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Video card SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 380 4G D5: review and testing 

We continue to introduce new graphics cards based on the GPU AMD Radeon R9 380. This time we will get acquainted with the novelty produced by the company SAPPHIRE. It is a model SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 380 4G D5. Graphics cards of this manufacturer are often allocated due to an affordable cost, efficient cooling subsystem and balanced characteristics. 

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 380 4G D5

Also the product is characterized by the qualitative element base with solid-state capacitors and effective Black Diamond chokes, as well as the cooling system SAPPHIRE DUAL-X, using axial fans with double ball bearings and system Intelligent Fan Control (IFC-II), which guarantees quiet operation at low loads.

The specs:

Model

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 380 4G D5 (11242-07) 

Graphics core

AMD Radeon R9 380 (Antigua PRO)

Manufacturing process, nm

28

Quantity of shader processors

1792

Support for technologies and API

DirectX 12, OpenGL 4.5, AMD Mantle, AMD Eyefinity, AMD App Acceleration, AMD HD3D, AMD CrossFireX, AMD PowerPlay, AMD PowerTune, AMD ZeroCore, AMD TrueAudio, AMD Virtual Super Resolution, AMD Frame Rate Target Control, Vulcan, AMD FreeSync, OpenCL 2.0, AMD LiquidVR

Nominal frequency of graphics core, MHz

985

Memory capacity, GB

4

Memory type

GDDR5

Nominal/effective frequency of video memory, MHz

1450 / 5800

Memory bus width, bit

256

Memory carrying capacity, GB/s

185,6

Internal interface type

PCI Express 3.0 x16

Screening interfaces

1 х HDMI

1 x DisplayPort

1 х DVI-I

1 х DVI-D

Minimal capacity of PSU, W

500

Dimensions (according measuring in our test lab), mm

237,35 x 126,15 x 37 (249 x 127)

Drivers

Available drivers SAPPHIRE or GPU

Producer’s website

SAPPHIRE

Package and content 

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 380 4G D5

Graphics accelerator is shipped in a vertical cardboard package, which is almost completely painted black. Its front side contains a logo of the series SAPPHIRE NITRO and sufficiently large image of the robot. At the bottom the main advantages of the new item are listed:

  • factory overclocking;
  • 4 GB of memory;
  • optimal operation of modern games at a resolution of 1440p;
  • two-fan cooling system SAPPHIRE DUAL-X;
  • intelligent control system of mode (Intelligent Fan Control II).

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 380 4G D5

The side of the box lists the minimum system requirements for optimal performance. Thus, the capacity of power supply unit must not be less than 500 W when installing a graphics accelerator. If you use the combination of two video cards in the mode AMD CrossFireX, this requirement increases to 850 W.

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 380 4G D5

Inside the package the graphics card is securely fastened using cardboard, foam and anti-static bag. This provides a high safety of the device during transportation.

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 380 4G D5

Supplied set of SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 380 4G D5 includes:

  • adapter DVI↔D-Sub;
  • sticker on the computer;
  • set of instructions.

This kit contains basic components for installing the video card and connection a digital or analog monitor. In some cases, you may need a 6-pin PCIe-adapters for connecting additional power supply, but most modern power units must be equipped with them initially.

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 380 4G D5

To display an image the following set of interfaces is provided:

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

Taking into account the complete adapter for analog connector D-Sub, this set of connectors is optimal. It will allow to connect virtually any monitor or TV with a resolution of 4K Ultra HD.

Appearance and circuitry 

 

 SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 380 4G D5

Video accelerator SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 380 4G D5 is realized on the black circuit board with height of 127 mm, and length of 249 mm (as measured in our lab). In the center you can find the graphics processor which is equipped with a metal frame to protect against chipping and damage during building.

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 380 4G D5

GPU power subsystem is made according to 5-phase scheme. It uses proprietary chokes Black Diamond, which remain at the maximum load by 10% cooler and 25% more efficient of standard counterparts. This ensures a high reliability and energy efficiency of the graphics card. There is also installed a reliable solid-state capacitors with an increased service life.

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 380 4G D5

The controller is realized ON Semiconductor NCP81022.

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 380 4G D5

In addition to PCI Express x16 slot two additional 6-pin PCIe SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 380 4G D5 are used for power. Nothing prevents connection or disconnection because the latch of connectors are located on the back side of the PCB.

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 380 4G D5

A small switch is closer to the interface connector. It is designed to switch between the two chips BIOS, one of which implements UEFI-mode for faster download of new versions of the OS.

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 380 4G D5

The reverse side of the printed circuit board contains several elements of the power subsystem. Also, you can see that the PCB contains connectors for bridges AMD CrossFireX, as this technology is implemented on the software level.

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 380 4G D5

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 380 4G D5 works on the basis of the chip AMD Radeon R9 380 (Antigua PRO), which is determined by the utility GPU-Z 0.8.5 as the AMD Tonga. It is produced by 28-nm process technology and includes 1792 stream processors, 32 rasterization units and 112 texture units. The nominal frequency of the graphics processor is increased from 970 MHz to 985 MHz.

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 380 4G D5

The card is equipped with 4 GB of memory, realized with the help of 8 chips SK Hynix H5GC4H24AJR-T2C with capacity of 4 GB each. They operate on the effectively frequency of 5800 MHz, although the reference rate for AMD Radeon R9 380 is 5700 MHz. Exchange of data between memory and the graphics chip is carried out through a 256-bit bus with a capacity of 185.6 GB/s.

Cooling system 

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 380 4G D5

Used Cooling System SAPPHIRE DUAL-X occupies two slots for expansion cards. Its front part is covered with a plastic lid. It features fixed 100 mm axial fans.

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 380 4G D5

The fans Apistek GAA8B2U operate at a voltage of 12 V and a current of 0.45 A, that provides the final output of 5.4 W. They are equipped with double ball bearing including protection against the ingress of dust. This design can significantly increase the life cycle of the fans.

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 380 4G D5

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 380 4G D5

The second part of the cooling system includes four 6-mm copper heat pipes and radiator of longitudinally spaced plated plates. Large copper plate contacts with the GPU through a thin layer of thermal paste. Heat is removed from the memory chips and the power subsystem elements. Special thermo between them and the bottom of the radiator are applied.

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 380 4G D5

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 380 4G D5

Heat pipes are soldered to both edges of an aluminum radiator, and to a copper substrate. This improves heat distribution and improves the efficiency of the cooling system. However, they are coated with nickel.

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 380 4G D5

In case automatic control of fan speed under maximum load, the GPU heated up to 72°C. fans worked at 57% (1528 rpm) of its maximum speed, creating a subtle noise that allowed completely comfortable.

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 380 4G D5

After setting the rotation speed of the fan blades to the maximum value (2868 rpm), the noise rose above average, but still remained affordable even for prolonged use.

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 380 4G D5

In idle mode the frequency of the graphics core and memory was reduced, and the cooling system switched to the passive mode (due to the technology Intelligent Fan Control II). In this state, the GPU temperature did not exceed 50°C. Any noise is absent.

Read the full review >>>

Game review: Beyond Eyes

Title: Beyond Eyes
Genre: Indie, adventure
Developer: Tiger and Squid, Team17 Digital Ltd
Editor: Team17 Digital Ltd
Release date: August 11 2015
Platform: РС/Xbox One

We faced with the history of ordinary girl Rae. She was about ten years old. And her interests are consistent with age: she loves to walk in the nature, enjoying the warm spring days, playing hide and seek with friends, catch up, etc. To a certain extent Rae is the average girl, she is active, cheerful and kind.

Beyond Eyes

But once the accident had happen. During the celebration of an event fireworks were exploded. One of them was broken and exploded near the Rae’s eyes. The girl became blind. She could no longer continue her usual cheerful and carefree lifestyle.

Everyone had such feeling: such events occur that completely changes it "before" and "after." And the subject is serious enough and it is not expect to see in an indie game. However, this moment is developed in the game extremely well: the player instantly realizes that that cheerful and kind girl is absent. She is not interesting for friends because she cannot to chase the ball or look for hidden comrades.

Beyond Eyes

What should the girl do as she can not continue to engage in her favorite activities? Surrender and despair? But Rae is a different person: in one summer day she heard meowing and went toward the sound. So she met her new best friend a cat named Nanie. The animal came and entertained her constantly, even during cold winter days, until it was gone. And Rae decided to go looking for him.

Beyond Eyes is a good, small, but very interesting adventure-game. Indescribable and innovative graphic design makes it unlike to other game in the world. Developer is the studio Tiger and Squid decided in a unique way to show how blind people see the world.

Beyond Eyes

How it is implemented in the game: the player sees the girl and a small patch of landscape directly in front of her. Everything else around is white emptiness. As the girl moves forward landscape features bushes and trees, hedges and fences, roads, trails, buildings and fountains.

