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The hard drive behind RoBoHoBo’s game-winning drive

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A hard drive’s speed affects a computer’s overall performance, especially when gaming. African gaming icon, Luca Tucconi, believes his 1TB Western Digital Black drive gives him the competitive edge when competing against dozens of other players.

Performance hard drives are a critical component of any gamer’s hardware arsenal, affecting his or her ability to play seamlessly and to the best of their ability. This is particularly important for professional or competitive gamers, whose livelihood depends on their equipment’s ability to perform. For pro gamer, business owner and South African gaming icon Luca Tucconi, also known as RoBoHoBo, his 1TB WD Black drive gives him an important competitive edge. With advanced technology that delivers superior system performance, WD Black redefines RoBoHoBo’s gaming experience, minimising lag and maximising his multitasking capability.

Tucconi is a 23-year-old economics student living in Cape Town, South Africa. He is also the face behind the well-known gamer RoBoHoBo, and the CEO and co-founder of Orena, a South African competitive eSports portal that brings together gamers from across the country. He has won many accolades as a First Person Shooter player and an in-game leader and has played under the biggest gaming banners in the country, including Bravado Gaming, Ventus E-Sports and First in Battle. He is currently part of the Bravado Gaming organisation as manager of the Call of Duty division and as a brand ambassador. He also hosts professional gaming tournaments in South Africa, and runs a very successful Twitch channel, offering the South African gaming community a fully optimised and internationally recognised streaming platform.

“When my old hard drive failed after many years of use, I approached Frances Lombard, Head of Gaming and Business Development at Pinnacle Africa, to help me with obtaining a replacement. Without a suitable hard drive, I was not only unable to play, but also unable to stream our gaming tournaments and my own individual gaming stream. As this is the crux of my livelihood, time was of the essence. She assisted me with providing the 1TB WD Black drive quickly, enabling me to get back to business in short order,” he explains.

“Pinnacle has developed a working relationship with RoBoHoBo as one of the sponsors in his organised gaming tournaments, and we were thrilled to be able to assist with a new hard drive. WD Black was the ideal solution for RoBoHoBo’s needs, offering generous capacity and incredible performance as well as supporting the high resolution needed for HD gaming. It also features a number of technological enhancements to maximise system performance, including Vibration Control Technology for faster, longer and harder gaming, and a dual core processor that offers twice the processing power to maximise drive performance,” says Lombard.

WD Black also features Corruption Protection Technology, which helps to protect and limit the potential problem of data loss during power failure or power loss to the hard drive, protecting important game data. In addition, Dynamic Cache Technology increases performance by improving caching algorithms in real time and optimising the cache allocation between reads and writes. This results in the drive automatically allocating more cache for read data, which reduces data congestion and increases overall performance. Topped off with an industry-leading five-year limited warranty, the WD Black drive is the ultimate gaming solution.

“Having a powerful PC is critical to gaming ability. Regardless of your talent or skill, if you are using low quality or out-dated hardware, you will feel an impact on your maximum output as your computer will be unable to process newer, more detailed gaming titles. Your virtual character is restricted by the capabilities of the machine that is projecting it. The WD Black drive gives me a smooth and seamless experience when dealing with multiple administrative operations and gaming at the same time. I definitely have felt a major difference with regards to hardware related lag”, says Tucconi.

For RoBoHoBo, the top features of the WD Black drive include the 64MB cache, the generous 1TB hard drive capacity, and the Corruption Protection Technology that helps save information when the PC is turned off abruptly, essential given recent load shedding issues. He also cites the improvements in Frames Per Second with the new hard drive, which has assisted in significantly improving general game play.

“I would definitely recommend the WD Black drive to my fellow gamers. It has proven to be the perfect addition to my current setup. My parts were slowly but surely beginning to become out-dated with my hard drive taking the first hit. The new WD Black drive has provided me with sufficient storage space as well as a piece of gaming hardware that supplies a high speed and quality experience. These drives are definitely suited to an avid or professional gamer!” states Tucconi.

 “Gaming is becoming a significant force in the South African entertainment industry, as the number of players and tournaments, and the size of the prize pools, continues to grow. As a manufacturer of performance hard drives, gaming is an area of focus for us both locally and across the globe, and we are proud to be behind such legendary gaming names as RoBoHoBo. We look forward to working together to grow gaming to new heights in South Africa,” Kalvin Subbadu, Product Manager: Components at WD South Africa, concludes.

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Acer gaming beast escapes

Acer this week unveiled two notebooks that take portable gaming to new extremes.

