Hardware Mobile

Why You Shouldn’t Buy A New Laptop Battery

Here’s an excellent video description on why you shouldn’t buy a new laptop battery. If I didn’t come across this video, I would’ve bought myself a new battery. Now that I know, I can save myself some of that cash for a new handphone. =P

Computers Hardware

14 Of The Coolest PC Casings That Everyone Should Know About

  1. Zalman fatal1ty FC-ZE1
  2. Zalman is a Korean company that is formed in 1999 specializing in aftermarket cooling products. On the other hand, Johnathan ‘Fatal1ty’ Wendel is the world’s best known PC gamer. When you mix the 2 of them together, you’ll get the Zalman Fatal1ty FC-ZE1 PC Casing. Here are several of the cool features that comes with the cool design.

    • The entire enclosure is covered with firm 5mm thick anodized pure aluminium panels that prevent intensifying vibrations
    • Even 130 watts of heat is easily handled by the two 92mm front intake fans and a 120mm rear exhaust fan.
    • Easily slot in hard disk drives into the hard disk chassis. The anchored spinning bars with cylindrical rubber wheels allows the user to install and remove the hard disk simply by rolling the hard disk in and out of the chassis without having to use any tools.
    • Easily slide off the side panel of the casing like a door with one push of the latch.

  3. Antec Nine Hundred
  4. The guys at Antec don’t call it the ultimate gamer case for no reason. It’s built for maximum cooling, making use of every hole that they can find. Here’s what’s cool about the Antec Nine Hundred.

    • Have you ever seen a monster-size 200mm exhaust fan mounted above a casing? There’s even a 3-speed switch control.
    • The entire bezel is pierced with holes for maximum air intake.
    • You can also fill up the 9 drive bays with a maximum of 6 hard disks.
    • Two 120mm are located at the front and one at the back that comes with 3-speed control.
    • The side panel also has a 120mm fan mount for extra cooling.
    • There’s even a tray on top for mp3 players, digital cameras, etc.
    • The I/O ports located at the top makes it more convenient.
    • This is the first casing that I come to know of that has the power supply located at the bottom.

  5. Antec P180
  6. The P180 is another killer casing by Antec. Killer in terms of design and quality.

    • There is a separator that divides the power supply from the system located on top. This isolates heat and noise generated from the power supply.
    • The front and side panels that are covered with 3 layers of (aluminum, plastic, aluminum) to further depress noise.
    • There are a maximum of five 120mm fan mounts located at all sides of the casing. The 3 standard fans that come with the casing have 3-speed switch control.
    • The total number of drive bays = 11. A maximum of 6 for hard disk drives.
    • The front door is designed to open up 270ยบ
    • The rubber grommeted ports on the rear are for liquid-cooling tubes that comes with external liquid-cooling hardware.
    • Hard drive cages contain silicone grommets that absorb vibrations and reduce noise.
    • The built in air filter is washable

  7. Thermaltake Armor Extreme Edition
  8. This casing is almost the same as Kandalf Extreme, except for the front panel. Both are products undoubtedly made by one of the worlds largest PC modification companies, Thermaltake. What’s exceptional about this line of casing is the dual channel air guide architecture.

    • This casing’s side door is special in the sense that it contains a dual channel air guide architecture that provides dedicated cooling for dual processor motherboards.
    • The hard disk chassis is removable. Easily relocate the HDD and FDD drive bay.
    • Installing 5.25″ devices like CD ROMs are tool free.
    • Easily install PCI slots into the casing’s screwless slots.
    • There’s a 5.25″ accessory box that comes with the casing.
    • The top has a 62% opening ratio.
    • The side door is easily opened by the extra large thumb screws.

  9. Thermaltake Tai Chi VB5000SNA
  10. Tai Chi is actually an internal Chinese martial art often practiced with soft relaxed movements. It doesn’t disappoint, just like Thermaltake’s Tai Chi casing that has smooth edges and and open working spaces.

    • The all aluminum extrusion built chassis improves heat dissipation and structural rigidity.
    • The casing is built to house liquid cooling systems.
    • The side panel opening is hydraulic operated.
    • You don’t need a screwdriver at all. Installation of hardware parts around the casing is tool free.
    • Internal space is amplified and the airflow is optimized.
    • A total of 11 5.25″ drive bays are supported.
    • Front control panel is easily relocatable.
    • The aluminum motherboard tray is removable.
    • Handles at the top provide easy lifting.
    • The wheel stands enables easy mobility.
    • An opening for ventilation can also be found at the bottom.

  11. Apevia X-Pleasure-BK
  12. The X-Pleasure from Apevia (formerly Aspire) is a pretty pleasurable treat for the eye. This full tower casing is spacious, expandable and solid. There are 2 types of make, aluminum and metal.