Rae has well-developed ear as she could hear even the most distant sounds, like the murmur of a river or fountain, birds singing, ringing the bells in the tower, and so on. 

Beyond Eyes

Also want to mention one more genius idea: Rae can not know for sure what kind of an object makes a sound. They are positive, kind and light for her: a beautiful fountain; bright clothes, which dries under the hot spring sun, and so on. Sometimes her idea corresponds to reality, sometimes it is impossible: the fountain can be a drain pipe, and clothes a scarecrow with crows. 

We really like the effect of emotion overlay and deep symbolism: Rae does not see the world around her, but for the first time she went out so far from home, and there are many things for the first time. Especially we liked the scene when she gets to the huge highway road: the road looks like black smoke, ominous music plays and so on. 

Beyond Eyes

The game itself is something reminiscent of a hit for the Playstation 3 Journey - a journey straight to the goal. Something going on around, Rae faces with curious events, meet animals, met with other children, she helps with their problems, and they help her to go in the right direction.

Frankly speaking: it is not always interesting to play Beyond Eyes. It features a lot of boring moments and silly conventions that increase the length of the game. Rae moves slowly (obviously), and developers advisedly put a huge, long hedge on her way. And you need to find bypasses. 

Beyond Eyes

The story is also quite leisurely and fabulous naive. We can not attribute it to a minus of the game as in the context it looks great.

On the other hand, Beyond Eyes can and should be forgiven for the excellent implementation of such complex idea to show the world of blind girl. The game calls an incredible emotion; you believe and feel the same everything happening on the screen.

Especially sound helps to dive into the atmosphere. Blind people are mainly guided by the sound, so Beyond Eyes features enormous work to create a competent sound. All is performed flawlessly: from the sounds of movement and ending with music.

Beyond Eyes

In general we strongly recommend Beyond Eyes for the inspection. It won’t to take much of your time and relatively low system hardware platform PC. So do not take the time to immerse yourself in this amazing, deep, vital and mental game. Positive emotions are guaranteed!

tags: team17   adventure   indie   amd radeon   windows   nvidia geforce   intel core   xbox one   playstation   amd   intel   
Read the full review >>>

Video cardSAPPHIRE NITRO R9 390 8G D5: review and testing

Company SAPPHIRE Technology, widely known as one of the largest manufacturers of video cards and one of the main partners of AMD, of course could not stay away from the announcement of a new lineup of graphics cards AMD Radeon R9 300, and has present own versions.

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 390 8G D5

One of them is SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 390 8G D5, which in comparison with the reference AMD Radeon R9 390 used proprietary cooler Tri-X, provided factory overclocking up to 1010 MHz, and the qualitative element base and a number of other improvements, which will be discussed in this review. Let’s start from detailed performance characteristics of new item:

Model

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 390 8G D5 (11244-00)

Graphics core

AMD Radeon R9 390 (Grenada PRO)

Quantity of shader processors

2560

Supported API and technologies

DirectX 12, OpenGL 4.5, AMD Mantle, AMD Eyefinity, AMD App Acceleration, AMD HD3D, AMD CrossFireX, AMD PowerPlay, AMD PowerTune, AMD ZeroCore, AMD TrueAudio, AMD Virtual Super Resolution, AMD Frame Rate Target Control, Vulcan, AMD FreeSync, OpenCL 2.0, AMD LiquidVR

Graphics core frequency, MHz

1010

Memory frequency (effective), MHz

1500 (6000)

Memory capacity, GB

8

Memory type

GDDR5

Memory bus, bit

512

Memory carrying capacity, GB/s

384

Bus

PCI Express 3.0 x16

Max resolution

4096 x 2160

Screening interfaces

1 х DVI-D

1 х HDMI

3 х DisplayPort

HDCP support and HD-video decoding

Yes

Minimal PSU capacity, W

750

Dimensions from the official site (measured in our lab), mm

308 x 127 x 42,3 (315 х 125)

Drivers

Available drivers   SAPPHIRE or  GPU

Producer website

SAPPHIRE Technology

As you can see, the actual overclocking of the graphics core is only 10MHz compared to reference 1000 MHz, so you should not expect for a significant increase in performance compared with the reference version. The key advantages of the new product are an original cooling system and updated electronic components.

Package and content

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 390 8G D5

Graphics card SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 390 8G D5 comes in a large cardboard box decorated with original and stylish printing. In addition to a small viewing opening on the front side you may note names of the manufacturer and model of the device, the volume and type of installed video memory, support for proprietary cooling system Tri-X, as well as the presence of factory overclocking.

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 390 8G D5The reverse side contains a small schematic representation of the graphics card, as well as a list of its benefits:

  • Tri-X – a proprietary cooling system, with three axial fans form  air flow directed to the key components of a video card, which promotes more effective cooling.
  • Dual Ball Bearing Fans - fans with double ball bearings have a greater smoothness and an increased service life.
  • Cooper Heatpipes - five copper heat pipes of different diameters for better heat dissipation are the base of the heatsink.
  • Copper/Aluminum heatsink - the radiator is made of aluminum with a copper base.
  • Black Diamond Chokes - chokes feature 10% lower temperature during operation and 25% higher efficiency.
  • DVI-D, HDMI + 3 DP ports - a set of external interfaces includes a large number of various digital ports.

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 390 8G D5

A list of system requirements is located on one side of the box. Based on the recommendations, the power supply in such a system should have a capacity at least of 750 W and two 8-pin PCIe.

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 390 8G D5

The delivery set of the graphics card SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 390 8G D5 contains the standard documentation, CD with software and a nice bonus in the form of cable HDMI.

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 390 8G D5

To display the image on the test Powered by the next set of interfaces:

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

Design and circuitry

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 390 8G D5

Model SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 390 8G D5 is realized on the original black circuit board with a standard arrangement principle. Applied circuitry includes extremely high quality components: solid capacitors with extended service, advanced chip IR3553 and effective chokes Black Diamond Chokes. This increases the stability and reliability of the graphics and also prolongs its life.

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 390 8G D5

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 390 8G D5Powering of the product is realized via reliable 8-phase scheme: 6 phases are responsible for the power of the graphics core and 2 are designed for video memory subsystem.

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 390 8G D5

Chip IR3567B is used as a digital PWM controller of power subsystem.

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 390 8G D5In order to power the graphics card there is a PCI Express x16 slot and two 8-pin PCIe, located on the side of the board. Note that the cooler doesn’t complicate the disconnection or connection of the cable PCIe.

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 390 8G D5

The reverse side of the PCB doesn’t contain significant elements. We should also note the complete absence of connectors for bridges AMD CrossFireX, as this technology is implemented at the software level. Also do not forget that starting from the version of the driver AMD Catalyst 15.7 WHQL, you will be able to combine a bunch of novelty with the AMD Radeon R9 290.

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 390 8G D5

The basis of SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 390 8G D5 is a graphics chip AMD Grenada PRO, which is determined by the utility GPU-Z 0.8.5 as the AMD Hawaii. It is produced by the norms of 28-nm manufacturing process and consists of 2560 unified shader pipelines, 64 ROP units and 160 texture units. The GPU operating frequency was increased to 1010 MHz with respect to the recommended 1000 MHz.

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 390 8G D5Memory of model SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 390 8G D5 (total 8 GB) is realized with the help of 16 chips SK hynix H5GC4H24AJR-T2C with capacity of 4 GB each, which run on the recommended effective frequency 6000 MHz. Communication between the graphics processor and memory is realized through a 512-bit bus, which is able to pass 384 GB of information per second.

Cooling system

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 390 8G D5The video card including installed cooling system Tri-X occupies two expansion slots and has a total length of 308 mm according to the official website (315 mm measured in our lab).

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 390 8G D5

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 390 8G D5

A cooler consists of a massive two-section heatsink with 55 and 70 aluminum plates transversely arranged and three 86 mm axial fans mounted on the plastic case.

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 390 8G D5The fans are produced by company FirstDO and are labeled as «FDC10H12D9-C». Rated voltage of operation is 12 V and the current strength is 0.35 A, which gives the final output of 4.2 W.

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 390 8G D5The uniform distribution of heat over the whole area of the radiator is provided by five copper heat pipes of different diameter: one 10 mm and two 8 mm and two 6 mm. Note that the heat pipes are not covered by a layer of nickel, which is designed to reduce the drop in the efficiency of cooling system during the operation, due to the oxidation of metals.

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 390 8G D5They are secured by solder and tight fit between the fins of the radiator.

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 390 8G D5

The main cooling system is directly in contact with the power elements of the power subsystem and video memory chips using thermal interface, which should positively affect the overclocking potential.

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 390 8G D5

In case of the automatic speed control of fan blades under the maximum load, the graphics core is heated to 74°C, and cooler, as indicated by the monitoring works at 50% of its maximum capacity. Noise was very quiet.

