and Nintendoswhether or not mobile phones are causing damage to our GameCube. The system was the first of the sixth generationkids. consoles to launch and contained internet connectivity, but the company could not keep up with the competition and decided to pull the product in 2001.Sega to release Dreamcast Since then it has gained a cult status amongst gamers, so itstitles in HD for Xbox Live and not surprising to see high demand for re-issues of its popular titles.PlayStation NetworkSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/sega-to-release-dreamcast-titles-in-hd-for-xbox-live-and-playstation-network/15268.htmlMarch 18th, 2012 Bethesda planning Elder Scrolls MMO announcement in May Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/bethesda-planning-elder-scrolls- mmo-announcement-in-may/15267.html 4
    • March 18th, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone Fewer Apple fans flock toMarch 18th, 2012 stores as new iPad goes on sale Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/fewer-apple-fans-flock-to-stores-as- new-ipad-goes-on-sale/15266.htmlBethesda is rumoured to be working on a massively March 18th, 2012multiplayer online (MMO) version of its popular ElderScrolls role-playing games, with a formal announcementexpected in May.Bethesda is rumoured to be working on a massivelymultiplayer online (MMO) version of its popular ElderScrolls role-playing games, with a formal announcement Queues for Apples third generation iPad were not as big asexpected in May. those for the iPad 2 last year, suggesting potentially weaker sales for the Cupertino, California-based company. Queues for Apples third generation iPad were not as big asAccording to an anonymous industry source cited by Toms those for the iPad 2 last year, suggesting potentially weakerGuide, Bethesda and ZeniMax Online Studios have teamed sales for the Cupertino, California-based company.up for Elder Scrolls Online, a title that has been speculatedabout for years, following the success of the latest game inthe series, Skyrim. Apples store in Regent Street, London saw over 600 people line up for the iPad 2s launch, but that number has dwindled to roughly 400 people for todays launch of the so-calledThe source claims that the game will be set in the worlds “new iPad.”“Second Era,” hundreds of years before the time period ofthe existing Elder Scrolls franchise. While this does not necessarily account for interest in the device across the world, it will be a worrying figure for investors and for Apples new CEO, Tim Cook, who took over from Steve Jobs last year. However, a study by Dynamo PR, which interviewed those standing in the queue, found that 63 percent of those waiting to buy the latest iPad were PC owners, up from 44 percent last year and just 25 percent two years ago for the launch of the initial iPad.Gameplay will involve three playable factions related tothree different animals: a lion, dragon, and bird of prey.Whether or not these are merely emblems or possible petcreatures is not yet known.The game studio is expected to announce the game inMay, followed by some gameplay footage shown at E3 andQuakecon later in the year. It seems unlikely that the gamewill launch this year, unless Bethesda has been working onthis secretly for a long time. Late 2013 is much more likely.It is not clear how this might affect the possibility of future This is significant, as it means that more PC users aresingle-player games in the Elder Scrolls series, but by setting considering tablet computers as either a replacement forit long before the current games it frees things up for or a complementary system to their desktop or laptopBethesda to continue to add a sequel to Skyrim. computers. Apple said last week that it is planning a post- PC future, and while it is unlikely that PCs will got he way of the dodo, there are clearly more alternative devices being bought than ever. 5
    • March 18th, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneOther findings in the report showed that a whopping 88percent of those in line were men, while the average agewas 26, supporting the public perception of technologyenthusiasts as being young males.Some people queued for unholy amounts of time. Forexample, one man managed to secure a prominent place atthe front by waiting for an insane 141 hours. Say what we willabout Apple fanbois, but thats dedication.“The surprising difference in this year’s iPad launchcompared to other years is the actual number of peoplequeuing,” said Paul Cockerton, co-founder of Dynamo PR.“It’s significantly less than previous years. Whether thatmeans pre-orders have been more successful, or selling inother retail stores takes some of this burden only Applewould be able to answer.” Sadly the 3-inch VGA resolution AMOLED display doesnt appear to have been updated from the NX10/11, but Samsung has at least done a side swivel display, much like the one on its EX1 compact. Theres no word on whether orSamsung NX20 leaked, not Samsung has made any changes to the EVF, something a lot of it competitors have made vast improvements to overcatches up to competition the past year.Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/samsung-nx20-leaked-catches-up-to-competition/15265.htmlMarch 18th, 2012Its easy to forget that Samsung is a player in theinterchangeable lens camera market as so far the companyhasnt really impressed with its NX series of cameras.Now its upcoming NX20 model has leaked and it lookslike Samsung has managed to catch up with most of its Other features include built in Wi-Fi, i-Function 2.0, a builtcompetitors, but if the preliminary specs are correct, not in flash, a hot-shoe for Samsung flashguns and a dedicatedreally overtaken anyone. video button. The NX20 supports 1080p video, although its not clear at what frame rates itll be able to record video. AsIts easy to forget that Samsung is a player in the for the exact launch date and pricing, were going to have tointerchangeable lens camera market as so far the company wait a while longer as this information hasnt leaked as yet.hasnt really impressed with its NX series of cameras.Now its upcoming NX20 model has leaked and it looks Source: Focusmedia (in Dutch)like Samsung has managed to catch up with most of itscompetitors, but if the preliminary specs are correct, notreally overtaken anyone. Cooler Master gets back intoThe NX20 is said to be slightly larger than the current the watercooling businessNX10/11 models with an improved grip which can be clearlyseen in the pictures. Samsung has kitted out the NX20 with a with Eisberg range Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/cooler-master-gets-back-into-the-20.3Megapixel APS-C size CMOS sensor and the camera has watercooling-business-with-eisberg-range/15264.htmlan improved ISO range of 100-12800. The NX20 can also March 18th, 2012shoot 8fps and it has a max shutter speed of 1/6000 (up from1/4000 for the NX11). Its been quite a few years since we last saw a watercooling solution in retail from Cooler Master, despite the company demoing various solutions over the past two years at all the major trade shows. Now the company has finally decided 6
    • March 18th, 2012 Published by: VR-Zoneto make a return to the watercooling business, initially in 120 which should retail at around €120 that takes a singleEurope only with its new Eisberg series of coolers. 120mm fan and the Eisberg 240 which will retail for around €140 and feature a larger dual fan radiator for a pair ofIts been quite a few years since we last saw a watercooling 120mm fans.solution in retail from Cooler Master, despite the companydemoing various solutions over the past two years at all themajor trade shows. Now the company has finally decidedto make a return to the watercooling business, initially inEurope only with its new Eisberg series of coolers. Cooler Master isnt likely to launch the Eisberg series in the APAC region but the company is working on a different solution for the APAC market that we sadly cant write about at the moment, but its based on what Cooler Master showed off at Computex last year. We dont know when this solution will launch, but its being evaluated by Cooler Master for a not too distant launch as far as were aware.The pump is actually made by German Eheim which Cooler Master demoed Elitenormally produces pumps for aquariums and it featuresceramic bearings which suggest that it should have a long life 120 mini-ITX chassis atspan. Unlike sealed unit watercoolers from its competitors, CeBITCooler Master has allowed for the liquid to be topped up and Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/cooler-master-demoed-elite-120-the pump contains a small reservoir unlike many competing mini-itx-chassis-at-cebit/15263.htmlsolutions. The tubing is of a softer more flexible type than March 18th, 2012used by Asetek, but Cooler Master has fitted metal coils tothe outside of the hoses that increases the rigidity of thehoses. With several recently announced monster cases – or Ultra Towers as Cooler Master prefers – such as the Cosmos II, the company was demoing its first high-end mini-ITX chassis at CeBIT last week, the Elite 120. The cube shaped case doesnt really stand out from the crowd in terms of design, in fact it looks a lot like some of Silver Stones mATX cubes, but Cooler Master has done a pretty decent job on small chassis. With several recently announced monster cases – or Ultra Towers as Cooler Master prefers – such as the Cosmos II, the company was demoing its first high-end mini-ITX chassis at CeBIT last week, the Elite 120. The cube shaped case doesnt really stand out from the crowd in terms of design, in fact it looks a lot like some of Silver Stones mATX cubes, but Cooler Master has done a pretty decent job on small chassis.Initially Cooler Master will be offering two different SKUs,the Eisberg 120 which should retail at around Initially CoolerMaster will be offering two different SKUs, the Eisberg 7
    • March 18th, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone REVIEW: PROLiNK Wireless Pan/Tilt IP Camera Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/review-prolink-wireless-pantilt-ip- camera/14993.html March 18th, 2012 Internet Protocol (IP) cameras were for the longest time expensive, especially if it had pan and tilt functionality. Things have changed and you can now purchase an IP Camera that uses either a Wired or a Wireless network connection and includes pan & tilt. Lets take a look at just how easy it is to setup, configure and deploy the PROLiNK Wireless Pan/Tilt IP Camera (PIC1003WP). The PROLiNK PIC1003WP Wireless IP Camera with Pan Tilt (IP Camera) is not new, that is, there are many other manufacturers making such devices. This is especially true for CCTV (Close Circuit TeleVision) cameras. In the early days such cameras were wired and you had to useThe front of the Elite 120 is made from Aluminium and customised hardware to interface and control the cameras.plastic and Cooler Master has gone for a fairly simple, butappealing design. A single USB 3.0 port as well as two USB2.0 ports and a pair of audio jacks are found on the right andleft sides of the front, with a 5.25-inch drive bay taking upthe top part of the case. One of the other problems associated with IP cameras is accessing them over the Internet through all the technicalities like, firewalls and routers. There is a way to resolve this but it comes at a price. PROLiNK’s IP Camera is a simple plug and play even through your router and firewall. PROLiNK achieves this by magically managing all the connection settings which is tied to a unique camera id. This is almost like RIM’s BlackBerry Messenger ID and even WhatsApp. Each of those applications keeps a unique number for your device. By managing only the unique device ID and a password you can basically connect to the IP Camera using a web browser or mobile device runningInternally you get three 3.5-inch bays of which two can Android 2.2 or Apple iOS.be converted into no less than six 2.5-inch bays for SSDs.Theres also a front mounted 120mm fan and the Elite 120takes a standard ATX PSU. Around the back youll find apair of expansion slots which means that you can use dual-width graphics cards with the Elite 120. No word on pricingor availability, but we can see this being a popular choice forSFF gaming rigs when it arrives. 8
    • March 18th, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone D-Link has announced their premium app, mydlink+ that is designed for iPad and Android tablets. The app allows usersIf you really need to manage the IP Camera LiveView to view high quality footage as long as they have Wi-Fi orsoftware for scheduling and managing the settings you will 3G access. You can save the snapshots to the tablet, switchneed Windows as the Active X controls are not available in between different cameras with the built-in monitoringMac OS. That should be easily rectified with software like dashboard, and see four feeds on the same screen (1 liveParallels Desktop 7 for Mac. view, 3 snapshots). The app is available to download fromRun the included CD-ROM to install LiveView and LivePlay iTunes and Android Market.and have access to the Adobe Acrobat PDF manual. The D-Link All-in-One Mobile Companion (DIR-505)installation is straightforward and requires only input tomove along with the default settings.D-Link launches new app foriPad and Android Tablet, andall-in-one mobile companionrouterSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/d-link-launches-new-app-for-ipad-and-android-tablet-and-all-in-one-mobile-companion-router/15261.htmlMarch 18th, 2012 For the busy mobile road warriors, the D-Link All-in- One Mobile Companion (DIR-505) is all they need to get wireless access, wherever an existing network is available. The portable device also offers USB sharing features forD-Link has announced their new mydlink+ app for the Apple users to share videos, music and photos from an externaliPad and Android tablet devices that allows users to monitor hard drive or thumb drive to the iPad, iPhone or Androidup to four network cameras in your home or office. On top devices.of that, the company also introduced their latest DIR-505mobile companion router that claims to offer instant Wi- The DIR-505 is smaller than a standard mouse, with easyFi access, convenient file sync, USB sharing, and device one-touch Wi-Fi Protected Setup (WPS) that provides quickcharging wherever you go. setup. With the free SharePort Cloud app for both Android and iOS devices, you can access videos, music and photos from anywhere. The All-in-One Mobile Companion also comes with a USB port for sharing content from a USB storage device (or charging smartphones), as well as an Ethernet Port that enables users to easily connect to an existing network in a conference room or hotel room. The D-Link All-in-One Mobile Companion DIR-505 will be available in Q3 2012. Pricing details to be announced closer to retail date. 9
    • March 18th, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone Once in a while you run into a company youve never heardMotorola unveils white of that has a product that makes you wonder why no-version of MotoLuxe Android one thought of it before. AIO is such a company, although speaking to a representative of the company at CeBIT, itphone turns out their heritage is from a defunct case maker and theSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/motorola-unveils-white-version-of- product in question is its Myriad chassis.motoluxe-android-phone/15260.html Once in a while you run into a company youve never heardMarch 18th, 2012 of that has a product that makes you wonder why no- one thought of it before. AIO is such a company, although speaking to a representative of the company at CeBIT, it turns out their heritage is from a defunct case maker and the product in question is its Myriad chassis.The Motorola Motoluxe (also known as XT615) is amid-ranged Android smartphone that was announced inJanuary this year. It was initially launched in black finish,but recently, the company has come up with a white versionof the Motoluxe.It looks like in recent months, many flagship smartphoneshave launched a white version, which offers users anotherchoice if they dont like the original finish. The origin ofa white phone traced back to the Apple iPhone, and afterthat, we have also seen the white Xperia arc S, Lumia 900and the Droid Razr. The Motorola Motoluxe (also knownas XT615) was first launched in black, and recently thewhite version has popped up in the market; price-wise, itis similar to the original black Motoluxe. From the abovepicture, the white finish is mainly at the rear and both sides The Myriad is anything but your average chassis, as thisof the phone. For those who are interested, the Motoluxe mATX case has no less than seven hot-swappable hard driveis powered by 800MHz processor and 512MB RAM (with bays behind a heavy door. But as nice as the hot swappable1GB ROM). It features a 4-inch FWVGA LCD display, 8- drive bays are, the fact that five of them are connected to amegapixel rear and 3-megapixel fron cameras, runs Android port multiplier makes this a truly unique product. It allows2.3 Gingerbread OS and Moto Switch UI. Unfortunately, the for the creation of a soft RAID without the need of a RAIDmid-range phone is available only in some countries, and in controller in the system, as all five drives are connectedChina, it is priced at around 2335 yuan (or US$370). to a single SATA connector on the motherboard. The port multiplier allows for RAID 0, 1, 3, 5 and 10.AIO Group shows off mATXcase with built in RAIDSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/aio-group-shows-off-matx-case-with-built-in-raid/15258.htmlMarch 18th, 2012 10
    • March 18th, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone WD finally launches My Book Thunderbolt Duo, is cheaper than competition Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/wd-finally-launches-my-book- thunderbolt-duo-is-cheaper-than-competition/15257.html March 18th, 2012 Thunderbolt devices are finally starting to trickle out into the market, albeit most of them so far have been storage devices and Western Digitals new My Book Thunderbolt Duo is no different in this regard. However, where WD has managed to excel compared to its competitors in terms of pricing. Thunderbolt devices are finally starting to trickle out into the market, albeit most of them so far have been storage devicesThe only minor complaint is the fact that AIO decided to use and Western Digitals new My Book Thunderbolt Duo is notrays for the drives which makes the hot-swapping kind of different in this regard. However, where WD has managedawkward as you have to remove the drive from the tray and to excel compared to its competitors in terms of pricing.screw the new drive back in before you can swap out a faultydrive. Other features of the chassis includes a single 5.25- The My Book Thunderbolt Duo is available in either 4TB orinch drive, another internal 3.5-inch bay and a 2.5-inc bay, as 6TB, although currently only the 4TB model is available fromwell as a USB 3.0 port, two USB 2.0 ports and a pair of audio WDs website. WD has gone for a more expensive setup withjacks on the front, all accessible without having to open the support for Thunderbolt in and out ports at the rear of thedoor. My Book Thunderbolt Duo which allows for daisy chaining of drives for improved performance. As with previous My Book products from WD, the My Book Thunderbolt Duo has user upgradeable drives.Internally theres space for five expansion cards with plasticretention clips and the case comes pre-fitted with a 120mmfan. Were not so keen on the top mounted PSU, but as this isa mATX chassis its not a massive deal breaker. AIO claimsthat the Myriad can handle four 350mm add-in cards, albeitthese would only be single slot cards of course. The finishingof the chassis also caught our attention, as its quite differentfrom what weve seen from other manufacturers. Overall,this is an unusual little chassis, but sadly it only appears tobe available in Europe for the time being. 11
    • March 18th, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneWD doesnt provide any performance figures for the My Where the My Book Thunderbolt Duo really shines thoughBook Thunderbolt Duo on its website, but Engadget posted is when it comes to the purchase price, as the 4TB is pricedfrom figures showing off four daisy chained My Book at US$599.99, $50 cheaper than LaCies similar offeringThunderbolt Duo drives with a read speed of 690MB/s and and the 6TB model comes in at US$699.99, a whole $100a write speed of 530MB/s. As such the write speed is slightly cheaper than LaCies equivalent. Its disappointing thatslower than what LaCie claims for its 2big with Thunderbolt neither company supplies a Thunderbolt cable with theirinterface which manages a write speed of 596MB/s when device, but at US$49 a pop, we can sort of understand why.four drives are daisy chained, but the read performance is toWDs advantage as LaCie only manages 670MB/s. Apples new iPad already torn down, contains some news Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/apple-s-new-ipad-already-torn- down-contains-some-news/15256.html March 18th, 2012 Trust iFixit to send a member of their team to Australia just so they could be the first to tear down Apples new iPad. Although much is already known about the new hardware, iFixits teardown did reveal some interesting design changes that give us some interesting revelations of potential future products from Apple. Trust iFixit to send a member of their team to Australia just so they could be the first to tear down Apples new iPad. Although much is already known about the new hardware, iFixits teardown did reveal some interesting design changes that give us some interesting revelations of potential future products from Apple. 12
    • March 18th, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneAs it goes, most mobile devices that use ARM processors – Electronic Arts has announced the open beta of itswith the exception of some of the Tegra 3 based tablets – use upcoming Command & Conquer Tiberium Alliances free-to-an SoC with support for a PoP package for the DRAM and play massively multiplayer online (MMO) strategy game.this was also the case with past iPads from Apple. However,the new A5X SoC has reverted from this and gone back to amore traditional approach with the DRAM mounted on the The game, developed by EAs Phenomic studio is thesame PCB as the rest of the components. Although its not latest addition to the companys Play4Free portfolio, whichentirely clear as to what kind of packaging Apple is using for includes other games like Battlefield Heroes, Battleforge,the A5X, its clear that were looking at a larger chip and its Need For Speed World, and Lord of Ultima.obviously running a fair bit hotter than the A5, judging bythe heat spreader on the chip. The game employs the popular Command & Conquer strategy franchise and takes advantage of quickly growing browser-based online gameplay. The game will also launch on mobile devices like smartphones and tablets and users can switch back and forth between their devices, creating a unique cross-platform experience.The new iPad appears to use a standard dual-channel Players will be able to harvest resources, form alliances, andmemory configuration with a pair of 512MB Elpida LP- engage in epic battles, pretty much all the things that can beDDR2 DRAM chips. The network chip has of course been done in a standard Command & Conquer title.upgraded to the same BCM4330 as the iPhone 4S andbeyond dual-band Wi-Fi support it also offers Bluetooth4.0 + HS connectivity and an FM transceiver. The 3G/4G The beta can be accessed for free by anyone across the globemodem is Qualcomms MDM9600 which is pretty much par today and the final product will be free to play, though likefor the course when it comes to 3G/LTE modem solutions at most other free to play games some restrictions or in-gamethe moment. purchases may be applicable.The change to a new package for the A5X SoC suggeststhat Apple might be trying out some new hardware designs Nokia confirms iPad tabletinside the new iPad and considering the rumours that Appleare working on an ARM powered MacBook Air, this isnt rival in the workstoo farfetched. The simple reason for this is that a larger Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/nokia-confirms-ipad-tablet-rival-in-device wouldnt need to use such a highly integrated PCB as a the-works/15254.htmlphone and moving away from a PoP package has some other March 18th, 2012advantages, such as the ability to improve the cooling of theSoC. Well see how things evolve, but as far as what Apple isplanning for the future, no-one knows but Apple itself. Nokia has confirmed that it is working on a tablet computerEA launches beta of free-to- of its own, marking the once dominant mobile phone companys first competition with the Apple iPad and myriadplay Command & Conquer of Android tablets.MMO strategy game Nokia has confirmed that it is working on a tablet computerSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/ea-launches-beta-of-free-to-play- of its own, marking the once dominant mobile phonecommand--conquer-mmo-strategy-game/15255.html companys first competition with the Apple iPad and myriadMarch 18th, 2012 of Android tablets. The firms head of design, Marko Ahtisaari, revealed to a Finnish magazine that he is spending a third of his timeElectronic Arts has announced the open beta of its developing the new tablet computer, which has long beenupcoming Command & Conquer Tiberium Alliances free-to- rumoured as a major project for the struggling company.play massively multiplayer online (MMO) strategy game. Stephen Elop, CEO of Nokia, said that the tablet category has always interested the company, but that if it was to enter 13
    • March 18th, 2012 Published by: VR-Zonethat market it wanted to employ a different approach to of the loosely-organised Anonymous group, but more officialthe existing offers. This is important, as the tablet sector is channels for the group have denied involvement.already saturated with many rival products, most of whichare very similar. Unfortunately for over 26,000 people that distancing has come too late, as they already installed the software and are now potentially at risk of hidden malware.Nokias PR team refused to confirm the announcement,but suggested that it was watching the tablet market “withinterest.”The rumours over Nokias tablet suggest that it will The people behind the software claim it is not infected withemploy Microsofts upcoming Windows 8 operating system, viruses, but they also claim that there is no such thingmarking a new stage in its partnership with the software as a virus in the world of open source software, a rathergiant. While Windows Phone 7 has failed to match the might questionable statement that suggests their denial might be aof iOS or Android, many have high hopes for Windows 8, matter of pedantry.which will be employed on PCs, smartphones and tablets. Security firms are testing the software to see if it poses anyNokias tablet computer is expected to launch towards the risk. It is probably wise not to use it (or to uninstall it) untilend of the year. its safety has been verified by an independent source. Source Forge has removed the software for now until it is certain it is not a security risk.Thousands downloadAnonymous hackers virus- MMD introduces Philips C-riddled OS Line Blade 2 monitorSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/thousands-download-anonymous- Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/mmd-introduces-philips-c-line-hackers-virus-riddled-os/15253.html blade-2-monitor/15252.htmlMarch 18th, 2012 March 18th, 2012Hacktivist group Anonymous claims that an operatingsystem erroneously linked to its members has infected MMD, a wholly-owned company of TPV through brandthousands of computers with malware. license agreement with Philips, have announced the new Philips C-Line Blade 2 monitor that features an ultra-Hacktivist group Anonymous claims that an operating slim 12.5mm display, IPS display technology that claimssystem erroneously linked to its members has infected to deliver superior images and color reproduction.thousands of computers with malware.The 1.5GB Ubuntu-based OS, known as Anonymous OS,was circulated on software website Source Forge with theexpressed aim of checking the security of webpages for“education purposes.” It was allegedly created by members 14
    • March 18th, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone The 22.3-megapixel Canon 5D Mark III was unveiled just two weeks ago, with improved features such as 36 x 24mm full-frame CMOS sensor, ISO sensitivity of 100 - 25,600 (expandable up to L:50, H1:51,200, new DIGIC 5+ processor, and continuous shooting speeds of up to 6 fps at full resolution. Today, Canon Singapore has released the pricing and availability of the EOS 5D Mark III digital SLR camera. Samsung unveils new products at South East Asia, Oceania and Taiwan Forum Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/samsung-unveils-new-products-at- south-east-asia-oceania-and-taiwan-forum/15250.html March 18th, 2012The Philips Blade 2 monitor (239C4QHSB) sports astylish, ultra-slim design with IPS (In-Plane Switching)technology that can deliver exceptional desktop experiencefor consumers. Measuring 12.5mm in depth, it claims tobe one of the slimmest desktop displays on the market.Available in classy black or elegant white, the Blade 2 is At the South East Asia, Oceania and Taiwan Forum,equipped with a 23-inch IPS display that delivers vivid and Samsung has unveiled their new line of products for 2012,life-like images when viewed even from obscured angles. with the vision of delivering connectivity and content acrossIt also features a SmartContrast ratio of 20,000,000:1 all their devices - TVs, mobile phones, tablets, laptops,and comes with dual HDMI ports and a VGA (Analog) digital cameras and home appliances.connection. Samsung ES8000 LED TVCanon Singapore revealsprice and availability of EOS5D Mark IIISource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/canon-singapore-reveals-price-and-availability-of-eos-5d-mark-iii/15251.htmlMarch 18th, 2012The highly-anticipated EOS 5D Mark III was officiallylaunched two weeks ago, and today, Canon Singapore hasunveiled the pricing and availability of the digital SLRcamera. Read on. The Samsung ES8000 Smart LED TV sports a new metallic U-shape stand that gives a unique, minimalistic design. It claims to offer crisp images in both 2D and 3D. It features Micro Dimming Ultimate technology that can analyze the picture and optimize the LED backlight and video signal in real time. This provides 20 percent increase in brightness, richer colors and higher contrast ratios. The technology also helps to eliminate the "halo" effect and image distortion associated with diffused light. The Smart TV also features Smart Content, Smart Interaction and Smart Evolution. Smart Content allows users to share photos, memories and memos with loved ones from the TV to the cloud to smart devices. You can also access wide offerings of movies, TV shows and streaming videos via Samsung Apps, while Samsung Smart Hub provides multi-tasking between apps simultaneously. The 55-inch Samsung ES8000 LED TV will be available End March 2012 at S$6,499. 15
    • March 18th, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneSamsung WB850FThe Samsung WB850F has an ultra-compact body and The Samsung Series 9 claims to be the world’s thinnest andboasts a 21x optical zoom, and 16.2-megapixel BSI CMOS most compact laptop in the market. Thanks to the companyssensor technology that can reduce image noise and MaxScreen technology that minimize bezel size, it featuresdistortion, even in low light conditions. The camera also a vivid 15-inch display fitted into a stylish 14-inch chassis.features 3-inch VGA AMOLED screen, Wi-Fi direct that The Series laptop measures 14.9mm thin and weighs 1.59kg,lets users link the WB850F to a phone or tablet for photo which claims to be almost 50 percent more compact thansharing, and Auto Backup function that enables user to other 15-inch thin and light. Incorporating Intel Core i7transfer images to the PC without having to carry around processor and Samsung SSD, the notebook powers up in justcables. The Samsung WB850F is available in Black from 9.8 seconds and wakes in only 1.4 seconds. The SamsungApril 2012. Series 9 will be available in Q2 2012.Samsung GALAXY Tab 2 (7.0) and GALAXY Tab 2 (10.1) ASUS HD7850 DirectCU II TOP Review Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/asus-hd7850-directcu-ii-top- review/15243.html March 18th, 2012 Earlier this month we reviewed the (paper launched) reference AMD Radeon HD 7850, which shares the same PCB as the higher end HD 7870. Back then we also felt that the stock performance was lackluster and our review sample had almost zero overclockability. Coming toSamsung has announced the GALAXY Tab 2 (7.0) and stores next week, ASUSs custom pre-overclocked HD7850GALAXY Tab 2 (10.1) tablets which are powered by a 1GHz offering actually punches above its weight and impressed us.dual core processor, and runs Google Android 4.0 ICS Read on to find out why!operating system. Available in 3G and Wi-Fi versions, the Built with AMD Southern Islands Pitcairn Pro GPU, ASUS7-inch model is designed for personal on-the-go, while the HD7850 DirectCU II TOP 2GB (HD7850-DC2T-2GD5) is a10.1-inch model is suited for home and family. Both the dual slot card with their much heralded "DirectCU II" directGALAXY Tab 2 will be available in Q2 2012, in 16GB. contact heatpipe cooler.Samsung Series 9 Notebook 16
    • March 18th, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneAt first glance from the front, the dual fan ASUS card lookssimilar size wise to the reference HD7850 blower design. The PCB is actually 8-inches length wise but the protuding part of the cooler extends it to 10.5-inches. We feel that there is a missed opportunity here to serve users of space constrained enclosures since the rated TDP of the HD 7850 at 130W is not very high anyway and can make do with a smaller cooling system. A 6-pin PCIe extension cable is preinstalled as the release catch on the card is obstructed by the cooler.But when we turn the cards around, we see that the ASUScard actually uses a significantly cut down version of thereference PCB. Accessories - the mandatory driver CD and instruction manual, a CrossfireX bridge and a DVI to analog convertorNo changes at the display outputs so six monitor Eyefinitycan be achieved with pair of mini-DP, a single HDMI and aDVI-D port. 17
    • March 18th, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneQuick refresher - the HD 7850 has 16 Graphics Core Nextcompute units (almost half that of the big daddy HD 7970),with 1024 Stream processors, 32 ROPs and a GDDR5 256bitmemory bus. ASUS pre-overclocked their card to 975MHzon the core and 1250MHz on the memory, a decent increaseof 115MHz (13.4%) and 50MHz (4%) respectively. As with allthe new 28nm based cards launching this year, the HD 7850has PCIe 3.0 support, which helps in transfer bandwidthconstrained scenarios like HD video encoding and will workwith the current Intel Sandy Bridge-E and the upcoming IvyBridge platforms. The Leica MP film camera (body alone) is priced at NT $360,000 (or US$12,185), and every limited edition unit will be engraved with the serial number, which could be regarded as a value of a collection of traditional film cameras, and is available for pre-order. Comes in Leicas original wood-made box, the camera features a copper and zinc-alloy body, while the the upper and lower lids are military grey, which resembles the Leica M2 Grey film camera that was launched in 1960. The Leica MP also uses "Vulcanite" leather that was on the Leica M8.2. Another special feature is the engravings of "MP100 - XXX" on the top camera shoe, the chinse words "Exciting Hundred 1912 - 2011", and Taiwans national flower, the plum blossom. Such a limited edition Leica MP camera would surely appeal to collectors.Leica launches limitededition MP cameras tocommemorate Taiwanscentenary establishmentSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/leica-launches-limited-edition-mp-cameras-to-commemorate-taiwan-s-centenary-establishment/15249.htmlMarch 18th, 2012To commemorate Taiwans centenary establishment (from1912), Leica has launched the limited edition Leica MPcameras in the country, and apparently, only 100 units. 18
    • March 18th, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone from her tyranny. To do so, mercenaries have to be hired, locations emptied of enemy troops, and funds “acquired” to hire more guns and buy more gear. As a means to an end, the storyline works. The wide varieties of maps – ranging from towns to mines to even a water pumping station – mean players gain a believable feel to the conveniently- square island. These varied, salad-y areas are chock-full of littered objects that breathe life into Arulco, such as NPC’s who cower at your gun-toting approach, or children who follow obliviously with their saviours. For a simple island, Arulco is rich in varied landscapes, a diced salad of jungle, desert, and suburban neglect. The neat touches add colour and also give players a sense of progression and permanence. Dead NPCs stay dead, their half-looted houses still hosting the remnantsGracing the launch event include Taiwanese model and of whatever trash you chose not to take during a previousactress, Tiffany Hsu. rampage. Enemies who re-take positions are smarter, covering previous loopholes and forcing players to work around them in a different manner. A pleasant day/night cycle also adds some interesting spice to battles. Depending on how you equip mercenaries, the time of day and their surroundings affects how well they hide. Having the glaring opposite type of camouflage might even give penalties!Jagged Alliance: Back inAction PC Game ReviewSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/jagged-alliance-back-in-action-pc-game-review/15208.htmlMarch 18th, 2012Jagged Alliance: Back in Action marks a return and a re-make of the hit title from the late 1990’s. Boasting updatesto bring it more in-line with the current generation, is thisquiet title release worth your money and game time? Flip onpast the break to find out.I enjoy four-course meals. These tend to have the sort oflength that dinner conversation is witty without becomingstale. They also give me a solid amount of food to chew on,since I dislike having just a small bite of something great.Jagged Alliance: Back in Action is just that sort of meal,despite some undercooked meat and tough flavors. Beforewe move on, check out the trailer and gameplay for the game(in case you have not).Back in Action is a remake of the second game, from wayback in the 1990’s. The hokey story behind Jagged Alliancehasn’t changed – Players are hired to oust a dictatorialQueen from island paradise Arulco, freeing its populace 19
