AMD has continued refining its Fusion offerings since launching the first APUs early last year. Just four months ago the company launched Trinity for mobile platforms -- arguably where its APUs provide the most value.
Now AMD is finally prepared to offer a desktop version, 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.
Borderlands 2 succeeds at building on the foundation laid three years ago, delivering an improved menu system, revamped skill trees, new characters, more weapons, smarter foes, and the same addictive loot-driven co-op first-person shooter action. As exciting as all of that may be, we're more interested in seeing how the game runs on the finest PC hardware from Intel, AMD and Nvidia.
Built on a highly modified version of Unreal Engine 3, the game only uses DirectX 9, opting to exclude the engine's DirectX 11 support. It's worth mentioning that Borderlands 2 is a "The Way It's Meant to be Played" title, supporting many Nvidia features such as PhysX and 3D Vision Surround. Let's get down to business...
Back when Vista first arrived I remember comparing how it performed to XP and being extremely disappointed with the results. Vista was generally rough around the edges and that included drivers, so gaming and productivity applications were more often than not slower in the new OS. Microsoft's PR machine has been hard at work over the past few months, trying to explain the numerous improvements Windows 8 has received on the backend. The good news is that it shows.
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.
Apple’s coveted Retina display has finally found its way to a full-size notebook courtesy of the latest MacBook Pro. In addition, there’s an entirely reworked chassis that’s nearly as thin as the MacBook Air and weighs more than a pound less than the standard Pro. Customers can also configure a Retina system with up to 16GB of RAM and 768GB of flash storage, versus a maximum of 8GB of RAM and 512GB of solid state storage on a standard Pro.
But hey, who are we kidding, the only reason that most people are going to dish over the extra cash for Apple’s latest and greatest is the 2880 x 1800 resolution goodness of the Retina display. And I’ll go ahead and let you in a little secret: it’s a thing of beauty.
A powerful graphics card is likely the most expensive component in your PC if you're a gamer, but with all current and past-gen GPUs available in the range of $100 to $500, it can be tough to pick the right solution for your needs.
In an effort to narrow things down, we're about to compare today's most relevant gaming cards that sell for $200 or more, testing them in a slew of games to see how it breaks down as we look for the best graphics cards for gaming at resolutions of 1920x1200 and 2560x1600.
Indonesian PC wizard Hazzan has broken the world record for overclocking PC graphics cards. How do you even measure such a thing? The scene uses the scores handed out by benchmark tool 3DMark 11, and Hazzan's 4-way SLI GTX 680 setup registered a score of P33190, which beat the previous mark by 39 points.
If you've been a gamer for at least a decade, then you will recognize Max Payne as the PC third-person shooter of the early 2000s. Notable for its film noir style and use of the bullet time effect (The Matrix), Max Payne's character went on to surpass anyone's expectations with several console ports, a sequel, and a feature film adaptation in 2008.
It's been hinted that Max Payne 3 will make the most of current high-end PCs, with DirectX 11 tessellation compatibility and advanced graphics options. With that in mind we test it with 25 graphics card configurations and a range of CPUs.
After 11 years in the making and more setbacks than we care to count, Blizzard has finally unleashed a third installment to its cult classic dungeon crawler.
Blizzard has somewhat of a reputation for making highly scalable titles that run on virtually any gaming rigs, so that's largely what we expect from the developer's latest offering... watch us beat the hell out of Diablo III with today's finest hardware.
Considered a successor to Tribes 2, Tribes: Ascend embraces its heritage by incorporating the same fast-paced combat, tons of maps, weapons, vehicles and unique traversal mechanics.
The game is built on a modified Unreal Engine 3 and only supports DirectX 9 graphics, but the recommended specs are relatively high, calling for a GeForce GTX 560 or Radeon HD 6950 with a quad-core processor. Considering those requirements, we're hoping the game gives our test hardware a nice workout.
Ivy Bridge is still about a week away if you buy the latest hearsay, but Laptop Reviews has jumped the gun with a review of HP's EliteBook 8470p, complete with benchmarks of Intel's new chips. Equipped with an unidentified Core i7 engineering sample, the machine outpaced...
As you've undoubtedly heard, the third installment of BioWare's Mass Effect trilogy hit shelves last Tuesday. Being one of the year's most anticipated launches, it's no surprise to see it with an aggregate review score of over 90.
We've benchmarked Mass Effect 3 across three different resolutions with two dozen GPU configurations -- including AMD's new Radeon HD 7000 series. We'll also see how the performance scales when overclocking an eight-core FX-8150, along with benching a handful of other Intel and AMD processors.
Although its popularity is undoubtedly aided by the cult-like status of the Elder Scrolls franchise, Skyrim isn't just a clone of its predecessors (we're looking at you MW3). Bethesda has made many gameplay refinements, especially to the graphics and animations -- our area of interest.
While it may not bring your PC to its knees, Skyrim promises to be the best-looking Elder Scrolls title to date with its newly developed game engine, called the "Creation Engine." As usual we have put a wide range of hardware to the test, 17 graphics cards and CPU performance comparisons await inside.
As you've undoubtedly heard, Modern Warfare 3 launched this week and, well, what can we say? The game has reportedly sold a record 9.3 million copies in a single day.
In terms of graphical fidelity though, Infinity Ward's latest effort is about as visually appealing as its 2009 predecessor. No, I don't stutter. Unfortunately, the company has focused on optimizing the game for consoles while ignoring PC development for the last five years. If you're itching to see how your DirectX 10 or 11 GPU handles a DX9 engine, then maybe MW3 has something to offer you.
Earlier this month we checked out the beta version of Battlefield 3 to see how it played on a range of DirectX 11 graphics cards. The results were concerning as even the latest and greatest graphics cards struggled, especially those who planned to enjoy the game in all of its visual glory.
The good news is that only one month later reviewers are finding the final game to be quite enjoyable and considerably more polished than the beta. Today we'll take a peak at what's required to play Battlefield 3 as we test a number of GPU and CPU configurations.
Newcomer 'Flying Wild Hog' has been secretly working on an early Christmas present for PC gamers, the game is called Hard Reset. Some of you may have already heard of it, as a 1GB playable demo was released last week out of nowhere.
Hard Reset is incredibly fun to play, moreover the game looks impressive, featuring quality graphics, despite it's a DX9 only title. Let’s move on to see how we tested the game.
After many years of waiting the third installment of the Deus Ex series has finally arrived, and most important of all, the game appears to be every bit as good as its predecessors.
In other good news, Deus Ex: Human Revolution could very well be a game capable of fully utilizing the power and features of today’s high-end graphics cards. Such games have become increasingly rare and with the exception of just a select few, most of the games we have run performance tests on this year have been shameful console ports that would struggle to max out a tablet PC.