Thursday, November 14, 2013

Console Competitive PC Build ~$500

There's a lot of people out there who don't want or need a next generation console.  I made this build guide to specifically be competitive in price and performance to the new consoles so that you won't be missing out on none of the gaming goodness.  Perfect for the person on a budget, trying out PC gaming, student, and entry-level PC gamer.  Check out the video and enjoy.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Nvidia ShadowPlay (crushes Fraps)

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Linux Vs Windows Gaming (benchmarks)

Here are some benchmarks comparing Windows 8 to Linux Mint 15 (Ubuntu derivative).  I fully expect Steam OS to perform similarly to these results.  This is my hardware, so your results will vary but should scale according to the components that you use.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

[Tutorial] How To Import LastPass Passwords Into KeePassX ~ Web Upd8: Ubuntu / Linux blog

With privacy becoming a public issue not only from "hackers" but also from the government being able to access much of information without much oversight, some have opted to use cloud services less and less.  LastPass, a very good password management system that integrates with your web browser is one that I've thought a lot about lately.  If you don't know what LastPass is, it's basically an online password manager that will store your usernames and passwords when you allow it.  Then when you have to login to a web site again, it can automatically fill in those fields and even auto log you in if you choose.  A time saver and a life saver for those of us who have many passwords and actually use unique passwords to help secure our data and information.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

[Tutorial] Install Genesis Emulator To 64 Bit Ubuntu (13.04)

After searching for awhile I quickly found that there isn't very many 64 bit emulators for Linux and even less specifically for the Sega Genesis. The problem isn't that I need 64 bit to satisfy my PC superiority complex but that in Linux, the 32 bit versions don't seem to work on the 64 bit distributions.  I did manage to find one though by the name of dGen. Problem with dGen is that it's command line only. Who in the world makes a program that displays graphics based on the command line? In any case I found a frontend GUI that works great even though it's very dated. Below are the step by steps and a video to hopefully help you out. Keep in mind that I wrote these as if you were using the Ubuntu 13.04 desktop. This will work for any Linux distribution if you change the steps to fit your desktop situation. There's a video tutorial with the same material that's covered in this write up.  It's all the way at the bottom of this page if you prefer the video.  If you need further help please feel free to leave a comment and I'll see what I can do.

[Tutorial] Live Stream To Twitch TV With Ubuntu Linux (video)

A couple of people from Twitter and YouTube asked me to do a video on how to stream to after viewing a video I posted of a recent live stream.  Here is that video to follow up the written tutorial I also did.  The written instructions can be found here.  I suggest that you use video in conjunction with the written portion to follow along.  Should make it a little easier.  I noticed after going back and reading it and watching the video that neither one is very well done.  If something doesn't make sense to you feel free to leave a comment and I will try to help you the best I can.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

[Build] Entry Level Gaming PC (Less Than $500)

Antec VSK-3000
Want to try out PC gaming for the first time?  Or build a PC gaming tower for a family member who's on a budget?  Here's a build that comes in at under $500 and not only today's games but can be used for homework, web browsing, and watching 1080p movies.  At this price point don't expect it to do high speed video rendering or break benchmark records but it gets the job done.

This build does not include the peripherals such as mouse or keyboard.  Or does it include the monitor and operating system.  To keep the price at a minimum, this is where you have to become creative and thrifty.  A good idea is to try to find these from an old computer that no one is using anymore.  Or you can get one from a friend who has an extra lying around.  Also shop your local classifieds such as here in the U.S.  Local thrift stores like Goodwill Computer Works will often have parts and accessories for dirt cheap prices too.  Remember that the license for Windows can be reused from your old PC.  Ubuntu is an alternative to Windows that you can choose to use.  But keep in mind that although the game library for Ubuntu (Linux) is steadily growing, there are many games that are not compatible.

Monday, September 9, 2013

Record or Stream Desktop & Games (Ubuntu 13.04)

In my adventure to get desktop recording and live streaming working under Linux I have come across some great resources and information around the interwebs. This is an attempt to compile and present what I think is the best and easiest methods of doing these tasks at the time of this post. The instructions I give are specifically for Ubuntu but could work if you know how to follow these steps in your distro.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

[Software] Handbrake

Ever tried to play a video and you got an error saying this file type isn't supported?  Or you need to edit video in Vegas or Premier but it wouldn't recognize it?  What about transferring your movies to your iPhone or Android in a way that it can actually read it?  Then you should check out Handbrake.

