WPS Office Free

WPS Office Free isn’t just an alternative to Microsoft Office – it manages to mimic pretty much the entire look and basic set of features. Available completely free of charge (although there are ads associated with certain features), this office suite comprises a word processor, presentation tool, spreadsheet and more, and is fully compatible with Microsoft document formats.

There’s a lot to like here. The cloud element is a very nice touch, and while 1GB of free storage is nothing to get too excited about, it’s useful for small files like text documents.

Other additions – such as the ability to convert PDF files into Word format – give WPS Office Free an edge over other free office suits, and the incredibly low system requirements mean it’s ideal for installing on even the oldest of Windows PCs.

For anyone who likes the idea of working on the move – and taking advantage of the cloud storage – there are iOS and Android version of the software available, as well as one for Linux. With a raft of supported language, this is an incredible versatile suite.

User experience

If you’ve ever used a recent version of Microsoft Office, WPS Office Free will feel immediately familiar. It employs the same ribbon interface, and all of the most common tools and options are intuitively placed so you won’t spend ages searching for the setting or tool that you need. Performance is swift too, thanks to the light system requirements.

Not everyone will be happy with the ads that need to be endured to gain timed access to certain features of WPS Office Free, but that’s the only sacrifice you have to make to enjoy this otherwise superb software suite.

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Norton WiFi Privacy

Don’t be fooled by the name – Norton WiFi Privacy isn’t some clever patent-pending wireless-only technology. It’s Symantec’s VPN, and while it will keep you protected on wireless hotspots, it works just as well on whatever other network technologies you might use.

We were interested to know about what the service could do, but the website wasn’t much help. It linked to a Norton blog post explaining the importance of checking a provider’s network, saying: “Decide which server locations are important to you. If you want to appear as if you’re accessing the web from a certain locale, make sure there’s a server in that country.” But the product page said nothing about Norton’s own servers.

Out of curiosity we launched the sales live chat and asked for a list of WiFi Privacy’s supported locations. The agent didn’t know, which seemed odd. He’d never been asked before? Really? He went off to ask the technical team anyway, and this was the gem of a reply:

“Okay, this is what I got from the team: ‘I am sorry but for security reasons we do not release that information, however there are servers located all around the world.'”

We’ve no idea how giving away the locations of WiFi Privacy’s servers is a security risk. Anyway, we browsed to the product FAQ and found that countries include the “United States, United Kingdom, Singapore, and Brazil.” Checking the product itself later on gave us virtual IPs in 28 locations including the US, Europe, Australia, Israel, Japan, Mexico, Singapore, South Africa and more.

Figuring out the prices takes work, too, as the plans can vary greatly depending on where you look. 

The US site allows monthly subscriptions for a single device from $4 (£3.20), and when we checked had a 10 device, one-year bundle for $50 (£40), which is half the usual price.

Meanwhile the UK site has yearly-only plans starting at £20 ($25) for one device (a special offer which doubles on renewal), climbing to a chunky £80 ($100) for 10 devices with no initial discount.

In addition, both sites sell Norton WiFi Privacy in bundles with the Norton Security suite, which might also save you some money.

There’s yet another issue to consider in Norton’s money-back guarantee. You can get up to sixty days with this, but the exact rules vary depending on where and how you buy the product. The best advice here is to carefully read the small print.

Privacy

The WiFi Privacy website claims the service provides a “no-log virtual private network that doesn’t track or store your activity.” Sounds good to us.

The company also says it doesn’t store your location, which presumably means there’s no session logging of your incoming IP address. That’s welcome news if you’re using the service on a mobile device, as otherwise it could log your physical movements throughout the day.

We wanted to know more, and were surprised to see the service doesn’t have its own privacy policy, or any more specific details on logging. 

The closest thing to this was a clause on data collection which said that by using the service you’re agreeing to share information including “personal information about you, your devices or systems or your usage of the Services”. But this referenced another document which talked only about the policy on Norton’s website, not the product. 

A secret server list, and no clear privacy policy? Norton WiFi Privacy clearly isn’t very interested in transparency. Or, maybe more likely, Symantec is aiming the service at the average home user who isn’t even faintly interested in the service details, and the company isn’t too concerned about anyone else.

As an example, when we visited this privacy policy page a browser alert told us www.symantec.com wanted to ‘access our location’. They don’t really get it, do they?

