Under The Hood: This Week In PC, Component And Software News

Under The Hood: This Week In PC, Component And Software News

Thinking of building a new gaming PC? Struggling with whatever random error your desktop is throwing up this week? Under The Hood gives you a quick and concise run-down of the most important things that happened to the PC master race in the last seven days.

AMD Has New CPUs And A New Stock Cooler

Where its competitor Intel has decided to cut the air cooler out of its enthusiast-targeted Skylake CPU packages, perennial underdog AMD has doubled down. It’s launching a new, more efficient cooler alongside new desktop chips for gamers and non-gamers alike.

The new Wraith is AMD’s best air cooler to date, ships with the FX 8370 octa-core CPU, and is designed to handle its gutsy 125W TDP. With 24 per cent more surface area across its fins and 34 per cent more airflow overall, it’s one-tenth as noisy as AMD’s previous stock cooler attempts on high-end chips. The updated, less hardcore stock cooler shipping with AMD’s mainstream chips doesn’t have a cool name like Wraith — it’s just the company’s new “95W Thermal Solution”.

Logitech’s New G810 Gaming Keyboard Is A Full-Colour Masterpiece
If you thought Logitech’s previous gaming keyboards were a bit… space-age, then you’re in luck. The third keyboard in the company’s revamped G gaming line-up looks a lot more straightforward and, y’know, rectangular, but still keeps the same excellent mechanical keys and RGB backlighting.

The G810 Orion Spectrum is the third keyboard to use Logitech’s excellent and unique Romer-G mechanical switch, which is 25 per cent faster to actuate than the Cherry MX switches — 1.5mm of travel versus 2mm. And when you’re mashing keys in the middle of a firefight, that might actually make a difference.

Cheap USB-C Cables Could Kill Your Phone Or Laptop
Benson Leung, an engineer on Google’s Pixel team, was doing God’s work by risking his Chromebook Pixel, which charges via USB-C, to test every single USB-C to USB-A cord available to general consumers. One crappy cord, and his $US1500 computer would be fried.

You know how this story ends right? On Monday, a cheap cord purchased from Amazon destroyed all his testing equipment, including his computer. According to Leung’s Google Plus page, the “SurjTech 3M USB 3.1 Type C to Standard Type A” cord was unbelievably poorly made, with some necessary wires soldered incorrectly, and other wires missing. (Mercifully, the faulty cable is no longer available for purchase on the site.)

You Can Now Stream Torrents From The Pirate Bay In Your Browser
Despite a stormy ride, The Pirate Bay is still alive and well. And now it has an intriguing new feature: you can stream the torrents it indexes right there in your browser. The torrenting site has announced that it now supports Torrents Time — a browser plugin that lets you stream a torrent from inside a browser. It’s a bit like Popcorn Time, only it still works (in fact, the plugin was predictably built by some of the guys from Popcorn Time).

Well, it works most of the time. The Pirate Bay feature is still in beta, and it suffers from the same old problems you have with all torrents — crappy quality, long waits for parts of some files and all those kinds of things.