Movies, Music, Video Games, Social Networks and Lifestyle News And Reviews

Product reviews and news of digital entertainment products and services in movies, music, video games, game streaming, social networks and lifestyle products.

While discussions about the best desktop gaming PCs tend to be divided between do-it-yourselfers and fans of pre-built PCs, gaming laptops spark a different debate, typically between large system builders versus, smaller boutique system integrators. Many of the industry behemoths kick-started or bolstered their gaming system lines by acquiring boutique SIs (think of Voodoo, which was swallowed by HP, and Alienware, which is now a part of Dell), but some niche builders are still going solo, including well-known players like Falcon Northwest and Maingear. Mythlogic is another custom builder providing an alternative to mainstream brands, and we're going to show you one of their machines here --... Read more...
Since its launch in 2013, Slack has risen to superstardom. In a recent blog post, the company highlighted some of its recent milestones, which includes hitting 2.3 million daily active users by its second anniversary, over 675,000 paid seats, and over $64 million in annual revenue. Not bad for a software solution that came out of nowhere just a couple of years ago. Given its meteoric success, it's only a matter of time before this cloud-based collaboration tool gets snapped up by a bigger company, but that company apparently isn't going to be Microsoft. According to TechCrunch, Microsoft apparently mulled the idea of acquiring Slack but instead decided to double-down on its Skype focus. Microsoft's... Read more...
Do you think Microsoft might be a little stoked about DirectX 12? You better believe it. Microsoft's excitement over its next-generation API spilled over into a short video demo comparing the visual effects of DX12 to that of DX11, while also explaining some of the benefits, like reduced latency and smoother frame rates. "DirectX 12 is a ground-breaking Microsoft technology that gives game developers the ability to harness the full capabilities of a PC’s GPU(s) and raise the bar on graphic fidelity and immersive gameplay," Microsoft explains in the video's description. The neat thing about DX12 is that it's a low level API, like Vulkan. What that means is that developers have deeper access to... Read more...
Microsoft held a massive event Tuesday in New York City at which the company unveiled a number of new devices, including the hot Surface Pro 4, new Lumia-branded Windows 10 smartphones with Continuum, and the surprise no one saw coming, the slick Surface Book hybrid laptop. But before any of those new devices were actually shown, Microsoft demoed some exciting new HoloLens mixed-reality technology, dubbed Project X-Ray, that allowed a gamer – named Dan -- to battle holographic robots right on stage, live. During the demo, Dan “held” a holographic gauntlet gun that he used to fire lasers and blast robots as they hovered in the air or broke through the makeshift walls. Live at the event, onlookers... Read more...
The wait is over. The time is nigh for sci-fi super-spy gadgets, cigar-smoking, and rampant exclamation points. Oh yes, the one-eyed one has returned. Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain has landed on the PC and it’s a doozy. Utilizing the same Fox Engine for its visuals, this latest effort nicely follows-up last year’s Metal Gear Solid V Ground Zeroes—the prequel which set the stage for this, the epic and more open-ended Phantom Pain. Despite being one of the industry’s most beloved visually-challenged protagonists--with numerous sequels, prequels and remakes under his belt, Snake is a veritable stranger to the PC platform, visiting the master race all of three times before now (unless you... Read more...
PC enthusiasts tend to spend a lot of time sitting in front of their systems. We spend hundreds of dollars on monitors, graphics cards, and processors without a second thought, to ensure the best experience we can afford. So, why do so many of us sit ourselves down in inexpensive and inadequate thrones for extended computing and gaming sessions?If your body is your temple, does it not deserve the finest in enthusiast seating? There are two prominent companies crafting these enthusiast chairs, DXRacer and Maxnomic, though there are a plethora of smaller players as well.  DXRacer was a pioneer in gamer-focused seating, but Maxnomic has stormed onto the scene claiming higher quality materials... Read more...
You no longer have to wonder what Super Mario would look like if he was rendered in 3D using the Unreal Engine 4. What, the thought never crossed your mind? Well it did for YouTube user aryoksini, the same cat who showed off samples Super Mario 64 remade in HD using the Blender engine. As nifty as that was, his newest project is even better. Using the Unreal Engine 4, aryoksini created a 3D world in which you see Mario like you've never seen him before. Not that we haven't seen Mario in 3D before, just not as well rendered as this -- it's equal parts awesome and disturbing to see Nintendo's iconic character all grown up into a modern sprite. "Here is Mario running in Unreal Engine 4, all the... Read more...
