6 Best Gaming Earbuds Worth Buying (for Console, PC, and Mobile)

Just like over-the-ear headphones, gaming earbuds also have their advantages. Compared to headphones, earbuds are portable and more flexible. You can use carry and use them without the extra bulk or weight associated with hanging a headphone over your head/neck. Additionally, avid gamers who wear glasses might find headphones uncomfortable.

For context, the pressure exerted by headphones presses the glass frame against the ears. This hurts after long hours of gaming. Earbuds are also relatively cheaper than headphones.

best gaming earbuds

Best Gaming Earbuds on The Market

With the above benefits in mind, you should consider getting gaming earbuds. If you’re in search of the perfect earbuds for gaming on your PS4, Xbox, Nintendo Switch, or perhaps, PC, check some of the products listed in this guide.

You’d find their key specifications, unique features, pricing information, etc. Read on.

1. Turtle Beach Battle Buds

Best Gaming Earbuds

Design-wise, this gaming earbud from Turtle Beach —a 45-yeard old gaming accessory manufacturer— is a stunner. The Battle Buds is available in two color variants (Black and White) and boasts of a unique design which, as a gamer, you’d absolutely love.

Each earbud is triangularly-shaped and comes out-of-the-box with three pairs of (small, medium, and large) ear hooks. These ear hooks (also called Stabilizers) prevents accidental slip-out during usage by ensuring that the earbuds fit perfectly in your ears. In addition to the stabilizers, the earbuds also ship with three different pairs and sizes of ear tips. All these extra accessories are included to offer in-ear comfort and great audio output during short and long hours of gaming.

The Turtle Beach Battle Buds comes with an in-line control hub that features a microphone, mute button, and a volume adjustment slider. If the in-line mic doesn’t cut it, you can attach the removable high-sensitivity microphone that ships with earbuds. This picks up your voice better (than the in-line microphone) during group gameplay.

Moving to the sound quality, each bud features a 10-millimeter speaker that produces crystal clear audio. Turtle Beach says it produces ‘crisp highs’ and ‘thundering lows’ that’d suffice for your gaming (and music) needs. Users of this earbud also testify to how ‘clean’ and great the sound is.

Best Gaming Earbuds

Regarding compatibility and platform support, the Turtle Beach Battle Buds is compatible with table-top consoles (Playstation 4, Xbox, etc.), handheld consoles (Nintendo Switch), PC (Mac and Windows), and smartphones/tablets (Android and iOS).

Price and Availability

The Turtle Beach Battle Buds cost $29.95 on Amazon. For this price, you get the earbuds, 2 extra pairs of ear tips, 2 extra pairs of stabilizers, a removable microphone, and a carrying case/bag.

Other Key Features

  • Cord length: 2-feet
  • Weight: 3.84 ounces
  • Earbuds & Removable Mic Plug: 3.5 mm

Pros

  • Multi-platform compatibility
  • Great audio quality
  • Removable 3.5mm gaming microphone

Cons

  • No noise-cancellation support

2. MINDBEAST Super Bass

Best Gaming Earbuds

If you are on a shoelace budget but desire a decent gaming earbud, the MINDBEAST Super Bass is recommended. The earbuds cable is 5-feet long and coated in thick silvery-grey metal-color plastic that provides resistance against water and sweat. The shiny plastic coating also makes the earbuds more visually-appealing. Another thing to love about this earbud is the 3.5mm plug. It is coated in sturdy plastic that prevents the cable from bending and breaking.

Per audio quality, each earbud is fitted with a powerful driver that produces ultra-clear stereo sound. The drivers also feature a noise-isolation technology that helps to reduce ambient noise by about 90%.

With this, you get to enjoy distraction-free gaming each time you use the MINDBEAST Super Bass Earbuds. The extra pair of different-sized (small, medium, and large) silicon ear tips also ensure that the earbuds fit comfortably in your ears without slipping out.

When you purchase the MINDBEAST Super Bass earbuds, you get a compact and portable leather carrying case. And just like the earbuds, the carrying case is also waterproof and dirt-proof.

Price and Availability

As earlier mentioned, the MINDBEAST Super Bass is a low-price budget earbud that you can comfortably purchase without hurting your wallet. It is available for $18.99 on Amazon.

Other Key Features

  • Cord length: 5-feet
  • Compatibility/Platform Support: Playstation, Xbox, Nintendo, Mobile (iOS and Android)
  • Plug: 120-degree 3.5mm jack
  • Microphone: Built-in microphone with volume & voice control

Pros

  • Noise cancellation
  • Long cable
  • Leather carrying case
  • Affordable

Cons

  • No ear hooks

3. HyperX Cloud Gaming Earbuds

One thing we loved about the HyperX Cloud right off the bat is its uniquely-designed ear tips. The ear tips, which come in three different sizes (small, medium, and large), are made out of silicone and have their individual ear hook/stabilizer. This makes them fit comfortably and firmly in the ears during gameplay.

The rubberized cable is thick, flat, and has an in-line control hub that houses the microphone and multi-function button. The microphone picks up sounds (voices, footsteps, gunshots, etc.) decently during gameplay.

With the HyperX Cloud built-in microphone, you can be sure of clear communication with your team when playing Call of Duty on your PS4. The earbuds can also be used on the Xbox controller, Nintendo Switch, Mobile devices (Android & iOS), and PC. The branded leather-esque carrying case makes it easy to move the earbuds around without tangling the cable.

Price and Availability

The HyperX Cloud Gaming Earbuds retails for $39.99 and can be purchased from Amazon. For this price, what you get out-of-the-box include the HyperX Cloud earbuds, 2 extra pairs of patented silicone ear tips, and a carrying case.

Albeit a little pricey, this is definitely one of the best gaming earbuds money can buy you.

