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AMD: Next-gen Threadripper is coming, next-gen CrossFire probably isn't

Mon, 2019-08-19 19:20

If you’re a fan of AMD’s Threadripper, don’t worry: More details are coming “soon” on the next-generation Threadripper chip, AMD chief executive Lisa Su said Monday.

Su, speaking at the Hot Chips conference at Stanford University, was pressed to provide more context on when a next-gen Threadripper would ship. In a series of questions by Anandtech’s Ian Cutress on when new information would be provided, Su’s responses ranged from “soon” to “less than a year,” finally settling on a commitment to provide more information in 2019. 

Su’s comments followed Threadripper’s conspicuous absence from Su’s Computex keynote in Taiwan, then statements that Threadripper wasn’t being ignored. However, it remains unclear what AMD will announce, or when.

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The 18 biggest game reveals from Gamescom's first-ever keynote—including Kerbal Space Program 2

Mon, 2019-08-19 16:06

With E3 in what appears to be a slow death spiral, there’s a push to make Gamescom the new tentpole summer event. Whether that will happen? I’m pretty skeptical—but it does mean a new showcase for trailers, closing out the slow summer months with a bang.

For 2019, Geoff Keighley hosted the first Gamescom Opening Night, a sort of companion show to his annual Game Awards in December. They even managed to sandwich the trailers between awkward award presentations, if you can believe it.

Gears 5

At E3 2019, Microsoft chose to focus on Gears 5’s multiplayer modes—and just multiplayer. It was a bit of a weird choice, but Gamescom finally gave us a Nine Inch Nails-backed look at the campaign, our first in a while. 

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Cerebras Systems' new deep-learning chip is as big as your keyboard, and the largest ever

Mon, 2019-08-19 15:20

If you’ve become accustomed to thinking of CPUs and GPUs that can fit in the palm of your hand, think again—Cerebras Systems says that it’s designed the largest chip ever, one that’s as large as your computer’s keyboard

Cerebras is scheduled to unveil this whopper of a chip tonight at the Hot Chips conference at Stanford University. While the largest GPU includes 21.1 billion transistors, and requires 815 square millimeters of die space, the Cerebras Systems chip includes 1.2 trillion transistors, and requires 46,225 square millimeters of silicon. That’s 71.64 square inches, or a rectangular chip that would measure about 8 inches by 9 inches. It’s so large that Cerebras published photos comparing it to a PC keyboard!

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Google shows off Stadia streaming games: Cyberpunk 2077, Mortal Kombat 11, and more

Mon, 2019-08-19 14:08

Give Google some credit, I guess: Whether or not you believe in Stadia, its upcoming video game streaming platform, we sure will know a lot about it when it finally arrives. Today Google hosted its third major Stadia event in six months, detailing more games coming to the service in the ambiguous “release window,” exclusive and otherwise.

We now know that window stretches to at least April 2020, as Google led off with CD Projekt’s Cyberpunk 2077. It’s a pretty good get, as not only is Cyberpunk one of 2020’s most anticipated games, it’s also bound to be one of the most technologically demanding. The promise of being able to play on Stadia, getting maxed-out 4K visuals without investing in a high-end graphics card of your own? That’s pretty damn neat—if it works.

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Best NAS drive for media streaming and backup

Mon, 2019-08-19 12:05
If you rip and library your own media, there's no better tool for storing and streaming it than a NAS box. These versatile storage devices also serve as the perfect personal, secure cloud for backing up your PCs and other devices.

Nvidia's GeForce Now adds real-time ray tracing and Android support as cloud gaming heats up

Mon, 2019-08-19 12:00

Long before Microsoft teased Project xCloud or Google revealed Stadia, Nvidia launched GeForce Now, its surprisingly playable solution for on-demand gaming from the cloud. The service has been in beta since early 2017, and Nvidia’s finally preparing for its full release with a pair of new announcements at Gamescom 2019 in Cologne, Germany: real-time ray tracing is coming to GeForce Now, and GeForce Now is coming to Android phones.

