7 February 2000 - Monday

IBM Plans Fastest Chip
- 23:48 pm Sniper
This scoop from CNet reveals that IBM is planning a chip that will be 5 times faster than today's Pentium.

The new system has a distributed clock function. In most standard computer chips, the clock paces the speed of the circuits and a centralized clock synchronizes the operations of the entire chip. The clock waits for all operations on a chip to finish before starting the next cycle, so the speed of the chip is limited to the pace of the slowest operation. 

GlobalWin FDP32/FEP32 - 08:21 am Kan
ArashBest took the GlobalWin FDP32/FEP32 heatsink coolers for a spin over at their playground and came out with the following conclusion on these bad boys:

The FEP32 is the adjusted version of the slightly bigger FDP32. Due to the FDP32's monster size, it does not fit in some motherboards, like the ABIT BP6 or the ASUS P5A. For this reason, thoughtful Global Win also offers a smaller version, called the FEP32. If you don't have an Abit or ASUS motherboard, then you will want to invest in the FDP32, which provides a little better cooling for a slightly higher price. If you do have an Abit BP6 or other motherboards that are not compatible with the FDP32, go for the FEP32 all the way!

Pentium III 550E Review - 08:19 am Kan
Fancy a review of those new Coppermine 550E processors? Check out Ultimate Chaos review of it over here. Tons of pictures included, here's an excerpt:

After a few days of playing, we determined that the CPU is stable at a maximum of 704MHz (128MHz bus, 1/4 PCI divider) at default voltage. Here, we do a few laps in Viper Racing, one of our favorite drunken LAN games around the UC Crackhouse.

ATI TV Wonder - 08:14 am Kan
New review over at the house of Anand where the guys took a look at the ATI TV Wonder PCI graphics card. This card got all the functions like stereo TV tuner, digital VCR, closed captioning etc. Probably your all-in-one card for your PC.

This area of the card was a bit disapointing. When the card first arrived, I followed their brief instructions and installed the card. Then came the driver installation, that went fairly smoothly. So after the usual reboot, it was time to try out the card. Well, it didn't work. First the software would not scan for channels in the install, but after trying it again it finally worked. Secondly, the tv software crashed enough to warrant a ritualistic driver cd burning festival. So, after that frustrating event, a call was placed to ATI to ask if there was any drivers that worked. ATI provided us with some new drivers, and testing began on those. Everything went without a hitch with those drivers except for the fact that WebTV wouldn't work with the drivers.

An Overclocking Adventure - 08:10 am Kan
This sure sounds exciting with Dan's Data short thriller on An Overclocking Adventure. Basically Dan went on a ride with the little Pentium III 700 Mhz processor as well as the ABIT BF6 motherboard in the Overclocking Park and met the eveil Dr Heat (err, don't worry if you don't understand what I'm trying to write). Here's a summary:

Practically all of their heatsinks are made of the usual 6063 aluminium alloy (aluminum-magnesium-silicon, with better thermal conductivity than other aluminium alloys), but they've also recently started making models like the PAL6035, with inset copper heat spreader plates. This is a significant innovation, because copper is a better conductor of heat than aluminium - although aluminium is pretty good.

nVidia BenMark - 08:08 am Kan
Just a quick one, nV News dropped us a line on some of the benchmark results from the new nVidia BenMark software which is designed to measure the T&L performance under Direct3D.

Here are some results from NVIDIA's BenMark demo running at [email protected] using the default settings on a P2-450MHz & Annihilator Pro @ 140MHz core / 340MHz memory.

The numbers are based on millions of triangles per second and were determined by adding additional lights (directional, point, and spot) to each scene.  I've also provided illustrations of what the different light sources look like.

Monsoon MM700 Speakers - 08:05 am Kan
We start off a brand new day with an exciting review of the Monsoon MM700 speakers from TheTechZone (I just love the big woofer) and the speakers comes with a decent price tag as well.

Even though Monsoon calls these dipole-radiating satellite planar magnetic speakers, they should not be mistaken for true dipole speakers. The satellite speakers are really nothing more than planar tweeters, which looks very much like ribbon tweeters. The satellite are mounted on a metal stand that angles them up at the ears for better sound effects. Each satellite speaker receives 11 watts of power from the amp built into the sub enclosure. The sub woofer gets 22 watts of power.


6 February 2000 - Sunday

Inari Passport: Network Via Home AC Wiring
- 17:15 pm Wilfred
Heh! I'm interested! The FiringSquad wrote about the Inari Passport Network Kit that allows you to network your home/offices via the AC wiring within the premise. This is really cool stuff, and I wish I can get hold of this! The guys reported acceptable performance and relative ease-of-installation.

Hopefully, the network would perform better in multiplayer gaming. I was a little discouraged by the average transfer rate, but 125kbps should be fast enough for most multiplayer games. I pinged the client machine from the server and got a 18ms average. I quickly started up a multiplayer game of Quake 2. Pings ranged between 20-30ms which is the same as a normal LAN. I played for a while on both machines, and I didn't notice any lag or other network issues. The PassPort Network performed very well in the gaming tests.

Iwill Slocket II - 17:10 pm Wilfred
Looks like everyone wanted their hands on the Iwill Slocket II for review eh? Digital-Clips let us know they reviewed the Slocket II.

Iwill’s second incarnation of the Slocket series comes with native hardware support for Intel’s PIII E series processors, the Coppermine-core 100MHz FSB chips that are an overclocker’s wet dream come true. While all Slocket adapters allow for the chip’s voltage and FSB to be set manually via onboard jumpers, the Slocket II adds a further array of voltages and FSB settings aimed specifically at Coppermine chips. What’s more, Iwill’s gone an extra step further and built Joshua compatibility onto it, so when VIA finally releases its Socket370 processor, you can plug it right in.

Senfu Water Cooling Kit - 17:06 pm Wilfred
Not for cooling those thirst-quenching reservoirs of water in your offices, the Senfu Water Cooling Kit is a hardcore CPU cooling apparatus that should sent your heartbeat racing (when installing?) with the thought of passing fresh water thru pipes around your processor. Club Overclocker has a lookie:

Senfu has created something good here. This water cooling system is definitely going to be the future replacement for my conventional heatsink. If it wasn't for the reliability of the water pump and lack of a descent water container, I would be running this right now. I have some ideas for a sealed water container similar to the ones you can find over at www.overclockershideout.com. A small sealed container would work perfect and should fit inside a computer case right next to Senfu's awesome dual fan water cooler.

Now for the water pump.  All I can say is don't use it. If you are using it, look for a replacement. The pump is a great design and the hoses connect quite nicely but the pump is too underpowered. If the water container is above or below the water cooler by more than a foot, the pump stops. This is very, very bad. If it hadn't been for the pump, Senfu's water cooling system would be permanently mounted in my case right now.

FIC KW15 i810E - 16:59 pm Wilfred
This is certainly not the most exciting of boards to read about if you are a hardcore DIYer, but still, check out the FIC KW15 i810E board reviewed at Anand's. Have a read of the options if you're shopping for a budget motherboard. The review shouts "STAY AWAY FROM THIS!"

After reviewing Supermicro's i810E PIIISED, FIC's KW15 was very disappointing. Low stability, scant overclocking options and somewhat confusing documentation made this board less than ideal. The addational CDs were nice to see, but they do not make up for the aforementioned problems.

If performance is not the top priority and low price is the primary concern when constructing a system, the FIC could fill that role. However, if you feel that stability is important, there are better boards to look into.

Linus(x) Inside - 08:34 am Sniper
GNet had an interview with Linus during the launch of the Crusoe processor, here is the full stuff:

GNet : How do you see your current role in the whole Linux movement then ? 

Linus : I am mostly like a technical person, systems integrator kind. I think I could call myself a "source  management system with brains" (laughs), able to determine whether some new feature is good or not. To a large degree, I am some sort of connection point for
different projects that happen all over the world, and I kind of act as the person who brings them all together. Occasionally, I say what I think is the right thing to do, and sometimes I must go one step beyond when things
are not going the way I would like them to go - then I
just have to sit down and do it all myself. But I try to avoid that. 

ReVolt Review - 08:17 am Kan
3D GameForce went for a spin with the remote-control car simulation game ReVolt. Definitely an interesting game to play around with, check out some of the dazzling graphics:

Re-Volt offers both single player and multiplayer options; however, the game is primarily geared to single player. Under the single player option, there are a variety of different modes that you can choose from. These modes include single races, championship, time trial, practice, and stunt arena. The single and championship modes pit you against computer-controlled opponents, while the other modes allow you to race alone. Each type has a goal for you to work toward, which will unlock new levels or cars. 

GeForce DDR T&L Testing - 08:14 am Kan
nV News did some testing on the Creative Annihilator Pro using the Indy3D benchmark software. They managed to obtain some scores on the polygon count rate by adding in spotlights to each scene. Looks like performance decreases drastically once you added up to 6 spotlights. 

To stress the GeForce's lighting processor on the Annihilator Pro, spotlights were added to each MCAD40 and MCAD150 scene.  Indy 3D supports a maximum of 6 spotlights and these results are reported in polygons rendered per second.

Unlike the official Indy 3D results, where 1/3 of the MCAD scores are based on running in an antialiased wireframe mode, this test is based entirely on polygon throughput.

The Four Flaws of 3DMark 2000 - 08:13 am Sniper
Sorry for missing out this one, 3DGPU discussed the flaws in benchmarking the GeForce with 3DMark 2000 in this article.

