Tuesday, March 18, 2014

The EVGA GT 640 rev 2. (GK208) GDDR5 SC

In a previous post I mentioned a video card upgrade.  Sad to say but the card was faulty, and had issues and I had to RMA it.  But the replacement arrived and it is working well.

The card I had:

EVGA GT 220 1GB GDDR3  (the 01G-P3-1226-LR) 

Nice HTPC card, low power, a bit overpriced but popular amongst Linux users wanting a little 3D oomph for video and/or occasional 3D application.

For the replacement, I basically wanted a similar card, quiet, low power draw, no additional 6 pin power needed.  And I needed Nvidia...because Nvidia cards perform better on Linux.

So I googled around and didn't find anything that seemed a good fit for my needs and budget...at least not till after Christmas shopping with an Amazon gift card when I found this, which I hadn't recalled seeing:

EVGA GeForce GT 640 Superclocked 1 GB GDDR5 64-Bit DVI-I HDMI Ready Graphics Card 01G-P3-2642-KR

I might not have seen it because until recently, GT 640's with GDDR5 were rare...they were at one time OEM only.  Also there are at least 4 versions of the GT640.  No, really, 4 versions at least.  You have to pay close attention to tell them apart.

There's the original Fermi version that has separate core and shader clocks but has only 144 CUDA cores.

Then TWO Kepler GK107 versions with core/shader clocks at the same speed, one with DDR3 and one with GDDR5 (which at the time was OEM only)  Some people did everything they could do to try to get the GDDR5 version.  AFAIK only Dell made theirs relatively available.

Then last  year (May) came the GK208 "Rev 2." version with GDDR5.  It seems to be a rare card, the only review I've seen for Rev 2. GT 640 is for the Gainward version.

Because of this, there's all sorts of confliciting info, because there's at least two versions of the GK208 die.  For example some sources say this card has 16 TMU's but others 32.  Considering EVGA says it's texture fill is higher than a stock GT 650's...I'm leaning towards the 32.

Here's the EVGA product sheet for it, it's hard to find.  The card itself isn't listed in EVGA's products.  I don't know why, it's easily one of the better HTPC cards in this configuration, perhaps because it might cut into sales of the higher priced 650's?  I got my card for $89, try finding one at that price now..they're going for over $100 now and they're out of stock on Newegg. Unlike the GT 650, (and the previous versions of the GT 640) the Rev 2 versions come with full size HDMI jacks not those silly mHDMI ones so you don't need one of those silly mini-HDMI to standard HDMI adapters.  It is, however, wide enough to be a 2-slot card though it doesn't have a 2-slot bracket so you might mistake it as a single slot card...it isn't.

Here's the specs for the 640's

and the 650

But this EVGA version is factory overclocked and has a separate faster shader clock.  Several sites mentioned the card easily had the thermal legroom to do it in the GK107 version and the GK208 runs cooler and uses less power.  It runs cooler and uses less power than the GT220 even.

It's still a crap card for SL, I mean sure, it doubles the frame rate with shadows and DoF on, but it's still not a great card.  It won't bust your budget or eardrums though.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Just Say No to Gacha, and few more gripes from CC McCrankyPants

Just Say No to Gacha!


Because while it was originally created as a fun inexpensive thing based on Japanese toy/collectable-in-a-capsule vending machines, it's turned into just another customer un-friendly marketing tool that is akin to gambling.

Think about it, while you can trade your gacha items, how many turns of the wheel do you have to do to get what you want?  And how much would that thing have cost you if you had just bought it in a store?  When I want something, I want what I want when I want it, which is usually...NOW.  I don't want to have to put 1500L$ into a machine to get something I'd only pay 350 for.  I don't want to have to wait for a trade so that I "might" get what I really want.  I want it now.  Not later, now, and at a fair price....now.  I don't want to have to go to a lag heavy region and wait for a machine, I just want to go in, and get what I want...perhaps even WHILE shopping on marketplace at the same time. Yes, I'm one of those people who have actually paid full price for items that were in Lucky Chairs...because I didn't want to have to wait.

And this isn't the only issue.  There's another of Gacha only items.  Meaning if you don't go there, you can't get it at all, not even if you wait.  I consider that, downright contemptible.  Sure I can accept some waiting period, but I want to be able to buy the gacha item in the store without having to put up with gacha to get it.  I'm willing to pay a fair price for it.

And don't get me started on every designer and their pet KittyCat starting up their own C88 style clique and doing their own monthly location based event.  Sometimes with the evil that is event only items, which the organizers tell the designers to use to get people to come to the events rather than just shopping at the stores.

And Hunts!  I'm one of those people who think Designers that participate in hunts should put the hunt item in the front of the store in a box  you can buy...just as an option for those who just want to get in, pay a little something for it, get the item and get out.

Look...Designers you have got to stop doing this.  These events don't really help you or the consumers, they just fill the pockets of the organizers.  I know they're one of the forms of marketing that work in SL, but you need to figure out something better.

Notes on the Outfit:

I wanted an Adolfo-ish Nancy Reagan-esque outfit, so I settled on the Steffen Garcia: Blair. The skirt is shorter than Nancy or most Political Wives would wear, but otherwise it has that whole "lady who lunches/Political Wife Sex Kitten thing going on.  It looks classic, but it also has sex appeal.