Other Key Features

  • Driver: Dynamic 14mm with neodymium magnets
  • Plug: 90-degree angled 3.5mm plug
  • Cable length: 4 feet

Pros

  • Portable carrying case
  • Unique and comfortable ear tips design

Cons

  • No noise cancellation

4. INSTEN Dual-Microphone Gaming Earbuds

Design-wise, this product is very much similar to the Turtle Beach Battle Buds (see #1 above) but a lot cheaper. The earbuds come with soft ear tips that are comfortable and gentle on the ears. Each bud have their individual (non-detachable) ear hook that holds the earbuds firmly in the ear during gaming. To accommodate different ear canal sizes, the INSTEN Dual-Mic Earbuds ships with 2 extra pairs of (medium and large) ear tips.

There’s an in-line control hub that consists of a microphone, a control button for media control, and a volume control slider. For enhanced voice reception and communication during gaming, you can attach the removable 4.5-inch flexible microphone to one of the buds. The audio is great as well; it emits decent bass and stereo sound. The INSTEN Dual-Microphone earbuds also boast of built-in Noise Cancellation which helps to eliminate background noise during gaming and music play.

Price and Availability

The INSTEN Dual-Microphone earbuds cost $11.79 on Amazon. It is compatible with gaming consoles (PS4, Nintendo Switch, and Xbox) and mobile devices (Android and iOS).

Note: You might have to use a Microsoft Adapter (not included in the box) to use the INSTEN Dual-Microphone earbuds with old Xbox One controllers.

Other Key Features

  • Colour variant: Black
  • Plug: 90° 3.5mm plug

Pros

  • Dual Microphone
  • Dedicated volume control

Cons

  • No carrying case

5. BlueFire Noise-Reduction Gaming Earbuds

Best gaming earbuds

This product from BlueFire is up there among the best gaming earbuds in the market. When you unbox this product, the first thing you are bound to notice is the extremely long cable. At 7-feet, you don’t have to worry about using the earbuds close to your console, TV, or controller. It even gets better; the ear tips are padded with ‘memory foam’ to prevent discomfort you might experience from long hours of gameplay.

The BlueFire earbuds feature directional drivers that produce a combination of decent treble and stereo bass. In addition, the built-in noise cancellation technology will help to block out background noise from your gaming keyboard, air conditioning unit, fan, etc. There’s also an extra detachable microphone that can rotate up to 120-degree when fixed to the earbuds. The microphone quality is really great and users have commended that it picks up vocals decently during gameplay and chats.

The BlueFire Noise-Reduction Gaming Earbuds can be used with a PS4 controller, Xbox, and Nintendo Switch. You can plug and use directly with your PC, smartphone, and tablet without any additional configuration.

Note: For old Xbox controllers and console, you might need to use an extra Microsoft Adapter (this isn’t included in the box).

Price and Availability

Best Gaming Earbuds

The BlueFire Noise-Reduction earbuds are available in three (3) colors options — Blue, Red, and Green. All variants cost $23.99 on Amazon and ship with 3 pairs of different-sized ear tips (small, medium, and large), a 3.5mm audio extension/splitter, a detachable microphone, a storage bag, and a user manual.

Pros

  • Noise Cancellation Support
  • Carrying case
  • Memory Foam Earbuds
  • Lengthy cable

Con

  • The mic doesn’t have noise cancellation; might pick up background noises

6. Wohzoek Gaming Earbuds

This is no different from other products in this guide. Despite sporting a sturdy (read: rugged) design, the Wohzoek Gaming Earbuds is lightweight (weighs only 21.2 grams) and comfortable on the ear. Although the earbuds lack active noise cancellation mechanism, the ear hooks indirectly help to significantly reduce background noise by ensuring the earbuds reach deep into your ears and don’t fall out during usage.

There are two microphones on the Wohzoek Gaming Earbuds. One is on the left in-line earbud while the other is detachable — it can be rotated and adjusted up to 360° so it picks up your voice clearly during gaming. And when the detachable microphone isn’t in use, you can store it in the leather wallet-like carrying case. The cables of the earbuds are braided to prevent them from getting tangled, particularly when stored in your pocket.

The Wohzoek Gaming Earbuds is compatible with Playstation, Xbox, Nintendo Switch, PC, and mobile phones.

Price and Availability

The Wohzoek Gaming Earbuds is available for $22.99 on Amazon. One downside that’s worth mentioning, however, is that there’s only one variant (Red) of the product.

Pros

  • Leather storage bag
  • Lengthy cable (4 feet)

Cons

  • No volume adjustment buttons/slider

Buying Gaming Earbuds: Things You Should Know

When shopping for a gaming earbud, what exactly are some of the vital things you should be on the lookout for? What are the features you should pay attention to the most? We highlight some of them below.

1. Cable Length and Quality

The best gaming earbuds out there have either rubberized cables or braided cables made out of fabric/cloth-like material. From personal experience, braided cables are more durable and less likely to get tangled, bend, or get damaged. Therefore, you should gravitate towards products with braided/fabric cables when shopping for gaming earbuds. However, it it worth noting that, price-wise, braided cables might cost more than regular rubber-coated earbuds. The price difference is usually by a dollar or two and often trivial.

2. Controller/Device Support

This is another important feature you should put into consideration before clicking that buy/checkout button or swiping that credit card. Check that the gaming earbud you’re paying for supports the console(s) or device(s) you intend to use it on.

Although the products on this page will work with the major table-top consoles (PlayStation, Xbox) and handheld consoles (e.g. Nintendo Switch), there are gaming earbuds that work selectively with certain types and versions of consoles. With that in mind, confirm that the earbuds will work with your gaming console/controllers.

