Anthem: Team with up to three other players in cooperative adventures that reward both combined effort and individual skill. Each player’s choice of javelin exosuit will shape their contribution and strategic role. As you explore, you will discover a gripping story filled with unique and memorable characters. Seamless and intelligent matchmaking will ensure you can quickly and easily find other players to adventure alongside.
Battlefield 5: The Battlefield series goes back to its roots in a never-before-seen portrayal of World War 2. Take on all-out multiplayer with your squad in modes like the vast Grand Operations and the cooperative Combined Arms, or witness human drama set against global combat in the single-player War Stories. As you fight in epic, unexpected locations across the globe, enjoy the richest and most immersive Battlefield yet.
Nvidia RTX Graphics Cards are available now in New Zealand, with models from EVGA, Asus and Gigabyte all looking very good. This latest generation of GPU has a slightly different naming style with the unexpected R – this highlights the real-time ray tracing aspect of this new release. Another new term to come along with the graphics cards in NVLink, the new SLi bridge for enthusiasts looking to build the most powerful gaming rigs in world.
Ray tracing relates to some of the graphic elements that make our games look good, or maybe realistic is a better word for this, it helps with dynamic lighting and reflections and with the boost real-time ray tracing enables, we’re even closer to having games look like our favourite CG cutscenes 🙂 It’s not a game breaker and if your sticking with GTX you’ll still be able to play, just on lower settings. Youtube demos can be seen via these links for Battlefield 5, Metro Exodus and Shadow of the Tomb Raider if you want to see real-time ray tracing in action.
Looking closer at the models available at launch, the new EVGA RTX 2080 XC with the Precision X1 software suite which, when paired with the NVIDIA Turing graphics card, promises to unleash its full potential with a built-in overclock scanner, adjustable frequency curve and RGB LED control.
The software is set for release along with the new RTX series, and it looks like this new generation of EVGA’s GPU stress testing utility, brings with it some excellent modes for pushing our new graphics cards to the limits.
If EVGA has the coolest software award then the coolest RTX award must go to Gigabyte’s new RTX 2080 OC with Windforce Cooling.
The triple cooling system features 3x 82mm fans, with an alternate spinning fan in the middle, 6 composite copper heat pipes and heat-pipe direct touch all working together to deliver an effective heat dissipation capacity for great performance at lower temperatures.
The airflow is spilt by the triangular fan edge, and guided smoothly through the 3D stripe curve on the fan surface, effectively enhancing the airflow.
The card looks amazing too, gone in the signature orange from the previous 10 series, replaced by a perfect semi-metallic grey.
Moving onto the new Asus Dual RTX 2080 we can highlight one thing all these new cards have in common, they’re large, and Asus is totally OK with this, making some of fattest.
Via Asus: This generation, our top-end cards adopt a 2.7-slot footprint to accommodate a larger heatsink because bigger is better. We’ve increased the overall surface area of our cooling array by over 50% compared to last gen. If you want to squeeze the most out of the Dual GeForce RTX 2080’s performance, our latest design gives you a lot more thermal headroom for overclocking. If you’re just looking for an amazing plug-and-play experience, the extra heat dissipation keeps your fans running at lower speeds while you game.
The coolers on all models sit high, so when you fit them in your systems (upside down), these new RTX series fill almost three-slots. Keep this in mind if you’re thinking of adding a component to the motherboard slots below. There is also no more DVI output, though the EVGA card looks to include an HDMI – DVI adaptor in the box. For the next generation VR headsets you’ll now see a special USB Type C connection on the back.
This promotion has now ended, keep your eyes on our GGPC PC Gaming Blog for more awesome promotions!
For those building a new Custom PC there’s a sweet promotion on at selected retailers throughout NZ and if your system includes the RX 580, VEGA, VEGA 56 or VEGA 64 Graphics Cards within you can register to redeem a Far Cry 5 game code, though this process is fairly straightforward it’s important to note you’ll have to do a part of this from the PC you’ve just built as the AMD system actually verifies hardware this time around before providing the game code.
STEP #1: Visit www.amdrewards.com, sign in (it’s easy to create a new account, but remember the email address as you need it later) and the button will change, click to move on.
STEP #2: Enter the code you received from your retailer
STEP #3: System will verify automatically here. If you see the message below please ensure you have the latest drivers installed for your AMD hardware. These can be found in the AMD Driver Centre if needed.
Now with more motherboard options! Promotion is valid on purchases from April 1st – June 30th (or while code stocks last) Completed registrations will still be accepted by GIGABYTE until July 15th, 2018.
