An all-in-one with a screw-less chassis and modular components
In the old days, you weren't getting inside an all-in-one system without a hammer, stick of dynamite, and the full blessing of the AIO gods. Ah, but times have changed, and upgradeable AIO systems are now much more common. Acer's new Veriton Z2660G AIO falls into the upgradeable category by sporting a screw-less chassis that's easy to pop off and modular components inside.
Use code TAXDAY at Origin PC for free shipping and other bonuses
The tax deadline is rapidly approaching, and if Uncle Sam helped himself to a larger chunk of your paychecks than he's entitled to, you'll be due a tax refund. Depending on how much it is, you might be tempted to buy a new PC, especially if you've been holding onto a Windows XP system. To give you a nudge, boutique builder Origin PC is offering a string of incentives when you use promo code TAXDAY.
Eurocom claims the M4 is the most powerful ultraportable on the planet
Put the kids to bed because Eurocom's M4 just might scare the children. Based on the specs, it certainly should scare any Ultrabooks that happen to wander by. According to Eurocom, the M4 is the world's most powerful ultraportable, a claim it makes based on its combination of up to an Intel Core i7 4940XM Extreme processor and Nvidia GeForce GTX 860M (Maxwell) graphics.
One lucky gamer will receive a free Krypton laptop valued at $1,478
If it's a laptop for gaming that you're after, boutique system builder Digital Storm has four new pixel-pushing models to choose from, including the 15.6-inch Javelin and Lance, and 17.3-inch Krypton and Behemoth. All four models sport Nvidia's recently introduced GeForce GTX 800M Series graphics, and to kick off the launch of these new machines, Digital Storm is giving away a Krypton.
Hewlett-Packard jumps off to a fast start with 7 million notebook shipments in Q1
If Hewlett-Packard can maintain its current pace, there's a good chance it will close out the year with more laptop shipments under its belt than rival Lenovo, the world's largest supplier of PCs (a distinction once held by HP not that long ago). It's still early, but preliminary numbers show that HP shipped 7 million notebooks in the first quarter of 2014, which is 1 million more than some were expecting.
Custom PC builder embraces the virtual coin movement
Back in January of this year, Xidax became the first system builder to add Bitcoin to its list of payment methods. Apparently happy with the way things have been going, the boutique builder is claiming another first in the virtual coin community by accepting Dogecoin, which is similar to Litecoin in that it can be mined much quicker than Bitcoins. Dogecoin is arguably the hottest virtual currency at the moment.
Razer gave thin and light gaming a major kick in the pants when it introduced its Blade laptop last year. It earned a 9 verdict (and our respect) in our review of the $2,000 model, which offered up impressive gaming performance in a package measuring just 13.6 inches by 9.3 inches by 0.66 inches (that's 0.05 inches thinner than a dime when you stand it up) and weighing 4.1 pounds. This year's refresh upgrades the 14-inch QHD+ territory (3200x1800), so what do you do with 'old' models? Apparently you try offloading them on students for a 20 percent discount.
MSI just took a steamroller to its gaming laptop division and the result is a new series of notebooks that pack a punch in a small frame. In fact, we'd forgive MSI if it decided to call its new laptops the Bruce Lee line, though instead it with "GS Series," which consists of a pair of 15.6-inch GS60 Ghost laptops and a 17.3-inch GS70 Stealth notebook, all equipped with gaming hardware and each one less than an inch thick.
Here we are more than a year after the release of Windows 8 and it still remains a hot topic. The points of consternation among its critics are that Microsoft overhauled the user interface with a focus on touch computing, and then added insult to injury by removing the Start button and Start menu (the Start button has since returned, but without the handy menu). Nevertheless, it's a faster and more secure operating system than Windows 7. What's a user to do? Well, if you're buying a rig from boutique builder Puget Systems, you can have the company give Windows 8 a makeover so that it essentially feels like Windows 7.
Get ready to see 15-inch and 17-inch all-in-one systems
We're still waiting on someone to build a premium 30-inch all-in-one (AIO) with high-end gaming components, ample cooling, and easy upgrade features. Perhaps someday. On the opposite end of the spectrum, a handful of PC makers are reportedly going to test the market for smaller size AIO PCs. We're talking 15-inch to 17-inch models, which some surmise could decrease the demand for larger laptops.