Performance

Signing up for Norton WiFi Privacy takes some thought, as there are several different options. Going via an app store covers you for that device only; choosing the UK website gives you options to cover more devices; choosing the US website gives you monthly as well as cheaper yearly payment terms. It all seems a little complicated.

However, setup is relatively straightforward. Norton’s client is essentially a lightweight interface which bundles OpenVPN for its core communications, then throws in ad blocking as well.

We tapped the WiFi Privacy system tray icon on our Windows 10 PC and a simple window appeared. This isn’t a regular application window – it can’t be moved, and if you click somewhere else it disappears – but it looked good, clearly displaying our current IP address and location on a map.

The client is well-designed and easy-to-use. A Virtual Location tab displays a list of 20+ countries (not servers) across the US, Europe and elsewhere, and just tapping one of these automatically closes your current connection and connects you to the new server. That’s far less tedious than the three-step process you’re often required to use elsewhere (tap Disconnect, choose a location, tap Connect).

Performance in our tests* was mid-range, with downloads around 25Mbps in the UK, a little lower in most European locations, and around 15Mbps on US-UK connections. These figures aren’t exceptional, but they’re similar to what you’ll see with many other VPNs, and perfectly adequate for many applications.

The built-in ad blocker should improve your surfing speeds a little, but there are no other extras or significant configuration features. You can’t change protocols, ports, tweak a kill switch or do anything even slightly advanced. As is the general theme with WiFi Privacy, the program is targeted more at consumers than expert users.

For all its lack of technical extras, Norton WiFi Privacy remains a likeable tool which mostly works very well all on its own. The program may not give you settings for DNS or WebRTC leaks, for instance, but it handled both issues well in our tests, correctly shielding our identity and passing all our privacy tests without any problems at all.

Final verdict

If your VPN needs are simple then WiFi Privacy might appeal, especially if you’re looking to cover a lot of devices, when it can be a particularly good value proposition. But experts will find it too basic, and the lack of detail on even basic product specs is a concern.

*Our testing included evaluating general performance (browsing, streaming video). We also used speedtest.net to measure latency, upload and download speeds, and then tested immediately again with the VPN turned off, to check for any difference (over several rounds of testing). We then compared these results to other VPN services we’ve reviewed. Of course, do note that VPN performance is difficult to measure as there are so many variables.

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Facebook hires 3,000 to spot self-harm videos

Facebook is to hire 3,000 additional moderators to help detect hate speech, child exploitation and self-harm being broadcast on the social network.

Chief executive Mark Zuckerberg said it had been “heartbreaking” to see people “hurting themselves and others” in videos streamed live on Facebook.

He added he would make reporting problematic videos easier.

The move follows cases of murder and suicide being broadcast live on the social network.

In April, a man was killed in a video streamed live on Facebook. Later in the same month, a Thai man killed his baby daughter and then himself in a live stream.

Mr Zuckerberg said the additional staff, joining the 4,500 existing moderators, would help the company respond more quickly when content was reported.

In a post on his Facebook profile, he said the company would develop new tools to manage the millions of content reports it received every week.

“We’re going to make it simpler to report problems to us, faster for our reviewers to determine which posts violate our standards and easier for them to contact law enforcement if someone needs help,” he said.

The post suggested Facebook’s moderators would contact law enforcement, rather than contacting members directly if they were at risk of harm.

“Just last week, we got a report that someone on Live was considering suicide. We immediately reached out to law enforcement, and they were able to prevent him from hurting himself”, said Mr Zuckerberg.

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VSDC Free Video Editor

VSDC Free Video Editor is a feature-packed non-linear video editing suite that can compete with even expensive editing software. There are no extra programs bundled in the installer – just the occasional prompt to upgrade to the premium edition.

With VSDC Free Video Editor you can create video projects from a combination of video clips, still images and audio files, with a resolution of up to 1,980 x 1,080 (full HD) and a maximum frame rate of 30fps. There’s also a built-in screen capture tool for recording video and taking still images from your desktop – ideal for software reviews and tutorials. VSDC Free Video Editor also offers an extensive range of video and audio filters, plus stylish transitions. 

You can export finished projects in a variety of formats, with handy ready-made profiles for popular devices. VSDC Free Video Editor also provides a way to burn your project onto DVD – a feature rarely available in free editing software.

User experience

Videos in VSDC Free Video Editor are made up of ‘objects’, which include video clips, images, audio files, sprites, animations and many other elements. You can layer these in various ways, including blending, overlaying, and masking. If you’re interested in picture-in-picture or watermarking effects, this is an incredibly simple way to do it.

