PC Components, Peripherals And Gadget Reviews And News

Dig into our deep-dive product reviews and news of PC components from processors, to motherboards, graphics cards (GPUs), sound cards, and storage, along with other gadgets and peripherals that complete the computing experience. Whether you're a DIY PC enthusiast builder or just looking to read-up on what should be inside or connected to your next pre-built PC, here's where you'll find all the nuts and bolts sorted on what makes modern computer systems tick, as well some of the best user interface devices to go with them.

Kingston has been a dedicated stalwart of the memory, storage, and peripheral markets for many years. The company’s products target virtually every type of user, from entry-level first-time PC builders to seasoned sysadmins. The products we’ll be showing you here today, the Kingston DC500R and DC500M solid state drives, target the latter type of user, in need of reliable, high-capacity SSD storage for enterprise and data center applications. At first glance – of both their physical design and specifications -- the Kingston DC500R and DC500M drives appear to be similar. The ‘R’ variant, however, is geared for read-heavy workloads, while the ‘M’ variant... Read more...
To say the just-released AMD Ryzen 3000 series processors and Radeon RX 5700 series graphics cards are game-changers for AMD (and PC enthusiasts) would be an understatement. The Zen 2-based Ryzen 3000 series processors aggressively take on Intel's competitive offerings in virtually every metric and offer features, like PCI Express 4.0, not yet available on other platforms. PCI Express 4.0 means more bandwidth for components like graphics cards and solid state storage, and more bandwidth can translate to fewer bottlenecks and increased performance, especially for storage. AMD's latest offerings have OEM partners like Gigabyte excited and lining-up to support the platform. Gigabyte has an extensive... Read more...
Hot on the heels of the release of AMD’s Ryzen 3000 series processors and Navi-based Radeon RX 5700 series, we’ve connected with the VP and General Manager of the Radeon Business Unit, Scott Herkelman, to discuss the launch, get a few technical questions answered, and get to the bottom of the “jebaiting” story. Show Notes: 02:15 – Scott’s Role As VP and General Manager of the Radeon BU 05:54 – What Did The Hardware Review Community Miss With The Radeon RX 5700 Launch? 10:45 – Radeon Image Sharpening versus NVIDIA DLSS 13:11 – What Happens During The Bring-Up Of A New GPU? 16:15 – Scott’s Thoughts On The Push For Real-Time Ray Tracing... Read more...
As most of you are probably aware, Creative Labs, is one of the Founding Fathers of PC Audio and has manufactured sound cards and other audio-related hardware for 30 years. The original Sound Blaster was the de facto standard for DOS gaming audio almost right from its release in 1989. As high-profile PC games like Wolfenstein 3D came out with Sound Blaster compatibility trumpeted on their boxes, the company rose to prominence with its Yamaha OPN and OPL-based FM synthesis sound cards. Fast forward to today, and the house that Sound Blaster Built is still pumping out new and better audio hardware. Today, we're going to take a look at the company's latest flagship audio wunderkind, the just- announced... Read more...
The Zen 2-based AMD Ryzen 3000 series is easily one of the most anticipated product launches in the PC space in recent memory. AMD has essentially promised to address virtually all of the perceived shortcomings of the original Zen-based Ryzen processors, with the Ryzen 3000 series, while continuing to aggressively challenge Intel on multiple fronts – performance, power, price, you name it. AMD has been extolling the virtues of Zen 2 for quite some time, but in the last few weeks the company has really turned up the heat and revealed some exciting details, like single-thread performance on-par with Intel’s best, enhanced multi-threaded performance, and huge amounts of cache to keep... Read more...
AMD has been talking about its next-generation Navi GPU architecture for ages. It was over 3 years ago that we first mentioned Navi here on the HotHardware, and since then there has been a slow, steady stream of information disseminated to the public, leading up the last month’s big architecture disclosure at E3 and the official unveiling of the initial Radeon RX 5700 series line-up, which we will be showing you here. If you missed our coverage of AMD's  Navi GPU architecture and its newly-designed RDNA-infused microarchitecture and instruction set, you can find it right here. We strongly suggest checking that article out, because we cover a number of deep technical details, including... Read more...
NVIDIA dropped a hint that something “Super” was coming just prior to Computex and since then a handful of leaks have let the cat mostly out of the bag. Today, however, we can dispel the rumors, officially reveal what NVIDIA’s got coming down the pipeline, and show you exactly what NVIDIA’s Super branding is all about. NVIDIA is overhauling its Turing-based GeForce RTX line-up with an array of “Super” GPUs, specifically the GeForce RTX 2060 Super, RTX 2070 Super, and RTX 2080 Super. In the short term, like two days from now, the GeForce RTX 2060 Super and RTX 2070 Super will hit store shelves. The GeForce RTX 2080 Super is coming in a few weeks though, and... Read more...