    • March 21st, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneVR-Zone.com | Tech News for the Geeks! discomfort. The problem, however, is that some people have VR-Zone | Stuff for the Geeks is a bi-weekly been reporting that their device is switching off due to the publication covering the latest gadgets and stuff for the overheating problem, which means that even if they were geeks. willing to bear the heat, it is still something that Apple needs to address.Independent tests verify iPad We contacted Apple yesterday about the overheating reports3 overheating claims but received no response.Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/independent-tests-verify-ipad-3-overheating-claims/15309.htmlMarch 21st, 2012 Image Credit: Remle M.Several independent tests have verified claims by iPad 3users that the latest Apple gadget is overheating. ASUS Eee Pad Transformer Prime Review: A tablet in itsEngineers at Consumer Reports tested out the new iPad witha thermal imaging camera and compared its temperature to primethat of the iPad 2 when playing a resource-intensive game, Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/asus-eee-pad-transformer-prime-Infinity Blade II, for 45 minutes. review-a-tablet-in-its-prime/15262.html March 21st, 2012The result was temperatures that reached as high as 113degrees Fahrenheit when unplugged and 116 degrees whenplugged in, which is as much as 13 degrees higher than theiPad 2. The ASUS Eee Pad Transformer was launched about a yearThe heat was worse in one corner of the device and the ago, and it stood out from the rest with its optional dockingengineers also found that it failed to charge while playing the station with a standard keyboard and touchpad. This year,game, despite it being plugged in. When the game was not the company launched their Eee Pad Transformer Primeturned on it charged as normal. which claims to be the first tablet device to incorporate Nvidia Tegra 3 quad-core processor. We managed to get one in to see how good it really is.Another test made by Dutch website Tweakers.net showedtemperatures of 92.5 degrees Fahrenheit after five minutes,compared to 83 degrees Fahrenheit on the iPad 2 for thesame duration, a roughly 10 degree difference, supporting Transformers fans who went to the Transformer Cybertronthe findings from Consumer Reports. Con at Resort World Sentosa in Singapore last week, would be fascinated by the showcase of the limited edition figures, as well as the 6.7 metres Optimus Prime aluminium-Both reports suggest that while the new iPad can get steel statue that was standing in the centre of the ballroom.incredibly hot, it can still be held without too much Coincidentally, Taiwanese company, ASUS, has come up 1
    • March 21st, 2012 Published by: VR-Zonewith their Eee Pad Android-based tablets with similar names March 21st, 2012to that of the popular changing toys; the first was the EeePad Transformer, followed by the recently launched Eee PadTransformer Prime.Late last year, toy maker Hasbro filed a lawsuit against ASUSfor infringing the trademark on the name "Transformer Hewlett-Packard (HP) will merge its PC and printerPrime" on the new Android tablet. The case is still businesses in an effort to cut costs, marking the latest stageongoing, though there have been not been any new updates. in the companys restructuring.However, this has not detered the Taiwanese company from Hewlett-Packard (HP) will merge its PC and printercontinuing to manufacture their line of "Transformer" businesses in an effort to cut costs, marking the latest stagetablets. in the companys restructuring.Last October, the ASUS Eee Pad Transformer Prime TF201made its first appearance at AsiaD: All Things Digitalevent in Hong Kong, and claims to be the first tablet to The new unit will be led by Todd Bradley, the existing chiefincorporate Nvidia Tegra 3 quad-core processor. The Eee of HPs PC business, suggesting that his approach to PC salesPad Transformer Prime TF201 is slightly thinner and lighter could be employed for printers as well. Marketing will alsothan its older sibling, measuring 8.3mm thin and weighing be unified to improve brand image and company efficiency.586g (to 13mm and 680g of the Eee Pad Transformer).Another distinct difference is that the TF201 sports a "Ensuring we have the right organizational structure in placemetallic spun finish, compared to the honeycomb texture of is a critical first step in driving improved execution, andthe Transformer. Before we take a closer look at the Android increasing effectiveness and efficiency," said Meg Whitman,tablet, heres the specifications:- CEO of HP. "The result will be a faster, more streamlined, ASUS Eee Pad Transformer performance-driven HP that is customer focused and poised Prime to capitalize on rapidly shifting industry trends.”CPU 1.3GHz Nvidia Tegra 3 (quad-core)Memory 1GBScreen 10.1-inch LED Backlight WXGA (1280x800) Screen, Super IPS+, 10-finger multi- touch supportDisplay Resolution 1280x800Storage 32GB EMMC + 8G life time ASUS Webstorage spaceWireless 802.11b/g/n, Bluetooth 2.1 + EDRCamera 1.2MP front, 8MP autofocus rear Last year HP was considering spinning off its PC businessSensor G-sensor, light sensor, or selling it altogether, despite it being one of the more gyroscope, E-compass profitable sectors of the companys business. It ultimatelyInterface 2-in-1 audio jack decided not to go with that route, but clearly it still sees the (headphone/mic), need to make savings. microSD card reader, mini HDMI The problem with a merger is that the PC and printerBattery 12 hours; 25Wh Li-polymer industries are very different, which means that a single Battery, 18 hours pad with management policy for both could result in failures in either dock of them. Analysts remain cautious about the move, as it is notPlatform Android 4.0.3 Ice Cream yet clear if it will be a viable business long-term, but many Sandwich investors are happy that Whitman is at least making changesDimensions 263 x 180.8 x 8.3mm to keep the company relevant.Weight 586gHP to merge PC and printer Blizzard acknowledges Starbusinesses Wars: The Old Republic effect on World of WarcraftSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/hp-to-merge-pc-and-printer-businesses/15308.html Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/blizzard-acknowledges-star-wars- the-old-republic-effect-on-world-of-warcraft/15307.html 2
    • March 21st, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneMarch 21st, 2012 older parts of the game for free. This could help bring in new players, but it appears that a full free-to-play conversion, like that made by Turbine with its Dungeons & Dragons Online and Lord of the Rings Online titles, is not currently being considered.Blizzard has admitted that the launch of rival massivelymultiplayer online (MMO) game Star Wars: The Old Blizzard has been steadily moving developer talent awayRepublic has had a negative effect on its leading title, World from World of Warcraft to its highly-secretive Project Titan,of Warcraft, and the company has some plans up its sleeve a second MMO title it has been working on for some time.to bring players back. Details remain under wraps, but it is hoping to keep bothBlizzard has admitted that the launch of rival massively games running simultaneously, despite the potential for it tomultiplayer online (MMO) game Star Wars: The Old ultimately end up competing with itself.Republic has had a negative effect on its leading title, Worldof Warcraft, and the company has some plans up its sleeve With the developer might of BioWare and the much-lovedto bring players back. Star Wars setting, it is not surprising that The Old Republic is presenting a genuine threat to the market leader. AfterThe Irvine, California-based firm has been losing only three months in operation the game is approachingsubscribers since a peak of over 12 million in 2010. Before two million paying subscribers and is the fastest growingBioWares Star Wars title launched in December of last year, MMO in North America. What is surprising, however, is thatBlizzard recorded World of Warcraft subscriptions at just Blizzard is vocally recognising this threat.over 10 million people, a huge drop as the hype meter wentoff the charts for a shared, persistent world of lightsabersand blasters. Since The Old Republics launch Blizzard hasnot yet shared subscriber numbers, which are likely down MSI R7970 Lightning Revieweven further. Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/msi-r7970-lightning- review/15270.html March 21st, 2012"Of course people are trying Star Wars - our developmentteam are trying Star Wars!” said John Lagrave, seniorproducer on World of Warcraft. “Im one of the few peoplewhos still playing it actually, but yeah weve seen a dip insubs. It certainly has to at least be attributable to The OldRepublic, but its also attributable to people who want to wait Equipped with their brand new Twin Frozr IV cooling systemand get Mists of Pandaria, so its not surprising.” and various other overclocking-oriented components, is the MSI R7970 Lightning the best graphics card that money can buy?Mists of Pandaria is Blizzards upcoming expansion for First unveiled at CeBIT 2012, the heavily souped up MSIWorld of Warcraft, featuring a new Asian-themed zone, R7970 Lightning is one of the best looking cards we ever hada new panda-style race, and a new monk class. Its in our labs. If you still dont know what a Radeon HD 7970announcement has proven controversial, as some players is or how it performs, read this article first.thought it was a step too far in the direction of making thegame child-friendly. At the back of the card, we get a large black metal backplate with a plastic blue orb-like cap placed behind the GPU core (more on that later)World of Warcraft offers a free trial up to level 20, butLagrave suggested that the company could open the trial upto level 40 or 60, letting users experience much more of the 3
    • March 21st, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneUnlike the reference design, we actually get six physicaldisplay outputs for an immersive Eyefinity setup - 4 x mini-DP and 2 x DVI (single link) ports By default, the core speed of the MSI R7970 Lightning is factory overclocked at 1070MHz, 16% higher than theBox, documentation and bundle - besides the mandatory reference design (925MHz). This is not surprising as mostmanual and driver CD, we have a "Military Class MIL- Radeon HD 7970s that weve played with can run at thatSTD-810G" certificate touting its durability, handy probe frequency without a voltage bump.wires for the voltage check points, mini-DP to DP convertor,DVI to HDMI dongle and two 6-pin to 8-pin PCIe convertors(rare).When the card is in operation, there are attractive blue LEDsat the front and back, and 14+2+1 of them at the VRM areabehind actually indicates how many power phases are in use. 4
    • March 21st, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone • Apple iPad 2 (iOS 5.1, Apple A5) - Peacekeeper scoreNew iPad Performance 383Disappoints: Peacekeeper • Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 (Android 4.0.1, NVIDIABenchmark Scores Remain Tegra 2) - Peacekeeper score 356the Same • ASUS Eee Pad Transformer Prime (Android 4.0.3, NVIDIA Tegra 3) - Peacekeeper score 344Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/new-ipad-performance-disappoints-peacekeeper-benchmark-scores-remain-the-same/15288.html • Apple iPad 1st gen (iOS 5.1, Apple A4) - PeacekeeperMarch 21st, 2012 score 234 Yes, it is odd seing Tegra 2-based tablet beating the Tegra 3- based one, but that is not surprising, given the load on the internal bus. Still, the difference in clock (T20 operates at 1GHz, T30 operates at 1.3GHz) should give better results. Pleasant surprise is AMD powered Acer W500, which leadsWhile Apple did an untypical thing and attacked NVIDIA the tablet pack. As the picture above clearly suggests, tabletsand their Tegra 3 quad-core chip, claiming 4x better from 2011 and 2012 are still around 10 times slower than aperformance, the first benchmark results tell a different standard gaming PC from 2009.story, especially in Futuremark’s Peacekeeper benchmark.Firstly, Notebook Magazine ran an article in which editorscompared the New iPad (iPad 3) and ASUS Eee Pad Nokia Lumia smartphonesTransformer Prime, powered by NVIDIA Tegra 3 processor.In their comparison, they did find a benchmark or two where get Maps and Drive updates Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/nokia-lumia-smartphones-get-maps-Apple’s A5X chip managed to beat NVIDIA Tegra 3 but and-drive-updates/15305.htmlin all honesty, there were benchmarks in which A5X got March 21st, 2012hammered by Tegra 3. If I was CEO of NVIDIA, I could notbe happier for the amount of free PR given by Tim Cooke andthe fruity gang.Now, Futuremark is joining the fold, comparing the NewiPad to existing batch of tablets with surprising results.Given that Apple did not give any processing power boost Nokia has just rolled out updates for two of the most popularbetween A5 and A5X, it is not surprising to hear that Windows Phone apps on its Lumia smartphones, Maps andperformance in HTML5 and JavaScript-based Peacekeeper Drive. Nokia Drive 2.0 provides the ability to do offline routedid not move by an inch. planning and navigation as well as taking notice of speed limits. Nokia has just rolled out updates for two of the most popular Windows Phone apps on its Lumia smartphones, Maps and Drive. Nokia Drive 2.0 provides the ability to do offline route planning and navigation as well as taking notice of speed limits. Further is the improved interface design with an advanced dashboard giving more detail and a list of recent destinations as well as better all round responsiveness/performance. Nokia Drive 2.0 currently works in 100 countries on six continents. Nokia Maps takes the jump to v1.3 and with that comes the ability to provide users with a means to see traffic situations in several countries. There are also a numberAccording to the company, “Peacekeeper takes 5 minutes of improvements made to the design, but otherwise thingsto run during which time it evaluates the browser’s remain much the same.performance with a rendering test, WebGL test, HTML5 Both Nokia Maps 1.3 and Nokia Drive 2.0 are available nowvideo test, HTML5 canvas test, HTML5 web worker test, as free downloads through the Windows Phone marketplace.data manipulation tests, DOM operations test and textparsing tests. For more detailed explanations of thesetests see the FAQ: http://peacekeeper.futuremark.com/ ASUS launches K93SM 18.4-faq.action”And if you wonder what the scores are, the results are here: inch notebook in Europe Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/asus-launches-k93sm-18.4-inch- notebook-in-europe/15304.html • Acer Iconia W500 (Windows 8 CP, AMD Fusion E- Series) - Peacekeeper score 405 • Apple iPad 3rd gen (iOS 5.1, Apple A5X) - Peacekeeper score 384 5
    • March 21st, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneMarch 21st, 2012 proprietory IceCool technology. The notebook ships with Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit.ASUS has just officially released its latest K-Series notebookinto the European market boasting an 18.4-inch sized LED-backlit Full HD (1920 x 1080) display. The K93SM cannow be found online at various EU e/retailers with stockshowing and pricing that ranges from 849 Euro to 1,149 Eurodepending on the chosen configuration.ASUS has just officially released its latest K-Series notebookinto the European market boasting an 18.4-inch sized LED-backlit Full HD (1920 x 1080) display. The K93SM cannow be found online at various EU e/retailers with stockshowing and pricing that ranges from 849 Euro to 1,149 Eurodepending on the chosen configuration. MSIs R7970 Lightning lives up to the name with 1800MHz core o/c Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/msi-s-r7970-lightning-lives-up-to- the-name-with-1800mhz-core-oc/15303.html March 21st, 2012 MSI certainly wasnt kidding anyone with all the marketing hype it ran with to put its Radeon R7970 Lightning graphics card up on a pedestal, as Swedish overclocking pro Elmor demonstrated when pairing up this lovely highly non-For that you get a notebook that packs a Core i5-2450M or reference HD 7970 with liquid nitrogen cooling measures.i7-2670QM processor, up to 8 GB of RAM, a GeForce GT MSI certainly wasnt kidding anyone with all the marketing630M 1 GB graphics card and a 500 GB (or 1 TB) HDD. hype it ran with to put its Radeon R7970 Lightning graphicsConnectivity includes Gigabit Ethernet, 802.11 b/g/n WiFi, a card up on a pedestal, as Swedish overclocking pro ElmorUSB 3.0 port and 3-in-1 card reader. Rounding out the specs, demonstrated when pairing up this lovely highly non-the S93SM comes with either a 8x DVD writer or 6x Blu-ray reference HD 7970 with liquid nitrogen cooling measures.combo drive, 6-cell (5200 mAh) battery and a chiclet style Elmor wasnt afraid to go to extremes with the card andkeyboard; in all weighing in at 4.1Kg. pumped a whopping 1.7V into it (which it surprisingly sustained without demise) and then proceeded to reach for the skies in the clocks department.ASUS keeps temps at bay and ensures the palmrest wontget uncomfortably warm with the implementation of its The end result saw the card thumping along at an incredible 1800MHz core clock rate, while the memory was pushed 6
    • March 21st, 2012 Published by: VR-Zoneto an equally staggering 1925MHz memory clock (equating price for the body is around 300,000 yen (US$3,580), whileto 7.70GHz effective and a massive 370 Gb/s of memory the body with AF-S NIKKOR 28-300mm F3.5-5.6 G ED VRbandwidth on tap). lens will sell at 400,000 yen (US$4,777). The D800E, which has the ability to disable additional filtering, will retail atWith that in place, stability was the next point of concern; 350,000 yen (US$4,180) for the body alone, in April.alas there were no dramas with a 3DMark11 result obtainedof P15035 (Performance preset) in conjunction with a Core According to Nikon Singapore, the supply shortage wouldi7-3960X Extreme Edition clocked at 5207MHz and 4GB not have a great impact to consumers here. In fact, the(4x1GB) of DDR3 at 2314 MHz sitting on MSIs Big Bang company will be releasing the stock to the market andXPower II motherboard. making them available for sales from 22 March onwards. Consumers can make a visit to the authorized retailers andMSIs custom PCB certainly looks to have paid off in check out the digital SLR camera, before the stocks getproviding a real treat for overclocking buffs alike. Give it a grabbed off the shelves. For those who are worried theyfew weeks or so and well no doubt be hearing of even higher cant get the unit before stocks run out, can place pre-clock rates achieved. orders with the stores directly. However, Nikon Singapore was unable to comment on how long consumers would haveExpect shortage in supply for to wait, if stocks did run out.the Nikon D800/D800ESource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/expect-shortage-in-supply-for-the-nikon-d800d800e/15299.html Zinio now available onMarch 21st, 2012 BlackBerry PlayBook Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/zinio-now-available-on-blackberry- playbook/15302.html March 21st, 2012Last month, Nikon announced the 36.3-megapixel D800/D800E digital SLR camera which is scheduled to beavailable end of March, next week. But for photographerenthusiasts who are looking to get the camera, dont besurprised if the popular D800/D800E is out of stock instores. For those of you who arent familiar with Zinio, it is an application that brings digital magazines to your Apple iPad, iPhone, Android devices, Mac and the PC. And BlackBerry Playbook owners will be pleased to know that Zinio is now available on the tablet.The Nikon D800 digital SLR camera is scheduled to go onretail in Japan on March 22 (and end of March in Singapore),though the companys web site states that to expect supplyshortages. The Nikon Imaging Japan said that it hasreceived pre-orders which are higher than expected, and The Zinio app offers digital magazines and newspapers fromthe originally released quantity is not sufficient to meet the around the world to your devices, and now to the BlackBerrydemand, and the company may require more time to deliver PlayBook. Zinio has over 5,000 titles in more than 30the D800. languages and lets you access your magazines on the go,The newly announced Nikon D800 is a full-frame digital read while online or download for easy offline access. TheSLR camera that is equipped with a 36.3-megapixel FX- Zinio app is free on the BlackBerry App World, though if youformat CMOS sensor. It has a 100% video finder coverage, want to read the digital magazines, you will need to purchase51-point Auto-Focus system, high ISO range of 100 to 6400 the individual ones within the app. For a limited time only,which can be expanded to 50-to-25600 and supports full HDvideo recording in FX or DX format. The estimated retail 7
    • March 21st, 2012 Published by: VR-ZonePlayBook users who download the app and register on Ziniocan enjoy access to free titles including Elle and Esquire.Samsung GALAXY S IIIappears in Visa commercial?Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/samsung-galaxy-s-iii-appears-in-visa-commercial-/15301.htmlMarch 21st, 2012 Samsung has partnered Viki to offer Smart TV owners,There have been many rumors about the Samsung GALAXY thousands of hours of content with the Viki Premiere app.S III circulating on the web, especially with its launch Viki is an international video site, known for aggregatingcoming closer each day. And it seems that the Android some of the world’s best TV programs and movies, whichsmartphone may have made an appearance in a Visa are subtitled in more than 150 languages. The video site iscommercial recently. also the content partner for the KPop Service App, which is a collaboration between Samsung and major Korean record labels, bringing together the latest news and information of popular Korean music artistes; the KPop Service App is exclusively available on Samsung Apps Smart TV users can now watch TV shows, movies and entertainment news from around the world, including the hottest Korean dramas, Japanese anime, award-winning independent films and more, all free and translated into the language of choice. Best of all, Viki Premiere is free to download and will be available via Samsung Apps on Smart TV from March in Singapore and across Southeast Asia.Even though there have been no specific details as to OCZ RevoDrive Hybrid 1TBwhen the Samsung GALAXY S III will be launched, it PCI-E SSD Reviewseems that the new flagship phone have been spotted in a Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/ocz-revodrive-hybrid-1tb-pci-e-ssd-Visa commercial with its Near Field Communication (NFC) review/15298.htmlcapability. However, many believed that it is the GALAXY March 21st, 2012S II and not the upcoming Android device. Foreign mediastates that the phone in the Visa commercial could be theSamsung GALAXY S III because it looks fairly wide and doesnot have the Home key. What do you think? Could this phonereally be the Samsung GALAXY S III? SSD drives undoubtedly are extremely fast, with theirSamsung partners Viki to speeds being only limited by the bandwidth of the SATA bus interface. However they also remain disproportionatelyoffer users high quality video expensive per GB when compared to mechanical drives,content in Singapore forbidding mainstream customers from purchasing largeSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/samsung-partners-viki-to-offer- capacity drives. For those who require a fairly large primaryusers-high-quality-video-content-in-singapore/15300.html drive and want to reap the benefits of SSD technology,March 21st, 2012 several companies developed caching solutions, such as the Synapse which we reviewed several weeks ago. OCZ however offers another interesting product, the RevoDrive Hybrid 1TB. The RevoDrive Hybrid is a ready-to-go storage solution which couples a 1TB mechanical drive with a 128GB SSD cache in the form of a PCI-E device. In this review we willSamsung Smart TV owners in Singapore can enjoy more find out not only how well it compares against SSD drivesquality content in the comfort of their homes. The Korean but when compared to other caching solutions as well.company has partnered with international video site, Viki, to SSD drives undoubtedly are extremely fast, with theiroffer a wide variety of TV shows, movies and entertainment speeds being only limited by the bandwidth of the SATAnews, all for free. bus interface. However they also remain disproportionately expensive per GB when compared to mechanical drives, forbidding mainstream customers from purchasing large capacity drives. For those who require a fairly large primary 8
    • March 21st, 2012 Published by: VR-Zonedrive and want to reap the benefits of SSD technology,several companies developed caching solutions, such as the Fairchild SemiconductorSynapse which we reviewed several weeks ago. OCZ however shrinks Driver MOSFETs foroffers another interesting product, the RevoDrive Hybrid1TB. The RevoDrive Hybrid is a ready-to-go storage solution Ultrabookswhich couples a 1TB mechanical drive with a 128GB SSD Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/fairchild-semiconductor-shrinks-cache in the form of a PCI-E device. In this review we will driver-mosfets-for-ultrabooks/15296.htmlfind out not only how well it compares against SSD drives March 21st, 2012but when compared to other caching solutions as well.Intel cans 3.4W TDP Cactus Driver MOSFETs, more commonly known as DrMOS areRidge Thunderbolt chip a key part in the VRM design in modern computers andSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/intel-cans-3.4w-tdp-cactus-ridge- despite being smaller than traditional MOSFET designs,thunderbolt-chip/15297.html once you start looking at notebooks and even more so atMarch 21st, 2012 Ultrabooks, these chips actually take up quite a lot of space. Now Fairchild Semiconductors have managed to shrink the foot print of its Generation II XS DrMOS by 50 percent to make them more suitable for use in Ultrabooks. Driver MOSFETs, more commonly known as DrMOS areWere not sure if this is good news or bad news, but Intel has a key part in the VRM design in modern computers anddecided to cancel one of its planned Thunderbolt chipsets despite being smaller than traditional MOSFET designs,in the upcoming Cactus Ridge range of chips. The company once you start looking at notebooks and even more so athas canned the 3.4W TDP part, also known as the L3510H Ultrabooks, these chips actually take up quite a lot of space.in favour of the lower power L3510L. Now Fairchild Semiconductors have managed to shrink theWere not sure if this is good news or bad news, but Intel has foot print of its Generation II XS DrMOS by 50 percent todecided to cancel one of its planned Thunderbolt chipsets make them more suitable for use in Ultrabooks.in the upcoming Cactus Ridge range of chips. The company The chips in question are called FDMF6708N and measurehas canned the 3.4W TDP part, also known as the L3510H a mere 6x6mm and come in a PQFN package. Beyondin favour of the lower power L3510L. being smaller, Fairchild has also implemented somethingTechnically there is no different between the 3.4W TDP called Zero Cross Detect or ZCD which allows for improvedL3510H and the 2.8W L3510L Cactus Ridge Thunderbolt light load performance which results in improved batterychips, although we presume that Intel was planning on life. Fairchild claims 2.5 percent improved efficiency at peakcharging more for the lower power part as it wouldve been loads of 15A and a six percent better efficiency at a 30A fulltargeting the notebook market space with the 3.4W part load compared to its nearest competitor when connected togoing into desktops and powered devices. a 19V power source.The L3510 is a 4-channel Thunderbolt controller and its By integrating more features into the same package,set to replace the original Thunderbolt controller known Fairchilds new DrMOS also helps simplify the PCB designas Light Ridge or 82523EF/EFL which launched towards by allowing for shorter PCB trances, the use of fewerthe end of 2010. The L3510 is a smaller 12x12mm chip components and reduced thermals at higher frequencies.– compared to 15x15mm for Light Ridge – and with the Sadly this is one of those aspects where its really up to thechanges its also slightly more power efficient. Intel has device maker, but hopefully well see this kind of productalso managed to implement additional features on-chip for in future Ultrabooks, as when it comes to battery life, everyCactus Ridge, such as a DisplayPort redriver, a connection little helps. The FDMF6708N is priced at US$ 1.86 a piecemanager and a link controller which should help drive down in quantities of 1,000 units, although as multiple parts arethe cost of implementing Thunderbolt as well as help to being used in one and the same Ultrabook and these thingsreduce the PCB space taken up by the components needed. are usually bought in far larger quantities, wed doubt that this is anywhere near the actual cost for the UltrabookThat said, Intel isnt expecting to have final samples for manufacturers.its customers until mid-April, or about four weeks lateaccording to its earlier schedules. This is unlikely to havea huge effect on any actual products now with the new Ivy Windows 8 is expected toBridge Ultrabooks not launching until June or even later inthe year. In related news, Intel is planning a Thunderbolt launch in Octoberdeveloper lab in Taiwan later this month for its partners to Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/windows-8-is-expected-to-launch-in-give them additional training and advice as to how to best october/15295.htmlimplement the technology in their products. March 21st, 2012 Not entirely unexpectedly, Microsoft is aiming for an October launch for Windows 8 and we should see both the x86 and ARM versions launch at the same time. This would give Microsoft ample time to get its new OS out into the 9
    • March 21st, 2012 Published by: VR-Zonechannel in time for the holiday shopping season, be it on new About a month and a half ago VR-Zone revealed Intelsdevices or in retail boxed versions. Atom CE5300 series of media processors (also known as Berryville) as well as Intels plans for Tizen and now Intel hasNot entirely unexpectedly, Microsoft is aiming for an officially announced the Atom CE5300 platform at the IPTVOctober launch for Windows 8 and we should see both the World Forum in London. Intel also had some of its partnersx86 and ARM versions launch at the same time. This would at the show, displaying their very first set-top-boxes basedgive Microsoft ample time to get its new OS out into the on the new platform.channel in time for the holiday shopping season, be it on newdevices or in retail boxed versions. Intel is of course doing its best to sell the new Atom CE5300 platform and to drum up some consumer interestBloomberg is reporting that the OS will in fact be finished Intel has put a blog post detailing the advantages of Atomsometime this summer and that Microsoft is preparing a CE5300 SoCs making it sound like set-top-boxes based onpartner event for next month where it will detail its Windows it will be the ultimate convergence devices. Intel is bragging8 strategy, especially with regards to timing and marketing. about console level graphics and if theyre comparingWed expect more details to slip out into the public after that themselves to the Nintendo Wii then they might be right, butevent, although as we know, things can change quite quickly considering that the graphics core should identical in termsin this industry, but Microsoft needs to get its new version of of performance to the Cedar Trail based Atom processors,Windows out in a timely manner if it wants to hit the holiday its no PS3 or Xbox 360 graphics.season. On the other hand we have no doubt that the CE5300 seriesAs for ARM based devices it appears that Microsoft is of SoCs will offer more than enough performance to handleworking with a few select partners for the initial launch media playback of all types, in no small amount thanks toand Bloomberg reports that the upcoming ARM devices are a dedicated video decoder. As we mentioned earlier, somebeing quality controlled by Microsoft as to meet the highest models will also sport a hardware video encoder whichstandards. Theres no doubt that is an important launch should make it a good solution for PVRs as well. Intel is alsofor Microsoft, as if the ARM version of the OS and the hoping that the Atom CE5300 will do double duty as a homeaccompanying devices prove to be a flop, Microsoft might be gateway and act as a cable modem, router and VoIP gatewayout of the ARM market space until the company has a new beyond the regular set-top-box features on offer.version of Windows. The real question here is how well Intel can compete withApparently three of the ARM based partner devices at launch ARM based solutions which have traditionally dominatedwill be tablets, but its not known how many devices will this market space. Its worth keeping in mind that many set-launch in total. Were hearing rumours of Asus Transformer top-box products arent always produced to be as cheap aslike devices being popular among some of the partners, possible, even though cost is always a consideration. Cablebut wed also expect a range of new interesting devices TV companies generally want products that lasts as long aslike Lenovos Yoga convertible notebook. The question is if possible and that are upgradable, especially when it comesthe fairly limited version of Windows 8 which will run on to being able to offer new features to their customers thatARM devices will be enough to satisfy consumer demand, they can charge an extra service fee for and here an x86considering that so far its been an OS on productivity chip might be a winner as its far more flexible than manydevices rather than on consumption devices. Itll be even ARM solutions. Then again, most consumers have no ideamore interesting to see if Microsoft can appeal to its target and couldnt care less about whats inside their set-top-box,market with the new devices well see, or if itll prove to be so well see how this one plays out.a tough sale, just as the case has been with most Androidbased tablets. Microsoft Xbox projectorIntel announces the Atom helmet patent shows gameCE5300 media processor console plansfamily Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/microsoft-xbox-projector-helmet- patent-shows-game-console-plans/15293.htmlSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/intel-announces-the-atom-ce5300- March 21st, 2012media-processor-family/15294.htmlMarch 21st, 2012 It has come to light that software developer Microsoft has patented a gaming helmet and projector eyeware for the Xbox, which could be a planned feature for the companys next-generation console.About a month and a half ago VR-Zone revealed Intels AtomCE5300 series of media processors (also known as It has come to light that software developer Microsoft hasBerryville) as well as Intels plans for Tizen and now Intel has patented a gaming helmet and projector eyeware for theofficially announced the Atom CE5300 platform at the IPTV Xbox, which could be a planned feature for the companysWorld Forum in London. Intel also had some of its partners next-generation console.at the show, displaying their very first set-top-boxes basedon the new platform. 10
    • March 21st, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneThe Redmond, Washington-based firm has been secretly degrees Fahrenheit after a very short period of use, such asworking on the gaming accessory since September 2010, 10 or 30 minutes.according to Patent Bolt, and has two versions in the work,which could revolutionise console gaming in the same waythat the Wii did. Some reports show that the new iPad 3, technically known as “the new iPad,” can overheat so much that users get an error screen telling them that it must cool down before beingThe two variations are a helmet and glasses, both of used. While this might help prevent the risk of burns or fire,which feature two projectors, which project virtual gameplay it will do little to appease angry customers.imagery into the room, bringing the industry one step closerto holographic gaming.The patent suggests that the projectors will be partiallytransparent so that users can see both the projected virtual DisplaySearch previously suggested that the new iPad hadobjects and the real terrain and objects behind them, helping display problems, thanks to its higher-resolution “retina”bring gamers closer to the dream of actually being fully display. It requires twice the number of LED lights andpresent in the game environment. Of course, this might consumes a lot more power, which could explain theonly work with gimmicky games that involve, for example, overheating issue.finding or interacting with objects in ones house, rather thanfull-blown blockbuster titles. Apple included a more powerful processor in the tablet, which required a bigger battery in order to keep battery lifeThere is also no guaranteeing that Microsoft will successfully similar to that of the iPad 2. The company claims that thedevelop this technology, or that it will be used in the Xbox iPad 3 could be used for up to 10 hours on a single charge, but720, but it certainly needs a new approach to consoles if it is many users are not even getting a tenth of that time beforeto compete with the Wii U, which is taking advantage of the the device overheats.tablet computer boom by adding a tablet controller. Apple has already sold three million of the new iPad, but several users have reported that they are returning the device, which could cost the company million of dollars if theUsers report iPad 3 problem is widespread enough.overheating problemSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/users-report-ipad-3-overheating- Apple has so far failed to respond to the issue.problem/15291.htmlMarch 21st, 2012 Image Source: Remle M. Project Titan stealing WorldA growing number of users are reporting that Apples third- of Warcraft developer talentgeneration iPad, which launched last week, is overheating to Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/project-titan-stealing-world-of-such an extent that it cannot be held. warcraft-developer-talent/15290.html March 21st, 2012A growing number of users are reporting that Apples third-generation iPad, which launched last week, is overheating tosuch an extent that it cannot be held.Multiple reports from consumers of the latest tabletcomputer show excessive temperatures like 96.8 or 117 11