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 390 8G D5

Under the maximum speed of fan blades the GPU temperature dropped to 64°C. In this case the noise has exceeded the average level and became uncomfortable for continuous operation near the PC.

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 390 8G D5

In case of load absence the frequencies of the GPU and memory are automatically reduced. As a result they allow to reduce the power consumption and heat release. In this mode the GPU temperature did not exceed 44°C because the fans stopped to rotate and cooling system operates in a completely passive mode.

SAPPHIRE NITRO R9 390 8G D5

Read the full review >>>

Video card ASUS STRIX R7 370 (STRIX-R7370-DC2OC-4GD5-GAMING) on AMD Radeon R7 370: review and testing 

Along with the flagship video cards AMD Radeon R9 Fury X and AMD Radeon R9 Fury, as well as high-level models of the series AMD Radeon R9 300, AMD has updated the budget segment of own product, which along with last year's series of AMD Radeon R7 200 received a new name - AMD Radeon R7 300. One of the innovations is the graphics card AMD Radeon R7 370, which will be offered for a suggested price of $ 149 for the modifications to the reference design.

ASUS STRIX R7 370 (STRIX-R7370-DC2OC-4GD5-GAMING)

It received a renamed and graphics core slightly modified from last year's adapter AMD Radeon R7 265, which now has the name of AMD Trinidad PRO instead of AMD Curacao PRO. In turn, this has already been renamed GPU AMD Pitcairn PRO with old one AMD Radeon HD 7850.

ASUS STRIX R7 370 (STRIX-R7370-DC2OC-4GD5-GAMING)

At the same time it doesn’t have any significant structural changes: the chip also includes 1024 stream processors, 64 texture units and 32 units of rasterization. As for the video memory subsystem, two versions of the video card were announced: 2 or 4 GB and effective frequency 5600 MHz.

 

AMD

Radeon R9 380

AMD Radeon R7 370

AMD Radeon R7 265

AMD Radeon HD 7850

Code name

AMD Antigua PRO

AMD Trinidad PRO 

AMD Curacao PRO

AMD Pitcairn PRO

Quantity of stream processors

1792

1024 

1024

1024

Texture units

112

64 

64

64

ROPs

32

32 

32

32

GPU frequency, MHz

970

975 

925

860

Video memory effective frequency, MHz

5500 / 5700

5600 

5600

4800

Video memory capacity, GB

2 / 4

2 / 4 

2

2

Video memory interface, bit

256

256 

256

256

Like in the case with the previously discussed graphics cards in a new lineup, another difference of AMD Radeon R7 370 from its predecessor in the face of AMD Radeon R7 265 is the increased frequency of the graphics core from 925 to 975 MHz.

ASUS STRIX R7 370 (STRIX-R7370-DC2OC-4GD5-GAMING)

Let’s move on to a more detailed study on the example of video card ASUS STRIX R7 370 (STRIX-R7370-DC2OC-4GD5-GAMING).

Model

ASUS STRIX R7 370 (STRIX-R7370-DC2OC-4GD5-GAMING)

Graphics core

AMD Radeon R7 370 (Trinidad PRO)

Quantity of shader processors

1024

Supported API and technologies

DirectX 12, OpenGL 4.5, AMD Mantle, AMD Eyefinity, AMD App Acceleration, AMD HD3D, AMD CrossFireX, AMD PowerPlay, AMD PowerTune, AMD ZeroCore, AMD Virtual Super Resolution, AMD Frame Rate Target Control, Vulcan, OpenCL 2.0

Graphics core frequency, MHz

1050

Memory frequency (effective), MHz

1400 (5600)

Memory capacity, GB

4

Memory type

GDDR5

Memory bus, bit

256

Memory carrying capacity, GB/s

179,2

Bus

PCI Express 3.0 x16

Max resolution

4096 x 2160

Screening interfaces

1 х DVI-D

1 х DVI-I

1 х HDMI

1 х DisplayPort

HDCP support and HD-video decoding

Yes

Minimal PSU capacity, W

500

Dimensions from the official site (measured in our lab), mm

214 x 125 x 42 (226 х 128)

Drivers

Available drivers  ASUS or  GPU

Producer website

ASUS

Like all video cards in series ASUS STRIX, the novelty has received quite a large list of changes compared to the reference specifications. So, in addition to the original PCB, proprietary cooling system and improved element base, there is a factory overclocking. The graphics core is clocked at 1050 MHz (increase of 7% compared to the recommended 975 MHz). Video memory operating at the reference effective frequency of 5600 MHz.

Package and content 

ASUS STRIX R7 370 (STRIX-R7370-DC2OC-4GD5-GAMING)

Graphics card ASUS STRIX R7 370 (STRIX-R7370-DC2OC-4GD5-GAMING) comes in a fairly large cardboard box and decorated with original and stylish line of the graphic printing with logo ASUS STRIX. In addition to the names of the manufacturer and model of the device here you can find information about the use of its proprietary cooling system DirectCU II with technology 0dB FAN, which provides 30% lower temperature compared to the reference cooler and in passive mode at low loads.

ASUS STRIX R7 370 (STRIX-R7370-DC2OC-4GD5-GAMING)

The reverse side of the box is traditionally reserved for the slightly more detailed description of the advantages of new item. Also, there is a schematic diagram of the interface panel, and the mention of the features of proprietary utility GPU Tweak II with the functions of the online Online Streaming.

As for the benefits, they include:

  • DirectCU II - proprietary cooling system which compares favorably with the direct contact of heat pipes with a graphics core, 220% greater area of heat dissipation and 40% higher thermal conductivity that allows a 30% reduction in the temperature and decreases three times the noise level compared to reference cooler. 
  • ASUS Auto Extreme with Super Alloy Power II - model ASUS STRIX-R9390-DC3OC-8GD5-GAMING is one of the world's first graphics card built in a fully automated line, which guarantees consistently high quality and ensures the rejection of aggressive chemicals in the production process. In addition, it is based on using high-quality electronic components (Super Alloy Power II), allowing further improves the reliability of the new item.
  • 0db FAN provides silent operation of video at low loads.

ASUS STRIX R7 370 (STRIX-R7370-DC2OC-4GD5-GAMING)

A list of system requirements is located on one side of the box. Based on the recommendations, the power supply in such a system must have a capacity at least of 500 W and provide at least 24 A on +12V line. Also tested model requires the connection of 6-pin cable PCIe.

ASUS STRIX R7 370 (STRIX-R7370-DC2OC-4GD5-GAMING)

Supplied set of the graphics card ASUS STRIX-R7370-DC2OC-4GD5-GAMING includes the standard documentation, CD with software and a nice bonus in the form of bridge AMD CrossFireX.

ASUS STRIX R7 370 (STRIX-R7370-DC2OC-4GD5-GAMING)

To display the image the next set of interfaces is provided:

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

Design and circuitry 

ASUS STRIX R7 370 (STRIX-R7370-DC2OC-4GD5-GAMING)

Model ASUS STRIX R7 370 (STRIX-R7370-DC2OC-4GD5-GAMING) is realized on a compact black PCB. Used electronic components correspond to the branded concept Super Alloy Power II and include only high-quality components: solid and tantalum-polymer capacitors, advanced MOSFETs and ferrite core chokes. This increases the stability and reliability of the graphics in general, and prolongs its lifetime.

ASUS STRIX R7 370 (STRIX-R7370-DC2OC-4GD5-GAMING)

Power of new product is made according to 4+1-phase scheme where four phases are responsible for the power of the graphics core, and one is designed for video memory subsystem.

ASUS STRIX R7 370 (STRIX-R7370-DC2OC-4GD5-GAMING)

Chip uP1608TK is applied as a digital PWM controller of power subsystem.

ASUS STRIX R7 370 (STRIX-R7370-DC2OC-4GD5-GAMING)

In order to power the graphics card there is a PCI Express x16 slot and one 6-pin PCIe, located on the side of the board. Note that the cooler doesn’t complicate the disconnection or connection of the cable PCIe.

ASUS STRIX R7 370 (STRIX-R7370-DC2OC-4GD5-GAMING)

To implement the technology AMD CrossFireX on ASUS STRIX R7 370 a single connector for the corresponding bridge is used. It allows you to combine two video accelerators for the joint calculation of graphical effects.

ASUS STRIX R7 370 (STRIX-R7370-DC2OC-4GD5-GAMING)

The reverse side of the printed circuit board contains mounting screws of cooling system and some electrical components.

ASUS STRIX R7 370 (STRIX-R7370-DC2OC-4GD5-GAMING)

The base of ASUS STRIX-R7370-DC2OC-4GD5-GAMING is a graphics chip AMD Trinidad PRO, which is determined by the utility GPU-Z 0.8.5 as the AMD Pitcairn. It is produced by the norms of 28-nm manufacturing process and consists of the 1024 unified shader pipelines, 32 ROP units and 64 texture units. The GPU operating frequency was increased to 1050 MHz with respect to the recommended 975 MHz.

