Home > Blog
September 19, 2021
VR has really kicked into gear these past couple years, with modern VR headsets and games now providing some seriously awesome experiences. Here I break down the current consumer headset market as someone who follows the industry closely, and discuss the pros and cons of the current 3 most popular PC VR gaming headsets.
September 11, 2021
Most modern games lean more heavily on the GPU than CPU, since graphics is the part of gaming that progresses most over time (while the demands of gameplay and mechanics processing doesn't necessarily rise by the same rate over time). But for various reasons that I'll explain, certain titles can really hit your CPU more so than others.
September 7, 2021
I tackle the nuanced topic of CPU and GPU bottlenecks, and attempt to break it down in as simple language as possible including how CPU and GPU bottlenecks work and how to choose a CPU GPU combo to avoid CPU bottlenecks.
August 2, 2021
One of the best PC games of the modern era deserves its own build guide. Even after all these years, GTA V is one of the most played and most streamed/watched titles to this day. It can also really put modern GPUs to the test when you crank up the settings at 1440p or higher.
July 28, 2021
Like CPUs, GPUs also have thermal paste applied onto the chip to more efficiently transfer heat to the heatsink. Replacing the paste on an old GPU may potentially restore its condition somewhat in terms of operating temperature (which may also positively impact performance).
July 21, 2021
In the past couple weeks we've finally started to see a bunch of used GPUs hit the market due to recent changes in the crypto mining world. But is buying a used graphics card that was used in a mining rig or farm worth the savings? What are the risks, and does crypto mining damage a card more so than gaming does? Let's discuss both sides of the coin.
July 19, 2021
Fortnite is well known to run well on even a potato, but if you're eyeing off a 144Hz or 240Hz monitor like competitive players, or simply want to run high/epic settings, you'll still need a certain baseline of specs for super smooth performance to not let lame lag get in the way of your Royale domination.
June 30, 2021
The gaming phenomenon that is Call of Duty Warzone keeps on keeping on with no stopping in sight. Here's what to know about choosing optimal hardware for the best experience if you're planning to upgrade your setup this year.
May 23, 2021
A notoriously demanding game on both the GPU and CPU (even RAM). Here are my findings after scouring all corners of the interwebz for every EFT benchmark I could lay my eyes on, to bring to you recommended PC builds for 1080p, 1440p, and 4K.
April 21, 2021
Often overlooked when building a PC, the power supply is a crucial part that makes up a computer. Selecting a cheap, poor quality one is setting up your PC to encounter problems down the line. In this guide we cover the best quality and best value PSUs on the market right now, along with everything you need to know about PSU features if you're new to building computers.
April 6, 2021
It seems graphics cards will remain difficult to purchase for at least a while longer, with premade PCs actually being an easier way to get a hold of the ever-evasive, massively in-demand RTX 3000 and RX 6000 series. Since my last prebuilt PC guide was published last year, it's time for some all new recommendations based on my latest findings this past week, including tips on how to find reliable prebuilt PCs from good manufacturers in order to avoid wasting your money on a dud.
Mar 14, 2021
The NH-D15 is a standout high-end CPU cooler, often featured in our recommended builds. Installation isn't hard but there are a few key things to know that may not be apparent from solely following the official instructional manual.
Mar 3, 2021
To say it's not the greatest time to buy a new graphics card would be understatement of the century. Let's talk about it, including what NVidia is trying to do to help gamers.
Feb 16, 2021
Everyone knows Cyberpunk is one of the most demanding games on the market, but do you really need monster specs? We put the game to the test against a typical mid-range gaming PC setup to see whether high/ultra settings and/or ray tracing is viable without having to sell a kidney for a top of the line graphics card, including a look at how different DLSS settings affect performance.
Jan 28, 2021
I've tinkered around with Cyberpunk's settings for a while now, and here are my findings including a ton of screenshot comparisons of various presets, ray tracing, and DLSS settings to help you more easily find the right balance of performance vs image quality.
Jan 24, 2021
I've now had time to play and benchmark one of the biggest releases in modern gaming history, and here are my thoughts on the game and what to know about choosing parts to achieve your desired level of performance for your gaming monitor's resolution.
Jan 21, 2021
AMD is sitting pretty on top of the CPU stack, but the slightly higher than average release prices of their latest Ryzen 5000 series has opened the door for Intel to be a very reasonable "value" alternative. Competition in the CPU market is fierce right now, and if you want the best value, we break down the chips you're looking for.
