Tech News

  • Creative Redefines the Pinnacle of Sound Cards with Sound Blaster AE-9 and Sound Blaster AE-7

    Published: Tuesday, July 09, 2019 | By: Dennis

    Sound Blaster: 30 Years of Revolutionizing Audio

    SINGAPORE - 9 July 2019 - Creative Technology Ltd continues its legacy of revolutionizing audio with the launch of its most advanced PCI-e sound cards ever – the Sound Blaster AE-9 and Sound Blaster AE-7. Built with only the most premium components, and complemented with the latest technologies from Creative, these sound cards are designed to define a new performance standard in this class for the ultimate PC entertainment experience.

    Sound Blaster: 30 Years of Revolutionizing Audio
    Up till 1989, the only sounds coming out of the PC were mere beeps. The same year, Sound Blaster was born, and PC audio was transformed forever. Since then, over 400 million Sound Blasters have been sold; and the Sound Blaster brand has become synonymous with the term ‘sound card’ and high-quality PC audio - first for gaming, and then movies and music.

    With experience and expertise refined over three decades of audio innovation, Sound Blaster has continued to reinvent itself with the development of digital audio processing technologies. Each new innovation served to redefine what the ultimate audio experience really means, such as when it evolved beyond the PC in the form of external sound cards for platforms like gaming and entertainment consoles.

    “The Sound Blaster philosophy is simple yet demanding. With every new product, we aim to break new ground in four key areas: technology, performance, function and platform. In our 30th year, we will make greater strides than ever before in redefining the Sound Blaster experience. The AE series, which represents our biggest leap in PCI-e sound card innovation yet, is just the beginning.  Later this quarter, we will be introducing our latest addition to the ‘X’ series of multi-channel audio external sound cards; it will be the first Sound Blaster product featuring Super X-Fi, our game-changing and award-winning headphone holography technology. And in the next quarter, we will unveil our latest products under the ‘G’ banner of gaming-focused sound cards with better console compatibility and ease of use than before. Simply put, Sound Blaster makes great sound, and never stops making it sound greater,” said Sim Wong Hoo, CEO of Creative.

    Sound Blaster AE-9: In a Class of Its Own
    Sound Blaster AE-9 is Creative’s flagship PCI-e sound card, and it more than delivers on its promise to gratify the needs of pro-gamers and pro-audio users. It uses audiophile-grade components such as the top-of-the-range ESS 9038 SABRE-class reference DAC that delivers up to 129 dB DNR, PCM 32-bit 384 kHz sampling, DSD64 playback of lossless audio with ultra-low distortion and jitter elimination, and boasts Nichicon Fine-Gold capacitors, WIMA film/foil audio capacitors and swappable op-amps.

    What really makes Sound Blaster AE-9 stand out against the competition is its CleanLineTM Technology, a new breakthrough in filtering a microphone path for clear and uncompromised voice communication. This latest technology features specially-designed circuitry and components which eliminates voltage rail issues and isolates unwanted noise caused by power supply ripple from high-performance GPUs. Sound Blaster AE-9 is the first ever to integrate this technology in its core, allowing users to forgo the need for a desktop mixer while still enjoying the benefits of having one.

    Sound Blaster AE-7: Next-in-line, Yet Still an Audio Beast  
    It may seem to sport slightly ‘lesser’ specs compared to the Sound Blaster AE-9, yet Sound Blaster AE-7 is very much a powerful sound card in its own right, being equipped with a hi-res ESS SABRE-class 9018 DAC that boasts up to 127 dB DNR, with 32-bit 384 kHz sampling and DSD64 playback. Audio clarity is the order of the day, with a THD of 0.0001% which represents an upgrade over its predecessor Sound BlasterX AE-5, and also the competition. At its price point, Sound Blaster AE-7 presents an excellent value proposition.

