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Latest Reviews

  • Grand Theft Auto V Benchmarked: Graphics & CPU Performance

    By Steven Walton on

    PC gamers are finally getting their chance to play the latest entry in the Grand Theft Auto series. Rockstar has made many improvements to the PC version, including enhanced graphics, denser traffic, greater draw distances, upgraded AI, new wildlife, and advanced weather and damage effects. GTA V looks to be truly optimized for PC.
  • Oppo R5 Smartphone Review

    By Tim Schiesser on

    Smartphone manufacturers are obsessed with thinness. Being the 'best at' this or 'most' that gives you bragging rights and that's what Chinese OEM Oppo appears to be after with the R5. At just 4.85mm thick, it's a pretty impressive form factor, though you'll have to compromise with a smaller battery, a pretty standard 1080p display, average camera and a mid-range SoC. Can the R5 still deliver a better experience over a thicker device with, potentially, better hardware?
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  • Crucial MX200 1TB & Crucial BX100 500GB SSD Series Review

    By Steven Walton on

    Crucial SSDs have been among the most reliable and best performing on the market, with last year's MX100 being their greatest hit. Its successor, the MX200 arrived only six months later and along with it Crucial also introduced the even more affordable BX100 series and a new SSD toolbox software. On today's menu is the beefy 1TB MX200 along with the 500GB BX100.
  • LG G Flex 2 Review

    By Tim Schiesser on

    While similar in shape to the original, the new LG G Flex 2 features a more reasonable 5.5-inch display while maintaining the same flexibility. LG is packing in the latest and greatest hardware, including a Snapdragon 810 SoC, 1080p display and 13MP camera with autofocus and optical image stabilization. It's still a niche flagship, but the question remains, is the curved G Flex 2 worth it?
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  • Intel Core i3 vs. Core i5 vs. Core i7: A Value and Performance Analysis

    By Steven Walton on

    With desktop CPU prices ranging from as little as $60 to over $600 there are options for everyone. The Core i3 is intended as entry-level, the Core i5 is geared for mainstream usage, and the mighty Core i7 is meant for high-end systems and enthusiasts. But what exactly do you get by spending more? Here's your answer.
  • Intel SSD 750 Series 1.2TB NVMe SSD Review

    By Steven Walton on

    Designed for enthusiasts and workstations, the key feature of Intel's SSD 750 Series is its adoption of Non-Volatile Memory Express or NVMe, bringing multiple queues and lower latency with a direct path from the storage to the CPU. The drive is rated to deliver sequential read performance of up to 2.4GB/s with sequential writes hitting 1.2GB/s.
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  • Logitech MX Master Wireless Mouse Review

    By Steven Walton on

    The original MX Performance was announced back in August of 2009 as Logitech's answer to Microsoft's 'BlueTrack' mouse sensor technology. For $100, it was a pretty good deal back back then, being the first mouse from Logitech feature its Darkfield laser and Unifying USB micro-receiver. Now six years later, Logitech wants to recapture the magic of its MX Performance with the 'MX Master', which is aimed at those who want a high-end mouse that isn't designed for gaming.
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  • Samsung 850 Evo M.2 500GB & 850 Evo 250GB mSATA Review

    By Steven Walton on

    Samsung tempted value-oriented enthusiasts in December with its 'V-NAND'-based 850 Evo series. Equipped with 3D TLC NAND, which allows Samsung to stack layer upon layer of transistors, the design improved density, endurance, performance and lowered production costs. Today we have two similarly new drives that focus on different form factors. The mSATA version will appeal to compact PC users, while the M.2 will be more sought after by power users.
  • Battlefield Hardline Benchmarked: Graphics & CPU Performance

    By Steven Walton on

    Battlefield Hardline showed superb graphics and smooth gameplay when we benchmarked it during last month's week-long public beta, and while the good news was that the game could be played on fairly modest hardware, it didn't quite display Battlefield 4's wow-factor. Developed by Visceral Games, the retail version Hardline is now available and we are back to rerun all the beta tests along with others to see how the frame rates have changed from beta to retail.
  • HTC One M9 Review

