CES 2018: AMD Ryzen 3 Mobile Is Here, Completing The Zen Mobile Family

As part of its CES 2018’s line-up, AMD has officially announced two more additions to its Ryzen Mobile family in the form of Ryzen 3 2300U and Ryzen 3 2200U. You might be able to notice from their names that both of these APUs are lower-end models as compared to the Ryzen 7 2700U and Ryzen 5 2500U that were released last last year.
Just like their high-end siblings, both of these Ryzen 3 Mobile APUs also feature AMD Radeon Vega graphics. Same goes to the newly enhanced SenseMI technology which include the improved version of Precision Boost as well as Mobile XFR that rewards users with higher performance if their laptop has excellent cooling.
Here are the general specifications of the new Ryzen 3 Mobile looked like when compared with two previous Ryzen Mobile chips:

To be officially available on 9 January, users can expect to see new systems powered by the new chip within the first quarter of this year. In fact, we will not be surprised if we see some of them making their appearance at CES 2018.
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CES 2018: Nvidia Debuts Big Format Gaming Displays; Built In G-Sync And Shield

Nvidia has unveiled a new “technology” called Big Format Gaming Displays (BFGDs) during its CES 2018 presentation earlier today. BFGDs are basically displays made by several manufacturers, which feature G-Sync HDR and Nvidia Shield built in. In addition, these monitors come with 4K resolution and 120Hz refresh rates as well.
To be more specific, Nvidia’s Big Format Gaming Displays are 65-inch monitors that are not exclusively made by Nvidia itself. Instead, manufacturers like Acer, Asus, and HP will be making the monitors and they will be aided by Nvidia in terms of technology implementation. These monitors are, of course, aimed at PC gamers who want high performance and instant response times from larger-than-normal displays.

What makes Big Format Gaming Displays even more interesting is the fact that Nvidia has equipped them with Shield TV as well. This means that not only will gamers experience low latency gaming with G-Synch HDR, they will also be able to access well known video streaming apps along with features such as Nvidia GameStream and Google Assistant.
The thought of having a 65-inch display optimised for low latency and ultra high quality gaming may no doubt tempt plenty of PC gamers. Unfortunately, prices of Big Format Gaming Displays were not mentioned by Nvidia, but we do expect them to be priced similarly (maybe even higher) to consumer-grade 65-inch TVs.
(Source: Nvidia)
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CES 2018: Intel Takes The Lid Off Its 8th Generation Processors With Radeon GPUs

Intel has launched what should be the first in its line of Core processors equipped with AMD made Radeon RX Vega M graphics. Interestingly, the Vega M will also include a dedicated 4GB of HBM2; connected what Intel is calling the Embedded Multi-Die Interconnect Bridge (EMIB) technology.
The EMIB is a slab of silicon that connects the CPU, GPU, and HBM2 into a single piece; reducing the amount of space the components would otherwise take up. According to Intel, this will allow OEMs to build high performance laptops that are only 17mm in thickness an can run for up to eight hours. The Vega M GPU is also said to be 40 percent more powerful than Intel’s previous integrated graphics effort.
Intel is releasing two lines of the 8th Gen Intel Core processor with Radeon RX Vega M processors. The GL line will see processor with a TDP of 65W, while the GH line will have a TDP of 100W. The GH processors will also have the unlocked versions for overclocking.

Thus far, Intel has five processors equipped with the Radeon RX Vega M GPU. These are the i7-8809G, i7-8709G, i7-8706G, i7-8705G, and i5-8305G. As the name implies, the Core i7-8809G is the highest end product, with a clock frequency of 3.1GHz (base) and 4.2GHz (boost). It’s also the only one of these processors that has the CPU, GPU, and HBM2 unlocked; possibly making it one of the only unlocked Intel processors without the -HK suffix.
For the most part, the Core i7-8709G, i7-8706G, and the i7-8705G share the same technical specifications. All three have clockspeeds of 3.1GHz (base) and 4.1GHz (boost). The main difference appears to be that the i7-8709G is from the GH line (albeit without being unlocked), while the other two are from the lower powered GL line.
At the budget end of the spectrum is the Core i5-8305G. It features a base clockspeed of 2.8GHz, and a maximum speed of 3.8GHz. Naturally, it’s from the 65W GL line of Intel processors.
All five of the Core Radeon processors have four cores with eight threads.