ASUS STRIX R7 370 (STRIX-R7370-DC2OC-4GD5-GAMING)

Memory of model ASUS STRIX R7 370 (total 4 GB) is realized due to the use of 8 chips SK hynix H5GC4H24AJR-T2C with capacity 4 GB each, which run on the recommended effective frequency of 5600 MHz. Communication between the graphics processor and memory is realized through 256-bit bus, which is capable of carrying 179.2 GB of information per second.

Cooling system 

ASUS STRIX R7 370 (STRIX-R7370-DC2OC-4GD5-GAMING)

The video card including installed cooling system ASUS DirectCU II takes up two expansion slots and has a total length of 214 mm according to the official website (226 mm as measured in our lab).

ASUS STRIX R7 370 (STRIX-R7370-DC2OC-4GD5-GAMING)

ASUS STRIX R7 370 (STRIX-R7370-DC2OC-4GD5-GAMING)

The cooler consists of a compact radiator with 38 longitudinally spaced aluminum plates, and two 75 mm axial flow fans mounted on the plastic case.

ASUS STRIX R7 370 (STRIX-R7370-DC2OC-4GD5-GAMING)

The fans are produced by company EVERFLOW and are labeled as «T128010SH». Rated voltage of operation is 12 V, and the current is 0.25 A, which gives the final output of 3 W.

ASUS STRIX R7 370 (STRIX-R7370-DC2OC-4GD5-GAMING)

The uniform distribution of heat over the whole area of the radiator is provided by two copper heat pipes with diameter of 8 mm. Fins and heat pipes are covered with a layer of nickel, which is designed to reduce the drop in the efficiency of cooling system during the operation, due to the oxidation of metals. ASUS DirectCU cooler use scheme of direct contact of heat pipes to the surface of the GPU through a small layer of thermal paste to accelerate removal of excess heat.

ASUS STRIX R7 370 (STRIX-R7370-DC2OC-4GD5-GAMING)

To cool the power elements of the power subsystem there is a separate low-profile heatsink with thermal interface. But memory chips don’t have any additional cooling.

ASUS STRIX R7 370 (STRIX-R7370-DC2OC-4GD5-GAMING)

In case of the automatic speed control of the fan blades and under maximum load, the graphics core is heated to 75°C, and cooler works while 43% of its maximum capacity. Noise subjectively was quiet and comfortable for everyday use.

ASUS STRIX R7 370 (STRIX-R7370-DC2OC-4GD5-GAMING)

Under the maximum speed of fan blades rotation the GPU temperature dropped to 59°C. This noise exceeded the average level, but in a closed PC case it did not stand out too much compared to other components.

ASUS STRIX R7 370 (STRIX-R7370-DC2OC-4GD5-GAMING)

In case of load absence the operating frequencies of the graphics core and memory were automatically reduced, allowing them to reduce power consumption and heat. In this mode, the GPU temperature did not exceed 39°C because the fans stopped to rotate and cooling system operates in a completely passive mode. Here the above-mentioned technology 0dB FAN is activated, providing silent operation of video at low loads.

Read the full review >>>

APU AMD A4-6320: review and testing

If you want to build the budget office or home computer one of the most important roles plays the correct selection of the processor. In many cases, one of the low-cost APU models from AMD will be suitable. The advantages of this solution are:

  • the ability to use inexpensive motherboard;
  • easier cooling system;
  • lower cost compared with a set of processor and discrete accelerator with the same performance.

AMD A4-6320

As you can see, the acquisition of APU has many benefits. If we talk about the hero of this review, AMD A4-6320, the advantages are extended by relatively low cost. As a result you will have a well-balanced computer for watching video and surfing the Web.

The specs:

Model

AMD A4-6320 

Marking

AD6320OKA23HL

APU socket

Socket FM2

Basic clock frequency, MHz

3800

Max clock frequency with AMD Turbo Core 3.0, MHz

4000

Multiplier (nominal / in turbo mode)

38 / 40

Basic system bus frequency, MHz

100

L1 cache memory, KB

2 х 16 (data memory)

64 (instruction memory)

L2 cache memory, KB

1024

L3 cache memory, KB

No

Microarchitecture

AMD Piledriver

Code name

AMD Richland

Quantity of cores/threads

2/2

Instruction support

MMX(+), SSE, SSE2, SSE3, SSSE3, SSE4A, SSE4.1, SSE4.2, x86-64, AMD-V, AES, AVX, XOP, FMA3, FMA4

Max calculated power (TDP), W

65

Max operating temperature, °C

70

Manufacturing process, nm

32

Technology support

AMD 64-bit, AMD Virtualization, EVP (Enhanced Virus Protection), AMD PowerNow!, AMD Turbo Core 3.0

Build-in memory controller

Max memory capacity, GB

-

Memory type

DDR3

Max frequency, MHz

1600

Memory channels quantity

2

Built-in graphics core AMD Radeon R7 Graphics

Thread processors

128

Tetxture blocks

16

Rasterization blocks

4

GPU clock frequency, MHz

760

Instruction support

DirectX 11, OpenGL 4.3, DirectCompute 5.0, OpenCL 1.2, Shader Model 5.0

Producer website

AMD

Product page

AMD A4-6320

Package, content and design 

AMD A4-6320

AMD A4-6320 processor comes in white standard packaging typical for all APUs produced by AMD. They don’t have an unlocked CPU multiplier.

AMD A4-6320

The reverse side of the box features a delivery set in different languages.

AMD A4-6320

Delivery set of APU AMD A4-6320 includes:

  • cooling system;
  • quick guide for installing the processor and cooling system;
  • sticker for the computer case.

This set is typical for the majority of boxed processors and includes everything you may need to start the building the computer.

AMD A4-6320

Externally the APU also looks quite standard. Its heat-spreading lid has the manufacturer's logo, name and serial number of model. Also here you can find the list of countries of chip production (Germany) and final assembly (China).

AMD A4-6320

The reverse side of the device is equipped with a standard set of contacts that are compatible with the CPU socket Socket FM2. This means that AMD A4-6320 can be used in tandem with the new motherboards (Socket FM2+).

Cooling system

AMD A4-6320

The delivery set of today’s product under review contains compact cooling system which consists of the fan blades with a diameter of 70 mm and a small aluminum radiator. In general, it is quite typical for the APU with TDP level of 65 W.

AMD A4-6320

The active blowing is provided by fan Foxconn PVA070E12L (12 V; 0.20 A), which is attached to the radiator by means of conventional screws and it connects to the motherboard via a standard 4-pin connector. Speed adjustment of blades is supported by PWM method.

AMD A4-6320

AMD A4-6320

The radiator is in contact with the processor through a thin layer of thermal paste. The entire cooling system is attached by using standard metal staples and a plastic latch.

Analysis of technical features

AMD A4-6320

In case of disabled technology AMD Turbo Core 3.0, our APU AMD A4-6320 worked at a frequency of about 3800 MHz at multiplier of "x38", and a reference frequency of 100 MHz. The voltage on the core was at the level of 1,360 V.

AMD A4-6320

AMD A4-6320AMD A4-6320

After activation of technology AMD Turbo Core 3.0 the frequency of processor cores was increased. During the testing it eas in the range from 3800 to 4000 MHz. Core voltage varied from 1.312 to 1.4 V (most of the time it was on the level of 1,366 V).

AMD A4-6320

When using bench cooling system and during stress tests core temperature does not exceed 41°C, which is an excellent indicator.

AMD A4-6320

After moving to the idle mode the multiplier was decreased to "x18", and CPU clock speed has dropped to 1800 MHz. The power voltage was at the level of 0.904 V.

AMD A4-6320

Distribution of APU AMD A4-6320 cache memory is carried out as follows. L1 cache memory of: 16 KB per each of the 2 cores is allocated to the data with 4 channels of associativity, and for instruction has 64 KB with 2 channels of associativity. L2 cache memory: 1 MB with 16 channels of associativity. L3 cache memory is absent.

AMD A4-6320

Integrated memory controller supports DDR3 memory modules with a maximum frequency of 1600 MHz, which can operate in dual channel mode.

AMD A4-6320

tags: amd   amd a4   apu   turbo core   amd radeon   socket fm2   directx 11   richland   piledriver   
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APU AMD A8-7650K: review and testing

AMD has a lineup of APU, which combines the different components in a single case: CPU and graphics core and memory controller. The advantages of this design include:

  • more plain cooling, which reduces noise and heat computer;
  • cost of APU will always be lower than the same processor and graphics card;
  • you can build the entire system in a compact package.

As you can see, these devices have a number of advantages over traditional processors and graphics cards. If you need to build more productive gaming computer, you can always buy another digital and video accelerator.

AMD A8-7650K

This material will be devoted to one of the new APU model AMD A8-7650K. It is equipped with four processor cores and a graphics subsystem AMD Radeon R7 Graphics. At first glance, this configuration looks very attractive, but the final verdict will be done only after all the tests and comparisons with competitors.