You can also add charts and text, which makes VSDC Free Video Editor a brilliant tool for creating presentations with much more impact than a standard slideshow. 

Each object you add can be edited, moved and cut independently – nothing is final until you export your finished project. The audio and video effects are well worth exploring. They include various Instagram-style filters, as well as special effects like fire, smoke and water – all of which are fully customizable.

If all that isn’t enough, VSDC Free Video Editor receives regular updates that add even more features. The latest version is significantly faster than previous iterations, and includes a stabilization tool that’s ideal for footage shot with a shaky smartphone. It also enables you to upload multiple files to YouTube (if a project has been split into multiple parts, for example), and there’s a new smart export profile for Instagram.

The premium version of VSDC Video Editor is even faster thanks to integrated hardware acceleration, but this isn’t available in the free program and you won’t be able to export your project if it’s enabled. To disable hardware acceleration in the free editor, select the cog icon in the top right, click ‘Acceleration options’ and uncheck the box marked ‘Use hardware acceleration for encoding video’. 

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How to stop buffering on Kodi

Buffering when streaming videos on Kodi is annoying, but it can be stopped – here’s how.

Buffering when streaming on Kodi can be annoying, but there’s a way to combat it.


By

Kodi, the open source media player, is the go-to in 2017 for all streaming needs. It provides you with an easy way to stream music, photos and videos from your PC, Mac or NAS drive, along with the ability to stream videos online. While Kodi is available on a number of different devices, they all have one common issue: buffering.

Buffering is a streamer’s achilles heel. The one weakness in an otherwise flawless setup. The arrow to the knee. However, while we’ve all suffered from buffering in the past, there are a few ways that you can combat and even eliminate buffering on Kodi – keep reading to find out how.

Read next: How to install Exodus on Kodi

Check your internet speed

Before you start trying to tweak settings within Kodi to stop buffering, it’s first worth checking the speed of your internet. Generally speaking, those that want to stream video online require download speeds of 5-10mbps minimum, and those with a slower connection will experience buffering from time-to-time.

Some streaming services, like Netflix, can still function with a relatively slow internet connection, but the same can’t be said for most services available on Kodi.

To test the speed of your internet connection, simply connect to the same network that Kodi is connected to and head to www.speedtest.net (PC, Mac) or download the Speed Test App (iOS, Android).

Once accessed, run the test and pay close attention to the ping and download speed – while download speeds are important, if you have extremely high ping then you will still experience buffering issues.

If you’ve got a slow internet connection, try restarting your router or contacting your ISP to see if there are any issues in your area. If your speed test results are normal, then move on to the next section.

Read next: How to use Kodi V17 Krypton

Move closer to your router or use an Ethernet cable

If your router’s connection to the internet isn’t the issue, the next step to try is to improve the connection. This is done in one of two ways: if the Kodi box is connected to the internet via Wi-Fi, try moving the media streamer closer to your router to get a better signal. You might also be able to connect to the faster 5GHz Wi-Fi network if available.

The second option is to connect the Kodi box to the router using an Ethernet cable, as it should provide the fastest connection possible. However, due to the variety of devices that Kodi can be loaded onto, it’s not always an option.

It shouldn’t be an issue for those running Kodi on a media streamer like the Nvidia Shield as it features an Ethernet port, although those that use Amazon Fire sticks and other basic media streamers are forced to stick to Wi-Fi.

Read next: Best Kodi add-ons of 2017

Tweak Kodi’s video cache to stop buffering

If you’ve followed the above steps and still find that Kodi is buffering, there’s one more option: adjusting Kodi’s video cache. It’s a more hands-on approach that should stop buffering, but it’s more complicated than the options listed above and uses a custom-made add-on for the open source media streamer.

  1. In Kodi, select Settings (cog icon) and then select the File Manager menu.
  2. Select ‘Add New Source’ and enter the following address in the pop-up window: http://repo.ares-project.com/magic/
  3. Make sure you give the source a memorable name so you can find it later, and click OK to save it.
  4. Head back to the Settings menu (cog icon) and select the Add-Ons menu. From here, select ‘Install from zip file’ then select the source you added in step 2.
  5. Select repository.aresproject > repository.aresproject.zip and install the Ares Project repository. It’ll be installed within seconds, and you should be notified once it has finished.
  6. Head back to the Add-On settings menu and this time select ‘Install from repository’.
  7. Select Ares Project > Program add-ons > Ares Wizard and select ‘Install’.
  8. Wait for the program to install. This should take no longer than a few seconds, and you’ll be notified once complete.
  9. Head back to the main menu and select Add-Ons > Program add-ons > Ares Wizard. It should automatically download and install files for first-time setup, then power up once updated.
  10. In Ares Wizard, select Tweaks > Advanced Settings Wizard > Next. You should then see the amount of available RAM on your device – take note, and select ‘Generate’.
  11. Set the Video Cache size to half of the available RAM, making sure NOT to adjust any other setting.
  12. Select ‘Apply Settings’ and restart Kodi.

