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.

The ATi Radeon 8500 Driver Update 11/14/01 One step closer but still not quite there yet By Dave Altavilla 11/14/01          Well then, it's update time.  As we promised in our 10/22/01 release review of the Radeon 8500 and 7500 series graphics cards, we're back with an update on ATi's progress in the driver department.  Today, ATi will be releasing their 7.63.01 revision driver for both the Radeon 8500 and 7500 series graphics cards.  This "unified driver" has been targeted by ATi to solve many of the issues that cropped up in the initial release of their new generation product. Specifically, in a conference call with ATi, we were... Read more...
  AMD's Athlon XP 2100+ Processor Crunching Code at 1733MHz. By, Marco Chiappetta March 13, 2002 For about three years now, a fierce battle has been raging between Intel and AMD.  This battle has taken consumers down a road that led to a wider selection of higher performing processors than ever before, and at prices that were much lower than previous generations of flagship CPUs.  As each company introduced a new speed step, or introduced a new processor core, the competition was right there to introduce their new part in an effort to steal some thunder and make some noise of their own.   The Athlon arrived and quickly became the first "mainstream" CPU to break... Read more...
  The ASUS A7N266-E Motherboard Review An All-In-One Powerhouse! By, Jeff Bouton March 6, 2002 Not satisfied with being a dominant player in the commercial graphics market, nVidia recently made the leap into the chipset market.  In some ways it seems like the perfect move for the graphics giant to take.  What better way to secure their dominance as a chip maker than to take on a part of the market that has needed a serious shot in the arm for quite some time?  Prior to their efforts, it was accepted by most of us that on-board graphics were just meant for simple 2D capability.  Not many of us ever really questioned that fact.  It was what it was, and if you wanted... Read more...
  Dueling i845 DDR Boards From Abit and Asus Abit's BD7-RAID and Asus' P4B266 Take Flight By, Dave Altavilla January 23, 2002   We're back again with a look at two new motherboards based on Intel's recently released i845D chipset with DDR SDRAM support.  Our initial look at the i845D was centered around some fairly standard issue offerings from Intel and DFI.  MSI was the only "tweaker's" board that we put to the test in that round-up and it certainly shined heads and tails above the rest.  This time around, we have entries from two strong veterans in the "enthusiast/tweaker's" motherboard market, Abit and Asus. We all know Abit's approach with their... Read more...
  The Acorp 7KT266A Motherboard Review More KT266A Action In The House! By, Jeff Bouton January 23, 2002     Today we'll be reviewing the latest in a long line of KT266A motherboards to move through the H.H. labs, the Acorp 7KT266A.  Although some of you may not have heard of them, Acorp has been around for a number of years and remains one of Taiwan's top manufacturers of computer hardware components.  The 7KT266A is one of the newest additions to a well established line of motherboards.  With the praise that the KT266A has garnered over the past few months by reviewers and users around the world, it is no surprise that Acorp made it their chipset of choice for... Read more...
Abit's TH7II-Raid & Skt. 478 P4 CPU! Setup for the next generation of Intel's Flagship By, Dave Altavilla August 16, 2001   All indications are that we are shaping up for a very busy fall here in the PC Hardware scene.  New Processors, Motherboard Chipsets and Form Factors, Graphics Cards and Graphics Chipset, are coming to fruition from various manufacturers and we get the feeling that a tidal wave of technology is upon us.  Perhaps the US and world economies have hit a proverbial speed bump but for sure, investment in R&D and next generation technology continues with vigor. Adding fuel to the fire, Abit Computer has released a follow on product to their well designed... Read more...
Asus V8200T5 Deluxe and V8200T2 Deluxe GeForce3 Titanium Series Hot Hardware - nVidia Titanium - Light and Strong By Dave Altavilla 12/3/01 Titanium, named after the mythological Greek Titans in reference to its strength, is an extremely light weight metal that is often used in alloys with Aluminum and Ferrocarbons.  Discovered in the late 1700s, Titanium is used especially in aircrafts for fire walls, outer skin, landing-gear components, hydraulic tubing, and engine supports.  Light weight tensile strength are key attributes that make this metal and compositions of it, in valuable for designs that need to be nimble, sleek and strong.  Nimble, sleek and strong...  It seems... Read more...
