Greeting an Affordable Z170A-X1/3.1 Mainboard from ASRock

ASRock is known for developing high-quality hardware components for a relatively affordable price. Thence, its latest Z170A-X1/3.1 ATX mainboard is not an exception, since its price tag does not go beyond $100. In order to cheapen the prime cost, the manufacturer backed away SATA Express & M.2 connectors, limiting the PCB by six SATA III 6 Gb/sec ports.

To add, instead of a modern 8-channel audio controller it incorporated a well-known Realtek ALC892 item. The other boons of modernity remained unchanged. Thus, ASRock took Intel Z170 top chipset as the basis for the motherboard. The chipset is targeting the latest Intel Skylake CPUs for Socket LGA1151. The PCB accommodates 4 DIMM slots for dual-channel DDR4-3466 MHz RAM (up to 64 GB max. capacity).

Graphics facilities are ensured thanks to a pair of PCI Express 3.0 x16 slots, although there are three more PCI Express 3.0 x1 slots for the connection of other items. Network options are entrusted to gigabit Intel I219V LAN …

Scythe Showcases a New Affordable Kotetsu Cooler

Scythe has recently showcased its newest CPU cooling system with an expressive codename Kotetsu. Relying much on the demands of average customers, the product offers an optimal correlation of efficiency and price. The Kotetsu is an ordinary tower-like product with a perfect cooling potential. However, its key advantage is the employment of Hyper Precision Mounting System, which ensures fast and trouble-free installation.

First and the foremost, Scythe Kotetsu is ready to work with all current CPU platforms, including Intel Socket LGA1150 and AMD Socket FM2+. Heat dissipation efficiency is realized thanks to a large number of aluminum fins, incorporated into the heatsink, as well as four heat-pipes of 6 mm each. The heatsink features an extraordinary shape that ameliorates the airflow between the fins. Therein, contact base is entirely made of copper.

Second of all, this cooler is initially equipped with one 120 mm fan, entitled Scythe Glide Stream. Due to PWM support, it …

Spire Launches Ridge 6601 and Ridge 6602 PC Chassis

Spire has officially launched a new line of budgetary PC chassis, codenamed Spire Ridge. At the moment, there are only two models within the series – the Ridge 6601 and the Ridge 6602. Both are characterized by the support for ATX motherboards and have many other identical specifications: i.e. mid-tower form-factor, 192x415x418 mm dimensions. Still, there are some differentiations as well.

The first distinction between the two models lies in the frontal panel design. Therefore, Ridge 6601 features a laconic panel made of plastic without additional ventilation. In its turn, Ridge 6602 features a half-perforated metallic frontal panel that allows for a more intense cooling of internal components.

The couple boasts identical expansion facilities with two 5.25-inch buckets for optical drives, four 3.5-inch buckets for HDD/SSD, and seven expansion slots. Connectivity options are introduced by a set of frontal interfaces, including two audio slots, one USB 2.0, and one USB …
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