Feature Index Page 3

  • Anatomy of a Mouse

    Computer mice are often inexpensive and basic, but some of them boast all kinds of extras. In this Anatomy feature we'll dig into the guts of one inexpensive mouse and one Logitech MX model to see how the two compare on the inside.

    By Nick Evanson on

  • The Best and Worst PC Hardware of 2020

    Let's do a brief recap of 2020's best and worst PC hardware products. We have 5 categories to work through covering mostly PC hardware components like CPUs, GPUs and motherboards, as well as laptop hardware and monitors.

    By Tim Schiesser on

  • The History of the Modern Graphics Processor

    3D graphics turned a dull PC industry into a light and magic show after generations of innovative endeavour. Here's our extensive look at the history of the GPU, from the early days of 3D, to game-changing hardware and the industry's consolidation.

    By Graham Singer on

  • AMD Smart Access Memory Tested, Benchmarked

    Today we're taking a detailed look at how AMD's Smart Access Memory (SAM) technology influences performance in a wide range of games. All in all, we plan to benchmark 36 games at 1080p, 1440p and 4K.

    By Steven Walton on

  • AMD Ryzen 5 3600 + Radeon RX 6800: Tested at 1080p, 1440p and 4K

    The Radeon RX 6800 is bound to be a popular GPU choice and with so many of you using the still amazing Ryzen 5 3600, it makes sense to see how it performs with the new RDNA2 GPU.

    By Steven Walton on

  • Rundown of Must-Have Portable Apps

    Portable apps are lightweight versions of applications that don't use an installer, so you can run them from a USB drive or a cloud folder. We've assembled a collection of the best and most useful portable apps across a variety of categories.

    By Julio Franco and Shawn Knight on

  • Resolution Scaling: The Secret to Playable "4K Gaming"

    Resolution scaling is a great option if you're looking to eke out an additional 10-15% performance, after tweaking settings. If you're playing at a high resolution like 4K, and you combine res scaling with image sharpening, the results are often very close to native.

    By Arjun Krishna Lal on

  • Explainer: What are MMX, SSE, and AVX?

    Computer technology is no strange to acronyms: CPU, RAM, SSD, to name but a few. Ever so often, new ones appear on the scene in the never-ending quest to improve the capabilities of our computing devices. Today we'll explain processor instruction set extensions MMX, SSE, and AVX.

    By Nick Evanson on

  • How Arm Came to Dominate the Mobile Market

    Whenever you think of mobile computing, Arm is likely the first company that comes to mind, or it should be. Billions of Arm chips are used on phones, TVs, embedded systems and tablets. But they're coming for more.

    By William Gayde on

  • Revisiting Video Game Music: PC Edition

    Forging ahead with our reminiscence of the most memorable video game music, part two focuses exclusively on PC video game soundtracks. We've got our hands full as there's a lot of excellent material to consider, so here comes our list.

    By Shawn Knight on

  • What Ever Happened to GameSpy?

    Today, multiplayer gaming is easy. But in the 90s, it was cumbersome and not exactly user friendly until an app called GameSpy hit the scene which made browsing for servers and connecting with players a far more intuitive process. It was a game-changer.

    By Sami Haj-Assaad on

  • A Beginner's Guide to the Linux Command Line

    Do you think of the command line as an antiquated leftover from the past, or an old fashioned way of interacting with a computer? Think again. In Linux, the command line remains the most flexible and powerful way to perform tasks.

    By Himanshu Arora on

  • Against All Odds: How Nintendo Made It

    Few companies can brush off failure and come back stronger like the world's most famous gaming company. Nintendo has been synonymous with video games for decades, but it's not always been rosy for the Japanese giant.

    By Rob Thubron on

  • Apple M1: Why It Matters

    Ever since Apple's M1 SoC launched, the tech community has been abuzz trying to draw comparisons to see where it stands in terms of performance and efficiency against Intel or AMD. Here's why we think M1 is a very relevant development in the world of computer hardware.

    By Julio Franco and William Gayde on

  • 26 Years of The Elder Scrolls

    It's been nearly a decade and two console generations since Skyrim came out in 2011. The Elder Scrolls VI is eventually coming, but as the franchise turns 26, we're looking back at how things got started.

