Maximum PC - All Articles en Newegg Daily Deals: EVGA Superclocked GeForce GTX 760, AMD FX-8350 Black Edition, and More! <!--paging_filter--><p><img src="/files/u69/evga_sc_760.jpg" alt="EVGA Superclocked GeForce GTX 760" title="EVGA Superclocked GeForce GTX 760" width="300" height="183" style="float: right;" /><img src="/files/u154082/newegg_logo_small.png" alt="newegg logo" title="newegg logo" width="200" height="80" /></p> <p><strong>Top Deal:</strong></p> <p>Summer might be winding down, but that doesn't mean it's game over for gamers. The past few months has seen some big titles get released, and the fun will continue through the back-to-school shopping season and beyond, starting with the impending release of Grand Theft Auto V for PC. Are you prepared to play everything that's coming out? If not, check out today's top deal for an <a href=";cm_mmc=BAC-MaximumPC-_-DailyDeals-_-GPU-N82E16814130932-_-0801&amp;nm_mc=ExtBanner&amp;AID=5555555" target="_blank">EVGA Superclocked GeForce GTX 760 Graphics Card</a> for <strong>$230</strong> with free shipping (normally $240; additional $10 mail-in-rebate). This card is factor overclocked from stock to 1072MHz (core) an 1137MHz (boost). It also features 2GB of GDDR5 memory on a 256-bit bus running at 6,008MHz (effective). EVGA's custom ACX cooler keeps the card nice and cool, allowing for 15 percent lower GPU temps, 7 percent lower mosfet temps, and 15 percent lower memory temps.</p> <p><strong>Other Deals:</strong></p> <p><a href=";cm_mmc=BAC-MaximumPC-_-DailyDeals-_-CPU-N82E16819113284-_-0801&amp;nm_mc=ExtBanner&amp;AID=5555555" target="_blank">AMD FX-8350 Black Edition Vishera 8-Core 4.0GHz (4.2GHz Turbo) Socket AM3+ 125W Desktop Processor</a> for <strong>$180</strong> with free shipping (normally $190 - use coupon code: [<strong>EMCPCGW22</strong>])</p> <p><a href=";cm_mmc=BAC-MaximumPC-_-DailyDeals-_-DISPLAY-N82E16824009513-_-0801&amp;nm_mc=ExtBanner&amp;AID=5555555" target="_blank">Acer S241HLbmid Black 24-inch 5ms HDMI Widescreen LED Backlight LCD Monitor</a> for <strong>$130</strong> with free shipping (normally $140 - use coupon code: [<strong>EMCPCGW24</strong>])</p> <p><a href=";cm_mmc=BAC-MaximumPC-_-DailyDeals-_-SSD-N82E16820167192-_-0801&amp;nm_mc=ExtBanner&amp;AID=5555555" target="_blank">Intel 730 Series 2.5-inch 480GB SATA 6Gb/s MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)</a> for <strong>$380</strong> with free shipping </p> <p><a href=";cm_mmc=BAC-MaximumPC-_-DailyDeals-_-RAM-N82E16820233246-_-0801&amp;nm_mc=ExtBanner&amp;AID=5555555" target="_blank">Corsair Vengeance 16GB (2 x 8GB) 240-Pin DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory</a> for <strong>$158</strong> with free shipping (normally $175 - use coupon code: [<strong>EMCPCGW28</strong>])</p> Acer amd Daily Deals daily deals evga intel Newegg Fri, 01 Aug 2014 13:26:07 +0000 The Maximum PC Staff 28276 at Microsoft Skins Mobile Mouse 3500 with Halo's Master Chief, Goes Up for Pre-order at Gamestop <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/halo_mouse.jpg" alt="Halo Mouse" title="Halo Mouse" width="228" height="201" style="float: right;" />An affordable rodent for Halo fans</h3> <p>It's a bit of an odd cross promotion, but to draw attention to Halo: The Master Chief Collection for Xbox One, <strong>GameStop is offering up for pre-order Microsoft's new Wireless Mobile Mouse 3500 Halo Limited Edition: The Master Chief</strong>. Microsoft outfitted its existing Mobile Mouse 3500 with a highly detailed scene featuring Master Chief in his two-tone green MJOLNIR Power Assault Armor and gold hued visor.</p> <p>"With this mouse, you get Master Chief and all the awesomeness that comes standard with the popular Wireless Mobile Mouse 3500 such as its ambidextrous design, snap-in nano transceiver, 2.4 GHz wireless technology, and two-color battery light indicator. You also get BlueTrack Technology that allows you to use the mouse on virtually any surface including granite, marble, carpet, and wood," Microsoft said in a <a href="" target="_blank">blog post</a>.</p> <p>The Mobile Mouse 3500 uses BlueTrack technology for tracking on virtually any surface. It also features a plug-and-go nano transreceiver and up to 8 months of battery life.