For a limited time and while stocks last, get yourself a Gigabyte Aorus Motherboard from the range below and you can register to redeem a Far Cry 5 Game Code bonus!
STEP #3: Now that you have registered you’ll swiftly receive your game code from the Gigabyte team via email, once you’ve received it head to www.farcry5-redeem.ubi.com/en-US/login, login to your Uplay account (or create one) and enter your code!
STEP #5: Once in the Uplay launcher you can activate the game code as shown below, once that’s done you’ll have the game added to your library available for download.
STEP #6: GAME ON!
Now you’re in for a treat! Far Cry 5 is a multiplayer masterpiece, you take on the role of the local Sheriff for the Montana town named Hope County, and while you could just spend your time hunting and fishing (with grenades) there is an ominous doomsday cult rising up and causing some problems around town… better get onto that! With most of the game world being accessible to players after completing the game’s introductory missions, once complete you’re going to be pretty much free to rush through the world causing chaos as you see fit.
The latest GTX 1070Ti is available in New Zealand now, and this version from Gigabyte is looking GOOD!
An enthusiast-class graphics card that combines the power of the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 Ti GPU with the renowned Gigabyte WINDFORCE 3X cooling, RGB illumination, and top-notch reliability. Paired with 8GB of 256-bit GDDR5 memory, the card is ideal for gaming fanatics looking for serious graphics power to tackle today’s most challenging, graphics-intensive games and VR without breaking a sweat.
WINDFORCE 3X, a triple-fan cooling system from Gigabyte incorporates two composite copper heat-pipes which directly touch to the GPU core. It further utilises a large metal base plate and thermal pads across critical heat-generating components for a total cooling solution. Together with the special fin architecture and the unique blade fans, this graphics card has delivered exceptional cooling performance while maintaining low noise, furthermore, the semi-passive cooling fans allow gamers to enjoy light gaming in complete silence.
Aesthetics-wise, the angular shroud design with orange accents is distinctively Gigabyte and sparks a gaming vibe, this cooler version was first released back in 2016, and it has been featured on higher tier cards like the GTX 1080 with great results, at GGPC this is one of our favourite coolers and thusly featured in many of our custom PC builds.
The metal backplate offers rigidity and protection to the structure while adding a sleek, clean look to the GTX 1070 Ti Graphics Card. This GPU is further styled up with the RGB illuminated logo powered by RGB Fusion giving us the freedom to choose the right theme for each of our gaming rigs via the AORUS Graphics Engine utility software, and then change on a whim🙂
The GTX 1070 Ti Gaming is beefed up with 6+2 power phases to provide better stability with a more efficient power distribution. The use of the highest-grade chokes and capacitors reinforces the already legendary reliability of Gigabytes graphics cards and with the newly updated AORUS Graphics Engine, users can adjust and monitor clock speeds, voltage, fan performance, and more through the intuitive interface to get the best from their gaming hardware – it’s even got an instant performance boost with the one-click overclock function!
We’ve already got our lucky hands on some for testing 😛 Keep your eyes on the GGPC PC Gaming Blog for the latest!
TEAM UP AND FIGHT ON! Those fine folks at Nvidia have a killer DESTINY 2 GAME BONUS for those grabbing a new GTX 1080, GTX 1080 Ti Graphics Card or Gaming PC and Gaming Laptop featuring this awesome hardware 🙂
Humanity’s last safe city has fallen to an overwhelming invasion force, led by Ghaul, the imposing commander of the brutal Red Legion. He has stripped the city’s Guardians of their power, and forced the survivors to flee. You will venture to mysterious, unexplored worlds of our solar system to discover an arsenal of weapons and devastating new combat abilities. To defeat the Red Legion and confront Ghaul, you must reunite humanity’s scattered heroes, stand together, and fight back to reclaim our home.
This awesome bonus is valid on purchases made between the17th of October 2017 and 5th of January 2017 so get in quick! This is a register to redeem promotion so once you’ve geared up with your new hardware simple visit the website below and follow the steps along.
This is a register to redeem promotion, please use the handy links below depending on which flavour your grabbing 🙂
Hardware monitoring in Destiny 2 is a little different with most being disallowed/disabled – those fine folks at Logitech G have a great workaround for this though using the Logitech Gaming Software and their ARX companion APP 🙂
An epic open-world awaits us! Brought to life by the award-winning Nemesis System, we must go behind enemy lines to forge our army, conquer fortresses and dominate Mordor from within as we prepare to confront the full power of the Dark Lord Sauron and his Ringwraiths in this epic new story of Middle-earth. Forge a new Ring of Power, conquer fortresses in massive battles and dominate Mordor with your personal orc army in Middle-earth: Shadow of War!