Intel is saying that there will be new products from HP and Dell featuring the new Core processors. Interestingly, the next premium grade NUC – formerly known as Hades Canyon – will feature the integrated Radeon graphics option.
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CES 2018: AMD Ryzen Desktop APUs To Be Available This February, Price Starts at USD 99

Just before CES 2018 officially opens it door, AMD has made several interesting announcements that to help the company continue the great momentum that it had in 2017. Among them is the unveiling of the new Ryzen Desktop APUs which were previously codenamed as Raven Ridge.
Also known as the Ryzen 2000G series APUs, these processors offer the power of AMD Zen CPU and Radeon Vega GPU in one single package. For starters, AMD will be releasing two different models, as listed below:
Ryzen 5 2400G: 3.6GHz Base / 3.9GHz Max Boost / 4 Cores / 8 Threads / 11 Computational Units for Graphics
Ryzen 5 2200G: 3.5GHz Base / 3.7GHz Max Boost / 4 Cores / 4 Threads / 8 Computational Units for Graphics
In terms of release dates, both AMD Ryzen 2000G series APUs with Radeon Vega Graphics will be making its official debut on 12 February. The Ryzen 3 2200G will be made available for USD 99 (about RM 396) which made it as the most affordable Ryzen processor to date. As for the higher-end Ryzen 5 2400G, it will be carrying a price tag of USD 169 (about RM 676).

We’ll be reaching out to AMD to obtain more information regarding Ryzen 2000G series release in Malaysia, so stay tuned.
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CES 2018: Intel’s Hades Canyon NUC Claims To Be The Smallest VR Capable Computer

Intel’s next generation NUC, formerly known as Hades Canyon, is set to be its most powerful mini-PC. The NUC8i7HVK and NUC8i7HNK will both feature Intel’s latest 8th generation Core processors with AMD developed Radeon RX Vega M graphics. An improvement that Intel claims will make them capable of running virtual reality applications.
Both NUCs share the same configuration, having space for user specified RAM and storage options. They also have dual Thunderbolt 3 ports on the rear, supported by a USB 3.1 port on the front, five USB 3.0 ports (four on the back and one on the front), two HDMI ports, and two mini-DisplayPorts.

The real draw here is the new processors, with the NUC8i7HVK sporting the Intel Core i7-8809G and the NUC8i7HNK fitted with the Core i7-8705G. The biggest difference between the two would be the power draw potential, with the former having a TDP of 100W and the latter drawing 65W.

It’s unclear if these processors really allow the NUCs to run virtual reality, but they should be good enough for just about anything else. If anything, the Thunderbolt 3 ports still allow for external GPUs to be connected.
As is usually the case, there is no release date for the new Hades Canyon NUCs as of yet.
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CES 2018: 2nd Gen AMD Ryzen Processors To Be Launched This April, Alongside X470 AM4 Chipset

AMD had quite a successful year in 2017 thanks to its Ryzen processors and the company is planning to continue the momentum by releasing the second-generation Ryzen processors later this year. Consumers can expect better performances from these new chips which will be manufactured using Zen+ microarchitecture and 12nm process as opposed to the original 14nm Zen products.
Also known as the Ryzen Desktop 2000 series processors, among the improvements include having lower power consumption while still able to deliver high frequencies. In fact, AMD stated that the new processors will indeed have higher clocks than their predecessors. At the same time, these processors will also feature some improvement to their cache and memory speed as well as latency.

AMD will also be introducing the new high-end X470 chipset alongside the new Ryzen Desktop 2000 series processors. Users can apparently expect lower power consumption and new features from the new 400-series AM4 motherboards although AMD didn’t explain about them in detail during its pre-CES media event.
That being said, the older 300-series AM4 motherboards is still compatible with the new Ryzen Desktop 2000 series processors and owners of such motherboards are able to obtain the support just by updating their BIOS. Nevertheless, there are still many details regarding the Ryzen Desktop 2000 series are still under wraps at the moment which will only be revealed once we get closer to their launch this coming April.
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Amazon Said To Be Bidding For English Premier League Broadcasting Rights

Amazon is said to be preparing a bid for the rights to stream English Premier League football matches. The company apparently sees sporting events as a way of drawing more viewers in to its Amazon Prime Video service, and give it more clout in competing with Netflix.
The online retailing giant is said to be aiming for one of the smaller EPL packages, which could see it stream around 20 games from the 2018/19 season. That said, the current auction (which ends in February) is for UK broadcasting rights. The Premier League tends to sell broadcasting rights for different regions separately to maximise profits.
That said, Amazon is not one of the traditional broadcasters like Sky or BT. Amazon Prime Video is available in quite a few countries at this point; including Malaysia. It’s unclear if the company will try to stream football matches globally, but that would certainly give it a leg up against the competition.

