Neximuss

Experienced blogger, influencer and in spare time CEO. Grow up under high IT and music influence, today considered as an online marketing expert, especially in SEO and Usability topics.

Top 7 iPhone accessories every iPhotographer should own

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A widget or a device here and there can help you become a real professional iPhotographer. So, let’s call this little piece of the written word what it is – the best accessories for iPhotography. Accessorising in both amateur and professional photography is a complete must. You don’t need to blindly follow all trends, just your needs, and wishes. It’s well-known that sometimes an awesome lucky shot is all you need to get that hunger for pursuing a career in photography. Or it can motivate you to become an influencer. Who knows, options are limitless. Or maybe you are just that one person responsible for every family photo. Nevertheless, in the era of social media, we aim for a little extra when it comes to documenting memories. No, you don’t have to have a professional camera just, a few statement pieces for your one and only iPhone.

Nedim SabicTop 7 iPhone accessories every iPhotographer should own
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Best budget mechanical keyboards

Mechanical keyboards are becoming the norm these days, but many of them are overpriced, so we at Geektick reviewed the most budget friendly keyboards.

The market for mechanical keyboards is massive these days, with new mechanical keyboards being released every day. In short, when I was younger, I never owned a mechanical keyboard and had zero knowledge when getting one. So I made a mistake, of course, and ended up buying an overpriced keyboard. Still though, it’s a pretty good keyboard, but I am kind of annoyed by the fact  that I could have possibly saved around 50 dollars, and I ended up finding the same model keyboard for 20 dollars cheaper at the market next day. And no, I couldn’t return the keyboard, because they had a policy which stated if you damage the box of said item you can not get a refund. And I was rash when opening the keyboard so I ended up destroying the box entirely. A foolish mistake on my part.

The story I told you was just an insight into why it is good to do some research before buying. So I presume you guys are here for the list and not for my story. So lets start going through the best budget keyboards.


Content:

 

 


BEST BUDGET  Mechanical Keyboard – EagleTec KG011 Office

The stylish EagleTec Kg011 is our choice as the best budget mechanical keyboard. It was a clear winner compared to the rest.

This keyboard isn’t your average day to day keyboard, it is truly something special. It has a nice sleek body and a stylish light blue background color, but this isn’t the only style of this keyboard as it has quite a lot of styles to choose from.  This keyboard has a nice edge finish. It handles extremely well, looks pleasant to the eyes and on top of all of those things it comes with a cheap price tag making this the best keyboard to buy if you are on a low budget and don’t want to spend a lot of money. It is the most logical step you can take to assure yourself a nice gaming setup.

Product details:

  • 104 double-shot injection molded key caps are blue LED backlit, 100% anti-ghosting.
  • Custom mechanical switches designed for longevity with greater durability and responsiveness.
  • Mechanical keys with medium resistance, audible click sound, and tactile bump feedback.
  • Plate mounted keys. This high quality build technique integrates a metal plate between the switches and the PCB.
  • Blue LED back lighting can be adjusted for brightness, breathing effect, and on/off
  • Multimedia controls on Function keys.
  • Switchable ‘W’, ‘A’, ‘S’, ‘D’ and arrow keys for specific applications and/or gaming
  • Different styles of color to suite the users needs : black, black with blue LED back lighting, white and silver with blue back lighting, black with rainbow LED back lighting, white and silver with rainbow back lighting and the plain white and silver


BEST SELLER  Mechanical Keyboard – Corsair Gaming K55

 

Yet another great keyboard with a lot of demand for it. This keyboard has sold over thousand of copies and is still going strong with the current market.

It has a nice bottom extension to reduce the pain of your wrist,  giving you the option to lean your arm on it. Besides being quite comfortable it also looks quite fancy, with the colorful LED lighting and with its nice sleek body. On top of that it has many customizable features and much more. It doesn’t cost much either, making it one of the most requested keyboards there is at the moment. There are many more things where this keyboard exceeds at but lets keep it nice and simple. It is a nice fancy keyboard that provides a nice feel,  while it comes with a cheap price tag.

Product details :

  • Three-zone dynamic RGB backlighting with 10+ preconfigured vivid RGB lighting modes allow you to choose immersive lighting effects
  • 6 programmable macro keys enable
  • Dedicated volume and multimedia controls for direct audio control without interrupting your game
  • Quiet and responsive keys give a satisfying feel
  • Multi-key anti-ghosting ensures the most accurate simultaneous key presses
  • Detachable wrist rest with soft rubber texture provides comfortable positioning for your wrists
  • Windows Key Lock mode ensures interruption-free game
  • Keyboard tilt adjustment to enable comfort for long play sessions


BEST BUY  Mechanical Keyboard – Azio Backlit Mechanical

The Azio Backlit Mechanical Keyboard is our pick for the best buy for many reasons. First of all lets start with the thing I like the most about this keyboard, the extension for your wrist. I can’t stress enough how much this means for the user of the keyboard. I am on my computer for about 6-8 hours per day and after time when I start writing or resting my arm I feel a strange soreness in my left hand.

But besides that, it has a simple design which itself is quite pretty and sleek. It handles quite nicely and is quite comfortable to use. In my own personal opinion it is probably one of the best keyboards in the market at the moment. You might be asking yourself: “But where are the LEDs?”. This is just the basic version of this keyboard, as there are other versions or to say styles which include a nice set of customizable LEDs.

Product details :

  • Mechanical Key Switches (Kailh Blue)
  • Gunmetal Grey Anodized Aluminum Face Plate
  • White LED Backlight w/ Adjustable Brightness
  • Detachable Palm Rest
  • Full NKRO on USB (Windows)
  • Easy-Access shortcut Keys & Volume Wheel
  • Windows Key Lock
  • Braided 6ft Cable


CHEAPEST  Mechanical Keyboard – Redragon K552-N KUMARA

 

By far one of the cheapest mechanical keyboards that exist at the given moment. It actually costs less compared to some plain keyboards, and yes, you heard me, it legit rcosts less. But do not let that discourage you to buy this keyboard. Even though the price is quite low for a mechanical keyboard, it still provides all of the functions of a mechanical keyboard and looks and feels pretty nice. It has some disadvantages, for example there is no bottom extension to provide the most comfort for the wrist area.

Surprisingly, it is quite durable and has a nice design. It also comes with customizable LEDs with many colors to choose from  and only costs just a mere 20 bucks. It’s impressive how much the technology has come along and how obtainable it has become.

Product details:

  • Custom mechanical switches for ultimate gaming performance
  • Red LED adjustable lighting and double-shot injection molded keycaps for crystal clear backlighting
  • Metal and ABS construction, mechanical keys, and gold plated USB connector stand up to hardcore gaming
  • Custom mechanical switches designed for longevity, responsiveness, and durability. Mechanical keys with medium resistance, audible click sound, and tactile feedback
  • 87 standard conflict free keys, 12 multimedia keys, and splash-proof design


HAVIT HV-KB378L RGB

The havit keyboard ain’t the most popular or well known mechanical keyboard, even though it is still a great keyboard never the less. As it provides many nice additions to it, for example the bottom extension which provides a nice place to rest your wrist. It comes with a bunch of customizable keys, and on top of that it comes with a nice amount of adjustable LEDs. It can change to around 10 modes and has a nice smooth finish on the sides giving this keyboard the most desirable look.

It ain’t the cheapest but it is quite budget friendly. It provides all the needs for many people and comes at a decent price.

Product details:

  • 104 keys RGB mechanical keyboard, constructed with floating keys, blue switches
  • 10 adjustable multiple RGB backlit modes, including: Always-on mode, Single-color-breathing mode, Pro-gamer mode, 7-color-breathing mode, On-click-lighting mode, Single-color or Mixed-color-flowing mode, Running-forth and back mode, Ripple-spreading mode.
  • Customizable Pro-gamer mode: Press FN+INS to switch to Pro-gamer mode, only W, A, S, D, ESC, “↑” “↓” “←” “→” 9 keys are default to be lighted, 5 default modes can be chose by pressing FN+ 1-5; And these 5 modes are allowed to be customized the backlit color and lighting mode by pressing FN+ HOME.
  • Metal base with wrist rest (non-detachable), effectively reduce fatigue of long time using; gold plated USB interface guarantees efficient and stable data transmission
  • Easy-to–reach multimedia keys: Fn + F1-F12, provides Windows Key lock for gaming, multimedia controls for entertainment, email and calculator


AULA Ergonomic Sapphire Keyboard

Another addition to our list of great keyboards, it provides everything a person would need from a mechanical keyboard and more. It has a nice simple finish around the sides, a nice bottom extension. Besides all of those things it feels extremely well when playing games and provides a nice amount of customizable buttons to add to the core of the game when playing. The standard version is a nice black finish with a carefully done build, the other versions just adds LEDs to the main version. The LEDs on the second version are open to the users preference and enable him to change them to his will.

Product details:

  • Ergonomic design, high quality and minimalist style
  • Large and comfortable palm rest to reduce hand fatigue
  • AULA mechanical blue switch with ultra-long lifetime durability, perfect for all gamers
  • User-friendly design with a set of shortcut function keys cooperated with the FN key
  • Lock / unlock function for WINDOWS key to avoid miss clicks / distractions during gaming


Thermaltake Poseidon ZX Tournament

A classical mechanical keyboard, compact and has all the things you would expect it to have. Only real con to getting this keyboard is the fact that it’s lacking the additional bottom extension. Besides that it has a nice finish with the addition of LEDs behind each key providing the ability to see the keys during all time.

It comes with two options, you can choose between blue or brown switches.

Product details:

  • Fully Back-Lit Keyboard: With an LED under each cap, the POSEIDON ZX is a fully back-lit keyboard, offering 4 levels of adjustable brightness
  • TteSPORTS Certified Mechanical Blue Switches: The TteSPORTS Certified Mechanical BLUE switches are built for speed and durability, offering a pronounced tactile feel and audible click feedback
  • Accessible Media Keys: With the Fn (function) + F1-F7 keys, you can control your volume and media player anytime, without having to minimize your current game or program.
  • Tenkeyless Form Factor: The POSEIDON ZX comes in the tenkeyless form factor; which is 80% the length of a regular full sized keyboard. This size makes the POSEIDON ZX more portable to take on the go for gaming, as well as helps prevent gamers from having their mouse hit their keyboard in the middle of games.


Tomoko Blue Switch 104-Key Black Mechanical Keyboard

A simple black mechanical keyboard made for all purposes, just a few words to describe this keyboard. It has a nice edge finish and a sleek black design. It provides a nice feel when you are playing video games and also adds the option to customize a few buttons to the user’s request. Another nice thing about this keyboard is the fact that it is pretty portable enabling you to carry it around wherever you want. Also, this keyboard is water proof,  which is a nice little feature.

Product details:

  • Anti-Ghosting 104 KEYS. N-Key Rollover. With anti-ghosting 104 keys, it allows Multi-Keys to work simultaneously without confliction
  • Blue Switches. Provide you “clicky” tactile feedback to improve typing speed and accuracy. Lifespan of 50 million keystroke, 60±15g key force and 4.0±0.2mm stroke travel
  • FN Shortcuts. Easily access to media controls, such as play, pause, next and previous track, calculator, email, web browser etc without exiting game
  • Build Quality. Made of top-grade ABS and metal base, with matte-finish texture,it is sturdy and robust for durability. Laser-engraved keys are not easy to fade. Water-resistant with drain holes


CM Storm QuickFire TK

Probably the most expensive keyboard we will cover today, but hear me out. Yes this article is the best budget keyboards. And this keyboard is extremely good with all due respect but it comes with a higher price tag. It is extremely portable, has all the basics, like customizable buttons and LEDs that can go through 3 modes depending on the users tastes with the standard amount of buttons with a long lifespan.

That sounds plain but it’s a well trusted keyboard that will last a long time and provide the best quality.

Product details:

  • Mechanical BLUE CHERRY MX switches with a lifespan of over 50 million keypresses
  • Compact and ergonomic layout with an integrated numpad section
  • Fully backlit with blue LEDs, 3 modes, and 5 brightness levels
  • NKRO through USB for unlimited simultaneous keystrokes
  • Embedded blue steel backplate for maximum stability and durability
  • Super grip pads and keyboard standoffs with rubber feet for increased stability
  • 7 easy-access multimedia shortcut keys


MechanicalEagle Z-77 Keyboard

Extremely friendly budget wise, compact and good looking. Quite a nice keyboard to be honest. It has a nice feel to it providing the utmost comfort when playing games,  it also has the addition of LEDs making it look extremely well especially in the dark. And it is extremely compact enabling you the portability many keyboards lack.

What more is there to say about this stunning keyboard,  and the price will leave you without any words. It is extremely cheap, especially when it’s on sale it goes down up to 35 dollars.

Product details:

  • Innovative pluggable design mechanical keyboard allows you to replace all the switches by yourself. It comes with 5 PCS of free switches (Gaote switch/ Otemu switch) for you to replace.
  • Easy to change 9 backlit by pressing FN+Ins; 8 modes gaming keys lighting-up patterns. Support selectable keys lights (Light colors can’t be changed).
  • Anti-ghosting 87 keys/n-key rollover. Allows multi-keys to work simultaneously in high speed. Each key is controlled independently, which allows faster response in games.
  • Custom mechanical switches designed for responsiveness and durability. Mechanical keys with medium resistance, nice click sound, and tactile feedback. Tested for over 50 million times keystroke.
  • Ergonomic designed: the stepped keycap makes it sleek and the arc and slope fit your hands easily to prevent fatigue. Convenient Multi-media Keys FN+F1~F12 Provides Windows Key lock for gaming, multimedia controls for entertainment, email and calculator


Conclusion

With the sheer number of keyboards we’ve covered, some people might wonder what is the best keyboard to get. Well, in short, if you fancy yourself the cheapest then the pick is obviously the Redragon K552-N KUMARA. Otherwise if your budget is really low but you can afford a bit more than the Redragon K552-N KUMARA then go for our best keyboard the EagleTec KG011 Office. If you want to save some money and still get a really good keyboard then the obvious choice is the Azio Backlit Mechanical. On top of these keyboards there are stacks and stacks of mechanical keyboards that are extremely over priced. And many of them are extremely good for many reasons, but the key issue with them is their price, making them quite expensive for the average Joe.

Either way, if by any chance you, the reader, is wondering what are the advantages of having a mechanical keyboard while gaming, then listen out for a small story. So here is the story why I needed a mechanical keyboard. Throughout the years I played many games and in all of them I always had an issue with either my mouse being wacky or my keyboard having issues when I press over 3 buttons at the same time. So firstly I changed my mouse to the one I use at the moment, afterwards I changed the keyboard. The main game which caused me to get a mechanical keyboard is WoW as it was getting harder and harder to play the game as I progressed to the end stages of each expansion. Why? Well when you level up and get more gear in WoW there are many more spells and potions to use, and in order to use them at the same time you need to spam the button, but there is a global cool down on those spells which helped out but I still had many issues nevertheless. Then I started to play battlegrounds and many more things as I progressed in the game and it was getting so hard to play that I was legit destroying 5 buttons by mashing them constantly. For example when you play a battleground as a healer, it gets so stressful to keep running away while healing yourself and your teammates at the same time, I can not stress how difficult that was. And on top of the basic button mashing, there were moments when your key wouldn’t register at all and you would be left there with a blank face on how you wiped on the last boss.

Okay I went off topic a bit with the story, but overall getting a mechanical keyboard was the best decision I made as it provided a great way to play games, write documents and many more things, and also the sound it makes is extremely satisfying. So if you are in the end planing to buy one of these keyboards or another mechanical keyboards which you fancy be sure to keep in mind that these keyboards are all extremely good and provide a great way to boost your setup and overall boosting your satisfaction when using one. Also be sure to keep an open mind upon seeing these cheap keyboards, they might be cheap but it does not mean they are weak or bad in any case, yeah, they are a lot cheaper compared to the standard razor mechanical keyboard with the nice greed LEDs, but these are extremely good as well and they deserve some love too.

To sum up everything, there are many great keyboards which will suite everyone’s needs, the ones we looked over today are extremely budget friendly and provide a nice alternative to the expensive and overpriced keyboards. May Talos bless your kind heart for reading this article.

Nedim SabicBest budget mechanical keyboards
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Best portable gaming system

With all the hype about the new generation of consoles that will release in the next year or two, I thought I’d take the time to write something about the current best of the best. Since I own or owned all of the consoles from PS1-PS4, Xbox and Nintendo I’m as excited as you are for the next generation.

So why buy a console?

They are the ideal systems to bring with you on holidays or vacations, and for your house alike. They don’t take up much space, next to none cable management, and with the latest UI from Sony and Microsoft even DVD’s are becoming less and less seen. Sure you could bring a laptop with you but to play the games these consoles run you’d need to cash out way more than these systems cost. Not to mention all of these have their exclusive games. For example, you can only play the Uncharted franchise on PS3 or PS4 nowhere else, same goes for Halo on Xbox and the latest Legend of Zelda for Nintendo. They are also compact as they can be taking into consideration what’s inside them and the best is yet to come.

Without further ado, let’s get into the best of the best;

 Overview

 

Sony PlayStation 4 Pro

Coming from a company like Sony it’s no wonder this thing is a beast. Console wise, the PS4 Pro offers almost everything you can expect from a portable gaming console. The console had a few nicknames before it was released including PS4K or PS4.5. The second one is more suitable because this is an upgrade, rather than a proper level-up of the console, which the PS5 will be.

This means you are getting the best possible version of the 3 year old console. not a next-gen one. As Sony would call it “The super-charged PS4” and it suits it very well since it’s bigger than ever. Adding to that it has more power under the hood and it can run 4K video and now supports HDR (video). Taking all of this into consideration we can say that the PS4 Pro is purely focused on gaming and performance.

While most of you won’t be interested to buy the Pro version over the stock one, there are some guys still out there who are about to join the Sony team and they are in for a treat.

 

 

DESIGN AND FEATURES

The PS4 pro is a pure beast, short and simple. A little taller than its predecessor, clearly wider and deeper though. The overall effect this gives you is something of a well-built machine.

Its rival, the Xbox One S can afford to go a bit smaller than its predecessor because the specs are the same on both. The Pro here has a bigger engine though and that alone asks for bigger space, not to mention other improvements in specs, but we’ll get to that in a bit.

 

It still has that same parallelogram shape but the sharp corners have been rounded off. There is a chrome effect on the PS logo at the top and it’s the only thing that stands out from the matte plastic. That subtle little detail adds a premium vibe to it that is very appealing.

The original two-deck design is now a three-deck. There seems to be a no functional point to this extra deck, it’s just an aesthetic feature.

As with earlier versions, two USB ports hide in the small space at the front, but Sony has added a third to the back. With this feature added I can finally charge my controller without a cable sticking out the front.

The other connections are as before: HDMI out, Ethernet, Aux (for the camera), optical out, and power. Note that the power lead is no longer a figure-of-eight cable, but instead it’s kettle lead.

Underneath all the aesthetics the PS4 Pro promises double the power of its downgrader. This means the Pro can run games faster with almost no frame rate drops on the most intense games, but most importantly, the PS4 Pro now supports 4K and HDR as I mentioned before and that is a really great addition when battling his rival- the XBOX.

The fact that the PS4 Pro can handle 4K and HDR indeed means better looking games. New PS4 games will have a ‘Pro’ option for enhanced visuals, and even some older games are getting patched right now as you are reading this.

Compatibility won’t be an issue, so you don’t have to worry about that. All PS4 games must work on standard and Pro consoles. That’s practically a rule at this point – nobody gets left out in the cold. If this wasn’t the case, then it would be entirely up to the developers to decide how to make use of the extra power that the PS4 Pro has.

The PS4 Pro is indeed quieter than the original. Of course, there is more noise when you insert a disc in it and as the fan speed gets higher, but once you install everything and play your game in normal or average conditions, it’s barely heard. If you turn your TV volume on, from your sofa for example, you can’t even be able to hear it.

 

This thing is also pretty fast. The PS4 Pro has a SATA 3 hard drive, which is an upgrade from the SATA 2 which the original had. This essentially means that the Pro can transfer data faster at almost twice the speed. Bigger games like GTA V or Hitman, they jump into action noticeably quicker and that is great, particularly because the long loading screens kill our happiness and our excitement for playing the game.

 

 

SONY PS4 PRO – CONTROLLER

There’s also a new controller. Well, a slightly tweaked version of the older one. If you’ve seen that one released with the new slim PS4, well you know exactly what to expect.

Its functionality remains the same, of course; the analogue sticks, the face buttons, Options/Share buttons, and the D-pad have all been given a new grayish tone to contrast it with the black color of the controller.

That touchpad is now also translucent. On the top side, it lets the players know which color they are in multiplayer games and matches.

All of these tweaks are aesthetic which gives the Xbox One S a couple of points, they added a tougher joysticks and somewhat of a grippier texture. The PS has licensed third parties, like Razer to make “Pro” controllers.