    • March 21st, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneBlizzard, the game studio behind the popular Warcraft,Starcraft and Diablo series, has revealed that its Project The problem with running two MMOs is that it might end upTitan massively multiplayer online (MMO) game is taking competing with itself, with many veteran World of Warcraftdeveloper talent away from its highly-successful World of players likely willing to try something new. Since MMOs takeWarcraft (WoW) title. up a huge amount of time for gamers it can be difficult toBlizzard, the game studio behind the popular Warcraft, juggle both, so the success of Project Titan may come at theStarcraft and Diablo series, has revealed that its Project expense of its existing flagship game.Titan massively multiplayer online (MMO) game is takingdeveloper talent away from its highly-successful World ofWarcraft (WoW) title. Free mobile apps drain“There are people that had worked on the ‘World of Warcraft’ battery powerteam that now work on [Project Titan] where we’ve had like Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/free-mobile-apps-drain-battery-a slow trickle of expertise,” said Tom Chilton, game director power/15289.htmlfor World of Warcraft. “Meanwhile, we’ve also hired people March 21st, 2012and trained them over the last four to five years to take theplace of some of the people that have gone to work on theother games.”Blizzards MMO remains the global leader with over 10 Free mobile apps use considerably more battery powermillion players at the end of 2011. However, it has been than their paid equivalents, due to resource-hoggingsteadily losing subscribers since its peak record of 12 million advertisements, according to a study by Purdue University.in 2010, with rival games like Star Wars: The Old Republiclikely to blame. Free mobile apps use considerably more battery power than their paid equivalents, due to resource-hogging advertisements, according to a study by Purdue University. Researchers at the Indiana-based university found that third-party advertising services that are attached to free apps consume a significant amount of power, with one example accounting for 75 percent of the apps total energy consumption. Popular bird-flinging game Angry Birds was one of the main test apps employed, with the report finding that the game itself only used 20 percent of the total energy output. A whopping 45 percent of power was used to find out the users location in order to provide targeted advertising, which the remainder of the power provided. Another issue that was discovered is what is called a “3G tail,” where a 3G connection is left open for up to 10 seconds after a download has been completed, resulting in a needless loss of power, and a potential data charge for the user.Despite work on its top-secret Titan MMO, which somebelieve could be a “World of Starcraft” or perhaps a newfranchise altogether, the studio remains committed to Worldof Warcraft, with plans to release another expansion, Mistsof Pandaria, some time in the future, most likely this year.“I do believe there’s room for us to have two highly successfulMMO games,” Chilton added. “I don’t feel like there’s goingto be a time where we just say ‘OK, everybody on the WoWteam, pack it up you’re moving over to the Titan MMO.’ Idon’t see that as being a realistic probability. I think we’regoing to try to staff up both teams and actually end up withtwo large, strong MMO teams.” 12
    • March 21st, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneWhile the advertising model allows developers to create free launch when the tag has been scanned. The Xperia sola alsocontent, the studys author, Abhinav Pathak, said that energy comes with "floating touch" navigation, which only worksoptimisation needs to be taken more seriously. for web browsing and manipulating the live wallpaperon the home screen. It sports a 3.7-inch Reality Display with Mobile BRAVIA Engine and is equipped with 1GHz dual-The tests were made using popular apps on both the Android core processor. The Sony Xperia sola will be available in Q2and Windows Phone mobile platforms, but tests could not this year.be conducted on Apples iOS due to the companys softwarerestrictions. The findings are likely to be the same, however. Sony Xperia UBattery life is becoming an increasing concern for mobileusers, as smartphones and tablet computers consume hugevolumes of power, particularly if the user leaves apps likeemail and Facebook running in the background. Batterytechnology has not developed at the same pace, which meansthat energy conservation is critical if users want to get adecent amount of time out of a single charge.Image Credit: Tomasz SienickiSony Singapore offersintegrated entertainmentacross devices and screensizesSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/sony-singapore-offers-integrated-entertainment-across-devices-and-screen-sizes/15286.htmlMarch 21st, 2012Today, Sony Electronics Singapore showcased their newproducts including BRAVIA TVs and Xperia Androidsmartphones, which bring about integrated entertainmentand communication to users, and letting them have theconvenience of sharing the content on different platforms.Sony Xperia sola The first thing that caught our eyes on Sony Xperia U is the illuminating transparent strip on the phone that can adapt its colors to match the display. The Xperia U is powered by 1GHz dual-core processor and features 3.5- inch Reality Display powered by Mobile BRAVIA engine, 5-megapixel camera with fast capture and high definition recording, and incorporates xLoud and 3D surround sound audio technology. It will be available in Q2 2012. Sony Xperia PThe Sony Xperia sola was announced last week, and todaywe managed to get a hands-on of a working prototype. Thesmartphone features Near Field Communication, and withthe Smart Tags, you can personalize the type of apps to 13
    • March 21st, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone PRO and Motionflow XR 800 technologies that provide crisp, seamless video viewing. It is also fully Internet- connected with built-in 3D that offers an immersive cinematic experience. First retail GEFORCE GTX 680 pixelated Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/first-retail-geforce-gtx-680- pixelated/15287.html March 21st, 2012 The first images of a retail GTX 680 have appeared online thanks to Overclock.net forum member "ironman86" - a lucky lad who managed to get hold of a GIGABYTE model, box and all. The card with a designated model name of GV-N680D5-2GD-B strictly follows NVIDIAs reference design apart from some exclusive GIGABYTE sci-fi themed artwork. The first images of a retail GTX 680 have appeared online thanks to Overclock.net forum member "ironman86" - a lucky lad who managed to get hold of a GIGABYTE model, box and all.The Xperia P is designed to deliver an ultra-bright viewingexperience with Sony’s WhiteMagic display technology on its4-inch Realityy display powered by Mobile BRAVIA Engine.It is equipped with 1GHz dual-core processor, 8-megapixelrear camera, and is NFC-capable. On the left is the SIM cardslot, HDMI output and microUSB port. The camera shutter,volume control and power button are on the right. The SonyXperia P is also scheduled to launch in Q2. The card with a designated model name of GV- N680D5-2GD-B strictly follows NVIDIAs reference design apart from some exclusive GIGABYTE sci-fi themed artwork. These photos also allow us to confirm that the power-Sony has also introduced their new range of BRAVIA TVs connector arrangement does indeed comprise two 6-pin- the flagship HX, elegant NX and entry to mid-level EX sockets.series. The Sony HX855 and NX650 feature the company’sdistinctive Monolithic design and Corning Gorilla Glassfor durable screens. The HX855 incorporates X-Reality 14
    • March 21st, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone March 21st, 2012 SSDs might still be the hot topic in storage, but considering the high costs per GB, hard disk drives arent going anywhere any time soon. Seagate has announced that it has managed to reach storage densities of 1 Terabit per square inch, something the company claims will allow for twice the hard drive capacity of today within the next few years.Be sure to head over to the source multiple times over SSDs might still be the hot topic in storage, but consideringthe coming days where the forum post will continue to be the high costs per GB, hard disk drives arent going anywhereupdated with additional benchmark results. any time soon. Seagate has announced that it has managed to reach storage densities of 1 Terabit per square inch, something the company claims will allow for twice the hardReport: AMD Radeon HD 7990 drive capacity of today within the next few years.Specifications For now the technology is only on a demo stage and its basedSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/report-amd-radeon-hd-7990- on Seagates HAMR or heat-assisted magnetic recordingspecifications/15285.html technology. It allows Seagate to store roughly 2 million linearMarch 21st, 2012 bits per inch which leads to the 1 Terabit per square inch claim, or as Seagate puts it 55 percent higher than todays 620 Gigabit per square inch density ceiling. Seagate is expecting that its first generation of HAMR drives will come in capacities of around 6TB for 3.5-inch drives and 2TB for 2.5-inch drives. The company is expecting the HAMR technology to be able to scale to somewhere betweenAMD is preparing to release the Southern Islands / HD 7000 5 to 10 Terabits per inch and as such allowing for 30 to 60TBflagship, codenamed New Zealand, to be branded Radeon 3.5-inch drives and 10 to 20TB 2.5-inch drives over a 10 yearHD 7990. As expected, the 7990 will be a dual-GPU card, period from the introduction of the first HAMR drives.based on 2 x Tahiti.AMD is preparing to release the Southern Islands / HD 7000flagship, codenamed New Zealand, to be branded RadeonHD 7990. As expected, the 7990 will be a dual-GPU card,based on 2 x Tahiti.In essence, HD 7990 will be 2 x HD 7970 downclocked,Crossfired and cramped into a single GPU. There will be atotal of 48 CU covering 4096 SP and 256 TMU. HD 7990will feature a total of 6GB GDDR5, 3GB per GPU. Theclock speeds are down mildly from the HD 7970, settling at850 MHz core and 5 GHz memory. Judging by these clockspeeds, it is likely the HD 7990 will ship with a ~375WTDP and the same non-standard 2 x 8-pin power connectorsconfiguration featured in HD 6990 and GTX 590.The 7990 is expected to release in early April, followingshortly after the release of GeForce GTX 680 later this week. As for now, Seagate hasnt announced a launch dateOn release, HD 7990 will take over the fastest graphics card of any HAMR based hard disk drives and it looks likecrown, at least until NVIDIA challenges with a dual-GK104 the technology will be a lot more demanding in termschip, possibly GTX 690. HD 7990 will be in with a fighting of mechanical design compared to traditional hard diskchance of becoming the most expensive reference gaming/ drives. That said, we have little doubt that Seagate and itsconsumer graphics card at release, eclipsing GeForce 8800 competitors will find ways to overcome this within the nextUltras $829. few years and wed dare to guess that at launch well see larger capacity drives than Seagate is currently expecting to launch, simply based on the fact that Seagate is talkingSeagate hits 1Terabit per about 3TB and not 4TB drives in its press release andsquare inch making comparisons to these, rather than the larger, already available 4TB models.Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/seagate-hits-1terabit-per-square-inch/15284.html Keep in mind that were most likely two to three years away from retail products and hard disk drive densities are likely to increase before then using currently technology, or some interim technology. Once we move beyond HD resolution 15
    • March 21st, 2012 Published by: VR-Zonecontent and with the ever increasing pixel density of digital • Gain breakthrough & predictable performance withcameras and all other kind of content that people store on ColumnStore Indexhard disk drives, something else is going to have to keep the • Help enable security and compliance with new User-industry moving forward until HAMR arrives. defined Roles and Default Schema for Groups • Enable rapid data discovery for deeper insights acrossDownload Windows Server the organization with ColumnStore Index8 Beta and SQL Server 2012 • Ensure more credible, consistent data with SSIS improvements, a Master Data Services add-in forRTM Final Excel, and new Data Quality ServicesSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/download-windows-server-8-beta-and-sql-server-2012-rtm-final/15275.html • Optimize IT and developer productivity across serverMarch 21st, 2012 and cloud with Data-tier Application Component (DAC) parity with SQL Azure and SQL Server Data Tools for a unified dev experience across database, BI, and cloud functions SQL Server 2012 is now available, while the availability ofKeeping in line with its strategy of releasing public previews Windows Server 8 is expected during 2012.of their next-generation software, Microsoft has releasedpublic beta versions of their next generation operatingsystem and SQL for the enterprise. Judge rules MegauploadEven with all the problems around the development of the court order was unlawfulconsumer version of Windows 8 for both X86 and ARM Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/judge-rules-megaupload-court-architectures, the development of enterprise software is order-was-unlawful/15283.htmlgoing its course. March 21st, 2012Windows Server 8 or potentially "Windows Server 2012"represents the next generation server operating system,succeeding Windows Server 2008 R2, while SQL Server2012 will succeed SQL Server 2008 R2 database suite. Inorder to prepare for the public rollout of the enterprisesoftware, Microsoft announced downloadable versions ofthe beta OS and trial version for the finalized, Gold version A New Zealand judge has ruled that the court order used(RTM) of SQL server. to seize a number of possessions belonging to Megaupload founder Kim Dotcom was unlawful, which could see theIf you’re interested in downloading the software and items being return to him.checking how it fits your enterprise needs or just want to getyour feet wet, you can visit the following websites to learn A New Zealand judge has ruled that the court order usedmore and download the software. to seize a number of possessions belonging to MegaUpload founder Kim Dotcom was unlawful, which could see theAs the name states, Windows Server 8 shares a lot in items being return to him.common with Windows 8, but the two are quite different.Windows Server 8 is effectively the sixth generation of serveroperating systems (3.11 for Workgroups, NT 4.0, 2000, Luxury cars, giant TVs, jet skis and jewellery were among2003, 2008) and with this one, Microsoft is heavily focusing the stash seized by police in a raid on Dotcoms £20on the virtualization and the cloud itself, as well as on million property, which led to the closure of the file-hostingbuilding and distributing desktop and mobile applications. service over allegations of copyright infringement and fraud.This is the first OS to fully integrate the virtualization However, a series of government and police errors meansfeatures which began to appear with consumer and server that the court order employed should not have been granted.versions of Windows 7 (Server 2008). Microsoft claimsWindows Server 8 will be built not to crash, even when wholeservices go down. Only time will tell if they delivered the key The New Zealand government and police admitted thatfeatures right. they made five separate procedural mistakes when filing the initial court order, resulting in it no longer having any legal power. It seems that in their eagerness to nab the man andNo doubt about it, SQL Server is the most used server his colleagues they did not pay close enough attention to thein todays world and SQL Server 2012 looks to bring on proper paperwork procedures. If similar carelessness wasnumerous improvements since 2008 R2. One of key features employed in charges against Dotcom, or in the extraditionis "AlwaysOn" technology that looks to keep both WS8 and filing, it could result in him getting off on a technicality ofSQL Server alive. According to Microsoft, this is the list of law.key features: • Deliver required uptime and data protection with AlwaysOn 16
    • March 21st, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone • FIFA 10 for PlayStation Portable and Wii • The Godfather II for PC, PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 • EA Sports MMA for PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 • Need for Speed ProStreet for PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 • The Saboteur (loss of The Midnight Club access) for PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 • Spare Parts for PlayStation 3 Xbox 360However, Dotcoms possessions will not necessarily bereturn to him, as his legal team demands, because newdocuments have been filed for the seizure and confiscationof not only the existing items, but additional assets that wereuncovered in the raid.Dotcoms lawyers say that the asset seizure initially left theman without money to fund a legal defence, a situation madeall the more grave now that it has been revealed that thecourt order was not legal.The judge will make a decision soon regarding whether ornot Dotcoms items should be returned to him. "As games get replaced with newer titles, the number of players still enjoying the older games dwindles to a level -- fewer than 1% of all peak online players across allImage Credit: Getty Images EA titles -- where its no longer feasible to continue the behind-the-scenes work involved with keeping these gamesEA to cut online support for up and running," EA said. "We would rather our hard- working engineering and IT staff focus on keeping a positiveseveral games experience for the other 99% of customers playing our moreSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/ea-to-cut-online-support-for-several- popular games."games/15282.htmlMarch 21st, 2012 The vast majority of the games are two or more years old, but that will be small comfort for those who are regularly enjoying playing them online. It is understandable, however, that EA made this decision, given the low population on these game servers.Electronic Arts (EA) has decided to pull online support for The online access to these games will be removed on 13 April.a number of its games, including some popular older sportstitles.Electronic Arts (EA) has decided to pull online support fora number of its games, including some popular older sports iPad 3 and other tabletstitles. causing injury Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/ipad-3-and-other-tablets-causing- injury/15281.htmlThe affected games are: March 21st, 2012 • BOOM BLOX Bash Party for Wii • Burnout Revenge for Xbox 360 • EA Create for PC, PlayStation 3, Wii and Xbox 360 The growing number of tablet computers, including Apples • EA Sports Active 2.0 for PlayStation 3, Wii and Xbox new iPad launched last week, are causing increasing reports 360 of neck and shoulder injuries, according to a leading doctor • EA Sports Active NFL Training Camp for Wii in the field. 17
    • March 21st, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneThe growing number of tablet computers, including the newiPad launched last week, are causing increasing reports of Huawei strikes back atneck and shoulder injuries, according to a leading doctor in Creative with countersuitthe field. Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/huawei-strikes-back-at-creative- with-countersuit/15280.html March 21st, 2012Dr. Tony Kochhar, who specialises in shoulder problems andrepetitive strain injury (RSI), said that he is now seeing morethan 20 patients a week with what is becoming known as“iPad shoulder.”“Holding the tablet lower down means users have to gazedownwards more sharply,” said Kochhar. “This is increasing Last month, Creative Technology sued Chinese networkingthe pressure on their joints.” and telecommunications equipment and services company, Huawei, over the failure of the WiMAX broadband project. And Huawei has filed a countersuit against Creative for USiPads are not the only devices responsible for this sharp rise $8.23 million over the termination of the project.in shoulder injuries, as other handheld devices like e-readersare also creating similar problems, as is holding a mobilephone between the ear and shoulder when attempting a do-it-yourself hands-free style. It was only about a month ago when Creative has sued Huawei for US$9.4 million (S$11.7 million) for the failure of the WiMAX broadband project, and that the ChineseKochhar provided some tips for avoiding injury when using company was unable to deliver the network performancean iPad or other tablet. He recommends that users correct as stated in the supply contract. In 2010, QMaxtheir posture by keeping the screen level with the face, rather Communications, a subsidiary of Creative Technology, hasthan hunching over it, as is usually the case. Ideally this contracted Huawei to set up the WiMAX broadband networkwould involve a stand, but if users are holding it up to their in Singapore. And now, Huawei has filed a countersuitface they need to switch arms periodically or risk causing against the local company for US$8.23 million (S$10.4arm injury. million) in unpaid goods and services as well as the wrongful termination of the WiMAX broadband contract.Gentle stretching of the neck and shoulders every hour isanother good way to ward off injury, as is taking regular ASUS launches Eee PC 1025breaks, the tried and trusted advice when it comes toworking on any form of computer for a long period of time. Flare series, worlds fastest netbook with 2 sec resume Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/asus-launches-eee-pc-1025-flare-Finally, Kochhar suggests that users should watch for the series-world-s-fastest-netbook-with-2-sec-resume/15278.htmlearly signs of “iPad shoulder,” such as aching over one side of March 21st, 2012the back of the shoulder blade or pain down the upper arm.Apple might be planning a post-PC future, but properlyaligned and positioned desktop PCs probably remain themost suitable devices to avoid strain while doing long-termwork. Who says netbooks are going to extinction? ASUS has recently announced their new Eee PC 1025 Flare series which claims to be the worlds fastest netbook that can resume in just two seconds. 18
    • March 21st, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone core mobile processors will launch at the same time as the desktop counterparts after all. The three new models from HP are the Pavilion dv4-5000, dv5-7000 and dv7-7000, a 14-inch, 15.6-inch (1366x768 for both models) and a 17.3-inch (1920x1080) model respectively. All three models feature the HM77 chipset and judging by HPs YouTube videos of the three new models we can expect to see SSD caching on at least the dv5 and dv6 models. Currently only the dv5-7000 is available in multiple SKUs, but wed expect HP to flesh out its line up over time once more CPU options become available. Starting with the dv4-5000 you get the Core i7-3610QM which is clocked at 2.3GHz, 4GB of DDR3 1600MHz memory, a 1TB 5,400rpm hard drive, a DVD drive and interestingly a GeForce GT 630M GPU with 2GB of dedicated DDR3 memory suggesting that HP doesnt seemThe ASUS Eee PC 1025 Flare Series netbook sports a new to think that Intels IGP in Ivy Bridge is good enough fordesign with several color options, and incorporates 1.8GHz the intended market for its Pavilion series of notebooks.Intel Atom Cedar Trail dual-core processor, which claims Other features include an Intel 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi card,to offer four times the graphical performance to previous Bluetooth (HP didnt specify which kind), Gigabit Ethernet,generations while consuming less power. It also supports two USB 3.0 ports, a USB 2.0 port, HDMI, D-sub, aup to 2GB of DDR3 memory, up to 500GB hard drive, and pair of audio jacks, a memory card reader and an HDcomes with Smart Camera with 4x zoom, built-in USB 3.0, webcam. The dv4-6000 comes in at 2.17kg and measureDLNA, and Wi-Fi Direct connectivity. The netbook features 344x234x33.5mm (WxDxH).the proprietary ASUS Super Hybrid Engine II with Instant The dv6-7000 isnt that different, as the base SKU is nearlyOn technology that offers two-second system resume from identical in terms of features to the dv4-5000 with the onlysleep mode, and up to 21 days of standby. It also supports difference being that it comes with a third USB 3.0 and aBlu-ray 2.0, and full high definition 1080p video playback smaller 750GB hard drive. The higher-end SKU gets a 1TBvia HDMI output. With the built-in data security features, it drive and 8GB of RAM, but this appears to be the onlyensures zero data loss, with user data automatically saved to difference between the two SKUs. The dv6-7000 weighs inthe hard drive when the battery drops below 5%. Available at 2.57kg and measures 378x247x32.5mm (WxDxH).in eleven different colors, including Addict Pink, Mysterious The dv7-7000 differs by having the Core i7-3720QM CPU,Blue, and Plucky Purple, the ASUS Eee PC 1025 Flare but it also comes with 8GB of DDR3 1600MHz memory asSeries netbook is now available in Singapore at S$499. standard, as well as having a pair of 1TB 5,400rpm hardUsers will also receive 3GB of cloud storage space on ASUS drives. It also gets upgraded graphics in the shape of anWebStorage. Nvidia GeForce GT 650M with 2GB of GDDR5 memory. The only other addition we could spot was a Blu-ray writer. TheHP let slip a three Ivy Bridge dv7-7000 is of course the largest and heaviest model out of the three at 3.15kg and 416x274x35.2mm (WxDxH).notebook modelsSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/hp-let-slip-a-three-ivy-bridge-notebook-models/15279.html Samsung GALAXY S III toMarch 21st, 2012 launch in May? Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/samsung-galaxy-s-iii-to-launch-in- may-/15277.html March 21st, 2012Despite not being expected to launch until June after Intelpushed back the date for its upcoming Ivy Bridge processors,HP has revealed three new notebook models featuring thenew processors. Two of the models feature the same quadcore Core i7-3610QM processor with the third sporting a The Samsung GALAXY S III is going to be launched soon,Core i7-3720QM, suggesting that its possible that the quad and there have been many leaked photos of the Androidcore mobile processors will launch at the same time as the smartphone online. But the latest one seems to be thedesktop counterparts after all. real deal, from a Powerpoint slide with the name of PRDespite not being expected to launch until June after Intel agency (WeberShandwick) at the bottom.pushed back the date for its upcoming Ivy Bridge processors,HP has revealed three new notebook models featuring thenew processors. Two of the models feature the same quadcore Core i7-3610QM processor with the third sporting aCore i7-3720QM, suggesting that its possible that the quad 19
    • March 21st, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone used first to the main memory, and then retrieving it from that main memory right away. These two steps alone could waste up to a microsecond per each transfer - and this adds up to quite a bit if you look at thousands of transactions every second. So, in DDIO, at least with Intel I/O adapters and new E5s, the adapter will send the requested data directly into the CPU L3 cache, for the immediate use by the processor, as you can see on this illustration:The photo of the Samsung GALAXY S III shows an extremelythin bezel around the display with a front button belowit. The phone is also very slim and has both front andrear camera; the overall design looks to be an authenticSamsungs style. According to sources, the GALAXY S III isscheduled for launch on 22 May. The home screen shows fivetouch icons at the bottom of the display, which Interestingly,are currently only available on the GALAXY Note. Unlessit means the GALAXY S III has a similar 5-inch display, itwill not make sense to incorporate the five touch icons onsmaller screens. It seems doubtful that the company have theGALAXY S III join the 5-inch camp to vie with its GALAXYNote. It is still too early to draw conclusions, lets wait andsee when the Android smartphone is announced.Intels Direct I/O in Xeon E5- Workstations and serverstoday, gaming systemstomorrow?Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/intel-s-direct-io-in-xeon-e5--workstations-and-servers-today-gaming-systems-tomorrow-/15276.htmlMarch 21st, 2012 Compared to it, a similar classic approach would take at least two to three memory trips for each write or read operation, as you can see on the comparison picture above for the otherThe new generation dual Socket 2011 Xeon E5 platform has way around, sending data to the I/O controller.one rarely mentioned, but important, capability - receivingthe I/O data from, say, storage or network, directly into Basically, data access ops associated with creating the I/the CPU cache, rather than going to and from the main O packet are satisfied from within the cache, avoiding thememory. Direct I/O (DDIO) could be used even beyond cache misses occurence for the software running on the CPUworkstations and servers, though... how about low-latency and the related main memory data fetching, which of coursehigh end gameplay? consumes time. Then, the I/O controller read request is doneDDIO idea was obviously coming from the server world, from that same cache, without evicting that data and causingwhere thousands of network requests, or data from storage possible cache misses if the software re-uses it.arrays, could be coming in and out of the server every second.In the old days, the on chip caches were limited in capacity,and priority had to be given to the local code and data used Now, all that is great and fine for the servers andby the CPU. workstations, especially low latency dependent apps like high frequency trading and all general Net server usageHowever, the new generation high end processors have large models. The 10% to 20% latency reduction that can becaches - 20 MB L3 in the case of Xeon E5 parts - and a lot obtained could also find its use in our home PCs toomore could fit in there. So, there could be alternative to the - how about massive multiplayer gaming scenarios? Aold process of sending the arriving I/O data that needs to be combination of reduced network I/O latency, and storage I/ 20
    • March 21st, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneO latency from dedicated PCIe SSD controllers, for instance, come this spring, while the “Family F1 game” will be releasedcould be noticeable in a very intensive online gaming setup. during this holiday season.The good thing is, DDIO is completely transparent, needingno software enablement as long as compliant I/O adapterICs are used. Since the Core i7 39xx parts come from thesame dies as Xeon E5 series, Intel could enable DDIO onthem as well - itd be a good extra capability to keep theirmarket niche in the face of arriving mainstream quad coreIvy Bridge processors. How about that?Codemasters and FormulaOne Extend Partnership,Multiple F1 Titles ComingSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/codemasters-and-formula-one-extend-partnership-multiple-f1-titles-coming/15274.htmlMarch 21st, 2012We have received news that Codemasters has extended thepartnership with the Formula One World ChampionshipLtd., which will result in even larger number of F1 games onmultiple platforms.Ever since Codemasters poached the F1 license fromunderwhelming Sony Computer Entertainment, thecompany delivered solid entertainment to millions of fansworldwide. To be more precise, F1 2010 and F1 2011 sold inover 5.5 million copies, bringing over 300 million dollars inrevenue.This is significantly more than Sony was able to achieve afterthey paid 200 million dollars to Formula One Managementand released a series of mediocre arcade games.Building on that, it comes as of no surprise that FormulaOne World Championship Limited, a group behind the sport- decided to convert the original two year license into amultiyear agreement which will see the arrival of multipletitles oriented to all audiences.According to Codemasters, we can expect F1 expanding inthe following direction: • F1 20xx titles - new simulation games targeting popular consoles and PC • F1 Online - new freemium (free-to-play, pay for premium) management game • Unannounced "family-oriented" F1 title (read: F1 for kids)According to Bernie Ecclestone, the CEO of Formula OneGroup, "Codemasters has created some of the best and mostsuccessful FORMULA ONE games to date. We and theteams work closely with them and look forward to creatingmore award winning games together in the future."The new F1 2012 title will follow in September, a year afterF1 2011 and two years after F1 2010. The F1 Online will 21
    • March 23rd, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneVR-Zone.com | Tech News for the Geeks! VR-Zone | Stuff for the Geeks is a bi-weekly In fact, Blizzard is planning so far ahead that it has also been publication covering the latest gadgets and stuff for the pitching ideas for its sixth expansion, which will likely be geeks. several years away. Sams said he is “pretty geeked up” about the plans hes seen.Blizzard planning "multipleexpansions" after World of Blizzard recently admitted that BioWares MMO, Star Wars: The Old Republic, was partially to blame for its fallingWarcraft: Mists of Pandaria subscriber numbers in World of Warcraft. It is hoping thatSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/blizzard-planning-multiple- its panda expansion brings many players back, but teasingexpansions-after-world-of-warcraft-mists-of-pandaria/15335.html about future expansions is likely also intended to keepMarch 23rd, 2012 existing gamers who might be fearful about the future of the title.Blizzard has promised that there will be several moreexpansions for its popular massively multiplayer online First Hackintosh Ivy Bridge(MMO) game, World of Warcraft, after the release of its system up and runningupcoming Mists of Pandaria expansion. Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/first-hackintosh-ivy-bridge-system- up-and-running/15336.htmlBlizzard has promised that there will be several more March 23rd, 2012expansions for its popular massively multiplayer online(MMO) game, World of Warcraft, after the release of itsupcoming Mists of Pandaria expansion.Despite moving developer talent away from its flagship titleto its secretive Project Titan MMO, Blizzard still has bigplans for World of Warcraft in the years to come. Despite there being over a month until Intel is expected to launch its Ivy Bridge processors, benchmarks are popping up left right and centre on the internet and now the firstBlizzards COO Paul Sams said that the company is already Hackintosh with an Ivy Bridge CPU has been spotted. Thein the early stages of development of its fifth expansion, system in question is running a Core i7-3770K CPU at stockthe successor to the as yet unreleased Mists of Pandaria. clock and is putting in some decent benchmark results.This stage is mostly about developing the ideas and lore that Despite there being over a month until Intel is expected toshape the landscape, classes, and other aspects that end up launch its Ivy Bridge processors, benchmarks are poppingin an expansion, but Blizzard is keen to point out that it is up left right and centre on the internet and now the firstworking on new stuff for its aging MMO. Hackintosh with an Ivy Bridge CPU has been spotted. The system in question is running a Core i7-3770K CPU at stock clock and is putting in some decent benchmark results. We should start with a word of warning here though for those planning on building their own Hackintosh with an Ivy Bridge CPU, as until Apple releases Ivy Bridge based systems, a patched kernel is needed to get the system to boot. The lack of support from Apple also means that an Ivy Bridge based Hackintosh could be fairly unstable compared to one running on supported hardware. 1
    • March 23rd, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone March 23rd, 2012 Apple has patented an idea for a universal TV remote that will turn your iPhone into a copy of any existing TV remote, potentially replacing standard remote controls altogether. Apple has patented an idea for a universal TV remote that will turn your iPhone into a copy of any existing TV remote, potentially replacing standard remote controls altogether.As far as the details, well, they come from renownedHackintosh website tonymacx86 which has had a fewexclusives like this in the past. Beyond the Core i7-3770K the The technology works like this: a user takes a photo of theirsystem was kitted out with 8GB of DDR3 2400MHz memory remote using their iPhone and uploads it to the iCloud,and a GeForce GTX 580 graphics cards. As for the rest of the where it is analysed. Apple then automatically sends backspecifications we dont really know what was being used, but a virtual copy of the physical remote to the iPhone, whichwith an overall 64-bit Geekbench score of 13453 this system should then work with the TV in question.is no slouch. The universal remote software will also take advantage of iPhone cameras and microphones to determine the current state of a TV, such as if it is on or off, or if the volume needs to be adjusted. This could, however, present some potential privacy issues and may not make it into the final product, if, indeed, it ever gets developed at all. Google previously developed technology for its Google TV service that allows Android smartphones to be used asApple is expected to launch Ivy Bridge products later this remote controls, but Apples idea extends beyond its ownyear, although with Intels delay of the mobile parts, is territory by offering to become a skeleton key for the entirepossible that Apple has delayed its launch schedule as well. TV market.Well just have to wait and see how things play out, butwe have no doubt that Apple will launch both desktop andmobile Ivy Bridge based systems within the next few months. The potential problem with this idea, aside from the fact thatHit the source for more screenshots and benchmark details. it will be a logistical challenge to achieve, is that copying existing remotes might present some legal difficulties for Apple, particularly if some TV manufacturers have patentsApple patents universal to back up their remotes.iPhone TV remote ideaSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/apple-patents-universal-iphone-tv- It is believed that this technology will be worked into a newremote-idea/15334.html iPhone in the future, rather than being rolled out to existing models. 2