3. Number of Microphones

It is advised that you purchase gaming earbuds with a dual microphone setup. These types of earbuds usually have an in-line microphone and a removable microphone. A combination of these two microphones on your earbuds will ensure clarity of vocals during gaming.

Two microphones are better than one, right?

4. Dedicated Volume Controller

You’d enjoy gaming better if your earbuds have a dedicated volume adjustment button, knob, or slider for the speakers. Some gaming earbuds even have dedicated volume and mute buttons for their microphones.

5. Accessories

Finally, you should look out for the accessories that ship with the product before making payment. The best gaming earbuds out there typically come with extra ear tips of different sizes (small, medium, and large) and ear hooks. Keeping your gaming earbuds in your pocket or bag will cause the cable to get tangled and consequently result to damage in the long run. This is why you should buy products that ship with a carrying case or storage bag out-of-the-box. Some earbuds come with extra ear tips, ear hooks, and extension cables or splitters.

Conclusion

Ultimately, you should take your time to explore the products in this guide and carefully examine which of the earbuds check all your boxes and offers the features you need. One thing we promise, however, is that the earbuds on this list are worth their money and will provide value.

Do let us know if you have any questions (use the comments section). We’d be more than happy to help.

The post 6 Best Gaming Earbuds Worth Buying (for Console, PC, and Mobile) appeared first on AddictiveTips.

How to get line numbers in Notepad on Windows 10

Text editors are apps that can be simple, or they can be complex. In fact, some text editors add so many features that they cease to be text editors and transcend to a higher app level. 

At its core, a text editor will accept text and allow you to save a file in various formats e.g. BAT, AHK, PS1, HTML, CSS, SRT, etc. There are all sorts of features that you can add on top of this to make entering, and editing text easier such as syntax highlighting, line numbers, auto-close tags, etc.

Notepad is the stock text editor on Windows 10 and its best feature is that it is a light, no-nonsense app that offers users a distraction free interface. The app opens quickly, can handle loads of text, and can save a file in any format

Line numbers in Notepad on Windows 10

Line numbers are a feature you’ll find in quite a few text editors and all code editors. They’re helpful and not just when you’re writing code. Sadly, Notepad doesn’t show line numbers along the side like a code editor or an advanced text editor normally would. 

To view line numbers in Notepad, follow these steps.

  1. Open a Notepad file.
  2. Go to View and select Status Bar.
  3. Enter text and move the cursor to the line you want to find the number for.
  4. Look at the bottom in the status bar and you will see the line number.

Other text editors

The Notepad line numbers aren’t the greatest since you have to click a line to find the number for it. Having line numbers appear along the side is really what most users prefer and Notepad doesn’t have that. 

There are other text editors though that you can use. We’re going to recommend two excellent apps. We will be ignoring apps like Notepad++ which, while excellent, is far too advanced to be called a simple text editor.

1. Metapad

Metapad is free, and has a terminal-like interface. It is as simple as a text editor can get with line numbers along the side. Because it so much like a terminal, you’re not going to be distracted by ugly icons or a poor UI design that’s stuck in the Windows 98 days. 

You can customize the background color of the app which means instead of a bright, blinding white background, you can get something that’s much easier on the eyes.

2. Brackets

Brackets sits snuggly on the fine line that differentiates simple text editors from advanced ones. The UI is great but you can change it so that you get nothing more than a simple, distraction-free window to work in. It has line numbers, and tons of other great features like a debugger, extension support, line selection, and a lot more.

It isn’t as light as Notepad or Metapad but it’s not heavy. During installation, it asks to be added to the PATH variable making it all the easier to use.

Conclusion

We’ve neglected quite a few popular text editors like Micro, SciTE, and Programmer’s Notepad. These apps aren’t bad but their UI is either cluttered or still following old design, or they tend to run heavy on a system. You’re free to check them out though and use whatever works for you.

The post How to get line numbers in Notepad on Windows 10 appeared first on AddictiveTips.

5 Best Raspberry Pi Alternatives to Run Linux On – buying guide

The Raspberry Pi is the star of the Linux micro-computer scene, and while it’s a great product, it’s not the only small computer you can buy to play around with Linux on. In this list, we’ll go over some excellent Raspberry Pi alternatives that you can run Linux on.

Make sure you have an SD card

Before we go over some great Raspberry Pi alternatives, it’s important to discuss SD cards. SD cards are very important, and you’ll likely need to purchase one alongside one of the devices on this list.

While it is true that some devices we cover in this article have built-in internal storage, you’ll still need an SD card. Why? Many of these devices use SD cards for booting and other essential tasks.

For best results, try grabbing one of the following SD cards below.

Best Raspberry Pi Alternatives for Linux

We’ve done our research so that you don’t have to, so here are the best Raspberry Pi alternatives Linux users have.

1. ODROID XU4

If you’re not satisfied with the Raspberry Pi, but still require something with excellent performance, the next best thing is the Odroid Xu4. It’s an impressive single-board ARM PC that has some excellent specs, such as an 8 core 2Ghz CPU (Samsung Exynos5422 Cortex-A15  and Cortex-A7),  built-in eMMC 5.0 storage, 2 GBs of RAM, Gigabit Ethernet, dedicated USB 3.0 ports, and more!

With Raspberry Pi alternatives, nobody does it better than Odroid. Out of all the micro-computers competing with the Pi, Odroid delivers a decent Linux community, and as a result, you’ll find support for a wide variety of Linux operating systems like Lakka, LibreELEC, Ubuntu, Debian, and more.

While using the ODROID XU4 we found that we could run many different Linux operating systems on the device, and run them well with little to no fuss. What fuss we found was fixable thanks to the excellent Odroid community.

