Sie sind auf Seite 1von 124

CPC AWARD WINNERS AS DECIDED BY YOU

THE BEST-SELLING MAG FOR PC HARDWARE, OVERCLOCKING, GAMING & MODDING W WA

COMPLETE 23-PAGE GUIDE

WATER COOL YOUR PC


11 waterblocks and radiators reviewed Step-by-step installation guides

PLUS

ISSUE 107

HOW TO OVERCLOCK IV Y BRIDGE CHIPS GA ME MAR K E GAME MARKETING

INSIDE: WHAT THE PIRATE BAY BLOCK MEANS FOR US

AUG 2012 4.50

WorldMags.net

Welcome to Issue 107


EDITOR BenHardwidge editor@custompc.co.uk TECHNICALEDITOR HarryButler GAMESEDITOR JoeMartin ARTEDITOR BillBagnall PRODUCTIONEDITOR JulieBirrell CONTRIBUTORS AntonyLeather, CliffHarris, GarethHalfacree,JimKillock, LucySherriff, MikeJennings, PaulGoodhead,RickLane,Robert Florence, SimonTreadaway, TracyKing PHOTOGRAPHY DannyBird GROUPADVERTISINGMANAGER BenTopp +44(0)2079076625 ben_topp@dennis.co.uk ACCOUNTMANAGER AdamMcDonnell +44(0)2079076620 adam_mcdonnell@dennis.co.uk SALESEXECUTIVE FinanTesfay +44(0)2079076898 finan_tesfay@dennis.co.uk USADVERTISINGDIRECTOR MatthewSullivan-Pond +16467179555 matthew_sullivan@dennis.co.uk

Editorial

GROUPPUBLISHER PaulRayner paul_rayner@dennis.co.uk MARKETINGEDITORIALEXECUTIVE PaulGoodhead paul_goodhead@dennis.co.uk LICENSINGMANAGER CarlottaSerantoni Carlotta_Serantoni@dennis.co.uk +44(0)2079076550 LICENSINGANDSYNDICATION ASSISTANT NicoleAdams Nicole_Adams@dennis.co.uk +44(0)2079076134 SYNDICATIONSENIORMANAGER AnjumDosaj +44(0)2079076132

Publishing & Marketing

Dennis Publishing Limited


Tel:02079076000fax02079076193 DIRECTOROFADVERTISING JulianLloydEvans MANAGINGDIRECTOR DENNISTECHNOLOGY JohnGarewal CEO IanWestwood NEWSTRADEDIRECTOR DavidBarker FINANCEDIRECTOR BrettReynolds GROUPFINANCEDIRECTOR IanLeggett CHIEFEXECUTIVE JamesTye CHAIRMAN FelixDennis SUBSCRIPTIONS Youcanmanageyourexisting subscriptionthroughwww.subsinfo. co.ukthisshouldbeyourfirstport ofcallifyouhaveanyqueriesabout yoursubscription.Email:custompc@ servicehelpline.co.uk Annualsubs:UK39.99UKsubs: 08448440032 Overseassubs:Europe60, ROW80 Overseassubs:+44(0)1795592906 PrintedbyBGP. Distributedby SeymourDistribution Tel:02074294001

Advertising

Thepaperusedwithinthismagazine isproducedfromsustainablefibre, manufacturedbymillswithavalidchain ofcustody.

Theadviceandinformationprovidedinthismagazineisgiveningoodfaith. DennisPublishingLimitedcannotacceptanyresponsibilityforanyloss,disruptionor damagetoyourdataoryourcomputersystemwhichmayoccurasaresultoffollowingor attemptingtofollowadvicegiveninthemagazineoronitswebsite.Ifthingsdogowrong, takeabreak.Theworldtendstoseembetterafteracupoftea. CustomPCispublishedmonthlybyDennisPublishingLtd,30ClevelandStreet, London W1T4JD,acompanyregisteredinEnglandnumber1138891. Entirecontents(c)DennisPublishingLtdlicensedbyFelden.

DONT TRY THIS AT HOME

WorldMags.net

August 2012

Welcome to Issue 107

Everbeentempted bythecooltemps, overclocking headroomorjustthesimple, awesomefactorofwater cooling,butdidntknow wheretostart?Thismonth, fortheveryfirsttime,weve dedicatedawholeLabstest toseparatewater-cooling components,reviewingthree CPUwaterblocks,sixGPU waterblocksandfourradiators. Whatsmore,weveevenincluded twostep-by-stepinstallationguides.

WATER COOL YOUR PC

54

44

40

98

Itsgoodtodebunktechclaims,but TracyKingarguesthatweneedtodoitfairly.

11

SPOTTINGAFAIRTEST

TheUKsmajorISPshavebeen orderedtoblockaccesstothePirateBay,but JimKillockasksifcensorshipistheanswer.

12

THEPIRATEBAYBLOCK

Representingdatawiththespinof anelectronchangedharddrivereadheads, butcoulditdothesameforlogiccircuits?

18

SPINTRONICS

Wecannowswimupforairinthe swampofhype,butwas itworththewait?

86

DIABLOIII

JoeMartintalkstoMaxisOcean Quigleyaboutthelatestinstalmentinthe SimCityfranchise.

14

SIMCITYINTERVIEW

CanIntelsnewintegratedHD4000 graphicsprocessorbeatAMDsLlanoGPU architectureatitsowngame?Weinvestigate.

38

IVYBRIDGEGRAPHICSTEST

CliffHarrisattemptstopersuade youtopostonlinereviewsofyourgames.

94 REVIEWYOURGAMES 96
THEENGINEROOM UNREALENGINE3

WecheckoutOCZsVertex4toseeif theIndilinxEverest2controllerisanygood.

44 INDILINXEVEREST2

Wereintroducinganewsectionthismonth, wherewelookatapopulargameengineeach issue.ItkicksoffwithUnrealEngine3.

August 2012

WorldMags.net

102 54 58 76 108 98 18 12 86 14

1ssue 107
Hardware 36 Dino PC Tyrannosaur
PC
3570K

Reviewed this month


PRODUCTS REVIEWED

30

GRAPHICS HARDWARE 38 Intel HD 4000 graphics 40 PNY Nvidia GeForce GTX 670 2GB SSD 44 OCZ Vertex 4 256GB JOYSTICK 46 Cyborg F.L.Y 5 KEYBOARD 48 CM Storm Quick Fire Rapid

52 52 52 53

Custom kit
Keysonic KSK-3205 Memoir 44 Pico Genie A100 Antec Advance Natural Spray 60ml Antec Advance 3x Strength Spray 60ml Antec Advance Deep Clean Gel Enermax Dream Bass AP001 Aquacomputer Cuplex Kryos HF Watercool Heatkiller CPU Rev 3.0 CU XSPC RayStorm CPU WaterBlock Koolance VID-NX680 Watercool Heatkiller GPU-X GTX 680 Hole Edition XSPC Razor GTX680 Aquacomputer aquagrATIx for HD 7970 Watercool Heatkiller GPU-X GTX 79X0 XSPC Razor 7970 Aquacomputer airplex XT 240 Alphacool NexXxoS XT60 Full Copper 240mm Phobya G-Changer 240 Ver. 1.2 Black XSPC EX240 Multiport Radiator

53

96

Whendidgamesstartarrivingin collectorseditions,andwhydowenowhave gamecharacterstatuettesandqueues outsideHMV?JoeMartininvestigatesthe evolutionofgamemarketing.

98

BUYNOW,PAYLATER

108

HOWTOOVERCLOCKIVY BRIDGE

Weshowyouthequickestandeasiestwayto geta3.4GHzCorei5-3570Kallthewayupto 4.5GHz,usinganAsusMaximusVGene motherboard.

How to fit CPU and GPU waterblocks 80 How to mount your radiator and pump 104 Readers drives 108 How to overclock a Core i5-3570K 111 For the win! 114 Letters 117 Folder of the month 118 Your folding milestones

Community
76

8 From the editor 11 Tracy King 12 Digital rights 14 Interview 16 Incoming 18 Science! 20 Mobile tech watch 24 CPC Elite products 50 How we test 84 Grumpy gamer 94 Dev perspective 96 The engine room 120 Retro tech 122 Robert Florence

Regulars

53 53 58 59

Water cooling Labs test

60 62 64 65 67 68 70 71 72 73 74

Games 86 Diablo III 88 Sniper Elite V2 92 Warlock: Master of the Arcane 93 Crysis 3
August 2012 5

WorldMags.net

WorldMags.net

WorldMags.net

TOO MANY DRIVER UPDATES

from the editor

AMD has decided to stop issuing monthly updates to its Catalyst driver updates. Good

h,goaway!Notagain,click,click.Dontcare!Atleast,thatsthe usualmonthlyexchangeIvehadwithmyPCforthepastfew yearsuntilIupgradedtoaGeForceGTX680.Thatsbecause IvebeenusingAMDgraphicscards,fromtheRadeonHD4850 throughthe5850toa6870.Theyweregoodcards,butthemonthly nagtoupdatemydriversniggledlikeabig,stupidflybuzzinginand outofmyear.IprobablyevenshoutedoutloudtomyPC.Sometimes. Ofcourse,likeanyself-respectingenthusiast,Iliketomakesure thatmyPCisperformingaswellaspossible,butthatdoesntmean Iwanttogothroughthehassleofuninstalling mygraphicsdrivers,reinstallingnewonesand restartingmyPCeverymonth.Itgrateseven morewhenyoulookthroughthereleasenotes andseethattheonlyfixesareforagameyou dontevenown,ataparticularresolution yourmonitordoesntevensupport,andthe graphicalglitchesyouwerehopingtoresolve inanothergamearentevenmentioned. Perhapsthemostannoyingmonthlyremindercamefrommy mediacentrePC,whichhasaRadeonHD3450.Ihaventupdated thedriverfor18months,becauseIhaventneededtoifitaintbroke, dontfixit,especiallywhenyouriskbreakingyourPCintheprocess. Everynowandthen,IfoundthatthepreviousversionofCatalystdidnt uninstallproperly,andinstallingthenewversionmeantIcouldno longeropentheControlCenter,requiringalongandtediousvoyage throughthecheckboxbadlandsofRegedittogetitworkingagain. IcanseewhyAMDadoptedthisstrategy.ATIdrivershadaterrible reputationforstabilitywhenCatalystwasreleased,andittookafew monthsof.NETtweakingtomaketheCatalystControlCenterrun smoothlyandquickly.AMDneededtoimproveitsreputation,and theideaofmonthlyupdatesmusthaveseemedappealing,while

The monthly nag to update niggled like a big, stupid fly buzzing in and out of my ear

alsogivingAMDbraggingrightsoverNvidiascomparativelyirregular ForceWareupdates. Itdidntworkthough.Inarushtogetanewupdateoutofthedoor everymonth,AMDsdriverteammusthaveundoubtedlyhadtoplace someissuesontheToDopile,andNvidiacertainlydoesntseemto havesufferedfromnotknockingoutnewdriverupdateseverymonth. Thankfully,allthisisnowinthepastthismonthAMDannounced thatitwasnolongergoingtoreleasemonthlydriverupdates,but insteadreleaseanewdrivereverynowandthenwithplentyoffixes, muchlikeNvidiasstrategy. Iwontbesadtoseethebackofit.Ilike tokeepmyPCshardwareandsoftware maintained,buttherecomesapointwhereit stopsbeingusefulandactuallyjustbecomes annoying.Goodcall,AMD.Idontcareifitwas amoney-savingdecisionitwastherightone. Inothernews,thismonthalsoseesthe introductionofanewregularsectioncalledtheEngineRoom,in whichweregoingtolookatagameengineeverymonth,andseehow itschangedPCgaming,particularlywhenitcomestographicsand hardwarefeatures.ThefirstoneisallaboutUnrealEngine3(seep96). Finally,wereteamingupwithourfriendsatbit-techtocreatea techandgamingpubquiz.Asafanofbothaleandquizzes,Ifully supportthisendeavour,andwillbepenningsomeofthequestions too.Ifyouthinkyouvegotwhatittakestobeonawinningteam,then checkoutthedetailsonp10andsubmityourentry. BenHardwidgeistheeditorofCustomPC.HelikesPCs,realale andWarhammer40,000.
EDITOR@CUSTOMPC.CO.UK @MANSHARK

August 2012

WorldMags.net

Explore a

new gaming experience with PNYs GTX 670.

For more information: www.pny.eu


PNYTechnologiesEurope.RCSBordeauxB394790430-PNY,PNYTechnologiesandthePNYlogoareregisteredtrademarksofPNYTechnologies,Inc.Allothertrademarksandlogosarethepropertyoftheirrespectivecompanies.Copyright2012PNYTechnologies,Inc. All rights reserved. 2012 NVIDIA Corporation. NVIDIA, NVIDIA logo, GeForce, GeForce logo, SLI, NVIDIA SLI-Ready logo, PhysX, 3D Vision, 3D Vision Surround, and CUDA are registered trademarks and/or trademarks of NVIDIA Corporation in the United States and other countries. All Rights Reserved.

WorldMags.net

WorldMags.net

SPOTTING A FAIR TEST


tsagoodjobthereareexperttechreviewsotherwisewedhave toeithertakeachance,orbuyeverythingandperformourown comparisontests.However,nowandagain,Iseeacomparison testthatsetsouttotestaparticularclaim,fromquantummagnets clarifyingsoundwaves,toexpensivedigitalcablesdeliveringsignal improvements,andthesetestsarentalwaysasrobustastheymight claim.SoIvedecidedtooutlinesomeofthepitfallswhentestingsuch claims,usingmyfavouriteclaim-of-superpowers,HDMIcables. Firstly,whatistheactualclaimbeingtested?Inourexampleof HDMIcables,whatdothemanufacturerssayisbetterabouttheir 200cables?Someclaimscantbetested,sincetheydontsay anythingspecific.OnecableIsawstatedthat itdeliversthefullexperience. Nothing quantifiablethere.Aclaimthatcanbetested ideallyhasastandardofmeasurement.For example,worldsfastestcableforHDMI: HyperSpeed-highspeedratedat21Gb/sec containsatestableclaim,oncewegetpast theHyperSpeedbabble. Somecomparisontestslookforeffectsthat themanufacturerhasntactuallyclaimed. Thisisaneasypitfallifyouretryingtoanswer whichcableisbetter?,becausethequestion issubjective. Secondly,isthetesttrulylike-for-like?InourHDMIexample,the testmightbewhetherthegoldcablesdeliverthesuperiorstandard theypromise(howeverthatsbeingmeasured)comparedtonon-gold. Asthetestfocusesononespecificarea,allotheraspectsshould ideallybeidentical.Cablelength,width,ageandsoonshouldallbethe same.Ifnot,theremaybeafactoraffectingperformanceotherthan thegold,andthetestwouldntbefair. Thirdly,theidealtestisdouble-blinded.Humansarefullofbias andpreconceptions,andthiscancreepintotestsinmanyways,from somethingsimplesuchashandlingtheexpensivecabledifferently

Its good to debunk seemingly false tech claims, but we also need to make sure that we do it fairly and accurately

HDMI cables either deliver ones and zeroes or they dont, but some may have better interference shielding, or they might last longer

fromthecheapone,toseeingdifferencesthatarentreallythere becauseyourebiasedtowardsaparticularbrand.Ideally,noone involvedinphysicallydoingthetestshouldbeawarethatitsforHDMI cables.Thepeopleevaluatingwhethersoundorpictureisclearer shouldntknowwhattheyrelookingfor,onlythattheyhavetonoteif thereareanydifferencesand,ifso,whatdifferences.Thequestion whichisbetter,pictureAorpictureB?isbiasedbecauseitprimes theviewertoexpectadifference,sotheymayfindoneregardless. Fourthly,hasthetestreplicatedcircumstancesthatleadto problems?HDMIcableseitherdeliveronesandzeroesortheydont, butsomemaybebetteratshieldingfrominterference,ortheymight lastlonger;ifyoudonttesttheminthesame environmentthataffectsperformancethen youwontfindout.Twodifferentlypricedcables willprobablyperformthesameoutofthebox inthesamesetup,butdotheyperformthe sameinmylounge,wheretheresno interference,astheydoinmyofficewhere theresloads?Dotheyperformthesameover timeandstress?Withoutreplicatingwhat leadstoproblems,thetestmaynotbefair. Comprehensivereviewsshouldalsotest morethanoneofeachcable.Youhaveno wayofknowingifyourtestcablesaretypical examplesoftheirmodelifyouonlyhaveone.Ofcourse,thisisall assumingthatweliveinanidealworld,butIhopethisgivesyouan ideaofthesortofissuesthatcancropupwhentryingtogetthrough technobabbleorgold-platedquantumpricing.Thenexttimeyou readatechreviewthatdebunksaclaim,askifthetestshavebeen performedfairly. GamerandscienceenthusiastTracyKingdissectstheevidence andstatisticsbehindsomeofthepopularmediastories @TKINGDOLL surroundingtechandgaming

WorldMags.net

August 2012

11

Jim Killock

The UKs major ISPs have been ordered to block access to the Pirate Bay, but is censorship the answer?

The Pirate Bay block


ensorshipisanegativeandblunt responsetoalmostanything,andit impliesthatthecensordoesnttrust youtomakeyourowndecisions.Past experienceofcensorshiphasshownthatits rarelyfullyeffective;theunwantedactivityis likelytocarryonregardless,andthetargetof censorshipwilloftenlooklikeavictim. TheUKblockingofthePirateBayhas followedthispattern.Evenbeforetheblocks, thesitehadasurgeoftraffic,mirrors appearedandtheUKPiratePartysmirror drewmoretraffic.Asthejudgeinchargeof thecasehasorderedwholeIPaddressesto beblocked,themirrormayleadtothepartys mainwebsitebeingcutoff,whichwould meanUKcensorshipofapoliticalparty. Itstemptingtoconcludethatthisisa planned,strategicvictoryforthosewhosetup

thePirateBay,andhereswhy.ThePirateBay wassetupasaSwedishlanguagewebsitein 2003byathinktankcalledthePirateBureau, whichorganiseddirectactionarounddigital copyrightissues.ThePirateBaywaslikea directattackonthenotionthatcopyright couldbeenforceableinthedigitalage,and achallengetotheolddistributionmodels. Itwasfirstlyintendedtoshowthatpeople coulddistributematerialbetterthanthe traditionaltop-downcompanies,and secondly,todemonstratethatinanageof near-zerocostindistribution,simplyrelying onchargesforcopiesseemsredundant. Thissecondfactorispartlyacceptedby manyconventionalbusinessanalysts,who emphasisequalityofservice,curationand customerrelationships.However,the PirateBureausmainaimwastopushthe

boundariesofwhatsacceptable,and demonstratethatthetypesofcopyright enforcementpushedbyindustrygroups wouldquicklybecomeintolerable.By blockingthePirateBay,ithasproveditspoint. Theacceptabilityofcopyrightenforcement quicklybecamethefocusofdebate,starting withraidsonthePirateBaysserversin2006, andthefamoustrialin2007.Thelegalcase endedwithfinalappealsinearly2012.The fourdefendantsfacelargefinesandjail sentences,butthesitestillhasntshutdown. TherewasnevermuchdoubtthatthePirate Baywouldbeseentobeinfringingcopyright. Itsfamouslysarcasticresponsestocopyright takedownrequestsleftlittledoubtthatitwas likelytoobeythelaw.Theargumentthatitwas merelyasearchenginedoesntreallyabsolve itofresponsibilityforitswebpages,which

THE PIRATE BAY BLOCK FAQ


Whentheblockwasordered 2May, 2012,forthestartofJune. Whomustblockaccess? Sky,Virgin,TalkTalk,Everything Everywhere,O2andBT. Whythecourtorderedthe block ItrecognisedthatthePirateBay wasdoinglittleornothingto dealwithcopyrightcomplaints andwasinfacthelpingto facilitatecopyrightviolations. Howisthesiteblocked? AnyrequesttothePirateBays IPaddresswillnotbefulfilled. Thisblockshttpandhttps traffic.Usually,thiswould meanthatmanysitesmight beblocked,butonlyonesite isservedatthisIPaddress. Isthesiteillegal? No.Theactivitiesmaybeillegal, butitsastretchtocallitan illegalwebsite. Isitillegaltovisitthesite? No.Visitingawebsiteisnt(yet) acrime. IsusingproxiesorVPNsillegal? No.Circumventiontoolsarent illegal. Isdownloading.torrentfiles illegal? No.Merelydownloadinga torrentfileisntillegal. Isdownloadingactual copyrightfilesacrime? No,butitisawrong.Itssimilar tonotpayingabillinthatitsa privatewrong,whichgenerally meansyoumightfaceafine ratherthanprison. Issharingfilesacrime? Sometimes,butthedamage hastobeveryserious,suchas leakingapre-releaserecording. Otherwise,itsacivilwrong. Cancopyrightbeenforcedin thedigitalage? Yes.Thedebateiswhether wide,publicenforcementis necessary,orwhether businessesproductsand innovationaretheanswer. WherecanIfindmore information? StealThisFilmIandIIaregood introductionstothePirateBays politics.Lookonhttp://vo.do forhigh-qualitylegaltorrents. Youcanalsofindmore informationbyvisiting www. openrightsgroup.org/ piratebay

12

August 2012

WorldMags.net

AccesstothePirateBayhas alreadybeenblockedbyISPssuch asVirgin,butisstillavailablevia theUKPiratePartysproxy

pointtocopyrightinfringingmaterial. point?Itsbettertovisitthewebsitesand andtheUKsDigitalEconomyActlookedset Theresultofthetrial,however,wasthe maybewatchsomeadverts. tosucceedintippingthebalancetowards spreadofangerinSweden.Thenvery However,therearestillveryfewfilms creatingnewresponsibilities,restrictions, successfulPiratePartieswereestablished, publishedviawebservicesintheUKwhenyou punishmentsandliabilitiesdesignedto nowwithtwoSwedishMEPsandregional checkbackcatalogues,evenaward-winning increasecontrolofthedistribution representationinanumberofGerman films.Plus,downloadpricesareoftenhigher mechanisms.OnlySOPAandPIPAmanaged regionalparliaments.Theywerecreatedasa thanthecostofDVDs.Whilethepubliccryout tofinallyoutragetheAmericanpublicandtip resultoftheperceptionthatactionagainstthe forentertainment,andtheindustriescontinue thelobbygroupsstrategyoffcourse.Now, PirateBaywastheheavy-handedagendaof todoverywelldespitetherecession,the thankfully,ACTAisalsoindanger. foreignlobbygroups,andultimatelypointless. lobbyistsmanagetocreateadoom-laden Politicians,whoaresusceptibleto Thesegroupspushednotonlyforclosing atmosphereinwhichpolicymakersbelieve argumentsaboutthedangersofcopyright PirateBay,butalsoformeasurestoidentify copyrightisfacinganexistentialcrisis. theft,tendtoviewthesemeasuresas individualcopyrightinfringers. Thelobbygroupsmanagetoturn Exposingthisagendawaspretty manyoftheirbestcustomersand THERE ARE STILL VERY FEW FILMS sometimeinfringersintoavowed muchtheoriginalgoalofthePirate Bureau.Ithadntonlyprovokeda enemies.Theypushcensorship PUBLISHED VIA WEB SERVICES IN debate,butactuallycreateda measuresthatsendthesignalthat THE UK WHEN YOU CHECK BACK politicalmovementopposedtothe copyrightcanonlyexistifwe CATALOGUES, EVEN AWARD WINNERS sacrificefreespeechandprivacy. copyrightlobbies.Theresponseof therecordingandfilmindustries Theyhavealsosuccessfully sincethefirstmajorfile-sharingtool,Napster, generatedthreecitizenmovementstooppose reasonable.Theycreateaninfrastructureof hasbeentocloseservicesandstopinnovation theirgoals:thedigitalrightsmovement, controlthatcanbeusedformuchmorethan thattheydontcontrol. includingORG;thePirateParties;andthe copyright,anddamagelegalrightsofdue Mostlyrunbylawyers,groupssuchas looseAnonymousgroupingsorganising processasenforcementdutiesareplaced theIFPI(InternationalFederationof Europe-wideprotests.Whenyoureinahole, onintermediarieswithnointerestin PhonographicIndustries)andtheMPA stopdigging. whetheraninfringementclaimisrealor (MotionPictureAssociation)lookforlegal valid.Copyrightmonitoringisaconstant solutions.Theywanttoprotectthevalueof threattoyourprivacy. theirhistoricassets,whichtheyworrycould Justasimportantly,theenforcement depreciateifdigitaldistributionpushes agendatakesattentionawayfromthemajor isexecutivedirectorof cheapaccessratherthanpremiumsales. question:howdodigitalmusicandfilm campaignorganisation Itsonlyreallybeenin2012thatthe businessesmakemoneyontheInternet?The TheOpenRightsGroup lobbyistslegislativestrategyhaslookedlike answerissimpledoabetterandquickerjob (www.openrightsgroup.org) itscomingofftherails.Astringofinitiatives ofprovidingcontentthanfilesharing.Veryfew pushedbythesegroups,includingtheACTA peopleintheUKwouldfile-shareBBCor @jimkillock treaty(seeIssue105,p10),HadopiinFrance Channel4programmes;whatwouldbethe

JIM KILLOCK

WorldMags.net

August 2012

13

Joe Martin

Oh, so Sim-people
CPC:Whyareyoumakingthis SimCitynowaftersolongawayfrom thefranchise? Ocean:Wewantedtodoalotwith SimCity4thatjustwasntpossiblethen.Over thepastdecade,wekeptcomingbackto thoseideas,andafterfinishingSpore,we finallyhadanopportunitytorunwiththem. Oneoftheobviousimprovementsisthe inclusionofafully3Dcityuntilrecently,we couldntmakea3Dcitywith thelevelofvisualrichness thatthegamedemanded. Inpreviousversionsof SimCity,theywerealsofairly low-resolutionsimulations thatglossedoveralotofthe detailsthatmakeacityfeel real.Wewanttoshowthe behaviorsthatmakeupcities withvastlygreaterfidelity,and webuiltourGlassBoxengineto tacklealotoftheseelements. CPC:Canyoutalkaboutthenewengine? Ocean:GlassBoxisntagraphicsengine,its asimulationengine.BeforeGlassBox,we didnthavethesimulationtechnologyto makecitieswhereeverythingwasalive.This iswhatwemeanwesay,Everythingyousee weSim.GlassBoxenablesustosimulate everythingaplayerseeswithinthecitythe

Joe Martin talks to Maxis Ocean Quigley about a PC franchise that were very happy to see being revived SimCity

thousandsofSims,vehicles andbuildingsthatliveinit. CPC: CPC:Weveseenthe agentsinthegame,but howdotheywork?Doall citizenshavethesame priorities,forexample? Ocean:Atthemostbasiclevel,agentsare usedbythesimulationtocarryinformation throughthecity.Almosteverythingthats movinginthecityisanagent,includingthe Simsandtheircars,watermovingthrough pipes,electricitymovingthroughwiresand resourcesmovingthroughyoureconomy. Buildingscommunicatewitheachotherby

sendingagentstoandfro.Simsleave buildingswithaparticulargoalinmind,to lookforatypeofjob,goshoppingortothe hospital,lookforabuildingtorobandsoon. DifferentSimsarelookingfordifferent goals,dependingonwheretheyvecome from.Iftheycantfindwhattheyrelookingfor, theyllchangetheirmindsafterawhile,and lookforsomethingelse.Eventually,theyllfind whattheyrelookingfor,giveupandgoback home,ormaybeevenleaveyourcity. Theycarrystuffwiththem,suchashealth, education,happinessormoney.Whenthey gettotheirdestination,thatshandedoverto thebuildingthatreceivesthem,whichinturn setsoffadditionalsimulationactivity.

14

April 2012

WorldMags.net

CPC:Theabilitytoadddatalayerstothe maphasaGoogleMapsfeeltoit,buthow manylayerscanplayerssee? Ocean:Beingabletovisualisewhatsgoing onisabsolutelykey.Itdoesntmatterhow richandsophisticatedthesimulationisif youarentallowedtoseeit!Everygameplay systemeducation,crimeorgarbagehas differentwaysofshowingyouwhatitsdoing. Wehaveheavydatalayers,wherewe makethecitylookprettyabstract,and superimposegraphsoverbuildingsshowing youwhatsgoingon.Intheheavydatalayers, yourefocusingononeparticularsystem, suchasfiresafety.Everythingthatmatters aboutfirewillbevisibletherewherefires haveoccurred,whereyourfirestationsare, howaccessibledifferentpartsofyourcityare toyourfiretrucksandsoon. Wealsohavelightdatalayers,where weoverlayinformationonyourcitywithout changingthewayitlooks.Thoseareuseful forfiguringoutwheretoplopsomething,or whereyoumighthaveaproblem. CPC:ThenewSimCitywillfeature multiplayertoo;howdoesthatworkwitha sandboxstrategygame? Ocean:Inreallife,citiesdontexistinisolation. Theyreconnectedtoeachotherthroughthe flowoftrade,emigration,sharedresources andacommonenvironment.Inaddition,cities sharelarge-scaleregionalinfrastructure.For example,highways,internationalairportsand strip-minesbenefit(orharm)citiesinawide area. Weresimulatingthat,whichallows citiestodifferentiate,specialiseandcarryout differentrolesinthelargerregions. Whatyoubuildanddocanaffectthepeople withwhomyouchoosetoplay.Yourcitymight

commitcrimes.Therewillberegional leaderboards,sodifferentcitieswillcompete forpopulationandeconomy,ortobetheworst polluterorthemostcriminal. Singleplayerscanplayagainstthemselves. Theyllbeabletohavetheirown regionandstillhavethesame VISUALISING WHATS GOING ON IS KEY. IT DOESNT MATTER experienceofowningmultiple cities,aswellaswatching HOW RICH THE SIMULATION IS theircitiesgrowandchange dependingontheirchoices. IF YOU CANT SEE IT! CPC:Inmultiplayer,canyouplayagainst othercitiesaggressively? Ocean:Itsprimarilyacooperativegame, whereyourebuildingwithyourfriends. However,theresarealsimulation underneathit,soifyouwanttogriefthem youllbeabletodoso.Forexample,youcould makethemdependentonyou,andthenyank therugoutfromunderneaththem,oryou couldpipepollutedwatertothemorcultivate lotsofcriminalsthatdriveovertotheircityto CPC:Willmoddingtoolsbeavailable? Ocean:WebuilttheGlassBoxenginetobe moddablefromtheoutset,andourdata formatsarethesameastheywereforSimCity 4andTheSims.However,gettingmoddingto workproperly,witheverythingelsewere doing,isahugechunkofwork.Fornow,the teamneedstoconcentrateonfinishingthe coregameandmakingitgreat.Afterthat,we canlookatthebiggerpictureagain,anddothe worktoallowmodderstobuildonit.

producesomethingthattheircityneeds,or workersattheircitymightcometoyoursfor jobs.Andattheregionalscale,thedifferent citiescancollaboratetoconstructprojects thatwouldbeoutofscopeforanindividual.

WorldMags.net

April 2012

15

NEW HARDWARE

COMPUTEX SPECIAL
TechnicaleditorHarryButlerhasjustbeentotheComputextradeshowin Taiwan,andseenallsortsofawe-inspiringkit,frommotherboardswith integratedGeForceGTX680stoPCcasesbuiltinsideinmodeltrains.This monthweregoingtoshareafewofthegoodiesthatcaughthiseye,andget aglimpseofwhatmaybecominginthefuture.
AsusshowedoffitsnewMaximusVFormula thefullATXversionoftheMaximusVGene. Checkoutthepre-installedwaterblocksfor theVRMsaroundtheCPUsocket

SilverStonesnewRaven4prototypeshowedanewapproachto motherboardorientation,eschewingthecasesprevious90-degree mountinginfavourofcompletelyflippingtheboardupsidedown

Antechadseveral differentcoloursofits P280caseonshow

Asushasreallyexcelleditselfwiththisproof-of-conceptLGA2011, whichhastwoGeForceGTX680sunderneaththecolossalheatsinkat thebottom.Itprobablywonteverbereleased,butwedlovetogeta glimpseofwhatgoesonintheAsusengineeringlabs

LianLihadaPCcase inamodeltrainon showitreallymoves andeverything!

Forthosetimeswhenyoufancyacoldbeerduring gaming,butcantbebotheredtogotothekitchen, heresanInWincasewithafridgebuiltintoitthis wasaspecialeditionbuiltfortheeGeSportsteam

16

February 2012

WorldMags.net

Everything you need to work better online from Fasthosts


Thats not just a web-hosting package, a domain name, a virtual or dedicated server, broadband, hosted email or online backup. Its technology based in the UK. You dont want to keep your customers waiting. And by choosing technology thats based in the UK, your customers in the UK will nd websites load faster. Plus, with 24/7 support via the phone and online were here whenever you need us. There are many reasons why a UK data centre is a good idea, but, surely, thats the most important. Plus, with up to 70% off *selected products and NEW dedicated servers theres no better time to buy. Find out how your business can work better online call free on 0800 6520 444 or visit www.fasthosts.co.uk

hosting | domains | NEW dedicated servers | virtual private servers | reseller hosting WorldMags.net

2012 All rights reserved. Fasthosts and the Fasthosts logo are trademarks of Fasthosts Internet Ltd. *offer subject to a minimum 12 month contract. Terms & Conditions apply, see website for details.

Lucy Sherriff

Spintronics
Representing data with the spin of an electron transformed hard drive read heads, but could it do the same for logic circuits too?

pintronicsisoneofthehottesttopics inscienceandtech,whetherit concernslogiccircuitsbasedon thespinormagneticmomentofan electronorqubitsinquantumcomputers. Withallthatexcitement,itseasytoforgetthat technologybasedonspintronicshasbeena partofthecomputingexperienceforthe betterpartofadecade.Youknowitbetter Spintronicshasalreadybeenusedinharddriveread asthereadheadofyourharddrive. headsforthebestpartofadecade Inthemid-1980s,tworesearchteams, Thefirstspintronicsdevicewentinto headedrespectivelybyAlbertFertandPeter productionjusteightornineyearsafteranew Grnberg,independentlydiscoveredthe physicaleffectgiantmagnetoresistance phenomenonofGiantMagnetoresistance wasdiscovered,saysRolfAllenspach,headof (GMR),aneffectfoundinthinfilmmaterials IBMsPhysicsofNanoscalesystemsresearch composedofalternatingferromagneticand groupinZurich.However,thereasonthe non-magneticlayers. technologymovedsoastonishinglyquickly FertandGrnbergobservedasignificant fromlabtoproductionwasbecauseitwasa differenceintheresistanceacrosssucha drop-inreplacement,heexplains.Nothing material,dependingonthealignmentofspins neededtoberedesigned;thenewheadjust inadjacentlayers.Highresistancemarksa replacedtheoldoneanddidabetterjob. regionofantiparallelalignment,andlow Theroadaheadforotherspintronics resistancemarksaregionofparallel devicesmightnotbeassmooth,andcertainly alignmentthedifferenceissignificant seemstobelonger,butstillpossibleto enoughtobeusedtoreaddatafromahard navigate.Oneofthemostactiveareasof drive.TheirworkwonFertandGrnbergthe researchconcernssomethingcalled 2007NobelPrize,ledtoanexplosioninhard drivedatadensities,andpavedthe wayforanewwayofthinkingabout storage,memoryandlogic. Attheheartofspintronicsisthe ideathatwecanexploitnotonlythe chargeofanelectron,butalsoits spin,ormagneticmoment.The instantwestopthinkingaboutan electronasamovingobject(partof aflowofcurrent),andconsideritas anentityinitself,itstartstobecome moreinteresting.However,getting RolfAllenspach,headofIBMsPhysicsof NanoscalesystemsresearchgroupinZurich fromthelabtothePCisntalwaysan easyroad.

magneticdomainwallsandspin-transfer torque,whichismostcertainlynotadrop-in replacementforexistingtech.Thephysicsis attheheartofbothnewtypesofmemory,and room-temperaturespintronicslogic. Botharebasedonthesamebasicidea. Aconventionalfieldeffecttransistorworks becausechargemovesaround,andwecan breakthatflowofelectronstoproducethe logicstatesofoneandzero.Spintronics, meanwhile,encodesthelogiconeorzeroin thespin-eitherupordownofanelectron. Insteadofdivertingflow,youflipthespinto changethelogicstate,Allenspachexplains. Inanidealcase,youwouldnthaveany currentflow,justtheflowofspin.Thisis whatreducesheatdissipation. Youcanflipthespinwithmagneticfield (whichisdifficulttocontrolinsidedevices), orwithelectricfield(whichmaybeeasier, especiallyatasmallscale).Thiscanbedone ataverylowpowerdensity,whichisamajor reasonwhypeopleareinterestedinthistech. Significantworkisbeingcarriedouton developingthesediscoveriesevenfurther intotheholygrail:universalmemory. Areliableandnon-volatiletechnology capableofhigh-densitydata storage,fastreadandwritestimes wouldconsignthestandardhard drive,flashandallthefamiliar alphabeticalRAMvariantstothe historybooks. Racetrackmemory, whichist hebrainchildofIBMresearcher StuartParkin,isIBMsstabatit. Thefirmfirstdemonstratedthe technologyin2008,butattheend oflastyearitshowedoffaversion integratedwithstandard200mm waferCMOStechnology.