    • March 23rd, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone Nvidia Kepler GPUs - back toFacebook buys IBM patents games, away from compute? Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/nvidia-kepler-gpus--back-to-games-to protect from lawsuits away-from-compute-/15332.htmlSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/facebook-buys-ibm-patents-to- March 23rd, 2012protect-from-lawsuits/15333.htmlMarch 23rd, 2012Facebook has bought a whopping 750 patents from IBM inefforts to protect itself from patent infringement lawsuits.The patents in question cover areas relating to software Nvidias first Kepler generation GPU, the GK104-basedand networking, according to a person close to the matter, GeForce GTX 680, is finally out officially. The benchmarksthough how strong the patents are is not yet clear. show high game performance, but is - compared to the old Fermi at least - GPU compute performance pushed aside here?To understand the scope of this acquisition, Facebookcurrently has 56 patents and 503 patent applications Some months ago, when I chatted in Shenzhen with Simonawaiting approval, significantly less than the portfolio it Moy, the ex-Nvidia man who designed the first GPU vertexbought from IBM. This takes it from a very weak position in shader for them, and brought the GPU compute ideathe patent world to an extremely strong one. into the reality, we discussed the impacts that replacing the hardwired 3-D acceleration with fully programmable, increasingly CPU-like, graphics processors suited also for compute tasks, would have. One agreed impact was, at the beginning, loss in some 3-D performance metrics tied to the fully hardwired accelerators but gain in the other new routines that may in return help back even with the gaming 3-D experience, such as complex effects and physics. The overall consensus was that, in the long run, it is that extra compute performance that will bring more aggregate benefit than just pure 3-D gaming hardware. And, I guess, thats what to some extent guided Nvidia Fermi GeForce 5xx generation designers few years ago. It seems that, despite the even more fine grained architecture, the new Kepler generation is back to the gaming acceleration focus. Nvidia was under high pressure to deliver the new benchmark winner ever since AMD took the clear GPU lead with the HD7970 as the first 28nm high end graphics processor implementation. The GK100, successor to the GF100 and GF110 in GTX580, was supposedYahoo recently sued Facebook for the alleged infringement to be the high end Kepler chip to bring the performance leadof several of its patents relating to privacy, advertising and back to Nvidia on most fronts, but for reasons known reallysharing, core areas of Facebooks business. The acquisition only to Nvidia itself, that chip never materialised. Instead, itof IBM patents is likely a response to this and similar was the mid-high end successor to the GF104 found in thelawsuits as the social networking giant realises the threat GTX560 cards, the GK104 we see now, that had to take theposed by rival firms with a better patent standing. high end battle position. Youve surely already seen the endless slides published all“We expect the number of patent and other intellectual over the web today about the brand new gaming features,property claims against us to grow,” the company wrote effects and yes, very decent game benchmark results for thein its initial public offering (IPO) filing in February. “We new part. Our Lennard has covered those in detail earliermay introduce new products, including in areas where we today, and most sites have shown Nvidias architecturecurrently do not compete, which could increase our exposure slides. The change from SM shaders to more fine grainedto patent and other intellectual property claims.” SMX is, obviously, the most noticeable change at the hardware architecture level. However, something else was worth observing - the GPUThe financial terms of the transaction are not known, but compute performance of the new part was lacking, in factFacebook is believed to have paid several hundred million it was slower than the GTX580 on about all computedollars for the portfolio. benchmarks. It is kind of understandable, since the GK104 chip in it was to originally replace the GF104 (GTX 460) - which also didnt focus on compute, being not the high-end offering at the time. So, the crippled 1/12 double precision FP rate vs single precision is seen as OK, if compared with 3
    • March 23rd, 2012 Published by: VR-Zonethe similar ratio on the HD7870, which was (supposed) to GPU in their consumer cards should be let to enjoy it, sincebe its main competitor. Of course, the other problem is that it is all already in the hardware, and it will create some extraits single precision FP is also seemingly identical to the goodwill as well. Why cripple it?HD7870, a mid range US$349 card. Beats by Dr. Dre headphones clone selling at US$42 in China Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/beats-by-dr.-dre-headphones-clone- selling-at-us-42-in-china/15331.html March 23rd, 2012 It is quite common to see people wearing the stylish Beats by Dr. Dre headphones on the streets or in the subway these days, as the popular headphones claim superb audio quality for music listening. It seems that in mainland China, which is well-known for producing counterfeits, has create knock- offs of the audio product and selling at just US$42.However, Nvidia is positioning the GTX680 squarely againstthe HD7970 now, and thats a big difference - HD7970 haswaaay faster single precision FP, and many times fasterDP FP, thanks to keeping the DP FP rate at 1/4 of SPFP, basically not crippling it to force users into plonkingthousands of bucks for an otherwise similar pro card.Since the GPU compute apps have become increasinglypopular - look at even Adobe and other big names - curtailingthe FP performance just to push overpriced pro parts wouldconstitute ripping off the customers. What if, for instance,Intel (or AMD) crippled the FP performance on theirconsumer Core i7 processors just to ensure that whoeverneeds more math capabilities MUST buy the otherwiseidentical, but more expensive, Xeons? Everyone would cry Beats Electronics, LLC was founded by hip-hop/rap artistfoul, wouldnt they? Dr. Dre and Interscope-Geffen-A&M Records chairmanSo, while blocking the extra FP in a US$ 200+ card may Jimmy Iovine, which produces products under the brand,be acceptable, a US$ 400 or higher top-end cream of the Beats by Dr. Dre. Monster was given exclusive rights undercrop should not have such crippling features. One may say a five-year contract to produce and develop Beats-brandedwho cares, this card is only for gamers, but the point is - headphones. Last year, HTC acquired 51% majority of thethanks a lot to Nvidia and its GPU (CUDA) compute promo stake of the company, and Monster have also decided not toefforts too- many PC apps these days do benefit from this renew their contract.acceleration, and an increasing number of them used double There have been a wide range of Beats by Dr. Dre productsprecision FP for the sake of, ehm, extra precision. on the market - Beats by Dr. Dre Studio High-DefinitionI am quite sure that the planned GK110 part, which now Headphones, Beats Solo HD, Beats Tour with ControlTalkshould be the true follow-on to the GF110 from the GTX580 and even Beats by Dr. Dre HeartBeats Lady Gaga In-Ear.card, should have better GPU compute performance when it And in China, they can cost from 1000 yuan (US$159) andcomes out. The point is, dont cripple the FP - the users who up; quite close to the standard retail price everywhere.really want Quadros and Teslas will buy them for the sake of Alas, factories in mainland China have produced their owntheir larger memory, expert support and validation anyway, imitations of the headphones. For those who arent awarebut those of the users who want to have the FP benefits of could purchase the Beats by Dr. Dre clone headphones 4
    • March 23rd, 2012 Published by: VR-Zonewith carrying case and in authentic looking box, all for just March 23rd, 2012270 yuan (US$42). No clue whether the audio performancewould be similar or better than the original though. Some not too blurry pictures of what appears to be an upcoming Android 4.0 handset from Samsung has made an appearance online and one of the pictures gives us the model name, GT-i9300. This may or may not be the much anticipated Galaxy S III, but at this point in time its anyones guess. Some not too blurry pictures of what appears to be an upcoming Android 4.0 handset from Samsung has made an appearance online and one of the pictures gives us the model name, GT-i9300. This may or may not be the much anticipated Galaxy S III, but at this point in time its anyones guess.Panasonic Eluga waterproof Whats certain is the fact that the GT-i9300 was designed for Android 4.0, as it uses the new on-screen soft menus, rathersmartphone to retail in Japan than capacitive or hardware buttons below the display.on 29 March Samsung has instead moved its logo to a position below the display, which is quite unusual for a Samsung device.Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/panasonic-eluga-waterproof-smartphone-to-retail-in-japan-on-29-march/15330.htmlMarch 23rd, 2012Besides faster processor, bigger screens and slim, stylishbody, many phone makers are focusing on the durabilityof the device - how resistant it can go against water, dust,shock etc. The new Panasonic Eluga, which claims to bewaterproof, is going to be launched in Japan next week, on29 march.At last months Mobile World Congress, Panasonic unveiledtheir new 4.3-inch Eluga, which claims to be waterproof. Thesmartphone is scheduled to launch in Japan on 29 March byNTT DoCoMo, though pricing details have yet to be revealed.However, the Panasonic Eluga started selling in UK lastweek, at £399 (US$630), which is quite expensive. ThePanasonic Eluga measures 7.8mm thin and weighs 103g. Itsports a 4.3-inch OLED touchscreen (960x540) and claimsto be resistant to water and dust. Internally, it is powered bya 1GHz TI OMAP processor with 16GB memory and featuresNear Field Communication (NFC) technology, 8-megapixelcamera (without flash) and runs Android 2.3 Gingerbread.According to the company, Android 4.0 ICS upgrade willcome in Q2 2012. The phone will also be launched in otherEuropean countries in April.Pictures of Samsungs GT-i9300 leak, could be the According to Phone Arena where the pictures appeared, theGalaxy S III GT-i9300 is likely to feature a 4.7-inch display or close toSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/pictures-of-samsung-s-gt-i9300- that size at least. A few of the pre-installed apps, such asleak-could-be-the-galaxy-s-iii/15329.html S Planner and S Memo suggest that it should at least be a Galaxy S series device, as these apps can also be found on the Galaxy Note. Even so, the GT-i9300 doesnt look anything like the earlier pictures that leaked of what was said to be the 5
    • March 23rd, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneGalaxy S III, so its entirely possible that this is a different apparently ideal on an 11.6-inch display at either 1366x768,device. 1920x1080 or 2560x1440 resolution. Another interesting aspect of Microsofts blog post on theWindows 8 screen resolution subject of displays and resolution for Windows 8 is that the company is asking developers to build apps suitablerecommendations suggest for higher resolutions and as such wants developers to use2560x1440 tablets scalable vector graphics rather than traditional bitmaps. This is due to the fact that scalable vector graphics willSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/windows-8-screen-resolution- look good at any resolution, whereas bitmaps generally lookrecommendations-suggest-2560x1440-tablets/15328.html terrible at non-native resolution. This wasnt done as a directMarch 23rd, 2012 response to the new iPad, as Microsoft is offering tools to developers that allow them to preview what their Metro apps will look like at various screen sizes and resolutions, something that should hopefully improve the look of Metro apps when Windows 8 launches later this year.Microsoft has apparently decided that Apples retina displayon the new iPad just doesnt cut it, as the company has Nvidia reveals GeForce 600Mreleased details covering common screen sizes for Windows8 which points towards tablets – or slates as per the diagram line-up alongside the GTX 680– with resolutions of up to 2560x1440 pixels which equates Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/nvidia-reveals-geforce-600m-line-to 291 DPI on a 10.1-inch device. up-alongside-the-gtx-680/15327.html March 23rd, 2012Microsoft has apparently decided that Apples retina displayon the new iPad just doesnt cut it, as the company hasreleased details covering common screen sizes for Windows8 which points towards tablets – or slates as per the diagram– with resolutions of up to 2560x1440 pixels which equatesto 291 DPI on a 10.1-inch device.Apples 9.7-inch iPad manages 264 DPI, or slightly higher Theres no doubt that Nvidias GeForce GTX 680 has provenpixel density than 11.6-inch Windows 8 tablets which will itself to be a serious performance contender and althoughoffer a pixel density of 253 DPI with a 2560x1440 display. we dont know what Nvidia is planning below the GTX 680,These appear to be for high-end devices only, so dont expect the company did also announce its range of mobile GPUsthis to be the standard for Windows 8 tablets when they alongside it. The GeForce 600M series will at least initiallyarrive, as Microsoft is also listing 1920x1080 and 1366x768 consist of 10 new GPUs, of which three are high-end GTXas supported screen resolutions. models. Theres no doubt that Nvidias GeForce GTX 680 has proven itself to be a serious performance contender and although we dont know what Nvidia is planning below the GTX 680, the company did also announce its range of mobile GPUs alongside it. The GeForce 600M series will at least initially consist of 10 new GPUs, of which three are high-end GTX models. The "standard" models can be seen in the table below and ranges from the very basic GeForce 610M to the GT 650M. There are some oddities here though and theyre not that easy to spot given the model names. The GeForce 610M, GT 620M, GT 630M and GT 635M are in fact not based on the Kepler architecture, but rather the older Fermi architecture.More importantly though, if you have a device with a However, Nvidia is said to be making these new mobile chipsresolution of 1024x600 or 1280x720, which in the first case using TSMCs 28nm manufacturing process, to the actualis just about every single netbook – apart from the slightly GPUs should be smaller and cooler running that the mobileworse 1024x576 resolution – you wont be able to run the GeForce 500-series of GPUs.Metro UI. We cant think of a single notebook or screen with1280x720 resolution though, albeit there were a few TVswith this resolution in the early days of LCD TVs. That said,Windows 8 will support any display with a height of at least768 pixels, so even old 1024x768 displays will work with theMetro UI.Microsoft has also worked out what it thinks is the idealsweet spots for pixel density on various resolution displays,as well as the ideal touch target size, i.e. how big the objectyoure touching will be on the screen at any given pixeldensity. As such, a touch target size of around 9mm is 6
    • March 23rd, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneAs for the new Kepler based GPUs, all three GT models have384 shaders/CUDA cores and a 128-bit memory interface. Game sales surpass videoFirst up we have the GT640M LE which is a slower clocked sales in UK for first timeGT 640M which for some reason features much lower Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/game-sales-surpass-video-sales-in-memory bandwidth than the GT 640M, despite that the GT uk-for-first-time/15326.html640M LE has an equally wide 128-bit memory bus. Rumour March 23rd, 2012has it that at least some GT 640M LE cards will be re-branded Fermi based GPUs, but were uncertain if this isactually the case or not and its not something weve heardanything about.Besides clocks speeds and memory bandwidth the GT 640MLE and the GT 640M appears to be identical and theres Computer game sales have surpassed sales of videos for thelittle else to see here. The faster GT 650M is again another first time in the UK in 2011, according to a report by thevery similar part, although in this case Nvidia has provided Entertainment Retailers Association.specific clock speeds for the GPU depending on the memorytype its paired up with. When DDR3 is being used with the Computer game sales have surpassed sales of videos for theGT 650M it will be clocked at 850MHz, but if GDDR5 is first time in the UK in 2011, according to a report by thebeing used, then the GPU will be clocked at 735MHz. The Entertainment Retailers Association (ERA).other GPUs only feature an "up to" GPU clock speed, so itspretty clear from this that Nvidia doesnt want the GT 650M The videogame industry is now the biggest entertainmentto compete with its higher-end parts. category in the UK, with £1.926 billion earned in 2011 alone,The high-end parts start with the GeForce GTX 660M and over £100 million more than the £1.802 billion made in thethis is the first part that only supports GDDR5 memory. On video sector and nearly double the £1.066 billion made ona hardware level it appears to be identical to the GT 650M music.with 384 shaders and a 128-bit memory interface. However,the GPU is clocked higher at 835MHz and its likely that itllbe paired with faster memory in most scenarios, although it In terms of percentages, the games market in the UK ruledhas the same theoretical peak memory bandwidth as the GT 40.2 percent in 2011, with video closely following at 37.6650M. On feature that comes into play here though is SLI percent and music trailing behind at 22.2 percent.support, as only the GTX models support SLI, albeit werenot sure how many notebook makers would opt to offer amachine with a pair of upper mid-range cards in SLI. This is good news for the games industry, which is also set to get tax cuts from the UK government this year.This brings us to the GTX 670M and GTX 675M which aresimply re-branded Fermi chips that used to be known as theGTX 570M and GTX 580M. The GTX 670M features slightlyhigher clock speeds than the GTX 570M, but this isnt likelyto have a huge impact on game performance. The GTX 675Mis identical to the GTX 580M, despite Nvidias attempt atconfusion on its own website by listing the shader clock for Falling sales in brick-and-mortar stores have not affectedthe older GPUs and the core clock for the rebranded models. the overall growth of the games market, as more people are moving to digital downloads, as well as apps on smartphonesNvidia has of course provided scores of benchmarks and and tablet computers, which makes access much more directother figures to back up its new and re-branded GPUs and and cuts down on packaging and storage costs.if you hit the source link youll find all of those. The onlyproblem is that most of them arent comparable in anysensible way. What we dont doubt is Nvidias claim that Digital delivery of game content now accounts for 26 percentits new GeForce GT 640M is twice as efficient as a GTX of the games market in the UK, so theres still plenty of room285M from 2010, yet fitting in much slimmer notebooks. In for growth before games stores die out completely. However,fact, the example Nvidia is giving shows the GT 640M in an we are already seeing the doom of local stores after GAMEAcer Timeline Ultra M3 Ultrabook and we also know that recently announced that it would be closing its hundreds ofGigabyte is planning on using the same GPU in its upcoming stores across the UK.Ultrabooks. 7
    • March 23rd, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone"This is a dramatic time for the entertainment market,” saidKim Bayley, director general of the ERA. “It is an historicdevelopment for the games sector to have overtaken videolast year. Video has long been the biggest entertainmentsector. Sales so far this year, however, suggest video is notgoing down without a fight."Sales for the first 11 weeks of 2012 show that video is sellingtwice as much as games, but that will likely change as theyear goes on and big games release. The Wii Us launch andbig budget game releases around Christmas will likely makeup a huge portion of the game market in the UK for 2012.Image Credit: Getty ImagesApples new iPhone to launch No other details are known about the device, which will likely follow suit with the new iPad by being called “the newin Q2 with bigger display iPhone,” but we can probably expect a faster processor andSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/apple-s-new-iphone-to-launch-in- a bigger battery to cope with the increased power demands,q2-with-bigger-display/15325.html providing it does not lead to the same overheating problemsMarch 23rd, 2012 that are plaguing the new iPad. A release date in the second quarter of the year will mean that the iPhone 4S, which released in October 2011, wont have even been out a full year, which might upset fans who parted with hard-earned cash for a very limited upgrade ofApples next iPhone is expected to release in the second features.quarter of this year, with a bigger and better “retina” display.Apples next iPhone is expected to release in the second An artists impression from Ciccarese Design shows aquarter of this year, with a bigger and better “retina” display. different "teardrop" shape for the device, but it is not yet clear if this will be employed for the finished product.South Korean media, the Maeil Business Newspaper, citedanonymous industry sources for its claims that Apples Image Credit: Ciccarese Designimpending sixth-generation iPhone will feature a 4.6-inchdisplay, significantly larger than the 3.5-inch display on allprevious models. BioWare outlines new Mass Effect 3 ending plansThis would put the new model in direct competition with Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/bioware-outlines-new-mass-effect-3-Samsungs Galaxy S II, which has a 4.5-inch display on ending-plans/15324.htmlthe Rogers model, and could lead to claims that it is March 23rd, 2012“slavishly copying” Samsungs designs, an accusation thatApple previously levelled at the company.The display is also expected to feature a higher resolutioncapable of full high-definition, improving on the existing Dr. Ray Muzyka, co-founder of game studio BioWare, has“retina” display of the iPhone 4S and echoing a similar move reassured fans of its popular Mass Effect series that themade with the latest iPad, which was released at the end of company is listening and that changes to the controversiallast week. ending of the third game in the series are on the way. Dr. Ray Muzyka, co-founder of game studio BioWare, has reassured fans of its popular Mass Effect series that the company is listening and that changes to the controversial ending of the third game in the series are on the way. Muzyka said that he believes that Mass Effect 3 is the best game BioWare has developed and that it was incredibly painful to receive negative feedback about it. He said the studios first instinct was to defend the work, pointing out 8
    • March 23rd, 2012 Published by: VR-Zonehigh review ratings, but that it ultimately had to respect its (ED: Due to the limited amount of time and deliberatefans and accept the criticism. obstruction by hostile parties who will remain anonymous, we will review the card as is first and publish a technical piece on the new Nvidia Kepler architecture later today orThe outcome is that Casey Hudson, executive producer for tomorrow.)Mass Effect 3, is getting the team back together to work on “a Here we have the ASUS GTX 680 2GB, based off NVIDIAsnumber of game content initiatives” which Muzyka said will reference design. We wont be too surprised to see customhelp answer questions, provide more clarity, and aid withclosure for those who have enjoyed the trilogys storyline so Direct CU variants later.far. Card measures 10 inches long (shorter than HD 7970 @ 11.5Muzyka was careful to highlight that the company needs inches) and takes up 2 slots.to strike a balance between addressing fan feedback andkeeping the artistic integrity of the original story, whichmeans that the resulting changes may not please everyone.He also said that some of the feedback BioWare has receivedwas destructive rather than constructive and that it wontsupport or respond to this type of comment, which helikened to attacks on individual members of the team.BioWare also plans to release additional Mass Effect contentand games, though it did not specify what these updatesmight be. More details on the story ending update will bereleased in April.ASUS GTX 680 2GBOverclocking Review: WinSome Lose Some NVIDIA deployed a 6+6 pin PCIe connector (theoreticallySource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/asus-gtx-680-2gb-overclocking- means up to 75+75+75W of power draw) on this board withreview-win-some-lose-some/15322.html a new stacked layout. If we look closely on the PCB we canMarch 23rd, 2012 see unused solder points for another 6 pins, implying that there could be other SKUs with higher power requirements.After a long and turbulent few months filled with muchspeculation and deliberate misinformation, we finally haveNVIDIAs belated response to the the 28nm AMD SouthernIslands GPUs - the Geforce GTX 680 (current name, amongformer identities). In the first of many Keplers that we willbe evaluating, we take a look at ASUSs reference offeringand see if its indeed a worthy contender (or pretender) tothe reigning king of the hill Radeon HD 7970. Overclockedbenchmarks also included!Introduction and Specifications 9
    • March 23rd, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneI/O Panel - We get a full sized DP, HDMI connectors (why not accounting for fancy GPU Boost throttling) and anot their mini/micro variants?) as well as single-link and commendable 1.5GHz GDDR5 (6GHz) on the memory. Withdual-link DVI outputs. We are not a fan (get the pun?) of half only 2GB of framebuffer and a 256 bit memory bus (asheight exhaust holes as it creates unnecessary turbulance opposed to 3GB and 384 bit on the cards they are competingand kills the possibility of single slot water cooling with), this disparity will come into play in bandwidth starved scenarios like high (ahem multi-monitor) resolutions and scenes with complex textures. Like all the other cards this year, the GTX 680 comes with PCIe 3.0 support which is currently only (unofficially) supported by Intels enthusiast Sandy Bridge-E and the upcoming Ivy Bridge mainstream chips.Back of card - would really prefer a backplate here to preventshort circuits, considering that a lot of vital soldering pointsare exposed. EVGA GeForce GTX 680 hits 1842 MHz under LN2 Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/evga-geforce-gtx-680-hits-1842- mhz-under-ln2/15323.html March 23rd, 2012 A day before GTX 680s official release, famed overclocker kIngpIn managed to hit a blistering 1842 MHz on the GTXThis card has got one of the most spartan bundles ever - only 680 at EVGAs Taiwan R&D Center.a double Molex to 6-pin PCIe convertor and the mandatory A day before GTX 680s official release, famed overlcockermanual/driver CD. kIngpIn managed to hit a blistering 1842 MHz on the GTX 680 at EVGAs Taiwan R&D Center.By default, the reference cards are clocked just over 1GHzon the core (which is the trend for new cards now, 10
    • March 23rd, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneThe overclock was achieved using a modified PWM sectiondone by TiN and under LN2 (yeah the default PWN will notbe able to hold so stay tuned for their FTW and Classifiedversions), with the core hitting -150C. The system used was aCore i7 3930K, overclocked to 5.5 GHz with memory runningat 2400 MHz and using the latest Precision X overclockingutility. The system was benchmaked using 3DMark 11,scoring a remarkable 14912 in Performance preset. The Google Street View and Google Earth team have gone all the way to the Amazon Basin to collect ground-level images of the rivers, forests and communities in the Rio Negro Reserve. On World Forest Day, the search engine giant have made these images available via Google Street View feature. According to Google, more than 50,000 still photos were stitched together to create the 360-degree panoramic views. Well, you can now take a virtual boat ride, stroll along paths, take a forest trail hike, or visit other communities, all on yourThough remarkable, kIngpIns 3D Mark 11 score was PC. Check out the Amazon Forest, Rio Negro, and the Streetnarrowly beaten by Elmors HD 7970 @ 1800 MHz, scoring View gallery.P15035. Of course, this is done with full tesallation turnedon, if not, it will be nearly 1K higher.Heres a short note from kIngpIn on his forums: Setup is capable of 16k single card regardless when pushed all the way and today we got 1900 stable, we think 2ghz is possible with more tuning. Just need more time. Tried 2 cards on Ln2 to obtain this result so far...its all modding that makes this frequency possibleMore at VR-Zone Chinese.You can now go GoogleStreet View on the AmazonBasin Ivy Bridge can hit memorySource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/you-can-now-go-google-street-view-on-the-amazon-basin/15321.html speeds of over 3GHz on fourMarch 23rd, 2012 DIMMs Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/ivy-bridge-can-hit-memory-speeds- of-over-3ghz-on-four-dimms/15320.html March 23rd, 2012Not everyone are unable to travel long hours to SouthAmerica and have the opportunity to experience the beautyof the Amazon forest and river. Well, what if you can view itat the comfort of your home and workplace? In conjunection If youre into overclocking, then the news that Intelswith World Forest Day, Google has provided the Street View upcoming Ivy Bridge processors can reach memory speedsof the Amazon Basin. of over 3GHz is going to be exciting news in itself, but the fact that it can be done on four DIMMs is just insane. Intel has obviously done some serious improvements to the memory controller in Ivy Bridge compared to Sandy Bridge, but were most likely going to have to wait to the launch to find out exactly what Intel has done. If youre into overclocking, then the news that Intels upcoming Ivy Bridge processors can reach memory speeds 11
    • March 23rd, 2012 Published by: VR-Zoneof over 3GHz is going to be exciting news in itself, but the factthat it can be done on four DIMMs is just insane. Intel hasobviously done some serious improvements to the memorycontroller in Ivy Bridge compared to Sandy Bridge, but weremost likely going to have to wait to the launch to find outexactly what Intel has done.Overclocker Sin0822 has posted screenshots of a GigabyteZ77X-UD5H motherboard which has been paired up with anIntel Core i7-3770K running on a base clock of 102.37MHz.The memory is overclocked to an insane 3,276MHz usingfour unspecified G.Skill modules rated at 2,666MHz with alatency of 11-13-13-36 and a 2T command rate which isntterrible latencies considering the high speed the modules areoperating at. The Nikon D800 features a 36.3-megapixels FX-format CMOS sensor and new EXPEED 3 image processing engine that offers fast image processing and card recording, as well as image playback and transfer. It also offers 51-point Auto- Focus system, 100% video finder coverage, high ISO range of 100 to 6400 which can be expanded to 50-to-25600, supports full HD video recording in FX or DX format, and dual card slots for a CF card and SD memory card. The Nikon D800 is retailing at S$4,488 (body only) in stores now. Nikon D4Apparently the UEFI has a 29.33 divider for the memory,something you cant get with Sandy Bridge and this is partof the reason for the high memory overclock. Sin0822 alsoclaims that higher speeds are possible using fewer DIMMs,so in other words, we can expect even higher memoryoverclocks in the future from the Ivy Bridge platform. Itllbe interesting to see how high memory overclocks the IvyBridge platform will bring and we doubt well have to waitlong for more record breaking memory overclocks. Hit thesource links for more details and screenshots.Nikon Singapore unveilspricing for D800 and D4 The Nikon D4 is the next-generation flagship digital SLRdigital SLR cameras camera to incorporate the new FX-format 16.2-megapixelSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/nikon-singapore-unveils-pricing-for- CMOS image sensor with EXPEED 3 processing engine. Itd800-and-d4-digital-slr-cameras/15319.html also features a wide range of ISO sensitivities, from ISO 50March 23rd, 2012 to ISO 204800, Multi-area Mode full HD movie recording with three image area options, and faster and more accurate AF with 51 focus points. The Nikon D4 is selling at S$9,799 (body only) in stores now. Zynga acquires OMGPOP,Eager to get the Nikon D800 and D4? Well, Nikon Singaporehas just announced that the D800 and D4 digital SLR developer of Drawcameras will be selling from today, 22 March, at selected Something, for US$200Nikon authorised dealers. millionNikon D800 Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/zynga-acquires-omgpop-developer- of-draw-something-for-us-200-million/15315.html 12
    • March 23rd, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneMarch 23rd, 2012 March 23rd, 2012 More details are out on a new low cost 7-inch tablet from Toshiba which had some of its pre-release photos leaked outAre you playing Draw Something on your mobile device? at the beginning of January. We now know the official modelWell, for those who do not know, or have yet to be asked name for this tablet, LT170 and its final appearance looksby their friends if they are playing, Draw Something is much like the one seen back in January with a black and bluea social drawing and guessing game application which is color scheme.growing in popularity. Developed by OMGPOP, the app has More details are out on a new low cost 7-inch tablet frombeen downloaded more than 35 million times, and it is no Toshiba which had some of its pre-release photos leaked outwonder social network game development company, Zynga, at the beginning of January. We now know the official modelhas plans to acquire the company. name for this tablet, LT170 and its final appearance looks much like the one seen back in January with a black and blue color scheme. Thanks to details leaked via Notebook Italia we now have a bunch of specs to share about the LT170. First and foremost, it happens to be powered by a 1GHz Freescale i.MX53 SoC (System-on-Chip) which comprises a single Cortex A8 core and is paired with 512MB of DDR3 memory. Storage comes in the form of 8GB flash memory as standard which can be expanded upon thanks to the inclusion of a microSD slot as well as the ability to connect other external storage devices via the micro-USB port. Other features include a front mounted 0.3MP webcam and rear facingAccording to online reports, Zynga has acquired OMGPOP, 2MP camera, an accelerometer and ambient light sensors.and while the exact price has not been revealed, it was said This little 7-inch (1024 x 600) Android-running tabletto be at around US$200 million. OMGPOP is a New York- weighs in at just 362g and is 11.5mm thick. Its powered bybased game company that has developed many free online a Li-ion battery which Toshiba says will provide up to sevenmultiplayer games such as 9Ball Pool, Balloono Classic, hours of use in video playback mode.Hamster Battle, and Tracism. But it was only six weeks ago,that Draw Something was launched which catapulted itsfame on the world wide web.Draw Something is an Apple iOS and Android game wherebya player choose a word from three difficulties - easy, mediumand hard - and draws it out. Another player, either randomor friends of the player, will have to guess the word using thetwelve given alphabets that are given. Note that the word canbe three letter or more, and some of the available alphabetsare meant to throw you off. Guessing the word correctly willearn both players coins, the game currency which can beused to purchase more colors or bombs that will remove theunwanted excess alphabets during your guess.Zynga has been known for developing similar copycat-likeproducts and the company can produce a game similarto Draw Something and make it bigger and better. Someanalysts believed that OMGPOP could worth as much asUS$1 billion. Sounds similar to the story of Roy Raymond,founder of "Victorias Secrets" in the late 70s and latersold for US$4 million; Victorias Secrets is worth over US$5billion as of FY 2009. But hey, technology companies couldbe different, and US$200 million is a large sum of moneyanyway.Toshiba outs the LT170 7-inch Freescale SoC poweredAndroid tabletSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/toshiba-outs-the-lt170-7-inch-freescale-soc-powered-android-tablet/15318.html 13
    • March 23rd, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone The video editor addresses these symptoms hereon in the simplest way possible. If a video is uploaded YouTube can sense if it could do with some adjustments and will alert the user via a notification bar on the upload page offering to fix it up - upon doing so an updated version will be placed alongside the original allowing you to compare the differences and decide which youd like to go online. The animated video demonstration below animates the above information, while the new features are now available to try out for yourself in the YouTube video editor. Unprintable Content (Video, Flash, etc.) MSI GEFORCE GTX 680 now listed in Europe for 492 Euro Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/msi-geforce-gtx-680-now-listed-in- europe-for-492-euro/15316.html March 23rd, 2012 A little more substance has been provided to support the rumour of a $499 (ex. taxes) price tag on NVIDIAs GEFORCE GTX 680 thanks to an early listing on an MSI model by European retailer PC Components. A little more substance has been provided to supportAs for pricing, apparently it will strike at 299 EUR (just the rumour of a $499 (ex. taxes) price tag on NVIDIAsunder US $400) and can already be found for pre-order at GEFORCE GTX 680 thanks to an early listing on an MSIselect online retailers. model by European retailer PC Components. This MSI branded GTX 680 with a respective model name of N680GTX-PM2D2GD5 has an associated price of 492€YouTube adds darkness and (incl. VAT) and 416.95€ (excl. VAT) which lines up prettyshakiness fixes via its video closely with the US $499 price point weve heard whispers of previously.editing toolSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/youtube-adds-darkness-and-shakiness-fixes-via-its-video-editing-tool/15317.htmlMarch 23rd, 2012YouTubes built-in video editor has just been updated witha couple new features that many uploaders can benefit fromin submitting a better presented video. A common issuecan be seen with YouTube videos uploaded daily wherethe camera wasnt held still enough to do away with thegeneral shakiness (unless theyve gone to the extent of usinga tripod), while another common symptom can be related toaugmented darkness levels.YouTubes built-in video editor has just been updated with The listing on PC Components also includes an imagea couple new features that many uploaders can benefit from of MSIs box art for its new GTX 680 card whichin submitting a better presented video. A common issue confirms a number of features including NVIDIA GPUcan be seen with YouTube videos uploaded daily where Boost Technology, 3D Vision Surround (supporting up tothe camera wasnt held still enough to do away with the three displays from the single card), 2GB memory runninggeneral shakiness (unless theyve gone to the extent of using at 1502MHz (6GHz effective), a core clock of 1006MHza tripod), while another common symptom can be related to (1056MHz with boost) and a 195W TDP.augmented darkness levels. 14
