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Christmas Special: The PC Technology of 2011

Welcome to the TechPowerUp 2011 PC technology Christmas special. We hope that you will enjoy reading it while tucking into your turkey, Christmas presents and a little too much wine... In this article, we go through the technology of 2011 that has had the most significance, the most impact and was generally the most talked about. It's not necessarily the best tech of 2011 which is the most significant though, since lemons can be just as significant as the ground-breakers in how they fail to deliver - and the backlash that goes with it.

January: Intel Sandy Bridge i5 & i7

Released on January 9th, the new Intel Core i5 & i7 processors were based on Intel's second generation Core architecture built on a 32 nm production process (HEXUS review). They included an IGP (Integrated Graphics Processor) physically on the same piece of silicon along with HyperThreading. These new dual and quad core processors soundly beat all previous generations of Intel processors in terms of processing performance, heat, power use, features and left AMD in the dust. Therefore, Intel badly needed some competition from AMD and unless you have been living under a rock, you will know how that turned out in October with the launch of Bulldozer. Sandy Bridge was a sound win and is generally considered to be the only architecture worth considering at this point. The i5-2500K is currently at the sweet spot of price/performance. It comes at a stock speed of 3.3 GHz, but typically overclocks to an amazing 4.5 - 5 GHz with a decent air cooler and without too much difficulty in getting there. Models in the budget i3 range were released at various times later. See this Wikipedia article for details.

Duke Nukem Forever Gets Second, More Promising, DLC Upgrade

Duke Nukem Forever Gets Second, More Promising DLC Upgrade

Yes, everyone's favourite game they like to hate has received its second dose of DLC goodness. The first one was a bit of a ho-hum looking Hail to the Icons Parody Pack, but this second one, The Doctor Who Cloned Me, looks more promising, as it includes a "full new single player campaign", it's set in Area 51 (you know, where all the aliens live) features an evil would-be world dominator (how original) Dr Proton, new weapon types, new enemy types, bosses, more achievements and new interactive items. It also includes four new multiplayer maps. In short, if you liked DNF, then you'll likely enjoy this expansion pack, which costs $9.99. Teaser video follows the jump.
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