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NVIDIA APEX PhysX: CPU vs GPU Efficiency
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Gamers might rely on NVIDIA's hardware for its superior graphical processing power and affordable price point, but it's their gaming technologies that have helped deliver complete market dominance. NVIDIA's "The Way It's Meant to be Played" is a trademarked slogan denoting a direct involvement in software development as much as they focus on hardware. When the Ageia PhysX software physics technology was purchased back in early 2008, that commitment sharpened NVIDIA growing double-edge sword. In this article, Benchmark Reviews will demonstrate how far PhysX technology has come using the recently-released Mafia II video game, which introduces NVIDIA APEX PhysX and GeForce 3D-Vision technology enhancements. While adding PhysX support to a video game is nothing new for NVIDIA, allowing APEX PhysX features to be computed by the computer's central processor is new territory. For this NVIDIA APEX PhysX: CPU vs GPU Efficiency demonstration, our tests compare GeForce and Radeon GPU's against the Intel Core i7 CPU.


Choosing the Best LCD Panel Technology
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It's a well-known fact that nearly all consumers purchase their monitor based on size and price alone. Like everything we shop for, it is human instinct to get as much as possible for as little as possible. So why should we bother ourselves with the details, and what difference could it possibly make? Most people aren't even aware of the different construction processes used to produce the widescreen monitor that rests on their desks. Benchmark Reviews explores the various LCD monitor technologies used by manufacturers to produce computer monitors, and matches application to architecture for our readers.


Intel Core-i3/i5/i7 LGA1156 Overclocking Guide
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Congratulations! If you're reading this article it means you are either trying to overclock your LGA 1156 platform for the first time or you have already overclocked it but might want to know more about how is it done and how can you "enhance" your setup to reach that sweet point. The LGA 1156 platform has been out for a while now, and it quickly got adopted by users as the main performance platform thanks to lower prices compared to the LGA1366 platform while keeping the same performance. Intel launched 4 cores/8 threads processors (Core i5 and Core i7) based on Lynnfield's architecture, and after that, we saw 2 cores/4 threads CPUs with Intel GMA HD graphics (Core i3 & Core i5) based on Clarkdale's technology. Thanks to a better and more efficient technology, along with the reduced manufacture's size, the entire LGA 1156 gamma is able to overclock in a very decent way within air-cooling conditions, and that's what we're analyzing today. Benchmark Reviews will teach you how to understand overclocking values while doing the process at the same time. After that, the Core i3, Core i5 and the powerful Core i7 processors will be deeply analyzed to check how MHz increase against heat, voltage and power consumption. Start your engines and have a look at our latest Intel LGA 1156 Overclocking Guide to setup your latest Core i3/i5/i7 CPU to the max!


Enthusiast Custom PC Build Q3-2010
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Performance is often attributed to expensive objects of desire. In the automobile space, it's generally accepted that a higher performing vehicle will incur a significant markup over the average fuel-efficient family offerings. Computing is much the same. Retail OEM machines are pre-built at predetermined price points, often targeting the humble office/Internet-centric user. Performance isn't a primary concern for these systems, nor are upgradability or customisation. On the other hand, you have the expensive 'gamer' orientated machines which cost several thousands of dollars! This is where Benchmark Reviews steps in. We've sat down and created three enthusiast machines without the dreaded price gauge of many pre-built setups - the 'Enthusiast PC Build' for Q3 2010!


Installed Memory vs RAM Usable by Windows
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Most PC users are familiar with the 4GB system memory limitation of 32-bit Windows Operating Systems, which is why 64-bit computing has become the standard for computer enthusiasts. Occasionally though, a computer system will not report the correct amount of RAM installed. In this article, our 64-bit Windows 7 test system had 6.00 GB of installed memory but indicates only 4.00 GB usable RAM available. While some may dismiss this as a case of defective RAM, you might be surprised by the culprit. Benchmark Reviews troubleshoots Installed Memory vs RAM Usable by Windows.


SSD Benchmark Tests: SATA IDE vs AHCI Mode
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In a recent Benchmark Reviews technical article, SSD performance was tested in AHCI and IDE mode using only the HD-Tune software to produce results. It wasn't intentional, but our test results were flawed by this single-threaded benchmark tool, and our conclusion did not properly illustrate IOPS performance. In this article, Benchmark Reviews tests the latest JMicron, Indilinx, and SandForce SSDs using a combination of tools to illustrate the true difference between SATA IDE and AHCI-mode, and demonstrates how one SATA mode is better suited than the other.


Benchmark Performance SSD Testing: AHCI vs IDE
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Solid State Drive technology is unfamiliar to many consumers, and so long as there are different ways an SSD can operate there always be questions that need answering. Benchmark Reviews offers various SSD tests, but proving performance speeds and matching manufacturer claims is only part of the story. Each SSD processor has unique behaviors, with some working well with TRIM and offering improved performance in AHCI mode, while others include Garbage Collection (GC) and work best in IDE mode. In this article Benchmark Reviews demonstrates how SSDs are tested by the manufacturer, and illustrates how real-world performance is different for end-users.


Windows 7 System Image Disc Recovery
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Very recently Benchmark Reviews published the Microsoft Windows 7 Upgrade and Installation guide, which helps erase the mistakes made by Windows Vista and introduces computer enthusiasts to the newly introduced O/S. Microsoft has enjoyed a successful launch for their Windows 7 Operating System, also referred to at Win7 or W7, and PCs have been made more productive and secure as a result. But like all good things that we receive, it's in our nature to protect and keep them. The best way to accomplish this is with a solid backup, and luckily Windows 7 offers a built-in Backup and Restore tool for creating System Images. By creating a backup file users can preserve their data, but with a System Image recovering the source disk can be helpful when replacing the drive with another. In this article, Benchmark Reviews guides users on the best practices for protecting and Recovering Windows 7 with System Image Restore Disks.


Adobe Flash HD-Video GPU Acceleration Guide
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Let's think the first words coming to our minds when reading: Adobe Flash Player. Youtube, Hulu, vimeo, HD videos might be some of them. If you don´t understand or relate this words you probably live under a rock or have been out of the game, and by game I mean technology world, for a long time. In our AVIVO Purevideo DXVA HD Acceleration Guide we show you how to use your GPU to playback and enhance many kinds of video formats, normally used on DVDs and Blu-Rays, but not limited to them. The benefit is clear. As long as you can use your graphics card to playback your videos instead of using the CPU, you are doing things easier for your machine, thus consuming less energy and freeing your CPU to do other stuff at the same time.

This was the original idea of the DXVA technology. But what happens to the rest of the content we normally watch at the web? Flash is one of the biggest and more used formats today. Youtube being ranked 4th (by traffic stats) is knocking hard at our doors asking for some attention. Some other sites like Hulu (USA) or vimeo have enormous quantities of traffic also, and it wouldn´t be a problem if they weren´t constantly evolving and offering better quality services. For example, Youtube just went up to 1080p support the last month. But I fear 1080p isn´t an easy task for a mid-low CPU, it is? The answer to all this is very simple: DXVA for Adobe Flash Player, and that's what we are testing today in our Adobe Flash GPU Acceleration Guide at Benchmark Reviews.


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