Away from storage Cooler Master had a couple of interesting additions to its range to show off, not least the new HAF X, the super sized sister of the popular HAF 932
and HAF 922
. This new monster chassis sports 2x240mm fans, 2 x 200mm fans and 1x120mm fan straight out of the box to offer some serious airflow for your hardware although the styling is more aggressive and military than sleek and stylish – a trend that seems to be common across the new cases on show at CEBIT this year.
Extra features like two front mounted hotswap hard disk bays, a covered front panel and controllable fan lighting add to the mix, and the expected price tag of around £150 isn’t outrageous for such a super sized case either – remember the similarly sized ATCS 840 debuted at well over £200.
Cooler Master also had a few new high end coolers for us, and alongside a follow up to the V8 we were particularly interested in project HB6, a new seven copper heatpipe based tower cooler Cooler Master hopes can overhaul the Titan Fenrir
as cooling performance champion. The idea here is to maximise the thermal transfer surface area between heatpipes and cooling fins, with a moulded, hand-soldered base for optimum heat transfer. Cooler Master were very positive regarding pricing and expect the HB6 (hopefully it’ll get a snappier price before launch) to hit at around £35.
Click to enlarge - The HAF X and "HB6" from Cooler Master both look promising.
There were plenty of PSUs manufacturers on show at CeBIT this year, with new EU legistlation coming into effect that limits the amount of power electronics can draw at standby to just one watt. While this means that many of the rubbish OEM PSUs that have so long plagued e-tailers will now disappear and it also means that PSU manufacturers have a new target to aim for along with the 80+ Gold label.
As you'd expect, 80+ Gold was everywhere at CeBIT, with every major PSU manufacturer offering 80+ Gold rated high end models, but Enermax’s Modu 87+ and Pro 87+ were a little different, delivering 80+ Gold efficiency (over 90% under most circumstances) at more realistic wattages: starting as low as 500W – rare for such a high efficiency PSU. The golden fan might be a bit too bling-bling for some though but at least it's not backlit.
Click to enlarge - Enermax's 87+ range offers high efficiency at lower wattages, while the ACRyan PlayOn!DVR looks promising
Dedicated HD media players have grown in popularity massively in the last few months and while the like of the Asus OPlay, WDTV
were all in attendance it was ACRyan’s latest offering that caught our eye. Including the same file support as the smaller PlayOn! HD
, the new PlayOn! HD DVR adds twin digital tuners supporting Freeview HD as well as a more powerful Realtek chipset capable of a lot more than just playing 1080p media – we can’t go into details yet, but if ACRyan can deliver on some of the streaming services mentioned to us, this could become an extremely popular bit of kit.
The PlayOn! HD DVR also offers a drastically different interface from past Realtek chipset based media players following a full redesign and while the demo build we used was still a little sluggish (and the remote still needlessly over complicated) it’s still a big improvement. Topping it all off is a great looking front mounted Matrix Orbital style VFD display and considering the package of DVR, HD media player and network storage, the expected price tag of around £230 isn’t too bad either.
That’s it from bit-tech
at CEBIT this year – now we’ve got to get back to the UK and start reviewing the vast amount of kit we had a chance to check out!