HOW TO: Make your laptop a gaming laptop


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If you wanted to, you can pour a metric ton of money into a laptop and make it a game-ready mobile monsterlike one of these gaming-grade laptops). Go ahead, I’m not going to stop you. However, since Intel released the Haswell processors, the game has changed. Many smaller machines that couldn’t even run some games in the past are now perfectly viable for gaming – provided you adjust your settings and expectations. If you want some suggested laptop builds and how to tweak them when you get home, you’ve come to the right place. Keep reading…..

Labels: gaming| how-to

HOW TO: Improve laptop game performance


Don’t know about you, but when I get a new PC, I try to tweak settings to goose a little extra performance out of games. If you’re like me, here’s a handy checklist of what I do right after unboxing. It goes without saying that some of these tips are about digging deeper into the guts of your laptop. If you’re not comfortable with changing settings or removing services and files, don’t try these tips. For everyone else: LET’S GET NERDY!

Labels: gaming| how-to

How to Prepare your PC for Titanfall

titanfall screenshot.jpgLast night, at Midnight, the first big next-gen game launched for the PC and Xbox One - Titanfall. Like some nerdy New Years ball drop, servers and computers lit up to play without a hitch all over the globe. Here’s the good news: You don’t need a killer system to play the game. In fact, a modest machine will do you just fine....learn all about tweaking your PC to play right here.

Labels: gaming| how-to

AMD Mantle tech now live in Battlefield 4

bf4 - envy 27 display - banner.jpgIf you’ve got yourself an ENVY Phoenix, a tricked-out AMD graphics card and a copy of Battlefield 4, this story is for you. Got your ATTEN-SHUN!?!? Keep reading.


Labels: gaming

Every PC, a Steam machine

every PC a steam machine.jpgThis post started last week when a Twitter friend asked, “Sum up your thoughts of the Steam Machine in 140 characters or less.” The kneejerk reaction: “A PC.” In case you missed it during CES, Valve showed off SteamOS - a Linux-based, open OS made with the intention of getting PC-grade games to your living room – and a few of their anticipated Steam boxes. A pint-sized PC for your home theater that brings PC gaming to a bigger screen? I fully get that…and love it. But why stop there? Every PC is a potential Steam Box if you do it right.

Labels: gaming

Sid Meier’s Ace Patrol on a giant touchscreen

There’s something about strategy games that makes you feel like some grandmaster, chinstroking your way to victory with every well-considered move. Better still, try playing this game on a touchscreen. I’m not just talking about a tablet – or even our sweet hybrid PCs like the Split x2 or upcoming Pavilion 11 x2 – imagine playing this on an awesomely big all-in-one desktop like the ENVY recline.

Labels: gaming

Tweaks for Call of Duty: Ghosts

COD Ghosts - ENVY RECLINE - banner.jpgJust last week, I kicked your sorry butts in boot as Battlefield 4 deployed. Now, it’s time for your next tour of the latest digital battleground – Call of Duty: Ghosts is out. Provided you got the right kind of machine, we’re going to get you locked and loaded with all sorts of tips that I’ve amassed from all over the Internet. You ready?!?! WE ARE OSCAR MIKE!

Labels: gaming| how-to

Battlefield 4: Tweaks – and tech explained

bf4 - envy 27 display - banner.jpgALL RIGHT MAGGOTS, LISTEN UP. We’re skipping boot and going straight to why you came here today (or clicked on a link to get to this article): Battlefield 4. It came out this week. War may not be pretty, but this game sure is – and, I’m willing to be you want this game to look its shiniest. You want to get the most out of your PC to play this game and have it look pretty at the same time? Just keep reading! That’s notsomuch an order….as it is a request.


Labels: gaming| how-to

Getting the perfect gaming PC

building a gaming PC - banner.jpgSo I got this email the other day from the in-laws. Let’s just call her “Sally” – she promised to buy her kid a gaming computer this year for his birthday. Well, that 365th day is almost upon us and she comes to me for advice: “Speed? Memory? Graphics card? Components? I’ve heard these words but I don't know how much of any are required. What are the right upgrades needed for a desktop, so ‘Kevin’ can play his games and do his homework for the next couple of years?” I started writing an email then I realized, there’s way more here to this than a quick email reply. So…read on for my two cents on the modern gaming PC. And Sally: You’re welcome.

Labels: gaming| how-to

Hands-On with the ENVY 700: Hitting a Power / Price Sweet Spot

Wasn’t too long ago that I was telling you about the new ENVY 700 tower. The best way to think of it, the spunky little brother to our gaming-grade machine, the ENVY Phoenix 800. So, in that spirit I went out and got my hands on one to test out and tell you about.