A few months back, Samsung launched its SSD 970 EVO Plus series of solid state drives, which featured the company’s latest TLC NAND flash memory and an updated firmware optimized for higher performance. When the line-up initially arrived, capacities up to 2TB were announced, but only the 250GB – 1TB models were made available. The highest-capacity, 2TB Samsung SSD 970 EVO Plus has just arrived, however, and we got the chance to take one for a spin. At its core, the 2TB Samsung SSD 970 EVO Plus is virtually identical to the other drives in the line-up, save for a larger DRAM cache and, obviously, more NAND storage capacity. Here’s how the full line-up compares to the original... Read more...
HP is hoping to offer gamers the best of both world with its Omen X Emperium 65. Although HP is careful not to call the Omen X Emperium 65 a television, per se, there's no escaping that fact that this is a massive display that would be more at home in your living room, den, or bonus room than your average computer desk. The Omen X Emperium measures a massive 65 inches diagonally, which puts it squarely in big-screen 4K HDTV territory. However, it borrows technology from the gaming world that we don't see in typical consumer-grade televisions, like NVIDIA G-SYNC and support for 144Hz refresh rates, for example. This duality of purpose leads to some interesting design choices, some of which... Read more...
Just prior to hosting its Next Horizon E3 Livestream event, AMD treated press and industry analysts to additional deep dive technical details regarding its next-generation Zen 2 CPU and Navi GPU microarchitectures. The actual product details disclosed during the E3 Livestream, which included 16-Core Ryzen 9 3950X and Radeon RX 5700 XT specifications and pricing, are covered in our news stories here (Ryzen 9 3950X) and here (Radeon RX 5700/5700 XT).  In this piece, however, we’re going to dig a little deeper and cover the new aspects of AMD's Zen 2 architecture, and what it means for the company's Ryzen 3000 series family of processors. All of the Navi and RDNA-related juicy... Read more...
AMD's upcoming Radeon RX 5700 series of graphics cards is based on the AMD’s new Navi GPU architecture, which features a totally new compute unit design infused with “RDNA”, or Radeon DNA. For the past few generations, AMD’s GPUs have leveraged GCN-based, or the company's Graphics Core Next, compute units. GCN served AMD well for a number of years and is well-suited for a variety of workloads, but with the Radeon RX 5700 series and Navi, AMD wanted to update is microarchitecture and GPU line-up with Compute Units that have been fully re-tooled for gamers. With RDNA, AMD wanted to create the fundamental building block of a CU that could scale from a few watts, all the way... Read more...
AMD has been riding high ever since Computex 2019 when it gave us our first look at the Ryzen 3000 family of Zen 2 desktop processors. At the time, the company announced a family that [for now] starts with the $199 Ryzen 5 3600 (6 cores, 12 threads) and tops out with the Ryzen 9 3900X (12 cores, 24 threads). Leading up to the Computex unveil, we had been hearing about an even more powerful 16-core/32-thread Ryzen processor, and there were even rumors that the chip had been shown behind closed doors at the show. Today, we have confirmation of this new beast processor, and it is sure to give Intel some sleepless nights. Witness the Ryzen 9 3950X, which will serve as... Read more...
A few weeks back, we took a look at the WD Blue SN500 SSD. That solid state drive is an affordable NVMe M.2 option, that’s targeted at mainstream systems and budget-constrained users. The WD Blue SN500 offers the benefits of NVMe, with pricing that is in-line with legacy SATA devices. The drive we’ll be looking at today, however, the WD Black SN750 SSD with Heatsink, takes things in a completely different direction. The WD Black SN750 SSD with Heatsink targets enthusiasts and gamers, and offers much higher performance in some scenarios. It is also priced higher, but not exorbitantly so. The WD Black SN750 SSD with Heatsink is by no means a mainstream drive, as you’ll see shortly,... Read more...
There is a fledgling wireless standard that effectively renders the vast majority of home networks out of date -- don't panic though, your stuff isn't necessarily obsolete. It is called Wi-Fi 6, if using the simplified nomenclature that the Wi-Fi Alliance introduced last year, or 802.11ax if you want to stick with the more technical (and potentially confusing for the average consumer) description. Either way, what we have is a bleeding-edge standard that router makers are just now starting to adopt, one that is better equipped to handle the growing number of wireless devices that are commonly found in our homes (PCs and laptops, smartphones, tablets, game consoles, smart speakers, and so forth).... Read more...
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