    • March 23rd, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneSamsung Premium Suite March 23rd, 2012software upgrade available toGALAXY NoteSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/samsung-premium-suite-software-upgrade-available-to-galaxy-note/15314.htmlMarch 23rd, 2012 CeBIT might be past us for this time, but we still have a few titbits left from the show that we want to share. First up is ECS H61H2-TI mini-ITX motherboard which might not sound all that exciting at first, until you realise that it has a unique feature in the shape of HDMI input. CeBIT might be past us for this time, but we still have a fewSamsung has announced Premium Suite software upgrade titbits left from the show that we want to share. First upfor the GALAXY Note, which will offer additional features is ECS H61H2-TI mini-ITX motherboard which might notincluding new S Pen applications that are optimized for use sound all that exciting at first, until you realise that it has awith the device, as well as the new Google Android 4.0 Ice unique feature in the shape of HDMI input.Cream Sandwich OS. In all fairness, the HDMI input is more like a pass-through as this slim-line board will most likely be connected to a display via a LVDS or eDP interface and as such the HDMI input will allow you to connect another device such as a notebook or a games console to that display and use it like any other display. This is a feature that Apple offers via a DisplayPort input on its 27-inch iMac, but this is the first time weve seenSamsung Korea has announced the Premium Suite software this done on a motherboard for an All-in-One PC and viafor GALAXY Note users worldwide from Q2 2012. The HDMI.software will include additional multimedia features, newS Pen optimized applications, as well as upgrade to GoogleAndroid 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich operating system. ThePremium Suite will include My Story, an S Pen optimizedapplication that lets users create personalized digital cardsfor friends or family using any type of content includingnotes, video content, photos, text or voice.To celebrate the Premium Suite upgrade announcement,the company is providing special offers to all GALAXYusers as an official launch partner of Angry Birds Space,the new blockbuster mobile game. A special package of30 challenging levels – ‘Danger Zone’ – will be availablefor free if unpacked within the three-month period. Andthere is also an exclusive GALAXY Note level for allSamsung GALAXY users. For more information, visit http://samsung.angrybirds.com/galaxynoteECS has unique mini-ITXboard for AIO designsSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/ecs-has-unique-mini-itx-board-for-aio-designs/15313.html The other features of the motherboard is far less exciting, although its by no means a bad board, as it offers a pair of mini PCI Express slots, one full-size (which can be used as an mSATA slot) and one half-size, two SATA connectors, a pair of SO-DIMM slots, HDMI output, two USB 3.0 ports, two USB 2.0 ports, Gigabit Ethernet and a pair of audio connectors. Keep in mind that this is a low-profile or thin 15
    • March 23rd, 2012 Published by: VR-Zonemini-ITX motherboard and thats a pretty decent feature set. In what appears to be the real deal, an Nvidia marketingAt least theres some innovation of offer here from ECS and video has leaked just ahead of the GeForce GTX680 launch.its really quite strange that no other manufacturer of AIO The video details some of the new features we can expect tosystems have done this before. see, as well as it confirms the earlier leaks of what was said to be GTX680 cards.Broadcom launches new GPS In what appears to be the real deal, an Nvidia marketing video has leaked just ahead of the GeForce GTX680 launch.chip, does indoor navigation The video details some of the new features we can expect toSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/broadcom-launches-new-gps-chip- see, as well as it confirms the earlier leaks of what was saiddoes-indoor-navigation/15312.html to be GTX680 cards.March 23rd, 2012 Nvidia is making some bold claims about the GTX680 in the video and although the card in question might very well feature the fastest GPU out there when it launches, but were really curious about the power consumption and noise level and here Nvidia claims that were looking at a really power efficient chip that shouldnt be as noisy as previous generations.When it comes to GPS chips, Broadcom isnt the first First up of the new features is GPU boost, something similarcompany we think of, but its latest addition to its growing to Intels Turbo mode, but it appears to be far more limited.family of GPS chips – or GNSS receivers as they are starting If you look at the screenshot below from the video, itsto become known as with additional navigation systems adjusting the clock speeds on the fly, but he gains are atlaunching – offers indoor navigation with the help of "other least according to that particular scenario in the 10s of MHzwireless technologies". rather than the 100s. GPU boost only works in games thatWhen it comes to GPS chips, Broadcom isnt the first arent very “power hungry” in terms of actual electricitycompany we think of, but its latest addition to its growing which means that the GPU heats up less and as such thefamily of GPS chips – or GNSS receivers as they are starting additional thermal envelope allows for small overclocks.to become known as with additional navigation systemslaunching – offers indoor navigation with the help of "otherwireless technologies".Some of these other wireless technologies are Wi-Fi andBluetooth 4.0 low-energy beacons (where available), sensorsand NFC technology to help with indoor navigation in say ashopping centre for example. The BCM4725 as the new chipis known as also incorporates support for satellite-basedaugmentation system or SBAS which allows for groundstations to further enhance the navigation abilities of thedevice containing the new Broadcom controller.Also integrated in the BCM4725 is support for the GPS andGLONASS satellite navigation systems as well as support for Next up we have FXAA which is a new type of anti-QZSS or Quasi-Zenith Satellite Systems which for example aliasing which Nvidia claims doesnt take a “performanceJapan will be using to further improve navigation accuracy. hit” like traditional anti-aliasing technologies. This will beBroadcom claims that the BCM4725 is 50 percent more interesting to see in action, especially if its as good as Nvidiapower efficient than its previous generations of GPS chips claims.and that it thanks to the 40nm manufacturing process it For PhysX Nvidia has added some new features such aswill also take up 44 percent less PCB space inside devices. dynamic fracturing of objects which means that an objectBroadcom has also integrated more features, such as a will break differently every time it breaks, unlike in the pastlow noise amplifier to reduce the BOM cost for the device when an object had limited ways into which it could break.makers. The BCM4725 is available as of right now and Nvidia has also managed to improve hair effects, althoughBroadcom is currently shipping it to its partners, although well have to wait and see if this will actually end up in a gameitll likely be quite a while before the first devices start to in the future, as otherwise its mostly a pointless addition.appear with the new chip. Finally Nvidia is making a big deal out of 3D Vision Surround with up to three displays, but considering the additionalGeForce GTX680 marketing cost of displays and active shutter glasses we have a feelingvideo leaks this isnt going to be a major selling point as far as most consumers are concerned. The GTX680 can also handle fourSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/geforce-gtx680-marketing-video- displays simultaneously, although Nvidia still has at leastleaks/15311.html one more to go before they catch up with AMD when it comesMarch 23rd, 2012 to multi display support. 16
    • March 23rd, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneCommodore USA brings backthe Amiga, of sortsSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/commodore-usa-brings-back-the-amiga-of-sorts/15310.htmlMarch 23rd, 2012It appears as if Commodore USA is milking its brand namesfor as much as it can and the company has now launchedits first Amiga branded product, the Amiga mini. Its apretty decent looking mini-ITX system in what appears tobe a custom made aluminium chassis, but wed say that thecompany is pinning its nostalgic buyers hope a little bit too The Amiga mini is a breath taking US$2,495 (S$3,155)high. making it an insane purchase considering you put togetherIt appears as if Commodore USA is milking its brand names something similar for far less money. Oh and Commodorefor as much as it can and the company has now launched USA is also offering SSD upgrades for both models at USits first Amiga branded product, the Amiga mini. Its a $495 for 300Gb [sic] and US$995 for 600Gb [sic]. Werepretty decent looking mini-ITX system in what appears to fairly certain that Commodore USA wont be seeing toobe a custom made aluminium chassis, but wed say that the many orders for either system, but maybe there are a fewcompany is pinning its nostalgic buyers hope a little bit too nostalgic people out there willing to pay the price.high.The Amiga mini chassis has an engraved Amiga logo onthe front with a Commodore logo on the top, as well asa Commodore logo on the front and thats about as muchAmiga that there is to be had. In fact, the company has donevery little with the system as it sports a Zotac Z68-ITX WiFiSupreme motherboard with an on board GeForce GT 430GPU which is paired up with 1GB of DDR3 memory. To theboard, Commodore USA has added a Core i7-2700K CPU,16GB of DDR3 1333MHz memory, a 1TB 2.5-inch hard driveand a Blu-ray drive.Commodore USA has also launched the VIC mini which hasan identical chassis minus the Amiga logo. Internally werelooking at the Zotac D2700-ITX WiFi Supreme motherboardthat features an Atom D2700 processors paired with aGeForce GT 520 with 512MB of DDR3 memory. In thiscase you only get 4GB of DDR3 1066MHz memory due tolimitations of the CPU, but the two systems are otherwise thesame beyond the motherboard specific features.Both models are available in silver or black and you canbuy either as a barebone, although in this case were talkingabout a chassis and the Blu-ray drive for a fairly steep US$345 (S$435). If you thought that was bad, then wait untilyou here the price of the actual systems. The VIC mini comesin at US$995 (S$1,259), although that also gets you a copy ofCommodore USAs free Commodore OS Vision pre-installedas well as a pair of restore discs. 17
    • March 27th, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneVR-Zone.com | Tech News for the Geeks! The technology could potentially be used in multiple fields, VR-Zone | Stuff for the Geeks is a bi-weekly including by the military and criminals. Soldiers could use it publication covering the latest gadgets and stuff for the to plan stealthier attacks, while thieves could use it to hide geeks. from the thermal cameras on police helicopters, providing, of course, they can steal the technology in the first place.Scientists make The military has already taken advantage of similarbreakthrough in thermal technology to make a tank look like a car to heat-sensingcloaking technology devices. While it does not make it completely invisible, itSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/scientists-make-breakthrough-in- does recreate the shape of the device in terms of generatedthermal-cloaking-technology/15366.html and detected heat, leading to new tactics in warfare.March 27th, 2012 Scientists have been trying to discover ways to develop an invisibility cloak for a number of years now, an idea that was once thought to be impossible, but now looks limited only by time and research.Scientists have made a breakthrough in demonstrating howtechnology can be developed to make people or objectsappear invisible to thermal-imaging devices, bringing us onestep closer to science fiction-style cloaking. Nvidia Tegra 4 to get GPGPUScientists have made a breakthrough in demonstrating how i.e. GPU Computationaltechnology can be developed to make people or objectsappear invisible to thermal-imaging devices, bringing us one Capabilities, Kepler Inside? Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/nvidia-tegra-4-to-get-gpgpu-i.e.-gpu-step closer to science fiction-style cloaking. computational-capabilities-kepler-inside-/15361.html March 27th, 2012The researchers at the Institut Fresnel in France have shownhow optical cloaking using transformation optics can beapplied in a way to prevent heat from being seen by heat-sensing equipment, effectively masking the object from In the discussions surrounding thedetection. launch of NVIDIA Kepler (GK104 - GTX 680 and GK107 - GT 640M) architecture, we learned a lot of interesting details"We can design a cloak so that heat diffuses around an from NVIDIA engineers and marketing staff. Interested ininvisibility region, which is then protected from heat," said GPGPU in a smartphone?Dr. Guenneau from Institut Fresnel. "Or we can force heat toconcentrate in a small volume, which will then heat up veryrapidly." Lenovo launches Enterprise App Shop for Android Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/lenovo-launches-enterprise-app- shop-for-android/15364.html March 27th, 2012 Lenovo has launched the Lenovo Enterprise App Shop, a mobile app store for businesses that use Android-based tablet computers. Anyone running a device with Android version 3.1 or higher will be able to access Lenovos new app store, which works similarly to the Apple App Store or Android Market, but offers a range of business-orientated software and the ability for IT managers to control app purchases, licences, distribution and management. 1
    • March 27th, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneThe Shop features a variety of management services, such example, that would be 4.4 Trillion HD movies. All this dataas a vetted catalogue of enterprise apps free of malware is going to have to be stored somehow and this is whereor offensive content, custom management and corporate Intel is hoping to cash in with a wide range of products fromapproval process, private corporate app publishing, volume the data centre all the way down to home storage products.purchase pricing for discounts, and easy enabling and Much of todays presentations talked about the data centredisabling of apps, giving businesses considerable control and "Ubiquitous storage across the cloud" which Intel claimsover the apps employed by their staff, while not gaining is the future of storage.direct control over the devices themselves. What Intel is talking about here is three different things, federation between public and private data to allow for securely shared data, automated solutions that reduce time spent on managing the storage systems and client aware systems that optimize the way the data is delivered depending on the device used to access the data stored on the cloud. Intel is hoping to reach these goals by 2015, but its going to be tough to reach them considering a fair few technical hurdles, least not in the world of software."With the influx of personal and mobile devices in theworkplace, it’s critical for companies to manage theproprietary and third-party applications their employees areusing,” said Mark Cohen, VP of Ecosystem and Monetizationat Lenovo. “We created an app shop designed specifically forthe enterprise featuring LDAP integration and cross Androidplatform support to facilitate IT management while givingusers the apps they’re demanding to boost productivity.”The Lenovo Enterprise App Shop is available immediatelythroughout the world, except China.Intel Storage Forum 2012Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/intel-storage- Another subject that was touched upon was the importanceforum-2012/15365.html of technologies such as data deduplication and compression,March 27th, 2012 especially as were moving away from mechanical drives and towards SSDs in many high-end server environments. However, even more regular storage solutions can save a lot of space using these technologies and Intel is implementingEarlier today VR-Zone attended the Intels Storage Forum more and more of these features into its storage products.2012 in Taipei, Taiwan and although the company didnt Another feature targeting online storage providers is whatsreveal any big news at the event, one message was very known as thin provisioning where a users allocated space onclear this year and that is that Intel is investing heavily into a server is only allotted as its being used up and this is a waystorage solutions. At the event Intel talked about everything of saving on disk space in as much as all users dont requirefrom entry level "Personal Cloud" devices, to SSDs, 10Gbps instant use of all their allotted storage space.Ethernet all the way to Xeon powered solutions. As for the small business and SoHo/Home market, IntelEarlier today VR-Zone attended the Intels Storage Forum is hoping to win over users by promoting the "Personal2012 in Taipei, Taiwan and although the company didnt Cloud" or what to date has been known as a NAS or Networkreveal any big news at the event, one message was very Attached Storage. Intel is expecting the average user in thisclear this year and that is that Intel is investing heavily into market segment to generate in excess of 4GB of data perstorage solutions. At the event Intel talked about everything day come 2015 and this is where smaller, more affordablefrom entry level "Personal Cloud" devices, to SSDs, 10Gbps network attached storage solutions come into play.Ethernet all the way to Xeon powered solutions.Come 2020, mankind is expected to store an insane 35Zetabytes of data, thats 35 followed by 21 zeroes, or as an 2
    • March 27th, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone them all here. At the end of the day, Intel has to rely on its partners, as although the company makes a selection of servers, the company cant cover all of its customers needs by itself. EA launches Tiger Woods PGA Tour 13 Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/ea-launches-tiger-woods-pga- tour-13/15362.html March 27th, 2012However, Intel has found that its hard to reach this market Electronics Arts (EA) has launched Tiger Woods PGA Tourdue to in part the lack of awareness of this type of product 13, the latest golf simulation game on both the Xbox 360 andand in part due to the difficulty of actually understanding PlayStation 3.how a NAS works and how to configure. Admittedly NASproducts have improved in leaps and bounds over the past Electronics Arts (EA) has launched Tiger Woods PGA Tourfew years, but compared to a USB attached storage device, 13, the latest golf simulation game on both the Xbox 360 anda NAS is a big step into the unknown for anyone with PlayStation 3.more basic technical knowledge. Intel is looking into waysof how to make this market space more aware of this typeof product, as well as ways of how to co-operate with its The game, which comes in a normal edition and a Masterspartners to sell these products into this market. Sadly the Collectors Edition, features a revamp of the swing mechanicpresentation didnt really offer any solutions to the problem to allow over 62 million combinations of customised shots,and its not an easy nut to crack until the day you can simply online support for competitive gameplay, and a Tiger Legacyplug one of these devices into a network and thy more or less Challenge mode for reliving the legends most memorableconfigure themselves. golf achievements.The presentation about 10Gbps networking talked mostlyabout it being an ideal solution for reducing cable clutter The PlayStation 3 version is Move compatible and Xboxand as an alternative to running a Fibre Channel network, 360 version is compatible with the Kinect, allowing users toespecially as Intels 10Gbps NICs can run FCoE and iSCSI play golf with no controller. It is even responsive to gamersfor "free" as Intel put it, as they dont charge extra for voices.these features. The SSD presentation touched upon howreliable Intels SSDs are compared to the competition andof course on the kind of performance gains you can getby mixing in some SSDs in a high-end storage solution,especially with regards to IOPs which is important in certainimplementations. “We focused on making Tiger Woods PGA TOUR 13 the most immersive golf experience ever,” said Mike Taramykin, VP and GM of Tiger Woods PGA TOUR. “Fans have the opportunity to chase and win one of sport’s most highlySadly Intel didnt talk about any new or upcoming products coveted accomplishments, the Green Jacket, play with orat the event, but several of Intels partners had new product against friends with our online Country Clubs mode andon display at the event, but well cover those in separate news incorporate their authentic swing in the game with Kinectposts as there were far too many products for us to go into integration. Tiger Woods PGA TOUR 13 is the total package.” 3
    • March 27th, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneThe Masters Collectors Edition features a few extras,such as exclusive access to the Augusta National GolfGlubs Tournament Practice Facility and its Par 3 Course,a presentation on the Green Jacket, and five additionalcourses.The game retails at $59.99 for the normal edition and $69.99for the Masters Collectors Edition. It has shipped in NorthAmerica and will be available in stores worldwide from 30March.ZALMAN soon to releaseVF3000-equipped HD 7950graphics card This cooler does require three expansion slots however, butSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/zalman-soon-to-release-vf3000- it is said to provide temps that are up to 20c lower thanequipped-hd-7950-graphics-card/15360.html AMDs reference cooler is capable of.March 27th, 2012Following their entry into the AIB (add-in board) graphicscard biz toward the end of last year, photos of a particularlyinteresting specimen from ZALMAN have leaked onlineahead of launch; a HD 7950 based offering from thecompany which boldly shows non-reference attributes uponfirst glance.Following their entry into the AIB (add-in board) graphicscard biz toward the end of last year, photos of a particularlyinteresting specimen from ZALMAN have leaked onlineahead of launch; a HD 7950 based offering from thecompany which boldly shows non-reference attributes upon The clock rates on this card are apparently left at thefirst glance. reference clock speeds, but with this beefy cooler strutting its stuff there should be no issues getting a solid overclock when taking the manual approach. With that said, apparently ZALMAN is also working on bringing a factory overclocked model to market in the near future as well.The upcoming card, dubbed ZALMAN HD7950-Z uses acustom colored PCB and is paired with ZALMANs ownVF3000 series cooler that comprises a large aluminum finarrangement with copper heatpipes and two large red LED-lit fans. 4
    • March 27th, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone The case measurements come in at 450 x 200 x 420SAMA deliver boldly on value mm (WxDxH) with both ABS and SECC/steel used forwith Nighthawk 2 mid tower its construction. The interior is all-black along with the exterior, while the side panel sports a red acrylic window andcase protrudes slightly outward. The cases front I/O consists ofSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/sama-deliver-boldly-on-value-with- four USB 2.0 ports and audio jacks. It would have been nicenighthawk-2-mid-tower-case/15359.html to have seen a USB 3.0 port or two in place of the USB 2.0March 27th, 2012 ones, but I guess we cant have our cake and eat it.A Chinese case maker by the name of SAMA has emphasisedand delivered on value with its newly introduced Nighthawk2 mid-tower which gives a host of features and aestheticinclusions mostly only seen in more expensive chassis.A Chinese case maker by the name of SAMA has emphasisedand delivered on value with its newly introduced Nighthawk2 mid-tower which gives a host of features and aestheticinclusions mostly only seen in more expensive chassis. The Nighthawk 2 can accomodate graphics cards measuring up to 300mm long along with up to four 5.25" devices and six 3.5" using a tool-free mounting system.For just 299 RMB (about US $48) SAMA also impresses inthe cooling setup out of the box on the Nighthawk 2. Wherecases in this price range are lucky to have a rear exhaust and / In all, quite the bang for your buck and a well worthyor front intake fan, The Nighthawk 2 features a 120mm red candidate for a budget build.LED-lit front intake, a 120mm situated between the 3.5-inchdrive cage and motherboard tray, a 120mm at the rear as wellas two 120mm fans positioned up top. Rovio Entertainment buys over Futuremark Games Studio Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/rovio-entertainment-buys-over- futuremark-games-studio/15358.html March 27th, 2012 Futuremark is known for developing computer benchmark applications for home users and businesses such as PCMark7, 3DMark11 and PowerMark. And it seems that the company has been acquired by Angry Birds creator, Rovio Entertainment. 5
    • March 27th, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneFrom Rovios website, the company has acquired Marriage Central, a non profit organisation promotingFuturemark Games Studio, though there was no mention healthy marriages, has recently launched "Our Lovehow much it paid for the benchmark software developer. Journal" app as part of the opening of its annualThis is also the second acquisition by Rovio, the first being celebration of marriages called Real Love Works 2012. TheKombo Animation Studio in June last year. Coincidentally, app is possibly the first-ever marriage app designed forthe announcement came just after the launch of the new married couples. With "Our Love Journal" iPhone app, youAngry Birds Space, which is released on iOS, Android, Mac can capture and share experiences, interests and memorableand PC (including books, merchandising and animation). moments that you encounter in your daily life or even when on dates. All you have to do is snap your favourite moments,VR-Zone was one of the media who has received a edit, and sync it with your loved ones. They wouldn’t havefarewell note from Futuremark CEO, Jukka Mäkinen, who an excuse not to remember your favourite things now. Thementioned that the company will renew their focus on "Our Love Journal" app is available for free on the iTunescreating great benchmarks and performance measurement app store.software for gamers, home users, small businesses and theIT industry. "This year will see a new version of 3DMark that, - Tag menu for tagging photos (i.e. Food we like, Activity wefor the first time, will allow a direct comparison of gaming like, Events we like, Stuff we like, Places we like)performance across operating systems and form factors, aswell as a new version of PCMark for Windows 8." ZTE Android phone with IntelMarriage Central launches mobile processor to launch"Our Love Journal" app for 2H 2012 at US$160? Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/zte-android-phone-with-intel-couples to archive their love mobile-processor-to-launch-2h-2012-at-us-160-/15355.htmlexperience March 27th, 2012Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/marriage-central-launches-our-love-journal-app-for-couples-to-archive-their-love-experience/15356.htmlMarch 27th, 2012 ZTE is one of the industry partners that Intel has announced at Mobile World Congress last month to enhance smartphone portfolio. And the Chinese telecommunications equipment and systems company has unveiled that theirFor the blissfully wedded couples, heres a must-have app phone will be available in the second half of this year.for your iPhone - "Our Love Journal". The app is free todownload and lets couples archive and recall their sharedexperiences on their phones, as well as prompt on ideal datesuggestions, special anniversaries, and marriage enrichmentprogrammes organised by Marriage Central. 6
    • March 27th, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone have hands-free viewing and great comfort even if you choose to orientate it for typing. It also offers a clever stylus storage feature and a secure hand strap that will prevent misplacement or accidental slip while on the go. Targus Versavu 360° Rotating Protective Case & StandToday, Qualcomm and Texas Instruments have dominatedthe smart devices processor market, and chip giantIntel is waiting for the opportunity to penetrate this market,especially in China. Last weekend, ZTE said that in thesecond half 2012, it will launch Intel-based smartphone withextremely attractive price point. According to reports, ZTEssmartphone will be equipped with Intel Atom Z2000 mobileprocessor and runs Google Android OS. The company This Versavu 360° Rotating Protective Case and Stand hasalso mentioned that the price will be around 1000 yuan a patent pending mechanism that allows the iPad to rotate(approximately US$160). At the Mobile World Congress in within the case for comfortable viewing in portrait andFebruary, Intel has announced partnership with Orange, landscape modes. It also has a storage for stylus and secureLava International, Visa and ZTE to push smart devices hand strap for holding or carrying while on the move.using Intel processors. Available in Calypso Pink with Charcoal Gray, Bone White with Charcoal Gray and Black faux leather and Indigo, theTargus introduces new Targus Versavu 360° Rotating Protective Case and Stand is retailing at S$99.90.protective and functional Targus Vuscape Protective Case & Standcases for the new iPadSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/targus-introduces-new-protective-and-functional-cases-for-the-new-ipad/15354.htmlMarch 27th, 2012With the recent launch of Apples new iPad,accessories maker Targus has also introduced their newrange of protective and functional cases in variousstylish colours for the mobile device in Singapore. Checkthem out at your nearest Apple authorized resellers,Challenger and retailers.Targus has unveiled its latest range of seven new protective/functional cases with ease of use for the new iPad. The cases The Vuscape Protective Case and Stand provides additionalcome in a range of stylish, vivid colours including bright protection for the iPad with an extra padded interior shell.orange, cool indigo and calypso pink. For the classy but It has a soft, smooth inner lining that keeps the iPad safesubtle individuals, the new cases are also available in chic from scratches, dust and fingerprints. The exterior is easy toBlack faux leather and classic Bone White. clean and comes in Black faux leather, Bone White, Calypso Pink and Indigo. For those who are interested, the VuscapeAmong the cases is the Targus Versavu 360° Rotating Protective Case and Stand is retailing at S$85.90.Protective Case and Stand for the new iPad whichboasts superior protection, is water resistant and has a Vucomplete Back Coverluxurious-to-touch cover while smooth and comfortableto hold. The soft lining interior also helps to protectthe tablet from bumps, scratches, fingerprints, and dust.The case features a 360° smooth rotation functionality thatoffers different standing and viewing positions. You can 7
    • March 27th, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone news. SingTel is bringing in the 3G/WiFi version of the PS Vita handheld game console which will begin retailing from 14 April. Here are the price plans available from SingTel which offer theoretical download speeds of 7.2Mbps and free bundled local data usage. Note that the plans are with 24-month contract. Sapphire launches the Pure Platinum A55V Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/sapphire-launches-the-pure- platinum-a55v/15352.html March 27th, 2012Compatible with Apple Smart Cover, the Vucomplete BackCover also features a smooth inner lining that protects theiPad from scratches. The superior quality of the exterior caseis also easy to clean. The Vucomplete Back Cover has a pricetag of S$39.90 and comes in stylish Orange, Calypso Pink, Having chatted with Sapphire back at CeBIT a couple ofIndigo, Bone White, and Charcoal Gray. weeks ago, we knew the company is planning on taking a slightly different direction for its future motherboard products and the Pure Platinum A55V looks like its a stepSingTel offers 3G and Wi-Fi in that direction. What were looking at is a fairly basicversion Sony PlayStation Vita motherboard for AMDs APUs, without being a feature stripped board like what many of Sapphires competitors arewith plans offering when it comes to the A55 chipset.Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/singtel-offers-3g-and-wi-fi-version- Having chatted with Sapphire back at CeBIT a couple ofsony-playstation-vita-with-plans/15353.html weeks ago, we knew the company is planning on takingMarch 27th, 2012 a slightly different direction for its future motherboard products and the Pure Platinum A55V looks like its a step in that direction. What were looking at is a fairly basic motherboard for AMDs APUs, without being a feature stripped board like what many of Sapphires competitors are offering when it comes to the A55 chipset.It was about a month ago when Sony Computer The slot layout is fairly basic with a single x16 PCI ExpressEntertainment Hong Kong launches the PlayStation (PS) slot, two x1 PCI Express slots and three PCI slots, but asVita at 313 Somerset in Singapore. And today, local AMDs APUs dont support more than one discrete graphicstelecommunication company SingTel has announced it will card, this is unlikely to be an issue for those considering thisbe offering the 3G/Wi-Fi model of the handheld game motherboard. The standard six SATA 3Gbps ports are allconsole with attractive price plans. present and its the only area where Sapphire hasnt added anything in terms of functionality.The Sony PS Vita that was launched in Singapore last month,is the Wi-Fi only version. For those of you who are eagerlywaiting for the 3G and Wi-Fi model, heres some good 8
    • March 27th, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone the company is working on new 802.11ac hardware that is looking like a big step up from its current hardware. Edimax has teamed up with Broadcom for the hardware and its initial products will feature simultaneous dual band support. Taiwanese Edimax is generally known as a company that is offering budget routers with fairly antiquated UIs, but the company is working on new 802.11ac hardware that is looking like a big step up from its current hardware. Edimax has teamed up with Broadcom for the hardware and its initial products will feature simultaneous dual band support. So far no model names have been decided upon, but were looking at some pretty serious hardware here. The router processor is a 600MHz Intensi-fi chip from Broadcom based on MIPS32 architecture and it sports Gigabit Ethernet support, has dual PCI Express interfaces, a built in USB 2.0 host controller and DDR2 memory support. The 2.4GHz 802.11n module appears to be the BCM4331 which supports speeds of up to 450MHz as per the little sign next to the router. The only downside here is that the 802.11n module gets stuck with PCB antennas which isnt fantastic, but an acceptable trade-off on a product like this.Were quite surprised to see features like dual BIOS, aPOST80 debug LED, power, reset and clear CMOS buttonson a board at this price point. One feature we cant quitefigure out is the inclusion of a front USB 3.0 pin header, yetwe can only locate one USB 3.0 host controller and it appearsto be connected to the rear USB 3.0 ports and the board isntsharing the same PCB as one of Sapphires other models. On the 802.11ac side of things we presume that were looking the BCM4360 which is a three stream 802.11ac chip rated at speeds of up to 1.3Gbps, although Edimax sign statesThe rear I/O isnt overwhelming, but its got enough ports for 1.35Gbps. The BCM4360 uses 80MHz wide channels andyour average user with a PS/2 port, four USB 2.0 ports, two 256-QAM modulation as well as beamforming on both theUSB 3.0 ports, Gigabit Ethernet, 5.1-channel audio and a D- transmit and receive end to manage these kind of speeds. Itsub, DVI and HDMI port. Overall not bad for what should be has a PCI Express interface and if you look at the PCB youlla fairly affordable board and if Sapphires new strategy is one see that the 802.11ac module is connected to the main PCBof offering more affordable motherboards with an improved via a mini PCI Express slot.feature set, this isnt a bad first step in that direction.Edimax working 802.11acrouter and USB dongleSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/edimax-working-802.11ac-router-and-usb-dongle/15351.htmlMarch 27th, 2012Taiwanese Edimax is generally known as a company thatis offering budget routers with fairly antiquated UIs, but 9
    • March 27th, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone Blizzard is contemplating releasing a console version of its upcoming hack-and-slash role-playing game Diablo III, promising that it will be “a true Blizzard-level experience.” Paul Sams, the companys COO, told CVG that the game would need some tweaking from the PC version, but that a console version makes sense and that a decision to go forward with this idea would not be made primarily for financial reasons. Blizzard admitted that a console version would depend on how many hoops it has to jump through with the console manufacturers. It said that if it is incredibly difficult or costly to do, it would make the company think twice, but even then it would not automatically rule out the possibility.The router doesnt appear to be a final product though andwere solely basing this on the fact that there are emptyspaces for what appears to be a second mini PCI Expresscard, USB ports and various other components. HopefullyEdimax will at least go with a similar design for the finalproduct. A console port of the game might depend entirely on theAs for the USB adapter were most likely looking at success of the PC version, which will release on 15 May, withthe BCM43526 which as the sign says, offers dual band many fans cautious after considerable ruckus was causedoperation with speeds of up to 300Mbps for 802.11n and when a community manager told players to lower theirup to 900Mbps for 802.11ac. The only problem here is the expectations, a recommendation that was refuted by thelimitation of the USB 2.0 bus at 480Mbps, so its unlikely games director. A last-minute decision to axe player-versus-that this type of product will ever achieve their theoretical player combat from the game and release it in a later patchmaximum speed. Either which way, we cant wait until we did not help the situation.get our hands on some 802.11ac hardware to test, as it shouldmake a huge difference during large file transfers, if nothing Sams did not give any possible timeframe for the release ofelse. a console version, but given how long it took the company to develop the game for the PC it could be years away. He alsoBlizzard considering Diablo III did not specify which consoles would get the game, but we imagine it would want to release on more than just one ofconsole version the available platforms.Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/blizzard-considering-diablo-iii-console-version/15350.htmlMarch 27th, 2012 Apples new iPad draws 2A, charges from Gigabyte Z77 motherboard Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/apple-s-new-ipad-draws-2a-charges- from-gigabyte-z77-motherboard/15349.htmlBlizzard is contemplating releasing a console version ofits upcoming hack-and-slash role-playing game Diablo III,promising that it will be “a true Blizzard-level experience.” 10