If you’ve followed the above instructions correctly, you should notice improvements in Kodi streaming. If you do still suffer from buffering, we’d recommend using a different source/server/streaming app as it may be server-side and nothing to do with Kodi.

Read next: Is Kodi legal?

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Acer Aspire VX 15 Budget Gaming Laptop Review

Acer’s Predator lineup caters to gamers looking for considerable gaming horsepower in a portable package. The Predator 17, which we recently reviewed, fulfills that promise with aplomb. But some of us are on a tighter budget, and even mid-tier gaming laptops can be pricey. A slew of gaming laptops featuring Nvidia’s GeForce GTX 1050 GPU solves the budget issue, and Acer’s Aspire VX 15 is one of the company’s offerings in this class. We’ll put it through our laptop gauntlet to see if the compromise in graphical performance justifies the Aspire VX 15’s lower price tag.

Specifications

Packaging

The Acer Aspire VX 15’s simple packaging reflects this laptop’s value-oriented nature. The box is black with Aspire VX 15 logos in brown. Inside the VX 15 is buffered in closed-cell foam. A separate box compartment holds the 135W power adapter and AC cord. The packaging isn’t outstanding, but it’s no-nonsense and serves its purpose well.

Exterior

The Acer Aspire VX 15’s lid is constructed out of black plastic with a brushed finish. The brushed texture attracts smudges rather easily, but we found the blemishes easier to clean than the predominantly metal laptops we’ve tested. Front and center is Acer’s logo stamped in chrome. There are red accents on both sides of the lid, clearly inspired by the accents on Acer’s Predator laptops. Unfortunately, the accents don’t light up the same way the Predator’s do, but fancy lighting is probably a bit much to ask at this price. The lid flexes a bit with minimal pressure, which is worrisome because it protects the VX 15’s display.

Opening the lid reveals the inner surface around the input devices, and here the surface is a smooth, black plastic. Like the brushed plastic lid, the interior attracts fingerprints, but they’re wiped away just as easily. Additionally, there are subtle beveled edges that give the inner surface an aggressive flare. The construction of the chassis surrounding the input devices is a bit flimsy. Moderate pressure will flex the plastic, which doesn’t instill much confidence in the Aspire VX 15’s build quality. In fact, swinging the lid open will flex the plastic outward.

The Aspire VX 15’s speakers are located on the front lip of the chassis. However, we’ve always thought the best place for the speakers is above the keyboard, right next to the hinge. Placing them on the front lip makes them easy to block while using the keyboard or trackpad.

The edges are constructed a little differently, featuring a rougher texture than the lid or the interior surface. The VX 15’s overall thickness isn’t consistent, with the front lip measuring about 1.1″ thick, while the rear lip is 1.14″ thick because of the rear exhaust. Speaking of which, the exhaust adopts a traditional gamer aesthetic, meaning it looks like the rear of a supercar. It consists of large red borders with a matte surface, but the border of the exhaust wraps around to the two side edges, and the border surfaces here are glossy. Each vent grille also has five black slanted spokes.

The two exhaust vents surround the display hinge, which provides about 140° of movement. The hinge consists of a thick bar of silver plastic, and has the words “ASPIRE VX” engraved in the middle. The hinge feels a bit jerky, and a slight bump against the laptop will make the display shake a bit.

The bottom panel shares the same textured surface as the side edges. There are several air intake cutouts, two of which are directly below the GPU and CPU exhaust fans. There are five feet to keep the Aspire VX 15 sturdy — four large rubber feet at each corner and one small plastic foot near the front lip. The bottom panel isn’t flat, but rather has a subtle inward bevel on the middle of the panel and more aggressive bevels that curve inward to the laptop’s edges. Unlike the lid and area surrounding the input devices, the bottom panel is incredibly sturdy.

