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Sapphire Releases New Video Card

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Do you need a great new toy to blow all that Christmas money on? Did you happen to get a ton of new games for Christmas and your aging computer is struggling to play them? Maybe you just decided that it is time to treat yourself to some better graphics in your favorite games, but you don’t want to break the bank. Sapphire has come to your rescue with its brand new HD 7870 XT video card.

This new card comes loaded with impressive features including Boost technology. Boost technology allow the card to actively increase its speed when playing demanding games, giving you the boost in power when you really need it.

This new card is built on the Tahiti architecture, giving this card a distinct advantage over every other 7800 series card that uses the old Pitcairn architecture. The card comes loaded with 2GB of GDDR5 Memory and a core clock 925 MHz.

We haven’t had the chance to run test on one of these cards yet, but expect gains of at least 15% over the base 7870. For more info, check out the full press release below:

SAPPHIRE Technology has announced a new graphics card in its HD 7000 series, the SAPPHIRE HD 7870 XT with Boost. Like the other cards in the HD 7000 series, the new card is based on the highly acclaimed Graphics Core Next architecture from AMD.

The SAPPHIRE HD 7870 XT with Boost delivers a new price:performance point to the series. It is based on AMD’s Tahiti architecture with its 256-bit memory interface, and 1536 stream processors and 96 Texture units, unlike the remainder of the HD 7800 series that uses the Pitcairn architecture. Configured with 2GB of high speed GDDR5 memory running at 1500 MHz (6GHz effective) the SAPPPHIRE HD 7870 XT has a core clock of 925MHz which dynamically rises to 975MHz with PowerTune Boost, AMDs dynamic performance enhancement for games.

This new model also features SAPPHIRE’s latest Dual-X cooler technology, with its graduated heatpipes and two aerofoil fans with dust repelling bearings for efficient cooling and low noise operation. Output configuration is Dual Link DVI-I (supporting VGA with dongle supplied), HDMI and two mini-DisplayPorts, allowing a wide range of monitor types to be connected. AMD’s multi-monitor SLS technology, Eyefinity is supported.

For enthusiasts wishing to maximise performance of this graphics card, the latest version of the SAPPHIRE overclocking tool, TriXX supports this technology and is available free to download from the SAPPHIRE website. SAPPHIRE TriXX allows tuning of GPU voltage as well as core and memory clocks, whilst continuously displaying temperature. Manual control of fan speed is supported, as well as user created fan profiles and the ability to save up to four different performance settings.

The HD 7000 series is the third generation of DirectX 11 compatible solutions from the graphics division of AMD – formerly ATI. The SAPPHIRE HD 7870 XT is ready for DirectX 11.1 and the new Windows 8 operating system as well as delivering all the features of the current DirectX 11 such as DirectCompute11 and multi threaded communications with the CPU. Communication with the host PC is optimised with the implementation of the latest high speed PCI-Express Gen3.0 interface, and multiple cards can be used to further enhance performance in CrossFireX mode on a suitably specified mainboard.

HDMI specifications have also increased in the HD 7000 series. Fast HDMI 1.4a supports Stereoscopic 3D with enhanced frame rates of 60Hz per eye – 120Hz total. It is also ready for the next generation of 4K displays that can be driven from a single high speed input of 3GHz HDMI 1.4a or DisplayPort 1.2 HBR2.

APP Acceleration is the name given to the enhanced performance of a wide range of applications using the stream processing capabilities and specific hardware features of the graphics architecture. The HD 7000 series has been optimised for this type of task. Typical applications include Video encoding and decoding, compression and multiplexing for media distribution, gaming or video conferencing.  APP acceleration can also enhance everyday tasks such as Internet browsing, Office applications and file compression with supported software suites.

All trademarks acknowledged.

For more details please visit www.sapphiretech.com

Christian is the Technology and Gaming guru of Guys Gab, and he also happens to be damn great with auto coverage as well. Big dreams and big enthusiasm are great ways to describe Christian. As a writer he strives to bring concise information together with quick wit to create an enjoyable and informative experience for his audience. When not writing he can be found trying to complete his life goal of becoming a race car driving, astronaut, rock-star. Big dreams indeed.

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Software

Here’s How To Stay Secure While Using Free Wi-Fi In Public

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Raise your hand if you’ve connected to a free Wi-Fi network while you’re out.

Yes, we’ve all done it. But what most people don’t realize is that when you connect to that free Wi-Fi, you are hopping onto an open network, which leaves your computer vulnerable to hackers who can intercept your potentially sensitive information with a few clicks of their keyboard.

That’s right. When you fire up your laptop at Starbucks and log into Gmail, there’s nothing to stop a nefarious person who’s nearby from using some simple software to get your password. But that’s not even the worst of it. If you purchase something on the Internet while on public Wi-Fi, someone could steal your credit card info!