On the other hand, the original report from Bloomberg indicates that this move may be a US-centric plan. Football is rapidly gaining popularity in the United States, and it would work in Amazon’s favour to secure some sort of content.
There’s also a sort of football related competition brewing among streaming sites. Netflix is set to release a documentary about Juventus football club later this year, while Amazon has responded by entering into a deal with Manchester City to produce a similar programme.
[Source: Bloomberg]
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DJI Osmo Mobile 2 Promises Stabilised Videos At Only RM520

DJI has announced an updated version of its Osmo Mobile gimbal for smartphones. The new model makes it easier to record both in landscape and portrait and does it at a very attractive price.
The biggest difference between the Osmo Mobile 2 and its predecessor is the battery, is now non-removable. DJI promises that the new built-in battery can last up to 15 hours of continuous use, three times longer than the previous generation. DJI is also including a 1/4-inch tripod screw to the bottom of the gimbal, rather than the add-on accessory of before.
Fitting the smartphone is also easier with the spring-loaded mount that replaces the screws. The neck of the gimbal is also longer, giving way to a larger range of movement available via controls on the unit itself. It can go up to 170 degrees in both X and Y axis movement now. Speaking of the longer arm, it can now support smartphones in portrait mode for apps that only record/stream in that orientation.
DJI added a new hyper-lapse feature into the DJI Go mobile app as well as a zoom slider to simulate the use of a dolly zoom. This is on-top of current software features like ActiveTrack and time-lapse. The all nylon construction is robust, while the built-in USB port can even charge the smartphone, acting like a power back while filming.
The new DJI Osmo Mobile 2 will be available from February for US$129 (RM520), a far-cry from the original model’s price of RM1,376 at launch.
(Source: DPReview )
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CES 2018: Acer Refreshes Nitro 5 with AMD Ryzen Mobile, Provides 8th Gen Intel Core To Spin 3

Aside from introducing the 2018 Swift 7 ultra-thin laptop, Acer has also announced several refreshed models as part of its CES 2018’s line-up. One of them is the Nitro 5 which was first introduced at its media event in New York last year and is designed for casual gamers.
For 2018, Acer added new hardware option for it in the form of AMD Ryzen Mobile processors although the actual name of the chip was not mentioned in its press announcement. At the same time, the company has opted to add dedicated Radeon RX 560 graphics for the laptop which is rather interesting decision to say the least since Ryzen Mobile already have its own integrated Vega-based graphics.

Aside from its 15.6-inch full HD IPS display, the laptop also carries up to 32GB RAM and 512GB of solid state drive. While its basic design is still identical to last year’s model, the 2018 iteration of Nitro 5 does come with texturized top cover and keyboard area.
Meanwhile, Acer has also refreshed its Spin 3 convertible laptop which will soon comes with 8th Gen Intel Core processor. Carrying the SP314-51 as its official model name as well as a 14-inch full HD IPS display, the new processor helps the laptop deliver up to 12 hours of battery life. However, Acer didn’t reveal the full specifications for the newly refreshed model.

Price-wise, Nitro 5 will go for USD 799 (abou RM 3194) onwards while the Spin 3 has a slightly lower starting price of USD 599 (about RM 2395). These laptops will be released in North America sometime in April and March respectively but their availability status in Malaysia is not yet known at the moment.
(Source: Acer – 1, 2)
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VESA Introduces DisplayHDR; Open Grading Standard For HDR Monitors

The Video Electronics Standard Association (VESA) is making an attempt to create a unified grading system for High Dynamic Range technology. The idea is to provide consumers with a more accurate picture of what they are getting with each HDR display; instead of simply allowing manufacturers to slap the HDR label on every product.
DisplayHDR only covers LCD displays for now, leaving OLED screens out of the grading. It will grade future products according to three different grades of HDR performance.
For example, a DisplayHDR-400 certified monitor will need to playback HDR content on a panel that can at least hit peak brightness of 400 nits. It also needs to support 10bit encoding and 95% of sRGB coverage. With each rating, a higher standard must be adhered to receive the certification from VESA.
A big part for the new standard is the adherence to colour gamut coverage. Both the 600 and 1000 certification call for wide colour coverage to ensure the proper colour spectrum is represented on screen. At the same a high contrast output is also preferred before the certification can be given to the manufacturer.
Ideally, this will give use a better idea of what displays mean when they say HDR enabled. If anything, it’ll give OEMs something new to compete at, and perhaps make for a more informed consumer.
(Source: DPreview )
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