The skirt's rigged a bit too slim so it looks funny when you walk, the alpha and skirt rigging need some tweaks. Hopefully the designer will do an updated version.  It comes in several colors.

Hair is Truth Colbie, which is my go-to hair for that tailored elegance/anchorwoman bob look. Skin is my usual Belleza, Jewellery is the Michelle Pearl set from Yummy. (Which makes perfect sense with the outfit). Shoes are the Hucci Glynco's.


Steffen Garcia/Faenzo on Marketplace

Belleza skins

IKON eyes

Truth Hair

Yummy Accessories


Berry's Sexual Meme

Yes, I'm doing another Strawberry Singh meme.  This one is about Sex, baby.  But first, cheesecake pictures using the same hair Berry did:

 Truth Perla in Reds05, IKON Lucid Eyes in Moor, Belleza Betty Pale 3 skin with the Shyla/Betty lip 9 over it.  Lingerie from Luxuria

This one came out well, for not having depth of field and shadows on. Mata Hari sandals by Sax Shepherd.

  1. What is your sexual orientation or do you not like to label yourself? – Sapphic.  That's no secret.

  2. Name a physical attribute that you find attractive or sexy. – Pale skin, dark or red hair, and glasses.

  3. Are you promiscuous, a prude or in between? – I'm rather asexual in both lives, I mention the asexual thing in my profile, but not a prude.  I can count the number of intimate encounters I've had in SL on the fingers of two hands with fingers to spare.  Okay it's 7, I'm averaging about once a year.  Some of those just involved cuddling.

  4. What turns you on? – Not much.

  5. Are you dominant or submissive? – While I don't do the whole D/s thing, there is one thing I sometims say for fun:  I am the CC, and you will OBEY ME! Though I really would need a Nehru Jacket and natty svengali look to do that properly. Why do designers not OBEY and fulfill my every whim?  This disappoints the CC.  Perhaps saying things like that is what gets me mistaken for a Domme at times.  Or maybe it's the slinky black dresses or the riding crop.

  6. Are you into sexual roleplay? – Not really.

  7. Which sexual position is your favorite? –  There are sexual positions?  And what is this sex thing you speak of.

  8. Do you have any fetishes? – Other than for massive amounts of shopping?  Well I do like nice lingerie, and redheads, and brains.

  9. Have you or would you do porn, amateur or professional? – I don't know, considering all the many things I've done in SL....in fact I think I remember doing an amateur porn video in SL once.  C'mon it was the old days, we all did crazy stuff back then, it was the Jooky Juice.

  10. Do you consider yourself sexy? – Me? No.  My avatar, maybe, sometimes.


Belleza Skin
Luxuria is still in Nouveau

Truth Hair: Perla

Sax Shepherd Mata Hari's

IKON eyes: Lucid Moor

Sunday, March 02, 2014

Boogie Trains and Template Complaints

When I first saw the Liv Glam "Yes sir, I can Boogie" (white/black) and Trains and Winter Rains (multiple color hud) suits, I desired them as a classic suit loving SL fashionista should.

Classic military style belted jacket, slim pencil skirt, what's not to love?

What's not to love?  The skirt slit and rigging that's what.  The jacket is fine, the jacket is worth acquiring...the skirt not so much.  Look at the slit placement.  Yes, I know, I should be cheering that it actually HAS a realistic slit, but it would be better if it was centered and not quite so wide.  But the real issue is the rigging, notice  how the skirt clips into the leg.  That effect is worse, the more the legs bend.

Here's a close look at the issue.  It's just simply a problem with the rigging...of the template.   This outfit is a template so I can't blame the Liv-Glam's designer (SamanthaSJones) for this...other than her choice to use a template that really needed some more tweaks and polish.  If the rigging was fixed...I would be recommending this outfit.  But as it is, I can't.  It's not horrible, and I've worn it out and about, but it does need more work.  It's an "almost, but not quite" sort of thing.   Which is what I say about Liv-Glam as a design house...with some reluctance:  "Almost, but not quite a first tier designer...the work is hit or miss, could  use more tweaks/polish/better texture choices, and a second critical eye would do the designer some good.  Not horrible, but not spectacular either, especially since it's probably all templates."

For an example of how this skirt SHOULD be rigged, we have to go no further than the classic Maitreya Nolita.  THAT is how you rig a slightly below the knee skirt.

I've got a couple of other issues with the  Liv-Glam "Boogie/Trains" ensembles.  The HUD colors on the multicolor "Trains and winter rains" version don't match the actual on suit colors closely enough.  And some of those colors aren't very good choices at all, basically making those colors unusable.  Why put unattractive unflattering colors in a HUD?  Put colors that ARE attractive in it.

Theres also the fact that the template origin of the Liv-Glam suits are not mentioned and/or credited.  A customer might not be aware that they're templates, and thusly not know who else besides Liv-Glam to send suggestions/complaints to.  Here's a link to the template on marketplace

Dolphin Designs "The Lady"

It also means that there are most likely other designers using this template that needs more work that I don't know about.  I am absolutely of the opinion that Templates need to be credited in the interest of transparency and honesty to one's customers.  Use templates all you want, but for goodness sake, credit them.


Belleza Betty Pale skin

Truth Colbie hair

Hucci Glynco pumps

Liv Glam