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Intel’s 5×5 is Making a Comeback

A while back, Intel previewed it’s 5×5 form factor, designed to be smaller than M-ITX. New boards and cases have been released for the form factor, with a new name – Mini-STX. At CES, ASRock discussed its upcoming H110M-STX Mini PC that will use the form factor. The chassis ASRock specified for this new mini-PC measured 155 x 155 x 80 mm (L x W x H), 1.9 litres. Although SFF PCs of this size are relatively common (Intel NUC, Gigabyte Brix, etc), they are almost entirely built with soldered CPUs and GPUs and can’t be upgraded beyond changing the memory …
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Lian Li is on a Boat

First up, apologies for the ancient pop culture reference in the title. Lian-Li tends to produce a wacky product every few years. A while back, the the PC-CK101 puffed on to the scene, a train themed M-ITX chassis that had many of us scratching our heads in confusion. We’ve only just caught wind of this interesting enclosure that continues the trend, an all-aluminium yacht-like design, the PC-Y6. The design is certain to make waves, and while this case is rather large (58 litres based on box dimensions), it is very unique, and it should be able to sail into history as another amazing …
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AMD’s AM4 – A Unified Socket

At CES 2016, AMD has talked a little bit more about its upcoming Zen architecture processors. Specifically, the company revealed the socket that will be used and announced the code names of the new CPUs and APUs. We posted a leak about these names and some specs here. The current lineup of AMD CPUs and APUs spans across 3 different sockets: The FX line of CPUs drop into the AM3+ socket, the APU lineup uses socket FM2+, and the Athlon and Sempron SoC chips slot into socket AM1. These three sockets exist because each of the processor lines has very different underlying …
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New SilverStone SFX power supplies with 92mm fan?

I was checking SilverStone’s Facebook page to see if there was any updates on the 700W SFX-L unit and spotted this interesting photo of their PSU lineup. The above picture is a cropped and sharpened view of the linked image. As far as I know, the two mystery SFX PSUs in the front are previously unannounced units. At Computex last year they had shown off a non-modular SFX unit that still hasn’t been released but these two new units are fully modular. More interesting though is the fan, which based on my measurements of the casing, is a 92mm fan. The …
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MSI shows off their 30th anniversary edition board, the B150M GAMING 3X

MSI is celebrating their 30th anniversary this year and decided to mark the occasion with a special edition microATX motherboard, the B150M Gaming 3X. Ryan Shrout from PC Perspective is at the MSI booth checking out their boards and spotted this. It comes in a very, uh, interesting color scheme, with a golden PCB and red accents. MSI says this “represents fortune and bliss in traditional Chinese culture”. In the video it seems like the PCB has a bit of texture to it and it probably looks better in person than it does on camera, but I suspect this will …
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Gigabyte Launches the GA-X150M-Plus WS… and Forgets the Rear IO?

One of the weirder boards to be launched at CES this year is Gigabyte’s GA-X150M-Plus WS. This microATX motherboard features socket 1151 with the Intel C232 chipset (which Gigabyte has decided to call X150 for some unknown reason), dual DDR4 DIMM slots and a high quality audio solution. Also featured is a Realtek GbE LAN chipset, which supports cFosSpeed, a network traffic management application which Gigabyte claims to help improve network latency, maintain low ping times to delivery better responsiveness in a crowded LAN environments. Gigabyte also states that the Realtek GbE NIC consumes significant less power when it’s in idle state …
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ASUS B150I Pro Gaming/Wi-Fi/Aura motherboard

Asus is at it again.  They have announced the B150I Pro Gaming/Wi-Fi/Aura motherboard.  The B150I is an alternative to the Maximus VIII Impact for budget conscious Mini-ITX gamers. The B150I comes with a nice red and black color scheme.  It also features LED lights running down the back side that can be customized via the Asus Aura desktop utility. The board offers an assortment of Asus tech including Supreme FX, Sonic Radar II audio, ASUS LANGuard, and GameFirst. There are 4 SATA III ports, three fan headers, and an M.2 x4 port on the backside for the latest and greatest …
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Corsair Bulldog case and SF600 PSU updates

Logan from Tek Syndicate is at the Corsair suite at CES and there have been a few tweaks and improvements to the Bulldog chassis since the last time we saw it. The aesthetic has been toned down with a piano black finish in place of the black with bright red accents of the original prototype. It’s a “little bit smaller” by “a few millimeters in each direction”. That would mean it’s still pretty big for an ITX case though. The cooling has been tweaked but I couldn’t really discern the changes from the video alone. There’s also a few other miscellaneous …
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MSI introduces Vortex – the world’s most powerful trashcan!

For those who like the size and form factor of the current Apple Mac Pro but want something more suited to high-end gaming, MSI now has you covered with Vortex. Within the 6.5L cylindrical chassis, the Vortex supports up to an Intel i7-6700K, 64GB RAM, dual PCIe 3.0 x4 M.2 slots, and two GTX 980s! This is made possible by using the MXM version of the desktop GTX 980 that Nvidia released a few months ago. The parts are arranged in a triangular layout. Each card and the CPU has its own heatsink assembly and a single centrifugal fan at the top …
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Origin PC announces the custom-designed Chronos SFF case

Origin PC is throwing their hat in the ring with a custom-designed SFF case of their own, the new Chronos series chassis. Previously the Chronos line just used off the shelf cases like the SilverStone RVZ01. This new design vaguely resembles the Falcon Northwest Tiki from the outside but the interior layout is different so this isn’t just a tweaked version of that chassis, though it very well could be manufactured by SilverStone’s OEM division too. The case is 298.5 x 101.6 x 349.3mm (HxWxD) for a volume of 10.6L, so it’s a properly SFF case. The layout is similar to the …
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Invasion of the Curved 34″ AIO’s

Watching CES 2016 coverage, we noted a rather interesting trend – 34″ Curved screen AIO systems. Quite a few of them – there have been 3 launched so far, and it’s only the first day of the event! All In Ones have always been on the borderline of decent setups – they’ve never really been upgradeable. This looks to be changing though, as 3 major pre-built system manufacturers have launched new AIO products. Origin PC Omni The Omni from Origin PC combines customization options and build flexibility with an all-in-one body, using a 3,440 x 1,440-pixel, 34-inch curved display. The …
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ASUS ZenFone Zoom Smartphone Announced

  Today, Asus announced the ZenFone Zoom smartphone. The ZenFone Zoom features 3x optical, yes optical zoom. The lenses are produced by HOYA, a Japanese optics company. The camera also features a laser autofocus that, ASUS claims, can adjust in three hundredths of a second. While auto modes are available, it also allows the user to override ISO gain, exposure, white balance, and “other options.” It has a dual-LED flash, which is said to generate photos with “more lifelike colors and skin tones.” Two SoCs are listed for this phone. The lower-end chip is the same as the ZenFone 2’s higher-end …