Starting from the left, the Acer laptop’s I/O ports consist of a combination headphone/microphone jack, an SD card reader, a USB 2.0 port, the DC power input, and a Kensington lock. On the opposite side, you’ll find a USB 3.1 Type-C port, two USB 3.0 ports, an HDMI port, and an RJ-45 LAN port.

Display

At $799, we were surprised to find a gorgeous Full HD (1920×1080) IPS display. The display features Acer’s ComfyView, which is basically an anti-glare matte surface. You can connect an additional display via HDMI, but the port is only HDMI 1.4b compliant.

Input Devices

The Aspire VX 15 features a keyboard complete with a number pad. The scissor switches are crisp and responsive, and the keys have a comfortable amount of space between each other. The keyboard emits red LED-lit back-lighting, which is a nice touch for a sub-$1,000 laptop. Back-lighting can be switched between on and off using Fn + F9. The keycaps have a plain black surface with white font, which looks pink when the back-lighting is on. The WASD keys feature red-bordered keycaps with a red font. The power button is located at the top right of the keyboard.

The trackpad works with decent accuracy. The trackpad’s coating lets your fingers glide with minimal surface drag, which is something we don’t find often on gaming laptops. It’s not as smooth as Apple’s glass trackpads, for example, but it still feels more comfortable than most. Unfortunately, the trackpad’s bottom-out distance is uneven. Clicking the bottom half of the trackpad pushes it incredibly low, whereas the top half bottoms out much more shallow. Regardless, you’re better off using a dedicated mouse, but for everyday use the trackpad will serve you adequately.

Interior

There are 14 screws securing the bottom panel to the laptop; once those are unscrewed, the bottom panel snaps right off. The XV 15’s cooling solution is composed of a fairly traditional heatsink and connected heat pipe configuration, with a fan on each side of the laptop to keep the CPU and GPU cool. The heatsinks are rather small, but the i5-7300HQ and the GTX 1050 aren’t exactly the most powerful components, so heat generation shouldn’t be a big concern.

Above the CPU heatsink, you’ll find the DDR4 memory slots, one of which is unoccupied. To the far right, just above the GPU fan, you’ll find the XV 15’s M.2 SSD slot. On the far left, you’ll find a Qualcomm Atheros QCA6174A wireless card, which handles the XV 15’s Wi-Fi and Bluetooth capabilities. At the top you’ll find the 52.5Wh 3-cell lithium ion battery. Next to the battery is an empty space for a separate 2.5″ SATA slot. Acer will offer a complimentary drive mounting kit if you contact its support team, but you’ll need to purchase your own 2.5″ drive.

Software

The Aspire VX 15 is a budget gaming laptop, so don’t expect fancy centralized utilities. When we fired up the VX 15 for the first time, we found shortcut links to eBay and Spotify on the desktop, and Priceline and Netflix on the taskbar, which don’t seem fitting for a gaming laptop.

MORE: Best Gaming Laptops

MORE: Gaming Laptop Previews

MORE: All Laptop Content

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Cybenetics Offers New PSU Efficiency Certification

Disclaimer: Aris Mpitziopoulos is Tom’s Hardware’s PSU reviewer. He developed the certification methodologies described below apart from his role on Tom’s Hardware. He is the Chief Testing Engineer of Cybenetics. Neither Tom’s Hardware nor its parent company, Purch Media, are financially involved with Cybenetics. Aris does not perform the actual certifications for Cybenetics.

Without a doubt, the de facto certification program for PSUs these days is 80 PLUS. Although it managed to make the majority of users (and companies) realize the importance of efficiency in power supply units (PSUs), it’s still far from perfect, as we pointed out in this article.

In a nutshell, the major downsides of the 80 PLUS program are the following:

  • Limited number of measurements
  • Very low ambient temperature during testing
  • No vampire power and 5VSB measurements
  • No control over fake efficiency badges
  • No mention of the equipment used
  • No control over the samples that are certified and the ones that are finally released

All of the above must be addressed, and indeed we can’t help but wonder why nobody else has tried to offer something different and actually make it work, especially considering the 80 PLUS’ dominance in the PSU field. It’s certainly not ideal to have a single company dealing with PSU efficiency, because there’s absolutely no competition, and in a way, one company controls the whole market.

Cybenetics was formed with one purpose in mind: to introduce new efficiency and noise certification standards for PSUs.

