Posts Tagged ‘Hardware’

HTC Vive Vs. Oculus Rift: How Do The VR Headsets Compare?

Back in the day, I’d often get asked whether PlayStation or Xbox was best. Helpless efforts to argue “well, actually, PC is…” aside, I’d defuse their concerns about which had the superior graphics by naming which games you would or wouldn’t get on each. It’s not going to be any different for VR.

But for now, when numbers are really all we have, I’m going to list some numbers at you below. It’s too early to say for sure which headset you should buy if you’re planning on buying one at all, but this should help you to determine whether one virtual reality headset or the other might have better image quality or motion tracking.

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How Much Memory Do You Need For Games?

That's my memory, that is.

Do not glaze over. Or leg it in favour of a CaptainSparklez binge session on YouTube. We’re going to muscle through this together. By ‘this’ I mean the not-obviously-scintillating matter of system memory, also known as RAM. More specifically, I’m talking about two key questions. Does it matter what kind of memory you use? And how much of the stuff do you need? You know. For games. Luckily, this subject lends itself rather nicely to the sort of easy, sweeping and simplistic generalisations of which pathologically idle journalists are fond. But that’s good for you, too, as it means this stuff isn’t actually all that complicated and some actionable answers are attainable. These answers, in fact.

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What The High Oculus Rift Price Means For PC Gaming

£530. That’s how much it cost RPS to order an Oculus Rift to one of our distributed offices in the UK*. While I didn’t pay directly as such, it’s still a blood-chilling sum to spend on what, for now, still feels more like a peripheral to use with a select few experiments than a brave new age of PC gaming. I’m not going to write about whether it’s ‘worth it’ because I don’t know and won’t until the thing is strapped to my face. But I do want to chew over what that high price – which importantly is significantly less in the US, though more still in other territories – means.

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Oculus Pre-Orders Open Now, Price Is $600/£500/€700

And so the age of VR truly begins. It’s been a long time coming, but 2016 is the year we finally find out if facebox gaming will sink or swim. I’m extremely excited personally, but still doubtful that it can reach far outside an adoring techno-niche: something far more elegant is needed for that, I feel. But that’s for the future. Right now, today, the long-awaited consumer version of the Oculus Rift [official site] has gone on pre-sale. The bad news is that it’ll cost you a terrifying $600 before tax and shipping if you’re Stateside, and it gets even worse if you’re based in the UK or Europe – £500 for the former, €700 for the latter – before shipping. Maybe VR just sunk already?

Though you won’t actually have to stump that hideous sum up until the thing’s about to be posted out, which we now know will be in March.
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Oculus Rift Pre-Orders Just A Day Away

“Happy new year!” reads the email, as if this were good news. As if were a happy thing that, mere days after the traumatic horror-spend of Christmas, I need to find a few hundred quid from somewhere to buy an Oculus Rift headset, pre-orders for which open tomorrow.

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Why 2016 Will Be A Great Year For PC Gaming Hardware

2016 is going to be great for PC gaming hardware. Of that I am virtually certain. Last time around, I explained why the next 12 months in graphics chips will be cause for much rejoicing. That alone is big news when you consider graphics is arguably the single most important hardware item when it comes to progressing PC gaming. This week, I’ll tell you why the festivities will also apply to almost every other part of the PC, including CPUs, solid-state drives, screens and more. Cross my heart, hope to die, stick a SATA cable in my eye, 2016 is looking up.
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‘Final’ Oculus Rift Hardware Shipping To Devs

It’s not certain quite yet, but with the HTC/Valve Vive suffering a delay until Spring, it’s looking as though Facebook’s Oculus Rift might be first out of the gates for a consumer PC VR headset. Oculus have announced that “final Rift hardware” is now on its way to developers who are “imminently shipping.” “Imminently” is a very exciting word.

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2016 Will Be Great For Gamers: Part 1, Graphics

This year. Soon to be so last year

Four long, desolate years. Yup, it really was 1,460 sleeps ago, almost to the day, that the very first 28 nanometer graphics chip was launched, allowing card-makers to squeeze billions more transistors into their GPUs – meaning better performance for theoretically lower costs as a result. But here we are and 28nm is still as good as it gets for PC graphics. That’s a bummer, because it has meant AMD and Nvidia have struggled to improve graphics performance without adding a load of cost. It’s just one reason why 2015 has kind of sucked for PC gaming hardware. But do not despair. 2016 is going to be different.

In fact, it’s not just graphics that’s getting a long overdue proverbial to the nether regions. Next year is almost definitely going to be the best year for PC gaming hardware, full stop, for a very long time. So strap in for what is merely part one of my guide to the awesomeness that will be 2016.
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Valve Time Strikes Again: No SteamVR / HTC ‘Til Spring

It wasn’t that many months ago that I had fondly but confidently dreamed I would be spending Christmas in a VR wonderland. Those tykes at Valve seem always able to convince me that this time, this time they’re going to meet a mooted release date. Of course they’re not going to! It is completely, absolutely their thing to not do it! Would they even still be Valve if they did?

In fairness, their Steam VR headset, the Vive, is a partnership with HTC, who are doing the heavy lifting in terms of manufacturing, and it’s them who’ve finally broken cover and admitted that the thing definitely won’t be with us until next year. DAMMIT.
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AMD’s Radeon R9 380X Graphics And ‘Crimson’ Driver

XFX's 380X - other 380X's are available...

Rejoice, for among we mere mortals walks a new AMD graphics card. But hang on. Is it actually new? If it isn’t, what is going on with PC graphics these days and why do we keep having to make do with these thinly disguised rebadges? The answer is simple and the solution, happily, is imminent. Meanwhile, AMD has a new graphics driver out, and by that I mean not just a driver update but a whole new interface and platform. Give it up for AMD Crimson and kiss goodbye to that awful Catalyst interface.

Take the jump for an overview of the new AMD Radeon R9 380X and Crimson and a hint of why 2016 is shaping up to be the most exciting year in PC graphics since the early days of hardware T&L…
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