Tech News

  • Introducing the EVGA Z390 DARK - Revolutionary Design

    Published: Sunday, February 03, 2019 | By: Dennis

    "The EVGA Z390 DARK is a 3rd generation model built exclusively for ultimate performance with improved and upgraded component selections, VRM, NVMe I/O, and PCB layout, compared to the flagship X299 DARK."

    - Illya "TiN" Tsemenko

    The power of the DARK side of EVGA's Z390 motherboards is now available! After setting the bar with the X299 DARK, EVGA went back to work to design the next generation of motherboards designed exclusively for the world's top overclockers... or those looking to become one of the world's top overclockers. No effort was spared to improve the power design, layout, or features of the Z390 DARK.

    The Z390 DARK is the first motherboard to feature both the 24-pin power connector alongside both 8-pin CPU power connectors as right-angle connectors on the side of the board. Not only does the layout give the DARK a stunning look but the layout also provides a very friendly design for cable-management enthusiasts. This revolutionary design features:

    • The CPU Socket is turned 90-degrees, which allows the memory to run parallel to the top of the chassis
    • The entire VRM is cooled with a large passive heatsink.
    • This design allows for chassis airflow to pass unimpeded over the top of the power connectors, across the cpu and memory, and through the rear-panel heatsink.

    The DARK comes fully equipped with useful LEDS of all types...for monitoring system and component status, and displaying temperatures and voltages.  Additional must-have features include:

    • USB BIOS Flash Without a CPU - The dedicated internal USB port on the motherboard allows you to update your motherboard BIOS even if you don't have a CPU or cannot boot into the motherboard BIOS.
    • Multi-Function POST Indicator - Fully configurable in BIOS, these LEDs can be configured to show temperatures, voltages or cycle both in real-time.
    • Right Angle Headers - 24-pin power, both 8-pin CPU power, Fan, Probe-It, and USB 3.1 Gen1 headers – Hand-crafted design to provide clean system assembly without cable clutter.
    • Visual Guide / Bench Table - Every EVGA Z390 Dark is packed with a printed PCB showing components, LEDs, PCIe lane breakdowns, and other helpful information. More importantly, this PCB with included standoffs doubles as an open-air testing or benching station, providing clearance for heaters, condensation isolation, and storage devices.
    • PCIe / DIMM Status LEDs - PCIe / DIMM status LEDs allow for easy system assembly and troubleshooting at a glance.

    The EVGA Z390 DARK is finally here to convince you to give yourself to the DARK side of the EVGA Motherboard lineup. Go on, the DARK is waiting.


    • Chipset: Intel Z390
    • Socket: Intel Socket LGA1151, 8th and 9th Gen Intel Core i3/i5/i7/i9 Coffee Lake-S Processors
    • Form Factor: E-ATX
    • SLI: 2-Way SLI
    • Memory: 2 DIMM Dual-Channel (up to 32GB) DDR4 4600MHz+
    • Display Outputs: 1x mDP
    • USB: 4x USB 2.0 (4 Ports from 2 Internal Headers)
    • USB 3.1 (Rear I/O): 4x USB3.1 Gen2 Type-A, USB3.1 Gen2 (From ASM3142) 1x Type-A/1x Type-C, 2x USB3.1 Gen1
    • USB 3.1 (Internal Header): 1x USB3.1 Gen2 Type-C, 2x USB3.1 Gen1 (2 from Internal Header) with USB Power Delivery Support
    • SATA: 6 Native SATA 6.0Gbps Ports / 2 ASMedia SATA 6.0Gbps Ports
    • M.2 Key-M: 2x 110mm Slots (Up to 32Gb/s) / M.2 Key-E 1x 32mm Slot
    • U.2: 1x U.2 PCIe NVMe port
    • Ethernet: 2x Intel® Gigabit NIC
    • Audio: Creative Sound Core3D Quad-Core Audio Processor
    • Fan Headers: 8 (2 CPU PWM, 6 PWM/DC)

    Key Features

    • Highly-Efficient 17 Phase Digital VRM
    • Intel® Optane™ Memory Ready
    • New Integrated EVGA Wireless Module with Intel Dual-band WiFi / BT5.0 with external antenna
    • Reinforced PCIe slots
    • EVGA's Latest GUI BIOS Featuring OC Robot and In-BIOS Stress Testing
    • SafeBoot button to reset the motherboard and go into the BIOS with last known good settings without clearing CMOS
    • Slow Mode switch locks CPU multiplier to lowest possible setting to allow users to switch between max OC and low speeds in real-time.
    • SPI flashing via USB allows you to flash your BIOS without a CPU
    • Onboard Temperature and Voltage Monitoring
    • Onboard Clear CMOS, Power and Reset Buttons
    • Triple BIOS Support
    • EVGA E-LEET X Tuning Support

    Now Available!