And is it a "flaw"? I call it a preference, not a "flaw". In Quake II, the default "handedness" for the player is right-handed. Is that a "flaw" if you are left-handed? For many games, the default settings for the keys have the up arrow for moving forward, down arrow for moving backward, etc., etc. I like the "W" key for moving forward, the "S" for backwards, etc., etc. Are all these games "flawed" simply because the default settings are not to my liking? 

PC-PGA to Slot1 Converters - 08:09 am Kan
Dan's Data did a roundup on two PCPGA to Slot1 converters (ASUS S370-133 vs Eagle) and here's some of the performance details:

The Coppermine FC-PGA P-IIIs seem quite happy, with the right supporting hardware, to run 40% or more faster than their sticker speed. This doesn't just make them faster than much more expensive processors - it makes them faster than the stock speed of any Intel processor you can currently buy.

Montego II Quadzilla - 08:07 am Kan
Exxtreme3D just dropped us a line on their thoughts on the Montego II Quadzilla soundcard. Quadzilla as it is called, support up to 4 speakers as well as A3D 2.0. Here's some blurb:

The Quadzilla is a great card and it shows.  You might notice some improvement in your MP3’s, but it won’t put your 4 speakers to use.  The real sound is in the games, playing Half-Life Counter Strike (a popular add-on mod, which I spend most of my time playing) will really give you the advantage.  You will be able to hear the Terrorist behind you or walking near by.  You’ll have the edge when it comes to sound and awareness.

KX133 At Tom's - 00:28 am Wilfred
At Tom's, at Tom's... two in succession eh? Well, I didn't drop by everyday so kinda missed what he posted. Just saw that he'd put up a very interesting article on the Apollo KX133 chipset with very kind words for the new entry from VIA. Promising stuff!

The long awaited Apollo KX133 chipset from VIA Technologies is without the slightest doubt a good product. In all benchmarks it performed better than AMD's aging 750 'Irongate'-chipset, beating it in some by more than 50%. It is the one thing that AMD really needed to keep Athlon competitive with Intel's Coppermine. In my eyes VIA was able to keep its promises for the very first time. I remember numerous previous VIA-chipsets that always looked great on paper but never lived up to its specs. The KX133-reference board is also the first pre-release VIA-motherboard I ever received, that worked without a flaw in a very instant. If this should be a sign for the direction in which VIA is heading, then I want to send my deepest 'kudos' over to Taiwan, the former 'Formosa'.

5 February 2000 - Saturday

Panzer Elite
- 23:22 pm Wilfred
Not very often we have tank combat games right? The hunks at The FiringSquad got all excited by the gameplay offered in Panzer Elite, they gave it a very high 84% rating! You might like this game as well!

Panzer Elite is a tremendous step forward in the evolution of tank combat games. We had an incredible time with it and enjoyed all its options for realism. However, if you're not so inclined, remember that they are just options and can be toggled off. World War II tank combat has never felt so real and so alive. No more turn-based style fighting in the Steel Panthers tradition, but with just as much nitty-gritty realism. The campaigns are excellently done, putting on more responsibilities of an officer to the player than just commanding men in battle.

Transmeta At Tom's - 23:16 pm Wilfred
Missed posting about this for a day or so, it seems like Tom wrote an article on Transmeta's Crusoe processor over at his site.

Targeted at Web pads and mobile clients the TM3120 features 96 KB of L1 cache, a die size of 77 mm² and runs Mobile Linux in ROM. It is immediately available costing $65 for the 333 MHz and $89 for the 400 MHz version. The TM5400 is sampling and is supposed to be shipping by mid 2000. It comes with 128 KB L1 cache, 256 KB L2 cache, runs Microsoft Windows and NT, is aimed at ultra-light mobile PCs and costs $119 for the 500 MHz and $329 for the 700 MHz version. The die size is 73 mm². Both processors have an integrated Northbridge.

Olympus D-450 Zoom User Review - 16:38 pm Wilfred
Steve's Digicam posted a user review of the Olympus D-450. If you are looking for an affordable digital camera for everyday point-and-shoot, the D-450 features 3X optical zoom and 1280x960 resolution (1.3 megapixels) that will suffice for most uses.

The bottom line is that I have no reservations whatsoever in recommending this camera to those who do not need to make prints bigger than 4x6" size. The D-450 Zoom is a highly refined 1.3 megapixel camera with a sharp and fast lens. It's easy to use but still packs the features that advanced shutterbugs desire in a camera. It's fairly small and compact and if your LCD useage is kept to a minimum it will run all day on a charged set of NiMH batteries. The real bottom line is image quality and this camera delivers that in spades. The overall color, saturation and sharpness is very good, even when used in mixed lighting conditions.

HP 9100 CD Writer Plus - 16:34 pm Wilfred
Hewlett Packard has got some of the neatest looking CDRWs around, but they cost quite a bit more. So does the quality and performance warrant the extra dollars? The TechZone grills it for you today!

The HP 9100i is one of the most complete recordable CD system I've came across. Everything you need to create your own CD is included, even a CD label maker! Yep! You can make you own CD label with this unit. The software bundle doesn't disappoint either. You get a copy of Adaptec Direct CD, Adaptec Easy CD Creator, HP Disaster Recovery, Filing Central by eFax.com, Broderbund Print Shop Multimedia Organizer Professional and Corel Print Office

Guide To Windows 2000 Professional - 16:30 pm Wilfred
HipHardware put out a general 6-page guide for Windows 2000 Professional. Here's a blurb about BSODs:

Blue Screens of Death’s are still happening in Windows2000, not in the same extent as in Windows9x, but when they happen you have to reset your computer to get away from it. A BIG minus to Windows2000 which in my opinion is the operative system I have been waiting for, it supports games, doesn’t crash as often and is in a way very similar to Win9x. Of course you cannot expect Microsoft to make a totally “uncrashing” OS, but is it too much to ask for? Linux doesn’t crash often, it is way more powerful in handling drives, LANcards and memory. This is what makes a good server operating system.

Ratpadz Mousing Surface Reviewed - 16:22 pm Wilfred
HotHardware sent note that they've reviewed the Ratpadz. Heh, if you think it's time to get your mouse a company, consider the Ratpadz. ;)

In short the Rat Pad is a fine addition to your mouse controlled gaming arsenal. The additional precision and speed you will experience when using it will have your friends dropping the server connection in total frustration after you spank them silly in a death match. 

As for the other fantastic "features" of the Rat Pad, well let's just say this thing is an untapped resource!!!!!  It also makes a mean Pasta-Fragoli for that special romantic dinner you need to help get you out of the dog house from the prior evening's all night Quake-A-Thon... 

HW1: Matrox Marvel G400-TV - 14:03 pm Wilfred
Kai Ping completed a very comprehensive look at the Matrox Marvel G400-TV card just before he went off for Chinese New Year visitations. For anyone into video-editing, this is a nice bundle to own! Don't MISS THIS!

The State Of 3D Accelerators - 13:53 pm Wilfred
Penstar Systems put together an outline of the present state of 3D accelerators in the market today. Since you must have heard about most of the other popular accelerators, let's have a read on the still 'vapourware' Glaze3D. =P

On paper the Glaze3D looks like a great accelerator, and it may just be. Unfortunately Bitboys do not have the best reputation for getting out products.  Designing a chip of this complexity is a huge undertaking, and they probably had to be very inventive to get many parts of it to work. There still is no working silicon and none is expected until the year 2000. Advanced features include: quad texturing, full-scene anti-aliasing, motion blur, soft shadows and reflections (all accumulation buffer effects, like 3dfx's T-Buffer), 4X AGP, Embedded DRAM, 32 bit color, 32 bit Z-buffer, and other advanced filtering techniques.

The fillrate on this chip is pretty hefty. The 1200 is supposed to output about 1200 MegaTexels/second. The Glaze3D achieves this magnificent number by having 4 pixel pipelines that can spit out two textures a piece. The chip itself is scheduled to run at 150 Mhz (4 pixel pipelines x 2 texture outputs x 150Mhz core speed = 1200 MTex/Sec). In comparison, todays fastest chips run up to 183 Mhz (TnT2/Voodoo3) on the .25 micron process. The Glaze3D will be produced on the Infineon's .20 micron process with Embedded DRAM. This shouldn't be a problem because companies like TSMC already is in volume production of .18 micron parts, so by 2000 there should be enough Fab space at Siemens/Infineon to produce this chip.

Microsoft Intellimouse Explorer - 13:50 pm Wilfred
The Sharky Extremists (there are quite a few extremist sites out there...) took the MS rodent for a walk in the park today. I'm sure you've read Les and Kan's review about them?

The IntelliEye sensor is coupled with a powerful RISC processor that delivers up to 18 MIPS of raw processing power, which is pretty impressive for a mouse. This combination allows the Intellimouse to provide unequaled accuracy by delivering up to 1,500 "scans" per second, which is about twelve times what a conventional mouse offers. If that's not enough, at an impressive 1200 dpi, the Intellimouse Explorer is also far more sensitive than any competing solution on the market today.

Matrox Millennium G400 - 13:44 pm Wilfred
PC Mechanic's Maximum3D posted a review of the G400 card. A sweet card for those demanding the best image quality in 2D and 3D.

Anyone who knows anything has heard of Matrox. They've been in the video card business since I was a fetus (slight exaggeration). But, typically, when we think of gaming cards, we generally concentrate on the war between 3dfx and nVidia, with the Voodoo and GeForce chips respectively. Well, Matrox is back with the G400. The card has been out for a few months, but only now have we gotten a chance to play with it. Lemme say this: The G400 gives the 3dfx and nVidia counterparts a real run for their money.