 

 

 

 

The Verdict

The PS4, in my mind, is the side to join when it comes to the PS vs. XBOX rivalry. Its hardware won’t get old any time soon that’s for sure, and it has all the necessities a console needs to have – all the ports and all the goodies. Although some may argue that the lack of 4K streaming is an issue, it’s not measurable to the pros you get when buying the PS4 Pro. Sony has offered us many exclusives on this console, and with the latest one (when writing this article) Horizon Zero Dawn getting top scores from IGN, GameStop and reviewers like those two. It makes us wonder what will the rest be like. The PS4 Pro is more pleasing to look at and is more elegant in my opinion. Its universal color makes it blend into the room, no matter which color the environment it’s in is. With the coming of Red Dead Redemption 2 and The Last of Us 2 its fan base is going to be even bigger, because these 2 games are considered to have the best stories a game can possibly have.

 

 

XBOX ONE S

 

Almost 3 years after the release of the original Xbox one comes a newer version of the console. In its core it’s the same thing Sony did with the PS4 which is essentially an upgraded version of the original, but not a complete level-up.

It’s smaller, quieter and the most interesting thing about it is its development of the resolution, from HD to Ultra HD (4K) – quite a large gap but it’s very welcomed. Games are up-scaled to the resolution, that means it’s not true 4K, but movies will happily make the most out of the extra pixels whether you’re streaming 4K over Netflix or playing an Ultra HD Blu-ray.

 

DESIGN AND FEATURES

Advanced electrical engineering, Moore’s Law, or even a miracle, call it whatever you want, but the Xbox One S defies what many thought was impossible – integrating a massive power supply along with an expansive 2TB hard drive into a chassis two-fifths the size of the original – or 17 x 11.4 x 4.4 inches (L x W x D) if you want to know specifics. How Microsoft pulled it off, I’ll never know.

Well… actually, I might know. Something tells me it has to do with porous siding that allows for much better airflow. A denser design would enable Microsoft to use a smaller fan and repositioning of the hard drive directly behind the disc tray instead of in the back right corner would free up tons of extra space that allowed Microsoft to just cut out of the box completely.

After that, Microsoft can move the hard drive allowing the power brick (essentially a power supply unit that you’d find in a PC) to be seated inside the console instead of sitting next to it and just creating clutter that is unnecessary on your gaming shelf.

While components have shifted on the inside of the box, the embodiment of the system has undergone a transformation of its own. Now, there are 2 physical buttons in place of the touch buttons for power and eject on the console. Those USB 3.0 ports have now also been moved to the lower half of the face of the console.

On the back side you’ll find an HDMI In port that allows you to pass in a cable box, an HDMI Out, two Super Speed USB ports and S/PDIF and ethernet ports. There is an added IR blaster on the front of the console that enables you to turn on your other devices, like your TV for example. The only thing missing in all of this is a standard for Kinect, as I stated earlier.

Another down side is that if you like your console in color schemes or anything other than pure white you are out of luck. But this color has advantages on it’s own, as white is a color of universal harmony and cleanliness and it will surely fit nicely into your living room or some other environment. It’s not all sad for you color lovers out there as the new Microsoft Xbox Design Lab program allows you to customize your controllers as you’d like them to be.

Xbox as a platform

If you’re just now joining the green team and coming from PS Nation or from PC or just casual gaming in general you’re in luck. The Xbox as a platform is the best it’s ever been. The App Store is still bare bones compared to windows 10 device but it’s vastly improved from the platform that launched 3 years ago.

Navigation is also getting better with some minor improvements. For example they moved My Apps and Games to the top right of the home screen and that alone makes the interface much more efficient. Now it’s easier to get from one place to another without getting lost.

The final feature I’d like to mention is Cortana, a recent addition to the Xbox that works similarly to Siri or now even Amazon’s Alexa. Cortana understands commands like Invite my friend John to a party” or “Pull up my achievements from GTA.” Using Cortana is a more intuitive way of navigating Xbox and it is a major step in the right direction from the Kinect-only voice commands.

While Microsoft has said that the chip set has remained exactly the same, it can’t be, with that said they have swapped the standard Blu-ray disc drive for a 4K. HDR-capable one that can read Ultra HD Blu-rays. This is the next generation of physical media.

 

It’s hard not to be impressed with the Xbox One S’s 4K UHD TV. From the moment you turn on the system and set the picture to 4K it’s clear that the Xbox One S is the most premium system on the market. The biggest upgrade is in the graphical department. The system can either upscale all content or you can leave that to your TV. Of course, to see any sort of difference between the original Xbox One and the S version you’ll need to upgrade your TV.

 

Check out our list of the best 4K TVs if you’re looking to make the upgrade and truly embrace the next generation.

 

While the pool of streaming media content is a bit dry, so is the App Store itself. But do not worry, because Microsoft will be introducing more and more apps to its store. Especially now since they have promised the addition of Universal Windows Apps. Apps that cross lines between Windows 10 and Xbox are slowly rolling out now.

I was concerned that the loading and buffering of this more demanding content would take longer, but it seemed to load faster than the original Xbox One on its normal HD resolution. So far only Netflix has a 4K version of its app on the Xbox Store, but YouTube will follow shortly…as for Amazon or Vudu there are still no upgrades. If you are not a subscriber to Netflix’s 4K streaming tier, there’s always an option to pop in a Blu-Ray disc and surprisingly the Xbox One S is one of the cheapest ways to play 4K Blu-Ray right now.

 

You might ask yourself, but what about gaming content ?

It’s only logical that games look better in 4K than in any other resolution, even if that is achieved by up-scaling instead of native 4K read-through.

In the time of this review. I’ve checked out many games but Fallout 4 and Rise of the Tomb Raider, along with GTA V obviously had me most impressed.

Starting games took the usual, approx. 15 seconds of waiting, but once they started it was a delight. They looked way better than on the Xbox One before. While roaming the streets of Diamond City ( Fallout 4 ) I noticed stadium lightning for the first time ever. Its surface reflections added almost as much to the scene as the character models.

 

Playing the Rise of the Tomb Raider, the full-motion capture sequences had a crisp finish to them. It was like watching a 4K movie instead of watching a game rendered in 1080p.

 

GTA V

I very much enjoy playing Michael, he’s by far my favorite character. I play every free roam session with him and I noticed something pretty spectacular – while driving at night time I came across a cliff (where you see Los Santos for the 1st time as Trevor) and the city was amazing. The lights. the night sky, simply perfection.

These experiences may not be indicative of the experience of every game out there. But given everything I’ve seen so far, games are smoother, faster and better looking here than they’ve ever been on the original Xbox One.

 

With all that said, it’s important to mention that Microsoft won’t be making games for the Xbox One S. Although some games may have additional HDR capabilities on Microsoft’s latest gaming system, exclusives are out of the picture. Even the developers at 343 that made Halo won’t make the franchise exclusive to the One S by any means.

 

Xbox One S controller

Of course in order to play any game out there you’re going to need a controller. And to add to the upgrade of the console itself, Microsoft also upgraded the controllers as well.

The One S controller is almost the exact copy of the original’s controller, but with small, yet effective improvements.

 

 

The first improvement is that the Xbox One S controller will be the first ever controller by Microsoft to natively support Bluetooth. That means that if you want to use it as a controller for your PC you won’t need the Xbox One USB receiver plugged in in order to use it.

The other minor tweaks are in the textured grip that makes the controller easier to hold for an extended amount of time, and more powerful wireless antenna that allows players to sit farther away from the system.

While the cross-over from the Xbox One to the Xbox One S would’ve been a perfect time to switch the controller’s power source from batteries to rechargeable Li-Ion battery, that wasn’t the case here this time around. I guess they are holding that change for the next system code named Project Scorpio that comes out sometime this year. But if you do have a couple of the original Xbox One’s controllers lying around your house, you won’t have to replace them with new ones as they will work just fine with the One S as they did with the original.

 

The Verdict

The Xbox One S is a beast of its own. Although there might not me many exclusives to watch out for on this end of the spectrum, the existing multi-platform games bring a lot more than on the PS4. Due to its support of true 4K and HDR all content on it is a delight to look at. Its size is a major improvement and the overall “simple” design, along with the color, makes it a beautiful package. The App Store may be a little dry at the moment but that will just keep improving and there is a lot to watch out for with all of this in mind.

 

 

Nintendo switch

It is a compromise between a console and a handheld gaming device. its design is unique. With every new hardware that Nintendo releases, we can see that they are trying weird and fun ideas.

We can see that Nintendo is always trying to be different from other gaming consoles. They introduced motion-controls to gaming world with Wii U, and made a handheld device with a 3D display called Nintendo 3DS.  With the latest console they allowed you to play games wherever you want. With Nintendo Switch you can use it as a console to play at home or go out and use it as handheld device. After all, every gamer wants to enjoy full gaming experience where ever they are. This console works better than you would expect.  It has some small issues but it’s not far from being perfect.  Designers found a good compromise between being a home console and a handheld device.

Design and features

When you buy the Nintendo Switch in its box you will find:

The main body of console with two detachable controller sides, a grip that enables you to combine these controller portions into a gamepad, two straps that can be attached to its sides and make them individual controllers and a dock that allows you to connect Nintendo with television. USB power cable and an HDMI cable will also be in the box. As you can see you will get a lot of accessories.  Joy-con straps and Joy-con gripes can easily get misplaced, so you should find a way to keep them together.

Handheld mode

Let’s say something about handheld mode first.

When you use it in its mode you have to attach two portions of controller, to the left and to the right side of the screen and then you can enjoy the handheld mode. As a matter of fact, the size and shape of analogue sticks look like a modern version of PS Vita. On top side of the console you have a headphone jack, a volume rocker and a power button.  On bottom side of the console there is a kickstand that allows you to use it in tabletop mode. It conceals a micro SD slot that allows the console to expand its storage. Its storage is limited to only 32G, so if you prefer downloading games over buying them than you’ll have to invest in a micro SD card with support up to 2Tb  On the right side of the detachable Joy-con there is the classic A, B, X and Y button configuration that has been used on and off since the SNES, two shoulder buttons and an analogue stick.  There is also a small „+“-shaped button and a home button used for reaching the system console menus. On the left side,  there is a small „-“ button that is used as the „select“ button, an analogue stick, a share button (which is used for taking screenshots and will be upgraded to video record screen), two shoulder buttons and a Nintendo D-pad. The left Joy-con has a set of four circular buttons. Their shape is identical to face buttons on the right. That decision was made so the left Joy-con can be used as an individual controller. In this configuration its D-pad is acting as face buttons.

Console mode

If you want to connect the device to your television you place the main body of the console in the included dock and then you can use it in the console mode.The transfer of the viewing experience from its own screen to the television is as seamless as it could possibly be.  You can continue to play in the second because you don’t have to pause the game. Detaching the Joy-con is not too easy but it can be done by pressing and holding a small button on the back and sliding the controller up. The dock that you use to connect Switch to is around the same size as the Switch’s middle portions. On the back there is a USB port that is used to provide the console with a power, and an HDMI port that you use to connect your Nintendo to television. On the left side there are two USB ports that can be used for charging your controllers.

Tabletop mode

The last form is the „Tabletop mode“. The console can be propped on the table by using kickstand which you attach to the back of console and then detach Joy-cons for semi-portable gaming. The situation which you will not be able to use it is when you are taking a shower (Note: don’t do this, this device is not waterproof)

Set up

Setting up is really easy. To set up this console you have to attach the Joy-cons and press the power button. When you want to play games on TV you have to connect your dock with TV via HDMI and give it some power via the included USB power lead, and then just slip the console into the dock. When you want to pair your controllers it is a little bit more complicated because you can use it either paired or separately. When you want to use controller you just press both shoulder buttons at the same time. You can also use the keyboard. It’s not as good as smartphone keyboard but it’s better than traditional controller. You have to set up your account and Wi-Fi. After you have done everything, you will be able to enjoy your brand new console.

The verdict

The new Switch is a step in the right direction. Offering compatibility with multi-               functionality for the maximum experience. With its exclusive game The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild getting a 10/10 from GameSpot and IGN it’s sure to attract all Nintendo lovers and Zelda lovers alike. It has vibrant colors that will keep the attention of the toddlers too. It’s easy to carry around and, with its few problems that can and will be easily fixed with future updates, it’s the ideal bang for your buck.

Conclusion

If you were to ask me what I would choose. I’d go with the PS4 Pro. It simply has the best design (in my opinion), and the best UI. It has the more exclusive games than all other consoles and add to that, their exclusives reach 8 or 9/10 scores. Last of Us, Uncharted are the most popular and there are other hidden gems, but I’ll let you find those when you get the console. Don’t want to spoil the fun.

 

Nedim SabicBest portable gaming system
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Best microphone for gaming

So, from my perspective, video games are a big part of our lives now, or at least the industry of computer entertainment is. Whether you like it or not, video games won’t go away. From numerous consoles and entertainment systems all the way to personal computers, video games have been in our lives for quite a long time now.

When you think about it for a moment, quite a lot of people have actually grown up alongside video games as one of the entertainment types. All the way from the simplest forms such as ping pong, to tetris and now, well, everything. If it weren’t for the entertainment video games have given me, I probably wouldn’t have a life I have right now, just like many others. Then, there are various types of video games and I’m sure in the future, there will be many more categories of them, but I just like to put them as following: singleplayer games and multiplayer games. It’s simple as that, if you ask me, because some of them are made to be simply played alone so you can get immersed in the story and just, enjoy it for a few hours, all by yourself.. and then you have those which are only made for multiplayer entertainment. That means you play it with other people from around the world. It can be your friend from the neighborhood or a random person from a different side of the planet.

Nonetheless, video games have created a brand new form of entertainment that will continue to grow and won’t go away for a long time, for sure.

 

Now, if you’re playing a multiplayer game, communication is a very important aspect of the game itself, so how do we achieve that? Well, in the distant past, you would have simple interaction dialogues with predefined messages. Then it moved onto an interactive chat interface, meaning you could type your message on a keyboard or using your joystick to communicate with other players.

Now, you have all of those combined, but there is a very big difference. We have voice communication now. I’m sure you already know of this as it’s been around for quite a long time now, if not since the 1990s, but it has since grown into an industry of its own. What do I mean by this? Well, let’s just say that the voice communication industry is a big part of not just video games and entertainment, but every other part of IT.

Taking that into consideration, sure, you could just call up your friend and invite him over to your place so you could play some games together, but imagine if that friend didn’t live near you, but rather in a different city, or perhaps even a different country? Say he was on the other side of the world, right. You can’t just call him up and invite him to your place so you could play some games. Sure, you could still play together online, but that’s not it, right? The laughter, the fun you have together, it’s just not right. Well, what you can do is tell your friend to get headphones with a microphone and say you will do the same. Now you can speak to each other almost exactly the same way as if you were in the same room. That’s perfect, right? Sure, there MIGHT be some drawbacks, but voice communication is very important not just for gameplay, but the entertainment itself.

Due to the fact that I have been in this ‘gaming‘ world for quite a bit now, over ten years actually, I decided to help out similar people around the world by advising them which products to buy in the whole gaming industry. In this article, I will go over some of the best headsets and standalone microphones for gaming. Some of them are inexpensive, some are not, but I can tell you for certain that all of them are good. Some more, some less, but whichever appeals to you the most, you won’t regret the purchase.

Content:

 

[BEST] ASTRO A50 Headset

 


 

  • compatible with PS4 & PC
  • amazing audio quality
  • adjustable microphone
  • Dolby headphone 7.1 Surround Sound
  • WIRELESS

Well, aren’t they beautiful? I mean, just look at them. Eye catching colors, beautiful design and the best comfort you can get out of headphones. What else could you ask for?

The Astro A50s are built and made with extreme care and precision because they’re made by people who know the industry extremely well and have spent years in it researching and developing the best headphones you could get so you can achieve the utmost gaming experience ever. As we all know, the audio in video games is one the most important things. Whether you’re playing Starcraft or Counter Strike, the sound is of great importance. No matter what game it is, without the sound, it is boring and in some cases, unplayable. That’s why you need great headphones, such as these.

I mean, just look at them. Other than the fact that they shine with elegance and coolness, you actually do get the top notch product out there. Of course, there are other really well made headphones out there which rival the Astro A50 very well, but as far as I have seen, I came to a conclusion that these, really are the best you can get right now. Other than the fact that they are wireless, they are also extremely light, which means you can have them on your head for a really long period of time and you wouldn’t feel any discomfort. Now, of course, video games might not be everything you like, perhaps you like music so you’re looking from that perspective as well.. In that case, these are also a good choice, however, due to the fact that they are wireless, there might be the slightest difference between the wired version and these.

The wired version is, obviously wired, but also half of the price of these. Why? Well, the obvious reason is because you don’t need the additional receiver/transmitter as they are wired so they’re just plug and play, but the other factor is that they’re a bit older than these, meaning you will get a slightly worse audio quality, but as far as I have seen, it’s really not that much of a difference, but if music is of the greatest importance to you, you should look at a different type of headphones then. Back onto the A50s from the technical aspect, honestly, you’re getting the best there is out there at the moment. The microphone on it’s own is a wonder when you see its quality, ability and everything else.

When I’ve tried this headset, I knew I was going to get really good results, but I really wasn’t expecting them to be THAT good. The microphone, not only is it directional, meaning it will pickup YOU and only you, but the quality it gives is absolutely astonishing. Alongside some of the software you can get from ASTRO, you can freely adjust the settings of the microphone using various settings, lowering its sensitivity and similar. You really are given all of the settings you can get so you can fully control this headset. Other than the glorious microphone, let’s not forget the audio you hear. The sound quality for video games is by far the best I have experienced, no matter what game you’re playing. I’ve tested it on Counter Strike: Global Offensive, Team Fortress 2, Battlefield 4 & 1 and really, it’s absolutely amazing.

No one complained about the noise in the background I intentionally made as no one could hear it. This headset truly is made for gamers. If you choose the wireless version, that means you can walk around your whole room, if not the whole home without any impairments to the sound. My friend from the UK did this test specifically for me over TeamSpeak as he has the same headphones. He would get up from his desk and just walk around his home while constantly talking to me. I could hear a bit of a quality drop when he was outside his home, but while he was on the inside, there were no problems whatsoever. So yeah, that’s why this headset is gilded with the BEST category tag.

[BEST SELLER]SteelSeries Siberia 800


  • SteelSeries next-gen speaker drivers
  • closed ear-cups
  • Dolby cirtual 7.1 surround sound
  • Retractable microphone
  • WIRELESS

Simply said, this headset just shines with elegance, comfort and luxury. It looks sleek and simple, but it offers so much. First off, it’s wireless, which is a great addition, especially to gamers on the move as these headphones are very compact, so if you like to play games a lot, but you travel quite often, this headset is a very good option as you can rotate the speakers so it can be placed in a tight area, such as a bag or a briefcase. Other than that, the microphone is retractable and it basically disappears if you decide not to use it. All you have to do is push it inside the left speaker and that’s it. When it’s retracted, only its reddish tip is visible, so it’s really nice for various types of entertainment. Other than the luxurious look, the sound fidelity is astonishing due to the fact that the ear cups are closed inwards so you achieve total isolation from the surroundings and none of the sounds will leak out directly, but that’s not it. They are really, really comfortable on your head and ears. There’s no excess pressure being exerted onto your ears and due to their low weight, they’re pretty much perfect in that category. They come in black and greyish color which both fit nicely on this design of headphones. They’re somewhat similar to the older versions of the Siberia series, but they are more different than similar if you look it at from the greater perspective. You still have the round shaped speakers which are able to rotate. The additional full length padding on the arc which covers the head is there, as well, so yeah, the design is somewhat still the same, but they have certainly upgraded the specifications and abilities of the Siberia series. As always, due to the fact that these are wireless, you will always gain higher quality on wired versions, but as far as I have noticed, there isn’t a difference. You are paying for quality product, that is for certain, so if sound quality worries you, it shouldn’t as the Steelseries products have proven high quality over a lengthy period of time in the past and I stand behind this decision as both my friend and  me had a different version of Steelseries products, and there is no doubt.. They do deliver quality and luxury.

A unique thing about this headset is the fact that you receive two Li-Ion batteries. Not one, but two. You can charge the second one while using the first one, so when the first one is depleted, you just swap them out and continue gaming, no hassle in that! As per me, this headset really does deserve the BESTSELLER category tag as it’s not overly expensive and I’ve seen a lot of Twitch streamers and YouTube gamers use these. If you consider the pricetag of $240 and the quality this headset offers, it’s a very good trade off.

 

[BESTBUY] HyperX Cloud Revolver

 


  • Studio grade sound quality
  • Steel frame
  • Detachable microphone
  • 50mm sound drivers
  • Compatibility with PC/PS4/MAC/Xbox One

 

If you’ve ever followed up with HyperX products, then this one will look very similar to one of their most popular products ever, the HyperX Cloud II headset. We can say this is the version two of that headset as this one looks very similar to the Cloud II and obviously, it’s better. As stated previously, it’s built from a steel frame which makes it extremely durable and stiff while at the same time it provides comfort. Don’t let the steel frame worry you as this headset is actually very comfortable on your head. It’s not too lose and it’s not too tight, it’s pretty much perfect. I mean, it’s made from steel, there’s no way you can break this, so if you accidentally drop them on the ground or something similar, there shouldn’t be worry about them breaking or anything.

