TechSpot

Review Index Page 7

  • The Best Graphics Cards: Nvidia vs. AMD Current-Gen Comparison

    By Steven Walton on November 26, 2012

    With updated pricing, drivers, and performance across the board, we are revisiting today's AMD and Nvidia graphics card offerings to see where you should spend your hard-earned cash this holiday season and into early next year.
  • Sony Xperia TL Review

    By Andrew Kameka on November 25, 2012

    Each iteration of Sony's flagship device has improved and been better than the previous version, but no single attempt has been just right. The Xperia TL, available now on AT&T, is as close as the company has come to finding the smartphone sweet spot, but is that good enough?
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  • Nintendo Wii U Review

    By Stephen Totilo on November 19, 2012

    The Wii U meets the standards of modern console gaming, while also supporting Wii Remotes and therefore serving as an HD version of the Wii. It does all of these things and introduces some well-realized new features to modern console gaming.
  • Call of Duty: Black Ops II GPU & CPU Performance

    By Steven Walton on November 16, 2012

    For Call of Duty fans, developer Treyarch just delivered an early Christmas present when they released Black Ops II this week. As the ninth game in the Call of Duty franchise and the sequel to the 2010 game Black Ops, we are hoping to see something meaningfully new from Black Ops II.
  • Samsung Galaxy Note II Review

    By Andrew Kameka on November 15, 2012

    The Galaxy Note II is a smooth and dynamic experience from top to bottom. Its above average size can be both a gift and a hindrance. It's probably too big as a phone or too small as a tablet for most, but many will find it's a comfortable compromise between the two form factors.
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  • Budget SSD Roundup: The Best SSD for Less Than $100

    By Steven Walton on November 13, 2012

    This comparison review takes a look at 8 popular SSDs that cost $100 or less, featuring capacities of up to 128GB. The OCZ Vertex 4 128GB, Samsung 840 120GB and Crucial m4 128GB are included, while the most affordable high-capacity SSD featured in our roundup is the Kingston SSDNow V+200 120GB.
  • Halo 4 Review

    By Tina Amini on November 07, 2012

    When Bungie introduced the sci-fi, FPS franchise over a decade ago, it wowed fans with a perfect formula of alien creatures and versatile weapons. Hardcore Halo fans can rest assured that 343 has stayed true to the core of Halo, and we urge them to keep an open mind when confronted by its new skin.
  • Medal of Honor: Warfighter GPU & CPU Performance

    By Steven Walton on October 31, 2012

    Warfighter uses DICE's Frostbite 2 engine -- the same software that powers Battlefield 3 -- which may partly explain the high-end hardware requirements. We are testing MoH Warfighter with 29 DirectX 11 graphics card configurations from AMD and Nvidia across all price ranges.
  • Medal of Honor: Warfighter Review

    By Kirk Hamilton on October 31, 2012

    The Medal of Honor series has become, in most every respect, a flagrant imitation of Activision's much ballyhooed Call of Duty series. You play the game from the first-person perspective. You hold a machine gun and shoot bad guys, almost exclusively foreigners.
  • World of Warcraft: Mists of Pandaria Review

    By Kate Cox & Mike Fahey on October 26, 2012

    Mists of Pandaria is best looked at from two different perspectives. One: how is it for the new player? And two: how is it for the experienced player? If someone's been in a holding pattern at level 85 for years, what does Mists of Pandaria offer to that player, and how do its many changes improve or diminish the World of Warcraft experience?
  • AMD FX-8350 and FX-6300 Piledriver Review

    By Steven Walton on October 23, 2012

    AMD is refreshing its desktop processors with Piledriver, an enhanced version of Bulldozer that focuses on improving instructions per clock and frequency -- just like it did with the new Piledriver-powered Trinity APUs. In other words, instead of a major overhaul, Piledriver picks up where Bulldozer left off.
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  • Windows 8, The TechSpot Review

    By Julio Franco on October 23, 2012

    Windows 8 remains a nice upgrade, possibly a Service Pack-plus caliber upgrade when you look at the desktop improvements. Metro doesn't make Windows 8 more capable, but it does pave a way for Microsoft to sell slates and appeal to a mainstream user base that craves simpler devices.
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  • Testing Thunderbolt-Enabled External Storage: Gigabyte Z77X-UP5TH meets WD Velociraptor Duo

    By Steven Walton on October 17, 2012

    With most Thunderbolt products available today being storage-related, we wanted to see what the new Gigabyte Z77X-UP5 TH motherboard and its dual Thunderbolt ports had to offer in terms of performance. Put to the test: Western Digital's Velociraptor Duo, which boasts of a pair of 10K RPM Velociraptor hard drives.
  • XCOM: Enemy Unknown Review

    By Luke Plunkett on October 10, 2012

    XCOM is about as perfect a remake of an old game as I could have hoped for, in that while changes have inevitably been made, they're mostly for the better, and anything genuinely new introduced is only there to improve things.
  • Nvidia GeForce GTX 650 Ti Review

    By Steven Walton on October 09, 2012

    Having attacked the mid-range and upper-end markets, Nvidia has its sights set on the sub-$200 range, unleashing its GTX 650 Ti. At $150, the new arrival is roughly 34% cheaper than last month's GTX 660 and about 7% pricier than the Radeon HD 7770, which fetches around $140 depending on features and rebates.
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  • Guild Wars 2 Review

