Hardware http://www.maximumpc.com/taxonomy/term/41/ en Oculus VR Rumored to be Creating its Own VR Motion Controllers http://www.maximumpc.com/oculus_vr_rumored_be_creating_its_own_vr_motion_controllers_2014 <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u166440/oculus_rift_with_camera.jpg" alt="Oculus Rift" title="Oculus Rift" width="200" height="133" style="float: right;" />Competition for third-party developers?</h3> <p>Many third-party manufacturers are researching and developing motion control devices for the Oculus Rift such as the <a title="MPC treadmill slide" href="http://www.maximumpc.com/gdc_2014_highlights#slide-9" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Virtuix </span><span style="color: #ff0000;"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Omni</span> treadmill</span></a> and <a title="MPC PrioVR Suit Slide" href="http://www.maximumpc.com/gdc_2014_highlights#slide-10" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">PrioVR suit</span></a>. However, according to <a title="CNET" href="http://www.cnet.com/news/oculus-to-ge-hands-on-with-new-virtual-reality-gear/" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">CNET</span></a>, <strong>Oculus VR is making its own VR motion controllers</strong>.&nbsp;</p> <p>The tech website claims that that Oculus VR has been developing its own motion controllers that will work in tandem with the Rift and allow users to manipulate objects in game with hand and body movements. In addition, the device will supposedly use the Rift’s camera to track the position of a player’s hands. It’s a concept that Sony’s own Project Morpheus will be doing through the utilization of the PlayStation Move controller and PlayStation Camera.</p> <p>However, there are no details about how much the unnamed motion controllers will cost, when it will be made available to consumers, or when Oculus VR will announce it. In the meantime, the developer has begun to ship out the final version of the development kit and even announced that it will be hosting its first development conference.</p> <p>Maximum PC editor Jimmy Thang, back in January at CES, bemoaned the fact that he couldn't see his hands while checking out the Crystal Cove prototype. When Jimmy pointed this out, at the 1:40 mark, the representative replied, "We'll get them there. Just give us time."</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><iframe src="//www.youtube.com/embed/-feRkJEdB1o" width="600" height="315" frameborder="0"></iframe></p> <p><em>Follow Sean on&nbsp;<a title="SeanDKnight Google+" href="https://plus.google.com/+SeanKnightD?rel=author" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Google+</span></a>, <a title="SeanDKnight's Twitter" href="https://twitter.com/SeanDKnight" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Twitter</span></a>, and <a title="SeanDKnight Facebook" href="https://www.facebook.com/seandknight" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Facebook</span></a></em></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/oculus_vr_rumored_be_creating_its_own_vr_motion_controllers_2014#comments Hardware Oculus motion controllers oculus rift oculus vr Oculus VR motion controllers News Thu, 17 Jul 2014 21:03:41 +0000 Sean D Knight 28189 at http://www.maximumpc.com Nvidia Supposedly Working on New PC-Streaming Device http://www.maximumpc.com/nvidia_supposedly_working_new_pc-streaming_device_2014 <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u166440/nvidia_geforce_logo.jpg" alt="Nvidia GeForce logo" title="Nvidia GeForce logo" width="200" height="193" style="float: right;" />Another contender for the living room</h3> <p>Looks like Nvidia isn’t done trying to get into the living room. According to the <a title="BBC News" href="http://www.bbc.com/news/technology-28290861" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">BBC</span></a>, <strong>Nvidia is developing a new device that will play PC games</strong> on televisions, making use of the developer’s GeForce Experience software. It will also run Android software and, BBC reports, will have a “budget-priced separate controller.”</p> <p>Purported to be powered by Nvidia’s Tegra K1 chip, the unnamed device boasts a 192-core GPU and was shown last month running a demo of the Unreal Engine 4 on the Android L mobile operating system. While it will run Android games natively, it is also rumored to have the ability to stream PC games via Nvidia’s GeForce Experience. However, if the device makes use of the software, then it would be restricted to the company’s more recent cards.&nbsp;</p> <p>Aside from the additional cost of purchasing a new GPU to take full advantage of the device, it would also be in contention with Valve’s own in-home streaming service. Not to mention that it would go up against Valve's Steam Machine which has been pushed <a title="Steam Machine delay" href="http://www.maximumpc.com/controller_tweaks_prompt_valve_delay_steam_machines_until_2015" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">back to 2015</span></a>.&nbsp;</p> <p>For now, Nvidia has declined to confirm the existence of the new device.&nbsp;</p> <p>Could this device be a sequel to the Nvidia Shield, which hasn’t been very successful, or will this be a brand new product?</p> <p><em>Follow Sean on&nbsp;<a title="SeanDKnight Google+" href="https://plus.google.com/+SeanKnightD?rel=author" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Google+</span></a>, <a title="SeanDKnight's Twitter" href="https://twitter.com/SeanDKnight" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Twitter</span></a>, and <a title="SeanDKnight Facebook" href="https://www.facebook.com/seandknight" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Facebook</span></a></em></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/nvidia_supposedly_working_new_pc-streaming_device_2014#comments geforce experience Hardware nvidia Nvidia gaming device shield Gaming News Tue, 15 Jul 2014 23:59:58 +0000 Sean D Knight 28172 at http://www.maximumpc.com Origin PC Genesis Overview (Video) http://www.maximumpc.com/origin_pc_genesis_overview_video_2014 <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u154082/origin_pc_genesis_2.png" alt="origin pc genesis" title="origin pc genesis" width="250" height="161" style="float: right;" />Check out video footage of this cool, revolutionary chassis</h3> <p>In this video, Gordon walks you through Origin PC’s Genesis. The Genesis features the company’s custom designed and modular chassis that lets the builder add a bottom slice with additional radiators or hard drives as well as the capability to mount the motherboard tray in four orientations including reversing the tray and window. It’s truly a unique and dare we say it—revolutionary approach to case design. And yes, just like custom systems from other vendors, you can get the case—you just have to buy entire system and gut the parts. The case isn’t quite perfect though so Gordon walks you through what works and what doesn't. And no, despite what Gordon seems to imply, you can’t actually change the orientation of the motherboard willy nilly. That’s done when you order the machine and when it’s being built.</p> <p><iframe src="//www.youtube.com/embed/Rr2pkO2wGE8" width="560" height="315" frameborder="0"></iframe></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/origin_pc_genesis_overview_video_2014#comments chassis genesis gordon ung Hardware maximum pc millenium origin pc overview Review Specs video News Reviews Features Fri, 27 Jun 2014 17:50:04 +0000 Gordon Mah Ung 28079 at http://www.maximumpc.com Best AC Router http://www.maximumpc.com/best_ac_router_2014 <!--paging_filter--><h3>Best AC router: everything you need to know about the 802.11ac standard</h3> <p>Even though you might just now be getting around to upgrading your home network to take advantage of the 802.11n spec, there’s a new standard on the horizon that promises even faster speeds. How fast? Well, if 802.11n is a pitcher’s fastball, the draft 802.11ac spec is a bullet fired from a gun, at least in theoretical terms.</p> <p>Unless you live in an underground bunker completely isolated from interfering signals and find yourself favored by the gods of Wi-Fi, you’ll never come close to 802.11ac’s theoretical maximum of 1.3 gigabits per second (assuming a three-antenna design). Overhead, interference, and a number of other factors poop on the Wi-Fi party, but the same is true of earlier standards, so you’ll still see a net gain in performance. How much depends on your setup, but in general, real-world 802.11ac performance ends up being around twice as fast as 802.11n, which bodes well for streaming HD videos, gaming, and file transfers.</p> <p>One of the reasons why 802.11ac is so much faster is because it taps into wider channels. As part of the spec, 802.11ac must support 80MHz channel bonding (160MHz is optional), up from the maximum of 40MHz in 802.11n. It also boasts twice as many multiple input, multiple output (MIMO) streams at eight.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a class="thickbox" href="/files/u152332/routers_opener12942_small_0.jpg"><img src="/files/u152332/routers_opener12942_small.jpg" width="620" height="519" /></a></p> <p>Before you rip out your router and replace it with an AC model, there are some things you should know. We’ll tell you what they are, and then dive into a roundup of seven 802.11ac routers available now in search of the <strong>best AC router</strong>.</p> <h3>AC Buyer’s Guide</h3> <p><strong>What to look for when upgrading your home network</strong></p> <h4>Don’t Forget the Adapter</h4> <p>The 802.11ac spec should be finalized in early 2014, perhaps even by the time you’re reading this. Until then, don’t expect to see a lot of systems natively support the new standard. So, you’ll need an 802.11ac adapter, of which there are a growing number to choose from.</p> <h4>Built-in USB Ports</h4> <p>A router with at least one USB port should allow you to plug in an external storage device and share files across your network. For this, a USB 3.0 port works best. You can also share a printer over your network through your router’s USB port, though only if the router supports this feature. Not all do, so you’ll want to verify that the model you’re considering does if this is a must-have feature.</p> <h4>Decoding AC1300, AC1750, and AC1900</h4> <p>Router makers use clever marketing tactics to help their products stand out from the crowd. One of the most common tricks is to add the 2.4GHz (up to 450Mb/s) and 5GHz (up to 1,300Mb/s) channels together to arrive at a higher, more attractive number. AC1750 looks and sounds faster than AC1300, so why not use the bigger number? It’s a bit deceptive because you can’t actually combine the two channels for a faster connection. Some, like Linksys and Netgear, advertise AC1900 for their highest-end routers, and that’s because the 2.4GHz channel supports a 600Mb/s data rate due to the use of 256-QAM (quadrature amplitude modulation) instead of the more common 64-QAM. This provides a real-world benefit, but only if your Wi-Fi adapter also supports 256-QAM.