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Swiftech Apogee XL CPU Waterblock 07-01-2014

Today we have for review Swiftech's absolute latest in blocks, the Apogee XL. Superseding the Apogee HD, which we reviewed two years ago, the XL offers some fine-tuning in performance for the latest AMD and Intel processors, reduced flow restriction and a new visual enhancement with LED back-lit logo plate in four included interchangeable colors: blue, green, red and white. There are two different versions available, the standard black polycarbonate body we received and an all-new XLC model with clear top.

X2 Aurel Noise Cancellation Headset 05-27-2014

X2 Products comes to us from a team of PC enthusiasts based in the Netherlands. X2 has sent over for review today the X2 Aurel audio headphones with passive noise cancellation. Despite having an in-line microphone, the Aurel seem to be emphasized more for their audio headphone performance rather than portrayed as a true gaming headset. X2 advertises the Aurel series 2.0 as genuine audio headphones designed for style and functionality with gold-plated cables, passive noise cancellation and superb and crystal clear sound.

OCZ 240GB Vertex 460 solid state drive 04-14-2014

One of the first announced products to come about as a result of Toshiba acquiring OCZ was the Vertex 460, a marriage of OCZ's Indilinx Barefoot 3 controller and Toshiba 19nm toggle flash memory. Advertising up to 545MB/s sequential reads and 525MB/s sequential writes and from 90,000 to 95,000 4K random IOPS, it appears as if OCZ is right back at the top of their game in the SSD market. Available in 120GB, 240GB and 480GB capacities with a three year warranty, the Vertex 460 joins the Vector 150 in OCZ's new lineup of consumer SSDs utilizing Toshiba's toggle NAND flash memory.

SilverStone Grandia GD08 HTPC Case 03-26-2014

SilverStone makes many different sizes and styles of HTPC cases. The chassis we'll be taking a look at today is their Grandia GD08 which supports a full-size ATX motherboard and power supply along with dual optical drives and as many as eight 3" and two 2" hard drives. Provisions for cooling are spacious as well with up to four 120mm intake and two 80mm exhaust fans plus extra venting in the top and rear.

Kingston HyperX Predator 8GB DDR3-2400 Kit 03-20-2014

What Kingston sent us for review today represents the next step up in their HyperX Predator line, the 8GB DDR3-2400 KHX24C11T2K2/8X kit. While only half the capacity of the set we reviewed last year, this kit is verified to run at the faster DDR3-2400 speed and CAS11. Memory bandwidth becomes very important for performance when shared with an iGPU such as AMD's latest Kaveri APU. Kingston also offers 8GB kits in DDR3-2666 and now DDR3-2800 speeds.

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While very effective, solar power is still quite an expensive proposition and now a start-up engineering team is developing new materials that could cut the costs dramatically.

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Apple may not be the only company struggling with weak tablet sales. In a recent interview with Re/code, Best Buy CEO Hubert Joly said sales of tablets have boomed and are now crashing as the volume has really gone down in the last several months.

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In an effort to further improve its voice and data security, Blackberry announced that that it will acquire Secusmart, a Dusseldorf, Germany-based company that specializes in encryption and anti-eavesdropping services. Financial details were not disclosed and the deal is still pending regulatory approval.

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We've seen a huge shift in the wireless landscape over the past year or so thanks largely to T-Mobile but it's a new plan, or lack of, from Virgin Mobile USA that may ultimately reshape how we think about wireless service.

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Instagram yesterday unveiled a new messaging app that allows users to send short-lived photo and video messages from their mobile devices. Dubbed Bolt, the app's premise is similar to that of Snapchat or Slingshot.

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Ever since the launch of Watch Dogs in late May, PC gamers have had to suffer through mediocre performance in the flagship Ubisoft title, even on rigs with high-end graphics cards. Despite Ubisoft claiming it had improved performance, the patch they released in June did little to ease the pain. ...

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Facebook will soon have one less weapon in its quest to find additional revenue streams as the social networking giant will shut down Gifts on August 12. You win some, you lose some.

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Microsoft has today launched the first update to Windows Phone 8.1, known as GDR1 or simply 'Update 1', with users in the Preview for Developers program set to get the update over-the-air some time this week.

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Earlier this year Nvidia launched their GeForce GTX 750 Ti and GTX 750 graphics cards. Based on the latest Maxwell microarchitecture, the release garnered a surprising amount of attention. Normally cards in this price and performance bracket are unexciting workhorses; they’re the mainstream budget cards that people buy because they either can’t...