Pros

  • Has a large community of users like the Raspberry Pi and users will easily be able to find a support network and technical support.
  • Loads of mainstream ARM Linux OSes support Odroid, including RetroPie, LibreELEC, Lakka, etc.

Cons

  • The built-in CPU cooler may be a bit too loud.

2. Libre Computer Board

The Raspberry Pi ushered in micro-computers into the Linux community. Ever since that happened, people have been buying the Pi to use it for everything from TV set-top boxes, to homebrew video game consoles, and much more. However, the Pi is not fully open. It has some hardware that is considered “closed-source.”

If you’re a huge fan of the RPi, but care about open hardware, consider checking out the Libre Computer Board instead. All development of the Libre Computer Board is transparent, and the project contributes their code upstream to Linux. Under the hood, it’s a competitive piece of hardware with impressive specs such as a Quad 64-bit 1.4GHz ARM Cortex-A53 Processor, Micro SD support,  a 4K Ultra HD ARM Mali-450 GPU, 2 GBs DDR4 RAM, USB 3.0, and gigabit ethernet.

The Libre Computer Board has decent support for most ARM Linux operating systems out there and it can run everything from Debian to Ubuntu Bionic, and even Retropie. However, be warned that these operating systems need to be custom configured by the manufacturers so compatibility is limited.

Pros

  • Fully open-source, and developers regularly contribute their work upstream to various Linux projects.
  • Has various custom-built OS images available for use.

Cons

  • Mainstream ARM oses might not work on the device if the manufacturer chooses not to support it.

3. EleDuino BeagleBone Black

The EleDuino BeagleBone Black is a small single-board computer much like the Raspberry Pi. However, unlike the Raspberry Pi, it is not targeted at school children and hobbyists. Instead, the EleDuino BeagleBone Black is a development and programming board, but many hobbyists have found excellent use with it.

Under the hood, the EleDuino BeagleBone Black is very impressive. By default, EleDuino BeagleBone Black comes with Debian Linux. It has 4 GB onboard eMMC flash storage, an ARM Cortex-A8 core operating at up to 1GHz, support for serial interfaces, GB ethernet, a USB host for development, and much more.

There’s no question that the Raspberry Pi line of devices has inspired ARM development and programming projects. That said, the Raspberry Pi is more targeted at hobbyists, and school children. If you’re a programmer, do yourself a favor and check out the EleDuino BeagleBone Black instead.

Pros

  • Comes with Debian Linux out of the box.
  • Ideal for developers and even has a USB host port for development purposes.

Cons

  • Some might find the 1 GHz CPU is not powerful enough.

4. Orange Pi Lite

There are many Raspberry Pi “clones” on the market. These clones often capitalize on the fact that the Raspberry Pi is popular and well-known. Orange Pi Lite is one of those clones, but that’s not a bad thing. As it turns out, Orange Pi Lite is actually an incredibly impressive alternative to the Raspberry Pi for those on a budget.

Orange Pi Lite is budget-friendly. And while the Raspberry Pi 4 is 35$ USD, this device packs in some pleasant features for the price. These features include 512 MBs of DDR 3 ram, a Quad Core 1.2GHz Cortex-A7 CPU, ARM Mali, dedicated WiFi, USB 2.0 support, and full HDMI support.

While running the Orange Pi Lite we found that it runs best with Armbian (Raspbian). The official Orange Pi Lite OS images did not work, and the developer’s state in the documentation that users should only use Armbian.

Pros

  • Incredibly pricing for what you get.
  • Dedicated WiFi antenna.

Cons

  • Only supports 512 MB of RAM.

5. ODROID HC2

Many users turn to Raspberry Pi to create an affordable file server. It’s easy to see why this is a popular use for the Pi, as it is much more efficient than building a dedicated server. However, the Pi platform is not the only good micro-computer that users can turn into a server. Introducing the ODROID HC2, a dedicated micro-computer that you can use to create an inexpensive file server.

The Odroid HC2’s specifications make it adequate for a Linux server. It has a 2 GHz Exynos 5000 CPU, a Mali-T628 MP6, and 2GBs of RAM. And while those specifications are excellent, that’s not why the Odroid HC2 is worth checking out. Instead, the reason that this device deserves your attention is one key feature: the dedicated SATA port.

This means no more plugging in external USB hard drives to make your file storage solution work. Just plug in your favorite 2.5-inch SATA hard drive and go!

Pros

  • Has a dedicated SATA port and users can connect their favorite 2.5-inch drive for super-fast storage.
  • Very small form factor despite the case it comes in.

Cons

  • Odroid does not discuss the device much on its website and users may need to turn to forums to find out what OS is best.

Conclusion

In this list, we covered some of the best Raspberry Pi alternatives available to run Linux on. However, as micro-computing is getting bigger and bigger each day, more alternatives pop up all the time. So, what is your favorite Raspberry Pi alternative to use? Let us know in the comment section below!

The post 5 Best Raspberry Pi Alternatives to Run Linux On – buying guide appeared first on AddictiveTips.

6 Best Gaming Projectors (Reviews) in 2021 – Buying Guide

You’re on the right page if you need some help buying your first gaming projector. Or perhaps, you’re looking to replace an old or damaged projector that doesn’t provide the ultimate gaming experience you desire. Be you a casual gamer who does it for fun, or a professional playing for sport, the products in this guide are some of the best gaming projectors money can buy you.

Best Gaming Projectors On The Market

Before we proceed, we’d like to make sure you will check out the section at the bottom of this page. We’ve included a basic buying guide on gaming projectsors that’ll further inform your decision and explain some technical terms. Now let’s get to it.

1. Optoma HD39HDR Gaming Projector

Best projector gaming

Design-wise, this looks like the everyday projector. But in terms of gaming performance, low input lag, quick response time, and extensive connectivity options are at the top-selling features of the Optoma HD39HDR projector.

