On the face of things, free games bundled in with PC graphics cards seem like great deals, regularly popping in top games alongside the hardware to power them. The problem is, if you're a hardcore PC gamer to begin with,…
Nvidia's Fermi GPU wagon continues to spout out top-notch cards at low prices, and perhaps none are more appealingly spec'ed and priced than the GTX 560 Ti. It tears into the sub £200 market by some margin if you shop around, but can it compete with the stellar cards AMD are touting at similar price points? Read on to find out.
Apple and NVIDIA may be parting company so soon after the two teamed up. There seems to have been an issue in the renegotiations of the partnership after overheating materials in MacBooks led to failures of the GeForce 8400M and 8600M GPUs. That meant that Jobs Inc had to extend the warranty of their units to three years and that’s not the kind of thing that makes any manufacturer happy.
Apple has apparently described NVIDIA’s attitude as arrogant and if the two can’t work it out then we could see the latter’s chips disappear from iMacs almost immediately and from the rest of the range within three to four years.
Seems a bit of a shame given the level of NVIDIA’s technology and the way that Apple has carved itself a niche at the graphics end of the market but the Cupertino crew has always prided itself on quality of product and, when the chips are down, there’s little choice in the matter.
There’s a lot of software out there for cracking wireless passwords, and most of it’s legal. Why? Because it’s sold as a way for network administrators to ‘test’ their network’s security. Of course, there’s nothing to stop you ‘testing’ a network that you don’t own, in a coffee shop or airport, for example.
Most cracking programs use your PC’s CPU to do the hardcore number-crunching, but it turns out that the graphics card is actually far better at doing the kinds of calculations necessary. How good? Well, an above average quad-core CPU, the Intel Q6600 can only accomplish 1,100 passwords per second, whereas a similarly above-average ATI HD4870 graphics card can smash through 15,750 passwords per seconds.
Who woulda thunk it? Luckily, we might be seeing some of this power hit regular programs too, with Nvidia’s CUDA, ATI’s Stream, and Apple’s OpenCL frameworks. The graphics card isn’t best at every type of calculation, but if a program can intelligently route calculations to their fastest solver, then we could see blazing program speed increases in the near future.
Exciting news from the world of processors! Open the champagne, because the details have turned up about Intel’s forthcoming processors. There’s the “Medfield”, and the “Pineview”, not to be confused with residential homes for the elderly.
The Pineview is expected to be a full “System-on-a-chip”, where all the functions of the PC – the memory controller, I/O, graphics chip, etc, are all on one chip. There are dual-core and single-core versions, and it’ll be built from a 45nm process, just like Intel’s current little champ, the Atom, which powers most netbooks in the market today.
The Medfield will take the same system-on-a-chip approach, but will be built from a 32nm process. It’s expected sometime in 2010, and will be preceded by the Pineview, which is due in 2009. Intel has confirmed that “Medfield” is an Intel codename, but won’t say any more than that.
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