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HIS R7 260X iPower IceQ X2 2GB GDDR5 PCI-E DLDVI-D+DLDVI-I/DP/HDMI (H260XQM2GD) graphics card: review and testing

Let’s continue the familiarity with the graphics cards HIS. Graphics accelerators of the manufacturer are proved to be reliable device with quiet and efficient cooling systems. This material is devoted to a model built on the graphics core AMD Bonaire and equipped with 2 GB of video memory standard GDDR5. According to the specs, its main advantages are the support for resolution 4K Ultra HD and an appropriate design HIS iPower, which provides good overclocking potential.

HIS R7 260X iPower IceQ X2 2GB GDDR5 PCI-E DLDVI-D+DLDVI-I/DP/HDMI (H260XQM2GD)

The video accelerator HIS R7 260X iPower IceQ X² 2GB GDDR5 PCI-E DLDVI-D+DLDVI-I/DP/HDMI (H260XQM2GD) has quite a long name, so for convenience we shall denote it more succinctly: HIS R7 260X iPower IceQ X² 2GB GDDR5 or или HIS H260XQM2GD.

The specs:

Model

HIS R7 260X iPower IceQ X² 2GB GDDR5 PCI-E DLDVI-D+DLDVI-I/DP/HDMI (H260XQM2GD)

Graphics core

AMD Bonaire

Manufacturing process, mm

28

Quality of shader processors  

896

Support for technologies and API

DirectX 12, DirectCompute 11, OpenGL 4.3, OpenCL 1.2, AMD Eyefinity, AMD CrossFireX, AMD HD3D, AMD PowerPlay, AMD PowerTune, AMD Eyespeed, AMD ZeroCore, AMD Mantle, AMD TrueAudio

Nominal frequency of graphics cote, MHz

1000

Memory capacity, GB

2

Memory type

GDDR5

Nominal/effective video memory capacity, MHz

1500 / 6000

Memory bus, bit

128

Internal interface

PCI Express 3.0 x16

Screening interfaces

1 х HDMI

1 x DisplayPort

1 х DVI-I

1 х DVI-D

Nominal PSU capacity, W

500

Dimensions (according to our test lab), mm

220 x 112

Drivers

HIS or  GPU

Producer website

HIS

Package and content

HIS R7 260X iPower IceQ X2 2GB GDDR5 PCI-E DLDVI-D+DLDVI-I/DP/HDMI (H260XQM2GD)

The graphics card HIS H260XQM2GD is shipped in cardboard package with familiar design from other graphics accelerator of HIS. Its face side includes some of the main advantages of the new product:

  • power subsystem with design HIS iPower, which provides a good overclocking potential;
  • proprietary software for overclocking and monitoring (HIS iTurbo);
  • support for resolution 4K Ultra HD.

HIS R7 260X iPower IceQ X2 2GB GDDR5 PCI-E DLDVI-D+DLDVI-I/DP/HDMI (H260XQM2GD)

The reverse side of the box contains more detailed information about the merits of device:

  • quiet and efficient cooling system HIS IceQ X2;
  • PWM controller that supports the Dynamic Phase Control and saves energy by turning off unused power phases;
  • high-quality solid capacitors and inductors provide stable operation of the graphics accelerator during overclocking.

HIS R7 260X iPower IceQ X2 2GB GDDR5 PCI-E DLDVI-D+DLDVI-I/DP/HDMI (H260XQM2GD)

The side of the package has a list of system requirements for optimal performance of graphics accelerator. Note the indicator of the minimum of the power supply, which should not be less than 500 W. If you will install two similar video card in mode AMD CrossFireX, this requirement is increased up to 600 W. It is also desirable that the power supply has been equipped with one or two six-pin connectors PCIe.

HIS R7 260X iPower IceQ X2 2GB GDDR5 PCI-E DLDVI-D+DLDVI-I/DP/HDMI (H260XQM2GD)

Supplied set of video card HIS H260XQM2GD consists of:

  • Adapter DVI-I ↔ D-Sub;
  • disk with software and drivers;
  • sticker on the computer case;
  • Quick Start Guide;
  • leaflets with a list of addresses of HIS in different social networks.

In general, this set is fairly typical and allows immediately start working with graphics accelerator. As for the adapter for additional power, it is difficult to imagine a modern power supply with recommended above capacity, which won’t have at least one 6-pin PCIe.

HIS R7 260X iPower IceQ X2 2GB GDDR5 PCI-E DLDVI-D+DLDVI-I/DP/HDMI (H260XQM2GD)

The interface of the tested model has the following connectors:

  • 1 x HDMI;
  • 1 x DisplayPort;
  • 1 x DVI-I;
  • 1 x DVI-D.

Such set of connectors together with the supplied adapter DVI-I ↔ D-Sub will allow to connect almost any modern monitor or TV without any difficulty. The following resolutions are supported:

  • Digital up to 4096 x 2160;
  • Analog up to 2048 x 1536.

Design and circuitry

HIS R7 260X iPower IceQ X2 2GB GDDR5 PCI-E DLDVI-D+DLDVI-I/DP/HDMI (H260XQM2GD)

The graphics card HIS R7 260X iPower IceQ X² 2GB GDDR5 is made on a dark blue PCB. It should be noted that the graphics chip is not equipped with a protective frame, so you should be very careful to dismantle or install the cooling system.

HIS R7 260X iPower IceQ X2 2GB GDDR5 PCI-E DLDVI-D+DLDVI-I/DP/HDMI (H260XQM2GD)

HIS R7 260X iPower IceQ X2 2GB GDDR5 PCI-E DLDVI-D+DLDVI-I/DP/HDMI (H260XQM2GD)

Power of GPU is performed on a 7-phase scheme. Its main advantage is the use of the highest quality components: solid capacitors and ferrite chokes. Controller ON Semiconductor NCP81022 supports management of involved phases (Dynamic Phase Control).

HIS R7 260X iPower IceQ X2 2GB GDDR5 PCI-E DLDVI-D+DLDVI-I/DP/HDMI (H260XQM2GD)

To complete the work HIS H260XQM2GD, in addition to opportunities of slot PCI Express 3.0 x16, you must connect an additional 6-pin PCIe. Its connection is slightly complicated by cooling system located near.

HIS R7 260X iPower IceQ X2 2GB GDDR5 PCI-E DLDVI-D+DLDVI-I/DP/HDMI (H260XQM2GD)

The reverse side of the PCB has several labels with technical information and the screws that secure the cooling system. In the upper right corner you can find placed above described controller power of subsystem and connector for bridge AMD CrossFireX (allows you to combine two cards for the joint processing of graphics).

HIS R7 260X iPower IceQ X2 2GB GDDR5 PCI-E DLDVI-D+DLDVI-I/DP/HDMI (H260XQM2GD)

The heart of HIS R7 260X iPower IceQ X² 2GB GDDR5 graphics chip is AMD Bonaire, made on 28-nm technology. It consists of 896 unified shader pipelines, 56 texture units and 16 ROP units. The nominal clock frequency of the graphics processor is 1000 MHz.

HIS R7 260X iPower IceQ X2 2GB GDDR5 PCI-E DLDVI-D+DLDVI-I/DP/HDMI (H260XQM2GD)

Novelty has 2 GB of video memory collected using four chips ELPIDA W4032BABG-60-F of standard GDDR5 with 512MB each. They operate efficiently at a frequency of 6000 MHz, and in order to exchange data with a graphics core there is 128-bit bus with a bandwidth of 96 GB/s.

Cooling system  

HIS R7 260X iPower IceQ X2 2GB GDDR5 PCI-E DLDVI-D+DLDVI-I/DP/HDMI (H260XQM2GD)

HIS R7 260X iPower IceQ X2 2GB GDDR5 PCI-E DLDVI-D+DLDVI-I/DP/HDMI (H260XQM2GD)

The graphics card is equipped with a dual-slot cooling system based on two axial fans. Overall dimensions of the graphics accelerator with fixed cooling system are 220 x 112 mm. The outer part of the cooler is covered by the plastic cover with decorative ornaments.