Of course, there’s the iconic red colour which braids the top part of the headphones, the headrest and in addition to that, the sides of the speakers are glowing in red as well, representing the HyperX logo alongside some stylish lines in a circle, as you can see in the picture. Other than the great design, they provide really good functionality as well. There’s an additional software you can obtain from HyperX for extra sound effects and adjustments, but it’s not necessary. The headset itself is plug & play so it’s pretty straight forward. There is one slight drawback though. They aren’t very compact as other headsets. They’re bulky and slightly heavy. The weight isn’t a problem as it’s countered by the huge amounts of ear and head padding which makes them very comfortable actually, but you can’t carry these around everywhere. I mean, you just can’t due to their size and inability to rotate and bend, but they are absolutely amazing for their price if you plan on using them at your home.

The microphone itself is the main part of these as it looks relatively small and simple, but in reality it really isn’t. The best thing about it is that you can detach it very easily and it will look as if it wasn’t there, so if you just want to chill in the evening hours while going through the gameplay of your favorite game, just detach the microphone and enjoy. The great quality of the microphone is just an extra cherry on the cake as well, as I personally had no trouble using it in communication with random players and my friends both in game and over TeamSpeak & Discord, so I can say with certainty that it is very good. Because of that and its great price, I decided to place it as the winner of the BESTBUY category. If you’re on a budget, but you’re also looking for great quality, then you wouldn’t make a mistake by purchasing this headset.

 

Blue Yeti Pro


  • Four different polar pattern settings
  • Cutting edge A-D converter chip
  • Built-in amplifier for zero-latency monitoring
  • 15 Hz – 22 kHz frequency response

Now, this microphone caught my eye with quite a few things. First off, it looks amazing. The vintage look really appeals to the user and it’s just, pretty. Reminds me of those old microphones in studios before the 2000s. There’s also the fact that this microphone has multiple outputs. An XLR output if you really want to use this microphone to its maximum potential, and an USB output, for the quick plug & play action.

I wouldn’t say it’s great for portability as it really isn’t, but if you really have to, you wouldn’t have much trouble moving it around, just be careful, because it is absolutely amazing. It is somewhat heavy, but when you see what it has to offer, you will understand why the extra weight.

The single greatest thing anyone has ever implemented onto dedicated microphones is the simple and separate button for muting it. And it’s there. You don’t have to unplug the cable, you don’t have to mute it in sound manager, you just press the button and it’s muted, so if someone walks into your room, just press that button and no one will be disturbed. There’s also a volume knob for, well duh, adjusting the volume of the microphone output and it’s that simple, really.

The additional XLR output on the bottom of the microphone is amazing as you can use an additional external amplifier or a different device for other uses and hook it up directly to the microphone using the XLR output, provided you have the necessary wiring. This means, that if you ever want to record music, instruments, vocals, anything that is very dependent on quality of the sound, you can achieve it with this microphone. I’ve heard numerous popular YouTubers claim that this is one of the best microphones out there and I can’t disagree. I haven’t encountered a better one so far.

The coolest part about this one is the four different pattern settings. What does that mean? You can choose what type of monitoring (recording) you want the microphone to be in. It can be stereocardioidomnidirectional and bidirectional.

The stereo mode means it will pick up sounds on both the left and the right channel and it is ideal for recording almost any type of sound. Cardioid mode is crafted for podcasts, vocals or game streaming. It captures the sound only from one direction, so positioning the microphone in front of you while live streaming and picking this mode is the perfect combination.

The omnidirectional mode is quite cool, to be honest as it captures audio coming from all directions. If you want to capture 3D sound or gain the 3D effect with sound, this mode will suit you the best. Last but not least, we have the bidirectional mode and simply said, it records from two sides, which is perfect if you are recording two vocals, or you’re playing with a friend in the same room.

This microphone combined with an adjustable stand you can also purchase is pretty much the perfect combination. It has all you want out of a microphone and it won’t disappoint you.

 

Audio-Technica AT2020 USB microphone


  • Condenser microphone with USB output
  • A/D converter with 16 bit, 44.1/48 kHz sampling rate
  • Internal headphone amplifier for clarity and musical detail

Now, the point of this article was to review microphones for gamers and so far it has been a great trip, but it was headsets only, meaning you would receive a microphone and headphones in one. However, as the primary focus is on microphones, I’ve decided to count in dedicated microphones as well because they really do stand out in that business as they are made for detecting and recording audio. Now, sure, it may not be very convenient to carry both headphones and a dedicated microphone at the same time, so this is a better option if you are certain you won’t be moving around quite of ten. Dedicated microphones are especially handy for live streams and YouTubers as they will always provide better quality than headset microphones. We also have to remember the fact that you can literally put this microphone on a microphone stand and position it anywhere you like, so there’s that. It can be above your head, it can be below your chin, on the side of your face, anywhere you like.

Now, onto the microphone itself. Made by Audio-Technica, an amazing audio-oriented company which not only produces superb microphones, but they’re also in the business of headphones and headsets, and they’re good at it. Previously, I have reviewed one of their noise-cancelling headphones with a microphone and honestly, I was left speechless. The stuff these people make is just amazing. When I was reviewing this microphone, I wasn’t skeptical about it whatsoever, because I simply knew that it would deliver what I wanted. Excellent sound quality without any issues and trouble.

The size of this microphone is very impressive as well because you would usually expect a dedicated microphone to be relatively bulky and large, but this model actually is not so big. You could certainly put it in your front pocket of your pants if you wanted to. Now, of course, the sound quality is the main thing about microphones and I can tell you with assurance that you would not regret buying this. You get a quality-made stand which can have its angle adjusted, so technically saying, you could have this microphone placed anywhere on the desk and it will pick up your voice. It is almost fully omni-directional, meaning it can pick up sound coming from almost all directions. The exception being its two sides which are covered with the frame and the bottom part. Other than that, you really do get an amazing product for the price you pay, which actually isn’t as high as you would expect for such a great product. Then again, even if you’re not a gamer, this microphone is still great for you. Say you’re an instrument player. Buying this microphone is a perfect product for you as it will record all of the sounds you create with your instrument and voice, no joke.

One last thing I would like to note about this microphone as seen in the title of it is that it is USB connected, which makes things even easier. You don’t need any other external adapters and/or converters. You just plug it into the USB port and it’s ready to go. It’s that simple!

 

Rode NT-USB Condenser Microphone


  • USB connectivity
  • On-mic mix control
  • Tripod stand, pop filter and ring mount included
  • Ultra-low noise

Very similar to the previous microphone from Audio-Technica, the RODE NT-USB microphone has a few more additional features at a slightly more elevated price, but the trade off is quite worth it. RODE is without saying, a great producer of quality and well made microphones and they offer numerous bonuses with their products. As you can see in the picture, just by purchasing this model, you receive a tripod stand, a ring mount and the most important of all, the pop filter shield which filters out those annoying ‘pop’ noises. Other than the great extras you receive with this microphone, there’s also one really useful thing on it and that’s the two mix wheels on it which lets you adjust the volume of the microphone itself and volume of the headphones you can plug into the microphone itself for realtime sound feedback.

The great visual aesthetic design is really pleasing to the eyes. The color is a perfect match and the USB cable is detachable so that makes this microphone quite portable, if you don’t mind disassembling everything every time.

It provides amazing sound quality, especially for instruments, but it is also great for gamers as it can capture even the slightest whispers, so you can truly get immersed into the video game you’re playing without yelling your heart out in an effort to signal your friend. The pop filter shield is a really useful thing, especially if you use the microphone on a daily basis as it filters out the ‘pop’ noise as previously stated, which can get really annoying in a very short time period.

The microphone stand is adjustable so you can place the microphone anywhere on the desk and just point it towards yourself and it will capture your voice without any problems. The additional volume wheels on the microphone are very useful, especially if someone walks into your room, you can lower the volume very easily without unplugging the microphone, so the usability of it is really good.

Other than that, it’s a really great piece of hardware for the price you pay.

 

HyperX Cloud II


  • USB Audio Sound Card
  • 7.1 Virtual Surround Sound
  • Noise cancelling microphone
  • Echo cancelling
  • 15 Hz – 22kHz frequency response
  • 53mm sound drivers

Bulky. That’s the main characteristic of this headset. But don’t let that put you down, they’re pretty good in my opinion. I already had a chance to review these some time ago, but I decided to give them another shot as they were pretty good and I wanted to test them out further. This variant comes only in color of black which makes them look pretty cool. One would think that with great size, great weight comes, but surprisingly, these headphones are pretty light. They’re made out of plastic, but I tested how strong it was by trying to bend it, and it didn’t break. I did bend it quite a lot, but it didn’t break, so it is some high quality plastic. The reason these headphones are inexpensive is because they’re made out of plastic I assume because the technicalities are really good. I had no problems with the sound quality of both the speakers and the microphone, so there’s that.

The microphone itself is detachable, meaning you can’t retract it upwards or downwards, but you actually have to detach it to move it out of sight. That is a great thing if you have to move these headphones around quite a lot because you can’t rotate their speakers, but you can detach the rather large microphone, which is a good thing. They are VERY COMFORTABLE on your ears and head when you put them on and as sketchy as it may seem, the material the padding is made of does not look cheap as it doesn’t rip apart, doesn’t come off and doesn’t give off that weird odor after a prolonged usage of the headphones.

It also has an active noise cancellation on the microphone, meaning you won’t be picking up a large amount of unnecessary sounds coming in from the background which makes this headset a great choice if you’re playing video games in a loud room. There is also a 7.1 audio mode which turns the audio into more realistic sounding audio, but I personally didn’t like it on any of the headphones, but that’s just personal preference, so it shouldn’t cause you any problems.

All in all, a great piece of hardware for avid gamers for a relatively low price.

 

Turtle Beach – Elite Pro


  • 50mm sound drivers
  • extremely soft ear padding
  • rotational microphone
  • 12 Hz – 22kHz frequency response

The orange color on these headphones is what makes them look cool, aside the amazing design of course. The customizability is one of the key characteristics on these as they were made for one specific audience.. and those are hardcore gamers. Sure, you don’t have to be a hardcore gamer, but a lot of professional teams in various popular video games use these in tournaments and live streams as they are really, really good. Oh and did I mention they look cool?

The extremely soft ear pads are so soft you could fall asleep with these without any trouble. They don’t cause any excessive pressure on your ears nor your head so there’s no worry in getting a headache or sweaty ears. I mean, of course, if it’s blazing summer and the temperatures are high, it will always be not so pleasing to wear headphones, but these are one of the most comfortable I’ve seen so far.

The microphone is relatively simple and straight forward. You can rotate it upwards and downwards, so lining it up with your mouth won’t be a problem at all. The quality of the microphone is pretty good, but in this case, they have focused more on quality of the sound you receive through the speakers, which I understand, as it is very important in the tournaments. Of course, we cannot ignore the voice communication between the players, but I believe they have prioritized the sound quality of speakers over the microphone.

Now, I’m not saying it’s bad, it is very good actually, but you can get better ones for somewhat the same price. Other than that, a really great pair of headphones in my opinion.

 

Conclusion


If you’re a gamer, and I believe you are if you’re reading this article, let’s be real.. you need good gear to perform well. Whether it be a mouse, a keyboard, in this case a headset, it has to be quality made. If you’re reading this segment of the review, you will get the general understanding of the best headsets there are in the market right now. Maybe, just maybe none of these suit you, and I’m sure that will happen as each gamer has their own and unique play style and requirements, and if that’s the case, feel free to contact me through the comment section and I will gladly help you out in picking the best headset for yourself.

All in all, this article was made in an effort to help out numerous people who seek the best voice communication device there is that they can afford and no matter what you are, a musician, a hardcore gamer, a casual gamer, I’m positive this article can help you pick your ideal microphone/headset.

 

Nedim SabicBest microphone for gaming
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Best Mirrorless Cameras

We, the reviewers at Geektick have spent countless days reviewing the best mirrorless cameras, and we came up with the best mirrorless cameras out there. I have been using a standard Canon EOS 600D camera for about 2 years. It is quite bulky and is a hassle to take out and take a fast picture. Even though I have taken countless pictures, it still lacks something. The fact that it’s so heavy and requires up to two minutes to take a shot with it is just irritating.

But recently a friend of mine borrowed me his Mirrorless camera for about a day or two saying I should try it out. To my own shock it was actually pretty good. It had the same image quality, and it was about 5 times lighter than my DSLR. At that point, random thoughts were going through my mind. I was quite shocked and amazed at the same time. For example, going up a mountain and taking shots with a heavy DSLR is quite annoying and most of the time you leave it at home when you go hiking. And now I’ve found a nice solution. So I’ve decided to go hiking a bit, I’ve brought it with me and took some fancy shots of the mountains. Upon coming home I ported them to my PC and compared the shots to some old ones taken with my Canon. And once again I was shocked! The camera my friend lent me was literally better then my DSLR, the image quality looked the same two days ago. Before I gave it back I’ve decided to record a small video, and this time I was simply out of words. This camera was able to record videos in 2K and 60 fps. Simply astonishing!

But in the end I had to give it away. And now thanks to that I have searched up the best mirrorless cameras.


Content :

Lets get to business and see what camera suits you!


BEST MIRRORLESS CAMERA – FUJI X-T2 

The X-T2 is an upgrade to the original x series, it solves many of the problems and cons the x series had. The camera has had an improvement in image quality and considerable changes in Auto focus, video, flash control, making the X-T2 the perfect mirrorless camera for photo geeks. This camera is quickly becoming the most popular camera out there, selling many copies across the world. This camera basically can fulfill all your needs and more. This camera can take any man’s breath away whether he is a photographer or not. It is that good! Now lets take a minute and admire the fact that this camera can record in 4K. Astonishing!

 

bestFuji X-T2 features:

  • 24MP X-Trans CMOS III sensor
  • ISO 200 – 12,800(up to 51200)
  • 325 AF points
  • AF point selection joystick
  • F-Log flat profile and 4K out over HDMI
  • 2.36M-dot OLED EVF with 0.005 sec refresh time
  • 3″ 1.04M-dot articulating LCD
  • 4K UHD video at up to 30 fps for up to 10 min
  • 8 fps continuous shooting with AF
  • 5 fps continuous shooting with live view updates between capture
  • 14 fps continuous shooting with electronic shutter
  • Dual SD card slots (UHS-II compatible)
  • USB 3.0 socket

Battery life of this camera is one of the best and goes up to 1000 shots. No matter what you need this camera can suite your needs making this the best camera around. Granted performance wise it can be beaten by some other cameras but the price itself makes this camera the best camera.

Overall Score:

96


BESTSELLER – SONY ALPHA A6000 

Sony a6000 is an upgrade of the Sony NEX-6, a very well-regarded CSC. It is the best selling mirrorless camera  on the internet. Its autofocus speed compared to a DSLR is out of this world. It has a sleek body design as it only weighs 12.1 oz and the dimensions are 4.7x.2.6×1.8 inch. It comes in black, white and silver. This camera is by far my favorite one, you are able to take quality images, record Full HD videos for less then 500 dollars. I am going on a whim and saying this is probably the best beginner camera out there, and probably the best one for personal use. It is a pure bargain and if you are planing to get a casual camera to carry around this one is your perfect match.

bestsellerSony Alpha A6000 features:

  • 24.3 megapixel APS-C CMOS sensor
  • Bionz X image processor
  • 11 fps continuous shooting with subject-tracking
  • 3-inch tilting LCD with 921,600 dots
  • Full HD video recording at 1080/60p and 24p; HDMI output
  • Built-in flash + Multi-Interface Shoe
  • Wi-Fi with NFC capability and downloadable apps
  • ISO 100-25600 (up to 51200)

The only major cons are that the A6000 utilizes Sony’s lower resolution SVGA viewfinder, rather than its top-end XGA panel. It has a battery life of 360 shots which is more then enough coming from this camera.

Overall Score:

84


BESTBUY – CANON EOS M5 

The Canon EOS M5 is  a 24MP mirrorless camera built around a Dual Pixel APS-C sensor, giving it depth-aware focus across most of the frame. It is compact, powerful and fast. That is why we deem this camera to be the best buy. Inside there’s a new image sensor and processor that offer better image quality and performance, and the sensor also now supports Canon’s Dual Pixel CMOS AF technology, allowing swift and accurate phase-detection autofocus across most of the image frame, it also increases the burst speed. This camera is the latest in the Canon series and one of the most anticipated ones out there.

bestbuyCanon M5 EOS features:

  • 24MP Dual Pixel APS-C CMOS Sensor
  • 2.36M-dot OLED electronic viewfinder
  • 1.62M-dot tilting rear touchscreen
  • Electronic video stabilization combines with in-lens IS to give 5-axis IS
  • ISO 100 – 25,600
  • 7 fps continuous shooting
  • Wi-Fi with always-connected Bluetooth

Battery life is 295 shots, sadly this is disappointing, but in eco mode you can take up to 410 shots easily.

Overall Score:

90


CANON EOS M3

Canon has been selling mirrorless cameras since 2012, in addition to SLRs and point-and-shoots. There are two models to choose from the EOS M3 and the EOS M5.The EOS M3 is similar Rebel T6s stuffed into a compact body that resembles the company’s PowerShot models. It utilizes the  Hybrid CMOS AF III 24.2MP CMOS sensor as well as a Digic 6 processor. Even though being around for over four years, there are just six EF-M lenses available from Canon. Luckily there are lenses from third party manufacturers such as Tamron and Samyang/Rokinon (but they  are manual focus).

It only weighs 12.91 oz and the dimensions are 4.37 x 2.68 x 1.73 inch. The body comes in two colors white and black. Personall , I am not amazed with this camera, it’s quite similar to the Sony A6000 and has the same price tag, but it still deserves a place on this list as it’s a classic.

Canon EOS M3 features :

  • 24.2 Megapixel CMOS (APS-C) sensoreos-m3-ef-m-18-55mm-is-stm-camera-kit-black_1_xl
  • ISO 100–12800 (up to 25600)
  • DIGIC 6 Image Processor 
  • Hybrid CMOS AF III 
  • Front Dial and Exposure Compensation Dial help provide full manual control and offer customizable functions as well as improved operability and ease of use
  • 4.2 fps continuous shooting
  • Full HD 1920×1080 movies at 24p and 30p in MP4 format with ease using manual movie control
  • Intuitive touch screen 3.0 tilt-type (180° up/45° down) LCD monitor (approximately 1,040,000 dots) perfect for selfies 
  • Easily transfer images and videos to a compatible smartphone, tablet or Canon Connect Station CS100 device with built-in Wi-Fi and NFC capability, and share on social networking sites or view on an HDTV
  • Compatible with EF-M lenses as well as the full line of EF* and EF-S* Lenses (using Mount Adapter EF-EOS M; not included) and Speedlites for expanded creativity

This camera only has a few cons to it. The biggest con is its low battery life which only lasts for up to 200 shots.

Overall Score:

82

 


PANASONIC LUMIX DMC-G7

The Panasonic G7 is a direct descendant of the original mirrorless camera. This camera is trying to be a non-specific interchangeable lens camera. Because of that it looks like a miniature DSLR and includes all the control points you’d expect. In fact it includes all the control points you’d expect from a mid-range DSLR, including twin control dials as well as plenty of buttons and switches. Nevertheless it is a mirrorless camera. The design of the G7 attracts DSLR buyers, but the level of direct control also makes it competitive with the likes of Sony’s A6000.

It weighs 14.4 oz and the dimensions are 4.92×3.39×3.05 inch. The body resembles a DSLR one and it comes in black and silver.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-G7 features:panasonic_dmc_g7ks_lumix_dmc_g7_mirrorless_micro_1148283

  • 16MP Four Thirds CMOS sensor
  • 4K (UHD) video at up to 100Mbps
  • 4K Photo mode with ‘Pre-Burst’ mode
  • ISO 200 – 25,600
  • 30 fps continuous shooting
  • Fully-articulated touch screen
  • Wi-Fi for remote shooting and image transfer

It has a battery life of 350 shots.

Overall Score:

82

 


SONY ALPHA A7 II

Sony Alpha A7 II is Sonys 4th release. It has the same 24 MP sensor as the predecessors but performance increased. In the form of  5-axis sensor-based image stabilization and improved AF performance. It also has some design tweaks that change the over all look. The A7 II  is 25% heavier then it’s predecessors. Nevertheless this camera is an improvement for the better. It is 30% faster compared to the A7. The a7 II has the ability to record in the XAVC S codec, which offers a 50MBps bit rate at 1080/60p. The a7 II retains the 3″ tilting LCD of it’s predecessor, but with an increase in resolution.

It weighs 21.1 oz and it’s dimensions are 5.0 x 3.8 x 2.4 inch.

Sony Alpha A7 II features:sony_ilce7m2k_b_alpha_a7ii_mirrorless_digital_1102009

  • 24.3MP Full-Frame Exmor CMOS Sensor
  • BIONZ X Image Processor
  • 1080 footage at up to 50Mbps (XAVC S)
  • ISO 100-25600
  • 5-Axis SteadyShot INSIDE Stabilization
  • Enhanced Fast Hybrid AF and 5 fps Burst
  • 3.0″ 1,229k-Dot Tilting LCD Monitor
  • XGA 2.36M-Dot OLED Electronic Viewfinder
  • Refined Grip & Robust Lens Mount
  • Built-In Wi-Fi Connectivity with NFC
  • Weather-Resistant Magnesium Alloy Body

The battery life is quite low once again, as it is only 270 shots.

