Archive for August, 2006

SLI vs. Crossfire – Which is best?

Thursday, August 31st, 2006

If you're going to want to build or buy the best possible gaming PC then you're going to want to make use of either [tag]Nvidia[/tag]'s [tag]SLI[/tag] or [tag]ATI[/tag]'s [tag]Crossfire[/tag] dual [tag]graphics card[/tag] technologies.  But which one is best?

In an attempt to answer this question, the folks at ExtremeTech have put these two technologies to the test.  They put the following graphics cards to the test:

So, which configuration came out on top?  Well, just as with most other things in life, it depends.  In this situation it depends on what you use as a benchmark. 

However, what's clear is that the [tag]Radeon[/tag] X1900 Crossfire is by far the most cost-effective dual graphics card setup that they tested, so if you're a gamer on a budget, this is the configuration to go for.

System freezing up? Check your RAM!

Thursday, August 31st, 2006

Ed Bott looks at how a faulty RAM module can cause your system to crash and freeze up:

Lessons learned:

Most system and application failures are fairly easy to identify. Random failures often indicate hardware problems.

Bad RAM, overheating, and defective hard disks, in order, are the most common hardware failures in my experience.

Hardware can fail over time. Most people assume that the problem is software because they haven’t changed any hardware lately

People are far too quick to blame software or malware (or, more often than not, blame Windows) for system crashes and lockups before examining the facts and running a few simple hardware tests.  I agree with Ed, the most common causes of problems are bad RAM, overheating and a dodgy hard drive, but there are other things that need to be checked out and ruled out before ripping the OS apart - a bad PSU, dodgy cabling and loose expansion cards can all cause random crashes and lockups.  I've come across people who have been ripping the OS apart for 6 months trying to solve crashes only to find that the problem was a hardware issue that could be found and fixed in a few minutes.

MSI StarReader 52-in-1 card reader – First card reader to support SIM cards

Thursday, August 31st, 2006

MSI StarReaderMove over 22-in-1 and 32-in-1 card readers.  The MSI StarReader supports a mind-boggling 52 different media formats (including the SIM format used in cell phones).

The StarReader connects to a PC via the USB port (it supports USB 2.0, allowing for 480Mbps data transfer speed) and supports pretty much every media card you can think of. 

On top of that, The MSI StarReader is the first card reader to support SIM cards and comes with software so that you can easily edit your phone book and messages.

MSI StarReader

I like it!  I want one!

The iPod ad spoof – My favorite Antrageous cartoon to date

Thursday, August 31st, 2006

This has to be my favorite Antrageous cartoon to date - partly because I had so little to do with it. 

Requires Adobe Flash Player or click here for still image.

The whole Antrageous venture outgrew just being what I did months ago when Kathie graciously took over a huge part of the production and improved the workflow dramatically.  Bringing out a daily cartoon, even a simple one, is quite a bit of work.

Maxtor OneTouch external drive misery – transplanting the hard drive into another enclosure

Wednesday, August 30th, 2006

"Hi, I was just reading your dissection of the [tag]Maxtor[/tag] [tag]OneTouch II[/tag]. I have the same drive and have determined that the chipset that converts [tag]USB[/tag] to [tag]IDE[/tag] in the enclosure is malfunctioning. The drive itself is fine. If I take it apart, will the drive work in any standard 3.5" enclosure? A simple "yes" or "no" is all I need to hear. Thanks!"

Yes

It's a standard Maxtor drive in there (I'm not sure which drive they use now but it'll be one from their range) and it'll work just great in another enclosure.