HIS R7 260X iPower IceQ X2 2GB GDDR5 PCI-E DLDVI-D+DLDVI-I/DP/HDMI (H260XQM2GD)

HIS R7 260X iPower IceQ X2 2GB GDDR5 PCI-E DLDVI-D+DLDVI-I/DP/HDMI (H260XQM2GD)

Blowing is realized by two fans Apistek GA81B2U (12; 0.38 A) of 76 mm diameter and shape of the curved blades. They are mounted directly on the plastic cover.

HIS R7 260X iPower IceQ X2 2GB GDDR5 PCI-E DLDVI-D+DLDVI-I/DP/HDMI (H260XQM2GD)

The heatsink contacts with the GPU via a copper plate and a thin layer of thermal paste. Also there are three copper heat pipes with a diameter of 6 mm each. They are not coated with a layer of nickel, so are susceptible to oxidation during use.

HIS R7 260X iPower IceQ X2 2GB GDDR5 PCI-E DLDVI-D+DLDVI-I/DP/HDMI (H260XQM2GD)

HIS R7 260X iPower IceQ X2 2GB GDDR5 PCI-E DLDVI-D+DLDVI-I/DP/HDMI (H260XQM2GD)

Heat pipes are firmly soldered to the edges to the radiator as well as to the copper base. This provides faster heat dissipation and improved cooling performance.

HIS R7 260X iPower IceQ X2 2GB GDDR5 PCI-E DLDVI-D+DLDVI-I/DP/HDMI (H260XQM2GD)

In automatic mode, the GPU temperature did not exceed 59°C at maximum load. Fans at the same time rotated at 1599 rpm, and the noise does not exceed the average level.

HIS R7 260X iPower IceQ X2 2GB GDDR5 PCI-E DLDVI-D+DLDVI-I/DP/HDMI (H260XQM2GD)

At maximum speed (3777 rpm) noise rose to an average level and has ceased to be comfortable for extended use. The temperature of the GPU has decreased to 48°C. This mode is suitable only for overclocking and running of load tests.

HIS R7 260X iPower IceQ X2 2GB GDDR5 PCI-E DLDVI-D+DLDVI-I/DP/HDMI (H260XQM2GD)

In idle mode the GPU temperature dropped to 31°C. In this mode, the cooler worked quietly (1182 rpm) and was almost indistinguishable against the background of other components.

Read the full review >>>

Motherboard ASUS B85M-E: review and testing

In this review we will focus on the motherboard ASUS B85M-E. This microATX model which at an average cost of about $ 100 boasts of high reliability, support for modern interfaces USB 3.0 and SATA 6 Gb/s, as well as a number of other improvements and proprietary technologies, which will be discussed later.

Do note that it is based on chipset Intel B85, with key features and capabilities which you can find in the review of GIGABYTE GA-B85M-HD3. But now we are going to proceed directly to the specifications of ASUS B85M-E.

ASUS B85M-E

The specs:

Producer

ASUS

Model

B85M-E (rev 1.02)

Chipset

Intel B85

CPU socket

Socket LGA1150

CPUs supported

Intel Core i7 / Core i5 / Core i3 / Pentium / Celeron of 4th gen

Memory frequency

1600 / 1333 / 1066 MHz

Memory support

4 x DDR3 DIMM- slots with support of memory up to 32 GB

Expansion slots

 

1 x PCI Express 3.0 x16

1 x PCI Express 2.0 x4

x16

x16+x4

1 x PCI Express 2.0 x1

1 x PCI

Disk subsystem

Intel B85 chipset supports:

4 x SATA 6 Gb/s (yellow)

2 x SATA 3 Gb/s (black)

LAN

1 x Realtek 8111F (10/100/1000 Мb/s)

Sound subsystem

Codec Realtek ALC887

8-channel sound

Power connectors

24-pin power socket ATX

4-pin power socket ATX12V

Fans

1 x CPU fan connector (4-pin)

2 x system fan connectors (4-pin)

Cooling

Aluminum radiators on chipset

External I/O

1 x DVI-D

1 x D-Sub

1 x HDMI

1 x DisplayPort

1 x LAN (RJ45)

2 x USB 3.0

4 x USB 2.0

3 x audio jacks

2 х PS/2 (mouse and keyboard connection)

Internal I/O

1 x USB 3.0, each with support of two USB 3.0 (19-pin)

2 x USB 2.0, each with support of two USB 2.0

4 x SATA 6 Gb/s

2 x SATA 3 Gb/s

1 х TPM

1 x COM

1 x LPT

1 x connector of audio output to front panel

1 x set of front panel connectors

1 x CMOS

BIOS

128 MbFlash ROM UEFI AMI BIOS

PnP, ACPI 2.0a, SM BIOS 2.7, DMI 2.0, WfM 2.0

Packaging

 

user manual

warranty card

disk with drives and documents

2 x SATA cables

1 х interface panel plug

Form-factor,

dimensions

microATX

244 х 213 mm

Producer website

ASUS
Updated versions of BIOS and drives are available at support page

Read the full review >>>

Graphics card HIS 6670 Fan 1GB GDDR5 PCI-E DP/DVI/HDMI (H667F1GD): review and testing

We continue to test quite relevant previous generations of graphics cards using the new method. This time we look at a graphics accelerator based on the core AMD Turks (AMD Radeon HD 6670). It was presented several years ago, so it will be interesting to compare it with the current models in the joint testing.

The graphics card HIS 6670 Fan 1GB GDDR5 PCI-E DP/DVI/HDMI, which will be discussed in this review, is equipped with a relatively fast memory GDDR5 and efficient cooling system from the company ARCTIC. 

HIS 6670 Fan 1GB GDDR5 PCI-E DP/DVI/HDMI (H667F1GD)

The version HIS 6670 Fan 1GB GDDR5 PCI-E DP/DVI/HDMI has quite a long name, so for convenience we would use some abbreviated versions: HIS 6670 Fan 1GB GDDR5 or HIS H667F1GD.

The specs:

Model

HIS 6670 Fan 1GB GDDR5 PCI-E DP/DVI/HDMI (H667F1GD) 

Graphics core

AMD Turks

Manufacturing process, nm

40

Quantity of shader processors

480

Support for technologies and API

DirectX 11.0, DirectCompute 5.0, OpenGL 4.1, OpenCL 1.1, AMD Eyefinity, AMD CrossFireX, AMD HD3D, AMD Vision, AMD PowerPlay

Nominal frequency of graphics core, MHz

800

Memory capacity, GB

1

Memory type

GDDR5

Nominal/effective video memory frequency, MHz

1000 / 4000

Memory bus, bit

128

Internal interface

PCI Express 2.1 x16

Screening interfaces

1 х HDMI

1 x DisplayPort

1 х Dual-Link DVI-I

Minimal PSU capacity, W

400

Dimensions (according test in our test lab), mm

183 x 130 x 40 (177 x 112)

Drivers

 HIS or  GPU

Producer website

HIS

Package and content 

HIS 6670 Fan 1GB GDDR5 PCI-E DP/DVI/HDMI (H667F1GD)

The graphics card HIS H667F1GD comes in a vertically-oriented white package. Its front side has an image of the famous sword Excalibur, the manufacturer's logo and the model name.

HIS 6670 Fan 1GB GDDR5 PCI-E DP/DVI/HDMI (H667F1GD)

The reverse side of the package contains the minimum system requirements. The main among them is that the power supply unit with capacity at least of 400 W. If you use a combination of two graphics cards in a mode AMD CrossFireX, this requirement is increased up to 500 W.