</p> <h4>Beamforming</h4> <p>Instead of sending a signal out in all directions, routers that support beamforming are able to focus the signal toward a client for better performance, reliability, and range. A good analogy is to think of a how a light bulb (traditional router) casts its light in every direction, whereas a flashlight (router with beamforming) focuses its energy on a specific target. Even better, beamforming can focus on multiple targets, not just one.</p> <h3>How We Test</h3> <p><strong>Maximum PC Lab Midwest</strong></p> <p>For the past several years, we’ve been testing routers at Maximum PC Lab North, a 2,800-square-foot home located on 10 acres of what was once a dairy farm. The new location is Maximum PC Lab Midwest, a 1,400-square-foot home flanked by houses on either side, a yard extending into a wooded area out back, and a semi-busy road in front. The new location offers a harsher, more real-world testing environment.</p> <p>We measure the performance of each router in five separate locations starting with the Bedroom in a spot 10 feet away from the router with no obstructions. The next test takes place in the Dining Room 15 feet from the router and separated by two walls, followed by the Entryway with 20 feet and three walls of separation. The final two tests take place outside in the Driveway (35 feet) and Backyard (90 feet) toward the edge of a wooded area.</p> <p>When possible, each dual-band router is configured to run in 802.11n-only mode on the 2.4GHz channel and 802.11ac-only mode on the 5GHz channel, both with WPA2 encryption and channel bonding. We use the open-source Jperf utility, a GUI front end for Iperf, to measure throughput in each of the five locations. Our Jperf server is an HP Envy Ultrabook with a Core i5 processor wired directly to the router being tested, and the client PC is a Dell Inspiron laptop with a Core i3 processor. Since the client PC doesn’t support 802.11ac natively, we run the tests with a Linksys USB6300 dual-band USB adapter. We compare the 802.11n scores to our zero-point router, an Asus RT-N66U.</p> <p>Finally, we also test each router’s attached storage performance by plugging in a 32GB Lexar JumpDrive P10 USB 3.0 flash drive. We chose this drive because it’s one of the fastest on the market with up to 265MB/s read and 245MB/s write performance. Once configured, we use a stopwatch to time how long it takes to write a single 3GB file to the flash drive and then again with a 1GB folder containing several smaller files. We repeat both tests to read the large and small files to the hardwired server PC. All the benchmark results can be seen on page 43.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a class="thickbox" href="/files/u152332/jperf_small_0.jpg"><img src="/files/u152332/jperf_small.jpg" alt="Jperf’s wealth of settings aren’t just good for benchmarking; you can use the open-source app to troubleshoot your network, too." title="Jperf" width="620" height="433" /></a></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><strong>Jperf’s wealth of settings aren’t just good for benchmarking; you can use the open-source app to troubleshoot your network, too.</strong></p> <h3>D-Link DIR-868</h3> <p><strong>Simple design with a confusing interface</strong></p> <p>Routers come in all shapes and sizes, and after spending time with an assortment of boxy models with antennas extending every which way, D-Link’s cylindrical DIR-868 is a welcome change. It’s not overly big and looks rather neatly groomed compared to the other routers in this roundup, but looks will only get you so far.</p> <p>With regard to brawn, the DIR-868 offers exceptional range on the 5GHz channel in 802.11ac mode, delivering 15.1Mb/s in the Backyard test at a distance of 90 feet. Technically, that makes the DIR-868 the second-fastest at that range, though it virtually tied Netgear’s model at 15.3Mb/s for pole position. Since this test is outside, a fly belch could explain the tiny difference.</p> <p>The DIR-868 didn’t fare as well on the 2.4GHz channel in 802.11n mode. Its performance wasn’t bad, just merely average, and it certainly never threatened our zero-point router. However, its file-transfer performance using the built-in USB 3.0 port was among the fastest.</p> <p>Initial setup of the DIR-868 was pretty painless, though the fugly web-based interface could use a major overhaul. It’s way too wordy and not very intuitive to navigate, especially for less savvy users and/or anyone who’s unfamiliar with networking nomenclature.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a class="thickbox" href="/files/u152332/dlink12913_small_0.jpg"><img src="/files/u152332/dlink12913_small.jpg" alt="Nestled inside the cylindrical DIR-868L are half a dozen antennas with beamforming support." title="D-Link DIR-868" width="620" height="805" /></a></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><strong>Nestled inside the cylindrical DIR-868L are half a dozen antennas with beamforming support.</strong></p> <p><strong>D-Link DIR-868</strong></p> <p><strong><br /></strong></p> <div class="module-content" style="margin-top: -20px;"> <div class="module-text full"> <div class="verdict"><img src="/sites/maximumpc.com/themes/maximumpc/i/mxpc_7.jpg" alt="score:7" title="score:7" width="210" height="80" /></div> </div> </div> <p><strong>$155 (Street), <a href="http://www.dlink.com/" target="_blank">www.dlink.com</a></strong></p> <p><strong>&nbsp;</strong></p> <hr /> <p><strong><br /></strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <h3>Trendnet TEW-812DRU</h3> <p><strong>Plain looks meet plain performance</strong></p> <p>Despite this router’s high MSRP, we’ve seen this model retail for a Benjamin online, giving users a comparatively inexpensive upgrade path to 802.11ac territory. The old adage “You get what you pay for” applies here because even though the TEW-812DRU supports the AC spec, its performance on the 5GHz channel in 802.11ac mode consistently trailed the competition. In our two outside tests—Driveway and Backyard—the performance gap was especially noticeable. Throughput on the 2.4GHz in 802.11n mode fared better at close distances, but again became strained as we moved farther away from the router.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a class="thickbox" href="http://www.maximumpc.com/files/u152332/trennet12888_small_0.jpg"><img src="http://www.maximumpc.com/files/u152332/trennet12888_small.jpg" alt="Low street pricing is this router’s saving grace." title="Trendnet TEW-812DRU" width="620" height="802" /></a></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><strong>Low street pricing is this router’s saving grace.</strong></p> <p>Trendnet deserves major props for a well-designed web interface that’s straightforward and easy to navigate. The main screen provides you with an uncluttered glimpse of your network situation, and Trendnet even figured out a way to include a bit of fine-grain control in the Basic view. Naturally, there are a lot more levers to pull in the Advanced tab, but you’ll still never feel lost or overwhelmed.</p> <p>You can share files by connecting a drive to the router’s single USB 2.0 port, though transfer speeds are hindered by Trendnet’s decision to forego USB 3.0. And while it offers FTP and Samba support, no DLNA is a buzzkill.</p> <p><strong>Trendnet TEW-812DRU</strong></p> <p><strong><br /></strong></p> <div class="module-content" style="margin-top: -20px;"> <div class="module-text full"> <div class="verdict"><img src="/sites/maximumpc.com/themes/maximumpc/i/mxpc_6.jpg" alt="score:6" title="score:6" width="210" height="80" /></div> </div> </div> <p><strong>$140 (Street), <a href="http://www.trendnet.com/?todo=home" target="_blank">www.trendnet.com</a></strong></p> <h3>Linksys EA6900</h3> <p><strong>Belkin’s first product under the Linksys name</strong></p> <p>The Linksys brand has managed to survive two acquisitions in the past 10 years, first by Cisco in 2003, and more recently by Belkin in 2013. Apparently, the Linksys name isn’t enough because Belkin also calls the EA6900 the Linksys Smart Wi-Fi AC1900. The “Smart” portion of that title denotes the availability of Smart apps you can install on the router, and the AC1900 is a sum of the 2.4GHz (up to 600Mb/s) and 5GHz (up to 1,300Mb/s) bands added together. Give the marketing team a cookie.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a class="thickbox" href="/files/u152332/linksys12906_small_0.jpg"><img src="/files/u152332/linksys12906_small.jpg" alt="Belkin proves with the EA6900 that Linksys is in good hands going forward." title="Linksys EA6900" width="620" height="477" /></a></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><strong>Belkin proves with the EA6900 that Linksys is in good hands going forward.</strong></p> <p>Beyond the talk, the EA6900 walks the walk with acceptable 802.11ac performance on the 5GHz band and blazing-fast 802.11n throughput on the 2.4GHz band. It obliterated the zero-point router in the three indoor tests, and split the two outdoor tests, losing by less than 3Mb/s in the Backyard—impressive.</p> <p>There are two USB ports on the back, one Hi-Speed (2.0) and one SuperSpeed (3.0), though the latter acted like the former by registering a pokey 6:09 (min:sec) to write a 3GB file to the attached storage device. However, both ports support DLNA and allow you to share a printer across your network.</p> <p>Overall, a solid first effort by Belkin.</p> <p><strong>Linksys EA6900</strong></p> <p><strong><br /></strong></p> <div class="module-content" style="margin-top: -20px;"> <div class="module-text full"> <div class="verdict"><img src="/sites/maximumpc.com/themes/maximumpc/i/mxpc_8.jpg" alt="score:8" title="score:8" width="210" height="80" /></div> </div> </div> <p><strong>$195 (Street), <a href="http://www.linksys.com/en-apac/home">www.linksys.com</a><a href="http://www.trendnet.com/?todo=home" target="_blank"></a></strong></p> <h3>Netgear R7000</h3> <p><strong>So fast it should be illegal</strong></p> <p>If you have the space to park Netgear’s mammoth R7000, otherwise known as the Nighthawk, the router will pay its rent by serving up blistering-fast throughput on both the 2.4GHz and 5GHz bands in 802.11n and 802.11ac modes, respectively. It posted the fastest AC performance by far in the Entryway (336Mb/s), which is 20 feet away from the router and separated by three walls, and had the best range of the bunch. Overall, it was one of the more consistent-performing routers, and also demonstrated an intelligent ability to pick out less-crowded channels on its own—that’s a great commodity for novice users.