    • Buyers have a choice to choose between aluminum for a lighter casing or metal for the extra strength.
    • There are 13 drive bays on this monster, 7 of which are for hard disks.
    • The slide in rail system makes it easy to install 5.25″ devices like CD ROMs.
    • 3.5″ drive bays are removable, providing easy access and set up.
    • The casing comes with built in temperature readout and a classy analog fan control gauge that can control up to 5 fans, located at the front panel.
    • Both side panels and front panels are lockable.
    • The casing comes with two 80mm and two 120mm fans

  13. Sunbeam Premium 9 Bay Acrylic Case UV Blue
  14. Here’s a casing that was built to show off what the inside is made of. The transparency of the casing might give the impression that the casing is flimsy, but truth be told it is stronger than you think.

    • The entire case is made out of high quality, 5-8mm thick acrylic panels reinforced with metal fasteners all around for utmost durability.
    • The internal 120mm fan rack is movable, allowing customization for optimum cooling.
    • The top contains a 80mm blowhole.
    • Retaining holes at the back are made for water cooling applications.
    • Glows in the dark and transparent with a light blue tint under light.

  15. Lian Li PC-777a
  16. THis is surely one of its kind. Here’s a special design by Lian Li as a mark of their 20th anniversary celebrations, boasting of a casing that looks like a turbocharger. There are only 200 units made worldwide. It’s unique yet practical. Look forward to more surprises inside.

  17. The entire casing is covered with aluminum and contains mesh grills at the side for plenty of airflow without accumulating excessive dust.
    • Easily remove the side panel with only unscrewing a single thumbscrew, pull it back and then lift the panel off.
    • The motherboard plate is swappable for a BTX plate.
    • Take advantage of the many cavities around the insides to keep wiring and mess to a minimum.
    • Installing expansion card slots is a breeze as they are locked on with thumbscrews.
    • The hard disk drive bays use the ‘screw slider’ method of installation. This method requires you to attach 4 special screws to the device to easily slot them into their respective hole.
    • I/O connections are located at the top

  18. Cooler Master CM Stacker 832
  19. This model is one of Cooler Master’s hottest, unique casings. The matte aluminum finish is stunning and elegant. It’s the 3rd generation Stacker that has a lot of improvement internally compared to previous generations.

    • All aspects of installaing is tool free, though there is the option of additionally securing hard drives with traditional screws.
    • The mainboard tray is removable, which caters for easy access during installation.
    • Located together with other I/O ports at the top, you will find 4 USB ports strategically positioned without getting in each other’s way.
    • All 9 drive bays can support 5.25″ or 3.25″ drives.
    • Three stock 120mm fans are positioned at the front, back and sides with an option of a 4th 120mm fan at the top.
    • The side panel can carry a maximum of 4 fans.

  20. Silverstone TJ07 Silver
  21. The TJ07 is another of Silverstone’s product that shows culmination of years of experience as it fuses the latest in manufacturing process, thermal concept, ergonomic design, and attractive aesthetics. It’s quiet and aesthetically pleasing.

    • Contains 2 power supply bays.
    • The main structure is made out of a solid extruded aluminum panel measuring 4-8mm in thickness.
    • The panels are arched precisely at the edges to form an aluminum casing frame that is more than 2x the structural rigidity of steel casings. The other benefit is the significant reduction of noise.
    • There are 14 drive bays, 6 of which are for hard drives.
    • Space is enormous. You can easily route cables without zipties and there is nothing that cannot be fitted into the TJ07
    • The cooling system consists of 6 fan mounts at the top, rear and side.
    • Rivet use is minimum, which maximizes serviceability
    • The casing layout is toll free

  22. Lian Li PC S80B
  23. The Lian Li PC S80 comes in 2 colors, black and silver. The exterior is extremely smooth and free from clutter, with nice, tight lines around the side panels and door.

    • Boasts of a never-before-seen fan cooling system, excessive amount of aluminum plates and vibration dampening foam that completely soundproofs the system.
    • A rear soundproof cover is installed at the rear which causes additional soundproofing.
    • The front door is lockable.
    • The door is held in place by a spring-loaded ball bearing in a machined holder that works perfectly.
    • Two 120mm fans at the front pump cool air into the chamber before exhausting it with the 80mm fan above the CPU and an adjustable 120mm fan.
    • The unit is built to maintain a vacuum for the cooling system, so the outside of the unit is completely devoid of any major vents or openings. Simple yet artistic.
    • Everything around the unit is either slotted in or secured with thumbscrews.
    • The hard drive cage uses plastic runners with several passive aluminum coolers allow the hard disks to be slotted in effortlessly while gaining from the aluminum fins that accelerates heat dissipation.
    • The casing sits above 4 aluminum feet covered with felt-based dampening foam that further maximizes vibration absorption.

  24. Lian Li PC B20
  25. The PC-B20B is almost the same as the PC-S80, with only several slight feature differences that separates them.

    • Additional thumb screws comes with the casing.
    • Comes with a fan speed controller at the front.
    • Anti vibration rubber rings are used to hold the metal casing together.
    • Both hard drive cage and motherboard plate is removable, making installation a breeze.
    • All round tool free installation.
    • The front door is lockable.
    • B20B also uses a spring loaded ball bearing.
    • Both side panels are covered with noise absorbing foam.