Handbrake is a very powerful tool for doing video conversion.  It's also fast, easy to use, and doesn't contain a bunch of fluff to convince you that it has more features then it needs.  The presets make using this app dead simple.  It will also backup your DVD's or Blu-Rays giving you the option to select the chapters and audio tracks.  There are many more features available that I have no idea how to use but I'm sure is useful to someone a lot smarter then me.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

[Tutorial] Minimize All Windows Except One

This is a trick that can be very useful that you may not know about.  In the video I will show you how to minimize all windows but the one you're focused on.  Very simple and easy, but useful.

Monday, September 2, 2013

[News] AMD Releases the first 5ghz CPU

Newegg has the newest and first CPU that clocks to 5ghz from AMD.  I know its advertised at 4.7 Ghz but it will turbo to 5Ghz when its under load.  Not official 5Ghz but close enough for those looking for bragging rights.  The FX-9590 is available on Newegg for the hard to swallow price of $850!  This is definitely not a win for AMD.  All I can say is AMD keep trying.

[Hardware] The "You Dont Need No Console" Gaming PC ~$500

I swear the number one common misconception about PC gaming is that it's too expensive.  It's no more expensive then console gaming and I'll show you.  For those who propose the argument that you still need to buy the monitor and other peripherals, I say on consoles you still need to buy controllers, headsets, and whatever else you feel enhances your game play.  Not to mention online subscription fees (laughs at the idea).

I'm not a fanboy of any platform or corporation because why should I be when I know they only see my as profit.  I enjoy what I feel is best for me and that's it.  I guess this makes me my own fanboy!  Check out the video and I'll show you that you can build a gaming rig for the cost of a next generation console and you make your own decision.

[Opinion] Xbox Cloud Is NOT Magical

I keep coming across information on the internet about how this new founded Xbox cloud is supposed to be so great.  I'm not sure why people think that the cloud is supposed to change the face gaming but to each his own.  Check out the video and listen to me rant about this for a while.

[Opinion] Why I'm Not Buying A Next Gen Console

These are my views on why I don't want or need a next generation console.

Sunday, June 2, 2013

[News] Used Games Aren't To Blame For All The Video Game Industry's Problems

I've said for a long time that the used game market is just the easy target for the industry to blame so they don't have to own up to their bad business practices (not to mention piracy).

Read the Kotaku article for their opinion.
Used Games Aren't To Blame For All The Video Game Industry's Problems:

'via Blog this'

[News] Hirai: PS4 is first and foremost a video game console | Games industry news | MCV

With the debacle that was the Xbox One release, Sony has taken it's chance to troll Microsoft and promote themselves at every chance they could get.  Just check their Twitter feed the day of the Xbox One for some good examples.  Looks like CEO Kaz Hirai played on consumer fears that the Xbox will have to many features that get in the way of gaming by reaffirming the fact that the Playstation 4 will be "first and foremost a video game console."

Click Below To Read Full Article:
Hirai: PS4 is first and foremost a video game console | Games industry news | MCV:

'via Blog this'

Friday, May 31, 2013

Violent Video Games

Saying violence in video games causes real life violence is a lot like saying porn on the internet has caused more babies.  It's completely stupid and ignorant argument at best.  With this Presidential administration spouting out complete nonsense towards video games and the many unfortunate incidents involving kids and guns, you would think that video games would suffer.  That doesn't seem to be the case though.  Matter of fact the exact opposite seems to be happening.  The video game industry has been stomping on the movie industry for awhile now.  This has put the same target on their backs as the movie industry had had during the days of the 80's action movies.

I personally grew up on video games with the Atari 2600 being my first console.  We also had a computer in the house since I can remember.  I know everyone is different but I've spent a good part of my life in front of games and not once have I had the want or the need to commit any sort of violent act because of video games.  The violence we are experiencing these days can attributed to a larger societal problem.  But if you do your research, the United States and humans in general have always been deeply entrenched in violence.  And guess what.  Video games have not always been around.  Case closed.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

[Opinion] Rift Going F2P and Why I Like PC Gaming

In this video I talk about Rift going free-to-play and why I like PC gaming for the possible upcoming console refugee.

