Items tagged with review

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 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...
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...
You read the headline correctly – this is not a review of a Synology NAS, but instead a wireless router. If this sounds unusual to you, you are not alone. Synology is a Network-Attached Storage (NAS) company, or at least it used to be, as it's now taking all its networking expertise and jumping into the router market, and the black beauty you see below is its maiden attempt. Plainly named, the Synology RT1900ac Router, the company’s fledgling entry into this crowded market, is a dual-band AC unit. As you might have guessed, it’s capable of 1,900Mb/s of bandwidth across its 2.4GHz and 5GHz bands,... Read more...
Dell recently refreshed its popular XPS 13 with new hardware to bring it up to date with current CPU and storage offerings.  The updated model now sports a Skylake-based Intel processor and a Samsung PM951 NVMe solid state drive, plus a few minor tweaks to its already impressive design.  When the current iteration of the Dell XPS 13 debuted back in January of last year, it was nearly unrivaled in terms of its power to size ratio, and overall value in the space. The ultrabook market has heated-up a lot since then though, and the XPS 13 has some stiff competition at the moment. In addition... Read more...
Rise of the Tomb Raider has hit the PC lining it up in our gun sights for graphics, gameplay and performance analysis. The game launched on the Xbox family of consoles a few months back and has since been ported to PC thanks to NIXXES Software. It’s a competent console to PC port updated with many graphics settings and effects to tweak and dial to your particular tastes and system capabilities. Some of the rendering and effects features include, Ambient Occlusion, Depth of Field, Dynamic Foliage, Bloom shader effects, Tessellation and several more. But before we get ahead of ourselves, let's give... Read more...
The 2-in-1 and convertible PC space has changed significantly over the past couple of years. What was once a cluttered mess of kludges is now a well-defined market segment packed with refinement, power, and plenty of options. You could partially credit Microsoft's Surface line for making 2-in-1s an object of desire, but it's also products like the Dell XPS 12 that make today's line-up of convertible devices so much more interesting. Dell's XPS 12, which was first announced last fall, is just as capable as a laptop as it is a tablet. That's no small feat, and it's multifaceted abilities are largely... Read more...
At a glance, you may assume the phone we're testing here is one you've seen before -- a Nokia Lumia 1020 clone perhaps? Despite having a similar circular camera fixture on the handset's back side, suggesting a strong focus on photography, this is actually a newly released phone produced by ASUS. The ASUS ZenFone Zoom is an interesting beast. Though it was initially released for a more international audience, ASUS has since seen fit to bring the device to North American shores. It makes sense, though. Other than calling or texting, cameras have long been a key smartphone feature that gets used most... Read more...
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