  • G.SKILL Hexa-Channel DDR4 Memory Kits with Massive Capacity

    Published: Wednesday, January 30, 2019 | By: Dennis

    Taipei, Taiwan (30 January 2019) – G.SKILL International Enterprise Co., Ltd., the world’s leading manufacturer of extreme performance memory and gaming peripherals, is exhilarated to announce new ultra-fast, ultra-high capacity Trident Z Royal DDR4 RGB memory specifications designed for use with the latest unlocked 28-core Intel® Xeon® W-3175X processor. Operating in hexa-channel with 6- or 12-module kit configurations, these new 6-channel Trident Z Royal memory kits can reach insane memory speeds of up to DDR4-4000 CL17-18-18-38 at 1.35V, which feature extreme performance Samsung B-die memory ICs. With fast memory speed and massive capacity, these hexa-channel memory kits are perfect for heavy-workload workstations when paired with the 28-core Xeon processor.

    The Road from Quad- to Hexa-Channel: Boosting Memory Bandwidth
    As computing technology improves, the amount of processed data also increases, leading to a demand for more memory channels and higher bandwidth. For the first time, this new platform introduces hexa-channel memory support to the larger consumer market, which was previously only found in server-class systems. While operating under 6-channels, the extreme performance DDR4-4000 CL17 96GB (8GBx12) memory kit reaches a blazing fast read bandwidth speed of 122GB/s – a substantial increase over currently available quad-channel platforms. See below for a screenshot of the bandwidth result from the AIDA64 memory benchmark:

    192GB Super Massive Memory Kit Capacity
    Using high-capacity 16GB modules, this platform allows a maximum of 192GB memory capacity with a kit of 16GBx12. Being the first of its kind, G.SKILL propelled the full 192GB to an extreme DDR4-4000 speed with CL17-18-18-38 timings. The screenshot below shows the 12-module Trident Z Royal 192GB memory kit being stress tested and validated on the Asus ROG Dominus Extreme with the Xeon W-3175X processor:

    Availability & XMP 2.0 Support
    These extreme performance Trident Z Royal DDR4 RGB memory kits will support the latest Intel XMP 2.0 for easy overclocking setup and will be available via G.SKILL worldwide distribution partners.

  • Noctua introduces new thermal compounds and cleaning wipes

    Published: Wednesday, January 30, 2019 | By: Dennis

    Vienna, January 29th 2019 – Noctua today introduced NT-H2, the further improved second generation of its award-winning hybrid thermal compound. Combining the iconic NT-H1’s proven features, superb ease of use and renowned long-term stability with a novel, fine-tuned formula of microparticles for even better thermal performance, NT-H2 is an enthusiast-grade paste for the highest demands. At the same time, Noctua also presented a new, large 10g pack of NT-H1 as well as NA-SCW1, a set of 20 cleaning wipes that are ideal for removing thermal compound in a quick, clean and efficient manner.

    “First introduced in 2007 and shipped with our premium-quality CPU coolers for more than 10 years, our NT-H1 thermal compound has proven its excellent performance in countless tests and reviews,” says Roland Mossig (Noctua CEO). “It’s chosen again and again by overclockers and hardware enthusiasts around the globe, not only for its efficiency but also for its ease of application and cleaning. Today, we’re proud to present the new, second-generation NT-H2 that provides even better performance!”

    Further improving the award-winning NT-H1, NT-H2 uses a new, fine-tuned mixture of metal oxide microparticles for even lower thermal resistance and reduced bond-line thickness at typical mounting pressures. This allows it to achieve an even better performance in most application scenarios. In Noctua’s standardised internal testing at various platforms and heat loads, up to 2°C lower temperatures were attained.