This is a Standard throw projector that supports 4K gaming and rated to operate at a decibel level of 26dB. For context, it produces an almost-soundless whisper that’s ignorable during gameplay — be rest assured that this will not, in any way, interfere with the audio produced by the projector’s built-in 10-Watt speaker. For more submerged audio experience, you can hook the Optomo HD39HDR to your gaming headphones or soundbar via the HDMI or 3.5mm audio outputs.

Segueing to the more important features, the Optoma HD39HDR boasts of 4,000 Lumens of brightness that guarantees amazing picture and video quality. Want a projector that you can use for gaming and movies during the day without having to close window blinds or curtains? This model of the Optoma HD39HDR would serve your needs. In addition to top-quality visuals, you also get blistering refresh rate (120Hz) and impressive response time (8.4ms) for lightning-fast gaming.

You can toggle the projector between Bright, Eco, or Dynamic modes to finetune your gaming experience. Eco Mode consumes less power and provides longer lamp life — up to 10,000 hours at an average daily usage rate of 4 hours. In Dynamic mode, the lamp can be used for up to 15,000 hours. These figures translate to durability and longevity; you won’t be needing a new projector in at least 5-6 years. There’s a dedicated button for switching the projector’s mode on the full-size remote that ships with the device.

Price and Availability

best projector gaming

Optoma is a top player in the projector industry, and they manufacture some of the best projectors in the market. The Optoma HD38HDR 4K projector is a great example. As expected, you’d have to shell out top dollar for a top-quality product, right? The device is quite pricey but definitely packs features that justify its $799 selling price.

Other Key Features

  • Brightness: 4,000 ANSI Lumens
  • Native Resolution: 1080p (1920 x 1080)
  • Maximum Resolution: 4K (3840 x 2160)
  • Input Lag: 32ms
  • Throw Distance: 10.5–13.9 feet
  • Contrast ratio: 50, 000: 1
  • Weight: 7.7 lbs
  • Ports: 2 x HDMI (1.4a & 2.0), 2 x 3.5 mm ports (Audio in & Audio out), 2 x VGA (In & Out), 1 x USB, 1 x RS232, 1 x AC power port, 1 x Kensington lock

Pros

  • 4K Support
  • Supports 3D content
  • Extensive connectivity options
  • High brightness and contrast ratio

Cons

  • Quite pricey

2. BenQ TK800M 4K Gaming Projector

Best Gaming Projector

This is another high-end 4K-compatible projector that will serve your gaming needs. At 3,000 Lumens, gaming during the day with this projector shouldn’t be a problem, even in a moderately lit or illuminated room. The BenQ TK800M has an input lag of 42 milliseconds (42ms) which is a decent input lag for a gaming projector.

The BenQ TK800M boasts of a glossy teal-colored front covering. Used in a tabletop style, this would add some aesthetic touch to your home entertainment or gaming center. The grill on the front houses the projector’s 5-watt power built-in speaker. Sound quality is great, plus you’d also get reasonable bass production — don’t get your hopes too high, though. For a fully immersive and surround sound experience, you can connect the BenQ TK800M to a sound system.

There’s a diverse collection of ports for sending and receiving both audio and video signals. Asides gaming consoles, you can also project content from your streaming sticks, laptop, TV box, smartphone, digital camera, and other compatible devices. The device’s 15,000: 1 contrast ratio means you can expect impressive image quality (deeper blacks and brighter whites) when gaming or watching videos.

Price and Availability

Support for 4K gaming is one of the highlight features of the BenQ TK800M. And its for the same reason (plus other advanced gaming features) that the projector costs $1,199 (on Amazon). Both gamers and non-gamers have commended the picture quality, brightness level, and other features. So yeah, this is a gaming projector that’s worth its price.

Other Key Features

  • Brightness: 3,000 ANSI Lumens
  • Native Resolution: 1080p (1920 x 1080)
  • Maximum Resolution: 4K (4096 x 2160)
  • Input Lag: 42ms
  • Throw Distance: 15 feet
  • Contrast ratio: 10, 000: 1
  • Weight: 9.2 lbs
  • Ports: 2 x HDMI, 2 x 3.5 mm ports (Audio in & Audio out), 1 x VGA (In & Out), 1 x USB 2.0 Type-A, 1 x RS232, 1 x AC power port.

Pros

  • 4K Support
  • Decent Input Lag
  • Impressive design
  • Remote control support

Cons

  • A little heavy and produces a humming noise during usage. It’s nothing your headphones or sound system won’t block out, though.

3. ViewSonic PX700HD Projector

Best projector for gaming

This is the best projector for gaming to buy if you have a $450 – $500 budget. It’s way cheaper than the above-mentioned products but you’d miss out on futuristic features like 4K support. The built-in 2W speaker, although decent, might not produce loud and optimal audio output sufficient to fill a small room. This wouldn’t be a problem if you’d be gaming with headphones or a soundbar.

On the bright side, however, the ViewSonic PX700HD still manages to pack diverse connectivity options coupled with an impressive contrast ratio and brightness rating.

This projector’s lamp projects images and videos at 3,500 Lumens. If used in SuperEco mode, the ViewSonic PX700HD lamp can last up to 15,000 hours of usage without a decline in brightness quality. Sport Mode, on the other hand, enhances image and color quality to provide detailed viewing experience when watching your favorite football or baseball team play. There’s a remote control in the box for switching between display modes, adjusting volume, navigating the projector’s menu, among other things.

For gaming, expect lag-free performance the ViewSonic PX700HD; its input latency measure 16ms. For a <$500 gaming projector, this ultra-low input lag is pretty remarkable. There’s 3D compatibility for both gaming and video content, so you can step your gameplay up a notch. This projector also takes advantage of a unique SuperColor technology to offer cinema-quality visuals in any environment.