</p> <p>If you're interested, you can place your <a href="" target="_blank">pre-order at GameStop</a> for $30 today; it will ship in October. You can also <a href="" target="_blank">place your pre-order</a> for Halo: The Master Chief Collect at GameStop for $60; it ships November 11, 2014.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> GameStop halo Hardware master chief microsoft mobile mouse 3500 Peripherals News Thu, 31 Jul 2014 23:39:26 +0000 Paul Lilly 28275 at AMD Uncages A10-7800 and A8-7600 Kaveri APUs <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/kaveri_0.jpg" alt="AMD Kaveri" title="AMD Kaveri" width="228" style="float: right;" />New APUs solve the Twitter teaser picture mystery</h3> <p>We now have our answer to a <a href="" target="_blank">Twitter picture</a> teasing a new AMD A-Series APU launch that made the rounds last week. The picture showed a dozen robots on the side of a semi-truck, leading to speculation that AMD might release a 12-core APU. In a sense, that's what AMD launched today, though not in the way you might think. <strong>AMD's updated Kaveri parts released today include the A10-7800 and A6-7600 APUs</strong>, the former with 12 Compute Cores (4 CPU and 8 GPU) and the latter with 10 Compute Cores (4 CPU and 6 GPU).</p> <p>In a more traditional sense, the higher-end A10-7800 is a quad-core chip clocked at 3.5GHz (up to 3.9GHz via Turbo), while the A6-7600 is also a quad-core part, but clocked at 3.1GHz (up to 3.8GHz via Turbo). They both feature AMD's Heterogeneous System Architecture (HSA) that allows the CPU and GPU to tag team tasks, TrueAudio technology, Mantle support, and configurable TDPs.</p> <p>"The AMD A-Series APUs bring a superior level of gaming and compute experiences to the desktop PC," <a href="" target="_blank">said Bernd Lienhard</a>, corporate vice president and general manager, Client Business Unit, AMD. "With support for AMD’s acclaimed Mantle API that simplifies game optimizations for programmers and developers to unlock unprecedented levels of gaming performance transforming the world of game development to help bring better, faster games to the PC."</p> <p>AMD's A10-7800 and A6-7600 are available now for $158 and $104, respectively (MSRPs).</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> a10-7800 A8-7600 amd apu Build a PC cpu kaveri processor News Thu, 31 Jul 2014 23:17:19 +0000 Paul Lilly 28274 at 9 Horrific Game Launches <!--paging_filter--><h3>DRM issues, poor performance, and crashing servers</h3> <p>If you’re like us, you like the Internet, but there are unfortunately downsides to the service. It seems that over the years, developers have been releasing unfinished buggy games, hoping to just patch the situation later.&nbsp;</p> <p>While some games get better with patches and updates over time, there’s really nothing that can completely erase the memory of a rocky launch. With that said, here’s a look of the 9 worst PC game launches.</p> <p>What’s the worst game launch you’ve experienced? Let us know in the comments below!&nbsp;</p> april issues 2014 diablo 3 half life 2 maximum pc the list The Sims watch dogs worst game launches Features The List Thu, 31 Jul 2014 21:47:48 +0000 Maximum PC staff 28250 at Seagate 1TB Hybrid vs. WD Black2 Dual Drive <!--paging_filter--><h3>Seagate 1TB Hybrid vs. WD Black2 Dual Drive</h3> <p>Every mobile user who is limited to just one storage bay wants the best of both worlds: SSD speeds with HDD capacities. Both Seagate and WD have a one-drive solution to this problem, with Seagate offering a hybrid 1TB hard drive with an SSD cache for SSD-esque performance, and WD offering a no-compromise 2.5-inch drive with both an SSD and an HDD. These drives are arch rivals, so it’s time to settle the score.