HIS 6670 Fan 1GB GDDR5 PCI-E DP/DVI/HDMI (H667F1GD)

Inside the box the graphics card is securely fixed through a form of transparent plastic and foam inserts. This ensures the preservation of fragile electronics during transportation and storage.

HIS 6670 Fan 1GB GDDR5 PCI-E DP/DVI/HDMI (H667F1GD)

The delivery set of model HIS 6670 Fan 1GB GDDR5 includes:

  • CD with software and drivers;
  • sticker on the computer case;
  • Quick Start Guide;
  • flyer with a list of addresses of HIS in different social networks.

Given the technical characteristics of new item, only an optional accessory that can be useful for users is an adapter DVI-I↔D-Sub. It is designed to connect the monitor with the outdated analog connector.

HIS 6670 Fan 1GB GDDR5 PCI-E DP/DVI/HDMI (H667F1GD)

Interface panel is equipped with the following ports:

  • 1 x HDMI;
  • 1 x DisplayPort;
  • 1 x Dual-Link DVI-I.

Such a set of connectors allows you to connect any modern digital monitor or TV with the help of the cables that are part of their equipment.

The following resolutions are supported:

  • Digital - up to 2560 x 1600;
  • Analog - up to 2048 x 1536.

Design and circuitry 

HIS 6670 Fan 1GB GDDR5 PCI-E DP/DVI/HDMI (H667F1GD)

Video accelerator is produced on blue PCB with height of 112 mm. The graphics chip is equipped with a protective frame, which protects it from damage during removal and installation of the cooling system.

HIS 6670 Fan 1GB GDDR5 PCI-E DP/DVI/HDMI (H667F1GD)

The GPU power subsystem consists of two phases. For power supply there is the slot PCI Express 2.1 x16, and the connection of additional connectors is not required at all.

HIS 6670 Fan 1GB GDDR5 PCI-E DP/DVI/HDMI (H667F1GD)

The reverse side of the printed circuit board contains a number of elements of the power subsystem. Even here you can see the screws that secure the cooling system, and a few stickers with technical information. Note that the graphics card doesn’t have connectors for bridges AMD CrossFireX, as it this technology is implemented at the software level.

HIS 6670 Fan 1GB GDDR5 PCI-E DP/DVI/HDMI (H667F1GD)

The heart of HIS H667F1GD is a graphics chip AMD Turks (AMD Radeon HD 6670), produced by 40-nm process. It consists of 480 unified shader pipelines, 24 texture units and 8 ROP units. The nominal frequency of the GPU is 800 MHz.

HIS 6670 Fan 1GB GDDR5 PCI-E DP/DVI/HDMI (H667F1GD)

The graphics card is equipped with 1GB of memory of standard GDDR5, collected using four chips ELPIDA W2032BBBG-50-F with 256 MB each. It is operated on the effective frequency 4000 MHz and communicates with the graphics chip through a 128-bit bus with a bandwidth of 64 GB/s.

Cooling system 

HIS 6670 Fan 1GB GDDR5 PCI-E DP/DVI/HDMI (H667F1GD)

HIS 6670 Fan 1GB GDDR5 PCI-E DP/DVI/HDMI (H667F1GD)

Cooling System of HIS 6670 Fan 1GB GDDR5 occupies two slots for expansion cards. The total length of the video card with installed cooling system is 177 mm, and height is 112 mm (as measured in our lab). The entire structure is covered by a black plastic casing with the original design.

HIS 6670 Fan 1GB GDDR5 PCI-E DP/DVI/HDMI (H667F1GD)

The blowing is realized by axial fan with blades of blue translucent plastic. Its diameter is 74 mm and the manufacturer is a famous company ARCTIC. Capacity of turntable is relatively small - 1.8 W (12 V, 0.15 A), but in this case, a higher rate is unlikely to be required, but the main emphasis is on the low level of generated noise. 

HIS 6670 Fan 1GB GDDR5 PCI-E DP/DVI/HDMI (H667F1GD)

Removal and heat dissipation is performed by a simple aluminum heatsink, which is in contact with the GPU through a thin layer of thermal paste.

HIS 6670 Fan 1GB GDDR5 PCI-E DP/DVI/HDMI (H667F1GD)

Now let's examine the efficiency of the cooling system. Under automatic rotation speed of the fan blades (39% of the maximum) at maximum load, the GPU temperature did not exceed 50°C. Cooler operated very quietly and did not stand out compared to other computer components.

HIS 6670 Fan 1GB GDDR5 PCI-E DP/DVI/HDMI (H667F1GD)

After installing the fan speed to maximum, the temperature dropped to 42°C. Even in this mode, the noise remained below average and was comfortable for long life.

HIS 6670 Fan 1GB GDDR5 PCI-E DP/DVI/HDMI (H667F1GD)

In idle mode the core temperature dropped to 28°C, and the cooling system was virtually silent.

tags: his   gddr5   amd radeon   amd crossfire   turks   radeon hd 6670   arctic   opencl   amd eyefinity   directx 11   elpida   
Read the full review >>>

Motherboard ASUS M5A97 R2.0: review and testing

Motherboard ASUS M5A97 R2.0, as you might guess from its name, is based on the chip of AMD 970 north bridge, which is complemented by traditional south bridge AMD SB950. It is designed to work in tandem with the family of processors AMD Phenom II, AMD Athlon II and AMD FX for connector Socket AM3 +, where TDP does not exceed 140 W. At the time of writing, this model is offered in the average retail for $ 95 - 105, which is not much for pretty good and modern equipment. As we know, AMD SB950 the south bridge does not support modern interface USB 3.0, but the manufacturer has taken care of the customer and equipped models with four corresponding ports by the controller ASMedia ASM1042A. Let's take a look at the capabilities of the motherboard.

ASUS M5A97 R2.0

The specs:

Producer  

ASUS

Model

M5A97 R2.0 (rev 1.0)

Chip of north and south bridges

AMD 970 + AMD SB950

CPU socket

AMD Socket AM3+

Supported CPUs

AMD Phenom II / AMD Athlon II / AMD Sempron (Socket AM3)

AMD FX (Socket AM3+)

Memory frequency

2133* / 1866 / 1600 / 1333 / 1066 МГц

(*OC)

Memory support

4 x DDR3 DIMM- slost with memory support up to 32 GB

Expansion slots

 

2 x PCI Express 2.0 x16

x16

x16+x4

2 x PCI Express 2.0 x1

2 х PCI

Disk subsystem

AMD SB950 supports:

6 x SATA 6 Gb/s

RAID 0, RAID 1, RAID 5, RAID 10

LAN

1 x Realtek RTL8111F (10/100/1000 Мb/s)

Sound subsystem

Coded Realtek ALC887

8-chanenl sound

S/PDIF Out

Power

24-pin ATX main power connector

8-pin ATX12V power connector

Fans

1 x CPU fan connector (4-pin)

3 x system fan connectors (4-pin)

Cooling

Aluminum radiator of north bridge

Aluminum radiator of south bridge

Aluminum radiator on the elements of the processor power subsystem

Extenral I/O

1 x LAN (RJ45)

2 x USB 3.0

6 x USB 2.0

1 x Optical S/PDIF out

6 x audio jacks

2 х PS/2 (for mousse and keyboard connection)

Internal I/O

1 x USB 3.0 each with support of two USB 3.0 (19-pin)

3 x USB 2.0 each with support of two USB 2.0

6 x SATA 6 Gb/s

1 x socket COM

1 x socket TPM

1 x button «MemOK!»

