Review Roundup december 3 2010

Laptops – Netbooks


Acer Aspire 1551 tested by legitreviews

There are three models in the Aspire 1551 series, the AS1551-4650, AS1551-4755 and the AS1551-5448. Pricing ranges from $389-$500. The differences are simple enough, AS1551-4650 comes with a 1.3GHz AMD Turion II Neo Dual Core Mobile K325 and 2GB of memory, while the AS1551-4755 has the same CPU with 3GB of RAM.

On our Aspire 1551-5448 loading up Word and Excel were snappy enough. The AMD Turion II K625 CPU proved to be quite capable of handling anything you could reasonably expect a notebook to run. The addition of a quality SSD could really put the little Aspire over the top. At $499 it’s a stretch for someone strictly on a netbook budget so adding an SSD would complicate that argument.

Motherboards


ECS H67H2-M tested by pcstats

The Intel H67 chipset will make use of the integrate graphics core tucked away on the socket 1155 2nd generation Intel Core processor. Motherboards like the ECS H67H2-M PCSTATS is previewing for you today will not require a discrete videocard at all, but will support up to one PCI Express 2.0 x16 videocard. Multi-monitor support via the IGP and a range of video outputs including HDMI and Display Port come standard.

Overclocking features are represented in the ECS H67H2-M BIOS as you might expect, but it remains to be seen how well Sandy Bridge processors will handle being pushed past default Turbo Speed clocks. In case something goes awry during overclocking, the onboard Port 80 card will throw up an error code.


Gigabyte GA-X58A-UD5 tested by xbitlabs

We didn’t have any problems assembling our testbed configuration around our Gigabyte GA-X58A-UD5 (rev. 2.0) mainboard and running it in default mode. However, there are a few peculiarities that must be mentioned as they may have a certain effect on performance and power consumption. You can see one as soon as you launch some diagnostic utility. The mainboard sets its base clock rate higher than usual in default mode.

The Gigabyte GA-X58A-UD5 (rev. 2.0) had no problems overclocking our CPU to 3.9 GHz, just like other mainboards we had tested.

We have discussed a very appealing mainboard from Gigabyte today. The GA-X58A-UD5 (rev. 2.0) comes in a robust and informative package with good accessories. It has a handy PCB design and broad functionality, traditionally surpassing that of same-class mainboards from other manufacturers.

Memory


Patriot Viper Xtreme DDR3 2000MHz Kit PX534G2000ELK tested by neoseeker

The heatsinks appear to be adequate. They have a copper core on top of the actual memory chips for fast heat transfer. The copper is then covered by an aluminum shield which covers the majority of the RAM to aid in heat dissipation. You can see some of the copper under the aluminum shield.

At stock timings of 9-10-9-27 the highest stable overclock I could get was 2050MHz. For testing purposes I will have the RAM set to 2130MHz, the timings at 10-11-10-25, voltage at 1.68V and the processor will be clocked to 2768MHz which was the closest I could get to the stock speed of 2800MHz.

Video Cards


VisionTek Killer HD 5770 tested by ocmodshop

The card promises a 40% network performance increase in online games, and a 27% smoother framerate. The VisionTek Killer Xeno bypasses your computer’s slow and outdated network stack and routes all game traffic through Xeno’s dedicated Network Processing Unit (NPU).

We are assuming that the Killer technology shares its processing and memory resources with the GPU, rather than utilizing a stand-alone processor. Bigfoot’s stand-alone products use a dedicated NPU (Network Processing Unit) and dedicated memory. This architechture is so modularized that you can terminal into the processor and issue Linux commands. We’re not sure how well integrated the VisionTek product is, but we’ll run it through its paces when we recieve a test sample.


NVIDIA GeForce GTX 460 SE tested by en.expreview

GTX 460 SE boasts 288 stream processors and 48 texture units,48 and 8 less than GTX 460 respectively.In addition,it has 32 ROPs,consistent with that of GTX460 1GB,eight more than GTX 460 768MB.

Due to the decrease of stream processors and PolyMorph Engine,GTX 460 SE’s disadvantage was more obvious in the Tessellation performance compared with GTX 460 768MB/1GB.On the other hand,owing to increase of memory capacity and memory interface,GTX 460 SE also features higher bandwidth.


Sapphire HD6850 TOXIC Edition tested by overclock3d

The main improvement is an upgrade of the GPU Core speed from the default of 775MHz to 820MHz. Memory also sees a significant boost from the 4000MHz of the original HD6850 to a monster 4400MHz on the TOXIC. Sapphire have also greatly increased the output options available.

It’s the GPU though that is far and away the star of the party. The 45MHz increase that Sapphire have given the HD6850 TOXIC over the standard HD6850 helps it just edge ahead of a reference design, but the quality of the chip and the board it’s used on mean that the overclocking headroom is almost obscene.

With a price-tag of around £165 we’ve already got a Gold Award worthy product, but the cherry on this delicious cake is the TriXX overclocking software that is also provided. It’s simple to use, has a clear GUI and has everything you could want, including a small memory footprint.

Digital Camaras


Samsung NX100 Digital Camera tested by everythingusb

The top settings dial is just like you would find on a good point and shoot, with all the normal features like “smart”, aperture, priority, etc found on them. The Samsung NX100’s large 3″ AMOLED screen is just as gorgeous as I thought it would be, and is both crisp, clear and easy to view in all but direct sunlight.

I was very impressed with the Samsung NX100’s abilities. It may not have as fast lens options as most full size DLSR’s, and it may not be as small as most P&S; but it can produce both video and pictures that put even the best P&S camera to shame. It is also a heck of a lot smaller and lighter than a full size DLSR camera! The NX100 really is a good blend of power and ease of use, and while not perfect for all consumers, I think it would be a very good choice for your first DSLR.

Printers


Canon Pixma Pro 9500 Mark II tested by techreviewsource

The Canon Pixma Pro 9500 Mark II is a dedicated photo printer that offers professional-looking printing capabilities and is also fast too. It has ten dedicated ink cartridges to allow for economical printing and the best quality possible.

Quality of photo printers is excellent, especially for larger prints, which professionals will appreciate. Smaller 4 x 6 or 5 x 7 prints also looked good in subjective testing. Text quality is also good, which is nice if you want to use this printer for some light printing, but its real strengths lie in photo printing.

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~ by benchmarkstest on December 3, 2010.

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