Gaming on the Go: Laptop vs LAN Rig

mkgotg1_copyBeing on both the host and attendee side of numerous LAN parties, portability becomes just as important as power. That conundrum, paired with being a full-time student, prompted me to purchase a custom built gaming laptop. My editor, however, took a different route, building a miniature 'LAN rig' the size of a lunchbox. That's when our testing lights flicked on: which is the better solution?

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Choiix Comforter Lapdesk

choiix_comfortlapdesk_7Cooler Master is well-known for their Notepal line of notebook cooling options, a family of products most of which we've had the pleasure of reviewing. Furthering their coverage of mobile computers, the Choiix brand from CM offers several new designs including cooler, sleeves, and mice that focus on portability as well as comfortability. Today I sit down with such a hybrid, the Comforter Lapdesk.

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Antec Notebook Cooler To Go

002_lanoc_front_lanoc_watermarkThe notebook cooling market has lately been flooded with makes and models, each attempting to tackle the heat issue that often comes with portable computers, especially in those used for gaming. Antec sent us out their Notebook Cooler To Go, which is designed as you may have guess to be portable. Having reviewed similar products in the past, that portability is often acquired through the sacrifice of performance. Given Antec's reputation for effciency, I was anxious to see how the Cooler To Go stacked up against not only it's similar-sized competition but also the bulkier models that are often required for higher cooling rates.

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Cooler Master NotePal ErgoStand

025_lanoc_front_lanoc_watermarkThe NotePal laptop cooling line from Cooler Master has several options in it's arsenal, many (if not all) that we've had the pleasure of reviewing. However, when we saw their latest addition to the series at CES 2010, we we're anxious to get our hands on it. The ErgoStand boasts many of the features that have made past models so popular, and sports some great new additions of it's own. Fresh to the market, today I sit down with a sample to put to the test.

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VIZO EZSurf

dec_058front_lanoc_Cooling is essential to any computer and has become even more vital for those users running higher-end laptop models, such as gamers. The nature of the notebook is a hot one, and putting extra hardware and stress in little spaces only adds to the problem. We've reviewed many laptop coolers in the past, each with their own tactic to tackle a common enemy (heat). The weapon of choice has always been fans, ranging in size, quantity, and speed. That is, until now. VIZO has introduced a new, fanless tactic to the arsenal of laptop cooling, and sent us a sample to try for ourselves.

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VIZO Ninja HS

rev1_034_LanOC_frontCompanies have been trying to produce the perfect laptop cooler for years, trying to cover all range of sizes and focusing on unique hot spots of the laptop models. This is near impossible with one set mold, or at the very least spreads each aspect so thin it hardly does any good. However The people over at VIZO weren't satisfied with one specific mold. They decided that the best way to satisfy each individual user was to let the user decide their own measurements and fan placements, to meet their own unique cooling needs. The result is the Ninja HS, and VIZO has sent us a sample to try for ourselves.

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FSP NB S90

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It's often something we don't think about until we need it the most: a new notebook power adapter. Your laptop manufacture sent one with the computer, and its been great. But there are many reasons to consider picking up a spare and even more if you're a regular LAN attendee. These underestimated pieces of hardware can save you from a catastrophically epic fail. Great for gaming, work, or leisure an extra notebook adapter can even make you the savior of someone elses good time. However you look at, an extra adapter can never hurt. In fact, the one you pick up may end up out performing the adapter your laptop manufacturer sent. FSP Group has sent us a sample: the NB S90, with that exact goal in mind.

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Otterbox BlackBerry Storm Commuter Case

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I had the chance to take a look at Otterbox's Defender case for the BlackBerry Storm a few months ago. I was impressed with OtterBox's durability but did have a short list of issues. As it turns out they just released a new BlackBerry Storm case called the Commuter. From looking at the PR on the case it looks like they addressed the issues I had with the Defender. Because of that I was excited to put my Defender away and give the Commuter a try.

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Cooler Master NotePal U2

IMG_5877_lrNo its not U2's newest album, but it is a new product from a brand we know and trust. Today I will be taking a look at the NotePal U2 notebook cooler from our friends over at Cooler Master. Lets find out how it compares to the countless other notebook coolers on the market, from past experiences with their notebook coolers we know not to expect anything but the best.

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Luxa2 h1-Touch

IMG_5845_lrWith the newer Smartphone’s like the BlackBerry Storm and the iPhone they have so many uses you want to keep an eye on them all of the time. When you’re sitting at your desk half the day (or half of the night in my case) it would be great to be able to keep an eye on your phone. Luxa2, a Thermaltake company introduced a product with this issue in mind called the H1-Touch. With this being our first look at a Luxa2 product I am excited to see what they have to offer!