Overall Score:

93

 


LEICA TYP 240

The LEICA M typ 240 is the world’s second full-frame mirrorless camera. It is the successor to the world’s first full-frame mirrorless camera, the Leica M9 of 2009. Over all the TYP 240 beats the M9 out of the water. The TYP 240 has a much higher ISO performance rate then the M9.

The body comes in two colors black and silver. And it weighs 23.9oz without any extension also it’s dimensions are 5.5 x 3.1 x 1.7 inch.

Leica TYP 240 features:

  • 24 MP CMOS Sensorleica_m_typ_240_front
  • ISO 200 – 6400
  • 3” TFT Display with 920.000 Pixels, scratch resistant cover glass made of sapphire glass
  • 3fps (until buffer of 2 GB is filled)
  • Recording resolution 1080p, 720p, 640*480 (VGA)
  • Single frame video compression (Motion JPG), Quicktime format (mov)
  • All-metal case made of die-cast magnesium; synthetic leather covering. Cap and base plate made of brass
  • Focusing Methods: Manual focus with optical rangefinder, Live View, 100% Live View Zoom, Live View focus peaking
  • Optical Viewfinder :Large, light bright-line rangefinder with automatic parallax compensation, LED illuminated frame lines

A great camera that is worth buying as it brings new things to the table. If you have enough money then this camera is for you.

Overall Score:

87

 


COMPARISON

These Mirrorless Cameras have been chosen due to their unique abilities, features and benefits. As many Mirrorless Cameras today forget about the average user and the use of the Camera itself. In many cases companies like Fujifilms and Sony try to make the perfect camera in every shape and size. So their goal is to make the strongest camera out there. Yet that means the production value in the latest cameras has increased and so has the price tag. I will try to judge the cameras based on their price and raw power.graphv2-copy

The Typ 240 is not included as it is a different type of mirrorless camera as it uses an optical finder instead of an electronic viewfinder.

Price wise the A6000, EOS M3 and the G7 are clearly miles ahead as they cost under $500. It should be noted that for all these cameras you will need to buy a lens, only the G7 is an exception as it comes with a lens. That in theory makes them affordable to almost any beginner, therefore it should be noted that in some cases these cameras will not perform to the standards you want. The Leica Typ 240 is extremely expensive due to its unique and one of a kind abilities. The EOS M5 is remarkably cheaper then the tier one cameras but it offers a similar experience, it should be noted that the Canon EOS M5 is meant for everyone as it provides more features then the cheap and reliable A6000 and the price is under $1000 making it globally accessible. The Fuji X-T2 along with the Sony Alpha A7 II are tier one cameras and are the most expensive besides the Leica Typ 240, but the price is not without its reasons as they are among the best cameras of this world and should be regarded as such for few years to come. That might change though as Sony and Fujifilms are constantly putting out stronger and better cameras.

Still, price does not matter much to these cameras as all of them are powerful. Though the Fuji X-T2 is the most powerful one and the A7II coming in second place. But none of them can give the quality light design like the Leica Typ 240. Many of these cameras can burst up to amazing speeds up to 30 fps. There is where the G7 truly shines as it is the fastest burst speed out of all these cameras. While the others have an average burst speed of 7 fps. Though many of them can increase that burst speed with attachments. They can also increase their ISO in some cases.


MIRRORLESS CAMERA PROS AND CONS

I am just going to explain the pros and cons in more details. With every camera there is a risk of making a bad decision as it could have a bad video recorder or it would have a slow burst mode. That’s why this section is here.It is going to explain unanswered questions about these cameras.

SIZE AND WEIGHTs-l225

Mirrorless cameras have matured over the past 8 years they have also changed in shape, color and many other things, making it harder to talk  about their strengths and weaknesses as they are all diverse. It remains true, though that mirrorless cameras are generally smaller than their DSLR peers. Taking the mirror out means that the lens can be mounted closer to the sensor, helping to reduce the size of the system. Furthermore, without the need to be backwards compatible with film era systems, the lenses tend to be designed to match the size of the sensor, meaning many of these are smaller, as well. Just as in the DSLR world though, more expensive, faster lenses, especially those designed for Sony’s full-frame Alpha A7-series, are an exception to the standard Mirrorless Cameras as they are big and bulky compared to the rest. Also to note, many of these cameras are made to be compact, in many cases the weight doesn’t go over 24 oz. The average weight of a mirrorless camera is about 17 oz.

AUTOFOCUS

Once  a weakness of mirrorless cameras is now one of their strong points, the hybrid autofocus systems  have essentially closed the gap between DSLR and mirrorless focus performance for all but the most demanding applications. Not all mirrorless models offer hybrid AF though, so it’s worth doing a little research if you need a camera with good continuous autofocus. Also, there are companies that develop lenses that are not autofocus, for example for the canon due to the fact that the canon only has a small amount of lenses to offer.

VIDEO

Mirrorless cameras assess focus from their imaging sensor rather than a separate module, they are more accurate and consistent. Combined with awareness of the scene that allows cameras to track and maintain focus on a subject’s eye, it’s increasingly the case that autofocus is one of mirrorless’s biggest strengths. The most obvious advantage of mirrorless cameras is that there isn’t a mirror blocking the sensor. This means you don’t have to completely change the way that the camera works in order to shoot video you can continue to use the same means of previewing and shooting when you switch from stills to video, while for DSLR you would have to change everything. As a result, it is mirrorless cameras that have led the charge towards offering better and better video and the clever photographic tricks that can stem from it. Many newer mirrorless cameras have the ability to shoot in 4K resolution, but the others posses up to full hd. This is a step in the right direction as 4K recording equipment is currently extremely popular and as mirrorless cameras get better so does their video resolution, granted though you will have to pay extra for those cameras but it is totally worth it, as you will get all you need in one camera.

Every camera has its cons. The mirrorless is  fairly new and it is aiming to improve every down side as it constantly updates.

Cons:

The need to constantly power the sensor and screen while shooting, combined with attempts to capitalize on the size benefits of mirrorless mean that battery life is limited on most mirrorless cameras sometimes to a restrictive degree. The average battery life is about 250-350 shots with rare cases going above 350. But you can buy attachments to increase the battery life.

Of course, there’s the absence of an optical viewfinder. There are only a small number of Mirrorless Cameras with an optical viewfinder for example the Leica Typ 240, but these cameras cost a lot of money. While electronic viewfinders are constantly improving, they are not limited by the size of the image format and can more accurately preview the image you’re going to get, most contemporary camera live view feeds still lag behind the action when continuous shooting.

Mirrorless cameras have started to compete in areas where the DSLRs have dominated for years, we have also seen DSLR strike back, with mirrorless style on sensor phase detection being added to offer a faster live view experience and better autofocus during video. As such, it’s getting to the point that personal preference for one particular feature or one specific lens might sway your decision. Whichever you choose, advances in technology and a broader range of choices can only be a good thing.


CONCLUSION

The best camera from all of these is the  Fuji X-T2 as it servers for all purposes, but the A7 II is a close second as it has the same capabilities as the X-T2, the Sony Alpha A6000 is the go to camera for beginners due to its many features for only 400 dollars, you will not find a camera that is this advanced and this cheap I can guarantee you that.So to put everything in perspective it all depends how much money you can spare on these wonderful cameras. If you cannot afford the types of Fuji X-T2 or the LEICA TYP 240 then you should reconsider buying the Sony Alpha A6000 or the Canon EOS M3 as they provide many features and are cheap. But if you are looking for pure raw power you should buy the Fuji X-T2 or the Sony Alpha A7 II, granted, they aren’t the cheapest but they sure provide a lot of advantages compared to the A6000 and the EOS M3.

I hope this article helped you choose the right camera for you.

My personal pick would be the A6000 as I do not need the raw power offered by the X-T2, also price has a lot to do with my own decision as the A6000 is a complete bargain. May Talos bless your kind hearth.

Nedim SabicBest Mirrorless Cameras
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Best laptops for business (March 2017)

Managing small family business or working in some large corporation, finding yourself a good laptop is a serious undertaking. You need something powerful, strong and also light to be easily portable and also that has a nice battery life to last you on that long work day.

But with hundreds of options out there for  buying, how to find yourself what you need. Well, you came to the right place. Business laptops have the basic components like regular laptops, but with some extra features like fingerprint readers and facial recognition, to be MIL-SPEC-tested and Trusted Platform Module (TPM) for secure access. MIL-SPEC is basically a set of standards designed to test laptop durability, durability and ruggedness. These test put the laptop in the extreme situations, like extreme heat or cold, pressure, humidity, dust and vibration testing.

We will show you the components  that you need to look for when buying a laptop.

Processors and Graphics

Dual core processor is a standard for business laptops like Intels i3, i5 and i7, and AMD series A4 A6 and A8 , but for little more money you can buy a quad-core processor for more demanding applications like high-powered, low voltage and standard mobile processors that are found in some gaming laptops and desktop-replacement. You can also find desktop-class processors in laptops, but they usually use more power. Look nothing under 1.7gHz and nothing over 2.7 gHz, that is a sweet spot, and will give you great relation between power used and speed.

Most business laptops come with integrated graphics, which is perfectly fine, since you won’t be playing any games on it. Most buyers who want discrete graphics will use them for special tasks in Photo Shop or Adobe Illustrator.

RAM – Random Access Memory and Storage 

Anything that has less than 4GB of RAM is a bad solution. You are going to need at least 4GB if you don’t wan’t your laptop to lag. If you have money you should go even for 8GB of RAM or even better, 16GB of RAM. Bigger amount of RAM memory allows you to have more programs opened, and do tasks much faster.

Let’s talk about storage. Buying laptop with 500GB or 1TB of hard drive memory (HDD) is a nice compromise between space and price. If you travel a lot then you should think about going for solid-state drive (SSD). They don’t have any spinning parts, so if you accidentally drop your laptop or expose it to vibration you can be 100 percent sure that your data is completely safe. SSD also boots much faster and launches programs faster too. You can find 128GB SSD, but if you can, you should go for 256GB or even 512GB if you can afford it.

Display

 

LCD screens with  1.336px x 768px resolution are somewhat still available for buying if you don’t want to spend a lot of money on your laptop. But it is a much better choice to buy 1.920px x 1.080px and buy a laptop with at least 15 inches in diagonal. This display will give you a lot of space for arranging many programs or looking at some Excel documents with many columns, so your coworkers will be able to see everything without squinting.  If you want you can even go for 4K display for that ultimate pleasure at looking at positive business data.

Battery 

 

A big battery in a laptop is your biggest friend during long work days. Business laptops usually come with multiple battery options. Some more expensive laptops have multiple kinds of batteries (four, six, or even nine-cell options). The more cells” you have the longer the battery life. Bigger battery means some extra weight you have to carry, but it is worth it. Also you should look for laptop with a removable battery if you need to have power 6 to 8 hours before you need to charge again.


Next I will mark off the best laptops for business, and also give you a complete review of their statistics. I listed them from the greatest to those less great. With that out of the way, now let’s see what are the best business out there to buy.

No.1

Apple MacBook Pro 13-inch (2016)

This is, currently, one of the best laptops there is to buy, and there is completely no doubt about that.  It has the best screen, the best design, the best speed, and of course class. You will certainly look professional when you come into the meeting room, and take one of these bad boys on the table.

MacBook features design that looks both modern and classic, with all aluminum body and great dimensions making it very very portable. Talking about dimensions  MacBook Pro has width of 13.75 inches (34.93 cm) and depth of 9.48 inches (24.07 cm), and being only 0.61 inch (1.55 cm) tall, plus the weight is a big factor here, weight is just around 3.02 pounds (1.37 kg, 48.32 Ounces ) making it very comfortable to carry around.

When it comes to ports they are minimum.

Apple MacBook Pro is equipped with  two Thunderbolt 3 ports on the left and 3.5 headphone jack on the right side. These Thunderbolt 3 are coming with a USB type-C connector, allowing for both power and data transfer. They will provide you with a very fast transfer speeds (up to 40 Gbps), and also connect not one, but two 4K monitors.

Sadly,  Apple MacBook Pro no longer has SD card slot, so you will need to USB c connector for data transfer.

KEYBOARD

If you didn’t use MacBook earlier, then at first you will find it kinda weird. This keyboard has a very low travel distance (0.5 mm) when typing and you will find this keyboard very speedy and efficient.

DISPLAY  

 Next on the line it’s that famous Apple screen.

It is super BRIGHT. 

Apple is claiming it is about 67 percent brighter than anything released. It is 2560 x 1600-pixel Retina display on the 13-inch MacBook Pro display. At first you would think it’s some old display, don’t worry, Mac got you covered. This is one where with the brightness also comes the rich colors. When looking at some 4K videos, you can pick out every single face line of your character. MacBook scored amazing 495 nits on tests! – which is way higher than anything else in this category.

Audio

Talking about best laptop in the class, it comes with really good audio performance. Whether you’re playing some music form Spotify, or watching Netflix, listening to old family videos, you are gonna love these speakers. Those are some monster speakers on this small laptop.

Apple has designed this laptop to deliver double dynamic range and three times less power peek. I am personally a fan of metal music, and during testing this laptop I cranked up Sabaton to the max, and Joakims voice sounded more than crystal clear.

 HARDWARE

Let’s talk about what’s in this beautiful bad boy. It comes with  a 6th-generation Core i5 CPU, with -GHz, 8GB of RAM memory 256GB of SSD storage,  and  Intel Iris Graphics 540 graphics card. The result of all this nice hardware is that notebook is faster and quieter than the previous Pro, but not as fast as some other notebooks that market has to offer.

But don’t worry, even if you have dozen of programs running you won’t feel the slightest lag or stutter.

Apple decided to go with Iris 540 graphics on the 13-inch MacBook Pro, with backup of 64MB of eDRAM, whose purpose is to accelerate both the processor  and graphics workload.

If you want to play games on this laptop you can. You can run newer games on medium setting in about 30-40 FPS.

Heating is a big problem for most laptops because of the tight space inside and the low air flow.

This  13-inch MacBook Pro has some spots that get little bit more warmer, and some spots remain cool and nice. While pushing this laptop a little bit more, the touchpad reached about little more than  80 degrees, which is more than comfortable to operate, but, however, the keyboard and the bottom line of the notebook reached something about 100 degrees, but it is still somewhat comfortable to use.

Enough about hardware let’s talk about some software.

One BIG thing about Mac is that you don’t have to worry about any unwanted third-party apps that come pre-installed with your Mac.

It has a pure macOS Sierra experience, and comes with Siri on the Mac for the first time. With Siri comes an Optimized Storage feature that will help you free up space if you need it, support Apple Pay for purchasing online and also an improved Photo app that makes images into collections called Memories.

Battery

Apple says that you will get about 10 hours of web surfing from their 54.5 watt-hour battery, which is kind of a true. We’ve put battery life to the test. So we browsed the web while connected on the wi-fi and put brightness to 100 nits, and after about 9 and 1/2 hours the battery run out.

Summary

MacBook Pro 13-inch is a huge upgrade from its predecessor in everything. It is lighter, faster much more compact, and has an awesome screen. Combine that with great speakers 2 fast Thunderbolt 3 ports and you got yourself a perfect combination.

It is a great, great laptop and I strongly recommend it if you can afford it.

So, that wraps it up for Apple MacBook Pro 13-inch, if you liked the review and you wish to buy this bad boy you can buy it from the link down below:

 


This is probably one of THE best buy laptops out there on Internet to buy. Wonder why ? Well here is the FULL review of this beast.

Dell XPS 13

DELL XPS 13 has everything that you need from the business laptop. It offers a nice combo of style, design, performance, screen, price and of course battery life.

I personally got this laptop, and the first time I laid my hands on it I was amazed with how well it performed.

First thing you will notice is its display, which has literally no bezel around screen. This allowed DELL to cram 13 inch screen into body that you would find on a 11 inch laptop.

This also allows for illusion that screen is floating above the base which allows you to focus more on your content.

The rest of the laptop is very classy and attractive as well,  but not as thin as some other laptops out there.

Both the top and the bottom is made from machined aluminum, which gives a frame durable and rigid feel on touch. The interior is even better. It is constructed by comfortable,  carbon-fiber material, soft to touch making typing a real pleasure.

We are still staying on the outside of the laptop, to say a word or two about its dimensions.

DELL XPS 13 weights around 2.8 pounds ( 1.27kg, 44.8 Ounces ), and that puts it kinda in the middle, being neither too heavy, nor featherweight.

At 0.33 inches (0.8cm) to 0.6 inches (1.5), again in the middle. But that won’t be a problem because you will get all the ports that you need.

PORTS

Talking about ports, DELL XPS 13 comes with two USB 3.0 ports,Type-C port with Thunderbolt 3 support, a SD Card Reader and the headphone jack.

Display

DELL XPS 13 comes with two options for display, and both are very very good.

One is full-HD 1920 x 1080, non-touch screen with a matte finish.

Second is quad-HD touch-screen model with resolution of astonishing 3200 x 1800 pixels, with much richer colors.

While watching 4K videos on YouTube, the higher resolution is a clear winner. Characters have much more details, face lines are very smooth, making pleasure to watch.

Talking about  brightness- the XPS 13 isn’t one of the brightest. It reached about 300 nits on our testing, while 3200 x 1800 touch display reached little bit more, about 307 nits. This results put XPS 13’s somewhere in the middle spot.

Audio

With a great screen comes a great audio. Two stereo speakers can get pretty loud , but sound losses some of its quality at maximum level. But that is on default settings. When I added more bass in the Waves MaxxAudio Pro app, Vince Staples’s – “Bagbak”, sounded much more balanced.

You can make many different settings, such as Reducing Noise or Revive for streaming, and adjusting details in tracks.

Lets talk about:

Keyboard and Touchpad

Typing on the Dell XPS 13 is a real pleasure. Keyboard offers 1.2 mm of movement. I went on a 10fastfingers.com typing test and scored about 70 words per minute, which is just below Mac Book Pro, which reached 80 words per minute.

Dell is known for having Precise touchpad, and it lived up to its name, offering both the smooth, fast and most important precise scrolling. You won’t have any problems executing various gestures, like tapping with three fingers to launch Cortana or to switch apps.

Lets talk about the guts of this beast. It’s time to move inside to see what Dell XPS has to offer.

Performance

Dell XPs 13 as said before comes in two forms. The first is equipped with 7th-generation Core i5-7200U (Kaby Lake) processor , 8 GB of RAM memory, 1080p screen and 256GB of Hard Drive Storage (HDD).

Second one is 4K touch screen with Core i7-7500U CPU, 256GB SSD and 8 GB of RAM.

There isn’t a substantial difference between these two.

Both these sets offer ULTRA fast performance in the field of everyday use, so you won’t notice a single lag.

Even if you have multiple tabs open, you can quickly switch between from Skype to Google Chrome to Word etc.

On Geekbench 3, a test which measures overall performance of the laptop, the first model Core i5 scored 7.161, and the second model the Core i7 scored 7.920. These are both really solid scores to achieve.

The XPS 13’s PCI-e NVMe SSD is truly fast, hitting about 340.0 megabytes per second. Once again putting XPS 13 just below the MacBook’s 356.0 megabytes per second.

Graphics

With XPS 13’s Intel HD Graphics 620 card you will be pretty surprised. After all it is a business laptop. I tried Dirt 3 driving game, and got some pretty solid numbers.

I was able to run it at about 30 fps, at medium-high setting at 1920 x 1080p.

Webcam

One of the weaker things on the Dell XPS – it is its webcam. Not because of the image quality, but because of its location. You won’t find it on a typical spot, centered above the screen, no, you will find the webcam below the screen on the left side, right near the hinge. This extremely odd placement means that you will need to angle your face to find a right angle for the other side to see you. Also you will need to reposition the laptop quite a bit so you don’t get too far to the right.

Battery Life

Dell XPS 13 can boast with one of the longest battery life of the all ultra portable laptops out there in the market. If that wasn’t enough the new version includes a beefier 60-watt-hour battery, improvement over 56 watt model.

Result of this is that the new nontouch version of the XPS 13 offers some epic endurance. We tested it on Laptop Mag web surfing test, it lasted just below 14 hours, hitting 13 hours and 50 minutes.

Results were extremely different on the touch screen model. The XPS with 3200 x 1800 touchscreen and i7 lasted about four and a half hours less. Scoring a time of 9 hours and 10 minutes, which is still better than average of about 8 hours.

Software

DELL kept all the bloatware to minimum. If you buy it from Amazon or their official store you will find McAfee LiveSafe, DropBox and Microsoft Office. And that is it. No more no less.

HEAT 

The XPS 13 hot out side and cool inside. The 95 degrees Fahrenheit is some border of comfort, everything above is starting to be less and less comfortable. After streaming video for some 25 minutes, the touchpad reached about 83 degrees Fahrenheit and the bottom reached the 90 degrees.

So that is our review of the DELL XPS 13, if you like it and want to buy it directly from Amazon you can do it by pressing this link.

Next on the list we have a real treat:

Lenovo ThinkPad Yoga 260

Lenovo’s Yoga line has always been known pairing flexible, bend-back design with high level durability, usability and maybe most importantly portability.