Jan 9, 2021
Unless you've just returned from Mars courtesy of SpaceX, graphics cards are in huge demand right now without the supply to meet it, meaning you'll need a little luck or cunning to grab one of the new GPUs from NVidia or AMD (and at a regular price). But it's not impossible, so if you're up to a challenge these are the top models I suggest to get the fastest gaming performance for your budget.
Jan 1, 2021
Confused about BIOS updates and 500 series (B550 and X570) motherboards? This guide breaks down what to know when planning a new PC build with a Ryzen 5000 CPU like the 5600X, 5800X, 5900X or 5950X - there is a chance that you will need to update your motherboard's BIOS before being able to boot up with one of these new processors.
Jan 1, 2021
A lot of modern AMD and Intel motherboards have a BIOS flashback button that gives you the ability to update the BIOS without a CPU installed, but not all. Here is a complete list of all current motherboards that have this neat feature, which is especially handy for anyone building a new Ryzen 5000 build that may require you to update the BIOS prior to being able to boot-up with a Ryzen 5000 CPU.
Dec 29, 2020
If you buy a B550 or X570 today, you still might need to update its BIOS before being able to boot-up your new system with one of the latest Ryzen 5000 CPUs (5600X, 5900X, etc). Here I detail exactly how to do this on any motherboard and answer common questions surrounding this somewhat mysterious yet sometimes crucial method.
Dec 20, 2020
Another overhaul of my previous recommended builds that takes into account the many changes in the market; the 5600X and 5900X make their first appearance, there's a ton of new B550 and X570 recommendations, and I show which parts you need for 60FPS in Cyberpunk at any resolution.
Nov 30, 2020
Cyber Monday is about on-par with Black Friday when it comes to online tech deals, so just like on Friday I'll be searching for, vetting, and listing any noteworthy deals on quality components, systems, accessories, and more.
Nov 27, 2020
Black Friday weekend is here and as I do every year I'll be tracking down the best standout deals I find on all things PC building and gaming, including accessories, VR, software deals (ie VPNs), and whatever else I can find that's worth considering.
Nov 25, 2020
A comprehensive step by step guide on installing one of the most popular CPU coolers of all time. Some beginners find installing this cooler a little confusing if you solely rely on the basic diagrams of the included manual; the photos and explanations in this tutorial are here to make things easier.
Nov 19, 2020
Last year we made a list of the most useful, trustworthy applications to consider installing on your fresh new custom build, but just like hardware components, the software game also changes quite quickly. It's time for a new, updated list of software recommendations for this year, including the current best anti-virus and security software, the best hardware monitoring and FPS benchmarking programs, and everything in-between (including VPNs).
Nov 16, 2020
4K 144Hz is the ultimate resolution and refresh rate combination for gaming right now, but choosing a 4K 144Hz monitor isn't easy as it's going to cost a sizeable chunk of change (if not a kidney). You really want to do thorough due diligence to select the right model, as no monitor is perfect; there's always a compromise somewhere. After looking into every single 4K 144Hz model I could find on the market right now and analyzing the findings of professional reviewers and general consumers alike, these are the models I can suggest.
Nov 3, 2020
After 2 weeks of in-depth research on the current state of the gaming display market, our monitor buyer's guide gets a complete overhaul with brand new recommendations for Q4 2020 and a bunch of useful tips and knowledge nuggets to help you more fruitfully navigate the oftentimes-confusing monitor market.
Oct 17, 2020
A good pair of headphones will almost always beat out a similar priced gaming headset in terms of sound quality for the price, as the latter are almost always average headphones with a cheap mic slapped on, along with gamer-focused marketing and fancy-sounding features to inflate the price.
Oct 13, 2020
If you're after the ultimate gaming setup, sound quality is part of the equation. Here we break down some of the better value speaker sets on the market right now, including the top budget speakers, mid-range 2.1 setups, and high-end 5.1 systems for epic surround sound.
Oct 11, 2020
Within PC gaming communities you often hear that building your own PC is really easy these days and that anyone and everyone can and should do it. Even Grandma if she suddenly woke up one day with a sudden strong urge to dominate some sorry noobs on PUBG - apparently she should build a new rig too. But is it really as easy as they say? Should everyone build their own PC, even if they have 0 hardware knowledge?
Oct 7, 2020
Sound cards are a rare inclusion in a gaming PC build, and it should absolutely remain that way. However, while 99% of gamers shouldn't even consider getting one, there's always exceptions to the rule and the audio fanatics among us sporting seriously super-powered professional-grade headphones or speakers may want (or even need) to look beyond what motherboard audio can provide to take full advantage of that golden gear. If you're part of the audio 1%, these are the best internal sound cards we can recommend.