    • March 27th, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneMarch 27th, 2012 a few smartphones, but none of them drew in excess of 600-700mA. Microsoft and Nokia to invest 18 million Euro in mobile appOne downside of Apples many hand held devices is that developmentthey draw a lot of power when charging and the latest iPad Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/microsoft-and-nokia-to-invest-18-is even more power hungry, especially when the battery is million-euro-in-mobile-app-development/15348.htmlrunning low. As such its getting to the stage where most March 27th, 2012computers will no longer be able to charge Apples portabledevices, although for DIY:ers its less of an issue as many Microsoft and Nokia have agreed to invest up to €18 millionmotherboards can deliver more power to the USB ports and in app development for the Windows Phone platform.in in the case of Gigabytes new Z77 boards, the new iPad isno match. The duo launched the AppCampus program at AaltoOne downside of Apples many hand held devices is that University in Finland, which will run for the next three years,they draw a lot of power when charging and the latest iPad encouraging students to develop apps for both Windowsis even more power hungry, especially when the battery is Phone, Symbian and Series 40, though the primary focus willrunning low. As such its getting to the stage where most likely be on Microsofts operating system.computers will no longer be able to charge Apples portabledevices, although for DIY:ers its less of an issue as manymotherboards can deliver more power to the USB ports and “AppCampus offers an unprecedented opportunity forin in the case of Gigabytes new Z77 boards, the new iPad is entrepreneurs to put their ideas into practice and createno match. world-class mobile products,” said Klaus Holse, president of Microsoft Western Europe. “We want to turn a new leaf in the mobile industry and foster Finland’s role as a center of excellence for mobile technology. Such investment into early-stage concepts has rarely been seen in this sector, and this demonstrates how highly both Nokia and Microsoft value Finnish mobile expertise.”As you can see in the video below, the iPad in question onlyhad seven percent battery life remaining and at this pointits sucking 1.98A. Thats a lot of power and we were told byGigabyte that theyve seen it hitting just over 2A. That said,as you mightve noticed from the picture above, this quicklydrops once the iPad begins to charge, but considering astandard USB 2.0 port only delivers 500mA and even a USB3.0 port will only deliver 900mA, you have to wonder howmuch Apple cares about PC owners.In all fairness, Gigabyte isnt the only company to deliver Apps are key to the success of a mobile operating systemextra power to mobile devices that sucks extra juice to reduce and one of the primary reasons people choose Apple devicestheir charging time, but many laptops and brand name over those of rivals, due to the extensive library of appsdesktops doesnt offer this ability and if they do, they wont available. Android is quickly catching up, but Windowsbe able to do it at close to 2A. The power draw is dynamic as Phone is lagging behind considerably.you can hear mentioned in the video, but even so, chargingnew Apple devices from a standard USB port might soon bea memory of the past. The problem for Microsoft, and Nokia as the primary phone manufacturer of Windows Phone devices, is that developers are reluctant to invest the time and money in creating an appIn this specific case we used the On/Off Charge port on the for Windows Phone, as the rewards are currently limitedGigabyte motherboard, as the port auto detect Apple devices compared to the two dominant platforms. In order to makeand will deliver as much power as the device requests. For it more rewarding it needs apps to attract customers, makinga laugh, once wed shot this little video, we also tested with the situation a viscious cycle, with the only solution being 11
    • March 27th, 2012 Published by: VR-Zoneactive investment from Microsoft and Nokia, which the duo new features to help it steal the top slot form Nintendo, or athave finally decided to do. least keep it in second place ahead of Sonys next PlayStation.Microsoft to launch $100 Of course, until Microsoft or another trustworthy sourceXbox Lite before next-gen validates this rumour we cannot take it for granted that this is what will happen. It could even be an elaborate ruse toconsole keep Microsofts real Xbox 720 plans under wraps, such asSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/microsoft-to-launch-100-xbox-lite- speculations that it will feature a tablet controller, no discbefore-next-gen-console/15347.html drive, and a projector gaming helmet.March 27th, 2012 Nokias Lumia 800 to get WiFi tethering by the end of the weekMicrosoft will launch a $100 Xbox Lite next year before Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/nokia-s-lumia-800-to-get-wifi-releasing its next-generation console sometime afterwards, tethering-by-the-end-of-the-week/15346.htmlaccording to leaked plans. March 27th, 2012Microsoft will launch a $100 Xbox Lite next year beforereleasing its next-generation console sometime afterwards,according to leaked plans. It has become apparent via a meeting between carrier H3GA well-known leaker of Microsoft plans, a user who goes by and Nokia in Milan, Italy that the Finnish handset maker isthe name MS Nerd, shared that the Xbox Lite, previously planning to provide internet tethering support on its Lumiacodenamed Xbox Loop, will feature an ARM processor, 800 series devices by means of a software update before thewill be significantly cheaper than existing models, and will month is out.launch in late 2013, possibly just in time for the Christmasshopping season. It has become apparent via a meeting between carrier H3G and Nokia in Milan, Italy that the Finnish handset maker is planning to provide internet tethering support on its LumiaIts not exactly clear what will be axed from the Lite version 800 series devices by means of a software update before theto make it so cheap, as it will run games, media apps and month is out.will work with the Kinect. Its graphics power might be toneddown or Microsoft might just be taking a big hit on its profitsfrom it to make it more affordable. Internet sharing was possible out of the box on Nokias Lumia 610 and 900 smartphones and its been said that the feature will be made available on the Lumia 710 in the nearThe next-generation Xbox, codenamed Xbox Next, which future as well.suggests a potential deviation from the expected name of In relative news, as a reminder there is a new firmwareXbox 720, will launch some time after the Xbox Lite, but if update on the horizon for Lumia 710 and 800 phones,the Lite launches in late 2013 it means we might not see the build 12070 promising better battery life and many otherNext until 2014 or possibly later, giving Nintendo a further improvements.time advantage on its launch of the Wii U this year.A new version of the Kinect is also expected to launch in2015, which could coincide with the release of the newconsole. This would give Microsoft enough time to develop 12
    • March 27th, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone Express 2.0 lanes integrated directly into the chip package.Intels Valleyview Atom SoC The NM10 IOH only supports four PCI Express 1.0 lanes, sowill come in multiple SKUs this should allow for improved performance when connectedSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/intel-s-valleyview-atom-soc-will- to PCI Express add-in cards and peripheral chipsets.come-in-multiple-skus/15345.html The SoC also sports a pair of SATA 3Gbps ports, SDIOMarch 27th, 2012 support, four USB 2.0 ports, two USB 3.0 ports, of which one supports USB 3.0 OTG, a built in Gigabit Ethernet MAC and as previously mentioned support for DisplayPort, eDP and HDMI output. Some SKUs will also supports the MIPI-DSI display interface and the MIPI-CSI interface forWeve already reported on the basic information that has cameras. Intel has also added Blu-ray playback support forleaked so far about Intels upcoming Valleyview Atom automotive entertainment solutions.SoC, but it appears that Intel is planning a range of The battery operated SKUs will only support LPDDR2SKUs for various markets according to information that memory, but the general SKUs will support DDR3L memoryhas reached VR-Zone. In fact, the information that was and even have ECC support as reported earlier. Valleyview 2leaked is with regards to Valleyview together with the will as far as were aware be the first Atom core to supportinformation weve received points towards a replacement for dual channel memory – note that ECC memory is onlythe embedded E600 series of Atom processors which makes support in single channel – and it will also be the first Atomsense considering Advantechs roadmaps. core to support up to 8GB of memory. It almost looks as ifWeve already reported on the basic information that has Intel is finally getting ready to drop its Celeron processorsleaked so far about Intels upcoming Valleyview Atom and bring its Atom chips up into its more grown up processorSoC, but it appears that Intel is planning a range of family, at least if the features of Valleyview2/Bay Trail isSKUs for various markets according to information that anything to go by.has reached VR-Zone. In fact, the information that wasleaked is with regards to Valleyview together with theinformation weve received points towards a replacement for NVIDIAs New Dawn forthe embedded E600 series of Atom processors which makes Kepler is on the waysense considering Advantechs roadmaps. Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/nvidia-s-new-dawn-for-kepler-is-on-Lets start by clearing up the naming scheme a little bit, the-way/15344.htmlas Valleyview or Valleyview 2 as the embedded version is March 27th, 2012known as, is the name of the Atom core and not the actualSoC. The SoC is known as Bay Trail, in the same way as theCedarview core being part of the Cedar Trail processor. Intelwill be offering two versions of Bay Trail, one for standarddesktop style applications and in-car infotainment systemsas well as one intended for battery optimized usage. Were Dawn, NVIDIAs beloved fairy who first made hernot entirely sure if there will be a consumer version, but Intel appearance in a tech demo almost a decade ago will soondid at least have a Valleyview Atom core at some point, so its be making her return to coincide with Kepler. Dubbed "Newpossible that Intel will offer up a future Atom D or N model, Dawn", this will be the official tech demo for Kepler and isbut well just have to wait and see how things develop. said to be more or less a retake of the original, only with theAs for Valleyview 2/Bay Trail were looking at a highly obvious vast improvements across the board in the level ofintegrated 22nm SoC that will feature two or four cores. detail on tap.As revealed in the previous leak, were looking at vastly Dawn, NVIDIAs beloved fairy who first made herimproved performance and as you can see from the picture appearance in a tech demo almost a decade ago will soonbelow, were talking four to seven times the performance, be making her return to coincide with Kepler. Dubbed "Newalbeit this is expected to be over the Atom E600 series which Dawn", this will be the official tech demo for Kepler and isfeatured a 400MHz version of the PowerVR SGX 535 core said to be more or less a retake of the original, only with thefrom Imagination Technologies, so it might not be quite as obvious vast improvements across the board in the level ofimpressive as first thought. detail on tap. While Dawn made her debut in amazing detail dating back all those years ago, thats nothing compared to what the likes of Kepler can do for us. NVIDIA will have Dawn looking far more lifelike than before with significant improvements to the environmental elements, including more realistic physics, hair animation and overall a far greater level of detail. Kepler will allow NVIDIA to use a level of tesselation in this tech demo that its rival may possibly not be able to accomplish (irrespective of whether or not a hack becomes available down the road to execute it).Most of the NM10 IOH has been integrated into Valleyview2/Bay Trail and as such the new SoC will have four PCI We dont have a formal release date for the New Dawn yet, but its expected to arrive for download via NVIDIA.com and 13
    • March 27th, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneGeForce.com sometime soon. In the meantime, enjoy theshort sneak peek below :- Unprintable Content (Video, Flash, etc.)Beefy BF3 patch arrives forPS3 tomorrow (Xbox 360 andPC soon)Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/beefy-bf3-patch-arrives-for-ps3-tomorrow-xbox-360-and-pc-soon-/15343.html From the front, the HTC T328w (also known as One V)March 27th, 2012 looks like a combination of the Desire S and Wildfire S, though the rear looks more like the HTC Explorer. It is also available in a variety of colors - black, white, blue, pink etc. The phone has dual-SIM support, measures 9.3mm thin and weighs 114g. It features a 3.7-inch WVGA touchscreen, 1GHz MSM7227 processor, 512MB RAM and 4GB storageThe official Battlefield Blog site has let us know to expect a (expandable to 32GB via microSD card slot). At the rear is achunky BF3 patch tomorrow for PlayStation 3 owners and is 5-megapixel camera and the T328w runs the latest Androidconfirmed to be coming for the Xbox 360 and PC versions 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich OS with the new HTC Sense 4.0.very soon. The phone also incorporates Beats Audio and SRS WOW HD audio technologies for impressive audio enjoyment. TheThe official Battlefield Blog site has let us know to expect a HTC T328w is reported to retail at an attractive 1999 yuanchunky BF3 patch tomorrow for PlayStation 3 owners and is (or US$317).confirmed to be coming for the Xbox 360 and PC versionsvery soon.The patch will roll in a significant number of tweaks andbalances, while a particularly noteworthy mention is the"Rent a Server" feature that the update will make availableon the Xbox 360 and PS3. There will be more info comingout about that functionality this time next week.The full fix and additions list is a mile long, but you can headover to the source to catch all the details.HTC T328w dual-SIM phoneto retail at US$317 in ChinaSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/htc-t328w-dual-sim-phone-to-retail-at-us-317-in-china/15340.htmlMarch 27th, 2012 LG Optimus LTE P936 shows up on FCC Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/lg-optimus-lte-p936-shows-up-on- fcc/15339.html March 27th, 2012The new HTC One series smartphones are going to belaunched soon, and apparently, the pricing for the dual-SIMHTC T328W (or HTC One V) has been revealed. The Androidphone is reported to be priced at 1999 yuan (or US$317) inChina. Korean company LG has been busy with the introduction of three new phones at the recent Mobile World Congress. And it seems that a new Optimus LTE P936 smartphone has appeared on Federal Communications Commission (FCC). 14
    • March 27th, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone Japanese Planex Communications might not be the most well-known maker of Wi-Fi routers, but the company has managed to come up with an interesting solution for those that want to save space, a Wi-Fi router that goes inside the whole in the wall where a power socket would normally be fitted. This means that the router doesnt take up any space, but it does also limit its functionality a bit.This year, it seems that 4G LTE is widely sought after aswe see many phone makers coming up with their new LTEflagship phones. According to reports from GSM Dome,LG has a new smartphone, Optimus LTE P936, whichhas appeared on FCC. The Optimus LTE P936 is said tofeature a large 4.6-inch touchscreen display with 1280x720resolution and 320ppi pixel desnsity. It is powered by1.5GHz Snapdragon processor, runs Google Android 2.3.6Gingerbread and equipped with 8-megapixel rear camerawith LED flash that can capture videos in 720p HDresolution. We would probably hear more news about theOptimus LTE P936 in the coming weeks, and it is likely the The MZK-KR150N as the router is called needs to be wiredphone will receive Android 4.0 ICS update soon. directly to the mains wires inside the socket and as such a qualified electrician needs to do the installation according toPlanex to launch Wi-Fi router the company. The WAN connector is also located here, so in other words, if you cant easily get an Ethernet cable into thethat replaces your wall power socket, this product isnt for you.socketSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/planex-to-launch-wi-fi-router-that-replaces-your-wall-socket/15338.htmlMarch 27th, 2012 On the upside, you end up with only a Wi-Fi antenna stickingJapanese Planex Communications might not be the most out of the wall socket and thats as much space as the routerwell-known maker of Wi-Fi routers, but the company has will take up. As you mightve guessed by the model name,managed to come up with an interesting solution for those the MZK-KR150N only offers speeds of up to 150Mbpsthat want to save space, a Wi-Fi router that goes inside the over 802.11n Wi-Fi, although the router also has a singlewhole in the wall where a power socket would normally be 10/100Mbit Ethernet port.fitted. This means that the router doesnt take up any space,but it does also limit its functionality a bit. 15
    • March 27th, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone upcoming Linux 3.4 kernel being set in stone. However, at the same time, details have also appeared on roadmaps from Advantech, a Taiwanese IPC maker that gives additional details as to what to expect. The first details were spotted by Phoronix as they found details with regards to patches for the upcoming Linux 3.4 kernel that stated "ValleyView is a CedarView-like chip but with an Ivybridge graphics core." This in itself is very interesting, as it shows that at least on the desktop side, Intel is planning on moving away from the PowerVR graphics cores that the company has been relying on for its past couple of generations of Atom processors. Other details unearthed by Phoronix include support for two DisplayPort interfaces (most likely eDP and a regular DisplayPort) and HDMI output, a new interrupt architecture and Turbo Boost support, albeit somehow done differently than on Ivy Bridge.The router has a power and WPS button on its "facia" andtheres also a small switch that allows you to set it to routeror access point mode. Its actually a really clever solution forextending Wi-Fi coverage in larger homes or offices where asingle router wont be enough, at least as long as you can getan Ethernet cable from the router to a suitable wall socketeasily enough. What wed really like to have seen integratedinto the MZK-KR150N is support for power line networking,as this wouldve eliminated the need for an Ethernet cable tobe used for the network connection.The MZK-KR150N should launch early next month in Japanwith a retail price of about US$119 (S$150) which is a tad on Shortly after Phoronix discoveries, The Verge managed tothe expensive side considering the basic spec of the product. dig up some roadmaps from Advantech that gives us a few additional details as to what to expect. According to a few upcoming products from Advantech the Valley View AtomIntels Valley View Atom SoC SoC will feature the Balboa Pier chipset – a bit of trivia here,leaks, said to have Ivy Bridge Intels 440LX chipset was codenamed Balboa – although as Valley View is said to be a 22nm SoC, its very likely that thelevel graphics chipset will be integrated into the CPU package or the CPUSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/intel-s-valley-view-atom-soc-leaks- itself.said-to-have-ivy-bridge-level-graphics/15337.html The Advantech roadmap further details one to four cores,March 27th, 2012 four times the graphics performance, although it doesnt really state compared to what, but wed presume the current Cedar Trail Atom processors, support for between 4 and 8GB of DDR3 memory and interestingly enough ECC support making Valley View a much more interesting solution for the IPC and entry level server market and finally what appears to be native USB 3.0 support.Quite often Intel is the best source when it comes to its ownproduct leaks and this time around its upcoming Valley View Valley View isnt expected to launch until very late thisAtom SoC has leaked thanks to in part to the fact that Intel year or early next year, but it could potentially be the mosthas had to submit graphics driver information in time for the interesting Atom processor to date, especially as it seemsupcoming Linux 3.4 kernel being set in stone. However, at like Intel has given up on pushing its Atom processors as athe same time, details have also appeared on roadmaps from castrated, low-budget alternative. Judging by the rumouredAdvantech, a Taiwanese IPC maker that gives additional specifications, we have a feeling that Valley View wont be asdetails as to what to expect. cheap as the current Atom processors, but itll likely depend a lot on whats available from the competition.Quite often Intel is the best source when it comes to its ownproduct leaks and this time around its upcoming Valley ViewAtom SoC has leaked thanks to in part to the fact that Intelhas had to submit graphics driver information in time for the 16
    • March 29th, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneVR-Zone.com | Tech News for the Geeks! March 29th, 2012 VR-Zone | Stuff for the Geeks is a bi-weekly publication covering the latest gadgets and stuff for the geeks.MediaTek combines 802.11ac ASRock, originally spun off from ASUSTeK almost a decadeand Bluetooth 4.0 into a ago, has risen from its humble beginnings to become the 3rdsingle chip largest motherboard vendor behind ASUS and GIGABYTE in terms of volume shipments. Their growth has beenSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/mediatek-combines-802.11ac-and- attributed to an aggressive pricing strategy coupled withbluetooth-4.0-into-a-single-chip/15397.html feature-filled offerings to give them the competitive edge.March 29th, 2012 With the recent acquisition of legendary overclocker Nick Shih to augment their R&D team, we can expect them to scale greater heights. Today we preview an impressiveTaiwanese MediaTek might be famous for creating low-cost and well rounded board - their upcoming Fatal1ty Z77feature phone and entry level smartphone processors, but Professional!the company also manufactures a wide range of other chips. Front Box - The use of Jonathan "Fatal1ty" Wendels likenessLast year MediaTek merged with Ralink and MediaTek’s and trademarks reveal ASRocks target buyers for the boardnew 802.11ac/Bluetooth 4.0 combo chip has most likely - gamers with wads of cash.been born out of that merger.Taiwanese MediaTek might be famous for creating low-costfeature phone and entry level smartphone processors, butthe company also manufactures a wide range of other chips.Last year MediaTek merged with Ralink and MediaTek’snew 802.11ac/Bluetooth 4.0 combo chip has most likelybeen born out of that merger.The new chip is called the MT7650 and it combinesdual band, single channel, 433Mbps 802.11ac Wi-Fi withBluetooth 4.0 + HS into a single chip for use in mobileconsumer platforms and MediaTek claims that this is aworld’s first. The MT7650 is backwards compatible with802.11n, Bluetooth 3.0, as well as Bluetooth 2.1. It alsosupports Wi-Fi Direct and Wi-Fi Display, two technologiesthat should start to become more useful this year as widersupport is being enabled.The press release initially made us read "mobile consumer Rear Box View: A cluttered feature listing full of marketingplatforms" as smartphones and tablets, but the last line of hyperbolesthe feature list states support for Windows 7, Windows 8and Linux, so it looks like the MT7650 is primarily targetingfairly large mobile devices such as notebooks. There’s nomention of interface, but we presume the MT7650 is a USBdevice. MediaTek didn’t supply any availability date for theMT7650, but we’d expect it to arrive in consumer devicessometime in the second half of the year.First Looks: ASRock Fatal1tyZ77 ProfessionalSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/first-looks-asrock-fatal1ty-z77-professional/15384.html 1
    • March 29th, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneThe Fatal1ty Z77 Professional is a stunning beauty. Deckedout in a black and red colour theme (hmm... familar)together with gold capacitors, most neutral observers willbuy this based on its looks already. This board also featuresan incredible amount of components and meticulousengineering, which we will detail in the next few sections. A quick look and comparison of Intels native USB 3.0 host controller Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/a-quick-look-and-comparison-of- intel-s-native-usb-3.0-host-controller/15396.htmlBack of board - this is one of the few boards that we see March 29th, 2012with I/Cs sticking at the back, which shows how packed thePCB is. You can also see that out of the three "full-length"PCIe x16 slots in the previous picture, only the first slot iselectrically capable of x16 operation while the second andthird slot have only x8 and x4 soldering points respectively.This is not a surprise as Socket 1155 processors have 20native PCIe signal lanes, and three/four-way multi-GPU If youre a regular VR-Zone reader you might rememberenthusiasts will be better off going with X79/Socket 2011 our massive USB 3.0 host controller test that we did backplatform instead. in August last year. As the first of Intels new 7-series motherboards are starting to appear, we thought wed do a quick test of Intels native USB 3.0 host controller and compare how it stacks up to some of the best discrete controllers. If youre a regular VR-Zone reader you might remember our massive USB 3.0 host controller test that we did back in August last year. As the first of Intels new 7-series motherboards are starting to appear, we thought wed do a quick test of Intels native USB 3.0 host controller and compare how it stacks up to some of the best discrete controllers. For this test we used a Gigabyte Z77X-UD5H and connected up the same Patriot Wildfire SSD and ASMedia ASM1051E SATA 6Gbps to USB 3.0 bridge as we used in our previous test to keep it as level playing ground as possible. We only ran CrystalDiskMark and HD Tune Pro this time around though, but both tests are giving us something of an indicator as toAt the I/O panel, we get an orgy of USB ports (twelve in total what to expect from Intels native USB 3.0 host controller.of which six are USB 3.0). The veritable PS/2 port also makes We used the most recent Intel USB 3.0 drivers which at thean appearance, meant for the OCD benchmarker wanting to time were the 1.0.3.214. Admittedly there might have beennot waste precious cpu cycles on USB polling. There is also some performance improvements for the competition sincetwin Gigabit LAN ports, IEEE1394, eSATA and 7.1 audio. For we did our previous test, especially in the case of RenesasIGP display, we have a space saving HDMI and DisplayPort as we used a beta driver for the µD720201. Sadly we didntconfiguration. have all of the host controllers at hand, but well be doing some additional testing with newer drivers for the ASMedia ASM1042 and see if theres any difference worth writing about. 2
    • March 29th, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneStarting with the read performance in CrystalDiskMark Intelis straight away up in the lead with 241.9MB/s, althoughthats only 8.6MB/s faster than the µD720201 which wasthe fastest host controller last time around in this test. Inthe write performance test the Etron EJ168A is still in thelead with its 185.9MB/s whereas Intel is 3.7MB/s behindat 182.2MB/s. It goes to show that despite Intels hostcontroller is part of the chipset, this doesnt mean itll befaster than a discrete chip under all circumstances. Looking at the max read speed Intel isnt doing quite as well as before, as its host controller is only a mere 2.7MB/s ahead of the µD720201. The maximum write speed sees Intel ahead of Renesas, but behind both ASMedia and Etron. Where the Intel USB 3.0 host controller stands out is in the burst read and write tests, as here Intel has a healthy 11.8MB/s lead in the read test and a massive 28.3MB/s lead in the write test. This is obviously an area where an integrated host controller offers some serious benefits over a discrete one and its possible that once we get faster device side controllers, we could see improved performance from Intel overall.Moving on to HD Tune Pro, Intel stays ahead of thecompetition once more with an average read speed of235.2MB/s, 8.7MB/s faster than the µD720201 this timearound. Moving on to the write test, Intel falls behind allthree of the tried in tested host controllers from Asmedia,Etron and Renesas. Here the Intel controller barely breaksthe 200MB/s barrier and considering all of the other threehost controllers are comfortably past the 200MB/s barrier,this is quite disappointing. 3
    • March 29th, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone Amazon CEO to recover Apollo 11 rocket engines from ocean floor Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/amazon-ceo-to-recover-apollo-11- rocket-engines-from-ocean-floor/15395.html March 29th, 2012 Amazons CEO, Jeff Bezos, is leading an effort to recover the engines of the Apollo 11 space rocket from the darkest depths of the oceans floor. Amazons CEO, Jeff Bezos, is leading an effort to recover the engines of the Apollo 11 space rocket from the darkest depths of the oceans floor. The billionaire founder of the online bookstore, which hasOn the other hand, it looks like Intel needs to do a fair bit of expanded into other areas, including tablet computers withwork on its drivers, as with 5.5 percent CPU usage, Intel is its Kindle Fire, has always expressed interest in spaceas bad as Renesas original µD720200 host controller, albeit exploration and the achievement of putting a person on theits only half the CPU usage that the host controller in AMDs moon in 1969.A75 chipset utilized when we tested it back in August. Bezos has spearheaded attempts to locate the missing engines of the Saturn V rocket, which plummeted into the Atlantic after the launch of one of the worlds most important space missions. Bezos team believe they have found the engines, some 14,000 feet beneath the sea, and now they are planning an expedition to recover them. Bezos is privately funding this project, which has an undisclosed cost, but will likely be several million dollars.Well be taking a look at the USB 3.0 performance inWindows 8 and see what kind of difference if any, thatMicrosofts USB 3.0 host drivers bring to the table. Thegood news here though is that Intel appears to have donea good job with its USB 3.0 implementation. What thisquick little test also tells us is that if you have a USB3.0 host controller from ASMedia, Etron or the µD720201from Renesas, you shouldnt really have to worry about theperformance difference, as in most instances its only a few Plans for the recovery of the 19-foot engines are still in theMegabytes per second difference and sometimes its even in early stages, with no timeframe established for when theythe discrete controllers favour. will be lifted from the ocean floor. It will likely take several 4
    • March 29th, 2012 Published by: VR-Zonedays or weeks from the beginning of the process until theyare on display in a museum.Another problem is that it may be difficult to rescue theengines without damaging them. They have been lying inthe sea for over 40 years and may have been damaged whenthey landed. Bezos and his team will want to ensure that asmuch of them as possible can be salvaged without destroyinganything, which could make the process take even longer."There has always been great interest in artifacts fromthe early days of space exploration and his announcementonly adds to the enthusiasm of those interested in NASAshistory," said Bob Jacobs, spokesperson for NASA.Official "The Girl With TheDragon Tattoo" DVD looks all"Piratey" As you can see in the image above, the first look of the mediaSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/official-the-girl-with-the-dragon- would imply that this is a ripped, i.e. pirated homemadetattoo-dvd-looks-all-piratey-/15391.html DVD. This is a tribute to Lisbeth Sander, a hacking heroineMarch 29th, 2012 of the Millennium Trilogy. Then again, if you download the movie and burn it on the Sony DVD-R, youll get the same thing. Just that one would be of illegal kind. Retailers wont stockWhile there is a battle raging over the shutdown of PlayStation 4 games if SonyMegaUpload service and and an all-out attack on movie blocks used gamespiracy, it is quite amusing to see a triple A title coming with Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/retailers-won-t-stock-playstation-4-an interesting tribute. games-if-sony-blocks-used-games/15393.htmlSony has finally released The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo March 29th, 2012DVD and Blu-ray. This controversial movie caused a lot ofmainstream media fuss over "realistic" depiction of eventstaking place in the book. My personal opinion is that theDavid Finchers take is more true to the core than theSwedish movies from 2009 (the ones with Noomi Rapace init), which are loved by many people who did not read thebooks (if youre thinking I am wrong, just read the books and Analysts believe that retailers will not stock PlayStation 4then re-watch the part II and III). games if Sony decides to block used games on the next- generation console. Analysts believe that retailers will not stock PlayStation 4 games if Sony decides to block used games on the next- generation console. Rumours have been circulating that the next PlayStation, codenamed Orbis, will not be backwards compatible with PlayStation 3 games and wont be able to run pre-owned games, forcing users to buy brand new titles. While Sony has not confirmed this, analysts at Wedbush Securities, DFC Intelligence and IDC think it will be a bad move and that retailers will be inclined not to stock PlayStation 4 games for this reason. They believe it will benefit game studios and publishers, who will make slightly higher sales, but that less consoles might be sold if players are aware of these restrictions. 5
    • March 29th, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone Fans never gave up on the franchise, though. A simple search on Google reveals almost 19 million results, meaning there is still a lot of interest in the universe where people are leading battles against the cat-like Kilrathis. Today, you can download the next chapter in the saga. After seven years of development, the group of fans finally released the Wing Commander Saga: The Darkest Dawn.This would be a particularly bad blow to brick-and-mortarshops, which are already struggling to survive. Hundreds ofshops belonging to Game Group in the UK have closed afterthe company went bankrupt, and others could follow suit ifthey lose the revenue stream from pre-owned games.Sony might be hoping to employ online game passes,according to IDC, but this would present its own problems,as not everyone has the internet, or fast download speeds.Until we live in a completely digital age the value ofused games cannot be underestimated, and it looks likeSony could see significant protest from both retailers andcustomers if it goes down this route. Wing Commander Saga consists out of two campaigns. The first one represents a remake of the first "Prologue" campaign from 1990; a five mission tutorial set on TCS Wellington. Second campaign is "The Darkest Dawn" whichDownload Wing Commander consists out of impressive 50 missions all set on the TCSSaga Fan Project for Free Hermes.Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/download-wing-commander-saga- To download and play 55 missions for free is a starkfan-project-for-free/15292.html testament to dedication shown by a small team of WingMarch 29th, 2012 Commander fans. Game is available for Windows platform only, with Linux and Mac OS X to follow soon. Download the PC Game for free here, and check the official Wing Commander Saga: The Darkest Dawn trailer on YouTube here:Electronic Arts is infamous for killing franchises which have Apple CEO visits Foxconn iPhone factorystrong fan bases and caters to the mainstream crowd. Assuch, the publisher killed Wing Commander franchise. Now,12 years later - fans released a free game based in the Wing Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/apple-ceo-visits-foxconn-iphone-Commander universe. factory/15392.html March 29th, 2012Wing Commander is without any doubt, one of cultfranchises from the dawn of gaming. The game was selling inrecord volumes at the time before the industry was known asthe industry. However, the game drifted from a 3D universeinto numerous low-res cut scenes and expensive actors.After Wing Commander 4, it was obvious why EA decided toshut down the production of future versions. Apples CEO, Tim Cook, has visited a controversial iPhone factory run by Foxconn in China, after allegations of, and investigations into, poor working conditions. 6