The 12.5 inch ThinkPad Yoga 260 has an accurate touchpad, definitely the best in class keyboard, and really recognizable style. It can boost your productivity experience, but it is not perfect. It also has an undersaturated display, and somewhat bellow average battery life.

Design

Lenovo ThinkPad Yoga 260 features 2 in 1 design, with four modes that will adapt elegantly to your needs. Those four modes include :

  • Laptop
  • Stand
  • Tablet
  • Tent

Laptop is pretty much self-explanatory, tablet mode has keyboard folded all the way to the back of the screen.

Tent mode has the system standing  on the edges, with the display facing out.

And lastly has Stand mode has the laptop resting on the keyboard, and the screen looking outside.

 A pair of powerful hinges allows the the screen to do all this.

It is made from some king of lightweight carbon-fiber hybrid material,  on the back, and blend of both magnesium and plastic on the base.

Thanks to this you can easily carry it around with you. Yoga 2 is also extremely durable. According to Lenovo, Yoga 260 has passed 15 different tests of durability MIL-SPEC durability tests, including all those for extreme heat and cold. So if you go to Sahara or Antarctica it is completely safe. Also, if you are drinking some beverage while working with Yoga 260, and accidentally spill it, don’t worry about it, nothing will happen. It comes with a spill-resistant keyboard to protect you from any spills.

Lets talk about dimensions.

At 12.20 x 8.66 x 0.70 inches and 2.9 pounds (1.3 kg, 46.4 Ounces ) , the Yoga 260 won’t have any problem fitting in any bag. And carrying it around is easy.

DISPLAY

The ThinkPad Yoga 260’s, 1920 x 1080 12,5 inch, display gives you a very sharp image and also strong viewing angles, but not everything is colorful and cheerful as you think. Color output seems to be lifeless when watching YouTube video at 1080p, you can see all the fine details, but most colors will feel undersaturated. Yoga 260 display may not be the most colorful, but it is one of the brightest. ThinkPad Yoga 260 panel managed to score a full 330 nits of brightness, which is above the category average (308.7 nits), above the XPS (307 nits) but below the amazing MacBook (495 nits).

AUDIO

The Yoga 260 features two hinge mounted speakers, which are powerful enough for some smaller room, but if you need to have a presentation in anything bigger you will need external speakers. Don’t expect some high quality on those speakers. High tones get to be somewhat tiny, and not particularly loud even when volume is cranked up to maximum. Laptop comes with a built in Dolby Audio software, which lets you to switch between multiple sound profiles, such as for: Movie, Music, Voice and Gaming  uses, or even better to manually adjust a graphic equalizer.

Ports

The ThinkPad Yoga 260 comes with solid selection of ports. On the left side we’ve got:

  • Single USB port
  • A mini DisplayPort
  • connector for Lenovo’s OneLink+ Dock accessory
  • and optional smart card reader.

On the right side we’ve got:

  • USB port
  • HDMI port
  • an audio jack
  • microSD card reader
  • SIM card slot
  • and  Kensington lock slot.

As previously said it is a solid collection of ports, but a one more USB port or USB type C port would be beneficial.

Keyboard

Lenovo is know for having the best laptop keyboards in the business, and the Yoga 260 fully lives to the tradition. With deep travel, slightly curved keys which are easy to feel and also a strong feedback, most typical laptops have only about 1.5 mm of travel space (some even less), YOGA 260 has a FULL 2 mm. offering extremely pleasant typing experience.

Touchpad

ThinkPad Yoga 260 3.6 x 2.2-inch buttonless offers smooth, accurate navigation around, with black matte texture that provides traction without feeling of being too rough to fingers. The system responds almost immediately to multitouch gestures, such as three-finger swipe for switching apps, pinch-to-zoom and also two-finger swipe for browsing images in Your Photo Gallery.

TrackPoint

Like most of ThinkPads, the Yoga 260 also features a red track point, which is positioned between G and H key on the keyboard. The TrackPoint is way more precise than anybody expected. It also saves arm movement because you don’t have to take your arm from the keyboard. If you can navigate it with your nub, you could do much more work for much less time.

Stylus and WRITEit app

ThinkPad Yoga 260 comes with an active stylus : the ThinkPad Pen Pro. 

It offers about 2,050 levels of pressure for highly accurate both drawing and handwriting  experience. When drawing in Fresh Paint app, the strokes will appear thicker or thinner, based on how hard you press. Writing letters feels very natural and the letters appear as beautiful as I would write them on the paper.

The pen is positioned on the right side with built-in compartment. The pen charges its internal battery when docked, and according to Lenovo the Pen will last about 19h worth of charge in just 20 sec.

The pen weighs less than an ounce and being 4.5 inches long, Pen Pro feels better than on any other laptop. The tip offers a good friction, and giving some illusion as you are writing on a real paper with a real pen.

It also comes with a WRITEit app, which allows you to handwrite directly in any text field in any app.

Lenovo comes with 720p webcam, which is capable of taking sharp images. Nothing impressive, but also not bad.

Performance

Yoga 260 with is 2.3 GHz i5-6200U GPU 256SSD and 8GB of RAM, rocks through any test you throw at it. Even with dozen demanding apps opened, you won’t feel a slightest lag.

The ThinkPad Yoga 260’s integrated Intel HD 520 graphics processor is good for watching 4K videos, or doing some less demanding operations, but you can forget playing even slightly more demanding games.

Lenovo’s business took about 4 minutes and 42 seconds to complete Laptop Mag Spreadsheet Macro Test. That test includes matching 20,000 names with their addresses which is much better than category average (7:33).

Laptop Mag File Transfer Test was completed in 38 seconds for ThinkPad Yoga 260’s 256GB SSD. This test includes copying about 4.97GB of mixed media files, and the Yoga 260 SSD falls little bit behind the competition. At 130.5 MBps is it only slightly slower then category average 162.3 MBps

Heat

The Yoga 260 stays cool under pressure. After streaming video for 15 min, the touch pad reached about 81 degrees Fahrenheit, and both the keyboard and bottom registered 90 degrees. All the results are below 95 degrees of comfort threshold.

Battery Life

Still sticking to Laptop Mag test, which includes non-stop Web surfing over WI-FI at 100 nits of brightness. And Yoga 260 lasted a decent 7 hours and 46 minutes. Not to bad.

Software

Yoga 260 comes with a minimal bloatware and a lot of useful utilities.

WRITEit lets you handwrite in any text field, and SHAREit lets you transfer files between your laptop and other devices.

Companion performs checks on your hardware, and also searches for new drivers and new updates.

Lenovo Settings lets you check camera, battery, audio, WI-FI, display, and it also has the ability to make your laptop a hotspot for other devices to use WI-FI.

So that is the review for Lenovo Yoga 260. If you are productivity-minded user that likes fantastic keyboard, 2 in 1 design, durable, lightweight business then Yoga 260 is the laptop for you.

If you liked it and want to buy it, you can do it by pressing this link:

On number four spot we have:

 

Lenovo ThinkPad T460

 

There may be a lot of business laptops out there, but Lenovo’s ThinkPad T460 is one of a kind. It is one of the best solutions if you want to get the work done. This epic laptop really finds a sweet spot between the price and the quality. Starting at $802.03 this powerhouse provides you with everything you need to get through a long business day, offering a strong chassis, extremely durable battery and last but not least a nice performance.

So lets dive deeper into this laptop.

Design

ThinkPad T460 won’t be winning any beauty competition any time soon, since it is neither the thinnest nor the lightest. Standing at 3.8 pounds or 4.2 with high-capacity battery (60.8 ounces regular and 67.2 ounces with extra battery) and with 13.4 x 9.2 x 0.83 inches. But it is still compact enough to carry it around and to balance it on your lap.

ThinkPad T460 follows the Lenovo simple,classy and aesthetic design. It has matte black chassis with silver ThinkPad logo on the back, and with a red TrackPoint on the keyboard.

Lenovo is also known for making some of the most durable laptops. And this one is not an exception. Thanks to glass-fiber-reinforced plastic chassis it can survive more than a couple of scrapes. According to Lenovo, T460 successfully passed several MIL-SPEC 810G, such as those for extreme heat or cold, vibration or drops.

Keyboard

Keyboard on the ThinkPad T460 is spill-resistant, and provides an amazing typing experience. Slightly bent-in keys offer 2.33 millimeters of travel distance, which is one of the deepest that is ever seen on a laptop.

Like most other ThinkPads, the T460 has a TrackPoint stuck between its G and H key. And like always it offers extremely accurate navigation, you can use your thumb to navigate and never need to take your hands of the keyboard.

Let’s say a thing or two about a touchpad .

It features 2.9 x 3.9-inch touchpad, which is very smooth and responsive.It is also supporting a multitouch very well, such as two-finger scroll, three-finger swipe and of course pinch-to-zoom.

Display

ThinkPad T460 comes with 14-inch, 1920 x 1080 touch screen. It outputs really sharp and accurate images, but not not so impressive colors. When watching some 1080p videos you can see all the fine details, like hair or the ridges, but the colors seems to be somewhat dark. It also doesn’t have a great viewing angle. If you are looking at any angle grater than 45 degrees all the images will start to fade out.

The thouchscreen on  the ThinkPad T460, unlike the other screens, is rather matte than it is glossy, and thanks to that it eliminates some glare. To achieve this Lenovo used the “in-cell touch” technology, and that builds the touch screen digitizer directly into the LCD panel eliminating need for another separate protective layer.

Brightness on the ThinkPad  T460, maxes out at about 240 nits of brightness with a touch screen, and little bit more with non-touch about 242 nits of brightness. And that fall under the category average.

Audio

With decent display comes lets say a decent audio.

Speakers are located at front, just below the trackpad. And they provide you with good enough sound for watching movies or conferencing, but if you are going to listen to music on it you are going to have not so good time.

Output was ultra loud, almost to fill two rooms, but the drums and the guitars sounded tinny and the vocals seemed faded and distorted.

Once again Dolby Audio software lets you tweek and customize options. You can manually set it up for different surrounding or modes. Like for: music, games, videos, or voice calls. Also there is Dynamic preset, which automatically adjust output for the best results according to your environment.

Webcam and microphone

When doing Skype call and catching up with emails you don’t need to worry about typing noise that keyboard might produce. Microphone itself is the dual-array noise-cancelling microphone with ability to suppress sounds from the keyboard. Also there is a feature to capture voice of a single participant or a group that is spread around the conference table.

Webcam is 720p low-light-sensitive Webcam with  face-tracking technology built in. When taking pictures the webcam takes bright and colorful images of people even if they are situated somewhere in the darker areas of their home or work place. 720p camera isn’t the one of those  ultra-sharp smartphone cameras that you will find on some high-end laptops or smartphones, but it will get the work done.

Ports

What ThinkPad T460 lacks in beauty and aesthetics, it compensates in variety of ports. It has all the port you need for everyday use, but sadly lacks the USB type C port.

On the right side we have:

  • 3.5mm headphone jack
  • a SIM card slot (for optional 4G)
  • USB 3 port
  • an SD card reader
  • Ethernet
  • HDMI out
  • a Kensington lock slot

On the left side we got:

  • mini DisplayPort
  • USB port
  • USB port
  • and an optional SmartCard reader

Performance

For our review we tested the configuration of: Intel Core i5-6300U CPU, with 16GB of RAM memory and 256GB SSD. Also, ThinkPad T460 handles everything easily. You can get serious work done without a fear of getting lagged. Even with multiple Google Chrome tabs opened and couple of other apps playing or doing something in the background you won’t feel even the slightest lag or get a feel that laptop is struggling to process all the information coming and going from the system.

On Geekbench 3, a benchmark that measures overall performance of the laptop, the ThinkPad T460 scored a solid 6,708. Which is just above the category average.

On the other test that we put it through it got even better results than any other similar laptops. The test was to match 20 000 names with their addresses in OpenOffice Calc. Completing it for just above the 4 minutes, 4 minutes and 13 seconds.

You won’t be playing any games or any high-end 3D modeling on ThinkPad T460, because its integrated Intel HD Graphics 520 GPU isn’t built for that. But watching HD videos or playing some casual games? No problem. It got you covered. On 3DMark Ice Storm Unlimited, a synthetic benchmark that measures overall performance of graphics card, the T460 gota really good score of 65,981,  much higher than category average.

Battery Life

You won’t see many laptops with removable batteries these days, they are coming to extinction. But not the ThinkPad T460. T460 comes with PowerBridge technology. That is in short combining internal 3-cell battery with a removable 3- or 6-cell unit. External battery runs out first, but the internal battery keeps the laptops up and running so you can hot-swap in a spare battery.

High capacity, 6-ell (72 watt hour) battery lasted a strong 17 h and 5 minutes on Laptop Mag test. That test involves a surfing web on WI-FI with 100 nits of brightness. With touch screen a time dropped  to a still great 13 hours and 15 minutes. This time it is way way ahead of the category average of about  hours.

Less powerful battery, 3 call battery, lasted for 8 hours and 30 minutes for a non-touch model and 6 hours and 40 minutes for touch version of the laptop.

HEAT

The ThinkPad T460 stays relatively cool under pressure. After streaming video for 15 minutes, touchpad and keyboard measured about 82 and 85 degrees Fahrenheit, still comfortable for hold. The bottom was a bit more warmer, getting to about 95 degrees.

Software

Like most Lenovo’s laptops the  ThinkPad T460 comes with minimal bloatware and many useful applications. Lenovo Settings lets you tweak anything and everything in the laptop.

Lenovo Companion runs hardware scans and checks for updates and monitors the laptops performance.

That wraps my review for the  ThinkPad T460 – a professional tool  for and excellent typing experience with a great battery life.


And that is my review for best business laptop of March 2017. Hope you like it and I will get back to you with another review very soon.

Bye !

Nedim SabicBest laptops for business (March 2017)
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The Best Smartwatch (March 2017)

In this review we are going to cover all styles, shapes and OS systems that any smartwatch on the market now has to offer. Stick with us so you can find out which are the best of the best.

The other day I was in a grocery store, and while standing in line to pay I noticed a guy who just tilted his arm a bit and he was on his way. A few minutes later I asked the cashier lady what was that about. She stared at me for a while and said that he paid with his watch. When I came home, after some digging and searching, I found out that smartwatches are, apparently, a thing these days. So I went and bought myself one, the Samsung gear S3, since I have a Galaxy S7, that seemed like a logical choice. Since I’ve been wearing it, I can tell you that it’s a really good conversation starter. I don’t even have to mention the helpfulness of  any smartwatch, because they are there to serve you, and only you.

 

I’ve always been a fan of watches, but classical ones. Seen it all, from cheap rip offs, to Rolex or Hublot. But those are the traditional, fashionable ones. They only serve one purpose, to tell time. Some of them do have dates of course, and the chronograph ones can do even more stuff, but in the end, their main role is to tell the time. Not for smartwatches tough, these beauties can tell the time, of course, but there is more to them. See, the best accessory you can buy to a smartphone, is a smartwatch. It’s basically the ultimate smartphone accessory. They beam important notifications straight to your wrist, can run native apps. They enable you to search the net via your own voice, you can track your exercise route over GPS, you can even check-out from a grocery store without reaching for your wallet. They do all of this while looking sleek, clean, and, in the end, absolutely stunning.

For some, jumping into the world of smartwatches is a risky move. But now, with a little effort  from Google with Android Wear, Apple with watchOS, and more, there’s never been a better time to strap up one of these beauties. But, choosing the right smartwatch for you can be a little difficult, that’s why I’m here today. We’ve received smartwatches for testing and spent quite some time on them. We looked at everything, from the OS to the “style” factor. Let’s not beat around the bush any further and dive straight into the reviews.

We’ve covered pretty much every style and OS there is out there, and here are our top picks;

Overview

Best Apple watch

Best LG Watch

Best Samsung Watch

The Best Fashion smartwatch – The Huawei Watch

– Conclusion

 

Best Apple watch – The Apple Watch 2

There is no debating anything here. Apple is being Apple on this one. They upgraded the Watch in many ways, and all of them are indeed useful. Longer battery life, the GPS abilities and the water-resistance now make this a great overall smartwatch.

 

OS: watchOS 3

Compatibility: iOS

Display: 1.53″ OLED

Processor: S2 dual-core

Band sizes: Varies per watch size

Onboard storage: 8GB

Battery: 18 hours

Charging method: Wireless

Connectivity: Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, NFC

 

Overall

Since it’s waterproof you can use it for all activities what involve water in any way. Meaning, you can swim with it, jog in the rain with it…etc.

It now comes in aluminium, stainless steel and ceramic models.

The design of this beauty is simple, yet elegant, the same you get with the previous version. It differs from other smartwatches in its competition due to its shape. So if you are someone who likes this type of watch, it’s a great choice for you. With it you will look stylish, modern and the watch itself is handsome, in a way, as all Apple products are lately.

All of it’s components feel premium. Coming from a company like Apple that was to be expected. From the curved edges and strengthened glass to its digital crown on the side. They don’t excuse the expensiveness of this device but uplift it greatly. Also the weight of it is somewhere in the middle, a perfect blend of heavy and lightweight.

 

As for the customization of this piece, Apple made it clear they want to stick to simple. Having that in mind they have made some options for you from the beginning;

 

  • Aluminum case with Sport Band or Woven Nylon band

Stainless steel case with Sport Band, stainless steel band, or leather band

  • Aluminum case with Nike Sport Band
  • Stainless steel case with Hermès band

Additional Sport Band included with purchase

  • Ceramic case with Sport Band

Magnetic Charging Dock included with purchase

 

The process of changing the stripes to your own liking involves you to manually press the release strap buttons, and done, as simple as that.

 

In a nutshell

The Apple watch is loved by millions around the world, and although it is a bit more expensive, it is Apple and all of their products are “a bit expensive“. Having this in mind if you do own an Apple device, an Iphone for example, then it will pair up with this beautifully. All of this will make you stand out from the crowd and people will have the impression that you run some company or similar, because Apple leaves that impression quite often.

 

Best LG Watch – The LG Watch Sport

 

LG has always been the one to not follow trends, and this watch does exactly that. For example, in a world where changeable phone batteries aren’t around anymore, LG has stuck with that modular design. The best example is the LG G5 with its replaceable batteries where one even includes camera options.

 

OS: Android Wear 2.0

Compatibility: Android, iOS

Display: 1.38″ OLED

Processor: Snapdragon Wear 2100

Band sizes: Fixed large band

Onboard storage: 4GB

Battery: 16 hours

Charging method: Wireless

Connectivity: Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, NFC

 

Although phone calls require a SIM card (US only) this watch has impeccable call and data strength. It has an appealing design to it and since its release there have been many standalone apps. Standalone apps have been a problem for this device as there weren’t many of them available, but that’s been fixed now since time has gone by.

Having all the specs and aesthetics in mind this watch is the watch to beat right now, simply because it’s packed full of features. Running Android Wear 2.0 it also functions as a full-featured fitness tracker. It can track your runs, calories and your strength training too.

It’s one of the few smartwatches that supports LTE connection, meaning you can receive calls and data without having your phone nearby. To enable this feature all you have to do is pop a SIM card into the back of the watch.

 

Overall

It’s a sizable watch that rises high off the wrist and is surprisingly comfortable with it’s contoured lugs. It also has a rotating main button and 2 customizable ones, same stuff you get if you buy a chronograph classical watch. LG has made it waterproof up to 30 min in the depth of 1.5 meters or 5ft.

The watch isn’t small by any means and will certainly draw attention to itself. It’s stylish,form-fitting and comfortable despite being a little heavy.

There’s nothing small about this sports-driven smartwatch, but it’s still stylish, form-fitting and surprisingly comfortable despite all its extra weight and girth.

It has an ergonomic design just like the LG Watch Style, and it maintains top performance. It comes in 2 colors;

  • Titanium
  • Dark blue
  • Latter (exclusive)

Because these are slimming colors, the watch my look smaller than it actually is. The latter is exclusive to the Google Store and could become hard to find in stock.

This is a fitness watch, not a luxury timepiece. At the same time, it does a good job of blending into everyday life. You can wear it with a button-down shirt, hoodies, or some other clothes but it also has the potential to blend into a business environment also. It’s something you can wear outside of the gym, too, for sure.

The unit we received was titanium and it combines matte stainless steel casing and a dark grey band. It has an attractive two-tone finish to it whenever the circular bezel catches the light.

Because of the size of this watch it had to have a sizable band so you can secure it firmly to your wrist. Due to that, the band is made out of Thermoplastic Polyurethane (TPU), so it’s perfect for the gym and it will sustain through the sweatiest workouts. The TPU is stiffer and not so rubbery.

Because of this it feels better against our skin, but not only that, it also contains antennas. Which means that the band is not customizable, making this the watch for performance and functionality over fashion.

This phone also features LTE meaning it can work without a phone.

The watch casing is water-resistant, with its IP68 rating meaning it can survive 1.5 m (about 5ft) underwater for up to 30 minutes. Only Pebble smartwatches beat that rating…so far. IP68 makes it more waterproof than the first Apple Watch and LG Watch Style, and it ties the Gear S3. But like Samsung’s watch, Google advises you not to go swimming with it. This could have something to do with the fact that it doesn’t have a water-ejecting speaker along the lines of the new Apple Watch 2, which can go to a depth of 50 meters (164ft).

