It's about time we celebrated how awesome PC gaming is!
We love video games. Many of you reading this also love video games. And if you're a fan of Maximum PC, chances are you prefer gaming on a PC. It is, after all, the superior platform for gaming -- we love our console gaming brethren, but they'll never convince us otherwise -- so why not celebrate this hobby of ours? That's exactly what Nvidia plans to do -- the GPU maker just sent us details about GAME24, the first ever global PC gaming celebration.
Plus: AMD's commitment to high-end CPUs, DDR4, 5-way GPU support, 20nm GPUs, and more!
In a bit of a surprise to us, AMD and Origin PC wanted to come in together for episode 231 of the No BS Podcast. As you may recall, this is surprising considering that last October, Origin PC’s Co-founder and CEO Kevin Wasielewski announced that it would be dropping AMD graphics cards from its systems, stating, “This decision was based on a combination of many factors including customer experiences, GPU performance/drivers/stability, and requests from our support staff,” and whom also then added, “Based on our 15+ years of experience building and selling award winning high-performance PCs, we strongly feel the best PC gaming experience is on Nvidia GPUs.”
Tablets and embedded graphics are eating into the add-in board market
The latest report from Jon Peddie Research (JPR) shows that graphics add-in board (AIB) shipments during the second quarter of 2014 declined 17.5 percent compared to the previous quarter. JPR says the market is behaving according to past years, though the decrease was more than the 10-year average. What's also interesting is that the drop in discrete graphics card shipments coincided with a 1.3 percent increase in desktop PC shipments.
Digital Storm today unveiled its Bolt II Battle Box Titan Z Special Edition, which is a specially priced Bolt II small form factor (SFF) rig wielding a dual-GPU Nvidia GeForce GTX Titan Z graphics card. In addition to adding a Titan Z, Digital Storm went back to the drawing board and redesigned the Bolt II to accommodate a new Hardline Cooling System consisting of a 240mm radiator, pump, and "stunning" acrylic tubing with yellow coolant.
Despite its problems, we actually liked Nvidia’s original Shield Android gaming handheld. Our biggest issue with it was that it was bulky and heavy. With rumors swirling around about a Shield 2, we were hoping to see a slimmer, lighter design. So consider us initially disappointed when we learned that the next iteration of Shield would just be yet another Android tablet. Yawn, right? The fact of the matter is that the Shield Tablet may be playing in an oversaturated market, but it’s still great at what it sets out to be.
If you have been looking to upgrade your GPU, then now would be a good time to do so. Especially if you are a fan of the Bordelands franchise. Those who purchase select Nvidia GeForce GTX GPUs will get a free copy of Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel.
A tiny system with the gaming performance of a Titan Z
Of all the systems featuring an Nvidia GeForce GTX Titan Z graphics card, the Tiki-Z Special Edition from Falcon Northwest might be the most impressive. That's because the Tiki-Z Special Edition is a micro-tower measuring just 4 inches wide and 13 inches tall --the same size as the standard Tiki and roughly equivalent to the original Xbox console -- yet has enough space to accommodate Nvidia's Titan Z, which is powered by a pair of Kepler GPUs.
Six entry-level graphics cards battle for budget-board bragging rights
The video-card game is a lot like Hollywood. Movies like My Left Foot and The Artist take home the Oscars every year, but movies like Grown Ups 2 and Transformers 3 pull in all the cash. It's the same with GPUs, in that everyone loves to talk about $1,000 cards, but the actual bread-and-butter of the market is made up of models that cost between $100 and $150. These are not GPUs for 4K gaming, obviously, but they can provide a surprisingly pleasant 1080p gaming experience, and run cool and quiet, too.
Note: This article was originally featured in the May 2014 issue of the magazine.
Say hello to "Denver," the codename for Nvidia's 64-bit Tegra K1 System-on-Chip (SoC), which also happens to be the first 64-bit ARM processor for Android. The new version of Nvidia's Tegra K1 SoC pairs the company's Kepler architecture-based GPU with its own custom-designed, 64-bit, dual-core "Project Denver" CPU, which Nvidia says is fully ARMv8 architecture compatible.
Refreshed desktops offer 4K gaming performance starting at under $4,000
The 4K era is in its very early stages, and though the technology still has room for improvement (especially on the monitor side), you can make the leap if you're determined. Boutique builder Origin PC is all too happy to satisfy your 4K gaming needs with its Nvidia Battlebox Titan Z systems that are now available. These are basically refreshed Genesis, Millennium, and Chronos machines equipped with Nvidia GeForce Titan Z graphics cards.