‘Mini-Mighty’ MSI Z97I Gaming AC Motherboard Review

Ever-increasing popularity of mini-ITX mainboards is accounted for the augmentation of small-sized PC systems, work- and multimedia stations, as well as gaming platforms. The latter lay down specific demands towards hardware base, requiring the combination of high performance, durability and price-efficiency. MSI is ready to satisfy those demands, by offering ‘mini, but mighty’ Z97I Gaming AC system board. Being a part of Intel Z97 chipset family, this tiny tot owns all ‘Gaming’ series facilities, despite compact dimensions. Let’s check them out.



Specs Overview


MSI Z97I Gaming AC is based on Intel Z97 chipset targeting Haswell-based CPUs for Socket LGA1150 platform (Celeron, Pentium, Core i3/i5/i7 series). The implemented PCB accommodates a pair of DIMM slots for DDR3 SDRAM modules (16 GB volume) with the clock frequencies from 1333 MHz to 3300 MHz. Expansion facilities are introduced by a single PCI-e 3.0 x16 slot with no backup from PCI slots. The board comes …

Crucial Teases New TLC-Based BX200 Solid-State Drive

Crucial has found a way to consolidate the needs of budget- and efficiency-oriented customer groups. Therefore, it developed a new series of SSDs, based on TLC memory. The BX200 2.5-inch drives (7 mm case depth) come equipped with 16-nm chips by Micron as well as Silicon Motion SM2256 controller. All the models share SATA III 6 Gb/sec interface and are compatible with Crucial Storage Executive & Acronis True Image HD utilities.



Crucial BX200 are available in three capacity versions: 240 GB, 480 GB and 960 GB. Their maximal sequential Read/Write speed makes up 540/490 Mb/sec, whereas the maximal random Read/Write index achieves 66.000 & 78.000 IOPS correspondingly. As far as one can see, there is no visible decrease in performance, if compared with MLC memory showings.


The new-comers are estimated for 72 TB of data lifespan; this equals to 40 GB of daily loading over a span of 5 years (MTBF – 1.500.000 hours). In order to provide for the utmost reliability, Crucial adds a …

SilverStone Heligon HE01 - a new super-cooler

The Taiwanese company introduced a bulky cooler SilverStone Heligon HE01, which is designed to cool down more or less all types of modern CPUs — from Intel LGA775 up to LGA2011 and from AMD AM2 to AMD AM3 + / FM2.



The construction does not weigh less than 1.1 kg, since in addition to two-part radiator (926 g) it is equipped with fan of 140x140x38 mm size. Linear dimensions of Heligon HE01 are 140 mm in width, 119 mm in length and 160 mm in height. Staples that hold the fan, take a few millimetres of space.


The thickness of a pair of «towers», joined by six nickel-plated copper heat pipes with a diameter of 6 mm, is uneven. The intense air flow passes successively through a thin array of aluminium fins, and then through the fan, afterwards through a larger section of the radiator. Copper base with nickel cover is protected with a film from scratches.


The manufacturer claims that Heligon HE01 will cope with the withdrawal of 300 watts of heating power.


Regular …
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Registered at: 05 April 2011, 13:22
Last visit: 05 April 2011, 13:22