    • March 29th, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneApples CEO, Tim Cook, has visited a controversial iPhone March 29th, 2012factory run by Foxconn in China, after allegations of, andinvestigations into, poor working conditions.The visit, which is Cooks first to China since he took overfrom the late Steve Jobs, draws international attention backto how workers are treated in order to produce the lucrative Talking about Huawei, theres even more it it... pushingiPhone and iPad devices. aside the US and Australian government-induced obstacles, the giant firm is getting along with some really forward technologies.Cooks appearance is likely designed to assure investors andcustomers that Apple takes these accusations seriously, so According to fresh todays Wireless Watch report, Huawei ismuch so that the top dog is willing to check for himself. darn serious on overtaking all of the competition in the nextHowever, the problem is that Foxconn was likely made generation wireless arena. The 30 Gbps beyond LTE, oraware of the visit before he arrived, which means that things basically over 1,000 times the faster 3.5G wireless networkscould be made to seem better than they really are on any in existence today, would provide brand new usage modelsother normal working day. for the mobile devices, not to mention far less of low speed connection problems when many devices congregate around common cell points. Huaweis holding of 265 key approved specs for the LTE and beyond, as the story says, is a major weapon in hand to control the evolution of the future mobile network data specifications, at the very least. Couple it with fast processors of its own to implement baseband circuitry at the SoC single- chip level, and voila! there come next generation phones and tablets of serious calibre. What the story didnt mention is that the company is just as well getting along with the 40GE and beyond (100GE) wired Ethernet implementations, including some really nasty fiber optic converters and network solutions, according to our insiders.The problem for Apple is that in many ways it needs apositive spotlight on Foxconn, as the production of itspopular devices would be impossible without it and similar The combination of top wireless and top wired technologiescompanies. makes for an interesting market proposition. One use of such high end networks could be in massive multiparty FullHD videoconferencing, for instance, where Huawei isApple has an important relationship with China, not developing its own implementation of the H.265 next genjust because of the companies who manufacture and higher efficiency protocol for further compressed FullHDassemble its products, but because of deals with Chinese video, and up to 30% extra gain over the H.264 with minimaltelecommunications firms for providing network coverage losses, unless you press the freeze frame pause button,for the iPhone. This has led to Apple securing guarantees where the losses may become, umm, more obvious. But then,from the Chinese government that intellectual property video conferencing means a moving video, isnt it?protection would become a bigger priority. Details and release dateImage Credit: Reuters emerge on Call of Duty BlackHuawei goes beyond 4G (on Ops 2 Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/details-and-release-date-emerge-on-air) and 40GE (on cables) call-of-duty-black-ops-2/15389.htmlspeeds, and gets into H.265 March 29th, 2012Full HD video conferencing asmainstreamSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/huawei-goes-beyond-4g-on-air-and-40ge-on-cables-speeds-and-gets-into-h.265-full-hd-video- Some details have leaked out on Treyarchs upcoming sequelconferencing-as-mainstream/15390.html to Call of Duty Black Ops giving us a supposed launch date and some juicy info on a new game mode and more. 7
    • March 29th, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneSome details have leaked out on Treyarchs upcoming sequelto Call of Duty Black Ops giving us a supposed launch dateand some juicy info on a new game mode and more.Black Ops 2 will apparently be arriving on November6th following one of the biggest advertising campaignsActivision will have ran to date with an absolute bucketloadof coin thrown into this blockbuster multiplayer FPS sequel.A new game mode dubbed "Escort" will be making an entryinto Black Ops 2 with both "Drop Zone" and "Kill Confirmed"also making their return. Two modes are rumoured to getdropped however, Team Defender and Infected. There willbe 15 prestiges in 50 ranks offered in the game, with everytwo prestiges giving a 5 rank increase and a max prestigelevel cap of 90.Black Ops 2 will include Call of Duty Elite 2.0 support withClan Tournament access, while its map structure will followthe tradition of Black ops in both size and design. There willbe a heavier emphasis on "hardcore" mode this time aroundwhich should get a solid thumbs up from many of the players The notebook has a 14-inch sized display, while internallywho have been expressing their desire for it. it comes equipped with 2GB of RAM out of the box (withThese wont be the only improvements to Black Ops 2 - support for up to 8GB), a 500GB mechanical HDD, a couplethe single player campaign is expected to be far improved. USB 3.0 ports. HDMI output and an 8-cell battery.Activision is anticipating BO2 to be the most successful in Without doubt this slim AMD alternative to the ultrabooksales numbers of all the COD titles to date. Certainly with realm will be a cheaper route to take, but at this stage we aremany people agreeing that Black Ops was a better game than yet to hear of a release date or exact price point.Modern Warfare 3, this already puts the sequel in a goodlight leading up to its release. Operas Mini 7 browser forASUS unveils AMD powered Android boosts performanceU82U 14-inch Ultra Thin Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/opera-s-mini-7-browser-for-android- boosts-performance/15387.htmlLaptop March 29th, 2012Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/asus-unveils-amd-powered-u82u-14-inch-ultra-thin-laptop/15388.htmlMarch 29th, 2012 Opera has just released its latest version of Opera Mini for Android devices onto the Android Market as well as its own mobile website. The Opera Mini 7 web browser bringsASUS is preparing a new "Ultra Thin" notebook for market significantly improved hardware acceleration resulting inwhich would have otherwise been referred to as an ultrabook faster overall browsing performance and smoother panning.if not for the AMD powered internals. The upcoming Opera has just released its latest version of Opera MiniU82U uses AMDs E-450 APU comprising two Bobcat cores for Android devices onto the Android Market as well as itsrunning at 1.65GHz and Radeon HD 6320 graphics. own mobile website. The Opera Mini 7 web browser bringsASUS is preparing a new "Ultra Thin" notebook for market significantly improved hardware acceleration resulting inwhich would have otherwise been referred to as an ultrabook faster overall browsing performance and smoother panning.if not for the AMD powered internals. The upcoming There are a range of other improvements also implementedU82U uses AMDs E-450 APU comprising two Bobcat cores into the new build including changes to the user interfacerunning at 1.65GHz and Radeon HD 6320 graphics. where a limitless number of Speed Dial buttons can be added; this opposed to prior versions with a maximum of nine visual bookmark thumbnails for favorite website access via the Home Screen. Further to the above, Opera has included its Turbo feature into Mini 7 which speeds up browsing speeds and cuts down on download sizes by routing all web page requests through Operas own proxy server. This proxy server can compress web pages by up to 90 percent before forwarding them onto the users browser for snappy load times. 8
    • March 29th, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneAs a side note, not that too many folks will be affected here, movies at the same time, the battery life will be about 4.5but Opera Mini 7 does require Android 1.5+. hours. - Password change option is now located on the main screenFirmware update for Seagate - Support for M4A (MP4) meta data (album art, song title,GoFlex Satellite brings new artists, etc are now displayed in the various menus) - A-Z scroll bars have been added to the Movies andfeatures including improved Documents screens, making it easier to find filesbattery life - Users can now toggle between the native video player andSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/firmware-update-for-seagate-goflex- GoFlex Media video player for Android App on the settingssatellite-brings-new-features-including-improved-battery-life/15385.html pageMarch 29th, 2012 Steps to update your Seagate GoFlex Satellites firmware Step 1: Exit the GoFlex Media App on your mobile or tablet device. Step 2: Connect your GoFlex Satellite to your computer using the USB Adapter.Owners of the Seagate GoFlex Satellite mobile wireless Step 3: Download the Satellite Firmware to your computerstorage device can now enjoy additional features including and copy the downloaded file to your GoFlex Satellite. (Doaccess to other Wi-Fi network while connected to the device, not put it in a folder)as well as improved battery life. Details inside. Note: Filename is satellite_firmware_xf_DVT_1.3.5.015.bin (do not rename this file) Step 4: Safely remove the GoFlex Satellite drive a. For Windows - use the safe remove hardware icon by the clock b. For Mac OS - click the eject icon in the finder in Mac OS. Step 5: Disconnect the USB cable from the computer Step 6: Power on the GoFlex Satellite and let it update. (2-3 Minutes) DO NOT ATTEMPT to connect to the Satellite until the Wi-Fi light on the drive stops blinking. Once the Wi-Fi light stops blinking the GoFlex Satellite is ready to use.So if you have not updated the Seagate GoFlex Satellitefirmware, simply download it from Seagates website.Some of the new features with the updated firmware include: 9.7-inch Eken A90 Android- Users can now join an existing Wi-Fi network while usingthe GoFlex Satellite wirelessly; most mobile devices can tablet retailing at US$160 Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/9.7-inch-eken-a90-android-tablet-only connect to one Wi-Fi network at a time, so up until retailing-at-us-160/15383.htmlnow a user would have to choose between accessing media March 29th, 2012from the GoFlex Satellite and accessing the Internet. Withthe update, user can connect to the network which GoFlexSatellite creates and stream media, while still having anoption withinthe GoFlex Media app to connect to anotherWi-Fi source.- Support for up to eight users (the device could only supportup to three users previously), but for best performance it The Apple new iPad is going for US$500, while the Androidis recommended that no more than three users play high models with similar screen sizes are also around the samedefinition (HD) movies at the same time. price point. For those who are looking for something more- Option for extended battery life when combined with the affordable, would know that many China-branded tabletscurrent iOS GoFlex Media App (download/play feature on are selling at much lower. And it seems that this Eken A90settings page). When the "Stream and download" button is Android tablet is said to be the cheapest in the market, atswitched on in the settings menu (as it is by default)a single just US$160.user can watch HD movies (at a quality of 3-megabits) back-to-back for up to seven hours. When three users are watching 9
    • March 29th, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone HTC device owners, do you know you can synchronize your personal data to HTCSense.com cloud service? Well, the service has been around since 2010, and according to the company, it will be temporarily closed by 30 April, end of next month. News reported that HTC is planning a major overhaul to their cloud service to improve user experience. No details have been revealed though, and the company is informing users about the closure of the current service and asking them to download and backup their data they have stored on the cloud. After 30 April, the "data will no longerEken may not be an extremely popular name in the tablet be accessible and will be deleted". Meantime, do backup thebusiness, but it seems that the China-based company data to your computer if you have not.has recently launched their new A90 tablet. According tothe companys website, the A90 is powered by a 1.2GHzAllwinner A10 processor with 1GB DDR2 RAM and 8GB Thecus shows off its lateststorage. (Note that the processor is not dual- or quad-core).It sports a 9.7-inch capacitive touchscreen display with NAS products at ISFresolutions of up to 1024x768 pixels. The tablet measures Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/thecus-shows-off-its-latest-nas-just 11mm thin and comes with two microUSB port, 3.5mm products-at-isf/15380.htmlearphone jack, microSD slot, and HDMI port. It also has a March 29th, 20122-megapixel rear and 0.3-megapixel front cameras, and isequipped with built-in 5000mAh rechargeable battery. Andyes, for this Eken A90, it is retailing at just US$160.HTCSense.com upgradingrequires users to backup We missed Thecus at CeBIT earlier this month, but we got a chance to catch up with the company at ISF and have a looktheir cloud data at some of its new products. On display were the recentlySource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/htcsense.com-upgrading-requires- announced N2800 and N4800 Atom powered NAS boxesusers-to-backup-their-cloud-data/15381.html as well as the Core i3 powered N8850 which is part of aMarch 29th, 2012 new series of tower NAS products from Thecus for more demanding users, as well as Thecus new tablet. We missed Thecus at CeBIT earlier this month, but we got a chance to catch up with the company at ISF and have a look at some of its new products. On display were the recentlyHTCSense.com was launched in 2010 which offer users announced N2800 and N4800 Atom powered NAS boxesthe features including locating their lost phones as well as the Core i3 powered N8850 which is part of aremotely, backup their data, and synchronize their contacts new series of tower NAS products from Thecus for moreand call history to the cloud. And it seems that the demanding users, as well as Thecus new tablet.company has decided to introduce some new services, butin order to make room for upgrade, it is asking users todownload and backup their data they have stored on thecloud to their computers. 10
    • March 29th, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone Both of the front USB ports are now of the 3.0 variety and we also find the D-sub and HDMI ports present here, as well as an audio line-out connector. In this case it comes at the cost of one eSATA port and a pair of USB 2.0 ports which the N4200Pro sported. The additional features pretty much make both the N2800 and N4800 computers rather than NAS devices, even though Thecus doesnt promote them as such.The N2800 shares the same chassis as the N2200XXX, butthe specs have been boosted to include a 2.13GHz AtomD2700 CPU which is paired up with 2GB of DDR3 memory.Thecus has also added a front USB 3.0 port for quicklysyncing data from a removable drive with the N2800. Aninteresting feature that Thecus has added to several of itsnew NAS products is an HDMI and D-sub connector so thatyou can do local configuration of these products by simplyattaching a display, i.e. no PC needed and you could in fact Come June, Thecus will be issuing a firmware upgradeuse a flat screen TV if you didnt have a computer monitor which will contain new graphics drivers which will see thearound. Theres also an expansion slot, but we were told N2800 and N4800 gain support for HD video playback viathat this currently only supports USB 3.0 add-in cards and the HDMI port, although neither device really looks likenothing much else. something wed want to put next to our TV. However, this is also where Thecus new tablet comes into play, but more on that a little bit later. Noctua NH-L12 CPU Cooler Review Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/noctua-nh-l12-cpu-cooler- review/15379.html March 29th, 2012 Today there is an abundance of high performance CPU coolers, with each company supplying several solutions to the market. The vast majority of such CPU coolers however are tower coolers of significant size, making their implementation inside desktop HTPC cases and other tight configuration problematic. In this review we will examine and test a special kind of cooler; the NH-L12 by Noctua, a low profile quiet cooler developed to offer superior acousticsThe N4800 builds on the N4200Pro, but once again we performance in tight spaces.have the Atom D2700 processor and 2GB of DDR3 memorycompared to an Atom D525 with only 1GB of DDR3 memory. 11
    • March 29th, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneToday there is an abundance of high performance CPU Voltage Range 12 Vcoolers, with each company supplying several solutions MTBF > 150.000 hto the market. The vast majority of such CPU coolershowever are tower coolers of significant size, making theirimplementation inside desktop HTPC cases and other tight Microsoft considering Kinectconfiguration problematic. In this review we will examineand test a special kind of cooler; the NH-L12 by Noctua, a as home security camera,low profile quiet cooler developed to offer superior acousticsperformance in tight spaces. facial tracker Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/microsoft-considering-kinect-as-Socket compatibility Intel LGA2011, LGA1366, home-security-camera-facial-tracker/15378.html LGA1156, LGA1155, LGA775 March 29th, 2012 AMD AM2, AM2+, AM3, AM3+, FM1 (backplate required)Height (without fan) 66 mm Microsoft is considering additional uses outside of gamingWidth (without fan) 128 mm for its Kinect motion tracking technology, including the potential as a home security camera and for tracking facialDepth (without fan) 150 mm expressions on TV viewers.Height (with fan) 93 mm Microsoft is considering additional uses outside of gamingWidth (with fan) 128 mm for its Kinect motion tracking technology, including theDepth (with fan) 150 mm potential as a home security camera and for tracking facialWeight (without fan) 415 g expressions on TV viewers.Weight (with fan) 680 gMaterial Copper (base and heat- pipes), aluminium (cooling The company is reputedly in the early stages of developing fins), soldered joints & nickel ideas for alternative uses of the device, according to plating anonymous sources cited by Game Zone.Fan compatibility 120x120x25mm & 92x92x25mm One of the biggest potential areas of expansion is homeScope of Delivery · 1x NF-F12 PWM premium security. Traditional cameras are already doing that job quite fan well, when theyre not being accessed by hackers, so its not · 1x NF-B9 PWM premium clear what the Kinect will add to the table. It may be that the fan Kinect will sense intruders and pivot its camera so that it is constantly following and recording their activities. · 2x Low-Noise Adaptor (L.N.A.) · Y-Split Cable · NT-H1 high-grade thermal compound · SecuFirm2™ Mounting Kit · Mini-ITX Mounting-Kit · Noctua Metal Case-BadgeWarranty 6 YearsFan specifications Facial recognition is another area that the company is allegedly exploring, both for games and TV. We can seeModel the potential applications in games, including some partyBearing style games that require players to make various expressionsMax. Rotational Speed (+/- 1500 / 1600 RPM towards the camera. An acting training simulator is another10%) possibility.Max. Rotational Speed with 1200 / 1300 RPML.N.A. (+/- 10%) As for TV, Microsoft might be looking at seeing how peopleMin. Rotational Speed 300 / 300 RPM react to shows and ads, but this may be too much of an(PWM) invasion of privacy. Users are unlikely to want to be testMax. Airflow 93,4 / 64,3 m³/h subjects for marketing campaigns, unless there is some kindMax. Airflow with L.N.A. 74,3 / 52,6 m³/h of reward as an incentive. It could perhaps be introduced toMax. Acoustical Noise 22,4 / 17,6 dB(A) cinemas or other venues than users homes, but privacy willMax. Acoustical Noise with 18,6 / 13,1 dB(A) remain a big stumbling block to any implementation of thisL.N.A. idea.Input Power 0,6 / 0,96 W 12
    • March 29th, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone Torment. The Icewind Dale series is another hinted at option for a revamp.Baldurs Gate: EnhancedEdition to launch on iPad and The iPad version is expected to retail for around $10. It is not yet clear if the PC version will be the same, but we expect itPC wont be far off.Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/baldur-s-gate-enhanced-edition-to-launch-on-ipad-and-pc/15377.htmlMarch 29th, 2012 Baldurs Gate: Enhanced Edition will launch sometime this Summer. FBI and others licence UnrealBaldurs Gate: Enhanced Edition, a revamp of the popular game engineBioWare role-playing game, will launch on the iPad and PC, Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/fbi-and-others-licence-unreal-game-complete with a new user interface and multiplayer support. engine/15376.htmlBaldurs Gate: Enhanced Edition, a revamp of the popular March 29th, 2012BioWare role-playing game, will launch on the iPad and PC,complete with a new user interface and multiplayer support.Overhaul Games will release the updated title on all versionsof the iPad, along with full touchscreen functionality, as wellas the games classic home, the PC. The FBI and other US government agencies have licensed the Unreal game engine, used in Mass Effect 3 and Batman: Arkham City, for training programmes.The under 2GB download will include all content fromthe original game, its expansion Tales of the Sword Coast, The FBI and other US government agencies have licensedand some totally new content developed by the games the Unreal game engine, used in Mass Effect 3 and Batman:original developers, who previously worked at BioWare. This Arkham City, for training programmes.content will include new characters, quests, and adventures. The various agencies included in the long-term agreementPresumably there will be new landscape for some of this. are the FBI, the Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity (IARPA), and the US Army, in what will be known as the Unreal Government Network. The FBI Academy will use the technology to develop virtual multiplayer crime scenes for simulated training sessions. The IARPA will use it in so-called “serious games” for eliminating bias in intelligence analysis. The US Army will use it to practice anaesthesiology skills for its medics, while weapon researchers will use it as a virtualisation tool.Additional updates will include modernised graphics, a newUI, and a variety of other unannounced improvements thatthe studio is promising will be noticeable. Saving on thecloud is a feature they are working on, as is the ability to fullmod the game. Some popular mods made by players over theyears might even become part of the official game. The US Army has previously employed the Unreal engine for the promotional first-person shooter Americas Army 3Overhaul Games previously revamped the old favourite, and emergency response simulator Zero Hour, developed byMKD2, adding completely updated high-definition graphics. Virtual Heroes.The studio is also planning to redo Baldurs Gate 2 andis even considering an enhanced version of Planescape: 13
    • March 29th, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneFinancial terms of the agreement were not disclosed, but in somewhere as well, but as to what these are, we simply dontthe case of the IARPA the deal was worth over $10 million, know.suggesting similar prices for other agencies. Intels Smart Response,Intel Valleyview 2 clock Smart Connect and Rapidspeeds and more unveiled Start requirements detailedSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/intel-valleyview-2-clock-speeds-and- Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/intel-s-smart-response-smart-more-unveiled/15375.html connect-and-rapid-start-requirements-detailed/15374.htmlMarch 29th, 2012 March 29th, 2012Weve already unveiled a lot of details about IntelsValleyview 2 Atom core which will be part of the Bay TrailSoC and today we can reveal the clock speeds and a fewmore details about this upcoming Atom core. Weve also got With the introduction of its new 7-series chipsets –details on the TDP, graphics clock and a few other details to specifically the Z77 and H77 as well as a few mobile variantsshare, so click on through for all the gory details. – Intel will be adding two new technologies in addition to Smart Response. These two new additions will be knownLets start with clock speeds, the standard SKU will be as Rapid Start and Smart Connect and the requirementsclocked at up to 1.9GHz, but as is the case, there should be have now been detailed courtesy of Asus manuals for itsa few different models here, but as far as were aware this is upcoming motherboards based on the new chipsets.what Intel is targeting the quad core models to be clocked at.At this speed they should hit a TDP of around 10W, i.e. the With the introduction of its new 7-series chipsets –same as the current D2700 desktop Atom processor which is specifically the Z77 and H77 as well as a few mobile variantsa dual core, Hyper Threaded part. The graphics core should – Intel will be adding two new technologies in addition tobe clocked at up to 667MHz, slightly faster than the D2700, Smart Response. These two new additions will be knownbut only at about half the speed of an Ivy Bridge graphics as Rapid Start and Smart Connect and the requirementscore which Valleyview 2 is claimed to be incorporating. have now been detailed courtesy of Asus manuals for its upcoming motherboards based on the new chipsets. As previously, Intels Smart Response will require a minim of 20GB of SSD space and nothing has really changed from the Z68 chipset here. However, in addition to the 20GB of space needed for Smart Response, Rapid Start will consume an equivalent amount of SSD space to that of how much RAM you have installed in the system. Asus is listing 2, 4 and 8GB, but wed presume if your system has 16GB of RAM, youll need 16GB of spare SSD space.As for the SKU targeting battery powered devices, werelooking at a clock speed of up to 1.5GHz and this will be adual core only part. However, Intel has managed to reducethe TDP to a mere 3W or there about, i.e. lower than thecurrent Atom N2600 mobile part. The graphics clock herewill be a mere 350MHz, or 50MHz slower than the AtomN2600 or the same as Intels upcoming Ultrabook Ivy Bridgeprocessors at their lowest GPU clock speed.The standard SKU or Type 3 as Intel calls it will measure27x25mm whereas the battery powered SKU or Type 4 willcome in at a mere 17x17mm and this is also part of the reasonwhy it lacks some of the features of the Type 3 SKU. Intelwill also offer extended temperature versions of the Type 3SKU, but these wont be able to use some components likethe integrated Gigabit MAC, as Intel doesnt have a suitablePHY that works in extended temperature environments andas such a PCI Express Ethernet chip would have to be used.Sadly we havent managed to dig out any more details withregards to any consumer equivalent chip, but wed dare to What makes Rapid Start somewhat more frustrating to useguess that there will be a Type 1 and Type 2 SKU hiding is that it requires a separate partition from the one used for Smart Response, so in other words, if you want to take 14
    • March 29th, 2012 Published by: VR-Zoneadvantage of both technologies, you need to chunk up yourSSD into smaller partitions. Were not entirely sure if thiswill be automated or not, but its something well make sureto have a look at in more detail shortly. Asus is also warningthat if youre using a 32-bit Windows system with more than4GB of RAM, Rapid Start might run into some issues.As for Smart Connect, well, it doesnt appear to use up anyadditional space, as it seems like its happy to share spacewith Smart Response on the same partition. Smart Connectis more likely to be found on notebooks, as its a technologythat requires an Intel Wi-Fi card or NIC as far as were aware,as it allows a computer in sleep or hibernation mode to wakeup and download updates for Windows, keep your emails upto date (do people still use offline mail clients?) and evenrefresh web pages and other internet connected programs.Itll be interesting to see how well this works in praxis, but wehave a feeling Intel has put some effort into making it workas seamless as possible.inXtron shows off the AkitioMyCloud Pro at ISFSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/inxtron-shows-off-the-akitio-mycloud-pro-at-isf/15373.htmlMarch 29th, 2012 Beyond the Atom D425 processor, inXtron has also added a single DDR3 SO-DIMM slot that accepts up to 4GB of 800MHz memory – although we dont know what theOne issue in the past has been that NAS boxes powered by standard configuration will be – a half-size mini PCI ExpressIntels Atom processors have been way too expensive to hit slot and a USB DOM (Disk On Module), all visible in the PCBconsumer level price points and as such this market space picture below.has been pretty exclusive to RISC – generally ARM or MIPS– powered solutions. This appears to be changing, as at theIntel Storage Forums inXtron was showing off its AkitioMyCloud Pro which is targeted to retail at sub US$200 whilesporting an Atom processor and a fair few other goodies.One issue in the past has been that NAS boxes powered byIntels Atom processors have been way too expensive to hitconsumer level price points and as such this market spacehas been pretty exclusive to RISC – generally ARM or MIPS– powered solutions. This appears to be changing, as at theIntel Storage Forums inXtron was showing off its AkitioMyCloud Pro which is targeted to retail at sub US$200 whilesporting an Atom processor and a fair few other goodies.The MyCloud Pro might not be a high-end Atom NAS, as itsports a 1.83GHz single core Atom D425 processor which When it comes to connectivity the MyCloud Pro might becant really compete against more expensive NAS products a little bit light on features compared to more expensivewith Atoms more recent D2x00 series or Atom processors. products, but it has a single Gigabit Ethernet port, two USBThat said, for most home users – which this product is 3.0 ports – via an ASMedia USB 3.0 host controller – and amainly targeting – it should offer some nice performance front USB 2.0 port from which you can easily copy files fromimprovements over most RISC based NAS products in this a USB storage device onto the NAS. As you can see from theprice bracket. In fact, the MyCloud Pro offers comparative pictures, the MyCloud Pro has space for a pair of 3.5-inchhardware to previous generation products from many of the drives and it supports RAID 0, 1 and JBOD.more established players in the NAS market that sold for twoto three times as much as the MyCloud Pro is expected toretail for. 15
    • March 29th, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone March 29th, 2012 Canon Singapore has announced their latest LEGRIA HF- M and HF-R series video camcorders with integrated Wi-Fi connectivitiy, which allow users to share with friends and family on the web. The four video camcorders are - LEGRIA HF M56, LEGRIA HF M52, LEGRIA HF R38 and LEGRIA HF R36.The UI we saw at ISF looked promising as well with a fairlysimple to use point and click UI that borrows a bit fromApples desktop design. Theres of course support for all thestandard features youd expect to see such as UPnP-AV, NFS,FTP, Samba, sharing of content to social networking servicesand much more, although oddly enough the spec sheet didntmention DLNA support. The MyCloud Pro does have aBitTorrent client built in as well as an iTunes compatiblemusic server. Another handy feature is apps for iOS andAndroid devices. Canon Singapore has unveiled four new high definition LEGRIA HF-M and HF-R series camcorders that let users share their videos online without the need of a PC. The LEGRIA HF-M series features an enhanced version of Canon’s HD CMOS PRO sensor that claim to deliver professional-quality full HD video, even under extreme low- light conditions. With the Canon HD video lens and a powerful 51x advanced zoom in the HF-R series, users can zoom and capture the action easily no matter where they are. With the built-in Wi-Fi connectivity, the LEGRIA HF- M and HF-R series let you connect wirelessly to your iOS devices and view or store their recorded MP4 movies on their devices. You can also upload directly to Facebook and YouTube via the Movie Uploader application, as well as stream movies wirelessly from their LEGRIA camcorder to any DLNA-certified HDTV. Equipped with Advanced HD CMOS PRO sensor thatOverall the Akitio MyCloud Pro looks like a really impressive improves low-light sensitivity when shooting in darkpiece of kit for the money and although inXtron has environments, the LEGRIA HF-M series boast great clarityproduced a few NAS products in the past, the MyCloud Pro with its new 2.37-megapixel full HD CMOS sensor. Theis vastly more impressive. Were going to try and get a unit HF-M series also features a 10x optical zoom lens andin for review to see if it lives up to the specs and see what advanced iris diaphragm which helps create more attractivethe transfer speeds are like when in use, as many NAS boxes background blur. The four new HD LEGRIA camcordersin this price range tend to suffer when it comes to shuffling feature a flat touchscreen panel with a new user interfacelarge amounts of data across a home network to them, but for easy navigation. A HOME button has also been addedhopefully this shouldnt be an issue in this case. The product for convenience of returning to the main screen. All modelshas as yet to launch, but its apparently not too far away. come in a sleek and compact form and are equipped with a built-in internal memory and SDHC/SDXC card slot. The Canon LEGRIA HF M52 and Canon LEGRIA HF R38 comeCanon Singapore unveils four with 32GB of built-in memory, while the Canon LEGRIAnew LEGRIA camcorders with HFM56 and Canon LEGRIA HF R36 come with 8GB of built- in memory.Wi-Fi connectivitySource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/canon-singapore-unveils-four-new-legria-camcorders-with-wi-fi-connectivity/15370.html The Canon LEGRIA camcorders will be available mid April with the following prices:- Canon LEGRIA HF M56 - S$1,349 Canon LEGRIA HF M52 - S$1,549 Canon LEGRIA HF R38 - S$1,099 16
    • March 29th, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneCanon LEGRIA HF R36 - S$899 Heres the full rundown on the specs side of things for Eurocoms Panther 4.0 :-Eurocom officially unleashes • CORE LOGIC: Intel X79 Express Chipset • BIOS: Unified Extensible Firmware Interface (UEFI);the Panther 4.0 notebook AMISource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/eurocom-officially-unleashes-the-panther-4.0-notebook/15371.html • PROCESSOR: up to Intel Core i7-3960XMarch 29th, 2012 Extreme(3.30GHz, 15MB L3 cache) • MEMORY: up to 32GB; DDR3-1333/1600/1866; four physical memory sockets • EXPANSION: Built-in ExpressCard 34/54 slotEurocom has just formally introduced its latest mobile • STORAGE: up to 4TB of storage with four physical SSD,powerhouse, the Panther 4.0 which is based on Intels X79 / Hybrid or HDD, RAID 0/1/5/10 support;Sandy Bridge-E platform with the option of a Core i7 3960XProcessor Extreme ticking things over at rapid pace. • I/O PORTS:Eurocom has just formally introduced its latest mobile • 3x USB 3.0powerhouse, the Panther 4.0 which is based on Intels X79 /Sandy Bridge-E platform with the option of a Core i7 3960X • 2x USB 2.0Processor Extreme ticking things over at rapid pace. • eSATA • Firewire-400 (TI XIO2221ZAY) • Display Port v1.2 • DVI-I (SL) • HDMI 1.4a out w/HDCP • Headphone • Microphone • S/PDIF out • Line-inThis 17.3-inch sized (1920 x 1080) notebook gives a • RJ-45 / LANmultitude of GPU options with both GeForce SLI and • COMMUNICATION: built-in 10/100/1000Mb Base-TXAMD Radeon CrossFireX support via Modular MXM 3.0b Ethernet LAN (Intel 82579V); WLAN (optional); Bluetoothconnectivity. NVIDIA GPU options include the GTX 675M, v2.1+EDR (optional); 2M Video Webcam (built-in)670M, 660M, GTX 580M and GTX 560M as well as Quadro • SECURITY: TPM 1.2; Fingerprint, Kensington Lock5010M, 4000M or 3000M GPUs. On the AMD side, theresthe option of Radeon HD 6990M or HD 6970M GPUs. • KEYBOARD: Illuminated full-size with separate numeric keypad; with three customizable lighting areas and seven optional colours; W/A/S/D gaming key; built-in touchpad with multi-gesture and scrolling functions; 6 touch sensor instant buttons: Volume Up/Down, Mute, WLAN, BT, Webcam • WEIGHT/DIMENSIONS: 5.5kg (12.1lbs); 419(W)x286(D)x57.9-62.1(H)mm (16.76x11.44x2.31-2.48inch) 17
    • March 29th, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone the support for Verizons 4G LTE network, which will greatly improve the speed of web browsing and content streaming etc. The LG Lucid 4G measure 119.1 x 62.2 x 11.4mm, weighs just 142g and comes with a 1700mAh battery that can provide up to 350 hours of standby time, and up to 8 hours of usage. Verizon Wireless will retail in stores tomorrow, 29 March, at US$130 (before rebate). Huawei aims to be the new IBM? Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/huawei-aims-to-be-the-new- ibm-/15368.html March 29th, 2012Quite the serious piece of kit indeed. The below video alsolets you get a good glimpse underneath the covers. Unprintable Content (Video, Flash, etc.) China has now its share of high powered movers and shakersFor further details including the full list of optional extras on in the IT world. We all know how Lenovo masterfully playedthis US $3,499 base priced 5.5Kg chunk of mobile PC, head the strokes with its IBM PC division to become the global PCover to the official product page here. brand. How about the other big name there, Huawei?Verizon selling LG Lucid 4Gon 29 March at US$130Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/verizon-selling-lg-lucid-4g-on-29-march-at-us-130/15369.htmlMarch 29th, 2012 If only reading the past stories about them in the western press, one would easily assume Huawei to be just a - very big one, though - plagiarizer of glorious western technology marvels in the networking and telecoms business, especially damaging to the once leading show in town, Cisco. WhileVerizon Wireless has announced that the LG Lucid 4G dual- part of their business seemed a bit like that, the reality is thatcore smartphone will be retailing in US from tomorrow at US Huawei grew way beyond that level, and the new aspirations$130; or US$80 with two-year contract (after a US$50 mail- seem to be very serious, on the global level.in rebate). The staff in Huaweis Shenzhen outfit - not a small one mind you, with a square mile-sized campus of some 60,000 workers - shared with us some interesting stories. Firstly, the general Huawei strategy now, ordered from the very top, is not to be the new Cisco, but the new IBM. In this contest, it means controlling everything: from the whole hardware stack, including their own CPUs, own servers and of course own telecoms and networking stuff, improving the software stack, to much stronger solutions and services arm. While the ARM handphone CPU Huawei has is just the beginning, despite its seemingly very high performance, they argue the real push will come at the high end, especially servers, since the company wants to become the dominant player in the field. Itd be interesting to see which CPUs they would use there, aside from the obligatory Intel lines, sinceThe LG Lucid 4G smartphone is equipped with 1.2GHz China is abound now with its own high end CPU offerings.dual-core processor, 1GB memory and incorporates CorningGorilla Glass on its 4-inch IPS-LCD touchscreen (480x800resolution). The smartphone also features a 5-megapixel Keep in mind that, while it may be associated with Chinesecamera with LED flash at the rear, Wi-Fi b/g/n, Bluetooth government and even PLA these days, Huawei had quiteand USB 2.0, and according to LG, it will receive the Google humble, enterprising beginnings. So, dismissing all this as aAndroid 4.0 ICS update soon. One of its biggest strength is party-ordered big time plan would be a big mistake. As far as 18
