Reviews Of Desktop PCs, DIY PC Builds, All-In-Ones, And Small Form Factor PCs

In-depth product reviews and news of Computer Desktops, DIY PC Builds, All-In-One PCs, and Small Form Factor PCs. If it crunches numbers, pushes pixels, throws down the frag or provides a digital canvass for content creation, you'll find it there.

SilverStone released a handful of new cases and coolers a few months back, targeting an array of price points for DIY PC builders. One of the more affordable additions to the line-up was the SilverStone Fara B1 mid-tower we're evaluating today. The Fara B1 is priced to move at about $60, but it has the looks and features of much more... Read more...
To celebrate the launch of Marvel's Spider-Man, the hotly anticipated game developed by Insomniac Games and published by Sony Interactive Entertainment exclusively for the PlayStation 4 Pro, Sony released a limited edition PS4 themed after the arachnid super hero. Themed consoles are nothing new, though this one seems... Read more...
The sound of silence -- there’s nothing like it, especially when it comes to a media PC. The last thing anyone wants while binging on the new season of Game of Thrones is the distracting drone of a fan or whir of a hard drive. Silence is precisely what the Streacom DB-4 chassis we'll be featuring here has to offer... Read more...
The Sony VAIO Tap 21 is a member of a small, but growing, breed of new PCs that straddles a line between traditional all-in-one desktops and tablets. The VAIO Tap 21’s specifications read like many modern desktop systems, and include an Intel Core i7 processor, hybrid storage, a decent amount of memory and full-blown Windows... Read more...
As far as computer chassis go, when it comes to being successful in the enthusiast DIY niche', manufacturers tend to focus on a few key design approaches that will help products stand out and ultimately sell. You can go the way of functionality and build quality, like Corsair did, for example with their Obsidian 700 and 800 series, though... Read more...
The market for nettops—small, highly-integrated, mini-ITX desktops, typically based around Intel's Atom—didn't explode off the block the way netbooks did in the past 18 months, but an increasing number of manufacturers from Acer to Dell have released new designs built around the standard, and the systems in question are steadily becoming more... Read more...
Since you are here, reading this and potentially some other articles and news about PC hardware, you've probably attended or at least heard of LAN parties. The main point of LAN parties is, of course, to play video games with your peers on networked PCs. Another fun aspect of LAN parties, especially big events like QuakeCon, is that you get... Read more...
Enthusiasts are familiar with the Smooth Creations team as the artists behind the airbrushed gaming rigs from the likes of Falcon Northwest, Alienware, and Maingear. Not as many may be aware, however, that Smooth Creations has recently expanded from the realm of painting cases to that of building and selling painted, customizable systems and... Read more...
The intoxicating smell of fresh paint was the first sensation to greet us when we opened up a very special package from Diamond Multimedia and Smooth Creations. This was quickly followed by jaw-dropping awe as we admired the meticulous detail of the system's custom paint job. Speculating at the power waiting to be unleashed under its hood,... Read more...
As gamers and hardware enthusiasts, it’s easy to get jaded by Extreme Edition processors and multi-card CrossFire configurations. They push performance full-bore. And although you’ll never hear AMD, Intel, or NVIDIA recommending against using their enthusiast offerings in higher-end configurations, there’s no denying that Xeons, Opterons,... Read more...
When it comes time for a new rig, there are those who want the power of a full-sized system but without the footprint of a mid or full sized case.  Today, we're going to take a look at a barebones kit that promises full-sized performance in a footprint no bigger than a shoebox.  Enter the Shuttle SDXi Barebones Kit. The SDXi Barebone... Read more...
  What's in a name?  So often hardware companies name their products to paint a mental picture, or set the tone for how they want potential customers to view their particular component.  The names chosen are meant to invoke feelings of speed, performance, size or perhaps the supposed exhilaration you will experience... Read more...
  Due to the fact that we're an on-line PC hardware enthusiast and technology news publication, the majority of our readers tend to be the do-it-yourself type that build their own custom systems. We cover the gamut of PC hardware, from high-end motherboards and graphics cards, to optical drives and speakers. And while... Read more...
  When we look at the Small Form Factor platform's relative size and shape, it is easy to see why these systems are becoming extremely popular as dedicated living room or home theater PC's. With the gradual adoption of Media Center PC's in the home, Shuttle is now trying harder than ever to ensure that those systems are small... Read more...
When we last checked in with Shuttle back in April, we took a look at their current entry for the Intel platform, which was based on the latest chipset at the time, the i925XE.  Our introduction for that piece went something along the lines of how the SFF market typically lags behind the full-sized board market, but how Shuttle was right... Read more...
It seems that Shuttle consistently expands their line of XPC small form factor systems as new core logic chipsets are released. A quick trip to their product page reveals a current line-up of XPCs based on chipsets from Intel, NVIDIA, ATI, SiS and VIA. There are no less than six different chassis designs available as well, with each one designed... Read more...
When it comes to making Small Form Factor PCs, we find that most manufacturers need to make compromises in order to create a viable product.  Radical heat dissipation techniques typically consume much of the area in already cramped confines, motherboards are usually cut-down versions of full-sized models which, in turn, have... Read more...
Normally, when a new Small Form Factor PC arrives in the lab, the unit is generally  a single manufacturers combination of form and function. Inside and out, everything is designed by only one OEM in a singular effort.  From Shuttle to Epox and more recently Foxconn, the outer chassis is meant to support the technology within. Not... Read more...
Every time a new small form factor system arrives in the lab, inevitable comparisons are made to Shuttle's popular line of XPC systems.  The simple fact of the matter is that Shuttle's XPCs have set the bar for the rest of the industry.  And their XPC systems have sold so well, they've transformed Shuttle from a second tier motherboard... Read more...
When we pause to think of some of the more memorable, market driving, changes to the computer industry, the advent of the mini-PC is one of the first to come to mind.  What started out as a single offering from Shuttle has grown into a market in and of itself, with new entries from a wide range of companies hitting the retail channel... Read more...
Shuttle went through a complete metamorphosis as a company a few years back, and they haven't looked back ever since.  Their wildly successful line of "XPC" small form factor (SFF) PCs has taken off like no other physical incarnation of the PC has in a very long time.  Not even Mr. Jobs could have predicted the kind of... Read more...
Although they now face some stiff competition from the likes of Biostar, Iwill, Soltek and MSI, among others, Shuttle deserves credit for almost single-handedly spurring the so-called small form factor revolution.  When they initially released the venerable SV24 almost three years ago, many PC lovers were immediately enamored by the tiny... Read more...
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