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a class="thickbox" href="/files/u152332/netgear12904_small_0.jpg"><img src="/files/u152332/netgear12904_small.jpg" alt="The aggressive design and “Nighthawk” name are both inspired by the Lockheed F-117 Nighthawk stealth attack aircraft." title="Netgear R7000" width="620" height="541" /></a></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><strong>The aggressive design and “Nighthawk” name are both inspired by the Lockheed F-117 Nighthawk stealth attack aircraft.</strong></p> <p>Netgear has put in a lot of work over the past few years making its web interface more user friendly, but that hasn’t come at the expense of advanced knobs and dials. If you like to tinker with your network settings, you’ll find a host of options to play with, including robust QoS controls, which look at both upstream and downstream traffic.</p> <p>There are two USB ports on the Nighthawk, including a USB 3.0 port conveniently located on the front. In our file-transfer tests, the Nighthawk ran the table, leaving the other routers in the dust.</p> <p><strong>Netgear R7000</strong></p> <p><strong><br /></strong></p> <div class="module-content" style="margin-top: -20px;"> <div class="module-text full"> <div class="verdict"><img src="/sites/maximumpc.com/themes/maximumpc/i/mxpc_9ka.jpg" alt="score:9ka" title="score:9ka" width="210" height="80" /></div> </div> </div> <p><strong>$200 (Street), <a href="http://www.netgear.com/" target="_blank">www.netgear.com</a></strong></p> <h3> <hr /></h3> <h3>Asus RT-AC66U</h3> <p><strong>This router rises about its predecessor, the Dark Knight (RT-N66U)</strong></p> <p>Asus nicknamed its last-generation router—and our zero-point in this roundup—Dark Knight, and if it’s looking for another DC Comics hero to represent the RT-AC66U, we recommend going with The Flash. Point blank, this is the all-around fastest router we’ve ever tested. It came out on top in five of our 10 throughput tests and nipped at the heels of the leader in three others.</p> <p>A pair of slower USB 2.0 (compared to USB 3.0) ports on the back temper our enthusiasm over performance, though at least Asus offers a host of ways to share and stream files—DLNA, iTunes, FTP, and Samba server support all showed up to the party. You can also use Asus’s AiCloud app available on Android and iOS to tap into your files from a mobile device.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a class="thickbox" href="/files/u152332/asus12894_small_0.jpg"><img src="/files/u152332/asus12894_small.jpg" alt="If speed kills, this router would be a serial killer. " title="Asus RT-AC66U" width="620" height="622" /></a></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><strong>If speed kills, this router would be a serial killer. </strong></p> <p>The user interface is brilliantly mapped out and chock-full of settings. All the main functions are categorized on the left-hand side, while tabs on the main window allow you to dig several layers deep. Power users and novices alike will feel right at home jumping around the menu. It’s also nice that Asus gives you the ability to tweak the signal strength and external antennas.</p> <p><strong>Asus RT-AC66U</strong></p> <p><strong><br /></strong></p> <div class="module-content" style="margin-top: -20px;"> <div class="module-text full"> <div class="verdict"><img src="/sites/maximumpc.com/themes/maximumpc/i/mxpc_9ka.jpg" alt="score:9ka" title="score:9ka" width="210" height="80" /></div> </div> </div> <p><strong>$180 (Street), <a href="http://www.asus.com/" target="_blank">www.asus.com</a></strong></p> <h3>Amped Wireless RTA15</h3> <p><strong>High maintenance, low reward</strong></p> <p>We’re not sure if the RTA15 is so potentially fast that it keeps tripping over its own two feet, or if this is a case of being seduced by promises of a wild ride by a hot number that has no intentions of following through. Either way, we were left frustrated and unsatisfied.</p> <p>Amped Wireless advertises the RTA15 as a “High Power 700mW” router, yielding expectations of both speed and distance. During our tests, we saw glimpses of the former—the RTA15 would spike on the 5GHz band before taking a dip in performance. Averaged out over time, the best we could muster was just shy of 300Mb/s, and even that took a lot of tinkering. We spent way more time experimenting with settings on the RTA15 than any other router. One thing we discovered is that dialing back the signal strength helps in close quarters, but we never did uncover the magic formula that would make this router scream.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a class="thickbox" href="/files/u152332/amped12896_small_0.jpg"><img src="/files/u152332/amped12896_small.jpg" alt="Move along. This is not the AC router you’re looking for." title="Amped Wireless RTA15" width="620" height="600" /></a></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><strong>Move along. This is not the AC router you’re looking for.</strong></p> <p>File transfer speeds over the single USB 2.0 port failed to impress, as well. It was among the slowest of the bunch, taking a minute and a half longer than any other router to write a single 3GB file.</p> <p><strong>Amped Wireless RTA15</strong></p> <p><strong><br /></strong></p> <div class="module-content" style="margin-top: -20px;"> <div class="module-text full"> <div class="verdict"><img src="/sites/maximumpc.com/themes/maximumpc/i/mxpc_5.jpg" alt="score:5" title="score:5" width="210" height="80" /></div> </div> </div> <p><strong>$185 (Street), <a href="http://www.ampedwireless.com/" target="_blank">www.ampedwireless.com</a></strong></p> <h3>Buffalo WZR-1750DHP</h3> <p><strong>Don’t judge a router by its cover</strong></p> <p>Whereas high-performance routers are adopting sleek designs with aggressive angles and external antennas, Buffalo’s WZR-1750DHP stands up like a hardcover book with subdued LEDs and a rubberized coating. This isn’t a fashion contest, however, and Buffalo’s model quickly demonstrated why looks mean nothing. Throughput on the 5GHz band in 802.11ac mode consistently bumped elbows with Asus and Netgear, with Buffalo edging out both in the Entryway. 802.11n and file-transfer performance via USB 3.0 were both solid, too.</p> <p>A wealth of advanced features can be found in the back end, including some not-so-common tweaks like an eco mode and an optional time limit for guest access. Buffalo earns bonus points for a persistent Help button in the upper-right corner. Clicking it brings up an explanation of whichever settings are on the page—we wish more router makers would follow in Buffalo’s footsteps here.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a class="thickbox" href="/files/u152332/airstationbuff2887_small_0.jpg"><img src="/files/u152332/airstationbuff2887_small.jpg" alt="Exceptional speed and features belie this router’s unassuming looks." title="Buffalo WZR-1750DHP" width="620" height="763" /></a></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><strong>Exceptional speed and features belie this router’s unassuming looks.</strong></p> <p>Zooming through the menu system is a little quirky. The main menu is the most touch-friendly of the bunch with four large, tiled menus, but the deeper you go, the more traditional (and a little confusing) the menus get. Given the focus on touch computing lately, we hope Buffalo eventually extends the main menu look throughout the UI.</p> <p><strong>Buffalo WZR-1750DHP</strong></p> <p><strong><br /></strong></p> <div class="module-content" style="margin-top: -20px;"> <div class="module-text full"> <div class="verdict"><img src="/sites/maximumpc.com/themes/maximumpc/i/mxpc_9.jpg" alt="score:9" title="score:9" width="210" height="80" /></div> </div> </div> <p><strong>$140 (Street), <a href="http://www.buffalotech.com/select-your-region">www.buffalotech.com</a></strong></p> <div class="module orange-module article-module"> <div class="module orange-module article-module"><span class="module-name">AC Routers Compared</span><br /> <div class="module-content"> <div class="module-text full"> <div class="spec-table orange"> <table style="width: 620px; height: 265px;" border="0"> <thead> </thead> <tbody> <tr> <td>&nbsp;</td> <td><strong>D-Link<br /></strong></td> <td><strong>Trendnet<br /></strong></td> <td><strong>Linksys</strong></td> <td><strong>Netgear</strong></td> <td><strong>Asus</strong></td> <td><strong>Asus</strong></td> <td><strong>Buffalo</strong></td> <td><strong>Asus Zero-Point</strong></td> </tr> <tr> <td><strong>5GHz 802.11ac</strong></td> <td>&nbsp;</td> <td>&nbsp;</td> <td>&nbsp;</td> <td>&nbsp;</td> <td>&nbsp;</td> <td>&nbsp;</td> <td>&nbsp;</td> <td>&nbsp;</td> </tr> <tr> <td class="item">Bedroom – 10ft (Mb/s)</td> <td class="item-dark">416</td> <td>324</td> <td>361</td> <td>400</td> <td><strong>419</strong></td> <td>298</td> <td>398</td> <td>N/A</td> </tr> <tr> <td>Dining Room – 15ft, 2 walls (Mb/s)</td> <td>243</td> <td>221</td> <td>239</td> <td>291</td> <td><strong>335</strong></td> <td>138</td> <td>309</td> <td>N/A</td> </tr> <tr> <td class="item">Entryway – 20ft, 3 walls (Mb/s)</td> <td class="item-dark">257</td> <td>178</td> <td>241</td> <td><strong>336</strong></td> <td>284</td> <td>112</td> <td>268</td> <td>N/A</td> </tr> <tr> <td>Driveway – 35ft (Mb/s)</td> <td>67.8</td> <td>20.2</td> <td>63.7</td> <td>136</td> <td>132</td> <td>42.4</td> <td><strong>138</strong></td> <td>N/A</td> </tr> <tr> <td>Backyard – 90ft (Mb/s)</td> <td>15.1</td> <td>2.76 </td> <td>11.1</td> <td><strong>15.3</strong></td> <td>9.54</td> <td>2.81</td> <td>14.3</td> <td>N/A</td> </tr> <tr> <td><strong>2.4GHz 802.11n</strong></td> <td></td> <td></td> <td></td> <td></td> <td>&nbsp;</td> <td>&nbsp;</td> <td>&nbsp;</td> <td>&nbsp;</td> </tr> <tr> <td>Bedroom – 10ft (Mb/s)</td> <td>79.5</td> <td>97.1</td> <td>170</td> <td>96.4</td> <td><strong>180</strong></td> <td>159</td> <td><strong>180</strong></td> <td>111</td> </tr> <tr> <td>Dining Room – 15ft, 2 walls (Mb/s)</td> <td>65.6</td> <td>95.2</td> <td>140</td> <td>93.4</td> <td><strong>163</strong></td> <td>66</td> <td>141</td> <td>99.3</td> </tr> <tr> <td>Entryway – 20ft, 3 walls (Mb/s)</td> <td>62.3</td> <td>42.2</td> <td><strong>149</strong></td> <td>88.3</td> <td>145</td> <td>50.4</td> <td>91.7</td> <td>122</td> </tr> <tr> <td>Driveway – 35ft (Mb/s)</td> <td>42.8</td> <td>31.4</td> <td>80</td> <td>78.7</td> <td><strong>95.5</strong></td> <td>4.13</td> <td>64.4</td> <td>73.4</td> </tr> <tr> <td>Backyard – 90ft (Mb/s)</td> <td>4.31</td> <td>23.8</td> <td>56.4</td> <td>54.4</td> <td>58.4</td> <td>2.35</td> <td>51.4</td> <td><strong>59.1</strong></td> </tr> <tr> <td><strong>File Transfers</strong></td> <td>&nbsp;</td> <td>&nbsp;</td> <td>&nbsp;</td> <td>&nbsp;</td> <td>&nbsp;</td> <td>&nbsp;</td> <td>&nbsp;</td> <td>&nbsp;</td> </tr> <tr> <td>3GB Router to PC (min:sec)</td> <td>1:38</td> <td>2:16</td> <td>1:41</td> <td><strong>0:50</strong></td> <td>4:29</td> <td>6:20</td> <td>1:12</td> <td>4:28</td> </tr> <tr> <td>1GB Router to PC (min:sec)</td> <td>0:39</td> <td>2:16</td> <td>0:40</td> <td><strong>0:22</strong></td> <td>1:35</td> <td>2:14</td> <td>0:29</td> <td>1:52</td> </tr> <tr> <td>3GB PC to Router (min:sec)</td> <td>2:51</td> <td>4:33</td> <td>6:09</td> <td><strong>1:31</strong></td> <td>6:00</td> <td>7:45</td> <td>2:15</td> <td>6:15</td> </tr> <tr> <td>1GB PC to Router (min:sec)</td> <td>1:10</td> <td>2:58</td> <td>2:58</td> <td><strong>0:40</strong></td> <td>2:25</td> <td>2:35</td> <td>0:59</td> <td>2:34</td> </tr> </tbody> </table> <p><em>Best scores are bolded. <br /></em></p> </div> </div> </div> </div> </div> http://www.maximumpc.com/best_ac_router_2014#comments best ac router D-Link DIR-868 fast wireless Internet feature Hardware Kaya February issues 2014 Linksys EA6900 modem routers Features Wed, 04 Jun 2014 23:12:17 +0000 Paul Lilly 27899 at http://www.maximumpc.com Top 8 Apple Successes and Failures http://www.maximumpc.com/top_7_apple_successes_and_failures_2014 <!