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Launched late summer 2017, AMD’s Radeon Vega series cards were well received, to the point of being a little scarce on store shelves. It really didn’t help that the Crypto-boom of late 2017 had anything of Team Red’s flying off the shelves without a second glance, but it did give board partners time to work on aftermarket versions of the line quietly in the shadows. While all cards are still flying off the shelves faster than you can blink lately, the first aftermarket variants of AMD’s Vega line are starting to trickle out, and one of the first is right here carrying ASUS famous ROG STRIX Branding in the ROG STRIX Radeon Veag64 OC. Featuring an improved PCB layout, better power delivery, and ASUS’s triple fan Cooler, and packing 8GB of HBM2 memory, this just might be the best Vega yet.
Corsair has been known for an excellent line of enthusiast grade products for years and to many enthusiasts the goto company for high end gear. Sometime back Corsair released the Corsair Hydro Series H115i Extreme Performance Liquid CPU Cooler, 280mm that runs at 2000 +/- 10% RPM and 104.65 CFM topping 40 dBA and was considered by many to be far to loud. Complaints were heard across the land even though the name implicitly says H115i EXTREME PERFORMANCE, well Corsair listens to it's user base and has their finger on the pulse of the community so they have released a variant of the H115i in the H115i PRO Low Noise 280mm RGB Liquid CPU Cooler that the fans top out at 1200 RPM with an advertised dBA level of 20 at full speed pushing 55.4 CFM. Will the decrease in CFM decrease the effeciency of the Corsair H115i PRO 280mm RGB or has Corsair stirred in some of that magic and adjusted other components to bolster the cooling performance.
Vega has traveled down a difficult path getting on retailers/eTailers shelves and shortages have been reported on all models. AMD finally relented and let partners design custom boards but supplies of parts and availability have been a problem. Well, Vega is here at Proclockers and PowerColor sent us a Red Devil RX Vega 56 on a custom PCB packed with goodies and a powerful cooling solution. Triple fan, triple slot monster in traditional Red Devil Red and Black and AMD said let there be Vega and there was and Vega is GOOD!
ASUS’s STRIX line of products is one of the most popular choices among gamers for bringing strong gaming oriented features and aesthetics to an affordable mid-range price point. ASUS now brings that along to the big end of the AMD Ryzen ecosystem, known officially as Threadripper, in the form of the ASUS ROG STRIX X399-E Gaming Motherboard.
Gaming headsets are all the rage but when we heard about the all wood construction of the Sound BlasterX Kratos S5 2.1 Gaming Speaker System we had to get hands on a set. Being fans of the original Sound Blaster products our enthusiasm extends to the Sound BlasterX series of products and the Kratos S5 coming in at a pocket friendly $129.00 (When on sale $99.99) we wondered what the return to wood speaker boxes had to offer.
Razer was founded in 2005 and started out dual-headquartered in San Francisco and Singapore and focused on one thing “For Gamers by Gamers” and has remained true to that one defining point. Razer has something for everyone in an ever-widening circle of products that now includes the Razer Lancehead Tournament Edition in four varieties (Black, Gunmetal Grey, Mercury White, and Quartz Pink) and we have the Gunmetal Grey edition to look at.
Patriot has been building high-performance memory products for more than three decades, and the latest iteration is designed to put some serious bite into your system without poisoning your wallet. Featuring the signature full cover black heat spreaders Patriot is known for, but with the signature Viper head emblazoned and topped with a glowing lightbar, the Viper LED kits are ready to strike at your memory needs. Patriots new memory kits come in Red or White, and several speeds of 2400MHz to 3600MHz and capacities.
Every gaming computer needs a good mix of gaming gear to reach your pinnacle of gaming nirvana and often we spend hundreds of dollars improving and updating our gaming shrines. Often overlooked or scrimped on is our Mouse Pad or Mat. Far too often we see that $1.99 generic mouse mat sitting in front of a machine that took a couple of thousand to build. Razer, one of the world’s leading manufacturers knows all too well about that and has a wide variety of mouse pads and mats in all price ranges. Razer sent in Razer Invicta Elite Gunmetal Dual-Sided Gaming Mouse Mat (from the Gunmetal Suite we will be covering in the Gun Metal Variety).
Thermaltake is jumping feet first into the peripherals arena with its Tt eSPORTS line of equipment. It sure seems like Thermaltake is going out of its way to brand and advertise this line of peripherals completely separate from their components business, so much so that the eSPORTS line has its own website. They were kind enough to send us a nice sampling of the eSports line which we will be taking a look at over the next week or two. The first one which will be having a look at today is the MEKA PRO mechanical gaming keyboard. Thanks for sending it over Thermaltake!
If you’re anything like us, you’ve probably been fascinated with thermal images from the first time you saw your favorite Austrian born actor battling a fictional extraterrestrial trophy hunter in a Guatemalan jungle. Ten points to you if you correctly guessed the name of the 1987 science fiction thriller poorly described above. Outside of some action-packed theatrics, thermal imaging is very real and has an unbelievable amount of uses in the real world. From search and rescue to aviation to preventative maintenance, FLIR has been on the forefront of thermal imaging industry-wide for more than half a century.
Having been around since before the dinosaurs our very first experience with a sound card came in the form of a “Multimedia Upgrade Kit” from Sound Blaster. Adlib had a similar kit for $30 less but we went with Sound Blaster because the name was cooler. The kit consisted of an ISA (Industry Standard Architecture) sound card, 1x speed CDROM and a small set of unpowered speakers. The tag on that was $469.00 and we were the first ones to have a multimedia computer in a University of 6000 students. Fast forward more years than we care to comment on and Creative Labs sends us the Sound BlasterX AE-5 7.1 Channel 32-bit 384KHz sound card to have a shot at.
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