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PCs - PC Components

Raspberry Pi Celebrates Birthday With Pi Zero W

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Raspberry Pi Celebrates Birthday With Pi Zero W

The Raspberry Pi celebrates its 5th birthday with the launch of the Pi Zero W-- an update on the 2015 Pi Zero complete with wifi and Bluetooth connectivity.

The Pi Zero W carries the same specifications as its predecessor on a slim single-sided board, namely a 1GHz single-core Broadcom BCM2835 CPU, 512MB RAM, mini-HDMI port, micro-USB port and a HAT-compatible 40-pin header. Wireless connectivity comes through the addition of a Cypress CYW-43438 chip, the same found in the Raspberry Pi Model B.

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Asus Rivals Raspberry With Tinker Board

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Asus Rivals Raspberry With Tinker Board

Asus is the next company to take on barebones micro-PCs as it reveals the Tinker Board-- a small machine similar to the popular Raspberry Pi, if with a more powerful processor capable of 4K video playback.

Officially dubbed the "Asus 90MB0QY1-M0EAY0," the Tinker Board measures 8.5 x 5.3cm and carries a quad-core 1.8GHz ARM Cortex A17 CPU, ARM Mali-T764 GPU and 2GB DDR3 RAM. The combination, according to the company, allows 4K video and 24-bit audio support through H.265 4K decoding, and should also allow for better 3D graphics performance.

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Intel Presents Credit Card-Size Compute Card

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Intel Presents Credit Card-Size Compute Card

Intel reveals a PC small enough to fit in a wallet at CES 2017-- the Compute Card, a device measuring 95 x 55 x 5mm the company claims brings computing power "to virtually any product, anywhere."

The compact Compute Card frame fits an Intel system-on-chip, memory, storage and wifi/Bluetooth connectivity. Chipzilla does not reveal the actual specifications as yet, but it promises a modular design customers will be able to configure with a range of processors, including 7th gen Intel Core CPUs with vPro.

Connecting a Compute Card to a device demands a new standard connector-- one described as "USB-C plus extension." The connector handles USB, PCIe, HDMI, DP and additional signals running between the card and devices, and Intel says it can be used by a wide variety of things, such as interactive fridges, smart kiosks, security cameras, smart TVs and IoT gateways.

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Zotac Presents VR GO Backpack PC

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Zotac Presents VR GO Backpack PC

Zotac offers a variety of miniature gaming PCs, but only one comes ready with straps-- the VR GO, a PC users can strap on their backs straight out of the box for more mobile VR experiences.

The straps are removable, meaning customers can use the PC as a regular desktop machine. It carries fairly decent hardware, with Nvidia GeForce GTX 1070 graphics, quad-core Intel Core i7 CPU, M.2 SSD and a hot-swappable battery in a form factor the company says still includes proprietary cooling system and properly positioned I/O ports.

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The Palm-Size Racing P1 Mini PC

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The Palm-Size Racing P1 Mini PC

Component maker Biostar announces a mini PC-- the Racing P1, a machine around the size of three smartphone stacked on top of each other based on the 14nm Intel Atom Z8350 CPU.

First seen back at Computex 2016, the Racing P1 measures 129 x 83 x 27mm and has a fanless design offering silent operation. Construction is in carbon fibre with "sports car curves," and while customers can hide the machine behind a display via VESA-compatible mounts one can add a spot of flash through RGB LEDs and a 5V LED Header for the addition of LED strips controllable via Vivd LED DJ software.

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MSI Puts VR-Capable PC in Backpack

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MSI Puts VR-Capable PC in Backpack

MSI presents the VR One at Tokyo Games Show (TGS) 2016-- a VR-capable PC described as the "lightest and thinnest" yet, allowing one to carry it around as a backpack.

Previously seen in prototype form, the VR One features an overclocked Intel Core i7 CPU, GTX 1070 mobile graphics and 2 hot-swappable battery packs promising up to 1.5 hours of "full speed gameplay" on a single charge. Connectivity includes x1 HDMI, X1 Mini DisplayPort and and x1 Thunderbolt 3 ports for full support of headsets such as the HTC Vive.