1 х button «USB BIOS Flashback»

1 х button «DirectKey»

1 х socket DRCT

1 x connector of audio output to front panel

1 x set of front panel connectors

1 x CMOS

BIOS

64 Mb Flash ROM UEFI AMI BIOS

ACPI 5.0, SM BIOS 2.7, PnP 1.0a, DMI 2.0

Packaging

User’s manual

Warranty card

Disk with drivers and utilities

2 x SATA cables

1 х interface panel plug

Form-factor, dimensions

ATX

305 х 229 mm

Producer website

ASUS
Updated versions of BIOS and drives are available on support page

tags: asus   usb 3.0   amd sb950   phenom   atx   amd fx   asmedia   amd 970   ddr3   athlon   usb bios flashback   icontrol   uefi bios   amd crossfire   socket am3+   
Read the full review >>>

PSUSeasonic Platinum 1050: review and testing

In this review we will continue to meet with the "platinum" products of the company Sea Sonic Electronics. And this time we will learn the PSU Seasonic Platinum 1050 (Seasonic SS-1050XP3) with nominal capacity of 1050 W. It is built on a new platform Seasonic XP3, therefore has the same advantages as the flagship 1200W model Seasonic Platinum 1200, but it is cheaper. The latter fact should primarily be interested for owners of productive gaming systems and workstations, as well as all those for whom the main criterion for buying the power supply is not the maximum capabilities, but a balance between performance and cost.

Seasonic Platinum 1050 SS-1050XP3

The specs:

Model 

Read the full review >>>

MSI R9 285 GAMING 2G graphics card: review and testing

Graphics cards and motherboards of MSI Gaming series are designed to build gaming devices capable to bear prolonged gaming sessions. This is achieved through the use of components corresponding brand concept Military Class 4. Another important component is the good overclocking capability and a set of related software.

MSI R9 285 GAMING 2G

Graphics card MSI R9 285 GAMING 2G, which will be discussed in this review has enough performance to create a balanced gaming and multimedia midrange computer. In this case, it is based on reliable and high-quality components that will prove its high reliability.

The specs:

Model

MSI R9 285 GAMING 2G

Graphics core

AMD Radeon R9 285 (Tonga Pro)

Technology process, nm

28

Quantity of universal shader processors

1792

Technologies and API support

DirectX 12, DirectCompute 11, OpenGL 4.4, OpenCL 1.2, AMD Eyefinity, AMD CrossFireX, AMD HD3D, AMD PowerPlay, AMD PowerTune, AMD Eyespeed, AMD ZeroCore, AMD Mantle, AMD TrueAudio, AMD PowerTune, AMD FreeSync

Rated/dynamic frequency of graphics core, MHz

«OC»

973

«Gaming»

954

«Silent»

918

Memory capacity, GB

2

Memory type

GDDR5

Basic / effective memory frequency, MHz

1375 / 5500

Memory bus width, bit

256

Memory carrying capacity, GB/s

176

Inner interface

PCI Express 3.0 x16

Screening  interfaces

1 х HDMI 1.4a

1 x DisplayPort 1.2

1 х DVI-I

1 х DVI-D

Minimal PSU capacity, W

500

Dimensions taken from official website (according measurements in own test lab) , mm

260 x 127 x 37 (270 x 130)

Drivers

 MSI or  GPU

Website

MSI

Package and content 

MSI R9 285 GAMING 2G

For testing we have a version of the graphics card MSI R9 285 GAMING 2G without decorative package and delivery set. According to the official photos, box is fully consistent with the design of other adapters of Taiwanese game series, for example MSI R9 280X GAMING 3G. That is the main color gamut is black and red, and a key element of the front side is a stylized dragon emblem. On the reverse side you can get acquainted with the main advantages of this model.

According to the information provided on the official website, it has the following features:

  • cooling system Twin Frozr IV Advanced, which includes two axial fans with a special curved blade shape Propeller Blade, productive nickel plated heatpipes with the design SuperPipes and radiator with design Airflow Control (to create air flow direction);
  • qualitative circuitry Military Class 4, which consists of solid capacitors Solid CAP, tantalum polymer capacitors Hi-C CAP SFC and coils with a ferrite core;
  • proprietary software MSI Gaming App for quick and easy switching of preset profiles;
  • complete utility MSI Predator with functions to capture game play, screenshots or videos record.

Supplied set of MSI R9 285 GAMING 2G includes a set of paper documentation, CD with drivers and proprietary software, as well as an adapter DVI↔D-Sub.

MSI R9 285 GAMING 2G

The interface panel contains the following connectors:

  • 1 x HDMI 1.4a;
  • 1 x DisplayPort 1.2;
  • 1 x DVI-I;
  • 1 x DVI-D.

Given the presence of adapter DVI↔D-Sub we can talk about all the most popular video outputs, allowing to connect almost any modern digital or analog display.

Design and circuitry

MSI R9 285 GAMING 2G

MSI R9 285 GAMING 2G is built on black PCB with height of 122 mm. Around the GPU there is a protective frame, which can prevent it from damage when installing or removing the cooling system.

MSI R9 285 GAMING 2G

MSI R9 285 GAMING 2G

The GPU power subsystem is made by 7-phase scheme. The controller is a chip ON NCP81022 from the company ON Semiconductor.

MSI R9 285 GAMING 2G

In addition to the features of slot PCI Express 3.0 x16, there are two additional 6-pin PCIe designed to provide power. Their connection and disconnection is free due to the arrangement of latches only on back side (the PCB has special slots).

MSI R9 285 GAMING 2G

The reverse side of the printed circuit board contains a number of electrical components and the fastening screws of the cooling system. Also do note the graphics accelerator is not equipped with connectors for bridges AMD CrossFireX, as this functionality is implemented at the program level (two graphics cards for collaborative computing graphics is supported).

MSI R9 285 GAMING 2G

The basis of MSI R9 285 GAMING 2G is a graphics chip AMD Radeon R9 285 (AMD Tonga Pro). It is produced by a 28-nm process process and consists of 1792 unified shader processors, 112 texture units and 32 ROP units. The nominal clock frequency of the GPU determined by utility GPU-Z 0.8.1 is 973 MHz. That is the profile «OC» of software MSI Gaming App is applied.

MSI R9 285 GAMING 2G

The graphics card is equipped with 2 GB of video memory, collected by using 8 chips ELPIDA W2032BBBG-6A-F with the effective frequency of 5500 MHz. Data exchange with the GPU is realized through a 256-bit bus with bandwidth of 176 GB/s.

Cooling system   

MSI R9 285 GAMING 2G

MSI R9 285 GAMING 2G

MSI R9 285 GAMING 2G

Graphics accelerator is equipped with a proprietary cooling system Twin Frozr IV Advanced and occupies two slots for expansion cards. The total length of the graphics card with installed cooling system is 270 mm, which ensures its compatibility with a large number of case of different form factors.

MSI R9 285 GAMING 2G

Blowing is realized by two fans Power Logic PLD10010B12HH (12 V; 0.4 A) with a diameter of 95 mm and the design of the blades Propeller Blade. This creates a good air flow and improved airflow of components. The fans are built by 2 ball bearing, which promises a higher lifetime.

MSI R9 285 GAMING 2G

Radiator fins are covered with a layer of nickel for long service life with maximum performance and spectacular appearance. They are characterized by a special smooth design Airflow Control, which creates the directed air flow for better heat dissipation.

The heat exchange takes four copper heat pipes: three 6 mm and one 8 mm. They are coated with nickel for protection from oxidation during prolonged use.

MSI R9 285 GAMING 2G

MSI R9 285 GAMING 2G

The heat pipes are soldered to the fins of the radiator and to its base. This greatly improves the heat transfer and increases the efficiency of the cooling system.

MSI R9 285 GAMING 2G

Another important component of the cooling system is a metal plate with a double functionality. It reinforces the printed circuit board to protect it from damage and deformation and at the same time removes heat from the memory chip and the power supply subsystem. To improve the contact using special thermal spacers.

MSI R9 285 GAMING 2G

In case of the automatic rotation of the fan blades (1505 rpm) the GPU temperature was 71°C. This value is not low, but there is a significant margin of safety till critical point. Noise was below average.

