Still many people only shrug their shoulders pointing on the unknown “hole” in their new laptops, while seeking for advice in our London laptop repair service, Bits and PCs. The ones who know what it is expressed their disapproval of companies’ abolition  of 3.5mm TRS audio jack. Some claim that the change is absolutely unnecessary. Others fear that headphones will become unserviceable. On the other hand, the choice found its proponents. Apple and Motorola forced the transition on mobile platforms. Yet, many computer manufacturers acknowledge that USB-C is inevitable. So they are only happy to fit more functionality into something they cannot avoid.

3.5mm TRS audio jack is now the past

Like it or not, but the decision to get rid of 3.5mm TRS audio jack is becoming more and more popular. USB Implementers Forum recently published USB Audio Device Class 3.0 specifications. The standard is to be deployed by producers of anything from a smartphone to a laptop, who wants to know how to stream audio through USB-C on the devices they produce. The company clearly stated the aim of such step – abolition of the outdated standard.

Theoretically, this translates into a more compact, dust and water resistant devices. One “hole” is going to replace many. Even though USB-C uses higher voltages, developers claim that device’s energy consumptions will not exceed existing figures. On the contrary, they promise that the figures will be reduced. It is planned to deactivate unused components in order to save energy. However, it will make the life of headphone producers a little bit more difficult. They will have to include a special chip in the headphones themselves in order to “read” the audio signal.

The battle between AMD and NVIDIA is neverending. Hardware.info tested 13 graphics cards in Battlefield 1, a new first-shooter game released a couple of weeks ago. Here we will touch few interesting details of that test and summarise the information.

AMD and NVIDIA

Again, the two main competitors in the production of graphics cards are brought together to determine who is the best. 13 graphic cards were tested in Battlefield 1 with different parameters. We will pay more attention to performance in DirectX 12, as it is the present and the future of games at least for a while.

Running the game with Ultra graphics configurations and in high resolutions, such as 2560 × 1440 or 4k, both NVIDIA GTX 1080 and Radeon R9 Fury X show great results. The difference in performance is between 13 and 8 frames per second. However, NVIDIA is the leader in this race. Even though NVIDIA prevails in many tests, the following comparison changes the game.

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If we take into account prices of those graphic cards and compare it with performance a different picture appears before our eyes. In performance per $ chart, the leaders are AMD Radeon RX 480, Radeon R9 Fury X and NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060. The difference, in this case, reaches up to 33 units between the competitors.

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Verdict

Overall, NVIDIA performs better than AMD in DirectX 12 Battlefield 1. However, AMD does not lag far behind and seem like a more cost-effective choice. Here at Bits & PCs, London computer repair service, we can give you a valuable advice and assistance upgrading your gear.

Acer updated their lineup powered by Chrome OS. Chromebook 15 CB-532 is a newcomer. The main distinctions of the new Chromebook are relatively low price and long working hours away from a power socket.

Chromebook 15 specifications

Chromebook 15 is equipped with 15.6-inch Acer ComfyView LED-screen with the resolution of 1366 x 768 pixels. In the heart of it, operates dual-core Intel Celeron N3060 processor at the frequency of 1,6GHz. It has 2GB LPDDR3, low power DDR that uses lower voltages and consequently lower frequencies, and eMMC  16GB flash drive.

Storage space can be expanded by adding an SDXC memory card, up to 128GB. Additionally, every buyer gets 100GB of cloud storage. However, as any other Chromebook, it only supports dedicated applications, that can be obtained from Google Play Store. So maybe you won’t need much space at all.

The device has a battery with a capacity of 3950 mAh and, as the producer states, is capable of working 12 hours on one full charge. Moreover, the device is equipped with wireless module Wi-Fi 802.11ac MIMO 2×2 (2,4 and 5 GHz), Bluetooth 4.2, 2 USB 3.0 ports, and one HDMI port.

Chromebook weighs just under 2 kg with dimensions 383 × 256 × 24.2 mm. It is capable of surviving a fall on its edges from the height of 60 cm or pressure of objects that weigh up to 60 kg.

The model is already on the US market with a price tag of $200. Yet, its appearance on the UK market is anticipated soon. For upgrade and data migration contact London laptop repair service, Bits and PCs.

HP releases new workstation in all-in-one form factor. This is the third gen of HP’s Z1 computers. In comparison to its predecessors, new HP Z1 G3 has a slightly more compact design, it is twice as light, but also has a smaller display.

 

HP Z1 G3 Specifications

Unlike Z1 G2 which had the 27-inch display, the new model has the only 23.6-inch display. However, its resolution is actually higher. Z1 G3 is now equipped with IPS anti-glare 4K (3840×2160) display panel  with 1000:1 contrast ratio.

The model can be customised to your demand. A selection of the 6th generation quad-core processors is at your disposal: Intel Xeon E3-1270 v5, Intel Xeon E3-1245 v5, Intel Xeon E3-1225 v5, Intel Core i7-6700, and Intel Core i5-6500; alongside with one dual-core Intel Core i3-6100 version. The workstation can carry up to 64GB DDR4-2133 memory. To save the internal space the company had to abolish 3.5 inch hard drives. The new model supports only 2.5 inch and M.2 drives. By default, it comes with an SSD drive. Yet, a configuration with 72000 RPM hard drive is also available. Fast data transfer is guaranteed with dual Thunderbolt 3 with USB 3.1.

HP Z1 G3 has a serviceable design.  A tool-less rear access also makes the workstation easy to upgrade.

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Some sources state that the most basic model can cost you as little as £699. Yet the only model available on official HP website in the UK at the moment costs £1,650. You may need some financial aid for that one. Sell your Mac or PC to us and treat yourself with a new powerful computer.

Apple is organising an event on the 27th of October, which is precisely in one week’s time. The rumour has it that new Mac products are to be announced.

New Mac products to be announced

Apple has already released their new iPhone and operating system, macOS Sierra. So people expect new descendants of Mac family, MacBook, iMac, Mac mini, Mac Pro, etc., to arrive shortly. This announcement will be also a great tactical move. As Apple’s timely release of updates to the lineup will allow having the new products on sale for the full holiday season.

 

For a long time, Apple forwent any significant changes  or improvements in Mac lineup. Consequently, as experts claim, many people tend to purchase Apple products only if it is an absolute necessity. Possibly, people halt the purchase on a Mac until new models are actually released. Some devices are still present in Apple store that have been produced and sold unchanged for four years already. Apple Mac Pro, for example, has not been updated for almost three years. Yet, Apple refuses to comment these rumours.

Apple Special Event is being actively advertised. It will be possible to watch the event live at 5 PM (GMT) on the 27th of October. You too want to treat yourself with new Mac? Sell your Mac to Bits and PCs and get a new one.