Graphics Cards, PC Monitors And Computer Audio Reviews And News

The sights and sounds of the modern computing experience are driven by key user interface technologies like graphics cards, display monitors and various audio solutions. Here you'll find reviews and news on the latest in cutting-technologies for GPUs (Graphics Processing Units), LED and LCD computer display monitors, sound cards, PC and wireless speaker systems and 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...
Dell has a long history of producing high-quality displays, and the recently released Dell UltraSharp 27 Premier Color UltraHD 4K monitor (model UP2718Q) we will be showing you here -- the company’s first to support HDR10 -- is no exception. Though this display demands a premium price, it is also chock full of sought after features that target graphic designers and content creation professionals. The 4K resolution (3840 x 2160) IPS panel used in the UP2718Q features UHD Alliance Premium certification and support for 100% of the Adobe color gamut. It can display approximately 1.07 billion colors, includes Dell Premium Color software, and supports 100% sRGB, Adobe RGB, REC 709,... Read more...
In case you didn't get the memo, the 4K Ultra HD revolution has begun. What's been remarkable about the ongoing transition from Full HD 1080p to 4K Ultra HD is that hardware makers and content creators didn't get stuck in a 'chicken and egg' scenario. Typically when new technology emerges, hardware makers wait for software developers to come out with content that can take advantage of the new capabilities, while software developers are reluctant to code for new hardware until there's a big enough userbase to justify the investment. In this case, we're talking about monitor manufacturers and 4K video producers, both of which have been willing to take a leap of faith. On the content side,... Read more...
In about six weeks, Blizzard will launch Reaper of Souls, the first expansion pack for Diablo 3. I've spent the last few weeks playing in the beta for RoS, and while I normally hold an article this extensive for a launch, there's enough locked-in differences to be worth discussing at this stage. This new expansion comes with the usual slew of goodies -- a new Act for the game, new quests, a new enchanting ability, and a new skill for each existing class, as well as a new Crusader class to experiment with. The ancient city of Westmarch: Location of Act V All of this falls into the "expected" category. What's more important about Reaper of Souls is that it makes core changes to the way Diablo... Read more...
We're not going to beat around the bush, here. BioShock Infinite is game-of-the-year material. The floating city of Columbia is one of the most evocative, intense, gorgeous environments I've ever seen -- but how much you like it may depend on what sort of visual wizardry you prefer. BioShock Infinite is built on Unreal Engine 3, and while it pushes that framework's capabilities into the stratosphere, there's a clear difference between BioShock Infinite and, say, Crysis 3. It's a testament to Ken Levine and the artistic team at Irrational Games that the gap feels like a stylistic choice rather than a technological limitation. Crysis 3 is a triumph of texturing and structural detail. BioShock Infinite... Read more...
There are two types of power users on this planet, and they consist of those who use a 30-inch monitor, and those who don't. The latter far outnumber the former, but thanks to a number of factors, this particular digital divide is growing smaller by the day. For one, 30-inch monitors are somewhat more affordable compared to a few years ago, at least in the sense that the average Joe doesn't have to sell a kidney to come up with the scratch for one (except for teens, who are more interested in trading body organs for iPads, anyway). That in itself is pretty remarkable when you consider that 30-inch monitors aren't just big, they also represent the pinnacle of display technology in terms of picture... Read more...
Once upon a time, CRT monitors ruled the land. They were big, they were bulky, and you could easily throw your back out if you ignored your chiropractor's advice to bend at the knees and keep your chin up, when picking up heavy objects. Back in the day, a 19-inch CRT weighed around 40 pounds and dominated your computer desk with all that junk in the trunk. But like everything else in the realm of technology, computer displays evolved. First came LCDs, and then LCD displays sporting an LED backlight like the S2330 Ultra Slim monitor that Dell sent us. One of the main advantages to using an LED backlight is it takes up less room than the cold cathode fluorescent lamp (CCFL) type backlight found... Read more...