When complete with batteries the backpack weighs 3.6kg, and MSI says operation is both cool and silent through dual 9cm ultra blade fans and 9 heat pipes taking care of cooling duties.

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Tim Cook: "Stay Tuned" for Mac Refresh

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Tim Cook:

The latest Apple event focused solely on the iPhone and Watch, leading to worries the company forgot about the Mac. However Tim Cook says this is not the case, in an email telling a MacRumors reader to "stay tuned" for future updates.

"I love the Mac and we are very committed to it," the email to an anonymous MacRumours reader states. Of course, one can't fully confirm the authenticity of the email, but the headers suggest it originates from Apple corporate servers. As for the author, while Apple execs sometimes answer correspondence personally, it might also have come from the company's executive relations or PR teams.

In any case, Apple traditionally holds a separate Mac-focused event after holding iPhone ceremonies-- last year had it reveal the 4K 21.5-inch iMac on 13 October, little more than a month after the 9 September event. As such, one can safely expect the company to do something similar, particularly since the Mac lineup is in need of an update.

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HP Presents More Novel PCs

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HP Presents More Novel PCs

HP appears to be all about unusual PC form factors-- the Pavilion Wave is a mini PC built around a 360-degree speaker, while the Elite Slice features a modular compact design.

The Pavilion Wave looks less like a PC and more like a piece of audio gear. It features a triangular, fabric-coated chassis and an integrated speaker complete with a parabolic reflector the company says provides "superior" 360-degree audio for one's music and movies. Web chats are also catered for, since the PC carries dual-microphones.

Technical specifications include support for up to quad-core desktop CPUs, 2TB HDD, 128GB SSD, 16GB DDR4 RAM and an optional Radeon R9 M470 GPU. Connectivity comes through wifi, x3 USB, x1 HDMI, x1 DisplayPort (allowing it to push video to two 4K displays) and ethernet ports.

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Easy Port Access With MSI VR Boost Kit

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Easy Port Access With MSI VR Boost Kit

Connecting VR headset cables to the back of desktop PCs can be "a bit of a hassle," MSI says-- thus the need for the Boost Kit, a means to easily add more HDMI and USB connectors.

The kit consists of a 5.25-inch drive bay device featuring x1 HDMI 2.4 and x2 USB 3.0 ports. It requires a spare 5.25-inch front panel bay and comes complete with a "stylish expansion slot bracket" for the neat guiding of the HDMI cable from the back of the graphics card through the PC. Oh, and a motherboard with USB 3.0 support. Obviously.

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The PC Inside a Keyboard

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The PC Inside a Keyboard

Chinese OEM Pipo presents a pair of interesting takes on the Windows 10 mini PC-- the KB1, a computer inside a keyboard, and the KB2, a smaller, more unique computer inside a folding keyboard.

The non-foldable KB1 comes in 2 versions, both featuring an Intel x5-Z8300 Cherry Trail processor and a choice of 2 or 4GB RAM and 32 or 64GB of internal storage. It is the size of a standard keyboard and even features a touchpad to handle mouse-related duties.

Ports include x1 VGA, x1 HDMI, x2 USB and x1 ethernet, together with a microSD slot and audio jacks. It also features stereo speakers, 802.11ac wifi and a 6000mAh battery.

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Asus Adds to VivoMini Mini-PCs

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Asus Adds to VivoMini Mini-PCs

Asus adds to the VivoMini mini-PC series with the VM65N and VM65, both ideal for daily computing or HTPC applications through Intel Core Skylake processors, DDR4 RAM, discrete Nvidia graphics and SonicMaster-enhanced audio.

The VM65N is the higher-specification option. It features Nvidia GeForceM Optimus graphics and 4K/UHD display support, allowing users to enjoy high resolution video and games. The graphics card also promises a performance boost of up to 56% over PCs with integrated graphics, making the VM65N ideal for photo or video editing.

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