</p> <h4>ROUND 1: Specs and Package</h4> <p>The WD Black2 Dual Drive is two separate drives, with a 120GB SSD riding shotgun alongside a two-platter 1TB 5,400rpm hard drive. Both drives share a single SATA 6Gb/s interface and split the bandwidth of the channel between them, with the SSD rated to deliver 350MB/s read speeds and 140MB/s write speeds. The drive comes with a SATA-to-USB adapter and includes a five-year warranty. The Seagate SSHD uses a simpler design and features a 1TB 5,400rpm hard drive with an 8GB sliver of NAND flash attached to it, along with software that helps move frequently accessed data from the platters to the NAND memory for faster retrieval. It includes a three-year warranty and is otherwise a somewhat typical drive aimed at the consumer market, not hardcore speed freaks. Both drives include free cloning software, but since the WD includes two physical drives, a USB adapter, and a longer warranty, it gets the nod.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a class="thickbox" href="/files/u152332/wd_endeavor_quarter_left_higres_smal_0.jpg"><img src="/files/u152332/wd_endeavor_quarter_left_higres_smal.jpg" alt="WD’s Black2 Dual Drive is two individual drives in one enclosure, and it has the price tag to prove it. " title="WD Black2" width="620" height="620" /></a></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><strong>WD’s Black2 Dual Drive is two individual drives in one enclosure, and it has the price tag to prove it. </strong></p> <p><strong>Winner: WD Black2</strong></p> <h4>ROUND 2: Durability</h4> <p>This category is somewhat of a toss-up, as the WD Black2’s overall reliability is degraded somewhat by the fact that it has a spinning volume attached to it, giving it the same robustness of the Seagate SSHD. There’s also the issue of the WD Black using the slightly antiquated JMicron controller. We don’t have any reliability data on that controller in particular, but we are always more concerned about the SSD controller you-know-whating the bed than the memory, which is rated to last for decades, even under heavy write scenarios. Both drives also use two-platter designs, so neither one is more or less prone to damage than the other. In the end, we’ll have to go with the Seagate SSHD as being more durable, simply because you only have to worry about one drive working instead of two.&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Winner: Seagate SSHD</strong></p> <h4>ROUND 3: Performance</h4> <p>Seagate is very clear about the performance of its hybrid drives, stating that they “boot and perform like an SSD,” but it never says they’re faster. It also claims the drive is “up to five times faster than a hard drive,” which seems like a bit of a stretch. It’s difficult to actually benchmark a caching drive because it won’t show on standard sequential read tests, and it gets killed by SSDs in access time tests. That said, we did see boot and PCMark Vantage scores improve significantly over time. Our boot time dropped by more than half, going from 2:27 to 1:07 after several boots, and our PCMark Vantage score shot up from 6,000 to 19,000. Still, these times are much slower than what we got with the WD SSD, which booted in 45 seconds (the system had three dozen programs installed), and hit 33,000 in PCMark Vantage.</p> <p><strong>Winner: WD Black2</strong></p> <h4>ROUND 4: Cloning Package</h4> <p>Both drives include free software to help you clone your old drive and, in an odd twist, both companies use Acronis software to get ’er done. Seagate’s software is called DiscWizard, and works on OSes as old as Windows 98 and Mac OS 10.x. WD throws in a copy of Acronis True Image, though it only works with WD drives attached via the included USB-to-SATA adapter. We tested both software packages and found them to be nearly identical, as both let us clone our existing drive and boot from it after one pass, which can be tricky at times. Therefore, we call the software package a tie since they both perform well and use Acronis. However, WD’s $300 bundle includes a USB-to-SATA adapter that makes the cloning process totally painless. Seagate makes you forage for a cable on your own, which tips the scales in WD’s favor.</p> <p><strong>Winner: WD Black2</strong></p> <h4>ROUND 5: Ease of Use</h4> <p>This round has a crystal-clear winner, and that’s the Seagate SSHD. That’s because the Seagate drive is dead-simple to use and behaves exactly like a hard drive at all times. You can plug it into any PC, Mac, or Linux machine and it is recognized with no hassle. The WD drive, on the other hand, only works on Windows PCs because it requires special software to “unlock” the 1TB hard drive partition. For us, that’s obviously not a problem, but we know it’s enraged some Linux aficionados. Also, the WD drive only has a 120GB SSD. So, if you are moving to it from an HDD, you will likely have to reinstall your OS and programs, then move all your data to the HDD portion of the drive. The Seagate drive is big enough that you would just need to clone your old drive to it.