It has a fantastic and stylish, full circle 1.38-inch OLED display. Also the always-ON screen mode is more useful but drains battery very fast and it automatically gets brighter in sunlight.

In a nutshell

The LG Watch Sport is currently the best you can buy at this point. It doesn’t deliver too much in the fashion aspect although it has the potential to draw in many compliments on itself. LG’s focal point was performance and functionality and because of this this watch delivers in so many areas. It’s not as water resistant as Apple’s is but still it is waterproof non-the-less making it another great feature. It goes best with the LG G5 or V20  which we will link below and you can check out our review on those at Geektick also.

 

Best Samsung Watch – The Samsung Gear S3

 

Despite its launch problems at the beginning, due to the serious lack of original apps, The Gear 3 is still one of the best smartwatch options in the world. The lack of apps will definitely be fixed in the upcoming year and, indeed, it has been fixed to a certain point. It features a Super AMOLED display as all Samsung devices, which are considered to be the best of the best. If you’ve ever owned an S5, S6, S7 or other of its devices (these being the most popular) you know how bright and crisp it is. Also they have included a GPS which was nowhere to be found in the Gear S2. Its still waterproof like the LG Watch Spor of up to 1.5 m and its battery is a monster with up to 3 days of use before needing a charge. Samsung also made the watch so it can run both iOS and Android, so if the Apple Watch is a bit too pricey this is a great alternative.

 

OS: Tizen OS

Compatibility: Android, iOS

Display: 1.3″ 360 x 360 Super AMOLED

Processor: Dual-core 1.0GHz

Band sizes: S (105 x 65mm) L (130 x 70mm)

Onboard storage: 4GB

Battery duration: 3 days

Charging method: Wireless

Connectivity: Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, 4G

 

Overall

Samsung’s Gear 3 weighs 59g. This can be a deal breaker for some because it can feel a little heavy on the wrist. Having this in mind, it’s normal for it to have a metal frame housing the 1.3 screen and having 2 buttons on the side. Their function is Home/Apps and Back keys. Put all this together and you have a truly well-built smartwatch.

Its distinction in the Menu department is hard to remember at first, but as all things, you will remember it and slowly adjust to the method used here. This is more of swiping and swinging the bezel rather than hitting the actual physical buttons.

Samsung’s focal point of its recent smartwatches, the Gear S2 and Gear S3 is its bezel. It has a rotating dial that serves as a way to navigate through the watch. Spinning the dial left or right will allow you to scroll through displays, let you select apps or to flip through a list quickly without having to take your eyes off the screen.

It seems odd that there’s no ‘confirm’ key, as you’ll scroll through the apps you want, land on the one you were looking for, then have to stab it with a digit to open it. It’s not the most fluid way of doing things – although you can set up the Gear to be able to open an app if you hover the dot over the software you fancy.

On the back of the Gear S3 is the heart rate monitor which is of Samsung’s own design. It has the ability to track your heart rate through the course of the day. This is an added benefit for those who want to get fit and in shape, as it also shows accurate increase and decrease of the heart rate.

For our testing we received the Gear S3 Classic. It comes with a leather strap out the box, and like most watches, the leather is stiff and needs some wearing before it can have a nice and flexible addition. Since it’s a bit complicated to change the straps, you might want a more sweat-resistant strap for your fitness purposes and you will wear that strap for a longer period of time. Simply because the change of straps is a bit difficult.

You already know its features a 1.3-inch Super AMOLED screen which is the best in the market. It doesn’t come as a surprise because Samsung has used this tech on all of their devices in recent times. It has a fantastic reputation worldwide and is clear, crisp and bright.

Samsung says that the Gear S3 uses an Always-On Display, the same tech that the S7 has. It enables you to always see it, no matter what you are doing but it will drain battery life, so keep that in mind when deciding whether or not to keep it ON. Although you can argue which is better, the round or square smartwatch, you can’t argue that the display of the Gear S3 isn’t the best. It is vivid, bright, rich and everything you can wish for from a smartwach, regarding the display portion.

In a nutshell

The Samsung Gear S3 is the absolute best when it comes to displays. Adding to this it’s also waterproof which is just an added benefit. The watch supports both OS systems and is a great alternative to the Apple Watch, but it does fall short in some aspects compared to the watch from Apple. It has the ability to be a customizable watch unlike the LG’s Smart Watch, because you can change the straps to your liking, but it is a difficult procedure. It doesn’t support LTE, which means it won’t work without a phone nearby. All in all a great watch with minor drawbacks.

 

The Best Fashion smartwatch – Huawei Watch

 

The watch Huawei is not perfect, with its main flaw being the, not so great, battery life. But, its once high price is dropping quickly and now it’s actually a great blend of fashion and tech. I might even say the best blend.

 

OS: Android Wear

Compatibility: Android, iOS

Display: 1.4″ AMOLED

Processor: Quad-core 1.2GHz

Case dimensions: 42mm diameter, 11.3mm thick

Onboard storage: 4GB

Battery: 2 days

Charging method: Wireless

Connectivity: Wi-Fi, Bluetooth

 

Overall

The watch features a fully circular 1.4 inch AMOLED display. Something you’d find in a Samsung watch. Having this in mind it doesn’t come as a surprise when its 400×400 gives us 286ppi (pixel per inch). To put that into perspective, Apple’s retina display has 290ppi or 302ppi (depends on the model you get). It’s much sharper and clearer than the new Moto 360 and LG G Watch Urbane that have similar design patterns.

With its circular display it comes off as a more traditional watch. You can see from the image that it looks like an analogue watch, unlike the watches from Apple and Sony. To me this is way more visually appealing than square watches, but there is a certain amount of people that prefer the square design pattern.

The watch uses a white watch face which just adds to the aesthetic appeal of the model. Again proving that this is a perfect blend of technology and fashion.

During my time with the watch I had the brightness setting on level 4/5 , I never had an issue with the screen in direct sunlight, but the brightness can be boosted with ‘Brightness Boost’ if you are having problems seeing some things on the screen. The colours are vibrant, and really pop from the screen.

It features a mode called Ambiet mode. It works on a principle that, if your phone is inactive for a few seconds, the screen will dim, thus saving battery. This is a great alternative to Samsung’s Always-On mode as it still allows you ti see the time without having to press any buttons on the device to increase its brightness. If you do want to increase it, there are some gestures built into the device itself, like you flicking your wrist to wake the screen (a feature with the Apple Watch also).

Early smartwatches were known for having awful designs, just take a look at the Samsung Gear Live or LG G Watch, but this beauty is a sight for sore eyes.

The Huawei Watch is reasonable lightweight – as in, its weight is noticeable, but it doesn’t feel too heavy in day to day use.

The watch comes in 3 options :

 

  • Gold ( brown alligator leather band or a gold link band )
  • Silver ( black leather strap, a steel link strap, or a silver Milanese loop )
  • Black ( black leather band, black steel link strap, or a black Milanese loop )

 

We received the silver steel casing with the black leather band, and I simply must say, it’s my  favourite combo of the bunch.The leather strap  the best I’ve seen come with a smartwatch. Soft, flexible, and doesn’t wrinkle.

If you want to further customize the watch, you can add any 18 mm watch strap. It’s a nice option to have, especially if you like to stand out. Changing the strap is incredibly simple, just pull back the release mechanism and it’ll pop out. This watch feels the most premium, the design is sophisticated, the materials are high quality, what more could you ask for ? at least looking from a design perspective.

The crown button, located at the 2 o’clock position instead of the 3 o’clock traditional placement. It acts as a home button, also waking and dimming the screen, and is neatly positioned where it is makes the button much more ergonomic.

On the back of the watch you’ll find a heart rate monitor and four gold contacts for the charging doc.

The watch is also rated IP67, and that means it’s dust resistant and will survive up to 30mins underwater, in a depth of 1m. I wouldn’ t recommend it for swimming, but showering and being out on the rain with it is totally fine.

In a nutshell

The watch from Huawei hit the market fast and aggressive. It is by far the best fashion smartwatch among its competition, and that might just be its edge. It comes with all the great features, including the display and heart rate monitor. But you might dislike its battery life. It’s the most crisp and esthetic pleasing watch for sure, at least to me, as I am a traditional watch lover and love the minimalist design of it.

 

Conclusion

That concludes our review of the best smartwatches from the individual manufacturers, keep in mind that each watch will work best with its manufacturer’s flagship device, as it’s optimized to be that way. I really enjoyed reviewing these products and we are glad to have receive these test models from the companies that made them. There is something for everyone’s liking out of all the watches presented here.

Have a great day folks.

 

Nedim SabicThe Best Smartwatch (March 2017)
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Folding Lightweight Bike – Your Modern Alternative

Folding bicycle is a bicycle designed so that it can be folded into a much more compact size. It is ideal for campers, students , city dwellers and everyone who has problem with space.

Folding bikes can easily be packed down, so you can carry them into buildings and any kind of public transportation.  They fit into the smallest apartments and you can easily store them in a car, a plane or a boat.

Folding bikes are the holy grail for mixed-mode commuters. They are highly recommended by people who are against dependence on cars as the major mode of ground transportation.

Main cons you need to consider, if you want to be a proud owner of this ingenious product, is its speed and stability. Most of the bicycles have 20″ wheels, and this is more or less the “standard” size for a folding bike. However, the size varies from 16 inches to 26 inches. Smaller wheels are great for long-distance carrying  and larger are for a faster and more stable ride. One of the main things you want to pay attention to is weight.

Every folding bike is meant to be a light folding bike. Average weight of these bikes is from 18lbs to 26 lbs. The material has a big role when it comes to weight and price. Some customers prefer titanium bikes while carrying them. Others think that the difference between steel and titanium is insignificant. Your selection depends upon your anatomy and the frequency of your use. Whatever you choose, all bikes on the market are particularly light so you’ll have no problem with that. You have to know that weight plays a big role in the price. Price will be much higher if you want to consolidate all the good sides of folding bikes.

Most people search for the best folding bike.  Bikes differ in many ways, and it is hard to compare them. You should search for something that fits you, for example, if you are a commuter and you want your bike to be easily foldable, you will search for portable bikes. Every bike has its own incomparable performances.

Some of the advantages are:

You can take it anywhere – more mobility

Folding bike is small enough that you can put it under your desk and no one will notice it’s actually there.  Another great thing is that you don’t have to worry about thieves.

Save money

By being a mixed-commuter, you can save a lot of money. Say no to expensive fuel, parking fees and high auto maintenance.

Be fashionable

Many people avoid folding bikes because they think they are too complicated and too much 70s looking. Recent folding bikes are designed so fashionable and innovative that everyone looks great riding it. It takes you 10-15 seconds to unfold it. Not as complicated as it seems.

Exercise

Replacing car with bike is an effective way to lose weight and be healthy. The recommended daily physical activity time for adults is 30 minutes a day. This way you don’t have to go to the gym. You are saving money and getting in shape at the same time. Jackpot.

Low maintenance

You have to worry about:

  1. air in your tires
  2. charging the lights
  3. oiling the chain

and that’s it.

Even if you need to visit a mechanic, you’ll find they are waaay cheaper and more trustworthy.

Ice breaker

This one may sound weird, but every time you do your magic and open your bike, people will be interested and ask questions. It is fun and never gets boring.


What’s it like to ride a folding bicycle?

Folding bikes are very easy to use. All you need to do is practice. The most complicated thing is learning how to fold them, and that’s not hard.  You may notice it’s a little different than a regular bicycle when you first try it out.  Turning is a little more responsive because of the smaller wheels. This means you can quickly turn if you need to.  If you live in a hilly area, don’t worry! – many bikes have multiple gears, so you will be just as fast at hill climbing as with a regular bicycle.

How much do I need to spend? 

The prices vary from 150$ do 2500$. I recommend  to invest in a good bike, even if it is a little pricey. If you go for the cheapest one, you have to know that it’ll wear out faster. You can find a good bike for a reasonable price. Check out our buying guide so you can find a perfect match.

UNDER 500$

Vilano Urbana Single Speed Folding Bike

71c7d7ebrl-_sl1500_

Design – 80%

Functionality – 74%

Durability – 70%

Mobility – 65%

Price – 85%

Simplicity is the key. Vilano Urbana isn’t the worst folding bike around. For the money, it works totally fine but it seems to be below par in most departments. However, at this price point, you can’t expect something extraordinary. The bike weighs 21.4lbs and is a 20” one. If you want a folding bike and you have a tight budget, this is the bike for you.


 Rockefeller Integral 26-Inch Folding Mountain Bicycle

Design – 95%

Functionality – 85%

Durability – 90%

Mobility -80%

Price – 80%

This bike can handle the roughest terrain because of a full suspension soft-tail system and a double disc. This bike does it all – it looks good, it is super easy to fold and extra cheap. You want to have this bike!

CategoryFolding Bike, Mountain Bike
Speed21 Speed
GENDERMen’s
Bicycle Wheel Size26 Inch/700CC
Dimension (CM)172*105*40
Bike length (CM)170
MaterialAluminium Alloy
Frame MaterialAluminium Alloy
Fork MaterialAluminium Alloy
Wheel MaterialMagnesium Alloy
CassetteSuperwin-13-T28
Spokes6
Shift LeverSHINING SYS
Rear DerailleurSHIMANO SIS TOURNEY
Front DerailleurSHIMANO TZ50
Fork TypeSpringer Fork
Frame TypeSoft-tail Frame
Brake systemDouble Disc Brake
Pedals TypeOrdinary/Standard
Is there a suspension fork?Yes
If Folding or NotYes
Rider Height (CM)155-180cm
Rider Weight (KG)<=100kg
ColorWhite, Yellow, Orange, Red
Brand#Rockefeller ™
Net Weight(kg)17
Package Weight (kg)22

 RT-20 Folding Bike

orange

Design – 80%

Functionality – 75%

Durability – 80%

Mobility -70%

Price – 70%

 The 7 gears give a good speed. The weight of this foldable bicycle is 27.56 pounds with a dimension of 45.28 x 7.87 x 59.84 inches. It looks good in white and orange color.

  • 7 Gears Shimano
  • 20 in Mini Folding Bike
  • 12.5 KG Only
  • 7005 Aluminum Frame
  • Mechanical Brakes

Product Description

Weight:12.5kg
Size: 20 in
Color: White, Black, Orange, Yellow
Speeds: 7 Gears
Frame: 7005 Aluminum
Fork: Carbon Steel (Foldable)
Headset: Pro Integrated Model
Hand bar: 25.4 MM 7005 Aluminum
Stem: Quick Release 7005 Aluminum
Seat: Pro Saddle Seat
Post/Clamp: 33.9 mm 7005 Aluminum
Shifter Lever: SHIMANO –TX50-7 Rear
Derailleur: SHIMANO –TX50-7
Paddle: HS Brakes: Yinxing Mechanical Brakes
Chain Wheel: 52 T 7005 Aluminum
BB: TW Zhingqing
Chian: KMC
Freewheel: Shimano 14T-28T 7 Speeds
Tire: Chaoyang 20X1.5
Hubs: Pro Hubs Quick Release 7005 Aluminum
Rim: 40MM Double Layers 7005 Aluminum
Spokes: 14 #

Bike TypeRoad Sport Touring
Brake Styledual-disc-brakes
ColorWhite Orange
Frame Material Typealuminum
Item Dimensions45.28 x 7.87 x 59.84 inches
Item Weight28.66 pounds

 

Rim Size20 inches
Shipping Weight39.68 pounds
Size20 in
Suspension Typeno-suspension
Wheel Size20 inches


Dahon Jack D7 Folding Bike

61cx4inop9l-_sl1000_

Design – 94%

Functionality – 96%

Durability – 97%

Mobility – 88%

Price – 85%

The Dahon Jack D7 folding bike is a model for city riding. It belongs in the 26-inch wheel category and is produced by Dahon, one of the world’s leading manufacturers of folding bikes.

This Dahon Jack D7 model is super light and it quickly folds for carrying and transportation. The Jack folds to 13 x 37 x 31 inches taking less than 10 seconds. The pedals also fold in. Therewith being a folding model, the Dahon Jack D7  is comfortable and has 7-speed Derailleur gear system, alloy handle bars and high quality seat. Its brother, the D8,  is almost the same, but with 8 gears and different paint job.

Specifications

  • Colors – Shadow
  • Frame Material – Aluminium
  • Bike Weight – 35.1lbs
  • Standover Height –  24″
  • Wheel Size – 26″
  • Speeds – 7
  • Folded Size – 27″ x 9″ x 54″
  • Maximum rider weight – 110 kg (240 lbs)

    Dahon Speed Uno

Design – 90%

Functionality – 88%

Durability – 85%

Mobility – 85%

Price – 90%

Dahon have provided a low-budget bike that can compete with the more expensive models.  The tires on the Speed Uno are designed and manufactured by Dahon , and those are high functioning Dahon Rotolo 20” tires. Each of them is pumped up to a total of 65 psi and has a thickness of 1.5 inches. The benefit of these wheels being large is that there is considerably more capacity to absorb shocks when traversing bumpy terrain.

Specification

Folded Size: 11.6″ x 29.9″ x 24.9″

Folded Time: 15 seconds or less

Weight: 24.1lbs

Speeds / Gears: 1

Wheel Size: 20″

Frame Type: K Series – SuperLite 4130 with ViseGrip technology

Brakes: Rear Caliper

Saddle: VL3057A

Max Rider Weight: 240lbs


Allen Sports Downtown

allen-sports-downtown-review

Design – 78%

Functionality – 81%

Durability – 80%

Mobility – 75%

Price – 82%

This is not the most aesthetically pleasing folding bike, but for this amount of money, this bike offers much.  Allen Sports is a company that has been producing excellent folding bikes for several years now. It has one issue, as with all single speed bikes, and that is, it does struggle up steep hills. I would not recommend this bike if you are planning on using it in regions with lots of hills.

Specification

Color: White, Red and Blue

Folded Size: 15.3″ x 33.4″ x 27.9″ (38cm x 84cm x 70cm)

Weight: 25.9lbs (11.7kg)

Speeds / Gears: 1

Wheel Size: 20″

Max Rider Weight: 240lbs (120kg)


Schwinn Loop 7-Speed

 

schwinn-loop-11

Design – 74%

Functionality – 70%

Mobility – 73%

Durability – 65%

Price – 80%

The Schwinn Loop 7-Speed folding bike is very popular among  those who are looking for a cheap, but quality bike, because they are known for making relatively inexpensive but good bikes.  The company was established in 1895 by Ignaz Schwinn who originated from Germany, and after relocating to America began developing Schwinn Bicycles.

Specification

Shipping Weight – 21.3Kg (46.9lbs)

Breaks – Long-lasting front and back linear pull breaks.

Gear Shift – 7-Speed Shimano grip shifting.

Frame – Low stand-over folding alloy frame. (For easier folding and storage)

Maximum Rider Weight – 104Kg (229.3 lbs.)

Additional Features – Comes with a nylon bag used to store the folded bike.

Weight – 15kg (33lbs.)

Folded Size – 40cm x 82cm x 66cm (16” x 32.5” x 26”)

Colors – Black and Green.

Wheels – 20-inch alloys.

Crank – 3-piece single crank set.

Box Dimensions – 72cm x 43cm x 77cm (26.9” x 16.9” x 29.9”)

Road spray protection added the front and back of the bike.

Built-in carrier at the rear of the bike. (For carrying items whilst travelling)


UNDER 1000$

Montague Crosstown Folding Bike

montague-crosstown-folding-road-bike

Design – 95%

Functionality – 90%

Durability – 90%

Mobility – 89%

Price – 95%
This bike is different because of its full 26” wheels and 7-speed components. However it can be folded down into a relatively small size for easy transportation. The Montague Crosstown can be folded down in under 20 seconds. That is not bad, but it could be better. The bike wheels are a bit of an issue to carry due to their size but the bike is incredibly light so once you get used to holding it, it really is effortless.

Specification

ColorBoulder Gray
FrameCustom drawn 7005 Series, Aluminum tubing with DirectConnect™ folding system.
ForkRigid Unicrown, with CLIX™ Wheel Release System ramped dropout.
Rims700c  Alloy. 32 hole, Silver.
TiresKenda semi-slick.  700c x 35mm.
HubsetFormula. Alloy CLIX™ front quick release.
Spokes14 Gauge Stainless
SaddleGel with Elastomer Comfort System
Seatpost30.0 X 300mm Alloy with Montague logo
HandlebarsRiser style 30mm rise. 600mm wide. Alloy, Black.
StemOctagon™ height adjustable stem. No tools required.
ShiftersShimano 7-Speed RevoShift.
Front DerailleurNA
Rear DerailleurShimano Altus, 7-Speed.
Crankset42T chainring. Alloy 170mm crank arm with chain guard
CassetteShimano MegaRange 14-34T
Speeds7
BrakesetTektro dual pivot caliper. Side pull with Quick Release.
PedalsTrekking pedal with all-weather non-slip tread.
Bottom BracketSemi-Sealed Cartridge.
Frame Sizes17”, 19”, 21”
Folded Size36” x 28” x 12”
Approx Weight28lbs
MSRP$659.95

Dahon Mariner D7

dahon-mariner-d7

Design – 93%

Functionality – 96%

Durability – 98%

Mobility – 93%

Price – 91%
The Dahon Mariner D7 has managed to become the best-selling adult folding bike in the U.S. for years. The success is not undeserved. The bike is an ideal if you travel in a boat, as it is water and rust resistant. People love this bike because of its quality and slick design.  The bike has a sleek design in a polished silver color. This bike is not the lightest, but it has everything – a rear rack, mudguards, and 7 speeds.

