Crucial Videocards, DDR433, and Prizes Galore
After ignoring the signs that I really needed to upgrade the 'ol notebook, fate
stepped in and made the screen fall off last week....
a fairly unglamorous way to decide the matter, but effective ;) So in
place of my poor old 7lb Acer came a new 3lb magnesium-alloy Fujitsu
P2000. It is so good to type again!
|PCstats.com just keeps on giving! Lastest prizes include an MSI GeForc4 Ti4600, Sony DCJ01 and nine 256MB sticks of Crucial DDR333/PC133 memory from the Forum Contest.
But enough about that, and on with this weeks newsletter! Hint, it's
prize time again.
Upgrading a PC can be really fun, and we've
done our share this week to help out
quite a few of you! Yes, today was newsletter prize mailing day at PCstats
HQ, and at last count, we sent out over two grand worth of prizes!
There is still more to come in the way of MSI Bluetooth
Motherboard Prize Packs,
so you still have a chance to win something cool from PCstats!
Memory is always a grand item and earlier in the week the folks
at Ramstore.ca dropped off some Geil PC3500 DDR - this is really extreme memory -
that helped Colin break 14,000 3DMarks on his heavily tuned system (he
literally tweaks 24/7). But even if you don't have a PC that can absorb
the shock of DDR433, there are alternatives. Crucial surprised a lot
of people by introducing their own line of videocards this week and we have
our world exclusive review right here.
Don't forget to read Colin's Tips for
this week and remember there
are still a few more MSI Bluetooth Motherboard Prize Packs to be
like it when a manufacturer goes out of their way to "wow" the customer
with packaging. Like Mushkin's neat air packaging, the GEIL memory came
incased in a very cool looking neon
green plexyglass case! Looking at GEIL's website we
see that the PC3500 DDR is actually specially handpicked
6 ns modules that require anywhere from 2.7V-3.0V to run at
rated speeds with timings of CAS 2.5, 6-3-3-2.
Read the Review
not a name you would normally associate with videocards, but they are
trying their hand in the market and if all goes well we could be seeing
some very cool stuff from them... after all, they control what kind of
micron memory goes on the cards! Crucial have teamed up with ATI and
Sapphire Tech to produce the Crucial Radeon 8500LE 128MB. The Crucial Radeon 8500LE 128MB
has one analog video port, a DVI port for LCD displays and a
TV-Out jack. The card follows the ATI Radeon 8500 reference design almost to a
"T" but instead of using BGA memory, the Crucial Radeon 8500LE uses 6ns
Micron DRAM based on the TSOP-II form factor.
Read the Review
Hitachi are firmly entrenched with the
corporate markets who need cost effective displays with the best amount of
features to keep the workers happy. At just over $900USD, for a 18.1" TFT
LCD the CML181SXW has to be one of the most aggressive priced LCD's on the
market today. Add to that support for both DVI and analog video signals,
integrated small form factor speakers, and what is probably the most
attractive feature for the board office worker - a headphone jack and
volume wheel - and you have a large LCD
display which should generate a good amount of
Read the Review
Samsung SW232 32-10-40 CDRW
||KingMAX PC2700 DDR333 Memory
With the growing acceptance, and more importantly , lower prices of
CD-R/RW drives, the speed race is on yet again in the world of
optical drives. Samsung's latest CD burner in the SW series is
capable of writing CD-R media at 32X, rewriting CD-RW media at 10X,
and reading standard CD-ROM's at 40X. The aptly named SW-232 retails
for about $75USD which is pretty good considering it has an 8MB
buffer, comes bundled with Roxio's Easy CD Creator 5 and supports
PureBurn / Justlink buffer underrun protection.
Read the Review
Just by looking at the DIMM, you know the 256MB KingMAX DDR333 is something
special. KingMAX is the only memory manufacturer that equips their DIMM's with BGA DRAM
modules and It's not just for looks either.
Our 256MB KingMAX DDR333 test sample was equipped with 5ns DRAM and has
a CAS Latency of 2.5 which isn't surprising since 99% of
PC2700 memory is CL 2.5 by SPD.
Read the Review
mandatory when you go car shopping - after all protecting such a valuable
part of our daily lives is a given. When it comes to computers, most
people don't even consider the perils that can befall a computer simply
plugged into the wall outlet. Universal Power Supplies seem pretty trivial
next to flashy video cards or LCD displays, but when it comes to
protecting you from lightning strikes or other power problems they are one
of the most important pieces of equipment, and insurance.
If you live in rural areas you are more
accustomed to power outages and no doubt understand the usefulness of a UPS
which will give you a few minutes to finish up your work, save it and properly
close down the computer.
Read the Review
|Colin's Weekly Tech Tips
By: Colin "TipMaster" Sun
those Boot Times
For users of Win9x/ME you can decrease the boot time of your system a bit with a few simple tweaks to the MSDOS.SYS file in the root directory of your hard drive. The first thing you want to do is remove the write protection on the file.
Load up your Windows Explorer and go to the
"Tools" menu. Inside select "Folder Options...", a window should
pop up. Click the "View" tab and in the lower 2/3rd of the pop up
menu you should see "Advanced settings:". From there scroll down
and find the radio button "Show hidden files and folders". Make
sure it's selected then press the "OK" button. Now all the hidden
files and folders on your hard drive will be shown. Now use Notepad to open up your MSDOS.SYS file and add/edit the lines to look like this.
After you've made the changes save and exit.
From now on when you boot your Win9x/ME system you should notice
it boots just a tad faster now! For more insight into the dark world of computer tweaks, all of Colin's Tech Tips have been archived
or your reading enjoyment!
Comments: "I would like to thank Colin for his
tip about memory usage. I have a computer with 768 MB of memory
and I have often wondered if the computer used all
the memory. I changed the system.ini file like he said
and my computer now has great performance!" D.
|A little extra memory
a long way, and a little price comparing can save you from paying too much!|
|Shop for Video Cards
ATI, Visiontek, PNY, Others...
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AMD / Intel
RDRAM , DDRAM
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it needs your brilliant computer knowhow to become even
|The High Tech Low Down
With C. Angelini
Early in May, Intel
cultivated a hearty performance
lead with the Pentium 4 running at 2.53GHz. Here we are, more than
three months later, and the processor market has seen virtually no
action from Intel or AMD.
Could it be the calm before a storm? Intel has
forecasted speeds in excess of 3GHz before the year's end, so there
will undoubtedly be intermediate releases leading up to the third
gigahertz landmark. In fact, we'd expect to hear from
Intel in the very near future.
What about AMD, though?
Besides making a much-needed transition to .13-micron manufacturing,
little has been heard regarding the current Athlon XP or the
upcoming Hammer architecture. An AMD representative
has already prophesied that before Hammer sees the light of day, a
beefed up Athlon will make an appearance with 512KB of level two
cache. It is currently speculated that the upcoming "Barton" core will include some of the optimizations that give Hammer a performance kick.
AMD is of course unwilling to comment on what
this could include, but it wouldn't be unreasonable to guess that a
larger level one cache or, more realistically, SSE2 support may be
in line. Only time will tell what AMD is conjuring.
In the mean time, expect Intel to pull further into
the performance lead.
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