18

August 2012

WorldMags.net

Racetrackmemory,thebrainchildofIBMresearcher StuartParkin,storesdataasmagnetisedregionson nanowiresthatcanbewritten,readandoverwrittenas theywhizzpastfixedreadandwriteheads

Racetrackstoresdataasmagnetised regionsonnanowiresthatcanbewritten,read andoverwrittenastheywhizzpastfixedread andwriteheads.Sincethebitsthemselves movealongthenanowires,youonlyneedone transistorperracetrack,asopposedtoone youhave.Soasthepolarisedelectroninthe transistorperbit.Youcanalsostackthewires, pulseofcurrenthitsthemagnetiseddomain creatingdatadensitiesthatnotonlyequalbut andswitchesfrom0to1,anotherelectron surpassconventionalharddrives.Whats oneinthemagnetiseddomainhastoflip more,thedataisnon-volatile:itpersistseven from1to0. whenthepowerisswitchedoff. Thistransferofmomentumcanmovea YoumayrecallfromGCSEphysicsthatin magnetisedbitalongawireatanimpressive aferromagnet,thespinsofalltheelectrons 150nmpernanosecondinidealconditions. arealigned.Youcanhaveregionswithina Thisgivesyouanon-volatileformofhighmaterialwherespinsarealignedoneway, densitymemorywithaccesstimesin rightnexttoareaswherethespinsarealigned nanoseconds;muchfasterthanharddrives. theotherway.Theboundary betweenthetwodifferentlyaligned THIS GIVES YOU NONareas,theregioninwhichthe VOLATILE, HIGH-DENSITY magneticmomentoftheelectrons changes,isknownasthemagnetic MEMORY WITH ACCESS domainwall.Onedirectionofthe TIMES IN NANOSECONDS wallislogicstateone,theother directionislogicstatezero. Thespinofagivenregioncanbe Itisntperfectthough.Allenspach manipulatedbyamagneticfield,butthis acknowledgesthatthereal-world doesntnecessarilymoveitalongthe performanceisstillsomewaybelowwhat nanowire.Instead,youcanmovethedomains theorysuggestsshouldbepossible.Wefound withapulseofspin-polarisedcurrent. weneededmuchlongercurrentpulsesthan Generally,anelectricalcurrentisntpolarised weexpectedtomovethedomains,hesays. ithasanevenmixofupanddownspinWhilewevehadyearsofperfectingsilicon states.However,ifyouloadthecurrentwith production,makingperfectferromagnetsis moreelectronsspin-up,forexample,when stillanewgame.Tinydefectsinthecrystalline ithitsamagneticdomainwall,thespin structurewerecausingthemagnetic angularmomentumoftheelectronsis domainstobecomestuck,meaningthat transferred,switchingthepolarisationofthe thecurrenthadtobeappliedformuchlonger regiononeithersideofthedomainwall. toshiftthemalong.Inaclearstretchof Thisworksbecauseangularmomentumis permalloywire,though,thetheoryheld, aconservedquantityyoucantgetmorethan andpulsesofjustafewnanosecondswere youalreadyhave,andyouhavetokeepwhat enoughtomovethedomainsalong.

Therealworldgetsinthewayofspintronics inlogictoo.Thisistoolargeatopictocoverin detailhere,butbasically,thisworkcanbe dividedintotwomainavenues,eachofwhich haspromise,butalsosomeveryobvious difficultiesthathaveyettobeovercome. Thefirstavenueworksatroom temperatureandisbasedonthesame underlyingphysicsasracetrack: ferromagnetism.Thiswouldmeanatotal overhaulofcomputerdesigntogetitintoPCs. Thealternativeapproach,whichis compatiblewithcurrentmaterials,only worksbelow200Kelvin.Thatsabracing -73Cinrealmoney,soitisntmuchcopin youraverageair-cooleddesktopPC,andnot reallyappropriateforthemassmarket. Whilethesekinksstillexistinmemoryand logicresearch,andcurrenttechnologyworks, theindustrywillbereluctanttomovefrom currentstandardtechnologythathasproven reliability.Theimplicationisthat,despite spintronicspotential,fornow,standard memoryisdoingenoughtostayintherace. Whetherornotanyofthisbecomes commercialiseddependsonthedifficultiesin thesiliconindustry,Allenspachconcludes. Itshardtopredictifaningeniousengineer willfindanewsolutionfortheproblemsfacing existingtechnology,butwewanttobereadyif thestandardapproachfails.

isajournalistwitha degreeinastrophysics whoknowsallaboutthe latestscientifictech. @lucysherriff

LUCY SHERRIFF

WorldMags.net

August 2012

19

Gareth Halfacree looks at the latest mobile hardware

Welcome to the future, where you dont need a speaker to hear a phone, and you can control a device without even touching it

Changing human interaction


evealreadylookedat technologiessuchasmolecularlevelwaterproofing,whichaim todramaticallyimprovethe flexibilityofsmartphones,andeventhe potentialfortransparentdevices.Allthese technologieshavesomethingincommon though:theyreevolutionary,notrevolutionary. Awaterproofsmartphoneisjustanormal smartphoneyoucanusesafelywhenits raining;atransparentbatteryusesmuchthe samechemicalsasitsopaqueequivalent. Sometimes,however,acompanyreleases detailsofatechnologythatstruly revolutionary,andthismonthwerelucky enoughtohavetwosuchreleasestodiscuss. Whileoneisclosertocommercialisationthan theother,bothofferafascinatingglimpseofa possiblenewdirectionformobiledevices.

KYOCERA TISSUE CONDUCTION AUDIO


Thefirsttechnologycomesfromacompany morereadilyassociatedwithphotocopiers thansmartphones:Kyocera.AttheCTIA Wirelesseventearlierthismonth,the companyrevealeddetailsofitsnew technologyfordramaticallyimproving smartphoneaudioquality. Thecompanywillsoonreleasethefirst mobilephonedevelopedaroundtheconcept oftissueconductionaudio.Asaresult,the speakerthemostfundamentalcomponent ofanyphoneiscompletelymissingfromthe device,asistheholeabovethescreenbehind whichitwouldnormallysit.Withoutaspeaker, thephonewouldbeprettyuseless,but Kyocerastechnologypromisestoreplace thespeakerwithsomethingbettersuitedto makingcallsinnoisyenvironments:a ceramictransducer.

Kyocerastissueconductiontechnologyisalreadyup andrunninginprototypehandsets

Atraditionalspeaker-whetheritsina smartphoneorhi-fispeaker-vibratestheair aroundit,whichinturnenterstheearand vibratestheeardruminawaythehuman brainperceivesassound.Itsatechnology thatsservedmankindwellforcenturies,but ithasoneslightproblem:iftheairisalready vibrating,eitherbecauseyourestandingin themiddleofagale-forcewindorother peoplearecreatingtheirownvibrations,the particularvibrationsyoureaftercanbelost. Inotherwords,whenpeoplearebeing noisy,itshardtohearyourphone.Itsan

obviousstatement,butonethatsdogged mobilephonemanufacturersforyearsas theytrytocomeupwithnewmethodsfor improvingtheirdevicesusabilityincrowds. Itsthisproblem,alongwiththeusability concernsforhard-of-hearingindividualswith mobilephones,thatKyocerastechnology aimstoaddress.Dispensingwiththe traditionalconceptofusingairasthemedium tocarrytheaudio,theprototypedeviceis equippedwithaceramictransducerthat usesyourownbodytissueasthecarrier. Thetechnologyworksbytransferringa vibrationfromtheceramictransducertothe tissue,boneandcartilagearoundtheear, whichisinturntransmittedtotheeardrum andperceivedassound.Bypassingtheusual airconductionofatraditionalspeaker, Kyoceraclaimsthatthetechnologyis inherentlyimmunetonoise:nomatterhow loudthesurroundingenvironment,thesound fromthephonereachestheeardrumintact. Tissueconductionisntanewtechnology: thesamesystemisusedinhearing-aid devices.Asaresult,thetechnologynotonly promisestovastlyimproveaudioqualityfor usersinnoisyenvironments,butalsotomake smartphonesusablebythosewithreduced hearingforthefirsttime. Asimilarsystemisusedtotunestringed instrumentsinanoisyvenue,itsimpossible totuneaguitarbyear.Instead,musiciansuse atunerthatclipsontotheinstruments headstocktopickupthevibrationsfromeach string.LikeKyocerastechnology,theresultis anear-immunitytobackgroundnoise:two musicianscantunetheirinstruments alongsideeachotherwithoutaffectingthe accuracyoftheothersreadings. Tomakethemostofthetissueconduction technologyinanoisyenvironment,Kyocera

20

August 2012

WorldMags.net

Touch,fromDisneyResearch,isable toturnanythingintoagesture-sensing surface-eventhehumanbody

recommendsthatuserswearear-plugs thatblockouttheextraneousairborne backgroundnoisetransmittedthroughthe earintheusualmanner.Sincethetissue conductionsystemdoesntrelyonhavingyour ear-holesopen,theplugshavenoeffecton thesmartphonesconductionvibrationsand theaudiocomesthroughclearasday.

DISNEY TOUCH
Fromacompanynotreadilyassociatedwith smartphonestoacompanyrarelyassociated withtechnologyatall:Disney,anditsresearch projectthataimstoextendtouchawayfrom thedisplayandintoeveryobjectwithwhich youcouldpossiblywishtointeract. Thecompanymightbebetterknownfor theanticsofacertainround-earedmouse andhisfriends,butDisneyploughsa considerableamountofmoneyintoresearch anddevelopment.Thelatestprojecttosee thelightofdayisTouch,anewsensing techniquethataimstoexpanddevices interactioncapabilitiesfarbeyondthatof atraditionaltouch-screen. Unlikestandardtouchtechnologies,which relyoneitherresistivemeasurementofa surfacecoatingorconductionbetweena speciallymanufacturedsurfaceandhuman skin,Touchworksthoughaprocessthat Disneycallsswept-frequencycapacitive sensing.Initsmostbasicform,itcanact asanextensiontoexistingtouch-screen

mediaplaybackvolumewithoutever needingtophysicallytouchthedevice. Combinedwithawearablecomputing systemsuchasGooglesupcomingProject Glassahead-mountedAndroidsmartphone withaugmentedrealitycapabilitiesDisney mayhavestumbledonthebiggestinnovation inhuman-machineinteractionindecades. Despiteitswide-rangingcapabilities includingtheabilitytotransformliquidsinto touchsurfacesanddetectsubmersion Touchisclaimedtobesimpletoimplement, requiringjustasingleelectricalconductorto beembeddedintoanobject. TheTouchmoduleitselfmeasuresjust 3.6cmoneachside,butstillmanagesto accommodateasmallyetpowerful microprocessorfromNXP,awavegenerator IC,abiasinductor,variousresistors,diodes andvoltageregulatorsplusaBluetooth wirelessmoduleand250mAh3.7Vlithiumpolymerlong-lifebattery. Suchamodulewouldbeeasytointegrate intoanexternaldevicesuchasaBluetoothenabledbraceletforhands-freesmartphone use,whilethesametechnology couldbeintegrateddirectlyintoa BY ATTACHING ELECTRODES handsetforenhancedinteractivity TO A USERS WRISTS, THE whiletakingadvantageofthe SYSTEM CAN MONITOR existingcomponentsalready presentinthedevice,suchasthe HAND GESTURES batteryandBluetoothmodule. Sadly,whiletheteamisconfidentenough leanbacktoenjoytheshow;liedownfora initscreationtodemonstrateitatthe napandtheTouch-enabledsofawould ConferenceonHumanFactorsinComputing pauseyourfilmandswitchofftheTVor Systems,Disneyhasyettoindicatewhenor uninterruptedrest.Theteamevendescribes eveniftheTouchtechnologywillbeready aTouch-enableddoorknobthatonlyunlocks forcommercialexploitation. toyourparticulargrip-patternorafingerbasedgesturepattern. Inthemobilearena,Touchcouldbethe technologythatmakeshands-freeuseof smartphonespossible.ByattachingTouch isthenewsreporterat electrodestoauserswrist,thesystemcan www.bit-tech.net.He monitorhandgesturesandrelaythemtoa knowsallabout the smartphoneortabletoverBluetooth. latestnewsinPCandmobiletech. Relativelycomplexgesturesarerecognisable, withDisneyusingtheexampleoftappingtwo @ghalfacree fingersintothepalmofyourhandtoadjust technologies;taken toextremes,itoffers awholenewworldof interactivityhitherto impossiblewith traditionaltechnology. TheworkofIvan PoupyrevatDisney Researchin Pittsburgh,Touch monitorsmultiple frequenciesof capacitanceinstead oftodayssinglefrequencymonitoring. Theresult,Poupyrevsteamclaims,isa systemthatnotonlytracksmultiplefinger touchesbutcanalsotellifthefingersare bentoriftheuserisholdingthedeviceina particularposture. Touchpromisesmuchoutsidethetouchscreentoo.DisneyclaimsthatTouchenabledsurfacescouldenablesofasto respondtoyourbacksideandautomatically turnontheTV,thendimthelightswhenyou

GARETH HALFACREE

WorldMags.net

August 2012

21

WorldMags.net

WorldMags.net

Our choice of the best hardware available


A
You dont have to spend an astronomical sum to get a decent PC. Our stunning value build includes 4GB of branded memory and a quad-core AMD Llano APU with integrated graphics
MOTHERBOARD APU RAM COOLING

PSU

HARD DISK

OPTICAL DRIVE

OPERATING SYSTEM

NAME

SUPPLIER www.lambda-tek.com www.lambda-tek.com www.aria.co.uk www.overclockers.co.uk www.scan.co.uk www.scan.co.uk www.scan.co.uk www.cclonline.com www.amazon.co.uk

MANUFACTURER www.antec.com www.gigabyte.com www.amd.com www.crucial.com www.gelidsolutions.com www.thermaltake.com www.seagate.com www.liteonit.eu www.microsoft.com

REVIEWED Issue 92, p59 Issue 98, p34 Issue 104, p38 Issue 100, p96 Issue 100, p86 Issue 97, p72 Issue 104, p72 Issue 99, p108 Issue 75, p46

PRICE (inc VAT) 45 64 85 26 24 52 55 15 110

A B C D E F G H I

Antec One Hundred Gigabyte GA-A75M-UD2H AMD A8-3870K Black Edition 4GB Crucial Ballistix Sport PC3-12800C9 Gelid Tranquillo Rev.2 Thermaltake SP-530PCWEU 500GB Seagate Barracuda ST500DM002 Lite-On IHAS124-19 Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit

TOTAL SYSTEM PRICE

476

120GB OCZ Agility 3 2.5" Solid State Drive

Our best selling SSD model!

WERE AWARD WINNERS!

www.cclonline.com
24 April 2012

PC Pro 2011
Highly Commended

WorldMags.net

83.99

Sequential Reads - 525 MB/s Sequential Writes - 500 MB/s Maximum IOPS - 50,000 IOPS Native TRIM support CCL Code - HDD0547

Pr ices cor rec t at tim e o f g oi ng to publi shi ng. I mages are for i llustrati ve pur poses only.

A
As Core i7 motherboards and high-end graphics cards command a premium price, here are some components for a Core i5 PC that offer great performance and wont break the bank
MOTHERBOARD CPU RAM COOLING GRAPHICS CARD

PSU

HARD DISK

SOUND CARD

SOLID STATE DRIVE

OPERATING SYSTEM

NAME

SUPPLIER www.scan.co.uk www.scan.co.uk www.scan.co.uk www.pixmania.com www.dabs.com www.scan.co.uk www.scan.co.uk www.scan.co.uk www.dabs.com www.ebuyer.com www.cclonline.com www.amazon.co.uk

MANUFACTURER www.silverstonetek.com http://uk.msi.com www.intel.co.uk www.patriotmemory.com www.arctic.ac www.cclonline.com www.thermaltake.com www.seagate.com http://uk.asus.com www.crucial.com www.liteonit.eu www.microsoft.com

REVIEWED Issue 103, p70 Issue 106, p74 Issue 106, p36 Issue 106, p40 Issue104, p48 Issue 105, p40 Issue 97, p72 Issue 104, p75 Issue 99, p108 Issue 104, p64 Issue 99, p108 Issue 75, p46

PRICE (inc VAT) 105 77 168 37 30 187 52 84 24 83 15 110

A B C D E F G H I J K L

SilverStone Raven RV03 MSI Z77A-G43 Intel Core i5-3570K 8GB Patriot G2 PGD38G1600ELK Arctic Freezer i30 Sapphire AMD Radeon HD 7850 2GB Thermaltake SP-530PCWEU Seagate Barracuda 2TB ST2000DM001 Asus Xonar DG Crucial M4 128GB Lite-On IHAS124-19 Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit

TOTAL SYSTEM PRICE

972

OCZ ZX Series 850W Power Supply


Fully modular cable management system 850W Continuous Power Ultra quiet 140mm ball-bearing fan +12VDC @ 70A Single Rail Design 80 Plus Gold Certied CCL Code - PSU0225

Get FREE Next Day Delivery Use this Code: #CPC-Free www.cclonline.com/cpc 08000 50 10 10

124.96

WorldMags.net
Pr i ces cor rec t at tim e o f go in g to publi shi ng. I mages are for i llustrati ve pur poses only.

April 2012

25

Our choice of the best hardware available


A
This PC has the potential to be the finest gaming machine you can find as well as an excellent all-round computer for office work, digital photography, video production and media playback
MOTHERBOARD CPU RAM COOLING GRAPHICS CARD

PSU

HARD DISK

SOUND CARD

SOLID STATE DRIVE

OPERATING SYSTEM

NAME

SUPPLIER www.scan.co.uk www.scan.co.uk www.scan.co.uk www.pixmania.com www.scan.co.uk www.scan.co.uk www.dabs.com www.scan.co.uk www.scan.co.uk www.ebuyer.com www.cclonline.com www.amazon.co.uk

MANUFACTURER www.silverstonetek.com http://uk.asus.com www.intel.co.uk www.patriotmemory.com www.be-quiet.net www3.pny.com www.corsair.com www.seagate.com http://uk.asus.com www.crucial.com www.liteonit.eu www.microsoft.com

REVIEWED Issue 85, p88 Issue 106, p64 Issue 106, p36 Issue 106, p40 Issue 91, p74 Issue 105, p36 Issue 97, p79 Issue 104, p75 Issue 80, p63 Issue 104, p64 Issue 99, p108 Issue 75, p46

PRICE (inc VAT) 191 150 168 37 40 420 90 84 58 175 15 110

A B C D E F G H I J K L

SilverStone Fortress FT02B-W USB 3.0 Asus Maximus V Gene Intel Core i5-3570K 8GB Patriot G2 PGD38G1600ELK Be Quiet! Dark Rock Advanced PNY GeForce GTX 680 2GB Corsair Professional Series HX 650 Seagate Barracuda 2TB ST2000DM001 Asus Xonar DX Crucial M4 256GB Lite-On IHAS123-19 Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit

TOTAL SYSTEM PRICE

1,538

CM Storm Trigger Mechanical Keyboard

Performance Mechanical Gaming Keyboard High durability gold-plated Cherry Black Linear switches rated for over 50 million key strokes Anti-ghosting 6 key rollover CCL Code - KBD0458

WERE AWARD WINNERS!

www.cclonline.com
26 April 2012

PC Pro 2011
Highly Commended

WorldMags.net

97.99

Pr ices cor rec t at time of goi ng to publi shi ng. I mages are for i llustrati ve pur poses only.

A
The most awesome components around, before reaching workstation territory. Weve included a dual 120mm liquid cooler kit as a base example, but the case has space for a variety of water-cooling setups
MOTHERBOARD CPU RAM GRAPHICS CARD COOLING

PSU

SOLID STATE DRIVE

SOUND CARD

HARD DISK

OPERATING SYSTEM

UPDATED
NAME SUPPLIER www.scan.co.uk www.scan.co.uk www.scan.co.uk www.overclockers.co.uk www.scan.co.uk www.scan.co.uk www.scan.co.uk www.ebuyer.co.uk www.amazon.co.uk www.scan.co.uk www.amazon.co.uk MANUFACTURER www.silverstonetek.com http://uk.asus.com www.intel.co.uk www.kingston.com www.nvidia.com www.corsair.com www.antec.com www.ocztechnology.com www.uk.europe.creative.com www.seagate.com www.microsoft.com REVIEWED Issue 63, p87 Issue 106, p64 Issue 106, p36 Issue 106, p40 Issue 106, p46 Issue 91, p 74 Issue 97, p78 Issue 107, p44 Issue 62, p61 Issue 104, p75 Issue 75, p46 PRICE (inc VAT) 276 150 252 54 880 83 107 218 103 84 110

A B C D E F G H I J K

SilverStone Temjin TJ07B-W Asus Maximus V Gene Intel Core i7-3770K 8GB Kingston HyperX Genesis KHX1866C11D3P1K2/8G Nvidia GeForce GTX 690 2GB Corsair H100 Antec High Current Pro HCP-750 OCZ Vertex 4 256GB Creative X-Fi Titanium Fatal1ty Pro Seagate Barracuda 2TB ST2000DM0001 Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit

TOTAL SYSTEM PRICE

2,317

CM Storm Trooper Full Tower Gaming Case


Representing the apex of gaming full towers Two 90 degrees rotatable 4-in-3 HDD modules Supports up to 14 hard-drives A built in fan controller Supports upto XL-ATX Motherboards CCL Code - CAS0569

Get FREE Next Day Delivery Use this Code: #CPC-Free www.cclonline.com/cpc 08000 50 10 10

107.58

WorldMags.net
Pr ices cor rec t at tim e o f go in g to publ is hi ng. I mages are for i llustrati ve pur poses only.

April 2012

27

Our choice of the best hardware available

TYPE NAME SUPPLIER MANUFACTURER REVIEWED PRICE(incVAT)

GRAPHICS CARD Sapphire HD 6870 1GB www.dabs.com www.sapphiretech.com Issue 102, p61 140

GRAPHICS CARD PNY GeForce GTX 670 2GB www.scan.co.uk www3.pny.com Issue 107, p40 320

GRAPHICS CARD PNY GeForce GTX 680 2GB www.scan.co.uk www3.pny.com Issue 105, p36 420

TYPE NAME SUPPLIER MANUFACTURER REVIEWED PRICE(incVAT)

CPU Intel Core i5-3570K www.scan.co.uk www.intel.co.uk Issue 106, p36 168

MOTHERBOARD Asus Maximus V Gene www.scan.co.uk http://uk.msi.com Issue 106, p64 150

COOLER Arctic Freezer i30 www.dabs.com www.arctic.ac Issue 104, p48 30

RAM 8GB Patriot G2 PGD38G1600ELK www.pixmania.com www.patriotmemory.com Issue 106, p40 37

CCL-Tech.net Your NEW Home for


WERE AWARD WINNERS!
PC Pro 2011
Highly Commended

News, Unboxing, Reviews, Previews, Competitions and Loads More

www.cclonline.com
28 April 2012

WorldMags.net
fb.me/CCLOnline bit.ly/CCLYoutube @cclcomputers

TYPE NAME SUPPLIER MANUFACTURER REVIEWED PRICE(incVAT)

CPU Intel Core i7-3930K www.novatech.co.uk www.intel.co.uk Issue 101, p32 444

MOTHERBOARD Asus Sabertooth X79 www.scan.co.uk http://uk.asus.com Issue 101, p70 234

COOLER Corsair H80 www.dabs.com www.corsair.com Issue 101, p86 72

RAM 16GB Corsair Vengeance CAS9 DDR3 www.dabs.com www.corsair.com Issue 101, p40 80

TYPE NAME SUPPLIER MANUFACTURER REVIEWED PRICE(incVAT)

CPU AMD A8-3870K www.aria.co.uk www.amd.com Issue 104, p38 85

MOTHERBOARD Gigabyte GA-A75M-UD2H www.lambda-tek.com www.gigabyte.com Issue 98, p34 64

COOLER Gelid Tranquillo Rev.2 www.scan.co.uk www.gelidsolutions.com Issue 100, p86 24

RAM 4GB Crucial Ballistix Sport PC3-12800C9 www.overclockers.co.uk www.crucial.com Issue 100, p96 26

Win a Sandisk Ultra 120GB Solid State Drive with CCL-Tech.net


Entering is easy, simply goto our facebook page fb.me/CCLOnline and click Like

Get FREE Next Day Delivery Use this Code: #CPC-Free www.cclonline.com/cpc 08000 50 10 10

WIN

WorldMags.net

April 2012

29

Our choice of the best hardware available

TYPE NAME SUPPLIER MANUFACTURER REVIEWED PRICE(incVAT)

LGA1155 CPU WATERBLOCK

UPDATED

GEFORCE GTX 680 WATERBLOCK XSPC Razor GTX680


www.aquatuning.co.uk

UPDATED

RADEON HD 7970 WATERBLOCK

UPDATED

DUAL 120MM RADIATOR

UPDATED

XSPC RayStorm CPU www.aquatuning.co.uk www.xs-pc.com Issue 107, p60 51

Aquacomputer aquagrATIx for HD 7970


www.aquatuning.co.uk www.aquacomputer.de

Alphacool NexXxos Xt60 Full Copper 240mm


www.aquatuning.co.uk

www.xs-pc.com Issue 107, p65 94

www.alphacool.com Issue 107, p72 50

Issue 107, p67 76

TYPE NAME SUPPLIER MANUFACTURER REVIEWED PRICE(incVAT)

BUDGET CASE Antec One Hundred www.lambda-tek.com www.antec.com Issue 92, p59 45

MICRO ATX CASE SilverStone TJ08-E www.scan.co.uk www.silverstonetek.com Issue 98, p48 83

AIR COOLING CASE SilverStone Raven RV03 www.scan.co.uk www.silverstonetek.com Issue 103, p70 105

WATER COOLING CASE SilverStone Temjin TJ07B-W www.scan.co.uk www.silverstonetek.com Issue 63, p87 276

The best bits of a hard drive and a SSD combined into one package

500GB Seagate Momentus XT 2.5" Hard Disk Drive

WERE AWARD WINNERS!

www.cclonline.com
30 April 2012

PC Pro 2011
Highly Commended

Solid state hybrid drive delivers SSD like performance with hard drive capacity options. SATA II, 7200rpm, 32MB Cache CCL Code - HDD1024

WorldMags.net

69.99

Pr ices cor rec t at tim e of goi ng to publi shi ng. I mages are for i llustrati ve pur poses only.

TYPE NAME SUPPLIER MANUFACTURER REVIEWED PRICE(incVAT)

530W PSU Thermaltake SP-530PCWEU www.scan.co.uk www.thermaltake.com Issue 97, p72 52

650W PSU Corsair Professional Series HX 650 www.dabs.com www.corsair.com Issue 97, p79 90

750W PSU Antec High Current Pro HCP-750 www.scan.co.uk www.antec.com Issue 97, p78 107

1.2kW PSU Antec High Current Pro 1200W www.ebuyer.com www.antec.com Issue 96, p48 228

TYPE NAME SUPPLIER MANUFACTURER REVIEWED PRICE(incVAT)

HARD DISK Seagate Barracuda 2TB ST2000DM001 www.scan.co.uk www.seagate.com Issue 104, p75 84

SSD Crucial M4 256GB www.ebuyer.co.uk www.crucial.com Issue 104, p64 175

NAS BOX Synology DiskStation DS212j www.dabs.com www.synology.com Issue 104, p50 160

Gainward NVIDIA GeForce GTX 680 Phantom 2048MB


The Gainward GTX 680 Phantom - A Low Noise Monster! GPU Clockspeed : 1150 MHz 2048MB GDDR5 Memory Clockspeed : 3150 MHz Dual DVI, HDMI and DisplayPort CCL Code - VGA0594

Get FREE Next Day Delivery Use this Code: #CPC-Free www.cclonline.com/cpc 08000 50 10 10

474.98

WorldMags.net
Pr ices cor rec t at tim e o f go in g to publ is hi ng. I mages are for i llustrati ve pur poses only.

April 2012

31

Our choice of the best hardware available

TYPE NAME SUPPLIER MANUFACTURER REVIEWED PRICE(incVAT)

24IN MONITOR Dell UltraSharp U2412M www.scan.co.uk www.dell.com Issue 105, p64 228

27IN MONITOR Dell UltraSharp U2711 www.aria.co.uk www.dell.co.uk Issue 81, p56 529

TRIPLE MONITOR STAND XFX Triple Display Monitor Stand www.scan.co.uk www.xfxforce.com Issue 96, p58 299

TYPE NAME SUPPLIER MANUFACTURER REVIEWED PRICE(incVAT)

SOUND CARD Asus Xonar DX www.scan.co.uk http://uk.asus.com Issue 80, p63 58

2.1 SPEAKERS Corsair SP2500 www.scan.co.uk www.corsair.com Issue 92, p79 182

HEADSET Asus Vulcan ANC www.scan.co.uk http://uk.asus.com Issue 98, p57 72

5.1 SPEAKERS Logitech Z906 www.ebuyer.com www.logitech.com Issue 102, p50 242

CCL Elite Hawk II Gaming PC

WERE AWARD WINNERS!

www.cclonline.com
32 April 2012

PC Pro 2011
Highly Commended

Our best selling gaming PC evolved Better Graphics - Bigger Hard Drive! AMD FX-4100 3.6GHz CPU 8GB DDR3 Memory AMD Radeon HD 6850 1TB Hard Drive, Built-in-WiFi CCL Code - CCL-EL-HWK2

WorldMags.net

399.98

Pr ices cor rec t at ti me of goi ng to publi shi ng. I mages are for i llustrati ve pur poses only.

TYPE NAME SUPPLIER MANUFACTURER REVIEWED PRICE(incVAT)

KEYBOARD Corsair Vengeance K60 www.scan.co.uk www.corsair.com Issue 101, p46 85

MOUSE Corsair Vengeance M60 www.ebuyer.com www.corsair.com Issue 104, p52 49

STEERING WHEEL Logitech G27 www.scan.co.uk www.logitech.com Issue 92, p108 190

JOYSTICK Logitech Flight System G940 www.scan.co.uk www.logitech.com Issue 92, p109 262

TYPE NAME DEVELOPER PUBLISHER REVIEWED PRICE(incVAT)

RPG Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim www.bethsoft.com Bethesda Issue 101, p100 30

FPS Deus Ex: Human Revolution www.square-enix.com www.square-enix.com Issue 98, p96 30

STRATEGY Frozen Synapse www.mode7games.com www.mode7games.com Issue 96, p92 19 for two

UNDERDOG Trine 2 http://frozenbyte.com http://frozenbyte.com Issue 102, p98 12

CCL Elite Griffon II Gaming PC

New Upgraded Version with SSD Drive, Bigger Hard Drive and Better Graphics AMD FX-6100 3.3GHz CPU 8GB DDR3 Memory AMD Radeon HD 7850 1TB HDD & 120GB SSD Built-in-WiFi CCL Code - CCL-EL-GRF2

Get FREE Next Day Delivery Use this Code: #CPC-Free www.cclonline.com/cpc 08000 50 10 10

949.99

Pr ices cor rec t at tim e o f go in g to publ is hi ng. I mages are for i llustrati ve pur poses only.

WorldMags.net

April 2012

33

Our in-depth analysis of the latest PC hardware

3570K 21stcenturytoy

36 DINO PC TYRANNOSAUR

CantheIvyBridgegraphics corecompetewithLlano?