Monday, May 27, 2013

Xbox One and Broadband Internet

Microsoft recently announced that they would requiring that their newly unveiled Xbox One will have to be connected to the internet.  I know that they danced around the details about what that actually meant and they said that you would not have to be connected to the internet.  But at the end of the day, you will have to be connected to play games according to The Verge.  This among other things has caused a huge uproar in the gaming community.  My personal thoughts are that it is okay to have to be connected to the internet to get those really shiny features but completely ridiculous to make the consumer have to be connected.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

[Tutorial] Deus Ex: The Barret Boss Battle

Deus Ex: Human Revolution basically coaches you into playing a covert and stealth type of game play then drops these in your face gun boss fights on you. Really caught me off guard my first time so hopefully this video helps someone else out on the Barret boss fight.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

[Hardware] May 2013 Gaming PC Build Guide ~$1000

The May 2013 gaming PC build by yours truly.  Keep in mind that this is a "custom" build.  Which means that it should fit your wants and needs.  Feel free to switch, mix, and match as needed.  If you have any questions, drop them in the comments section.

[Software] Convert Your MP4 Videos To MP3 Audio

Do you have downloaded YouTube video or videos in MP4 format that you just want the audio from?  This app is an easy to use must have app.  Its called "Convert MP4 to MP3".  A simple name for a simple application and it does exactly as the name details.

As you can see from the screenshot below, Convert MP4 to MP3 is layed out very simply.  No reason to have to hover over a bunch of buttons or reading instructions trying to figure out how to do the exact task the app says it does.  I highly recommend this app if you download videos online which more then likely are in a MP4 format.  Works great for music videos, video podcasts, or whatever else you can think of.

This app is completely free and free of tag along apps that auto install to your computer.  Go download this app at Convert MP4 to MP3.

The New PC vs Console Debate

PC vs Consoles.  Anyone that plays video games has heard this debate or argued it themselves at least once.  I'm not here to rehash this debate but think that you should look at it from a different perspective.  The line between computers and consoles becomes more and more blurred.  I personally believe that the new consoles reported to be released by the end of this year will be little more then purpose built computers. More or less exactly the same as the one you surf the internet and do your homework on, but with a more narrow focus of what it actually does in mind.

The introduction of the Steam Box not only blurs the line between console and computer but will bridge the two.  Essentially a computer that's dressed like a console.  Steam could make a huge splash in the living room gaming market with the right moves and really change the landscape of couch potato gaming.

With all these options that are not very different at all, I think the choice to the consumer will now be more about brands choice, the ecosystem where your friends play, and the platform that offers you the most features that you want.

For more in depth reading and the inspiration for this article go to PCWorld: "What the 'console-ification' of PCs means for gamers".

Thursday, January 17, 2013

[News] PC Gaming From Your Couch

Playing PC games from your couch isn't a new idea.  It's been done and done again.  But doing it usually requires some really awkward setup that in my opinion turns out to be really uncomfortable compared to just sitting at your desk.  A company named Nerdytec is here to solve that with a very interesting product, the Couchmaster.  If nothing else they are nerdy for calling it the Couchmaster.

At first thought of a product that will so called allow you to game from your couch, I thought gimmicky.  But after a closer look this thing is really a good idea.  Basically this thing acts a workstation that sits on your couch.  You'll be able to sit your keyboard, mouse, and some extra peripherals.  It will fit on virtually any sofa, couch, or love seat.  You could also use this on a regular single person chair also.  You just ditch the provided arm rest included and sit the main board on the arms of your living room chair.

The Couchmaster also provides some very excellent cable management too.  Once you have it put all together, the whole setup looks really clean.  All the wires are routed through Couchmaster and its internal cable space.  It reminds me of those office desks where you drop all the wires down through those round holes on the top then run them down to the actual computer.

The Couchmaster is a bit on the bulky side when used with the side pieces.  From look at the pictures it appears to take up at least another person worth of space on your couch.  I'm guessing this would be great if your living in swaggy bachelor pad or whatever situation where sitting room isn't as important.  But I can't see this being as useful in the family setting though.  I'm sure the wife wouldn't appreciate being told to go sit somewhere else while your Couchmaster is sitting in her spot.  Your call.

