Some Of The Biggest Brands In The World Had Their Products (Part 6) - Samsung Galaxy Beam, Asus P8Z77-V Pro, OCZ Octane

12/10/2012 3:45:47 PM

Samsung Galaxy Beam - Great match up

Samsung, the manufacturer with so many ideas, decided to see what child can be borne by mating a smartphone and a projector. The outcome is Samsung Galaxy Beam. While definitely unique, it is not one of a kind as the first projector phone appeared in 2010 with the same name. Perhaps showing it off the second time will garner more success? Let's see if it can do well.

No reason for diet

Kill me if you want but I will still classify this phone in the “slim” category. The guys from Samsung put a projector in it and yet the Beam still manages to maintain the slim form factor and remain decently lightweight. With a yellow bezel and rubberised back, it feels good on the hands too. Because of the projector, the camera is placed lower, making it a little too easy to cover it with a finger.

Sunshades may help

Fans of the AMOLED display may be disappointed because the Beam only uses a 4.0 WVGA (800x480 pixels) TFT display. Despite that, it produces decent quality colours. Instead of having problems with oversaturation, picture quality seems more lifelike. I like the fact that with the average resolution, text still remains as sharp as ever. Of course, under sunlight, the phone is rendered into near uselessness.

Not again

I almost scream in agony when the Beam subjected me to using Gingerbread. That's right folks, it is not ICS out of the box. Of course, this is Android with Samsung's TouchWiz UX on top. Good news: it is intuitive and easy to learn. The smartphone itself is also generally smooth but has filled up the homescreen with a lot of shortcuts and widgets. This, as it has proven on many occasions, is the perfect recipe for noticeable performance lag.

Project everything!

This is the feature to get excited about: the 15 lumens projector that is capable to beam a 50-inch picture and with great speakers. Also, why stop at just the picture alone? Movies, internet, presentation, games and even the homescreen too can be projected. Just do all of it! Turning it on is just the matter of holding a button on the top right side of the Beam. The output quality is good but I need a decent amount of darkness to have a good time with it.


·         Price: $524

·         Dimensions (H x W x D): 124 x 64.2 x 12.5 mm

·         Weight: 145.3 g

·         Processor: Dual-core 1 GHz Cortex-A9

·         Memory: 768 MB RAM

·         Storage: 8 GB storage

·         Operating system: Android 2.3 Gingerbread

·         Display: 4.0-inch WVGA (800x480) TFT

·         Graphics: Mali-400

·         Connectivity: WiFi 802.11 b/g/n 2.4GHz, BT 3.0+HS, USB 2.0, MicroUSB, 3.5mm Ear Jack

·         Battery: 2000mAh

·         Quadrant standard: 2,680


·         Niche market but a very appealing midrange smartphone

·         Value: 8/10

·         Features: 9/10

·         Performance: 7/10

·         Design: 8/10

·         Usability: 8/10

·         Score: 8.0/10

Asus P8Z77-V Pro - Not bad for midrange

Asus P8Z77-V Pro - Not bad for midrange

When Intel announced the Z77 chipset, many users out there are overjoyed. They finally found a chipset for this generation that gives them a tonne of features. And from something so small too! Besides, the many enhancements it now offers had to be previously produced with either a separate chipset or even a separate daughter-card installed on the motherboard. Intel has truly delivered with the Z77 and ASUS is quick on the bandwagon to deliver the best package using this chipset. The P8Z77-V Pro is the testament of this promise and hard work from one of the biggest components manufacturer in the world.


If it is about what the board has to offer, we must start with the number of ports available. The P8Z77-V Pro has six built-in USB ports - four of which are USB 3.0, a HDMI and DisplayPort as well as VGA and DVI for monitors that need these connectors, LAN port and even a digital S/PDIF connection for those who want a true digital sound experience. As this is a full-sized ATX board, it comes with two x16 PCIe slots that work either as a single mode x16 or dual mode x8. So you want to SLI/CrossFire your system? Go ahead. You also will get four RAM slots that support up to 32GB of memory. Indeed there is no such thing as running out of memory at all. And for those who love extra features, Asus also included eight SATA ports that offer a system performance that evenly splits between SATA 3Gb/s and SATA 6Gb/s.