MSI R9 285 GAMING 2G

After fixing the fan speed at maximum value (2885 rpm) heating of the GPU during prolonged load was dropped to 60°C. Noise of cooling system rose to an average level, but still remained comfortable enough to work in the afternoon.

MSI R9 285 GAMING 2G

In idle mode the GPU temperature dropped to 37°C. In this mode the cooler worked quietly (1047 rpm) and almost did not stand out against other components.

Read the full review >>>

PSU Seasonic Platinum 400 Fanless: review and testing

Many users have a dream to build completely silent PC. At first glance this problem seems to be simple. It is enough to select the processor and graphics card of energy-efficient series, to equip them with massive radiators, put it all into the case with a proper system of vents and at the outlet we have a silent building. But what about the power supply? Indeed, in most cases, it is equipped with a separate fan, and not always of high quality. You can certainly try to improve the design of cooling power, removing the fan and attaching the additional radiators. But you won’t be sure that this modernization will give the desired effect. Moreover, it can lead to bad consequences, and, of course, you will lose the warranty.

Seasonic Platinum 400 Fanless (SS-400FL2)

So what is to be done? The company Sea Sonic Electronics has the answer to this question in the face of energy-efficient fanless solution that can operate in a completely passive mode for all types of loads. They are three representatives of "platinum" series: Seasonic Platinum 520/460/400 Fanless, where the number refers to the rated power of the device. We are already meet in practice the 520-watt model and were very pleased with the results. Now we will learn other versions of fanless power supplies. This review will focus on the junior model Seasonic Platinum 400 Fanless (Seasonic SS-400FL2) with power of 400 W. Like the rest of the series Seasonic Platinum, it is subjected to some modernization, which primarily positively affects the final cost of the device. After all, the price issue is always an important factor in the choice of computer accessories.

The specs:

Model 

Read the full review >>>

Motherboard ASUS Z97-E: review and testing

ASUS is constantly expanding its product range by using the new motherboards, so almost every user can choose a model based on personal preferences and the required functionality. This review we will be focused on versions ASUS Z97-E, which has become a novelty in the price range up to $200. It came in the same category with solutions such as ASUS Z97-P, ASUS Z97-A and others. Let’s compare it with the neighbors on the equipment product lineup:

ASUS Z97-P

ASUS Z97-K

ASUS Z97-C

Read the full review >>>

PSU Seasonic X-1250: review and testing

Lately for testing we had many high power supply units manufactured by Sea Sonic Electronics. All of them have a very high performance and excellent consumer qualities, but in most cases they were intended for installation in conventional systems. And we would like to test the solutions for enthusiasts. And finally we have such an opportunity. Today for testing we have a model Seasonic X-1250 (Seasonic SS-1250XM2). Rated power of the power supply is 1250 W, which makes it the most efficient solution in a series of   Seasonic X.

Note that the Seasonic X-1250 also fell under the global updating campaign of upscale devices from Sea Sonic Electronics. And, judging by the new index (SS-1250XM2), it affected not only the cost of the power supply, but also major changes took place at the hardware level.

Seasonic X-1250 (SS-1250XM2)

The specs:

Model 

tags: seasonic   atx   80 plus gold   sanyo denki   infineon   hybrid   amd crossfire   nvidia sli   eps12v   hitachi   dc-to-dc   
Read the full review >>>

MSI Z97S SLI Krait Edition motherboard: review and testing

«Dare to be different» these words can be found on the official page of the MSI new motherboard MSI Z97S SLI Krait Edition. Nominally, it belongs to a series of MSI Z97 Classic is the midrange solution. It has two key advantages: support for two slots PCI Express 3.0 x16 with lines distribution according to scheme x8+x8 for ligament AMD CrossFireX/NVIDIA SLI and original design in white and black colors, perfectly suited to fans of modding. You can also note an excellent opportunity for the organization of the disk subsystem, a large number of USB 3.0 ports and high-quality sound system. But let's look at its detailed technical specifications.

MSI Z97S SLI Krait Edition

The specs:

Producer

MSI

Model

Z97S SLI Krait Edition (rev 2.0)

Chipset

Intel Z97

CPU socket

Socket LGA1150

Supported CPUs

Intel Core i7 / Core i5 / Core i3 / Pentium / Celeron of 4th and 5th gen: Intel Haswell, Intel Haswell Refresh, Intel Devil`s Canyon, Intel Broadwell

Memory frequency

3200* / 3100* / 3000* / 2800* / 2666* / 2600* / 2400* / 2200* / 2133* / 2000* / 1866* / 1600 / 1333 / 1066 MHz

(*OC)

Memory support

4 x DDR3 DIMM- slot with memory support up to 32 GB

Expansion slots

2 x PCI Express 3.0 x16

х16

х8+х8

3 х PCI Express 2.0 x1

2 x PCI

Disk subsystem

Intel Z97 chipset supports:

1 x M.2 (M.2 2242, M.2 2260, M.2 2280)

1 x SATA Express (compatible with 2 х SATA 6 Gb/s)

4 x SATA 6 Gb/s (RAID 0, RAID 1, RAID 5, RAID 10)

LAN

1 x Realtek 8111G (10/100/1000 Mb/s)

Sound subsystem

Codec Realtek ALC892

7.1-channel sound

Power

24-pin ATX main power connector

8-pin ATX12V power connector

Fans

2 x CPU fan connector (4-pin)

3 x system fan connectors (4-pin)

Cooling

Aluminum radiator on chipset

Aluminum radiator on CPU power system elements

Extenral I/O

1 x HDMI

1 x D-Sub

1 x DVI-D

1 x LAN (RJ45)

4 x USB 3.0

2 x USB 2.0

6 x audio jacks

1 x PS/2 (for mouse or keyboard)

Internal I/O

1 x USB 2.0 each with support of two USB 3.0 (19-pin)

2 x USB 2.0 each with support of two USB 2.0

1 х socket TPM

1 х socket COM

1 х socket LPT

1 x connector of audio output to front panel

1 x set of front panel connectors

1 x CMOS

BIOS

64 Mb Flash ROM UEFI AMI BIOS

ACPI 5.0, PnP 1.0a, SM BIOS 2.7, DMI 2.0

Packaging

User’s manual

Warranty description booklet

Driver and utility disc

2 x SATA cables

1 х interface panel plug

Form-factor, dimensions

ATX

305 х 244 mm

Producer website

MSI
Updated versions of BIOS and drives are available on support page

Read the full review >>>

GIGABYTE GA-F2A78M-DASH motherboard: review and testing

New GIGABYTE’s product which will be discussed in this material is a very interesting combination of a compact microATX PCB, a number of useful technologies and a good set of video outputs. This set of features allows you to pre-estimate the GIGABYTE GA-F2A78M-DASH as a very interesting solution to build an inexpensive compact multimedia system.

On the other hand, the tested model has a TPM-module and supports the technology DASH (Desktop and mobile Architecture for System Hardware), which is designed for remote control of desktop and mobile systems, which makes it quite an interesting model for the building of office or industrial PCs.

Due to the name, the basis for new item is the second oldest chipset - AMD A78, which means that it is intended to work with series processors AMD Kaver or solutions of lineups AMD Trinity / Richland.

Now let's take a closer look at all the features of the new model.