Oct 5, 2020
The new RTX 30 series graphics cards from NVidia has changed the hardware market, and in this latest update to our recommended PC builds we break down what to know when planning the best RTX 3060 Ti, 3070, 3080, or 3090 build along with our usual budget PC recommendations for anyone planning a super cost-effective rig. If you need help choosing the best value parts for a new system build, this comprehensive guide is here to help you avoid getting stuck in eternal research land of doom.
Oct 1, 2020
It's well known that picking parts yourself and building your own computer will save you money, but there's a few key things to know when choosing components that if you're not aware of can lead to overspending. Here we cover the basics of picking parts to save money, plus a bunch of extra tips to cut costs further if you're on a tight budget where every dollar counts.
Sep 23, 2020
Buying a refurbished gaming desktop is an option worth considering if you want to cut costs when buying a prebuilt system, but only if you find the right deal from a trusted place and understand what refurbished really means (and the risks). We explain the pros and cons to buying refurbished computers and hand-pick some of the better deals we could find on the market right now.
Sep 20, 2020
The used graphics card market has seen a flood of gamers and enthusiasts selling their current or previous gen cards in the hopes of upgrading to RTX 3000 this holiday season, meaning it's a decent time to find a bargain within the still-modern RTX 2000 or RX 5000 series if you can't afford the shiny new 3000 series, or don't want to wait until next year to get a GPU (which may be the only hope of getting a 3000 card due to the well-publicized low-stock (and/or high bot) launch of the 3000 series.
Sep 20, 2020
This week NVIDIA has finally well and truly put a coffin in SLI as we know it, and starting next year won't be releasing official SLI drivers for future games. However, multi-GPU setups will live on thanks to DirectX 12 (or Vulkan) mGPU, though only if developers choose to implement mGPU in their code themselves. We break down what it all means in as simple terms as possible, including a revisited look at the pros and cons to SLI for those considering it for older cards (or for the 3090, which actually will support it, despite future-game SLI drivers to be officially off the cards).
Sep 9, 2020
We re-visit our Overwatch build guide with a fresh look based on the 2020 market to see which CPU, GPU and RAM you'll need to reach the performance level you desire, and more tips including whether NVIDIA or AMD is faster, the most popular monitors used by pros, and more.
Sep 3, 2020
League of Legends is one of the most popular eSports on the planet and we take a fresh 2020 look at which modern PC parts you'll require to get flawless 60FPS, 144FPS, or 240FPS performance to play at your absolute best without lame lag getting in the way.
Aug 28, 2020
The recent release of the B550 chipset has made choosing an AMD board more confusing than it already was, but with a little basic understanding of the differences between these two types of AMD boards and whether they apply to you, the decision becomes a lot simpler.
Aug 5, 2020
If you're planning a build in Q3 and don't care to wait for upcoming GPU and CPU releases later this year, I'm excited to share with you 14 brand new build guides for this month - all in the one complete guide. These builds have been over 3 weeks in the making, and have all been designed from the ground up based on the current August market as great examples of how to maximize gaming performance, cooling and aesthetics for 14 different budgets (IMHO).
July 10, 2020
Choosing a motherboard can be one of the more confusing component choices when building your first PC. Following the recent launches of B550 (AMD) and Z490 (Intel) motherboards, we've revisited our main motherboard buyer's guide for beginners and done a complete re-write from scratch. The makeover includes new diagrams, 2020 motherboard/CPU compatibility "cheatsheet", and a bunch of new FAQs covering almost everything you'd need to know as a beginner shopping for your first motherboard.
July 6, 2020
The MSI B450-A Pro MAX is one of the best overall "bang for buck" budget AMD motherboards for a practical, non-flashy mid-range gaming PC. Its new B550 brother is set to become available any day now, but comes in at roughly $40 (US) more. Are the improvements over the B450 worth it?
July 3, 2020
Choosing an AMD motherboard just got more confusing with the release of the B550 chipset, as B550's have been released in quite dramatically different price tiers, all the way from < $100 for the cheapest model to around $300 for the top model (which is well within X570 territory). The questions being asked by every gamer and his goat this month is whether or not B550 is worth it over B450 for budget PCs (which we'll cover today), and if B550 is a better buy than X570 (article on that coming soon).
July 3, 2020
B550 motherboards bring PCIe 4.0 to the masses, but you might have heard that it's no big deal. We explain why that is, how PCIe 4.0 affects SSDs and GPUs (the only two devices that can use it right now), and when (or if) PCIe 4.0 will actually be important for a gaming PC. We'll also cover other common questions surrounding PCIe in general for good measure, as it's often a confusing topic for beginners.
See the Archives for older posts