Thermaltake has churned out a long list of products under their Tt eSPORTS branding this past year and with each offering have displayed unique designs and portability minded function.  Earlier we reviewed the MEKA G-Unit Illuminated keyboard and today we are back with a headset. The Cronos is a mid-range offering looking to deliver on the brands staples while also offering clear audio and voice communication all gamers crave. Join me as I put the Cronos through its paces and see if it is indeed worthy of the Tt eSPORTS name.

When I spoke about the AMD launch of its new R9 cards, I mentioned that most of the cards are rebadged versions of the 7000 Series cards. That doesn’t mean manufactures couldn’t go out of their way to improve on the designs themselves. Asus attempted this with their flagship R9 280X called the Matrix R9 280X Platinum. The Matrix itself brings a lot of amazing features, but the platinum edition is handpicked and equipped with a higher overclock to go with it all. Today I’m going to take a close look at the card to see what sets it apart from the rest of the R9 280X’s on the market.

When it comes to AMD video card manufactures there really only a few different names that come to mind. At the top of that list for most people will be Sapphire. Those of you who made it out to LanOC v13 will also remember that Sapphire joined us for our event as well. When they offered to let us take a look at their new R9 series cards, I jumped at the chance. Boy was I surprised to see that they had made some significant changed to their product line, especially the Toxic model that we are going to take a look at today.

Every new launch means new custom PCB designs from the manufactures. The first to hit our office this time around was an R9 270X from Gigabyte with their Windforce cooler design and an overclock. In the past I have been impressed with Gigabytes Windforce designs for their pure cooling power, I’m excited to see what three cooling fans on a large heatsink will do for keeping the R9 270X cool. But first let’s take a look at the card.

In the world of Small Form Factor builds you are always compromising. You either have to give up some performance for a smaller size or give up some size to get the performance you are looking for. Recently though, this trend has been starting to change. My last LAN build was easy to carry around while having (at the time) the second fastest GPU from Nvidia and a high end CPU. Of course because of my GPU I couldn’t go any smaller. Asus has a new GPU that is going to change that. Their new GTX 670 Direct CU Mini is the same length of a MiniITX motherboard. With that size, my LAN rig is going to need a complete rebuild.. To go smaller!

Here in just a few months it will have been two years from when Motorola introduced their Razr MAXX. That length of time is significant for a few reasons. First, most of you know that a lot of people run on two year contracts for their phones so a lot of the original Razr MAXX owners will be on the market for replacements here at the start of the year. Two years is also important because it wasn’t long before the original MAXX was introduced that Google purchased the company for a whopping 13 Billion dollars. In that time as well things have changed in the phone market. Sure the iPhone is still around but who would have thought that Blackberry would still be around and that the phones that were once so powerful and huge are now considered slow and normal in size. What a perfect time for Motorola to introduce its third MAXX phone. This time the they dropped the Razr name all together and just went with the Droid MAXX and its smaller battered brother is called the Droid Ultra. I’ve been using the MAXX for a while now and today I’m going to tell you a little about my experience.

If you have been paying attention at all, there has been a lot of talk about what AMD has been up to on the video card side of things. Part of this is related to them inviting some of their press and partners out to Hawaii to show off their upcoming product launch. Why Hawaii? Well this follows their islands name scheme. For those who didn’t make it out there they did a live video stream as well. There they showed off information about the cards but avoided specifications and major details. In place they focused on details about their new focus on in game audio for example.

If people left things alone and didn’t continue to innovate we would all still be driving around in Model T’s rather than the car options we have now. Lian Li has impressed me every time I have had a chance to check out their cases, but they haven’t been sitting on their hands. I recently had their new PC-10N come in. With their new rail design for motherboard installation and with its corners cut off the PC-10N does have a few new features while sticking with the all-aluminum design that Lian Li is known for. Of course I can’t leave it at that, I had to dig into the case and see what it is all about.

Years ago most every PC you came across was beige in color and a tower or desktop in size/shape. As things have progressed we saw that slowly move from beige to black and we now see a lot of manufactures offering white as well. It has happened so much other component manufactures have taken notice and we now see everything from RAM to power supplies that also come in white to match. When it comes to size, things have changed as well. We now have a range of options from large builds down to small table top PCs. Today I’m going to take a look at the Fractal Node 304 white. We have covered the Node 304 in the past but I’m excited to see what it looks like in white.

Earlier this year we went hands-on with the R4 from Fractal, a mid tower solution to the Define product line. We were quite pleased with the humble case, the simple Fractal facade silently housing a myriad of features. Our one complaint was the weight of the chassis, to which Fractal responded by sending us the R4’s big brother full tower, the XL R2. I'll be installing a full ATX building and, against better judgement, showing it off at our upcoming LAN party.Take a look with us, we could use an extra hand lifting.

 

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