In fact, this happened to my girlfriend just last week, despite my constant warnings to her about just this thing. Lucky for her, her credit card company noticed some suspicious activity on her account and contacted her to verify these transactions. Turns out, she had ordered some shoes from Nordstrom’s website while sipping on an Iced Caffe Mocha at Starbucks a few weeks ago, and someone snagged her CC#.

So how do you keep yourself safe when using public Wi-Fi?

If you absolutely must connect to Wi-Fi, consider these security tips to keep prying eyes out of your devices:

  • Don’t use public Wi-Fi to shop online, log in to your financial institution, or access other sensitive sites.
  • Use a Virtual Private Network (VPN) to create a network-within-a-network, which keeps all of your data encrypted. There’s a comprehensive explanation on how VPNs work here.
  • Only visit websites with HTTPS encryption when you’re in public places.
  • Turn off the automatic Wi-Fi connectivity feature on your phone so it won’t seek out hotspots.
  • Buy an unlimited data plan for your device and stop using public Wi-Fi altogether.

Hopefully these tips will help you guys stay safe out there when you’re surfing on a free Wi-Fi network. If you have any other questions, please leave me a comment below.

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Computers

Razer’s Project Linda Turns Your Phone Into A Laptop

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Razer Project Linda

Last January, Razer wowed the crowds at CES with an impressive triple-screen gaming laptop, and this year they are back with another innovative concept, the Razer Project Linda, a 13.3-inch laptop design powered by the company’s Android-based Razer Phone.

Razer’s Project Linda laptop seamlessly docks the Razer Phone inside its chassis where a touchpad would normally reside and connects with the press of a button. The phone’s Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 and 8GB of RAM deliver responsive performance, instantly transforming it into an Android laptop. The Razer Phone 5.7-inch display can be used as a touchpad, or as a second screen for access to apps, tools, and more.

Razer Project Linda

“Android power users and laptop enthusiasts share a need for performance in a mobile form factor, which we provide with our award-winning Razer Phone and Razer laptops,” says Razer co-founder and CEO Min-Liang Tan. “Project Linda combines the best of both worlds, bringing a larger screen and physical keyboard to the Android environment, enhancing the experience for gaming and productivity.”

This is a great idea in concept, and it may actually hint at the future of the computer as we know it. Use your smartphone for the basics, like surfing the web, social media, games and apps. And when you need to be more productive, simply place the Razer Phone into the “dock” so you can write long e-mails and do other productive things where you’d benefit from a larger screen and keyboard.

Razer Project Linda

We’ve seen a few products try this before (like The Superbook, which raised nearly $3 million on Kickstarter), but if there’s anyone who seems poised to pull this off, it’s Razer. It should be interesting to see if Razer will move forward with Project Linda, or if it’s just another CES concept that never sees the light of day.

For more information on Razer’s Project Linda concept, visit razerzone.com/projectlinda.

Photo credit: Razer

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Computers

The Azulle Byte3 Mini PC Proves That Good Things Come In Small Packages

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Byte3 Fanless Mini Desktop PC

Back in the day, I had this bulky, awkward computer in my living room that I used to stream movies and other content onto my big-screen TV. And while it worked great, it really ruined the aesthetics of the room.

Thankfully, computers have come a long way since then, getting smaller and more powerful over the years. A perfect case in point is the sleek and lean Azulle Byte3 Fanless Mini PC, which is small enough to fit in the palm of your hand, yet powerful enough to tackle anything you throw its way.

Despite its small stature, the Byte3 packs quite a punch, with a 64-bit Quad-Core Intel Apollo Lake processor, 4GB or 8GB of RAM, and 32GB of eMMC storage (with a Micro SD card slot that accept up to 256GB). Hook it up to a TV or monitor, and you’ve got a lightning-fast computer that looks right at home in your living room or on your desk, and thanks to its fanless design, it’s whisper quiet to boot.

Sure, with the Byte3 you can browse the web, check e-mails, do online banking, and shop online. But with 4K at 60 FPS, you can also stream Netflix, Hulu, YouTube and other video services without breaking a sweat. Or use Microsoft Office to complete any business, school, or leisure-time task. Heck, you can even connect a webcam to your mini PC and make video calls on the big screen.

As you can see, the Byte3 has a wide variety of ports that enable you to connect a wide range of peripherals. I kept things simple, hooking up the mini PC to my 50″ TV via HDMI, and connecting my Logitech wireless keyboard/mouse over Bluetooth. Once that was done, I was off and running.

Overall, I was really impressed with the Byte3. It’s a fantastic little computer that will do almost anything you need it to do, despite it’s tiny footprint. Without a doubt, the Azulle Byte3 is the feather-weight champion of fast, functional, user-friendly and affordable technology. At it’s quite a bargain at just $199.99.

What do you think of the Azulle Byte3 Fanless Mini PC?

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