Apple is prepping the long-awaited return of the Mac Mini and MacBook Air, giving both computers their first major refresh in several years, according to a new report today.The ‘Mac Mini Pro’ could easily be the new name of the Mac Mini 2018 described by Bloomberg, citing anonymous sources. Expectations are for new storage and processor options, a first for the Mac Mini since October 2014.This may not be a routine update. Apple is said to be focusing on pro users, with the report specifically mentioning how the Mac Mini has been popular among app developers, those running home media centers, and server farm managers.The company still sells the four-year-old Mac Mini for $499 (£479, AU$749) without a keyboard, mouse, or screen. That has made the small desktop computer affordable, even with powerful internal specs (at the time of the computer’s launch).Of course, to the surprise of absolutely no one, the cutting-edge Mac Mini Pro is said to be more expensive than the versions that’s on sale right now.
MacBook Air time
Apple’s MacBook Air 2018, on the other hand, is targeting computer shoppers who are looking for an entry-level Mac deal. The rumors on this laptop has been consistent for months – Apple just needs to launch it.
It’s said to have a 13-inch screen with thinner bezels and a much-needed high resolution display, according to Bloomberg. The current MacBook Air (which has merely been getting year-to-year specs bumps ) is the last Apple laptop without a ‘Retina’ display and distracting viewing angles.The selling point here is almost certainly going to the price. The MacBook Air 2017, with its dated design currently costs $999 (£949, AU$1,499), and the better 12-inch MacBook starts at $1,299 (£1,249, AU$1,899). That’s a hard sell to schools and users looking for laptops on a budget.
Cheap MacBook deals curated by TechRadar
When will they launch?
Today’s report notes that the MacBook Mini Pro and MacBook Air 2018 could launch in October, which is typically when Apple reveals its iPad or computer lineup.
Apple is also expected to hold a press conference to launch the iPhone 9 and iPhone 11 in early September, theorized to be September 12. We could see the new Mac computers then, or maybe hints of them.
iOS 12 is expected at the early September launch event, while MacOS 10.4 Mojave could be the big software highlight for an October event.
When will the new iPhone launch? We’ve got a pretty good idea
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Dell has taken the opportunity of Gamescom 2018 in Cologne, Germany to announce fresher hardware options for the Alienware 15 and 17 laptops as well as new mainstream gaming monitors.Now, the Alienware 17 comes with the option to include a factory-overclocked Nvidia GeForce GTX 1080, whereas before that overclocking option was only available up to the 1070 model. Dell has also vastly expanded the storage options available to both laptops. In addition to offering far more single and dual storage configurations, Dell has introduced triple storage configurations for the laptops.Both the Alienware 15 and 17 can now be equipped with anything from a single, 256GB solid-state drive (SSD) in the SATA M.2 format to dual 1TB PCIe M.2 SSDs paired with a single 1TB hard drive spinning at 7,200 rpm for the brand-new triple storage option. Dell is also now offering a dual storage option including a 120GB Intel Optane drive paired with a 1TB spinning drive.Finally, both of these laptops have at last been updated with per-key keyboard backlighting. This means that each key on these laptops’ keyboards is individually backlit, meaning that Alienware FX lighting can be applied differently to each key.The company has yet to disclose pricing for these beefier, new hardware options, but they’re available starting August 21.
Meet the Dell 24 Gaming and 27 Gaming monitors.
New Dell Gaming monitors appear
Dell has also announced two new gaming monitors under its more mainstream Dell Gaming brand. They’re known respectively as simply the Dell 24 Gaming Monitor (S2419HGF) and Dell 27 Gaming Monitor (S2719DGF), and are aimed at audiences that are either new to PC gaming or simply not as hardcore about it as the Alienware crowd.Both available on August 28, the 24-inch version of the monitor goes for $319 (about £240, AU$427), offering an FHD (1,920 x 1,080) resolution and a 144Hz refresh rate. Meanwhile, the 27-incher calls for $549 (about £414, AU$735), putting up a QHD (2,560 x 1,440) resolution with a 155Hz refresh rate. Clearly, both screens are ideal for fast-paced types of games, particularly competitive gaming, with those refresh rates – and both screens use AMD FreeSync for tear reduction as well as sport a 1-millisecond response time.Players can use either monitor to store up to three preset screen modes for certain games, and both monitors contain USB ports for connecting peripherals through. While they lack the lighting features of Alienware monitors, this a fine way to save on a second screen if you just splurged on that overclocked GTX 1080 version of the Alienware 17.