GIGABYTE GA-F2A78M-DASH

The specs:

Producer

GIGABYTE

Model

GA-F2A78M-DASH (rev 3.0)

Chipset

AMD A78

CPU socket

Socket FM2+

Supported CPUs

AMD A / AMD Athlon

Memory frequency

2400* / 2133 / 1866 / 1600 / 1333 MHz

(*OC)

Memory support

4 x DDR3 DIMM- slot with memory support up to 64 GB

Expansion slots

1 x PCI Express 3.0 x16 (CPU)

1 x PCI Express 2.0 x16 (PCH)

х16

х16+х4

1 x PCI Express 2.0 x1

1 x PCI

Disk subsystem

AMD A78chipset supports:

6 x SATA 6 Gb/s

RAID 0, RAID 1, RAID 10, JBOD

LAN

1 x Realtek 8111EP (10/100/1000 Мb/s)

Sound subsystem

Codec Realtek ALC887

2/4/5.1/7.1-channel sound

S/PDIF Out

Power

24-pin ATX main power connector

4-pin ATX12V power connector

Fans

1 x CPU fan connector (4-pin)

2 x system fan connectors (4-pin)

Cooling

Aluminum radiator on chipset

Extenral I/O

1 х DVI-D

1 x D-Sub

1 х HDMI

1 x DisplayPort

1 x LAN (RJ45)

4 x USB 3.0

2 x USB 2.0

3 x audio jacks

1 х PS/2 (mouse or keyboard)

Internal I/O

2 x USB 2.0 each with support of two USB 2.0

2 x USB 3.0 each with support of two USB 3.0

2 х COM

1 х LPT

1 x connector of audio output to front panel

1 x set of front panel connectors

1 x S/PDIF Out

1 x CMOS

BIOS

1 х 64 Мb UEFI BIOS

PnP 1.0а, DMI2.7, SM BIOS 2.7, ACPI 5.0, WfM 2.0

Packaging

User’s manual

Warranty description booklet

Driver and utility disc

4 x SATA cables

1 х interface panel plug

Form-factor, dimensions

microATX

244 х 244 мм

Producer website

GIGABYTE
Updated versions of BIOS and drives are available on  support page

Read the full review >>>

PSU Seasonic X-850: review and testing

In the introduction of the updated line of power supply units Seasonic X, we would like to give a special attention to high-performance solutions. This class includes the model Seasonic X-850 (Seasonic SS-850KM3). Due to a rated power of 850 W it will primarily be of interest to owners of gaming systems with several graphics cards, overclockers components and other computer hardware enthusiasts. And here the advantages of “gold” solutions are taken into account: a high level of efficiency, good condition for output voltages, the presence of a dedicated +12V line, efficient cooling system and many others.

Seasonic X-850 (Seasonic SS-850KM3)

The specs:

Model  

tags: seasonic   atx   80 plus gold   infineon   hybrid   sanyo denki   nvidia sli   eps12v   amd crossfire   
Read the full review >>>

Motherboard GIGABYTE GA-Q87M-D2H: review and testing

Widely known leader in computer hardware, company GIGABYTE does not limit its product range by devices exclusively for gamers and everyday home use. Its assortment always contains excellent solution for the corporate sector, where preference is given to a reliable model with a reasonable price tag. And such motherboard will be discussed in this material.

According to labeling GIGABYTE GA-Q87M-D2H is based on quite a rare guest in our test lab Chipset Intel Q87. Its basic features and key advantages are described in review Fujitsu D3222-B. Don’t forget that one of its main advantages is to support a large number of proprietary technologies. For example, Intel vPro. This is a built-in security system, designed to increase the level of security. It is aimed at achieving the following key objectives:

  • responding to emerging threats, including protection against rootkits, viruses and other malicious software;
  • protection of personal data and access points of the site;
  • protection of confidential user and corporate data;
  • remote and local monitoring, recovery and repair of PCs and workstations.

More detailed information abouy Intel vPro can be found at Intel, and we’’ move on to the review of new item.

 

GIGABYTE GA-Q87M-D2H

 

Traditionally let’s start consider its detailed specifications.

Producer

GIGABYTE

Model

GA-Q87M-D2H (rev 1.1)

Chipset

Intel Q87

SPU socket

Socket LGA1150

Supported CPUs

Intel Core i7 / Core i5 / Core i3 / Pentium / Celeron 4th gen

Memory frequency

1333 / 1600 MHz

Memory support

4 x DDR3 DIMM- slot with memory support up to 32 GB

Expansion slots

1 x PCI Express 3.0 x16 (CPU)

1 x PCI Express 2.0 x16 (PCH)

х16

х16+х4

1 x PCI Express 2.0 x1

1 x PCI

Disk subsystem

Intel Q87 chipset supports:

6 x SATA 6 Gb/s

RAID 0, RAID 1, RAID 5, RAID 10

LAN

1 x Intel WGI217LM (10/100/1000 Мb/s)

Sound subsystem

Codec Realtek ALC887

8-channel sound

S/PDIF Out

Power

24-pin ATX main power connector

4-pin ATX12V power connector

Fans

1 x CPU fan connector (4-pin)

1 x system fan connector (4-pin)

Cooling

Aluminum radiator on chipset

Extenral I/O

1 x HDMI

1 x DisplayPort

1 x D-Sub

1 x DVI-D
2 х PS/2 (for mouse or keyboard)

1 x LAN (RJ45)

4 x USB 2.0

2 x USB 3.0

6 x audio jacks

1 х optical S/PDIF Out

Internal I/O

1 x USB 3.0 each with support of two USB 3.0 (19-pin)

2 x USB 2.0 each with support of two USB 2.0

1 x connector of audio output to front panel

1 x set of front panel connectors

1 x CMOS

2 х socket COM

1 x socket LPT

1 х S/PDIF Out

1 х socket for diagnostic equipment connection

BIOS

AMI EFI BIOS

64 Мb

PnP 1.0a, DMI 2.7, SM BIOS 2.7, ACPI 5.0, WfM 2.0

Packaging

User’s manual

Warranty description booklet

Driver and utility disc

2 x SATA cables

1 х interface panel plug

Form-factor, dimensions

microATX

244 х 244 mm

Producer website

GIGABYTE
Updated versions of BIOS and drives are available on support page

Read the full review >>>

PSU Seasonic X-750: review and testing

Learned earlier PSU Seasonic X-650 although coped with gaming configuration based on two powerful graphics cards, but it worked with overload. This mode of operation is possible, but a constant use is undesirable. In the case of building the configurations with multiple "voracious" graphics card it is better to look in the direction of a more powerful version - 750 W and more. Especially the line of Seasonic X includes such models, for example, Seasonic X-750 (Seasonic SS-750KM3). Together with Seasonic X-650 it has undergone a small modernization and got a lower price tag.

Seasonic X-750 (Seasonic SS-750KM3)

 

The specs:

Model  

Read the full review >>>

PSU Seasonic X-650: review and testing 

Despite decrease in price for power supplies of series Seasonic Platinum, it is not reasonable for very buyer. But don’t upset about this. After all, the manufacturer has a great alternative to the "platinum" solutions. It is a line of power supplies Seasonic X. In terms of the technical characteristics and consumer qualities they are not inferior to their top-end analogs, but at the same time their price is reduced. In other words they are more balanced in terms of indicator "price/performance." In addition, the range of the series Seasonic X, as Seasonic Platinum, covers quite a broad segment of the market, offering the user a choice of power solutions from 650 to 1250 W.

Not very long ago this series has undergone some updating, the main result of which was the reduction of the final cost of production. We, of course, could not pass by such an event and decided to evaluate new revision of "gold" PSUs in practice. And now we offer you to learn the capabilities of the solution Seasonic X-650 (SS-650KM3), because the entire lineup, in our opinion, is the most popular to date.

Seasonic X-650 (SS-650KM3)

The specs:

Model  

Read the full review >>>

ASUS X99-S motherboard: review and testing  

ASUS has already introduced the extensive line of motherboards based on the top chipset Intel X99. The last product visited our lab was the motherboard ASUS X99-PRO. These solutions are designed specifically for processors of family Intel Haswell-E, such as previously tested Intel Core i7-5960X Extreme Edition. Based on this ligament you can build incredibly powerful computing systems for gaming, overclocking or solve complex practical tasks.