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Cooler Master Notepal X2

100_2198-lanocA while back we had the opportunity to take a look at Cooler Master's Notepal Infinite laptop cooler, unique for its ability to support up to 17" wide screen laptop, as opposed to the average 14~15.4" limit. More recently, however, Cooler Master has release a new line of cooling options, and included is the Notepal X2, the Infinite's big brother, so to speak, rivaling it as the second CM laptop cooler supporting wide screens. With a new look, new features, and new design, its time to see how the X2 stacks up in the harsh realm of notebook cooling.

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Choiix Roundup

IMG_5572-lrWhen it comes to laptop accessories you can find just about anything that you can imagine. Choiix a Cooler Master brand has recently been making a name for themselves by marketing what they call lifestyle products with a focus on style and comfort along with simplicity and portability. Most of their products focus on Netbook or Eee PC’s along with small notebooks, obviously a growing market. With the Cooler Master Brand backing them up I expect to see and hear a lot more from Choiix. Today I’m going to take a look at a few of their products just to get an idea of what Choiix is all about.

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OtterBox Samsung Omnia Defender Case

Cell phones have become an integral part of our lifestyle and culture, taking place as almost a necessity in our hierarchy of needs.  Unfortunately these futuristic pieces of tech are typically very fragile and therefore often unfit for more strenuous conditions.  The cell phone phenomenon has persisted for years now however, and solutions to this problem have been developed.  Phone cases aren't exactly a wondrous, technologically ingenious way of protecting your new gadget, but they work.  One manufacturer, Otterbox, has developed a reputation for making quality phone accessories.  New phones are being released every day, and yet Otterbox seems to have a unique case solution for most if not all phones.  They  were kind enough to send us a case for the Samsung Omnia, known as the Defender, to test in everyday use.  Here is how it measured up.

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BlackBerry Storm Defender Case

I recently entered the world of Blackberrys with an upgrade to the BlackBerry Storm. Being my first touch screen also I was very concerned about damaging the phone. After researching different cases I found OtterBox who makes heavy duty cases for numerous Smartphone’s and mp3 players including the Storm. Today I will be talking about my experience with the OtterBox Defender case.

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Cooler Master SNA95

IMG_5287 [lr] [lrsm]If you have ever lost or damaged your notebook’s power cable before you understand how important and expensive they can be. The cable for my Eee PC runs just under $55 bucks on Amazon right now, and my old laptop’s cable was even more than that. Cooler Master recently introduced their SNA95 power supply for notebooks.  With 95 watts and adapters to fit almost any available notebooks the SNA95 looks like it could be a good replacement or supplement for your notebook. Let's take a closer look.

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Cooler Master Notepal D1

D1 Pics 051 [lanoc_sm]A while back, Cooler Master sent us the Notepal Infinite, a notebook cooling solution to cover wider-screened models, sporting a self-claimed 17 degree difference. Recently, we received the new Notepal D1, a turn around of its sister product, per say. Designed specifically for increased mobility, the D1 is only about half as long as any laptop and wide enough to fit a standard size model. Sure, smaller is always better when it comes to those of constantly on the go, but how does it actually stack up against other notebook coolers, specifically the elder Infinite?

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Razer Gear 17 Inch Laptop Sleeve

IMG_4722 [lr] [lrsm]Our friends over at Razer have been hard at work introducing a new product line called Razer Gear. Along with that product line you will find products ranging from T-Shirts to messenger bags. Today I am going to take a quick look at their 17 inch Laptop Sleeve to get an idea of what all of the fuss is about.

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Choiix Easy Fit Netbook Sleeve

IMG_4758 [lr] [lrsm]I recently decided to jump onto the Netbook bandwagon (a little late) as a portable replacement for my 14.1 inch laptop. The smaller size of my 10 inch Netbook gave me the ability to carry it on me most of the time without a heavy laptop bag slowing me down. Of course this means that it is being transported with almost no protection. While looking into options I was peaking around at the Choiix website remembering that they had a lot of creative solutions for Netbooks at CES. A small professional sleeve caught my eye called the Easy Fit Netbook Sleeve. Today I am going to see how well this sleeve perform in everyday use. Will it protect your Netbook from damage? I will soon find out.

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Spire Endo Laptop Bag

100_0398-lanoc1Today I will be reviewing the Endo laptop messenger bag from Spire. Laptops are made to be portable and are also quite expensive . When taking your laptop out into the public you need as much protection as you can get. Is this the one messenger bag to top the rest?

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Cooler Master Notepal Infinite

100_1558-lanocsmThere are a lot of things a laptop provides: generally low power consumption, connectivity, and portability to name a few. But when a user takes a laptop beyond spreadsheets and blogging, there are certain areas that are left lacking. Extensive use creates stress on the system and many styles' neglected ergonomics create stress on the user. Cooler Master has created a solution for both.

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