Athlon 800 Mhz Review - 09:08 am Kan
GamePC spinned the Athlon 800 Mhz processor and showed us some great benchmark results on this mutha today:

Let's get down with the specifics of the Athlon 800, and what makes it what it is. Just as with the Athlon 750, the 800 has a slowed down 2/5 cache divider, meaning the L2 cache on the Athlon 800 is running quite a bit slower at a lagging 320 MHz. Intel's Coppermine Pentium III's only have 256k of L2 cache, it's running at full processor clock speed (733 MHz core/733 MHz L2 cache), and that gives quite a performance gain, especially for 3D gaming. The Athlon's slower 512k cache can't hack it anymore, and is very visibly slowing down the benchmarks we ran on the processor. This problem won't occur when AMD integrates the L2 cache onto the processor core with their upcoming "Thunderbird" processors, but in all likelyness we won't be seeing these processors until March or April. Once the cache is on-die, AMD will be free to take the Athlon core to it's fullest potential, which is more than likely beyond 1.2 GHz from what we know.

3D Prophet DDR/DVI - 09:06 am Kan
Guru3D took a look at the 3D Prophet DDR/DVI GeForce card. The good thing is it includes a TV-Out based on the Brooktree's 869 chip, thus enabling you to watch your favorite DVDs on your bigger TV.

Currently it is their hottest  flagship high-performance videocard based up-on the GeForce 256. The card is (at this time) a very high performance card due to it's Double Date Rate SGRAM 32MB Frame buffer, 4x4 integrated Transform and Lighting (Frees up CPU bandwidth), 256-bit QuadPipe rendering (Fast graphics performance), AGP 4x with fast write (to makes it even faster). If you'd like to know more then you should definably continue to read our review continued on the next pages ...

GeForce V6800 Raw Data - 09:03 am Kan
SystemLogic took apart the default heatsink from the ASUS V6800 GeForce graphics card, slapped on their own bad-ass cooler on top of the card and showed us some overclocking madness in the process. Here's an excerpt:

The motherboard used during testing was a BE6-II and the problem was with the AGP voltage. Running QIIIA with the motherboard's AGP voltage at default 3.3 volts I would get picture anomalies. ASUS website recommends running the 3.62 drivers for QIII due to its OpenGL support. After an installation of the 3.62 drivers I still had the same visual problems in QIIIA. After reading a post, it was recommend that I raised the AGP voltage. The voltage for my AGP slot was raised to 3.6 volts and the problem is fixed. The Smart Doctor Software registered my 3.6 volts at 3.48 volts.

2CoolCPU Cooler Review - 09:00 am Kan
Woah, what a wacky name. Fast Mhz reviewed the 2CoolCPU Cooler today and it definitely looks effective!

The difference between the two is the plus has a higher output ball bearing fan. I would suggest the Plus for those cases loaded with PCI cards to get that hot air away from the cards or any cases that are less than a full size case. Small cases seem to hold the heat in...

Maxi Sound Fortissimo - 08:58 am Kan
The Kawai Network took the Maxi Sound Fortissimo soundcard for a short ride today, beat two traffic lights and arrived at this conclusion:

As the physical part of the installation, it’s very easy, stick your card in one of your PCI slot, hook the up the audio cables and you are done, once you boot into Windows 98, it detects the sound card right away, pop in the CD and you are done. Install this sound card is everything but smooth in Windows 2000 (server, Build 2195), Windows 2000 install the drivers for the sound card but it refuse to work, after hours of troubleshooting, I finally gave up.                               

DirectX to Integrate Voice Technology - 08:55 am Kan
Finally this is possible with the future releases of DirectX. Microsoft announced that they will be implementing the new DirectPlay® Voice into future APIs inside DirectX, enabling players to talk to each other while playing games etc. Thanks to Electic for the info.

"With the addition of this technology to the DirectPlay API in DirectX, Microsoft will provide game developers with a powerful set of programming interfaces to cleanly integrate voice technology into their games," said Paul Donlan, program manager for DirectX at Microsoft. "Real-time voice communication between players will greatly enhance the gameplay experience. Imagine table talk during an online bridge game or squad collaboration during World War II-era flying games such as 'Combat Flight Simulator.' Once embedded into DirectX, voice technology will bring multiplayer gaming to a new level."

6 New Motherboards from Transcend - 08:53 am Kan
World renown memory manufacturer Transcend announced that they are releasing 6 new Socket370 motherboards which are capable of utilizing the new FC-PGA processors. Thanks to Dimension-X for the press release!

The FC-PGA, or "Flip Chip Pin Grid Array" is a new CPU package terminology that involves flipping the silicon core to face up. The core sits on top of the actual package and makes direct contact with the heatsink. For this reason, the CPU will have better heat dissipation. The system will be more stable and end-users will benefit from the increased durability and reliability of the whole system.


4 February 2000 - Friday

Kan Yawns - 19:23 pm Kan
Yes! Managed to beat Wilfred today before his usual coughs. =) Tomorrow is Chinese New Year, so on behalf of the dudes behind Hardware One, Happy New Year! Anyway, something drastic will be happening late next week or so (can't say much about it), but oh boy, am I excited!

Drive safely, and have a good time guys. 

Allegiance Preview - 19:21 pm Kan
Yippeee! Those space-sim fans will love this. FiringSquad managed to get a preview of Microsoft's latest multiplayer 3D online space/combat game, Allegiance. It definitely looks good!

The basic idea behind Allegiance is very simple, and easily explained. Earth has been destroyed by an asteroid, space is aflame with war, with three unique factions duking it out over the Solar System and other former possessions. Nothing stunning so far, right? Well, where Allegiance separates itself from the crowd (be they RTS or space-sim games), is in the play.

Benchmarking Guide - 19:18 pm Kan
Heh. This guide is more suited for reviewers out there. Cole 3D did a quick summary of all the keywords and commands you need to start those benchmarks running on games like Quake and Unreal. 

Besides games, there are several programs that are based around benchmarking. Some of my favorites are 3DMark, 3D Winbench, and SiSoft Sandra. 3DMark and Winbench are pretty much only graphic related, but SiSoft Sandra is more of a total system benchmark, and is often used in CPU reviews to determine the Dhrystone and Whetstone scores.

Realworld T&L Benchmarks - 19:14 pm Kan
Our hard gals over at HardOCP put the GeForce under their microscope and whipped up the Realworld T&L Benchmarks article. Instead of running endless benchmarks using 3D WinBench, the guys decided to stress the GPU by using Test Drive 6 as the benchmark software.

Well you might or might not know that we looked into the world of Transform & Lighting, better known as T&L here lately.  (not to be confused with T&A, but I can point you to a site that discusses that later)  The nVidia GeForce is the ONLY consumer card on the market now that boasts a Hardware T&L engine, the GPU.  We have put the GeForce under the microscope lately with benchmarking programs that created all kinds of controversy.  Instead of another benchmark, let's use a real game this time...

Leadtek WinFast GeForce SDR - 17:39 pm Wilfred
The chums at AnandTech review factory delivered another, this time on Leadtek's SDR GeForce card. No frills solution for all!

In comparison to other SDR GeForce cards, the choice to buy the Leadtek WinFast 256 SDR card is a difficult one. Selling at a price of about $230, the WinFast lies around the price of the other SDR GeForce cards reviewed. A solid performing card when at stock speed, the Leadtek WinFast 256 GeForce SDR is great for those without high overclocking goals.

Warped Perspective - 17:35 pm Wilfred
Didn't I tell you I have a soft spot for OS/2 related news (and recently digital photography? =P )?? Anyway, osOpinion put up another iteration of Warped Perspective. Though I think the author made some clever points, I feel IBM's marketing is a letdown in comparison to the technology they produced. If they have to play the game to survive, then please... play it?!

Raise your hands if you know the answer: What is the purpose of "Revision Numbers" or "Version Numbers" of software applications?

The short answer is: Marketing. That's it, plain and simple. The purpose of changing a version number is to imply to potential users of the software product that there has been some kind of significant improvement in the software. Note that the versioning does not "legally" make this claim; nor does such a version number change "prove" that anything inside is different. But version numbers for software serve the same purpose as Model Year numbers on cars: they imply newness without necessarily delivering it.

Quantum FireBall Ict10 - 17:32 pm Wilfred
StorageReview let us know that they've reviewed the FireBall Ict10 drive from Quantum and called it the fastest budget drive out there!

The Fireball lct10 is arguably the fastest budget drive around. Even so, that's not the story here. StorageReview.com readers (ourselves included) simply don't look at value drives when building a performance system. There are many applications, however, that require the utmost in quiet operation. In fact, here at SR, we're in need for the quietest drive around. The finalization and construction of our new testbed is imminent. As you can imagine, the boot disk in that new testbed needs to be the quietest around, to better subjectively gauge other drives yet to come. The Fireball lct10 looks like it'll be the drive we need for such an application. The promising thing is that this "QDT" technology doesn't seem to be limited to the value-class ATA arena.

Final Fantasy 8 - 17:28 pm Wilfred
You have waited long? Now that it's arrived, how are the ratings for it? 3D Rage takes a look at the RPG game from SquareSoft.

Final Fantasy 8 is, without a doubt, one of the most addicting games that I have ever played, but there are several factors that contribute to its downfall. Not to say that Final Fantasy 8 is not a great game, which it is. I'm just saying that it could have been better through the utilization of higher resolutions, tweaking the junctioning system, enabling more ways to obtain magic other than drawing it from monsters, implementing a way to skip GF animations, and several more that are failed to be mentioned. The storyline, while failing to unfold as smoothly as I would like, will keep you glued to your monitor for hours on end just hoping that you'll uncover another twist or turn in the plot. The cinematic sequences are absolutely the best that I have ever laid eyes on, and I would purchase the game just to get a look at those beautiful sequences.