Specification

Folded Size: 10.9″ x 32″ x 25.6″ (27cm x 80cm x 65cm)

Weight: 25.9lbs (11.7kg)

Speeds / Gears: 7 (36″ to 84″)

Gear Shifter: 7 Speed, SRAM – Facilitates rapid shifting

Wheel Size: 20″

Frame Type: KM Series, 7005 Alloy, ViseGrip technology

Brakes: DHV-107

Saddle: VL3057A

Max Rider Weight: 230lbs (105kg)


 STRiDA SX

strida5_opphl_5784

Design – 70%

Functionality – 69%

Durability – 77%

Mobility – 72%

Price – 68%

The STRiDA SX is truly in its own class when it comes to design with ‘umbrella-fold’ mechanism and has actually been going for more than 20 years. It takes a while before you set. It can last up to 30 minutes. One of the biggest advantages of this bike is that it could be folded under 10 seconds. Some people say it could be folded under 5 seconds with some practice. The STRiDA SX has slightly larger 18″ wheels than the 16″ wheels that are typically associated with their bikes – however, these are still smaller than the 20″ wheels that can be found on most folding bikes. Pros of this bike are that it is uncomfortable over large distances and slow due to having a single gear. Depending on the taste, this bike is aesthetically unappealing.

Age Range DescriptionAdult
ColorBlack
Frame Material TypeAluminum
Item Dimensions20 x 43 x 47 inches
Item Weight24 pounds
Number Of Speeds1
Shipping Weight29.55 pounds
Size16-Inch
Wheel Size16 inches

OVER 1000$

We’re getting to the point where standards are high. You can expect lightweight, quick and portable bikes with disc brakes, carbon frames, suspension forks and slick gearing. The fact these bikes fold down can be considered a bonus rather than their primary function.

SOGAR Two-wheeled Electric Bicycle

electric

Design – 93%

Functionality – 84%

Durability – 80%

Mobility -90%

Price – 73%
  • Mechanical shock, comfortable ride, effectively guarantee the long ride comfort
  • Within the triangle component of the cavity, the triangle structure formation cavity suspension, effectively eliminate part away
  • Removable battery, long life, the use of mainstream battery level supercar, movement of the “gas station”
  • Comfortable damping cushion, accord with human body structural cushion, comfort breathable shock absorption

Bilateral lock locking device, more reliable, more convenient fold


Allen Sports XWay Aluminum 20 Speed Folding Bicycle

51vnnu7ue4l

Design – 80%

Functionality – 75%

Durability – 85%

Mobility -80%

Price – 70%
  • 6061 Aluminum Frame and top end components deliver a light folding bicycle (11 KG/24 LB) that is great for long distance treks or urban commutes
  • 20 Speeds provides wide gear range designed for high speeds on flat terrain, climbing hills and everything in between
  • 451 MM Wheels deliver improved performance and handling over the standard 20″ or 16″ found on most folding bicycles
  • Patented frame release levers allow quick and easy folding of bicycle in less than 8 seconds
  • Patented wheel lock system secures the bicycle when folded and allows the bicycle to be rolled like a cart

 

Allen Sports XWay Aluminum 20 Speed Folding Bicycle received a full rating on Amazon. This lightweight bike is designed for urban environments.

Brake StyleMechanical Rim
ColorStone
Frame Material TypeAluminum
Item Dimensions33.5 x 14 x 27.5 inches
Item Display Weight88 pounds
Item Weight24 pounds

 

Number Of Speeds20
Package Quantity1
Shipping Weight32.85 pounds
Size12-Inch/One Size
Wheel Size45.1 inches

Montague Paratrooper Pro 27 Speed Folding Bike

m1000

Design – 88%

Functionality – 85%

Durability – 90%

Mobility -70%

Price – 70%
 Montague Paratrooper Pro 27 Speed Folding Bike is also a worth considering. It is comfortable and good-looking. Black color adds to the charm of this gorgeous bicycle.
  • Weight: 29 lbs.
  • Folded size: 36″ x 28″ x 12″
  • Wheel size: 26″
  • Frame sizes: 18-inch and 20-inch frame.
  • Speeds: 27
  • CLIX system: The clever integration of the CLIX system into the Paratrooper Pro makes it possible to fold this bike in a little under 20 seconds without using any special tools. Folding this bike is as easy as flipping a CLIX quick release lever on the top tube to ensure it fits in small compartments like car trunks and on board buses or trains.
  • Paratrooper Pro Frame: This technology eliminates the need to break the frame in order to fold it. That makes the bicycle stronger while the use of the FIT (Folding Integrated Technology) makes the folding easier.
  • “LockOut” feature: The suspension has the ‘LockOut’ feature which allows one to turn on or off the suspension system depending on the type of road.
  • Faster tires: The CST Critter Knobby tires are faster on the streets and still good for dirt trails.
  • Speed: The 27 Speed feature gives you more gears and easier shifters for quicker shifting and responsiveness.
  • Front Derailleur: Top Swing Dual Pull. Shimano Acera.
  • Rear Derailleur: Shimano SLX 9-Speed.
  • Chain set: Alloy 170mm crank arm, SR Suntour XCM. Matte Black
  • Frame: custom drawn 7005 Series Aluminum with FIT System.
  • Shifters: Shimano RAPIDFIRE Plus Trigger Shifters
  • Stem: Alloy, K-alloy Direct Connect. 105 millimeters with 7 degree rise
  • Fork: Disc Compatible. 100 mm travel. Alloy one piece lower. SR Suntour XCM HLO with hydraulic lockout.

Pros

  • Powerful on and off-road riding because it has strong suspension and braking system that can control it when it is running at a high speed.
  • It is quick and easy to fold and release.
  • Montague Pro Folding Matte Black Bike can handle rugged mountain terrains.
  • It is a bike that can be carried and packed with ease.
  • The bike has 27 gear speed.

Cons

  • It is not ideal for commuter riding
  • It is a bit heavy and bulky to carry even after being folded.

The Montague 20-Inch Paratrooper Pro Folding Bike is ideal for off-road riding. This is a perfect folding mountain bike that will not disappoint in handling steep climbs or rugged downhill sections. Cyclists can comfortably roam in any place with this bike version since, it can maneuver those technical single tracks with ease and precision while letting you experience the comfort of riding on a folding bike. This bike is great for anyone looking to combine the joy of mountain biking and the luxury and convenience of owning a folding bike.


SOON

VEKTRON

vektron

 

 

Tern Bicycles and leading electric drivetrain manufacturer Bosch are collaborating to create a compact and powerful folding e-bike. It folds under 10 seconds.

The Vektron is built around the German-engineered Bosch Active drivetrain. It includes a 400Wh Bosch battery for a range of between 50 and 100+ kilometers. The powerful Bosch motor has been adapted from Bosch’s automotive applications. Bosch’s batteries boast leading power density, while sophisticated Bosch electronics manage critical matters such as fast charging and auto shut-off in extreme temperatures. The Elektron also features Deore hydraulic disc brakes, for all-weather stopping power, an integrated 150 lumen Valo 2 light, for 24 hour visibility, and a cargo rack.

Vektron launched on Kickstarter in October 2016.  Pricing is expected to be between 2,999€ and 3,300€ in Europe and 3,500 USD in North America.


 

The Hummingbird

hummingbird-folding-bike

The Hummingbird is the lightest folding bike in the world.  It weighs 6.5 KG (or 14,3 lbs). It’s a carbon fiber bike for commuters and mixed-commuters and it’s almost on the market. The Humingbird Bike Company is based in the UK. The Hummingbird utilizes a patented folding system that keeps the chain in tension when folded. It was entirely designed and made in Britain. The Hummingbird will be offered in two versions: with 16″ wheels or 20″ wheels.  The Hummingbird will be available either as single speed or 5-speed with 4 color choices: yellow, red, black and raw carbon fiber. Discounted Kickstarter pricing begins at £990 ($1500USD) with expected retail pricing starting at £1550 ($2360USD).


A-bike Redux – Electric Version

a-bike-electric-sir-clive-sinclair_dezeen_468_3
The A-bike was invented by  Sir Clive Sinclair in the United Kingdom and introduced to the market in 2006.  It was a very compact folder that weighed only 5.5 kg (12 lbs).  Due to its small 6″ wheels, it had a fairly rough ride on uneven terrain.  Fast forward to today and a Kickstarter campaign has been launched to bring an electric version of the A-bike to market in the fall of 2015.  It will feature a detachable lithium battery and a brushless DC motor that is said to give a 15 mile (25 km) range and a top speed of 12.5mph (20km/h).  Touted as the “the world’s lightest and most compact electric folding bike” it weighs 26lbs (12kg) and has a folded dimension of 8.3″ x 15.8″ x 27.6″ (21cm x 40cm x 70cm).  Retail pricing of the A-bike Electric is projected to be £699 / $1089.

History of Folding Bikes

There are many companies that claim they are inventors of the first folding bike.  The truth is that the folding bike has been around for considerably longer than one might imagine and most claims of being the first are erroneous. When the military interests in bicycles arose in 1980s, French army deployed folding bikes for bicycle infantry use. The 1970s saw increased interest in the folding bike, and the popular Raleigh Twenty and Bickerton Portable have become the iconic folders of their decade. It was, however, the early 1980s that can be said to have marked the birth of the modern, compact folding bicycle, with competing tiny-footprint models from Brompton and Dahon. Founded in 1982, by inventor and physicist Dr. David Hon and his brother Henry Hon, Dahon has grown to become the world’s largest manufacturer of folding bikes, with a two-thirds marketshare in 2006.


Conclusion

There is an enormous number of folding bikes on the market. Folding bikes have come a long way in the past few decades. If you want to pick one for you, the key is to know what you’ll use it for and how far you plan to ride it. Folding bikes with larger wheels are good for long distanced trips and you will be more familiar with them, although the smaller-wheeled versions are also very impressive. If you decide to buy one, remember that folding bikes don’t depreciate in value. That means if you want to resell it, you could always find a costumer and give it for a very decent price.

Nedim SabicFolding Lightweight Bike – Your Modern Alternative
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Raspberry Pi Alternatives (March 2017)

Maybe it wasn’t what you were looking for? Doesn’t complete the tasks you need it to? It’s just not what you wanted?

Well, you’ve come to the right place, because in this article we go over a few alternatives for the Raspberry Pi that are out there in the world with different features and uses and maybe one of them is just right for you.

One might ask why would you need a Raspberry Pi alternative? There’s actually quite a few good reasons. The main one would be the price range. Yes, I know, $25-$35 is not much, but people who buy these products are usually between ages of 18-22 due to the fact that a person of that age usually goes to a university so they would most likely need one of these for projects and such. However, you don’t have to be a college student to have a reason to buy these. Simply said, if you do not have a stable income, $25-$35 might be a high price for you, so you would be looking into cheaper alternatives for Raspberry Pi.

Another good reason would be the fact that it simply doesn’t do what you need it to do, or it’s too big for a project you need. The original Raspberry Pi is quite big in size if it were to be used in some portable project, however depending on what you are doing and making, it may not be. But, in case it is, there are smaller alternatives which do pretty much the same function at cost of something else, such as processing power, number of ports and so on.

By the end of this article, you will have quite a few Raspberry Pi alternatives presented to you with their specifications and detailed descriptions and at the very end, there will be three category picks for BEST, BESTSELLER & BESTBUY according to the price, usage, portability and similar factors of the product.

Table of contents:

 

Banana Pi M3

  • Octa-core 2GHz CPU
  • LPDDR3 2GB RAM
  • Bluetooth 4.0 support
  • Gigabit Ethernet
  • SATA Port

This is one powerful piece of hardware. I mean, it has a physical antenna attached to it, like.. damn. Anyway, this device is slightly bigger than the Orange Pi, but it has it’s reason as it comes with an eight core ARM Cortex-A7 CPU which has PowerVR GPU chip. Alongside the powerful CPU, it comes with 2GB of LPDDR3 RAM and 8GB onboard eMMC (memory) which is amazing, meaning you don’t even need an external storage source to have an OS running on this, as you usually would need with other products. The 4 USB 2.0 ports which enables you to have multiple devices and peripherals attached to it, like a keyboard, a mouse and similar. The 2.0 USB might be a slight drawback as the standard today is 3.0 however it makes it up with other features such as the gigabit ethernet and a SATA port.

Yes, a SATA port. This thing has a SATA port. You can plug in an external hard disk drive into this, or even an SSD, depending on your need, granted you would need to supply additional power for the external drive, but if you can handle that problem, you can easily have a 24/7 HDD or SSD operating on this device, which would extend your possibilities even more. Other than the standard USB ports and an HDMI output, it has an IR receiver which means this device is very suitable for somewhat big projects that reach into software development and electrical engineering and that unleashes even more possibilities.

Alongside those features, it has a really powerful WiFi chip which also brings Bluetooth 4.0 with it. The WiFi chip receiving and transmitting power can be greatly amplified by using an external antenna which comes with the product itself, and it’s really all straight-forward. From the hardware set-up to software side, this miniature and portable PC brings astonishing power in such small form. Whether you would use it for a simple media center in your home, or a cluster network, or pretty much anything else, it will suit your needs as it does pack a punch.

 

 

 

Orange Pi One

  • Quad Core 1.2GHz Cortex-A7
  • ARM Mali GPU
  • 512MB DD3 RAM
  • 40 Pin GPIO
  • Various connectors such as HDMI and Ethernet

Other than the fact that this piece of hardware is noticeably smaller than its counterpart, Orange Pi, it has almost identical specifications.

The CPU itself isn’t much weaker than the one in Orange Pi, so it gets the job done, but due to the fact that this edition of Orange Pi boards is smaller than the other ones, it has a bit less features to it, but it is a fair trade-off because after all, you do get a much smaller board to work with, which is very useful if you’re using it for projects that rely on constant mobility and compact size.

In comparison to the full sized Orange Pi, this one has 2 USB ports less which is the biggest visual change when comparing the two. It still has the crucial 40 GPIO pins, so you won’t be left with little functionality as it still holds almost all the features as the full sized Orange Pi. Sure, it has a bit less RAM and a slower CPU, but you wouldn’t be buying this one if the full sized Orange Pi sufficed. Perhaps you need a much smaller board that’s easier to conceal? Or the original one just doesn’t fit.

Really, there are multiple reasons you could be getting this one, but the price isn’t one of them due to the fact that the price differential is less than $10, so yeah.. there’s that.

Other than the size, a little slower processor and less RAM, Orange Pi and Orange Pi One are almost identical and when you factor in the price difference between the two, the most common reason you would have for buying the Orange Pi One is due to it’s smaller size.

Orange Pi

  • Quad Core 1.6GHz ARM Cortex-A7
  • 1GB DDR3 RAM
  • Ethernet, HDMI, 40pin GPIO ports
  • ARM Mali GPU
  • 3.5mm audio output

The first product we’ve tested is branded as Orange Pi with a price tag of $24.98 on Amazon. This compact and modular ‘nanoPC‘ is truly amazing for its price. It outmatches Raspberry Pi Zero and Raspberry Pi 2 in multiple factors while it’s in rivaling grounds with Raspberry Pi 3 which is very powerful for its size. In general, it has all the ports you would need, ranging from Ethernet, HDMI, 3 USB 2.0 ports and 40 GPIO pins for use as you require. The ethernet port is 100Mbps so it may not be the most suitable choice for networking projects or similar as you would usually need 1Gbps ethernet ports for networks, but 100Mbps is still not bad if you were to go with this board.

The audio output is your regular 3.5mm port and it will deliver great audio to your speakers or headphones, which makes it suitable for a home cinema center. Alongside the 3.5mm port, there is a camera interface port for which you can buy an additional camera board. Upon connecting it to the board, you can turn this compact and portable PC into basically anything. On the bottom side of the board, you will find a TF card slot in which you can insert a memory card which will additionally expand the space you will have full control of. The most suitable use of this would be booting a different OS if you had to, or if you were for example going to have a media library on this PC for your home, you could store all the media on that card and just have it in the slot all the time which will grant you access to all the files on it over the Orange Pi PC.

Other than those, there is also a small sized microphone on the top side of the board which seems to be of decent quality. It won’t pick up all of the sounds, especially the ones from a far, however it can prove itself useful if working with applications which have voice commands and similar.

Powering this device might seem odd to you as you might expect it would use a micro USB port, however this uses a barrel pin and it’s rated at 5V 2A DC, but you do get an adapter with it so it shouldn’t be a worry, but if you were to power this on a portable battery, you might run into some issues.

The GPU itself is a Mali400MP2 chip clocked at 600MHz and it fully supports OpenGL ES2.0 which means you are able to run games off of it. Simply said, if you wanted to make a portable console of some sort, you are able to do it due to the OpenGL support alongside the HDMI output. However, it is not made for RAM intensive applications, after all, it does have only 1GB of RAM which is shared with the GPU, but it is able to run Google Chrome.

The operating systems you can install on this device are Android Ubuntu, Debian and a Raspberry Pi image. As previously stated, you will need a memory card to install anything on this PC. Overall, this compact and modular ‘nanoPC’ is very versatile as it has many uses and applications, however if you’re going to use it for RAM intensive applications and similar, it may not be the best choice, but other than that, it’s great.

 

 

Intel Edison Kit for Arduino

  • Intel Atom based on 22nm Silver Mont architecture
  • Yocto Linux, Arduino, Python and Node.js support
  • Open source community software tools
  • DDR3 1GB RAM alongside 4GB eMMC flash memory
  • Bluetooth 4.0
  • C/C++, Python, Node.hs, HTML5, JavaScript support

Intel Edison is a great piece of hardware as it packs great features for it’s price of $84.99 and as bad as that price may sound, it is actually worth it as this board comes directly from Intel with their CPU, Intel Atom. The possibilities with this device are pretty much infinite as long as you have the idea and knowledge due to the fact that it has quite a powerful hardware and it is well built and optimised and tested over a long period of time by multiple developers coming directly from Intel. The point of this device was to induce creativity among people mostly on Intel forums however the goal went much further away and that’s a good thing as people have shown you can use this portable miniPC for anything, ranging from a simple home media library to a complex robotic system. As long as you have ideas, you will not get bored with this one. Even if you have some big ideas, this device can probably handle it as the parts that it’s made from are quality checked and well-made.

The CPU itself is an Intel Atom CPU clocked at speed of 500MHz, and yes, that may sound low, but don’t let it fool you, it’s actually very powerful. It’s made to handle CPU intensive works and applications so it can be used for parallel processing of data, even big chunks of data aren’t a problem due to the fact how good this CPU has become over the years. I have an Intel Atom Notebook clocked at 1.6GHz and that ‘laptop’ is tiny when compared to others, and you would think to yourself that it’s useless, however it’s not. I’m able to do intricate Java programming on it alongside HTML and Javascript, so, once again, don’t let the low clock fool you, it is actually pretty damn good for its size. Other than the CPU, it packs 1GB of DDR3 RAM which is pretty decent. If you ask me, I would like at least 2GB, however depending on what you do with it, 1GB should be quite sufficient as the CPU makes up for it in most of the areas where it lacks.

The operating system that comes with the board itself is Yocto Linux v1.6 and may require a bit of time to get used to it, but once you do, you will be unstoppable due to the fact that pretty much everything is open sourced. However, the point of this board is to create a bridge between itself and Arduino boards. Once you combine the features of both of those, you have a powerful system that can be used to any extent, depending on what you need.

As I have noticed, a lot of users which own different boards had a problem with temperature and overheating of certain parts on the board, and while there are solutions, Intel Edison board has no such problems. Its operating temperature is between 32 and 104 Fahrenheit and due to amazing cooling optimisation Intel has implemented on this board and similar products, it will basically never go over that 104 mark. HOWEVER, if you ever do experience problems with the temperature with the onboard chips, you can always buy those miniature aluminium heat sinks which work quite well from my experience.

To wrap it up, Intel Edison Kit for Arduino is a very good product I would recommend to any advanced electronics hobbyist as it involves physical circuits due to the fact that it connects to an arduino and it has unmatched features in this field.

 

And now, for the grand finale.. three different categories and only four participants. It looks like an easy win for everyone, but in reality.. it’s not.

As a reminder, we have three categories: BESTBESTSELLERBESTBUY.

Now other than the fact that we have only four candidates this time, it still wasn’t an easy decision on the category of BEST as they all compare almost evenly in various areas. Some have advantages and some don’t, but overall, they’re somewhat even when we take a look at their general score. Anyhow, the winners for three of the categories are as following:

 

 

 

 

Nedim SabicRaspberry Pi Alternatives (March 2017)
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144Hz Gaming Monitor (March 2017)

We have done countless tests and have come up with the best monitors for every gamer and aspiring ELeague players, especially CS-GO players. A 144 Hz monitor is a must buy. Why? Well, these monitors were made for gaming. For most of my life I was using a 60 Hz monitor so I never knew until I tried a 144 Hz monitor.

