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.

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...
For many of you, Maingear Computer may not be a household name and that would probably be just fine with the folks out at the shop in Union New Jersey.  Loosely classified as a specialty high performance system builder and retailer, Maingear's mission statement on style, performance and quality claims that they strive to not... Read more...
It was back in January of this year at the Consumer Electronics Show that AMD first revealed their plans for the DTX open industry standard for small form factor computers.  The focus of those early briefings was to explain AMD’s vision for interoperable small form factor systems.  As it stands today, most SFF systems from large... Read more...
A short while after Dell purchased Alienware late last year, news broke that Hewlett Packard had acquired boutique system vendor Voodoo PC.  Voodoo PC is best known for their high performance gaming PC's that feature custom cases, some with lavish paint jobs, unique cooling solutions, and impeccable wiring jobs. We evaluated a Voodoo Omen... 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...
It was at this year's Consumer Electronics Show that we were first exposed to an Intel demo machine dubbed the ' V8' .  Intel wouldn't label the machine as a direct response to the QuadFX platform by AMD, but they did want to stress the point that enthusiasts could have a dual-socket, eight-core... Read more...
It's probably safe to assert that, by and large, DIY Small Form Factor PCs are still niche products.  Although they have been offered by the likes of Shuttle, AOpen, MSI and many others for nearly half a decade now, there's still an audible gasp that's heard from non PC-centric folks when then first encounter one.  Questions range from, "What... Read more...
If you are a regular here at HotHardware.com, you have most likely heard of Alienware, one of the companies that helped establish the market for high-performance, gaming PCs. Since hitting the scene in 1996, Alienware has become a leader not only in gaming PCs but also in high-performance desktop, notebook, media center, and professional... Read more...
Without question, the process of choosing a standard, pre-built PC or building one yourself has become almost trivial over the last few years. Given the caliber of hardware on the market, even with just a little bit of knowledge, it is difficult to purchase a system today which would not be suitable for nearly any standard application.... Read more...
Last summer, Dell agreed to purchase Alienware in a controversial merger of two very different companies. Alienware, who was looking to raise capital to fund its world-wide expansion, found a good partner in Dell when it came to realize that it would be able to meet its demands while simultaneously benefiting from... Read more...
NVIDIA's two major launches last week marked a significant advancement in both 3D Graphics and PC Motherboard feature-set and performance.  The launch of NVIDIA's G80 GPU with their GeForce 8800 series of graphics cards was the advent of the first truly DX10 capable GPU architecture on the... Read more...
When Shuttle first thrust small form factor systems upon the Do-It-Yourself crowd in 2001, they were deemed niche products that wouldn't likely appeal to the masses, due to inherent expandability deficiencies and limited feature-sets relative to full-sized desktop systems.  Over the last half decade though, interest in small form... 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...
It's hard to believe that the first time we set eyes on a Small Form Factor PC was back in December of 2001.  Back then, Shuttle was breaking new ground with several new products that helped give birth to a whole new sector in the PC industry.  As Shuttle's successes mounted with each new release, other manufacturers... 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...
It almost goes without saying that we'd all love to have enough disposable income to be able to afford the best-of-the-best, top-shelf, ultra-high-end, no compromise products, whether it be a 36 foot Chris Craft Corsair with 840hp of Mercruiser under its decks (in the aft section, by the way, the wet bar and mini fridge are in the... Read more...
For the last few years, there has been an undeniable trend towards packing all the functionality and performance of a full-fledged desktop system into a smaller form factor. As one of the chief pioneers of this new form factor, Shuttle enjoyed having dominant market share as they were one of the only true contenders in the SFF category. Fortunately... Read more...
Whether you are contemplating building a standard desktop, multimedia PC or that killer gaming rig you've always wanted, one of the biggest things to consider today is noise.  There is a major shift in thinking lately, as a growing number of users, and companies alike, are tackling the problem of ambient noise in the quest for a quieter... Read more...
Over the years, we've evaluated multiple versions of Asetek's famed Vapochill vapor phase-change cooling system. In fact, our first experience with a Vapochill dates all the way back to June of 2000. The first Vapochill we evaluated hardly resembles today's more refined models, however. Gone is the standard beige case, replaced with a custom... 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...
With the advent of the mini-PC, a completely new industry has been born.  Well, maybe it isn't so new anymore, but what started out almost as a novelty has matured into a major craze in the enthusiast market.  Today's mini-PCs come in a broad range of flavors with a wide variety of features.  Sitting high atop the list of unique... Read more...
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