38 INTEL HD 4000 GRAPHICS

Takeawayonestreaming multiprocessor

GEFORCE 40 PNY670 2GB GTX

dualthrottlecontrolfor lessthan30

CYBORG F.L.Y 5 46 Aflightstickwith

Adinkymechanical keyboardfor66

48 CM STORM QUICK 52 KEYSONIC FIRE RAPID KSK 3205

Keyboard,mouseand remoteinoneunit

sosmallitfitsintoa smartphonecase

PICO GENIE A100 52 Aprojectorthats

AUSBsoundcard disguisedasavalve

53 ENERMAX DREAM 53 ANTEC CLEANING BASS AP001 PRODUCTS


Weputthreekitcleaners throughtheirpaces
36

34

August 2012

WorldMags.net

HOWWETEST,P50

OCZ Vertex 4 256GB


Wetakeourfirstlookatthenew IndilinxEverest2controller insideOCZsnewSSD 44

WorldMags.net

August 2012

35

DINO PC Tyrannosaur 3570K


The use of a Core i5-3570K enables Dino PC to reduce the price of a pre-overclocked gaming rig
T. REX Fast; good choice of components; overclockable; great value for money BAMBIRAPTOR Noisy exhaust fan; low-spec sound card; modest overclock

HOW MUCH?
Price1,299incVAT Supplierwww.dinopc.com Manufacturer www.dinopc.com SKUnumber trex3570K

IN DETAIL
CPU3.4GHzIntelCore i5-3570Koverclockedto 4.3GHz Motherboard AsusP8Z77-V Memory8GB1,600MHz CorsairVengeanceDDR3 GraphicsAsusDirectCUII NvidiaGeForceGTX6702GB SoundCreative SoundBlasterAudigySE Harddisk2TBSeagate 7200.14,Corsair120GB Force3SSD OpticaldrivesLite-On Blu-rayreader CaseCorsairCarbide400R CoolingCPU:CorsairH100; case:1x120mrearexhaust fan,2x120mmfront intakefans PSUCorsairTX650M PortsFront:2xUSB3, FireWireRear:4xUSB3, 2xUSB2,LAN,audioout, mic,headphone,optical S/PDIFout,PS/2 ExtrasWindows7Home Premium

otsurprisingly,theappropriatelynamed Tyrannosaur3570KsportsanewIntel Corei5-3570K.Thischoice,plusnumerous otherhardwareselections,meansthatthe constructionandplentyofspaceforexpansion, Tyrannosaur3570Kcostssignificantlylessthanthe whilebeingafewinchessmallerinalldimensions. Scan3XSVengeanceZ77wereviewedlastmonth Meanwhile,anAsusP8Z77-Vmotherboard forms (seeIssue106,p44). thePCsbackbone.AsusZ77motherboardsare ThelatterincludedaCorei7-3770Koverclocked packedwithfeaturessuchasWi-FiGo,whichsupports to4.5GHz,butthischipcostsalotmorethanthe DLNAmediastreaming,anditevenenablesyouto Corei5-3570K,mainlyduetoitssupportforHyperturntheTyrannosaur3570Kintoawirelessrouter.You Threading.Forthemajorityofus,thiswontmakea alsogetthehighlyuseful FanXpert2software.This hugeamountofdifference,butitsworthconsidering cameinveryhandywhentuningtheTyrannosaur ifyouperformalotofmulti-threadedvideoencoding 3570Kscasefansmoreonthatlater.DinoPChas orrenderingwork.LackingHyper-Threading,the alsodoneagoodjobofcablerouteingandtidying Tyrannosaur3570Kismuchmoreofagamingtheinsides;italsoprovidesatwo-yearpartsand orientatedPC.Itstillpacksapowerfulpunchthough. labourwarranty,followedbyoneyearlabouronly. TheCorei5-3570Khasbeenoverclockedto4.3GHz, PERFORMANCE anditscooledbyaCorsairH100dual-fan,all-in-one Withacorespeed200MHzlowerthantheScan3XS liquidcoolerintheroof. VengeanceZ77,andlackingHyper-Threading,it DinoPChasoptedforaGeForceGTX6702GB(see wasntsurprisingtofindthattheTyrannosaur3570K p40)ratherthanScanschoiceofaGeForceGTX680 wasslowerinourMediaBenchmarks.Itwasmore 2GB.Inourtests,though,therewasaveryslimmargin than100pointsslowerintheimageeditingtest,400 betweenthetwo.ThecardisAsusGeForceGTX670 pointsslowerinthevideoencodingtestandnearly300 DirectCUIImodel,whichfeaturesalargedual-fan pointsslowerinthemulti-taskingtest.Itsoverallscore cooler.Thiswasincrediblyquiet,evenduringour stresstest,andtheGPUcoreneverrose aboveadeltaTof25C. THE MAX CPU TEMPERATURE WAS A AsiswithmostPCspricedaboveagrand MEDIOCRE 75C, SO WE DECIDED TO thesedays,8GBofRAM,a2TBharddisk,a TRY TO PUSH IT A LITTLE FURTHER Blu-rayreaderandSSDareincludedas standard;thelatterisaCorsairForce3.Our of2,360wasafairwayshortoftheScanPCs2,639. onlymajorgripeisthechoiceofsoundcarda ThedropfromaGeForceGTX6802GBtoaGTX670 CreativeAudigySE.Thisisfineforbasicuse,and 2GBsawasmalldropinframeratescomparedtothe evenprovides7.1surroundsound,butwedexpectan ScanPCtoo.TheTyrannosaur3570Kmanageda AsusorCreativeX-Fisoundcardinthispriceleague. minimumframerateof57fpsinArmaII,whilethe ThisisallinstalledinaCorsairCarbide400Rcase, Scanwas3fpsfasterat1,920x1,080atVeryHigh whichhasa120mmexhaustfanandtwo120mm settings.InourShogun2CPUbenchmark,the intakefans,aswellasremovabledustfiltersas Tyrannosaur3570Kwasalso4fpsadrift,witha standardforeasycleaning.TheH100cooleracts minimumframerateof28fps. asafurtherintake,withthewarmexhaustairbeing Theresstillsomeroomtomanoeuvrethough.The removedbytheadjacent120mmexhaustfan.Despite Tyrannosaur3570Ks4.3GHzoverclockisachieved costingalotlessthantheCorsairObsidian650Dthat usingavcoreof1.15Vand,giventhemaximumCPU Scanused,the400RsportsUSB3ports,sturdy

36

August 2012

WorldMags.net

PRE-OVERCLOCKED PC

02
TheCorsairH100all-in-oneliquidcoolerisperhapsoverkill forthemodestoverclock,butitprovidesplentyofheadroomfor furtheroverclocking

coretemperaturewasamediocre75Cinourlab,we decidedtotrytopushitalittlefurther.Byraisingthe vcoreto1.25Vandthemultiplierfrom43xto47x,we hadthesystemstableat4.7GHza400MHzoverclock. Wealsoboostedthegraphicscardspowerlimit to120percent,thecoreby100MHzandmemoryby 200MHz.ThissawtheTyrannosaur3570Kbeatthe ScanPCintheimageeditingtestandnearlyequalling itoverallwithascoreof2,613just26pointsless. ArmaIIsawtheminimumframerateriseto60fpsand theaverageframerateshootupto75fpsfrom68fps again,thisisfasterthantheScanPC. Ofcourse,youmakeanyoftheseadjustmentsat yourownrisk,butitshowsthatthisspeciscapableof alotifyourepreparedtopushit. Meanwhile,therearexhaustfanisbyfartheloudest componentintheTyrannosaur3570K.Stoppingitsaw therestofthePCchugalongatblissfullylownoise levels.Settingthechassisfanprofiletosilentinthe BIOSdidntmakemuchdifference,butthankfully, AsusFanXpertIIsoftwareallowedustotweakthefan profilecurvetopreventitfromgoingberserkevery

01 03

timetheCPUwasunderload.ThissawtheCPUcore temperaturerisebyjust2Cunderload.

CONCLUSION
TheDinoPCTyrannosaur3570KisasolidPCthat costsbarelymorethanthesumofitsparts.Itswell balanced,fastandoverclockable.Onlythemeagre defaultoverclock,noisyexhaustfanandmediocre soundcardseeitmissaPremiumGradeaward.
ANTONY LEATHER

DinoPChasopted foraquiet,fastand overclockableAsusDirectCUII GeForceGTX6702GB

01

inthePC,butyoucantameit usingAsusFanXpertIIsoftware

02 Therearexhaustfanisby fartheloudestcomponent 03 TheCreativeAudigySEis fineforbasicuse,butwed

expectanAsusorCreativeX-Fi soundcardinthispriceleague

GIMP IMAGE EDITING


Dino PC 3570K Scan 3XS Z77 OC 0 1,000

ARMA II
2,023 2,165
2,000 3,000 4,000 Scan 3XS Z77 OC

2,246

1,920 x 1,080, 16x AF, 4x AA

Dino PC 3570K

57 fps

68 fps

60 fps 75 fps 60 fps 72 fps

HANDBRAKE H.264 VIDEO ENCODING


Dino PC 3570K Scan 3XS Z77 OC 0 1,000 2,000 3,000

3,417

3,796 3,821
4,000
Stock speed min

25

50
Overclocked min

75

100

Stock speed avg

Overclocked avg

MULTI-TASKING
Dino PC 3570K Scan 3XS Z77 OC 0 1,000

1,641

1,797

1,931
2,000 3,000 4,000

OVERALL
Dino PC 3570K Scan 3XS Z77 OC 0 1,000 Stock speed

2,360 2,639
2,000 Overclocked

2,613

3,000

4,000

SPEED DESIGN HARDWARE VALUE

21 / 25 22 / 25 22 / 25 23 / 25

customPC
OVERALL
August 2012 37

88

WorldMags.net

INTEL HD 4000 Graphics


A credible step up, but it still cant quite catch Llano on the desktop
HIGHDEFINITION GRAPHICS Low power; vastly better than HD 3000; runs cool; exciting for mobile computing HIGH-DENSITY FLOPPY Still outperformed by FM1 APUs; supporting CPUs are currently expensive

IntelsHD4000coreiscurrently onlyavailableinpriceyCPUs suchastheCorei7-3770Knot exactlythefoundationofa budgetbuild

istorically,on-boardgraphicssystems whetherbuiltintotheCPUorchipsethave beenratherajoke,mainlybecausetheyve beenmassivelyunderpoweredand,asa result,haveonlyeverbeenusedformundanetasks, suchasbasic2DWindowswork.Manufacturers haventhelpedtheirreputationeither,often oversellingtheirpotentialwithmassivelyinflated claimsabouthowtheirlatestarchitectureisgoingto revolutionisegaming.Infact,itwasntuntillastyears releaseofAMDsA-SeriesAPUsthatwesawan on-boardGPUthatpassedmuster. FastforwardtothepresentdayandIntelislooking tosnatchsomeofthelow-endgraphicspiefromAMD viatheon-boardHD4000GPUinsomeofitsCorei5 andCorei7IvyBridgeprocessors.Intelisobviously quiteexcitedaboutitschancestoo,asitsseenfitto deemitsnewIvyBridgearchitectureasmorethana tick,indicatingthatithasdonemorethanjustsimply shrinkthemanufacturingprocessusedtoproduce theprocessors. Thisclaimstacksuptoo,asthereareanumberof significanttweakstotheunderlyingarchitectureof theHD4000corecomparedwiththeHD3000core thatitreplaces.Theheadlinechangeistheincreased numberofexecutionunitsthereare16intheHD 4000comparedtothe12ofitspredecessor. Arguably,amoresignificant(thoughless glamorous)changeisthefactthatasecond texturepipelinehasbeenaddedtotheguts oftheGPU.Thisenablesworktobefedto theexecutionunitsmoreefficiently,and meansthatdespitehavinga30percent increaseinexecutionunits,eachonenow actuallyhas50percentmorepipeline bandwidthwithwhichtoplay. IntelhasalsotweakedthememorysubsystemoftheGPU,grantingitadedicated 256KBpotoftheprocessorson-boardL3 cache.Thisisalltheon-boardmemorythat theGPUcommands,however,soitneeds toborrowatrancheofsystemmemorytoo, asisusualforanintegratedGPU.

Allthissoundsjustdandythen,buthowdoesthe HD4000GPUstackupagainstthecompetition?Well, forastart,itcostsmoretogetholdofone,asthetwo processorsthatcurrentlysportthecorearethe250 IntelCorei7-3770Kandthe170Corei5-3570K.Of course,thesearentprocessorsaroundwhichyoud baseasuper-lowbudgetbuild,butitsconceivable thatyoudseethei5-3570KinamediaPCfortheliving room.Thissituationshouldchangesoon,however,as Intelisduetoreleasethedual-core,Corei3-3225with aTDPof55W,whichwillsportaHD4000GPUand shouldretailmuchclosertothe100priceofthe competingAMDA8-3870K.

PERFORMANCE
Arguably,thisisareleasethatsneededtooinour gamestesting,theRadeonHD6550DcoreoftheAMD APUoutperformedtheHD4000convincingly,despite itbeingpartofacheaperchip. At1,280x720inLeft4Dead2,theAMDprocessor was20percentfasterthanIntelsofferingagap thatremainedconstantevenwhenweincreasedthe resolutionto1,920x1,080. ThisisnttosaythattheHD4000wasacomplete flop,however,asitoutperformedtheHD3000core thatitreplacesbyquiteamargin.Itsminimumframe rateof26fpsat1,280x720wassome45percent

1,280 x 720, High settings, no AA, 16x AF

LEFT 4 DEAD 2

Intel HD 4000 Intel HD 3000 Radeon HD 6550D Radeon HD 6450 0 Intel HD 4000 Intel HD 3000 Radeon HD 6550D Radeon HD 6450 0

28 fps 18 fps 31 fps 31 fps 22 fps 36 fps

48 fps

55 fps

25
22 fps 1520 fps fps 27 fps 18 fps 30 fps

50

75

100

1,920 x 1,080, High settings, no AA, 16x AF

38 fps 26 fps

25 Minimum Average

50

75

100

38

August 2012

WorldMags.net

ON-BOARD GRAPHICS

UnliketheHD3000core,andeven thediscreteRadeonHD6450,the HD4000managedtoproducea playableminimumframerateof 26fpsinDirt3at1,920x1,080

quickerthanthe18fpsreturnedbytheHD3000core, andhauledthegamefromastutteringmesstoa playableexperience.Italsooutperformedthe30 AMDRadeonHD6450discretegraphicscardthat wetestedforcomparison. SwitchingLeft4Dead2infavourofDirt3toldmuch thesamestory,withtheon-boardHD6550Dofthe AMDAPUcontinuallybetteringtheHD4000.Again, though,theHD4000wasstreetsaheadofboththe HD3000andthediscreteRadeonHD6450,returning aplayableframerateat1,920x1,080afeatnot managedbytheothertwoGPUs. DiabloIIIthrewaspannerinthesilicon,however, asboththeIntelGPUsperformedparticularlypoorly inthistesttheHD4000evenfellbehindtheAMD RadeonHD6450discreteGPU.Wecouldntdetermine whetherthiswasadriverissueornot(DiabloIIIisa newgame,afterall),buteitherway,thisishardlyan excuse,especiallywhentheAMDdriverworkedfine.

CONCLUSION
Intelson-boardGPUisstilloutclassed byAMDsGPUonthedesktop.The A8-3870KanditsHD6550DGPUare fasterand cheaper,albeitatthepriceof ahigherTDPandreducedCPUspeed However,inthemobileworld,where AMDsAPUshavevastlyreducedGPU coresinordertosatisfyTDPandpower consumptiondemands,thissituationis reversed.Thisisalsoarguablythearea thatinterestsIntelthemostanyway,given thecurrenttrendsinconsumersPC buyinghabits.Here,thefrugalpower needsandrelativelygoodperformanceof theHD4000GPUmakemoresense.TheHD4000may bealetdownonthedesktop,butthatwontpreventit frommakingwavesinthelargercomputingworld.
PAUL GOODHEAD

IntelsHD4000graphicssystem takesupabigchunkoftheIvyBridge diewevehighlightedthegraphics portioninthisdieshot

1,280 x 720, Low settings, no AA, DX11

DIRT 3

1,280 x 720, High settings, no AA, no AF

DIABLO III

Intel HD 4000 Intel HD 3000 Radeon HD 6550D Radeon HD 6450 0 Intel HD 4000 Intel HD 3000 Radeon HD 6550D Radeon HD 6450 0
30 fps 24 fps

41 fps 32 fps

50 fps

Intel HD 4000

22 fps

26 fps

Intel HD 3000 14 fps


59 fps 70 fps

18 fps 40 fps 55 fps 33 fps 41 fps

Radeon HD 6550D Radeon HD 6450

40 fps

25
26 fps 21 fps 32 fps 26 fps 33 fps 24 fps

50

75

100

0 Intel HD 4000 11 fps Intel HD 3000 Radeon HD 6550D Radeon HD 6450

25
14 fps

50

75

100

1,920 x 1,080, Low settings, no AA, DX11

1,920 x 1,080, High settings, no AA, no AF

7 fps 9 fps 22 fps 16 fps 31 fps 21 fps

38 fps

29 fps

25

50

75

100

25

50

75

100

Processorsused:IntelHD4000Corei5-3570K;IntelHD3000Corei5-2500K;RadeonHD6550DAMDA8-3870K

WorldMags.net

August 2012

39

PNY Nvidia GeForce GTX 670 2GB


Nvidia continues its assault, with this superb, but still rather expensive, GPU
70s ROCK Fast performance; not much slower than GTX 680 for 100 less 70s HAIR Still too expensive for most gamers

HOW MUCH?
Price320incVAT Supplierwww.scan.co.uk Manufacturer www.nvidia.com

IN DETAIL
GraphicsprocessorGeForce GTX6702GB,916MHz1,019MHzguaranteed Pipeline1,344stream processors(916MHz1,084MHzguaranteed), 32ROPs Memory2GBGDDR5, 6GHzeffective Bandwidth192.26GB/sec, 256-bitinterface CompatibilityDirectX11.1, OpenGL4.1 Outputs/inputs2xDVI, HDMI,DisplayPort,2xSLI Powerconnections 2x6-pin,top-mounted Size240mmlong,dual-slot

vidiahasbeencruellybludgeoningthe theGTX6802GB),butpartofthisisthecoolerthe competitionwithitsgiantbenchmark PCBitselfmeasuresjust175mm.Apairof6-pinPCI-E stickrecently.First,theGTX6802GB powerconnectorssitsalmostinthemiddleofthecard, comprehensivelyoutclassedAMDsRadeon whiletotherear,apairofDVIports,anHDMIportanda HD79703GB,thentheGTX6904GBdroppedinto DisplayPortprovideplentyofflexibility.Aswiththerest snatchthefastestgraphicscardtitlebyacolossal of Nvidias6-series,the670supportsuptofour margin.However,whileAMDdeployeditsfulllineof simultaneousdisplaystoo. 7-seriesGPUsinafewmonths,withpricesranging PERFORMANCE fromunder100toover400,NvidiasKeplerArmaIIistheleastfavourablegamefortheGTX670 poweredcardsonlystoppedcostingnorthof400 2GB,butitstillmanagedtomatchtheHD79503GBat recently,whencardssuchastheGTX6702GBturned 1,920x1,080with4xAA,withaminimumof56fps.At upwithits320tag,alongwiththelow-endchips. 2,560x1,600with4xAA,theGTX6702GBfellalittle Withthemodularnatureofthe28nmKepler behind,though,withitsminimumof32fpscloseto10 architecture,itsbeenastraightforwardtaskfor percentbehindtheHD79503GB.Thisistheexception Nvidiasengineerstomakethereductionsnecessary ratherthantherule,howevertheGTX6702GBwas todrivedowntheprice.Afull-fatKeplerGPUsports considerablyfasterinallourothertests. fourgraphicsprocessorclusters(GPCs)oftwo Theperformanceadvantagewasparticularlyclear streamliningmulti-processors(SMs)each.TheGTX inBattlefield3.At1,920x1,080with4xAA,theGTX670 6702GBhassimplyhadoneofitsSMsdisabled, 2GBsurpassedtheHD79703GBacardthats40 droppingthestreamprocessorcountto1,344and moreexpensivethankstoaminimumof60fps.Itwas thenumberoftextureunitsto112(aGTX6802GB boasts1,536and128ofeachrespectively). NvidiahasalsochosentodroptheGPUs IMPRESSIVELY, THERES LITTLE GAP clockspeeds,althoughthisisrather BETWEEN THE GTX 670 2GB AND complicatedbytheuseofNvidiasGPU Boosttechnology,whichincreasesclock ITS BETTER-ENDOWED SIBLING speedsonthefly.TheGTX6702GBhasa muchcloserat2,560x1,600with4xAA,buttheGTX baseclockof915MHz,atwhichitwillrunregardless, 6702GBwasstillquickerthankstoaminimumof butalsohasaguaranteedboostclockof980MHzto 35fps,comparedtotheHD79703GBs33fps. whichitwillboostinthevastmajorityofgames. Impressively,thereslittlegapbetweentheGTX670 However,thisisonlyaworst-caseboost,withourstock 2GBanditsbetter-endowedandcostliersiblinghere; cardcapableofboostingto1,084MHzamuchlarger theGTX6802GBwaslessthan10percentquicker. boostcurvethanthatoftheGTX6802GB,whichtops Dirt3alsosawtheGTX6702GBsurpasstheHD outat1,110MHz. 79703GB.Itsminimumof67fpsat2,560x1,600with4x Elsewhere,thememoryisunchangedfromthatof AAwas3fpsfasterthanthetop-endRadeon,and9fps theGTX680,with2GBofGDDR5runningat1.5GHz quickerthantheHD79503GB,whileagaincomingin (6GHzeffective).The256-bitmemoryinterfaceisalso around10percentslowerthantheGTX6802GB. unchanged,givingatotalbandwidthof192.26GB/sec TheGTX6702GBimpressedusinSkyrimtoo, notablylessthanAMDscompetingcards. managingaminimumof66fpsat2,560x1,600with WhilethereductioninSMunitsandclockspeed 4xAA.Again,thissurpassedtheperformanceofthe arenttoodrastic,theGTX6702GBishugelydifferent HD79703GB,andwaslessthan10percentslower fromtheGTX6802GBphysically.Theentirecard thantheGTX6802GB. measuresjust240mmacross(17mmshorterthan

40

August 2012

WorldMags.net

GRAPHICS CARD

AswithotherKeplerGPUs,theGTX670sspeed ismatchedbylowpowerconsumptionandcool temperatures.Apeakpowerdrawof230Wwhile runningUniginesHeavenbenchmarkis3Wmore thantheHD79503GB,but16WbelowtheGTX560Ti 1GB.Meanwhile,thepeakloaddeltaTof55Cisfine, withthecardscoolerspinningupthefantomaintain aGPUtemperaturebelow80C.

CONCLUSION
TheGTX6702GBcomfortablysurpassesboththeHD 79503GBandHD79703GBinthemajorityofourtests.

At320foranon-overclockedcard,itsfairlypriced too,performingjust10percentslowerthanaGTX 6802GB,despitecosting25percentless.Plentyof custom-cooledandfactory-overclockedversions areavailabletoo,attheusualslightpremiums. However,whiletheGTX670isundeniablyagreat card,its320priceisstillunlikelytotemptthoseon moreconservativebudgetswerestillwaitingforthe inevitablebutstillunconfirmedGTX660.However,if yourpursestringsstretchto320thentheGTX670 2GBisafantasticchoice.
HARRY BUTLER

ARMA II: OPERATION ARROWHEAD (DX9)


1,920 x 1,080, high AA, 16x AF

BATTLEFIELD 3 (DX11)
1,920 x 1,080, 4x AA, 16x AF

GeForce GTX 670 2GB Radeon HD 7950 3GB 0


2,560 x 1,600, high AA, 16x AF

56fps 56fps
25 50

69fps 64fps
75 100

GeForce GTX 670 2GB Radeon HD 7950 3GB 0


2,560 x 1,600, 4x AA, 16x AF

60fps 45fps
25 50

72fps

56fps
75 100

GeForce GTX 670 2GB Radeon HD 7950 3GB 0


5,760 x 1,080, high AA, 16x AF

32fps 35fps
25

39fps 40fps
50 75 100

GeForce GTX 670 2GB Radeon HD 7950 3GB 0


5,760 x 1,080, 4x AA, 16x AF

35fps 28fps
25

41fps 35fps
50 75 100

ThePCBonlyaccountsfor 175mmofthecards 240mmlength

GeForce GTX 670 2GB Radeon HD 7950 3GB 0

19fps 20fps

24fps 23fps
25 50 75 100

GeForce GTX 670 2GB Radeon HD 7950 3GB 0

24fps 19fps

28fps 25fps

25

50

75

100

DIRT 3 (DX11)

1,920 x 1,080, 4x AA, 16x AF

THE ELDER SCROLLS V: SKYRIM (DX9)


1,920 x 1,080, 4x AA, 16x AF

GeForce GTX 670 2GB Radeon HD 7950 3GB 0


2,560 x 1,600, 4x AA, 16x AF

110fps 128fps 85fps 100fps


25 50 75 100

GeForce GTX 670 2GB Radeon HD 7950 3GB 0


2,560 x 1,600, 4x AA, 16x AF

89fps 111fps 73fps


25 50 75

84fps
100

GeForce GTX 670 2GB Radeon HD 7950 3GB 0


5,760 x 1,080, 4x AA, 16x AF

67fps 80fps 58fps


25 50

GeForce GTX 670 2GB Radeon HD 7950 3GB 100 0


5,760 x 1,080, 4x AA, 16x AF

66fps 82fps 55fps


25 50

68fps
75

61fps
75 100

GeForce GTX 670 2GB Radeon HD 7950 3GB 0 Minimum

49fps 38fps
25 Average

56fps

GeForce GTX 670 2GB Radeon HD 7950 3GB 75 100 0 Minimum

37fps 30fps
25 Average

45fps 36fps
50 75 100

42fps
50

TOTAL SYSTEM POWER DRAW


GeForce GTX 670 2GB Radeon HD 7950 3GB 0 Idle

PEAK GPU TEMPERATURE (DELTA T)


230W 227W
150 225 300 Lower is better GeForce GTX 670 2GB Radeon HD 7950 3GB 0 Idle

88W 89W
75 Gaming

11C 15C
15 Load 30

55C 57C
45 60 Lower is better

SPEED 37 / 40 FEATURES 28 / 30

customPC

VALUE 27 / 30 OVERALL

92

TEST KIT

3.3GHzIntelCorei52500K CPU,AsusP8P67 motherboard,4GBCorsair1,600MHzDDR3memory, CrucialM225128GBSSD,Windows764-bit,Nvidia GeForce285.62,AMDCatalyst11.12

WorldMags.net

August 2012

41

WorldMags.net

WorldMags.net

OCZ Vertex 4 256GB


A sumptuously quick SSD, but you have to pay for it
PINNACLE Fantastic performance in every sense; veyear warranty ABYSSAL Much higher /GB than Crucial M4 256GB

HOW MUCH?
Price218incVAT Supplierwww.ebuyer.co.uk Manufacturer www.ocztechnology.com SKUnumberVTX425SAT3-256

IN DETAIL
InterfaceSATA6Gbps Nominalcapacity256GB Formattedcapacity 238.47GB ControllerIndilinx IDX400M00-BC Cache1GBDDR3-800 Memorytype/amount1 6xIntel16GB25nmMLC NANDflash WarrantyFiveyears

heSSDworldisinupheavaloflate.Having AswevecometoexpectfromOCZ,theVertex4 waitedyearsforSSDstodipbelowthemagical iswellsupported.Firmwareupdatesarealready costof1pergigabyte,priceshavecrashedby available(wevetestedusingthe1.4firmwarewith asmuchas40percentinthethreemonths whichmostdrivesnowship)andOCZsdownloadable sinceourSSDLabstest(seeIssue104,p58),and SSDToolboxoffersextrassuchaspartition drivescannowbefoundatjust60ppergigabyte. management,forcingTRIMandthesecureerasure OCZisalsolookingtofurtherupsettheapplecart ofdata.Thecurrentfirmwareupdateisdestructive, withitsVertex4,boastinganewIndilinxEverest2 though,sobesuretobackupbeforeinstallingit;the controller.Overthepastfewyears,OCZnailedits updatecanbeperformedfromWindowswiththe colourstothegoodshipSandForce,withthe Vertex4connectedasasecondarydrive. compression-baseddrivecontrollerusedinboth OCZhasalsoextendeditswarrantytoamightyfive itsVertex2andVertex3drives.Now,though,OCZis years(comparedtothreefortheVertex3).WhileSSDs exploitingitspurchaseofdrivecontrollerdesigner, aretechnicallywrite-cyclelimited,OCZseffortsin Indilinx,toproduceitsowncontrollerchips,withthe reducingwritecycles,dubbedNdurance2.0,has IndilinxEverestcontrollerdebutinginOCZsrather clearlymadeitconfidentenoughtoguaranteethat, disappointingOctaneandPetrolSSDs.Thenew evenunderheavyuse,theVertex4willremainhardy. iterationlooksmorepromising,though,with sequentialperformanceclaimsofupto OCZ REVEALED THAT THE EVEREST 550MB/secreadand465MB/secwrite. CONTROLLERS ARE BASED ON However,OCZhasntdevelopeditsown controllerfromscratch;itrecentlyrevealed DUAL-CORE MARVELL CHIPS, WITH thattheEverestcontrollerisbasedona CUSTOM INDILINX FIRMWARE dual-coreMarvellcontrollerchip,with customIndilinxfirmware.Thisisasimilarto PERFORMANCE thecontrollerusedinCrucialsM4andCorsairs TheVertex4startedwellinAS-SSDwithasequential PerformanceProdrives(seeIssue104,p64),soithas readspeedof497MB/secamajorimprovementover aprovenreputationforperformanceandreliability, theOctane256GBs432MB/secinthesametestand althoughitmakesyouwonderwhatIndilinxhasbeen moreinlinewithexpectationsfromahigh-endSATA uptoforthepastfewyears.Regardless,theresulting 6Gbpsdrive.However,itssequentialwritespeedhad platformisuniquetoOCZ. usreachingfortheRestartTestbutton,aswecouldnt CrackingtheVertex4256GBopenrevealsthis believetheincreaseinperformance.Withasequential controllerchip,bearingthedesignationIDX400M00writespeedof461MB/sec,theVertex4256GBeven BC.Arrayedaroundthecontrollerare1625nmIntel eclipsedtheCorsairPerformancePro256GBs NANDmoduleswithtwo8GBdiespermodule,for speedof400MB/sec. atotalnominalcapacityof256GB.TheNANDand OCZhasclearlyoptimisedthedrivefor4KBsinglecontrollerarejoinedbyapairof512MB800MHzDDR3 queue-depthrandomreadstoo,withaspeedof memorychips,actingascacheforthedrivecontroller 27.18MB/secinAS-SSDbeingthefastestresultweve tokeepperformancerunningsmoothlyandstutterseen.A4KBsingle-queue-depthrandomwritespeed free.AsEverest2isa1:1drivecontroller,unlikethose of87MB/secwasmorelikethespeedswereusedto producedbySandForce,ithandlesuncompressedand seeing,butstillamongthefastestwevetested.The compresseddataequally,meaningthatthedrivewill 4KB64-queue-depthrandomspeedsinAS-SSDwere performthesame,regardlessofyourdatas alsoexcellent.Areadspeedof325MB/secis,again, compressionstate.

44

August 2012

WorldMags.net

SATA 6GBPS SSD

easilythefastestresultweveseeninthistest,whilea writespeedof308MB/secisalsooutstandinglyquick. MovingtoCrystalDiskMark,theVertex4256GB repeateditssuperbperformance.Asequentialread speedof502MB/secandsequentialwritespeedof 470MB/secagainhighlightthedrivessuperbwrite speeds.The4KBsingle-queue-depthrandomread speedswerealittlemundaneat29.32MB/sec,butthe correspondingwritespeedof106MB/secisagaina best-everresultforasingledrive.Meanwhile,the 4KB32-queue-depthrandomreadspeedwasalso excellentat237MB/sec,anda4KB32-queue-depth randomwritespeedissimilarlycompetitive. Whatsmore,theVertex4256GBmaintainedits performanceverywell.Havingfilledandemptiedthe driveanumberoftimesandthenforcedtheTRIM

command,itsreadandwritespeedswereunaffected, whichbodeswellforlong-termuse.

CONCLUSION
TheVertex4is extremelyquickacrosstheboard.Only itssequentialreadperformancelagsfractionally behindthecompetition,anditstoweringwriteand randomperformancemorethanmakeupforthis. However, whileCrucialsM4256GBisslower,itcan nowbefoundforjust150(63ppergigabyte).The Vertex4256GBs218priceworksoutat92pper gigabytea50percentincreasethattheVertex4 cantjustify,despiteitsspeed.Ifyourelookingforthe quickestsingleSSDonthemarket,thenthisisit,but theCrucialM4256GBremainsourSSDofchoice.
HARRY BUTLER

ThenewiterationoftheIndilinx Everestcontrollerlookspromising, withsequentialperformanceclaimsof 550MB/secreadand465MB/secwrite

Sequential read/write (MB/sec)

AS SSD

Sequential read/write (MB/sec)

CRYSTALDISKMARK
OCZ Vertex 4 256GB

OCZ Vertex 4 256GB

497 461 513 293 513 279


0 150 300 450 600 Higher is better

502 470 511 300 511 279


0 150 300 450 600 Higher is better

OCZ Vertex 3 240GB

OCZ Vertex 3 240GB

Crucial M4 256GB

Crucial M4 256GB

4KB single-queue-depth random read/write (MB/sec)

AS SSD

4KB single-queue-depth random read/write (MB/sec)

CRYSTALDISKMARK
OCZ Vertex 4 256GB

OCZ Vertex 4 256GB

27 87 21 87 23 81
0 25 50 75 100 Higher is better

29 106 35 98 24 95
0 30 60 90 120 Higher is better

OCZ Vertex 3 240GB

OCZ Vertex 3 240GB

Crucial M4 256GB

Crucial M4 256GB

4KB 64-queue-depth random read/write (MB/sec)

AS SSD

4KB 32-queue-depth random read/write (MB/sec)

CRYSTALDISKMARK
OCZ Vertex 4 256GB

OCZ Vertex 4 256GB

325 309 205 238 153 212


0 100 200 300 400 Higher is better

237 242 200 230 194 238


0 Read 75 Write 150 225 300 Higher is better

OCZ Vertex 3 240GB

OCZ Vertex 3 240GB

Crucial M4 256GB

Crucial M4 256GB

FEATURES 18 / 20 SPEED 43 / 45 VALUE 23 / 35

84
OVERALL

customPC

TEST KIT

3.3GHzIntelCorei5-2500KCPU,AsusP8P67 motherboard,8GBKingston1600MHzDDR3memory, NvidiaGeForceGTS250512MBgraphicscard,PCPower andCoolingSilencer750WPSU,Windows7Home Premium64-bit,IntelRapidStorageTechnologydriver (iaStor.sys)

WorldMags.net

August 2012

45

JOYSTICK

CYBORG F.L.Y 5
A collapsible, adjustable ight stick with dual throttle control for under 30
ICEMAN Adjustable; dual throttle; plenty of buttons; collapsible; cheap SLIDER Not as sturdy as larger joysticks; no twist action lock; some imsy buttons
tsbeenawhilesinceweve lookedatajoystick,forthe simplereasonthatnotmany havebeenreleasedsincethe demiseofMicrosoftsFlightSimulator series.Thankfully,Cyborg,abrandofMad CatzInteractivethatalsositsbesidelongtimeflightsimperipheralmakerSaitek,isstill TheF.L.Y5isalsofairly churningouttheoddjoystick.TheF.L.Y5caughtour sturdy,andwobbleorflexing eyemainlybecauseitcostslessthan30;however,it arentanissue,despitethedetachable alsohasdualthrottlecontrolararefeatureatthis stick.Thisisparticularlyimportant,asthestickrotates price.Thismakesflyingmulti-engineaircraftthatlittle forYawcontrol. Sadly,wecouldntseeawaytodisable morerealistic,especiallyifoneengineisonfireatthe this,though,whichisworthbearinginmindifyou timeandyouneedtothrottleitbackinahurry. dontlikeusingthetwistfunctionforruddercontrol. TheF.L.Y5ispackagedinanextremelysmallbox. Thestickisactuallydetachablefrom thebaseandthelatterhastwolarge THIS MAKES FLYING MULTI-ENGINE flip-outsupports,onewiththe AIRCRAFT A LITTLE MORE REALISTIC, throttlecontrolonit.Combinedwith ESPECIALLY IF ONE ENGINE IS ON FIRE theremovablestick,theF.L.Y5canbe storedinasmallplaceuntilyoufeel CONCLUSION theneedforspeedagain.Alternatively,itsidealfor TheF.L.Y5sobviouscompetitionisThrustmasters stashinginabagandtakingtoaLANorfriendshouse. T-FlightHotasX,whichcostsalittlemore.Itssturdier AswithmanyofCyborgsR.A.Tmice,thereare andhasalockabletwistactiononthesticksYaw severaladjustablesurfacesontheF.L.Y5,including control,butitsalsolarger,lacksdualthrottlecontrol, theheadandhead-buttons,aswellasthestick hasfewerbuttonsandnoscrollwheel.TheF.L.Y5 isat heightandangle.Atoolforthejobisprovidedina homeonadeskforlongperiods,butitsequallyhappy storageslotontherightlegessentiallyahexkey. tobequicklydismantledandstored.Youwontbeleft Thisismorethanweveseenonajoystickbutitsavery wantingforbuttonsorfeatureseitherthefactthatits welcomeaddition;youcanbuyalargerorsmaller adjustableandhasdualthrottlecontrolisamazingat mousetofityourhands,butjoysticksareusually thisprice.Ifyouneedafully-featuredjoystickbutcant madetosimilarsizes. spendmorethan30,buytheF.L.Y5. Thereare12buttonsintotal,includingtheusual ANTONY LEATHER triggerandthumbbuttons,butaShiftbuttondoubles thisnumberifyourepreparedtoinstalltheincluded software.Theresaneight-wayhatswitchandascroll wheelattheneckofthesticktoo,withthelatter providingtheperfectmeansforadjustingthetrimof DESIGN 36 / 40 yourcontrolsurfaces.Oneortwoofthebuttonsarea littleflimsy,butthethrottlecontrolsfeelexcellently FEATURES 32 / 35 smoothandpositive,withabuttonontheside enablingyoutolockthemtogetherifyourplaneonly VALUE 23 / 25 OVERALL hasoneengine.