ASUS X99-S

New motherboard ASUS X99-S which will be discussed in this material has an expanded set of internal interfaces. There is a full set of computer keys on the PCB as well as a number of switches and functional elements specifically designed for overclocking. Do note a very good set of slots for expansion cards, advanced disk subsystem and eight slots for RAM of format DDR4.

The specs:

Producer

ASUS

Model

X99-S

Chipset

Intel X99

CPU socket

Socket LGA2011-v3

CPUs supported

Intel Core i7 Extreme of Intel Haswell-E

Memory frequency

2133 / 2400* / 2666* / 2800* / 3000* / 3200* MHz

(*OC)

Memory support

8 x DDR4 DIMM- slots with support of memory up to 64 GB

Expansion slots

 

5 x PCI Express 3.0 x16

40 lines

28 lines

х16

х16+х16

х16+х16+х8

х16+х8+х8+х8

х8+х8+х8+х8+х8

х16

х16+х8

х8+х8+х8

x8+x8+x8+x1+x1

1 х PCI Express 2.0 x4

Disk subsystem

Intel X99 chipset supports:

1 х M.2 x4 Socket 3 (M.2 2242, M.2 2260, M.2 2280)

8 x SATA 6 Gb/s

2 x SATA Express (compatible with 4 x SATA 6 Gb/s)

Support of arrays RAID 0, RAID 1, RAID 5 and RAID 10

LAN

1 x Intel WGI218V (10/100/1000 Мb/s)

Sound subsystem

2 / 4 / 5.1 / 7.1-channel HD Audio based on codec Realtek ALC1150

Power connectors

24-pin power socket ATX

8-pin power socket ATX12V

Fans

2 x CPU fan connectors (4-pin)

4 x system fan connectors (4-pin)

1 x external fan connectors (5-pin)

Cooling

Aluminum radiators on chipset connected by heat pipe with auxiliary radiator

Aluminum radiators on power elements connected by heat pipe among each other

External I/O

1 x button «USB BIOS Flashback»

8 x USB 3.0

2 x USB 2.0

1 x LAN (RJ45)

1 x optical S/PDIF out

5 x audio ports

Internal I/O

2 x USB 3.0 with support of two USB 3.0 (19-pin)

2 x USB 2.0 each with support of two USB 2.0

1 х socket TPM

1 x connector of audio output to front panel

1 x S/PDIF Out

1 x set of front panel connectors

1 х button «MemOK!»

1 x button «Power»

1 x button «Reboot»

1 x button «CMOS reset»

1 x diagnostic LED-indicator

1 х module Thunderbolt

1 х switch «EZ XMP»

1 х thermal sensor switch

1 x switch «TPU»

1 x switch «EPU»

1 x switch «SLI/CFX»

1 x socket DRCT

1 x CPU/DRAM Overvoltage

BIOS

128 Мb UEFI AMI BIOS, ACPI 5.0, PnP, SM BIOS 2.7, DMI 2.7, WfM 2.0

Form-factor

ATX

Dimensions

305 x 244 mm

Producer website

Product page

 

ASUS

Updated versions of BIOS and drives are available at support page

Read the full review >>>

ASUS Z97-K motherboard: review and performance testing

Motherboard ASUS Z97-K is a solution of the average level which is designed primarily to build home systems or PC gaming with one graphics card. The solution has traditionally high performance, advanced features for organizing the disk subsystem (include interface M.2 with a carrying capacity of 10 Gb/s and six SATA 6 Gb/s ports), good configuration of interface panel (suit most users except for owners of multi-channel speakers), as well as a number of other features. But first of all we offer a look at the full specifications of the new item.

ASUS Z97-K

The specs:

Producer

ASUS

Model

Z97-K (rev 1.0)

Chipset

Intel Z97

CPU socket

Socket LGA1150

CPUs supported

Intel Core i7 / Core i5 / Core i3 / Pentium / Celeron 4th and 5th generation: Intel Haswell, Intel Haswell Refresh, Intel Devil`s Canyon, Intel Broadwell

Memory frequency

3200* / 3100* / 3000* / 2933* / 2800* / 2666* / 2500* / 2400* / 2250* / 2200* / 2133* / 2000* / 1866* / 1600 / 1333 MHz

(*OC)

Memory support

4 x DDR3 DIMM- slots with support of memory up to 32 GB

Expansion slots

1 x PCI Express 3.0 x16

1 х PCI Express 2.0 x16

x16

x16+х4

2 x PCI Express 2.0 x1

2 x PCI

Disk subsystem

Intel Z97 chipset supports:

1 x M.2 (M.2 2260, M.2 2280)

6 x SATA 6 Gb/s

RAID 0, RAID 1, RAID 5, RAID 10

LAN

1 x Realtek 8111GR (10/100/1000 Мb/s)

Sound subsystem

Realtek ALC887 codec

8-channel sound

S/PDIF Out

Power connectors

1 х 24-pin ATX main power connector

1 x 8-pin ATX 12V power ATX12V

Fans

1 x CPU fan connector (4-pin)

2 x system fan connector (4-pin)

Cooling

Aluminum fan on the chipset

Aluminum fan on elements of power subsystem

External I/O

1 x HDMI

1 x D-Sub

1 x DVI-D

1 x LAN (RJ45)

4 x USB 3.0

2 x USB 2.0

3 x audio jacks

2 х PS/2 (mouse or keyboard connection)

Internal I/O

1 x USB 3.0 each with support of 2 USB 3.0 (19-pin)

3 x USB 2.0 each with support of 2 USB 2.0

6 x SATA 6 Gb/s

1 х socket TPM

1 x COM

1 x connector of audio output to front panel

1 x S/PDIF out

1 х CMOS

1 x set of front panel connectors

BIOS

64 Mb Flash ROM UEFI AMI BIOS

PnP, ACPI 5.0, SM BIOS 2.8, DMI 2.7, WfM 2.0

Packaging

User’s manual

Warranty description booklet

Driver disc

2 x SATA cables

1 х interface panel plug

Form-factor, dimensions

ATX

305 х 218 mm

Producer website

ASUS

Updated versions of BIOS and drives are available at support page

Read the full review >>>

ASUS Z97-DELUXE(NFC & WLC) motherboard review and testing

Let's face it, that when purchasing the flagship solution, it would be nice to always get a complete set of additional bonuses and accessories. Apparently, this is the idea of the company ASUS, launching to the market modification of an excellent motherboard ASUS Z97-DELUXE with an expanded set of delivery, that will appeal to fans of modern gadgets, particularly smartphones and tablets. Also ASUS Z97-DELUXE (NFC & WLC) has the advantages of the original model, such as an integrated two-way wireless interface module Wi-Fi a/b/g/n/ac and Bluetooth 4.0, two network controllers and a number of other features which will be described in this review.