    Common Features for Sound Blaster AE-9 and Sound Blaster AE-7

    The Best Sound Blaster Processing Yet
    Enjoy the full spectrum of Sound Blaster audio customization and enhanced audio realism with immersive 5.1 and 7.1 surround virtualization along with Dolby Digital Live encoding and DTS Connect encoding.
    Award-winning Headphone Amplification
    The custom-designed, award-winning fully discrete Xamp headphone amplifier with push-pull design ensures each audio channel is individually amplified to deliver a whole new level of pristine audio fidelity in an authentic, unaltered lossless model.
    All-new Audio Control Module (ACM)
    Both sound cards feature ACMs built with user-friendliness in mind. Sound Blaster AE-9’s ACM stands out with a display unit for direct and easy volume control, a headphone selector switch supporting different types of headphone impedance, a multi-function microphone input port with +48V Phantom power and a built-in amplifier.
    New and Streamlined Software Interface
    The newly designed Sound Blaster Command software sports a revamped user-friendly interface which drives Creative’s signature Sound Blaster Acoustic Engine through achieving more audio control customizations with lesser clicks.

    Upgrade Promo for Sound Blaster Users
    As a gesture of appreciation for their support over the last 30 years, Creative is offering an exclusive promotion to its fans – the opportunity to upgrade from their old sound cards with an attractive 15% discount off the latest Sound Blaster products. This promotion will be valid for all upcoming Sound Blaster products launched between now and the end of the year.  For more information, visit

    Pricing and Availability
    Sound Blaster AE-9 (on pre-order) and Sound Blaster AE-7 are priced at USD349.99 and USD229.99 respectively, and are available at

    For more information, visit and

    About Creative
    Creative is a worldwide leader in digital entertainment products. Famous for its Sound Blaster® sound cards and for driving the multimedia revolution – with over 400 million sold - Creative drives digital entertainment with cutting-edge audio solutions that include premium wireless speakers, wireless headphones, powerful audiophile-grade digital amplifiers and next-generation home-theatre systems. Aiming at the new mobile networked generation by bridging the worlds of the computer, smartphones, and tablets, Creative continues to reinvent the Sound Blaster, with its ground-breaking Sound Blaster Roar series and USB-audio class of products such as the Sound Blaster X7.

    In 2016, Creative unveiled the X-Fi Sonic Carrier: a brand-new concept in hi-res audio and video delivery for home entertainment. This technology powerhouse dubbed ‘the soundbar of the gods' personifies the Audio of Tomorrow.

    In 2018, Creative launched an all-new game-changing technology for headphones called Super X-Fi® Headphone Holography. This technology uses computational audio to recreate the listening experience of a high-end multi-speaker system in a professional studio, and delivers the same expansive experience - with the same original depth, detail, realism, and spaciousness - in headphones. Super X-Fi further uses Artificial Intelligence to compute a custom audio profile based on a person's unique anthropometry. Super X-Fi has won multiple accolades worldwide, including an unprecedented 15 awards at CES 2019.

  • SilverStone Strider Platinum ST1000-PTS 1000W Power Supply Review @ APH Networks

    Published: Monday, July 08, 2019 | By: Dennis

    On great thing about technology is that once you figure out how to do something better everyone benefits.  SilverStone showed this PSU at CES and Computex and it is the worlds smallest 1000W PSU.

    If you want big power and small size, the SilverStone Strider Platinum ST1000-PTS 1000W is the only power supply in the market that achieves both -- and a decent one at that.

    Around the time that 4-way SLI hit the mainstream so did more powerful PSUs.  And, they had to be to deliver enough power to run four monster GPUs.  This land rush to build a more powerful PSU brought with it a form factor increase and the advent of the 80 Plus power rating. 

    Fast forward several years and we have 80+ Platinum Power Supplies and finally the first form factor shrink for a 1000W+ PSU since they first hit the market so many years ago. 

  • AMD Ryzen 7 3700X and Ryzen 9 3900X @ LanOC Reviews

    Published: Monday, July 08, 2019 | By: Dennis

    It won't take anyone long to find a review of the new Ryzen 3700X and 3900X including many of the standard hardware review outlets.

