Just landed in New Zealand! The Sound BlasterX Kratos S5 Gaming Speakers is the latest, best-in-class 2.1 gaming speaker system from those talented audio wizards at Creative.This new set is designed to sound great and look good too with an Aurora Reactive lighting system 😛 The pack contains two 4” satellite speakers and a 6.5” subwoofer built entirely out of wood for better resonance damping delivering clear highs, detailed mid-range, and deeeeep bass.
Setup is easier than ever, the left and right speakers connect to the subwoofer and from there to your Gaming PC via a USB cable. Optionally if you want to connect them to a something via a classic 3.5mm it also includes a dual RCA-to-stereo adapter which is nice.
You can use the speakers ‘as is’ or optionally install the Creative Sound Connect software package which has preset modes for specific games like Overwatch (brilliant!) and Dota 2 but also additional modes for concerts, movies and much much more. Power and volume control is done directly from the handy control pod with a twist of a large knob, you can also connect your Gaming Headset and/or Microphone via this pod to help keep everything convenient and tidy 🙂
Essentially, Creative have made a really nice set of speakers and then added RGB lighting just to top it all off.The Aurora Reactive system gives customisable RGB LED lighting along the base of the satellite speakers , you can choose from six presets or tweak colours and patterns to match your other RGB savvy gear – you could even integrate it with other Aurora Reactive enabled gaming gear like the Creative Sound BlasterX Siege M04 Gaming Mouse or Vanguard K08 Gaming Keyboard \o/
UPDATE: Promotion extended, now 1st June 2017 to 31st July 2017.
Asus Republic of Gamers have a sweet new bonus offer available now for those gearing up with selected ROG STRIX series motherboards, it’s BIG, RED and is the leading cause of dry skin in the world – a giant ROG towel \o/
With all the rain lately in NZ this promo really couldn’t have come at a better time, when summer returns it’ll also be great for the beach, it’s certainly easy to spot 🙂
Asus ROG STRIX motherboards have killer looks and an all important feature which allows you to control a host of RGB devices from a single software package – we’ve done some special builds to demonstrate this and we know you’ll agree, when building a PC around Asus AURA RGB things really do look good!
Getting your ROG bonus is pretty easy, once you’ve geared up with your killer new motherboard simply visit the ASUS Redemption Site to fill in your details on the form below.
Not all the motherboards listed in this promotion on the Asus website are available in NZ right now and others have just arrived making them a little hard to find, below are quick links so you can check them out – we’ll add to this as more arrive 🙂
If you’re lucky enough to be packing a Gigabyte Aorus Motherboard in your Gaming PC there’s a really cool update that will let you tweak Corsairs new RGB Vengeance RAM kits within the existing Gigabyte FUSION app we already use to customise our zone lighting. These new kits light up in one entire colour at a time rather than having individual zones, so we’re limited to showing a single colour per stick but we could still have four fitted each with their own colours, the Corsair RGB currently does four standard light effects — static, rainbow, breathing and colour shift.
Right now those with GIGABYTE Fusion enabled motherboards will be able to control their Corsair Vengeance RGB RAM as well, you can still control things via Corsair Link software but having one software package to control everything is the goal, just like we did with the MasterCase Pro 6 PC Part Picker build so we can’t wait to try this out with Fusion here at GGPC 😛
The FUSION desktop app itself is really easy to use, but what makes this one sooo appealing for us is it actually has a smartphone companion app as well and with it you can customise things from your android smartphone – you can download the Gigabyte RGB Fusion Smartphone App on Google Play \o/ It’s important to note that this app will likely need an update to add the new ram functionality and there is sometimes a little tinkering you must do around permissions in order to pair your system with the app, thankfully Jon Colón left a review on the app which explains it with details “UPDATE: In order for this program to work, open windows firewall with advanced security. Under inbound rules click “New Rule” – Click port then next. You need to add TCP 9009, UDP 1980 and UDP 19801″
Fun times ahead for sure – if you just can’t wait to start playing around with this awesome new tech below are links to some of our favourite FUSION ready motherboards and also the G.Skill RGB kits which are available in New Zealand right now!
