Radeon HD 5970
Here's more stuff to check out...

Part one looked at SSDs, flash-based storage, and RAM. In part two, we look at some other options to consider this holiday shopping season.

Video cards:

Radeon HD 5970
Radeon HD 5870
Radeon HD 5850
Radeon HD 5770
Radeon HD 5750

ATI has been providing a lot of value over the last year and a half with its video cards. The new Radeon HD 5000 series is very popular due to its support for DirectX 11. The Radeon 5700 series is targeted at the mainstream, while the Radeon 5800 series is for higher end gamers. The recently released Radeon HD 5970 is currently the most powerful graphics card in the world.

While the higher end cards have been hard to get since their launch, DailyTech has been told that production has been ramping up and more GPUs have been shipping from TSMC. That has helped to ease supply issues, but strong consumer demand still means a hefty premium.

Radeon 5770 cards are readily available for around $160, while the 5750 is around $140.

Power Supply:

Saving money through greater efficiency has been a hot topic this year. The new Energy Star 5.0 specification requires 80 PLUS Bronze level certified power supplies. Most computers use less than 400 watts at load, but a basic engineering guide is for power is to have double what you require. Most PSUs are usually at their most efficient around 50% of their maximum rated load.

OCZ OCZ Z-Series 850W Modular - OCZZ850M

Although OCZ has been focusing a lot on SSDs, it has also been investing heavily in power supplies since it bought PC Power & Cooling in 2007. The Z-Series PSUs feature Gold or Silver level 80 PLUS certification.


Casio Pathfinder/Pro-Trek Watch

One of my hobbies is mountain climbing, and I've been a fan of Casio's Pathfinder series of watches for several years. Known as the Pro Trek series outside of North America, most of the watches feature a large face and digits for easy readability, as well as a digital compass, altimeter, barometer, and thermometer.

Some advanced models also feature solar power recharging, a tide graph, water resistance to a depth of 200m (20 Bar), and atomic calibration.



Sony's new take on the PSP has been controversial, largely because of its high price due to the inclusion of 16GB of NAND flash memory. The removal of UMD is a feature for some, but left UMD owners in the dust without a means of playing games they've already bought. However, the PSP-3000 remains in production, and continues to be sold alongside the PSP Go.

For those who are getting into portable gaming or switching from the inferior graphics of other platforms, the PSP Go does deserve consideration. The convenience of not having to carry around flash disks or UMDs is a big plus, but you'll pay for that convenience.

Electric Vehicle:

The Tesla Roadster has been in the news a lot this year as the company ramped up production and opened stores around the world. As a purely electric vehicle, the Roadster needs less maintenance than cars with an internal combustion engine. The low-cost of electricity also means savings for those tired of the gas pumps.

The Roadster's 0–60 MPH (0–97 KM/h) acceleration time is 3.9 seconds, while the upgraded Sport model accelerates in just 3.7 seconds.

The $109,000 price tag means it is out of reach for most of us, but there has to be something out there to dream of. Tesla has announced a lower cost Model S sedan that will be below $50,000 with tax credits, and the company is planning on a more mainstream EV around the $30,000 mark.

"I want people to see my movies in the best formats possible. For [Paramount] to deny people who have Blu-ray sucks!" -- Movie Director Michael Bay

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