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Prices for NAND flash memory and cards grow slightly

VIA denies KT600A chipset @ 3DCenter.org

HWZ review: Gigabyte GA-8PE800 Ultra (Intel 845PE)

Novac announces micro CATCH TV, a USB2.0 TV tuner

Antec Sonata PC Case @ Bjorn3D

Plextor PX-504UF and PlexWriter 52/24/52A: new external DVD+RW and internal CD-RW

HWZ review: Seagate Barracuda 7200.7 160GB (7200RPM-2MB)

Kanguru releases 2Gb USB2.0 flash drive

HWZ review: Soltek SL-75FRN2-L (nForce2 Ultra 400)

SunFire V60X and SunFire V65X: new Intel Xeon-based rackmount servers from Sun

HWZ review: IBM ThinkPad X31 (Centrino) Notebook

AOpen announces its new Aeolus FX5900 line of graphics cards

HWZ Preview: MSI MEGA PC (MEGA651)

ASUS SK8N on nForce3: specs and photos



Prices for NAND flash memory and cards grow slightly

According to Asian distributors, after several months of downturn NAND flash prices start to recover due to a slight deficit in the market, also resulting in flash cards prices growth.

NAND flash prices might stabilize later this month or early in June, as makers are expected to rapidly increase their production volumes. Until now, NAND prices have been dropping worldwide, despite the growing demand from makers of mobile handsets, PDAs, digital cameras. According to the news source, the offer of consumer electronics lagged behind by 20% or even 30%.

Source: The DigiTimes

VIA denies KT600A chipset @ 3DCenter.org

"We asked VIA about the speculations on a KT600A Socket A chipset with dual channel memory interface for the Athlon XP."

Read answers at 3DCenter.org.

HWZ review: Gigabyte GA-8PE800 Ultra (Intel 845PE)

"The overclockability of the board was good and it managed to let users reach a system bus setting of up to 210MHz (820MHz FSB). For those thinking of overclocking their 533MHz FSB P4 would surely find a lot more headroom in overclocking with the GA-8PE800 Ultra."

Read more at HardwareZone.

Novac announces micro CATCH TV, a USB2.0 TV tuner

Novac announced a small external USB2.0 TV tuner, micro CATCH TV(NV-UT200), to arrive for sale late in June for about $110.

Sized 75x48x23mm, it weighs about 65g. The novelty has an antenna input, S-Video jack, stereo audio-in and audio-out. The bundle includes the remote control. honestech TVR software is used for MPEG video recording (minimum requirements: Pentium 4 2GHz or Athlon XP 2000+. honestech MPEG Encoder SE kit is used for AVI-MPEG, MPEG-MPEG conversions.

Source: PC Watch

Antec Sonata PC Case @ Bjorn3D

"Quiet is in, and so is style. As the PC leaves its desktop and beige past behind, our demands on it are increasing. It´s not enough to be well-made and efficient, today´s PC has to look good and fit in multiple environments. To that end, Antec has introduced the Sonata Mid-Tower PC case. The Sonata is designed to run quietly and cooly while looking good no matter where you place it. This is our first look at the new Sonata, future updates will reflect upgrades to the motherboard and CPU."

Read more at Bjorn3D.

Plextor PX-504UF and PlexWriter 52/24/52A: new external DVD+RW and internal CD-RW

Plextor announced the external PX-504UF DVD+RW drive to arrive to retail late in June for about $257. Supportnig USB2.0 and IEEE1394, it works under Windows 98 SE/ME/2000/XP.

The speeds are: 4 DVD+R write, 2.4 DVD+RW write, 16 CD-R write, 10 CD-RW write; 12 DVD read, 40 CD read. Besides DVD+VR support, the model understands DVD-VIDEO (from Dolby Digital). Finally, with dimensions of 184x265x52mm, it weighs about 2kg.

As for the new internal PlexWriter 52/24/52A ATAPI (E-IDE) CD-RW to be available for sale early in June, its price is still open, but expected to be around $111.

This drive is like a younger brother to PlexWriter Premium. It has 2Mb buffer and <65ms seek time. PlexWriter 52/24/52A supports Buffer Underrun Proof, PoweRec and VariRec technologies.

HWZ review: Seagate Barracuda 7200.7 160GB (7200RPM-2MB)

"Overall, we felt that Seagate could have done a much better job at the Barracuda 7200.7. Although its specifications stated an improvement of about 0.9ms in average seek time, our results seem to disagree with its specifications. Clocking more than 1ms slower (in some cases) than the older Barracuda ATA V, the 7200.7 seems to be one of the slowest 7200RPM drives we´ve seen to date."

