Gigabyte U2442F 14-inch Ultrabook Review and more
Posted on: 05/13/2013 10:38 AM

Here a roundup of today's reviews, including Gigabyte U2442F 14-inch Ultrabook Review, Luxa2 P1 7000mAh Mobile Battery Charger Review, Ozone Blade Review, OWC Envoy Pro EX USB 3.0 Bus-Powered Portable SSD Review @ SSD Review, and PowerColor Radeon HD 7790 TurboDuo 1GB Video Card Review

Gigabyte U2442F 14-inch Ultrabook Review
It was 2011 and Intel saw a surging trend in mobile computing, admittedly inspired by Apple's Macbook Air. Notebooks were to become thinner, batteries had to last more, optical drives were going away, and performance, performance didn't have to suffer too much. Moreover, manufacturers didn't seem to be doing a whole lot to get on this trend, so Intel pushed forward by investing $300 million of its own money to make it happen.

The first Ultrabook specification was based on the Huron River platform using the Sandy Bridge architecture. This specification required a minimum battery life of 5 hours, a resume from hibernation time of 7 seconds, and the laptop's body could be no more than 18mm thick for 13.3” models and 21mm thick for 14” models. The use of solid-state drives and unibody chassis were also encouraged (but not part of the specification) to help meet these criteria.

Read more: Gigabyte U2442F 14-inch Ultrabook Review

Luxa2 P1 7000mAh Mobile Battery Charger Review @ Hi Tech Legion
I don’t even know why Ultraman just seemed to have barely enough power to finish off one monster every episode. Maybe he didn’t eat his alien veggies when he was a kid so he wasn’t as strong as he could be. I couldn’t exactly blame him for not bringing a backup battery for recharging on the battlefield however as battery technology wasn’t exactly advanced back in the 60s. Their computers were still using punch cards and took up an entire floor so I doubt they had a pocket-sized battery charger technology. Besides, Ultraman’s suit didn’t have any pockets.

Thankfully, we live in an age where portable battery technology is available. With phones and tablets being an important part of our lives to stave off that giant monster called “boredom”, keeping a spare battery charger handy on the car or in a drawer is just a smarter move. Also, the last thing you need is not have enough battery to complete a 911 call when an actual Kaiju starts attacking the city. Many manufacturers are offering different solutions with different capacities, one of them being Thermaltake’s premium Luxa2 line that has a 7000mAh battery charger available.

Read more: Luxa2 P1 7000mAh Mobile Battery Charger Review @ Hi Tech Legion

Thermaltake Knucker Plunger Gaming Keyboard @ Benchmark Reviews
n today's throw-away culture it seems that nothing is sacred anymore. Spending ~$100 on a keyboard seems like nothing to some folks with disposable income, but not all of us have that luxury. To this end Thermaltake's Tt eSPORTS division have created the Knucker Plunger Gaming Keyboard (model: KB-KNK008).

The Knucker Gaming Keyboard was designed and priced to sit partially between regular rubber dome keyboards and mechanical switch keyboards. The end result is what Thermaltake call 'Plunger switch technology', a semi-mechanical rubber dome setup that gives tactile feel of mechanical switches at a much lower cost. Here at Benchmark Reviews we aim to give you the information you want without all the hype, so you can make an educated decision for yourself. Read on to find out if the Knucker keyboard is all that it promises to be.

Read more: Thermaltake Knucker Plunger Gaming Keyboard @ Benchmark Reviews

FEZ Review @ OCC
When playing the game just to finish it, you will have a good time trying to find everything and going everywhere like you would in any well-designed game world. Getting lost does not matter because you can just keep going through doors, ending up where ever you may, with more items to collect. Once you start trying to complete it and find every single collectible, the experience becomes more irritating and tedious with confusing puzzles and a poorly designed map for getting from one area to another. The basic gameplay is quite good but left me unimpressed, though perhaps that is a good thing, because the world-spinning mechanic was so well implemented that it never stood out to me. The advanced gameplay that follows does not appear to be designed for the average gamer, but even if you can only solve a few anti-cube puzzles without help, you will enjoy doing so.

