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.

  Hercules Audio - DJ Console Portable DJ Mix Controller & Multi-Channel Audio Jason R. Gibson October 29th, 2003 It has been a while since we at Hot Hardware have taken a look at a Hercules product. You may remember back in early December of 2002, we looked at the Digifire 7.1 Digital soundcard. Sporting some very impressive specifications and achieving a high level of performance, the Digifire was a very welcomed edition to their sound card product line. Recently, Hercules underwent some fairly major internal changes, that resulted in unfortunate downsizing of the company.  However, it seems that Guillemot, Hercules' proprietor, have turned their company around and reinvented... Read more...
The Hercules Digifire 7.1 Sound Card 360o Of Sound Emersion By Jay Gibson December 11, 2002 Since our last look at a Hercules sound card, the Gamesound Fortissimo II, there have been a few advances in the technology that audiophiles will rejoice over.  As Hercules' flagship product, in their audio line-up, the Digifire brand sports the leading edge audio processing capabilities, as well as a host of other features, including of course, Firewire connectivity. With support for 7.1 digital surround sound and FireWire DV Editing, this card should cover just about ever aspect one could ask for in a sound card. But, the thing to keep in mind is that quantity of features does not always mean quality,... Read more...
   The HighPoint RocketRAID 404 (HPT374) 4 Channel PCI IDE RAID Controller... By, Marco Chiappetta October 10, 2002 Over the past few years, one of the most prolific integrated accessories found on high-end consumer class motherboards has got to be an IDE RAID controller. Virtually every OEM from Abit to Soyo now ship motherboards that are outfitted with a RAID controller.  These integrated solutions give users the ability to inexpensively boost drive throughput, or ensure data security by "striping" or "mirroring" their data across multiple drives.  They also give users the ability to simply plug more IDE devices into their motherboards.  If you look... Read more...
Hercules 3D Prophet 8500 128MB Review RADEON 8500 and All the Trimmings By -Chris Angelini July 3rd, 2002 Competing in the video card market is much like swimming in school of sharks.  Each manufacturer has the potential to pack a potent punch, but the slightest sign of weakness can quickly incite a feeding frenzy.  We?ve seen it time and again.  S3 released the Savage 2000, which was inhibited by shoddy drivers and 3dfx?s promising Voodoo5 family succumbed to the GeForce2.  Hercules encountered a similar predicament back in 1999, only Hercules? problem was financial rather than technological.  Guillemot quickly purchased the struggling company and turned it into a multimedia... Read more...
The Hercules Gamesound Fortissimo II Big Sound, Small Price... By Robert Maloney April 17, 2002 Before we begin, I would like to give you a little background information because this is my debut appearance on HotHardware.  I have been working on and with computers for most of my life (as I am sure most of you reading this can say the same) and consider myself somewhat of a techno-geek. New hardware always makes me a drool, even when I have no need for it. My first IBM clone was a sleek 486DX50 with a whopping 4MB of RAM. Being a novice to clones at the time, I bought this one with only two words in my head as a requisite: ?SOUND? & ?BLASTER?. All of the advice I heard said that you needed... Read more...
The Hercules Game Theater XP Hercules is Breakin' Out! By Jeff Bouton May 22, 2001   Today, it seems that if you ask someone what kind of sound card they have installed in their system, more often than not, the answer is "...a Sound Blaster Live..."  Without a doubt, Creative has garnered a huge stake in the PC audio market, especially with the success of the Live series of sound cards.  But to think that they are the only makers of quality sound cards would be a big mistake.  The Hercules Corporation has been making quality video card products since 1982.  Early on they pioneered video processes that helped shape the innovations that we see today.  In... Read more...
The Hercules Prophet II GTS 64MB Guillemot or Hercules?  Either way you spell it, we see performance and quality By Dave "Davo" Altavilla 10/5/00   If you go WAY back, 1982 to be exact which is like an eternity in "net years", with a tenure the PC Industry, you'll know that Hercules was the first company ever to develop high resolution graphics for the computer.   At that time, things were in a drab monochrome output but it didn't take long before this leader and giant in this market was releasing true "Windows Accelerators".  Remember names like the "Graphite" and the "Dynamite"?  They were all the rage and 2D speed... Read more...