ASUS Z97-DELUXE(NFC & WLC)

The specs:

Producer

ASUS

Model

Z97-DELUXE(NFC & WLC) (rev 1.03)

Chipset

Intel Z97

SPU socket

Socket LGA1150

Supported CPUs

Intel Core i7 / Core i5 / Core i3 / Pentium / Celeron 4th and 5th generation: Intel Haswell, Intel Haswell Refresh, Intel Devil`s Canyon, Intel Broadwell

Memory frequency

3300* / 3200* / 3100* / 3000* / 2933* / 2800* / 2666* / 2600* / 2400* / 2200* / 2133* / 2000* / 1866* / 1600 / 1333 MHz

(*OC)

Memory support

4 x DDR3 DIMM- slots with memory support up to 32 GB

Expansion slots

2 x PCI Express 3.0 x16

1 х PCI Express 2.0 x16

x16

x8+х8

x8+x8+x4

4 x PCI Express 2.0 x1

Disk subsystem 

Intel Z97 chipset supports:

1 x M.2 (M.2 2260, M.2 2280)

4 x SATA 6 Gb/s

1 x SATA Express (compatible with 2 х SATA 6 Gb/s)

RAID 0, RAID 1, RAID 5, RAID 10

ASMedia ASM1061 controller supports:

2 x SATA 6 Gb/s

ASMedia ASM106SE controller supports:

1 x SATA Express (compatible with 2 x SATA 6 Gb/s)

LAN

1 x Intel WGI218V (10/100/1000 Мb/s)

1 x Intel WGI211-AT (10/100/1000 Мb/s)

Wi-Fi

802.11 a/b/g/n/ac (2,4 / 5 ГГц)

Max data transfer rate up to 867 Мb/s

Bluetooth

Bluetooth 4.0

Sound subsystem

Realtek ALC1150 codec

8-channel sound

S/PDIF Out

Power connectors

1x24-pin ATX main power connector

1x8-pin ATX12V power connector

Fans

2 x CPU fan connector (4-pin)

4 x system fan connector (4-pin)

Cooling

Aluminum radiator on the chipset

Aluminum radiators on power subsystem elements connected by heat pipe

External I/O

1 x HDMI

1 x DisplayPort

1 x Mini DisplayPort

2 x LAN (RJ45)

6 x USB 3.0

4 x USB 2.0

1 x Optical S/PDIF out

6 x audio jacks 

2 x sockets for antennas Wi-Fi и Bluetooth

Internal I/O

2 x USB 3.0 each with support of two USB 3.0 (19-pin)

2 x USB 2.0 each with support of two USB 2.0

6 x SATA 6 Gb/s

2 x SATA Express

1 х TPM socket

1 x connector of audio output to front panel

1 x S/PDIF out

1 x set of front panel connectors

1 х «MemOK!» button

1 х DRCT socket

1 х module TB_HEADER

1 x power button

1 x reboot button

1 x «Reset CMOS»

1 x diagnostic LED-indicator

1 x «TPU» switch

1 x «EPU» switch

1 х «EZ XMP» switch

1 x button «USB BIOS Flashback»

BIOS

64 Mb Flash ROM UEFI AMI BIOS

PnP, ACPI 5.0, SM BIOS 2.8, DMI 2.7, WfM 2.0

Packaging

User’s manual

Warranty brochure

Driver and utility disc

1 х set ASUS Q-Connectors

6 x SATA cables

1 х bridge 2-Way NVIDIA SLI

1 х combined antenna Wi-Fi and Bluetooth

1 x ASUS NFC EXPRESS with NFC- identifier

1 х DisplayPort cable

1 х Mini DisplayPort cable

1 х USB 3.0 cable

1 x micro-USB cable

1 х expansion card ThunderboltEX II/DUAL

1 х interface panel plug

Form factor,

Dimensions

ATX

305 х 244 mm

Producer website

Read the full review >>>

ASUS Z97-AR motherboard: review and performance testing

Motherboard ASUS Z97-AR is one of ASUS middle class solution. At the time of reviewing its average cost is about $ 190 dollars, which is almost identical to that discussed earlier ASUS Z97-A. Due to such close proximity of the two models, it will be interesting to compare their ability to select the optimal variant.

 

ASUS Z97-AR

ASUS Z97-A

USB 3.0

external/internal

4/2

4/2

USB 2.0

external/internal

2/6

2/6

RAM

4 x DIMM

 Up to 32 GB

 4 x DIMM

Up to 32 GB

PCIe 3.0 x16

2

2

PCIe 2.0 x16

1 (in mode х2)

1 (in mode х2)

PCIe x1

2

2

PCI

2

2

Line distribution schemes

х16

х8+х8

х8+х8+х2

х16

х8+х8

х8+х8+х2

Video outputs

HDMI

DisplayPort

HDMI

DisplayPort

DVI-D

D-Sub

Audio outputs

5
Optical S/PDIF-out

5
Optical S/PDIF-out

SATA 6 Gb/s

4

4

SATA Express

1

1

eSATA

No

No

M.2

(supported drive formats)

1

(2260/2280)

1

(2260/2280)

Thunderbolt

No

No

LAN

1

1

Wi-Fi

No

No

Bluetooth

No

No

Power phases

8

8

Format

ATX

ATX

As you can see, the differences between the two models are so minimal that it is clear their close price positioning. In fact, saving just a few dollars and select ASUS Z97-AR instead of ASUS Z97-A, you will lose two additional video outputs and one supplied SATA cable. The rest capabilities based on their specifications at first glance are identical. But let us have a closer look at the novelty.

ASUS Z97-AR

The specs:

Producer

ASUS

Model

Z97-AR (rev 1.0)

Chipset

Intel Z97

CPU socket

Socket LGA1150

CPUs supported

Intel Core i7 / Core i5 / Core i3 / Pentium / Celeron 4th and 5th generation: Intel Haswell, Intel Haswell Refresh, Intel Devil`s Canyon, Intel Broadwell

Memory frequency

3200* / 3100* / 3000* / 2933* / 2800* / 2666* / 2500* / 2400* / 2200* / 2133* / 2000* / 1866* / 1600 / 1333 MHz

(*OC)

Memory support

4 x DDR3 DIMM- slots with support of memory up to 32 GB

Expansion slots

2 x PCI Express 3.0 x16

1 х PCI Express 2.0 x16

x16

x8+х8

x8+x8+x2

2 x PCI Express 2.0 x1

2 x PCI

Disk subsystem

Intel Z97 chipset supports:

1 x M.2 (M.2 2260, M.2 2280)

4 x SATA 6 Gb/s

1 x SATA Express (compatible with 2 х SATA 6 Gb/s)

RAID 0, RAID 1, RAID 5, RAID 10

LAN

1 x Intel WGI218V (10/100/1000 Мb/s)

Sound subsystem

Realtek ALC892 codec

8-channel sound

S/PDIF Out

Power connectors

1 х 24-pin ATX main power connector

1 x 8-pin ATX 12V power ATX12V

Fans

2 x CPU fan connector (4-pin)

4 x system fan connector (4-pin)

Cooling

Aluminum fan on the chipset

Aluminum fan on elements of power subsystem

External I/O

1 x HDMI

1 x DisplayPort

1 x LAN (RJ45)

4 x USB 3.0

2 x USB 2.0

1 x Optical S/PDIF out

5 x audio jacks

1 х PS/2 (mouse or keyboard connection)

Internal I/O

1 x USB 3.0 each with support of 2 USB 3.0 (19-pin)

3 x USB 2.0 each with support of 2 USB 2.0

4 x SATA 6 Gb/s

1 x SATA Express

1 х TPM socket

1 x COM

1 x connector of audio output to front panel

1 x S/PDIF out

1 x set of front panel connectors

1 х «MemOK!» button

1 х DRCT socket

1 х module TB_HEADER

1 x power button

1 x switch «TPU»

1 x switch «EPU»

1 х switch «EZ XMP»

BIOS

64 Mb Flash ROM UEFI AMI BIOS

PnP, ACPI 5.0, SM BIOS 2.8, DMI 2.7, WfM 2.0

Packaging

User’s manual

Warranty description booklet

Driver disc

1 х set ASUS Q-Connectors

2 x SATA cables

1 х bridge 2-Way NVIDIA SLI

1 х interface panel plug

Form-factor, dimensions

ATX

305 х 244 mm

Producer website

ASUS
Updated versions of BIOS and drives are available at support page

Read the full review >>>

SAPPHIRE R9 290 4GB GDDR5 graphics card review and testing

Many manufacturers have already released graphics accelerators based on AMD Radeon R9 290 which are equipped with a proprietary cooling system. However, models with reference cooling system are still available. This is SAPPHIRE R9 290 4GB GDDR5 which will be examined in this article.

Can the cooler developed by engineers of AMD effectively cope with the heat release of the GPU? On this question will be learned and revealed during today’s review.

SAPPHIRE R9 290 4GB GDDR5

Read the full review >>>

amd crossfire

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