    It doesn’t feel like its been over two years now but back in March of 2017 AMD introduced their Ryzen CPUs and without a doubt changed the entire PC market. Things were stagnant in just about every PC market, but especially in the CPU market and the introduction of Ryzen quickly changed things. Before that time the mainstream CPU market got its yearly refreshed quad-core CPU and that was about it. Now today AMD is releasing a mainstream CPU with 12 cores and 24 threads and their low-end APUs are rocking 4 cores. Its been a wild ride and it has had Intel on the defensive. Well today's the day we finally get to take a closer look at the new lineup and AMD sent over the Ryzen 9 3900X and the Ryzen 7 3700X for me to check out. Before I do that I want to dive into the new 3rd generation of Ryzen and the Zen 2 architecture that is powering it. Then from there, we can see how both CPUs perform. Let's go! 

    Sadly, I am sad to say that I sadly didn't get included sad smile.  How sad.

  • PCI-Express 4.0 Performance Scaling with Radeon RX 5700 XT @ TechPowerUp

    Published: Sunday, July 07, 2019 | By: Dennis

    With the launch of Zen 2 we also get our first look at PCI Express 4.0 and heaps more bandwidth.  The question is.  What can you use all that bandwidth for?

    Games of course!

    PCI-Express 4.0 has been one of the main new features prominently brandished on the product boxes of both the 3rd generation Ryzen desktop processors, and Radeon RX 5700 series graphics cards. We examine the performance impact of running these cards on older generations of PCIe.

    A good indication that we have an increase in performance is to do an Apples to Apples test taking the faster component and using it with slower hardware.  That will give you a good benchmark to compare against and with how much faster PCI Express 4.0 is it would be interesting to see exactly how it will benefit you.

  • Ryzen 3900X & Ryzen 3700X Review @ Bjorn3d

    Published: Sunday, July 07, 2019 | By: Dennis

    When I was at Computex 2019 I had attended the opening ceremonies where Dr Lisa Su addressed the crowd with news of a 3rd generation Ryzen CPU.  As Darren and I have talked on the Hardware Asylum Podcast the new 'Zen processors are rumored to be faster than the Intel parts and in the instance of teh 12-Core Ryzen 9 3900X it was faster than the $1200 12-Core Intel Core i9 9920X.

    Well, it would seem that the reviews have started coming in.  Lets see what they say.

    The King is Dead, Long Live the King! – Ryzen 3900X & Ryzen 3700X Review

    The wait for Zen 2 is over and Ryzen 3000 is here! I know I’m kinda spoiling the result by announcing the new king is here, but I don’t think anyone will be surprised with the results we will see today. AMD announced the new Ryzen 3000 series including the two CPUs we have today, the Ryzen 9 3900X and the Ryzen 7 3700X. A short while ago and when AMD demo’d the new Zen 2 based CPU via a Cinebench run head to head and beating the 8700K, I knew we would be in store for something special. How special, I was not sure and while I know, I can tell you that the mainstream king CPU the Core i9 9900K has been usurped.

    I really simplified that but I hope you get the point. The CPU wars have been heating up since Zen initially launched a few years back and AMD has been slowly chiseling away at Intel’s market share primarily, but also their performance lead as well. This has been a rather quick progression but in small steps as Ryzen 1st gen and second gen used the initial Zen, then Zen+ which was a more refined version of the initial ZEN core. Now we have Zen 2 which is slated to flip the CPU market on its head if AMD’s initial claims were to be believed. And now its time to dig in and follow the path of what the new platform has to offer and what it can do.

    Seems they are impressed.

  • Mushkin Alita Battle Angel Sweepstakes Campaign

    Published: Wednesday, July 03, 2019 | By: Dennis

    Everyone loves a little free stuff every once in awhile right??

    Mushkin has you covered with their Alita campaign with some really great prizes!

    The list of sponsors include:

    With prizes being seperated by region.  For those of you in the United States we are talking 80" Flat Panels!

    Follow this link to Enter

  • NVIDA GeForce RTX 2070 Super @ TechPowerUp

    Published: Wednesday, July 03, 2019 | By: Dennis

    With the release of the new "Super" graphics cards from NVIDIA we should get a new group of reviews.  By the looks of it aftermarket cards will be late to the party but the Founders Editions will be in the wild soon.