    Just like NT-H1, NT-H2 does not require a break-in period and due to its excellent long-term stability, it can be used on the CPU for up to 5 years. Both pastes are electrically non-conductive and non-corroding, so there is no risk of short circuits and they’re safe to use with all types of heatsink.

    NT-H2 will come in standard 3.5g and extra-large 10g packages that include three (3.5g) and ten (10g) NA-CW1 cleaning wipes for easy cleaning. Pre-moistened with a custom detergent mixture, these wipes are ideal for cleaning CPUs, GPUs and the contact surface of heatsinks in a quick and efficient manner. For enthusiast users who take off and install their coolers frequently, the NA-CW1 wipes are also available separately in a set of 20 (NA-SCW1).

    In addition to the new NT-H2 and NA-SCW1 cleaning wipes, Noctua also introduced a new 10g package of NT-H1. While, so far, the popular paste has only been available in a 3.5g package, the new 10g version is ideal for power users or for large processors such as AMD’s Threadripper (TR4) or Intel’s LGA3647 that require higher volumes of thermal compound.

    Prices and availability
    All models will be available via Noctua’s official Amazon and eBay within the next few days. Other sales partners will receive stock shortly.

    The suggested retail prices are as follows:
    NT-H2 3.5g: 12.90 EUR/USD
    NT-H2 10g: 24.90 EUR/USD
    NT-H1 3.5g: 7.90 EUR/USD
    NT-H1 10g: 14.90 EUR /USD
    NA-SCW1: 7.90 EUR/USD

  • PC is still developers favorite gaming platform @ PCGamer

    Published: Sunday, January 27, 2019 | By: Dennis

    Strike another win for the PcMasterRace.  (if you are into the whole reddit thing)

    According to PCGamer they had over 4000 developers take a survey on their preferred gaming platform and it is no surprise that the PC came out on top, if only by a small margin.

    PC remains the most popular gaming platform among developers, and its lead over consoles and mobile is growing, according to a Game Developers Conference survey of nearly 4,000 developers. 

    The State of the Game Industry 2019 report found that 56% of respondents had released their last game on PC, the first time the figure has topped 50%. Smartphones/tablets were the next most popular platform at 38%.

    Back with the first XBox release there was some major Microsoft money involved pushing to get developers to create games for the gaming console.  the XBox was Microsoft’s first gaming console and as they have done with the PC their goal was to make money on the software side selling games and licenses for the new platform.

    Sadly the aftermath was that PC gaming suffered and has finally started to recover.  I highly doubt the console and mobile space will ever be as popular as PC gaming but as the technology develops there might be a time when there is virtually no difference.

  • Fractal Design Meshify S2 Black Tempered Glass Edition at Modders-Inc

    Published: Thursday, January 24, 2019 | By: Dennis

    Fractal Design is one of those companies that either brainwashes their user base or is really just that good because it seems everyone wants to build in them.  The TechUtainment sector loves them. (likely because of the advertising dollars and injection of free product that they can't/won't sell) and they generally review well on the modding sites.

    Personally I cannot say for sure which is true.  I have never gotten a sample nor has the company reached out to me.  Maybe I just need to start a YouTube channel.  Oh wait..

    Modders-Inc has this to say.

    Fractal is launching the new version of the Meshify case line which is all about airflow, the Fractal Design Meshify S2. Fractal tends to build a more subdued case. Lacking from Fractal's line up are RGB LED-laden chassis. Don't get me wrong, there's a time and a place for RGB LEDs. Fractal has taken lessons learned from their other lines

    While the above is just an incomplete snip auto-magically pulled from the first paragraph of their article I gather there may or may not be some RGB involved with this case.

  • MSI GeForce RTX 2080 Ti Lightning Z 11 GB @ TechPowerUp

    Published: Thursday, January 24, 2019 | By: Dennis

    This card is one we talked about on the most recent Hardware Asylum Podcast Episode 95.  The RTX 2080 Ti Lightning was shown during CES with the expectation that very few, if any would make it to the US.

    So far this is the second review I have seen so..  now we know where they all went. wink smile

    ~ Photo from TechPowerUp

    MSI's GeForce RTX 2080 Ti Lightning Z is the company's flagship RTX 2080 Ti. Its out of the box overclock is larger than on most other cards, and it actually provides significant performance gains. MSI also added a lot of features for overclockers, and RGB is present, too.