</p> <p><strong>Winner: Seagate SSHD</strong></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><strong><a class="thickbox" href="/files/u152332/laptop-sshd-1tb-dynamic-with-label-hi-res-5x7_small_0.jpg"><img src="/files/u152332/laptop-sshd-1tb-dynamic-with-label-hi-res-5x7_small.jpg" alt="Seagate’s hybrid drive offers HDD simplicity and capacity, along with SSD-like speed for frequently requested data. " title="Seagate SSHD" width="620" height="639" /><br /></a></strong></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><strong>Seagate’s hybrid drive offers HDD simplicity and capacity, along with SSD-like speed for frequently requested data. </strong></p> <h3 style="text-align: left;">And the Winner Is…</h3> <p style="text-align: left;">This verdict is actually quite simple. If you’re a mainstream user, the Seagate SSHD is clearly the superior option, as it is fast enough, has more than enough capacity for most notebook tasks, and costs about one-third of the WD Black2. But this is Maximum PC, so we don’t mind paying more for a superior product, and that’s the <strong>WD Black2 Dual Drive</strong>. It delivers both speed and capacity and is a better high-performance package, plain and simple.</p> <p style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-style: italic;">Note: This article originally appeared in the April 2014 issue of the magazine.</span></p> Hard Drive Hardware HDD Review Seagate 1TB Hybrid ssd WD Black2 Backup Drives Hard Drives Reviews SSD Features Thu, 31 Jul 2014 19:27:45 +0000 Josh Norem 28103 at Security Researchers Discover Fundamental Security Flaw in USB, No Fix in Sight <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/usb_0.jpg" alt="USB" title="USB" width="228" height="170" style="float: right;" />The bad side of USB</h3> <p>Oh great, as if it wasn't bothersome enough knowing that all our online communications are susceptible to government spying with very little we can do about it, now we've come to find out that just by having a USB port, there exists a pretty serious security risk every time we plug in a compatible peripheral. The problem is that <strong>virtually any of the millions of USB devices out there can be reprogrammed for malicious purposes</strong>, and there doesn't appear to be much we can do about it.</p> <p>Security Research Labs in Berlin has given a name to the fundamental flaw in USB -- "BadUSB." At issue is that every USB device has a controller chip that controls the USB connection to other devices. Those controllers have firmware, and if reprogrammed -- which is easy to do since the USB-IF focused more on compatibility than security -- a benign device like a keyboard or mouse can suddenly turn evil.</p> <p>"A device can emulate a keyboard and issue commands on behalf of the logged-in user, for example to exfiltrate files or install malware. Such malware, in turn, can infect the controller chips of other USB devices connected to the computer," <a href="" target="_blank">SRLabs explains</a>.</p> <p>The device can also spoof a network card and change the computer's DNS setting to redirect traffic. Unfortunately, there are no known defenses against this other than not using your USB devices. Malware scanners can't access the firmware running USB devices, and behavioral detection isn't reliable since a BadUSB device's behavior simply looks like a user plugged in a new device.</p> <p>"Once infected, comptuers and their USB peripherals can never be trusted again," SRLabs added.</p> <p>The best analogy so far <a href="" target="_blank">comes from <em>ExtremeTech</em></a>, which likens the situation to having unprotected sex. In other words, if you plug your USB device into another PC, you can assume it's been compromised.