The quad-core Core 2 Extreme QX6850 keeps the desktop CPU performance belt tied firmly around Intel's waist at a price that helps offset the lack of sizable performance gains. New products at the end of the year may outclass this new chip when they arrive, but for now, the QX6850 reigns supreme.
Thanks to an expensive new motherboard requirement, Intel's new Core i7 desktop processors will remain enthusiast and professional-level parts until more affordable complementary hardware comes out later next year. Speed never comes cheap, however, and if you're willing to spend for it now, you'll find yourself in possession of the fastest CPU on the market.
While not for everyone, the Tekkeon MyPower is a great option for iPod users who are constantly looking for an AC power outlet.
Leia is a new technology that aims to revive interest in glasses-free 3D display.
Iomega's Super DVD Writer offers competitive performance for a reasonable price--perfect for anyone who wants five-format flexibility.
If you don't mind a few minor annoyances, the Nyko Charge Station is a great way to recharge your Wii remotes.
Microsoft's Xbox 360 Quick Charge Kit is a must-have Xbox 360 accessory for those who already own--or are considering buying--a wireless controller.
The BFG GeForce 6800 Ultra OC is clearly a high-performance video card, but the overclocked settings don't do much.
The proof-of-concept motherboard-chassis hybrid combines to make it easier to install new components, but it's not perfect.
Dual-display ability helps make the ATI's merely satisfactory performance much more palatable.
If you thought dual cores were over the top, get ready. Intel presents the Core 2 Extreme QX6700, a single CPU with four distinct processing cores. At $999, the first quad-core CPU will remain an enthusiast part for a while, but as a glimpse of the future, it's clear that clock speed is out and core counts are in.
Most laptop stands either are too big to carry, or only support smaller notebooks. The Targus Space Saving Lap Chill Mat packs down nearly flat, and can also support 17-inch desktop-replacement laptops.
AMD's new Phenom X4 9850 is overpriced and outclassed compared with its Intel-based quad-core competition. If PC vendors can use this chip to make cheap systems (as they did with older Phenoms), we might have nicer things to say, but as a DIY part at this price, we can't recommend AMD's latest quad-core CPU.
Telecom Square's Global Hotspot is a dependable and convenient way to access the Internet while traveling, but you'll need to be a heavy data user to make the service economical.
AMD's new Phenom quad-core CPU has little to recommend it over competing chips from Intel. The Phenom is marginally less expensive, but not enough to make up for its subpar performance. Unless AMD drops prices more aggressively, it looks like Intel will maintain its grasp on the CPU market for the foreseeable future.
If you don't mind sacrificing a few convenient features for truly portable design, Creative's Sound Blaster Audigy 2 ZS Notebook turns your laptop into a bona fide sound system.
The Vantec NexStar Hard Drive Dock is a good, affordable tool for computer technicians and those who work with internal hard drives.
The Novatel Wireless MiFi Liberate is arguably the best mobile router AT&T has offered yet.