    NVIDIA gave the GeForce RTX 20-series a midlife refresh with the new "Super" brand extension in the wake of AMD's upcoming Radeon Navi 7nm GPU. The RTX 2070 is based on the RTX 2080, which means SLI support and more shaders compared to the the original RTX 2070.

    What is not all that suprising is that these cards are tuned up versions of their namesake with more memory.  Makes you wonder why they are faster.  wink smile

  • With Great Power Comes Great Gaming: NVIDIA Launches GeForce RTX SUPER Series

    Published: Wednesday, July 03, 2019 | By: Dennis

    *Cheesy Title*

    Best-In-Class Performance, Power Efficiency, Plus Real-Time Ray Tracing for Growing Wave of Blockbuster Games

    SANTA CLARA, Calif., July 02, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- NVIDIA today supercharged its lineup of gaming GPUs by introducing GeForce® RTX 2060 SUPER™, GeForce RTX 2070 SUPER and GeForce RTX 2080 SUPER -- delivering best-in-class gaming performance and real time ray tracing for today’s and next-generation games.

    The result of nearly a year of architectural and process optimizations, the new GeForce RTX SUPER GPUs deliver the fastest gaming performance, and the best power efficiency of any gaming GPU in their class. They also offer gamers an uncompromised combination of leading performance and cutting-edge features.

    “The ecosystem driving real-time ray tracing is immense -- tens of millions of GPUs, industry standard APIs, leading game engines and an all-star roster of game franchises,” said Jeff Fisher, senior vice president of the PC business at NVIDIA. “This killer lineup of SUPER GPUs delivers even more performance for demanding PC gamers and ensures that they’re prepared for the coming wave of real-time ray tracing blockbusters.”

    Ray tracing is the advanced graphics technique used to give movies their ultra-realistic visual effects. Only GeForce RTX™ GPUs use a hybrid architecture of advanced shading, programmable ray tracing and compute cores to deliver ray traced games in real time. Ray tracing is supported in industry standard APIs, including Microsoft DirectX Raytracing (DXR) and Vulkan, as well as in the game engines used by developers to create games, including Unreal Engine, Unity, Frostbite, id Tech, Northlight, 4A Engine and more.

    Last month’s Computex and E3 trade events marked a milestone for real-time ray tracing, as a growing number of developers announced that they will be using it to create stunning visuals in their upcoming games.  Call of Duty: Modern Warfare, Control, Cyberpunk 2077, Doom Eternal, Sword and Fairy 7, Watch Dogs: Legion, and Wolfenstein: Youngblood joined the list of major titles that will be using ray tracing. Battlefield V, Metro Exodus  Quake II RTX, Shadow of the Tomb Raider, and Stay in the Light (early access) are already shipping with ray tracing support.

    The new SUPER series of RTX GPUs join the existing GeForce RTX 2060 (starting at $349, the first step up to RTX performance) and the GeForce RTX 2080 Ti (starting at $999, the best gaming GPU on the planet).

    • GeForce RTX 2060 SUPER GPU - Starting at $399, Available July 9
       º Up to 22% faster (average 15%) than RTX 2060
       º 8GB GDDR6 - 2GB more than the RTX 2060
       º Faster than GTX 1080
       º 7+7 TOPs (FP32+INT32) and 57 Tensor TFLOPs 
    • GeForce RTX 2070 SUPER GPU - Starting at $499, Available July 9
       º Up to 24% faster (average 16%) than RTX 2070
       º Faster than GTX 1080 Ti
       º 9+9 TOPs (FP32+INT32) and 73 Tensor TFLOPs 
    • GeForce RTX 2080 SUPER GPU - Starting at $699, Available July 23
       º Memory speed cranked up to 15.5Gbps
       º Faster than TITAN Xp
       º 11+11 TOPs (FP32+INT32) and 89 Tensor TFLOPs

    GeForce RTX GPUs support multiple cutting-edge and advanced gaming features. In addition to being the only GPUs capable of real-time ray tracing, they deliver an order of magnitude increase in AI processing performance with NVIDIA Deep Learning Super Sampling (up to 130 Tensor TFLOPS of horsepower), and are also the only ones that support advanced features including Mesh Shading and NVIDIA Adaptive Shading (NAS). 