The fate of Mordor rests upon the choices you’ll make. So weigh them with your life, because Nothing Will be Forgotten.
This awesome bonus is valid on purchases made between the 26th of September 2017 and 12th of December 2017 so get in quick! This is a register to redeem promotion so once you’ve geared up with your new hardware simple visit the website below and follow the steps along.
Recently we managed to get our hands on a very new gaming laptop from Gigabyte, an ultra slim and light AERO 14 with a GTX 1050 Ti inside! This was perfect as we really wanted to check out the GTX 1050Ti Laptop performance a game called Playerunknown’s Battlegrounds, but before we jump into gameplay FPS tests let’s take a quick look at the laptops full specs and design.
The Aero 14 is ultra thin and light, weighing in at around 2KG while being less than 2cm thick – it’s packing a popular intel i7-7700HQ quad core CPU with a 4GB GTX 1050Ti and 16GB of DDR4 ram. The display is a beautiful anti-glare 2560×1440 IPS, edged entirely in black with just a dash of orange and carbon fibre on the back of the laptop.
Inputs and Outputs…
3x USB 3.0
1x Mini DisplayPort 1x HDMI 2.0 (4K savvy)
1x ThunderBolt 3!
1x 3.5mm Audio Combo (headphone and mic)
In addition to these, it also has a built in webcam and microphone which is good, a Kensington lock point and a nice white LED backlit keyboard for late night gaming. That ThunderBolt 3 port is great to see too, you can use these to attach an external graphics card boosting the power of your gaming laptop into that of top tier of desktop gaming systems!
Performance is general use is excellent, with the NVMe M.2 SSD inside booting into Windows 10 took around 4 seconds, with battery life under extreme load (playing Path of Exile while live streaming via OBS with FaceRig running) which gave us just over an hour (1 hour 1 min 17 seconds) – as a side note here, gaming performance is excellent on battery with the Aero 14, we recorded everything including the 20% battery tipping point when a laptop will automatically switch from the Nvidia graphics to intel integrated – let us know if you want to see this and we’ll cut out the boring bits then upload for you to check out on YouTube 🙂
Must be time to jump into some PUBG! (literally)
The game begins with an airdrop onto the island where 100 players proceed to battle it out until the last man standing is declared the winner. We specifically captured the 60-second gameplay video below to include the parachute landing, item grabbing and a player kill, while in a level with the heavy rain weather effect active.
This is because we’ve heard from players having issues on low/mid range systems, specifically when the player first lands, the specific issue being that the buildings and items have not entirely loaded in! This would almost certainly lead to disaster as these opening moments are a rush for weapons to defend yourself with.
As you can see in the video below, the Aero 14 GTX 1050 Ti Gaming Laptop has no such issues and we are able to gear up even in this densely contested area 🙂
We then continued straight on from the gameplay above, dodging crazy people with crowbars and getting into firefights – we even managed to get flash-banged yet survived!
For all tests we ran with the fans set to auto, you can use the included Gigabyte Smart Manager software package to tweak this but auto works perfectly, ramping up and down the fan speeds when needed.
Overall we’ve loved spending time with this laptop, the design is so nice and physical build is of the highest quality, the intel/nvidia hardware combination is superb and that Pantone certified display, along with the Dolby speakers is both suprising and beautiful. Best of all though, now that we’ve had a really good go with the new GTX 1050 Ti Gaming Laptop we can happily give it our GGPC Recommends Award – The Gigabyte Aero 14 GTX 1050 Ti is GOOD!
For those new to gaming laptops and high Hz displays, it’s important to note that just because a laptop has a 120Hz/144Hz screen it doesn’t mean you’ll ever be able to hit that target FPS in your favourites. Every game is different, and we highly recommend testing first on the lowest setttings to see how much wriggle room you’ll have to play with as you turn the settings up 🙂 That aside, let’s play some games!
With the Destiny 2 BETA underway we decided to jump in and see what this awesome laptop could do, testing first to see what our base FPS would be like at 1080p with low settings before tweaking upwards to see if we could stay above on the highest settings possible, we found the best settings for this in Destiny 2 on the P57Xv7 was to run with MSAA turned on (crazy heavy!) and high settings across the board with textures tweaked up to the highest settings.
