News of the day (January 26, 2010)

 Nvidia GF100: the geometry revolution?
  Posted on 1264515520 by Damien

NVIDIA has finally decided to tell us a bit more about the graphics architecture of its forthcoming high-end GPU, Fermi or GF100. Will it be enough to persuade you not to go for a Radeon HD 5800 but wait for the NVIDIA solution?

> Nvidia GeForce GF100: the geometry revolution?

 The Kingston V+ now with Toshiba
  Posted on 1264504980 by Benoit

Kingston is decidedly active in the world of SSDs. The firm continues its transition over to Toshiba NAND Flash chips and controllers, announcing the new SSDNow V+s (the previous range used a Samsung controller and memory). They are available in 64, 128 and 256 GB versions and in a previous version at no less than 512 GB!

With an SATA 3 Gbps interface, these SSDs have TRIM support and reads have been announced at 230 MB/s and writes at 180 MB/s. As usual with Kingston, these SSDs can be purchased on their own or in a bundle with 2.5’’ to 3.5’’ mounting enclosures, a 2.5’’ USB enclosure and an Acronis True Image license.

Prices are in line with storage capacities, going from $268 for the 64 GB version to $1985 for the 512 GB version "bundle"! At these prices, while SSDs may be gaining in capacity, standard drives look as if they still have a future…

 ViewSonic V3D241wm-LED: HD, 120 Hz, LED
  Posted on 1264500922 by Benoit

On the launch of 3D Vision by NVIDIA, only Samsung were selling a compatible screen (the 2233rz). Over time more models have appeared, though the selection is still small. ViewSonic brought out the VX2265wm (a 22 inch at 1680x1050), followed by Acer, who, with its GD245HQ, is currently the only manufacturer to be offering a Full HD (1920x1080) 24-inch.

ViewSonic is set to join Acer in this smallest of clubs with the forthcoming V3D241 wm-LED. As it’s name indicates, it will be a 24-inch (more precisely 23.6 inches at 1920x1080), 120 Hz screen, compatible with 3D Vision. On top of this, it will have a backlit LED, which in theory will guarantee bettter evenness of brightness and contained energy consumption. In terms of connectivity it’ll have a VGA, a DVI and an HDMI.

Though we don’t yet know how much it’ll cost we do know that it should be available as of the beginning of the second quarter. Fermi looks as if it should be available around the same time and this means 3D gaming with the latest titles at 1920x1080 should be in order.

 CPUs: Intel dominating, AMD hanging on
  Posted on 1264497501 by Benoit

The end of 2009 was a pretty good period for AMD. After having announced that it was back in profit (in part thanks to Intel’s payment), AMD also seems to have clawed back market share over this period according to an IDC survey.

In general, while 2009 saw overall revenues of the two players fall by 7.1%, sales of microprocessors went up by 2.5%. With respect to market share, Intel took 81.9% in the last quarter of 2008 as against 80.5% in the last quarter of 2009. This was directly to AMD’s benefit with the AMD share going up from 17.7% to 19.4% over the same periods. This can be attributed to the attractive pricing of the Athlon II / Phenom II range, but we should put this in context. In fact, the foundary lost market share in the second and third quarters, the last quarter merely making up for this.

In the end, over the year of 2009, Intel will have taken a 79.7% share (80.3% in 2008), against 20.1% for its rival (19.2% in 2008). While Intel is clearly dominating things (no surprises here!), AMD is holding on and even clawing things back slightly. This survey also shows that Via is virtually absent from the X86 CPU market with a 0.3% share.

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