PCWorld July 2019

We review the Google Pixel 4a, plus what to expect if you’re switching from an iPhone SE. Find out if your Chromebook is expiring. Reviews of Note 20 Ultra, Norton 360 Deluxe, Mullvad vs. NordVPN, and much more!

United States
R 111,71
R 319,14
12 Issues

in this issue

7 min
amd’s ryzen 9 3950x is a 16-core cpu aiming to topple intel’s gaming dominance

With the debut of AMD’s 16-core Ryzen 9 3950X, Intel’s slim lead in gaming CPUs could disappear. Announced recently by AMD CEO Lisa Su at her keynote at E3, the company also claims that its new stack of 7nm-based Ryzen 3000 chips are competitive with Intel’s higher-clocked CPUs in games, and dominant in multi-tasking chores. The big news, of course, was the long-awaited, much-whispered Ryzen 9 3950X. During her keynote, Su said the CPU, which will be available in September, features a boost clock of 4.7GHz with a base clock of 3.5GHz. The chip will sell for $749. Besides a massive cache of 72MB, not much else was said about the Ryzen 9 3950X. But its arrival means that AMD has fully fleshed out its lineup that will take on Intel’s 9th-gen…

5 min
amd’s new ryzen 3000 apus give budget gamers an affordable taste of radeon vega

If you’re on a Top Ramen diet, the last thing you’re probably jazzed for is AMD’s new $750 16-core Ryzen 9 3950X or its $450 Radeon 5700 XT graphics card. But AMD buried some good news for budget gamers among its massive CPU, GPU, and motherboard PCIe 4.0 announcement blitz at E3 2019: A pair of affordable new Ryzen 3000-series APUs. AMD’s APUs blend the company’s Ryzen processing cores with Radeon Vega graphics on a single ready-to-game chip. The Ryzen 3 3200G will feature a quad-core chip running with a 4GHz boost and 3.6GHz base speeds. For graphics, it will feature Radeon Vega 8 GPU cores running at 1,250MHz. The new APU will come with a Wraith Stealth cooler. Compared to the previous Ryzen 3 2200G, the newer Ryzen 3200G will run about…

4 min
next-gen xbox ‘project scarlett’ console packs ryzen, radeon navi, ssds, and ray-tracing

Six years after the infamously terrible reveal of the Xbox One, Microsoft has somewhat redeemed itself. At Microsoft’s E3 2019 press conference, Phil Spencer detailed the plans for its upcoming next-gen Xbox console, “Project Scarlett,” a traditional high-end box that will live alongside Microsoft’s “Project xCloud” streaming service. Project xCloud is due later this year, while you’ll need to wait until holiday 2020 for Scarlett, as expected. Let’s break it down. If you’re curious about the games revealed at Microsoft’s showcase, we split those out into a separate article, complete with trailers for all the major announcements. PROJECT SCARLETT NEXT-GEN XBOX “We believe a console should be for one thing: Gaming.” That was Phil Spencer as he started discussing the next-generation Xbox, a pointed change of direction for the company that wanted to…

2 min
nsa warns that ‘bluekeep’ vulnerability in windows xp and 7 is especially dangerous

The National Security Agency is warning users that a recent vulnerability affecting Windows 7 and Windows XP systems is potentially “wormable,” meaning that it could be exploited and weaponized by malware. Microsoft issued an alert in mid-May about a Remote Code Execution vulnerability, known as CVE-2019-0708, that can affect Windows 7, Windows XP, Windows 2003, Windows Server 2008 R2, and Windows Server 2008. Since then, the vulnerability has been nicknamed “BlueKeep.” Microsoft issued a BlueKeep patch for Windows 7, and another BlueKeep patch for Windows XP. Microsoft strongly urges users to patch affected systems. That’s because code designed to exploit the vulnerability could spread pre-authentication and without any user interaction. These are prime breeding conditions for a worm similar to the spread of WannaCry, Microsoft warned. WannaCry took down millions of computers…

4 min
we ran quake ii rtx on a geforce rtx 2080 ti card, and here’s how fast it was

You are now finally able to get Nvidia’s remastered Quake II RTX version for free. And if you’re wondering just how fast the game runs, we just found out in the oldest-school way possible. First, to catch you up, Nvidia has taken iD’s classic 1997-vintage shooter Quake II and lovingly updated it with a fully path-traced renderer. While you might dismiss that as “just another game with hybrid ray-tracing” support, this is much more than that. At this juncture of ray-tracing hardware performance, most games use ray tracing sparingly and combine it with traditional raster techniques. Nvidia’s Quake II RTX remaster, however, renders everything by physically tracing light rays to create the scene. Such an undertaking with a modern game’s complexity isn’t possible, but 1997’s Quake II puts it within reach. Nvidia gave…

3 min
google’s play-anywhere stadia game service gets a founder’s edition bundle, pricing, and more

Nearly a week before E3, Google, of all companies, kicked off festivities. On June 6, Google detailed its Stadia streaming service, or at least gave us more details after a relatively info-light reveal at March’s Game Developers Conference. It’s a bit complicated, though. Stadia Pro is the system everyone expected, a sort-of Netflix-for-games at $10 a month, with the top-tier technical package—4K, 60 frames per second streaming, and more—streamed seamlessly to any compatible device be it a laptop, desktop, Pixel 3 phone, or Chromecast. Google will curate a selection of games for Stadia Pro, similar to Microsoft’s Xbox Game Pass. And there were some great games Google mentioned in its presentation, including Destiny 2’s new Shadowkeep expansion—now with cross-platform save capabilities—and the long-awaited announcement of a Baldur’s Gate III. Ubisoft showed up…