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> badusb Peripherals Security ubs News Thu, 31 Jul 2014 17:54:51 +0000 Paul Lilly 28273 at Lian Li Introduces PC-V2130 Full Tower Case <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/pc-v2130.jpg" alt="PC-V2130" title="PC-V2130" width="228" height="222" style="float: right;" />A full tower chassis with room for multiple water cooling radiators</h3> <p><strong>Lian Li today added another big case to its lineup, the PC-V2130</strong>. As you might have guessed, this one sports a brushed aluminum design, a popular motif at Lian Li, and is an updated version of the PC-V2120. The PC-V2130 improves upon its predecessor by adding robust water cooling support, more versatile drive bay options, and an enhanced cable management scheme.</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank">According to Lian Li</a>, the PC-V2130 has 94L of space inside and can support motherboards up to HPTX. There's a tool-less removable top panel that allows for 240mm or 280mm radiators. Two additional 280mm radiators can be installed at the front and bottom of the chassis.</p> <p>For cable management and cooling, there are 8 grommeted holes, 31mm (1.2 inches) behind the motherboard tray to hide bundles, two 140mm fans up front, two 140mm fans on the bottom, a single 120mm fan on the rear, and optional fan mounts on the top.</p> <p>Other amenities include dust filters, wheels to move the case, thumbscrews, stealth covers, and more.</p> <p>The <a href="" target="_blank">PC-V2130</a> will be available soon for between $499 and $569.</p> <p><iframe src="//" width="560" height="315" frameborder="0"></iframe></p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> Lian Li pc-v2130 News Thu, 31 Jul 2014 17:15:49 +0000 Paul Lilly 28272 at Newegg Daily Deals: Dell UltraSharp IPS 24-inch Monitor, Logitech G710 Plus Mechanical Keyboard, and More! <!--paging_filter--><p><img src="/files/u69/dell_monitor.jpg" alt="Dell 24-inch Monitor" title="Dell 24-inch Monitor" width="300" height="285" style="float: right;" /><img src="/files/u154082/newegg_logo_small.png" alt="newegg logo" title="newegg logo" width="200" height="80" /></p> <p><strong>Top Deal:</strong></p> <p>Think about the one thing you stare at all day during work hours. Right, the ceiling -- it's the best way to space out when you're at work. And the second thing? Your monitor, of course. Since that's the case, why skimp on an inferior panel? Be kind to your eyeballs and check out today's top deal for a <a href=";cm_mmc=BAC-MaximumPC-_-DailyDeals-_-DISPLAY-N82E16824260047-_-0731&amp;nm_mc=ExtBanner&amp;AID=5555555" target="_blank">Dell UltraSharp U2412M 24-inch LED Monitor</a> for <strong>$240</strong> with free shipping (normally $265 - use coupon code: [<strong>EMCPCHA48</strong>]. This monitor sports an In-Plane Switching (IPS) panel with a 2,000,000:1 dynamic contrast ratio, 300 cd/m2 brightness, and flexible stand (pivot, swivel, height).</p> <p><strong>Other Deals:</strong></p> <p><a href=";cm_mmc=BAC-MaximumPC-_-DailyDeals-_-RAM-N82E16820231445-_-0731&amp;nm_mc=ExtBanner&amp;AID=5555555" target="_blank">G.Skill Ripjaws X Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory</a> for <strong>$81</strong> with free shipping (normally $90 - use coupon code: [<strong>EMCPCHA35</strong>])</p> <p><a href=";cm_mmc=BAC-MaximumPC-_-DailyDeals-_-RAM-N82E16820233186-_-0731&amp;nm_mc=ExtBanner&amp;AID=5555555" target="_blank">Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Low Profile Desktop Memory</a> for <strong>$80</strong> with free shipping (normally $93 - use coupon code: [<strong>EMCPCHA33</strong>])</p> <p><a href=";cm_mmc=BAC-MaximumPC-_-DailyDeals-_-OTHER-N82E16823126299-_-0731&amp;nm_mc=ExtBanner&amp;AID=5555555" target="_blank">Logitech G710 PLUS USB Wired Gaming Mechanical Keyboard</a> for <strong>$100</strong> with free shipping </p> <p><a href=";cm_mmc=BAC-MaximumPC-_-DailyDeals-_-COOLING-N82E16835181060-_-0731&amp;nm_mc=ExtBanner&amp;AID=5555555" target="_blank">Corsair Hydro Series H105 Extreme Performance 240mm Liquid CPU Cooler</a> for <strong>$100</strong> with free shipping (normally $115 - use coupon code: [<strong>EMCPCHA77</strong>])</p> corsair Daily Deals daily deals dell g.skill logitech Newegg Thu, 31 Jul 2014 16:03:18 +0000 Paul Lilly 28271 at MSI Radeon R9 270 Gaming OC Review <!