Tag Archives: amd

AMD's Vision


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During my trip to SXSW last week, I spent some time at the AMD campus. I was able to talk briefly with Raymond from the AMD Product Marketing Group. I had heard that AMD has a vision for Vision, and wanted to get more information for all of you. It’s a difficult process to buy a new computer these days, with all of the choices there are. AMD Vision was created to simplify that process for you.

When a consumer walks into a store, they typically have ideas as to what they want to buy. Vision, Vision Premium and Vision Ultimate designations are similar to “good”, “better” and “best” hardware configurations. What this will do is give the purchaser a much better idea of what they will get with any particular model, to help them decide if it is the right one for them.

Even without knowing a model number, people can compare models against each other by using the Vision designation. People don’t necessarily care about the tech terms, such as “gigabyte”. They want to be able to look at something, and just know it will work for them. With this program, it’s simple for an average computer user to figure out what is what, and what will do the job.

For instance, let’s say a woman walks into the store and needs to buy a notebook that will allow her to surf the web and watch movies. The Vision line would be perfect for that. However, if she also needed to do some light video processing, she would be better off choosing the Vision Premium model. If she’s a power user who does a lot of processor-intensive work (or even a gamer), she’ll need to go with a machine designated with the Vision Ultimate tag.

This is the vision of Vision – to simplify the buying process, and make it more intuitive. AMD has been seeing very positive results with this program. People understand what they are trying to convey, and are using it to their advantage.

From what I’ve seen, I have to agree. Vision is fantastic, and I highly recommend using this system when you are looking to buy your next computer.

I appreciate the folks at AMD sponsoring my trip to SXSW, and giving me the opportunity to get important product information to our community.

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Acer Ferrari One 200


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If you’ve been watching my live stream this past week, you’ve likely seen the red laptop sitting on my desk. It is an Acer Ferrari One – part of the 200 series. It was sent to me to review by my friends at AMD, and I have to thank them for it. This notebook is part of the new Vision program set forth by AMD. Vision tries to make it easier for consumers to understand if the computer they are about to buy will do the things they want to do… gaming, email, Internet browsing and productivity apps. I’m all about productivity, so I am looking forward to really putting this machine through its paces.

The notebook is running Windows 7 on top of AMD M780G chipset, and is running an AMD Athlon X2 Dual Core processor. This is a beefy notebook. It’s not a netbook. Netbooks are typically cheap and slow, and don’t have enough power. The Ferrari is powerful and portable, weighing in at only about 3.3 pounds.

I have an 11.6 inch screen with this gorgeous little monster, with a 16×9 aspect ratio widescreen. The Ferrari packs 3 GB of RAM inside the case, with Wireless-N networking capabilities built in. You’ll also find a 2.5″ hard drive inside, along with hi-def audio functionality. Thankfully, the built-in card reader will read almost any type of removable media you might have lying around.

The reason why AMD has sent this particular unit is to show off part of their Eyefinity project. This port will let me connect to up to three different screens. Yes, it will run all three of them. How many notebooks can do that? When you’re at school or work, you want to be portable and save space. But at home, you want to hook up to larger monitors. Hook up the Ferrari to them, and you’re good to go. They will be treated as one screen by the machine, and will work flawlessly for you. There’s no need for a separate desktop to use with all those home monitors – the Ferrari has more than enough power and speed to handle nearly anything you would need it to do.

I don’t have to configure anything in software to make three screens work. It’s seamless, making it appear as though it is one giant screen. This is an important technology, fellow Geeks. You really NEED multiple screens these days.

I’ll be testing the Ferrari itself in the coming weeks, along with checking out just how well Eyefinity works. Stay tuned to see video reviews.

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AMD Questions and Answers


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Thanks to AMD for allowing our community to ask them questions. Yes, we have an open line of communication with them – so don’t think it begins and ends with this video. If it weren’t for AMD, I wouldn’t have been able to attend SXSW (and, of course, visit AMD’s campus in Austin, TX).

Does ATI have any plans to counter Nvidia’s Fermi? Most people actually say that Fermi are trying to counter what ATI is doing. If you look, ATI has launched several DX-11 based graphics cards over the past several months, whereas Fermi has not launched a single one. The question should be thrown to Fermi, instead.

What is the best ATI video card out there? – If you’re looking for a single GPU solution, it would be the 5870. If you’re looking for the best overall (and fastest) graphics card, you’ll want to check out the HD 5970.

What is your favorite technology in the new series of graphics cards? – It’s going to depend on the person, and their usage of their graphics card. There are two technologies that make the ATI line the best there is. DirectX 11 is the one that is the most useful, as well as the most widely-demanded. DirectX 11 was introduced with Windows 7, and is now available on Vista. It brings additional performance and quality capabilities. For power users, the best feature is the Eyefinity technology. It’s a game changer.

What is the difference between the 4800 series cards, and the 5800 series cards? – Both cards are fantastic for DirectX 9 and DirectX 10 games. The 4800 is still a good value, but with the 5800 series you will have just a bit more performance.

If you were building an extreme gaming PC (no matter the cost), which GPU would you choose? – One of the employees answering questions recently did this exact thing. He chose the Phenom II X4 965 Black Edition Quad Core processor. He wanted this both for the ease of use with Eyefinity, as well as the sheer power of the hardware. This processor incorporates 6MB of unified high-speed L3 cache and a high-speed DDR2/DDR3 memory controller.