Another awesome piece of gaming gear from Computex is here!
Arm yourself with the MasterMouse Pro L and customise your grip with modular top and side covers. This new kind of gaming mouse reminds us a bit of the James Donkey 007 and includes 2x unique top covers combined with two pairs of magnetic side panels. This allows for several grip configurations so you can make a mouse that works best for you and the games you are wanting to play 🙂 Another cool bit is that Cooler Master have made 3D Print models for the MasterMouse Pro L available freely if you would like to make things for yourself, just like they did with the recently announced MasterPulse Headset.
Nearly every inch of the MasterMouse Pro L’s body is covered in a matte UV coating – this is highly durable and won’t peel, wear, or tarnish. Both of the main buttons are equipped with Omron switches guaranteed to last 20 million clicks and the cable has been built to endure even the most dedicated gamer 😛 We shall see CM… Challenge accepted!
The MasterMouse Pro L offers 8 programmable buttons that can be easily expanded up to 14+1 switch button thanks to the Storm Tactix function. Assign the Storm Tactix button based on your preference and press it to enable your secondary button functions. There is also a DPI switch which is found on the bottom right side of the mouse but even this can be reassigned to any other button, great news for the snipers among us who are looking to switch DPI levels on-the-fly.
On the inside you’ll find a PixArt PMW3360 optical sensor delivering up to 12000 DPI with no interpolation and no acceleration and a 32-bit ARM processor which allows you to record and play back complex macros, as well as save all of your settings for use on any computer without software, 512KB on-board memory allows you to take your macros with you wherever you go 🙂
If you do jump into the software package you’re in for a treat and can customize DPI levels, illumination, button functions and advanced sensor settings (lift of distance, angle snapping, angle turnability, sensitivity) within, you can also tweak the RGB lighting on the mouse wheel together with the back beam and then for both front sides – and then save up to five separate illumination profiles with multiple effects options and switch between them at will \o/
Lucky for us we were able to get hands on with this one a little early and it’s very impressive! On that note we happily give this new breed of Cooler Master gaming mouse our GGPC recommends award – The MASTER MOUSE IS GOOD!
Keep your eyes on the GGPC Computers Blog for more of the latest and best in Gaming Gear!
UPDATE: G.Skill have released a software package for Trident Z RGB. The current beta software version supports Intel 200-series chipset motherboards. Intel 100-series chipset and even the new AMD 300-series chipset motherboards have partial support; some models have known issues that will be fixed in the future versions. This beta version does not have Intel X99 support yet.
UPDATE: ASUS Aura software with Trident Z RGB support is up on the ASUS website. The correct version is v1.04.29 or later, ASUS only lists their Z270 motherboards as compatible, but should also work with ASUS Z170 motherboards. There is currently no support for ASUS X99 motherboards.
OOhhhh we do love adding a little colour to our Gaming PC and with these latest DDR4 memory kits from G.Skill things are looking better than ever! A culmination of over 25 years of experience in DRAM manufacturing, G.SKILL has combined full-range RGB lighting with their Trident series DDR4 ram kits. Designed with a custom 10-layer PCB and hand-picked IC chips to enhance overclocking performance, the Trident Z RGB series is capable of reaching speeds of DDR4-4266MHz!
By default, the Trident Z RGB displays a rainbow of colours in a wave-style lighting effect, illuminating any system with a myriad of hues. Further lighting effects and colour customisations can be controlled and chosen through software, which is out now from Asus AURA!
Once you’ve got everything installed Aura will look like this, each ram stick has 5 customisable zones for you to tweak at your leisure 🙂 We’ve done a quick custom pc build that connects all lighting to Aura giving you full control from one access point, you can check it out on the GGPC PC Part Picker – For this one we added an additional CM MasterFan Pro RGB + Phanteks LED RGB Strip lighting along with the G.Skill Trident Z RGB, a STRIX GTX 1070 with RGB and STRIX Z270X RGB Motherboard to show just how far you can take things 🙂
The new AMD Ryzen 7 series CPU will be with us very soon and details have released for the three new options in this lineup 🙂 They are the high end part of a new range incoming which will also include the Ryzen 3 and 5 series.