Mandrake Linux 7.0 Review - 17:23 pm Wilfred
Geeknews.org threw up a 7-page review on Mandrake Linux 7.0. They have quite some good things to say about this particular distribution.

There has been some hype about Mandrake being a more user-friendly Linux distribution when compared to its contemporaries, Red Hat Linux being the most oft-cited.  I have had some experience in the past using Mandrake 6.x and I thought it was okay, but felt it was clearly Red Hat Linux with some extra user-oriented applications and a bit more Pentium optimization. I can safely say that with Mandrake 7.0, the good people over at MandrakeSoft have pieced together a distribution all their own. The biggest changes are both obvious and non-obvious. Firstly, they have totally redesigned the installer that they use. In fact, they really create a revolutionary look to installing Linux via X - thanks to their new DrakX graphical installer. On the underlying side, they introduce a good deal of improvements to things, among them hardware detection/device configuration in the form of Lothar.

Silver Thermal Compound - 17:19 pm Wilfred
This is novel! Club Overclocker sent note that they reviewed a silver thermal compound they received. Using it, they achieved some 8 deg C decrease in CPU temperatures!

I then applied Millisec's Silver Thermal Compound to our heatsink and CPU. I could not believe the difference this stuff makes. A whopping 8° F cooler! It's amazing how CPU temps can be dramatically lowered by simply using high quality thermal paste!

New S3 Q3 Maps - 15:25 pm Sniper
Boys and girls! Want to take your Viper II for a fragging session?  Download these new S3TC maps before you do that.

Digital Photography News!
- 13:55 pm Wilfred
Over at our affiliate's page at Digital Photography Review, you'll find loads of updates on new cameras to come. They've got juicy information on the really sleek bodies from HP and Canon! The Canon EOS Digital SLR looks set to chart new waters! I urge you over for a lookie!!  ~droolz~

Phoneline Network In a Box - 08:58 am Kan
GA-Source took a look at the D-Link Phoneline Network in a Box today. Capable of up to 10Mb transmission, I'm always curious whether it will work if someone picks up the telephone on the other end. =)

With the 10Mb speed of the new HomePNA 2.0 spec, you get a much more straightforward feel transferring files. You aren't accessing them quite fast enough to watch a DVD movie from a drive in another room, but it isn't that far off either. At 10Mb, you are operating across the network at approximately the speed of a 8x CDROM drive. That is good enough for me to be able to build a machine without a CDROM in it, and do all the installs across the network.

IWill VD133 - 08:54 am Kan
Not to forget those Ars who reviewed the IWill VD133 motherboard. Based on the VIA Apollo Pro 133 chipset, it supports up to a maximum of 150 Mhz FSB and comes in a 5 PCI/2 ISA slots configuration.

The motherboard comes bundled with one of the nicest Ultra 66 cables I've ever seen, a floppy cable, and a CD.  Now this isn't just any CD, this is an Iwill Power Installer CD. This takes the cake as one of the smoothest CD's I've seen bundled with a motherboard ever.  It's got your standard stuff on it, VIA chipset drivers, Hardware doctor software, Anti-Virus software, user manual, yadda yadda yadda.  You know what's on a disk.  Here's the cool part--this disk is bootable.  That's right, boots right up into some Linux-y thing.  (You can tell I'm well versed in Linux right?)  When you boot into the Power Installer CD you have the ability to make some driver disks for their motherboards.  The VD isn't on that list (d'oh!).  It's a nice idea at least.

ATI Rage Fury MAXX - 08:49 am Kan
Our pals over at iXBT-Hardware produced their thoughts on the ATI Rage Fury MAXX. Check out their usual solid blurb in one single page:

It is worth saying that the necessity to shift between different frame buffers from time to time causes quite tangible delays, which may lead to visual artifacts. Below we will try to show if these fears are grounded or not. The thing is that quite a lot depends on the type of the game and its requirements towards the CPU and graphics card. Let's consider the case when the game doesn't utilize the processor that much: the CPU manages to calculate the frames very quickly and transmits then to the graphics chipsets for further rendering. In this situation, the first chip fails to finish rendering a frame in the buffer while the CPU is ready to submit another frame.

The Quest for Gigahertz - 08:44 am Kan
HardwareCentral went for a spin and produced The Quest for Gigahertz article. Overclocking, increasing die-shrink and cooling are all part of the game to reach the Gigahertz barrier. 

However, as technology progresses, we always tend to find new ways of getting the most out of our current designs by scrutinizing and subsequently optimizing parts of the design which are holding the processor back from operating at an even higher clockspeed. One of the most obvious is the die-shrink.

The reason that a processor can be clocked to a higher speed if we use a smaller die is the fact that the individual transistors as well as the length and width of the interconnecting traces is reduced. The reduction in size causes for far less propagation and switching delay in the transistors, allowing the processor to be clocked at a higher speed. Thus by simply shrinking the die size as well as having a scalable CPU design, we’re able to clock the same processor to much higher speeds than the earlier generations.

Demos and Visual Effects - 08:41 am Kan
Alo Ha! Smacked right here this morning are news from PlanetGeForce on the demos and visual effects proggies available for GeForce users. Source code included too! Ideal for people who wish to poke around with the programs. Here's some of'em:

This is a collection of demo executables and source code that demonstrates many effects and techniques that are possible with today's graphics processors. Most of the executables require a specific processor function, so QuickTime moves or JPEG stills are provided to show the effect on systems without the hardware. 

Deskstar 34GXP Vs FireBall KX - 08:34 am Wilfred
GamePC decided to spice things up a little and pitted IBM's Deskstar 34GXP against the Quantum Fireball KX in their review this morning. Looks like the 2MB buffer gave the Deskstart a slight edge:

The IBM Deskstar did not out perform the Quantum Fireball Plus KX by much. Leaving to understand IBM’s larger buffer advantage does not increase the overall performance by much. Overall, the Fireball Plus stays close behind in many of the tests due to his slightly quicker reading access time. A person may thing, oh .5 MS difference, what a big whoopdee doo but in fact that .5 MS makes up for the lower buffer size and how it can still stay and play with the big boys. Another thing to note is how quite both drives ran when testing the two. Both drives were actually quieter then the case fans. As for heat produced by the two spinning at 7200 RPM’s, the Deskstar did run considerably warmer (which is no surprise since I have the 22GXP and it too runs fairly warm) over the KX.

ELSA Erazor X2 Review - 08:31 am Wilfred
The blokes at HardwarePros took the Erazor X2 for a quick spin and you will want to see what they said about this card (how about checking out our take on it too?):

ELSA has put together a great video board at a decent value. The fact that it's based on NVIDIA's GeForce 256 and has 32MB of DDR SGRAM is enough to make most people's mouths water.  The only decision you'll have to make is which DDR board you want to get and will it cause a huge hole in your wallet!  If the money isn't an issue, then the best way to choose a board is by looking at what extra features each board offers and what software bundle you're getting.  The ERAZOR X2 does come with an S-Video out and a decent game bundle which includes the award-winning game, Drakan. 

Singapore Lifts Half-Life Ban - 08:25 am Wilfred
After rejecting an earlier appeal to lift the ban on Half-Life, the censorship board reviewed its stance and overturned the decision. Whew! Kudos to whoever made that decision!! All is not lost yet! Check out the full details at CNet Singapore:

"The Films Appeal Committee (FAC) has reviewed the ban on the video game Half-Life and decided to lift it (the ban)," said Pang Cheng Lian, FAC chairman.

"In deciding to lift the ban, the FAC took into consideration that the gaming centers and individuals have invested in the game on the assumption that it was not banned, and that the game has been in the market for more than a year.

"Hence, the more practical approach in this case is to lift the ban," Pang said in a statement.

ABIT BE6-2 Motherboard - 08:22 am Wilfred
Tech-Junkie has reviewed the ABIT BE6-2 BX motherboard downunder. As always, you can trust the guys to be concise and neat! Here's a snippet:

If Abit's plan was indeed to build the most comprehensive and kick-ass BX motherboard, they did a darn good job of it. Packed with features and refinements, the BE6 Revision 2 is the ultimate BX motherboard. Despite the slight lag in performance in comparison with the original BE6, Revision 2 still shines because of Softmenu III and the excellent clock generator that will allow overclockers to go crazy.

Home Networking Article - 08:19 am Wilfred
AbsolutePC put together a 5 page article teaching us just how to get your 10/100 network kit up and running at home. For those of you looking to wire up your home, here's where to start:

What is networking? Networking is the communication of two or more computers. This communication allows computers to share resources like files, printers, Internet connections, and the ability to play multiplayer games. When you want to network a computer, you don't just change settings, add drivers, and hope they will communicate by paranormal means. No, they need to be wired to each other.

3 February 2000 - Thursday

Intel's 'Willamette' Heats Up GHz race - 21:55 pm Sniper
Yawn.........I've given up all these "need for speed" stuff.  Anyway ZDNet has this article that outlines the future of Intel's chips.  Well, I just want to have a Cursoe Webpad and a PS2. That's all!!  

The chip, in addition, is expected to include Willamette
Processor New Instructions -- a new set of single instruction, multiple data or SIMD multimedia instructions. These instructions are used to help enhance the processing of certain multimedia data, such as video.

A Starter's Guide to Video Editing - 21:46 pm Sniper
This one caught my attention while I was surfing. For those interested in video editing, so what are you waiting for?