If we turned the MSAA setting down to SMAA our framerate skyrocketed upwards allowing us to capture between 90-120 FPS even with the resolution increased to 2560×1440, we are using the in-built FPS counter, found within the gameplay settings tab in Destiny 2, but we’ve also captured another test with our temperature and CPU/GPU usage stats up top left if you’re interested in checking these out.
Jumping into some Overwatch we turned everything up that we could, customising the EPIC preset to increase the antialiasing quality right up to ULTRA – SMAA HIGH (odd that epic doesn’t include this as standard right?) and also pushed our resolution all the way to 2560×1440. It’s nice that this higher resolution is available (some P57x models even have 4K!) and even better still to see that still supported a blazing 120Hz! Even with these extremely high settings though we still spent most of our time enjoying a crisp 90FPS, which, after experiencing the super visuals on the laptop itself, just isn’t done justice in the video below!
From here we decided to move into some Battlefield 1 and encountered a similar issue, even at the highest settings with our resolution set to 2560×1440 we were getting frame rates well into the 80’s – lucky for us the map rotation eventually swung around to the Amiens City which is notoriously heavy late game and we were able to snap a quick shadowplay with plenty of explosions, tanks, players and smoke everywhere helping to drop our FPS around 60 🙂
From here we moved into testing out our favourite space sim at the moment – the still-in-development Star Citizen \o/ We played with the settings for a while and found the best setup (right now, it changes with each update) is to play at 1080P with the graphics preset on HIGH. This gives you all the coolest effects like ambient occlusion and also adds some extra definition to the “space clouds” which I feel gives you something to visually gauge your speed and direction – turning things down to the lower preset does free up around 20 more FPS though so we captured a quick Shadowplay for those settings as well.
We decided to round off our gaming tests with a bit of Black Desert Online and set off on an adventure! Finding ourselves in an Orc village at dawn with rain pelting down we tweaked our settings for a smooth and beautiful combat experience at 1440p 🙂
Gaming performance aside there are a lot of things to like about this laptop, yet again the build quality is good with very little flex on the screen, the hinges on the screen are robust (and still orange) and if you tip the laptop upside-down you’ll see the impressive dual exhaust cooling system which, when at 100% speed (a setting we highly doubt you’ll use, auto is fine) has a noise output that is reminiscent of the noise from a kettle boiling. It’s packing most of the features we look for in a modern system like AC Wireless, Bluetooth, USB Type C, and HDMI 2.0 for 4K 60FPS, sadly no DisplayPort this time but ours did have a Blu Ray drive hidden on the front! The laptop has a nice white LED keyboard backlight that can be switched between half strength, full, off and of course auto mode which adjusts to suit the lighting around you
Battery on the P57Xv7 lasted us 1 hour & 11 mins at full brightness while looping videos which was excellent, we ran all the tests above with the fan profile set to auto which revs the cooling up and down as needed. As with our previous tests with the P57Xv6 we again set out to restrict airflow so we could see when things started to throttle and noted 90 degrees as the tipping point to watch with the CPU usage – during these high temps we still had no system crashes or instability.
Overall it’s been a pleasure to game with, and the Gigabyte P57Xv7 with it’s GTX 1070 + i7-7700HQ combo is most definitely good – on that note we happily give this fine gaming laptop our GGPC recommends award – the P57Xv7 is GOOD!
UPDATE: GGPC Workshop spots are currently fully booked, spots may open on the days though!
Coming up this weekend, the Vodafone Event Centre plays host to a tech fair with friends from Gigabyte, Asus, Cooler Master, G.Skill and Logitech G showcasing their latest tech devices and solutions for end users like us!
They’ll be hosting demonstrations and lending expert tech advice while displaying their latest products for you to get hands on with. Brand experts will be at each booth to take you through their tech and share with you their knowledge on PC Gaming. The event centre will also host various entertainment setups such as full gaming setup areas, a drone enclosure offering drone flying sessions, workshop classes, hands-on PC builds and more!
The crew from GGPC will be there hosting a workshop packed full of handy tips & tricks for water cooling, case modding, and getting the best performance for your dollar plus there will be awesome prizes up for grabs throughout each day – and a bunch of lucky attendees will get the chance to buildtheir own dream PC at half price!
This event is free to attend so if you’re a system builder, gamer, tech guru or just interested to see the latest and greatest electronics and digital technology in New Zealand, JOIN US AT THE NZ TECHXPO 2017 THIS WEEKEND!