  26. Aerocool ExtremEngine 3T
  27. AeroCool has designed their new ExtremEngine 3T with huge fans and a superbly deisgned case for the purpose of providing sufficient cooling for overclocking. AeroCool is officially the first company to release a case with not only one but two larger fans capable of moving plenty of air!

    • A gigantic is found 10 inch fan by the side cover and a 6 inch fan at the front that look like a jet engine for cool air intake. A further two 8mm fan or a 120mm is mountable at the rear.
    • Every drive bay is covered with a metal mesh at the front.
    • Comes with a fan speed controller.
    • Finger latches and thumbscrews are all that is used to secure parts of the entire casing together.
    • 11 drive bays are supported with 7 for hard drives.
Hardware Mobile

10 Easy Tweaks For Laptop / Notebook Users

Notebooks are pretty common nowadays. As the years go by, laptop prices have gone to about $600 per piece. If the job requires traveling, you’d most probably have a laptop too. But no matter what brand the notebook may be, everyone faces the same issues. It may not be as efficient as a desktop and there is a limit to usage when there is no power plug nearby. Relax, cause here are 10 tips and tricks that you can easily follow to make it faster, save more battery and be more useful than you ever thought it would.

  1. Make notebook batteries last longer
  2. A notebook battery has to handle the OS, hard drive, accessories, cooling system, sound, screen and external devices. It’s a huge load and it can’t go more than 1 or 2 hours. If you wanna stretch it for another extra 30 min or so, you can.

    • Set brightness as low as you can tolerate. Most notebooks have a shortcut key to adjust the brightness, which you can easily switch back and forth when you are plugged in.
    • Use the touchpad when the notebook is not plugged in. External devices will consume additional power. Don’t leave anything that you do not require, plugged in.

  3. Power schemes
  4. Windows XP users get to create several different power profiles to fully optimize the power for every condition. Just right click on the battery icon at the lower right of the LCD. Set schemes for maximum battery life, watching movies, playing games, etc. For example, this is what your ‘Max Battery’ scheme should have. Know that a notebook performs the fastest and is coolest when plugged in.

    • Turn off monitor after 1 minute
    • Hard disks after 3 minutes
    • Standby after 10 minutes
    • Hibernate after 20 minutes

    You can easily pull off 2 1/2 hours with these 4 settings. Who knows, you may even hit 3.

  5. More power saving techniques
  6. Newer notebooks include a program that is able to adjust CPU clock speeds, so that you can save even more power. For example, you don’t need 3GHz to play Minesweeper or write a Word document. Use it, if it’s available. You can further push your laptop’s battery life.

    Just so you should know, 3 common activities that take up a lot of juice are

    • Burning cd’s
    • Watching dvds
    • Playing 3D games
  7. Sweep up the dust
  8. Remove all unwanted programs from the ‘Add / Remove Programs’ application window in the Control Panel.

  9. Driver
  10. Set Windows Update to automatically check for updates. You can find it in the Security Center applet in the Control Panel. Visit your notebook’s manufacturer and check for updates for your model. Ensuring that your notebook has the latest software and drivers installed guarantees system stability and efficiency.

  11. Upgrade memory
  12. The most obvious performance increase is in the RAM department. Just right click at the ‘My Computer’ icon and check. If your Ram is 256MB double it to 512MB. 512MB is the minimum for any PC or laptop using Windows XP. If it is at 512MB and you still have horrible load times, laggy programs and a lot of disk swapping, push it to 1024MB. This is the most obvious notebook tweak of all. You will feel the significance when the RAM is added.

  13. Cleaning
    • LCD
    • Use an eyeglass cleaner with a microfiber cloth, if you can’t get hold of a proper anti-static cleaner.

    • Touchpad & Keyboard
    • Use compressed air to blow out the dust and debris lying below the keys. Then use the same method as cleaning the LCD.

    • Case
    • Use the same method as the LCD

    • Innards
    • Blast every grill and port that you can find with compressed air. You can wipe the outer parts with any clean towel.

  14. Burning laps
  15. Notebooks are hottest when unplugged. The reason is because the fans don’t run as often. Even with the fans at full throttle, the underside will still be the hottest side. The solution lies in slipping in a layer of something in between. You can very well find laptop cooling pads in PC accessories shop that are USB powered. They will help, but they also do drain power. The best choice is to grab something nearby like :

    • a towel
    • a thick shirt
    • a small pillow
    • a cardboard

  16. Wireless Networking
  17. Newer computers come with in built networking. Get a wireless network adapter if you don’t have on. Some of the great stuff that you can do includes checking out recipes from the kitchen or sip on pina colada by the pool while chatting with buddies on your days off. Wireless gives the laptop a whole new useful perspective.

  18. Video/Audio Output
  19. Newer computers come with in built video-out and audio-out. These 2 jacks can be used to bring home entertainment up a notch. Watch movies on the TV or play music through the stereo system.