    By Tim Schiesser on

    HTC's signature metal body makes a repeated appearance on the new One M9 and it looks absolutely fantastic. The two-tone, two-finish design adds an extra bit of flare to the well-crafted, premium build, making this phone one of the most attractive on the market today. But where does One M9 fall short and where is it better than the competition?
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  • AMD FreeSync Review

    By Tim Schiesser on

    While they may be entering the market second with their version of the technology, AMD has laid the groundwork with FreeSync for the ideal adaptive sync standard going forward. The company has delivered on their promises to create a cheaper, more flexible, open standard for variable refresh. We go through some of the main differences with Nvidia's G-Sync, our impressions gaming on a FreeSync monitor, and OEMs crucial role for FreeSync to reach its full potential.
  • Nvidia GeForce GTX Titan X Review

    By Steven Walton on

    The GeForce Titan X is a processing powerhorse, with its GM200 chip carrying 6 graphics processing clusters, 24 streaming multiprocessors with 3072 CUDA cores. Combined with six 64-bit memory controllers for a total 12GB of GDDR5 memory clocked at 7GHz, that's 50% more cores and memory bandwidth than today's single-GPU king, the GeForce GTX 980. Needless to say, we're eager to see what the new Titan X is capable of.
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  • Cities: Skylines Review

    By Luke Plunkett on

    If you play city-building games to, well, build cities, this is the best you can get. Never before have I felt like I could just walk up to an enormous tract of land, open up some tools and just... build whatever I wanted, however I wanted. Cities: Skylines is a gorgeous video game.
  • BitFenix Aegis Core MicroATX Case Review

    By Steven Walton on

    The BitFenix Aegis delivers on design, with internals that are unique yet functional and externals that are eye-catching but not excessive. Despite being a 43L mATX case, the Aegis holds huge hardware, especially when it comes to cooling.
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  • Alienware 15 Review

    By Tim Schiesser on

    Designed for high-end gaming, the Alienware 15 packs powerful hardware rivalling decent gaming desktops, including flagship mobile GPUs from both AMD and Nvidia. And like other Alienware machines, the 15 is highly customizable, with pricing ranging from $1,200 up to $2,700 depending on the hardware inside.
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  • 3-Way Budget Mid-Tower PC Case Shootout

    By Steven Walton on

    Mid-towers are by far the most popular case form factor, supporting most full-sized hardware including the ever abundant ATX motherboards and power supplies, while typically costing only $50 to $75. In most situations, anything in that range will be adequate for a standard build, but Silverstone, Corsair and In Win have launched new contenders that are said to deliver the build quality, design, features and performance of pricier models without breaking the bank.
  • Homeworld Remastered Collection: Graphics & CPU Performance

    By Steven Walton on

    Following its original release in 1999 and a successful sequel in 2003, it's been too long since we've heard about the Homeworld series. Although fans haven't been lucky enough to receive a brand new game, they are now able to relive the magic at high resolutions with a full graphical makeover. The remastered versions have high-res textures and models, new visual effects, recreated cinematic scenes, and support for HD, Ultra HD and 4K resolutions.
  • Dell Venue 8 7000 Review

    By Shawn Knight on

    The new Dell Venue 8 arrives to the market with a unique form factor and a chassis that's thinner than any other tablet in the world. Running Android OS and powered by Intel's Atom Z3580 quad-core processor, 2GB of DDR3 RAM and 16GB of flash memory, this is arguably one of the best looking tablets currently on the market.
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  • Sub-$100 Gaming Headset Roundup

    By Steven Walton on

    I have long relied on desktop speakers when playing games. Now that I am a father, however, those speakers are too loud for me to enjoy the combined 500 Watts RMS of 5.1 audio. Having only ever bought relatively cheap headsets with proportionally cheap audio quality, it seems about time for me to upgrade. In the process of settling on a new headset, I've acquired six sub-$100 gaming-oriented models from separate hardware manufacturers to compare in a roundup.
  • Dell XPS 13 (2015) Review

    By Tim Schiesser on

    The ideal Windows laptop is very hard to find but the new XPS 13 ticks most boxes. It has a 13-inch display with a very slim bezel, the aluminium shell with a carbon fibre-style interior looks pretty darn good, there's a new Intel Broadwell Core i5 under the hood, and battery life is rated at up to 15 hours. The XPS 13 is a return to form for Dell in a big way.
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  • Silverstone Sugo SG13 Mini-ITX Case Review

