Systems

Alienware's new Area 51 gaming desktop PC arrived late last year and it certainly turned heads, including ours, due to its somewhat radical design. Sure, we've seen some wild chassis designs out of Dell's Alienware gaming PC division in the past, but their new, redesigned Area 51 machine really broke the mold. In fact, if you're stuck on the old gray or black box design of most legacy systems, the "Triad" chassis of the new Area 51 may be too much of a departure for you to wrap your head around. We think, with a little investigation into the mechanical engineering and simple physics of the... Read more...
In the last few years Virtualization has gone from a buzzword to a platform of choice in the world of Information Technology. Consumers already reap its benefits on a day to day basis as Banks, Internet Service Providers, online merchants, and many other companies have adopted the technology all the while transparent to the end user. The reasons why virtualization is attractive to companies are many but, to put it succinctly, it all boils down to efficiency which then translates to lower cost and higher availability. In an article on the Intel/IBM sponsored VirtualizationConversation.com, HotHardware.com's... Read more...
Whenever AMD or Intel release a new processor and chipset platform, you can bet there’s going to be a good amount of excitement surrounding the release, along with anticipation as we eagerly await the arrival of systems that incorporate the new technologies. Velocity Micro’s new Edge Z55 Intel Core i7 Gaming System is out and we’ve had the chance to run it through our tests to see just how it stacks up. As you’ll see, the new Intel Core i7 CPU and X58 chipset enables the Velocity Micro Edge Z55 Gaming System to hold its own against the elite PCs of just a few months ago.The new Core i7 brings with... Read more...
Unlike the enthusiast system manufacturers, Alienware and VoodooPC, Richmond, Virginia-based Velocity Micro is still an independent, privately held company. In fact, Velocity Micro is doing well enough on its own to have even purchased the enthusiast, boutique system maker, Overdrive PC last year. On top of that, Velocity Micro is one of the few (if only) independently owned, U.S.-based, high-end gaming systems manufacturers that--in addition to selling direct--also sells its systems at Best Buy and Circuit City. That's a claim that even Velocity Micro's competitors, Oregon-based Falcon Northwest,... Read more...
It almost goes without saying that we'd all love to have enough disposable income to be able to afford the best-of-the-best, top-shelf, ultra-high-end, no compromise products, whether it be a 36 foot Chris Craft Corsair with 840hp of Mercruiser under its decks (in the aft section, by the way, the wet bar and mini fridge are in the bow) or perhaps the fastest Gaming Rig money can buy.  Fortunately for many of you, the technically elite members of our audience, an ultra-high-end Gaming Rig can be built with your own hands and a few key off-the-shelf components. ... Read more...
Over the years, we've evaluated multiple versions of Asetek's famed Vapochill vapor phase-change cooling system. In fact, our first experience with a Vapochill dates all the way back to June of 2000. The first Vapochill we evaluated hardly resembles today's more refined models, however. Gone is the standard beige case, replaced with a custom enclosure that's available in multiple colors, and with windowed side panels. Modern Vapochills still use compressors, of course, but the units have been upgraded and the refrigerant used is far more efficient. The latest iteration of Asetek's Vapochill that... Read more...
Watch any episode of "This Old House", "Hometime", "The New Yankee Workshop", or any other Do-It-Yourself type program for that matter, and you're bound to hear a certain phrase repeated over and over. Carpenters, mechanics, plumbers, chefs, they all use it. This phrase has almost become a mantra for anyone who takes pride in their work. The phrase is, "use the right tool, for the right job."  Doing so will yield far better results, than half-heartedly tackling a project with whatever tools are handy.  You won't see a carpenter smacking a nail with... Read more...
  By, Marco Chiappetta April 8, 2004 Almost four years ago, we took at a look at Asetek's original version of the Vapochill designed for the Pentium III, and we came away impressed.  The enclosure was a basic beige full-tower, which by today's standards isn't very exciting. The installation was tedious, but we were able to take a Slot 1 933MHz Pentium III all the way up to 1.16GHz, using an Abit CX6 motherboard.  No small feat considering it was June of 2000 and Intel was still using a .18 micron manufacturing process... Read more...