Computers eventually started to ease the video editing process, but this was limited by cost to the high-end professional market. The beauty of these expensive editing computers was that you could edit a video just like a document with cutting and pasting. This was called
non-linear editing, as opposed to linear editing, in which a video had to be edited in sequence. These new computers were also capable of adding digital effects, smooth transitions and multiple layers of audio.

PS2 First-Person Sim Uncovered - 21:40 pm Sniper
Second Skin Media Managing Director Russell Murray has given FGN Online details of his company's upcoming PlayStation2 "first-person simulator". Read on to get the full scoop

"So in this mission, you would have to not speak normally because it's not just what you say, but how you say it is important. These voice-recognition engines can now verify your voice, and you can now even determine whether someone's agitated or nervous while they shout and add it into the equation, so you end up speaking to characters information-wise kind of emotionally as well, and that's quite important when it comes to multiplayer which will also feature in Second Skin!" 

Senfu Single-Fan Water Cooling Radiator - 21:02 pm Wilfred
Overclockers Australia posted a review of this funky cooler for your PC. Things don't get more hardcore than this... having a bath tub of water next to your splendid casing.

I have to say I'm very impressed and give Senfu the big thumbs up for not only producing the unit at all, but for doing such a quality job with it. This kind of thing is exactly what the hardcore overclocking market needs, proper mass-produced products that address our unique needs and work well. I'm sure some people will complain that the elite, hardcore aspect of water-cooled PC's is eroded by mass-market products, but I think it's a great sign that overclocking is being recognized more by the industry.

Jane's USAF - 20:56 pm Wilfred
Thresh's FiringSquad whipped up a review on Jane's USAF. As always, top quality simulation from Jane's with detailed visuals, flight models, tactics and all. Have a read:

While being strong in eye candy and options, I struggled with USAF after playing through the game. There is much depth to the training and learning what it takes to fly a modern jet in USAF and perhaps that can suffice for most people. But for those who crave the endless exhilaration from a game like Falcon 4.0, getting USAF to stay around on your hard drive after finishing the game might be a problem. It just does not have great legs because of its static campaigns.

Where USAF manages to excel is in its ability to offer simmers more than just the every day cruise around the park. You can fly some of the greatest planes ever made and feel the different aspects of each one. The idea of this is not new but the way Jane's implements this is new.

Pioneer DVD 104S - 20:51 pm Wilfred
Been looking for a DVD-ROM drive? Pioneer has the best looker around for a long while, and today at The TechZone they checked out the 10X version in an EXTREMELY short review.

If you're getting a new computer and are wondering whether to get a DVD-104S or just a normal CD ROM, get the Pioneer. The price is not that much more and the CD read speed is just as fast as most stand alone CD ROMs and you'll be able to read all disc formats but DVD RAM. It doesn't get much better than this.

Gigabyte GA-MG400 Matrox G400 AGP - 20:47 pm Wilfred
AnandTech also put out their review on Gigabyte's rendition of the Matrox G400 card. Tell me you like it 'cheap and good'!!

Compared to the regular G400s from Matrox, the MG400 is a steal. At $120 for a 32MB card, the MG400 comes in a full $60 cheaper than a 32MB Millennium G400. The only thing that $60 buys you is DualHead support with the Millennium G400, if you don't really care about DualHead support then the MG400 is a pretty good deal. Unfortunately if you don't already have a supported Gigabyte motherboard, then the deal loses some of its appeal because you now have to purchase a new motherboard for your new video card. If you were going to upgrade your motherboard regardless, this may be an added incentive to go with a Gigabyte board, but then it does severely limit your motherboard choices.

ACS54 Speakers - 20:44 pm Wilfred
CPU Review has a short review on Altec Lansing's 5-piece ACS54 speakers. Here's a blurb:

The ACS54 is an inexpensive way to enhance the sound experience you get from your games or DVDs. A good buy.

Let's face it, a <$80 set of speakers (including subwoofer) is not going to rival a good audiophile setup that can easily cost $5000+ ... but it can definitely sound far better than the normal cheap speakers you get with your computer.

3D Blaster Annihilator GeForce FAQ - 14:13 pm Wilfred
Thanks to Mike Chambers of nV News for the heads up. Here's Christopher Hill's detailed FAQ for the Annihilator GeForce cards. If you own ANY GeForce, I bet you can use a read!

Q. On some levels in Quake 3 Arena I get severe slowdowns with all of the settings maxed out. How can I fix this?

Turn down the texture colour depth to 16-bit or slide the texture detail slider down one notch. There's not quite enough memory to store all the textures in the video memory on certain levels, such as Q3DM6, Q3DM9, Q3DM11 and Q3DM15

D-Link USB Radio - 14:09 pm Wilfred
BoomGames sent note that they got the D-Link USB Radio blasting in their labs for a couple of days and are now back with a writeup on its worth. Read what they say:

Internet radio is nice and free, but is subject to net congestion and eats so much bandwidth that it's almost silly. Modem users often have to all but dedicate their internet connection to the connection, while users of high-bandwidth connections only have to add to the saturation.

Broadcast radio is a field we haven't seen much new to lately. People have gone off into CD and MP3 fields, while others have diverted to Internet Radio. This has actually forced many radio stations to begin offering the Internet as another source of reception of their transmission. Over the internet, there is no static. However, there are transmission interruptions and the compression algorithm really cuts down the audio quality. The technology isn't quite ready for wide-spread use.

Another ABIT BE6-II Review - 14:07 pm Wilfred
Coincidentally, 3D Spotlight also released a review of the BE6-II today. This is still ABIT's top-end BX motherboard that comes with ATA/66 support. The snip:

This is the fun part about Abit boards, overclocking. Abit made sure they stayed on the top of other motherboards in terms of overclocking when they implemented the 1MHz increments via the Softmenu III. The BF6 and BE6-II are virtually the same, so the overclocking results are identical when using the same hardware on each motherboard.

Gigabyte GA-6CX i820 Mobo - 14:03 pm Wilfred
AnandTech got hold of Gigabyte's i820 board for testing and churned out a short review of it. Here's a blurb from their verdict!

While the 6CX wasn't our pick for Editor's Choice in our January 2000 i820 Motherboard Roundup, the board itself is a very solid and reliable solution which is something we've come to expect from Gigabyte as a manufacturer.

The lack of voltage manipulation and the somewhat limiting FSB settings do not make the 6CX the ideal board for overclockers looking for a good i820 motherboard , but the DualBIOS and VGA BIOS on Motherboard Technology supported by the motherboard help to mask those oversights.

However, as with most other i820 motherboards, the biggest thing keeping the 6CX out of the hands of most users isn't the motherboard itself, but rather the inflated cost of RDRAM.

Mandrake 7.0 Review And Install Guide - 14:01 pm Wilfred
Over at Cole3D, they've cooked up a review on Mandrake 7.0 and published an installation guide for it. The latest OS comes with many enhancements and newbies (note, newbie doesn't exclude techies) will like it's improved user-friendliness.

Mandrake 7's installation is the easiest one I have seen so far. I popped in a bootdisk that I made (my BH6 doesn't like to boot off CD for some reason), and began. I was greeted with a nice screen asking me if I wanted a Recommended, Custom, or Expert installation. Recommended will partition the disk for you (So you might wanna stay away from this unless your drive is completely blank), Custom allows you to partition the drive yourself, and Expert allows you to partition the drive yourself and install individual packages. I happened to choose Custom. Mandrake's partitioning utility was extremely easy to use, and completely graphical. I removed my old partitions which had contained Red Hat 6.1, and made a new swap and / partition. Mandrake's disk partitioner is by far the easiest to use.

Transmeta: Will They Beat The Odds? - 13:54 pm Wilfred
If you like daily commentaries, today osOpinion has another set of articles you can check out! Here's another page full on Transmeta and what they've done right so far:

Transmeta has apparently done two correct things. First, they claim to have actual chips in actual products real soon now (this phrase not capitalized to avoid conflict with Jerry Pournelle). We've seen the chips, and we've seen them work, and we soon (with luck) will get our own hands on them. All this will happen while the product named "Crusoe" is still fresh on our brains. Compare this to Intel's self-inflicted 64 bit "Merced" processor FUD attack. The computer press has been printing news, analysis and rumors about "Merced" for at least two years that I can (possibly faulty) recall. Is it any wonder people may give up on it ever appearing if they think the media leaks are signs of a hemorrhage?

Final Fantasy VIII Review - 10:35 am Sniper
At GameSpot is another review of the game FF8, role playing fans go take at look.

In early 1999, Final Fantasy VIII for the Sony PlayStation sold millions of copies within days of its release in Japan. Now, one year later, the epic role-playing game has become available for the PC with much less fanfare surrounding its publication, probably because most everyone who wanted to play Final Fantasy VIII already has. What's more, the PC version of Final Fantasy VIII seems hell-bent on completely alienating its audience of innocently curious computer gamers, as they'll likely end up utterly bewildered if they ever made the mistake of buying it. That's because Final Fantasy VIII for the PC is a completely inadequate conversion of the attractive yet problematic console role-playing game.

S4 MidiLand 7100 5.1 - 10:25 am Sniper
Both Sharky and GameSpot took this affordable speakers for a test run. Find out for yourself if its better than the Creative ones.