HOW MUCH?
Price30incVAT Supplier www.pixmania.co.uk Manufacturer www.cyborggaming.com SKUnumber CCB4330200B2/04/1

IN DETAIL
ConnectionWired MaterialPlastic Buttons12(additional12 usingshiftkey) ExtrasDetachablestick, collapsiblebase,adjustable surfaces,scrollwheel, 8-wayhat,dualthrottle, twistaction

91

46

August 2012

WorldMags.net

Great Offers from CCL


CCL-Tech.net Your NEW Home for
News, Unboxing, Reviews, Previews, Competitions and Loads More
Keep updated with CCL-Tech on your favorite social media site

Featuring our New Range of Gaming and Workstation PCs

CCL-Tech.net - News, Reviews, Unboxing, Previews, and More

WIN
19 RP 9.99
Win a Sandisk Ultra 120GB Solid State Drive with CCL-Tech.net
R

fb.me/CCLOnline

bit.ly/CCLYoutube

@cclcomputers

Entering is easy, simply goto our facebook page www.facebook.com/CCLOnline and click Like

CCL FireStorm Workstation PCs


CCL Firestorm Scorch II Workstation
Core i3 Workstation with 8GB RAM and a powerful NVIDIA Quadro Graphics Card Intel Core i3-2120 3.3GHz Processor 8GB DDR3 RAM, 500GB SATA III HDD NVIDIA Quadro 400 Graphics Card 1 Year On-Site Warranty

Our Entry Level Workstation PC Powered by Intel Core i3

CCL Firestorm Outbreak Workstation


Powerful Intel Quad Core based machine, with both an SSD and tradional Hard Drive couple with an AMD FirePro V4800 Graphics Card . Intel Core i5-3550 3.3GHz Processor 16GB DDR3 RAM, 120GB SSD, 2TB HDD AMD FirePro V4800 Graphics Card 1 Year On-Site Warranty

Quad Core Powered Workstation with SSD and FirePro

Add a monitor
for

549.99
Save: 50.00
CODE: CCL-WS-SCH2

999.99
Save: 100.00
CODE: CCL-WS-OBR

99

CCL Elite Gaming PCs


Powered by the New Intel IvyBridge CPU ye Features the latest Intel core i5 CPU and the Ultra Fast
NVIDIA GeForce GTX680 Graphics Card Intel Core i5-3570K 3.3GHz Processor 16GB DDR3 RAM, 120GB SSD, 2TB HDD NVIDIA Geforce GTX 680 Graphics Card 1 Year Warranty

CCL Elite Eagle II Gaming PC


Overclock
for

CCL Elite Owl II Gaming PC


Now with upgraded processor, Double the Memory and Faster AMD Powered Graphics. Intel Core i3-2100 3.1GHz Processor m 8GB DDR3 1333MHz Memory AMD Radeon HD 6850 Graphics Card 1 Year Warranty

Upgraded version of the popular CCL Elite Owl System

49

1399.99
Save: 100.00
CODE: CCL-EL-EAG2

449.99
Save: 50.00
CODE: CCL-EL-OWL2

QR

QR

www.cclonline.com/cpc
Call us on 08000 50 10 10
www.cclonline.com
Get FREE Next Day WorldMags.net Delivery Use this Code: #CPC-Free
M onitors, bundles a nd operatin g s ys tem s are avai lab le s ep arately un les s s p ec i fied.

MECHANICAL GAMING KEYBOARD

CM STORM Quick Fire Rapid


Small, and very nearly perfectly formed
WOLVERINE
Small without feeling cramped; sturdy; well priced

STORM No wrist rest; only 6-key rollover when using USB

HOW MUCH?
Price66incVAT Supplierwww.scan.co.uk Manufacturer www.cmstorm.com SKUnumberSGK-4000GKCC1

echanicalkeyboardshavebeenaroundfor decades,andformostofthattime,theyve theextrasize,butwecertainlydidntfeelrestrictedat beenrelativelyunfashionabledevices anypointwhenusingtheboard.Infact,weappreciated reservedfortypingpuristsandthosewho theextraroomonourdesk. consideredcheapermembranekeyboardsuncouth. Ourmajorgripe,however,isthelackofawristrest Recently,though,weveseenmechanicalkeyboards mechanicalkeyboardstendtositalittlehigherupoff experiencearenaissance,withmanufacturerskeento thedeskduetotheheightofthekeys,sohavingawrist toutthemasthenextmust-havegamingperipherals. restisimportantandasillyomission. Asever,alotofwhatssaidismarketinghyperbole, Asitsagamingkeyboard,theQuickFireRapidalso buttherearebenefitstousingamechanicalboard. sportsn-keyrollovertechnology,meaningthatthe Theytendtobeextremelysturdyforastart,asthe boardcanrecogniseanynumberofsimultaneous mechanicalkeysneedtobemountedtoametal keypresses.Thisonlyworkswhenconnectingthe chassis.Thismakesevenasmallmodelsuchasthe keyboardviathebundledPS/2adaptor,however CMStormQuickFireRapidsurprisinglyweighty, USBuserswillbelimitedtosix-keyrollover,whichisnt lendingitafeelingofqualityandstability. idealwhensomanynewmotherboardsdonteven Theothermajorbenefit,andtheoneforwhich havePS/2connectors.Italsosportsmediashortcut yourepayingaheftypricepremium,isthekey keysthatareaccessedviaafunctionkey,andahandy switchesthemselves,whichhavelonger travelandmoretactilefeedbackthan THE BLACK SWITCHES HAVE membranekeyswitches.ThesilverQuick A SLIGHTLY HIGHER ACTUATION FireRapidwerelookingathereusesCherry FORCE, REQUIRING MORE FORCE Blackswitches,althoughtheresalsoa blackversionofthekeyboardthatusesthe TO REGISTER A KEY PRESS Redswitchestoo(SKUSGK-4000-GKCR1). However,theQuickFireRapidsBlackswitches featuretolocktheWindowskey,toavoidaccidental haveaslightlyhigheractuationforce,whichcanmake presseswhengaming. themalittlelessresponsive,asittakesmoreforceto CONCLUSION registerakeypress.Thedifferenceisminor,though, TheCMStormQuickFireRapidsdinkyproportions, andtheresistancecanbewelcomeinlonggaming solidbuildqualityandaffordablepricemakeitan ortypingsessions,asitmakestypinglesstiring. attractivekeyboard.Itlackssomeoftheflairofthe TheothermajorcharacteristicoftheQuickFire moreexpensiveCorsairVengeanceK60(seeIssue Rapidisitssizetheboardeschewsthetraditional 101,p46)butifthisisntimportanttoyou,andyoudont numberpad,makingitalmostathirdsmallerthan mindpurchasingaseparatewristrest,thenitsasolid otherkeyboards.Somepeoplewillundoubtedlymiss mechanicalgamingkeyboardforthemoney.
PAUL GOODHEAD

IN DETAIL
ConnectionWired,USB CableBraided,removable MaterialPlasticandmetal ExtrasExtraredWSADkeys

DESIGN 32 / 40 FEATURES 25 / 35 VALUE 22 / 25

79

OVERALL

48

August 2012

WorldMags.net

WorldMags.net

Thorough testing and research is the key to evaluating whether a product is worth buying, and deciding whether or not theres a better alternative

We judge CPUs on whether they offer sufficient speed for the price. Part of a CPUs speed score comes from how overclockable it is. Every type of CPU is tested in the same PC, so all results are directly comparable.

Intel LGA1155

AsusMaximus IVGene-Z

4GBofCorsair 1,600MHzDDR3

AMDFM1

MSI A75MA-G55

4GBofCorsair 1,600MHzDDR3

AMDSocket AM3+

AsusCrosshairIV Formula

4GBofCorsair 1,600MHzDDR3

NvidiaGeForce GTX5903GB

120GBPatriot Wildfire

Windows7 64-bit

TESTS: WeusetheCustomPCMediaBenchmarks,CinebenchR11.5,WPrimeandCrysis.Wealsotesttheresultantpowerdrawofthetest
PCwiththeCPUinstalled.ThesetestsrevealabroadrangeofperformancecharacteristicsfortheCPU,fromimageeditingtogamingand fromvideoencodingto3Drendering.WerunallthetestswiththeCPUatstockspeedandagainwhenoverclockedtoitshighestfrequency.

Graphics cards are mainly evaluated on how fast they are for their price. However, we also consider the efficacy and quietness of the cooler. Every graphics card is tested in the same PC, so all results are directly comparable.

3.3GHzIntelCore i5-2500K

4GBCorsair1,600MHz DDR3

AsusP8P67Rev3

Windows764-bit SP1

Thegraphicscard werereviewing

50

August 2012

WorldMags.net

HOW WE TEST

2.66GHzIntelCore2 DuoE6750

2GBofCorsair 1,066MHzDDR2

250GBSamsung SpinPointP120S

AsusP5KDeluxe WiFi-AP

Ourbenchmarksuite simulateshowpeople reallyusePCs,anda higherscoreisbetter. Youcandownload thesuitefrom www.tinyurl.com/ benchies

Motherboards are evaluated on everything from layout and features to overclockability and value for money. Every motherboard is tested with the same components, so all results are directly comparable.

Someproductsare gloriouslyoverthe top.Theseitemsof excellentoverkill earnourExtreme Ultraaward. PremiumGrade productsare utterlydesirable wedeatnothing butbeansuntilwe couldaffordthem. Productsworthy oftheProfessional awardmake you andyourbusiness appeareven moreawesome. Approvedproducts arethosethatdoa greatjobforthe money;theyrethe cannypurchasefor agreatPC.

IntelCore i5-2500K

Motherboard ontest

4GBofCorsair 1,600MHzDDR3

AMDA8-3850

Motherboard 4GBofCorsair ontest 1,600MHzDDR3

AMDPhenom Motherboard IIX61100TBE ontest

4GBofCorsair 1,600MHzDDR3

NvidiaGeForce GTX5903GB*

2TBWesternDigital CaviarBlack

Windows7 64-bit

TESTS: WeusetheCustomPCMediaBenchmarksandseveralgames,andalsotest thespeedsoftheboardsSATAports.Wetrytooverclockeverymotherboardwereview bytestingforamaximumQPI,baseclockorHTTaswellasoverclockingtheCPUtoits maximumair-cooledlevel.WerunourtestsatstockspeedandwiththeCPUoverclocked.


*Pleasenote:WetestedAMDFM1motherboardsusingtheon-boardgraphics,nottheNvidiaGeForceGTX5903GB

TESTS: ByusingthefastPCdetailedonthe left,wecanbesurethatanylimitationswesee areduetothegraphicscardontest.Wetestthe fourgames(right)attheirmaximumdetail settings,intheirhighestDirectXmode,andat threeresolutions.High-endcardsshouldbeable tosustainplayableframeratesat2,560x1,600, while1,920x1,080ismoreimportantformidrangecards; wenolongertestat1,680x1,050 because1,920x1,080issocheap.Wealsotryto overclockeverygraphicscardwetesttoseewhat differencethismakestothecardsperformance.
WorldMags.net

Forthosegadgets andgizmosthat reallyimpressus, orthatwecantlive without,theresthe CustomKitaward.

August 2012

51

Custom Kit
BOARD GAME
Memoir44hastheperfectlearningcurve,inthatitseasy topickup,buthardtomaster.Allthescenariosinthe bundledbookarebasedongenuineWWIIbattles,andseeone playertakingtheroleoftheAlliesandtheothertheAxis.Actions canonlybetakenwhenyouhavethecorrespondingOrderCard, however,makingitfrustratingifyoureinagoodpositionbutcant exploitit.Thisoftenleadstothefeelingthatitstherunofthecards, ratherthangoodgeneralship,thatwillwinyouthegame. PG WAR HUH?
Price 39 inc VAT Supplier www.amazon.co.uk Manufacturer www.daysofwonder.com

Written by Paul Goodhead Seen something worthy of appearing in Custom Kit? Send suggestions to paul_goodhead@dennis.co.uk

We check out the latest gadgets, gizmos and geek toys


MEMOIR 44

01

PROJECTOR

PICO Genie A100

builtintoaniPhonecase,thathastobecrapright? Imagineourshock,then,whenitturnedouttobereally ratherexcellent.Granted,youneedthelightsturned down,asthelampdoesnthaveoodlesofpunch,butthe pictureiscrisp,clearandeasilyfocuseduptoasizeof around50inusingthefocusingring.The2Wspeakerbuilt intothecaseissufficienttoo,makingitidealfortravelling orimpromptubusinessmeetings.Itsexpensive,of course,butifmoneyisnoobject(oryoucangetone throughwork)thenyouwontbedisappointed. PG ALADDIN GENIE
Price 200 inc VAT Supplier www.theaccessoriescrowd.com Manufacturer www.thepicogenie.moonfruit.com

02 Welladmitthatwewereprettydismissiveofthe PicoGeniewhenwefirstheardofitaprojector

MEDIA CENTRE KEYBOARD

KEYSONIC KSK-3205

havetoswitchbetweenyourkeyboard,mouse andremote,dependingonwhatyouredoing. ThisiswhyKeysonichasdevelopedthe3205. ItsaroundthesizeofaBlackberry,soits hardlyanobtrusivepieceofkit,butitmanages topackinmediacontrols,atouchpadanda keyboardwithouteverfeelingcramped.The Rangeisgoodtoo,andalthoughtypingonthe keyboardisfiddly,youshouldnthavetodothis toooften.Ouronlygripeisthebuildqualityit feelsextremelylightweightandinsubstantial, andweexpectbetterfor40. PG PLASTIC FANTASTIC
Price 40 inc VAT Supplier www.amazon.co.uk Manufacturer www.keysonic.de

03 InteractingwithmediaPCscanbea clunkyexperience,whereyouoften

52

August 2012

WorldMags.net

CUSTOM KIT

USB SOUND CARD

ENERMAX Dream Bass AP001

likeavalvefromanoldschoolamplifier. Bothheadphoneandmicrophoneminijacksareprovided.Enermaxclaimsthat itwillprovideimprovedplaybackand recordingqualitythankstotheon-board VIAVT1620Achip,whichsupports 24-bit/192KHzsamplingandhas twohigh-qualityDACs.However,the outputoftheDreamBassAP001is disappointinglybass-heavy,making almostalltypesofmusicsound unbalancedasthoughyourehearing itthroughawall.Itisntadjustableeither thereisntevenaTonetabinthe WindowsSoundControlPanel,although thereisthebizarreoptionforanextra bassboostintheEnhancementstab. Ontheplusside,theextrabasswas morewelcomeingames,whichtendto emphasisebassinsoundeffects,butits unbalancedperformanceineverything elsemeansthat youdbebetteroff stickingwithon-boardsound. PG BASE BASS
Price 23 inc VAT Supplier www.systo.co.uk Manufacturer www.enermax.co.uk

04 TheDreamBassisanaffordable USBsoundcard,styledtolook

05 06 07

CLEANING SPRAY

ANTEC Advance Natural Spray 60ml

snakevenom,poisonoustoadstoolsand,well,yougetthepicture.Antecalsoguaranteestheres noammoniaoralcoholinthesprayand,unliketheothercleaningproductsontest,itsscentless, soatleastitwontmakeyourroomstink.Itdoesitsjobwell,althoughitslowviscositymeansthat youllhavetobequickwhencleaningvertically-orientateddevicessuchasmonitorsorTVs.Italso smearedeasierthanthe3xStrengthspray,meaningthatitsonlyreallyworthconsideringifyou objecttotheusualsmellofcleaningproducts. PG FAKE NATURAL


Price 5 inc VAT Supplier www.ebuyer.com Manufacturer www.antec.com

05 AntecsAdvanceNaturalSprayismadefrom100percentnaturalingredients,andhasno chemicaladditives.Afterall,everythingnaturalisgoodforyou,exceptdeadlynightshade,

CLEANING GEL

ANTEC Advance Deep Clean Gel

liquidsprays,soitsnotgoingtorunawayorevaporatebeforeyoucanuseit.Thegelcleanedour smartphonetoastandardthathasntbeenseensinceitwasnew,anditwasgoodatwardingoff ourdirtyfingerprintstoo.Theonlydownsideisthatitsmoreexpensivethanthe3xsprayandonly suitedtocleaningsmallgadgets,thankstoitsthicknessandlackofasprayapplicator. PG HAIR GEL JELLY


Price 8 inc VAT Supplier www.ebuyer.com Manufacturer www.antec.com

ThesecondofourtrioofcleaningproductsistheDeepCleaningGel,whichincludesacarry 06 pouch.Italsohasaposhercloththanthetwosprays.Asyoudexpect,itsthickerthanthe

CLEANING SPRAY

ANTEC Advance 3x Strength Spray 60ml

properties,itsalsothickerthantheNaturalSpray,soitstickstosurfacesbetter,andwefoundittobe lesssmearytoo.Theresultisareasonablypricedproductthatdoesagreatjobofcleaningyourkit, evenifyouarentparanoidaboutgerms.Costingonly1.40morethantheNaturalCleaner,there seemslittleexcusenottohaveoneoftheseinyourdeskdrawer. PG KIM & AGGIE MARY POPPINS


Price 7 inc VAT Supplier www.ebuyer.com Manufacturer www.antec.com

Ifyoureallywantacleanerthatwilldothejob,weadviseoptingforthe3xStrengthSpray, 07 whichhasbeendevelopedbyAntectobearuthlessbacteriakiller.Aswellasitsantibacterial

WorldMags.net

August 2012

53

54

August 2012

WorldMags.net

HOWWETESTED,PAGE56

COOL
versincechildhood,were taughtthatelectronics+water =bad,justthesamewaywe learnthattoasters+forks= dangerous.However,water-cooling yourPCneedntbearecipefordisaster. Infact,ithasthepotentialtoquietlyand effectivelycoolallthehardwareinside yourPCwithaminimumoffans. Overthepastfewyears,theresbeen ahugeincreaseinclosed-loopliquidcoolingsystems,suchasCorsairsH100 andPNYsliquid-cooledGTX5801.5GB. However,whilesuchproductsoffera quickandeasyrouteintotheworldof watercooling,theylackstyleand flexibility;theresnowaytoaddaGPU blockorswapoutthepump,andtheyll neverlookasgoodasawell-maintained custom-builtloop.Buildingyourownloop mightbemoreexpensive,butitsfarmore customisableandalotmoresatisfying. However,withamultitudeofdifferent waterblocksfordifferentCPUsockets, nottomentiondifferentdesignsforevery typeofgraphicscard,choosingtheright partscanbetricky.Thisiswhyweve

CUSTOMER
E
HARRY BUTLER

Picking the right water-cooling parts can be a shot in the dark, so weve rounded up loads of blocks and radiators to help you build the perfect water-cooling loop
roundedupseveralCPUandGPUblocks andradiators,sowecanfindoutwhichare worthyofyourplumbing.

56 Howwetested 58 AquacomputerCuplexKryosHF 59 WatercoolHeatkillerCPURev3.0CU 60 XSPCRayStormCPUWaterBlock 62 KoolanceVID-NX680 64 WatercoolHeatkillerGPU-XGTX 65 XSPCRazorGTX680 67 AquacomputeraquagrATIxforHD7970 68 WatercoolHeatkillerGPU-XGTX 70 XSPC Razor7970 71 AquacomputerairplexXT240 72 AlphacoolNexXxoSXT60FullCopper 73 PhobyaG-Changer240Ver.1.2Black 74 XSPCEX240MultiportRadiator 75 Graphs 76 HowtofitCPUandGPUwaterblocks 80 Howtomountyourpumpandradiator
56

680HoleEdition

79X0

240mm

WorldMags.net

August 2012

55

how we tested T

estingwater-coolingpartsisadifficult process,anditsfraughtwithaveritable shed-loadofvariables.Thefactthatalmost notwowater-coolingloopsarealikewhenit comestotubinglength,pumpflowrateand choiceofCPU/GPUblockmakestheprocess verycomplex. ForthismonthsLabstest,wedeviseda doubleelimination-styletest.First,wetested thethreeCPUblocksontheirown,plumbed intoaloopladenwithcoolingcapacityanda high-flowrate.Havingfoundthebest,wethen movedontotheGPUblocks,testingthree GeForceGTX6802GBblocksandthree RadeonHD79703GBwaterblocksontheir respectivecards. Withthebestagainfound,wethen plumbedboththewinningCPUblockand winningGTX6802GBblockbackintothe loop,thistimeswappingouttheradiatorto determinethebestforuseinacombined

WeusedaSwiftechMPC655(LaingD5Vario)pump, whichiscapableofupto25litres/minofflow

WeusedasimpleXSPCdrive bayreservoir,asithasan easy-accessfillport

CPUandGPUloop;amuchmoredemanding testthanonewithaloopthatsimplycontains eitheraGPUorCPUblockalone.

measureaCPUorGPUblockseffecton waterflowrateunderbothhigh-andlowflowcircumstances. Tomeasureflowrate,weusedaColeParmerflow-meter,withaminimum sensitivityof2litres/min(120litres/ hour),plumbedintotheloop.Using standard1/2infittings,theflowofwater thoughtheflow-meterforcestheweight insideupwards,indicatingflowrate. Asacoolant,weuseddeionisedwater throughout,asitscheapandplentiful idealwhenfrequentlychangingpartsand plumbing.However,forlong-termwatercoolinginstallations,itsimportanttoadda biocidetoyourcoolanttopreventorganisms suchasalgaefromgrowinginthewarm, wateryconditionsinside.Alternatively,you

canusepre-mixedcoolants,whichincludea biocideelementandareavailableinawhole rangeofattractivevibrantandgarishcolours. WerebigfansofMayhemsPastelrange, althoughat15/litre,itsagreatdealmore expensivethanstandardwater. Forareservoir,weusedasimpleXSPC 5.25indrivebayunit,asithasaneasy-access fill-port.ForboththeCPUandGPUblock tests,coolingfortheloopwasprovidedbya 30mmthick,triple-120mmfanradiatorfitted withthreePhobyaG-Silent1,600rpmfans blowingthroughtheradiator.Thiswas chosentoprovidecoolingpowerthatwasfar morethanjustasufficientlevelfortheCPU andGPUblocks.Thisway,wecouldgauge theirabilitytoremoveheatfromourtest hardwarebetterthanwecouldwithourdual 120mmtestradiators. Fortubing,weusedclearMasterklear 1/2ininner-diameterPVCtubingthroughout, connectedtoourhardwarevia1/2inMonsoon compressionfittings.Weused1/2intubingto removeanychanceofitimpactingonour coolingorflow-ratemeasurements.Smaller 1/4in(6mm)inner-diametertubingisstilla viablechoice,though,particularlyforlowerflowloops.Withjustthepump,radiator,flow meterandreservoirplumbedin[inthat order),werecordedaflowrateof9.5litres/ minwiththepumpatfullspeedand3litres/ minatitslowestspeed.

THE TEST BENCH


Thewater-coolingloopisonlyhalfthestory though;wealsoneededatoastytestsystem

THE GEAR
Throughoutourtesting,weusedaSwiftech MPC655LaingD5Vario12Vpumpwith 1/2in(13mm)fittings(suchpumpsarealso availablefromAlphacoolanddirectfrom Laing).Oneofthemostprovenandpopular water-coolingpumpsaround,theLaing D5-Vario,iscapableofupto25litres/minof flow,withaheadpressureof3.7matfull power(4,800rpm),whilealsoallowingyouto dropitsspeedtoamorevibration-friendly levelof1,800rpm.Thisenabledusto

FLOW RATE
Inadditiontothetemperatureresults,youllalsonoticethatwemakerepeatedreference toflow-rateresults,butwhyisthisimportant?Basically,inorderforyourwater-cooling looptowork,itneedstohavewaterpumpedarounditconstantly.Afasterflowrate doesntmeanthatyourloopisnecessarilycoolerthough.Afterall,thewaterisall thermallyconductive,howeverfastitsbeingpushedaroundtheblock. Flowrateonlyreallybecomesaproblemifitstartsdroppingbelow1litre/min,which meansthatallthekitinthisLabstestisfine.Thatsaid,ifyouwanttoaddmanyblocksto yourloop,perhapsformultiplegraphicscardsandchipsetcooling,thenitsworthlooking forkitwithahigherflowratetobesurethatitwillbeabletosustainyourloop.Inshort, goodwater-coolingcomponentsshouldbedesignedsoasnottoimpedeflow,soweve includedtheflow-rateresultsforyourreference,andaccountedforthemintheDesign score,ratherthanthePerformancescore.

56

August 2012

WorldMags.net

WATER COOLING

OurtestRadeonHD79703GBwasoverclockedto1,125MHzwitha10percentincreaseinpowerdraw

toheatitup.WhileanewIvyBridgeCPU increasingitsenergydrawby32percent, wouldseemliketheobviouschoice,its whiletheHD79703GBwasoverclockedto thermalissuesarebelievedtobeinternal 1,125MHzwitha10percentincreasein (rumoursabound powerdraw. regardingIntels TheGTX6802GBwas allegedchoicetouse placedunderloadusing alow-qualitythermal GPUstress-testFurMark, pastebetweenthedieand pushingthecardtothe theCPUsheatspreader). limitofitsextrapower, Assuch,weveinstead buttheRadeonsmore plumpedforanIntelCore aggressivepower i7-2600Krippedfromthe managementcircuitry bosomofourLGA1155 meantthatwehadto heatsinktestsystem, useUniginesHeaven fittedintoanAsus BenchmarktotesttheHD P8Z68-Vmotherboard 79703GBblocks.Boththe alongside4GBof1,600MHz CPUandGPUblockswere DDR3memory. testedusingtheLaing However,whileour D5-variosmaximumand heatsinktestsystems minimumpumpspeeds. overclockedclockspeedof Finally,totestthe 4.1GHzusingavcoreof1.325V radiators,webuiltthe isenoughtotestaircoolers,it sameCorei7-2600K isntaschallengingtoagood systembasedaroundthe water-coolingloop,sowe bestCPUandGeForceGTX knockeditupanotch,resulting 6802GBwaterblocks,and inaCPUfrequencyof4.6GHz swappedoutthetripleandavcoreof1.385V. 120mmfanradiatorfor OurtestGeForceGTX6802GBwas Toremoveanothercommon overclockedby150MHz eachradiatorontest. variablewhenitcomestocooling, Sinceweonly allCPUandGPUblocksweremountedusing testeddouble120mm-fanradiators,we PhobyaHeGreasethermalpaste,although testedeachwithapairofPhobyaG-Silent suppliedthermalpadsandthermaltape wereusedassuggestedineachblocks instructions. Watercoolingcanbehazardousto TotestboththeGeForceGTX6802GB yoursystemifsetupincorrectly.CPC andRadeonHD79703GBwaterblock assumesthatyourecompetenttofit performance,weagaindidntsettleforstock thesecomponents,andtakesnoliability speeds.TheGTX6802GBwasoverclockedby forspills,leaksordamagetoyourPC adding150MHztoitsbaseclock(increasing causedbyincorrectinstallation. itshighestboostclockto1,260MHz),and

FurMarkisusedtoplacetheGeForceGTX6802GB underload,whileUniginesHeavenBenchmarkwas usedfortheRadeonHD79703GB

1,600rpmcoolingfansrunningatfullspeed inapushconfiguration. Wedalsoliketosayabigthankyouto www.aquatuning.co.ukforprovidingthe samplesandtestingequipmentforthis monthsLabstest.Thefolkstherearealovely bunch,andifyouvisittheirforumonbit-tech athttp://tinyurl.com/FreeAquaShipping,you evengetfreeshipping.Otherwater-cooling suppliersareavailable,ofcourse,andas always,itcanpaytoshoparound.

WARNING

WeusedaSandyBridgeCorei7-2600Koverclockedto 4.6GHztotesttheCPUblocks 58

WorldMags.net

August 2012

57

A convoluted mount and high price you can nd better elsewhere


FONZY Capable cooling; decent high-ow rate FOZZY Horrible to mount; some 1/2in compression ttings wont t; expensive

AQUACOMPUTER Cuplex Kryos HF

HOW MUCH?
Productcode10378 Price67incVAT Supplier www.aquatuning.co.uk Manufacturer www.aquacomputer.de

quacomputerisoneofonlyafewwatercoolingmanufacturerstooffertop-tobottomcoolinghardware,includingits Airplexradiators,CPUandGPUblocks, pumpsanditsAquaerofancontrollers. LiketheWatercoolHeatkiller(opposite),theKryos isavailableinmanydifferentfinishes,fromaffordable Polyoxymethylene(POM)toasuper-expensivesilver model(yes,really).TheKryosHFsitsinthemiddle,and isfinishedinattractivesteelandpolishedcopper,with itssculptedmountingarmsslottedintoeitherside. At420g,theKryosistheheaviestCPUblockontest, withalargecoppercontactplateandheatexchanger restingbeneaththeheftytop-plate.Thelatteris securedviafourAllenboltsthreadedthroughfrom thecopperbase,whichisfinishedtoamirrorsheen. Sadly,thetwo1/4inthreadsintheKryostop-plate werentsufficientlyspacedtoaccommodateour1/2in Monsooncompressionfittings,butstraight1/2in fittingsandsmaller1/4incompressionfittingsfitted withoutissues.Thecentrethreadisclearlymarked astheintake,withtheupperthreadtheexhaust. Whileitmightlookthepart,though,theKryoswas extremelyfrustratingtofit.Itusesthecombinationofa backplateandabolt-throughmount,butcomplicates thiswithnumerouswashers.Welostpatiencewithit numeroustimes,tryingtobalancewashersbetween thebackplateandmotherboardwhilethreading mount-boltsthroughallthree.Havingfinally succeededinattachingthemount,securingthe blockisachievedusingfoursprungscrews.However,

theyreallmanuallytightenedscrewswithnocutsfor flat-headorPhillipsscrewdrivers,makingapplying evenmountpressuretricky.Frankly,itsafiddlyand convolutedmountingprocessandwhoeverdesigned itdeservesaneternityofhavingtoinstallit,Atlas-style. Plumbedintoourtestloop,theKryossurprisedus bycominglastinthecoolingstakeswithadeltaTof 42C.Whilethisisbetterthananexpensiveall-in-one liquidcooler,its2CwarmerthantheXSPCRayStorm (seep60)and1CwarmerthantheWatercool Heatkiller.However,theKryosdeliveredwhenitcame tohigh-flowperformance,withaflowrateof7litres/ minwithourpumpsettofullspeed.However,this dippedto1.5litres/minduringlow-flowtesting.

CONCLUSION
TheAquacomputerKryosHFmightlookthepart,but itsmountisawkwardandclunkytoinstall,andits coolingpowerwasalsoafewdegreespoorerthanthe RayStorm.WhenyoufactorintheKryos15more expensiveprice,itsdifficulttorecommendcompared withthecompetition. HB

scores
COOLING 34 / 40 DESIGN 21 / 30

customPC

VALUE 21 / 30 OVERALL

76

58

August 2012

WorldMags.net

CPU WATERBLOCKS

Attractive and easy to t, but its hard to t 1/2in compression ttings

WATERCOOL Heatkiller CPU Rev 3.0 CU LGA 1155

ermanmanufacturerWatercoolproduces manydifferentversionsofitsHeatkillerCPU Rev3.0CPUwaterblock,allusingthesame copperbase,butwithdifferenttop-plates. TheCUversionseestheblockcladingleamingcopper andbrushedstainlesssteel,anditlooksabsolutely gorgeous.Itssuretokeepitscopperygoodlookstoo, thankstoacoatofclearvarnishtopreventtarnishing. Beneaththetop-plate,theblockscopperbaseplate andheatexchangeraremassive,withsixAllenbolts aroundtheedgeofthebaseplatemakingiteasyto disassembleandclean.However,youllneedtomake surethatyourmotherboarddoesnthaveany capacitorsinsidetheLGA1155socketperimeter, asthelargebasemayfoulthem. Whiletheblockspairof1/4inthreadfittingsareset intoacopperplate,theyreveryclosetogether,making ithardtouse1/2incompressionfittings.Evenwhen securingstraight1/2infittingswithjubileeclips,thefit wasstillverytight,makingtheHeatkillerharderto plumbintoourtestloopthanthecompetition. Ratherthanbundlinganumberofdifferentmounts withtheHeatkiller,Watercoolsellsspecifically equippedversionsforeachCPUsocket.TheLGA1155 kitwetestedisfittedusingasetofboltsthreaded throughfromthebackofthemotherboard,ontowhich thecoolerismountedviaasprungAllen-keyscrewat eachcorner.Itsasurprisinglysimpleprocess,more sothantheRaystorm(seep60)duetotheuseoftooltightenedscrews.Oddly,though,Watercooloffersa backplatemountasanoptionalextra.Whilethe

standardbolt-mountisperfectlysolid,thedecisionto omitthebackplateseemsratherstingyconsidering the52pricetag. Connectedtoourtestsystemandplacedunderload for30minutes,theHeatkillerofferedgreatcooling, withadeltaTof41Cjust1CofftheXSPCRayStorm. However,itwasalsothemostrestrictiveblockontest athighflowrates,withaflowrateatourpumps maximumsettingof6.5litres/min.Atlow-flowrates, though,thiswasreversed,with2litres/minbeingthe bestoftheCPUblockswetested.TheHeatkilleris clearlybettersuitedtolow-flowloops,suchasthose thatmakeuseofmultiplewater-blocks,althoughits high-flowperformanceisnttoofarbehinditsrivals.

CU Simple installation; looks fantastic PB Some 1/2in compression ttings dont t; comparatively restrictive at high-ow rates

CONCLUSION
TheHeatkillerisgreat-looking,goodatcooling, simpletoinstallandcompetitivelypriced.However, despiteitslargesize,itstruggleswithsome1/2in compressionfittings.Assuch,itjustlosesouttothe XSPCRayStorm,whichofferssupportforawider arrayoffittings. HB

scores
COOLING 35 / 40 DESIGN 25 / 30

VALUE 24 / 30 OVERALL

84

customPC

HOW MUCH?
Productcode10320 Price52incVAT Supplier www.aquatuning.co.uk Manufacturer www.watercool.de
60

WorldMags.net

August 2012

59

CPU WATERBLOCKS

Matches great performance with sensible design


Best cooling on test; supports large compression ttings; LED-lit mount

XSPC RayStorm CPU WaterBlock


STORM

TEACUP Slightly ddly mounting

HOW MUCH?
Productcode10402 Price51incVAT Supplier www.aquatuning.co.uk Manufacturer www.xs-pc.com

akingXSPCsmulti-socketCPUblockoutof itsbox,weweresurprisedbyitssimplelooks. WhiletheWatercoolandAquaComputer blocksaremadeentirelyofcopperandsteel, theRayStormsportsaplainblackacetalexteriorbuilt aroundacoppercontactplateandheatexchanger. XSPChasdoneitsbesttoimprovethelookswitha plasticmountingbrackettoppedwithabrushed aluminiumfascia.Theresultstilllacksthepanacheof thecompetition,butitshelpedbytheinclusionofpredrilled3mmLEDholesonallfoursidesoftheplastic mountingbracket.WiththepairofblueLEDs,the blockiseasilylitupandimmediatelylooksgreat. DespitebeingthesmallestCPUblockontest,the RayStormoffersapairof1/4inthreadfittings,spaced sufficientlytoaccommodateourMonsoon1/2in compressionfittingswithroomtosparetheonly CPUblockontesttoofferthisleveloffittingsupport However,theRayStormmissesafewtrickswhen itcomestoinstallation.Backplatesareincludedfor LGA1155andLGA775sockets,witheachattachedbya smallamountofdouble-sidedtape.Theblocksfour screws,threadedthroughthecornersoftheclear plasticmount,screwdirectlyintothebackplate. Frustratingly,eachscrewrequiresbothapairof washersandaspringtoprovidemountpressure, andwehadtopickwashersoffourmotherboard severaltimesduringinstallationaftersomescrews slipped.Mountingpressureisalsoalittleimprecise, aseachscrewisheadless,soyoucantusea screwdrivertoaccuratelytightenthem.Alowernut

oneachfittingcanalsobeadjustedtoapplyadditional mountpressure,butagain,youreonlyableto manuallytightenit. Anyconcernsaboutmountingdisappearedonce wehadtheRayStormplumbedintoourtestloop, however.ACPUdeltaTof40Cunderextendedload wasthebestontest(albeitbyjust1C),whilea maximumflowrateof6.75litres/minwasonly 0.25litres/minbehindtheleastrestrictiveblockon test.Whilethisisadropof2.75litres/minin comparisontoaloopwithoutaCPUblock,asignificant degreeofflowratereductionisinevitableforanyCPU orGPUblock.Meanwhile,droppingthepumpsflow ratetoitsminimumsawaflowrateof1.8litres/min.

