TechSpot

TechSpot

Our latest original content and features. TechSpot offers comprehensive product reviews, practical and in-depth how-to guides, PC enthusiast must-reads, as well as buying recommendations round up our daily tech coverage.

Palit GTX 780 Super JetStream: Titan-like performance for less

Palit GTX 780 Super JetStream: Titan-like performance for less

We've only previously seen water-cooled GTX 780 cards pushed this far. However, Palit's GTX 780 Super JetStream is no ordinary graphics card as its massive heatsink and three large fans keep its core cool when under stress -- a solution that allows the card to outpace the Titan, according to the manufacturer.

In our review we put those claims to the test, in addition to testing triple monitor resolutions in GTX 780 Super JetStream SLI cards, standard GTX 780 cards and on the almighty Titan.

ThinkPad Tablet 2 Review: Windows 8 Pro in True Tablet Form

ThinkPad Tablet 2 Review: Windows 8 Pro in True Tablet Form

When Apple's very first iPad hit the scene in 2010, their take on the "modern tablet" was destined to become ubiquitous: a thin, rigid slab of touchable electronics covered by a sheet of shiny Gorilla Glass. Following the iPad's resounding success, Apple made no apologies for designing their tablets as though they were giant smartphones -- or at the very least, something less than a full-fledged computer.

Consider this though: Windows 8 Pro on a tablet challenges this mindset.

Ouya: $99, Android-based Gaming Console Reviewed

Ouya: $99, Android-based Gaming Console Reviewed

The Ouya doesn't promise a brilliant future. It sells at $99 using a less than top-level Tegra 3 quad-core processor. As an Android device, it signals that it'll probably be displaced by a better iteration as chip prices go down. Ouya execs have said as much. There's no 10 year lifecycle on Ouya 1.0.

You get the Ouya for the now. You get it for the summer of 2013 and the fall. You get this to wedge it in the gaps of your gaming life. There are some good games, but not many, and they're hard to discover. The Ouya is a fascinating experiment and can be fun for those for whom $99 isn't much to plunk down.

Razer Blade 14-inch Gaming Laptop Hands On

Razer Blade 14-inch Gaming Laptop Hands On

At a mere .66 inches thick and powerful enough to capably handle some of the most demanding games on the market, Razer's new 14-inch Blade might be the coolest piece of equipment I've ever played a PC game on. It's certainly the hottest.

Once known for its mid-to-high-end gaming peripherals, Razer has gotten to a point where I can no longer refer to them as an accessory manufacturer. Between the original 17-inch Razer Blade, the Edge PC gaming tablet, and now this ridiculously thin beauty, the company has definitely made an impression on the PC gaming market.

Company of Heroes 2 Tested, Benchmarked

Company of Heroes 2 Tested, Benchmarked

It's hard to believe nearly seven years have passed since Relic Entertainment and THQ released Company of Heroes, a World War II-themed real-time strategy title that impressed the heck out of me and many other RTS buffs at the time. Like the original, Company of Heroes 2 is set in World War II but focuses on the Eastern Front.

The game takes advantage of DirectX 11 but also supports DirectX 9, and Relic's proprietary Essence 3.0 engine has a mess load of new features. Our test comprises nearly 30 different graphics cards from AMD and Nvidia, covering all price ranges, paired with an Intel Core i7-3960X to try and remove any CPU bottlenecks.

SanDisk Aims High With Extreme II SSD, Reviewed

SanDisk Aims High With Extreme II SSD, Reviewed

The new SanDisk Extreme II features an in-house developed firmware which helps to set it apart from other SSDs using the same controller. Also of note, the second generation Extreme series has dumped the SandForce controller in favor of the new Marvell 88SS9187, the same controller used by the Crucial M500.

SanDisk is pricing the 240GB Extreme II competitively fetching around $230, right on target with the Vertex 450 and also in the neighborhood of the Samsung 840 Pro, which will remain a secondary focus throughout this review.

Last Call: Google Reader Dies Monday, Here Are The Best Alternatives

Last Call: Google Reader Dies Monday, Here Are The Best Alternatives

Google feels RSS is no longer as important as it used to considering how the average internet user receives his fix of interesting links and news via social networks -- most of the time not through their social network, though.

But for millions of professionals that need that constant stream of information from manually selected sources, RSS is a big deal. Journalists, bloggers, programmers, researchers, students, tech savvy people, among others, fall into this group. It's a niche product, but still a big niche. Here are what we consider the best drop-in replacements for Google Reader today.

Company of Heroes 2 Review: More of the Same, Only Better

Company of Heroes 2 Review: More of the Same, Only Better

Company of Heroes was a game for true armchair generals. There was no resource collecting, no tank rushes, none of the hallmarks of other games that look like they're about a clash of armies but are really little but mouse-driven sprint races.

Seven years is a long time between wars, though, and now that we have a sequel, people are expecting a lot from this game, the first time Company of Heroes has ditched Western Europe for the Eastern Front. So what's new?

