Sunday, 08 December 2013 22:22
As we essentially kick off the week, we're still trying to play catch-up on the massive backlog of reviews sent in by our great affiliates. eTeknix has been with us for quite a few years and over the past weeks, they've pumped out quite a few reviews. We're going to start this big post with a few small cases and work our way up. The smallest of the bunch is the In Win H-Frame Mini-mITX Aluminum Chassis followed by the BitFenix Phenom Micro-ATX Chassis and the BitFenix Prodigy M Micro-ATX Chassis. The Lian Li PC-A79 is not a small case. This beast could handle 12x 5.25-inch drives if you needed it to. It's large and pretty awesome.
When it comes to graphics cards, eTeknix has had a chance to play with quite a few over the past few weeks. They managed to take a look at three of the new GTX 780 cards - including the reference GTX 780 Ti 3GB card as well as both the MSI GTX 780 Lightning 3GB card and the Gigabyte GTX 780 GHz Edition 3GB graphisc card. Gigabyte has taken an already amazingly fast card and pushed it a bunch farther. It's absolutely insane the amount of cooling this is on these new GPUs.
Image Courtesy eTeknix
Although not as fast, the ASUS AMD Radeon R9 270 Direct CU II OC 2GB card is a solid performer for the budget-minded enthusiasst. Still, if you like AMD graphics cards and you have a bit more money to spend, either the XFX R9 280X Double Dissipation Black Edition OC 3GB Graphics Card or the Sapphire AMD Radeon R9 280X Toxic Edition 3GB cards are great.
When it comes to storage, faster and bigger is always better. They start us off with the Lexar JumpDrive M10 Secure 64GB Flash Drive. As more and more people pack around their data, having a secure password on every device is a good idea - including your files on your flash drive. If you need a lot more space than that though, something like the Teratrend TS432U 4 Bay USB 3.0 RAID Enclosure is pretty decent. That being said, often a person will need files over the network and that's where a NAS comes in handy. Things like Synology DS214e "Special Edition" 2-Bay NAS or the smaller Western Digital My Cloud 2TB are worth looking at.
When it comes to powering your desktop PC, a good power supply is a must. We've looked at a lot over the years and today we've got a couple from eTeknix. The Antec High Current 750W Semi-Modular PSU looks to be pretty solid - and pretty basic, while the be Quiet! Dark Power Pro 550W has a bit of extra class. When it comes to keeping your portable devices charged up, the Patriot Fuel+ 9000mAh Mobile Rechargeable Battery could be a lifesaver.
If you're looking for a new chip and motherboard, the Intel Xeon E3-1230Lv3 1.8GHz Quad Core "Haswell" 25W CPU is maybe a different choice than you'd make initially, but think about it: 25W with a turbo clock of 2.8GHz powering quad-cores with eight threads. That's pretty awesome. If you need a compatible motherboard and don't want to spring for a full-on server board the ASRock Z87 Extreme6 is a fantastic board that should keep you running fast and stable for a long time.
Although that 25W CPU will be pretty easy to cool, it will run even cooler and faster with a good cooler strapped to the top. If you want to go with a traditional air cooling solution, the Raijintek Ereboss CPU Cooler will be more than adequate for almost any CPU on the market today. 'Adequate' may not be what you're looking for and if that's the case then liquid will be more up your alley. Check out both the Antec Kuhler H20 650 AiO CPU Water Cooler and the Zalman Reserator 3 Max AiO Liquid CPU Cooler to find out which one best suits your needs and styles.
As we wrap up their big news pile, check out a few of these other hardware bits below.
Noontec Rio In-Ear Headphones --=-- CM Storm Aluminum Keyboard, Mouse & Headset Round-up --=-- Netgear R6250 Dual Band Gigabit Smart WiFi Router --=-- SilverStone One ARM ARM11SC Single Monitor Arm