    By Steven Walton on

    Just when we were starting to think that the Sugo series lost its Mini-ITX mojo, after the last couple of models moved to MicroATX, Silverstone has stepped forward with the itty bitty 11.5L SG13. The thirteenth Sugo isn't quite the smallest to date, but it may be the most capable. Its 11.5L body is said to be capable of housing a standard ATX power supply up to 150mm long, a 120/140mm radiator and a 10.5" dual-slot graphics card.
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  • Evolve Benchmarked: Graphics & CPU Performance

    By Steven Walton on

    We've been eagerly anticipating more games based on the latest CryEngine build and now that wait is over: after being delayed from its original October 2014 release date, Evolve has launched this week on PC, Xbox One and PS4. Developed by Turtle Rock Studios (creator of Left 4 Dead), Evolve is the company's latest squad-based co-op shooter and unsurprisingly, it calls for some fairly beefy hardware.
  • Samsung Galaxy A5 Review

    By Tim Schiesser on

    Rather than completely dropping last year's Alpha design, Samsung reworked it for a new and much more compelling product for the mid-range market. The Galaxy A5 is a $400 smartphone inside a $700 body.
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  • The Best CPU for the Money: AMD vs. Intel Budget Shootout

    By Steven Walton on

    These days you might expect buying a new processor to be fairly straightforward. The choice seems clear: Intel has proven to offer superior core performance with considerably greater efficiency. However, many enthusiasts argue that AMD offers better overclocking on its more affordable processors and therefore delivers a better bang for your buck. We put that notion to the test.
  • Battlefield Hardline Performance Preview

    By Steven Walton on

    Battlefield Hardline is scheduled to arrive on March 17 but starting this week you can get your frag on for free during EA's open beta phase, which should hopefully help avoid a repeat of the launch issues that plagued Battlefield 4. While the Battlefield Hardline beta will be available to gamers on all platforms folks playing on PC can use this performance preview to determine what kind of performance your graphics card will deliver.
  • Lenovo ThinkPad Helix Review

    By Tim Schiesser on

    Now that low-power Intel Broadwell Core M CPUs are out, Lenovo is back with a refresh of the ThinkPad Helix, their detachable tablet-laptop hybrid. The new Helix offers a similar feature set than its predecessor, but Lenovo claims it's now 15% slimmer and will last several hours longer on battery. It's also over $500 cheaper than the original.
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  • Dying Light Benchmarked: Graphics & CPU Performance

    By Steven Walton on

    Dying Light takes place in an expansive urban environment where players navigate using free running 'parkour' mechanics while scavenge for supplies to craft weapons and defend against the city's growing infected population. It's the first game built with the Chrome Engine 6, which is a proprietary 3D game engine developed by Techland that was first used over 10 years ago in Speedway Grand Prix and sci-fi shooter Chrome
  • My First Few Hours with Dying Light

    By Yannick LeJacq on

    I wasn't sure what to expect from Dying Light, a new open-world zombie game from a studio known for making the regrettable open-world zombie series Dead Island. Imagine my pleasant surprise when I discovered some cool ideas during my first hours with the game. Dying Light improves aspects of Dead Island's zombie-centric gameplay by adding parkour-style movement into the mix along with other promising features.
  • Samsung T1 Portable SSD Review

    By Steven Walton on

    Flash-based thumb drives have come a long way, but while a 16GB stick can be purchased with spare change, those who need to move large volumes of data on without spending an arm and a leg have traditionally had to rely on comparatively sluggish USB 3.0 hard drives. Thanks to Samsung, we may finally have an external SSD that delivers blisteringly fast transfers at an affordable price in the form of its new T1 Portable SSD.
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  • littleBits Smart Home Kit Review

    By Shawn Knight on

    Retrofitting an existing home with so-called "Internet of Things" gadgets isn't cheap, but with the right tools you can hack some cloud functionality to your dumb appliances. littleBits is an ever-growing library of small electronic modules that easily connect together. Created by Ayah Bdeir, it started as a tool to help designers incorporate electronics into the prototyping process. Today, it's much more than that. Think of them as Lego bricks for the iPad generation.