  Abit's BE6 Motherboard - Slot1 Intel BX w/ ATA66 EIDE Probably the most familiar name to the hard core Overclocker, Abit has been producing motherboards, that break the mold and set new standards, for many years now. I remember the first time I used an Abit board back in the early days of the Pentium. The SoftMenu setup feature made life so easy and we all could squeeze a few more MHz. out of that tired CPU. A lot has changed since then but one thing hasn't. Abit is still trying to differentiate its products in the marketplace and they have succeeded again with the BE6. The new BE6 Motherboard from Abit is a combination of mature Intel technology and new standards for hard disk interfaces.... Read more...
Abit's KA7 - KX133 Athlon Motherboard AMD's Athlon Set Up The Abit Way! April 11, 2000 By Dave Altavilla   As my late Grand Father would say, "HOLY MACKEREL" !  My Grandfather was an excitable Italian type and this "fishy phrase" would be one that he would use to indicate his amazement with something.  In this case, the phrase is very fitting because I am totally amazed at the buzz and hype, with this review product that we have for you today.  Since Abit announced their KA7 VIA KX133 Athlon based motherboard, there has been a whirl-wind of press articles and commotion surrounding the product.  Well, in true HotHardware fashion, we just had to see... Read more...
The AMD Duron and Gigabyte's GA-7ZM KT133 Motherboard Compact Economy and Performance By Dave "Davo" Altavilla 7/20/00 It looks as if AMD is here to stay with their X86 processor offering.  Finally there is a viable and worthy opponent to the all mighty Intel.  This year AMD is giving Intel a run for their money with a host of processors that compete head to head in every market segment that Intel's PC product line plays.  The AMD Duron Processor is their answer to the Intel Celeron.  By the way, have you ever thought about the "Duron" name?  "DuRON"... "CeleRON", you can bet that was intentional.  In any event, the Duron boasts... Read more...
Abit's KT7A-RAID Socket A Motherboard Don't miss out... By Marco "BigWop" Chiappetta March 8, 2001 The competition in the CPU and motherboard chipset markets over the last year or so has been incredible. AMD has evolved into Intel's fiercest competitor and are consistently gaining market share. AMD's Athlon line of CPUs have steadily won over power users and budget shoppers alike with their high performance and relatively low prices (at the time this is being written a 1.2GHz T-Bird is selling for $236, while a 1 GHz Pentium III sells for $251). AMD can attribute their current market status not only to their great product, but to another company's efforts...VIA Technologies. A great... Read more...
Asus P4T Pentium 4 i850 Motherboard Beyond Intel's Reference Design By Dave Altavilla 12/19/00   The maturation process has begun with respect to Pentium 4 Motherboard offerings.  The first wave of product from various major manufacturers is beginning to hit the streets.  The designs are improving and with them the performance and configurations of the various models.  There is a long road ahead for the Pentium 4 and what we are seeing now in support hardware is still in its infancy. This is our take on a new Pentium 4 motherboard from Asus, the P4T.  It is based on the only chipset currently available for the Pentium 4, that being the Intel i850.  The first board... Read more...
Abit's SA6R - i815E With Highpoint ATA100 RAID Controller The i815E board with an attitude and a 1GHz. Flip Chip to back it up By Dave "Davo" Altavilla 11/1/00   Motherboards mature, like fine wine as the months go on, after a new chipset is released.  Intel has had the highly anticipated i815E integrated chipset out for a few months now and the Motherboard Manufacturers are really beginning to polish their product line offerings based on this chipset. At first, we saw some pretty straight forward designs with not too many frills or extras beyond the i815E's well rounded feature set.  Now things are starting to get a little more exotic when it comes to i815E boards and... Read more...
Abit's SE6 and BX133-RAID The Intel PC133 BX versus i815 - Where the rubber meets the road. By Dave "Davo" Altavilla 7/30/00   As the saying goes, "old habits die hard".  In this case, power users have turned the Intel BX chipset platform time and time again, for no compromise high end PC performance.  As technology matures, there are always "trailing edge" standbys that are not quick to adopt new standards.  For many folks, today's new mix of "PC133" based products from Intel doesn't offer enough incentive to make the jump over to the newer platforms.  Still for others, having the latest and greatest is important and the extra... Read more...
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