--paging_filter--><h3>No surprises here, just a solid 1080p card</h3> <p><a title="msi" href="" target="_blank">MSI</a> is offering two flavors of its midrange Radeon R9 270 GPU, formerly known as the <a title="7870 GHz" href="" target="_blank">Radeon HD 7870 GHz edition</a>. There is a standard model and one with an “X” after its name. The difference between the two is the X model has slightly higher core and boost clocks, but otherwise the two cards are the same and are both based on AMD’s Pitcairn GCN core, which is a 28nm part that debuted in 2013.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a class="thickbox" href="/files/u152332/r9_270x_gaming_2gd5v303_3d1_small_0.jpg"><img src="/files/u152332/r9_270x_gaming_2gd5v303_3d1_small.jpg" alt="Don’t bother with the R9 270X—the non-X version shown here is just fine. " title="MSI Radeon R9 270 Gaming OC" width="620" height="487" /></a></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><strong>Don’t bother with the R9 270X—the non-X version shown here is just fine. </strong></p> <p>The card in front of you is the MSI R9 270 Gaming model, which is a stock R9 270 with a mild overclock, hence the word “Gaming” in its moniker. It has an MSRP of $180, while the X version is roughly $20 more, though street prices are higher due to the mining craze and short supply. For those who are prone to guffawing at a card that is merely rebadged and price-dropped, this is par for the course and actually good news for gamers. That’s because both Nvidia and AMD refine their manufacturing processes over time, so by the time a GPU gets a rebadge, it’s often able to run at higher clocks with better efficiency for a much lower price. The bottom line is that this card once had a $350 price tag and now costs less than $200, so there’s very little to complain about.</p> <p>To rehash the specs, this is a card with a base clock of 900MHz and a boost clock of 975MHz, which is 50MHz higher than the reference board. It has 2GB of GDDR5 memory that runs at 5.6GHz, and 1,280 stream processors. Since this is not new silicon, the card does not offer support for TrueAudio, but as it’s a Graphics Core Next (GCN) card, it does support AMD’s new Mantle API (at press time, BF4 was not optimized for Mantle with the R9 270, but AMD said it’s “being investigated”). As a midrange GPU, the R9 270 has a low-ish TDP of 150w, and therefore requires only a single six-pin PCIe connector for power—an advantage over the 270X, which requires two six-pin connectors. Interestingly, the R9 270 doesn’t have a direct competitor from Nvidia since it costs just a bit over $200, so it sits right in between the $250 GTX 760 and the $150 GTX 650 Ti (the Ti Boost is out of stock everywhere, but costs around $175). The GTX 660 is about the same price, but that card is ancient, so we compared it to the more-expensive GTX 760.</p> <p>Overall, we had a pleasant testing experience with the MSI R9 270 card. It was quiet and cool—never getting hotter than <br />60 C—and was totally stable. It ran the grueling new Star Swarm demo over a weekend with nary a hiccup, and we were also able to overclock it to 1,140MHz boost clock, which netted a 10 percent bump in performance. Basically, we found its performance exactly in line with its price, in that it was a bit slower than the more-expensive GTX 760 in all the games we test aside from Tomb Raider, which is an AMD game.</p> <p>In the end, there’s nothing wrong with the MSI R9 270 Gaming OC and we have no problem recommending it. However, we’d still go with the GTX 760 just because it is quite a bit faster in many games, and only costs $30 more. If Mantle support is important to you, though, feel free to pull the trigger.</p> <p><strong>$220 (street),</strong> <a href=""></a></p> <p><span style="font-style: italic;">Note: This review was originally featured in the April 2014 issue of the&nbsp;</span><a style="font-style: italic;" title="maximum pc mag" href=";cds_mag_code=MAX&amp;id=1366314265949&amp;lsid=31081444255021801&amp;vid=1&amp;cds_response_key=IHTH31ANN" target="_blank">magazine</a><span style="font-style: italic;">.