Sunday, 9 October 2011

Hardware Review: Acer HN274H 3D Monitor

Another one of my Digital Foundry pieces. Here we have a comprehensive look one of the few 3D monitors out there that supports the HDMI 1.4 spec, while possibly having the potential to double up as a reasonable HDTV replacement.

Acer's unforgetably titled HN274H takes the form of a substantial 27-inch desktop display with a range of HDMI 1.4 compatible inputs and it also offers full support for both NVIDIA and AMD's 3D systems, meaning stereoscopic gaming up to 1080p60 - a format PS3 and its HDMI 1.4 compliance can't match. On top of that, if your PC graphics card is powerful enough, there's nothing to stop you running games at 1080p at 120FPS in 2D either - a very cool, eerily smooth experience we recommend you try out if you can.

With this all-formats support, the HN274H is a unique all-in-one product and the price isn't bad either: the display can be picked up for around £480 - not bad for a piece of hardware that supports all major stereoscopic 3D gaming systems, and happily works with other HDMI-based devices like 3D set-top boxes and Blu-ray players.

Click through for the full article here...

Formula 1 2011 (Digital Foundry - Face-Off)

With F1 2011 Codemasters continues to refine the solid foundations laid down by last year's game. The handling mechanics have been improved, crafting an experience which is even more authentic than before, while the AI has been refreshed to ensure that seasoned veterans receive a strong challenge. The changes aren't particularly drastic but they do have a positive impact on the game: F1 2011 is easier to play for the casual fan whilst containing plenty of depth under the hood for those who go looking.

F1 2011's graphical upgrades are also delivered with the same kind of subtlety: enhanced weather effects and a small increase in track-side detail bring about a more polished look to proceedings. The raw aesthetics seen in the previous title - giving the game a clean, almost clinical appearance - are left practically unchanged from an artistic perspective, and this is once again backed with a constrained use of lighting compared to other EGO engine games such as DiRT and GRID. To all intents and purposes the lighting scheme works well even if it lacks some of the shiny bloom effects which made Moto GP 10/11 such a pleasure to look at.

Click through for the full article here...