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PC World - Product reviews
  • Solid State Doctor 3.1 review: SSD TRIM for the massesSolid State Doctor 3.1 review: SSD TRIM for the masses

    For anyone not running Windows 8.1 with its "optimize drive" command, there haven't been a lot of options for forcing your SSD to clean house—i.e. erasing cells, consolidating data, or whatever other techniques SSD vendors use to make sure that the drive continues to perform at its peak and doesn't suffer debilitating conditions such as erase-before-write contention. Solid State Doctor, a toolbox utility from the LC Technology data recovery house, will spur nearly any SSD into tidying up the place via TRIM commands.

  • Dreamweaver CC 2014 review: Web design and development tool gets even more visualDreamweaver CC 2014 review: Web design and development tool gets even more visual

    With the latest version of Dreamweaver, Adobe adds even more visual aids—so many that it might be possible to produce Web content without even looking at the application’s code view. But it’s not FrontPage 98 or PageMill 2.0, by a long shot—Dreamweaver CC 2014 is so deep and so complex that you’ll spend as much time learning the application as you do building your pages.

  • Lumia 635 review: Could this be the low-priced future of Windows Phone?Lumia 635 review: Could this be the low-priced future of Windows Phone?

    I initially wanted to dislike the Lumia 635, only because I feel Microsoft’s Lumia phones can aspire to something better. But the phone delivers the basics, with one inexplicable omission: a front-facing camera.

  • Zotac Zbox EN760 Plus review: Don’t be fooled by its size, this box has graphics horsepower

    I’ve been trying to sneak a PC into my family’s living room for years. Gaming consoles no longer cut it for me. I want to see the same games on the big-screen TV that I play on the beastly gaming rig in my home office. The Stieger Dynamics LEET is gorgeous, wonderfully over-the-top, and would likely pass muster with my better half, but it’s way outside my budget.

  • 2014 Razer Blade Pro review: Only slightly better than last-year's model 2014 Razer Blade Pro review: Only slightly better than last-year's model

    Razer’s 2014 Blade Pro seems to be caught between two hardware generations. While its less-professional cousin, the 14-inch Blade, benefits from an enormous bump in graphics horsepower and display resolution this year, the 17-inch Blade Pro looks much the same as it did in 2013.

  • D-Link DIR-880L review: A good, basic 802.11ac Wi-Fi routerD-Link DIR-880L review: A good, basic 802.11ac Wi-Fi router

    If you’re a big fan of D-Link’s connected-home product line, D-Link’s DIR-880L is the 802.11ac Wi-Fi router to buy. D-Link is building out an ecosystem of IP cameras, motion sensors, and lighting controls that are super-easy to deploy, thanks to the company’s “zero-config” architecture. This router is also a good choice for if you’re looking for a new router that’s easy to set up and manage, with or without a PC.

  • WD My Cloud Mirror review: Your private cloud, now with built-in redundancyWD My Cloud Mirror review: Your private cloud, now with built-in redundancy

    I liked Western Digital’s My Cloud network-attached storage device when I reviewed it late last year, but relying on a single-drive NAS can be risky. If that drive fails, and you don’t have a backup, you could lose all your data—forever.

  • CameraBag 2.6 review: Photo editor brings the power and speed of Instagram to WindowsCameraBag 2.6 review: Photo editor brings the power and speed of Instagram to Windows

    Love them or hate them, it looks like photo filters are here to stay. The good news is that they can be subtle: Photos don't have to look like they were taken 45 years ago and left to yellow in some dusty album. Nevercenter's CameraBag ($20, currently on sale for $15) is a snappy and capable image editor that specializes in applying full-image effects and filters.

  • Samsung ATIV Book 9  2014 Edition  review: This laptop sounds as gorgeous as it looksSamsung ATIV Book 9 (2014 Edition) review: This laptop sounds as gorgeous as it looks

    Based on the way most laptops sound, I’d venture a guess that audio is the last thing engineers think about when they design laptops. In fact, I’d go one step further to speculate that marketing efforts drive most laptop builders’ decisions to collaborate with audio companies. But I won’t lump Samsung’s 2014 ATIV Book 9 in that crowd, because it sounds absolutely divine—especially with headphones.

  • The Wolf Among Us review: A gritty noir murder mystery, with fairy talesThe Wolf Among Us review: A gritty noir murder mystery, with fairy tales

    It's taken nine months, but The Wolf Among Us has finally wrapped its first season. The question going into this was never, I don't think, "Will it be a good game?" but rather, "Can it live up to Telltale's other series, the award-winning (and absolutely soul-crushing) video game adaptation of The Walking Dead?"

  • Digital Storm Vanquish II review: An affordable gamer with limited expandabilityDigital Storm Vanquish II review: An affordable gamer with limited expandability

    That you can buy a capable gaming platform such as the Digital Storm Vanquish II Ultimate for a mere $1269 speaks well of the GPU industry. With Nvidia’s GeForce GTX 770 and its 2GB frame buffer on board, Digital Storm’s Vanquish II Ultimate blazed its way through our 1920x1080 gaming tests, and even had enough juice to maintain playable (if not optimal) frame rates at 2560x1600. The only area where this PC will fall short for some is expansion: It doesn’t have enough memory slots, PCIe slots, or SATA ports.