--paging_filter--><p><img src="/files/u154280/imac.png" alt="Apple" title="Apple" width="342" height="228" style="float: right;" /></p> <h3>Sweet and sour apples</h3> <p>Following our <a title="microsoft success and failures" href="http://www.maximumpc.com/microsofts_5_greatest_successes_and_failures_2013" target="_blank">Microsoft</a> and <a title="google success and failures" href="http://www.maximumpc.com/top_7_google_successes_and_failures2014" target="_blank">Google successes and failures</a>&nbsp;stories, we’ve heard some of you clamoring for an Apple Successes and Failures list. Since it also happens to be Apple's big WWDC week, we decided now would be a good time to oblige and reflect on Apple's history. Yes, we’re the biggest PC fanboys around, but we can’t deny that Apple has had some financially successful computing devices. Plus, it's also fun to take a look back at some of the company's biggest blunders.</p> <p>Here's a list of eight successes and failures Apple’s had over the last few decades.</p> <p>Is there a company that you would like us to analyze next? Let us know in the comments below!</p> <p><em>Update: We've updated the list to include more successes and failures.</em></p> <p><span style="font-style: normal;">Follow Chris on&nbsp;</span><a style="font-style: normal;" href="https://plus.google.com/u/0/117154316323139826718" target="_blank">Google</a><span style="font-style: normal;">+&nbsp;or&nbsp;</span><a style="font-style: normal;" href="https://twitter.com/chriszele" target="_blank">Twitter</a></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/top_7_apple_successes_and_failures_2014#comments apple failure Hardware iMac ios iphone success wwdc Features Mon, 02 Jun 2014 22:45:45 +0000 Chris Zele 27189 at http://www.maximumpc.com Zotac Unveils the ZBOX Sphere OI520 Mini PC http://www.maximumpc.com/zotac_unveils_zbox_sphere_oi520_mini_pc_2014 <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u166440/zbox_oi520_plus_2.jpg" alt="ZBOX OI520" title="ZBOX OI520" width="200" height="152" style="float: right;" />A mini-PC with an orb form factor</h3> <p>For those looking for a round PC experience, hardware manufacturer<strong> Zotac International has unveiled the new ZBOX Sphere OI520 Series</strong>. The form for this series of mini PCs is in the shape of a sphere and is powered by the Intel Core i5 4200U processor (1.6 GHZ base, 2.6GHz Turbo).&nbsp;</p> <p>The ZBOX O-series offers two types for consumers. The <a title="Base Sphere" href="http://www.zotac.com/en/products/mini-pcs/o-series/product/o-series/detail/zbox-oi520/sort/starttime/order/DESC/amount/10/section/specifications.html" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">OI520 base model</span></a> comes with Intel HD 4400 graphics but no RAM (there are two DDR3L slots to acommadate up to 16GB of RAM) or hard drive. But not to worry, the ZBOX is supposed to be easy to upgrade. Just twist off the top and insert the necessary components. However, if you don’t want to bother with the RAM or HDD the <a title="Plus Sphere" href="http://www.zotac.com/en/products/mini-pcs/o-series/product/o-series/detail/zbox-oi520-9/sort/starttime/order/DESC/amount/10/section/specifications.html" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">OI520-Plus model</span></a> will come with 4GB of DDR3 RAM and a 500GB HDD.&nbsp;</p> <p>In addition, both models have four USB 3.0 ports (located on the back panel), 3 USB 2.0 ports (two on the back, one on the side), one HDMI output, and one DisplayPort. &nbsp;Both units also have GbE LAN port, Wireless 802.11ac, and Bluetooth 4.0 support.&nbsp;</p> <p>No price or release date was provided.&nbsp;</p> <p>What do you think of the ZBOX Sphere? Too circular for your tastes?</p> <p><em>Follow Sean on&nbsp;<a title="SeanDKnight Google+" href="https://plus.google.com/+SeanKnightD?rel=author" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Google+</span></a>, <a title="SeanDKnight's Twitter" href="https://twitter.com/SeanDKnight" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Twitter</span></a>, and <a title="SeanDKnight Facebook" href="https://www.facebook.com/seandknight" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Facebook</span></a></em></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/zotac_unveils_zbox_sphere_oi520_mini_pc_2014#comments Hardware zbox ZBOX Sphere ZBOX Sphere OI520 zotac Zotac International News Fri, 23 May 2014 00:18:00 +0000 Sean D Knight 27863 at http://www.maximumpc.com Microsoft Surface 2 Review http://www.maximumpc.com/microsoft_surface_2_review <!--paging_filter--><h3>Though improved, Microsoft’s ARM tablet still falls flat</h3> <p>When you’re literally the laughing stock of the tablet world, it’s pretty hard to make a comeback. In fact, most critics didn’t believe we’d see what’s before your eyes now: Surface 2.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a class="thickbox" href="/files/u152332/surface2_13041_small_0.jpg"><img src="/files/u152332/surface2_13041_small.jpg" alt="Surface 2 is faster and has a better kickstand than its predecessor, but it may be too late for Windows RT." title="Microsoft Surface 2" width="620" height="685" /></a></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><strong>Surface 2 is faster and has a better kickstand than its predecessor, but it may be too late for Windows RT.</strong></p> <p>There’s plenty of reason for people to be such haters, too. The original Surface RT that shipped in October 2012 was a financial bomb at its original price of $500. Microsoft eventually had to take a $900 million write-off on the Surface RT; irate shareholders even sued the company, calling SurfRT an “unmitigated disaster.”</p> <p>The reception to Windows RT has been so poor in general, that most of the original PC OEMs who jumped in have since jumped out in favor of full x86-Windows 8.1 tablets. That brings us to the curious life of Surface 2, a sequel to a tablet that most think didn’t deserve one.</p> <p>Externally, the Surf2 looks the same, but the internals are quite different. Surf2 sports a 1.7GHz Tegra 4, which is a good clip faster than the 1.3GHz Tegra 3 in its predecessor. The original wasn’t a horrible performer but it did get a bit laggy on occasion. Surface 2 is noticeably faster in feel and in the tests.</p> <p>To compare performance, we updated the Surface 2 and Surface RT to the latest OS versions and ran browser-based benchmarks within Internet Explorer 11. The Surface 2 was at a minimum twice as fast as the older tablet in the HTML5 tests we ran. There is a cost for this performance, though. Even though Surface 2 is rated to offer longer battery life, we found that Surface RT outlasted Surface 2 by a healthy margin. Our test, admittedly, puts more of a load on a tablet than typical usage. Rather than loop a movie, we looped Futuremark’s Peacekeeper HTML5 benchmark, which is a good processor load and keeps the Wi-Fi hot. Surface 2 ran nearly four hours while Surface RT hit an impressive six-plus hours. Surface 2 also got noticeably warm during the rundown.</p> <p>Other improvements to Surf2 include a 1920x1080-res screen, USB 3.0 support, and low-power capability on the Bluetooth 4.0 radio. The most noticeable physical change is a two-position kickstand, as the kickstand on Surface RT was apparently taken from the Gitmo enhanced-interrogation-techniques manual of PC use and was horribly uncomfortable to use at a desk or on a plane.</p> <p>The OS is, of course, Windows RT 8.1, and no discussion of the OS can go without talking about its app store. When Surface RT launched, people gave Microsoft the benefit of the doubt that the app market would pick up. It hasn’t. The app market still looks and feels like the store shelves following a zombie apocalypse, where you’d drop to your knees and thank the gods for a can of beans.</p> <p>Perhaps even worse for the app market is the lack of support from Google. We know each of the big companies are building their own self-contained biodomes but they’re also increasingly trying to cut each other out too, and the lack of a Modern app for Gmail, Google Maps, and all things Google really, really hurts the Surface 2. Yes, there’s a Netflix app, Amazon app, and Yahoo native app, but the inability to get Gmail or Google Maps or YouTube makes the Surface 2 an inferior experience to Android-based tablets. The fact that Google deigns to support iOS makes it doubly bad for those of us who want finger-friendly apps on our tablets.</p> <p>The only real plus on the software side is the free copy of Office 2013 that’s optimized for ARM on the Surface 2. With it, you get Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote, and Outlook. Those apps give the Surface 2 its only real edge over other tablets. With the TypePad 2 keyboard attached (the original TypePad is actually better) and a Bluetooth mouse, you can get away with a decent amount of laptop-like Office productivity that you really can’t with other tablets. And no, we don’t care what you say—that copy of SquareOfficePro12 you downloaded from the app store for $4.99 will not do absolutely everything Microsoft Office will do. It just can’t and won’t. It may do what you need it for, but it won’t do the same things as a set of applications that Microsoft has thousands of people working on, so stop fooling yourself.</p> <p>So, where does this leave Surface 2? It’s clearly superior to the original Surface RT in performance, but it doesn’t really matter. Even the original Surface RT had issues with fratricide in our eyes and the situation is far worse for Surface 2. Who, after all, wants to pay for Surface RT or Surface 2 when you can get a full x86-based Windows 8.1 tablet for almost the same price that will at least run Windows desktop apps? Frankly, not many of us, as you can see from the sales figures.