These are the best gaming laptops we’ve tested this past year
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During its huge Gamescom 2018 showcase in Cologne, Germany, Nvidia has revealed its brand new line of graphics cards, the GeForce RTX 20 Series.Three new Nvidia GeForce graphics cards appeared on Nvidia’s own site complete with some amazing price tags just moments before CEO and founder Jen-sen Huang announced the new products on stage.Starting from the top, the GeForce RTX 2080 Ti is Nvidia’s new flagship graphics card that promises to deliver 10 Giga Rays of ray tracing performance and 78 trillion RTX-OPS, a new performance metric that tracks the card’s ray-tracing operations per second. Nvidia was light on specs, but we know it will feature 11GB of video RAM, most likely being GDDR6 as with the company’s Quadro RTX cards.Just below that is the GeForce RTX 2080 equipped with 8GB of video RAM to deliver 8 Giga Rays and 60 trillion RTX-OPS. Lastly, the GeForce RTX 2070 8GB enables 6 Giga Rays and 60T RTX-OPS.The prices for Nvidia’s new graphics cards as follow:
Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 Ti: $999 (about £753, AU$1,388)Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080: $699 (about £527, AU$936)Nvidia GeForce RTX 2070: $499 (about £376, AU$668)
However, while these prices were shown on stage during Nvidia’s press conference, they do not match those found on the Nvidia website at the time of writing. Online, prices are still listed at $1,199 for the RTX 2080 Ti, $799 for the RTX 2080 proper and $599 for the RTX 2070 model.We’re currently chalking this up to a bug, and expect to see Nvidia update its website shortly. That said, we recommend you don’t pre-order until this change is made, as the purchase website will gladly take your money even if the price is wrong.All of Nvidia’s new graphics cards will be available for pre-order starting today to arrive on September 20. Stay tuned for even more information and insights around the shiny, new RTX 20 Series.
These are the best processors we’ve tested to date
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The HP Omen Obelisk might look like just another pre-built gaming desktop, but it’s been designed from the ground up for PC builders.From support for multiple full-length graphics cards to standard Micro-ATX motherboards and power supplies, the HP Omen Obelisk is one of the most easily upgradable pre-built gaming PCs we’ve seen since the Lenovo Legion Y920 Tower.The Obelisk is one of HP’s most functional chassis designs yet, with extensive venting around all its sides. It also packs front-facing ports, magnetic dust covers and, of course, customizable RGB lighting for the front logo and optional tempered glass side panel.
More power the way you want it
Better yet, HP plans to let users configure their system however they want with both Intel Coffee Lake and AMD Ryzen 2nd Generation CPU options. The electronics firm has also partnered up with Hyper X to provide its pre-built systems with up to 64GB of DDR4-2666MHz memory.Unfortunately, the Obelisk doesn’t feature any of HP’s usual hot swappable storage bays, but this PC includes room for two 3.5-inch drives (adaptable for 2.5-inch drives) two m.2 storage devices. Lastly, you’ll find an Integrated mounting area for an 120mm fan or liquid-cooled radiator at the top of the case.Available later this September, HP Omen Obelisk models start at $879 (about £690, AU$1,200) with configurations that include an Intel Core i3-8100, Nvidia GTX 1050, 8GB of RAM and 1TB hard drive. Meanwhile, the top-end model kicks things up with an Intel Core i7-8700, Nvidia GeForce GTX 1070, double the RAM and an additional 256GB NVMe SSD for $1,549 (about £1,220, AU$2,120).HP has also announced a $199 (around £150, AU$280) price for its actively-cooled Mindframe gaming headset first announced in May. Scheduled to arrive in early October, the HP Mindframe headset utilizes a thermoelectric device to conduct heat away from the inside of the ear cup in a similar fashion to refrigerators and air conditioners.
Hopefully, the HP Omen Obelisk will also get new Nvidia Turing graphics cards
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