Read more: FEZ Review @ OCC

Sapphire 7790 Dual-X @ PureOverclock
AMD’s current 7000 generation cards have matured rather nicely for the most part, and now we’re looking at another Radeon HD 7790. This one is a Sapphire card, the Dual-X specifically, and it’s positioned in the market as a more budget-oriented choice.

The the recent release of the GTX 650 Ti Boost, it seems AMD has this card straddling the cheaper vanilla GTX 650 Ti and the Boost models, with a price range in the $150 bracket, targeted at mainstream consumers who want some moderate gaming without breaking the bank.

Read more: Sapphire 7790 Dual-X @ PureOverclock

Ozone Blade Review @ Vortez
Ozone are no longer the relatively new company we first met in 2011 with the Strike Mechanical Keyboard. Since then they have flexed their muscles in the peripheral arena with a plethora of new releases such as the RADON Opto gaming mouse and more recently the Silver Award winning Rage ST Headset. Rather than aim for the boutique-end of the market Ozone design very much for gamers seeking good quality at the mid-range budget, and so far have done an admirable job.

A strong product line-up isn't quite enough to put a manufacturer ahead of the curve these days though. In common with other prominent gaming peripheral brands in recent times Ozone have sought to take advantage of the burgeoning E-Sports sector, including becoming the headline sponsor for teams based both in the EU and Korean E-Sports heartland. Among these teams are MVP-White, a professional League of Legends outfit who have since changed their name to MVP-Ozone to reflect this partnership. A list of some of the teams Ozone support in the community can be found here:

Read more: Ozone Blade Review @ Vortez

PQI Air Card Video Review @ TechnologyX
Sometimes as tech geeks we tend to overlook the little things. Such was the case when we received a few items from PQI this week that included their new AirCam Sports Camera, PQI Air Drive and the product we are looking at today, the PQI Air Card. The PQI Air Card replaces the SD card of your camera or multimedia device, allowing you to stream pictures and video directly to your smart phone for instant viewing, via free mobile PQI mobile software.

Read more: PQI Air Card Video Review @ TechnologyX

OWC Envoy Pro EX USB 3.0 Bus-Powered Portable SSD Review @ SSD Review
External storage solutions are all the rage as of late and they are reaching performance and capacity heights that we have never seen before. Yesterday, we spoke of technology advancing to the point that we could carry our entire computing environment with us and boot it from any PC and today, we can do that with both Windows and Mac systems.

To be useful though, external storage needs to have a few characteristics that we still hasn’t become the norm. USB 3.0 is a must as trying to work on a USB 2.0 system might be cognizant of trying to wade through a thick pool of mud and having an SSD present in the device is key to the performance USB 3.0 speaks to, albeit Thunderbolt would be ideal but has yet to really become mainstream. As much as many not consider it, looks also play a large part and that leads us right into our analysis of the OWC Envoy Pro 240GB external storage SSD that we are examining today.

Read more: OWC Envoy Pro EX USB 3.0 Bus-Powered Portable SSD Review @ SSD Review

PowerColor Radeon HD 7790 TurboDuo 1GB Video Card Review @ Madshrimps
The new Radeon HD 7790 TurboDuo 1GB card from PowerColor features overclocking from the factory and a custom cooling system with two fans and a heatsink with a single heatpipe. The fan speed profile was tuned for achieving good temperatures and by raising the clocks even further from Catalyst Control Center, we can squeeze the last performance drop from the card.

Read more: PowerColor Radeon HD 7790 TurboDuo 1GB Video Card Review @ Madshrimps

Diamond HD7790 Graphics Card @ Bjorn3D
Diamond is one of those companies we grew up with, and we think that it says alot about a company when they can last this long in this industry the way companies like Diamond have, and normally it comes from offering a good quality product and good service.

Read more: Diamond HD7790 Graphics Card @ Bjorn3D

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