</p> <p><strong>$580 (32MB w/TypeCover 2 keyboard),</strong> <a href="http://www.microsoft.com/en-pk/default.aspx">www.microsoft.com</a></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/microsoft_surface_2_review#comments Business Notebooks February issues 2014 Hardware Hardware maximum pc Review Reviews Notebooks Wed, 21 May 2014 13:30:10 +0000 Gordon Mah Ung 27845 at http://www.maximumpc.com Digital Storm Aventum II Review http://www.maximumpc.com/digital_storm_aventum_ii_review_2014 <!--paging_filter--><h3>What’s red and faster than Dream Machine? This PC</h3> <p>There’s a little secret in the high-end PC market—few if any of these premium rigs actually have truly unique case enclosures. Instead, most boutique builders start with existing off-the-shelf chassis and customize from there.</p> <p>The more ambitious OEMs will contract small runs from case companies and tack on a customized façade or logo. Even then, if you look close enough, you’ll see their mass-production lineage.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a class="thickbox" href="/files/u152332/aventum_small_0.jpg"><img src="/files/u152332/aventum_small.jpg" alt="The Aventum II’s case is custom built, not a re-skin of an existing case design." title="Digital Storm Aventum II" width="620" height="413" /></a></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><strong>The Aventum II’s case is custom built, not a re-skin of an existing case design.</strong></p> <p>That’s not so with Digital Storm’s Aventum II. Now in its second iteration, the rig highlights Digital Storm’s efforts at creating a truly unique enclosure. Rather than contract for a few thousand semi-custom cases with a slightly different nip or tuck, Digital Storm decided to CAD/CAM its own super-tower from scratch and have it hand-built right here in the US of A. This lets DStorm change the design to suit newer hardware, and boast a case that no one else can have.</p> <p>The giganourmous Aventum II case is a full four inches deeper than the already-honkin’ Corsair 900D and dwarfs just about all other super-towers. With any system, it’s not just about the case, though. Details of the components are spelled out in our spec chart, but the highlights include a 3.6GHz Core i7-4960X processor overclocked to 4.7GHz, along with 32GB of DDR3/1866 and a four-way GeForce GTX 780 Ti setup.</p> <p>If you read our Dream Machine story (September 2013), you know this much hardware is difficult to juice up. We had issues with our 1,600W PSU, and the last two four-way GPU boxes have all had big PSUs, too. DStorm gets around this by integrating two Corsair AX1200i PSUs into the system. That gives the box a combined power reserve of 2,400 watts. With the depth of the Aventum II (about 30 inches) it has enough room to integrate large rads along with the dual PSUs (and yes, peanut gallery, we hear you saying that maybe, just maybe, we should have done this in DM2013, too).</p> <p>In performance terms, the Aventum II is in good company. Up until now, the Dream Machine has held most of our benchmark records, but that’s no longer the case. The Aventum II just squeezes past the 5GHz Core i7-3670X in DM2013 in Premiere Pro CS6 and X264 HD 5.01 performance. It gets trickier on the graphics side—the Aventum II does set a new record in Batman: Arkham City but that’s pretty much a CPU benchmark today. In 3DMark11, the Aventum II loses to both DM2013 and the four-way Titan-based Origin PC Genesis that we reviewed in December, by about 10 percent. The reason? DStorm couldn’t get water blocks for the 780 Ti in time for our review, as the PCB layout has changed from the Titan’s. And on air, the company was sensitive not to offend our acoustic sensibilities since we had just beaten up its loud Bolt PC in our micro-tower roundup (November 2013). Consequently, the Aventum II is as silent as any liquid-cooled system.</p> <p>So, four-way Titan is better than four-way 780 Ti, right? Nope. We decided to see what the air-cooled 780 Ti cards could do when the librarian wasn’t shushing them, so we overclocked the cards by 158MHz and let them push thermals higher. With those settings, we hit 17,840 in 3DMark11,&nbsp; which easily bakes the four-way Titans—even the overclocked Titans—and we’re sure 18K would easily be surpassed with another 10 minutes of tweaking. We have some internal figures for Tomb Raider, Hitman, and Unigine 4.0 for DM2013, and the Aventum II easily wins there too, once the noise gloves are off. For the record, it did get a little loud, but not offensively so.</p> <p>Still, we’re torn. It’s simply a crime not to have liquid-cooled 780 Tis in this Lust Red box, yet we acknowledge that the option doesn’t exist today. And we also have to give Digital Storm props for its truly unique chassis, its digital fan and LED control, and the sheer straight-line speed it has in beating DM2013. As much as we wanted to withhold a Kick Ass from the Aventum II for the lack of liquid-cooled GPUs, we think the rig deserves the honor for being so dedicated to Pure PC Power.</p> <p><strong>$10,905,</strong> <a href="http://www.digitalstormonline.com/">www.digitalstorm.com</a></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/digital_storm_aventum_ii_review_2014#comments Digital Storm Aventum II Hardware January issues 2014 maximum pc Review Reviews Tue, 20 May 2014 22:39:46 +0000 Gordon Mah Ung 27607 at http://www.maximumpc.com Gigabyte GTX 780 Ti OC Review http://www.maximumpc.com/gigabyte_gtx_780_ti_oc_review <!--paging_filter--><h3>A ‘Force’ to be reckoned with</h3> <p>The Gigabyte GTX 780 Ti OC Edition is somewhat like a Maximum PC editor, in that it is powerful and mostly silent. This is the OC Edition we are testing, so it’s in a high state of tune right out of the box, thanks to a colossal “WindForce” cooler that can expel up to 450W of heat—it’s almost overkill on this 250W TDP GPU. Keep in mind we are big fans of overkill, though, particularly when this package costs exactly the same amount of money as the reference board. So, yes, you get all this cooling and overclocking for free.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a class="thickbox" href="/files/u152332/9227_big_small_0.jpg"><img src="/files/u152332/9227_big_small.jpg" alt="The ultra-fancy WindForce cooler sports anti-turbulence inclined fans, copper heat pipes, and vapor chambers." title="Gigabyte GTX 780 Ti OC " width="620" height="309" /></a></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><strong>The ultra-fancy WindForce cooler sports anti-turbulence inclined fans, copper heat pipes, and vapor chambers.</strong></p> <p>With all that cooling headroom, Gigabyte has increased the clock speeds on this sucker from the stock 875MHz to 1,020MHz, with its boost clock also increased from 928MHz to 1,085MHz. Since the 780 Ti’s memory is already running at 7GHz, Gigabyte left that untouched, so it remains at stock speeds. At press time the card should be bundled with three top games, but the deal is only “while supplies last,” so check with Gigabyte or the retailer during purchase for the bundle.</p> <p>To test the Gigabyte GTX 780 Ti, we put it up against the reference board from Nvidia, the $1,000 GTX Titan, the $650 Asus Mars 760, and the $550 AMD R9 290X. Since this is the first retail GTX 780 Ti we have tested, we expected it to break some benchmark records. And no surprise, it was the fastest GPU in every test we have, except in Far Cry 3 and Crysis 3 where it lost to the dual-GPU Asus Mars 760 by one lousy frame per second—effectively a tie. We were impressed by how much faster it was than the stock card, too—typically by around 10 percent—which, we will remind you, costs the same.</p> <p>The Gigabyte GTX 780 Ti overclocking performance was also respectable, but not as good as what we saw with the reference card from Nvidia. That card boosted up to 1,241MHz, but the Gigabyte card topped out at 1,176MHz. Under load, the Gigabyte card performed extremely well, hitting just 82 C and running totally silent at all times. The stock cooler hit around 85 C when overclocked and was quite loud. Clearly, the WindForce design reaps benefits both in acoustics and performance.</p> <p>With only the reference board to compare it to, along with the less expensive Radeon R9 290X, it’s impossible to say whether the Gigabyte is the “best” 780 Ti, but it’s damn good, and we can’t imagine how another vendor’s card would be any better at the same price. We can see a card maybe outperforming it by one or two percent, and having better software, but it won’t beat this one on price and certainly not on acoustics.</p> <p><strong>$700,</strong> <a href="http://www.gigabyte.us/">www.gigabyte.us</a></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/gigabyte_gtx_780_ti_oc_review#comments Air Cooling fastest February issues 2014 Gigabyte GTX 780 Ti OC graphics card Hardware maximum pc Review Reviews Thu, 24 Apr 2014 10:39:38 +0000 Josh Norem 27683 at http://www.maximumpc.com Best Gaming Mouse http://www.maximumpc.com/best_gaming_mouse_2014 <!--paging_filter--><h3>Best Gaming Mouse: Six cutting-edge gaming mice. Which one belongs in your paw?</h3> <p>We tend to think of some PC components as having a longer shelf life than others. A video card gets out of date faster than a motherboard, which gets out of date faster than an optical drive, for instance. Some people think that a mouse falls way down at the bottom of that list, somewhere between a power supply and the screwdriver you use to put the whole thing together, but those people have got it all wrong.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a class="thickbox" href="/files/u152332/mice_tony-12421_small_0.jpg"><img src="/files/u152332/mice_tony-12421_small.jpg" width="620" height="511" /></a></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><strong>Eeny, Meeny, Miny Mouse</strong></p> <p>Your mouse has a huge effect on how effectively you use your computer, and mouse technology evolves every year. Last year’s killer feature becomes this year’s baseline. Performance that was once top-of-the-line starts to make an appearance in the bargain bin. So if you’re still using the same crusty old mouse from half a decade ago, or if you’ve never made the jump to a true gaming mouse in the first place, you owe it to yourself to take a look at what’s on the market right now.</p> <p>To help you out, we’ve rounded up six premium gaming mice spanning multiple price points and niches and put them to the test in an attempt to find the <strong>best gaming mouse</strong>. Each one has been rated based on its features, build quality, performance, and software support. Some of these mice are among the best we’ve ever tested, so read on and find out how you’re going to control your next PC.</p> <h4>Logitech G602</h4> <p><strong>Is it time to cut the cord?</strong></p> <p>A lot of gamers still have the idea that a true gaming mouse can’t be wireless—that wireless mice lag and are unreliable and will totally wreck your K/D in Call of Duty. Fortunately, that idea has been proven wrong repeatedly recently, as multiple companies have released high-quality wireless gaming mice. With the G602, Logitech has pounded another nail in that myth’s coffin.