Price and Availability

You’d find the ViewSonic PX700HD projector on Amazon for $449 via this link. About 75% of buyers have rated the product 5-Stars, with many greatly commending the picture quality, input latency, and ambient light performance.

Other Key Features

  • Brightness: 3,500 Lumens
  • Native Resolution: Full HD (1920 x 1080)
  • Input Lag: 16ms
  • Throw Distance: 4.2 – 46.9 ft
  • Contrast ratio: 12,000:1
  • Weight: 7.94 lbs
  • Connectivity: 2 x HDMI, 2 x Audio (In & Out) ports, 1 x VGA, 1 x USB Type A, 1 x Mini-USB (Type-B), 1 x RS232, 1 x Monitor out, 1 x Kensingtion lock

Pros

  • Low input lag.
  • Numerous connectivity options.
  • High lumen count and contrast ratio.

Cons

  • No 4K support.

4. Optoma UHD50X 4K Projector

The UHD50X 4K Projector is one of Optoma’s flagship projector, and equally one of the best in the market for gaming.

Being a top-of-the-line product, you get the best features designed to smoothen your gaming experience. It banks on a Dynamic Black technology to add depth to images, thereby achieving a massive 500,000:1 aspect ratio. With the Optoma UHD50X, you’re getting nothing short of brilliant image quality and distinct colors. Mind you, this is a “Standard Throw” project with an optimum distance of 10.5–13.9 feet. This makes it suitable for use in large spaces as well as home/offices with enough room space. For small rooms, ensure that the projector is at least 10 feet away from the wall/screen for optimum image picture quality.

Similarly, the 3,400 Lumen brightness rating also makes it perfect for both indoor and outdoor usage. Response time for the UHD50X when gaming at High Definition (HD) is 16 milliseconds. You’d enjoy improved visual quality for 4K content but input lag will snowball to 26ms —  a brilliant response time for 4K gaming nonetheless.

The projector’s lamp is expected to provide up to 15,000 hours of operation if used averagely for 2 hours daily. At this rate, you wouldn’t be needing a replacement projector in 10 years or more. You’ll find all the required connectivity options necessary for audio and video input (or output) on board.

Price and Availability

The Optoma UHD50X is an all-round projector. It possesses features that make it suitable for home entertainment, gaming, and even office usage. For  $1,599, the product is a good buy. You can check availability details on the Optoma UDH50X Amazon page.

Other Key Features

  • Brightness: 3,400 Lumens
  • Native Resolution: Full HD (1920 x 1080) and 4K UHD
  • Input Lag: 16ms (26ms for 4K)
  • Throw Distance: 10.5–13.9 feet
  • Contrast ratio: 500,000:1
  • Weight: 11.13 lbs
  • Connectivity: 2 x HDMI (v1.4a & v2.0), 2 x 3.5mm Audio (In & Out) ports, 1 x VGA, 1 x USB Type A, 1 x Mini-USB (Type-B), 1 x RS-232C, 1 x S/PDIF.

Pros

  • Brilliant contrast ratio.
  • 4K Support.
  • Low input lag / Fast response time.

Cons

  • At 11.13 pounds, the Optoma UHD50X is large and bulky. It’s the heaviest projector on this list.

5. Sony HW45ES Projector

Renowned to be the best manufacturer of gaming consoles, you can expect to experience an absolutely impressive performance from this Sony projector.

First off, the design is fascinating; it’s something you’d love right off the bat. The projector almost looks like a console, and partly, a giant smart home camera. Overall, the aesthetic and form factor are visually appealing. If there was a Grammy or Oscars for projectors, the Sony HW45ES would be a strong contender for the ‘Best-designed gaming projector.’

The lamp is flanked on both sides by two front-facing fan grills for balanced heat dissipation during usage. The position of the fan exhausts also optimizes the projector for maximum throw distance. The lamp’s brightness maxes out at 1,800 Lumens and is rated to provide up to 6,000 hours of screen time. There are nine (9) picture calibration modes on the Sony HW45ES to allow users personalize their experience.

For optimal gaming performance, use the dedicated Game Mode. Other pre-set calibration modes include Two Cinema Film, Cinema Digital, Reference, TV, Phone mode, Bright Cinema, and Bright TV mode.

Best projector for gaming

One downside, however, is the lack of flexible connectivity/input options. All you get is one USB input, one 3.5mm headphone jack, a remote RS-232C, and two(2) HDMI inputs. Basically, the modern connectivity input options.

Price and Availability

Sony’s products are synonymous with expensive, and understandably so. Purchasing the Sony HW45ES will set you back by about $2,000 (see prices on Amazon). It offers a combination of crisp Full-HD image quality and fast response rate for an amazing gaming experience.

Other Key Features

  • Brightness: 1,800 Lumens
  • Native Resolution: Full HD (1920 x 1080)
  • Input Lag: 22ms
  • Throw Distance: 6.2 —29.7 Feet
  • Contrast ratio: 60,000:1
  • Weight: 20 lbs
  • Connectivity: 2 x HDMI, 1 x 3.5mm Audio, 1 x USB (Type-A), 1 x RS-232C.

Pros

  • Great design.
  • 3D Support.
  • Quiet operation (22db level).

Cons

  • Limited connectivity options.

6. LG CineBeam HU70LA 4K Projector

The LG CineBeam HU70LA 4K Projector is a much cheaper and better alternative to the Sony HW45ES. It is powered by LG’s native webOS smart operating system with streaming apps like Netflix and Amazon Prime built-in. As a cherry on top, the LG ThinQ AI technology also lets you navigate the projector via voice control. More specifically, you get both the Google Assistant and Alexa virtual assistants at your disposal.

