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Feature Articles
Top 100 Products of 2011
By Team HardwareZone - 30 Dec 2011,11:56pm

Picks 11-20


ASUS Eee Pad Transformer Prime

ASUS is one of the few companies that managed to distinguish its tablet offering from most other slates that have flooded the market in 2011. Its winning formula, lies with the ASUS Eee Pad Transformer Prime’s ability to link up with a separate keyboard dock to enhance its usability. Incidentally, the dock also acts as a secondary battery, thus extending the ASUS tablet’s overall mileage. While it is also the world’s first tablet to utilize NVIDIA’s latest quad-core Tegra 3 processor, the ASUS Eee Pad Transformer Prime is recognized due to its innovative approach to enhance the tablet form factor with its keyboard and battery dock.



What do you get when you combine two NVIDIA GeForce GTX 580 GPUs? The ASUS MARS II, a limited edition, single graphics card that basically smokes everything other graphics card in the market. Of course you would have to excuse the fact that it not only weighs a lot, but costs a lot (about S$2500). That's the price to pay for having the best graphics card money can buy.


ASUS Matrix GTX580 Platinum

The ASUS Matrix GTX 580 Platinum uses NVIDIA's fastest single GPU now, the GF110 found on its GeForce GTX 580 that comes with the full 512 CUDA cores of NVIDIA's Fermi GPU architecture. Inevitably, it's overclocked, but the main attraction isn't its clock speeds or even the huge triple-slot DirectCU II cooler onboard. The reason it's generating quite a lot of online buzz lies in a number of features that encourage serious tweaking while keeping the card working cooler than any other of its class. Factor in the icing of the card, like its design, bling and quiet operation, it's easily the most notable single GPU graphics card around for 2011.


ASUS PA246Q Monitor

The ASUS PA246Q deserves a spot in our Top 100 line-up with notable credit to its competent P-IPS panel, which covers 98% of the Adobe RGB color space. This is great for those who work with wide-gamut content. Apart from its dexterous joint, this 24-inch, factory-calibrated monitor also sports a 2-port USB hub which enables you to view content from external drives in a jiffy. Limited connectivity is a non-issue as well, given the professional monitor's generous HDMI, DVI-D, D-Sub and DisplayPort offerings.


ASUS Rampage IV Extreme

As a nod to the performance purist lineage embodied in the Sandy Bridge-E CPUs (i.e., the Intel Core i7-3960X processor), the ASUS Rampage IV Extreme motherboard has eight DIMM slots to take full advantage of the quad channel memory architecture of Intel's X79 chipset. The board also features the OC Key which is an exclusive piece of equipment that sits between your graphics card and display monitor. Using on-screen display (OSD) technology to control and monitor overclocking and basic BIOS matters, the OC Key attaches a transparent, graphical overlay on the original screen output and provides an informative menu for monitoring and overclocking purposes. The OC Key introduced on this board is one of the key differentiators among other OC-caliber motherboards that goes all out to make overclocking for enthusiasts easier to monitor and control on-the-fly.


Bowers & Wilkins Zeppelin Air

Bowers & Wilkins took the Zeppelin docking station, which we thought was as good as it gets, and made it even better in 2011. The new version, named the Bower & Wilkins Zeppelin Air, has a strong claim to be considered an entirely new product on its own as it comes equipped with AirPlay capabilities. This lets you stream music from your Apple device, such as the iPhone, to the docking station and enjoy audiophile quality sound.


Batman: Arkham City

The Dark Knight returns in the sequel to Batman: Arkham Asylum. This time, with a much more open-ended world, more side-quests and Riddler puzzles that extends your gameplay beyond the main story, Batman: Arkham City retains the same stealth and action gameplay that made its predecessor a hit amongst gamers. First released on the PlayStation 3 and Microsoft Xbox 360 consoles, Rocksteady Studios took a few more weeks for its PC version to showcase NVIDIA’s latest graphics capabilities through its PhysX enhancement and DirectX 11 tessellation support. Judging from the graphics enhancements, it was well worth the wait.


Battlefield 3

Battlefield 3 took the familiar setting of combat and strife, on which most first person shooters are based, and piled on a huge helping of realism to it. The game not only accurately captured the expanse and scale of war with vast, expansive maps but also brought gameplay that factored in vehicles, suppressive fire and squash dynamics. Battlefield 3 is your best chance of experiencing the front lines, minus the need to sign on to the army.


Beyerdynamic DTX 101 iE In-ear Monitors

With an unequaled treble and bass performance, it's of little wonder why Beyerdynamic's in-ear monitors has left the rest of the competition trailing in its wake. The DTX 101 iE also ensures a full-bodied vocal delivery which makes it one of the top of its class. Couple that with a comfortable fit and elegant styling, and you've got a winning combination that's worth every penny spent on this pair of dynamic transducers.


Canon EOS 600D

The Canon EOS 600D makes for an excellent mid-range DSLR for anyone looking to get into the Canon stable. While not a revolutionary camera, it's nevertheless a capable camera. It handles well, is fast and responsive, takes great pictures and HD video and has a gorgeous swivel LCD screen. Oh and it's also affordable for its capabilities.

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