    By Arjun Krishna Lal on

  • Cyberpunk 2077 DLSS + Ray Tracing Benchmark

    Cyberpunk 2077 is visually stunning and possibly the most graphically impressive game we've ever seen. Ray tracing elevates the game's visuals and provides a noticeable improvement, so it's time to test how your GPU performs with DLSS and ray tracing enabled.

    By Tim Schiesser on

  • Cyberpunk 2077 Benchmarked

    The day has finally arrived: Cyberpunk 2077 is here and the massively popular game appears to be a huge success. This benchmark feature will cover Cyberpunk 2077 performance with all current and previous-gen GPUs from AMD and Nvidia.

    By Steven Walton on

  • "Run as Administrator": What Does It Mean?

    You've surely opened software as an admin on Windows before, maybe as recently as today. But do you know what happens under the hood of Windows when you tell the OS to run a program as an administrator, and why is this process necessary in the first place?

    By Mark Turner on

  • What Happened Last Time AMD Beat Intel?

    AMD has overcome Intel in terms of performance before, but previous wins against the chip giant have been rare over the years. Furthermore, every time Intel looked inferior, it responded swiftly and effectively.

    By Sami Haj-Assaad on

  • History of the Modern Graphics Processor, Part 4

    With the arrival of DirectX 10, vertex and pixel shaders maintained large levels of common function, and so moving to a unified shader architecture made sense. The first GPU to go this route was Nvidia's iconic GeForce 8 Series.

    By Graham Singer on

  • History of the Modern Graphics Processor, Part 3

    With the turn of the century, the computer graphics market consisted of a discrete card duopoly (Nvidia and ATI), with both of them in addition to Intel supplying the vast majority of integrated graphics chipsets.

    By Graham Singer on

  • Nvidia Ampere vs. AMD RDNA 2: Battle of the Architectures

    For GPU enthusiasts, it's been a long two year wait. But now that Nvidia's Ampere RTX 3000 GPUs are out, as are AMD's Radeon RX 6000 series, it's time to take a deep look at how these chips work. Is one of them fundamentally better than the other?

    By Nick Evanson on

  • Silicon Graphics: Gone But Not Forgotten

    At its peak in the 1990s, Silicon Graphics had legendary status among 3D and graphic designers who leveraged the unique power of these workstations that were at cutting edge of visual computing.

    By Cal Jeffrey on

  • History of the Modern Graphics Processor, Part 2

    Voodoo Graphics revolutionized the PC nearly. The 3D landscape in 1996 favored S3 with 50% of the market. That completely changed as it was estimated that 3Dfx accounted for over 80% of the 3D market during the heyday of Voodoo's reign.

    By Graham Singer on

  • How to Optimize Your Internet Connection for Gaming

    You can have a super fast gaming PC with an RTX 3080 onboard and other speedy components. And yet, if you have a slow connection, your online gaming capabilities will be severely limited. Here are a few things you can try that can improve your existing connection.

    By Grzegorz Kubera on

  • Weird Keyboard Layouts: A Showcase

    It's safe to say many of us don't know much about what lies beyond the standard QWERTY keyboard. Well, there's so much more. Let's take a look at some popular and regional keyboard layouts.

    By Devin Kate Pope on

  • What's New in DirectX 12? Understanding DirectML, DirectX Raytracing and DirectStorage

    DirectX 12 has been expanding to cover ray tracing, machine learning and faster storage. Learn how next-gen titles like Cyberpunk 2077 are using some of these extras, and how they'll make games better for us all.

    By Nick Evanson on

  • Explainer: What Is Arduino?

    When it comes to computing devices, the headlines tend to go to biggest and fastest, but not always. Say hello to Arduino, a project that has inspired millions around the world to get into the vast ocean of electronics and programming.

    By Nick Evanson on

  • How to Customize the Windows 10 Context Menu: Add, Remove Items and More

    Left unchecked, it won't take long for the Windows context menu to become cluttered, and we bet there's at least one program on your context menus that you never use.

    By Mark Turner on

  • How to Remove the "3D Objects" Folder and Other Useless Shortcuts From Windows' File Explorer

    At some point, Windows 10 introduced a "3D Objects" File Explorer shortcut that takes up unnecessary space by default. This article will show you how to remove that annoyance and various other such shortcuts (Music, Videos, etc), so you can personalize as you want.

    By Mark Turner on