    NAS also supports Variable Rate Shading, including motion and content adaptive shading for the highest performance and image quality, as well as Foveated Rendering, which puts the detail where the gamer is looking when used in combination with eye-tracking, to deliver next-generation VR experiences.

    All NVIDIA GPUs come with GeForce Experience™, an application that makes PC gaming more accessible and provides unique, easy-to-use in-game features.  GeForce Experience includes NVIDIA Highlights, which automatically captures the best gaming moments; NVIDIA Ansel, which lets gamers take stunning in-game screenshots; and NVIDIA Freestyle, which lets gamers customize their games’ appearance with more than 15 post-processing filters and 38 different configurations including settings for image sharpening, color blindness and photo-realism. Gamers can even use the special night mode, which reduces the amount of blue light emitted, so they can get to sleep easier after a night of gaming.

    Super Fast. Supernatural Bundle.
    For a limited time, starting on July 9, qualifying purchases of a GeForce RTX 2060 SUPER, GeForce RTX 2070 SUPER, or GeForce RTX 2080 SUPER- based graphics card or desktop PC will include a copy of two award-winning games that support real-time ray tracing, Control and Wolfenstein: Youngblood. a value of $90.

    Where to Buy
    The GeForce RTX 2060 SUPER, RTX 2070 SUPER and RTX 2080 SUPER GPUs will be available as custom boards, including stock-clocked and factory-overclocked models, from top add-in card providers such as ASUS, Colorful, EVGA, Gainward, Galaxy, Gigabyte, Innovision 3D, MSI, Palit, PNY and Zotac and as Founders Editions from Look for the GeForce RTX SUPER GPUs in gaming systems built by Acer, Alienware, Dell, HP and Lenovo, as well as by leading system builders worldwide.

    For more information on the new RTX SUPER GPUs, please visit and click here for a product video.

    Keep Current on NVIDIA
    Subscribe to the NVIDIA blog, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram, and view NVIDIA videos on YouTube and images on Flickr.

  • Bitfenix Enso Mesh @ TechPowerUp

    Published: Wednesday, June 26, 2019 | By: Dennis

    There is an interesting thing about cases and how they are designed.  Sometimes the designers come up with some very unique ideas that are welcome additions to the market while other times you get a copy of a copy of a copy.  Sadly, the later of these two options is what we see most of the time.

    The Bitfenix Enso Mesh is a really sharp looking case, it features tempered glass, a full mesh front panel and stylish white design and interior.  However, it also looks like they combined features from three other cases and just applied those to their base chassis.

    For instance, I look, at the front panel and see a Phanteks side panel,  I look at the side and see and Antec or Silverstone design.  And, now that I think about it, the SilverStone SST-PM02 Primera might be the case I am thinking of.

    The original Bitfenix Enso managed to impress with solid quality and cool looks. The Enso Mesh is built around the same base, but with much-improved airflow and accessibility to the front fans, which gives you more freedom to customize your cooling setup.

    I think the Mesh is speaking mostly to the improved cooling over a totally new design.

  • COMPUTEX 2019 Ended Successfully The Heat of Gaming Is Extended to the Battle of High-Performance Computing

    Published: Saturday, June 01, 2019 | By: Dennis

    Yay! another Computex in the can/bag/history books whatever you wanna say.  This has been a pivitoal show for me and I have seen plenty of changes over the years.  In fact the first time I attended the show it was really quite tame however, the years that followed had more booth babes / show girls and the displays started to get larger.

    This was when the show stopped being 100% about sales and more about marketing and brand reconition.  This isn't always a  bad thing but does change the dynamic and what you can expect from attending.

    Below is a press release from the Computex folks talking about the show.  I'll be finishing my show coverage this following week and should have a total of 19 articles posted when I am done.  I say 19 but, it might be less  happy smile  Despite there being only AMD stuff as "new" there was some fun stuff to see.