</p> <p>The G602 is a wireless mouse with a solid, all-purpose set of features. It has plenty of buttons, including a bank of six bindable keys accessible to your thumb, which allows it to work fairly well for MMO or FPS gameplay.</p> <p>It’s long, with a high-arched design that will work best for those who prefer a full-palm grip, and the construction is top-notch. A rubber pad on the palm makes the mouse easy to hold on to, and the textured plastic around the sides of the mouse feels very durable.</p> <p>The G602 isn’t rechargeable, but it is designed for extreme longevity. Logitech claims that in gaming mode, a single set of two AA batteries will last for 250 hours. During our testing, we weren’t able to make a dent in the battery meter, so we’re not inclined to disagree.</p> <p>In order to provide longer battery life, Logitech went with an optical sensor. We found the tracking to be quite good, though the maximum 2,500 dpi and 500Hz polling rate might be too low for some gamers. Logitech’s software is usually solid, and the G602 is no exception.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a class="thickbox" href="/files/u152332/buildit-12387_small_0.jpg"><img src="/files/u152332/buildit-12387_small.jpg" alt="The Logitech G602 features plenty of thumb buttons. " title="Logitech G602" width="620" height="512" /></a></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><strong>The Logitech G602 features plenty of thumb buttons. </strong></p> <p>If you’re looking for a wireless-only mouse with plenty of features for any type of gaming, you won’t be disappointed by the G602.</p> <p><strong>Logitech G602</strong></p> <p><strong><br /></strong></p> <div class="module-content" style="margin-top: -20px;"> <div class="module-text full"> <div class="verdict"><img src="/sites/maximumpc.com/themes/maximumpc/i/mxpc_8.jpg" alt="score:8" title="score:8" width="210" height="80" /></div> </div> </div> <p><strong>$80, <a href="http://www.logitech.com/">www.logitech.com</a><a href="http://www.transcend-info.com/global2.asp"></a></strong></p> <h4>Mad Catz R.A.T. M</h4> <p><strong>A super-small mouse with some full-size problems</strong></p> <p>You’ve got to hand it to Mad Catz—the company is not afraid to try new things with its peripherals. This derring-do was apparent with the über-customizable R.A.T. 7, which was truly innovative. With the R.A.T. M, Mad Catz tried something new again. This time, however, it didn’t work out so well.</p> <p>The R.A.T. M is a gaming mouse designed for portable gaming. It’s wireless, powered by two AAA batteries, and absolutely tiny, so you can throw it in your laptop bag. It can be used as a Bluetooth mouse, though it also comes with a low-profile USB dongle that stows away under the mouse when not in use. As is usually the case, we found the USB mode to be more dependable than Bluetooth. A laser sensor provides great tracking on nearly any surface.</p> <p>Unfortunately, for all its portable conveniences, the R.A.T. M just isn’t comfortable to use. The palm rest on the mouse extends, increasing the overall length, but even at its very longest, the mouse is still quite small, leaving your hand in a cramp-inducing extreme arc. Worse, the palm rest doesn’t lock into place, so during the course of normal use it would almost constantly get shoved back into its shortest setting, rendering the mouse incredibly uncomfortable to use for more than a short while. There are plenty of buttons on the R.A.T. M, but most of them are quite difficult to hit, due again to the mouse’s small size.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a class="thickbox" href="/files/u152332/buildit-12383_small_0.jpg"><img src="/files/u152332/buildit-12383_small.jpg" alt="With the R.A.T. M’s palm rest extended, the mouse is almost big enough to comfortably use." title="Mad Catz R.A.T. M" width="620" height="498" /></a></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><strong>With the R.A.T. M’s palm rest extended, the mouse is almost big enough to comfortably use.</strong></p> <p>A portable mouse is always going to be a compromise, but at $130 MSRP, the R.A.T. M asks too much, and offers too little.</p> <p><strong>Mad Catz R.A.T. M</strong></p> <p><strong><br /></strong></p> <div class="module-content" style="margin-top: -20px;"> <div class="module-text full"> <div class="verdict"><img src="/sites/maximumpc.com/themes/maximumpc/i/mxpc_6.jpg" alt="score:6" title="score:6" width="210" height="80" /></div> </div> </div> <p><strong>$130, <a href="http://www.cyborggaming.com/">www.cyborggaming.com</a></strong></p> <p><strong><em>Click the next page to read about the TT ESports Theron and Roccat Kone Pure.</em></strong></p> <hr /> <p>&nbsp;</p> <h4>TT ESports Theron</h4> <p><strong>Aside from some flashy lights, does this newcomer bring much to the table?</strong></p> <p>TT ESports is the peripherals division of Thermaltake, and one of the newer entrants into the increasingly crowded market. While the Theron isn’t the flashiest mouse we’ve seen, it’s a very solid piece of hardware, and a sign that the company’s serious about competing.</p> <p>The Theron is an especially boxy mouse, with very wide, flat buttons and a nice clicking action. When powered up, it emits light from the scroll wheel, dragon logo, and from three LEDs located around the bottom, lighting up your desk under the mouse.</p> <p>The mouse features the sort of “soft-touch” rubberized surface that’s popular on a lot of gaming mice. Though it feels nice to the touch, these coatings have a tendency to make your hand feel sweaty quickly, and the Theron’s in particular started to show grease and fingerprints right away.</p> <p>On the underside of the Theron is a hatch that opens up to reveal a bank of five 4.5 gram weights, which allows you to substantially alter the overall weight of the mouse. It has two additional thumb buttons, one pinky button, and two DPI buttons. All are bindable, though the DPI buttons are placed far enough back from the thumb wheel that there’s no real hope of hitting them in the heat of battle. Our only real complaint about the construction of the mouse is that the scroll wheel felt a little flimsy in its socket—otherwise, the Theron is quite solid.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a class="thickbox" href="/files/u152332/buildit-12392_small_0.jpg"><img src="/files/u152332/buildit-12392_small.jpg" alt="Like a souped-up street racer, the Theron features customizable underlighting." title="Tt eSports Theron" width="620" height="429" /></a></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><strong>Like a souped-up street racer, the Theron features customizable underlighting.</strong></p> <p>The Theron doesn’t do much to stand out among the other mice in its price range, but it’s hard to find specific things to fault it for. It’s an all-around respectable option.</p> <p><strong>Tt eSports Theron</strong></p> <p><strong><br /></strong></p> <div class="module-content" style="margin-top: -20px;"> <div class="module-text full"> <div class="verdict"><img src="/sites/maximumpc.com/themes/maximumpc/i/mxpc_8.jpg" alt="score:8" title="score:8" width="210" height="80" /></div> </div> </div> <p><strong>$70, <a href="http://www.ttesports.com/">www.ttesports.com</a></strong></p> <h3>Understanding Mouse Settings</h3> <p>In Windows, there are really only three important mouse settings, and they are all located in the Mouse Properties panel. You can access this panel by opening the Control Panel, clicking Hardware and Sound, and then Mouse. Here’s what you need to know.<strong>&nbsp;</strong></p> <p>Pointer Speed This slider adjusts how fast your pointer moves, of course, but the real secret is that you shouldn’t ever need to use it. Any modern gaming mouse will allow you to set custom dpi levels, which adjust how sensitive the mouse is. Higher sensitivity will make the pointer move faster. If you instead keep the mouse sensitivity set low, and increase the pointer speed in Windows or in a game, your mouse accuracy will suffer.<strong>&nbsp;</strong></p> <p>Mouse Acceleration Mouse acceleration causes the mouse pointer to move farther based on how fast you’re moving the mouse. So, quickly jerking the mouse over an inch will move the pointer farther than slowly dragging it that same inch. Many people find that this feels natural, but for some types of games where extreme mouse precision is required it may be undesirable. To disable it, uncheck the box labeled “Enhance pointer precision.”<strong>&nbsp;</strong></p> <h4>Roccat Kone Pure Color Edition</h4> <p><strong>Sometimes beauty is more than skin deep</strong></p> <p>“Pure” is a good name for this version of the Roccat Kone gaming mouse—it’s all about pure performance. It doesn’t have a billion buttons, or removable weights, or any other extraneous features. Instead, the Kone Pure focuses on doing a smaller number of things well.</p> <p>For one, the Kone Pure offers great tracking, with a top-notch 8,200 dpi laser sensor. The mouse’s lift-off distance can be customized, if you like to really fiddle with your mouse’s performance. It also features half a megabyte of onboard memory, and a 32-bit processor, so you can store your profiles and macros directly on the mouse, and use them anywhere.</p> <p>Because the mouse is a little on the shorter side, we recommend it most for those who hold their device with their fingers bent, or who have smaller hands. The Color Edition we were sent for review is treated with a breathable matte finish and bright “Cool Blue” paint job. Of course, beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but to our eyes this thing is absolutely killer.</p> <p>The Kone Pure’s software is a little cluttered, but generally up to the task of accessing the myriad ways you can customize the mouse. The mouse features four buttons in addition to the standard three, but one of the thumb buttons acts as a shift key, effectively doubling the number of keys or macros you can bind.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a class="thickbox" href="/files/u152332/buildit-12385_small_0.jpg"><img src="/files/u152332/buildit-12385_small.jpg" alt="The Roccat Kone Pure comes in an array of limited-edition colors." title="Roccat Kone Pure Color" width="620" height="416" /></a></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><strong>The Roccat Kone Pure comes in an array of limited-edition colors.</strong></p> <p>The Kone Pure’s the real deal. It may not be perfect for everyone, but for most folks it’s a great option.</p> <p><strong>Roccat Kone Pure Color Edition</strong></p> <p><strong><br /></strong></p> <div class="module-content" style="margin-top: -20px;"> <div class="module-text full"> <div class="verdict"><img src="/sites/maximumpc.com/themes/maximumpc/i/mxpc_9.jpg" alt="score:9" title="score:9" width="210" height="80" /></div> </div> </div> <p><strong>$70, <a href="http://www.roccat.org/">www.roccat.org</a><a href="http://www.roccat.org /global2.asp"></a></strong></p> <p><span style="font-weight: normal;"><em>Click the next page to read about the Corsair Raptor M40 and Razer&nbsp;Ouroboros.