Com­pu­tex 2017

Richard Swin­burne rounds up his high­lights from this year’s Com­pu­tex tech show in Tai­wan

Custom PC - - CONTENTS -

Richard Swin­burne re­veals his high­lights from the tech trade show in Tai­wan.

In­tel X299 and Core i9

In­tel an­nounced its new Core i9 range of LGA-2066 socket CPUs at Com­pu­tex, in­clud­ing the mas­sive 18-core Core i9-7980XE, along with vari­ants sport­ing ten, 12, 14 and 16 cores. In case you were won­der­ing, Socket LGA2066 is com­pat­i­ble with all LGA2011-era cool­ers, although your cooler will need enough head­room for the chips’ higher ther­mal de­sign power (TDP). Sev­eral sup­port­ing X299 moth­er­boards were on show too, fea­tur­ing all flavours of RGB bling. Asus launched a bevy of boards, in­clud­ing Prime (X299-A and Deluxe), Rampage VI (Apex and Ex­treme), Strix -E and TUF Mark 1 and 2, while Gi­ga­byte an­nounced an X299 Gam­ing range. MSI also showed its X299 Gam­ing Pro with a car­bon fi­bre ef­fect, and I found the only public show­ing of the Gi­ga­byte X299 SOC Cham­pion and ASRock X299 OC For­mula on the G.Skill booth too! Both these boards, and the Asus Prime X299 Deluxe, were paired with 64GB of 4GHz+ DDR4 Tri­dent-Z RGB mem­ory. Sur­pris­ingly, Biostar pro­duced the most strik­ing X299 board de­sign, with a motherboard that’s wider than it’s taller – its EATX(++) GT9 Rac­ing is mas­sive!

Asus ROG Ze­phyrus lap­top

At the Asus ROG press event, Nvidia CEO Jen-Hsun Huang was in­vited to co-launch the com­pany’s Ze­phyrus gam­ing lap­top. This 15mm ul­tra-slim lap­top packs a full GTX 1080 GPU, and Asus still claims it has cool tem­per­a­tures and sub-40dB noise. In­stead of re-writ­ing the rules of ther­mo­dy­nam­ics, the rear bot­tom edge of the chassis lifts and opens to give the lap­top more breath­ing room, With the key­board shifted for­wards as well, there’s enough cool­ing to keep it slim and fast.

Ex­pect it to cost a pretty penny though.

New GTX 1080 Ti cards

Two new GTX 1080 Ti cards that caught my eye were the Gi­ga­byte Aorus GTX 1080 Ti Xtreme Edi­tion 11G, which had a triple-fan cooler on a four-slot card! Sim­i­larly, MSI showed off its

Get wood with In Win

In ad­di­tion to In Win’s bizarre WinBot spher­i­cal case, which de­tects faces and of­fers voice con­trol, its new 806 and Gam­ing Cube A1 con­cept chassis in­tro­duce wood into main­stream PC chassis de­sign for the first time. The 806 de­sign is much re­fined from the older 805, with quick-re­move side pan­els, ad­di­tional cool­ing fans in the roof area and mag­netic fan fil­ters; the bent wood also cre­ates a big­ger gap for air­flow than be­fore. GTX 1080 Ti Light­ning Z –a triple-slot, triple 8-pin socket mon­ster, but with a good­look­ing de­sign and RGB light­ing. Next up is the Galax GTX 1080 Ti HOF OC Lab Edi­tion (these names are get­ting ridicu­lous), with a beau­ti­ful white PCB and largely see-through Bit­spower wa­terblock on top – a very tasty de­sign! Fi­nally, EVGA launched its King­pinedi­tion card, with cop­per cool­ing fins and an im­pres­sive guar­an­teed over­clock of 2GHz+.

Noc­tua spends 4.5 years de­vel­op­ing fan

No joke – 4.5 years! With over 200 pro­to­types and new ma­te­rial anal­y­sis, it rep­re­sents some se­ri­ous R&D com­mit­ment. The re­sults are, in­deed, im­pres­sive. Noc­tua’s up­com­ing A-se­ries fan has a 0.5mm gap be­tween the fan edge and hous­ing, which re­quires the strictest man­u­fac­tur­ing tol­er­ances. It uses mil­i­tary grade (bul­let­proof vest/com­bat hel­met) Novel Ster­rox Liq­uid Crys­tal Poly­mer (LCP) on the blades, and has a su­per strong steel-brass im­peller de­sign, so it can re­sist vi­bra­tions, even af­ter years of use. The re­sult is a fan that’s good for ra­di­a­tors, heatsinks or chassis mounts, and Noc­tua says one of its new fans has the same cool­ing power as of its cur­rent fans. At $30 USD (around £23) a pop, though, they won’t be cheap.

Lian Li Al­pha 330

two Lian Li showed off its Al­pha 330 steel chassis, which is highly mod­u­lar. The front and top and be swapped around de­pend­ing on your cool­ing needs, and it makes ex­ten­sive use of tem­pered glass too.

MSI gam­ing stor­age card

MSI has in­vented an 8x PCI-E card that can house two M.2 PCI-E cards in RAID 0, plus a 2.5in SATA drive. The card also has sev­eral su­per-ca­pac­i­tors that pro­tect data in case of power loss, and a blower fan to keep drives cool un­der the cas­ing.

Cooler Mas­ter soups up Cos­mos

Cooler Mas­ter’s new Cos­mos C700P de­sign uses meaty metal rails, and has an im­pres­sive curved full-win­dow side panel. We’re told that the in­ter­nal lay­out is still a work in progress, but the theme seems to be ‘cover every­thing that isn’t the motherboard’. Ex­pect a co­pi­ous use of RGB light­ing and a pre­mium price too. Cooler Mas­ter’s MasterBox Q300T also caught our eye – it’s an on-edge cube with ex­trud­ing edges with an in­ter­est­ing shape, although it doesn’t look par­tic­u­larly prac­ti­cal.

En­er­max Steel­wing and SFX PSU

En­er­max’s new Steel­wing mini-ITX chassis has an in­ter­est­ing slat­ted front de­sign and big glass sides, and En­er­max has paired it with its new, high-pow­ered mod­u­lar SFX PSU. We’re not sure about the PSU’s place­ment over the motherboard, though, and while the case uses high-qual­ity ma­te­ri­als, it still looks pretty big for a mini-ITX chassis.

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