The Hercules 3D Prophet II Ultra So Cool...it's blue... By, Marco "BigWop" Chiappetta January 4, 2001 Way back in 1982, the technology behind the Hercules monochrome graphics adapter became an established PC standard (I actually had one...Geez, I'm ancient!). For many years to follow, it was commonplace to find Hercules products in home systems and high-end workstations alike. However, times change and nowhere is this more evident than in the PC Graphics market. From 1992 on, Hercules began offering products based on third-party chipsets in an attempt to gain market share in the increasingly growing Windows Accelerator market. Using chipsets from virtually every manufacturer including... Read more...
The Hercules 3D Prophet 4500 Kyro II Powered Goodness... By, Marco "BigWop" Chiappetta July 12, 2001 Something dawned on me when I sat down to begin writing this review.  The STMicroelectronics Kyro II powered Hercules 3D Prophet 4500, is the first video card that I have reviewed since July 2000, that is not powered by an nVidia chipset.  nVidia's dominance in the 3D chipset arena is well documented (and deserved for that matter) but it is always good for consumers, when a potential competitor rises from obscurity to challenge the dominance of the current market leaders. Along with increased competition, comes more rapid innovation and lower price points. However, I don't... Read more...
  Taming The Beast     A Look At The Hercules Terminator Beast Super Charged!               Hercules Computer Technology Inc. is one of the oldest manufacturers of video cards in the US. They have long been regarded as a quality manufacturer of mainstream computer graphics accelerators. Hercules has been a little dormant in the past year or so. However Hercules has recently returned to the game with a multitude of exciting new products based on current chip sets which offer the end user features not... Read more...
 WinTV USB  USB TV Tuner Statistics have shown that the average American watches at least 10-20 hours of TV a week (give or take a few hours). However, ever since the introduction of computers, the average computer users probably watches less TV and surfs the net more. That's where the USB WinTV comes in to play. Starring at the computer screen all day and night can be boring and static, so let me introduce you to a device that will turn you back into a spud and into a chair potato. Hauppauge the company is well known for their TV cards. Their use of the BT48 chipset has pretty much made them a standard for PC users of many OS's. Their PCI TV cards can be found at the local Office Max,... Read more...
How much ya bench?  - The P!!! 500E Coppermine @ 750MHz.  We recently got in a new sweet little Pentium!!!  500E Coppermine from our good buds at OutsideLoop Computers.  By the way, in case you haven't heard, they rock! We have heard many VERY encouraging stories on the net these days about the ability of the 500E and 550E to overclock EXTREMELY well.  We decided it would be great to see what kind of performance gains could be had with the 500E on an i820 motherboard with RAMBUS and the works.  Here's how things went... OutsideLoop also set us up with a sweet new Slotket card from MSI, the MS-6905 Master.  You guessed it, this little honey supports Coppermine... Read more...
Hot Hardware's How Much Ya Bench? - Version 2.0 Pentium !!! Coppermine 800 On The i820 Platform  April 17, 2000 - By Dave Altavilla  Over the past few months Intel has been releasing a myriad of processors covering all ends of the performance spectrum.  Never before has the end user had so many options to choose from with respect to what host processor will be driving their systems.  Whether you opt for Celeron, Pentium!!!, or Xeon, you will also have a host of flavors to choose from within that processor subset.  The widest selection ever of Packages, Cache and Clock Speeds are available to choose from, regardless of your requirements.     In our... Read more...
   Hot Hardware Presents The...   Well this is it, you silly freaks! The main event! Tonight we'll show you the two most smokin' overclock setups in the Hot Hardware Open Pit! Before we announce our winners I would like to comment a little on some of the Hot Hardware clientele. YOU PEOPLE NEED HELP!!!!! :-) You have way too much time on your hands and may very possibly be suffering from some strange neurotic disorder, kind of like chronic masterba... uh... never mind! :-) Seriously my Brothers and Sisters, you rock! I never knew there was such a vast group of creative and twisted minds out there! Thanks for making Hot Hardware what it is today! Whatever that is... :-) Enough talk!... Read more...
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