As part of a massive holiday giveaway promotion, Microsoft is offering over 100 MP3 albums through its Music Deals app for free to everyone. That is, everyone who uses Windows 8 or owns a Windows Phone.The promotion is available for a limited time but it is worth taking advantage of. Country, Rock and Roll, Rap, and Pop music are just some of the genres available in the collection Microsoft is offering. Among the free albums are ones from artists such as Eminem, The Rolling Stones, Linkin Park, Mumford & Sons, Lana Del Ray, U2, Stone Temple Pilots, Faith Hill, The Who, Bon Jovi, The Doobie Brothers, Katy Perry, and many more.In order to bolster your music collection, not only will you need... Read more...
Facebook co-founder Mark Zuckerberg isn't a stranger to question and answer sessions, including those conducted in-house at Facebook. And though it's become a bit of a tradition to have those kinds of meetings internally, never before has he engaged in an open Q&A session on his home turf -- until now, that is. Zuckerberg spent over an hour addressing questions received from around the world, as well as by several Facebook users who attended the event at the company's headquarters in Menlo Park, California. The topics were varied, some inevitably more interesting than the others, such as why Facebook made the decision to force its users to install the Messenger app. "Messaging is one of the... Read more...
A couple of weeks ago, we reported on a secret app that Facebook has been working on that would allow people to "poke, stalk, and whine" anonymously. Well, today, the company has taken the veil off of that app, and we can see that the rumors were quite on-the-mark. You will have the ability to remain anonymous with 'Rooms', though that's not really its purpose. Ultimately, Rooms brings back the magic of Internet forums or BBSes, where communities can congregate and discuss a subject in a far more sane manner than with a Facebook status. I'm sure we've all seen a message on Facebook to the effect of "(Your Friend) commented on this post", only to be unable to find it among the 2,000 other comments.... Read more...
If your any kind of a computing enthusiast, you're quite familiar with EVGA, even if you haven't bought and of their hardware. From power supplies to motherboards and graphics cards, the company has established a solid reputation for producing high-quality, enthusiast equipment. EVGA recently sent over one of their new Torq X10 gaming mice -- does this new entrant into the crowded high-end mouse market deserve your gaming dollar? Let's take a look. Of Mice and Markets: Ask ten gamers if a high-end mouse is important for gaming and you'll likely hear universal agreement. Ask them to name the best gaming mouse, and you may end up with a fight on your hands. Just as mechanical keyboards... Read more...
We think it's fitting for Maingear to bring 3K resolution gaming to its aptly named Pulse line of laptops. Consider that playing games at full HD 1080p (1920x1080) on the desktop is nothing special these days, which is why we're seeing more and more players jump to higher resolution displays, from 2560x1440 (most 27-inch class monitors) on up to the emerging 4K (3840x2160) format. We're finally seeing some innovation again in the monitor market, yet laptop displays were stuck in a state of comatose for a while. Not anymore. Maingear has given its Pulse 15 -- and the gaming laptop segment in general -- some much needed CPR by introducing a 3K IPS (In-Plane Switching) wide-view screen display into... Read more...
Last month, we covered a new research project from Microsoft, dubbed Project DeLorean, that seeks to dramatically improve the subjective experience of cloud gaming by cutting perceived latency between the player and the server. Today, in a potentially related announcement, comes news that Microsoft is also working on a system that would allow games to stream at 60 fps directly in-browser. The two projects, which are almost certainly related, would supposedly allow for in-browser play of both Xbox 360 and Xbox One games at up to 60 FPS with the "full" Xbox 360 experience -- meaning that the Xbox 360 dashboard would also run in-browser. According to the Neowin report, the project has Xbox branding... Read more...
When we reviewed the Maingear Epic Rush a few months ago, we found its performance jaw-dropping, and thus we expected the same out of its sibling, the Maingear Rush. However, these are different systems with different configurations on board. For instance, they have different CPUs--the Rush we're testing today has a newer, more powerful GPU configuration, and Maingear approached storage on the two quite differently as well. What both systems definitely do share is high performance and impeccable build quality. The Maingear Rush is a top-shelf system with killer components; there are no compromises here, and no concern for the final bill either. Is $8,393 a lot for a computer?... Read more...
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