</span></p> april issues 2014 graphics card Hardware maximum pc msi radeon r9 270 oc Review videocard Reviews Videocards Wed, 30 Jul 2014 22:39:42 +0000 Josh Norem 28096 at D-Link DGL-5500 Review <!--paging_filter--><h3>A router built specifically for gamers</h3> <p>When it comes to PC parts and accessories, all roads eventually lead to gamers. Intel and AMD both sell unlocked processors so gamers can more easily overclock their rigs for a few extra frames per second; pro gamer Johnathan “Fatal1ty” Wendel has endorsed everything from motherboards to power supplies; there’s gaming RAM; and of course, a whole assortment of accessories designed to give you an edge when smoking your friends on the virtual battlefield. Up until now, one of the few items missing from the list was an 802.11ac wireless router.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a class="thickbox" href="/files/u152332/dgl-5500_front_small_0.jpg"><img src="/files/u152332/dgl-5500_front_small.jpg" alt="The new Mac Pro stole its design from this router—true story. " title="D-Link DGL-5500" width="583" height="1200" /></a></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><strong>The new Mac Pro stole its design from this router—true story. </strong></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a class="thickbox" href="/files/u152332/dgl-5500_back_small_0.jpg"><img src="/files/u152332/dgl-5500_back_small.jpg" title="D-Link DGL-5500" width="584" height="1200" /></a></p> <p>D-Link gets credit for tying up that loose end with the DGL-5500, a dual-band AC1300 wireless router built specifically for gamers. What makes the DGL-5500 different from all the other 802.11ac models, including D-Link’s own DIR-868L (reviewed in our February issue), is the inclusion of Qualcomm’s StreamBoost technology.</p> <p>Whereas the majority of modern routers rely on simple quality of service (QoS) rules to prioritize network packets, StreamBoost examines what applications are running and how much actual bandwidth each one needs. It also manages latency because a laggy gamer is a dead gamer. The question is, does it work as advertised?</p> <p>For the most part, StreamBoost lives up to the hype. We consistently saw lower pings in online games when connected to the DGL-5500 versus our zero-point router, the Asus RT-AC66U. External factors beyond our control also affect ping, so it’s hard to offer an apples-to-apples comparison, but to give one example, our ping averaged around 42ms in Battlefield 4 when using Asus’s router. When switching to D-Link’s model and turning on StreamBoost, our pings hovered around 19ms. After firing up Netflix on a second PC and initiating file downloads on two other systems, the ping stayed around 22–24ms—that’s impressive.</p> <p>In our evaluation of D-Link’s DIR-868L, we said the fugly web-based interface could use a major overhaul, and that’s what we got with the DGL-5500. It’s much better looking than before and far less complicated to navigate, though it’s also painfully slow when switching between menus. The UI is also heavily biased toward StreamBoost—if you disable the feature, you lose access to the My Network map, which provides a graphical view of all active devices and how much bandwidth each one is consuming.</p> <p>The DGL-5500 outpaced our zero point router in 802.11n mode on the 2.4GHz band in our three indoor tests. It also did better at picking out uncluttered channels on its own—we use inSSIDer ($20, to identify the best channel(s) for testing. However, the RT-AC66U boasts better range and faster transfers in 802.11ac mode on the 5GHz band. It’s worth pointing out the DGL-5500 lacks beamforming, which concentrates the wireless signal at connected devices for longer range and better speeds.</p> <p>There are other shortcomings, as well—you can’t configure Guest networks, the single USB 2.0 port doesn’t support printer sharing, and the combined speed of both channels is capped at AC1300 rather than AC1750 as it is with D-Link’s DIR-868L. While StreamBoost is a step forward, the router is a step backward in other areas. Note to D-Link: Gamers care about this stuff, too.</p> <p><strong>$140 [street],</strong> <a href=""></a></p> ac wireless april issues 2014 Gaming Hardware hd media router 2000 Review Reviews Wed, 30 Jul 2014 22:22:18 +0000 Paul Lilly 28097 at