CONCLUSION
Whilenotasflashyasthecompetition,theXSPC RayStormgetsitrightwhenitcomestoperformance andcapability,withthelowestdeltaTontestandfull supportfor1/2incompressionfittings.At51,its alsothecheapestblockontest,makingitthe comfortablewinner. HB

scores
COOLING 37 / 40 DESIGN 27 / 30

customPC

VALUE 27 / 30 OVERALL
62

91

60

August 2012

WorldMags.net

WorldMags.net

GEFORCE GTX 680 WATERBLOCK

This huge block boasts great cooling, but it comes at a high price
Best-on-test cooling for the GTX 680 2GB; nickel-plated shininess; supports 1/2in compression ttings

KOOLANCE VID-NX680
B1-LANCER

BOIL-LANCER Expensive

HOW MUCH?
Productcode12574 Price103incVAT Supplier www.aquatuning.co.uk Manufacturer www.koolance.com

oolancegenerallyfocusesonthemore expensiveendofthewater-coolingmarket, andtheVID-NX680isnoexception,weighing inatover100.Thisfull-coverGTX6802GB blockisanimposingbeast,platedinshinynickeland toppedwithblackPOMacetal. TheVID-NX680comprisestwosectionsalower nickel-platedcopperbaseandheatexchanger,anda top-plateofacetalwithaninlaidnickelplate.Theuse ofnickel-platedcopperwontaffectaloopifmatched withcoppercomponents,butitshouldntbemixed withsilverorunplatedbrasscomponents. Insideisamuchlargerareaofdenselypackedthin channelsabovetheGPUblockthantheotherblocks ontest,withasecondarrayoflessrestrictivechannels abovethecardspowercircuitry.Thefitting pointsare arrayedateitherendoftheblock,withfittingsscrewed directlyintotheblockratherthanusingaseparate acetatemount.Thegulfbetweenthefour1/4infittings (twoupwards,twodownwards)alsomeansthatitcan supporteventhechunkiestcompressionfittings. InstallingtheVID-NX680tooklongerthanthe otherblocksontest,duetoKoolancesupplyinglarge squaresofthermalpadsratherthanpre-cutlengths. Therearejusteightmountingscrewsrequiredto securethe680gVID-NX680toyourcard.Washersare includedforeachscrew,asareapairofnickel-plated brass1/2inblankingfittingsfortheunusedports. FittedtoouroverclockedGTX6802GB,runningat abaseclockof1,156MHzanda32percenthigher TDPthanastockcard,theVID-NX680delivered

outstandingcooling.ItsdeltaTof23Cwas2Ccooler thanboththeotherGTX680blocksontestandan incredible31CcoolerthanastockGTX6802GBsair cooler.Withsomuchcoolingheadroom,theGTX680 2GBsGPUismorelikelytoGPUboosttoo,resultingin higherclockspeeds.Apeakflowrateof6litres/min was0.8litres/minsuperiortothatoftheXSPCRazor GTX680(seep65),and0.3litres/minbehindthe HeatkillerGTX680(seep64).Theheftysectionof narrowchannelsdoesntseemtonegativelyaffectthe flowratemuch,despiteofferingacoolingadvantage.

CONCLUSION
TheKoolanceVID-NX680isbig,brashandvery impressive.Offeringa2Ctemperatureadvantage overbothotherblocksontestpluscompetitiveflow rates,itsclearlythebestchoiceifyouwanttosqueeze everylastdropofperformancefromaGTX6802GB. However,itspricetagmakesitthemostexpensive blockontestthismonth,andtheXSPCsmulti-port fittingoffersmoreflexibilityandisonlymarginallyoff theVID-NX680scoolingability. HB

scores
COOLING 37 / 40 DESIGN 24 / 30

customPC

VALUE 24 / 30 OVERALL
64

85

62

August 2012

WorldMags.net

WorldMags.net

Good cooling at a fair price, but it just loses out to the XSPC
T-100 Good cooling; low price; unrestrictive block design T-X Lacks the tting exibility of the XSPC Razor GTX 680; 1/2in compression ttings dont t

WATERCOOL Heatkiller GPU-X GTX 680 Hole Edition

HOW MUCH?
Productcode12578 Price81incVAT Supplier www.aquatuning.co.uk Manufacturer www.watercool.de

artofWatercoolsHeatkillerwaterblock family,theGPU-XGTX680isagorgeous combinationofcopperandstainlesssteel.Its averythinblockand,iftheGTX6802GBdidnt includeadual-slotPCI-Epowerconnectorsetupand rearI/O,wouldcomfortablymakethecardsingle-slot. Theblockcomprisesalowercoppercontactplate, upperstainlesssteeltop-plateandaholedcopper plateattachedtothetop.Thecoppercontactplatealso hasextendedmouldingsonitsmilledbasetomake directcontactwiththeGPU,memorychipsandpower circuitryoftheGTX6802GB,withtherequisitecutthroughholetoaccommodatethetwocapacitors towardsthetopofthecard. Insidetheblock,adeepchannelrunsoverallthe heat-producingcomponents,withmanynarrow channelsovertheGPU.Watercoolclaimsitdeveloped theblockwithafocusonminimisingflowresistance, andtheunobstructedchannelsinsidebackthisup. Toppingofftheblockistheholedcopperplatethatsits ontopofthestainlesssteeltop-plate.Thisisan entirelyaestheticaddition(youcanbuytheblock withoutitfor5less),butadds flairtothedesign. Theblocksquartetof1/2inthreadfittings(two upwards,twodownwards)areattachedviaanacetal blockfittedtothetopofthecard.Twochromed1/2in Allen-keyblankingscrewsareincludedtoblockoffthe unusedports,buttheportsaresoclosetoeachother thatyoucantuselarger1/2incompressionfittings. Straight1/2infittingsand1/4incompressionfittings dofit,however.

Installationissimple,with11screwssecuring theblocktoastockGTX6802GB.Washersarealso provided,alongwithanAllenwrenchtofirmlysecure thesuppliedAllenscrews. FittedtoouroverclockedGTX6802GB,theGPU-X GTX680matchedthecoolingabilityoftheXSPCRazor 680(seeopposite),withadeltaTof25C.Thisisahuge improvementoverthe54CdeltaTofastockGTX680 2GB,evenbeforeyoufactorinthemassiveoverclock, althoughtheKoolanceVID-680(seep62)offeredeven bettercooling,withadeltaTof23C.TheHeatkiller provedtobethekingwhenitcametoflowrate, however,withahigh-flowrateof6.3litres/minanda low-flowrateof2litres/min.

CONCLUSION
MatchingtheXSPCRazorGTX680withitscooling power,andsportingalowerpriceofjustover81,the HeatkillerGPU-XGTX680isastrongcontenderfor yourcash.However,itsinabilitytosupportlarger compressionfittingsandtheXSPCsflexibilitysee theHeatkilleredgedoutofthewinningspot. HB

scores
COOLING 34 / 40 DESIGN 22 / 30

customPC

VALUE 26 / 30 OVERALL

82

64

August 2012

WorldMags.net

GEFORCE GTX 680 WATERBLOCKS

Capable performance, and an incredibly exible choice of tting points


SPCsRazorGPUwaterblocksallshare thesamegeneralaesthetics,withacopper, CNC-machinedbaseandinternalcavity, toppedwithabrushedstainlesssteel top.Theresultisasharp-lookingGPUblockthats incrediblythin,buttheRazorGTX680alsohasamultiportmountblockthatstandsproudofthewaterblock. Themulti-portconnectorsportsseven1/2in fittings;twoupwards,twodownwards,twostraight outandaseventhata45-degreeoutwardsangle. Theresultisablockthatseasytointegrateintoany existingsetup,withplentyofflexibilityforexpansion orconnectiontoasecondcardinSLI.XSPCeven includesfivechromed1/2inscrew-inplugsandthe necessaryO-ringstoblankoffanyunusedfittings. Meanwhile,themilledcopperbasehasraised sectionstoactivelycooltheGTX6802GBscore, memoryandpowercircuitry,withaholecutthrough theblocktoaccommodatethepairofcapacitorsnear thetopofthecard.Insidetheblock,waterchannels runoverallheat-producingcomponentsandthrough 1mm-thickchannelsfittedovertheGPUitself. FittingtheRazorGTX680toastockGTX6802GB isstraightforward,astherearenowasherstoinstall. Havingremovedthestockcooler,youllneedtoapply theincludedstripsofpre-cutthermaltapetothe memoryandpowercircuitry,beforeplacingtheblock ontopofthecard.Ninecross-headscrewssecurethe blocktightlytothecard,andtheresnoneedtousethe stockcardssquareGPUtensionbracket.Whilewe usedPhobyaHeGreaseasthermalpastetotestall

XSPC Razor GTX680

threeblocks,XSPCalsoincludesasachetofitsown K2thermalpasteforfitting. WithourGTX6802GBrunningat132percentofits standardTDPandoverclockedtoabaseclockof 1,156MHz,werecordedapeakdeltaTof25Chalf thatofastockGTX6802GB.ThisisthesamedeltaT astheWatercoolHeatkillerGTX680,but2Cwarmer thantheKoolanceVID-680(seep62).However,the RazorGTX680wasalsothemostrestrictive,witha high-flowrateofjust5.2litres/min 15percentlower thantheHeatkillerBlockandalow-flowrateof1.5 litres/min.However,weobservednotemperature differencebetweenhigh-andlow-flowrate,sothisis littlecauseforalarm.

SHARPENED Supports seven 1/2in ttings and includes blanking screws; good cooling; fair price BLUNTED Nothing to report

CONCLUSION
WhileitisntthecoolestorcheapestGTX680blockon test,theRazorstruckthebalancebetweenthetwo bestblocksandisaidedbyitsexcellentmulti-port connector,offeringunmatchedflexibility.Italsolooks fantasticinitsstainless-steelfinish,resultingina high-qualityandhighlyrecommendedGPUblock. HB

scores
COOLING 34 / 40 DESIGN 28 / 30

customPC

VALUE 27 / 30 OVERALL

89

HOW MUCH?
Productcode12582 Price94incVAT Supplier www.aquatuning.co.uk Manufacturer www.xs-pc.com
67

WorldMags.net

August 2012

65

dLAN 500 triple the networking performance


NEW!

3 LAN ports

Every power outlet becomes a network jack

Every power outlet becomes a network jack

dLAN 500 AVtriple+ Powerline adapter for connecting up to 3 network-compatible devices Home network via the power line with transmission rates of up to 500 Mbps Connects computers and consumer electronics to each other and to the Internet Simple and secure: functions in every room, in every building Direct connection of up to 3 devices with the integrated Gigabit switch The integrated socket ensures that no electrical outlet goes to waste
The Network Innovation

WorldMags.net www.devolo.co.uk

More information:

RADEON HD 7970 WATERBLOCKS

The cheapest HD 7970 block also delivers the best cooling


TRON Best cooling on test; low price; straightforward mount RINZLER No thermal paste or tape included; more restrictive than other blocks

AQUACOMPUTER aquagrATIx for HD 7970

HOW MUCH?
Productcode12576 Price76incVAT Supplier www.aquatuning.co.uk Manufacturer www.aquacomputer.de

quacomputers79703GBwaterblock, deckedoutingleamingpolishedcopper andstainlesssteel,certainlylooksthepart. Thelowercoppercontactplateandheat exchangercoversmostofthegraphicscard,andthe CNC-milledbasehaslargeflattenedsectionstomake contactwiththe memorymodulesandGPU.Dueto theHD79703GBsuseofchunkycapacitors,theres alsoalargeindentcutintothebasetodirectlycoolthe powercircuitryvitalforoverclocking. Meanwhile,astainlesssteeltop-plateisinlaidinthe largecopperbase,andissecuredusing12Allenbolts toallowforremovalwhencleaning.Theresalsoa secondcopperplatestandingproudofthesteeltopplate,bearingAquacomputers3DFlowbranding. Thissecondcontactplateisvital,asitcontainsa raisedflowchanneltoallowcoolanttoriseoverthetall capacitorsandflowdownintoachannelplacedover theVRMs,offeringdirectpowercircuitrycooling.The restoftheblocksinteriorisdominatedbyalargearea oftightlypackednarrowchannelsarrayedontopofthe GPU,providingthemosteffectivecoolingforthelarge TahitiXTGPU,atthecostofflowrateimpedance. Cappingoffthedesignisanacetalfittings-block, equippedwithfour1/4inthreadfittingstwoupwards andtwodownwards.Bothsetsaresufficientlyspaced toaccommodate1/2incompressionfittings,andtwo 1/2inscrewplugsareincludedfortheunusedports. Theinstallationprocedureisalittlestrangethough, asiteschewstheuseofthermalpadsforthememory modules,insteadsimplyadvisingyoutodeposita

smallamountofthermalpasteontoeach(although noneisincluded).Athermalpadisprovidedforthe VRMsandpowercircuitry,however. Meanwhile,securingtheblockisaccomplished viatencross-headscrews,withnoincludedwashers, makinginstallationveryquick. FittedtoouroverclockedHD79703GB,running at1,125MHzandaTDP10percentabovestock,the aquagrATIxofferedoutstandingcooling,withapeak deltaTofjust14Cafantasticdropof39Cin comparisontoastockair-cooledHD79703GBand comfortablythebestontest.Theblocksnarrow channelsreducedflowrate,though,withahigh-flow rateof5.5litres/minandalow-flowrateof1.5litres/ minbeingthelowestofthethreeHD79703GBblocks.

CONCLUSION
AswellasofferingthebestcoolingoftheHD79703GB blocksontest,theaquagrATIxforHD7970isalsothe cheapest;itsarguablythebest-lookingtoo,makingit theobviouschoiceforthoselookingtowater-cooltheir HD79703GB. HB

scores
COOLING 37 / 40 DESIGN 24 / 30

customPC

VALUE 28 / 30 OVERALL
68

89
August 2012

WorldMags.net

67

RADEON HD 7970 WATERBLOCKS

A solid block, but its outshone by the competition


ROBOCOP Decent cooling and ow rate ED-209 Many individual thermal pads; some 1/2in compression ttings dont t

WATERCOOL Heatkiller GPU-X 79X0

HOW MUCH?
Productcode12536 Price81incVAT Supplier www.aquatuning.co.uk Manufacturer www.watercool.de

haringmorethanafewdesigncueswiththe AquacomputeraquagrATIx7970(seep67),the WatercoolHeatkillerGPU-X79X0issimilarly deckedoutinstainlesssteelandcopper,and warrantedanappreciativecoouponremovalfromits box.Werejustsuckersforshinycopper. Despiteitsnamehintingatmultiplecardsupport, theGPU-X79X0isonlycompatiblewiththeRadeon HD79703GB,withthelargecoppercontactplateand heatexchangerprovidingthebasefortheblock.A polishedstainlesssteeltop-platesitsontopofthe heatexchanger,withasecondcopperplatehousing anelevatedchanneltoallowcoolantflowtoclearthe HD79703GBstallcapacitors.Securedtogetherby 15Allenbolts,theblockcanbefullydisassembledfor cleaningwithsomepatience. Insidetheblock,thewaterchannelflowsdirectly overthecardsDDR5modulesandthroughacentral areaofnarrowchannelsplacedovertheGPUcontact platetoensureeffectiveheattransfer.Meanwhile,a separatechanneliscutintothesectiondirectlyabove theVRMstoprovidedirectcoolingtothepower circuitry,withwaterflowingtotheseparatechannel viatheraisedcoppersectionontheblockstop-plate. Theblocksfour1/4inthreadfittingsaresuppliedby aseparateacetalblockfittedontopofthecard.Theyre narrowlyspaced,however,andlarger1/2infittings clash,evenwiththesupplied1/2inscrewplugs. InstallationoftheGPU-X79X0isalittletiresome too,thankstoitsuseofindividualsquaresofthermal tapeforeachofthe12GDDR5memorymodules.A

largerthermalpadisincludedtoensurecontactwith theVRMs,buttheendresulthaduswringingour handsinannoyanceatunwrappingyetanothertiny squareofthermaltape.Yousecuretheblocktothe cardvia11Allenboltswithwashers,however,which ismucheasierthanfittingthermaltape. FittedtoouroverclockedHD79703GB,runningat 1,125MHzandat110percentofastockcardsTDP,the GPU-X79X0deliveredadeltaTof17Cunderloadin UniginesHeavenbenchmark.Whilethisisamassive improvementoverastockHD79703GB,which peaksatadeltaTof53C,its3Cwarmerthanthe aquagrATIx7970.TheGPU-X79X0offeredhigherflow rates,however,withahigh-flowrateof5.5litres/min andalow-flowrateof1.5litres/min.

CONCLUSION
WhiletheGPU-X79X0isahugeimprovementoverthe stockcooler,itisntthecoolestblockontest.Itsalso fiddlytofit,andslightlymoreexpensivethantheXSPC orAquacomputerblockstoo.Itsstillaqualityblock, butitfacesstiffcompetition. HB

scores
COOLING 34 / 40 DESIGN 22 / 30

customPC

VALUE 24 / 30 OVERALL
70

80

68

August 2012

WorldMags.net

WorldMags.net

Lacks the exibility of its GTX 680 sibling, but still a solid choice
KEEN Supports both HD 7970 3GB and HD 7950 3GB; easy to t; little ow impedance DULL Lacks direct VRM cooling

XSPC Razor 7970

HOW MUCH?
Productcode12547 Price80incVAT Supplier www.aquatuning.co.uk Manufacturer www.xs-pc.com

iblingtotheXSPCRazorGTX680(seep65),the Razor7970matchestheformersthincopper andstainlesssteeldesign,andsupportsboth theHD79703GBandHD79503GB. Thecentralheatexchangerandcoppercontact plateissmallerthanthoseoftheWatercool(seep68) andAquacomputer(seep67)HD7970blocks,asit onlydirectlycoolstheGPUandRAM,withraised mouldingsonthebasetomakingcontactwitheach GDDR5chip,whilearaisedsectionmakescontact withtheGPU. Thebrushedstainlesssteeltop-plateisattached tothecoppercontactplatewith13Allenscrews, enablingittoberemovedforcleaningifrequired. Theresultisaverythinblockindeed.Inside,water channelsflowoverthemajorityofthecardsmemory modules,withanangledstackoftightlypacked1mm finssetdirectlyabovetheGPU.UnliketheWatercool andAquacomputerblocks,theresnoraisedchannel todirectflowovertheVRMs;instead,theRazor7970 hasaluminiumheatsinksattachedtoeithersideof theblocktocoolthecardspowercircuitry.Whilethis reducestheblockseffectivenessatcoolingVRMs,it hastheaddedbenefitofreducingflowimpedance. Duetoitsthindesign,theRazor7970sfittingsare mounteddirectlyontheblock,incontrasttotheRazor GTX680slargemulti-portconnector.Thefour1/4in threadfittingsaresothinthatdeeperfittingswill actuallyblocktheinlet,soXSPCincludessmall standoffstoensurecompatibility.Weinstalledour large1/2inMonsooncompressionfittingswithoutany

problems,andapairofscrewplugsisincludedto closeofftheunusedports. FittingtheRazor7970wassimple,thankstothick andeasilyappliedpre-cutthermalpadsfortheRAM andVRMs.Theblockissecuredusingtencross-head screwswithaccompanyingwashers,andasmalltube ofXSPCthermalK2thermalpasteisincludedtoo. FittedtoouroverclockedHD79703GB,theRazor 7970producedadeltaTof18C4Chigherthanthe AquacomputeraquagrATIx7970butstill35Ccooler thanastockcard.Whileitscoolingwasinferiortothat oftheotherHD79703GBblocksontest,however,the Razor7970sflowratewasbetter,withahigh-flowrate of6litres/minandalow-flowrateof2litres/min.

CONCLUSION
Whileitscapable,theRazor7970lackstheflexibility ofitsGTX6802GBsibling.Italsoprovidedtheworst coolingoftheHD79703GBblocksontest,althoughits stillahugeimprovementoverastockcard.Itsagood block,buttheaquagrATIx7970ischeaperandoffers superiorcooling,albeitatlowerflowrates. HB

scores
COOLING 33 / 40 DESIGN 28 / 30

customPC

VALUE 26 / 30 OVERALL

87

70

August 2012

WorldMags.net

DUAL 120MM RADIATORS

A basic, mid-height dual 120mm radiator thats also cheap

AQUACOMPUTER airplex XT 240

quacomputersairplexradiatorsrunfrom thebudgettotheludicrous(itsmodular radiatorscostwellover150),withthe XT 240fallingintotheformercategory.Atjust 37,itsthecheapestpieceofkitinthismonthsLabs, butthatdoesntmeanitslackinginqualityorability. Withdimensionsof275mmx123mmx45mm,the XT240offersamid-pointbetweenhalf-andfullheight.Thismeansthatmanymorecasescan accommodateit,aswellasthenecessarycooling fans,withoutcompromisingtoomuchsurfacearea. However,therehavebeensomesacrificestogetthe pricedown,withtheXT240offeringonlyapairof1/4in threadfittingsinthestandard90-degreeorientation fromtheradiator.Eachportisfullyseparatefromthe other,forcingflowthroughtheradiatorfins.However, justhavingtwo1/4inthreadfittingslimitsthedirection atwhichfittingscanentertheradiator,andmay necessitatetheuseofangledor90-degreefittings, dependingonyourlooplayout.Thelackofanaeration portalsomeansyoullneedtorotatetheradiatorfully onceitsplumbedinandfilled,beforefittingitintoyour case,toensuretherearenoairbubblesintheradiator. Despiteonlyshippingwithapairofports,theXT240 includesplasticscrewcapsforbothitsportstoprevent oxidisationduringshipping.Aquacomputeralso includesapairof120mmrubbervibration-dampening padstoreducefannoise,andeight30mmscrewsto mountapairof120mmfanstotheradiator. Plumbedintoourfullywater-cooledtestsystem, usingtheXSPCRayStorm(seep60)andXSPCRazor

GTX680(seep65),theXT240delivereddisappointing coolingabilityconsideringits45mmthickness.ACPU deltaTof52Cwasthehighestofthefourradiators tested,aswastheGPUdeltaTof31C.Thecoolant deltaTtemperatureof12Cwasalso2Chigherthan the60mmfull-heightradiators,indicatingtheXT240s reducedthermalcapacity.Itshigh-flowrateof4.25 litres/minwasalsolowerthanthatoftheAlphacool (seep72),butsurpassedthatofboththePhobya(see p73)andXSPC(seep74).

AIRPLEX Low price; no unnecessary extras COMPLEX Lacks exibility; disappointing cooling ability

CONCLUSION
WewerehopingthattheAquacomputerairplexXT 240wouldofferbettercoolingthankstoits45mm thicknessandincreasedsurfacearea.Sadly,its coolingwastheworstontest,althoughtherewereonly afewdegreesbetweenitandtheverybest.Itsno-fuss approachisstillsuretoattractthoselookingfora cheaperloop,andinthisregard,itsbudgetpricetag alsomakesitstrong.However,aquality60mm radiatorsuchastheAlphacoolshouldstillbeyour firstchoiceifyourcasecanaccommodateit. HB

scores
COOLING 29 / 40 DESIGN 18 / 30

VALUE 27 / 30 OVERALL

74

customPC

HOW MUCH?
Productcode31103 Price37incVAT Supplier www.aquatuning.co.uk Manufacturer www.aquacomputer.de
72

WorldMags.net

August 2012

71

Great cooling, loads of ports and very low ow-impedance


RAD Seven 1/4in thread ttings; very low owimpedance; good cooling BAD Comparatively pricey; 60mm depth limits compatible cases

ALPHACOOL NexXxoS XT60 Full Copper 240mm

HOW MUCH?
Productcode35279 Price50incVAT Supplier www.aquatuning.co.uk Manufacturer www.alphacool.com

hilewereonlylookingatAlphacools radiatorinthisLabstest,itsanother water-coolingcompanythatoffersa wholerangeofgoodiesforyourliquidcoolingneeds,frompumpstoreservoirs.The NexXxoSXT60FullCopper240mmisitstop-enddual 120mm-fanradiator,anditscertainlyaheftybeast. Itweighs1,484gandmeasures280mmx124mmx 60mm,qualifyingitasafull-heightradiator(30mm radiatorsarehalf-height).Whilethisreducesthe numberofcasesintowhichitcanbemounted,the largersizeandsurfaceareaoffersimprovedcooling. Theradiatorsfittingsaresplitbetweentwosealed sections,withnoflowbetweenthemotherthan throughthefinsoftheradiatoritself.Eachsection carriesthree1/4inthreadfittingsfacingup,downand straightout,offeringavarietyofplumbingoptions andtheabilitytomounttheradiatorinanyorientation. Whatsmore,thevarietyofthreaddirectionsalso reducestheneedforflow-limiting90-degreefittings. Aseventhde-aerationport1/4infittingisfoundat theoppositeendoftheradiator,whichcanbeusedto bleedairfromtheradiatoruponinitialfilling.Itsbest notforgotten,oryoumightfillyourlooponlytodeposit coolantalloverthedesk.Rumoursthatthisoccurred duringourtestingoftheNexXxoSXT60areunfounded liesandwillbevehementlydenied.Alphacoolincludes five1/4inthreadscrewstofillfiveofthesevenports,as wellasfullsetsofmatchingcopper-colour30mmand 35mmAllenfanscrewstofullykitouttheradiatorwith thecoolingconfigurationofyourchoice.Meanwhile,

fin-spacingisfairlyopenand,accordingtoAlphacool, optimisedforfanswithlowandmediumairflow. TheNexXxoSXT60producedverycapablecooling withourtestsystemsCPUandGPUunderfullload. TheCPUdeltaTof51Cisnotablyhigherthanwith asingleCPUblockintheloop,butthisisduetothe cumulativecoolingofboththeGPUandCPU.TheGPU deltaTof29Cis4ChigherthantheGPUblockina looponitsown,whilethecoolantsdeltaTof10C aboveambientis2Ccoolerthanthetwohalf-height radiatorswetested.Meanwhile,theNexXxoSXT60s impactonflowratewasminimal,withaflowrateof4.5 litres/minbeingonlymarginallylowerthanthesame loopwithnoradiatoratall(4.6litres/min).

CONCLUSION
TheAlphacoolNexXxoSXT60FullCopper240mm impressedus withitsfittingflexibility,coolingandlow flow-rateimpedance.Atafewpenniesbelow50,its themostexpensiveradiatorontest,butitsworththe premium.Ifyouhavetheroomforafull-height60mm radiator,thisistheonetobuy. HB

scores
COOLING 35 / 40 DESIGN 27 / 30

customPC

VALUE 26 / 30 OVERALL

88

72

August 2012

WorldMags.net

DUAL 120MM RADIATORS

Great cooling and price, although the Alphacool has more ttings

PHOBYA G-Changer 240 Ver. 1.2 Black


hePhobyaG-Changer240Ver.1.2Black ispartofPhobyas premiumfamilyof full-heightradiators,basedaroundcopper finsandbrasschambers(thesectionsinto whichthefittingsrun).At1,151g,itsslightlylighter thantheAlphacoolNexXxoS(seep72),andits dimensionsof294mmx125mmx60mmmean thatithasslightlymoresurfaceareatoo. TheG-changermatchesitschunkysizewithtwo pairsof1/4infittingssplitbetweenitstwosealed chambers.Pointingdownwardsorstraightoutthe backoftheradiator,thelayoutprovidesplentyof flexibilityfortubinginstallationinsideyourPC, althoughtheAlphacooloffersanadditionalpair shouldyouneedthefull180degreesoffittingrange. Attheoppositeendoftheradiatorisableedingscrew fittedwitharubberO-ringseal,foruseasadrainport forairtrappedintheradiator.Remembertodirectthe radiatorupwardswhenlooseningittoavoidspillages. Includedwiththeradiatorisapairofblackplastic 1/2inscrewplugsforthepairofunusedfittings,along witheight30mmmountingscrewsandfourchassis mountingscrewseverythingyouneedtogetthe radiatorplumbedintoyourloop,baryourchoiceof fittings.Withtheradiatorssetsoffittingssowidely spaced,theuseofeven1/2incompressionfittingsis noproblemeither. PlumbedintoourcombinedloopwithanXSPC RayStorm(seep60)coolingaCorei5-2600Kat4.6GHz (vcoreat1.385V),andanXSPCRazorGTX680(seep65) fittedtoaGTX6802GBrunningatabaseclockof 1,156MHz,theG-Changer240wastaskedwith dissipatingcloseto400W.However,wewerepleased tofindthatitofferedoutstandingcoolinginthisregard; aCPUdeltaTof50Cwas1Clowerthanthatprovided bytheAlphacoolNexXxoS,whiletheGPUdeltaTwas again1CcoolerthantheAlphacool.Coolant temperaturewasalsoverygood,withadeltaTofjust 10C2Ccoolerthanthe45mmand30mmradiators ontest.However,whiletheG-Changerofferedthebest coolingontest,itsalittlemorerestrictiveontheflow rate,withourloopreportingahigh-flowrateof4.1 litres/minwiththeG-changer240fitted.

FEAR Best cooling on test; well-priced; bleed port LOATHING Fewer ttings than the Alphacool; pricier than half-height radiators

CONCLUSION
Withthebestcoolingofanyradiatorontestanda priceofjustover45,thePhobyaG-Changer240 Ver.1.2Blackiscertainlyimpressive.TheAlphacool NexXxoSgreaterfittingflexibilityandlowerflow-rate impedance,alongwithitssimilarlycapablecooling, seeitjustsqueezeahead,buttheG-Changer240still comeshighlyrecommended,particularlyifyoureless concernedaboutfancyfittingangles. HB

scores
COOLING 37 / 40 DESIGN 21 / 30

customPC

VALUE 28 / 30 OVERALL

86

HOW MUCH?
Productcode35286 Price45incVAT Supplier www.aquatuning.co.uk Manufacturer www.phobya.com
74

WorldMags.net

August 2012

73

Very expensive for a half-height radiator and lacks any screw plugs
Six ports offer exible tting

XSPC EX240 Multiport Radiator


EXTREME

MUNDANE Poorer cooling than full-height radiators; no screw plugs included; expensive

HOW MUCH?
Productcode35414 Price51incVAT Supplier www.aquatuning.co.uk Manufacturer www.xs-pc.com

heEX240Multiportisthesmallestradiator ontest,withasizeofjust280mmx121mmx 35.5mm.Itshalf-heightclassmeansthatits mucheasiertofitinastandardchassis,andat just527g,itsalsosurprisinglylightclosetoathirdof theweightoftheAlphacoolNexXxoS(seep72). Duetoitssmallersize,theEX240doesnthavea separatechambersystem,insteadusingasplit-single chambertohouseitsfittings.Inthepast,suchdesigns haveattractedcriticismduetomanufacturersnotfully sealingthetwochambers,allowingcoolanttoflow fromonechambertotheotherinsteadofthrough theradiator.However,wewerehappytofindthatthe EX240schamberswerefullysealed,sotheresno threatofcoolantbypassingtheradiatorsfins. Feedingintoeachhalfoftheradiatorschamber arethree1/4inthreadfittingsat90degreestoeach other.Thisallowsforagreatdealofflexibilitywhenit comestoinstallation,withthepotentialtomountthe radiatoreithersideup,orforyourfittingstorun straightintotheradiator.However,XSPCsurprisingly doesntincludeanyscrewplugsforthesethreads adisappointingomissionconsideringtheAlphacool NexXxoSincludesfivesuchplugsandisstillcheaper thantheEX240.Apackofeight6mmchassismount screws,aswellasasetofeight30mmfanmount screws,areincludedthough. Plumbedintoourradiatortestingloop,comprising anXSPCRayStorm(seep60)andRazorGTX680(see p65),theEX240managedtopunchsurprisinglyabove itsweight,withitsCPUdeltaTof51Cmatchingthatof

theAlphacoolNexXxoS.AGPUpeakloaddeltaTof 32Cislessimpressive,however,andis3Cabovethe bestcoolingofferedbythePhobyaG-Changer240.A coolanttemperatureof38Cunderlinestheradiators reducedsurfacearea,andassuch,itsabilityto dissipateheatfromtheloop.Howevar,theend resultisstillveryclosetothatofthefull-height60mm radiators.Apeakflowrateof4litres/minfortheloop indicatethattheEX240isslightlymorerestrictivethan theotherradiatorsontestthough.

CONCLUSION
Whilewewerentexpectingthebestcoolingfroma half-heightradiator,theXSPCEX240accountedfor itselfwell,betteringthe45mmairplexXT240(seep71) andonlyfallingafewdegreesbehindthefull-height radiators.However,withnoscrewplugsforanyof itssix1/4inthreadfittings,theEX240isexpensiveat over50.Theairplexisabetterchoiceforthespaceconstrained,whilethePhobyaandAlphacoolfullheightradiatorsoffersuperiorcooling,aslongas yourcasehasroomforthem. HB

scores
COOLING 30 / 40 DESIGN 16 / 30

customPC

VALUE 19 / 30 OVERALL

65

74

August 2012

WorldMags.net

CPU blocks temperature CPU blocks ow rate (litres/min) GeForce GTX 680 2GB blocks temperature

GeForce GTX 680 2GB blocks ow rate (litres/min)

XSPC Raystorm Aquacomputer Kryos 1.5 23 1.6 6.3 7 Koolance VIC-NX680

40

Watercool Heatkiller GPU-X_ GTX 680

Watercool Heatkiller CPU rev 3.0 XSPC Raystorm 1.8 25 1.6 6.75 XSPC 680 Razor Koolance VIC-NX680

41

Aquacomputer Kryos 2 25 6.5

42

Watercool Heatkiller CPU rev 3.0

Watercool Heatkiller GPU-X_ GTX 680

XSPC 680 Razor

1.5

5.2

0
Flow rate (min) Flow rate (max) Load delta T C

10

20

30

40

50

0 0

10

20

30

4
Flow rate (min)

6
Flow rate (max)

Load delta T C

Radeon HD 7970 3GB blocks temperature

Radeon HD 7970 3GB blocks ow rate (litres/min)


Phobya G Changer 240 v.2 10

Radiators temperature

28

50

WorldMags.net
Aquacomputer AquagrATIx for 7970 1.5 5 Alphacool NexXxoS XT60 Full Copper 240mm 1.5 5.5 10 Watercool Heatkiller GPU-X_ GTX 79X0 XSPC EX240 12 XSPC Razor 7970 2 6 Airplex XT 240 G1/4 12 0 2
Flow rate (min)

Aquacomputer AquagrATIx for 7970

14

29

51

Watercool Heatkiller GPU-X_ GTX 79X0

17

31

51

XSPC Razor 7970

18

31

52

WATER COOLING

August 2012

10

15

20

6
Flow rate (max)

10

20
Coolant delta T C

30
GPU delta T C

40
CPU delta T C

50

60

Load delta T C

75

???