HP’s Epic Game Development Workstation

Here’s the big news, up front: HP’s Z-series workstations are now fully certified by Autodesk, Epic Games and PNY technologies so that developers know that they are working with the best possible systems to create games. Behold the ALT Systems Game Developer Edition!

A Far Cry 3 Technology Tour (and Tweak Tips)

Far Cry 3 strands you on a gorgeous – and deadly – tropical island. EVEN IF you weren’t a gamer, you’d want to just roam and explore this dysfunctional bullet-riddled slice of paradise. It is a showcase for what a PC was born to do….and it also happens to be fun to play. Let’s take you on a quick technical tour of the fictional Rook Islands, give you some tweaking tips regardless of the graphics card you have and things to look for in the tech and on the island.

Personalize Your Tech Gifts

If you’re already planning to gift the latest and greatest in tech this year, I’ve got a few suggestions. More than gifting a just a PC or printer and leaving your loved ones to the set-up and download, why not make it personal? First step is to pick the right piece of tech, and the next step is to select and sync the right apps and software to bring them joy all year long. Here’s some fun the suggestions to prep your presents for mom, dad, grandma, grandpa, and the kids.

Great PC Games of 2012 (and the PCs to Play Them On)

I’m just gonna call it – 2012 was a BIG year for PC Gaming. Forget all this talk about consoles or going mobile. There’s been some huge developments – and huge games – that came out in 2012. So for some end-of-year celebrating, We’re taking a quick look back at a big trend and some great games.


PC Gaming on Your TV with an HP PC

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Earlier today, Valve formally announced the rolling out of SteamOS - a Linux-based, open OS made with the intention of getting PC-grade games to your living room. Don't get me wrong, I salute these guys and what they do. I can see the benefit of having a box that can stream games from your gaming PC to the living room. That said, I can take virtually any laptop that I'm using for a million other things during the day and - when I get home - plug it into my TV via HDMI. No streaming required. 

Labels: gaming

Laptops: Better Than Game Consoles

If you bought a laptop today – and I’m talking even a slim, little Sleekbook…not some game-crusher like the Pavilion dv7 – you’d have an overall better experience than some console collecting dust in your home entertainment center and I dare you to convince me otherwise. 

E3 2012 and HP

Last week, at the 2012 Electronics Entertainment Expo (E3), I wanted to try something a little different. Sure, I set up some new laptops like the Envy Sleekbook 6 and the new, beefy Pavilion dv7, but I also trotted out a couple quality desktops already in-the-market that got their game faces on: The Pavilion HPE Phoenix and the TouchSmart 520. Then a couple people came up to me during the course of the show asking, “So….HP is making gaming PCs?” My answer: “EVERY HP computer is a gaming PC these days! Best of all: It doesn’t take a ton of money to get a good experience.”

The Newest AMD, Nvidia Graphics Cards: Tested in HPE Phoenix

Back in March, I took a closer look at how a tricked out HPE Phoenix performed in a couple quick tests with an Nvidia GTX 580 inside. In short, it is pretty solid for a mainstream single-GPU gaming machine. So, what I'm doing for this quick update - as you probably figured out from the title - is that I got my greedy little mitts on a slew of the newest graphics boards. I'm talking AMD's Radeon HD 7950, the HD 7970....and Nvidia's latest release – the GTX 680 – for a spin. Snagged-and-plugged-in, I am now in the midst of running a couple tests on this board. If you're curious to see what kind of difference these cards can make, read on....

Labels: gaming| graphics

A Diablo III Config Guide for HP PCs

Some of you have had a full week to play Diablo III by now. And sleep at some point. You are one of the 6.3 million people that bought a copy of the game within its first week, right? If you've been hedging, thinking you need a supercomputer to play -- or you weren't sure your computer was up to the task -- this story is for you. What you’re going to find after the jump, in short form, is a quick breakdown of a couple different machines I tested and what in-game settings I’d recommend for each.

Labels: gaming| how-to

Play Diablo III Beta FREE This Weekend!

It's been almost 12 years in the making, waiting for the next Diablo game, but it's coming next month. If you can't wait that long, you can play the game this whole weekend FOR FREE. That's right, nada. Nothing. Gratis. Starting at 12:01pm PT today, you can get online and play the beta client -- on your HP PC, of course. (And I don't mean just the obvious gaming rigs like the ENVY 17 and Pavilion HPE Phoenix.) For more insights....and the download link......keep reading.

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