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Some crazy shit about new-age-techno-whatsits and epeen 
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Post Re: Some crazy shit about new-age-techno-whatsits and epeen
I bought a new sound card.. the HT Omega Claro Halo ($200). In my last 2 builds, I had been using the built in sound, which worked okay. However, the digital out on the vast majority of on-board Real-Tek sound chips (I think all of them) will not encode Dolby Digital Live, or DTS Interactive. Therefore, you wouldn't get 5.1 sound out of your speakers unless you used the analog output. I've been wanting to use the optical cable for improved sound and better cable management.

I'm still using the Logitech Z906 with the Klipsch Pro-media sats, and the sound improvement is drastic. The sound in BF3 is just amazing now. It's crisp and clear and hits hard as fuck. The Claro also has a built-in headphone amp with 4 op amps for high impedance headphones. It sounds great with my Astro headphones. The only negative is that you don't get the benefit of the amps when using the front panel headphone jack, so I have it plugged in to the rear, which is really no big deal since the cable length is long enough. I use the Claro control panel to turn on head phone mode and turn off the speakers. The volume goes up to 11, with a clear tone, so you can go deaf if you want. It has a lot of the typical reverb effects that nobody uses, and a nice 10 band EQ. I have the headphones tuned a bit different than the speakers.

One negative is that the control panel is very different (updated) from the one in the manual. It took me a while to figure out which DSP's to turn on and such. I'm using DTS interactive for the speakers and Dolby for the headphones so it gets the virtual surround.. which sound quite good. The positioning is excellent. Another negative is that when you switch from speaker to headphone, it doesn't remember that you had the dolby headphone DSP engaged so you have to click it on each time. The control panel is very tight and there's no bloat-ware at all. Creative Labs used to pack a ton of useless stuff with their sound cards, and I appreciate the minimalist approach for the Claro. After getting used to the functions, I mostly like it. One frustrating thing is that you can save user pre-sets for the EQ, but you can't edit that preset to tweak it once it's saved. You can only create a new one and delete the old one. You can't even start off with the old one and modify it and save with a new name. It's a really bad UI for saving EQ sets. I'm pretty sure I have both headphone and speaker EQs dialed in so it shouldn't be an issue.. but still.. very bad design on that.

One other problem I'm having is that when I switch from headphone to speakers and back, it sends a pop noise through the speakers. Looking at the panel of my Z906, it looks like whenever it turns on the decoder in the amp, it pops. The popping noise is affected by the volume so I have to make sure to turn down the volume. It doesn't pop when I mute in windows, leading me to believe the pop is coming from the sound card. HT Omega has a support email but not forums, so I'm going to email and see what the deal is. If it isn't fixable, I can live with it.

Another thing I don't like is a paramter called "system input". The help says to use 2 channel for stereo input like for music, 6 channel for DVDs and 8 channel for games. I think it sounds better using 8 channel for everything. It also comes with EAX 2.0, but I'm not sure that's even used anymore. I don't think developers code for Creative Labs cards specifically anymore.

Installing the card was not simple. I have 2 video cards which both take up a double slot, so there is only one exposed PCI slot in my machine, and it's right between the two video cards. I was able to get it to fit, but there are some tall capacitors that are literally pressed up against the case on the lower video card. I don't think it'll be a problem, but certainly will if I ever go back to SLI and the video cards are even a few millimeters wider. The sound card blocks about half the fan exhaust of the top card, with only a few millimeters of space in between them. Looking at temps, it doesn't seem to be having an impact, but if the exhaust were closer to the back of the case, I'm sure it would have.

I have one of the small PCIe slots at the very top above the top video card, and while it would still have been tight, a PCIe card would have been a better format than the PCI. Still, it works and that's all that matters.

I really did not want to get a CL card again. I really disliked their business practices of not making drivers for VistA and Windows 7 for their older cards, thinking they could force you into buying a new sound card from them even if you didn't need one. Fuck them.

The only other card I was considering was the top line card from Asus. I don't think that would have been a whole lot different from a sound point of view. They're similar. I chose the Claro because they're an American company and all the reviews on New Egg were stellar. The price was about the same.

