After a weeks vacation working the phenomenal NXNE
it's great to start off today's newsletter with a few
exciting announcements. First off, I'd like to welcome C. Angelini, the man
behind the new High Tech Low Down
column just over there to the right. Chris has
been in the business for a number of years, and is probably best known
to most of you from his days on SharkyExtreme. Colin's Weekly Tech Tips have been getting such great feed-back that we have moved down a bit so there is more space for
all that wonderful computer tweaking wisdom!
This week we have a review on an MX440 videocard
by newcomers Albatron (their CEO used to run Gigabyte) who are sure to
make a name for themselves quickly. Also on the chopping block is a pretty
purple PCB Soltek SL-75DRV5 based on the KT333CE chipset, and packing a big
DDR333 punch. Last, but certainly not least is William's review of the Compaq Ipaq 3650 handheld. If Palm and Handspring
don't do it for you, this shiny metal wonder certainly might! Remember to
stop by the forums and enter the Tips Tricks and Techniques contest -
we've already given
away a handful of Crucial PC2700 DDR, but it won't last much longer!
Albatron... who? You're forgiven for not knowing who
Albatron is even though they're not exactly a new company. Like most other
manufacturers, have already adopted nVidia based videocards. The Albatron GeForce4 MX440 videocard is a no
frills videocard targeted towards the budget conscious gamer.
Based on the reference nVidia GeForce4 MX440, the Albatron MX440 doesn't have
many features. The Albatron MX440 has one 15 pin analog output as well as a
S-Video out. The card uses Samsung DRAM with a 5 ns rating and the GPU with a
core clock of 270 MHz is cooled by a rather neat looking heatsink fan combo.
Upon removing the heatsink off the GPU we were very pleased to see that Albatron
took the extra step and added some thermal paste.
Article Link: http://www.pcstats.com/articleview.cfm?articleID=1118
Soltek SL-75DRV5 KT333CE Motherboard
With the era of the KT333 chipset and consequently DDR333
upon us in full swing it leaves one wondering what to really make of it all. The
numbers 333 are being uttered with almost as much fervor as XP is. Has "333" just
become another meaningless marketing adjective, or is it really a sign of
wondrous things to come?
Unlike previous chipset advances, the first experience we have had with the
KT333 chipset on MSI's KT3 Ultra-ARU (chocked full of many features in
its own right) is less than that of expectation. The Soltek SL-75DRV5
rather pretty purple PCB which contrasts the slew of black and
red which seem to predominate the industry. With a retail price hovering around $150
CDN, this is easily one of the least expensive-KT333 based motherboards
available to consumers.
Article Link: http://www.pcstats.com/articleview.cfm?articleID=1036
Compaq iPAQ 3650 Pocket PC
Microsoft's answer to Palm Inc.'s "Palm" based
PDA's, their "Pocket PC" brand is steadily gaining popularity, easing Palm's
stranglehold on the hand held market and cutting into their market share.
towards execs on the go, the Compaq iPAQ 3650 Pocket PC works just as
well in the hands of the business user who really only needs an up to date electronic address
book.The iPaq 3650 sports a 206 MHz Intel StrongARM
Processor, 32 MB of RAM, 16 MB of ROM, and a 12-bit (4096 colour) Thin-Film
Transistor (TFT) Display. The iPAQ's hardware enables speedy access to all your
appointments, contact info and notes; not to mention more advanced multimedia
capabilities in the form of MP3/WMA playback, voice recording and offline web
Article Link: http://www.pcstats.com/articleview.cfm?articleID=1088
|Colin's Weekly Tech Tips
For more advanced users of Win2k/XP, you can dictate to the OS what you exactly you want your OS to run. First you must enabled Administrative Tools. To do that, right click on the status bar and select properties. For Win2k, click on the Advanced Tab and under StartMenu Settings you should see a bunch of check boxes and there check Display Administrative Tools.
For WinXP click the Start Menu tab. If the radio button is next to "Start Menu" click it's Customize button. Once you're inside go to the Advanced tab and under Start menu items, scroll down to the bottom till you reach System Administrative Tools and select Display on the All Program Menu. If the radio button is next to the "Classic Start menu", follow the directions for the Win2k settings. After go into the Administrative Tools folder and select Services. Here you can disable whatever services you don't use.
Be warned though, if you disable the wrong services you can kill your OS! Only disable services you don't use! eg. IMAPI CD-Burning COM Service for WinXP if you don't have a CD-RW or don't use XP's burning software. Reboot once you're done and you should notice quite a big speed boost from your computer, services that you don't use are no longer being loaded so you have more resources for everything. If your OS will not boot, restart and go into safe mode. Then go back to the services program, enable everything and you'll be back to square one.
For more insight into the world of tweaks, track down Colin in the PCstats forums for some Q & A