GeForce GTX 760 Review: Mainstream Performance

GeForce GTX 760 Review: Mainstream Performance

Nvidia continues to roll out the GeForce 700 series this week with the GTX 760 -- the generation's first truly mainstream product at $250. In other words, the GTX 760 has the potential to be today's most relevant option for someone who needs a new graphics card.

Assuming Nvidia doesn't throw us a curve ball, we expect the GTX 760 to deliver performance comparable to that of the HD 7950 with a price tag that's closer to HD 7870s -- a situation that would invariably benefit anyone shopping for a mid-range GPU.

PC Gaming Hall of Shame: Games That Weren't Cancelled, But Should Have Been

PC Gaming Hall of Shame: Games That Weren't Cancelled, But Should Have Been

Although some decent games do poorly for no good reason, many titles are so headscratchingly bad that you have to wonder why the developer even bothered.

In the group of terribly bad games, there are the truly bad ones and then there are the big flops: those that have built an irredeemable amount of hype. Without further ado, here's our PC gaming hall of shame: games that weren't cancelled but should have been.

Steam: Something Next-Gen Consoles Could Learn From The PC

Steam: Something Next-Gen Consoles Could Learn From The PC

The PS4, Xbox One and Wii U are all very different consoles, but there's one thing I wish all three had in common: their digital pricing. Something they could learn from the PC.

Steam gets a lot of credit for rejuvenating the PC gaming market, and there's one area it deserves more praise than anywhere else: its regular, highly-discounted sales.

In Win D-Frame Case Review

In Win D-Frame Case Review

Before last year, no In Win cases really caught our attention. That changed when we spotted the open-air X-Frame midway through 2012. Following the X-Frame's success, In Win introduced the H-Frame -- a similarly unique chassis with a feature list that includes eleven diamond-cut aluminum plates.

In Win's latest open-air chassis has to be their finest creation yet. The D-Frame is a limited edition aluminum pipe and tempered glass case that is unique and equally pricey. DIY'ers will be pleased nonetheless.

Gunpoint Review: A Smart, Fun Stealth-Puzzle PC Game

Gunpoint Review: A Smart, Fun Stealth-Puzzle PC Game

In Gunpoint you play as Richard Conway, a trenchcoated spy-for-hire who, after a job gone wrong, finds himself caught up in a paranoid, 70s-style corporate espionage plot. You'll guide him on infiltration missions as he sneaks into apartment buildings, high-security compounds, office complexes and weapons-manufacturing labs.

Gunpoint may be a stealth game, but Conway isn't some Sam Fisher-wannabe, crouching in the shadows and garroting unsuspecting guards. His methods are a bit flashier, and a hell of a lot of fun.

Best Of: Computer Tips & Tricks Everyone Should Know

Best Of: Computer Tips & Tricks Everyone Should Know

Many hardcore computer users might think themselves above learning new tricks, but there's always new things to learn that will help improve your skills. Our bet: you will find at least one useful thing here that you didn't know before.

We’ve compiled some of the most handy computer tricks you might not be taking advantage of. Our ultimate goal is to help you become more productive by shaving valuable seconds off your workflow. Of course, you can always pass along these tips to your not-so-savvy friends and family to help them become better PC users as well.

Prison Architect: A Must-See 2013 PC Game

Prison Architect: A Must-See 2013 PC Game

Prison Architect is like 'SimPrison', if there ever was one, made by people who seem to be damn near fearless about making video games about uncomfortable topics. The game is from the indie studio Introversion, who have also made the saddest/best game about nuclear war.

Here's a brief interview with Introversion's own architects about their newest work. They served up some fascinating answers about the possibilities of a game about building and running a prison.

Haswell Debuts: Intel Core i7-4770K Review

Haswell Debuts: Intel Core i7-4770K Review

Regular TechSpot readers will have no doubt spotted several mentions of Haswell on our front page this year. In the past few months we have covered everything from model names to performance and battery life claims. A key focus has been Haswell's graphics, with rumors suggesting its performance is set to be 2 to 3 times that of current HD 4000 integrated graphics.

So what is Haswell exactly? It is Intel’s 4th generation Core architecture which will see a major refresh of the entire Core i3, Core i5 and Core i7 product lineup in 2013. Whereas last year’s Ivy Bridge was a "tick" release, Haswell is a tock and traditionally that's meant a more significant advance forward.

GeForce GTX 770 Review: Adding Value to High-End GFX?

GeForce GTX 770 Review: Adding Value to High-End GFX?

Having taken the covers off the GeForce GTX 780 a week ago, Nvidia is ready to release their next part in the GeForce 700 series. Earlier rumors indicated that the GeForce GTX 770's specifications would be much like a GTX 680 on steroids, and as it turns out that's exactly what it is.