I recently acquired an SPL (sound pressure level) meter to use while setting up some home-theater speakers. I couldn't resist giving it a whirl after I set up the Midiland 7100 speakers. I popped in one of the Springsteen Live 1975-1985 CDs (it's a three-CD set) and cranked up Born in the USA. At one point, the SPL in the near field (sitting in front of the monitor) reached 105 decibels - the speakers were clearly clipping, but they were able to hit over 100dB and stay fairly clean. Clearly, the emphasis with these speakers is volume.

VIA KX133 Preview - 08:45 am Wilfred
SlotA.com posted a preview on an engineering sample of the VIA KX133 mainboard. They covered some important benchmarks and from the looks of it, the board is a good performer!

I have to say that I am impressed by the KX133.  The stability of the board was top notch.  I had expected more problems with AGP 2X and 4X.  I experienced no lockups with the TNT 2 and did not have to resort to registry hacks to enable 2X, 4X or side banding.  It looks like Via has done an excellent job following the AGP spec.  

I was also satisfied with the chipsets performance.  Sure it lagged in some tests, but remember that the KX133 will excel when using applications that that access the memory heavily.  This is why it pulled ahead of the AMD 751 with Winstone 99 and Content Creation.  Gaming performance is a little bit trickier.  While it held its own with the 751 I was hoping to see an improvement of some sort with AGP 4X enabled.  In all of the testing I have done so far I have not seen a definite increase.  

VIA Interview - 08:41 am Wilfred
The guys at The Firingsquad scored an interview with VIA, the company that's turning heads with their recent core logic chipset success. So what plans are in store?

FiringSquad: When do you plan on releasing PC266 chipsets and will they be available for both AMD and Intel platforms?

VIA: We plan to announce our DDR product plans in the second quarter of this year. Chipsets will be available on both Intel and AMD platforms, though the schedule hasn't yet been finalized.

ABIT BE6-II Motherboard - 08:37 am Wilfred
We're onto motherboards this morning as Jsi Hardware dismembered their systems for a BE6-II board. Listen to what they have to say about it:

This is one seriously cool motherboard, with so many Fsb settings to chose from i thing that this is the best overclocking board available at the moment. Ultra Dma 66 Support Future Proofs this board for quite a while (Until Ultra dma 100 is released next year)

Intel Vancouver i820 Motherboard - 08:25 am Wilfred
GamePC popped us a note on the i820 Camino board from Intel. One of the first to hit the streets as Intel try to push its adoption. Pay Vancouver a visit!

The VC820 does perform well, but it sure doesn't stand out from the crowd in any way, which is what we've come to expect from Intel. If you want the most stable, down to earth Intel 820 that money can buy, keep your eyes fixated on the VC820. The board design is well done (No ISA slots, thank god!), and it just plain works without a hitch. Most gamers will want to look to the I820 boards from Asus, AOpen, and Abit rather than Intel, which frankly, is what we would do too.

2 February 2000 - Wednesday

Loads Of Digital Photography Info - 19:36 pm Wilfred
Thanks once again to our excellent local digicam site for the scoops! Digital Photography Review blurbed on more than a handful of news breaks. Here's some of them:

Sony Announced 3 New Digital Cameras!
The DSC-S70, S50 and S30 that sport 3.3, 2.1 and 1.3 megapixel CCDs respectively!

Fuji FinePix 4700 Sample Pix At PC Watch
Yums! But I think the Canon S20 samples look a tat nicer! Whaddaya think?

Olympus C2020Z Review At Imaging Resource
Damn! If only they have trade-ins for people like me?! I want the enhanced C2020Z!!! This is a really sweet camera if you can't wait any longer for those 3.3 MPs!

The Playstation 2: Emotion Engine - 19:26 pm Wilfred
There's some raving over at PC World about the PS2. It's coming isn't it?! The world awaits in anticipation... gigaflops computing powess!

The Emotion Engine and its accompanying processing chip change all that by excelling at a processing function called floating-point performance, which can help it handle graphics.

How adept is it? According to MicroDesign Resources, the processor can handle 6.2 gigaflops at 300MHz. A single gigaflop equals one billion floating-point operations per second. MDR says that makes the chip two times faster than a 733-MHz Pentium III and 15 times faster than a 400-MHz Celeron at handling tasks like full-motion video. For the statistics-minded, the processor can handle 75 million 3D transformations per second, and can render images at 2.4 billion pixels per second.

Monster MX400 Sound Card - 19:19 pm Wilfred
GA-Source took apart the Monster MX400 today in their labs. Go and see what they found! Stick with your SBLive! or MX300 if you already have it!

So where did Diamond end up with the MX400? They made a product aimed at gamers that delivers quality. About the only way in which it really fell short was in CPU utilization. I would have hoped that it would have been a little lower. As it was, I hardly noticed it on the higher end machine I tested on. If you have a machine in the 450 range or lower, and are not planning on a CPU upgrade in the near future, the MX400 may not be your best choice. If your CPU is faster than that, or if you are planning to upgrade to that in the near future, then the MX400 is a decent choice. If you already own an MX300 (or any other Vortex 2 based card) or any of the SoundBlaster Live! family would I recommend replacing it with the MX400? Probably not, as you really won't change your sound experience by a whole lot.

Turn On T&L In New Viper II Drivers! - 19:14 pm Wilfred
Those of you with a Viper II rejoice! First, get the new Viper II drivers released yesterday and gotta try this out eh? Thanks to Voodoo Extreme on the blurb:


TreeMark "Simple" benchmark: 5.64908 fps


TreeMark "Simple" benchmark: 16.7954 fps

Mr DeCSS Not Jailed And More?! - 19:14 pm Wilfred
Apparently, yes Mr 16-year-old DeCSS was taken in for questioning and his home searched by Norwegian police. But he was released and he's got something to say:

Jon Johansen: No. They took me to the local police station. But my father was sick, so they questioned him here at home.

LinuxWorld: But they just took you in for questioning -- they didn't arrest you or anything like that?

Jon Johansen: Well, the biggest Norwegian newspaper regarded this as an arrest, since they hadn't told us that they were coming and they brought me in. So the biggest Norwegian newspaper looked upon that as an arrest.

CDR Burning Titles - 19:14 pm Wilfred
The Ars people reviewed 4 CDR burning software you might want to pair up with that brand new 12/4/32 drive in the bay.

If you're looking for the Swiss-army-knife of CD-R apps, look no further than Nero, It's astoundingly cool, and amazingly inexpensive, and the only bone I could really pick with it was it's not-yet-fancy- multi-session support. Is that worth sacrificing $50 and a bit of performance and reliability?  I don't think so.

Extending Linux To Support Code Morphing - 19:08 pm Wilfred
Trevor Turton at osOpinion wrote an article suggesting how Linux can be extended to support code morphing, now that Transmeta's Crusoe has come to light.

If Transmeta already has the code morphing licked and their Crusoe chips can execute x86 legacy applications at near Pentium III speeds, what else needs doing?  Transmeta's processors are designed to run under the control of operating systems like Windows® that know nothing about code morphing.  Hence the code morphing process has to be completely invisible to the operating system, which thinks that it has direct control of the bare metal (except for a thin layer of BIOS).  Transmeta has design their Crusoe processors in such a way that their code morphing code lives in ROM and loads automatically into RAM whenever the machine is power on.  It reads in the OS bootstrap loader, translates it into Crusoe native machine code, and executes it.  The bootstrap loads the rest of the OS kernel into RAM.  This also has to be translated and executed.  All x86 code translated in this way, and the code morphing code itself, has to be kept somewhere, so each Crusoe processors reserves an extent of the available RAM and hides it from the x86 operating systems and applications that run upon it.

Iwill Slocket II Review - 19:04 pm Wilfred
Extreme Hardware let me know that they checked out Iwill's Slocket II converter for both FC-PGA and S370 PPGA CPUs.

It performs flawlessly with FC-PGA Pentium III and S370 Celeron processors, is compatible Coppermine-ready Slot 1 motherboards, and is one of the few next-gen Slocket adaptors available. Just based on these points alone, I can recommend the Iwill Slocket II if you're in the market for a FC-PGA Pentium III, but want to use it with a higher performing Slot 1 motherboard

Soyo SY-6VBA133 Motherboard - 19:01 pm Wilfred
A VIA Apollo 133 board from Soyo is examined at BXBoards. The SY-6BVA133 got a high 4.5/5.0 rating from Andy.

This is an excellent product and in many ways is almost identical to the Soyo SY-6BA+ IV, which is high praise. Overclockers will enjoy the AGP /2 divider that the VIA PC133 chipset brings, although it has to be said that the VIA PC133 chipset is a slower performer than Intel BX.

The expansion opportunities of the board are excellent, and it is very nice to see 4 DIMM slots in addtion to the 5 PCI and 2 ISA slots, meaning that this board is very expansion-friendly.

Windows 2000 Sweepstakes - 18:58 pm Wilfred
Already 3,000 names are picked, but 3,000 more copies of Windows 2000 are still waiting to be won in Microsoft's Sneak Preview and Sweepstakes. If you are above 18 years of age and reside in the United States, check this out!

Microsoft has begun the last leg of the Windows 2000 Sneak Preview and Sweepstakes; already 3,000 lucky Windows fans have won full copies Windows 2000 Professional. On Friday February 4th an additional 3,000 full copies of Windows 2000 Professional will be given away. This week's sweepstakes is the last chance to enter to win a full copy Windows 2000 before it's official release on February 17th. Don't miss this opportunity to be the first on your block to own Windows 2000 Professional. The sweepstakes is limited to United States residents 18 years and older.

Super Duper Slot Fan - 18:54 pm Wilfred
PC Stats posted a review on the 'Super Duper Slot Fan'. Oh what a name!?! Coming from 3DCool, we expect some quality stuff don't we?