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Leaked images reportedly show off the Sonos Move, the company's first portable smart speaker

Mon, 2019-08-19 11:29
Ahead of a press event on Monday, August 28, images of the Sonos Move have leaked, showing off the company's new portable speaker.

Ask a PC expert: Why are there so many PC hardware launch supply problems?

Mon, 2019-08-19 11:00

These days, flagship PC hardware tends to sell out mere hours after launching. We saw it with Nvidia’s GeForce RTX 2080 Ti. We saw it with Intel’s Core i9-9900K. We saw it with AMD’s Ryzen 7 3900X. Why do the biggest companies in computing struggle to keep their most powerful parts in stock?

Empty-handed enthusiasts often complain that it’s a manufactured PR ploy, but the truth is more nuanced, as PCWorld CPU guru Gordon Mah Ung explains in the video below. Making badass, bleeding-edge hardware is complicated!

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Real-time ray tracing is coming to Minecraft on Windows 10, and it looks stunning

Mon, 2019-08-19 10:14

A mere week after Mojang killed Minecraft’s long-promised Super Duper Graphics Pack, the company announced another massive visual upgrade for the world’s best-selling PC game: Real-time ray tracing is coming to the Windows 10 Edition of Minecraft.

Mojang is partnering with Nvidia to add full-blown path tracing to Minecraft. While most of the RTX-compatible modern games released thus far only enable one or two real-time ray tracing effects—such as global illumination or real-time reflections—fully path-traced games use ray tracing for all lighting effects. It’s very computationally intensive, which is probably why it’s only been enabled in a pair of old-school games so far: Quake II RTX and soon Minecraft.

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Spotify family plans slated to get parental controls, including an explicit lyrics filter

Mon, 2019-08-19 09:36
Users of Spotify’s family plan will finally be getting some parental controls later this year, including a long-awaited filter for songs with explicit lyrics.

PCIe 4.0: Everything you need to know, from specs to compatibility to caveats

Mon, 2019-08-19 09:07

It’s finally here. AMD gets to hoist the trophy in the race to the next-generation PCIe 4.0 interface for desktop PCs. By combining its superb Ryzen 3000 CPUs, the powerful Radeon RX 5700 graphics cards, the X570 motherboard chipset, and a new spate of PCIe 4.0 SSDs, consumers can now build or buy the first PCIe 4.0-based PCs.

PCIe 4.0 sounds exciting—it’s the first big change to the interface since 2010. But as always, the questions of who can get it (and who can’t), and who really needs it, are more nuanced than you’d think. Keep reading to get the all the details. 

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iMessage is never coming to Android, so please stop asking

Mon, 2019-08-19 07:00
iMessage for Android might be on the wishlist of tech journalists and pundits, but it wouldn’t make much sense for Apple.

QNAP HS-453DX NAS box review: The most powerful multimedia NAS box that money can buy

Mon, 2019-08-19 06:00
The QNAP HS-453DX is the most capable multimedia NAS box on the planet. But it's very pricey and just how useful its direct audio/video output will be depends on your setup. But it's not dead easy to use.

Samsung Galaxy A50 review: A $350 phone that gives Galaxy a whole new meaning

Mon, 2019-08-19 06:00

In no uncertain terms, there’s nothing about the $350 Galaxy A50 that’s only half as good as the $750 S10e. Quite frankly, there’s nothing about it that’s only 40 percent as good as the $900 S10, either. I know that’s not technically how pricing works, but when you have two phones from the same company that are priced so far apart, it’s only natural to compare them.

Unlike the Google Pixel 3a, which basically copied the Pixel 3 note for note with subtle downgrades to bring down the price, there are some major differences between the mid-range A50 and the premium Galaxy S10+. But the main similarities—a giant OLED display, triple-camera array, in-screen fingerprint sensor, and a selfie cutout—give the phones a remarkable kinship. They even have the same pretty, prism-inspired color options and IP68 water resistance.

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