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Best Of CES 2014: Tom's Hardware Recognizes 12 Products

Outside The Box: Razer Project Christine

Razer's Project Christine was perhaps the most debated award amongst our editors. The company's modular PC concept allows users to easily swap components in and out with speed and ease, stacking them in individually-sealed boxes. Each chassis, or frame, features liquid cooling and noise cancellation, so builders don't have to worry about adding their own.

In a way, Project Christine goes against everything we believe in. We're avid PC builders, so we don't need the simple (yet inevitably marked-up) approach that Razer is offering. On the other hand, if Christine does go to market, it may end up encouraging those who wouldn't have previously considered piecing a PC together to get started. It's a different way of doing things. As such, we're giving it an award for unconventional thinking.

Read more about Project Christine here.

Most Innovative Technology: Oculus Rift

Oculus Rift was at CES last year, but the experience in 2014 is so much better. Oculus VR was showing off its latest hardware innovations in the form of a prototype named Crystal Cove.

This new model sports positional tracking and a low-persistence OLED display, making it more advanced than the development kit already available for order. The result is a virtual reality environment that lets you move your head, lean forward, lean back, and dodge side to side. It's awesome stuff. Check out our hands-on in the link below.

Read more about Oculus Rift Crystal Cove here.

  • vertexx
    Not too sure about the Sapphire choice. MSI IMO has the best set of coolers this year. Based on some reviews out there, it looks like they have the best 780ti card IMO. Will be looking forward to the head to head matchups for 290x.
    Reply
  • hasappra
    Not too sure about the Sapphire choice. MSI IMO has the best set of coolers this year. Based on some reviews out there, it looks like they have the best 780ti card IMO. Will be looking forward to the head to head matchups for 290x.
    This version Tri-X is the new cooler from Sapphire and it really is probably the best open air cooler that exist today. Furmark temp only 74C with noise only 43dB. That's awesome. You can read its preview in http://www.anandtech.com/show/7601/sapphire-radeon-r9-290-review-our-first-custom-cooled-290
    Reply
  • house70
    Corsair Cherry MX RGB? Forums are filled with people that have reported problems with their backlit keyboards. LEDs that last a couple weeks, then go out. I give them props for using mechanical switches, but that's where the props end (and it's not even something innovative, has been done for decades). As far as backlighting goes, they have the worst record by far. Just because something is shiny doesn't mean it gets the prize. It needs to withstand the test of time, and I would take any Corsair KB praise with a huge grain of salt.
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  • eklipz330
    that monitor is something else... too bad im gonna stay with AMD because of freesynchoping to snag a xl2420z when it hits shelves!
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  • xyster
    That monitor is hot. While AMD might have freesync, it sounds to me like freesync is a backhanded attempt to catch up with Nvidia on their innovation. Even if freesync does catch on, it should be compatible with Gsync monitors, no?, so why not just get something now that offers longterm flexibility in terms of options instead of waiting to see. if only they could get IPS and lightboost somehow added in.. mmmm..
    Reply
  • xyster
    That monitor is hot. While AMD might have freesync, it sounds to me like freesync is a backhanded attempt to catch up with Nvidia on their innovation. Even if freesync does catch on, it should be compatible with Gsync monitors, no?, so why not just get something now that offers longterm flexibility in terms of options instead of waiting to see. if only they could get IPS and lightboost somehow added in.. mmmm..
    Reply
  • Serpent of Heaven
    That monitor is hot. While AMD might have freesync, it sounds to me like freesync is a backhanded attempt to catch up with Nvidia on their innovation. Even if freesync does catch on, it should be compatible with Gsync monitors, no?, so why not just get something now that offers longterm flexibility in terms of options instead of waiting to see. if only they could get IPS and lightboost somehow added in.. mmmm..
    Free-Sync is apart of the VESA Standards. In theory, I could also be used with TVs, other displays, and laptops. This could also be used by your PS4 and Xbox Ones because of the AMD APUs is running the heart of the consoles. All hardware from the AMD 5000 Series and above, can utilize Free-Sync with the help of a Driver.Free-Sync is just one of many techs AMD had hiding on the side for the past 3 years. Some other examples would be Stacked Ram on the GPU like NVidia's Volta. Volta is the successor to Maxwell. AMD has already researched and made prototypes a few years go. They are just allowing NVidia to market these goodies for them because they are good at making a "big deal" about those new types of techs. AMD doesn't need to do a lot of work with the PR of the products when NVidia throws $$$ at the publicity of similar innovations. This equates to saving money on AMD's end.The ROG monitor is nice, but it's a TN panel. It will have it's up and downs with the addition of NVidia's G-Sync. Plus, besides that $799.99 price tag, you'll have to run firmware and driver updates for G-Sync with the NVidia WHQL and Beta Drivers. Translation: Don't expect it to work 100% up to specifications, all the time. There is bound to be some drivers that will cause issues with G-Sync. The same could be said about Free-Sync, but with all bases, a majority believe that AMD Drivers are still pretty bad. Lately, they've actually been getting better and better.
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  • The Zalman looks pretty sick.
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  • somebodyspecial
    For those who don't like clicking a dozen pics...The Best Of CES 2014 Graphics Card: Sapphire Tri-X OC 290 Mobile Platform: Nvidia Tegra K1 Case: Zalman AHV Computer Case Z15 Storage Device: LaCie Little Big Disk Thunderbolt 2 Gaming Peripheral: Corsair Cherry MX RGB Notebook: Lenovo Carbon X1 Automotive: 2015 Hyundai Genesis Sedan With Blue Link Monitor/Display: Asus ROG Swift PG278Q Platform: Gigabyte Brix Pro Mobile Device: Huawei Ascend Mate 2 With LTE Outside The Box: Razer Project Christine Most Innovative Technology: Oculus Rift
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  • cats_Paw
    Rift Rift and again Rift.All the other products seem flashy with a lot of marketing, but no real innovation.Tegra K1 looks promissing no doubt but its yet to see what it can do.
    Reply