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Thread: Anandtech News

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    #9261

    Anandtech: The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1660 Review, Feat. EVGA XC GAMING: Turing Stakes It

    Launching today is NVIDIA's next mainstream video card, the GeForce GTX 1660. The card is based on the a cut-down version of the TU116 Turing GPU used in the GeForce GTX 1660 Ti, and comes paired with GDDR5 memory rather than cutting-edge GDDR6. Overall, the new GTX 1660 is meant to be a cheaper option for the mainstream market, not delivering quite as much performance, but coming in at an even more wallet-friendly $219.

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    #9262

    Anandtech: New WD Blue SSD Switches To NVMe

    In the process of assimilating SanDisk, Western Digital has been re-using their hard drive branding on consumer SSDs: WD Green, Blue and Black can refer to either mechanical hard drives or SSDs. The WD Blue brand is used for the most mainstream products, which for SSDs meant SATA drives. The first WD Blue SSD introduced in 2016 used planar TLC NAND and a Marvell controller with the usual amount of DRAM for a mainstream SSD. The next year, the WD Blue was updated with 3D TLC NAND that kept it competitive with the Crucial MX series and Samsung 850 EVO. 2018 passed with no changes to the WD Blue hardware, but prices were slashed to keep up with the rest of the industry: the 1TB drive that debuted with a MSRP of $310 is now selling for $120.
    SanDisk's 64-layer 3D TLC NAND is nearing the end of its product cycle, but they and other NAND flash manufacturers aren't in a hurry to switch over to 96L NAND, so it's not quite time for another straightforward refresh of the WD Blue. Instead, Western Digital has chosen to migrate the WD Blue brand over to a different market segment. Now that the WD Black is well-established as a high-end NVMe product, there's room for an entry-level NVMe SSD, and it will be the new WD Blue SN500. This is little more than a re-branding of an existing OEM product (WD SN520), in the same way that the current WD Black SN750 SSD is based on the WD SN720. The SN520 was announced more than a year ago, but as an OEM product we were unable to obtain a review sample. Like the high-end SN720 and SN750, the SN520 and WD Blue SN500 use Western Digital's in-house NVMe SSD controller architecture, albeit in a cut-down implementation with just two PCIe lanes and no DRAM interface. The high-end version of this controller architecture has proven to be very competitive (especially for a first-generation product), but so far we have only the SN500's spec sheet by which to judge the low-end controller.
    WD Blue SN500 Specifications
    Capacity 250 GB 500 GB
    Form Factor M.2 2280 Single-Sided
    Interface NVMe PCIe 3 x2
    Controller Western Digital in-house
    NAND SanDisk 64-layer 3D TLC
    DRAM None (Host Memory Buffer not supported)
    Sequential Read 1700 MB/s 1700 MB/s
    Sequential Write 1300 MB/s 1450 MB/s
    4KB Random Read 210k IOPS 275k IOPS
    4KB Random Write 170k IOPS 300k IOPS
    Power Peak 5.94 W 5.94 W
    PS3 Idle 25 mW 25 mW
    PS4 Idle 2.5 mW 2.5 mW
    Endurance 150 TB 300 TB
    Warranty 5 years
    MSRP $54.99
    (22¢/GB)
    $77.99
    (16¢/GB)
    High-end client/consumer NVMe SSDs all use PCIe 3.0 x4 interfaces, but the entry-level NVMe market is split between four-lane and two-lane controllers. Two-lane controllers are generally cheaper and their smaller size makes them attractive for small form factor devices that can't fit a full 22x80mm M.2 card. The WD SN520 is a 22x30mm design that is also available in 42mm and 80mm card lengths, but the retail WD Blue SN500 will only be sold in the 80mm length that is most common for consumer M.2 drives.
    The switch from SATA to NVMe means the new WD Blue SN500 will offer much higher peak performance, but the use of a DRAMless controller means there may be some corner cases where heavy workloads show little improvement or even regress in performance. The SN500's controller does not use the NVMe Host Memory Buffer, but does include an undisclosed amount of memory on-board that serves a similar purpose. This means that omitting the external DRAM from the drive should not have as severe a performance impact as it does for DRAMless SATA drives like the WD Green SSD.
    Even if the new WD Blue SN500 succeeds at offering far better performance than the current WD Blue SATA SSD, it will still be a big step backward in terms of capacity: the SATA product line ranges from 250GB to 2TB, but the SN500 will only be offered in 250GB and 500GB capacities. We hope that Western Digital has an upgraded WD Green in the works to keep affordable 1TB+ drives in their portfolio.
    The MSRPs for the WD Blue SN500 are a few dollars higher than current retail pricing for the mainstream SATA SSDs they are intended to succeed. Western Digital has not mentioned when the SN500 will hit the shelves, but there will probably not be much delay after today's announcement, since this hardware has been shipping to OEMs for a year already.



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    #9263

    Anandtech: HP Expands 2018 Battery Recall Program, Delayed Announcement Due To Govt S

    HP started a voluntarily recall program of around 50,000 batteries back in early 2018. This year the company expanded the program with another 78,500 battery packs as it had received eight more complaints from its customers. HP initiated this recall in January, however due to the US Government shutdown earlier this year, the recall has only now been publically announced by the Consumer Product Safety Commission.


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    #9264

    Anandtech: Acer’s TravelMate X514-51: A 14-Inch Commercial Laptop under 1 kg (2.2 lbs

    Acer has introduced its new thin-and-light commercial notebook aimed at small and medium businesses. Outfitted with a 14-inch display and based on Intel’s Core i5/i7 processors, the TravelMate X514-51 weighs only 2.16 pounds (980 grams). The laptop also supports a host of security features required by businesses.