    By Kate Cox on October 04, 2012

    With a mix of familiar MMORPG tropes and new, modern approaches to delivering them, Guild Wars 2 is an excellent, welcoming take on the genre.
  • AMD A10-5800K Trinity APU Review

    By Steven Walton on October 03, 2012

    AMD is finally prepared to offer a desktop version of Trinity, which brings a new socket and a new high-end chipset. Given that Piledriver improved Bulldozer's power consumption, we expect Trinity to be more efficient than Llano, while Cayman's VLIW4 architecture should boost the GPU's speed -- or so we hope.
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  • Acer Aspire S5 Ultrabook Review

    By Shawn Knight on October 02, 2012

    The Aspire S5 comes with a beefy Core i7-3517U clocked at 1.9GHz, 4GB of RAM and 256GB of flash storage. In most instances, an SSD is the best addition period, for any modern system, but Acer took things a step further with two 128GB SSDs in RAID0. It goes without saying that the storage subsystem should be blazing fast.
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  • Apple iPhone 5 Review

    By Shawn Knight on September 27, 2012

    The sixth-generation iPhone has finally landed. Apple has almost completely redesigned the phone's exterior, yet it still looks very much like the iconic handset everyone is familiar with. There's a larger 4-inch screen, LTE, a faster processor, and a new dock connector not everyone is a fan of.
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  • Samsung 840 Pro SSD Review

    By Steven Walton on September 24, 2012

    While the Samsung 830 SSD and many of its year-old peers may still be attractive, Samsung is ready to move on to bigger and better things. The new flagship offering, the SSD 840 Pro, refines the 830 Series' firmware with faster random and sustained performance as well as improved reliability.
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  • Borderlands 2 GPU & CPU Performance Test

    By Steven Walton on September 21, 2012

    Borderlands 2 benchmarks and performance analysis -- Borderlands 2 succeeds at building on the foundation laid three years ago, delivering new characters, more weapons, smarter foes, and the same addictive loot-driven co-op first-person shooter action. We take the game for a spin on today's finest hardware.
  • Crucial m4 mSATA 256GB SSD Review

    By Steven Walton on September 19, 2012

    We took notice when Crucial announced its m4 mSATA SSD in a 256GB capacity at under $1/GB. The mSATA drive is tiny compared to Crucial's standard 2.5-inch m4, and despite the size difference, both 256GB models feature the same read and write speeds of 500MB/s and 260MB/s.
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  • Torchlight II vs. Diablo III: The Ultimate ARPG Shootout

    By Kirk Hamilton on September 19, 2012

    Torchlight II is much more of a beast than its predecessor; in terms of scale and ambition, it's right up there with the biggest names in loot-collection and click-based combat. And so of course, Blizzard's Diablo III looms large over the entirety of Torchlight II. How could it not?
  • Nvidia GeForce GTX 660 Review

    By Steven Walton on September 13, 2012

    Ever eager to keep AMD on its toes, Nvidia continues its push into the mid-range market with a Kepler-based card that is expected to retail for about $230 -- right in-between AMD's Radeon HD 7850 and 7870. The GTX 660 is based on the new 28nm GK106 architecture which inherits all the key innovations introduced by the flagship GTX 680.
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  • LG Optimus 4X HD Review

    By Michael Oryl on September 12, 2012

    The question is, does the phone manage to outshine its Bruce Banner exterior to show off what it's Hulk-scale guts are capable of? In short: yes. It turns out that what the Optimus 4X HD lacks in external appeal is more than made up for by its good nature and brainy innards.
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  • Cooler Master Silencio 650 Case Review

    By Steven Walton on August 30, 2012

    The Silencio 650 not resembles a cleaner version of Cooler Master's more aggressive HAF series, but it touts many attractive features, chief among which is sound absorbing foam mats and specially designed air vents to minimize noise while maintaining low operating temps.
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  • Crucial v4 256GB vs. OCZ Agility 4 256GB SSD Shootout

    By Steven Walton on August 28, 2012

    By mid 2012, SSD prices fell through the floor, costing approximately half as much as last year. Granted, that's still nowhere near as economical as standard hard drives, so companies have continued to offer affordable solutions such as the OCZ Agility 4 and the Crucial v4 reviewed today.
  • Nvidia GeForce GTX 660 Ti Review

    By Steven Walton on August 16, 2012

    Nvidia's new GeForce GTX 660 Ti has its crosshairs set on the HD 7870. Assuming it's priced competitively, the GTX 660 Ti seems like it could put a real hurting on AMD's offering, as it features the same DNA as existing Kepler products and boasts the same number of CUDA cores and texture units as the GTX 670.
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  • Windows 8 vs. Windows 7 Performance

    By Steven Walton on August 15, 2012

    For comparing Windows 7 and Windows 8 we will measure and test the performance of various aspects of the operating system including: boot up and shutdown times, file copying, encoding, browsing, gaming and some synthetic benchmarks.
  • Acer Aspire TimelineU M5 Review

    By Matthew DeCarlo on August 14, 2012

    More than last year, 2012's ultrabooks have been and will continue to be about tradeoffs: low-res screens vs. high-res, snappy SSDs vs. capacious HDDs, power-sipping IGPs vs. muscle-bound GPUs, and so on. Acer's new TimelineU makes its own compromises to manage an attractive $830 price tag.
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