I was breathless and wanted more. It took me to another world of joy. When I played skyrim it was marvelous. It was fun beyond life itself, I spent 7 hours every day playing it regardless of school or sleep. This game was made 6 years ago and it is still better than most games that come out today, mostly thanks to the massive amount of mods. With the correct set up of mods you can have the best possible graphics. That is what I thought at least. So I downloaded mods to improve my textures, lighting, etc. And at that moment I thought this could not get any more beautiful. But, recently I decided to buy a 144 Hz monitor. I started up skyrim, and to my surprise it was better than I ever thought. The crisp image quality and the smoothness of it all, lead me to a discovery. Nothing is absolute, everything can improve. In short I experienced another level in gaming with a 144 Hz monitor. This lead me to think, could there possible be even better monitors, so I spent days searching up 144 Hz monitors and day after day I would be surprised with the vast amount of monitors dedicated for gaming. With all of that research I have come up with the best possible monitors up for sale at this moment. I did this not for me, but for you! So you can enjoy your games, the way I do or even better.

So lets dive straight into the monitors (not literally)!


Content:


BEST GAMING MONITOR OF 2017 – Asus PG348Q

The Asus PG348Q is the best monitor in my opinion even though technically it is not a 144 Hz monitor as it can only go up to 100 Hz. Why is it better than the BenQ XR3501, and how can a 100 Hz monitor be considered the best in this current article? Well in short this monitor is quite similar to the BenQ XR3501, as it is huge and boasts a 34 inch screen and is curved like the BenQ XR3501. Than why buy it if it is the same and costs more.  Lets start of with the optimization. It is clearly better by miles, as it looks and feels great. As for the size it is the same as the BenQ XR3501 but it does not have edges, making it for me much more appealing to the eye. Then again the resolution is 3440×1440 making it miles better then any of the monitors we will cover today. Now something that is quite important is the additional settings which let you add an additional crosshair, timer and an fps counter, granted it is quite unnecessary in fps games as they all posses these settings in the software, but than again there are survival games in which you can make many weapons which are easier to use with a crosshair. In summary it has a lot of pros compared to its small cons. And yes this is not a 144 Hz monitor but I just had to add it because it just by my opinion the best monitor. Also a cool addition is that this monitor has 4 USB 3.0 sockets.

Let me tell you a small reason why this is the best gaming monitor out there, at least in my eyes. I used to play a lot of CS, and I got used to the crosshair, upon changing games which included guns in the gameplay, I would be left unable to play. I can not aim at this moment without a proper crosshair. And most of the time if a game has a crosshair it is dynamic, that irritates me a lot, why can’t they just make it static or at least add an option to change it to static. Well the crosshair from this monitor is customizable and guess what it is static. Developing a game is hard I do know that from a programmers aspect, thankfully most games do include a corsshair. Even minecraft has a small white crosshair. But in summary this monitor is the best you can get in the market at this moment.

In short the Asus PG348Q features are:

  • Size: 34 inches
  • Screen Type: Curved
  • Refresh rate: 100 Hz
  • Aspect ratio: 21:9
  • Resolution: 3440 x 1440
  • Contrast: 1000:1‎
  • Response time: 5ms
  • One HDMI port
  • One DisplayPort
  • Four USB 3.0 sockets
  • Asus GamePlus
  • Adjustable height and tilt
  • Power consumption: 100W


BEST SELLER – Asus VG248QE

The Asus VG248QE monitor is fairly cheap for a 144 Hz monitor, and it is probably the most popular one in the market. It is appealing to the eyes, with a 24 inch screen is more than enough for gaming. This monitor is designed for any gamer out there that is on a low budget, including me. Most of these monitors we will cover today are expensive, while on the other hand this monitor is quite cheap. And yes that is the best part of this monitor. It checks off all the requirements for a budget build.

In short the Asus VG248QE features are:

  • Size: 24 inches
  • Refresh rate: 144 Hz
  • Aspect ratio: 16:9
  • Resolution: 1920×1080
  • Contrast: 1000:1
  • Response time: 1ms
  • One DVI-D port
  • One HDMI port
  • One DisplayPort
  • HeadPhone jack
  • Adjustable height and tilt
  • Power consumption: 45W


BEST BUY – Acer XG270HU

The Acer XG270HU  monitor is our best buy. It meets everyone’s needs right in the middle. It is not extremely expensive and has a lot of features. It straight comes over and sucker punches you in the stomach because you still haven’t bought one. It is truly good, trust me. This monitor has a nice resolution of 2K  making it suitable for making the best youtube videos out there, and it is pretty large at 27 inches. But the best part of this monitor is the fact that it is a 144 Hz monitor, it is rare to see 2K resolution 144 Hz monitors for this price, and this is probably one of the best ones. Heck you would be better of buying two of these monitors because of the price and the quality provided by it.

In short the Acer XG270HU features are:

  • Size: 27 inches
  • Refresh rate: 144 Hz
  • Aspect ratio: 16:9
  • Resolution: 2560×1440
  • Contrast: 1000:1
  • Response time: 1ms
  • One DVI port
  • One HDMI port
  • One DisplayPort
  • Power consumption: 48W


BenQ ZOWIE XL2411

The BenQ ZOWIE XL2411 is a great monitor that can be considered for a person who just wants a better over all performance and not the full deal. If you are looking for a casual and cheap 144 Hz monitor than be sure to buy this one. The size of the monitor is a solid 24 inches, which is more then enough if you ask me. It is a full HD monitor that has 7 million colors and can support HDMI, DVI-DL and D-Sub ports. So in theory if you have been using a 60-75 Hz monitor all this time than this is the right monitor to buy as it is the perfect upgrade to 144 Hz. It is smooth and quite impressive.

In short the BenQ ZOWIE XL2411 features are:

  • Size: 24 inches
  • Aspect ratio: 16:9
  • Resolution: 1920×1080
  • Contrast: 1000:1
  • Response time: 1ms
  • One DVI-D port
  • One HDMI port
  • One D-Sub port
  • Adjustable height and tilt
  • Power consumption: 45W


Acer Predator XB241H

The Acer Predator XB241H is a true beauty indeed. It might not be cheap but it sure is a beast. Many of these monitors can go up to 144 Hz max, while this monitor is special. It has a higher overclock ratio letting it go up to 180 Hz. The size is only 24 inches like many others and  the screen resolution is full Hd again. It comes with one display and one HDMI port. Why is this a beast? Well our description is vague, yeah the overclock is pretty nice but why would this monitor be special why would it stand over the rest, why should we spend more for the same power. Well this monitor has something the rest do not have, they are plain and you look at them directly, while this monitor is curved providing a smoother feeling of the game you are playing. This monitor makes people look twice at the price tag and forces them to reconsider buying it. You might be asking yourself why would I ever need a curved monitor? I can probably buy a nice keyboard and the Asus VG248QE and still have a bit of money left over. Curved monitors improve your focus as they target light properly unlike flat monitors. Well curved or not it is still a great monitor never the less. And will surely satisfy you. 

In short the Acer Predator XB241H features are:

  • Size: 24 inches
  • Screen type: Curved
  • Refresh rate: 144 Hz
  • Overclockable refresh rate up to 180 Hz
  • Aspect ratio: 16:9
  •  Resolution: 1920×1080
  • Contrast: 900:1
  • Response time: 1ms
  • One HDMI port
  • One DisplayPort
  • Adjustable height and tilt
  • Power consumption: 36W


Asus MG278Q

The Asus MG278Q is truly a great gaming monitor. It will satisfy anyone’s needs. It is similar in many ways to the Acer XG270HU, for example it has the same size which is 27 inches and the same 2K resolution. Yes I do know this is the general similarities we could go into details for days and describe these monitors for days but nobody wants that and nobody will read that, most of the time. Yes it is a great monitor and yes it will provide an excellent image, which is smooth and true eye candy as you will fall in love with it. Once you turn on a game and see the detail of the image and the smoothness you will be in love, with the addition of Asus GamePlus technology. And once you fall in love, you shall love it for a long time as it can and will surely last you a long time. Also not to forget it has multiple ports two HDMI ports one DVI-D port one DisplayPort 1.2 and a USB 3.0 port. It might not be the cheapest but its a bargain which even I am willing to take.

In short the  Asus MG278Q features are:

  • Size: 27 inches
  • Refresh rate: 144 Hz
  • Aspect ratio: 16:9
  • Resolution: 2560×1440
  • Contrast: 1000:1
  • Response time: 1ms
  • One DVI-D port
  • Two HDMI ports
  • One DisplayPort
  • One USB 3.0 socket
  • Asus GamePlus
  • Adjustable height and tilt
  • Power consumption: 39W


BenQ XR3501

The BenQ XR3501 truly made me struggle as it is such a great monitor it deserves to be number one on this list, but sadly only one could be chosen and I opted for the Asus PG348Q. You will see why. But now listen to this beasts roar. It is everything above and more. Okay now sit down and be amazed as this monitor is not just big but it is powerful aswell. The size is a whooping 35 inch, and it is not just a mere full HD resolution it is actually 2560×1080. “And is that all to it, I can buy two Asus VG248QE monitors and spend less for the exact same.” Sure but will they be curved like this monitor? I bet you did not see that coming. As this monitor is not just a plain 144 Hz monitor with an impressive size. It is curved and I have already explained why you should buy curved monitors as they provide a better experience over all. But, NO buts, buy it and enjoy it. This monitor can not disappoint you, no matter what you are going to use it for. It also has many ports which are two HDMI ports and two DisplayPorts 1.2.

In short the BenQ XR3501 features are:

  • Size: 35 inches
  • Screen Type: Curved
  • Refresh rate: 144 Hz
  • Aspect ratio: 21:9
  • Resolution: 2560×1080
  • Contrast: 2000:1‎
  • Response time: 4ms
  • Two HDMI ports
  • Two DisplayPorts
  • Power consumption: 70W


e-Sports

Electronic sports. Most popular being Cs-go. So I will start of telling you my personal experience in CS. I have over 1.5k hours spent into cs go, but I stopped playing a long time ago, if I had a 144 Hz monitor back when the game was fun for me. It was a dream of mine to become a professional, but the chances of that were really low, and still are really low. Many issues pooped up but forget that, this is not about me it is about you, and your chance to learn from my mistakes. So if you want to become a eSport professional it is important to have a 144 Hz monitor. Here is a little story. Imagine having the perfect spawn for long A on DD2. No matter if you bought a deagle an AWP or a rifle. The spawn matters a lot, but now experienced players know that you are going to hold that position or peek. So they are going to pre fire you making your life difficult.

I can not describe how it feels when you get pre fired every single game on Faceit or Esea. Okay what does this mean, either they have cheats, maybe they are lucky or the most logical conclusion that they have a 144 Hz monitor. So taking that into consideration, you are dead now. Okay one round is lost to them having that entry on long. They keep doing it until it fails. And they get 4 rounds, than you guys decide to stack long, unknowingly to them. They rush long, your team was able to out aim them, but you still lost 3 people making that economy situation quite hard. But now if you for example had the same setup would it truly be 4-1 to them? No it would not, you would probably know they are going to pre fire and put yourself in a weird angle to set them off. But still that 144 Hz monitor gives them a smooth peek making them see you faster. So my point is Skill is skill. But pure raw power can sometimes overpower skill. That is why you need  a 144 Hz monitor. Now for another little story. I was playing a random pug in Faceit. It was just casual, I won it and yearned for more. After that win I became competitive so a loss is a no go. I win 3 matches in a row and get a level up on Faceit. Life is going dandy. And then I decide to go on a fourth match. I end up against 5 Swedes. Check their profiles they all have less then 700 hours. It was a piece of cake for me I thought. But sadly all of them owned 144 Hz monitors. I played each peek perfectly threw my grenades forced them out yet every time I would hit him in the body for 30 while he would get an instant head shot. I was getting furious. And with every round I was getting more and more angry. It got up to the point of me swearing and hitting the desk up to 5 times with my hand upon dying. I was on the point of punching my monitor. Have you ever had a feeling of injustice. I was literally better then them yet they had the upper hand every single round. Pre firing me and my teammates, round after round I was losing hope in this game. And at the end of the day I realized I do not want to play this game anymore. A game where I put a lot of effort and soul into, all for nothing. Just to get beaten by people who have the money to buy  “Skill”. So this is why you need a 144 Hz monitor, you will get to a point where skill does not matter. You will get to a point where you will face only rich tryhards. You will come to a point where you forgot that Cs Go is just a game. I came to that point and it ruined the game for me. Granted I still have some nice memories about cs go when I was playing with my friends and having fun.

This story is here to teach you why you need a 144 Hz monitor not just for gaming but for the love of the game itself. If you dedicate your entire being into something and then get destroyed by people who just bought “Skill” than you lose the point to play the game. But this is one part of the story though, it is my part. By owning a 144 Hz monitor you are able to to mop the floor with them. But yours could be different and you just play the game for the game itself. I used to play cs go like that a long time ago but now, I will not even download it onto my PC.

But there are other e-Sports games that could be considered dependent on a high frame refresh rate. Any single shooter game is mainly dependent on it. But if you are a person who plays Dota then it will not matter much if you get a 144 Hz monitor as it will only make the game more enjoyable and will not prevent you from becoming an eSports professional.

So in short here I described why it is necessary to have a 100+ Hz monitor for first person shooter games. As it adds a new layer of skill which you can reach, and it will lets say boost your over all capability of becoming a professional.


Why didn’t you add the X34A?

The X34A for a long time was considered to be the best monitor out there. Even though it had multiple problems upon release, luckily it did improve on them though. Either ways it was considered to be the best monitor out there. Having features like a 35 inch curved screen, 21:9 aspect ratio, a refresh rate of 100 Hz, and the list goes on. If you read the article you would see why I did not add this monitor. As it is almost the same as the Asus PG348Q. But the Asus PG348Q is slightly better in my own opinion. Making it a clear pick instead of the X34A. But do not get me wrong the X34A is 10 times better then some of the monitors I covered. In some eyes it is the best still. One thing that it lacks is a 144 Hz refresh rate same as the PG348Q and I could only put one 100 Hz monitor. Even the PG348Q is an exception. If I put both who are literally the same monitor it would make no sense. As I am here trying to help you buy the best monitor. A thing that has been happening with the X34A is some manufacturer issues. In short Dead Pixels, Screen Flickering, Unsaved menu settings and Backlight Bleeding. Due to this I picked the obvious choice the PG348Q. As it had rare instances of manufacturer issues. Do not get the wrong idea they still happen. But in a less amount compared to the X34A.

Also you might have spotted the featured image being the X34A I had to honor this worthy candidate in some way possible, as it could like I said before beat any of these monitors except the Asus PG348Q. If you wish to buy this monitor go ahead, but the Asus PG348Q is better and cheaper by a small amount than the X34A, on amazon at least.


Curved vs Flat

What is the difference between a curved and flat monitor. Well it depends mostly on the size of the monitor. If you own a monitor that is for example bellow 27 inch than a flat monitor is ok as your eyes are able to see the full size with no issues. While on the other hand if you have monitor above 27 inches it should get curved. Or you will start to get annoyed from time to time. What about tvs they are flat and above 27 inches. And yes that is true but you are further away from a tv then a computer monitor. And upon gaming or spending time on your PC you will get a small headache due to you constantly moving your eyes from left to right. Just imagine having a 100 inch tv screen if you curve it it can go all around you and is like a virtual reality tv. But imagine if it was flat you would legit get lost you would see the whole world on one screen and lose your feeling for determining objects. Well this is strange example but in short. Imagine sitting casually, your monitor is max 100 cms away from you, that is if you do not have a wireless setup. And now you are sitting there about to run some cs go. But you have a flat 30 inch monitor whose refresh rate is only 60 Hz. You get on ts and into a lobby with your high ranking friends. They are all Supreme or Global and you are Legendary Eagle(Le). So you guys go on mirage and they start up a tactic where you are the main entry. You enter somehow but due to you having a 60 Hz monitor you get killed 8 out of 10 times. But on those 2 times when you get the entry kill. You still end up being refragged by a person to your left that you were unable to spot. Why is that? Well the light coming from your flat monitor was hitting your eyes but not responsively, so your brain just saw it as an object in the face of panic. So in order to fix that you would need to move your mouse left and right constantly.

But it is not all dim for flat monitors. While curved monitors exceed on games the flat monitors exceed on different things. So you are just getting into designing, video editing, etc. The first thing you do is get a nice PC so you can render fast, now you are asking yourself what monitor should I get. So you could just be a designer and you wont need to worry about the frame rate of your monitor so that is a plus, but to get a curved one would be just suicide as it will only lead to confusion and small errors that could cost you your paycheck. For you see when you have a nice flat monitor the image will not get stretched. While on the curved monitor it might confuse you as it can cause issues for you. If you are going to edit videos stretched monitor will not make a difference it will be mostly up to your own taste whether you like a nice huge monitor to work on or a dual monitor set up, it does not matter. But if you are an animator it sure as hell can matter. Imagine making a nice and small animation for your school on a curved monitor. Ok it looks great on your monitor heck it looks beyond great it looks fabulous as the textures combine perfectly. Then you bring it to your school it opens up but the animations are a bit off. And not perfect like you made them to be. So in theory it does matter if you are going to use a flat or curved monitor.

But curved monitors are a part of the future. Though they are only useful when it comes to gaming. So if you want to design, animate, etc. it would be best for you to get a nice flat monitor. This might not be really that important it might not cause a big difference in your work, but it might make you furious if you are a perfectionist.


Comparison

So we have a bunch of monitors up there with a vague description of why you would use or need them. Granted I could have given a detailed description on each of the given monitors but it is pointless because most people including myself do not read that, that is why i put the most important things. So in short all of these monitors are lets say made for gaming, but some are better in some genres of games. For example you have FPS games then again you have MMO games and the list is infinite. So I will name the some genres of games and suggest which monitor you should buy.

There are many FPS games and many of them have eSport events. So in theory if you like BF, CS, TF2 and so on I suggest the Asus VG248QE. As it is nice and fast and only costs around 300 Dollars. Meaning you will be able to enjoy the competitive scene of those games, and those scenes are awesome. But these are not the only FPS games, these are the most played eSport fps games. For example FPS solo games. The advantages are the exact same, but you are going up against bots so you are going to win against them even with a 60 Hz monitor. But with a 144 Hz you will enjoy the smoothness. But if you have more then enough money to spend then you should  buy the Acer Predator XB241H as the frame rate can go up to 180 Hz, though that is not that important because if you have 144 Hz it will not make much of a difference as you will not be able to spot the difference as it is minor.

If you are on a low budget and want a really good monitor then the Acer Predator XB241H is the right way to go as it is ideal for every type of game. as it does not have any limitations unlike the Asus VG248QE, this monitor lets you decide what ever you want to do, also it is curved and provides a smoother gameplay. But it is also a lot more expensive but for a reason as it is much better.

If you want to enjoy every type of game to the max and have funds to spend then the Asus PG348Q. It is the ultimate monitor as it provides the best image quality for every game. But it does that for the right price, as it is quite expensive. It is huge letting you enjoy any type of explorer game, it is curved so when you play a raid on wow it will look more smooth (granted not the best example but still its true), and the best part is that there is no screen tearing making every single game look smooth and fast. But do keep in mind this monitor is basically when you have the money to buy yourself the ultimate tool for enjoyment. Just to clarify once again this monitor is not 144 Hz it is 100 Hz but it still does not cause screen tearing. But I will say this, if you want to become a professional cs go player(or an FPS eSports player) then get the bestseller as it will prove to be a better choice as it would provide a better frame refresh rate and provide you with all the tools you need. You will just need some dedication and hard work that is about it.

But monitors do not need to be all about games, you might need a monitor to work on and still want to play and enjoy your time, for that I suggest the Acer XG270HU. “But monitors do not matter when you are working, you are fine of with a 17 inch monitor most of the time. Also isn’t this a gaming monitor article?” It is but I am just saying overall the Acer XG270HU is an ideal monitor for anyone. It might not satisfy you fully but it will give you the ultimate over all experience(that sounds a tiny bit weird), I mean if you want to edit or do some cool things with animation or design it will not cause any issues, also it is not expensive like the other monitors so it truly is the best over all monitor. “Overall experience? You must be joking monitors do not matter”. Well I would like to disagree as you might not see it as I do. So you are in the right? Well no, neither of us are in the right to be honest it is more of a personal choice and for my opinion you can use the Acer XG270HU for video editing and designing animating etc. So in short this monitor like I said is just an over all good monitor, regarding features and price.


Conclusion

If you are looking to buy a nice gaming monitor, then be sure to buy one of these as you will make the right choice. It will make all your games feel realistic and natural. As for me I am enjoying my current monitor. It was hard to do many things on my old 60 Hz monitor. I would enjoy games but not to this measure. Over all the the must get monitor is obvious, and I do think you guys agree we talked a bit too much about the Asus PG348Q as it literally is the best gaming monitor of 2016 and 2017, at this current time that is. There might be a new release in 2017 which will be better so do not rage at me I am stating that this is the best monitor of early 2017. But either ways  I hope this article helped you in any way possible to make your gaming setup. Also in case you bought yourself a 144 Hz monitor, may you enjoy your gaming to the max with no issues or problems, and may Talos be with you.

Nedim Sabic144Hz Gaming Monitor (March 2017)
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