    I still want one.  Might have to go old school for this round

  • Super X-Fi Entering New Market after Historic Win at CES 2019

    Published: Tuesday, January 15, 2019 | By: Dennis

    10 ‘Best-of’ Accolades amid Overwhelming Response from Hundreds of Media Trigger Huge Interest from OEM Partners

    SINGAPORE - 14 January 2019 - Creative Technology crossed the finish line at CES 2019 achieving its best awards showing ever, with Super X-Fi Headphone Holography scoring 10 awards from the world’s leading consumer electronics media in a convincing manner.

    These awards are:

    1. AVS Forum ‘Best of CES 2019’
    2. TechRadar Awards 2019 ‘CES Top Pick’
    3. Overclock ‘Best of CES 2019’
    4. ‘SoundGuys Best of CES Award’
    5. Eteknix ‘Best of CES 2019’
    6. Android Authority ‘Best Audio of CES 2019’
    7. PC World ‘Best of CES 2019’ (for SXFI AIR)
    8. PC World ‘Best of CES 2019’ (for SXFI THEATER)
    9. Aktualne ‘Best of CES 2019’
    10. Tech Buyer’s Guide ‘Best of CES 2019 (Personal Audio)’

    “10 awards?! Wow!! What to say... I’m speechless! We are truly, truly honored and incredibly ecstatic! A big ‘Thank you’ to all the supportive media. The honor really belongs to the Super X-Fi team. They have worked insanely hard to achieve this unheard-of and ‘near-perfect’ score of 10 awards for a single technology. It’s like winning an unprecedented number of Oscars for a single movie”, said Sim Wong Hoo, CEO of Creative Technology.

    This breakthrough technology, which accomplished the seemingly impossible feat of recreating the soundstage of a multi-speaker surround system in a pair of headphones, has truly captured the imagination of many at CES 2019. This innovation has evidently attained far-reaching endorsement, which is personified by the rare achievement of one technology single-handedly winning these many awards at CES, where typically even the most inventive of innovations win less than a handful of awards.

    Word had spread fast amongst the visitors following the worldwide launch of Super X-Fi, and the Creative showcase room was inundated with walk-in requests for the demo sessions, which were mostly at full house right up to the last day of the event. Many major news media, such as CNN, ABC, Yahoo! News, Die Welt, Czech News Center, Straits Times, Business Times and Channel NewsAsia attended and were as blown away as everybody else.

    Amongst the many audio enthusiasts and experts who attended, most admitted that while they were initially skeptical on the veracity of Super X-Fi’s claims; after the demo sessions, they found themselves making remarks like ‘simply mind-blowing’, ‘easily the best demo of all’, ‘I’m not going back to normal headphone audio’, ‘I’m getting goosebumps’, ‘This is witchcraft!’. Some of them came wanting to debunk what they felt were hyperbolic claims, but admitted after the demo that these claims were in fact ‘understated’.

    The strong interest was not lost on other players in the audio industry, with visits from a few major players.

    “Others are trying to enter this space and are copying our marketing ideas. As imitation is the best form of flattery, I welcome all these attempts. Actually, such buzz serves to educate the market, telling more people headphone audio is wrong or unnatural. And only Super X-Fi can give you the real thing here and now,” said Sim.

    Super X-Fi Enters OEM Market
    In the immediate aftermath, Creative announced that it will be entering the OEM market aiming to bring Super X-Fi solutions to a much larger pool of users.

    “This unprecedented sweep of awards amid overwhelmingly positive response from all the media attendees and OEM partners has accelerated our plans to enter the OEM market immediately. In fact, many large OEM partners are pushing us to integrate Super X-Fi onto their products as soon as possible. This will be an exciting new phase for us, as the OEM market is potentially hundreds of times larger than the market for Creative’s Super X-Fi products,” added Sim.

    For more information on Super X-Fi, visit

  • Back from CES 2019 - Fun show but damn!

    Published: Sunday, January 13, 2019 | By: Dennis

    As many of you know CES 2019 has concluded and in midst of the mega tv's and 8K resolutions there was some good stuff to see.

