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Custom PC UK

Custom PC UK

September 2021

Custom PC is the UK’s best-selling magazine for PC hardware, overclocking, gaming and modding. Every month, Custom PC is packed with in-depth hardware reviews, step-by-step photo guides and informative features, all with a focus on tinkering with your computer’s insides. Along the way, you’ll also find hard-hitting tech opinion, game reviews and all manner of computer hobbyism goodness, from small Pi projects to extreme PC mods.

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Country:
United Kingdom
Language:
English
Publisher:
Raspberry Pi
Frequency:
Monthly
R 65,67
R 575,04
12 Issues

in this issue

2 min
pretty in pink

Just look at the gorgeous PC on our cover this month. Our modding editor, Antony Leather, has really outdone himself this time. The neat lines of the water-cooling tubing, the marble-effect paint job, the bright pink lighting – I’ve never seen another PC exactly like it, and that’s what makes building your own dream PC so special. By ‘dream’ I mean ‘amazing fantasy’ not ‘nightmarish’, of course. No one wants to build a PC when they’re naked on a public street, while being watched by a friend they haven’t seen for 20 years and an old school teacher taunts them because the PC doesn’t have enough gerbils in it. Or do they? We have seen some pretty weird PCs in Readers’ drives over the years. What I particularly love about our dream…

3 min
amd surprises with its 3d v-cache

At Computex 2021 on 1 June, AMD surprised those watching online with the revelation that it had developed a Zen 3 design with a stacked L3 cache, strapping an extra 64MB directly on top of the 32MB inside each 8-core chip. AMD called this innovation 3D V-Cache and showed off a Ryzen 5900X featuring it, stating it would give a 12-core or 16-core Ryzen 9 CPU a total L3 cache of 192MB. What’s more, an evaluation BIOS for the company’s EPYC server CPUs showed an option that implied four of these caches could be stacked four on top of each other. This means, in theory, that a 64-core CPU could have 2.3GB of L3 cache! Huge‘last level’ caches benefit compute-focused workloads by keeping more data closer to the processing cores. These caches…

3 min
more game addiction nonsense

The pandemic might not be entirely over yet, but I would like to draw a line with a very thick pencil under some of the nonsense from the media about video games during lockdown. The Guardian has seen fit to publish a scaremongering piece that claims in loud headliney letters that referrals to UK gaming addiction clinics have tripled during lockdown. Oh no, TRIPLED! That must mean a huge number of people are having serious mental health issues because of gaming, right? These headlines are designed to make small numbers sound big, otherwise it would be a non-story. The implication is that the number of ‘gaming addiction’ referrals is high in the first place, and therefore a tripling must be very serious indeed, but of course, this isn’t the case. The number of…

1 min
razer unleashes compact amd laptop

Razer has released a new version of its compact Blade 14 laptop that uses AMD CPUs, being the first Razer laptop to do so. The latest Blade 14 uses AMD’s Ryzen 9 5900HX CPU; despite its Ryzen 9 branding, this contains eight cores, rather than the 12 of its desktop counterpart, with a boost clock of up to 4.6GHz. Meanwhile, GPU power comes from Nvidia’s GeForce RTX 3000-series, with options for RTX 3060, 3070 and 3080 chips. All the models come with 16GB of RAM, a 1TB SSD and a 14in 2,560 x 1,440 display with a 165Hz refresh rate. Prices start at £1,800 inc VAT for the RTX 3060 model from razer.com When’s the next issue out? CUSTOM PC Issue 217 on sale Thursday, 5 August Letters Tell us what you think of the mag,…

1 min
amd counters dlss with fsr

AMD has finally released its equivalent of Nvidia’s DLSS tech, called FidelityFX Super Resolution (FSR). Like DLSS, it works on the principle of upscaling gaming graphics to higher resolutions to lessen the workload and improve performance. Unlike DLSS, however, it doesn’t require AMD-specific hardware, and works on Nvidia’s GPUs too. AMD claims that FSR can improve performance by up to 2.4x at 4K on average in the technology’s Performance mode, when compared with running at 4K natively. Four modes are available – Performance, Balanced, Quality and Ultra Quality, with AMD claiming that ‘image quality is almost indistinguishable from the target native resolution’ in the latter mode’. According to AMD, FSR’s ‘spatial upscaling technology utilises an advanced edge reconstruction algorithm to analyse features in the source image and recreate them at a higher…

1 min
aoc launches mini led gaming monitor

AOC has unveiled a 27in IPS gaming monitor in China, which has a mini LED backlight with 576 local dimming zones, helping it to meet the VESA DisplayHDR 1000 standard. The Agon AG274QXM also has a resolution of 2,560 x 1,440, a 170Hz refresh rate and adaptive sync support. According to AOC, the monitor also has a maximum peak brightness of 1,000cd/m², going down to 600cd/m² in HDR mode and 550cd/m² in standard mode. It’s that 576-zone mini LED backlight that will really help with HDR though. Comparatively, most gaming monitors we review don’t have many-zone backlights and struggle to display HDR content properly, despite often having high-contrast panels. The Agon AG274QXM is currently listed on AOC’s website in China (aocmonitor.com.cn), but there’s currently no word on if or when it will launch…