    • March 29th, 2012 Published by: VR-Zonewere told, they are dead serious on this, and theres plenty of March 29th, 2012money and other resources to back the plan. More to comeas we hear!Apple Australia offers torefund misled customers on Gold is unquestionably one of the most sought-afternew iPad commodities on this planet and a universal symbol of powerSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/apple-australia-offers-to-refund- and prestige. For their upcoming Z77 (Ivy Bridge) flagship,misled-customers-on-new-ipad/15367.html ECS literally used their midas touch to create a gold themedMarch 29th, 2012 motherboard. We lay our coveteous eyes on it... ECS is not the first company to use gold plated components but they have definitely got the balance and asthetics right on their upcoming flagship motherboard - the Z77H2- A2X Black Extreme. The advantages of using gold is the corrosion resistance and superior electrical conductivity relative to other common metals. Although the TaiwaneseOwners of the new iPad in Australia who feel that motherboard maker has had a checkered past when itthey have been misled about the devices 4G broadband comes to enthusiast overclocking, their inexpensively pricedcapability, may soon be able to get a refund from Apple. boards have been generally reliable and feature-filled. In this instance, we see a functional and well spaced out ATX layout with no glaring wire routing issues or obstruction.According to Apples senior counsel Paul Anastassiou, thecompany has proposed refunds to customers in Australiawho feel that they have been misled about the newiPads 4G broadband functionality. Apple will also publish Right on the box itself, we see a sticker boasting aboutclarifications on its website and at sales outlets with its memory overclocking credentials (2800+MHz), althoughregards to the incompatibility of the new iPad with 4G we suspect its more to do with the dexterity of the Ivy Bridgenetwork support in Australia. Anastassiou also said that the memory controller.company has never claimed the new iPad would work fullyon existing 4G network operated by Telstra Corp, and it hadbeen widely reported by the local media ahead of the iPadlaunch that it wouldnt be compatible.The Australian Competition & Consumer Commission, orACCC, has lodged a complaint at the Federal Court inMelbourne, accusing Apple of false advertising about thenew iPads 4G+Wi-Fi being able to work in Australia.First Looks: ECS Z77H2-A2XBlack Extreme - The MidasTouchSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/first-looks-ecs-z77h2-a2x-black-extreme--the-midas-touch/15363.html Here we have a list of components that have been plated gold 19
    • March 29th, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneGold Plated Galore: For networking, we get a single GigabitLAN port, bluetooth and wireless options without extraunsightly wiring. The venerable PS/2 is done away here tomake way for 8 USB ports, 4 of which are USB3.0 (2 ofthem native from the Z77 PCH). Display wise we get a HDMIoutput and the soon to be depreciated D-sub/DVI (SingleLink) connectors. There is also a E-SATA and 7.1 channelaudio as well. 20
    • May 31st, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneVR-Zone.com | Tech News for the Geeks! VR-Zone | Stuff for the Geeks is a bi-weekly publication covering the latest gadgets and stuff for the geeks.Porsche Design and ResearchIn Motion launch P9981smartphone in SingaporeSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/porsche-design-and-research-in-motion-launch-p-9981-smartphone-in-singapore/16107.htmlMay 31st, 2012 The P9981 claims to incorporate the best in design and technology features from Porsche Design and ResearchThe Porsche Design P9981 was unveiled in Singapore, in in Motion respectively. It features a forged stainless steelNovember last year. Today, the company and Research in frame, hand-wrapped leather rear cover, sculpted QWERTYMotion have jointly announced that the smartphone will keyboard, and crystal clear touch display. Powered byretail in all Porsche Design stores and authorized retailers a 1.2GHz processor and 8GB onboard memory, thefrom today. smartphone is built with Liquid Graphics technology that offers a highly responsive touch experience with seamless graphics, and runs BlackBerry 7 OS. The P9981 also features HD video recording, 24-bit high resolution graphics, microSD card slot for expansion, advanced sensors, and built-in support for Near Field Communications (NFC). So how is the P9981 different from other QWERTY BlackBerry devices on the market? Well, the differences include the design, as well as its exclusive Porsche Design user interface, Wikitude World Browser augmented reality app experience, and a premium, exclusive PIN that easily identifies the owner as a holder of a Porsche Design P’9981 smartphone. The Porsche Design P’9981 smartphone from BlackBerry will be available at all Porsche Design stores in Singapore, as well as authorized retailers at S$2,800. Megaupload lawyers aiming to have case thrown out Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/megaupload-lawyers-aiming-to- have-case-thrown-out/16106.html May 31st, 2012 The lawyers for file-sharing firm Megaupload are attempting to get the copyright infringement case against the company quashed and assets unfrozen. 1
    • May 31st, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneThe lawyers for file-sharing firm Megaupload are attemptingto get the copyright infringement case against the company EU to bring Germany to courtquashed and assets unfrozen. over not storing user data Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/eu-to-bring-germany-to-court-over- not-storing-user-data/16105.htmlThe companys legal team claims that US federal authorities May 31st, 2012have no right to charge the company, as it is outside theirjurisdiction, since it is a Hong Kong-based firm. Lawyersalso claim that no papers were formally served, which meansMegaupload could get off on a technicality of law, rather thanits proposed innocence. The European Commission is bringing Germany to court"This case was flawed from the start, once this case gets over failing to store telephone and email data for a six monthdismissed it cannot be fixed," said Ira Rothken, US general period, as required under European Union laws.counsel for Megaupload, who specialises in intellectualproperty lawsuits. He said the FBI had made a fatal mistake The European Commission is bringing Germany to courtin its case against the file-sharing company by not following over failing to store telephone and email data for a six monthproper protocol. period, as required under European Union laws. The Commission is seeking a fine from the European Court of Justice against Berlin for not implementing the 2006 EU directive, which requires telecommunications companies to store phone records and internet logs for at least six months so that police can more easily investigate crimes. The directive was to be implemented in a new German law, but in March 2010 the countrys highest court overturned the law, calling it a grave intrusion to the right to privacy. The court called for the law to be revised so that it did not infringe upon the rights of individuals. Narrower legislation has since been proposed, but the Commission said that this would not fully comply with the EU directive.Rothken is also seeking for frozen assets, totalling millionsof dollars, to be freed up. This was a strong criticism from thestart, as lawyers for Megaupload claimed that it and its staffwere being prevented from properly defending itself due tothe freezing of its money.The popular storage website was shut down in January whenthe home of Kim Dotcom, Megauploads founder, was raidedby New Zealand police. He and several of the companysexecutives were arrested and attempts to extradite them tothe US were made. The situation caused panic throughoutthe file-sharing world, with many similar websites shuttingdown over fear of similar prosecution.Dotcom and other key employees face charges ofracketeering, copyright infringement, and conspiring tocommit money laundering. A judge ruled in March that the "Ongoing delays in transposing the directive into nationalcourt order used to seize a number of Dotcoms belongings law are likely to have a negative effect on the internalwas unlawful, and this latest claim by the Megauploads market for electronic communications and on the abilitylawyers suggests the entire case may become another farce of police and justice authorities to detect, investigate andin the history of botched lawsuits. prosecute serious crime," the Commission said, according to the Associated Press. The Commission is hoping to secure a fine of €315,000 for every day that Germany fails to comply with the EU law, starting with the day of the court ruling. If secured this could add up to millions if the countrys Chancellor, Angela 2
    • May 31st, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneMerkel, fails to pass the law, which wont be easy, given a providing 3D models and YouTube videos, in addition tostrong stance against privacy invasion in the country. historical information for research or just for curiosity. Google partnered with UNESCO, the World Monuments Fund, Getty Images and Ourplace for information and photographs.Historic sites opened to allwith Google World Wonders Google has been launching a number of projects as part ofProject the Google Cultural Institute to preserve and share famous historical material. It is publishing high-resolution imagesSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/historic-sites-opened-to-all-with- of the Dead Sea Scrolls, digitizing the archives of Nelsongoogle-world-wonders-project/16103.html Mandela, and showcasing the worlds art as part of its ArtMay 31st, 2012 Project, which expanded form 17 museums to 151 in April. The Google World Wonders Project can be accessed here.Google has launched the World Wonders Project, which letspeople from around the world get a panoramic view of someof the worlds most iconic historical locations. Gigabyte goes ultra-light withGoogle has launched the World Wonders Project, which lets X11 Ultrabookpeople from around the world get a panoramic view of some Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/gigabyte-goes-ultra-light-with-x11-of the worlds most iconic historical locations. ultrabook/16101.html May 31st, 2012A whopping 132 sites spanning 18 countries are on offer,dwarfing the original Seven Wonders of the AncientWorld. These span a variety of categories, includingarchaeological sites, architecture, cities and towns, historicalsites, monuments and memorials, palaces and castles, parksand gardens, places of worship, regions and landscapes, and How about a 975g Ultrabook? Sounds tempting doesntwonders of nature. it, at least if youre a road warrior that spend a lot of time travelling with your notebook. The good news is that Gigabytes X11 Ultrabook officially weighs in at 975g,Among the collection are Stonehenge, Pompeii, the Kyoto although the model at the launch event came in even lightertemples, Shark Bay, and the Yoesmite National Park. The at 973g,only surviving ancient Wonder, the Great Pyramid of Giza, isnot on the list, but we expect it is only a matter of time before How about a 975g Ultrabook? Sounds tempting doesntGoogle expands this collection to feature more important it, at least if youre a road warrior that spend a lot of“wonders” throughout the world. time travelling with your notebook. The good news is that Gigabytes X11 Ultrabook officially weighs in at 975g, although the model at the launch event came in even lighter at 973g,The service employs Street View technology to provide adigital look at sites that may otherwise be inaccessible tomany people. Since many of these could not be filmed byGoogles cars, the company used trikes that carried camerasclose enough to take pictures. Having the worlds lightest Ultrabook is a nice claim to fame,It is not just a Street View look at the famous but the question is if the X11 will prove to be competitivebuildings or natural formations, however, as Google is also 3
    • May 31st, 2012 Published by: VR-Zoneenough in the long run. As youd expect, this is an Ivy Bridge youve got a good mix out of a productivity point of view.powered Ultrabook, although Gigabyte didnt specify which Less impressive is the 35Wh 4730mAh Li-Polymer batteryCPUs the X11 will ship with. Were curious about the choice which isnt likely to last more than 5-6h at light use, althoughof chipset as well, as according to the specifications the X11 Gigabyte didnt specify the battery life.sports the HM77 chipset rather than the Ultrabook specific At US$999-1,299 depending on CPU the X11 isnt a budgetUM77 chipset. model for sure and we have a feeling that despite its lightIts disappointing to see 4GB of soldered on DDR3 memory weight, its going to have a tough time competing with thewith no alternative SKUs, nor any way of upgrading the more established notebook makers. Time will tell, but atmemory, we would really have liked to have seen an 8 GB least this is easily the best notebook in terms of build qualitySKU at least. Likewise the 128GB mSATA SSD isnt exactly that weve seen from Gigabyte to date.as roomy as it gets and once again Gigabyte doesnt appearto offer any alternative SKUs. Doom 3 for Xbox and PS3 supports head mounted display Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/doom-3-for-xbox-and-ps3-supports- head-mounted-display/16100.html May 31st, 2012 Doom’s co-creator, John Carmack said in a press-release today that Xbox’s & PlayStation’s Doom 3 will have support for “3D TVs, monitors, and head mounted displays [allowing] players to experience the game with more depth than ever before. We think shooter fans everywhere will love it.” What’s exciting for gamers is that Doom 3 will support head mounted displays! Doom’s co-creator, John Carmack said in a press-release today that Xbox’s & PlayStation’s Doom 3 will have support for “3D TVs, monitors, and head mounted displays [allowing] players to experience the game with more depth than ever before. We think shooter fans everywhere will loveHowever, the biggest letdown is the glossy 11.6-inch it.” What’s exciting for gamers is that Doom 3 will support1366x768 display, this really is last years spec and we were head mounted displays!hoping for at least a 1600x900 display, if not a 1920x1080display as per Asus new UX21A. At least the screen bezel is Head mounted displays is a rather futuristic toy that manymatte which should help reduce additional reflections. might not be able to afford, but the notion of seeing blood and gore gushing directly into your eyeballs is everyGigabyte has skimped a bit on some other features too, such hardcore gamer’s dream (okay, maybe just a few…). Ifas only including single band 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi and a single you don’t have access to a hideous display helmet, CarmackUSB 3.0 port, despite the fact that the chipset supports up claims that if you purchase the Doom 3 BFG Edition it willto four ports so theres not even an issue about cost. The come with “enhanced graphics.”remaining connectivity options include a single USB 2.0port, a mini DisplayPort, a D-sub connector and Bluetooth4.0. You also get a microSD card reader and a 1.3Megapixel Microsofts Chuck Chanwebcam. accidentally revealed details about Windows 8 Release Preview Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/microsoft-s-chuck- chan-accidentally-revealed-details-about-windows-8-release- preview/16099.html May 31st, 2012The build quality of the X11 is light years ahead of what weveseen from Gigabyte in the past and contrary to what youdthink, the carbon fibre body feels very sturdy. Throw in apretty good keyboard and a large, easy to use touch pad and 4
    • May 31st, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneMicrosoft has stirred up some more gossips with its recent“accidental” blog post about the Windows 8 Release Preview. Vice President of Windows Development team, ChuckChan, posted a rather detailed blog about the Windows8 Release Preview on the Windows Hardware and DriverDeveloper Blog. According to thenextweb.com, the blog postwasn’t actually supposed to go live until June 1st. No worriesMicrosoft, we’re not stalking you or anything. The blog hasbeen removed, but there’s a screen capture for those thatmay want read more into it.Microsoft has stirred up some more gossips with its recent“accidental” blog post about the Windows 8 Release Preview. Vice President of Windows Development team, ChuckChan, posted a rather detailed blog about the Windows8 Release Preview on the Windows Hardware and DriverDeveloper Blog. According to thenextweb.com, the blog postwasn’t actually supposed to go live until June 1st. No worries Apple has been very tight-lipped about their Mac ProMicrosoft, we’re not stalking you or anything. The blog has line, and it doesn’t seem like they will be making anbeen removed, but there’s a screen capture for those that announcement about it anytime soon. Jim Dalrymphle, anmay want read more into it. Apple insider, is confident that Apple won’t discontinue the Mac Pro. In a recent Amplified podcast with Dan Benjamin, Dalrymple gave a resounding “no” when asked by Benjamin if there was a “chance” that Apple will cut the Mac Pro line. Bejamin followed up with, “You’re really confident in that? You feel good about that?” Dalrymple’s response was just laughter, and the podcast continued. The last Mac Pro update was in July 2010—that’s almost two years ago. In an industry where tech updates and new products churn out every second, Apple’s practice of keeping product development top secret is extreme. Apple has been so secretive about the Mac Pro matter that even a facebook petition with 14.9k likes has yet to persuade Apple to give an answer. Professionals who rely on the Mac Pro to produce their work are not technically angry with the lack of news regarding an update to their computer, but rather they want to know if they should move onto other hardware and/or platforms in case there’s no update for the Mac Pro.Apples Mac Pro line maycontinueSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/apple-s-mac-pro-line-may-continue/16098.htmlMay 31st, 2012Apple has been very tight-lipped about their Mac Proline, and it doesn’t seem like they will be making an Appleinsider.com asked Lou Borella, self-proclaimedannouncement about it anytime soon. Jim Dalrymphle, an professional editor and graphic animator, if he was worriedApple insider, is confident that Apple won’t discontinue the about the future of the Mac Pro. Borella states that he enjoysMac Pro. most of Apple’s products, but because he relies on his Mac Pro to make a living—that he needs “a little clarity.” 5
    • May 31st, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneMany Mac Pro users who are tired of waiting for an updateare opting to build “Hackingtosh” systems—customized Verizons FiOS to offer 300hardware PCs with Mac OS running it. Apple is making $5.1 Mbps packagebillion from the Mac line for the quarter, so it is puzzling Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/verizon-s-fios-to-offer-300-mbps-to see why Apple hasn’t been updating a product line that’s package/16095.htmlraking in so much money. Nonetheless, it is advisable for May 31st, 2012anyone to not purchase a Mac Pro now as the product hasn’treceived any major updates in two years. Chances are Applewill continue the Mac Pro line, but the question is when theywill let consumers know.Currently, Apple offers a Mac Pro with up to 12 cores underthe hood—thus, a top of the line Mac Pro system can handle Verizon’s FiOS will increase its current bandwidth offeringjust about anything. Nevertheless, two years is two years, as well as pricings. FiOS will offer a new “ultimate” packageand people want something new. that includes 300 Mbps downstream and 65 Mbps. It’s currently unknown whether Verizon plans to replace itsZTE Athena claims title of current ultimate package (150 Mbps up/35 Mbps down) or adjust it to a lower tier offering. The lowest tier packageworlds thinnest smartphone of 15 Mbps down/5 Mbps up is expected to remain, but the 35/25 Mbps up packages will increase to 75/50 Mbps up,[Rumor] respectively.Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/zte-athena-claims-title-of-world-s-thinnest-smartphone-rumor-/16096.htmlMay 31st, 2012A few days ago, Oppo announced that its Finder was “world’sthinnest smartphone,” and today ZTE is making a move atthat title with its Athena smartphone. The Oppo Finder is6.65 mm thick, but that’s old news because ZTE’s Athena willbe 6.20 mm thick. Nothing is official yet, but according torumors, the Athena will boast some impressive specs. Verizon’s FiOS will increase its current bandwidth offering as well as pricings. FiOS will offer a new “ultimate” package that includes 300 Mbps downstream and 65 Mbps. It’s currently unknown whether Verizon plans to replace its current ultimate package (150 Mbps up/35 Mbps down) or adjust it to a lower tier offering. The lowest tier package of 15 Mbps down/5 Mbps up is expected to remain, but the 35/25 Mbps up packages will increase to 75/50 Mbps up, respectively. Changes with regard to the pricings of the packages are not yet known. However, if the new 300 Mbps package replaces the 150 Mbps package, expect the new ultimate package to cost a bit—if not a lot—more. The current ultimate package runs a cool $199.99 per month, and if FiOS current ultimate customers opt to keep their ultimate package—it may cause even more anguish when the bills come around.A few days ago, Oppo announced that its Finder was “world’s Apple TV OS may be demoedthinnest smartphone,” and today ZTE is making a move at at Junes WWDCthat title with its Athena smartphone. The Oppo Finder is Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/apple-tv-os-may-be-demoed-at-june-6.65 mm thick, but that’s old news because ZTE’s Athena will s-wwdc/16090.htmlbe 6.20 mm thick. Nothing is official yet, but according to May 31st, 2012rumors, the Athena will boast some impressive specs.The title of thinnest smartphone may change hands at anygiven time, and it’s nice to see manufacturers competingwith each other to deliver the best of the best. 6
    • May 31st, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneTech blog BGR claims to have it from a "trusted source" May 31st, 2012 that Apple is going to showcase the operating systemfor its television set at this years Worldwide DevelopersConference in June.Tech blog BGR claims to have it from a "trusted source" that Apple is going to showcase the operating systemfor its television set at this years Worldwide DevelopersConference in June. Japan has made its first arrest under the new version of its anti-piracy act, known as the Unfair Competition PreventionAccording to the report, it is unlikely that Apple will Act.demonstrate the actual television at the event, but will beshowing off their operating system for the device. The source Authorities in Japan have made the first arrest under thealleges that Apple wants to give developers a chance to Unfair Competition Prevention Act since the amendmentsdevelop components to interface with the television before made last year to combat piracy. Nintendo posted a pressit is released. release (in Japanese) about the incident. The accused, a 39-year-old man from Saitama, is said to have sold R4 cartridges, devices used to pirate games for the Nintendo DS, to three separate individuals over the Internet between February 14th and March 9th for 7,200 yen (roughly $91 USD). The Aichi Prefectural Police Department carried out the arrest on Wednesday. In the press release, Nintendo expressed its hope that this arrest would cause the devices to disappear from the marketplace. While the R4 and similar devices (known in Japan as majikon) have been illegal to sell for years, there was no criminal penalty for doing so. This meant the devices were easily obtainable both on the Internet and on the streets of electronics districts throughout Japan. In December of 2011, however, a revision was made to Japan’s Unfair Competition Prevention Act which allows for criminal penalties to be applied to, in the words of the law,According to BGRs report, “the act of providing devices to circumvent technological"This new OS is said to be much more feature-complete than restriction measures.”the current OS that runs on the Apple TV, and is apparently Nintendo did not comment about the details of the casethe one that Apples upcoming HDTV will run. Yes, that one. other than applauding the efforts of the Aichi PrefecturalWeve heard Apple is actively trying to court manufacturers Police Department. Also included in the announcement wasto use a new "control out" API in order for third-party news of a man arrested in Fukuoka this past February formanufacturers to make accessories that are compatible with modding Wii consoles to allow them to play copied softwarethe new Apple TV OS and the upcoming "iTV." Its said that had been backed up to a USB hard drive. He wasthat by using the API, it will be possible to control any also charged with violating the new Unfair Competitionconnected components all from the Apple remote (and the Prevention Act along with the Japanese Copyright Act,Apple remote iOS app as well, were assuming)." though his case did not deal directly with majikon devices. Nintendo also praised majikon sale bans in countries aroundThe nation is likely ready for a "smart" television, and the the world, such as Korea, Taiwan, the UK, Italy, Holland, andFCC might soon make a decision that will ease such a release Germany.for Apple.Recently, WantChinaTimes reported that its sources hadtold them FoxConn was already receiving orders for the Apple might be closer toApple TV, and was currently in the ""trial production stage." getting the iPad in ChinaHowever trustworthy BGR deems its source, this is not Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/apple-might-be-closer-to-getting-a confirmation of anything. It has released inaccurate the-ipad-in-china/16091.htmlinformation before regarding hardware. However, the blog May 31st, 2012issued correct information regarding iOS releases in 2011,and could very well be correct this time too.First Arrest Made UnderJapanese Anti-Piracy Act On Wednesday, Apple crossed a barrier which had beenSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/first-arrest-made-under-japanese- preventing it from selling a 3G device in China. This couldanti-piracy-act/16088.html very well be the iPad, which Apple has had trouble selling in the country due to a legal battle. On Wednesday, Apple crossed a barrier which had been preventing it from selling a 3G device in China. This could 7
    • May 31st, 2012 Published by: VR-Zonevery well be the iPad, which Apple has had trouble selling in collecting physical copies of video games may not come tothe country due to a legal battle. an end after all.According to the Wall Street Journal, Cloud gaming services such as Valve’s Steam are stirring"According to the website of Chinas Telecommunication up the traditional brick and mortar gaming market, butEquipment Certification Center, an Apple device with third- according to WSJ.com, Sony will not abandon the opticalgeneration, or 3G, data capabilities has been issued the disk in its next gaming console. Hence, the days of peoplelicense needed for the company to begin sales in China. collecting physical copies of video games may not come toThe device would be compatible with the network of China an end after all.Unicom (Hong Kong) Ltd., Apples longtime partner in In 2013, Sony will release the PlayStation 3’s successor withreleasing its popular iPhone and iPad devices. The notice on improved hardware while maintaining most of the samethe website didnt name the device, listed as model number business strategies. Sony has reported profit from its PS3A1430." platform the last two years, and Sony’s Chief Executive,An ID lookup on EveryMac.com’s product identifier reveals Kazuo Hirai, hopes that the new console will continue to rakethat the number A1430 belongs to the 3rd generation Apple in the profits.iPad. This model includes both Wi-Fi and cellular service. Many brick and mortar companies that associate themselvesPreviously, Chinese regulators did approve a Wi-Fi only with Sony will be at risk of incurring huge losses in revenueversion of the iPad. However, this device never did go on sale if Sony did decide to go the downloadable content only routeanywhere in the country. This is likely due to Apples legal in the next Sony gaming console. GameStop, a major outletbattle with Proview, a Chinese manufacturer who claimed to for many PS3 games, agrees that it will need to transition to aown the iPad trademark in China. cloud system of distributing gaming titles to remain relevantThere is an enormous amount of growing that Apple could in the gaming market. However, as with any major industrypotentially do in China, and it needs to resolve its battles transitions, it will take some time to adopt.soon. This new step, whatever it was, could be very beneficial "If we all agree the technology is inevitable—which Ifor Apple’s business in China, which is considered the most think it is because its like death and taxes—its stillimportant market to Apple after North America. going to take longer to happen than it did for music andIn the meantime, Apple still needs to get a better foothold movies," GameStop’s CEO, Paul Raines, commented aboutin the country. Currently, Android phones dominate the the gaming market’s transition to a cloud based platform.nations market, and Microsoft recently claimed that Perhaps Sony is trying to maintain a good relation betweenWindows phone sales were also surpassing the iPhone there. itself and its business partners by opting to keep the optical drive as the main mean of software decoding. However,Sonys future gaming console that does not mean that Sony is unaware of the inevitable market transition to the clouds. Sony intend to integratewill have an optical drive more downloadable contents into its future console, moreSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/sony-s-future-gaming-console-will- than it currently has in its PS3 console.have-an-optical-drive/16094.html In addition to maintaining good relationships with itsMay 31st, 2012 partners, Sony believes that worldwide internet connections are not stable enough for it to make a complete transition to downloadable only contents. Sony wants its product to be in the hands of as many people as possible, and to make a product that requires a fast and stable internet connection only limits that objective.Cloud gaming services such as Valve’s Steam are stirringup the traditional brick and mortar gaming market, butaccording to WSJ.com, Sony will not abandon the opticaldisk in its next gaming console. Hence, the days of people 8
    • May 31st, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone (cisco.com) Emergence and increasing popularity of mobile devices such as smart phone and tablets have become a big part of why more and more people are in need of a connection to the internet. In 2011, 10.3 billion devices connected to the internet, but by 2016 18.9 billion devices will require a connection. Essentially, each person on earth right nowUntil Sony releases a cloud only console, those of us that requires about 1 internet connection, but in 2016 you willhave shelves of PlayStations CDs, DVDs, and Blu-rays may need 2 connections as you may own two or more devices thatcontinue tout our tangible collections for the world to envy. require a connection. Each person on earth may not own more devices thatCiscos VNI predicts the require an internet connection, but more and more people are gaining access to the internet globally. The internet isinternet will be four times expected to reach 3.4 billion users in 2016—that’s a 45% increase in users from 2011’s estimate!larger by 2016Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/cisco-s-vni-predicts-the-internet-will-be-four-times-larger-by-2016/16093.htmlMay 31st, 2012Cisco’s Visual Networking Index (VNI) recently released its (cisco.com)annual report that predicts the internet will be four timeslarger in 2016. Factors that contribute to the internet’s rapid Furthermore, improvements to networking infrastructuresgrowth include—but not limited to—increased number of will deliver faster connections for users, and a fasterdevices that can connect to the internet, more internet users, connection means more downloading and uploading.faster broadband speeds, more video media, and expansion Currently, the average fixed broadband connection is aboutof Wi-Fi access. 9 Mbps, but by 2016 it will increase about four folds to approximately 34 Mbps.Cisco’s Visual Networking Index (VNI) recently released itsannual report that predicts the internet will be four times Availability and open access to Wi-Fi connections may belarger in 2016. Factors that contribute to the internet’s rapid a great business practice for growing businesses such asgrowth include—but not limited to—increased number of internet cafés, but it just so happen that great businessdevices that can connect to the internet, more internet users, practices also contribute to the internet’s rapid growth.faster broadband speeds, more video media, and expansion Cisco forecasts that over half of the world’s internetof Wi-Fi access. connection will come via Wi-Fi connections.The VNI suggests that global IP traffic will reach 1.3 If you think the internet is an immense virtual space now,zettabytes (1 zettabyte = 1 trillion gigabytes). The total imagine what it will be in four years. If the internet is allamount of IP traffic in 2011 is about 369 exabytes, but Cisco corners of the earth now, cyberspace will be the Milky Way inexpects the annual IP traffic to increase by 330 exabytes the coming years. If you’re planning to contain the internetbetween 2015 and 2016. to its current state right now, check out VR-Zone’s “how to destroy the internet” article, but if you’re looking to forward to taming the a virtual monstrosity that will come about, then just sit back and wait for it to come roaring at you. A full report from Cisco’s VNI can be found here. 9
    • May 31st, 2012 Published by: VR-Zone from hundreds of normal cycling situations and accidentCheck out Hovdings airbag simulations.helmet if you want to cycle instyleSource: http://vr-zone.com/articles/check-out-hovding-s-airbag-helmet-if-you-want-to-cycle-in-style/16092.htmlMay 31st, 2012 A STM32 microcontroller is the brain of the necklace, and —according to Hövding—it is designed to conserve energyLet’s just admit it, bicycle helmets are bulky and ugly, but a so riders don’t have to worry too much about chargingSwedish company has come up with a design for an airbag- their necklace. One setback of the necklace is that its mainhelmet design that just might make you want to put it on. function is to protect riders from "abnormal movements"— The Hövding design company has concocted an airbag therefore, if a rock come flying at you while you are on yournecklace that deploys when a person is detected as falling off bike, you would get hit by the rock first and then fall off youror in a bicycle accident. The Hövding bicycle necklace has bike as the airbag deploys.various sensors built in that detect the cyclist’s movement,and can deploy in a fraction of a second before impact. “Hövding will only be deployed if the bicyclist makes an abnormal movement in an accident. This means that Hövding will not protect bicyclists from objects falling directly onto their head from above. However, this type of bicycling accident is extremely rare.” - hovding.com The benefits of having an airbag protecting you from a bicycle accident is great, but will it look as good on you as it did on the Hövding supermodel?Let’s just admit it, bicycle helmets are bulky and ugly, but aSwedish company has come up with a design for an airbag-helmet that just might make you want to put it on. TheHövding design company has concocted an airbag necklacethat deploys when a person is detected as falling off or in abicycle accident. The Hövding bicycle necklace has varioussensors built in that detect the cyclist’s movement, and candeploy in a fraction of a second before impact.The integrated sensors detect linear and angular motionso it doesn’t matter which direction you fall or fly, the Asus Maximus V Formula toairbag will deploy to reduce the degrees of injuries thatmay ensue. Much like a computer that has learned a thing be available in two SKUs Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/asus-maximus-v-formula-to-be-or two about human behavior, the Hövding necklace is available-in-two-skus/16089.htmlrun by sophisticated algorithms that call up information 10
    • May 31st, 2012 Published by: VR-ZoneMay 31st, 2012So far Asus has been very secretive about one feature of itsupcoming Maximums V Formula R.O.G. motherboard andeven covered up part of the motherboard when showing offthe board at various events. VR-Zone can now exclusivelyreveal what the hidden feature is and weve also found outthat Asus will be offering two slightly different SKUs of themotherboard in question.So far Asus has been very secretive about one feature of itsupcoming Maximums V Formula R.O.G. motherboard andeven covered up part of the motherboard when showing offthe board at various events. VR-Zone can now exclusivelyreveal what the hidden feature is and weve also found outthat Asus will be offering two slightly different SKUs of themotherboard in question.Beyond what we reported back in March, not that much As we mentioned, Asus will be offering two SKUs ofappear to have change with the board itself, but it looks like the Maximus V Formula, one with and one without theAsus will be bundling a dual band mini PCI Express 802.1a/ ThunderFX USB sound card and amplifier. Were still notb/g/n Wi-Fi/Bluetooth 4.0 card with the board, something sure we get the point of the ThunderFX as a motherboardthat wasnt clear at the press event. bundle, as this C-Media 6631 powered USB sound card appears to have been designed more for console use as a headset amplifier and noise cancelling solution. Wed rather have had the noise cancelling built into the motherboard audio in this case via some external microphone array, but then again, a pair of noise cancelling headphones ought to do the job just as well. Asus should be unveiling the Maximus V Formula at Computex next week, alongside a range of other new R.O.G. products at a special press event. We would expect the Maximus V Formula to be yet another expensive model from Asus, but it should be less than the P8Z77-V Premium at least.Sadly this is the best picture weve managed to dig up of thetwo SKUs iPhone Users are HeaviestThe big secret that Asus was hiding on the boards with