The specs:

Model

AMD A8-7650K 

Marking

AD765KXBI44JA

APU socket

Socket FM2+

Basic clock frequency, MHz

3300

Max clock frequency with AMD Turbo Core 3.0, MHz

3800

Multiplier (nominal / in turbo mode)

33 / 38

Basic system bus frequency, MHz

100

L1 cache memory, KB

4 х 16 (data memory)

2 x 96 (instruction memory)

L2 cache memory, KB

2 x 2048

L3 cache memory, KB

No

Microarchitecture

AMD Steamroller + AMD GCN

Code name

AMD Kaveri

Quantity of cores/threads

4/4

Instruction support

MMX(+), SSE, SSE2, SSE3, SSSE3, SSE4A, SSE4.1, SSE4.2, x86-64, AMD-V, AES, AVX, XOP, FMA3, FMA4

Max calculated power (TDP), W

95

Max operating temperature, °C

-

Manufacturing process, nm

28

Technology support

AMD 64-bit, AMD Virtualization, EVP (Enhanced Virus Protection), AMD PowerNow!, AMD Turbo Core 3.0

Build-in memory controller

Memory type

DDR3

Max frequency, MHz

2133

Memory channels quantity

2

Built-in graphics core AMD Radeon R7 Graphics

Thread processors

384

Tetxture blocks

24

Rasterization blocks

8

GPU clock frequency, MHz

720

Instruction support

DirectX 11.2, OpenGL 4.3, DirectCompute 5.0, OpenCL 1.2, Shader Model 5.0

Producer website

AMD

Package and content

For testing we got OEM-version of the APU (marking AD765KXBI44JA). Basically it is designed for OEMs, so it comes without packaging, cooling systems and related documentation. In general, the contents of boxed processor (marking AD765KXBJABOX) should not differ greatly from the previously tested APU AMD A10-7700K with the TDP level of 95 W.

AMD A8-7650K

On the heat-spreading lid you can see the model name, marking, the manufacturer's logo and QR-Code. In the lower part there is a mark that the chip is produced in Germany, and the final assembly of the device is realized in Malaysia.

AMD A8-7650K

The reverse side of APU contains a set of contacts for the CPU socket Socket FM2+. They are made of copper and are fairly long and fragile, so the installation of the connector should be done very carefully.

Analysis of technical features

AMD A8-7650K

Model AMD A8-7650K has four cores that support the operation in four-thread mode. In case of inactive technology AMD Turbo Core 3.0, the nominal frequency of CPU was 3293 MHz with multiplier "x33". The reference rate was 100 MHz, and voltage at the level of 1,296 V.

AMD A8-7650K

AMD A8-7650K

AMD A8-7650K

After activation of technology AMD Turbo Core 3.0, the frequency of processor cores has increased, and during all tests of the program LinX 0.6.5 it is in the range 3300 - 3500 MHz (depending on load). Voltage varies from 1,312 to 1,328 V.

 

AMD A8-7650K

All tests were performed in a bench cooling system, and the maximum temperature of APU did not exceed 44°C.

AMD A8-7650K

In case of simultaneous launch of tests AIDA64 and MSI Kombustor (load of processor and graphics cores) CPU frequency dropped to 2800 MHz. After disabling MSI Kombustor processor cores began to work at the maximum - 3500 MHz.

AMD A8-7650K

The maximum clock speed was recorded at the time of launch applications and was 3792 MHz at a voltage of 1,376 V.

AMD A8-7650K

Cache memory of the hero of this review is divided as follows. 16 KB of L1 cache per core with 4 associative channels reserved for data caching. For instructions you will have 96 KB of L1 cache with 3 associativity channels for each dual module. Also it has 2048 KB of L2 cache with 16 associativity channels for each dual-core module. L3 cache memory is absent.

AMD A8-7650K

Integrated memory controller supports dual-channel mode and DDR3 modules with an effective rate of up to 2133 MHz.

AMD A8-7650K

tags: amd   apu   a8-7650k   turbo core   amd radeon   radeon r7   amd gcn   steamroller   kaveri   socket fm2+   
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Game review Broken Age

Title: Broken Age
Genre: Adventure
Developer: Double Fine Productions
Editor: Double Fine Productions
Release date: 28 April 2015

Act 1 and Act 2 do not exist anymore. For those who in January last year missed the release of the first half, Broken Age has presented fully fledged game, and the transition between scenes will be realized in the form of window with the appropriate Steam-achievement. They are 45 units, and to get them the developers led by the odious Tim Shaffer strongly recommend to pass the game again. Those who wish to save time welcome to our review.

Broken Age

In the second chapter, the authors kept its main promise: the difficulty of puzzles really increased significantly. Despite the fact that the action places remained the same (the spacecraft, a coastal town Shellmound and the kingdom of birds Meriloft), the number of task for the main characters only increased. Vella and Shay are reversed, and until one decides furious puzzle in the belly of the monster, the other carries no less ingenious manipulation of objects outside and met with strange inhabitants of a new world.

Broken Age

The puzzles are not always corresponding to common sense, which is especially felt in the epilogue of the game. In an effort to bring the only true logical chain, conceived by Mr. Schaffer, we have repeat routine activities because every wrong step makes return to the starting point. Due to such moments, as well as much more lengthy dialogues, the playing time compared to the first act has grown at least twice.

Broken Age

But in spite of tricky puzzles, Broken Age is children's fairy tale about good and evil, which wants to seem deeper. The intriguing plots riveted to the screen in the first part, have not gone away, but the sequence of events is slipping into trivial.

Broken Age

Also important is another point. As you know to count other people's money is ignoble. InXile entertainment for $ 3M released a brilliant old-school RPG Wasteland 2 with open world and 100+ hours of variable gameplay. For $ 1.5M Ragnar Tornquist, slowly but surely produces episodic Dreamfall Chapters with reference narrative and complex election system and the implications.

Double Fine had $ 3.M.  For this sum it three years created a linear adventure with a set of contradictory items. Unbalanced gameplay, modest set of locations and good the story line (with series of funny and touching moments) are side by side with an amazing visual style, great prescription, animated and voiced characters.

Broken Age

If you are not one of those 87,000 contributors expected next masterpiece, Broken Age will be stout adventure.

Read the full review >>>

APU AMD A8-6500: review and testing 

In a previous material we have learn APU AMD A4-7300, which refers to the budget lineup and is designed to build a plain home or office computer. If you plan to create a more productive configuration that can cope with modern games, you should pay attention to models with four processor cores. This is due to the fact that in recent years many modern gaming innovations have processor with four thread mode with minimum requirements.

AMD A8-6500

And although the assortment of AMD contains recent solutions, this material will be devoted to the previous generation quad-core APU, AMD A8-6500. Although this model is not a novelty, but it looks quite attractive purchase because of its relatively low cost, which is an important advantage in the current situation.

The specs:

Model

AMD A8-6500

Marking

AD6500OKA44HL

APU socket

Socket FM2

Basic clock frequency, MHz

3500

Max clock frequency with AMD Turbo Core 3.0, MHz

4100

Multiplier (nominal / in turbo mode)

35 / 41

Basic system bus frequency, MHz

100

L1 cache memory, KB

4 х 16 (data memory)

2 x 64 (instruction memory)

L2 cache memory, KB

2 x 2048

L3 cache memory, KB

No

Microarchitecture

AMD Piledriver

Code name

AMD Richland

Quantity of cores/threads

4/4

Instruction support

MMX(+), SSE, SSE2, SSE3, SSSE3, SSE4A, SSE4.1, SSE4.2, x86-64, AMD-V, AES, AVX, XOP, FMA3, FMA4

Max calculated power (TDP), W

65

Max operating temperature, °C

71,3

Manufacturing process, nm

32

Technology support

AMD 64-bit, AMD Virtualization, EVP (Enhanced Virus Protection), AMD PowerNow!, AMD Turbo Core 3.0

Build-in memory controller

Max memory capacity, GB

-

Memory type

DDR3

Max frequency, MHz

1866

Memory channels quantity

2

Built-in graphics core AMD Radeon HD 8570D

Thread processors

256

Tetxture blocks

32

Rasterization blocks

8

GPU clock frequency, MHz

800

Instruction support

DirectX 11, OpenGL 4.3, DirectCompute 5.0, OpenCL 1.2, Shader Model 5.0

Producer website

AMD

Product page

AMD A8-6500

Package, delivery set and design 

AMD A8-6500

The device is shipped in a small cardboard box designed with familiar printing found in AMD A4-7300. Its front side indicates about that the abbreviation «APU» (Accelerated Processing Unit) refers to the presence in the same housing of graphics and processor cores, as well as memory controller.

AMD A8-6500

The reverse side of the package contains a list of its contents in different languages.