It has a MSRP of 159 euros or about 212 U.S. dollars.  Do keep in mind that the site appears to based in Europe, so I don't know how this will affect shipping times to the U.S.  Go check these guys out Nerdytec.

From the Nerdytec Site:
This handmade system of fine imitation leather will give you the most convinient way to control your pc directly from your couch.  The Couchmaster is a perfect support equipment for long gaming sessions or for ergonomic working on your living room TV.  Due of the big support cushions your forearms are supported optimally. The integrated USB 3.0 hub provides connections for up to 4 input devices (eg mouse, keyboard, headset, etc..).  The latest chip technology makes it also possible to operate the
entire system without extra power.  The delivered 5m active USB 3.0 cable connects the Couchmaster directly with your PC.  We tested a distance up to 10 meters!  (Possible by an additional 5m extension cable. Optionally available in our shop)
  • Integrated USB 3.0 Hub (max 900mA), no extra power needed, four ports
  • 5 meter active cable extension (expandable to 10 meter)
  • Ergonomic design made in germany
  • Universal use with different peripherals
  • Internal, practical cable management
  • Also ideal for the laptop use
  • Removable heel of hand  cushions
  • Practical mouse protecion pocket
  • Sidebag to store even more gaming tools
  • Plug and Play

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

[Hardware] January Gaming PC Build Guide ~$1000

Here's the January build guide.  I chose AMD for this build because after going through tons of websites, forums, and videos, I've come to the personal conclusion that side by side that you will not see a difference in gaming.  With that being said, that makes the AMD a very good bang for your buck buy.  Check the video out and leave your questions or comments below.

PCPartPicker part list
Price breakdown by merchant
  • CPU: AMD FX-8350 4.0GHz 8-Core Processor  ($189.99 @ NCIX US)
  • CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler  ($29.98 @ Amazon)
  • Motherboard: ASRock 970 Extreme3 ATX  AM3+ Motherboard  ($89.99 @ SuperBiiz)
  • Memory: Patriot Viper 3 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory  ($36.99 @ Newegg)
  • Storage: Seagate Barracuda 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive  ($64.99 @ NCIX US)
  • Storage: Samsung 840 Series 120GB 2.5" Solid State Disk  ($98.97 @ Amazon)
  • Video Card: MSI Radeon HD 7870 GHz Edition 2GB Video Card  ($244.99 @ SuperBiiz)
  • Case: Cooler Master HAF 912 ATX Mid Tower Case  ($51.52 @ NCIX US)
  • Power Supply: Corsair Builder 500W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V Power Supply  ($51.98 @ Newegg)
  • Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer  ($22.98 @ Newegg)
Total: $902.38

(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-01-16 10:55 EST-0500)

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

[News] Ethiopian Kids Hack Motorola Zooms

Taken from
When I first saw this story I was truly amazed by these kids and it showed the natural knowledge humans posses but probably don't use most of the time.  The story goes something like this.  There was a project called One Laptop Per Child.  They basically gave Motorola Zoom tablet PCs to Ethiopian kids.  These kids have no education and are illiterate.  To make things a little strange they delivered the Zooms in taped up boxes without any writing on them at all.  No person to explain these boxes either.  Within four minutes they opened the boxes.  Okay, I can give them the curiosity angle.  But get this, within five days they not only were using the devices but using nearly 50 applications each day per tablet.  Wow!  Now that sounds crazy considering these kids cannot read, write or speak English.  (The tablets displayed in the English language.)  Next the kids were singing the ABC song in English within two weeks.  If that doesn't amaze you enough, here's the absolute tastiest icing on the cake.  By month 5 of using the tablets, they had hacked the tablets sufficiently enough to enable the built-in cameras that were disabled by administrators.  If that's not impressive to you then nothing is.

Here in the United States we have a growing education problem, drop out rate, and disregard of learning in general.  But these kids not only succeeded in learning a language many Americans can't seem to master but taught it to themselves in a matter of months while at the same time digging into the insides of a unknown technology which is something that Ethiopia has zero of.  Moral of the story?  Us Americans have our work cut out for us if we plan to continue being a super power in the world.

Sources: [Hacker News] [Dvice]