    June 1, 2019 – Taipei, COMPUTEX 2019 closed today (June 1) with a huge success. In the last five days, 42,495 international buyers from 171 countries flooded into the show, a 0.5% growth from the previous year. The top 10 buyer countries are, namely, China, the US, Japan, South Korea, Hong Kong, Thailand, Singapore, Germany, Malaysia, and India. Once again, COMPUTEX established the role of a leading ICT tradeshow that connects businesses along industry supply chains and opens up infinite possibilities in the tech ecosystem. In addition, InnoVEX 2019 attracted 18,251 visitors in 3 days, a 3% from the previous year, showing significant startup dynamics. During the show, 76 heavyweight buyers from around the world participated in 470 sessions of one-on-one procurement meetings. Furthermore, InnoVEX invited 45 international venture capital firms, including Samsung NEXT, LINE, Delta, China Trust, and Israel's largest fundraising platform, OurCrowd, to match with 69 startups.

    Myriads of Gaming Devices Launched; New-Generation High-Performance Products Glowed
    With the advancements and introduction of new AAA games based on generous production budgets and marketing cost, PC manufacturers are taking up challenges to break technological boundaries. The development of high-performance multitasking processors, graphics cards, memory, and high-end peripherals is indicating that these brands are catering to professional eSports players and enthusiastic gamers, meeting their demands and expectations for immersive gaming experiences.

    MSI’s flagship GT76 Titan gaming laptop showcased at COMPUTEX was armed with an Intel® Core™ i9 processor that can be overclocked to 5.0GHz across all 8 cores, while its extreme cooling capability handles the most extreme heat, granting the new GT Titan its overclocked desktop performance. ADATA showcased its XPG ORB that presents all XPG products and offers immersive experiences. ASRock introduced its Phantom Gaming motherboards while its premium Z390 Phantom Gaming X received the most attention at COMPUTEX for being the first motherboard in the world to support Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax), providing improved thermal result and superior performance.

    Inspiring eSports Games Held for Charity on the International Stage
    As the first charity eSports event held at COMPUTEX, ZOTAC CUP Fight for Charity LOL Tournament ended today. A total Grand Finals prize pool of US$100,000 will go towards charities including Esports Foundation in the US, Gaming Aid in Germany and Make-A-Wish Foundation. ZOTAC successfully made positive impacts and give back for a good cause.

    G.Skill OC World Record Stage 2019 and OC World Cup 2019—organized by G.Skill and sponsored by Samsung and Intel—ended with championship taken by Alex@ro from Romania. The 8th G.Skill OC World Record Overclocking Competition invited 15 overclockers to represent the major e-sports vendors to demonstrate the powerful hardware performance on the spot. And in addition to the overclocking contest, G.Skill Extreme Mod Stage 2019, on the other hand, invited 10 teams of talented system mod builders to bring their creativity into full play at COMPUTEX and presented 11 of the world’s most creative and special system mods.

    Promising Startups From Around the World Gathered at InnoVEX, Pitch Competition Awards Delivere
    As a global indicator, InnoVEX is a platform that encourages startups to show their unlimited creativity and offers publicity opportunities. Every year at InnoVEX, a pitch competition is held. This year, the total award reached US$420,000. The grand prize worthy of US$30,000 was taken by MedFluid. Omni Eyes, Mind & Idea Fly, Onesoftdigm, MedFluid, and PurCity left with Startup Terrace Awards and US$ 60,000. MTAMTech was awarded US$10,000 by Taiwania Capital and Ganzin technology received US$10,000 award by Qualcomm.

    For the first time, a CEO Keynote was held with COMPUTEX pre-show International Press Conference with AMD President & CEO Dr. Lisa Su as the keynote speaker. Dr. Lisa Su addressed how the next-generation of computing will drive innovation. She also invited Microsoft, ASUS, Acer and close to 20 industry partners to present the computing industry ecosystem. Leonor Lin, TAITRA Executive Vice President said, “This year, we have seen various innovative applications driven by the advancements of AI, IoT, and 5G. The technologies to process a massive amount of data and high-performance computing will be one of the most important driving forces to sustain the growth of the tech industry in the future. COMPUTEX 2019 has fulfilled its promise to build global tech ecosystems. As the scope of exhibitions and the number of participants set new records, we expect COMPUTEX to keep leading technology businesses forward to build global technology ecosystems that bring prosperity to all.”