FitGraphicscard& scard& CPUwaterblocks


Thinking of water-cooling your PC after this months Labs test? Antony Leather shows you how to choose and fit CPU and graphics card blocks
ater-coolingyourPChas neverbeeneasier.Allthe partsareavailableoffthe shelf,andinmanysizes andcolours.However,notallthepartsare universallycompatible.Manygraphicscard makersalterthePCBsfromthereference design,makingithardforwaterblockmakers toofferuniversallyicompatiblehardware. Thankfully,whichevergraphicscardyou have,youcanwater-coolit,andwellshowyou howtochoosetherightwaterblock,andavoid compatibilityissues.Wellalsobeshowing youhowtofitbothfull-coverandGPU-only blocks,aswellasCPUwaterblocks.In addition,werealsoshowingyouhowto mountpumpsandradiators(seep80).

Although many graphics cards use identical GPUs, a lot of manufacturers alter the layout or size of the PCB, which means that many full-cover waterblocks wont fit some graphics cards. Use www.coolingconfigurator. com to find out which blocks fit your model, and see if it differs from the reference PCB. You can also compare your PCB with images of reference cards on Google.

IDENTIFY YOUR GRAPHICS CARDS PCB

CHOOSE YOUR BLOCK 1

If your graphics card is unaltered then its best to opt for a full-cover waterblock. These are single-piece blocks that cool the GPU core, memory and very often the VRMs too. This is the easiest way water-cool your graphics card; all the hot spots are covered and theres little (if any) need for additional airflow, as your watercooling system will deal with all the waste heat.

Fromwww.aquatuning.co.uk Fromwww.aquatuning.co.uk Fromwww.aquatuning.co.uk Fromwww.halfords.co.uk Fromwww.halfords.co.uk

CPU and graphics card waterblocks RAM heatsinks Tube fittings

Self-grip pliers Screwdriver

If your graphics card isnt a reference design, you can still water-cool it, but youll need a GPU-only waterblock. These are usually compatible with a wide variety of graphics cards, but they only cool the GPU core youll need separate RAM heatsinks to cool the memory. You could also fit heatsinks on the VRMs, but these should be okay if your case has good airflow.

CHOOSE YOUR BLOCK 2

All air-cooled graphics cards have four large screws surrounding the GPU, and sometimes numerous others dotted around the PCB. These hold the cooler to the PCB and any hot spots, such as the GPU core, RAM and VRMs. Youll need to remove these before attempting to remove the stock heatsink.

LOCATE THE HEATSINK SCREWS

76

August 2012

WorldMags.net

HOW TO FIT WATERBLOCKS

Disconnect any cables between the PCB and cooler, such as the fans power cable. Removing the cooler can be tricky, as the thermal paste between the GPU core and heatsink can act like glue. Twisting it slightly and then lifting one edge gently usually does the trick. If it really doesnt want to play ball then hold a hairdryer over the heatsink for a minute or two; this will loosen up the paste.

REMOVE THE HEATSINK

CLEAN THE CORE

Clean off the old thermal paste using a lint-free cloth or microfibre towel dont use tissue or kitchen roll, as these can leave behind particles that will hamper thermal transfer. Its also worth applying the new thermal paste before fitting the block (step 7), as youll be able to see if its made contact with the GPU core correctly.

Place the waterblock on top of the PCB and line it up. Make sure the block is sitting flat on the PCB and making good contact with the GPU core, and check that the mounting holes line up correctly. More importantly, make sure that it isnt fouling any capacitors or other components on the PCB. This shouldnt be a problem if you used the configurator in step 1, but it never hurts to be certain.

TEST-FIT

Full-cover graphics card waterblocks usually give you the option of having the inlet and outlet on either side of the waterblock. This can make matters easier when connecting the tubing to your components. For instance, you might want one tube coming from the CPU waterblock above, but then down to your pump in the bottom of the case. Plan your tubing route now so you get this right.

PL AN YOUR TUBING

If your graphics card isnt a reference model, youll need a GPU-only waterblock. These are easy to fit and are very similar to CPU waterblocks. As they dont cool the RAM, youll need to invest in some RAM heatsinks to help to dissipate the heat. Dont be tempted to ignore them unless you have a fan pointing directly at the RAM, as memory chips can become very hot.

MOUNT THE RAM HEATSINKS

INSTALL THE FITTINGS

Install the tube fittings before installing the block doing so afterwards will result in a fair amount of stress being applied to the block and PCB. This is especially important if youre using a GPU-only waterblock full-cover waterblocks are much more resilient.

78

WorldMags.net

August 2012

77

HOW TO FIT WATERBLOCKS

11

12

To fit the waterblock to the PCB, its usually easiest to lay it on a flat surface so that you can line up the holes. Make sure youve applied thermal paste and used any thermal pads as per the instructions that accompany your waterblock.

L INE UP THE HOLES

Place all the screws in their appropriate holes and start tightening them. Dont do this one at a time instead, tighten each a little way then move on to the next. This will help to prevent the PCB from warping and ensure an even mount. Even so, its worth checking the PCB as you tighten the screws to ensure it doesnt become warped.

SECURE THE SCREWS

13

14

CHOOSE YOUR CPU WATERBLOCK

There are countless CPU waterblocks from which to choose these days. Make sure you check the manufacturers description for any incompatibilities, or use www.coolingconfigurator.com. Also, consider if the block has space for two compression fittings side by side if youre planning to use these rather than the more traditional barbs.

As always, test-fitting is important. There are generally far fewer compatibility issues with CPU waterblocks than those made for graphics cards, but theystill exist. When your waterblock arrives, your first job is to check that its compatible with your motherboard.

TEST FIT

15

16

As with graphics card waterblocks, its important to install your tube fittings before installing the waterblock. This will prevent any excessive force being applied to the block, its mount or your motherboard. Whats more, its far easier to do this outside of your case and away from the motherboard.

MOUNT THE FITTINGS

SECURE THE BLOCK TO THE BOARD

Installing a waterblock is usually easier than fitting an air cooler, but check the instructions to see if you need to tighten all the screws equally, or if they have lock-off points that prevent you from tightening them too much or too little an even mount is important. If necessary, tighten them as best you can, then tweak them when the system is running to see if you can lower you CPU temperature further.

78

August 2012

WorldMags.net

WorldMags.net

mountpumps &radiators
evepreviouslycovered mountingaradiatorinyour caseroof,butradiatorstands offeroneoftheeasiestways tosecurearadiatorinyourcase.Theyregreat ifyoudonthaveenoughspaceinyourroof,or ifyoudontfancytakingaDremeltoit.Allyou needisalargeenoughspaceandavented sidepanel(ifyourcasedoesnthaveavent, wellshowyouhowtomakeoneinthefuture). Wellalsolookathowtomountyourpump. Therearemanywaystodothis,butscrewing thepumpstraighttoyourbayreservoiror casecanleadtosignificantvibrationand noise.WeveusedoneofPhobyaspump mountingsets,whichincludesneoprenepads andanti-vibrationmaterial.Thesereduce vibrationsfromyourpump,enablingyouto reducenoise.Theyalsoenableyoutomount yourpumpjustaboutanywhere.

There are plenty of ways to mount radiators and pumps but Antony Leather shows you an easy route that also avoids unwanted vibrations

Head to www.aquatuning.co.uk and go to the radiators section. Here, under Accessories, youll find a section called Radiator Templates. Youll find freely downloadable templates of all the major radiator sizes, which you can print out to determine which radiator will fit best in your case.

DOWNLOAD RADIATOR TEMPLATES

TEST-FIT

Test-fit your freshly printed template to see if it fits in your case in our example, we want to make sure it fits between the back of the case and the drive cage. Also check for clearance behind and above the template expansion cards might get in the way, for example.

Fromwww.aquatuning.co.uk Fromwww.aquatuning.co.uk Fromwww.aquatuning.co.uk Frommosthardwarestores

Radiator stand

Radiator templates

Phobya Noise Destructor V.1 3M mounting tape

CHOOSE YOUR RADIATOR STAND

Radiator stands are fairly new on the water-cooling scene, but they can make mounting radiators incredibly easy. Theyre available in all sorts of shapes and sizes, and even for external use. Its as simple as mounting the radiator to the stand, then mounting the stand to the radiator thats it.

There are several ways to attach your radiator and fans to the stand. Our stand was just thin enough to allow us to install it between the fans and radiator using the standard mounting screws. However, you could also install the stand at the rear of the radiator, depending on where you want it to be positioned.

SECURE THE RADIATOR AND FANS TO THE STAND

80

August 2012

WorldMags.net

HOW TO MOUNT PUMPS AND RADIATORS

The stand can be secured in many ways. It has mounting holes if youre prepared to drill some holes in your case; you could also use Velcro if you want to remove it easily or, like us, you could use 3M mounting tape. A small amount on each foot is enough to firmly hold the stand in place without the need for drilling.

APPLY ADHESIVE TAPE

If youre using 3M mounting tape, you can simply press the stand into the case in the position required. A firm push is all thats needed. It may help to install the fittings to the radiator prior to mounting it in the case, but in any event, you should be able to remove the radiator from the stand quite easily.

MOUNT THE STAND

CHOOSE YOUR PUMP MOUNT

Neoprene is usually the padding of choice for mounting pumps. This Phobya Noise Destructor V.1 set includes double-sided adhesive pads and a large foam midsection. The pads have screw holes for most major pump brands, but you can usually just rely on the pads to hold everything together.

TEST-FIT

Place the pump on the mount in the desired location to make sure it fits. The mount is over 1in thick, so youll need to account for this in your plans it does a sterling job of absorbing vibration though. You may also want to trim off the excess padding and shape the mount to the base of your pump.

Protective plastic hides the adhesive sides of the pads, and this needs to be removed, but leave on the outer edges for now. Stick the pads to the foam and press down firmly to stick them together. Now remove one of the outer edges and press this onto the base of the pump.

APPLY THE MOUNT

Place the whole assembly in the desired location and, when its in place, press down firmly to ensure that everything sticks together. Youre now finished with several layers of insulating foam and no direct contact between it and your case, your pump should now only been seen and not heard.

FIT IT TO YOUR PC

WorldMags.net

August 2012

81

Honestly,itsamiraclethatwevewritten anythingforthisissue,aswevebeen shakingwithexcitementsinceseeing BethesdasDishonoredearlierthismonth. ItsanempoweringFPS/ RPGstealthgamefrom thedesignerofDeus Ex,thestudio behindDark Messiah:OfMight andMagic,andthe artistsofHalf-Life 2.Thisshotisfrom anassassination missionbasedinan uptownbath-housefrom Dishonoredscompelling fantasyuniverse.

Dishonored

GRUMPYGAMER 84 Decisions,decisions DIABLOIII 86 Thedevil youknow SNIPERELITEV2 88 Abandonall scope

CRYSIS3 93 Oldaliens,New York DEVPERSPECTIVE 94 Review mirror THEENGINEROOM 96 Inside UE3

Saywhat youciv

92 WARLOCK:MASTER OFTHEARCANE
WorldMags.net

82

August 2012

Readers Night Wed, 4 July, 9 till late


Theplace OurCounter-Strike:Sourceserver Whatyouneed Anup-to-dateCounter-Strike: Sourceinstallation GAMESERVERIPADDRESSES 32-playerBC2 85.236.101.22:16667 32-playerCS:Source 85.236.101.24:37015 FINDUSONSTEAM Publicgroup http://steamcommunity.com/groups/ CustomPC ModernWarfare2 http://steamcommunity.com/ groups/CustomWarfare2

WorldMags.net

August 2012

83

GAMING

SPOILED FOR CHOICE

So many games are being released now, but few of them are actually worth playing
it. Im too busy keeping pace with the constantly incoming wave of blockbusters and sleeper hits. As if that werent fatiguing enough, Im often paralysed by choice when I do find moments of downtime. There are just too many games waiting in my Pile of Unplayed I can never decide where to begin. Ive just spent the entire weekend telling Steam to download games which, by the time theyre 50 per cent complete, Ill no longer want to play. Ill delete the partially downloaded game, download another one and the cycle repeats itself. Even when I do manage to install something, it never holds my attention for long. Anything that doesnt instantly capture my interest is usually disregarded as I continue searching elsewhere. There are just too many games to play, and whats most frustrating of all is that the ratio between quality and quantity doesnt seem to have changed as a result. There are more games, but there arent any more games actually worth playing. My situation is probably a little more extreme than that of others; as a journalist I receive a lot of free games, but Steams regular sales even the playing field by often making good games available for a few pennies. So if you ever find yourself with nothing to play on a rainy Sunday morning, despite the raft of games available, then fear not; you arent alone.
FIND ME ON TWITTER: @JOETHREEPWOOD

know I really shouldnt have anything to complain about, but Im a grumpy sod and I cant help it. Lately, Ive found myself even becoming annoyed about the amount of choice available in the games market. Things sure arent what they used to be, bah humbug! When I was a kid it never seemed as if there were that many games available for either our Amiga or fledgling PC or few good ones anyway. Pocket money would be saved up for just the two or three presumed decent releases of the year and, while some of them turned out to be duds, that didnt matter. If youre only buying three games a year then youre going to be able to speed-run them all, even if they turn out to be rubbish. Even when I moved away from home, this trend continued. As a poor, Pot Noodledevouring student I was low on funds and would only fork out my cash for the few gamesthat I knew would give me value for money GTA: Vice City and Morrowind, for example. Nowadays, though, it seems there are so many more games competing for our attention there are dozens of samey shooters and explosive racers, hundreds of JRPGs and enough real-time strategy titles to bomb a bunker. Partly, this is because the industry has swelled with money and talent in recent years, but the burgeoning and increasingly competitive indie scene makes a sizeable contribution too. The result is that its becoming harder to identify the interesting titles from the miasma of tedium theres always a modern classic or hidden gem passing me by. I always pledge that Ill come back to these undoubtedly deserving games, but I almost never manage

There are just too many games waiting in my Pile of Unplayed I can never decide where to begin

WHAT IM PLAYING Ivebeenbusyworkingonanewpodcast calledUnlimitedHyperbolefindoutmoreatwww. joemartinwords.comandconsidertheimageaboveasahint

84

August 2012

WorldMags.net

WorldMags.net

DIABLO III
SHOUT AT THE DEVIL Addictive; no-nonsense DEVIL WOMAN Online requirement; poor tutorial

The devil you know

iabloIIIhasalotofexpectations builtaroundit.Somebelievedit wouldbethebestgameever, whileothersthoughtBlizzards onlinerequirementsandauctionhouses (seeopposite)spelledacynicalendfortheseries. SomethoughtBlizzardwouldinnovate,others thoughtitwouldstagnate. Ultimately,nobodywasright.DiabloIIIis,much likeStarcraftII,justmoreofthesamecomparedwith itsforebear.Youstillceaselesslyclicktohooverup randomlootandturnhordesofdemonsintoarterial

THE HELLFIRE CLUB


Blizzardhasquietlydistanceditselffromthe 1997HellfireexpansionfortheoriginalDiablo. Hellfirewasanauthorisedexpansioncreated bySierraOnline,butBlizzardwasnt involvedinitsdevelopment.Amongthe newfeaturesitintroducedwasa Monkclass,whichthencuriously disappearedinDiabloII.Blizzards broughtbackthemelee-based, spirituallypoweredMonkinDiabloIII, butsaystheinterpretationisntrelated totheoneinHellfire.Eitherway,Diablo IIIsMonkisstillourfavouriteclass!

THE KNOWLEDGE
Price32.99incVAT PublisherActivision Blizzard DeveloperBlizzard Website http://eu.battle.net/d3

mist;despiteaslewoftweaks,nothingmuchhas changed.NewcharacterclassessuchastheWitch Doctorandalterationstotheskillsystemsultimately dontchangethat,andtheresnothinginDiabloIIIs coresystemsthatmadeusgaspwithsurprise. Thisisnttotallybad,however.Blizzardhasnt fixedwhatwasntbroken,meaningthatDiabloIIIis justasmuchfunasthepreviousgames.Almost. Unfortunately,notallofDiabloIIIisassembledwith thelevelofpolishforwhichBlizzardisusually known.Theintroductionleavesseveralfundamental issuesunexplainedtonewcomers,forexample, whilethemanualonlycontainsflavourtextwe oftenhadtoALT-Taboutofthegametoonlineguides. Someofthenewfeatureshaveglaring oversightstoo.Followerscannowbe recruitedtosupportyourheroinbattle, forexample,butquickly becomeannoyingwhen theyrepeatthesamestock conversations. However,thefactthat thesetinynigglesare

86

August 2012

WorldMags.net

REVIEW

BLIZZARD HASNT FIXED WHAT WASNT BROKEN, MEANING THAT DIABLO III IS AS MUCH AS FUN AS ITS PREDECESSORS

OneareawhereDiabloIIIisdecidedlydifferentfromitspredecessorsisofflineplay;there isntany.ToplayDiabloIII,youneedtosignupforaBattle.netaccountandlogin.Ifyou cantgetonlineortheservergoesdown,youcantevenplayinsingle-playermode. ThisapproachhassomeadvantagesforthosewhowanttoplayDiabloIIIonline,by makingco-opacinchandcheating impossible,butitalsobringscaveats. Therewillneverbeanymods,forexample, andthegameslaunchperiodwastypified bycrashingserversandunstablegames too.Thegamesviabilitydirectlydepends onthecommercialsuccessofBlizzardand Diablotoo,althoughtheWoWdeveloperis unlikelytocollapsesoon. Blizzardclaimsthathavingthegamelinkedtoitsserversiscrucialforwardingoff would-behackersandprotectingtheauction-housesystembuiltintothegame.This consistsoftwotypesofmarketthatcanbeaccessedfromthemainmenu,throughwhich playerscansellanyitemstheyfindinthegameandwhichtheydontwanttoeithersellto anin-gamemerchantorbreakdownformagicalcomponents. Oneoftheauctionhousesfeaturestransactionsthatdealonlyinin-gamegold,while theotherhandlesreal-worldmoneyacontroversialdividethatmayunbalanceDiablo IIIsmultiplayerfarmorethanafewhacks.Themoremoneyyouwanttoputintothe game,thebetteryourcharacterwillfare,itseems. WhileBlizzardsintegrationofthesesystemsissmoothlyaccomplishedandaclear stepforwardsintermsofhowitthinksgamesneedtobeprotectedandfinancedthese days,itisntafeaturethatwerekeenon.Itfeelscrassandcynicallymotivatedtohave suchfeaturesbuiltintoagamethatsalreadyexpensiveatlaunch,andwhichisonly playablethroughtheclosedBattle.netsystem.Ontopofthat,itdiminishesthefocusof thegameforthosewhowanttoplaysoloand,whileitprotectsDiabloIIIfromplayer-made hacks,italsoopensituptoothertypesofexploitation. Itscurrentlyworthtoleratingtheonlinerequirement,assumingBlizzardsortsoutits overloadedservers,asDiabloIIIisamultiplayer-focusedgame.However,ifBlizzard expectsustodropmoremoneyintothegamejusttounlockGatheringPantsofFire,then itsverymuchmistaken.

BATTLING BATTLE.NET

DiabloIIIsmainissuessaysalotaboutthe definitivereasonforustorecommendit restofthegamessolidconstruction.Its overthecompetition.Whatsmore,the fantasticatdolingoutasenseofsatisfaction, onlinerequirementandreal-moneyauction whilealsoofferingenoughpunishmenton housesrepresentastepbacktoplayerswho thetougherdifficultylevels(annoyingly, dontwanttheirexperiencesointensively thesehavetobeunlocked);hardcorefans definedbyBlizzard. willhaveplentytoplanfor.Itsanincredibly DiabloIIIisdefinitelyagreatgamewhenit accessibleclickfestandanoverwhelmingly workssmoothly,anditworksjustaswellin in-depthRPGatthesametime single-playermodeasitdoes thedefinitionofbeingeasyto withagroupoffriends.Its pickup,yettoughtomaster. exciting,addictiveandfunto TheproblemthatDiabloIII play,butitshardlyagroundfaces,though,isthatitdoesnt breakingnewexperience,andit doahugeamounttoinnovate doesntcomeanywherecloseto andisntquiteasperfectas justifyingtheamountofhype expectationsmayhaveledusto builtuparoundit. OVERALL JOE MARTIN believe;therefore,theresno

80

WorldMags.net

August 2012

87

Abandon all scope


Co-op; good gunplay

SNIPER ELITE V2
HEADSHOT

SHOT-PUT Repetitive; awkwardly balanced

THE KNOWLEDGE
Price29.99incVAT PublisherRebellion DeveloperRebellion Website http://sniperelitev2.com

nipinggames,likepokergames,areoneof themostdeceptivelydifficulttypesofgames todesignbecause,whiletheideaofa realisticsnipingsimsoundsfun,theactual ideaisboringandfrustrating.Realsnipersspend hoursordayssatontheirown,waitingitisnt exactlyconducivetoanexcitinggame. SniperEliteV2thereforehasto provideenough tensiontofeellikemorethanjustashooter-withsniper-rifle,whilealsodeliveringenoughactionand movementtostaveoffboredom.Itsalinethatthe gamewalksprettywell,althoughitleansmore heavilytotheshootersideoftheequationduetothe recklessnessthatspromotedbytheinclusionof regeneratinghealth.Wefrequentlycaughtourselves shoulderingourriflesinfavourofSMGs,orlobbing grenadesinsituationswhereasilencedpistolwould suffice,purelybecauseoftheminimisedrisk. Thesniperrifleishugelyrewardingwhenitsin play,however,especiallyifyouincreasethebullet realismlevelstomaximumandrecognisethatthe headshotisntactuallyalwaysthemosteffectiveway tokill.Atthatpoint,youcanstarttoweavesome beautifulbullet-magic,detonatinggrenadeson enemiesbeltsorinjuringfoesinsuchawaythat theirfriendsarecalledouttohelp. Theimpactofeachbulletishammeredhome throughRebellionsnewx-raycamera,whichpansin slow-motionaroundyourvictimsandshowsthepath

ofthebulletthroughthebody.Likeallslow-motion cameras,thiscangrowtiresomeafterawhile,butit alsoencouragedustotryharderforspecificshots suchaskillingtwoenemieswithasingleround. Whilethesnipingislotsoffun,though,thelevels dontalwaysdojusticetotheunderlyingsystems. Thesecondlevelinthecampaign,forexample,starts brilliantlywithacovertassaultonaGermanbase whereyoucanuserockettestlaunchestodisguise thesoundsofyourshots.Barelyminuteslater, however,theactionshiftstolongunderground tunnelsfilledwithenemiesthatpourfromnowhere onceyourespotted.Thisisdisappointing,anditisnt helpedbythepoorstorytelling.Supposedlyyourea USsniperwhoiskillingorcapturingNaziscientists

WhileRebellionisstillfarfroma householdname,theOxford-based studiohasbeenoneofthemostimportant independentUKstudiossinceitwasfounded in1991.Thisispartlyduetothefranchisesthe teamhasworkedon,includingthefirstAlien vsPredatorgame,butalsobecausefounder JasonKingsleyischairmanofTIGA,thetrade associationforUKdevelopers.Asifthatwerent enough,thecompanyalsopublishes2000AD!

STUDIO PROFILE REBELLION

88

August 2012

WorldMags.net

REVIEW

GRAPHICS COMPARISON
SniperEliteV2maybeheadedtoconsolesaswellasthePC,butRebellionhas alwaysbeenaPCdeveloperatheartandthatssomethingwhichmanifestsitself pleasantlyinthelookandfeelofthegame.Notonlyisthereabunchofdetailed configurationoptionsthatletyouspecifyjusthowyouwanttocontrolthegame suchashavingdifferentmousesensitivitiesoneachaxisorwhenscopedbut thegraphicsaresuperbtoo. Thismeansthattherecommendedsystemrequirementsareatouchhigher thantheyareontheaverageconsoleport,butitsgreatnewsforthoseofuswith thelatestgear.YoullneedaDirectX10cardwithatleast256MBofVRAMjustto scrapeinundertheminimumrequirements,buttheresalsoalotoftessellation, andevenamorphologicalanti-aliasingmodethatusestheDX11compute shader,soaDX11card willstandyouingood stead.Forourpart,a Radeon6900letus playsmoothlyat extremeresolutions withthesettingsall pushedtomaximum. Whenitcomesto customisingthe graphics,Sniper Eliteoffersahealthy Distance selectionofpreset options,anditalso auto-detectswhat yoursystemcan handle.Ifyouwantto fiddle,though,theres adecentselectionof optionsthatletsyou pushtheengine furtherbyenabling featuressuchas ambientocclusionor alteringtheshadow andanti-aliasing Textures settings.Pushing theAAashighas possibleshouldbeapriority,asthiswilleliminatethejaggededgesofvertices thatcanappearwhenlookingatlargescenes. However,theTextureDetailandDrawDistancesettingsaretheonesthatmake thebiggestdifference,controllingtheamountofsurfacedetailandhowfaryou canseedetailrespectively.WhileTextureDetailhasamajoteffectontheoverall lookofthegameasyoucanseefromthescreenshotsaboveshowingthe extremeLowandUltrasettingsDrawDistanceactuallyimpactsonthe gameplay.Simplyput,ifyoucantseeveryfarthenyoucantexpecttolivelongas asniper,nomatterhowfastyourhealthregenerates.Asaresult,werecommend pushingDrawDistancetomaximum,evenifyouhavetoturndownothersettings inordertoachievedecentperformance.

allonhisown,buttheressolittlecharacterisation thatthisjustificationisirrelevant. WhileSniperEliteV2hasitsfaults,italso works brilliantlyattimeswhenyoureshootingthetips offwarheadsordetonating vehiclefueltanks,for example.Italldependsonjusthowartfulyouwantto bewiththetoolsthegameprovides,whichispartof whatmakestheco-operativemodesomuchfuntoo; here,youcanhaveanallyeithersupportyoudirectly oractasyourspotter. WhilethequalityofgunplayplacesSniperEliteV2 inourgoodgraces,though,itdoesntearnmuch beyondthat.Thereareobviousfeaturesmissing, suchasafiringrangetotestnewweaponsand advancedstealthoptions suchasdisguises,which leavethegamefeelinga littleempty. Itsworthalook forballisticbuffs,butlacks thescopetobeanessential purchaseforanyoneelse.
JOE MARTIN

75

OVERALL

WorldMags.net

HI GH

LO W

HI GH

LO W

August 2012

89

WorldMags.net

WorldMags.net

REVIEW

What were Tolkien about


DIRE CHARM Straightforward strategy; attractive presentation JUST DIRE Buggy AI; difcult monsters

WARLOCK: MASTER OF THE ARCANE

YOUR MAJESTY
Warlockisntovertly linkedtootherParadox games,butitssetinthe Majestyfranchises world,Ardania.Paradox boughttherightstothis fantasystrategyseriesin 2007,asitsCEOFredrik Westerwasafan.Since then,itsreleasedaspate oftitlesintheseries, spanningPCsand tablets.However,you dontneedtoplaythe previousgamesto understandWarlock.

THE KNOWLEDGE
Price14.99 incVAT PublisherParadox Interactive DeveloperInoCoPlus Websitewww.warlock masterofthearcane.com

amessuchasWarlock: MasteroftheArcane dontneedintroducing thescreenshotstellyou whatsonoffer.Thisisatile-based strategygameinthesameveinas theCivilizationseries,inwhichyourtaskis tocrushyourenemiesandestablishdominion overtheworldthatmuchisobvious. Instead,itsthenuancesthatshouldreceiveallthe attention,suchashowParadoxhastransplantedthe Civformulatoafantasysettingandreplacedstandard armyunitswithorcs,impsandtheundead.Warlock evencastsyouasanin-gamecharacteran overseeingGreatMagewhocandirectlyinvolve themselvesinbattlesbycastingspellsusing harvestedmana.Thepurposeofthesespells rangesfromhealingandbuffingthroughtocreating firestormsandsummoningalliesandyoullneed themall,asWarlockdoesntletyoustackunits,soits easytoendupinvulnerableformations. However,whileWarlockdistinguishesitselfwith extra-dimensionalplanesandoptionalquests,italso differsfromCivinthattheonlywaytowinisthrough militaryconquest.Theresnodiplomaticorscientific goaltoaccomplishand,althoughyoucannegotiate withotherplayersandresearchnewspells,both systemsarewoefullyundernourished.Forexample, wecouldntfindatechtoshowyouthepathtowhich yourcurrentspellresearchwilllead. ThebiggestissuesconcerntheAIenemiesthough: theotherGreatMagesyoumustdefeattowin,andthe wildmonstersthatlittertherealm.Thelattersmain flawisthattheyrenumerousandunbalanceda findyourselfplayingforjustonemoreturnasyou Krakenoncewipedoutourentirearmywithasingle ploughtowardsmagicaldomination;theattractive tentacle,whiletheTheGreatMagessufferfrom presentation,streamlinedsystemsandaccessible occasionallybrokenstrategies.Itisnthardtohave interfacealldotheirjobwell.Thecomparativelylow foescaughtupinrepetitiveloopswhere pricehelpstoo. theykeepsummoningthesameunit, Itmaynotbeasdeepandinvolvedas onlytoberepelledeverytime.Eitherthe bignamesinthegenre,andithasits AIonlybelievesinvictorybyattrition,or faults,butWarlockneverthelessremains theresaflawintheunderlyinglogic. afunandcompetentlyassembledgame Despitethesesmallissues,however, thatsworthalookifyoureadevoteeofthe Warlockretainsthecoreappealofthe series,orwhenitgetsaSteamdiscount. OVERALL JOE MARTIN turn-basedstrategygenre.Itseasyto

65

92

August 2012

WorldMags.net

PREVIEW

Somewhere, over the Rambo

CRYSIS 3

THE KNOWLEDGE
PublisherElectronicArts DeveloperCrytek Webwww.crysis.ea.com ReleasedateSpring2013

rytek,likeDavidBowieattheendofLabyrinth, isexhaustedfromlivinguptoourexpectations. Nobodyatthestudiowouldeveradmittothis, weresure,butwhenlookingatCrysis3,its hardtoseeanythingbutadeveloperaimingfora comfortablemiddlegroundafteryearsofthanklessly supplyingPCgamersdemand. AfterFarCry,weaskedformoregraphical splendourandtacticalfreedom.Crytekgaveus Crysis,andwerespondedbycomplainingaboutpoor performance,fiddlycontrolsandlackofstructure. CrytekgaveusCrysis2,placating detractorswithconsole supportandamore regulatedenvironment. Wedismissedthese stepstooandCrytek hasofferedCrysis3 asacompromise. Thejungleofthefirst gamehasmergedwith thecityofthesecond,the CryEnginehasbeenimproved toofferagreaterspectaclethan before,and theres agreaterfocus onslower,moretacticalgameplaytoo. MuchofthisisembodiedinCrysis3s newsignatureweapon,acompositebowthat firesmodifiedarrowstoeitherstun,explode orimpaleenemies.Itcanbefiredwithout losingtheNanosuitsinvisibilitycloak,and thebowisflexibleenoughtomeetalltypesof encounter.Wieldingthebow,creepingthrough therainforeststhathavetakenoverNewYork, itsimpossiblenottofeellikeRambo.

