China is hands-down the manufacturing Mecca for a PC hardware nerd like me. So when I had the opportunity to see the magic happening first-hand I immediately packed a bag and travelled the 6,000-odd miles from the Shire-like West of England to the smog-choked Mordor of Dongguan in China to see just how such technical wonders are created. Like many PC gamers I automatically expect my expensive, complex lump of graphics processing goodness to just work, giving practically zero thought to where it’s come from or how it got here. But when I was given the chance to see first-hand the latest batch of Nvidia and AMD graphics cards being created and tested before my jet-lagged eyeballs I immediately jumped at it. And yeah, I now have a new appreciation for both the engineers who solder, screw, and test every single card as well as the marvellous machines that help them do it. Seriously, those little robotic component-placing magicians are mesmerising. I could watch them all day… … [Read more...] about How your Nvidia and AMD graphics cards are made
Troubleshoot graphics card
The dust hasn't even settled on Nvidia's new GeForce RTX series graphics cards, but already there are numerous complaints on various forums of a range of issues, from crashes and blue screen errors, to even cards outright dying. Even more frustrating for early adopters, the complaints seem mostly centered on the GeForce RTX 2080 Ti, which is the most expensive RTX card of the bunch.There are multiple threads related to GeForce RTX 2080 Ti issues on Nvidia's own forums and Reddit. Digital Threads wrangled a bunch of them, noting that users have been complaining about dead and dying cards for weeks, and that several threads have more than 100 comments detailing different issues.Is there really a problem, though? If so, that would be concerning—it's not unreasonable to expect that a $1,200 GPU (Founders Edition) would be engineered to perfection, or at least close to it. At the very least, we wouldn't expect so many different complaints to crop up so quickly after launch.The 2080 Ti … [Read more...] about Some users are complaining of GeForce RTX 2080 Ti cards dying
Other than dedicated workstations, high-end gaming PCs have some of the steepest hardware requirements. Each component needs to be carefully chosen to offer the best performance and features while working in harmony with your other parts. Like workstations, there are certain components, such as graphics cards, that won’t be found in your average home office PC; they can also be quite expensive. PC build guidesLooking for more PC building advice? Check out our build guides: Budget gaming PC build guide (~$750/£750) - A good entry-level system.Mid-range gaming PC build guide (~$1,250/£1,250) - Our recommended midrange build for most gamers.High-end gaming PC build guide (~$2,000/£2,000) - Everything a gamer could want.Extreme gaming PC build guide (>$4,000/£4,000) - You won the lotto and are going all-in on gaming.Prefer to buy a prebuilt than building it yourself? Check out our guide to the Best Gaming PCs. A couple hundred dollars can … [Read more...] about Should I buy refurbished PC parts?
If your computer is behaving strangely or randomly crashing, it can be hard to nail down the culprit. And as much as you don't want to believe it's the problem, testing your power supply should be part of your troubleshooting—it might be on the way out. This tutorial will show you how. Symptoms of a failing computer power supply There are a few telltale signs of a computer power supply that may be failing. Unfortunately, many of them are very general and could be a number of things. Typical symptoms include:Random computer crashes.Random blue screen crashes.Extra noise coming from the PC case.Recurring failure of PC components.PC won’t start but your case fans spin.As you can see, those symptoms could have many possible causes. A failing PSU is just one of many. I tend to troubleshoot other hardware first and the power supply last. If you buy a quality PSU, it is unusual for one to fail. How to test your PSU to see if it is dead or alive Testing for … [Read more...] about Is my computer power supply dead?
Some people get their kicks jumping out of planes. Others roll down hills in transparent plastic balls. The most discerning, though, choose to occupy their spare time with system-building—giving digital life to loose components by marrying them together with their bare hands, then watching their creations show their appreciation by emitting RBG lights. If you can't see the beauty in that then get out and go back to your zorbing. Heathen. Recently the art of PC building took a turn for the meta when developers Claudiu Kiss and The Irregular Corporation built a fastidious simulation of the activity. Shrewdly, they called it PC Building Simulator and it's quickly garnered an Early Access fanbase which I'm very much part of. The premise is irresistibly simple: construct PCs in first-person from scratch in a virtual office, running an IT support/repair business as you go. Buy components, get them delivered, put them in people's machines. No small part of the appeal here is … [Read more...] about How authentic is PC Building Simulator really?