These new beasts are set to become available on March 3rd in New Zealand and are all looking pretty tempting with 8 cores and some nice benchmarks released by AMD, you can check out the basic specs for each below.
At GGPC we can’t wait to get into testing these new CPU out in game, but there’s also something else which is looking pretty cool for system builders looking to use this new series – some of the versions include an RGB cooler! We’ve seen three versions coming with cooling solutions so far, one is called the Wraith MAX which looks to be very similar to our current square Wraith series (not a bad thing, it’s a great quiet cooler option) – the other two are named Wraith SPIRE (70mm and 80mm fan versions)which look awesome with a circular shape and the best bit is… ALL versions look to have a RGB lighting ring around the top!
Currently the SPIRE is included with this Ryzen 7 1700 CPU processor model, it sports a round aluminium heatsink with spirally projecting fins to keep things cool 🙂
We’ll confirm all the details as we get into testing but one things for sure, with these new RGB Coolers the Gaming PC builds are going to look GOOD!
Throughout 2016 we were treated to a range of outstanding new chassis as manufacturers embraced both tempered glass and RGB lighting in their chassis lineups 🙂 Of all these new cases though one has really stood out, from a manufacturer known as Segotepwho also made our orignal GGPC Shaman chassis known as Warship. This new case is a massive leap ahead in quality and looks a lot like the InWin 805 but with slightly different front IO placement, a big PSU shield and comes pre-fitted with 4x 120mm RGB fans.
Good looks aside there are a lot of other things Segotep got right with the SGK7, firstly the way it’s all packaged up is excellent with a sturdy double box and no polystyrene to be found 🙂 The foam padding holds everything securely and both sides of all the glass panels (two sides and front) are shrink wrapped for extra protection. The RGB fans are fitted 3x in the front and 1x in the back and come pre-connected to an included hub so you can control the colours and effects easily via the front IO. It also contains a decent manual for new builders which we really appreciate, and even a cleaning cloth which is a must for any glass build as they do tend to become fingerprint magnets 😛
There’s no better way to get to know a chassis than building a gaming PC in one so for this blog we designed one that’s using the new B250m motherboard from Gigabyte and fitted the new i5-7500 taking a little time to wrap the cable up on the included CPU cooler so it looks nice. Another good thing about the new motherboards is we get to use 2400MHz ram this time around – the previous 2133MHz limitations are removed giving us access to a much larger variety of kits at the faster speed which is great for us as we like to try out new parts whenever possible – the new G.Skill Trident RGB is coming in 2400MHz so we’re extremely happy about this little change up!
Putting it all together was a quick process and once we successfully did a little boot test I thought I’d spend a moment doing something with the Segotep SGK7 I haven’t really seen any other chassis do – adding a custom RGB name plate!
To do this you need to remove the front glass panel so you can access some screws, once those are out a little clear plastic panel (with the default Segotep sticker on it) can be removed. When we peeled off the sticker it left a little residue which we quickly cleaned off with some meths, using the old sticker as a sizing template I began hunting around for something the right size to use. We then simply printed GGPC on a piece of paper with black around it, the LED glow is powerful enough to shine through the paper but if you take a little time to cut out the name it really blasts through – just put your gamertag on the plastic backer and screw it back in you won’t need any glue etc – it’s that easy 🙂
We’ve not seen a chassis this good available for so little before especially in New Zealand and on that note, now that we’ve built a Good Gaming PC in this chassis we are happy to give it a well deserved recommendation to anyone looking for a top chassis at a great price – The Segotep SG-K7 is GOOD!
When the GTX 10 series laptops first appeared late last year we were blown away in our tests with the new GTX 1060 and GTX 1070 variants, both in terms of performance but also with how close these portable solutions were to their desktop brethren. With the GTX 1060 Gaming Laptop power efficiency had become so good that when running on battery it was almost as powerful as when it was connected to mains power – as you’ll see below in our long test with Battlefield one it was very close but still required a little settings tweak when switching between the two.
In a perfect world a gaming laptop will allow you to switch between powered and battery modes with no tweaking of settings required allowing us to truly game on the go.
