Items tagged with review

Now, more than ever, manufacturers are exploring alternative ways to differentiate smartphones. One savior to the oversaturated smartphone market, that is rife with products with similar specifications, may come in the form of modularity. The promise of a modular phone, is an ability to adapt to a user’s needs in the moment. Purchasing a smartphone is traditionally a long-term investment. What might perfectly address day-to-day use, however, could come up short under specific use cases. We already took a close look at the Moto Z family and see promise in Moto Mods, but modular smartphones... Read more...
The ThinkPad X1 Yoga marks a marriage between two of Lenovo's premium notebook lines: the ThinkPad X1 Carbon and the ThinkPad Yoga. The X1 Carbon line was introduced in 2012, bringing a largely carbon-fiber filled construction to decrease weight and increase durability compared to their previous X1 ultrabooks, while still maintaining the classic ThinkPad design established way back by IBM. The ThinkPad Yoga line, introduced a year later in 2013, consists of smaller 11 and 13 inch 2-in-1 form factors with a reinforced hinge capable of folding beyond 180 degrees into tent, stand or even tablet modes.... Read more...
Mainstream notebooks, laptops, and convertible devices have been significantly refined over the last few generations. The $500-$900 price range generally features laptops that are thin and light, built well, have decent battery life, and deliver solid multimedia experiences. Intel has a stranglehold on the CPUs and graphics in many of these mid-level systems, so PC makers seem to be emphasizing design differences lately. As important as performance is, you may well choose your next laptop because it converts into a mode or use case that fits your needs, rather than because of its technical specifications.... Read more...
No Man’s Sky, the interstellar survival/exploration title from Hello Games, hit the PC and console platforms this month, roughly two years after its now infamous reveal at the 2013 VGX Awards. There it received exuberant praise and took home several awards—including a “Special Commendation for Innovation.” During that showing, what impressed industry insiders most were its seamless transitions from outer-space travel to atmospheric burn-in, to boots on the ground. No Man's Sky features a massively open environment that remains one of the cooler aspects of the game--it never seems to get old once... Read more...
Motorola recently launched two new flagship Droid offerings, the Moto Z and Moto Z Force. We really liked them for their ultra-premium design, strong performance, and innovative Moto Mods add-on features. However, Moto is also ushering in a refresh of their more mainstream, cost-effective Moto G family as well. We last looked at the Moto G in 2014. We weren't blown away by performance, however, we were impressed how much the device managed to offer for just $149. The Moto G delivered Android’s core experience with good enough web browsing and general productivity performance to stand... Read more...
3D printers have come a long way since our first round-up review in 2012. This exciting technology has created everything from toys to running shoes, to prostheses for amputees. Is 3D printing, however, practical in a home office or in a classroom use case? The New Matter MOD-t 3D printer claims to be the most user-friendly printer ever and is supposedly “designed for 3D printing beginners and enthusiasts alike.” Is this device, however, something that truly belongs in your home office or a teacher’s classroom? Naturally, that's what we're here to find out. First, what is 3D printing and how is... Read more...
Last month, the partnership between Motorola and Lenovo seemed to crystalize when the combined company stepped out with its first co-branded smartphone products that will ship here in the United States. Lenovo acquired Motorola's Mobility division from Google a couple of years back, but has rightfully lead with the iconic Moto brand for new smartphone (and smartwatch) product introductions since the acquisition. It wasn't until we saw Lenovo's Product Engineer/Spokesman, Ashton Kutcher take the stage last month at Lenovo Tech World to launch the new Moto Z and Moto Z Force, that it became apparent... Read more...
The race to build the world's thinnest laptop hasn't always resulted in quality design innovation or utility over more full-figured machines. For example, comparatively, Apple's MacBook Air line looks a little plain-Jane versus some of the nicer thin and light laptops on the market these days, and certainly HP's Spectre line as well. HP recently saw fit to fully revamp its Spectre series across multiple sizes and formats, the latest of which is simply branded Spectre. The HP Spectre is actually a 13-inch machine, so you might refer to it as such (Spectre 13), if it helps you make the distinction.... Read more...
The ultrabook market shows no signs of cooling off any time soon. We've recently explored different flavors from all the top vendors including HP's Spectre x360 15t, Lenovo's ThinkPad X1 Yoga, ASUS's Zenbook UX-305CA and our reigning Editor's Choice in Dell's XPS 13. There's a lot to love about these premium thin and light machines. And though each offers its own careful balance of tradeoffs, it's tough to have it all in such a slim package. Most ultrabooks these days offer the likes of Intel's U Series processors or even Intel Core M chips when they really want to push boundaries and sack an onboard... Read more...
There's a first time for everything, as the saying goes, and the Alienware 13 OLED is a first for us without question. Though there were a couple of OLED (Organic LED) display driven laptops at CES 2016 this year, Dell's Alienware division is the first in the door here at HotHardware with a retail ready product. OLED displays offer better brightness, contrast, saturation and pixel response times versus legacy display types like IPS, and in in general they're more power efficient as well. OLED displays are somewhat common these days in smartphones and as it turns out, OLED-enabled handsets... Read more...
Whether you have a $10,000 beast of a gaming rig or a hand me down that isn't any more powerful than a toaster, having the right input devices can make a significant improvement in your work and play. Mice in particular come in all shapes and sizes to meet anyone's comfort and performance needs. That bargain bin mouse may be fine for browsing cat pictures, but its cheap sensor and total lack of ergonomics may be holding you back from pwning n00bs like you deserve.To help step your game up we're checking out three new mice that recently slid across our desk: Tesoro's Sagitta Spectrum H6L Gaming... Read more...
Overwatch, the team-based multiplayer shooter from Blizzard Entertainment has proven to be an unstoppable force in the industry having now reached the hands of more than 7 million gamers within a week of launch. Many predicted as much once the early beta saw nearly 10 million users. Admittedly, we too have been immovably glued to the game since installing the PC version early last week. It features a wide variety of characters, and play styles, with frenetic-pace gameplay that is easy and intuitive for casual players. Yet Overwatch dishes out plenty of depth and strategy for crafty players who... Read more...
Intel's successful line of NUC (Next Unit of Computing) mini PCs have done well for the company, for various use cases where an ultra-small form factor computer might come in handy. In areas where a PC either needs to stay out of sight, blend in with its surroundings or squeeze in places where other, larger computers just couldn't go, a NUC can make a lot of sense. Tiny boxes like the Intel NUC5i5RYK can pack a fair amount of CPU horsepower in their petite, silver 4.5-inch frames, but some users still want more juice and beefier graphics for heavier gaming and content creation workloads.Fortunately,... Read more...
The Asus Z170 ROG Maximus VIII Extreme motherboard is the latest in Asus' flagship line of enthusiast-class motherboards for gamers. It’s a top-end premium solution with a dizzying array of tuning options to supercharge your next build and tweak overall performance in games, networking and more. Our previous motherboard eval featured the Gigabyte Z170X-UD5 Ultra Durable, which was a budget-friendly Z170 motherboard that offered strong performance, without a ton of superfluous bells and whistles. Yet the Gigabyte board was quite the performer, holding its own in most tests and even coming out ahead... Read more...
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