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New Products

•  Intel Celeron G1850CPUPro, 2 days ago.
•  Intel Celeron G1840CPUPro, 2 days ago.
•  Intel Celeron G1830CPUPro, 2 days ago.
•  AMD FirePro V4900GPUPro, 3 days ago.
•  AMD FirePro W7000GPUPro, 3 days ago.
•  AMD FirePro W9000GPUPro, 3 days ago.
•  Nvidia Quadro K620GPUPro, 3 days ago.
•  Nvidia Quadro K2200GPUPro, 3 days ago.
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•  Nvidia Quadro K6000GPUPro, 3 days ago.
•  Intel Pentium G3240CPUPro, 5 days ago.
•  Intel Core i3-4360CPUPro, 5 days ago.
•  Intel Pentium G3460CPUPro, 6 days ago.
•  Intel Core i3-4370CPUPro, 6 days ago.
•  Intel Core i3-4160CPUPro, 6 days ago.
•  Intel Core i5-2450MCPUPro, 6 days ago.
•  Intel Core i5-750CPUPro, 12 days ago.
•  Intel Core i5-3230MCPUPro, 12 days ago.
•  Intel Core i5-3470CPUPro, 12 days ago.
What's Hot.
64GB USB Flash Drive

Mushkin Ventura Ultra USB 3.0 60GB

The Mushkin Ventura Ultra USB 3.0 has a Sandforce controller coupled with MLC NAND. This combination produces mediocre results for an SSD but for a USB flash drive its small file 4K performance is staggering. Comparing the Ventura Ultra and Sandisk Extreme shows that for small file IO the Ventura is around 200% faster than the Extreme. The Extreme has faster peak write speeds but overall the Ultra leads by a whopping 72%. The Ultra is a great choice for hosting Operating Systems or for use as boot media (check mobo. compat.) where its small file performance and low access times will reduce load times by orders of magnitude. Thanks to its exceptionally reasonable pricing, the Ultra topples the Extreme as my top USB pick for both value for money AND overall performance. [May '14 USBFlashPro]

16GB USB Flash Drive

SanDisk Ultra Fit USB 3.0 16GB

The 16GB SanDisk Ultra Fit USB 3.0 is a remarkable flash drive. As well as packing a tiny form factor, the Ultra fit also boasts an impressive performance profile with sequential read/writes of 134/86 MBps and 4K read/writes of 5.4/2.3 MBps. The Ultra Fit is actually only bested by three other 16GB models (Sandisk Extreme, Lexar P10, Lexar Triton) all of which cost between from 60-230% more. In terms of outright performance there are better alternatives but in terms of value for money the Ultra Fit is second to none. The superb value coupled with an amazing form factor which is barely larger than a USB socket make it easy to recommend the 16GB Ultra fit as one of the best, if not the best general purpose flash drive on the market[Oct '14 USBFlashPro]

256GB Solid State Drive

Samsung 850 Pro 256GB

The 256GB Samsung 850 Pro is the fastest consumer SSD we have seen to date. Thanks to Samsung's new 3D V-NAND the 850 Pro has lower power consumption and better performance, albeit marginally, than both the 840 Evo and 840 Pro. Looking at the peak lab performance figures for the 840 and 850 Pros shows that the effective performance improvement is only 5% whereas the 850 Pro beats the 840 Evo by 16%. All of these drives effectively saturate SATA 3.0 making it near impossible to distinguish between them in day-to-day use. At current prices the 256GB 850 Pro is prohibitively expensive, prices need to drop by 15% before it approaches the 840 Pro from a value perspective. Samsung may release a value orientated 850 Evo soon, but for now "most" users are better off with the 840 Pro. [Oct '14 SSDrivePro]

256GB Solid State Drive

Crucial MX100 256GB

The Crucial MX100 is the first 16nm SSD to date. Aside from NAND, the MX100 shares the same hardware as its more expensive sibling, the M550. Comparing the MX100 and M550 shows that the two drives have similar read speeds but that the MX100 lags by nearly 50% at writing. The newer 16nm NAND reduces costs and accordingly the MX100 is the cheapest SSD (per GB) to date. In terms of performance the MX100 is a compromise which may or may not be worth making depending on individual circumstances. For typical desktop use including email, office documents and web browsing the MX100 is a great choice but power users should look elsewhere. Comparing the 250GB 840 EVO and 256GB MX100 shows that for a marginal premium, the Evo offers better write speeds. (Note: at 500GB they are more evenly matched) [Jun '14 SSDrivePro]


Intel Core i7-4790K

The Intel Core i7-4790K, codenamed Devil's Canyon, is an upgraded 4770K, Intel's current flagship i7. The 4790K features an improved thermal interface which enables it to dissipate heat more efficiently than the 4770K. Comparing the 4770K and 4790K shows that stock performance has improved by 13% which is consistent with the base clock jump from 3.5 GHz to 4.0 GHz. OC performance remains unchanged. Comparing the 4790K and 4790 shows that at stock clocks the 4790K is around 16% faster which considering the small price difference makes the 4790K a far better choice. Previously Intel targeted the unlocked K versions at overclockers but with Devil's Canyon they have included VT-d on the K chip and this time it is squarely aimed at both power users and overclockers alike. Until the release of Broadwell in six months, the 4790K is the high end CPU of choice. [Jul '14 CPUPro]