The combination of TruMotion video processor and Wheel-less LED technology helps to prevent ‘Rainbow Effect’ (also known as Color Breakup) and LCD discoloration by making animations and colors appear fluid, deeper, and ‘original’. Maximum projection size and brightness level are pegged at 150-inch and 1,500 Lumens respectively.

For gaming, the LG CineBeam HU70LA projector performs averagely. With input lag ranging between 40-50ms, this isn’t the projector for heavy gamers and gaming aficionados. However, it offers a perfect balance for people who occasionally juggle between movie streaming and light gaming.

There are multiple input and output ports on the rear for wired connections; there are a USB Type-C port and a LAN port for ethernet connection. If you’d rather go cordless, you can pair your devices to the projector via Bluetooth or the webOS’ Wireless Content Share technology. Wi-Fi connection is also supported.

Price and Availability

Not only is this projector suitable for gaming, but it is also feature-packed enough to replace your TV as a stand-alone entertainment system. If you’re thinking of shelling top-dollar on a new smart TV, the LG CineBeam HU70LA projector can suffice as a reasonable replacement. You can purchase the projector on Amazon for $1,799.

Best Projector for gaming

Other Key Features

  • Brightness: 1,500 ANSI Lumens
  • Native Resolution: 4K UHD (3840 x 2160)
  • Speaker: 3W + 3W Built-in Stereo speakers
  • Lamp Life: 30,000 hours
  • Input Lag: 40 — 50 ms
  • Throw Distance: 8.9 –11.2 feet
  • Contrast ratio: 150,000:1
  • Weight: 7.1 lbs
  • Ports: 2 x HDMI 2.0, 2 x USB 2.0, 1 x USB Type-C (Display, Power : 5V/1A Out), 1 x RJ45, 1 x 3.5mm Audio out, 1 x Kensington lock

Pros

  • Compact and lightweight design.
  • Built-in Virtual Assistant.
  • Flexible (wired and wireless) connectivity options.
  • 4K support.
  • Built-in streaming apps.

Cons

  • No 3D support.

Buying a Gaming Projector: Major Touchstones

So, now that you know some of the best gaming projectors to buy, what exactly are the major specifications to look out for before making a purchase? We highlight some of them below.

1. Input Lag and Response Time

Although these two terms are (wrongly) used interchangeably, they mean entirely different things. For starters, input lag simply refers to the time it takes your projector to display the signal received from the connected console or other devices. Response time, on the other hand, is used to describe the time taken by a projector to switch pixel colors, say for red to blue, blue to green, etc.

Both metrics are measured in milliseconds (ms) and are generally used to assess the speed and performance of a gaming projector. The lower the input lag and response time, the better the gaming performance. Therefore, when you’re faced with multiple options, you should consider the product with the lowest input lag/response time.

An input lag range of 40 – 50ms is considered decent and acceptable. With projectors that sport an input lag of 25ms or below, expect nothing but ultra-smooth and lag-free experience during competitive gaming.

2. Brightness Level

This is another important criterion to factor into your gaming projector search. A projector’s brightness level is measured in Lumen. A projector’s picture quality and accuracy, to a great extent, depends on the lighting conditions of the usage environment. If you’d mostly be gaming in the dark or a poorly-lit room, a 500 – 800 Lumens-rated projector should suffice. For rooms with a lot of refractory ambient light, a projector with a minimum Lumens rating of 1,500 is recommended.

3. Contrast Ratio

Be it your favorite FPS game or soccer, you want a projector that displays characters in vibrant, crisp, and true colors. Whites should appear as whites and blacks should just be as distinct. That’s where aspect ratio comes in. This simply highlights the level of distinction between light and dark colors on the screen. For context, an 8,000:1 aspect ratio means that white color on the projector is 8,000 times brighter than black. The higher the contrast ratio, the better.

4. Resolution

Whatever you do, don’t buy a projector with a resolution lower than HD (or 1080p) — for gaming, that is. Full HD projectors provide an incredible level of detail required for optimum gaming and cinema-like movie experience. There are also 4K-capable projectors that offer even greater picture quality, but they are generally more expensive.

5. Connectivity

Finally, ensure you also carefully peruse the available connection options. A gaming projector should have multiple and versatile input and output ports. Wireless connectivity is also a plus. You never know what you might need to hook up to the projector. The more the merrier.

Conclusion

And there it is; the basic guide to buying a gaming projector. The projectors in this guide have been carefully examined and selected. These projectors possess an ideal combination of the above-mentioned features. They are some of the best gaming projectors (from trusted and reliable brands) available in the market. Do let us know if you have any questions, queries, or suggestions.

The post 6 Best Gaming Projectors (Reviews) in 2021 – Buying Guide appeared first on AddictiveTips.

5 Best Retro Gaming Controllers That Work on Linux (2021 Buying Guide)

If you love playing retro video games on your Linux PC, stop using that Xbox controller! Modern controllers are great, but they make you forget how older games were meant to be played. Instead, check out some of the controllers on our list of retro gaming controllers that work on Linux!

Something to keep in mind

All of the retro controllers we cover on this list support Linux officially. However, just because a gaming controller has support for Linux, that does not mean that the controls will be automatically detected in emulators when you plug them in. Keep in mind that you may need to go through emulation settings to manually configure a controller before you can enjoy your games!

If you don’t like programming controllers on Linux, check out Retroarch. They do a good job of automatically detecting gamepads. For more information on Retroarch and how to get it working on Linux, click here.

Best Retro Gaming Controllers for Linux

Without further ado, these are the five best controllers with a retro vibe that will work great on Linux.