And that’s why we’ve been excitedly awaiting the new GTX 1050 gaming laptop release, and today a pretty cool looking new one just got announced!
The new Sabre 15 Gaming Laptop in coming our way \o/ Featuring the new Kaby Lake Intel Core i7 processor and equipped with either the newly announced GeForce GTX 1050 Ti 4GB or the GTX 1050 2GB we’ll be putting both versions though some GGPC gaming tests to see exactly what these machines can do! We’ve recently updated our GTX 1050 Desktop playlist with new tests with a range of titles to compare with and it’s going to be blast finding out what these new gaming laptops can do.
Future tests aside (for now) the new Sabre series is looking really good, they’ve taken away the orange trim in favour of a clean all black look and the keyboard has been improved and is now fitted with 2.2mm travel scissor type keys, for that extra feel and precision 🙂 There will be options for a either a red LED or a glorious RGB backlit keyboard with 16.8 million colours to choose from.
Just announced – the new MasterMouse S is coming to New Zealand soon \o/ A small and elegant gaming mouse that aims to provide a secure and satisfying grip.
The body of the mouse sports five buttons (not including the dpi switch), one of which is a secondary function button that will allow us to map another command to the other four buttons – we like this layout as it’s easy to use and allows for some pretty handy hotkeys to be activated directly from the mouse, simply mapping health and mana potions to a single button and having the shifter let you activate either is pretty sweet but things get really cool when you map a steady fire macro as the alternate left click function, unloading a whole clip accurately at range is a killer. They actually call this shifter button the “Storm TactiX” which does sound a bit cooler than the shift term we like to use 😛 It’s located just under the base of your thumb for very easy access.
The MasterMouse S has onboard memory, so we can save our macros within five profiles, with everything being saved on the mouse. These profiles can also save unique settings to each with two RGB illumination zones, there is one along the rim of the mouse wheel and one at the rear edge and both be customised with the usual spectrum of 16.7 million colours as well as a range of effects that can be assigned to each of the zones independently.
All of the lighting settings, button functions, macros, DPI levels and various sensor settings can be tweaked easily via Cooler Master’s Portal software which is the new unified software package for all things CM 🙂
Aside from all this good stuff we get all the other usual premium bits like a matte UV coating that is easy to clean and resistant to finger smudges, main buttons equipped with those glorious Omron switches which can take a beating and a nice patterned PVC cable which at 1.8 meters long is pretty savvy for a little lounge room gaming.
UPDATE: This amazing keyboard is available in NZ now!
Not to be confused with the previous Orion Spark the new Logitech G Orion Spectrum is what happens when a company listens to customer feedback and adjusts to make their products even better. An awesome version of the G910 from Logitech is incoming – The G910 Orion Spectrum!
With a darker look, RGB logo and those ultra fast Romer-G mechanical switches to give you incredible responsiveness, this sleek RGB Mechanical keyboard actuates your presses faster than standard mechanical switches. This faster actuation gives you faster response for the winning edge in battles where every move you make matters.
A small detail in the keycaps has been adjusted to be smoother allowing for easier finger travel between them during the more complex maneuvers we all attempt while in the heat of battle.
As with the original Orion Spark the Spectrum allows for some pretty extreme customisation via the Logitech Gaming software, you can tweak keyboards lighting effects and mark individual keys by colour to keep track of spells and game commands. Each key’s backlight can be customised from a palette of 16.8 million colors. The key letters are entirely illuminated for a beautiful, evenly-lit glow with minimal light leakage 🙂 You can also download ARX Control app for your smartphone (here are links for Android and Apple) which introduces some second-screen capabilities. Use your smart phone or tablet screen to display in-game info, vital system statistics and more. The keyboard’s adjustable smart dock positions your phone perfectly at the top of the keyboard.
We’ve really put this keyboard through some extremely enjoyable game testing and happily give it our full recommendation – the Logitech G910 Orion Spectrum is GOOD!
This keyboard is outstanding top to bottom, in-game integration for lighting effects is simply outstanding – check out the video below as we test this with Counter Strike: Global Offensive using the key lighting to signal the number of rounds left in our clip.