Support variety

Like all ASUS motherboards today, the P8Z77-V Pro supports UEFI, ASUS' MemOK feature, Smart DIGI+ Power control, BIOS Flashback, USB Boost, and more. For internet connectivity, there is also the on board Gigabit LAN port that you can connect to your router for high speed transfers.

Extreme results

We ran our system benchmarks to test out the board's features and compare it against the others. On PCMark7, it managed to generate a score of 5,782, which is very good for something aimed for the mid ranged market. We also used PerformanceTest, which scored at 3,982. Something that we had expected based on what we had seen so far. So if you are looking for something that you can put in your mid­range computer, you can't go wrong with the ASUS P8Z77-V Pro motherboard (as long you are not going to go three-way or four-way SLI for your gaming needs).


·         Dimensions (H x W): 305 x 244 mm

·         Processor: Intel Core processor

·         Memory: DDR3

·         Ports: USB 3.0/2.0, HDMI, DipslayPort, VGA,DVI,S/PIDF, LAN

·         Expansion : 2 x x16 PCIe, 1 x x4 PCIe, 1 x x1 PCIe, 2 x PCI

·         PCMark7 score: 5782


·         Irrational need to purchase has been triggered.

·         Value: 9/10

·         Features: 8/10

·         Performance: 8/10

·         Design: 8/10

·         Usability: 9/10

·         Score: 8.4/10

OCZ Octane review - SSDing your PC affordbly

OCZ Octane review - SSDing your PC affordbly

When the ICT Industry got its first taste of SSDs, it had been a pricy affair. The whole idea is never thought as conceivable. A 20GB SSD being able to fetch up to a thousand Dollars (USD mind you not RM) just so that you can get lighting speeds on your PC. It's too expensive then. But now with the price dropping drastically as storage space increased, everyone seems to want an SSD? But what would work for the average Joe? The answer: OCZ. They have been in the forefront of the SSD market for some time now and have a fixed preference for using SandForce chipsets. However this is one of their products not using a SanForce chip as it uses INDILINK instead - a company they recently acquired. Let's see how it fairs in the race for speed.

Wallet friendly

The Octane may not be designed - or marketed - to be direct competition for SandForce SF2281 based drives like the Vertex 3 MaxIOPS. This, however, doesn't mean it is a low performance “budget” drive either. It just happens to be a budget friendly performance orientated drive that is supposedly offers a decent performance and capacity rating. This means that future drives can go up to 1TB and still not suffer big performance loss or increase in price. Good tidings for consumers all around!

Test details

We used Futuremark's PCMark 7 to test out how good the Octane is like in real world situations. PCMark 7 contains an individual disk subsystem benchmark. It is not a synthetic test but it does performance ratings based on real-life applications. This benchmark reproduces typical disk usage scenarios and measures how fast they are completed in popular applications. In other words, PCMark 7 shows you the speed of the disk subsystem from the application's point of view.

Performs when needed

The score that we got is 5012, which is lower than most Sanforce drives out there. Even so, we did find out that the drive itself will give, when you need it to give. From file transfer, to gaming and even video editing, the Octane is one of the top five drives you need to get if you want to have your system run like the Road Runner.


·         Chipset: INDILINX Everest

·         Cache: 512MB DDR3 RAM

·         Storage: 512GB

·         Connectivity: SATA 6Gb/s


·         Affordable, High capacity high speed SSD

·         Value: 8/10

·         Features: 8/10

·         Performance: 9/10

·         Design: 8/10

·         Usability: 8/10

·         Score: 8.2/10


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