1. 2.4 GHz Wireless USB SNES Controller

Are you a lover of Super Nintendo? Do you emulate SNES games on Linux with programs like Retroarch or Snes9x? If so, the 2.4 GHz Wireless USB SNES Controller is perfect for you. It’s a wireless SNES controller that runs on Linux.

The controller is powered by a 2.4 GHz wireless dongle, so there’s no need to fiddle with Bluetooth pairing. Besides its impressive wireless features, you’ll be happy to know that the 2.4 GHz Wireless USB SNES Controller has a built-in battery that is rechargeable, and lasts up to 3 years.

The 2.4 GHz Wireless USB SNES Controller comes in a 2 pack. Each controller has a dedicated USB dongle, and in our testing, we confirmed that it works excellent on Recalbox OS, Lakka, RetroPie, and traditional desktop Linux operating systems such as Ubuntu, Debian, and others

Pros

  • Comes in a 2 pack. No need to purchase multiples for multiplayer support.
  • Controllers are wireless, and each comes with their own dedicated connection dongles so no need to fuss with Bluetooth.

Cons

  • Controllers are rechargeable, but the battery is not replaceable.

2. 2-Pack USB Controller for NES Games

The original NES changed the world with innovative video games that nobody has ever seen before. These days, we can emulate those video games on Linux with ease. The trouble is, most people emulating these NES games use modern controllers, such as an Xbox One controller or a PS4 controller.

If you’re a diehard NES gamer on Linux and you’re trying to find the perfect controller to use, check out the 2 Pack USB Controller for NES Games. They’re excellent quality NES controllers for Linux, Mac, and Windows. They’re USB-powered, and look identical to the classic Nintendo ones.

While using the 2 Pack USB Controller for NES Games on Linux, we found that they worked excellent on Linux retro gaming OSes such as Recalbox, RetroPie, and Lakka. It also works great with no issues on traditional desktop Linux in apps like Retroarch.

Pros

  • Looks identical to the old official NES controllers.
  • Comes in a 2 pack so no need to purchase multiples for multiplayer.

Cons

  • The cable is only 4 ft long, which might not be enough slack for some gamers.

3. Innex Retro Link Classic Console USB Controllers Atari

Before Nintendo, there was Atari, and Atari was king of gaming. Looking back at the early 70s and mid-80s, they were releasing dozens of excellent video games. As time has passed, Atari is little more than a shell of what it once was. All of the classic Atari games can still be emulated on modern operating systems like Linux.

If you love Atari video games and you play them on your Linux PC, stop trying to play them with your Xbox controller! Instead, check out the Innex Retro Link Classic. It’s a modern Atari-like joystick. It comes with a quality joystick and a programmable button that will work with all of your Atari gaming needs. Best of all, it works in modern Atari emulators on both Raspberry Pi retro gaming OSes like RetroPie and traditional desktop Linux OSes like Debian.

While using the Innex Retro Link Classic, we found that it worked pretty well on many Linux retro gaming setups. That said, the official description of the device does not describe Linux, so it depends on the OS.

Pros

  • Looks identical to the old Atari joysticks.
  • Has a lengthy USB cable of 6 ft ensures comfort while gaming.

Cons

  • Joystick only has one functional button meaning it may not work in Atari emulators that support joysticks with multiple buttons.

4. Classic N64 USB Controller

The Nintendo 64 was one of the first gaming consoles to use 3D graphics, and the games on it were instant classics. Games like The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time and Super Mario 64 (to name a few) are still talked about and played today! The trouble is, Nintendo 64 has long been retired. Those that want to enjoy the classic N64 games must emulate them.

With emulation, none is more tricky than the N64. The reason? The controller is so unique, that it just doesn’t feel right on anything other than a classic 64 controller.  If you’re trying to enjoy N64 games on your Linux PC, put down that Xbox or PlayStation controller and trade it for the Classic N64 USB Controller!

The Classic N64 USB Controller is identical to the Nintendo 64 controller of old, with one key difference. Rather than having the proprietary Nintendo hookup on the end of the cord, it has a USB input. While using the Classic N64 USB Controller, we found that it runs great on a myriad of Linux operating systems, like Ubuntu, Debian, Arch Linux, and even Raspberry Pi retro OSes like Recalbox, Lakka, and RetroPie.

Pros

  • Identical button layout and craftsmanship to the original Nintendo 64 controllers.
  • The cable is 6 Ft long, a nice length for gaming.

Cons

  • The expansion bay on the back of the controller is for looks only and does not support Nintendo 64 expansions.

5. Retro-Bit Official Sega Genesis USB Controller

If you grew up playing Sega as a kid, you’ll be happy to know that you can relive the experience on your Linux PC with the help of the Retro-Bit Official Sega Genesis USB Controller. It’s an identical USB replica of the Sega Genesis controllers of old, complete with all of the buttons.

The Retro-Bit Official Sega Genesis USB Controller is an excellent device to pick up if you’re missing Sonic the Hedgehog, Golden Axe, or other classics. Best of all, the Retro-Bit Official Sega Genesis USB Controller is plug-n-play, so it’ll work on any Linux device you own with zero issues.

In our testing with the Retro-Bit Official Sega Genesis USB Controller, we found that it worked pretty well on Raspberry Pi retro operating systems (Lakka, Recalbox, RetroPie), and Ubuntu, Debian, and other Linux desktops.

Pros

  • 10 Ft cable for maximum length and cord slack while playing.
  • Is compatible with Linux as well as the Nintendo Switch.
  • Has left/right shoulder buttons for extra configuration.

Cons

  • Only comes with one controller, so you may have to purchase 2 for multiplayer games.

Conclusion

In this list, we discussed some of the very best retro controllers that will work on Linux. But there are a whole lot of other retro controllers on the market today compatible with Linux.

So, what is your favorite retro controller to use on Linux? Let us know in the comments below!

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