    Keep in mind I am usually taking part in the "CES Sideshow" and use the event more to make contacts than to report on what I see.  I stopped doing that several years ago for a variety of reasons.

    The largest of them being the lack of ROI from me trying to report on everything in real time.  CNET does a really good job at finding the good stuff, I know this because people text and post on my socials saying "Hey did you see this??".  *shakes head* 

    It is also a nod to how fuxX0ring difficult it is to run the "CES Sideshow".  Not only do I have to deal with setting up a meeting schedule but, Also dealing with reschedules because someone "more important" wants the timeslot I already reserved, Also making sure my meetings are in the same location and finally, dealing with "others" that think it is ok to show up late (or early) and take away from my scheduled meeting.

    Personally I find the last one highly disrespectful and the couple times it happened I walked out of the meeting. 

    Oh ya, I had a new one this year.  Get this:
    I setup a meeting, get two confirmations of the meeting, fill out the proper paper work and told I'm set.  However, when I show up its not on their calendar and the only way I get let is is showing the email.  I then got followed around during the presentation and asked numerous times if my company name is correct.  Lazy marketing company? or internal sabotage, you decide.

    Anyhow, I digress

    Over the next week I'll be rolling out some articles of the things I found most interesting at CES 2019.  Most will be old news at this point but, at least the techutainment community didn't sample any of these articles to make their video.

    Oh and finally, Darren and I will be recording the January Podcast this week and should be able to get an episode out before the end of the month.  It will be the CES 2019 wrap up and won't be spread over four episodes like last year.

    Stay Tuned!

  • G.SKILL Trident Z Royal DDR4-3200 16GB Memory Kit Review @ ThinkComputers

    Published: Friday, January 04, 2019 | By: Dennis

    Ohh Shiny!

    G.SKILL was one of the first companies to come out with RGB DDR4 modules and they were quite a hit. Their Trident Z RGB kits are still some of the best RGB kits available today and have a sleek and sexy look that you can’t help but admire. How could G.SKILL possibly top their Trident Z RGB kits? Well they showed everyone just how they were going to do that at Computex this year with the introduction of the Trident Z Royal DDR4 memory. This new memory features the same heatspreader design, but the heatspreaders are made of polished aluminum that just looks amazing. Topping off the heatspreaders is a crystalline light bar that is unlike anything we’ve ever seen before. Today we are checking out the F4-3200C16D-16GTRS kit which is a 16GB (2 x 8GB) kit running at 3200 MHz, with timings of 16-18-18-38 at 1.35v. Is this going to be the must-have RGB memory for 2018? Read on as we find out!

    These are some pretty sweet modules and have NO business being in a gaming computer.  The style is completely off and the gold motherboards for the Chinese market were soooo last season (thrice removed)

    But, hey they are pretty and should look good covered in frost.

  • Nvidia Targeted With Class Action Lawsuits Over Crypto Crash @ Toms Hardware

    Published: Sunday, December 30, 2018 | By: Dennis

    I caught this posted over at Toms.  Have to admit I'm surprised it too investors this long before taking action. 

    On a related note the topic of NVIDIA and their "stumble" was covered on the Hardware Asylum Podcast main show Episode 94 and I might suggest you check it out.

    According to the Complaint, the Company made false and misleading statements to the market. NVIDIA touted its ability to monitor the cryptocurrency market and make rapid changes to its business as necessary. The Company claimed to be “masters at managing our channel, and we understand the channel very well.” NVIDIA also claimed to the market that any drop off in demand for its GPUs amongst cryptocurrency miners would not negatively impact the Company’s business because of strong demand for GPUs from the gaming market. Based on these facts, the Company’s public statements were false and materially misleading throughout the class period. When the market learned the truth about NVIDIA, investors suffered damages.

    While I totally agree I'm not sure what anyone is expecting to get from this.  Investing is a risk, one day you could have your money safely stored in stock the next day a fire could destroy the entire factory along with the design archives.  It could be from mismanagement of fire suppressors or some angry employee who lost his red stapler. . 

    While the article suggests that the inventory excess has been "worked through" by now that really doesn't mean much.  From the side of NVIDIA they would be indicating that the chips have been sold.  However, that doesn't help the excess inventory in the market or the snobby owners who are still upset that they paid over a grand for their card that has virtually $0 value now.