The weekend's sales round-up features 8GB of 2400MHz RAM for $76, a high-end liquid CPU cooler for $90, some LED case fans for $3, and a mid-tower case for only $70. Keep your eye on our twitter and facebook feeds for sales and news throughout the week.
Antec's 1250 CLC presently rules as king over our CPU cooling test bench. The liquid cooler uses a dual-pump design with fixed fans, ensuring rapid exchange of liquid through the radiator. Software controls the fan RPMs (silent, extreme, and custom speeds) in a manner that enables silence and extreme performance, depending on the use-case scenario.
All this stated, we're happy to announce that Antec has kindly provided us with a 1250 Kuhler for giveaway on the site.
Our gaming PC build guides typically don't get published alongside as extensive benchmarking endeavors as this AMD build has undergone. In this budget AMD gaming PC build & tutorial, we assemble a ~$700 PC with the ability to play most modern games on maximum settings at 1080 resolutions. We've spec'd out this system for entry-level overclocking, so if you're interested in pumping more power out of the system while keeping costs down, this is a fantastic entry point to system tweaking.
As always, we'll start with a specification table and then jump to the video content. I've augmented this post with an additional video over what we normally provide, including a brief guide on how to overclock the Athlon 760K CPU and benchmark thermals. Below that is provided the regular "how to build a gaming PC" tutorial video, for those who are new to system building.
A new pair of hypnotically-decaled ASUS video cards claim to cool passively unless exceeding a thermal threshold of 65C. Named for the Latin word for "owl," the ASUS Strix video cards are equipped with a large heatsink, heatpipes, and two fans that are controlled based on thermals.
Let's get into more of the detailed specs on the ASUS Strix video cards:
Rumor has it that Crucial is manufacturing an MX100 SSD, likely using Micron's new 16-nm NAND. The MX100 will fall into the spot of the oft-selected M500 in Crucial's SSD lineup, making it the new budget contender in the entry-level arena; the M550 remains as a mid-range option at slightly faster speeds. The MX100 will continue operating on the SATA interface in a 2.5" form factor.
Zotac has been pushing small form factor HTPCs for years now, but they arrived to the market a bit ahead of the mini-ITX & Steam Machine craze of CES 2014; it'd be fair to say Zotac was ahead of its time, shipping "Zboxes" even before the NUC existed publicly, and as a result saw perhaps lower sales than if they'd been a year later to market.
And now they're back.
The new Zotac ZBOX Sphere OI520 series SFF HTPCs ship in two models -- the OI520 and OI520 Plus (both of which have awfully annoying names to remember). Here are the relevant specs:
We've never covered a game more extensively than we did Titanfall; it was the first game featured in our individualized video card benchmarks, we wrote crash fix guides to mitigate rampant bugs in beta, and produced a Last Titan Standing strategy guide for fans of the mode. The game has long been a bit of a shortcoming in my eyes, though; it wants desperately to be a twitch shooter, and yet so many things are wrong -- like the weaponset (should be more explosive, like in Unreal Tournament) and lack of a server browser. Once again, PC gamers have been handed a console interface and been told to toddle off and have fun.
Computer component manufacturer NZXT steps away from hardware for a moment to release their first bit of software: meet CAM. CAM is an elegantly designed PC monitoring program that finally does remote system observation right. After using other PC monitoring software like System Mechanic, which overloads their program with a lot of unneeded and non-functional features, CAM delivers with the bare basics for enthusiasts, focusing on everything you should need to monitor your gaming rig.
In the ongoing quest to keep you aware of what to do with GameSpy shutting down, we bring you this great news from the creators of Halo. Bungie announced on the 15th that they have a fix in-place for Halo PC and Halo Community Edition.
Not only are both Halo PC and CE getting renewed life in spite of GameSpy's death, but Bungie is giving thanks to the community members who are responsible for keeping the games alive:
There's been a lot of delaying going on in the industry lately. NVidia and AMD have both pushed back launches (Maxwell, Titan Z) on the GPU side, Intel pushed back X99 / HW-E to 3Q14, and even delayed Broadwell into "4Q14 or 1Q15." All of these delays are attributable to fabrication process changes that are sweeping the semiconductor industry right now; we're shrinking the process to a point that it's small enough that new engineering hurdles have arisen -- good news for innovation, but bad for the impatient.