The GTX 770 features the fastest GDDR5 memory we have ever seen at 7GHz. Memory at that clock rate is good for a peak bandwidth of 224GB/s, 16% more than the GTX 680. Therefore, technically if you could overclock a GTX 680 well enough you could create a GTX 770.

3D Nostalgia: Best 3dfx Glide Games

3D Nostalgia: Best 3dfx Glide Games

Having a specialized API could be arguably said was both the highlight and the downfall for 3dfx. The Glide API when used in conjunction with Voodoo hardware optimized the overall gaming experience and for the few short years that Glide reigned supreme, several games based its 3d implementation in this proprietary API.

If you are old enough, odds are you owned a 3dfx card and played some of these games. Let us take you a trip down memory lane and remember some of the best games ever that used Glide.

AMD A4-5000 Review: The affordable ultraportable APU

AMD A4-5000 Review: The affordable ultraportable APU

In 2006 AMD announced 'Fusion', a project aimed to develop a system on a chip that combined a CPU and GPU on a single die. Fast forward to this day, AMD has taken things a step further with Kabini, the first ever quad-core x86-based SoC.

AMD are releasing their first Kabini based processors today with the launch of the A6-5200 and the A4-5000. The A4-5000 that we are reviewing features four Jaguar cores clocked at 1.5GHz, a total L2 cache of 2MB, and the Radeon HD 8330 GPU on-die.

GeForce GTX 780 Review: The Titan Descendant

GeForce GTX 780 Review: The Titan Descendant

With the GTX Titan Nvidia showed just how much more complex and powerful their current generation 28nm GPU could be without putting the TDP rating through the roof. It also meant that Nvidia could move to the next generation mainstream GPUs without having to completely redesign their architecture for the GeForce 700 series and that is exactly what they have done.

The new GeForce GTX 780 is based on a similar, albeit slightly cut down version of the Titan GPU, managing to keep many of the features that make the $1,000 graphics card great, such as the 384-bit memory bus.

OCZ Vertex 450 Review: Vector-like Performance For Less

OCZ Vertex 450 Review: Vector-like Performance For Less

The battle between the OCZ Vector and the Samsung SSD 840 Pro has been closely contested ever since the Indilinx-based drive arrived late last year, though when push comes to shove OCZ could be on the losing end.

Meet the Vertex 450, OCZ's latest addition to the Vertex SSD series based on a slightly modified version of the Barefoot 3 controller that is designed to be more cost effective. So how does the new Vertex drive fare against the best SSDs in the market including OCZ's own?

Xbox One: Entertainment hub first, gaming console second - but can it disrupt TV?

Xbox One: Entertainment hub first, gaming console second - but can it disrupt TV?

Tech companies have been trying for years to get broadcast behemoths to change their ways and there’s been a good bit of progress. But it’s not enough. Technology is simply outpacing the traditional broadcast model. Something’s gotta give. Could the Xbox One be the catalyst for change that we’ve all been hoping for?

The Xbox One is now poised to become a huge mainstream success if Microsoft plays their cards right and even more so if they can get broadcast executives on board with their vision.

Metro: Last Light Tested, Benchmarked

Metro: Last Light Tested, Benchmarked

When the Metro 2033 was released in 2010 it contributed to raise the PC graphics bar making good use of the latest DirectX 11 rendering technologies. Metro: Last Light follows its predecessor roots by using a heavily customized and improved version of the 4A Engine.

Furthermore, the developer has continued to cater to loyal PC gamers who have considerably more power than console gamers at its disposal by including a richer gaming experience visually as well as a benchmark tool for measuring your system's performance.

Building a Thin Mini-ITX PC: Small and Silent Performance

Building a Thin Mini-ITX PC: Small and Silent Performance

The idea behind the Thin Mini-ITX form factor, besides the obvious which is to create seriously compact computers, is also to allow for DIY all-in-ones (think of little PCs you can attach to the back of your monitor). Having that said, we don't fully intend to go the all-in-one route in this article, but are aiming to build a powerful Thin Mini-ITX system that can be used in the office or at home as a media PC.

This is what our finished system should look like: extremely compact, powerful, and near silent operation, as in no-moving-parts silent. For less than $700 including a 256GB SSD, we believe you'll love what the final product will look like.

Metro: Last Light Review

Metro: Last Light Review

The Metro series is set some years after nuclear war has ruined the surface of the Earth and put an end to civilization as we know it. In Russia, survivors have retreated to the Metro, re-forging a bleak semi-existence in the tunnels beneath the city. This is the sort of game that mentions, in its opening cinematic, the very real possibility that God is dead.

Last Light assumes that players got the "bad ending" in Metro 2033 and took the option to blast the entire population of "Dark Ones" into oblivion. The subsequent discovery of a single surviving Dark One sets the plot of Last Light in motion.

  1. 1
  2. 2
  3. 3
  4. 4
  5. 5
  6. 6
  7. 7
  8. 8
  9. 9