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Acer  unveiled two new Predator Helios gaming notebooks this week at the next@acer global press conference in New York. They include the powerful Predator Helios 500, featuring up to 8th Gen Intel Core i9+ processors, and the Predator Helios 300 Special Edition that includes upgraded specs from its predecessor and a distinctive white chassis. Both feature VR-Ready performance, advanced thermal technologies, and blazing-fast connectivity.

“We’ve expanded our Predator Helios gaming notebook line in response to popular demand from gamers seeking extreme performance on the go,” said Jerry Kao, President of IT Products Business, Acer. “The Predator Helios 500 and Helios 300 gaming notebooks feature Acer’s proprietary thermal technologies and powerful components that, coupled with our award-winning software, deliver unparalleled gaming experiences.”

“The 8th Gen Intel Core i9+ processor for gaming and creation laptops is the highest performance Intel has ever delivered for this class of devices; purpose built for enthusiasts who demand premium gaming experiences whether at home or on the go,” said Steve Long, Vice President and General Manager, Client Computing Group Sales and Marketing, Intel. “Intel and Acer’s long relationship has produced amazing products over the years, and the new Acer Predator Helios gaming notebooks are powerful examples of what’s possible with this unprecedented level of performance.”

Predator Helios 500 is a gaming beast featuring overclocking, 4K 144 Hz panels

Designed for extreme gamers, the Predator Helios 500 is a gaming beast. It features up to overclockable 8th Gen Intel Core i9+ processors and overclockable GeForce GTX 1070 graphics. Intel Optane memory increases responsiveness and load times, while ultra-fast NVMePCIe SSDs, Killer DoubleShot Pro networking, and up to 64GB of memory keep the action going, making the Helios 500 the ideal gaming notebook for graphic-intensive AAA titles and live streaming.

Top-notch visuals are delivered on bright, vibrant 4K UHD or FHD IPS 17.3-inch displays with 144Hz refresh rates for blur- and tear-free gameplay. NVIDIA G-SYNC technology is supported on both the built-in display and external monitors, allowing for buttery-smooth imagery without tearing or stuttering. For those looking for maximum gaming immersion, dual Thunderbolt 3 ports, and display and HDMI 2.0 ports support up to three external monitors. Two speakers, a subwoofer, and Acer TrueHarmony and Waves MAXXAudio technology deliver incredible sound and hyper-realistic 3D audio using Waves Nx.

The Helios 500 stays cool with two of Acer’s proprietary AeroBlade 3D metal fans, and five heat pipes that distribute cool air to the machine’s key components while simultaneously releasing hot air. Fan speed can be controlled and customized through the PredatorSense app.

A backlit RGB keyboard offers four lighting zones with support for up to 16.8 million colors. Anti-ghosting technology provides the ultimate control for executing complex commands and combos, which can be set up via five dedicated programmable keys.

Acer’s PredatorSense app can be used to control and monitor the notebook’s vitals from one central interface, including overclocking, lighting, hotkeys, temperature, and fan control.

Predator Helios 300 Special Edition brings a sophisticated design twist to gaming notebooks

Acer’s budget-friendly Helios 300 gaming line sees the addition of a Special Edition model featuring an all-white aluminum chassis accented with gold trim, an unusually chic design for gaming notebooks.

The Helios 300 Special Edition (PH315-51) allows for ultra-smooth gameplay via its 15.6-inch FHD IPS display with an upgraded 144Hz refresh rate. The rapid refresh rate shortens frame rendering time and lowers input lag to give gamers an excellent in-game experience. It’s powered by up to an 8th Gen Intel Core i7+ processor, overclockable GeForce GTX 1060 graphics, up to a 512 GB PCIe Gen 3 NVMe solid state drive, and up to a 2 TB hard disk drive.

The Helios 300 Special Edition also comes equipped with up to 16 GB of DDR4 memory, and is upgradable to 32GB. Intel Optane memory speeds up load times of games and applications, access to information and improves overall system responsiveness. In addition, Gigabit Ethernet provides fast wired connections, while Gigabit Wi-Fi is provided by the latest Intel Wireless-AC 9560 that delivers up to 1.73Gbps throughput when using 160 MHz channels (2×2 802.11ac, dual-band 2.4GHz and 5GHz).

The Helios 300 Special Edition also includes two of Acer’s ultrathin (0.1 mm) all-metal AeroBlade 3D fans designed with advanced aerodynamics and superior airflow to keep the system cool. They can be controlled with Acer’s PredatorSense app, which offers three usage modes:

1. Coolboost mode:

For heavy loading games, rendering, streaming, and extended video consumption

2. Normal mode:

For productivity tools like Microsoft Office

3. Silent mode:

For web browsing and online chatting

Price and Availability

Predator Helios 500 will be available in South Africa in June starting at R34 999.00

Helios 300 Special Edition will be available in South Africa in August 2018. Exact Price will be communicated closer to the time.