All things considered, I'll give the card an 8/10 - with points taken off for mistakes in the control panel and that popping sound, but that only happens when switching headphone to speakers and vice versa. If I grade it on sound quality alone, it's 10/10. I didn't think there could be a massive improvement over the Real-Tek sound, but there is. Of course, a high end sound card needs a sound system to compliment it. I'm really happy with my Logitech - Klipsch hybrid. The sub is super smooth now, but reacts quickly. There's no sloppiness to the sound, and no buzzing or anything. The Klipsch sats are still great after all these years I've had them.

Playing BF3 with high volume, I was expecting rattles and frequency drop outs due to the really violent and sudden bursts of sound, but the sound card and speakers handle it easy. Music really fills the room and has that same punch and vibrancy. I threw on some NIN just to hear the dynamics and it sounded great.

So if you're in the market to dump the on-board sound and you have a mid to high end 5.1 system, the Claro Halo is super awesome.

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Thu Oct 06, 2011 9:40 pm
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Post Re: Some crazy shit about new-age-techno-whatsits and epeen
So I cracked the shits with logitech's shitty software crashing all the time, and their annoying bullshit survey every time I install an update so I picked up one of these.

http://au.razerzone.com/gaming-keyboard ... -ultimate/

This things a beast, I could probably beat someone to death with it. Still getting used to the change to the mechanical switches from the G19 however it feels pretty good to use. It's a little short on features (back light can't be changed for instance) but it certainly makes up for it in build quality.

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Good news is, the lab boys say the symptoms of asbestos poisoning show a median latency of forty-four point six years, so if you're thirty or older, you're laughing. Worst case scenario, you miss out on a few rounds of canasta, plus you forwarded the cause of science by three centuries. I punch those numbers into my calculator and it makes a happy face.


Tue Oct 18, 2011 4:02 am
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Post Re: Some crazy shit about new-age-techno-whatsits and epeen
lol @$199 AUD.

You can get a model M for less than that. Aside from the price though, seems reasonable.

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Sun Oct 30, 2011 12:46 am
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Post Re: Some crazy shit about new-age-techno-whatsits and epeen
Darvon wrote:
lol @$199 AUD.

You can get a model M for less than that. Aside from the price though, seems reasonable.


Yeah I didn't pay $199, got it for $50 less than that.

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Cave Johnson wrote:
Good news is, the lab boys say the symptoms of asbestos poisoning show a median latency of forty-four point six years, so if you're thirty or older, you're laughing. Worst case scenario, you miss out on a few rounds of canasta, plus you forwarded the cause of science by three centuries. I punch those numbers into my calculator and it makes a happy face.


Sun Oct 30, 2011 12:55 am
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Post Re: Some crazy shit about new-age-techno-whatsits and epeen
http://www.tgdaily.com/games-and-entertainment-features/59478-report-cds-are-officially-over

And thus begins the task of trying to find a source for uncompressed audio sources...

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Cave Johnson wrote:
Good news is, the lab boys say the symptoms of asbestos poisoning show a median latency of forty-four point six years, so if you're thirty or older, you're laughing. Worst case scenario, you miss out on a few rounds of canasta, plus you forwarded the cause of science by three centuries. I punch those numbers into my calculator and it makes a happy face.


Mon Nov 07, 2011 3:45 am
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Post Re: Some crazy shit about new-age-techno-whatsits and epeen
Thing is, while flac's are clearly better than MP3's, even if you have a few terabytes of storage space, one album can take 400+ meg of space. The recent Steven Wilson album, with 5.1 flac, is 3 gig on it's own. You can't keep that up for long. I'm going to get new albums in flac, but unless they're my very favorite I'm going to LAME them to high quality MP3 after I get bored with them.

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Darvon wrote:
Eagles could fly backwards using the jet propulsion of their freedom tears.


Mon Nov 07, 2011 7:52 am
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Post Re: Some crazy shit about new-age-techno-whatsits and epeen
AMD is laying off people in their desktop GPU division. Some speculate this is the end of high end AMD GPUs.

http://www.anandtech.com/show/5055/some ... f-amd-gpus

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Eagles could fly backwards using the jet propulsion of their freedom tears.


Wed Nov 09, 2011 6:35 pm
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Post Re: Some crazy shit about new-age-techno-whatsits and epeen
I would suspect it would have more to do with low end GPU production, since the general reason for those products existence has been more or less replaced by the Fusion APU lineup.