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In the wake of similar deals with rivals Comcast and Verizon, Netflix has reached an agreement with AT&T for direct access to their networks. It's a move that'll allow Netflix to sidestep congested Internet pipelines largely responsible for poor performance when streaming from the popular video service. ...

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Arduino, Raspberry Pi and similar hobby boards have proven incredibly successful among enthusiasts and educational institutions which is why Intel and Microsoft have joined forces to create a board of their own.

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I've never piloted a drone although I imagine doing so must be a pretty risky endeavor, especially for first-time flyers. Even with all of the preparation and skill in the world, there's always the possibility that something could go wrong mechanically.

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Authorities and content copyright holders have been attempting to shut down illegal torrent and video sites for years in what seems like a never ending battle. And now a task force in the UK has come up with an interesting way to combat the owners of these sites by compromising...

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Borrowing a page from the streaming music and video industry, Electronic Arts on Tuesday announced a subscription service targeting Xbox One owners. EA Access, in partnership with Microsoft, will grant members access to select EA games for a monthly (or annual) fee and early access to game demos.

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Nvidia's Shield Tablet launches today and with it come a new set of GeForce drivers. As you'd expect, the WHQL drivers add support for Nvidia's new slate but there are also some new / updated SLI and 3D Vision profiles as well as some tweaks for a few other games. ...

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Security researchers at Bluebox Labs have uncovered a design flaw in Android that could allow malware to take over a device.

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The new developers behind Popcorn Time have been continually updating the on-demand torrent streaming service after taking over for the original creators. Based on an open source platform, Popcorn essentially gives users a Netflix like experience while sourcing all its content from torrents.

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Facebook caught a ton of flak recently when word got out that the social network had performed psychological experiments on close to 700,000 unknowing users. Now it's OKCupid's turn to see what it feels like to be under the media microscope.

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Apple on Tuesday refreshed its 13-inch and 15-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display lineup, just in time for the back-to-school shopping season. The new machines are now powered by Intel's fourth generation Haswell processors and ship with more memory.

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The last we heard of a new flagship Windows Phone from HTC was way back in March, just shortly after the launch of their Android flagship, the HTC One (M8). The rumor mill has been relatively quiet about the upcoming device, until today that is, when new information from Engadget has...

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As expected, Yelp has added the ability to add short videos with reviews. The company announced that users of its iPhone app can now upload 3- to 12-second videos with their reviews, allowing them to show off aspects like ambiance, lighting, noise level, and other features of local businesses not easily...

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Facebook intends to kill messaging from its main mobile application in the coming days, following through with the plans it laid out several months ago. If you want to continue chatting through Facebook, you'll need to download the company's standalone Messenger app.

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The Russian Ministry of Internal Affairs (MVD) is offering a 3.9 million ruble (approximately $110,000) bounty for technology that can identify the users of the anonymous browsing network Tor.

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Researchers at Nvidia have developed a method to produce low-cost, high-resolution displays by simply layering two LCD panels on top of each other. The technique can quadruple the effective resolution of a standalone display, and could lead to cheap screens for head-mounted devices like the Oculus Rift.

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For many people smartphone cameras have replaced standalone point-and-shoots as the go-to device for everyday photography, as they're easier to access and more compact to carry with you. But just what goes in to making a good smartphone camera? What hardware do companies use? What do pixel sizes and f-stops...

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Earlier today we wrote about advancements in battery technology that have the potential to keep smartphones and other mobile devices running up to three times longer. It's a significant step forward but as we outlined, there's still more experimentation to be done before the technology is ready for consumer markets. ...

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We have seen some pseudo hologram technology in action previously, like when Tupac appeared at Coachella in digital form or when the Michael Jackson performed at the Billboard Music Awards. And now, Scotland based artists Chris Helson and Sarah Jackets (known as Helson and Jackets), have created an installation that may...

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Mozilla on Monday announced interim CEO Chris Beard will man the position permanently as the foundation looks to put its management woes behind them once and for all.

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Hilton Worldwide has been investing heavily in upgrading its various hotel locations with smart features and it plans to continue to do so with even more extensive smartphone integration. By 2016, all Hilton (and Hilton owned) hotel locations will offer customers the ability to use their smartphones as room keys. Hilton...

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Real estate listing aggregator Zillow has agreed to purchase one of its biggest competitors, Trulia. The $3.5 billion deal, which has been approved by both companies' boards, will close sometime next year pending regulatory approval.

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