AMD A8-6500

Package APU AMD A8-6500 includes:

  • cooling system;

  • brief instructions to install the processor and cooling system;

  • stickers on the computer.

AMD A8-6500

The heat-spreading lid contains device labeling and country where the chip is produced (Germany) ans country of the final assembly (China).

AMD A8-6500

The other side is equipped with a standard set of contacts that are compatible with Socket FM2-socket and Socket FM2+.

Cooling system 

AMD A8-6500

The scope of delivery of the hybrid processor AMD A8-6500 includes a compact cooling system, consisting of two parts: a small aluminum radiator and 70 mm fan. Given the fact that the level TDP APU does not exceed 65 W, a cooling system should be enough for the successful removal of heat.

AMD A8-6500

Airflow is performed by the fan Cooler Master FA07015L12LPB (12 V; 0.25 A), which is screwed directly to the radiator. Connection to the motherboard is done by using a standard four-pin connector. This enables adjustment of the rotational speed of the blades by PWM method.

AMD A8-6500

The radiator is fixed to the motherboard by means of classic metal latches, and the processor is in contact through a thin layer of thermal paste.

Performance analysis

AMD A8-6500

Detailed specifications of APU were obtained by and CPU-Z programs AIDA64. In case of disabled technology AMD Turbo Core 3.0 the clock speed is 3,500 MHz with multiplier "x35" and the reference frequency of 100 MHz. The voltage on the core was at the level of 1.192 V.

AMD A8-6500

 

AMD A8-6500

AMD A8-6500

In case of activated technology AMD Turbo Core 3.0, at full load, processing speed was varied from 3500 to 3900 MHz, and the voltage was varied in the range of 1,152 to 1,288 W. At the time of readout the multiplier was "x39", and the voltage was at around 1,360 V.

AMD A8-6500

When using cooling system during stress-tests core temperature did not exceed 46°C.

AMD A8-6500

AMD A8-6500

The simultaneous launch of stress-tests AIDA64 and MSI Kombustor did not increase the temperature of APU. The limited heating was on the level of 46°C.

AMD A8-6500

The maximum clock speed was recorded at the time of launch applications and was 4092 MHz at a voltage of 0,944 V.

AMD A8-6500

Distribution of cache memory AMD A8-6500 is carried out as follows. 16 KB of L1 cache per core with 4 channels is reserved for associative data cache. For instructions there are 64 KB of L1 cache with 2 channels of associativity for each dual-core module. Also it provides 2048 KB of L2 cache with 16 channels of associativity for each dual-core module. Cache memory level L3 is not available.

AMD A8-6500

There is a built-in controller of DDR3 memory with support for dual-channel mode modules with up to 1866 MHz.

AMD A8-6500

tags: amd   apu   amd a8   turbo core   amd radeon   ddr3   socket fm2   richland   
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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   
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APU AMD A4-7300: review and testing

In this article we will get acquainted with another member of the APU family of AMD company. These devices are well established as the basis for an inexpensive computer for a child or a reliable office machine. Integrated graphics core makes it possible not to worry about purchasing a discrete graphics card, especially if it is needed only for viewing video or working with documents.

AMD A4-7300

APU AMD A4-7300 which will be discussed in this review refers to the budget segment and is based on the microarchitecture AMD Piledriver. Despite the relatively low cost, it has two processor cores and a graphics subsystem AMD Radeon HD 8470D.

The specs:

Model

AMD A4-7300 

Marking

AD7300OKA23HL

CPU socket

Socket FM2

Basic clock frequency, MHz

3800

Max clock frequency with AMD Turbo Core 3.0, MHz

4000

Multiplier (nominal/in turbo mode)

38 / 40

Basic system bus frequency, MHz

100

L1 cache, KB

2 х 16 (data memory)

64 (instruction memory)

L2 cache, KB

1024

L3 cache, KB

No

Microarchitecture

AMD Piledriver

Code name  

AMD Richland

Quantity of cores-threads

2/2

Instruction support

MMX(+), SSE, SSE2, SSE3, SSSE3, SSE4A, SSE4.1, SSE4.2, x86-64, AMD-V, AES, AVX, XOP, FMA3, FMA4

Max designed capacity (TDP), W

65

Max operating temperature, °C

70

Manufacturing process, nm

32

Technology support

AMD 64-bit, AMD Virtualization, EVP (Enhanced Virus Protection), AMD PowerNow!, AMD Turbo Core 3.0

Built-in memory controller

Max memory capacity, GB

-

Memory type

DDR3

Max frequency, MHz

1600

Quantity of memory channels

2

Built-in graphics core AMD Radeon HD 8470D

Thread processors 

192

Texture blocks

24

Rasterization modules

4

GPU clock frequency, MHz

800

Instruction support

DirectX 11, OpenGL 4.3, DirectCompute 5.0, OpenCL 1.2, Shader Model 5.0

Producer website

AMD

Product page

AMD A4-7300

Package, content and design

AMD A4-7300

Cardboard packaging has a standard design and a nice white color. Its front panel has a logo AMD and information about the presence of the device processor and graphics cores.

AMD A4-7300

The reverse side of the box contains the lists of a package in different languages. The upper part has a bar code and serial number.

AMD A4-7300

The package of APU AMD A4-7300 includes:

  • cooling system;
  • Quick Installation Guide CPU and cooling system;
  • sticker on the computer case.

AMD A4-7300

AMD A4-7300

Marking and the model name are arranged on top of the heat-spreading lid. Below you can find the information about the country of chip production (Germany) and carried out the final assembly (China).

Cooling system

AMD A4-7300

The processor comes with fairly compact cooling system based on a small aluminum radiator. In terms of size it is similar to that used in the tested earlier AMD A6-7400K.

AMD A4-7300

Dissipation of excess heat is provided by fan Foxconn PVA070E12L-P02-AE on the basis of a plain bearing with a diameter of blades 70 mm. It connects via a standard 4-pin connector and supports PWM speed control method. Fan is made in China and has the characteristics of 12 V and 0.20 A.

AMD A4-7300

The base of the cooling system is contacted with the processor through a thin layer of thermal paste and fixation is done using a standard metal staples and plastic latch.

The analysis of technical parameters

AMD A4-7300

Now let's take a closer look at the characteristics of APU AMD A4-7300. Readings were provided by using a utility CPU-Z 1.72.0. The nominal clock frequency at the disconnected technology AMD Turbo Core 3.0 was at 3800 MHz with multiplier "x38" and a reference frequency of 100 MHz. The core voltage was 1.360 V.

AMD A4-7300

AMD A4-7300

AMD A4-7300

Together with the activation technology AMD Turbo Core 3.0 clock speed was increased: it varied in the range from 3800 to 4000 MHz. The multiplier rose to the level of "x38", and the voltage was between 1,272 and 1,360 V depending on the load.

AMD A4-7300

Given the use of the bench of the cooling system in case of the stress test program AIDA64 core temperature did not exceed 45°C.

AMD A4-7300

AMD A4-7300

In case of the simultaneous launch of stress tests AIDA64 and MSI Kombustor frequency of processor cores has dropped to 3100 MHz. In this mode the temperature dropped up to 44°C.

AMD A4-7300

Cache memory of the hero of this review is divided as follows. 16 KB of L1 cache per core with 4 channels of associativity allocated for data caching. For instructions there are total 64 KB of L1 cache with 2 channels of associativity. Also theer is 1024 KB of L2 cache with 16 channels of associativity. Cache L3 in the processor is not available.

AMD A4-7300

Integrated memory controller supports dual-channel mode and modules DDR3 with effective frequency up to 1600 MHz.

AMD A4-7300

tags: amd   amd a   apu   amd a4   turbo core   amd radeon   piledriver   richland   
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APU AMD A10-6790K: review and testing

In the current environment the AMD APUs look quite attractive purchase. This is primarily due to the fairly rapid integrated graphics core. For many users it can be useful not only when watching videos and work with standard applications, but also can be used to run various modern games. This functionality can replace the capabilities of a discrete graphics accelerator.

AMD A10-6790K

 

This material will contain a description of one of the most efficient APU model in series AMD Richland, based on microarchitecture AMD Piledriver. Representatives of this lineup are active constituent for components market. AMD A10-6790K version is equipped with four processor cores with a base clock speed of 4000 MHz and the function of dynamic acceleration speed up to 4300 MHz. We have to evaluate how well the device looks in comparison with competitors and neighbors in the lineup.