As compared to the currently available program, the voluntary certification program offered by Cybenetics aims to add greater accuracy to efficiency testing, address all above issues, and at the same time provide an authentic verification of the PSU’s operational noise level. Cybenetics also offers PSU beta testing and evaluation reports that can lead to significant time and money savings in the process of increasing the quality and the performance of the tested products. It is common knowledge to any engineer (experienced or not) that you cannot make a perfect product, especially a PSU where so many things can go sideways, without a serious amount of beta testing before it goes on mass production.

The Cybenetics test procedure has been developed through many years of PSU evaluation experience.The methodologies in place have been forged after numerous hours of testing and experimentation to obtain accuracy and reliability. Finally, the equipment that the company uses is state-of-the-art and it is clearly shown in every evaluation report, as anyone would expect from a proper report.

ETA Level AVG Efficiency PF 5VSB Efficiency Vampire Power
A+ 94% to 97% >=0.985 >79% <0.10W
A 91% to 94% >=0.98 >77% <0.15W
B 98% to 91% >=0.97 >75% <0.20W
C 85% to 88% >=0.96 >73% <0.23W
D 82% to 88% >=0.95 >71% <0.25W

Cybenetics introduces a new efficiency rating called ETA, after the Greek letter “Η,” which is based on a sophisticated methodology that takes into account numerous factors. Contrary to 80 PLUS that tests at only three or four different load points, the ETA program incorporates load combinations using a unique, custom-made application to account for the efficiency results of thousands of different load combinations, through a proprietary application. This process allows Cybenetics to use a single value rating to represent the PSU’s true overall efficiency. Moreover, and very importantly, Power Factor, Vampire Power, and the +5VSB rail’s efficiency are also taken into consideration in the final rating.

5VSB Power Consumption System AC Wall Power Consumption Efficiency
<=0.225W < 0.5W to meet 2013 ErP Lot 6 requirement (100V~240V) >45%
<=0.45W < 1W to meet 2010 ErP Lot 6 requirement (100V~240V) >45%
<=2.75W < 5W to meet 2014 ErP Lot 3 requirement (100V~240V) >55%

All tested PSUs must be compliant with the ErP Lot 6 2010/2013 and ErP lot 3 2014 directives and also meet all requirements mentioned in the (EU) No 617/2013 regulation:

  • 85% efficiency at 50% of rated output power
  • 82% efficiency at 20% and 100% of rated output power
  • Power Factor = 0.9 at 100% of rated output power
LAMBDA Level Requirements
A++ < 20 dB(A)
A+ 20 dB(A) to 25 dB(A)
A 25 dB(A) to 30 dB(A)
B 30 dB(A) to 35 dB(A)
C 35 dB(A) to 40 dB(A)
D 40 dB(A) to 45 dB(A)
E > 45 dB(A)

Cybenetics also provides a noise certification called LAMBDA. Utilizing an advanced methodology and a highly sophisticated controlling/monitoring program, the power supply’s noise readings are recorded throughout its entire operational range. Those readings are subsequently converted to sound pressure levels (SPL), averaged, and converted back to dB(A) again. At this time, to the best of our knowledge, there is no such noise certification program available for IT products. Our purpose in the future is to expand this program to other hardware components, as well.

The ETA certification comprises five levels (A+, A, B, C, and D), whereas LAMBDA consists of seven levels (A++, A+, A, B, C, D, and E). Each manufacturer or brand can choose to use either the corresponding certification badges depicting the level alone, or a more comprehensive badge that includes the actual overall efficiency or noise rating. In addition, each badge will be tied to the specific product through a short-URL and a QR code, which will be printed on the badge. This will allow users to easily find a PSU’s evaluation report certified by Cybenetics.

In addition to the normal test results, the evaluation reports also include a number of other test results (eg, efficiency and load regulation at 10%-110% load, ripple performance, hold-up time, etc.), which will provide useful information not only to everyday users but also to experts and PSU reviewers who do not have the proper equipment and software to apply our methodology. For both certification programs, 115VAC are mainly used; however, the ETA program also includes a number of tests using 230 VAC to check compliance with various EU regulations.

You can find more information about Cybenetics and the ETA and LAMBDA certification programs, at www.cybenetics.com. Within a three month period, close to 40 PSU models from various brands have been certified and listed in Cybenetics’ database, which also includes a graphic charts option (per manufacturer).

Tom’s Hardware utilizes Cybenetics’ fully equipped lab for all PSU reviews, and the test methodology is also compatible with the ETA and LAMBDA programs.

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