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LG G7 arrives in SA

LG this week introduced South Africa to its latest premium smartphone, the LG G7 ThinQ, focused on bringing useful and convenient AI features to the smartphone experience.

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Powered by the latest Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 Mobile Platform, the LG G7 ThinQ offers 4GB of RAM and 64GB of internal storage to run demanding tasks and apps with. It is equipped with a 6.1-inch Super Bright Display, but the LG G7 ThinQ remains compact enough to use with one hand.

Sporting a new design aesthetic for the G series, the polished metal rim gives the LG G7 ThinQ a sleeker, more refined look, complemented by Gorilla Glass 5 on both the front and the back for enhanced durability. Rated IP68 for dust and water resistance, the LG G7 ThinQ is also awarded MIL-STD 810 c certification, having been subjected to a range of extreme temperature and environment tests designed by the United States military.

The LG G7 ThinQ has an 8MP camera up front, rendering clear and natural selfies, with two 16MP cameras at the back that deliver higher resolution photos with more detail, as well as a Super Wide Angle configuration.

As with other leading brands, LG has evolved its signature camera by including AI functionality. The AI CAM offers 19 shooting modes for intelligence-optimised shots. Users can also improve their photos by choosing from an additional three effect options should the AI CAM recommendation not suit their taste.

The new Super Bright Camera captures images that are up to four times brighter than typical photos shot in dim light. Through the combination of pixel binning and software processing, the AI algorithm adjusts the camera settings automatically when shooting in low light.

Live Photo Mode records one second before and after the shutter is pressed for snippets of unexpected moments or expressions that would normally be missed. Stickers uses face recognition to generate fun 2D and 3D overlays, such as sunglasses and headbands, that can be viewed directly on the display.

New to the G series is Portrait Mode, which generates professional-looking shots with out-of-focus backgrounds. This effect can be generated using both front and rear standard lenses as well as the rear Super Wide Angle lens.

LG G7 ThinQ offers further AI functionality with the inclusion of Google Lens features. Google Lens is a new way to search using the AI and computer vision. Google Assistant and Google Photos allow users to access more information on objects such as landmarks, plants, animals, and books. It can identify text or visit websites, add business cards to contacts, events to the calendar or look up an item on a restaurant menu.

A button just below the volume keys launches the AI functionality. A single tap of this button launches the Google Assistant, while two quick taps launches Google Lens. Users can also hold down the button to start talking to the Google Assistant without the repetition of the OK Google command.

With Super Far Field Voice Recognition (SFFVR) and the highly-sensitive G7ThinQ microphone, the Google Assistant can recognise voice commands from up to five meters away. SFFVR is able to separate commands from background noise, making the LG G7 ThinQ an alternative to a home AI speaker, even when the TV is on. Commands for the Google Assistant have been increased in the LG G7 ThinQ so users can get more done with their voice alone.

“The LG G7 ThinQ is strongly focused on the fundamentals and its launch marks a new chapter for our company,” said Deon Prinsloo, General Manager for Mobile Communication, LG Electronics S.A Pty Ltd. “Through the combination of personalised and useful AI functionalities with meaningful smartphone features, this is LG’s most convenient and in the moment smartphone yet.”

Key Specifications

  • Mobile Platform: Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 Mobile Platform
  • Display: 6.1-inch QHD+ 19.5:9 FullVision Super Bright Display (3120 x 1440 / 564ppi)
  • Memory:
    • LG G7 ThinQ: 4GB LPDDR4x RAM / 64GB UFS 2.1 ROM / MicroSD (up to 2TB)
  • Camera:
    • Rear Dual: 16MP Super Wide Angle (F1.9 / 107°) / 16MP Standard Angle (F1.6 / 71°)
    • Front: 8MP Wide Angle (F1.9 / 80°)
  • Battery: 3000mAh
  • OS: Android 8.0 Oreo
  • Size: 153.2 x 71.9 x 7.9mm
  • Weight: 162g
  • Connectivity: Wi-Fi 802.11 a, b, g, n, ac / Bluetooth 5.0 BLE / NFC / USB Type-C 2.0 (3.1 compatible)
  • Colours: New Aurora Black
  • Others: Super Bright Display / New Second Screen / AI CAM / Super Bright Camera / Super Far Field Voice Recognition / Boombox Speaker / Google Lens / AI Haptic / Hi-Fi Quad DAC / DTS:X 3D Surround Sound / IP68 Water and Dust Resistance / HDR10 / Google Assistant Key / Face Recognition / Fingerprint Sensor / Qualcomm Quick Charge 3.0 Technology / Wireless Charging / MIL-STD 810G Compliant / FM Radio
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