</em></span></p> <hr /> <p>&nbsp;</p> <h4>Corsair Raptor M40</h4> <p><strong>What a difference $10 makes</strong></p> <p>The Raptor M40 occupies a curious space in Corsair’s too-dense lineup of gaming mice. With an MSRP of $60, it’s priced right at the bottom end of what we’d normally consider the premium gaming mouse market, yet it’s feature set is more in line with what you’d find in a budget mouse.</p> <p>It is, essentially, a stripped-down version of Corsair’s M65 gaming mouse, which has an MSRP of $70. The two share the same overall shape and design, but the M65 features an aluminum baseplate, a useful DPS-switching sniper button, and, most importantly, a laser sensor. The M40, by comparison, is all plastic and has an optical sensor.</p> <p>We experienced a noticeable performance dip switching to this M40 from the other mice in this roundup, including tracking problems on some of our test surfaces. Without many other features to speak of, the optical sensor is a strike against the M40.</p> <p>Otherwise, the M40 is perfectly decent. The software is a little clunky but serviceable, and offers profiles with multiple DPI settings and user-defined macros. Under the mouse, three separate weight chambers allow you to customize how the M40’s weight is distributed, which is a nice touch.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a class="thickbox" href="/files/u152332/buildit-12390_small_0.jpg"><img src="/files/u152332/buildit-12390_small.jpg" alt="Under the M40, you’ll find three separate weight chambers." title="Corsair Raptor M40" width="620" height="485" /></a></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><strong>Under the M40, you’ll find three separate weight chambers.</strong></p> <p>Ultimately, the M40 isn’t bad, it just doesn’t offer a great set of features at this price. If you like the design, we strongly recommend paying the extra $10 for the M65. Otherwise, you can get more mouse for $60 elsewhere.</p> <p><strong>Corsair Raptor M40</strong></p> <p><strong><br /></strong></p> <div class="module-content" style="margin-top: -20px;"> <div class="module-text full"> <div class="verdict"><img src="/sites/maximumpc.com/themes/maximumpc/i/mxpc_7.jpg" alt="score:7" title="score:7" width="210" height="80" /></div> </div> </div> <p><strong>$60, <a href="http://www.corsair.com/">www.corsair.com</a><a href="http://www.corsair.com/global2.asp"></a></strong></p> <h4>Razer Ouroboros</h4> <p><strong>Razer redefines ‘top of the line’</strong></p> <p>The Ouroboros takes a page (or maybe even a whole chapter) from the Cyborg R.A.T., the mouse that introduced the idea of a fully customizable device. Like that model, the Ouroboros’s length can be adjusted, and you can swap out the mouse’s side-plates, choosing between flat panels and flared wings. You can also fine-tune the angle of the palm rest, giving the mouse more or less arch as you desire. Somewhat surprisingly, the Ouroboros does not offer any sort of weight adjustment—a feature that’s started to pop up in a lot of high-end mice.</p> <p>The design and build quality on the Ouroboros are both excellent. It’s got an aggressive, boxy look and lacks the swoopy lines of Razer’s other mice. It’s also perfectly symmetrical, so it works equally well for left-handed gaming. A detachable USB cord allows the mouse to be used wired or wirelessly, with a small recharging station that doubles as the wireless receiver.</p> <p>Razer’s software is reliably high-quality, and the Ouroboros is no exception. As with all products using the Razer Synapse software, you have to sign up for an account to use it, which is silly, but once you do, you get access to pretty much every customization feature you could ask for in a mouse. Button bindings, macros, profiles, the works—in a slick, easy-to-use package.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a class="thickbox" href="/files/u152332/buildit-12393_small_0.jpg"><img src="/files/u152332/buildit-12393_small.jpg" alt="The Ouroboros can be adjusted to fit any size hand." title="Razer Ouroboros" width="620" height="522" /></a></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><strong>The Ouroboros can be adjusted to fit any size hand.</strong></p> <p>The bottom line is that this mouse is top of the line, and it’s priced to match. If you want a mouse that can do it all, and don’t mind spending a bundle, this is a great choice.</p> <p><strong>Razer Ouroboros</strong></p> <p><strong><br /></strong></p> <div class="module-content" style="margin-top: -20px;"> <div class="module-text full"> <div class="verdict"><img src="/sites/maximumpc.com/themes/maximumpc/i/mxpc_9ka.jpg" alt="score:9ka" title="score:9ka" width="210" height="80" /></div> </div> </div> <p><strong>$150, <a href="http://www.razerzone.com/">www.razerzone.com</a></strong></p> <h3>Know the Lingo</h3> <p>There’s a lot of jargon used in marketing material for gaming mice. Here are definitions for some of the most common terms.</p> <p>DPI Short for “dots per inch,” dpi is the measure of a mouse sensor’s maximum sensitivity. A higher dpi value lets you move the pointer faster without sacrificing any accuracy. Dpi is important, but note that dpi values higher than 2,000 only really matter if you prefer very fast, “twitchy” pointer movement. Anything much higher than 4,000 or so is unlikely to actually come up in real-world use.</p> <p>Polling Frequency This is how often the mouse sends new location information to your PC. A higher frequency means a quicker response time, though, as with dpi, it will be difficult for you to perceive differences in polling rates above 500Hz.</p> <p>Onboard Processor/Memory These features allow you to store profile information and performance settings directly on a mouse, so they’ll work on any computer the mouse is plugged into. This is useful, but some marketing materials oversell the utility of having a processor in your mouse.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a href="/files/u152332/razer_hand_small_0.jpg"><img src="/files/u152332/razer_hand_small.jpg" width="620" height="503" /></a></p> <p>Grip Style Razer marketing in particular likes to describe each mouse as being best for one particular grip style or another (see image). The major thing you should be aware of is whether you like to lay your palm and fingers flat on the mouse, or raise them up in an arch, so only your fingertips and the bottom of your palm touch it. The former favors a long mouse, with a higher, ergonomic arch.</p> http://www.maximumpc.com/best_gaming_mouse_2014#comments best gaming mouse Hardware logitech G602 Mad Catz RAT M maximum pc Razer Ouroboros Roccat Kone Pure TT Esports Theron wireless Mice Features Mon, 21 Apr 2014 21:09:29 +0000 Alex Castle 27555 at http://www.maximumpc.com Asus Transformer Book T100 Review http://www.maximumpc.com/asus_transformer_book_t100_review_0 <!--paging_filter--><h3>A lot of value in a little package</h3> <p>Looking at Microsoft’s hardware model, you might think that all Windows tablet/laptop hybrids fall into one of two camps: capable-but-pricey, à la the Surface 2 Pro, or the opposite of that, i.e., the ARM-toting, Windows RT–sporting Surface 2. Luckily, not all PC manufacturers see things so black-and-white. Hence we have the Asus Transformer Book T100, which not only offers Intel’s new x86 Bay Trail Atom processor and a full version of Windows 8.1, but is also priced at an affordable $400 for the 64GB model reviewed here ($350 for the 32GB). Shoot, an ARM-based Surface 2 with 64GB of storage costs $550! And that’s with the funky, fuzzy, flat TouchCover keyboard. That makes the T100 a compelling value proposition, to be sure. But we wanted to know how this combination tablet/laptop fares in actual use.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a class="thickbox" href="/files/u152332/asus_small_0.jpg"><img src="/files/u152332/asus_small.jpg" alt="Windows 8.1 and an x86 processor don’t hold the T100 back when it comes to battery life." title="Asus Transformer Book T100" width="620" height="590" /></a></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><strong>Windows 8.1 and an x86 processor don’t hold the T100 back when it comes to battery life.</strong></p> <p>Given the price, it shouldn’t be too surprising that the T100’s construction is largely plastic—shiny gray plastic on the back of the tablet, matte plastic on the front and back of the keyboard dock—but all parts feel solid. To form a clamshell, you line up the bottom of the tablet with two guideposts at the back of the keyboard dock and then click the screen in place. The process takes little effort.</p> <p>In its laptop state, the T100 weighs two pounds, seven ounces (not counting the power brick, which adds a mere 2.5 ounces) and measures a little less than an inch thick. The weight between the tablet and dock is pretty evenly distributed, as opposed to the top-heavy nature of some other hybrids.</p> <p>Port selection is modest—Micro HDMI, Micro USB, Micro SD, and headphone/mic jack on the right-hand edge of the tablet, and a lone USB 3.0 port on the left side of dock—but all your basic needs are covered. A power button lives on the top of the screen, with a volume rocker and Start button on the screen’s left edge—all are thin and reside on the curved edge of the chassis, which we found to be a bit awkward.</p> <p>You might look at this compact clamshell and think “netbook,” but the T100’s performance says otherwise. The Bay Trail chip is vastly superior to the underpowered Atoms that were found in the likes of Asus’s Eee PC and others of that era. Whether we were opening consecutive web pages, Working in Google Docs, or watching 1080p YouTube video, the T100 felt capable and responsive. Still, it’s not in the same league as, say, a Haswell-based machine, so we looked to the Surface 2 as a zero-point in our benchmarks. The Surface 2 is based on the Tegra 4—one of the newer, faster ARM processors available today running four Coretex-A15 cores. Running browser-based benchmarks in the same version of Internet Explorer on each machine, we found the two to be pretty on par. That is, except in our test where we open multiple websites, including a 1080p YouTube video, Google Maps in satellite view, and Space Goo’s WebGL Solar System, while running the Kraken benchmark. Here, the T100 ran laps around the Surface 2.</p> <p>Granted, full-on Windows applications, these are not. When we ran our standard laptop Photoshop test, the T100 was more than three times slower than Lenovo’s ThinkPad Helix, which sports a Core i5 but also cost four times as much. It might be just as well, since using the T100’s keyboard for any serious productivity would be pure madness. The keys are just far too small for extended use, and the small trackpad is similarly lacking.