  • Lenovo ThinkPad 10 review: A thinner, lighter Windows tablet with a high-res displayLenovo ThinkPad 10 review: A thinner, lighter Windows tablet with a high-res display

    Lenovo’s ThinkPad 2 was a great tablet, but Intel’s older Atom platform struggled to run Windows 8 smoothly, the tablet itself was chunky, and its screen had fewer pixels than the smaller, but newer ThinkPad 8. The ThinkPad 10 brings all of those old spots up to spec without sacrificing any of the great quality or productivity perks of the ThinkPad line.

  • Feed your greed for speed by installing SSDs in RAID 0Feed your greed for speed by installing SSDs in RAID 0

    Tired of waiting while your top-of-the-line SSD loads files? Is what once seemed blindingly fast just not cutting it any more? Relax, you’re not the only one suffering with Greed for Speed (GFS). Plenty of velocity addicts are stricken with the same affliction. Let us help.

  • MiniTool Partition Wizard 8 review: A potent free partitioning toolkitMiniTool Partition Wizard 8 review: A potent free partitioning toolkit

    MiniTool's Partition Wizard is a highly competent partitioning toolkit that experienced users should have little difficulty getting up to speed with—largely because it looks and feels just like a half dozen others: toolbar, list of functions to the left, and a pane with drive information to the right. While familiar, the interface is particularly focused in its approach and exceptionally easy to use for basic operations. Good for the less experienced. However, its interface approach to some advanced operations such as merge and re-size could use a bit of work.  

  • Apricorn Aegis Padlock DT review: Capacious, secure storage for your desktopApricorn Aegis Padlock DT review: Capacious, secure storage for your desktop

    If you’re looking for secure storage with lots of capacity for your home or workplace, Apricorn’s Aegis Padlock DT is a good place to start the search. This 3.5-inch external hard drive is relatively affordable—for the secure storage market, that is. It’s FIPS 140-2 certified and can be administered via an on-board keypad. That makes it more versatile than solutions that rely on client software for encryption and access.

  • Samsung Wireless Mobile Media Streaming Device review: Slightly buggySamsung Wireless Mobile Media Streaming Device review: Slightly buggy

    Smartphones, tablets, and laptops with fast but capacity-challenged SSDs often don’t have room for all the media you’d like to bring with you. You could rely on the cloud, but stream movies over a 4G connection and you’ll hit your data cap in no time. A portable, battery-operated Wi-Fi drive, such as Samsung’s sexily-named Wireless Mobile Media Streaming Device, is a far better solution.

  • Digital Storm Krypton review: A kick-ass gaming laptop at a great priceDigital Storm Krypton review: A kick-ass gaming laptop at a great price

    One of the little secrets about boutique gaming-PC shops is that many of them resell the same core OEM laptops after cosmetically customizing them with paint jobs, decals, and sporty-looking panel covers. These firms emphasize the highly tailored nature of their offerings to justify stiff price tags.

  • Sniper Elite 3 review: Sniper sim sequel aims high, but still falls slightly off targetSniper Elite 3 review: Sniper sim sequel aims high, but still falls slightly off target

    Taking aim at both PCs and consoles, Sniper Elite 3 is a third-person/first-person shooter hybrid that casts you in the role of an elite American sniper in World War II, and it's shockingly—even brutally—violent, just like its predecessor.

  • InfoQube review: Intricate information manager has a steep learning curveInfoQube review: Intricate information manager has a steep learning curve

    InfoQube is an in-development information manager with an interesting backstory. In the 1990s (centuries ago in Internet time), there was a powerful, flexible, PIM tool called Ecco Pro. It was so well-liked that Microsoft incorporated many of its features into Outlook, which it then proceeded to give away. Ecco partisans never quite gave up, and the program still has loyal followers. InfoQube is heavily inspired by Ecco, which somewhat colors its design decisions and feature set, but goes far beyond it, offering such features as an HTML editing pane, fully functional Gantt charts, advanced filtering and grouping, tabbed workspaces, and remote data access, to barely scratch the surface. But how well does it work for someone who did not use the software that inspired it?

  • Bvckup 2 review: No-nonsense app makes backups a breezeBvckup 2 review: No-nonsense app makes backups a breeze

    Your computer has power to spare. Copious amounts of RAM, a fast processor, and a capacious hard drive. Developers aren't afraid to use that power, whether or not they really need it. So coming across a frugally-written app that feels like the software equivalent of a tightly wound coil is a novelty. Bvckup 2 is a powerful backup utility that has the pedal-to-the-metal mindset of a command-line tool, but comes with a beautifully functional graphical user interface.

Spotlight
  • 'Xbox One Hotel' to open in Paris
    Relaxnews - 2013-11-13 2:45 PM

    To mark the launch of its latest games console, Microsoft France will transform the Hôtel O in Paris into a space dedicated entirely to the Xbox One.

  • Most plan on starting holiday shopping earlyMost plan on starting holiday shopping early
    thecanadianpress.com - 2013-11-04 5:15 PM

    Nearly three-quarters of Canadians recently polled say they plan to start their holiday shopping early this year, and will use the Internet to check and compare prices before buying gifts, two holiday retail studies suggest.

  • Five things you must do to prepare for the end of BlackBerryFive things you must do to prepare for the end of BlackBerry

    With BlackBerry on life support, it’s time to accept the likelihood that there won’t be a BlackBerry a year from now