Thanks again to everyone at AMD – not only for helping me with my SXSW trip, but for being so fantastic to work with during the event.

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Philip DeFranco and Texas Women!


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Famous YouTube personality Philip DeFranco is in Texas for SXSW, just like I am! Imei and I ran in to him earlier today, and I just HAD to ask him one burning question…

Thanks to AMD for helping me to attend this awesome event!

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Do You Have a Question for AMD?


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I am here in Austin, Texas to attend the SXSW Conference, thanks to the support of AMD. As a part of my trip, I will be visiting their campus tomorrow!

Here’s your chance to ask a question of the folks at AMD / ATI! If you leave a comment or question (using proper PUGS!), there’s a good change we’ll get a representative to answer it in a video!

Get your questions ready, and leave them as a comment on the YouTube video that this post was created from so I’ll be sure to see it!

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Does Free Speech Exist on the Internet?

I’ve seen this type of discussion come up many times within my community, and in others. When someone breaks a site rule and is “reprimanded” for it, they will often scream about their Freedom of Speech, guaranteed by the United States Constitution. I always get a chuckle out of this. You see, when you join a privately-owned site and agree to abide by their rules, there is no Freedom of Speech. The owners and administrators of said service are well within their rights to tell you what you can – and cannot – discuss on their little corner of the Web. If you don’t like it… well… no one is forcing you to stay there as a member.

This may sound harsh to some of you, and I don’t intend for it to be. I guess I’m trying to remind all of you that common courtesy and a maturity in following rules YOU agreed to when you joined a particular site are far more important than anything else. Anytime I see some ticked off person on Geeks yelling about their Freedom of Speech, my first thought is to ask them what rule THEY broke. I’ve learned over the years that 99% of the time, the upset person in question wanted to push the limits, and discuss something illegal, or otherwise against the rules.

What are your thoughts? Do you believe that the owners of a particular site or service have the final – and likely, ONLY – say in what is and isn’t allowed there?

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SXSW Conference Tips

I will be attending SXSW in just a few weeks. While this isn’t my first time, I’ve only been able to get there once before. Since this event is so huge, I sort of feel like a newb! There is a lot to see and do while at this conference, and I know that many people are confused as heck about what to do, where to go, and who to see! This guide done by C.C. Chapman is sure to help all of us figure out what’s what while we’re in Texas!

During my last trip to SXSW, I was fortunate to be able to talk with Hugh Forest, the Executive Director of the event. It’s always good to get the perspective of the person responsible for building a show like SXSW to get a sense for where the conference came from and where it’s headed in the future. The podcast version of that discussion is still available in my archives – along with the rest of my articles from that week.

The biggest piece of advice that C.C. has for us is that if we’re going to try and set up any type of meeting, do it over breakfast. Since there is so much going on at all times, breakfast seems to be the only time of the day you can really control to your advantage. People are awake, they’re ready to go… and they’re usually willing to talk. At the end of the day, they’re tired, their nerves are shot, and you’re not going to get very good information (or video footage!).

Another piece of advice that he has is to leave your laptop in the hotel, and pack for the day as light as you can. The conference center itself is unbelievably HUGE. There is going to be a lot of walking, and you don’t want to bog yourself down. Do your back a favor – don’t lug around a lot of equipment today. Keep your phone on you, yes… and perhaps a small video recorder. Beyond that, just be comfortable!

Make sure you take the time to say hello to everyone you see. You never know when the woman standing off by herself for a few moments may be someone who could greatly impact your future. At SXSW, there are musicians, actors, startup companies and everyone in between in attendance. Take the time to smile and just say a big howdy! Talk to the person next to you in each session. If there’s someone you want to meet, go say hello. You may feel they are too busy for you, but just take a chance.

Make sure the address book in your phone is up-to-date. If there are people you have contact information for that may be attending… make sure you have them in your phone. It will be much easier to find them come conference time!

Most of all… have FUN. Enjoy every moment of your time at this amazing conference.

I will be recording interviews during my time at SXSW, thanks to my awesome sponsor, AMD!

Is it Time for Summer Yet?

The weather in Seattle has been amazingly beautiful for the past week. Kat couldn’t believe her luck when she visited for a week, and had nothing but sunshine and warm temps. I couldn’t help but grumble. I know this will mean we’re going to end up having an extremely hot summer this year. I am not a fan of extreme temperatures in either direction. The rain has finally returned to the Pacific NorthWest though. Kat only missed it by two days.

However, the same day she returned home from Seattle, she left with her family to drive to Boston. They have a family member in the hospital there who has been seriously ill. Instead of heading back home today, though, they had to drive further north to stay with her fiance’s parents for a few days. There’s currently a lovely blizzard nailing much of New York and Pennsylvania, making it impossible for her to drive home. With her away from home, our work flow has gotten all twisted up and turned around. If we’ve missed something we were supposed to get done for you, we both deeply apologize! We’re tag-teaming to get everything done as scheduled!

I know Kat isn’t the only person ready for winter to end. Personally, I prefer Spring or Fall. I know a lot of you out there are pining for Summer, though, waiting on the hot temps and gorgeous sunshine. Are you one of them?

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