Slot coolers are basically thin squirrel fans that mount in an empty ISA/PCI bay and work to expel hot air from inside the case. While meant primarily to cool adjacent cards, they also help to keep the case temp down as well. We took a look at one from 3Dcool and tested just how well it did at these two jobs - cooling an adjacent video card, and cooling overall case temp.

Voodoo Scaleable Architecture - 18:49 pm Wilfred
iXBT Hardware wrote a second parter to their 3dfx's VSA Technology Preview posted some days back. Ok, you read about T-Buffers and Fullscreen Anti-Aliasing right?

We doubt that right after the launching of Voodoo5 we will see any games using T-Buffer effects (except FSAA) or gaming patches providing the support of these effects. Why? Firstly, we haven't yet seen any announcements from game developers. Secondly, the situation with HW T&L is a good example of what may actually happen. Even under the most favorable circumstances only in three months after the first graphics cards on GeForce 256 had been sold we saw the first games supporting hardware T&L, which were very few, in fact. Besides, you should also take into consideration that NVIDIA spends a lot of money and effort promoting hardware T&L support among applications developers. If you remember, HW T&L is supported in DirectX 7.0 and in OpenGL. At the same time, T-Buffer, though it is announced as an open tool is still 3dfx's innovation and it is not so beloved among the software developers.

Asus V6800 Review - 15:00 pm Sniper
An impressive review of the V6800 Deluxe from Anandtech.  Check it out here.

Because they already had a proprietary design to use, ASUS skipped the whole reference board design and made the V6800 out of the same ASUS design found in the V6600 Deluxe and Pure models which received high marks in prior tests. Using the same board design with more powerful DDR memory, ASUS assumed that it had a winning card on their hands, an assumption that
proved to be correct.

Voodoo Scalable Architecture - 14:29 pm Sniper
iXBT did a preview of the next generation 3dfx graphics architecture.  Full details here.

The most interesting thing, which attracted most of you probably, was the possibility to use SLI and T-Buffer simultaneously. First of all, under "SLI" in case of VSA 3dfx understands something different from the old SLI technology used in Voodoo2 epoch. In other words, 3dfx simply used an old, already well-known name to denote a new technology. A new SLI version implies much more than ordinary frame lines interleave

Transmeta, Sybase In Action - 09:29 am Sniper
Transmeta and Sybase demonstrated a demo of SQL at LinuxWorld, full story here.

Sybase is quickly putting that notion to the test, running a demo this week that shows a sales force automation application based on the company's SQL Anywhere database running on a Crusoe-powered device that can syncronize via a wireless hookup to a back-end corporate system.

Mobile Linux - 09:05 am Sniper
Kan went to search for his elusive Valentines Day gift so I'm here to start the new day for all of you.  First piece of news is an article on Mobile Linux.  Go chew on it.

When Linus Torvalds takes center stage at LinuxWorld on Wednesday, he will no longer wear the hat of the impartial shepherd of the Linux operating system, but
that of the creator of a new Linux distribution, Mobile Linux. 

1 February 2000 - Tuesday

ASUS K7M Motherboard
- 19:57 pm Wilfred
Heh, also found on AnandTech is a review on the ASUS K7M motherboard. If you have an Athlon and looking for a partner for it, be sure to consider this!

The K7M is one of the best Athlon motherboards on the market, however there is room for improvement. If you're looking for a good Athlon motherboard for overclocking then the K7M is probably your best bet right about now. Even with motherboards based on VIA's KX133 chipset coming out over the next few weeks, you can expect the K7M to hold its own in the Athlon motherboard market for at least a bit longer.

ACT-LABS RS Shifter - 19:55 pm Wilfred
Extreme Hardware got their hands on the RS Shifter from ACT-LABS too and issued their verdict on its performance on the circuits.

The added realism that the RS Shifter provides is fantastic. Judging purely on its gaming benefits, I would recommend it as an upgrade to most ACT Labs RS Wheel owners. However, its $60 price is a little too high, since only three games support it at the moment. If you’re a serious racer, the $60 shouldn’t be too hard to swallow, since there is nothing on the market that compares to the RS shifter. Casual racers, on the other hand, will probably want to save their money for another hardware upgrade or an extra game.

3D Prophet - 19:52 pm Wilfred
RivaExtreme checked out the Hercules 3D Prophet card. They got the SDR variant, so let's see if they liked the performance at all?

The Guillemot 3D Prophet is certainly a rockin' performer, and anyone would be happy to have it as a new addition to their system. However, you must decide if it's the right card for you - although it's performance is up with the best of the GeForce SDR cards, it doesn't compare to the DDR cards in speed.

BitBoys Interview - 19:48 pm Wilfred
AnandTech scored an interview with the BitBoys regarding the Glaze3D chip. Surely a very interesting product though many have passed on waiting for its debut.

The core of the Glaze3D is listed as 150MHz, despite the 0.20micron process that it will be manufactured on. The transistor count also seems quite low, suggesting relatively low heat output. What is holding back the clock speed?

The speeds of our architecture will increase over time and products generations. The 150 MHz is in line with the other chips coming out this year, considering that we don't really need much more clock frequency as we have an eight-texel pipeline instead of a two-texel pipeline like the upcoming Voodoo5 or the four-texel engine of the Geforce products. Running an eight-texel pipeline at 150 MHz is like running a two-texel pipeline like Voodoo5 at 600 MHz!

Gigabyte GA-MG400 16Mb Matrox G400 - 18:30 pm Wilfred
You're not confused I hope! SharkyExtreme posted a review on Gigabyte's 16Mb videocard that's based on Matrox's G400 chip.

And now we're down to the wire. Should you get a GA-MG400, Gigabyte's graphics card based upon Matrox's G400? Its highs are excellent 2D and 3D video quality, a strong game bundle, a low projected price and acceptable game performance. Its lows are you can only use it with certain Gigabyte motherboards, you can get an SDRAM GeForce and much higher frame rates for only $100 more (well, over double the price, but still not that much more and worth it for hardcore gamers), and if you get the GA-MG400, you will be dependant on Gigabyte to port Matrox's drivers in a timely manner to avoid facing incompatibilities.

GeForce Overclocking And Cooling - 18:25 pm Wilfred
Cole3D delivered a neat article on overclocking and cooling your latest GeForce investment. I'm sure some of you will kill for that few extra frames-per-second! Check it out, they've got pics to guide you along if you need to surgically remove that factory-installed heatsink.

Well, the beast is together, back in my case, and ready to rock. Using Hercules overclocking features, I set the Memory to 380 and the core to 160. The first test showed some discolored, twinkling pixels on the screen. I clocked the memory speed down until I found no more artifacts on the screen. The highest, stable speed I could set it to was 160-Core/355-Memory.

Will Crusoe Be Shipwrecked? - 18:20 pm Wilfred
osOpinion has got a new editorial you might want to check out! The author wrote about what he thinks Transmeta's Crusoe will need to survive the voyage.

The purchasers of Crusoe devices need games like Stock Market Exploiter. If you have a wireless Internet connection, it will give you continuous updates of the Dow-Jones and S&P indices. To impress your friends you can pretend to enter stock bids, and every day it will tell you how much make-believe money you have earned. You can configure the game so that your stocks go up and up and up, regardless of what they are doing on the NYSE.

How To Install A Temperature Monitor - 18:13 pm Wilfred
3D GameForce has an interesting idea some of you DIY-ers may have some spare time to try out! Install a little temperature monitor LCD panel on the front of your PC chassis ala your air-conditioner unit!

Well, you have just made a thermal probe in two simple steps. Now, you just need to decide where you want to put the probe. The probe has a 10ft cord, so the possibilities are endless. Finding out the temperature of an component only requires a quick glance to the readout on your case.

Soyo Coppermine Motherboards - 18:09 pm Wilfred
Soyo just popped a their press release in our mailbox announcing 2 new motherboards for CuMine processors, one based on the i820 Camino and the other on VIA's Apollo 133A chipset.

FOR REVIEW / NEWS COVERAGE (for immediate release)
TWO NEW SOYO MOTHERBOARDS -- For Coppermine PIII CPUS, with Camino Chipset / Via Apollo 133A chipsets, featuring RAMBUS / DIMMs support.

Business and consumers considering a Pentium III system with Intel's new Coppermine CPU's have the freedom of choice thanks to SOYO.

SOYO, Inc. has delivered a pair of Intel Pentium III motherboards, which support Intel’s Coppermine CPUs and feature a choice of Intel’s high-performance 82820 Camino chipset or VIA Technologies’ Apollo PRO133A chipset with 4x AGP graphics support. Both of these boards are available for review to qualified product reviewers.

1.) SOYO’s new SY-6ICA ATX footprint motherboard supports Intel’s Coppermine Pentium III CPUs to 800MHz and beyond. It features Intel’s 82820 chipset with 100/133 MHz FSB, 4X AGP graphics, and onboard AC 97 Codec Software Audio Solution with an ATA 66/Audio Modem Riser Slot in an ATX form factor. The board is expandable to 512MBs RAM with its two RamBus RIMMs slots, and features five 32-bit bus mastering PCI slots and one universal AGP port.

2.) SOYO’s new SY-6VCA ATX footprint motherboard ultilizes VIA’s PRO133A chipset with 133MHz Front Side Bus chipset with support for Celeron, Pentium II/III CPU’s to 800MHz, 133 Front Side Bus, AGP 4X graphics support, and high-speed ATA66 to power new generation high-speed hard drives. The SY-6VCA includes four 168-pin SDRAM DIMM sockets, which support up to 1.5GB of memory. The board also supports PC133/PC 100 DIMMs. The board is expandable with five 32-bit Bus Mastering PCI slots, two 16-bit ISA slots (one shared ISA/PCI slot) and one 4x AGP slot.

