In 2013 Tom's Hardware reviewed several hundred products. We take a lot of pride in how conservative we are with award recognition, but we still managed to hand out 45 honors. Of those, only eight achieved Tom's Hardware Elite status; the rest received a Smart Buy or Tom's Hardware Approved award.
That was our opinion. Now it's time to register yours.
We're kicking off our first ever Tom's Hardware Reader’s Choice Awards, selected by you, our most vocal fans, biggest critics, and loyal readers, all. We want you to help us recognize the best of the best.
We acknowledge that, in the course of a year, much changes. Still, most of these products are still relevant. We also realize that we’re leaving out an entire month's worth of potentially exceptional hardware. December 2013 will count toward our 2014 awards.
You can vote for any five products by visiting this page. Choose within categories, across categories, across award types, however you want to do it. Start voting now, and we'll close voting officially on December 16 at 12:01 AM EST. We'll reveal your collective five winners that following week.
For those of you in the U.S. who vote, you'll be entered into a sweepstakes. We'll pick 22 winners. The list of prizes is huge, and includes a complete Bolt system from Digital Storm; two very nice Lenovo ThinkPads, provided by Newegg; a Canon EOS Rebel SL1 camera, also from Newegg; an HP Chromebook from Newegg; a Nexus 7 tablet from Newegg; ASRock Z87-based motherboards; SanDisk 256 GB SSDs; Thermaltake keyboards, mice, and headsets; Cooler Master cases and power supplies; and Patriot mobile rechargeable batteries. A huge thanks to the companies who pitched in to make voting a little more exciting.
If you’re outside the country, we’d still love to hear your opinion; we just can’t ship off the bounty. Since this is a question that comes up frequently, we wanted to explain. As you know, we limit our giveaways to residents of the U.S., excluding Rhode Island, who are 18 years of age or older, even though we have a massive international audience that we value very much. However, officially, this is the Tom's Hardware U.S. website. Every government jurisdiction has its own rules for giveaways (contests and sweepstakes). These rules relate to such things as the responsibilities of contest sponsors including special fees that must be paid by them (hence, Rhode Island); whether giveaways are allowed at all; who can enter (relating to factors like age); and how we report prize values for tax purposes, including the required forms we must use. Every country and every state, province and local jurisdiction in every country has different rules. Rules in the U.S. are fairly uniform across government entities. We do not have the resources to assure that our contests and sweepstakes comply with giveaway rules in every jurisdiction, though, which is why those limitations are in place.
Back to the story. In the following pages, we list every award with a link to the round-up or review it appeared in, the author, the actual award classification, and a statement summarizing why we gave each product the award. Each page is organized alphabetically. We’re breaking this article up into a few categories, with a couple of catch-alls at the end. We hope it helps jog your memory before, or while you're voting. We also list all of the winners in this summary set of pages:
For those counting at home, we gave out seven awards in the storage/memory category, one for Wi-Fi, one eBook Reader, two Web Browsers, five Monitor/Displays, four Graphics Cards or GPUs, one Mouse, two Keyboards, 13 Motherboards, seven Coolers, and two Cases.