The specs:

Model

AMD A10-6790K 

Marking

AD679KWOA44HL

CPU socket

Socket FM2

Basic clock frequency, MHz

4000

Max clock frequency with AMD Turbo Core 3.0, MHz

4300

Multiplier (nominal/in turbo mode)

40 / 43

Basic system bus frequency, MHz

100

L1 cache, KB

4 х 16 (data memory)

2 x 64 (instruction memory)

L2 cache, KB

2 x 2048

L3 cache, KB

No

Microarchitecture

AMD Piledriver

Code title

AMD Richland

Quantity of cores-threads

4/4

Instruction support

MMX(+), SSE, SSE2, SSE3, SSSE3, SSE4A, SSE4.1, SSE4.2, x86-64, AMD-V, AES, AVX, XOP, FMA3, FMA4

Max designed capacity (TDP), W

100

Max operating temperature, °C

74

Manufacturing process, nm

32

Technology support

AMD 64-bit, AMD Virtualization, EVP (Enhanced Virus Protection), AMD PowerNow!, AMD Turbo Core 3.0

Built-in memory controller

Max memory capacity, GB

-

Memory type

DDR3

Max frequency, MHz

1866

Quantity of memory channels

2

Built-in graphics core AMD Radeon HD 8670D

Thread processors 

384

Texture blocks

48

Rasterization modules

8

GPU clock frequency, MHz

844

Instraction support

DirectX 11, OpenGL 4.3, DirectCompute 5.0, OpenCL 1.2, Shader Model 5.0

Producer website

AMD

Product page

AMD A10-6790K

Package, content and design

AMD A10-6790K

Packaging of processor AMD A10-6790K is entirely made in black color, symbolizing a series Black Edition with an unlocked multiplier. Its front side contains icons that confirm the presence of graphics and processing cores.

AMD A10-6790K

The reverse side of the box contains only a supplied list in different languages and a sticker with the serial number and bar code.

AMD A10-6790K

AMD A10-6790K supplied set consists of:

  • cooling system;
  • sticker on the computer case;
  • brief instructions on how to install the APU and cooling system.

AMD A10-6790KAMD A10-6790K

Design of heat distribution lid is made in the same manner as many other branded devices. Here are the model name, labeling and QR-Code. The lower part contains the country of chip production (Germany) and the final assembly (China).

Cooling system 

AMD A10-6790K

The complete cooling system is equipped with a sufficiently large aluminum heatsink. It is comparable with used in conjunction with the previously tested AMD FX-8320E. For active cooling there are 70-mm fan with the marking «FHSA7015B», based on the ball bearing. Its connection is made using a four-pin connector, that is the speed control by PWM method is supported.

AMD A10-6790K

In order to fix the standard metal mount with plastic latches is used.

AMD A10-6790K

Radiator is in contact with the processor through a thin layer of thermal paste pre-applied to a special area in the center.

The analysis of technical parameters 

AMD A10-6790K

APU AMD A10-6790K is equipped with four processor cores. They work in four-thread mode and clock frequency is 4000 MHz in case of inactive technology AMD Turbo Core 3.0. Core voltage in this case was at 1,312 V at multiplier "x40" and the reference frequency of 100 MHz.

AMD A10-6790K

AMD A10-6790KAMD A10-6790K

After activation technology AMD Turbo Core 3.0, the processor most worked at a frequency of about 4200 MHz with multiplier "x42" and voltage 1,312 V.

AMD A10-6790K

Sometimes when you run the application, the core frequency rose to 4300 MHz with multiplier "x43". Interestingly, the core voltage at this point is at a low level (about 0.976 V).

AMD A10-6790K

In case of benchmark LinX 0.6.5 bench cooling system was used, and the core temperature did not exceed 51°C.

AMD A10-6790K

After the transition to the idle mode, the frequency of processor cores reduced to 2000 MHz with a multiplier value of "x20". The core voltage was at 0.856 V.

AMD A10-6790K

Scheme of cache allocation is as follows. 16 KB of L1 cache per core with 4 channels of associativity allocated for data caching. For instructions there is 64 KB of L1 cache with 2 channels of associativity for each dual-core module. Also there is 2048 KB pf L2 cache with 16 channels of associativity for each dual-core module. Cache memory of L3 is absent in a given processor.

AMD A10-6790K

There is an integrated memory controller. It supports dual channel mode and DDR3 modules with an effective rate of up to 1866 MHz.

AMD A10-6790K

tags: amd   amd a10   apu   turbo core   amd radeon   fx-8320e   a10-7800   a8-7600   intel core i5   richland   piledriver   socket fm2   
Read the full review >>>

 

The most interesting software innovations and events. Release 145

Every day a huge amount of different software is produced and updated. To help you to sort out these updates our portal continue to provide a series of articles devoted to the most interesting events in the world of software industry. For ease searching all programs and utilities are divided into topics.

Software events

Windows 10: update details and minimal requirements

Omar Khayyam has written a perfect line that fully describes the latest events around the Windows 10: "That's the way it is! Light a fire and drop it into the water." This, of course, talking about information regarding free upgrade of illegal copies of Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 to Windows 10. This was said in a telephone interview by Head of Microsoft operating systems Terry Myerson.

According to the third law of Chisholm, any suggestions are understand differently than it is said by the speaker. The statement Myerson was seen as an opportunity to legalize the vast army of pirates. However, the euphoria about it did not last long. The next day, the official speaker of Microsoft said that there was a wrong interpretation: the illegal versions of Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 really can be upgraded to Windows 10 till 2016, but in this case, the user also gets inactivated version of the operating system. Licensed version of Windows 10 will receive only those who pre-purchased Windows 7 or Windows 8.1.

Thaiphoon Burner

Also recently we learned the minimum system requirements for the desktop version of OS Windows 10. In particular, the 32-bit version will require 1 GB RAM and 16 GB of permanent memory. 64-bit versions requires at least 2 GB of RAM and 20 GB of permanent memory. Also, the imperative is graphics adapter with support for API DirectX 9. Diagonal of the display should not be less than 8 inches, and resolution below 800 x 600 pixels.

Setting of PC components

it is a very comfortable and functional text editor. one of its key

tags: windows   windows 10   iobit   opera   pdf   microsoft   amd   apu   nvidia   ddr4   firepro   radeon   ssd   adobe   intel xeon   micron   bay trail   intel core   amd radeon   kaveri   youtube   flash   nvidia geforce   
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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 >>>

Game Review: Assassin's Creed: Rogue

Title: Assassin's Creed: Rogue
Genre: Action
Developer: Ubisoft Sofia, Ubisoft Kiev
Editor: Ubisoft
Release date: March 10, 2015
Platform: PC / PS3 / Xbox 360
Website: http://assassinscreed.com

Last year was very saturated for fans of Assassin's Creed: instead of the traditional one annual game, Ubisoft has released two: one for the current generation of consoles and computers, and the second for the old console, bypassing the desktop platform. We have already written about Assassin's Creed: Unity released for the PC. Now it is time to review of Assassin's Creed: Rogue.

The most important point regarding the project is that it was developed by a completely different studio Ubisoft Sofia, which was engaged in the development of big games in the series Assassin's Creed. This fact has affected both the strengths and weaknesses of all Assassin's Creed: Rogue.

Assassins Creed: Rogue

First of all the narrative aspect is change: the story instead of another history of the Assassins Order f, we have the opportunity to learn more about their enemies (Templars) and play at their side.

This game has a very interesting main character - a character named Shay Patrick Cormac. We get to know him as an assassin, who after a while loses faith in the order and joins to main opponents.

Assassins Creed: Rogue

Events Assassin's Creed: Rogue takes place in a very interesting historical epoch. Location is the British colonies in North America before and during the Seven Years' War of the XVIII century. But the story does not match for the era: it is quite trivial story vendetta, including the search for powerful artifacts and the struggle for influence in the region.

The main trouble Assassin's Creed: Rogue in its absolute secondary in comparison with last Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag. It looks and plays exactly the same way, borrowing most of the features, including the interface, gaming experience, narrative style and to some extent the scene.

If you remember, the main focus of Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag was placed on the management of his ship and pirates in the Caribbean. The same situation is in Assassin's Creed: Rogue, but the main character is a servant of the law in the face of the British Empire, and the location is the North Atlantic.

Assassins Creed: Rogue

And just as soon as the game starts to slip disputing all of the player's actions outside of the main story line. Range of options and actions that you can perform is very and very extensive, but unfortunately, the presence is not justified.

You can seriously engage in the improvement of your ship using building materials (iron and wood). You can get them only by robbery, attacking the passing vessel. But for a short time of the game you understand that it is not necessary for two reasons. First and the main, in almost all the decisive naval battles you is moved to more powerful ship, and to play the story your current ship is more than enough.

The second is the lack of motivation for the robbery. You are the national of the UK, so have no right to attack ships sailing under the Union Jack. Secondly, the hero is not the thief, but it is a business man, who has neither the time nor the proper justification for the small sea robbery.

Assassins Creed: Rogue

Of course you can improve own equipment. You can increase the supply of health, add additional strap for pistols, sew pockets for ammunition, killing animals and using their skin. And then the game mechanics has a common sense: unlike pirate Edward Kenuey, the hero of the fourth part of the series, Cormac is very charismatic and wealthy gentleman. Side jobs are also absolutely irrelevant: the condition of their performance is exactly the same with the same Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag. And, again, Edward made his living by performing them. He provides all the power of the British war machine, and the hero has a very specific and important task.

