CES 2017: New Gaming Hardware Afoot

Steve Anderson : End Game
Steve Anderson
The Video Store Guy
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CES 2017: New Gaming Hardware Afoot

Hard to believe, I know, but the New Year's Eve champagne has just barely gotten warm and the hors d'oeuvres barely cooled before the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) could get started in earnest again. Already, plenty of exciting items have slipped out into the general consciousness, and some items have some exciting implications for the gamers out there. Let's have a look at some of the biggest news.

New Laptops

Laptops are an exciting blend of mobility and power; not as powerful as a desktop PC, certainly, and not as portable as a tablet or smartphone, this device splits the difference and offers mobility and muscle enough for most users' satisfaction. Acer brought out a potent new model, the Predator 21 X. Boasting Tobii eye tracking systems--we've heard a lot out of these guys over the years--as well as a pair of GeForce GTX 1080 graphic cards and an Intel Core i7-7820 processor, this beast will run $9,000 starting this February. Its claim to fame, meanwhile, is a 21-inch curved display. Dell, meanwhile, is bringing out four new laptops at various price points and levels of capability, all built around the new Kaby Lake processor from Intel.

New Displays

Laptops were just the start; there were also plenty of new displays to show off for the desktop gaming device. AMD brought out its new Radeon FreeSync 2, packing in the capability to adjust display on the fly, and showing the resolution that the app or device in question is best suited for. That means better image quality as the display doesn't have to show a suboptimal pixel count. Additionally, HP--who's been regularly seen courting gamers lately--offered up an impressive 35 inch curved display known as the Omen X. Selling for $1,300, it boasts a complete slate of HDMI and USB ports, along with a display port and a headphone hook for you to hang your headset following a gaming session.

New Control Schemes

Even control mechanisms got into the hunt, as exemplified by the 3dRudder system. A wireless foot-based controller, the 3dRudder system is geared toward working with virtual reality games, though it will also work with other kinds. It's not just left / right movement; it can also handle front and back movement, rotation, and even up and down movement, making it a complete wireless 360 degree controller. The wireless version will be out this summer and sell for $200, while a wired version is already out.

Naturally, that's just a start. CES is positively lousy with developments like this, and before it's all over there will doubtless be plenty more to consider. We often look at the software side of gaming, but we don't give much credence to the hardware. Gaming hardware is every bit as vital as software--you can't really have one without the other--and we're seeing some downright impressive pieces coming to the fore. That's great news for us gamers, who will have many exciting opportunities to come in gaming.

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