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    #9265

    Anandtech: Samsung Begins Mass Production of 12 GB LPDDR4X for Smartphones

    Samsung said late on Wednesday that it had started volume production of 12 GB LPDDR4X-4266 memory for high-end smartphones. The chip is the highest-density DRAM for mobile applications. The first smartphone to use Samsung’s 12 GB LPDDR4X DRAM package will be the company’s own Galaxy S10+ handset formally announced last month.



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    #9266

    Anandtech: Acer EI491CR: A Curved 49-Inch Monitor with FreeSync 2

    Being one of the leading suppliers of monitors for gamers, Acer has not had a single ultra-large, ultra-wide display for gamers. Until now. This week the company finally started to sell its EI491CR, a 49-inch curved monitor that supports AMD’s FreeSync 2 technology.


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    #9267

    Anandtech: Sony Xperia 1, the Long 21:9 Smartphone, Available for Pre-Order

    When Sony introduced its Xperia 1 flagship smartphone at MWC 2019, the company disclosed all technical specifications, but omitted two important details: pricing and launch date. This month some of the company’s partners began to take pre-orders on the product and had to disclose its estimated price. While retailers are taking pre-orders, we still do not know when Sony intends to start shipments.



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    #9268

    Anandtech: Turtle Beach Acquires ROCCAT: a New Gaming Peripherals Giant Is Born

    Turtle Beach, a leading supplier of headsets and a developer of various audio technologies, this week signed an agreement to acquire ROCCAT, a maker of gaming peripherals. The move creates a new combined supplier of gaming peripherals with presence all around the world.
    At present Turtle Beach is primarily known in the US and some European countries for its gaming headsets for consoles and PCs. By taking over ROCCAT, the company gets keyboards, mice, and a variety of accessories for gamers. Turtle Beach estimates that the merged company will have a total of 48 core product models for various markets. Furthermore, Turtle Beach gains presence in Asia and additional European countries, where ROCCAT is known. To a large degree, Turtle Beach and ROCCAT have no obvious overlap in terms of product portfolio and in terms of distribution channels, allowing them to integrate better. It's not clear if ROCCAT hardware will be rebranded Turtle Beach, or if the ROCCAT brand will remain.
    René Korte, the head of ROCCAT, and other employees of the company, will join Turtle Beach and will continue to design peripherals.
    Under the terms of the agreement, Turtle Beach will acquire ROCCAT for $14.8 million in cash (net of a working capital adjustment), $1 million in cash or stock (company option), and up to approximately $3.4 million in earnout payments. Turtle Beach expects ROCCAT to contribute about $20 - $24 million to its 2019 revenue as well as over $30 million to its 2020 revenue.
    Sales of Turtle Beach totaled $287.4 million in 2018, whereas it net income was $39.2 million. The lion’s share of the company’s revenue was contributed by headsets for game consoles sold in North America, a market where Turtle Beach commanded a ~40% share for the past nine years. Meanwhile, Turtle Beach plans to increase sales of its PC gaming accessories to $100 million in the coming years, so the acquisition of ROCCAT is strategically important for the company.
    Related Reading


    Source: Turtle Beach


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    #9269

    Anandtech: JapanNext 75 and 86-Inch 4K IPS HDR Monitors: What Separates TVs from Moni

    Just when you thought that NVIDIA-inspired 65-Inch Big Format Gaming Displays (BFGDs) were huge, JapanNext has rolled-out its new 75 and 86-inch monitors. The JN-IPS7500UHDR-KG and JN-IPS8600UHDR monitors are aimed mostly at multimedia enthusiasts who also need to get some work done, but both LCDs feature profiles for gaming too.


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    #9270

    Anandtech: Kingston Launches New Enterprise SATA SSDs

    Kingston is making a renewed effort in the enterprise storage market this year, starting with the launch of their DC500 family of enterprise SATA SSDs. The new DC500R and DC500M product lines are designed for read-intensive and mixed workloads respectively, with endurance ratings of 0.5 and 1.3 drive writes per day, respectively.
    The target market for the DC500 family is second-tier cloud service providers and system integrators. The biggest cloud companies (Google, Microsoft, Amazon, etc.) have largely moved over to NVMe SSDs, but among the smaller datacenter players there is still a large market for SATA drives. These companies are already Kingston's biggest customers for DRAM, so Kingston already has a foot in the door.
    The DC500 family continues Kingston's close relationship with Phison, incorporating the new Phison S12 SATA SSD controller. This provides all the usual features expected from an enterprise drive, including end-to-end data path protection, Phison's third-generation LDPC error correction, and power loss protection. The NAND flash Kingston is using this time is Intel's 64-layer 3D TLC, rated for 5000 Program/Erase cycles. Kingston most often uses Toshiba flash, especially given their investment in Toshiba Memory Corporation, but ultimately Kingston is still an independent buyer of memory, and at the moment they consider Intel to be a better option for their enterprise SSDs.
    Performance ratings are typical for SATA drives with TLC NAND. Both the DC500R and DC500M will saturate the SATA link for sequential transfers or random reads. The DC500R's steady-state random write performance is rated for 12k-28k IOPS depending on capacity, while the DC500M with substantially more overprovisioning can sustain 58k-75k random write IOPS. Capacities for both tiers of DC500 will be 480GB up to 3.84TB. The DC500R is shipping starting today, while the DC500M will start shipping next week, except for the largest 3.84TB capacity that will arrive later in Q2.


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