Read more at HardwareZone.

Kanguru releases 2Gb USB2.0 flash drive

Kanguru Solutions announced its new USB2.0 trinket — 2GB KanguruMicro Drive 2.0.


Sized 85x28x15mm, U2-KMD-2G weighs just 21 g. The NAND storage supports 32-bit encryption and compression. At writing the device requires 39.139.4mA, with 35.0-36.1mA necessary for reading. Though offering a year warranty, the company ensures 10 years of operation or 1 million read/write cycles. Shock protection is 1000G.

Its interesting that compressed or encrypted data is stored in two special "folders": "Secret" keeps encrypted and/or compressed password protected information; "Zip" is for usual compressed data. MSRP of 2Gb U2-KMD-2G is $1299.95.

HWZ review: Soltek SL-75FRN2-L (nForce2 Ultra 400)

"Of course our tests were based on an engineering sample and retail boards could have better results since not many users have hit the wall with the new board from our observations. The key issue is to obtain memory modules that work hand in hand with the new nForce2 Ultra 400 that boards such as this Soltek SL-75FRN2-L are built upon."

Read more at HardwareZone.

SunFire V60X and SunFire V65X: new Intel Xeon-based rackmount servers from Sun

Sun Microsystems updated its line of entry-level servers with two new models on x86 Intel Xeon CPUs. This was called to extend strategic partnership with Oracle that ships software for x86-based Solaris and Linux systems. In the future Sun plans to continue offering inexpensive server platforms.



SunFire V60X 1U system bases on one or two 2.8GHz Intel Xeons; SunFire V65X 2U features two 2.8GHz or 3.06GHz Xeons. Both work under Solaris x86 or Red Hat Linux. The basic configuration of Sun Fire V60x costs $2450.

HWZ review: IBM ThinkPad X31 (Centrino) Notebook

"But all in all, we do like the new ThinkPad X31 as much as we did with the X30. As an ultraportable, the X31 have no other peers in the Centrino class of notebooks. For those who had favorable experiences with the X30, you´ll probably retain much of that feeling with this new ThinkPad. It´s still the same robust built and design, that ThinkLight, and a whole range of connectivities that includes an IEEE 1394 and a CompactFlash slot that made the X30 such a crowd favorite — and they´re all back in the new X31 and more."

Read more at HardwareZone.

AOpen announces its new Aeolus FX5900 line of graphics cards

AOpen announced its new line of graphics cards, Aeolus FX5900, based on NVIDIA GeForce FX5900.


According to the official press release, in June Aeolus FX5900 should get to the retail market. Featuring 128Mb DDR with 800MHz clock speed, they will have analog, DVI, TV connectors and will support VIVO. Besides, the bundle will include DVI CRT adapter and software, including WinDVD Deluxe, WinProducer.

HWZ Preview: MSI MEGA PC (MEGA651)

"The boot up was very swift and the tested performance was in the same league as its competing solutions; thus it is acceptable in this respect. We initially encountered some RAM incompatibility but quickly resolved it by replacing our Nanya DIMMs with Kingmax DDR333 modules (Crucial worked fine too). Perhaps the system is a little picky on memory because we seldom encountered problems with our pair of Nanya RAM modules. With that aside, for those curious of the on-board graphics display output quality, we tested it on a 21-inch Philips 202P4 and found it acceptable."

Read more at HardwareZone.

ASUS SK8N on nForce3: specs and photos

Our colleagues from Saudi T-Break were the first to lay their hands on the unique ATX Socket 940 AMD Opteron board from ASUS based on NVDIA nForce 3 Pro150. (Tks, Abbas!).


ASUS SK8N specifications:

  • Dual-channel memory architecture, 4 x 184-pin DIMM, up to 8Gb of Registered PC2700/PC2100/PC1600 ECC DDR SDRAM
  • 1 x AGP 8X slot, 5 x PCI slots
  • Single-channel 1xUltraDMA133 RAID on Promise R20378
  • 2 x Serial ATA (RAID0, RAID1, RAID 0+1)
  • ALC650 audio codec, S/PDIF out
  • CK8 MAC + RealTek RTL8201BL PHY LAN
  • A variety of interfaces and o/c capabilities

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