Eleven years ago, now-defunct developer Ion Storm released Deus Ex and made video game history. The original title cast players in the role of JC Denton, a nanotech-augmented agent with the United Nations Anti-Terrorist Coalition (UNATCO) circa 2052. The game's plot is a fusion of classic conspiracy theories and a referendum on what it means to be human. The problems of humanity in 2052—plague, environmental destruction, rampant terrorism—were far enough away in time to be comfortable, but close enough to be unsettling. Welcome to Detroit, circa 2027. All screenshots taken from in-game unless otherwise noted Deus Ex: Human Evolution takes place 25 years before the first game. Mechanical... Read more...
We like a good combo here at HotHardware, and we have a new one to add to the list. Right up there with peanut butter and jelly, Mario and Luigi, milk and cookies, we'd like to add dual GPUs and factory overclocks. If you are a regular reader, you probably already know we are fans of dual GPU video cards, and we have a strong affinity for factory overclocked video cards as well. And when a company combines the two, that's just fine in our book. So, it goes without saying that we were excited to check out Diamond's overclocked Radeon HD 4870 X2 XOC graphics card (model number: 4870X2PE52GXOC). As you probably already know, the Radeon HD 4870 X2 employs two RV770 GPUs, each of which is complemented by... Read more...
Throughout most of the 1990s, Diamond Multimedia was one of the major players in the graphics card world.  Their well made cards with solid performance resulted in some of the most well known brand names of the time including the Speedstar, Stealth, and Viper.  After merging with S3 Incorporated in 1999, the resounding failure of their joint contribution: the Diamond Viper II Z200 based on S3's Savage 2000, eventually led to the combined Diamond/S3 company backing away from third-party graphics cards.  In 2003, however, Best Data stepped in and purchased the rights to the brand name and assets from SONICblue Incorporated, including the Stealth... Read more...
We’re willing to bet that many of you have wildly varied opinions of Dell. Some no doubt consider them a huge, monolithic corporation who pushes out generic computers without a soul; while others consider them to be pioneers of the low-cost PC movement, who (almost) single-handedly made computers available to nearly every price point. No matter what your opinion of Dell as a company is, it is difficult to find many people in IT circles who dislike their monitor division. Dell’s lineup of flat panel displays have proven themselves to be reliable, stylish, and typically right on par price-wise with some of the most inexpensive LCD monitors on the market. They’ve delivered exceptional bang... Read more...
While the average PC enthusiast may gawk endlessly over pages of reviews of high-end power-hungry graphics cards, jaw-slackened by the frame rates and 3DMark score that he or she might find there, at the end of the month it is the low to mid-range card that is purchased most often than not.  Price typically comes into consideration, but it's not the only concern.  Availability, compatibility, and other issues factor in to a buyers decision as well.  Sometimes it simply boils down to the fact that the average Joe clearing stages in Peggle or watching the latest videos on YouTube simply doesn't need all of that horsepower.AMD's Radeon HD 3650 is one of the few cards... Read more...
With recent price cuts to current generation Radeon HD 3800 series cards, due to increased competition from new mainstream graphics cards from NVIDIA, there is a large gap in ATI's product stack between the sub-$200 Radeon HD 3870 and the now roughly $400 Radeon HD 3870 X2.  Until AMD readies a new batch of GPUs to fill this hole in their product stack, board partners are left to tweak current designs to entice potential consumers.Diamond is one of a group of manufacturers that continue to release updated revisions of both Radeons, either by adding additional memory, raising clock speeds, or sometimes both.  The model we will be taking a look at today is the Viper Radeon HD 3850... Read more...
Like high-end graphics cards setup in multi-GPU configurations, terabyte desktop drives, and 3GHz quad-core processors, 30-inch wide screen LCDs cater to what we like to call the "enthusiast" niche.  And though this niche obviously drives lower volume demand versus the mainstream, you have to remember that the enthusiast end-user is a very influential segment of the market, often times assisting in the definition of what will become mainstream technology tomorrow.  Not to mention 30 inches of screen real-estate is a professional workstation designer's nirvana, so perhaps this niche isn't as small as it would appear on the surface.  Regardless, though there are fewer... Read more...
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