Noctua NF-A12x15 Fan Review

Noctua has released a new 15 mm thick, named the NF-A12x15. It is designed to fit in skinny places and to provide relatively high static pressure. They faced challenges getting a fan this thin. For example, “For the 12cm NF-A12x15, a steel-reinforced motor hub and brass axle mount are being used in order to assure the required stability despite the fan’s 15mm thin profile.” Remember, Noctua guarantees their products out to six years and to make a thin fan last that long took some work. They also never made a fan this thin. As our press contact commented, “All of the new models are new form factors for us.” So let’s have a look at this, the newest entry into the slim fan derby: Read More

Noctua NF-A20 Fan Review

As of May 2017 Noctua released its NF-A20 fan as the NF-A20 FLX two-speed fan and the NF-A20 PWM variable speed fan. Noctua has been working on a 200 mm fan for years – it first showed a 20 cm prototype in 2013 at Computex, so this month will be exactly four years. They had to have been working on it before that, to make a prototype, but only now has Noctua released their 200 mm fan. As their press relations person said, “We really had to put our backs into this one to make it happen. It's so easy to build a 200mm fan that spins, but so hard to build one that performs, doesn't feel flimsy, and will spin for more than 10 years...” Were the results worth it? Let’s see! Read More

ASUS ROG Strix GTX 1070 Gaming 8G Review

Today on the review rig, we have the ASUS ROG Strix GTX 1070 to share with you. The 1070 Strix promises to have good and quiet cooling, your now typical RGB LEDs, and superior performance over any Founders Edition (FE) cards due to the factory overclock. There are a couple of neat features here, one of which is FanConnect, which you will later see why this sets the card apart from the others. Read on below to see if they have again accomplished what they set out to do! Read More

Patriot Hellfire M.2 NVMe SSD Review

Up next in our review carousel is another very fast M.2 PCIe NVMe based SSD. With only Toshiba/OCZ and Samsung generally competing in this enthusiast space, it will be nice to see some more competition. To that end, our friends at Patriot have kindly sent over their 480GB Hellfire M.2 SSD. The Hellfire promises to be pretty quick using its Phison PS5007-E7 controller shared by others in the market. Let's dig in a bit and see what makes the Hellfire tick, and see how it performs in our testing. Read More

MSI X370 SLI PLUS Motherboard Review

Today we have the MSI X370 SLI Plus on the test bench. This sample is one of the lowest priced motherboards equipped with the AMD X370 chipset in the retail market. Just at a glance you can see that it's a bit stripped down from its bigger brothers but still appears to have everything you might need to get your Ryzen CPU up and going, even overclocked, and at a reasonable price. The AM4 platform is still relatively new and with that comes a few growing pains. This leaves some of the memory options a bit limited and just finding the right memory for your motherboard can be a challenge since there's still some compatibility issues on all boards at the moment. There's another AGESA update scheduled for May, hopefully this will open things up a bit for us enthusiasts. Read More

MSI GTX 1080 Ti Gaming X 11G GPU Review

We saw a couple of weeks ago NVIDIA released the GTX 1080 Ti which we had a chance to review. From that review we concluded it was a beast of a card, even in its Founders Edition form. Truth be told, its the closest thing to a single GPU solution at 4K resolution with high settings we have, and at a more reasonable price than the Titan XP or Xp or... whatever the new one is called. As with nearly every GPU released, the AIB's get in the game giving us their take. MSI sent us the GTX 1080 Ti Gaming X 11G to review. They have updated their Twin Frozr cooling solution as well as better goodies on the PCB to deliver a quieter and better performing version of the FE 1080 Ti. Read on below to see how it shapes up! Read More

AMD RYZEN Overclocking Guide

My intention here is to aid you in leveraging just a bit more out of the AMD Ryzen CPU. One great thing that AMD carried forward is that all Ryzen CPUs have unlocked multipliers, this alone makes life easier when it comes to overclocking. Read More

ASUS ROG Strix Z270I Gaming Motherboard Review

It was only a matter of time before we got our hands on the small, mini-ITX versions of the Z270 chipset. Our first look at these micro power houses is from ASUS, their ROG Strix Z270I Gaming. The board, even in its tiny mITX size, looks to bring you all the features and performance of the larger boards but in a package that can fit into a small form factor. Let's take a look and see what the board has to offer! Read More

AMD Ryzen 5 1500X and 1600X CPU Review

Coming in swiftly behind big brother we have Ryzen 5. This is AMD's offering for the more budget-minded PC user. Today we'll be looking at the hex-core 1600X and the quad-core 1500X. These CPUs both have the XFR technology we've seen from the Ryzen 7 1800X and 1700X allowing for boost speeds over their typical max. Without further adieu, on to the main show. Read More

ASUS ROG Crosshair VI Hero Review

Today we'll have a look at the ASUS ROG Crosshair VI Hero which, at this time, is ASUS' top of the line performance board for the AM4 socket. From the early days of socket AM2/AM2+ with the introduction first ASUS Crosshair, in AMD land, the name has always been synonymous with performance. Over the years, I have had four different Crosshair motherboards and can say I have never been disappointed. Today I have my fifth Crosshair sitting in front of me and just by the look and feel of it, I can tell the quality is there. The AMD Ryzen CPU and AM4 platform are still new and as such you should expect a few growing pains. That being said, I'm certain given a bit more time most, if not all, of the bugs will be worked out and setting up this platform will be as easy as any other. At present there are some limitations with memory timings, this is driven by AMD not the motherboard manufacturers. This will be addressed in future AGESA updates delivered with your motherboard's BIOS. Read More

MSI GTX 1070 Aero ITX 8G OC Video Card Review

Up next on the test bench is another 1070 from MSI. This time, however, it is a small form factor GTX 1070 instead of the full sized card. We have in our hands the MSI GTX 1070 Aero ITX 8G OC. The card promises to have everything the full sized card has hardware wise, but in an ITX form factor. Let's see what magic MSI used to keep this card cool and humming along even with a smaller, single fan cooler keeping temperatures where we need it. Read More

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