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Cave Johnson wrote:
Good news is, the lab boys say the symptoms of asbestos poisoning show a median latency of forty-four point six years, so if you're thirty or older, you're laughing. Worst case scenario, you miss out on a few rounds of canasta, plus you forwarded the cause of science by three centuries. I punch those numbers into my calculator and it makes a happy face.


Wed Nov 09, 2011 8:08 pm
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Post Re: Some crazy shit about new-age-techno-whatsits and epeen
Reading the anandtech article, the most important guy that got laid off was the Director of Product Planning for AMD's GPU division. Most are speculating that AMD is giving up on the high end to focus on the low end and mobile stuff. I guess it just remains to be seen.

Of course, it's not good news if too. Leaving only Nvidia in the high end GPU market would be very bad.

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Eagles could fly backwards using the jet propulsion of their freedom tears.


Wed Nov 09, 2011 8:56 pm
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Post Re: Some crazy shit about new-age-techno-whatsits and epeen
Sooo found a nice deal for on ripjaws memory.

http://dealspl.us/Computer-Components_d ... ddr3-sdram

I am also considering getting a new video card, but as I know next to nothing about hardware I would appreciate some advice.

I know toms hardware has many articles I will be looking over later today, so if someone knows a specific card under ~$350 or a site that compares cards out on the market let me know.


Tue Dec 06, 2011 9:31 am
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Post Re: Some crazy shit about new-age-techno-whatsits and epeen
http://www.news.com.au/technology/quant ... 6219612143

That's a pretty amazing concept right there.

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Sun Dec 11, 2011 9:40 pm
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Post Re: Some crazy shit about new-age-techno-whatsits and epeen
So the news making the tech rounds today is a Russian web site that identifies IP addresses with the content of torrent downloads.

http://www.youhavedownloaded.com/

It says it has no records on me, which is cool and all, but I guess I really should start using a VPN. While it's been pointed out that most of us get dynamic IPs, they have other ways to identify who has that IP for the download.

Anybody knows of a free way to VPN a torrent? Most are only like $10 a month, or something like that, which isn't a big deal, but I really don't torrent much. I think the only thing I've done in the last couple of months is get S3 of SoA because I got tired of waiting for Netflix to send it to me, and a few MP3s. It would kind of suck to sign up with a VPN and only use it once every few months.

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Darvon wrote:
Eagles could fly backwards using the jet propulsion of their freedom tears.


Wed Dec 14, 2011 2:05 pm
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Post Re: Some crazy shit about new-age-techno-whatsits and epeen
Quote:
Hi. We have no records on you.
This means you are using a private torrent tracker


2011

Using public trackers

:lol:

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Sat Dec 17, 2011 10:44 pm
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Post Re: Some crazy shit about new-age-techno-whatsits and epeen
So downloaded the public preview build of Windows 8 today. Made USB installer of it and fired it, it immediately bricked the hard drive I installed it to after it's first reboot during the install process... good thing it wasn't one of my normal drives I use in that machine.

Best guess is the installer was still using the drive when it powered off during the reboot which fried something. The drive no longer detects properly and stops that machine from completing the SATA drive detection just after POST.

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Cave Johnson wrote:
Good news is, the lab boys say the symptoms of asbestos poisoning show a median latency of forty-four point six years, so if you're thirty or older, you're laughing. Worst case scenario, you miss out on a few rounds of canasta, plus you forwarded the cause of science by three centuries. I punch those numbers into my calculator and it makes a happy face.


Fri Mar 02, 2012 2:15 am
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Post Re: Some crazy shit about new-age-techno-whatsits and epeen
I've only installed Windows 8 on the Acer Iconia tablets we have at work as I wanted to test out the touch features on it. So far so good on mine. IE 10 is very snappy and nice to navigate with the touchscreen. Liking Metro so far although it takes a little getting used to. But I hope they give the option of enabling or disabling Metro when the full release comes out, don't see it working that well on desktops. Desktop is also a bit trickier with touch but do-able.

Overall I like it but not sure how big of a upgrade it is from 7 really apart from the app side of things. I can definately see us getting more tablets at work to get some of the benefits out of it but as for our laptops/workstations, it'll probably be a while before they get upgraded.

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Sun Mar 04, 2012 12:46 am
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