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If you ever plan to build your own PC, Tom's Hardware’s System Builder Marathon is a must-read. Our editorial team builds, tests, and evaluates PC systems at varying costs, using the components that we think maximize value. These components include motherboards, cooling devices, CPU platforms, chipsets, memory, cases, hard drives, networking and graphics cards and power supplies. For each build, we include performance benchmarks that include 3D games, audio and video compression, graphic design, image manipulation, and video editing. Our testing includes each configuration in its stock form and overclocked. Feel free to build along with us or watch patiently from the sidelines, because, remember—each of these systems are given away at the end of the marathon (don’t forget to enter!).
Crucial DDR3 Memory — Now With More Bling!
Oct 8, 2008 - in News
Just in case the whir of fans and the occasional tick-tick of a hard drive doesn’t provide enough clues that that yes, your PC really is powered on, Lexar Media is now offering its LED-laden Crucial Ballistix Tracer SDRAM in DDR3 trim.
Atom, Athlon, or Nano? Energy-Savers Compared
Oct 3, 2008 - in Reviews
We compared Intel’s Atom 230 and VIA’s Nano L2100 processors hoping to find the best product for low-power applications. VIA is in the vanguard of performance. Is this enough to beat Atom?
Interview: Bigfoot's Killer NIC, Exposed
Oct 2, 2008 - in Reviews
Since its release, the Killer NIC has garnered a reputation for being an extravagant and largely unnecessary add-on for the do-it-yourselfer. Seeking additional insight, we approached the card's designer.
The First sub-$1,000 Water-cooled PC
Oct 2, 2008 - in News
Considered a water-cooled gaming rig, but haven’t had the nerve to mix electronics and liquids? Visionman Computers has just announced a new gaming PC that features a water-cooled dual-core CPU that sells for $999.99.
Windows Campaign Violating Trademark?
Sep 30, 2008 - in News
Microsoft is being targeted by a startup company going by the name ‘G.ho.st’ in an apparent claim that Microsoft is violating a company trademark.
Maxtor's Shared Storage Does NAS At Home
Sep 24, 2008 - in Reviews
What do you do with all the data you collect at home? Network attached storage is the solution. We test Maxtor's Shared Storage II and find that it is also suitable for use in small businesses.
We Interview EFiX Creators: OS X on PC
Sep 22, 2008 - in Reviews
The EFiX makes it possible to install Leopard, unhacked, on a PC. We find out how from the masterminds themselves.
Chip-less Mod Tool Leaked for Nintendo Wii.
Sep 19, 2008 - in News
With all the raging and ranting about piracy going around these days – developers getting miffed about losing profits to piracy and people voiding warranties just so they don’t have to pay for games.
EFiX Dongle Turns (Some) PCs into Macs
Sep 16, 2008 - in News
Back in June, a European company called EFiX announced its EFi-X USB dongle for desktop PCs. The dongle promised the ability to not only install legitimate copies of OS X on any PC, but to utilize the Software Update feature, something Hackintoshes and P
Control All Aspects of Your Home Wirelessly
Sep 5, 2008 - in News
Want to automate things in your home like fans and lights using your PC? Two widely backed specifications are quietly battling for supremacy in the wireless home-control market: Z-Wave, a proprietary technology developed by the Norwegian firm Zensys, and
Guy Makes a PC Out of Nintendo Wii
Sep 4, 2008 - in News
Modding your computer to look cooler is one thing, and overclocking it your processor and memory is pretty cool too. But someone has managed to stuff a fully operational desktop PC into Nintendo’s minuscule Wii. Of course, the internals of the Wii were g
Windows XP Learns New Nag Tactic for Pirates
Aug 29, 2008 - in News
Vista hands Windows Genuine Advantage features down to XP Professional
Behold the five radiators, six graphics cards and 50+ fans “DayWalker” system
Aug 29, 2008 - in News
San Jose (CA) – While many of the case mods we saw at the NVISION conference and LAN party were extraordinary, the “DayWalker” Blade-themed case - or more accurately towering, human-sized, case – impressed us the most.
Pick Your Parts With OCZ's Do-it-yourself Gaming Notebook
Aug 28, 2008 - in News
San Jose (CA) - Pick your part, any part with OCZ's do-it-yourself gaming notebook.
OCZ Dominatrix: Your New Gaming Mouse Master
Aug 25, 2008 - in News
It isn't often you see bondage terms used for computer gaming peripherals, but the new OCZ Dominatrix Laser Gaming Mouse might just be worthy enough to tie you up.
Shuttle's Stylish New X27 Makes an Appearance
Aug 22, 2008 - in News
Shuttle has provided Tom’s Hardware with a sneak peak at their stylish new solution to the bulky, comparatively power-hungry basic office or multimedia desktop.
Logitech Introduces New Wireless Keyboard/Mouse Combo
Aug 20, 2008 - in News
Logitech continues its line of solid keyboard offerings today with the unveiling of the Cordless Desktop Wave Pro
VIA Announces Nano-ITX Board With VIA VX800 Chipset
Aug 20, 2008 - in News
VIA Technologies announced the Epia N700 Nano-ITX board, designed as a complete solution for compact industrial PC and embedded automation devices.
Who Says You Need Four Cores?
Aug 19, 2008 - in Reviews
AMD and Intel are both pushing their quad-core offerings as the key to better system performance, but do you really need to spend the money on four cores when two will do?
MSI Overclocking Challenge: French Final
Aug 7, 2008 - in Reviews
When pushed to extreme limits, overclocking can become a sport in its own right, and the team that set the world overclocking record last February is particularly adept at it. We went along with them to the MSI European Overclocking Challenge.
The Apple Mac Cost Misconception
Aug 4, 2008 - in Reviews
Let's settle the myth about Macs being more expensive.
Why I Went Mac But Still Keep My PC
Jul 28, 2008 - in Reviews
Macs have come a very long way and can pretty much do everything a Windows PC can Apple says. So why do I still have a PC right beside me?
Build Your Own Mini-PC for $80
Jul 25, 2008 - in Reviews
Dip below the conventional mainstream market and you'll find highly integrated platforms priced at about $80 dollars. We take a look at a Celeron-powered Intel board to see what sort of performance is available for less than $100.
New Mac Clones From Offshore
Jul 22, 2008 - in News
But where are they really?
System Builder Marathon: Price/Performance
Jul 8, 2008 - in Reviews
Wrapping up our system builder marathon, let’s analyze the price vs. performance of our sub-$1,000, sub-$2,000, and sub-$4,000 PCs.
System Builder Marathon: Overclocking
Jul 2, 2008 - in Reviews
Our three systems have been built and tested, so now it’s time to put them to the real test: will overclocking provide the performance advantages we anticipated?
System Builder Marathon: Sub-$1000 PC
Jun 30, 2008 - in Reviews
Day Three of our SBM brings the least expensive of our current builds. Can a $1000 system compete with the “big boys”?
System Builder Marathon: Sub-$2000 PC
Jun 30, 2008 - in Reviews
It’s day two of our SBM, and our mid-range system is ready to show what a reasonable amount of money buys a PC enthusiast in today’s market.
System Builder Marathon: Sub-$4000 PC
Jun 23, 2008 - in Reviews
Today, day one of our SBM, our highest-priced system sets the performance standard against which the less expensive configurations will be compared.
PC Case Roundup: Spring 2008
Jun 13, 2008 - in Reviews
We look in detail at a diverse cross-section of cases and answer some key questions: What are the features? Which is the loudest? Which provides the best value?