LI Staff' Post

NVIDIA, DirectX 12, and Asynchronous Compute: Don’t Panic Yet

Ashes of the Singularity: the game to bring NVIDIA cards to their knees?

Ashes of the Singularity: The game to bring NVIDIA cards to their knees?

Monday was a terrifying day to browse the web as the owner of an NVIDIA graphics card. News hit early this week that the company’s latest series of Maxwell GPUs, the GTX 900-series, could have a design flaw that compromises performance compared to AMD graphics cards when performing asynchronous compute in DirectX 12.

In short: A few weeks ago, Oxide Games released a benchmark demo of an upcoming game called Ashes of the Singularity, the first demo for DirectX 12, the soon-to-come update to Microsoft’s popular gaming API. Many Ashes benchmark reviews found that while NVIDIA graphics cards ran the game quite well with DirectX 11, AMD cards showed an enormous performance jump when upgrading to DX 12. NVIDIA cards, on the other hand, showed no performance improvements with DX 12, and in some cases, actually took a slight hit to performance compared to running the game with DX 11.

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PC Cable Management 101

This article was a team effort by the Logical Increments staff and Micah Dilse (@vidyajunkie)

An important and sometimes overlooked step to building your own PC is cable management. It may seem trivial, but good cable management can keep your computer running cooler and faster, and lengthen the time between cleanings. All the cables inside your case – especially ones with webbing – are major dust magnets. Any chassis, from the $30 entry-level boxes to the fortress disguised as the Corsair 900D, can give you cable management options. With good cable management, you get better airflow (keeping your components cooler), and minimize dust buildup (also keeping your components cooler).

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Clean cable management by Reddit user OriginSuperKingXero.

There are three important elements to good cable management:

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The Problem of Community Fragmentation from Matchmaking

Guest post by Hydrostatic Shock

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Matchmaking services have been replacing server browsers in multiplayer games on PC in recent years. The trend started in 2009 with the release of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2, developed by Infinity Ward. This caused a great deal of controversy in the PC gaming community, which led to a boycott of Modern Warfare 2 over the lack of dedicated servers and a server browser, which had been included in the previous title, Call Of Duty 4: Modern Warfare. The boycott did not result in any changes, and matchmaking services have continued to replace server browsers in PC games. 

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A Tale of Logical Increments

Greetings, traveler. Sit ye down, have a cup of dark coffee, and hearken to my tale.

I have enjoyed tinkering with technology for as long as I can remember. I roasted my first PC at the age of 12, by playing around with the PSU switch. During my university stay, I assembled several computers for both myself and for my friends, since none of them really cared much about technology: They just wanted to play. 

In the early months of 2010, I noticed that many people had a problem getting specific builds for specific budgets. While it is easy to find an answer to “What is the best CPU for $200?” it is not as easy to get “The best build for $800.”

Many people came to /g/ for advice, and I started collecting sample builds from various “build advice” threads. After a few months, it was clear that some items were much more likely to be suggested than others, and some advice (e.g. get a quality PSU) was constantly repeated to people new to PC buying and assembly. I thought it would be nice if /g/’s advice could be compiled into a simple source, so that people could get as much info as needed (for a novice), without having to wait for a nice person to make a build and give advice. This was what prompted me to compile the Logical Increments PC buying guide.

The guide has a list of PC builds, each with a descriptive name, ranging in price from less than USD$300 to over USD$2000. Each tier is slightly better than the one before it, either by having more powerful components, or higher quality components. There is also a list of infoboxes, describing some aspects of each component that you should watch out for when making a purchasing decision. The components selection and advice are compiled from /g/, and from PC-related websites and articles.

/g/’s advice proved to be of extremely high quality, and as a result, the guide received nearly 2 million views, and continues to get several thousand views every month. It is also featured in several websites as a “sticky” for users to refer to, since it answers many questions that novices may ask. /g/ as a whole is knowledgeable, intelligent, resourceful, well-read, and often quite helpful.

Over the last two years, the number of tiers has increased, and the infoboxes increased too. The guide is in .png form, and cannot exceed 5000 pixels, leading to space constraints. An image needs to be hosted, and photobucket has a long URL, and tinyURL was banned on /g/. A .png cannot have links, nor can it have collapsible items. With more requests for more things, it is inevitable that one day the guide moves to a proper site. An exceedingly nice gentleman who wishes to be known as Orion has shouldered the burden of creating the site (design, hosting, testing etc, were all done by him), and we are now ready to transition to a proper website, instead of one static image.

So please do take a moment to let us know if the new layout is to your liking, and if it is not, then tell us how we can improve it. If there are any features you like, let us know too. It is our hope to take all the elements that made the guide good, and expand them further, while still having an easy-to-remember URL.

Thanks for reading!

– The Falcon

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