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ASRock at CES 2017

ASRock was at CES this year in a suite so they could meet with press, buyers and marketing people without yelling over top of the crowds. They also did this as there were trying to show off a couple of new products they have been working on that are still working on Intel certification. ASRock is most known for their motherboards and they certainly had quite a lineup of new Kaby Lake Intel boards as well as some new boards for AMDs Ryzen CPU. Some of their high-end Intel boards now come with 5GbE networking. Of course 10GbE is already available in the commercial space for servers and large companies, but for the general consumer, 5GbE is the gap-filler that ASRock is hoping will take off.

ASRock

 

It's purely cosmetic, but ASRock has taken to putting themes on their motherboards and the PCB, slots, cooling solutions and more reflex different designs. As more PCs have windows and RGB lighting, ASRock wants to make sure you keep your theme going - and take it a step above the competition. It's pretty nifty.

ASRock is jumping back into network as well, but the piece they are excited about is the new Micro-STX platform. If you've heard about it before CES, you're a lot more connected than me (and probably are), but this was the first time that I'd seen this form factor. The boards are rectangular like a standard motherboard, but they are much, much smaller. The amazing thing is that ASRock is working with the 7th-Gen Intel Kaby Lake platform here as well and the board uses DDR4 SODIMMs. 

Micro-STX

Micro-STX Front

Micro-STX

Micro-STX Back

 

You'll notice that there aren't a lot of traditional SATA connectors or graphics card slots. ASRock is moving to M.2 for storage and has included four slots on the back. For graphics card upgrades, they are working with NVIDIA primarily to produce MXM form factor cards to be used on this system. As you can see, there are a few bottlenecks remaining, but ASRock is betting big on this new platform. Why not? You could easily populate the M.2 with 3TB of ultra-fast storage, an 802.11ac module, Kaby Lake CPU at crazy speeds and a new MXM GTX 1080 graphics card.

Micro-STX

 

The system they had running was very quiet and performed like a champ. It's a brave new world and ASRock is hoping they get to help pave the road to the future with the Micro-STX system they had on display.

For more images from our ASRock visit, please check the gallery here. Also, you can view our entire CES coverage over here.

 

LG at CES 2018

Over the years, LG has really impressed us with their latest and greatest and this year their "OLED Canyon" was pretty impressive indeed. Last year they had a full tunnel of OLED panels, and this year they had a full canyon to walk through that showcased their ability to bend their panels both concave (traditional) and convex (outward). This looked very impressive and shows that LG is thinking about practical applications for large displays as well as showing off some pretty tight curves that they can do with their displays as well. The results are almost breathtaking and while some may argue that VR gives you the same effect, the fact is that this canyon experience is a bit better than 4K - closer to 800K worth of craziness makes it incredible.

 

LG was also showing off their very nice Thunderbolt 3 displays that are capable of daisy-chaining multiple 4K displays. The 32UK950 pictured below is capable of the HDR600 specification - making it far superior to many companies HDR10 spec that just meets minimum requirements. While the image below looks pretty vivid and incredible, you really have to see it first-hand to appreciate the beauty that is the 32UK950 series.

32UK950

 

LG also showcased their gaming displays capable of 240Hz, but without the full HDR600 specification. LG does support both Freesync and G-Sync in their gaming displays. 

There was much more to see and take in at LG, but these are the main highlights I think you'll enjoy!

VulcLAN XVI

It's coming. Registration open! More details incoming at VulcLAN.com! There is NO other gaming event that promises more fun, frags and is four-day event for a mere $30 pre-registration. Come and get some!

VulcLAN XVI

 

GMail Gets Confidential

Google is working on a few things in their next major GMail release, and in addition to putting your calendar beside your emails, quick replies, snoozing and more, they are also rolling out a feature that makes email a little more secure. You will have the option to enter a passcode to open the email (sent by SMS) as well as have the ability to prevent forwarding, copying, download or printing these emails. This is a great step in the right direction for Google if they want to take on the enterprise.

The features are very similar to some found in Microsoft’s full Outlook application, and Microsoft is also adding the ability to restrict emails on its Outlook.com service. These features will largely appeal to businesses that want more control over how emails are used by recipients, but they won’t stop people from taking a screenshot or a photo of an email.

Source: TheVerge

AMD Unveils Gen 2 Ryzen CPUs

AMD is getting their act together and is following up their first generation Ryzen CPU with it's successor. At this point we are all hoping for some Intel crushing performance, but I fear that the latest chips will only see minor performance improvements. I'd like to think that AMD is really back in the performance game, but the cynical side of me says they will just release a Ryzen 1.2 instead of a 2.0. Model numbers, specifications and more information at the link below. Pre-orders are available.

At the more affordable end, there's the six-core Ryzen 5 2600, which will go for $199. It's clocked between 3.4Ghz and 3.9GHz, and it should be a solid competitor to Intel's similarly priced Core i5-8500. The new chips are built on AMD's 12 nanometer Zen+ architecture, so you can think of them as a slight upgrade over last year's models. Its true platform followup, Zen 2, is expected to debut next year.

Source: Engadget

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