Intel Pentium G3258

The Intel G3258 is the first budget Pentium processor to feature an unlocked multiplier. This enables a comfortable overclock to 4.3 GHz using just the stock heat sink and fan. At 4.3 GHz, in terms of single and dual core performance, the G3258 challenges a fully overclocked i7-4790K, the fastest CPU I have seen to date! These results are stunning considering that the G3258 is retailing for around one fifth as much as an i7-4790K. The G3258's Achilles heel is its poor multi-core performance which is over 50% weaker than the group leaders. For the vast majority of users, assuming an overclock of 4.3 GHz, the G3258 is the best value processor on the market by miles. On the other hand, users that encode multi-media or run SLI/Crossfire setups should look elsewhere. [Jul '14 CPUPro]

Hard Drive

WD Black 1TB (2013)

This is the most recent version (2013 FZEX) of Western Digital's best performing consumer storage drive, its predecessor was the WD1002FAEX which is now four years old. With average sequential read/write speeds of 150 MB/s this version outperforms its predecessor by a whopping 50%. Small file random 4K speeds have remained broadly unchanged with average read/write rates of 0.9/2.19 MB/s. Overall the 2013 WD Black has a very good performance profile and it also represents reasonable value for money, at least in the 1TB category. There are some good alternatives to the 2013 Black including the 2012 Blue. Looking at the 2013 Black vs 2012 Blue shows that both drives have similar performance. Power consumption (6.8/6.1 Watts active/idle) and noise levels (29.5 dBA) are also identical making it a tough call between the two. There is however, as always, better value amongst the larger capacities. [Feb '14 HDrivePro]

Hard Drive

Seagate Barracuda 7200.14 1TB

The 1TB Barracuda 7200.14 boasts impressive peak sequential read/write Lab speeds of 195/193 MB/s. These best case burst speeds indicate what the Barracuda is capable of under Lab perfect test conditions. Our real world benchmarks have been sourced from hundreds of users and give a better sense of how well this drive actually performs on a day to day basis. The 1TB 7200.14 has an average UBM sequential read/write speed of 147 MB/s, which is a superb result, especially for a budget drive. With 4K random read/write speeds of 0.77/1.53 MB/s small file performance is also respectable making the 1TB Barracuda a very good all round performer. In terms of value for money the relatively small 1TB drive is not as good value as its larger 3TB sibling but in the 1 TB category this is one of the best value for money drives available. [Jan '14 HDrivePro]

Graphics Card

Nvidia GTX 980

The Nvidia GTX 980 is the new top end Maxwell based Nvidia GPU. The Maxwell architecture offers significantly higher clock for clock performance when compared to Kepler based cards from the previous generation. Comparing the GTX 980 and GTX 970 shows that the 970 only lags by around 5% in terms of performance but yet it's priced nearly 40% lower making the GTX 970 far better value for money card. Even though the GTX 970 beats the 980 in terms of value, the 980 still destroys previous generation cards. Comparing the GTX 980 and 780 Ti shows that the Newer 980 offers around 8% better performance at a 25% price discount. Nvidia have changed the price/performance landscape with their new Maxwell architecture and now pose a serious threat to AMDs high end GPU market share. The new GTX 980/970 cards replace the now discontinued GTX 780 Ti, 780 and 770. [Sep '14 GPUPro]

Graphics Card

Nvidia GTX 970

The Nvidia GTX 970 is a game changer in terms of performnace per watt and value for money. The GTX 970 is based on Nvidia's ground-breaking Maxwell architecture which delivers considerable clock for clock performance gains over Kepler, its predecessor. Comparing the GTX 970 and 780 Ti shows that the two cards offer comparable performance yet the new GTX 970 costs nearly half as much! Unsurprisingly Nvidia are discontinuing the 780 Ti as it's now largely redundant. These price to performance gains typically occur once or twice a decade and although the new Maxwell architecture will improve down the line with the release of the Ti/Titan versions, at the moment the 970 offers the best value for money on the market by miles. Since this summary was originally written AMD have slashed prices and older Nvidia models (780/780 Ti/770) have also been hugely discounted. See the latest value for money rankings here[Sep '14 GPUPro]

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The Best.
SanDisk Extreme USB 3.0 16GBSamsung 840 Pro 256GBAMD FX-8350WD Black 1TB (2013)Nvidia GTX 970
SanDisk Extreme USB 3.0 32GBSamsung 840 Evo 250GBIntel Core i5-4670KSeagate Desktop SSHD 1TBAMD R9 280
SanDisk Extreme USB 3.0 64GBSamsung 850 Pro 256GBIntel Pentium G3258WD Black 2TB (2013)Nvidia GTX 770
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