Rambofeelslikeanimportanttouchstonefor Crysis3inotherwaystoo,asCrytekhaspushedthe storydownanexplicitlyaggressivepath,castingyou againasProphet.Hescaughtupintheescalating warbetweenCELLIndustriesandtheCephaliens, andhasgoneontheoffensive.Inthedemonstration wesaw,Crytekscreativedirectormaderepeated referencestohowProphet,backedupbyPsycho, hadchangedfrombeingthehuntedtothehunter. IfProphetandPsychoreallyarethehuntersthis timearound,youcanbesurethattheirpreyisthemost dangeroustypeimaginable.Thedemonstrationwe sawtookplaceinChinatown,whichhadbecomea bug-infestedswampowingtothehugebiodomethat CELLIndustrieshadraisedoverthewholeofNew York,andfeaturedahostofnewenemies.Someof theseweremerelyalienvariationsonfamiliarthreats, suchastheCephScorcher,whichstridesaround sprayingahoseofnapalm,whileothersweremore subtleanddangerousfoes.TheCephDrone,for example,isanon-aggressiveunitthatcandisable yourNanosuitsstealthmodewithascanningbeam. Asthedemonstrationebbedfromstealthto violence,wewerepleasedtoseethatCrysis3offersa widerarrayofapproachesthaneitherofthefirsttwo games,withyoursuitnowabletoremotelyhack enemysystemsorwieldCephheavyweaponry. Wewerealittledisappointedbythegraphicsinthe demoitshardtoseehowtheyvemovedonsince Crysis2.However,Crytekassuredusthiswasbecause thedeveloperwasconcentratingonimproving performance,ratherthanfidelity.Wellhavetowaitto seehowefficienttheseimprovementsarethough; welltellyoumoreassoonaswehavemoredetails.
JOE MARTIN

WorldMags.net

August 2012

93

Cliff Harris

Review your games


W
hatwasthenameofthelastPC gameyoubought?Youcan probablyrecallifitwasgood, whetheritliveduptoyour expectations,iftheframeratesweresmooth andifithadanyreplayabilityfactor.Youllalso probablyrememberthenegativesifitwas generic,buggy,repetitiveandnotactuallythe styleofgameyouexpected.Nobodyknows moreaboutyourimpressionsofthegame thanyou,right? Butdidyoureviewthegame?Idontmean professionally,foramagazinesuchas CustomPC,orforawebsite.Imtalkingabout userreviewsandratings.Didyouwritea forumcommenttofriendssayingwhether itwasgoodorbad?Orgiveita1-5starrating byclickingonawebsite(maybethesitefrom whichyouboughtit)?OrevenclickSteams RecommendtoFriendsoption,orthe ubiquitousFacebookLikebutton? Thechancesare,youdidnoneofthese (apologiesifyoudid).Thepercentageof buyerswhorateandreviewgamesis staggeringlylow.Itvariesbyplatform,and probablybygenretoo,butitsagiventhatthe overwhelmingmajorityofgamersneverpass anyinformationbacktotheworldabouttheir opinionsofagame.Thisislefttotheimplied marketforcesfromthesalesofsequels,DLC orothergamesbythesamedeveloper. Imgoingtotrytopersuadeyoutochange thisbehaviour,andencourageyoutopost onlinereviewsandratingsofgames,sohere goes.WhenItweetedaquestionaboutwhyso fewpeoplerateagame,Ireceivedsomequite interestingreplies.Tome,theyoftenseemed fairlyself-defeatingandsurprising. Overwhelmingly,peopledidntreviewor ratetheirpurchasesbecauseofalackof perceivedpersonalgainfromdoingso.The generalconsensuswasthatyoudidntget anythingforreviewingagame.Therewasno incentive,andthereforenobodytookthetime. Therewerealsosuggestionsthatittooktoo mucheffort,butgivenweretalkingaboutan

Notusingthe RecommendtoFriends optiononSteam,or clickingthe1-5star ratingonAmazon?Why thebloodyhellnot?

emailsignupatworst,andasingleclickon theLikebuttonatbest,wecanprobablywrap thisintothegeneralwhatsinitforme? justification.Iftherewasanyrealincentive, youwouldntletthebarrierofhavingtologin, orsignupafreeaccount,stopyourating something(unlessyoureterminallylazy!) SohowcanIpersuadeyoutoreview games?Wellfirstly,Iproposethatitsinthe interestofthecommongoodthatallnew gameshaveaverylargenumberof independent,honestreviewsfromawide rangeofpeople.Theresageneralwisdom-

Manyuserreviewscanformdifferentviewsofagame thanthoseofafewprofessionalreviews,asseenon sitessuchasMetaCritic

of-crowdsprincipleatworkhere.Ifagame onlyeverreceivestworeviews,andtheyre bothfrompeoplewholikeacertainstyleof game(saytheyrebothpickyaboutrealismin first-personshooters),thenthereviewscore foraperfectlyfun,playablebutslightlycasual FPS(thinkCallofDuty,ratherthanArma)can betotallyoutofkilterwiththepotentialthat gamehastoentertainitstargetmarket. Somepeoplereadeveryreview,notethe bylines,andgettoknowthereviewersquirks andopinions.However,thesearetheminority. Thevastmajorityofusreadreviewsblind, assumingthereviewerisprettymuchlikeus. Thiscanneverreallybetrue. Whentheprofessionalreviews(andImnot arguingagainstthem)arecombinedwitha hugenumberofuserratingsandminireviews,yougetatotallydifferentpicture.The gamemightbegiven3/5butmysteriously,the userreviewscomeoutat4.7/5,with1,000 userratings.Whenyouseethat,itprompts youtodigdeeper.Maybethosereviewers tastesdidntmatchthegamedesignwell. Maybetheyplayedthegameonhardwarethat performedunusuallybadlywithitsengine; whoknows? Inshort,morereviewsequalsmore informationonapotentialpurchase.More informedpurchasesnotonlymakehappier

94

August 2012

WorldMags.net

IndiegamessuchasFrozenSynapse andAmnesia:TheDarkDescentarent availabletobuyfromAmazon,anddont have$10millionadcampaignstheir successreliesonwordofmouthonline

gamers,buttheyalsomakeforabetter game#65isthinonthegroundindeed.The industryall-round.Itmeansthatgamedevs percentageofindiegamesalesthatcome thatmakegoodgameshavemoresales,and directlyorindirectlyfromcriticalanalysisin canre-investtomakemoregoodgames. forumthreadsandpersonalblogsisveryhigh. Everybodywins.Well,notquiteeveryone. Infact,theentirebusinesssurvivabilityof Intheabsenceofalargenumberofuser someindiegamesisattributablepurelyto opinionsonagamesquality,bigpublishers oneortwogamerswhostartathreadon cansometimesstackthedecka$10million www.penny-arcade.comorwww. advertisingcampaignishardtoignore,and somethingawful.com.Grass-rootssharing thehypemachinesforgamesgrowbigger ofcriticalopinionistheindieequivalentof eachyear.Itsnotatallunusualtohearabout SuperBowladsforbillion-dollartitles. gameswhosemarketingbudgetstotally Letsassumeyourewithmesofar.You dwarfedtheactualdevelopmentbudgets. agreethatalargenumberofuserreviewsand Ifuserreviews,ratingsandopinions becomemorewidespreadandmore ITS NOT UNUSUAL TO HEAR reliable,thentherelativepowerofthe ABOUT GAMES WHOSE marketingjuggernautrecedes MARKETING BUDGETS DWARF slightly.Wouldthatbesobad? Ofcourse,asanindiegame THE DEVELOPMENT BUDGETS developer,Icomeatthisfroma ratingsaregood,andwouldchangethe specificangle.BiggamessuchasCallofDuty industryforthebetter.Whyhassuchan receivethousandsofprofessionallywritten obviouslygoodideanothappened?Well,ifyou reviews,letalonealltheratingsandreviewsof readanypop-sciencebooks,youvealmost ordinarygamers.Atinypercentageofpeople certainlyencounteredthephenomenaofthe rategames,butwhenamillionpeoplebuya tragedyofthecommons.Inshort,thetragedy title,youtendtogetalotofclicksonthose ofthecommonsisaproblemwhereeveryone ratingsstars.Ifyouwanttoperformsome collectivelybenefitsfromacollectiveaction, researchtofindouthowBattlefield3plays, butnobodyhasanypersonalincentivetocarry youwontencounterashortageofopinions. outthataction. Itsdifferentwithindiegamesthough. Aclassicexampleispollution.Societyis Someindiegamesaremadebyoneperson, betteroffifnobodypollutes,buttheeffectof andachievemaybe1,000sales(orless)in anysinglepersonstoppingpollutionisalmost total.Suddenly,areasonableguessthatonein zero.Mostpeoplecontinuetopollute,while 500gamersbothersspreadingtheiropinions wonderingwhyeveryoneelseiscontinuing meansthatanalysisofcoolindieplatform

topollute.Thesituationcanneverchange withouteithergovernmentssteppingin,or incentivesthatrewardindividualaction. Icantseegovernmentssteppinginto ensurethatyourateDiabloIIIonafive-point scaleanytimesoon,norwouldwewantthat, soImtryingtodomybitbyrationalargument. Facefacts;atsomepoint,youvemadea purchasingdecisionforagame,atleastin partbasedontheopinionandscoregivenby arandomstrangerontheInternet.Inavery smallway,thatindividualgaveyousomething forfree,whichisanunbiasedopinionona purchasingdecisionyouprobably appreciateditatthetime. Atsomepoint,someonelikeyou,whowas busy,orcouldntseethepoint,actuallydid spontaneouslydecidetofireuptheirbrowser andtypethewordsjustboughtGameX, heresmyopinionontheirfavouritegaming forum.Thatpersoncouldeasilybeyou;it costsyounothingexcepttime,andbehonest, youcouldskipsomeofthoseYouTubecat videosnowandthentomakethetime.

istheone-mancoding wizardbehindPositech Games(www.positech. co.uk),thedeveloperofGratuitous SpaceBattles @cliffski

CLIFF HARRIS

WorldMags.net

August 2012

95

theengineroom
Rick Lane
UE3hasareputationforalackof colourvariation,butthatsalldown toartdirection.Itenablesawide varietyofcoloursfromdirtybrown andorangetobrightdaylightblue

Unreal Engine 3
Games have used UE3 since 2006, and Epic has kept updating it too. Rick Lane talks to third-party developers about why this veteran engine is still so appealing

henitcomestoengines,Epic certainlylivesuptoitsname. UnrealEngine3(UE3) has capabilitiesfarbeyondthe graphicshorizon.Thecompletepackage catersforsound,physics,animation, input-managing,networkingandscripting, anditsdesignedtobeflexible,scalableand, mostofall,powerful.Sinceitsdebutin2006, itsbeenusedtocreateover150games. Youcouldwriteabookonthepreciseway UE3packsinthatdetail,buttobebrief,the twoimportantareasarematerialsand lighting.Unlikepreviousversionsofthe UnrealEngine,youcantsimplytexturean

Normalmappingcancreatetheillusionofbumpsand dentsonaflatobject,asyoucanseeontheserooftops

objectinUE3.Texturingwasassimilated intothemorecomplexmethodofcreating materialsinstead.Thisallowsformuch greaterdetailandvarietyonsurfaces throughvariouschannels,suchasnormal mapping,whichcreatestheillusionof bumpsanddentsontoaflatobject.Thisis arguablythemostvitalmaterialchannel,as itgivesroomsandobjectsmoresubstance. Intermsoflighting,UE3movedonfrom theper-vertexlightingofUE2,allowingfor lightingsubdivisionwithinpolygons,which producesamorenaturalblendingoflight andshadow,andhighlycomplexpostprocesseffectssuchascrepuscularrays lightshaftsthatappearwhenapowerful lightsourceispartiallyobscured.More practicallightingtechniquesincludedthe applicationofshadowmapstostatic meshes.Usingthis,shadowscastby in-gamelightsarecodeddirectlyinto texturesandthenappliedtothebuilding blocksofthelevel,resultinginhighly realisticshadingatarelativelylowcostto hardware,astheenginedoesnthaveto constantlycalculatetheshadowsposition.

DevelopingUE3wasntsimplyacaseof takingadvantageofthelatesthardwareand APIinnovations.Whileoptimisinglevelsin UE3isnowlessofaconcernthankstosix yearsofhardwareadvances,backin2006,it wasapriority.UE3madesomeleapsinthis area.Acombinationoflevel-streaming supportandtheautomaticremovalof occludedobjectsintheplayersviewfrom therenderingpipelinehelpedtolighten theloadontheprocessorsofthetime. However,evenawell-optimisednew enginewillalwaysrequirebettertechto runitandadditionaltimetolearnit.Almost everyonehadtolearnnewproduction

UE3supportscrepuscularrayslightshaftsthatappear whenapowerfullightsourceispartiallyobscured

96

August 2012

WorldMags.net

pipelinesartistsespecially,recalls TripwireInteractive(developerofKilling FloorandRedOrchestra2:Heroesof Stalingrad)leadleveldesigner,AdamHatch. Initially,productivitywassloweddown becauseofallthenewprocessesandsteps thathadtobemadetomakeasinglepiece ofart.Ourdevelopermachineshadtoget asignificantupgradetobuildandprocessall ofthecoolnewstuffweweremaking. Inaddition,Epicconstantlyupdatesits software.In2009,itrevealedmultiplenew features,includingarevampedlighting systemformoredetailedsoft-shadows (shadowswithblurred,dispersededges, asopposedtohardblacklines),soft-body physicsformoreaccuratesimulationof deformableobjectssuchasclothand cardboardboxes,dynamicfracturingeffects onsurfacematerialsandtheabilityto simulatelargecrowdsofNPCs. Althoughalwaysexciting,theseupdates havesometimesprovedtobeadoubleedgedswordforTripwire.Therealityabout addingallthenewstufftoourgameisthat welosealotoftimemergingoverthecode, anddealingwithpotentialbugsandissues wedidntforesee.Wehadtostopmergingto Epicslatestcodebaseaboutayearbefore weshippedsothatwecouldkeepourversion oftheengineasstableaspossible. Epicssupportenablesdevelopersto concentrateonmakinggamesratherthan learningalloveragainhowtomakethem. Theenginesstabilitywithintheindustryis primarilywhynewUE3gamesarestillbeing made.OneofthenewestisTribesAscend. ToddHarris,COOofHi-RezStudios,explains whythedeveloperchoseUE3forTribes:Asa fastmultiplayershooter,wewantedTribesto havegreat-lookinggraphics,butalsofluid run-timeperformance,andUE3isknownfor deliveringboth. ComparingTribestoRedOrchestrais intriguing.Despitebothbeingmultiplayer shootersrunningonthesameengine, theyrestartlinglydifferent.WhereasROisa tactical,authenticandbrutalshooter,Tribes isadeadly,lightning-quicksci-fisport.This highlightsUE3sadaptabilityyoucantinker withalmosteveryfacetoftheengine. HarrisdescribesafewofHi-Rezsown alterations.Wemodifiedthein-game

Epics2009updatebroughtalotof newfeatures,includingarevamped lightingsystemformoredetailed softshadows,whichyoucansee underneaththeship

UE3enabledtheapplicationofshadowmapstostatic meshes,resultinginmorerealistictextureshadowing atarelativelylowcosttohardware

physicstosupportplayerskiing,jet-packing, andthebehaviouroffiredprojectiles,he says.Itwasimportanttoustopreservethe feelofTribesandweadaptedtheengine aroundthatgoal.Tribesisntonlyfastand fluid,butitalsoallowstheplayertoseemany otheropponentsoveralargewide-open battlefield.Thisiswhyweperformedcustom server-sidetechnicalworkaroundthe replicationofallthoseplayer-actors,and supportingthosemanyplayersbeing visibleon-screen. Tribes alsosubvertsmanyofthecommon criticismsdirectedatUE3,inparticularits tendencytowardsplastic-lookingcharacter modelsandadistinctlackofcolourvariation. However,thisismoredowntoEpicschoice ofcoloursinitsowngames,ratherthana limitationoftheenginetakealookatthe screenshotsofTribesanditsclearthat neitherofthosecriticismsapply.TheTribes aestheticisduetodeliberateartasset creationmorethananycustomtechnical solution,saysHarris.Theenginecan delivermanydifferentvisualstyles,soits simplytheresultofstrongartdirection.

TheideathatUE3canonlyproduceboring, brownenvironmentsisamyth.UE3uses floating-pointvaluestostorecolour,as opposedtootherdesignapplicationssuchas Photoshop,inwhichcoloursrunonafixed channelfrom0to255.Soif0.0isblackand 1.0isalushsummergreen,thescalecan thenbemultipliedovertoproducefurther saturationandeveneffectssuchascolourbasedillumination. UnrealEngine3sfutureseemsstable. AlthoughtherecentrevealofUE4probably meansthatUE3willeventuallyberetired, UE3sOpenGLcompatibilityandrecent demoonFlashindicateamobileandtabletbasedexistencethatcouldextendits lifespan.Also,UE4isalongwayoff.Hi-Rez saysitsexcitedaboutthepossibilityof morereal-timelightingoptionsforUE4,but saysitsalsorealisticaboutthehardware requirements.Tripwire,meanwhile,hopes thehardwarerequirementswilltakeinto accountthelengthywaitforanewengine. IwouldliketoseeUE4continueto bescalableandempowerustomakegames thatwillworkonawidevarietyofhardware andcomputers,saysHatch.Whilewewant ourfuturegamestohavepremium-level graphicsonhigh-end,top-of-the-line hardware,wewanttoabletosupportolder machines,butwithreducedvisualfidelity. Theseresponseshintatthelegacythat UE3willleavewhenitsfinallysuperseded. Itslonglifeandcontinuingsupportmeans thatmanydevelopershavebecome comfortableusingit.Thisenduringsuccess alsomeansthatconvincingdevelopersto moveonfromitmaynotbeeasy. Toppling thiskingsreignwontbeeasy.

WorldMags.net

August 2012

97

I
98 August 2012

Pre-orders. Downloadable content. Collectors editions. Joe Martin doesnt remember the games industry always being this nakedly commercialised. Now, he sets out to discover whats changed
aftertheirinitiallaunch,usuallycombiningastrategy guidewithanextralevelortwo. Theindustryworksalittledifferentlyinthe21st centurythough.Pre-ordersarenowahallmarkof theindustry,alongwithotherequallyinsidious marketingtechniquesday-onedownloadable contentandexorbitantlyexpensivecollectors editions,whicharriveassteeltinsstuffedwithtat. Gamershavecometoacceptthesestrategies

tseemsstrangetoremembernow,butbackin the1990sthesortofmarketingtacticsweseeall thetimenowwerentcommon.Youcouldntpreordergames,andtheinfrastructureforsupplying day-onedownloadablecontentwasntthereyet, meaningthatinsteadwehadexpansionpacksreleased sixmonthsdowntheline. Evenspecialeditionswererare;gamessuchasThief andDungeonKeeperwouldbegivenGoldreleaseslong

WorldMags.net

ANALYSIS

ascommonplace,althoughwhatisalittlemoresurprising ishowtheindustryitselfhascometorelyontheminorder tostayviable. Pre-ordersarevitallyimportantbecausetheyrea measuringstickforretailerswhentheydecidehowmuch stocktobuyinfordayone,saysChrisThomas,anaccount managerforCBSInteractiveandexpertongamemarketing. Whilebricks-and-mortarretailersfaceavarietyofobstacles tostayviableinanincreasinglydigitalmarket,guessingexactly howmuchstocktheyneedtosatisfydemandisperhapsoneof thehardesttoovercome.Buytoomanycopiesandyoullcreate asurplusthatshardtoshift,butstocktoofewandyoullneed toturncustomersaway.Itsatoughbalancingact. Pre-ordering,however,makestheprocesseasier.Retailers knowtheminimumamountofstocktoorder,whilealso gainingafirmindicatorofthepopularityofthefinalproduct. Around50,000pre-ordersisconsideredhealthyformost games,saysThomas,althoughthereareobviouslytitles thatperformmuchbetterthanthis.CallofDuty:Black Ops2,forexample,receivedmorepre-ordersontheday thatitwasannouncedthaneithertheoriginalBlackOps orModernWarfare3intheirentirerun-uptolaunch, accordingtoActivision. Theprimaryfunctionofpre-ordersislogisticalthen? Notquite.Pre-ordersmayhaveoriginallybeenconceivedto stabilisestockingissues,buttheyvebecomesocommonthat theyvespreadtootherareastoo.Digitaldistributorssuchas SteamandGreenManGamingregularlyofferpre-orderdeals too,eventhoughtheyarentalwayslimitedinquitethe same wayasretailstores. Thisisnttosaythatdigitaldistributorscant runoutofstock,ofcourse;in2009,Valve discountedPreysoheavilythatitsoldout itsentireallotmentoflicencekeysfaster thantheycouldbereplenished.Still, orderingmorekeysforadigital storewillalwaysbequickerthan restockingshelves. Thepointisthat,eventhoughpreorderswereoriginallyintendedtoaidbricks-

and-mortarstores,justbecausewereheadedtowardsan increasinglydigitalfuturedoesntmeanthatpre-orderswillbe phasedout.DiabloIII,forexample,despitebeinganonline-only gamethatneedstotieintoBlizzardsBattle.netsystem(see p86),isstillthemostpre-orderedgameinhistoryaccordingto bothBlizzardandAmazon. Publishersarealwaysgoingtowanttofront-loadthemoney theyget,sopre-loadingonSteamwillstillbesuper-important, saysThomas.Ifyoucantakemoneybeforeprovidinga deliverableproduct,thatsalwayspreferable.

HMVhasplayed hosttoan increasingnumber ofliveevents andlaunches. Liveeventssuch asthosehosted byMLGarethe future,saysCBS InteractivesChris Thomas

GOTTA COLLECT EM ALL


Itisntonlythewaythatgamesaresoldthats changedinrecentyears,butalsothemannerin whichtheproductsarepackaged.Gameshave alwaysbeencollectible,butitsonlysince2000that propercollectorseditionshavetakenoff. Infact,particularlylong-runningseriessuchas MaxPayneillustratethistrendexcellently,asthe oldergamesarepresentedalotmoresimply thantheirmoderncounterparts.Neitherof thefirsttwoMaxPaynegameshadanysortof collectorsedition,forexample,butRockstars latestinstalment?Well TheSpecialEditionofMaxPayne3isasighttobehold.It containsacopyofthegamesoriginalsoundtrack,exclusiveart printsbasedonconceptartfromthegame,abullet-shaped keyringwithasecretcompartment,apackofmultiplayerskins basedontheoriginaltitles,aDLCpackofextra weaponsanda10instatuetteofMaxhimself. Theresalsoacopyofthegameobviouslybut thatfeelslikeanafterthoughtcomparedwithall theothergoodies.Nowonderitcosts96incVAT. Unlikepre-orders,though,wherethemotivation ismoreconcernedwithensuringbusiness efficiencyandminimisingwaste,collectors editionssuchasthishaveamuchsimplerfocus makingmoney.Theydontimprovetheway thatretailersconductbusiness;theyjustoffer 100 bettermarginstopublishers.

Therearesome expansionpacks wedontmiss, however

Alduinisntas scaryinthisform, butheisexpensive

WorldMags.net

August 2012

99

Soundtracksare popularwitholder games,apparently

Whenyouleave thesefigures aloneforafew hours,theybattle eachother. Youd besurprised how wellinsult swordfighting faresagainstthe Nanosuit

Collectorseditionsarejustaquick waytomakemorecashmarginfor publishers,asourcefroma majorhigh-streetretailer toldusonconditionof anonymity.ThatMaxPayne statuemayaddabout30tothe perceivedprice,butitcostsonly 1.20perunittomake. Again,though,digital distributorshaventmissed atrickandhavestartedto offertheirowndigitaldeluxe versionsofgames,eventhough theycantofferthephysicalgoods suchast-shirtsandstatues.Thiscreates evenbettermargins,ofcourse,whilealsoofferingplayers itemstheycanuseimmediatelyexclusivemaps,weapons, skinsandsoon. Added-valuedigitalcontentisthemostprizedbythe majorityofgamers,saysHMVsheadofpress,Gennaro Castaldo.Itgivesyouamorerewardingexperienceandhelps yougetmoreoutofagame.Itcanalsogiveyousomeadditional communitystatus[makeyouseemtobe]aseriousgamer. ThisopinionissupportedbyGOG.comtoo,whotolduslast monththatmanycustomersbuygamestheyalreadyownon itsstorejusttosupporttheteamandgainaccesstothedigital extrasbundledwiththere-releases.Soundtracks,apparently, arethebestwaytoaddvaluetoanoldergame,whileextra in-gamecontentworksbetterfornewgames.

THE DOWN LOAD


Providingin-gamecontentanddownloadablecontent(DLC) thatdoesntupsettheaudienceforwhichitsintendedisoften adifficulttask,however.Alltoooften,gamerswillreactby accusingdevelopersofusingDLCtoprofitfromelementsthat

shouldhavebeenincludedinthe originalgame,orofgivingunfair advantagestothoseprepared topaymorefortheirgames. RichardWhitelock,aveteran gamedeveloperwhohas workedonDLCforgamessuch asAVP,offersadifferentopinion, however.Asheseesit,while DLCmayhaveobvious benefitswhenitcomesto marketinggames,itsalso atremendouslyuseful designtool.DLCcanbea refreshingchancetoshow off,toperformanencore,and respondtocriticismandpraise, saysWhitelock.[DLCenables]adialoguewiththeplayersnot typicalforAAAsingle-releaseprojects. Likepre-orders,whileDLCmaybeaboneofcontention withconsumers,ithasbenefitsfortheindustry.Inprevious decades,progressionwasslowduetothetimeandresources requiredtoiteratejustonegame;theonlywaytoimprovea gamewastomakeasequel,whichonlyhappenedwithvery successfultitles.WithDLC,though,developerscanimplement ideasmorequicklyandjudgetheirsuccessjustasfast. DLCfeelslikeanintermediarybetweenfinalboxedproducts andfullyiteratedonlinedevelopment,saysWhitelock.Soto bringtheadvantageofonetotheotherisusefulfordevelopers. WhileDLCmayhelpdeveloperstoimprovetheirtitles, however,someofthewaysinwhichitsdistributedcanbe annoyingformanygamerssuchaswhenDLCisattached toaspecificretaileraspartofapre-orderbonus.Thisis increasinglythecaseforbig,triple-Areleasesandgamessuch asMaxPayne3,whichalsoofferextramultiplayermapsifyou buyfromcertainstores.Theyreexcellentexamplesofhowthe

100

August 2012

WorldMags.net

ANALYSIS

Doesanyone everactually readthoselittle artbooks?

confluxofdifferentbonusesandincentivescansometimespull attentionawayfromthegameitself. Themotivationandreasoningforcreatingretailer-exclusive contentisntasobviousasitisforpre-orders,however,andfew ofourintervieweessaiditaddedgenuinevaluetoagameon anyfront.Theironlyrealpurposethatwecoulddivinewasas aformoffreeadvertisingforeachgame.Iimaginetheseare PRtools,speculatedCBSInteractivesChrisThomas,togive eachretailerareasontoshoutabouteachgame. Theproblem,ofcourse,isthatsomanytitlesareadopting thisapproach,andevensomeofthebiggestreleasescan becomelostintheshuffle;thisforcespublishersandretailers tomakeanevenbiggerefforttoattractattention.

L IVE AND LET L IVE


Iftheresoneaspectofamoderngamelaunchyoudefinitely wouldnthaveseeninthemid-1990s,itsthemidnightlaunch. Theveryideaofhundredsofpeoplequeuingupfordaysjustto gettheirhandsononeofthefirstcopiesofDiabloorCallof Dutywouldhavebeenludicrousadecadeago. Overa1,000fansturnedupfortheDiabloIIIevent,says Castaldo.Somestartedqueuingthreedaysbefore,and therewereevensomewhocamefromGermanygames increasinglyputonthemorespectacularlaunches. AccordingtoCastaldo,gamelaunchesarebecomingmore ofafocusforHMV,perhapsbecauseitsonedefiniteadvantage thatretailstoreshaveoverdigitalcompetitors.Asthe companyseesit,HMViswell-placedtostagetheseeventsand accommodatethelargenumbersofpeoplewhooftenturnup. ToThomas,though,theseliveeventsarereallyonlythe beginning.Wellhavetothinkofeventsonanentirelydifferent scalewhenitcomesfuturegamemarketing.Thefuture,asfar asImconcerned,islivegamingandeSports,saysThomas. ItshugeinAsiaandAmerica,whicharetypicallyayearahead

oftheUK.There aremorepeoplein someofthese stadiumsthanat mostfootball matches. Thereslittledoubtamongexpertsandgamersthatlive gamingeventsarebecomingamuchbiggerpartofthemarket. Thomaspointstogame-streamingsiteshavinghad230per centgrowthoverthepast12months,forexample,whileeven acasualglanceatorganisationssuchasMultiplayandMLG revealaburgeoningindustry.IntheUK,though,thesuccess oftheseeventshascreptuponusslowly,ratherthanina noticeablerush. Thebigquestionisntsomuchifliveeventswillbeimportant topublishers,buthowtheyllchoosetocapitaliseonitinthe futureandifgamerswillrespondaswellastheyhavetothe introductionofpre-ordersandDLC.

Theeditionwith theMaxPayne statuemaycost 96,butguess howmuchit coststomake?

SAVY GAMER?
Withtheeconomyinitscurrentstate,itisntsurprisingthatalotofgamers arelookingtosavesomecash,anditsherethatwebsitessuchashttp:// savygamer.co.ukstepinbyroundingupallthelatestdeals.Theresplenty ofopportunitytogetfantasticgamesatlowpricesthesedays,saysfounder LewieProcter.Thevastmajorityofcollectorseditionscanbeboughtfor reducedpricesifyouwaituntilafterrelease,forexample. Personally,Ithinkitsdisgracefulhoweagerpublishersaretogetinto bedwithretailers,hesayswhenitcomestonewertypesofdeal,suchas retailerexclusives. Itmeansthatretailersarelesslikelytocompeteon price.Intheworstexamples,balance,gamedesignandpacingare compromisedtoenablethegametobechoppedintobitsinthefirstplace.

WorldMags.net

August 2012

101

housandsofvoteshavebeencounted,manysambucashave beenquaffedandyourfavouritetechfirmsintheindustry havenowgoneawaywithbigsmilesontheirfaces.OnMay 24,wehandedouttheannualCustomPCandbit-techawards, followinganonlinesurveythatgaveyouthechancetovoteforthe

bestinthebusiness.Noneoftheawardswasdecidedbyourselves theyrealltheresultsofCustomPCandbit-techreadersvotes. Thisyearsawardswerealsothefirsttogiveduerecognitionto thosewhocamesecond,andwhoreceiveaHighlyCommended award.Anyway,withoutfurtherado,hereareyourchosenwinners.

BEST MOTHERBOARD MANUFACTURER 2012

BEST MEMORY MANUFACTURER 2012

HIGHLYCOMMENDED Gigabyte

WINNER Asus

HIGHLYCOMMENDED G.Skill

WINNER Corsair

BEST NVIDIA GRAPHICS PARTNER 2012

BEST SSD MANUFACTURER 2012

HIGHLYCOMMENDED Asus

WINNER MSI

HIGHLYCOMMENDED Corsair

WINNER OCZ

BEST AMD GRAPHICS PARTNER 2012

BEST CASE MANUFACTURER 2012

HIGHLYCOMMENDED XFX

WINNER Sapphire

HIGHLY COMMENDED Antec

WINNER CoolerMaster

102

August 2012

WorldMags.net

AWARDS 2012
BEST PSU MANUFACTURER 2012

Say

No

HIGHLY COMMENDED Antec

WINNER Corsair

BEST COOLING MANUFACTURER 2012


HIGHLY COMMENDED BeQuiet! WINNER Noctua

BEST NETWORKING MANUFACTURER 2012


HIGHLYCOMMENDED Netgear WINNER Synology

to

Slow

BEST PC MANUFACTURER 2012

HIGHLYCOMMENDED Overclockers.co.uk

WINNER Scan

BEST LAPTOP MANUFACTURER 2012


HIGHLYCOMMENDED Asus WINNER Alienware

Switch to VIPRE the antivirus that doesnt slow down your PC


VIPRE protects against: Malware & viruses Identity theft Malicious websites Spam emails PC hackers Cybercrime

BEST MODDING MANUFACTURER 2012


HIGHLYCOMMENDED Zalman WINNER Thermaltake

BEST MONITOR MANUFACTURER 2012


HIGHLYCOMMENDED Iiyama WINNER Dell

vipreantivirus.com/custompc

Try VIPRE for free at

BEST RETAILER 2012

HIGHLY COMMENDED Overclockers.co.uk

WINNER Scan

BEST GAME DEVELOPER 2012


HIGHLYCOMMENDED EA WINNER Bethesda

Available at
Scan me with your QR code app

WorldMags.net

Amazon, Amazon.co.uk and the Amazon.co.uk logo are trademarks or registered trademarks of Amazon EU S..r.l. or its affiliates. Copyright 2012 GFI Software. All products and company names herein may be trademarks of their respective owners.

August 2012

103

Your chance to get involved in CPC and bit-tech

NameKeirGraham Age21 OccupationCurrentlyacquiring computernetworkingcertifications LocationTodmorden MainusesforPCMovies,music, gamingandtheInternet Likes Gaming,sci-fiand constructingthings DislikesUKweather,traffic, Brusselssprouts
CPC:Whatoriginallyinspiredyouto buildBlueHorizon? Keir:Thefuninvolvedwithcreating scratch-builtPCswasmymain inspirationthroughoutthebuild.Itsprovided mewithcountlesshoursofentertainment overtheprojectslongconstructiontime.I alsosoughttomakeanimprovementover mypreviouscaseatthesametime,while upgradingmyhardware andfinallymakingthe leapfromaharddriveto anSSD,asthesewere slowlybecoming affordablewhenI startedtheproject. Icurrentlyhavetwo modsSilentFiberglass andBlueHorizon.Silent Fiberglasswasmyfirst attemptatmakinga

Keir Grahams distinctive mod was made using machine-milled raw aluminium and a selection of hand tools it even features a custom-built radiator
powerful,yetalmostsilent,computer,while alsotryingtomakesomethingalittledifferent fromtheaveragecase.Itwasalsowheremy ideaforacompletelycustom-built,casemountedradiatorcametolife.Ididnt havemuchtimetodesignandbuildSilent Fiberglass,resultinginseveralflawsinthe designaswellasfeaturesthatdidntwork asexpected.BlueHorizonwastherefore designedasadirectimprovement toSilentFiberglass, whereIaimedtosolvetheflawsofmy previousbuildandaddnewspecificationsto thedesignrequirements. Tothatend,Ibeganbymakingthecustom radiatormoreefficient,theinternalspace muchneaterandprovidingroomforafullATX powersupply.Ithendecidedtouseastandard caseshapeinordertomakethemachineas smallaspossible,whilestillbeingableto accommodateanATXmotherboardandfullsizedgraphicscard.Ialsoneededtobuildin anadequateamountofspacebehindthe motherboardtraytoaccommodateallthe wiresandtubes,enablingthevisible sectionstobeasneataspossible. OnceIhaddecidedonthebasic specificationsforthedesign,Ibegan theconstructionoftheframeand madesuretheoverallbuildquality wasimprovedovermypreviouscase. Whiletheconstructionwastaking

104

August 2012

WorldMags.net

ENTERYOUROWNPCATHTTP://FORUMS.BIT TECH.NET

ofKeirsshiny,glowing marvelinthefullproject logathttp://tinyurl.com/ ProjectBlueHorizon

SEE MORE

place,theaestheticsofthecasecontinually evolvedasIcameupwithnewdesignsand manufacturingtechniques. CPC:Whatdifficultiesdidyoucomeacross whenbuildingBlueHorizon? Keir:ThemainproblemIcameacrossduring theprojectwastheconstructionofthe

SYSTEM SPECS
CPU Intel Core i5-2500K overclocked to 3.3GHz, using auto-overclocks with Asus EPU GPU AMD Radeon HD 3850 overclocked to 705MHz Storage OCZ Agility 3 SSD, and 1.5TB Western Digital 5,200rpm hard drive for data Memory Corsair Dominator 1,600MHz (CAS 8-8-8-24) Motherboard Asus P8Z68-V/GEN3 PSU Cooler Master GX RS-650 Cooling Laing DDC pump motor with custom housing, Zalman ZM-GWB3 GPU block, EK-Supreme LTx nickelplated CPU block, Bitspower 45-degree fitting, 10mm barbs, Alphacool 90-degree rotary fittings, extruded 30 x 30cm heatsink from www.birminghamaluminium.com as radiator, and Feser One UV acid-green coolant

radiator,asthedesignIchosewasalittle tooambitious,whichmeantthatIhadto completelyredesignit.Ioriginallyplannedto maketheradiatorfromtwohollowaluminium panelsfilledwithcoolant,buttheyendedup beingtoodifficulttomake,soIchangedthe designtoanextrudedaluminiumheatsink. Fromthereon,thebiggestdifficulties concernedfiguringoutwaysinwhichtocreate thevariouspartsofmydesign,whichcostme afairamountoftimeandwastedmaterialin somecases.Ialsofellvictimtohumanerror onoccasion,whichrequiredmetomake entirepartsagain. CPC:Whatmaterialsdidyouusetomake theshellofthecaseandwhy? Keir:Rawaluminiumwasmymainchosen constructionmaterialthroughoutthe project.Aluminiumishasapleasantsilvery appearance,butitsalsostrong,light,easy

toworkwithanditdoesntcorrodeinmost circumstances. Whatsmore,sincetheentire caseismadefromrawaluminium,youcan easilysandawayanyscratchesonthesurface ofthemetal. AcrylicwastheothermaterialIusedthe most;Iusedthisforallthelightstrips,aswell asthePSU,radiatoranddrivebaycovers.I chosethismaterialbecauseithasahigh resistancetoscratchescomparedwithother glossyplastics,anditcanbepolishedafter machiningtoo.Italsohasareasonablylow meltingpoint,enablingittobeeasilybentinto curvesusingaheatgunandwoodenjig. CPC:Howdidyouworktheheatsinkinto thewater-coolingsystem,anddoesitwork asyouexpected? Keir:Theradiatorhasoutperformedall myexpectations,maintaininganaverage temperatureof32Cwhenidleand47Cwhile
106

WorldMags.net

August 2012

105

alsolearnedaboutnewmaterialsandtools. Alargeamountoftheknowledgegainedwas simplyfromhavingfirst-handexperience Ispentaconsiderableamountoftimeand effortdiscoveringhownottomakevarious parts,althoughthisisallpartoftheenjoyment ofsuchaproject. under100percentstresstesting,andthis iswithanoverclockedGPUandaroom temperatureof21C.Italsorequiresalmost noforcedconvectionfromthefanwhenidle, soitsextremelyquietthePSUfanisthe loudestpartofthecase. Ispecificallydesignedthecasetocontain thislarge,side-mountedheatsink/radiator, whichmeantthatIcouldalterthecasedesign toperfectlyaccommodateitbeforeIeven beganconstruction.Thistechniquealso gavemetheopportunitytohideasmuch tubingaspossible,givingthecaseaneat andsimpleappearance. CPC:Whattoolsandmachinerydidyouuse? Keir:Iusedavarietyoflargemachineryand handtools,althoughtheBridgeportmanual millingmachinewasmyfavourite,andthe oneI mostfrequentlyused.Itsaverywelldesignedpieceofmachinery,whichenabled metodrill,cutandmillallthematerialsused inmyprojectwithveryhighprecision. Ialsooccasionallyusedalathewiththe millertocreatepartssuchasthepump housing,whichrequiredaccurateshapingof aluminiumtoensurethateachpiecefitted togetherperfectlytoavoidleaks. Althoughthemillingmachineandlathe aregreatmachines,theyalsohavealimited workarea,soIusedajigsaw,palmsanderand anglegrinderwheneverthemachinesproved toosmall.Ifoundthejigsawtobethemost accuratetoolforcuttingpanelsoutofsheet aluminium,andtheanglegrinderwasthe CPC:Areyouhappywiththeendresult,and isthereanythingyouddodifferentlyifyou builtitagain? Keir:Imverypleasedwiththefinalresult itsperformingasIexpected,andinsome aspects,evenbetter.Thelightingprovidesa gentleglowbothinsideandoutsidethecase, aswellasbeingabletoprovideanevenUV sourceforallthecleartubingpreciselythe effectforwhichIwasaiming. ThemajorityofthechangesIwouldmake wouldconcerntheconstructiontechniques, andsomeofthematerialsIused.Mymain alterationwouldbetofindanalternativeto brazingrodstofastenthelargepanels together,asitturnedouttobeverydifficultto evenlyheatallthepartsatthesametime.I wouldalsomakethepumpfromatough plastic,andthenhaveitcoatedinchrome thiswouldgiveitthesameappearance,while avoidinganygalvanicreactionswithout requiringpaint.TheonlydesignareaIwould changewouldbetoextendthesidepanelall thewaytothebottomofthecase,thereby hidingthepaintedstripalongthebottomand creatingacleanerappearance.

quickestforcuttingorsmoothingoutany metalsurface.Meanwhile,thepalmsander providedthequickestwaytoachieveavery smoothsurfaceaftergrinding. CPC:Howlongdidittakeyoutocomplete theproject? Keir:Theentireprojecttook20monthsto complete,althoughIwasonlyworkingonit whenIhadsomefreetime,whichwasoften just16hoursaweekatthemostImadeno progresswhatsoeverinsomeweeks. CPC:Whathaveyoulearnedfromthe processofbuildingBlueHorizon? Keir:Ivebeenlearningthroughouttheentire project,particularlyintermsofgaining knowledgeaboutthebesttechniquesto producecomplicatedparts,althoughIve

BE A WINNER!