Enclosed is a news release. Contact Len Fernandes at 510-538-8916 or [email protected] for additional info or to arrange for delivery of an evaluation board.

Len Fernandes
LF Communications
[email protected]

Ming Chok
SOYO, Inc.
[email protected]


WITH INTEL’s 82820 CAMINO CHIPSET or VIA’S APOLLO PRO 133 CHIPSET AND AGP 4X GRAPHICS FREMONT, CA (February 1, 2000) – SOYO, Inc. today delivered a pair of Intel Pentium III motherboards, which support Intel’s Coppermine CPUs and feature a choice of Intel’s high-performance 82820 Camino chipset or VIA Technologies’ Apollo PRO133A chipset with 4x AGP graphics support.

SOYO’s new SY-6ICA ATX footprint motherboard ($139 MSRP U.S.) supports Intel’s Coppermine Pentium III CPUs to 800MHz and beyond. It features Intel’s 82820 chipset with 100/133 MHz FSB, 4X AGP graphics, and onboard AC 97 Codec Software Audio Solution with an ATA 66/Audio Modem Riser Slot in an ATX form factor. The board is expandable to 512MBs RAM with its two RamBus RIMMs slots, and features five 32-bit bus mastering PCI slots and one universal AGP port.

SOYO’s new SY-6VCA ($105 MSRP U.S.) is an ATX footprint motherboard that ultilizes VIA’s PRO133A chipset with 133MHz Front Side Bus chipset with support for Celeron, Pentium II/III CPU’s to 800MHz, 133 Front Side Bus, AGP 4X graphics support, and high-speed ATA66 to power new generation high-speed hard drives.

The SY-6VCA includes four 168-pin SDRAM DIMM sockets, which support up to 1.5GB of memory. The board also supports PC133/PC 100 DIMMs. The board is expandable with five 32-bit Bus Mastering PCI slots, two 16-bit ISA slots (one shared ISA/PCI slot) and one 4x AGP slot.

SOYO makes it easy to fine tune the SY-6ICA or SY-6VCA for performance-oriented applications such as 3D modeling, animation or gaming with its jumperless Sofset configuration technology. Both boards support multiple selectable sets of CPU and PCI clock speeds inside the BIOS directly, allowing for easy, no-jumper configuration. The CPU Frontside System Bus (FSB) and PCI bus clock to be configured 16 different ways -- from 66MHz-155MHz.

On-board I/O on both boards include two RS-232 serial ports, one parallel printer port, one floppy disk port, two Ultra DMA66/33 IDE ports, two USB ports, PS/2 Mini-DIN mouse & keyboard ports, and an IrDA port with optional cable for transceiver.

SOYO includes its Hardware Doctor Software package, which enables users to control and monitor their system at all times. The SY-6ICA and SY-6VCA also support WOL (Wake On LAN) to simplify network management Each board includes a Symantec software bundle with Norton Anti-Virus, Ghost and Virtual Drive.

SOYO, Inc. is the U.S. subsidiary of SOYO Computer, Inc. Founded in 1985, with worldwide headquarters in Taipei, Taiwan, and branch offices in Germany, Holland, Hong Kong, Japan and Korea, SOYO is one of the fastest growing major motherboard manufacturers in the world with 1998 sales of $280 million. The company sells its products through a Tech Data and a select group of resellers, system integrators, and VARs worldwide. SOYO’s U.S. headquarters are at 41484 Christy Street, Fremont, CA 94538. For information, call 510-226-7696 or visit www.soyousa.com.

SOYO is a registered trademark. Other product names are either trademarks or trade names of their respective holders.

D-Link 10/100 Network In A Box - 17:58 pm Wilfred
3D Unlimited let us know that they reviewed a network kit from the popular Taiwanese company, D-Link. Great value and performance coupled in a single winning kit. What more can one expect?

If you are looking for a great network starter kit, or an upgrade kit, this is definitely the only for you. With it's small size and very versatile features this works in almost any environment and situation you can through at it. With it's great features it can handle anything from a small office LAN to a large, high network traffic office with many clients. Also, most network kits on the market feature hubs for the means on connecting everything together, this kit uses a switch, which is not only faster, but more efficient, with less bottlenecks and faster performance.

'Quad-pump' Bus - 09:22 am Sniper
News from EBNOnline suggests that Intel is developing a new bus for its processors.

Intel Corp. is developing a new "quad-pumped" processor
bus that is expected to reach a clock speed of 400 MHz
when running in Intel's next-generation Foster and McKinley server microprocessors, according to industry sources.

TurboLinux enFuzion - 08:56 am Sniper
Kan will drool when he reads thisTurboLinux just released a new clustering technology that connects hundreds of workstations and servers into a supercomputer. What's special is that it is not OS dependant. I must go sweet-talk Kan to buy it so that I can run it in my office to crack RC5!

Enfuzion differs from Beowulf Linux clusters in many ways. EnFuzion runs on Linux as well as on all major Unix platforms and Microsoft Windows NT. And unlike with
Beowulf, enFuzion allows most serial applications to run without modifications, greatly simplifying the migration from single-system computing environments to highly
scalable, distributed processing parallel computing environments.

D-Link 10/100 Network-In-a-Box - 06:13 am Kan
Just got note from 3D-Unlimited that they have published their review on the D-Link 10/100 Network-In-a-Box kit.

Like normal, D-Link has provided lots of documentation for this product. This, in my opinion, is one thing they are known for, lots of documentation., which is very helpful, for beginners you will need to refer to these manuals often. These manuals provide lots of very useful info for setting up a network for a personal or business LAN. Also, goes above and beyond, for example, showing you how to setup a networked printer for your network. The kit provides an In-depth Product Manual for each product, and a special "D-Link Quick Starter Guide And Network Basics" - a complete how to install a network manual designed for a network beginner.

GeForce Pro - 05:57 am Kan
Catch Overclockers Australia review of the Creative GeForce Pro DDR over here. *drool* I think all the reviewers in HW1 have this card sticking in their system. Crazy...crazy. I'm still using using a S3 Trio 1 MB card in my office. Heh.

It is the heart of the chip that is also known as the worlds first Graphics Processing Unit which takes the transform and lighting calculations and processes them instead of the CPU having to do so. It leaves the CPU to get on with other important aspects such as artificial intelligence. The nice thing about T&L is that games using OpenGL and Direct X 7 can utilize this feature so programming games for T&L in future will be very easy to implement through these two API's.

Sony G500 21" Monitor - 05:20 am Kan
GamePC also reviewed the mutha Sony G500 21" Monitor. I liked this a lot, and you will do. Now run along and grab a piece (oh yes, pay for it as well) from your favorite computer store. =)

Utilizing Sony's MultiScan FD Trinitron technology, the G500 should be a well-rounded monitor that falls perfectly into the corporate professional market. Supporting a maximum resolution of 2048 by 1536 at 75 Hz it beats out their 21" monitor flagship, the F500. Many of the current high-end video cards on the market should be able to hit that resolution without any problems; the one we used with the G500 was ASUS's V6800 GeForce DDR card. As you all know by now, many monitors of today support super high resolutions, but running at those resolutions often create eyestrains and blurred images. Here comes the interesting part. Input to the monitor can be done through two ways. Those two ways being BNC or HD15. HD15 is basically the standard for all monitors on the market. BNC on the other hand has also been around for a while but has only really been used on high-end monitors, mainly because of the increased accuracy of signals sent from the video card. 

PlexWriter 8/4/32 - 05:16 am Kan
HotHardware reviewed the Plextor PlexWriter 8/4/32 CD-Writer. We liked it a lot too, and here's some of their comments on it:

Set up of the PlexWriter 8/4/32 was a breeze.  It went as easy as installing any other drive in a system.  One note of caution however, is that Plextor recommends installing the drive as a "Master" and preferably on its own EIDE channel.  This is standard procedure for most EIDE recordable CD drives, for best reading and writing performance.

Barracuda ATA II - 05:14 am Kan
CNEWZ send note on the newly announced Seagate Barracuda ATA II hard drive. Ah, new model, how sweet. And to think that Wilfred just got a piece of the old (was new) Barracuda as well. =)

Seagate Technology, Inc. (NYSE: SEG - news) today unveiled the Barracuda ATA II, the newest addition to the most popular line of PC disc drives in the world. Protected by Seagate's 3D Defense System, Barracuda ATA II is the world's most rugged 7,200-rpm hard disc drive and can withstand 300 Gs non-operating shock. With up to 30.6 Gbytes of capacity, the Barracuda ATA II is Seagate's third-generation 7,200-rpm ATA disc drive targeted at the value performance and commercial desktop systems. It features the fastest seek time and data transfer rates in its class, an improved platform with new electronics, a four-fold increase in cache, and fifty percent higher capacity per disc, for up to 15 percent better performance over all previous ATA hard drives.

Fuji's SuperCCD Technology - 01:37 am Wilfred
So you've just read about Fuji's blockbusting 6.1 megapixel camera and wondering why they are the only firm boasting of such incredible specifications? It's gotta do with their Super CCD sensor technology! Find out more at Digital Photography Review:

  • The Fuji FinePix 4700 has 2.4 million pixel SuperCCD sensor which produces a 4.3 million pixel image.
  • The Fuji Finepix S1 Pro has a 3.2 million pixel SuperCCD sensor which produces a 6.1 million pixel image.

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