Although all-in-one water cooling systems are nothing new, their rise in popularity is something very recent. We have watched as multiple companies have launched products designed bring “enthusiast” level cooling to the masses. This type of move is also nothing new as we have watched it happen with RAID, SLI, and many other items that were once only for gamers and other computer enthusiasts Still what many do not know is that most of these companies all buy their parts from the same place; Asetek. This company makes great water cooling products and they resell the pieces to others. Now, while that represents most of the market there are some that still build their own; one of these is Cooler Master. Back at CES 2011 we were allowed to see a prototype water cooling unit and we knew that they were looking to do something very different. Now in last months of 2012 Cooler Master has released their work. Today we will be taking a look at the Seidon 120M all-in-one water cooling unit to see if all of Cooler Master’s hard work has paid off.
When Cooler Master Launched their new QuickFire Line of gaming keyboards with Mechanical switched they were very well received. We have had the chance to test out all of the models even though we have not always been able to try out the different Cherry MX Switch types (we have gone through Red, Brown and Blue). Now while all of the models were well received there were complaints about more than a few of the features that were built in. One of the most common complaints that we have heard about the QuickFire line up is that the QuickFire Pro did not have full back lighting. Instead Cooler Master chose to only light up a small selection of keys that they called the gaming cluster. Still this keyboard has been bought by many gamers because it is one of the only mechanical keyboards that supports NKRO over USB. As an added bonus the QuickFire Pro has two modes of NKRO; Full and 6-Key. Well for those of you that have wished for a mechanical keyboard with full NKRO over USB and full back lighting your wait is over. Cooler Master has taken some of the best features of the QuickFire Pro and put them in a smaller version named the QuickFire TK and the best part,… it has full backlighting. Read on to find out all of the nice details.
Cooler Mater is a company that is certainly moving up. It was not that many years ago that they were not well thought of. This was until they released a lineup of cases and coolers that showed they were serious about their business. We saw products like the HAF932, the CM storm series cases and mice, the V8 cooler and others. While this was going on their more consumer based products were benefiting as well. We saw the Hiper 212+ become a favorite of many air cooling aficionados. We used them exclusively for over a year in our labs. Back in January we saw some nice new designs from Cooler Master in their suite at the Bellagio, today we have one of these in the lab and are eager to tell you how it performed. This is the CM Storm Spawn Gaming mouse. Let’s see if it has increased our frag rate.
There was a time when if you were talking about gaming you were talking about a desktop system. There was no other option really. To get the performance and power you needed you had to have a desktop system. Then a few years ago GPU and CPU manufacturers found a way to put a lot more power into their mobile products and real mobile gaming was born. However, with that came more power draw and more heat. There have been and more than a few solutions to keep these mobile power houses cool, but not all of them have worked. Cooler Master has had a string of these products that have been fairly capable. We have one of these in the lab, a new one, called Cooler Master Notepal Infinite EVO. It is a dual fan aluminum surface cooler with a 4-port USB hub built in. Let’s see what it can do.
As the PC Gaming scene ramps up (now that nVidia has finally released Kepler) we are starting to see some very nice accessories to take advantage of the flexibility and power that you get when you build a PC for the purpose of gaming. We have shown you more than a few items that are meant to improve your gaming experience including headsets, monitors, audio cards and now even mechanical keyboards. Only a few days ago we showed you Cooler Master’s new CM Storm QuickFire Rapid mechanical gaming keyboard and already have its big brother in the lab. So let’s take a look at the QuickFire Pro and see if this Cherry MX sporting partially backlit gaming keyboard has what it takes to earn the cool $100 that it will cost you.
In the world of computer enclosures things can get boring pretty fast; after all how much can you do with a box? For too many companies the way to differentiate their products is to put in a window and extra LEDs and call it a day. There is little that is new to be perfectly honest with you. However, every now and then something comes out that does stand out from the crowd. We have seen it before with some very unique designs and concepts. One company that has done a fairly good job at keeping things interesting is Cooler Master and in particular their CMStorm line. While at CES this year (2012) we were shown a case that caught our eye and imagination. It was the CMStorm Stryker. We called it the Storm Trooper, not only for its connections to the CMStorm Trooper, but also because it reminded me of the Strom Troopers from Star Wars. We have one of these in our lab now and well… let’s dive in to see what you get and how well it performs.
There was a time when the only type of keyboard you could buy was one with mechanical switches. This was pretty much it for the old AT days of computing. This style of keyboard later extended into the first ATX boards which featured PS/2 connectors (and later USB). This style of keyboard was later replaced by the smaller digital input (also known as capacitive and which was actually designed in the 1970s). These were nothing more than a sponge pad that would press a contact into two trace contacts on a PCB. As these were cheaper to make and boasted the same reliability as the older mechanical switches (which mean one switch per key) it soon became the standard and the older mechanical switch went away… That is until the gaming community resurrected it. Now we have a new generation of keyboards based on the old one-switch-per-key style of manufacturing. We have taken three of these for a stroll around the lab and now have a fourth to tell you about. This is the CM Storm Trigger Mechanical Gaming Keyboard. Let’s see if it can stand up to the rest of the pack.
Cooler Master is celebrating 20 years of life (we got to celebrate with them at CES 2012), but it has only been in the last five or so that we have really watched them take off. With the launch of the HAF line and their push into the enthusiast level of hardware (and the CM Storm line) Cooler Master has simply bloomed. Over the years we have tested many products from Cooler Master and still have more to go through. Today we are finally able to show you their newest edition to the HAF line up; the HAF XM. The HAF XM is a mid-tower case that has plenty of room for your three-way SLI or Crossfire plus all of the hard drives you could want. You get all of this for around $130 so let’s take a look and see if the HAF XM is worth the price of admission.
Have you ever wanted to grab a spot on your couch or bed and bring your notebook/netbook along with you? Personally I have not, but I know more than a few people that have (and often do) participate in this activity. These people all complain about the same things; the laptop is heavy, it gets hot, there is no room for a mouse. There are options to get around this though. Most look like TV trays for meals or some other type of accessory that goes over your lap. Again, there are complaints about this. Thankfully Choiix (a division of Cooler Master) has another option for you. Choiix is a company that specializes in computer peripherals that a very “lifestyle” oriented. So let’s take a look at the Choiix Comforter Lapdesk
A rather long time ago (in computer years) when real audio first came out on the computer the market was pretty bare for not only sound cards, but also for anything to use to listen to them. I can vividly remember buying an expensive ISA Soundblaster card and not being able to find any decent speakers to use with it. There simply was not a lot of choice out there to reproduce your audio. Of course before that I can still remember only having 8-bit audio through the motherboard speaker so decent is relative there. Now the market is flood of products many are just plain terrible (bad design, bad quality and bad audio playback). There are a few companies that have been working to break the “good enough” trend in audio. Cooler Master is one of them as we have shown you with their CMStorm Sirus headset. Now Cooler Master has another gaming headset available. This one is called the Sonuz and features a pair of massive 53mm drivers to push the sound deep into your skull. Let’s listen to them shall we?