ToenteryourmachineforpossibleinclusioninReaders Drives,yourmodneedstobefullyworkingand,ideally, finishedbasedintheUK.Simplylogontowww.bit-tech.netandheadovertotheforums.Once yourethere,postawrite-upofyourmod,alongwithsomepics,intheProjectLogsforum.Make sureyoureadtherelevantrulesandadvicestickythreadsbeforeyoupost.Thebestentranteach monthwillbefeaturedhere,wherewellprintyourphotosofyourprojectandalsointerviewyou aboutthebuildprocess.Fameisnttheonlyprize; youllalso getyourhandsonafabulous selectionofprizesseeright.

106

August 2012

WorldMags.net

HTTP://FORUMS.BIT-TECH.NET

Weve teamed up with some of the worlds leading PC component manufacturers and retailers to offer this great range of prizes to each lucky Readers Drives winner. If your creation is featured in the magazine then youll walk away all three of the prizes listed on this page, so get in your entries!

Totalvalue142incVAT Manufacturerwww.corsair.com CorsairbelievesthatagreatPCstartswithagreat case.TheCorsairCarbideSeries300Ris acompactexpressionofthiscore philosophy.Itpacksina remarkablenumberoffeatures givenitscompactdimensions, providesbuilderswithtonnesof roomforexpansion,andhas amazingcoolingpotential.And, likeallCorsaircases,itsbuilt usingthefinestmaterialsand finishedtothehigheststandards, soitwillwithstandseveralyears ofupgrades. Justasaqualitycaseis essentialtobuildingaquality PC,ahigh-performance,highqualitypowersupplyisalsoavital ingredient.BasedontheawardwinningTXV2Series,thenew EnthusiastSeriesModularPSUsadda modularcablingsystemforimprovedinstallation

CORSAIR CARBIDE SERIES 300R CASE AND 550W TX MODULAR POWER SUPPLY

flexibility.TXModularpowersuppliesarebuilt usingqualitycomponents,andarerigorously testedandqualifiedat100percentloadatan ambienttemperatureof50Cforunmatched reliability.Theyredesignedtoasuperior standard,sothattheynotonlymeettheATX specification,butalsoexceedit.Inadditionto unmatchedquality,TXModularPSUsarealso power-efficient,offering85percentenergy efficiencyorhigherat50percentload. WithaCorsairCarbideSeries300Rcaseand 550WTXModularpowersupplyattheheartof yourbuild,youllhavethefoundationsforatruly awesomegamingmachine.

PHOBYA MODDING KIT

Value50incVAT Manufacturerwww.phobya.com,www.aqua-tuning.co.uk pre-braidedextensioncablegivesyouextra routeingoptionsinyourcase,anditalsoenables youtorunuptofourfansfromonecompatible motherboardheader.Meanwhile,the PhobyaSATA3cablesincludedinthekit offerthesamegreatqualitybraidingas therestofthePhobyarange,whilealso securingyourconnectionwith latchedconnectors.Aswellas this,thekitincludesthePhobya SlimGuideController,whichgives youtheoptiontovarythespeed ofotherfansinyourcase,while thePhobyaTwinLEDsletyou shinealightonyourmods.

ThePhobyamoddingkitisdesignedwiththemodderinmind,offering greatvalueformoneyandqualityproducts.ThekitincludesNano-G 12SilentWaterproof1,500rpmmulti-optionfans,whichuse aninnovativefan-bladedesign.As standard,thefansincludebraided blackcablestokeepyourcaselooking asneataspossible.Thefansarealso suppliedwithaspecialcablethat letsyourunthefanat5Vratherthan 12V,reducingthenoiseemitted inordertohelpyoutobuilda silentsystem. Thekitalsoincludesthe 60cmPhobya3-pinMolexto 4x3-pinMolexY-cable.This

WorldMags.net

August 2012

107

OVErClOCKanInTEl COrEi5-3570K
Paul Goodhead shows you how to get your CPU up to 4.5GHz
n our recent overclocking masterclass (see Issue 105, p92), we remarked that it was almost too easy to overclock Intels Sandy Bridge-based Core-i5 2500K CPU. Imagine our faces, then, when we found out that the successor to the Core i5-2500K, the Ivy Bridge-based Core i5-3570K, was even easier to overclock. The only adjustments you should need to make are to the multiplier (or the turbo ratio if, like ourselves, youre using an Asus board) and the vcore you dont even need to mess about with the PLL voltage any more. This is, of course, great in terms of simplicity, but it also takes some of the sense of adventure out of the process. As with other LGA1155 processors, we dont suggest monkeying around with the base clock, as this can cause instability in the other buses that rely on it. Its also worth considering heat Ivy Bridge processors output a lot of it in a very small space much more so than Sandy Bridge processors. As a result, you need to be sure your cooler is up to the job before overclocking to this level, and make sure you keep an eye on your core temperatures in CoreTemp (www.alcpu. com/CoreTemp) too.

WHAT WE USED
CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K RAM: 8GB 1,600MHz STORAGE: 120GB Patriot Wildfire SSD PSU: 800W MOTHERBOARD: Asus Maximus V Gene COOLER: Be Quiet! Dark Rock Advanced GRAPHICS CARD: Nvidia GeForce GTX 590 3GB SOFTWARE: CPU-Z, Prime95, CoreTemp, CPC Media Benchmarks

GIMP IMAGE EDITING


Intel Core i5-3770K 0 1,000

OVERALL
1,862 2,189
3,000 4,000 Intel Core i5-3770K 0 1,000 Stock speed

2,248
2,000 Overclocked

2,670
3,000 4,000

2,000

HANDBRAKE H.264 VIDEO ENCODING


Intel Core i5-3770K 0 1,000 2,000

3,160
3,000

3,955
4,000

1,920 x 1,080, Very high settings, no AA, no AF

ARMA II: OPERATION ARROWHEAD (DX9)


Intel Core i5-3770K

92 fps 104 fps 102 fps 118 fps


0 25 50
Overclocked min

MULTI-TASKING
Intel Core i5-3770K 0 1,000

1,721

1,865
2,000 3,000 4,000
Stock speed min

75

100

Stock speed avg

Overclocked avg

108

August 2012

WorldMags.net

HTTP://FORUMS.BIT-TECH.NET

01

02

03

Press Delete when your PC starts to access the EFI. Our motherboard sends us directly into the overclocking options, but you may need to find yours they should be clearly labelled. Once there, set the overclocking mode (called Ai Overclock Tuner on our board) to Manual.

If youre using the same board as the one were using, set the Turbo Ratio option to Manual and change the option titled 1-Core Ratio Limit to 45. If you have a board from a different manufacturer, locate the CPU Ratio or Multiplier option and change that to 45.

Now you need to make your RAM run at the correct speed; in our case, this was 1,600MHz. Open the Memory Frequency menu and select the correct option for your memory. The speed of your memory is usually detailed on the side of the modules.

04

05

06

Now scroll down to the voltage options (or switch to the voltage screen if youre using a Gigabyte motherboard) and locate the CPU voltage. Adjust this to 1.3 (either by typing it or pressing the + button) and press Enter.

You also need to turn off CPU Spread Spectrum, as it plays with the CPU clock slightly, which can affect overclocks. On our board, this option was located below the voltage options, but it may be somewhere different on your board.

Finally, make sure that your motherboard is delivering the correct voltage via the Load-line Calibration option. In our case, it was located in the DIGI+ Power Control menu, but its usually near the voltage controls. Set this to the highest level you can Extreme in our case.

07

08

You now need to save your changes and exit the EFI. You can usually do this by scrolling to the menu on the far right, or by pressing F10 and selecting the appropriate option in the menu that appears.

Check your overclock is stable by running Prime95 for a while, and run CPU-Z and CoreTemp in the background, so you can monitor whats going on. If it isnt stable, go back to the EFI and lower the CPU multiplier a little and test again.

Weknowwesaidwedont recommendtweakingtheIvyBridge baseclock,asevensmallchangescan affectstability.However,ifyouwant evenmoremegahertz,oryouhavea multiplier-lockedCPU,thenitsworth trying.Backupyourdatafirst,asyoull beoverclockingtheSATAbus,which risksdatacorruption.Thebeststable IvyBridgebaseclockweveseenis 109MHz,butthatwaswithLN ,so thebestyoucanhopeforisaround 105MHz,whichwillstillprovidean extra170MHzwitha34xmultiplier.

pro tip

WorldMags.net

August 2012

109

WorldMags.net

UP FOR GRABS

WIN!Seasonic P-1000 Platinum 1000W PSUs


WORTH 225 EACH

SUsdontgetmuchmorepremiumthanthis.Ourgoodfriendsat Seasonicareofferingyoutwoofitsgorgeous1,000WP-1000PSUs. ThisisoneofthefewPSUstoreceivethe80Plus (www.80plus.org) Platinumaward,offeringefficiencyof20percentat90percentload, 92percentat50percentloadand 89percentat100percentload. Theresalsoamassivesingle12Vrailoffering83Aofheadroomfor multiplegraphicscards,nottomentionanoverclockedCPU.Six8-pin

(6+2)PCI-EconnectorsaresupportedbythisfullymodularPSU,and itscertifiedforusewith3-waySLIandCrossFireXsetupstoo. Meanwhile,the120mmSanAcedualball-bearingfanwillkeepthe PSUcoolandquiet,andSeasonicsS2FCandS3FCfancontrolsystems alsoenablehybridfanlessoperation,wherebythefanisswitchedoff unlessthePSUhitsa20percentor40percentloadrespectively. Formoreinformation,visitwww.seasonic.com

WhichrailsuppliesmostofthepowertoPCI-E graphicscards? a)+3.3V b) +12V c)+5V

with Seasonic Competition 107 in the Subject line


Closing date: 1 July, 2012

competition@custompc.co.uk

Email your answer to

WorldMags.net

August 2012

111

WorldMags.net

WorldMags.net

Letters
WHERES MY MOTHERBOARD?
I was interested to read the Ivy Bridge motherboard comparison in this months CustomPC. It just so happens that within the past two weeks, I decided to build a monster PC using an Asus P877-V Pro motherboard, an Intel Core i7-3770, 8GB of Corsair RAM, a 750W Corsair PSU, an Nvidia GeForce GTX G680 and a SilverStone Raven case. I was disappointed not to see my motherboard mentioned in the list of those tested, as I wondered where my board would be placed in this list. I was told that it was the top of the range when I bought the parts from Scan, and now Im worried because I thought I was buying the best. Any Ideas? TonyPollock Benreplies:SorryTony,butwesimply donthavetheresourcestoreviewevery motherboardwhenanewchipsetis releasedAsusalonehasreleased14

Send us your feedback and correspondence to editor@custompc.co.uk, with Letter in the Subject line
ofextraUSB3ports,fourextrapower phasesfortheCPUandacoupleof otherbitsandbobs.We haventreviewedit,but itssafetosayyouhavent madeabadchoice.

BAD DATES
Good morning and good day to you, oh personal computer wizardry masters. Just a quick question could you please sort out the dating system on your magazines? My poor little mind cant cope with receiving the July issue mid-May. Why does this happen? When I started reading CPC, it was a few weeks out, but two months?! RobHickling Benreplies:Heresalittlehistorylessonfor you,Rob.WhenwestartedCustomPC,we decidedtoreleaseittwoweeksafterthe otherPCmags,sowecouldincludelaterreleasedkitandgainanadvantageinthe firsttwoweeksonthenewsstand.Wealso decidedtoputthedateonemonthahead,

WedidnthaveroomtorevieweveryZ77motherboard, butthatdoesntmeantheAsusP877-VProisntgood

Z77motherboards,nevermindeveryone else.However,wevehadalookattheAsus P877-VthatwasincludedintheDinoPC Tyrannosaur3570K(seep36)thismonth itsagreatboardforoverclocking,hasloads ofroomforexpansionandtheWi-FiGo feature(whichcaneffectivelyturnitintoa wirelessrouter)isbrilliantaswell.ThePro versionoftheboardbasicallyaddsacouple

Get a kick out of pointing out the shortcomings of others? Its okay so do we
CHI WITH EVERYTHING
IvebeenreadingtheIvyBridgereviewin Issue106,andInoticedthatonp38,inthe Performanceparagraph,yousaythatthe Corei53570Kisagreatgamingchi.Isthis asimpletypingmistakeorareyouimplying thatIntelhasmanagedtopackagethe traditionalChineselifeforceusedin Chinasmartialartsandmedicineintoeach 3570K?IvejustboughtaPCwitha3570K (notbasedontheinclusionofChi)andIm lookingforwardtonextmonthsmagazine whereIllfindoutjusthowgoodadecision ImadebyoptingforaGeForceGTX670 overaGTX680.Greatmagasalways. AndrewTaylor

Benreplies:ThanksAndrewyoumadea gooddecisionwiththegraphicscard.As forChi,itcouldonlyhavebeenatypoas aScrabbleplayerIonlyspellitQianyway!

114

August 2012

WorldMags.net

FEEDBACK

Follow us on Twitter at @custompcmag


@carlosmunoz0885DoyouthinkaQ6600at3GHzwith4GBof1,066MHz DDR2wouldbottlenecka6870CrossFireXsystem?Thanks! Benreplies:Thatdependsonmanyfactorswhichgamesyoureplayingand, moreimportantly,whichmotherboardyoureusing.IfyouhaveanoldIntel965 board,thanyoureonlygoingtogeteightfirst-genPCI-Elanespercard,whichwill limityourbandwidth.Thatwillalsobeapowerfulgraphicssystem,andyoumay findyourselfgettingCPU-limitedathighresolutions,whichisntwhatyouwant whenyouhaveanoldCPU.OneRadeonHD6870inthatsystemwillbefinetwois pushingitifyouwanttogetthebestfromyourgraphicscards. @PeterODonnellReallyenjoyedthe@cliffskiarticlein@CustomPCmag. Therestofthemagkickedasstoo! Benreplies:Thanks!Gladyouenjoyedit. @BiggKennyMyfriendsallbelievethatyoumightaswellhavean850WPSU foraPCwithoneGPU.Isthisoverkill? Benreplies:Yes.Infact,ourSandyBridgetestsystemonlydrewatotalof373W withthedual-GPUGeForceGTX690installed,andrunningatfullload.Itsalways goodtohavesomeslack,though,asyoucanthensafelyinstallextracomponents, andexperimentwithoverclockingyourCPUandGPU.TheThermaltake SP-530PCWEUandCorsairHX650werecommendinourElitelist(seep31)are morethanadequateformostsingle-GPUsystems.

sothatitwasclearCPCwasntreleasedat thesametimeastheoldermagazines,but alsosothatitstilllookedcurrentwhenthe competitionturneduptwoweekslater.Asa generalrule,magazinedatesarealwaysa monthaheadofthereleasedateanyway, tomaximisetheirshelflife,butourmagis evenfurtherahead.Italwayshasbeen itisntanewstrategy.Theresnowayof goingbacknowthoughwithoutreleasing twoAugustissues,forexample,andthat wouldbeevenmoreconfusing.

CORRECTION
HUMBLE Pi
If youre old enough to remember the homecomputing era, then you may also remember spending the best part of a day punching in hundreds of lines of code, only to find out that a few bits of it didnt work, and you had to wait until next month to correct them. Well, sadly, it looks as though these days havent entirely disappeared, as a few parts of the code in the Raspberry Pi feature were broken in the editing and layout process, and wont work in their current state. Here are the corrections: MakeaRaspberryPimediacentre: Step6:Ignore the carriage return in the middle of the code. Step7:The double quotes in the command need to be straight quotes, rather than open-and-close quotes. CreateaRaspberryPiNASbox: Step3:The first command has an unnecessary t on the end . It should read: gksudo leafpad /etc/samba/smb.conf

Step6: Should read: You should now have access to the contents of the attached storage device. For hints on securing access, go to the terminal and type: man smb.conf ProgrammingtheRaspberryPi: Step4:Should read: Youll need to put: import RPi.GPIO as GPIO at the top of your Python project to use the GPIO

library, after which you can start to use your Raspberry Pi as an overpowered Arduino-alike. Step5:Should read: Configure with: GPIO. setup(NN, GPIO.XX), where NN is the pin number and XX either IN or OUT. Read a pin with: input_value = GPIO. input(NN) or turn on an output with: GPIO. output(12, True)

WorldMags.net

August 2012

115

Heres a sad truth. Most people who suffer from an online attack actually have some kind of security software already running on their PC. It just isnt good enough. Trend Micro is different. We stop threats in the cloud before they reach you. So your entire digital life can be protected. What a relief.

Stop the Nooo! Face before it starts. trendmicro.co.uk/noface


2012 Trend Micro, Inc. All rights reserved. Trend Micro, Titanium and the t-ball logo are trademarks or registered trademarks of Trend Micro, Inc.

AVAILABLE AT:

ADVANCED+
-REAL WORLDPROTECTION TEST

ADVANCED+
ON DEMAND DETECTION TEST

JUL 2011

AUG 2011

LABS WINNER

WorldMags.net

Titanium Internet Security 2012 April 2012

HTTP://FORUMS.BIT-TECH.NET

Join our folding team and help medical research

WHAT IS FOLDING?

Folding@homeusesthespareprocessingcyclesfromyourPCsCPUandgraphicscardsformedicalresearch.Youcandownload theclientfromhttp://folding.stanford.edu/download.htmlandourteamsIDis35947.Onceyoupassasignificantmilestone, youllgetyournameinthemag.Youcanalsodiscussfoldingwithusandotherreadersonthewww.bit-tech.netforums.

We catch up with folder of the month: enigmo


CPC:Whoareyouandwhatdoyoudo? enigmo:My name is Rob McCarthy, and Im an IT support engineer for a major London university. CPC:Whydidyoustartfolding? enigmo:Initially, I used it as a hardware stress test, as I like building new systems, and trying to make them as fast and stable as possible. However, as I learned more about the project, and having run SETI in the past, I decided to dedicate at least one machine to it full-time an ancien1.7GHz Pentium 4 that squeezed out around 600ppd. As soon as I had those first few work units under my belt, it was a runaway thing. CPC:Whatexcitesyoumostaboutfolding? enigmo:The fact that its furthering medical science plays a big part. Thinking it could be one work unit on one machine that provides a missing link to a cure for Alzheimers is thrilling, even though you could probably never pin it down to such specifics. Theres also the sense of community and competition you can see someone on your threat list you didnt see before, and hop on the forum and ask what theyre running. Or you could ask for advice from people for about a extracting a few extra ppd from a new piece of kit. CPC:HowmanyPCsdoyouhavefolding? enigmo:Five, but that changes depending on whether Im gaming, how the overclock on my main rig is faring and whether Ive broken a VM. I have two i7-2600K boxes, two older Core i5s, and my Core 2 Quad Q9550 box. At the moment, Im an all-SMP folding house. I havent folded on a GPU in months, after experiencing several stability and heat problems. Im tempted to start my 560Ti-448 folding, but I doubt I could afford the extra leccy! CPC: Whatsyourbestpieceoffoldingkit? enigmo: My overclocked Core i7-2600K. It piles up the points when I can stand the power and noise. CPC:Whichoperatingsystemsdoyouuse foryourfoldingmachines? enigmo: A mix, including Windows 7, Ubuntu VM and NotFreds Diskless. The ppd bump I saw from moving to a VM from a native Windows console was pretty big, so I intend to move more towards VMs they mean that the machines are a little more flexible anyway. CPC:Anytipsforfellowteammembers? enigmo:No problem is too stupid to ask about on the forums. Whatever it is, someone has probably solved it before, so ask away. CPC:Whatsyourworstfoldingexperience? enigmo:Infernal, damnable and infuriating core errors that could only be solved by blatting the install and starting again. Oh, and a toasted GeForce GTX 460.

CPC:Andthebestexperience? enigmo:Hitting ten million points just before last New Year and seeing my name in the Top 20 producers chart at around the same time. Plus seeing my username in the magazine for the first time years ago. Teamrank56 Worldrank1,564 Score18,144,391 Workunits 14,052 Dailypointsaverage30,676 TOPFOLDERS Thismonthsshout-outsgotoBMHand fatchef.Ifyoufoldunderanyofthesenames, emaileditor@custompc.co.uk
118

WorldMags.net

August 2012

117

MILESTONES THIS MONTH


Username Points milestone Username Points milestone Username Points milestone Username Points milestone

a5pin JoshEllie-17 l1ghtm4st3r mwhhammond pitprop Raoul589 blotty TacticalFluke FlamingWolfman Forquare Mecael Wispa KyralTim nsymons rob_woolcott Tom_Evans BaskB bigg Chrisz0rz darthvanman Glyn_Mason pj33val47 anadir2 KINGOFTHESWING pipnina ThreeFN dodgykeeper natwilford03 Clotten mar_duke mattydinx Pausanias828

20000 20000 20000 20000 20000 20000 30000 30000 40000 40000 40000 40000 50000 50000 50000 50000 60000 60000 60000 60000 60000 60000 70000 70000 70000 70000 80000 80000 90000 90000 90000 90000

Bnorus edmundkong36 EgAp10 Evil_Pillsbury Filce Laguna2012 McSpoon Millsy79 Pickles Rosyglo siddallj SourDipRaita SystemOfDiscord the_kille4 G0UDG JimmyMcRees emdal GarethFlatlands LittleTodden Munky RayCampbell Teflon YbrFinX Archaon88 bastardo_bill CCHS ittoms SazD ForGrace kornvdd Osiris_Blue Andrew_Dixon

100000 100000 100000 100000 100000 100000 100000 100000 100000 100000 100000 100000 100000 100000 200000 200000 300000 300000 300000 300000 300000 300000 300000 400000 400000 400000 400000 400000 500000 500000 500000 600000

Bigadz1 cs278 VasileiosZografos yes beads Eldorado-Bit-tech Igniseus Number14 Scammelio ShortMunky Yattiaman 8Core CheeZee73 Dobbs2010 geonectixs Pete GandalfDDUK sco0by CopperHead1960 CyberX Desertbaker Godfoder hazza_t Optimusprime1985

600000 600000 600000 600000 700000 700000 700000 700000 700000 700000 700000 800000 800000 800000 800000 800000 900000 900000 1000000 1000000 1000000 1000000 1000000 1000000

Slowlemon SyLvEsTeR20007 Abomin81on Daniel_Selley DrJAG FingAZ meandmymouth SicoAnimal Sparkymatt Andy_good_life DrDaveSell Mark_Skeldon RabidMongoose Votick JediMasterJonny luckybfocus Scorpuk Team_Thurlow redironman cave_diver davidj2010 Dolphin(CPC) Serpentine m1rr0rMan

1000000 1000000 2000000 2000000 2000000 2000000 2000000 2000000 2000000 3000000 3000000 3000000 3000000 3000000 4000000 4000000 4000000 4000000 5000000 6000000 6000000 6000000 6000000 8000000

THE NEXT OVERTAKE


World Team name rank Points Daily points average Time until overtake

7 14 19

CustomPC& bit-tech awachs HewlettPackard

5,193,480,634 2,021,158,427 1,604,379,698

3,651,075 4,694,850 4,287,391

0 8.1Years 15.7Years

118

August 2012

WorldMags.net

HTTP://FORUMS.BIT-TECH.NET

TOP 20 OVERALL
Rank Username Points milestone
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20

TOP 20 PRODUCERS
Work units
106,787 93,954 139,234 15,794 140,861 59,810 70,354 5,636 31,678 35,891 3,077 45,029 8,269 33,463 161,805 85,905 6,322 35,572 72,158 22,329

Username
Dave_Goodchild phoenicis DocJonz zz9pzza coolamasta Lizard StreetSam Wallace Christopher_N._Lewis CustomBitChimps BennieboyUK saspro fir3x Standin_wave greenfrog.biz PS3/LanDi One_Box The_M2B Justin_Wells PeteBee

Points
379,590,470 223,349,417 216,658,218 211,014,628 185,080,782 129,923,269 102,894,737 80,889,860 72,472,228 68,650,154 61,155,216 56,930,297 52,506,457 50,493,352 47,587,865 47,227,013 43,592,468 43,176,705 40,373,133 39,282,369

Rank
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20

Username
DocJonz coolamasta Wallace Nelio One_Box StreetSam The_M2B Scorpuk Lordsoth fir3x LordBadger Abomin81on JediMasterJonny m1rr0rMan BMH FingAZ fatchef PC_Rich SyLvEsTeR20007 Christopher_N._ Lewis

Dailypointsaverage
271,965 206,435 139,937 122,219 116,414 111,739 90,069 84,799 79,175 74,576 69,235 59,217 53,663 47,516 46,935 46,524 43,820 43,663 43,335 42,941

Overallscore
216,658,218 185,080,782 80,889,860 33,916,146 43,592,468 102,894,737 43,176,705 4,761,278 38,701,215 52,506,457 26,620,530 2,644,686 4,399,476 8,162,636 14,859,340 2,575,340 11,002,587 38,442,919 1,699,344 72,472,228

tarka_dahl Al_Bert BeauchN pompeyrodney fatchef Frank_Kehoe Nelio The_M2B fir3x Wallace StreetSam

8000000 9000000 9000000 9000000 10000000 30000000 30000000 40000000 50000000 80000000 100000000

Coming next month in


Gaming peripherals Hot Source

Harryiscurrentlyamassingahoard ofgamingkeyboardsandmice,which hesgoingtobeputtingthroughtheir pacesingamestoseewhichones deserveyourcash.

Ricklanecontinuesexploringgame enginesbyinvestigatingValves hugelypopularSourceengine,the backboneofmanypopulargames fromCSStoLeft4Dead2.

Silence your PC

Ifthesuddensilencewhenyouswitch offyourPCgivesyouasenseofrelief thenyouneedhelp. Wellexaminethe manywaysinwhichyoucanreduce yourmachinesirritatingwhirrs.

FollowingtherecentHitmantrailer,next monthsissuewillbepackedwith sexualisedviolenceandgratuitousbooth babeshotsfromE3,followedbyabizarre apologythatshowswestilldontgetit.


*Pleasenotethatthesestoriesaresubjecttoproductdelays,kitnotturning upandtimespentstaringatHarrysshortswhich,believeitornot,hesbeen wearingforseveralmonthsnow.Also,oneoftheseisafake.

Nuns with guns

On sale 19 July, 2012

WorldMags.net

August 2012

119

EGA graphics
B
luesky,greengrass,blackroads, whiteclouds,ayellowsunandared Ferrari.Simplerequirementsfora PCdrivinggame,youmightthink, butsuchluxurieswerentavailabletoallPC gamersintheOutrun-era.Likemanyearly PCgamers,IstartedoutwithaCGAmachine, whichcoulddisplayfourcoloursonthescreen atonce.Theywerentevenusuallygood colourscyanandmagentaweretypicallytwo ofthem.Ifyouwanted16coloursthenyouhad tohandoverseveralhundredpoundsforan 8-bitISAcardsuchastheGenoaSpectra4800 picturedontherightanEGAgraphicscard. Introducedin1984,EGA(Enhanced GraphicsAdaptor),finallybroughtnon-stupid colourstoPCgraphics.Atabasiclevel,EGA enabledthePCtodisplayall16ofthecolours inthestandardpalette(onlyavailableintext modeinCGA)at320x200and640x200.It alsoaddedabrand-new640x350modewith a64-colourpalette(6-bitRGB),anditcould display16ofthesecolourssimultaneously ifyourcardhadenoughRAM. Thisprobablysoundsprettyrubbish.Tobe fair,itisrubbish,butitwassuchamassive improvementoverCGAthatitcompletely transformedPCgamingfrombeinglaughably sub-Spectrumtobeingsomethingvaguely respectable.Itwasntcheapthough.Notonly

that,butifyou wantedthe640x 350modethen youneededanew monitortopluginto the9-pinportontheback. ThetotalcostofanewEGA monitorandgraphicscard startedoffcostingthousands ofpounds,butgraduallycame downtosanelevelsafterafew years.Theotheralternativewas myrouteusingasecond-hand EGAcardwithanoldCGAmode, andatleastgettingall16colours atCGAresolutions. Therewasjustoneproblem. ThecardwassetupforanEGA monitor,anditwouldntworkon myoldCGAmonitoruntilIsetthe DIPswitchescorrectly.Setting theselittleswitchesinthecorrect orderenabledthecardtoboot upinavarietyofresolutionsand coloursettings,includingCGA, EGAandMDA.Therewereten switches,andnodocumentation withmysecond-handcard.Inan agewhereyoucouldntjustlook fortherightdiagramsontheNet,thismeant thattherewerepotentially hundredsofdifferent combinationstotrybefore Icouldgetittowork.
CG A

Thecardpicturedhasonlytwo jumperswitchesforselecting displaymodes,whichismuch simpler,butyoullalsonotice anotherportonthebackplate. Thisisanothercuriosityfrom thatera,whenexpansioncards oftentriedtocovermanybases tomakethemmoreappealing. Thatextraportisaparallelport, enablingyoutoattachaprinter toyourmachineaswellasan EGAmonitor.Youusedtosee alotofthisthenearlySound Blaster16susedtohaveIDE connectorstoo. EGAsreignwasshort-lived. Itstartedofftooexpensive, andwaslaterusurpedbythesuperiorVGA (generally640x480with16coloursand320x 240with256colours),butitchangedthePC fromabusinessmachinethatcouldplay gamesbadly,toaversatilemachinethat couldplaygameswithhalf-decentgraphics. EGAscreenshotslookslightlygarishnow, withtheirlimitedcolourpalette,butthe improvementoverCGAwasphenomenal. Upgradingagraphicscardnowmightenable youtogofrom1,920x1,080to2,560x1,600,or enablesomeextradetailoptions,andthats great,butitsnothinglikethedifference betweenfourcoloursand16.Imnowgoingto lookformycopyofCommanderKeen.

CG A
Greengrass?Browntreetrunks?Yeah, thatsbetterthansplatteringmagenta andcyaneverywhere

Ben Hardwidge recalls his very rst graphics card upgrade, when a huge circuitboard bought you 12 more colours

EG A

PhototakenbyKonstantinLanzet

EG A

120

August 2012

WorldMags.net

WorldMags.net

WHY PC GAME MODS MATTER

Modders understand a philosophy thats hard for publishers to grasp. Let me introduce you to coolerism
community.Theyhavearesponsibilitytomakethecooleristspursuit easier.ModtoolsarethelifebloodofthePCgamingexperiencethe buildingblocksofnewgenresandnewexperiences. Thisbringsustoafundamentalcooleristbelief:allPCgames shouldshipwithmoddingtools.Themodsshouldbeofficially supported,andthebestofthemshouldbechampioned.Basically, theuniquePCmodcommunityneedstobetreasuredandloved. Imean,lookatthegamesconsoles.Theresnoplaceforthe cooleristphilosophyinthatweird,restrictedworld.Ifagameis greatonagamesconsole,itsexactlythat greatforever.Itnevergetsanycooler.Itcant. Andthegamespublisherwillsay,Oh,but wellmakeitcooler!Wellreleasenew downloadablecontent!Buttheydontknow cool.Itsallbottomlinewiththem.Coolisnt evenafactorwiththesecreeps.Coolerists needtobeataPC.Thatshomeforthem,and theyneedtofeelwelcomethere. DayZhasbeensuchasuccessthatArmaIIhasrocketedbackto thetopoftheSteamsaleschart,andyouneedtogetluckytologon becausetheserversarerammed.Youcouldeasilysetasideanhour forsomeDayZandthenspendthathourleapingfromserverto server,hopingtogetconnected.Butyouknowwhat?Itdoesntmatter. Everyoneisstillthere,clickingaway,hopingtogetinvolved.Sure,itsa messrightnow,butifitsanewexperiencewecandealwiththat.Let usin!Werepatient.Wegetit.Wereallcoolerists. RobertFlorenceisthestarandwriterofBBCcomedy Burnistoun,co-writerofMocktheWeekandTheITCrowd,and anenthusiasticgamerwhosrediscoveringthejoysofPCgaming
@ROBERTFLORENCE

sIwritethis,ImjustcoolingdownafterasessiononDayZ.As Imsureyouallknowbynow,DayZisamodforArmaIIthat turnstheplayerintoasurvivorinalandfullofzombies.Let metalktoyouaboutthisforamoment. Youspawnonabeachwithahandgunandafewsupplies.To survive,youneedtofindfood,waterandbetterweapons.Thismeans thatyouhavetosneakintohouses,factoriesandtowns,stayingclear ofthewanderingzombies,inthehopethatyoullfindsomeofthat stuff.Andthereareotherplayersouttheretoo.Theymighthelpyou,or theymayjustkillyouandtakeyourstuff.Ifyou die,byzombieattackorcrossbowbolt,youre backonthatbeachagain.Allyourhard-earned gearisgone.Itsadangerous,frightening game.Itsalsoanincredibleexperience. Anditsagamethatwouldnever,everbe made.Noguyorgirlinasuit,makinga decisionbasedonprojectedsalesand demographics,wouldeverputupmoneyfor thedevelopmentofthisridiculous,cruelanimalofagame,yetitexists. Itexistswithinanothergame,becausethatothergameallowedit. Modsareimportant.Theycomefromapositiveandbeautifulplace. SomeoneplaysagameandthensaysWouldntitbecoolif..?Then theychangethatgametoseeexactlyhowcoolitwouldbe.Itsthe ultimateexpressionofwhatImnowgoingtocallcoolerism.Mods aretheproductofacommunitythatwantstomakegamescooler. WouldntArmaIIbeevencoolerifyoucouldplayamultiplayergame fullofzombies?WouldntitbecoolifHalf-Lifehadsomekindof multiplayerteam-basedgamebuiltin? Coolerism:Thepracticalpursuitofanimprovedgaming experience,throughwish-fulfilmentandcoolification. Cooleristsneedtools though.PCdevelopersandpublishers needtounderstandthattheresaproudtraditionofmodsinthePC

If a game is great on a console, its exactly that great forever. It never gets any cooler

122

August 2012

WorldMags.net

www.novatech.co.uk

www.ebuyer.com

WorldMags.net www.aria.co.uk www.eclipsecomputers.com

Chillblast.com
www.chillblast.com

WorldMags.net