Intel has been a real champion for small form factor computing, recently introducing three new types of mini PC designs in addition to the NUC: the Compute Stick, Mini Lake and 5" × 5", or mini-STX as it is now commonly referred to. One of the first companies to adopt the new mini-STX form factor is MSI with its new Cubi 2 Plus, a tiny 1.3L computer that not only supports a desktop Skylake Core i7 processor but also accept up to 32GBs of DDR4 memory and a high-speed NVMe SSD for good measure.
There's an endless selection when it comes to headphones and finding the right pair of can be not only tough but there’s a lot of subjectivity involved depending on what matters most to you -- audio quality, comfort, features, and so on. Here are our picks for the best headphones over-the-ear, in-ear, noise cancelling, gaming, sports-oriented, budget and wireless.
Building a new PC is all about choices and tradeoffs. Picking between AMD and Intel is usually the first choice you have to make, but it certainly isn’t the most complicated. Instead, that honour goes to the motherboard, with each board maker typically offering at least half a dozen different models based on a single chipset. We've done a lot of the homework for you to save you some time, money, and/or regret. Here's what we believe is the very best out there.
Dark Souls III is arguably the biggest game to launch this month. Using the engine from developer FromSoftware's 'Bloodborne', Dark Souls III looks quite impressive but you can certainly tell this is a console port. The tweakable options are decent though the game gives no real explanation of what you are enabling. You do get enhanced graphics, better performance and higher resolutions.
Dark Souls 3 is an action RPG in which players are thrust into a gothic fantasy world and asked to survive against brutal odds. The narrative connects to the first two games, but story takes a backseat to action, so newcomers won’t feel totally lost. In Dark Souls 3, players travel to Lothric, a land of ash and decay. Your task is to defeat the Lords of Cinder, god-like creatures corrupted by power.
Gaming on a laptop normally requires a sacrifice of graphics power for form factor. AVADirect’s Avant P870DM-G gaming laptop houses a Nvidia Geforce GTX 980 desktop GPU, and it makes a hell of a difference. Properly cooled and clocked, this mini GTX 980 is capable of performing at or close to the same as its desktop counterpart.
The Logitech G900 Chaos Spectrum has been designed with an emphasis on reducing as much weight as possible. From the thin wall molding to the hollow "spoked" hyper-fast scroll wheel design. The result is a wireless gaming mouse that weighs just 107g, which should make it comfortable to use over long periods while delivering quicker response to motion.
The Oppo F1 is loaded with a collection of very respectable hardware for its $200 price tag. Inside is an octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 616 SoC to power a 5.0-inch 720p display, all in a slim metal body. The cameras are billed as the stars of the show, alongside the 2.5D Gorilla Glass 4 that protects the display. But the question is, what don't you get given the cost of admission?
Valve and HTC’s Vive is the most immediately impressive (and imposing) VR headset on the market. And it comes with a price to match: $800. Once you’ve got everything setup you can walk through a virtual space with your own legs and grab things with your own “hands.” That’s the key differentiator here: while the Oculus Rift and PlayStation VR have so far been largely focused on seated experiences, Vive is more focused on standing, walking, grabbing, and bopping.
Originally released in 2012 for a whopping $1,550, thousands of Xeon E5-2670 CPUs hit the second hand market last year as massive data centers upgraded their servers. This 4-year old CPU delivers 8-cores clocked at 2.6GHz with a 3.3GHz turbo frequency and a large 20MB L3 cache. But with supply overwhelming demand, prices have plummeted to just $70, so it's possible to build an insanely affordable 16-core/32-thread beast for less than the price of a Haswell-E Core i7.
Diverging from its usual modus operandi, Razer introduced its first ultrabook earlier this year, the Razer Blade Stealth. This is not a gaming machine out of the box. Rather, Razer has unapologetically prioritized mobility over gaming, and its specs are in line with a number of other premium non-gaming ultrabook offerings. But does the Blade Stealth have what it takes to stand apart?
A week ago, Oculus sent me one of their commercial Rift headsets, along with a special loaner “Oculus Ready” PC to use with it. Since then, I’ve been using a pre-release version of their Oculus store and headset operating system. I’ll be covering the Rift a lot over the coming week and beyond. For now, I thought I’d share some general impressions after a week of heavy VR usage.
For a few weeks now, the Android N Developer Preview has been available for anyone to install on their Nexus devices. With a collection of new features to be previewed, I decided to push the OTA update to my Nexus 6P and use it as my daily driver for a few weeks to see how these improvements affect everyday use.
Pranks are awesome. They are one of those few things in life that most people can unequivocally agree on being great. Pranks are in the same league with cat videos, candy, and free stuff - everyone loves 'em. You're a tech-savvy individual, and it's time that your pranks showed that. We've got some ideas...
For many people, spending $1,000 on a laptop is not feasible, even if high-end hardware is important. This is where the HP Envy 13 comes in: it packs hardware that’s comparable to a $1,000 laptop in a MacBook Air-like package, complete with a price that starts at just $800. In some ways, the Envy is the budget high-end laptop that price-conscious shoppers may be after.
These days, it seems like Valve will let just about anything on Steam. Programs like Greenlight and Early Access make it easier than ever to get a game on the preposterously popular PC storefront. Some of these games are very bad. How does this happen? What is the process actually like?
Oculus, HTC, and Sony have all released pricing details for their upcoming virtual reality headsets. But what seems pretty cut-and-dry gets complicated in a hurry when you consider they all need additional hardware to power the experience. To help make sense of it all, we've gone through the hassle of analyzing everything to see what the true cost of ownership looks like.
It's impossible to deny that 2015 was an amazing year for the PC ushering in a new golden era of PC gaming. 2016 will have to produce some truly special games to match last year's offerings, and so far, it's not doing too badly but there's still plenty more games to come. Here are our top 10 most anticipated titles.
The Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge is a fantastic device, especially from a hardware perspective. But just what are its best features? Check out the video above where we discuss and showcase some of the great things about the handset, and also one area where it should improve.
The new Hitman seeks to combine the strongest elements of the series’ previous entries. All three levels in the first episode are glitzy sandboxes in the vein of Blood Money, featuring numerous ways to manipulate your targets into meeting a stylish demise. There are guns to fire, vials of poison to pour into drinks, fuseboxes to detonate, winches to release, and wrenches to throw.
The Division is set in an open world with immersive and destructive environments based on a mid-crisis Manhattan. Built upon the Snowdrop Engine, Ubisoft aims to take graphics fidelity to the next level with a focus on dynamic global illumination, destruction and a number of cutting edge visual effects, especially on the PC version.
When buying a new computer you basically have two options: you can build one yourself or you can buy pre-built. The former will almost always result in better value and upgradeability. But if you need something that works out of the box, or are simply looking for something to recommend to your less DIY-inclined friends, then this is for you.
The Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge is an excellent phone and easily gets my recommendation for those wanting to purchase something this early into 2016. Samsung has addressed many of the Galaxy S6 issues while adding or improving features that make this year's flagship an extremely compelling choice.
The newly released My Cloud EX2 Ultra from WD is essentially a more consumer-friendly version of the existing My Cloud EX2100. The drive can be purchased in capacities from 4TB to 12TB as well as without drives. Under its sleek curved enclosure you'll find a Marvell Armada 385 1.3 GHz dual-core SoC and 1GB of DDR3 memory, while connectivity includes a single gigabit Ethernet connector and two USB 3.0 ports.