</p> <p>The 1366x768 screen is a little low-res by current standards, but we found the IPS panel to be satisfying with most any content. This, along with the decent power of the speakers and a phenomenal battery life (after running FutureMark Peacekeeper’s battery test for eight hours, there was still 25 percent battery remaining!) make the T100 a pretty nice tablet.</p> <p>So in the end, it’s hard not to see the highly versatile Transformer T100 as a good deal. Just don’t have any expectations of it taking the place of a real laptop.</p> <p><strong>$400 for 64GB ($349 for 32GB),</strong> <a href="http://www.asus.com/">www.asus.com</a></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/asus_transformer_book_t100_review_0#comments Asus Transformer Book T100 convertible Hardware laptop maximum pc Review tablet ultrabook Reviews Mon, 14 Apr 2014 09:21:44 +0000 Katherine Stevenson 27628 at http://www.maximumpc.com PAX East 2014: Cooler Master Unveils NovaTouch TKL Mechanical Keyboard [Video] http://www.maximumpc.com/pax_east_2014_cooler_master_unveils_novatouch_tkl_mechanical_keyboard_video <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u166440/novatouch.jpg" alt="NovaTouch TKL" title="NovaTouch TKL" width="200" height="100" style="float: right;" />New feature dampens the sound of typing</h3> <p><strong>Cooler Master has unveiled the NovaTouch TKL mechanical keyboard an Pax East</strong>. Maximum PC’s Jimmy Thang was able to see the new keyboard that features a silicon-based injection around the mechanical key switches.&nbsp;</p> <p><iframe src="//www.youtube.com/embed/gjIH4dKNg2s" width="620" height="315" frameborder="0"></iframe></p> <p>The silicon-based injection helps absorb the friction and shock when two mechanical pieces are rubbing against each other. Sound is kept to a minimum as well &nbsp;when a user is typing. As for the feel of the switch it is similar to, according to the rep, the Cherry MX Brown key switches.</p> <p>One other interesting feature is that the key stems are backwards compatible with Cherry MX key caps. A major plus for keyboard enthusiasts who like to switch out the caps with their own.&nbsp;</p> <p>The NovaTouch TKL is expected to come out sometime in the third quarter of 2014. No set price has been determined.&nbsp;</p> <p><em>Follow Sean on&nbsp;<a title="SeanDKnight Google+" href="https://plus.google.com/+SeanKnightD?rel=author" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Google+</span></a>, <a title="SeanDKnight's Twitter" href="https://twitter.com/SeanDKnight" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Twitter</span></a>, and <a title="SeanDKnight Facebook" href="https://www.facebook.com/seandknight" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Facebook</span></a></em></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/pax_east_2014_cooler_master_unveils_novatouch_tkl_mechanical_keyboard_video#comments Cooler Master Cooler Master NovaTouch Hardware mechanical keyboard NovaTouch NovaTouch TKL Mon, 14 Apr 2014 02:35:52 +0000 Sean D Knight and Jimmy Thang 27623 at http://www.maximumpc.com PAX East 2014: Logitech Showcases Its G502 Proteus Core Gaming Mouse [Video] http://www.maximumpc.com/pax_east_2014_logitech_showcases_its_g502_proteus_core_gaming_mouse_video <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u166440/logitech_g502.jpg" alt="Logitech G502" title="Logitech G502" width="200" height="153" style="float: right;" />A Mouse with a 12,000DPI sensor</h3> <p>If you have been looking for a mouse that will let you shoot the wings off of a fly, then <strong>Logitech’s G502 Proteus Core gaming mouse</strong> might be the one for you. Maximum PC’s Jimmy Thang got to see the&nbsp;<a title="MPC Logitech G502" href="http://www.maximumpc.com/logitech_g502_proteus_core_gaming_mouse_packs_customizable_12000_dpi_sensor" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Proteus Core</span></a>, which features a 12,000DPI sensor, up close and personal at PAX East.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><iframe src="//www.youtube.com/embed/lK4ueindDmQ" width="620" height="315" frameborder="0"></iframe></p> <p>Of course, if 12,000 DPI is too much for a user to handle then the sensor can be adjusted as low as 200. Aside from the high DPI the Proteus Core has 11 programmable buttons, comes with five 3.6g weights, the sensor can be adjusted for various surfaces, and it has a dual-mode hyper-fast scroll wheel.&nbsp;</p> <p>The Logitech G502 Proteus Core Tunable Gaming Mouse will be out sometime this month for $79.99 in the U.S. and Europe.</p> <p>So who would want to try and shoot the wings off of a fly at 500 feet with that mouse?&nbsp;</p> <p><em>Follow Sean on&nbsp;<a title="SeanDKnight Google+" href="https://plus.google.com/+SeanKnightD?rel=author" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Google+</span></a>, <a title="SeanDKnight's Twitter" href="https://twitter.com/SeanDKnight" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Twitter</span></a>, and <a title="SeanDKnight Facebook" href="https://www.facebook.com/seandknight" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Facebook</span></a></em></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/pax_east_2014_logitech_showcases_its_g502_proteus_core_gaming_mouse_video#comments gaming mouse Hardware logitech Logitech G502 Logitech G502 Proteus Core Proteus Core Sun, 13 Apr 2014 18:29:33 +0000 Sean D Knight and Jimmy Thang 27618 at http://www.maximumpc.com PAX East 2014: HyperX Showcases Gaming Headset and RAM [Video] http://www.maximumpc.com/pax_east_2014_hyperx_showcases_gaming_headset_and_ram_video <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u166440/hyperx_fury.jpg" alt="HyperX Fury" title="HyperX Fury" width="200" height="198" style="float: right;" />Meet the HyperX Cloud gaming headset and Fury RAM</h3> <p><strong>HyperX is showing off its HyperX Cloud headset at PAX East</strong>. A division of Kingston, HyperX has added quite a few interesting features to this headset which Maximum PC’s Jimmy Thang was able to learn about.&nbsp;</p> <p>For example, the headset comes with two interchangeable earcups. One set is made of leather and the other is a red, velour earcup that will change the sound profile of the device. HyperX also considered making its product an on-the-go type of headset that comes with a detachable microphone and adapters so that it can be used with a desktop, notebook, mobile phones, and Sony’s PlayStation 4.&nbsp;</p> <p><iframe src="//www.youtube.com/embed/bgh0RmGvmfQ" width="620" height="315" frameborder="0"></iframe></p> <p>Retail price for the HyperX Cloud headset is $99.99 and is available for pre-order.</p> <p>In addition to the headset, Jimmy learned a little about <strong>HyperX’s Fury RAM</strong> which features automatic overclocking up to 1866MHz, requires 1.5V, and comes in 8GB or 16GB modules.&nbsp;</p> <p>The HyperX Fury is available for purchase at $84.99 or $159.99 depending on if you are purchasing it individually or as a kit.&nbsp;</p> <p><span style="font-style: italic;">Follow Sean on&nbsp;</span><a style="font-style: italic;" title="SeanDKnight Google+" href="https://plus.google.com/+SeanKnightD?rel=author" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Google+</span></a><span style="font-style: italic;">, </span><a style="font-style: italic;" title="SeanDKnight's Twitter" href="https://twitter.com/SeanDKnight" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Twitter</span></a><span style="font-style: italic;">, and </span><a style="font-style: italic;" title="SeanDKnight Facebook" href="https://www.facebook.com/seandknight" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Facebook</span></a></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/pax_east_2014_hyperx_showcases_gaming_headset_and_ram_video#comments Fury RAM Hardware hyperX HyperX Cloud headest HyperX Fury ram Headphones Sun, 13 Apr 2014 00:51:40 +0000 Sean D Knight and Jimmy Thang 27617 at http://www.maximumpc.com PAX East 2014: Intel Booth Tour [Video] http://www.maximumpc.com/pax_east_2014_intel_booth_tour_video <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u166440/auros_x7.jpg" alt="Auros X7" title="Auros X7" width="200" height="123" style="float: right;" />A 4K gaming laptop and the Aorus X7 gaming notebook</h3> <p>With 4K monitors on the shelves, it is only a matter of time before 4K laptops start to reach into the wallets of tech enthusiasts. Maximum PC’s Jimmy Thang got to see an<strong> Alienware</strong>&nbsp;<strong>18-inch laptop</strong><strong>&nbsp;running in 4K </strong>during his Intel booth tour at Pax East.</p> <p>Hardly any information was provided on the laptop’s specs, though it was revealed that it has an Intel Core i7 4940MX Extreme Edition processor. The rep was also eager to point out that, while the stock processor speed is at 3.1GHz, it has been overclocked to 5.2 GHz.&nbsp;</p> <p>To show off its abilities, Batman: Arkham Origins was being used to demo the impressive piece of hardware in 4K although Jimmy noted that the framerate was choppy.</p> <p>No price or release date was provided.</p> <p><iframe src="//www.youtube.com/embed/4q75oB-wrow" width="620" height="315" frameborder="0"></iframe></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>During the tour Jimmy was also able to see the <strong>Aorus X7 gaming notebook</strong>. The 17.3-inch notebook features a metal chassis, dual Nvidia GeForce GTX 765M cards, and an Intel Core i7-4700HQ processor encased within a metal chassis. For storage, the notebook comes with one 1TB HDD and two 128GB SSDs&nbsp;</p> <p>The Aorus X7 is 1.9-inches thick and weighs 6.39lbs. To keep it cool, it also has five cooling pipes, four vents, and two fans which have been designed to be at the rear, along with the GPUs, so that the consumer’s palms and fingers don’t get heated while using it.&nbsp;</p> <p>Those wishing to purchase the Aorus X7 can do so for the starting price of $2,099.</p> <p><iframe src="//www.youtube.com/embed/OYpCtwGxmsU" width="620" height="315" frameborder="0"></iframe></p> <p><em>Follow Sean on&nbsp;<a title="SeanDKnight Google+" href="https://plus.google.com/+SeanKnightD?rel=author" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Google+</span></a>, <a title="SeanDKnight's Twitter" href="https://twitter.com/SeanDKnight" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Twitter</span></a>, and <a title="SeanDKnight Facebook" href="https://www.facebook.com/seandknight" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Facebook</span></a></em></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/pax_east_2014_intel_booth_tour_video#comments 4K gaming 4K gaming laptop Aorus X7 Auros X7 gaming notebook dual sli cards gaming notebook Hardware intel News Sat, 12 Apr 2014 23:56:11 +0000 Sean D Knight and Jimmy Thang 27616 at http://www.maximumpc.com