Assassins Creed: Rogue

But there is another, very exciting experience: the capture of sea and land outposts. These strongholds are across the Atlantic and colonial settlement. They are occupied by assassins. Their presence here is not desirable for the Templars, and you instructed to get rid of them. Sea battles are smooth as well as in Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag: you need to remove the ships, destroy fortifications, landers and cracking down on the garrison.


Capture of land fortifications is much more interesting: for this you need to fulfill several conditions such as removing the flag and killing officers. But the main thing is the murder of the commander of the garrison. You need to do this secretly without attracting attention, otherwise the chances of success drop dramatically: it starts to run away, throwing smoke bombs, shoots a firearm; calls for help.

Assassins Creed: Rogue

However, although the implementation of these tasks finally has very logical justification, it is not necessarily to fulfill them for the campaign.

Also there are many questions to the story campaign. Heroes, especially the main, are not charismatic. The hero doesn’t have the charm of Edward. Besides he has a terrible voice: the voice does not fit him perfectly, and the actor is constantly out of tune. The events are often absurd, and the logic of the narrative. Many jobs are boring.

However, it should be said, the game has quite successful release date for the PC. For console, it was released in mid-November with Assassin's Creed: Unity and a bunch of other autumn hits, which looked completely out of place. Now players can really miss the Assassin's Creed. So Assassin's Creed: Rogue looks good.

Assassins Creed: Rogue

It should be noted the excellent optimization efforts realized Ukrainian studio Ubisoft Kiev: the game starts easily and at a comparatively old components. However, it is quite expected, because Assassin's Creed: Rogue was originally developed for the weaker hardware foundations of the previous generation of consoles. However, it looks very pale against the backdrop of Assassin's Creed: Unity. There are three graphics settings: "Normal", "High" and "Very high". In addition there are many switches for detailed settings. The difference between these levels is absolutely imperceptible visually, but "very high" has almost twice indicator FPS.

Assassins Creed: Rogue

"Normal" level of graphics

Assassins Creed: Rogue

"High" level of graphics

Assassins Creed: Rogue

"Very high" level of graphics

So we recommend the game to all fans of Assassin's Creed.

System requirements:

  • OS: Windows 7 SP1 or Windows 8/8.1 (64-bit)
  • Processor: Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600 2,4 GHz or AMD Athlon II X4 620 2.6 GHz
  • RAM: 2 GB
  • Graphics card: NVIDIA GeForce GTS 450 or AMD Radeon HD 5670 (1024 MB VRAM) or Intel HD Graphics 4600
  • DirectX: 10
  • Sound card: DirectX-compatible with the latest drivers
  • Hard drive: 12 GB
  • Additional Peripherals: Xbox 360 controller, Tobii EyeX Controller, SteelSeries Sentry

Supported video cards at time of release: NVIDIA GeForce GTS 450 or next; NVIDIA GeForce 500 Series - GeForce 900; AMD Radeon HD 5670 or next; Series AMD Radeon HD 6000, 7000, R7, R9; Intel HD Graphics 4600, HD Graphics 5200.

tags: ubisoft   amd   nvidia geforce   intel   amd radeon   nvidia   xbox 360   windows   ps3   action   assassins creed   
Read the full review >>>

APU AMD A8-7600: review and testing

Not so long ago we introduced you to the dual-core APU AMD A6-7400K, which was quite a good budget option to build a low-cost system unit. For an affordable cost it can provide a decent level of performance for the office or a multimedia computer.

AMD A8-7600

Now let's look at more efficient model AMD A8-7600. This processor has four cores and more productive graphics card AMD Radeon R7 Graphics. This makes it possible to play many modern games at low resolution, allowing undemanding users save on the purchase of a discrete graphics card.

The specs: 

Model

AMD A8-7600 

Marking

AD7600YBI44JA

CPU socket

Socket FM2+

Basic clock frequency, MHz

3100

Max clock frequency with AMD Turbo Core 3.0, MHz

3800

Multiplier (nominal / in turbo mode)

31 / 38

System bus basic frequency, MHz

100

L1 cache capacity, KB

4 х 16 (data memory)

2 x 96 (instruction memory)

L2 cache capacity, KB

2 x 2048

L3 cache capacity, KB

No

Microacrhitecture

AMD Steamroller + AMD GCN

Code name

AMD Kaveri

Quantity of cores / threads

4/4

Instruction support

MMX(+), SSE, SSE2, SSE3, SSSE3, SSE4A, SSE4.1, SSE4.2, x86-64, AMD-V, AES, AVX, XOP, FMA3, FMA4

Max designed capacity, W

65

Max working temperature, °C

71,3

Manufacturing process, nm

28

Technology support

AMD 64-bit, AMD Virtualization, EVP (Enhanced Virus Protection), AMD PowerNow!, AMD Turbo Core 3.0

Built-in memory controller

Max memory capacity, GB

-

Memory type

DDR3

Max frequency, MHz

2133

Memory channel quantity

2

Built-in graphics core AMD Radeon R7 Graphics

Data flow processor

384

Texture blocks

24

ROP blocks

8

GPU clock frequency, MHz

720

Instruction support

DirectX 11.2, OpenGL 4.3, DirectCompute 5.0, OpenCL 1.2, Shader Model 5.0

Producer website

AMD

Package, supplied set and design 

AMD A8-7600

The new APU comes in the familiar white box with a red pattern, which is typical for devices with locked multiplier. The front side contains a stylized image of processor.

AMD A8-7600

The side of the package shows the main advantages of the AMD A8-7600:

  • heterogeneous uniform memory access (hUMA) allows processor and graphics cores to use a single space of RAM with maximum capacity of 32 GB;
  • branded microarchitecture AMD GCN allows significantly improve the performance of compatible games with support for Microsoft DirectX 11.2 and next;
  • good performance, as evidenced by high scores in the benchmark PCMark 8.

AMD A8-7600

The reverse side of the box lists a package set in different languages. There is a sticker with the serial number and processor bar code.

AMD A8-7600

The package of APU AMD A8-7600 includes:

  • cooling system;
  • sticker on the computer case;
  • Quick Installation Guide CPU and cooling system.

AMD A8-7600

AMD A8-7600

 

The heat-spreading lid contains marking and the model name. The following are the country where the chip is produced (Germany), and the final assembly (Malaysia). The reverse side is equipped with a set of contacts that are compatible with the CPU socket Socket FM2+.

Cooling system 

AMD A8-7600

The complete cooling system is rather simple design: a small aluminum radiator and fixed 70 mm fan labeled as «FHSA7015S». It is based on hydro bearing and has a maximum speed 2800 rpm. According to the characteristics, its maximum noise level should not exceed 20 dB. Thanks to the standard four-connector there is a support for the blade speed control by PWM method.

AMD A8-7600

 

AMD A8-7600

The radiator is in contact with the processor through a thin layer of thermal paste, which is pre-applied by the manufacturer. To fix the cooling system there is a standard metal mount with plastic latch. This method worked well, so it is widely used in other CPU of company AMD.

The analysis of technical parameters 

AMD A8-7600

APU AMD A8-7600 is equipped with four processor cores that operate in four-thread mode. Rated frequency with disconnected technology AMD Turbo Core 3.0 was 3094 MHz with multiplier "x31" and a reference frequency of 100 MHz at the time of reading. The core voltage is at around 1,192 V.

AMD A8-7600

 

AMD A8-7600

AMD A8-7600

 

Activation of technology AMD Turbo Core 3.0 has increased the multiplier to "x37". The frequency is equal to 3693 MHz at a voltage of 1,296 V.

AMD A8-7600

In case of using the bench cooling system core temperature was within normal limits and did not exceed 59°C during prolonged maximum load of the benchmark LinX 0.6.5.

AMD A8-7600

Power consumption of APU AMD A8-7600 in the nominal mode corresponds to the following indicators: 90 W for processor cores and 21 W for the graphics cores.

AMD A8-7600

In idle mode the core frequency decreased to 1397 MHz with a multiplier value of "x14". The voltage at the same time was 0.760 V.

AMD A8-7600

Cache memory of the hero of this review is divided as follows. 16 KB of L1 cache per core with 4 channels of associativity allocated for caching data. For instructions there is up to 96 KB of L1 cache with 3 channels of associativity for each dual-core module. Also there is 2048 KB of L2 cache with 16 channels of associativity for each dual-core module. L3 cache memory is absent in a given processor.

AMD A8-7600

APU has an integrated memory controller that supports dual-channel mode for DDR3 modules with the effective frequency to 2133 MHz.

AMD A8-7600

tags: amd   a8-7600   apu   amd a   amd radeon   radeon r7   amd gcn   directx 11.2   steamroller   socket fm2+   hsa   huma   kaveri   
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 >>>

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 radeon

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