Lots of tech changes this year (2015’s Tech Spec for comparison). As you know, Elise and I moved continents for our new home in Old Blighty’ and consequently we have overhauled our primary workstations with some shiny new hardware once we’d settled in. Sadly, some changes were as a result of tech breaking, and I replaced them under duress (dramatic, I know, but fuck you Focal and your shitty hinge design).
- Desktop PC: Custom Built (myself); NZXT H440 case, i5 6600K, 16gb 3200MHz DDR4, 750GB SSD + 4TB Hitachi HD, & RX480 8GB GFX card.
- Laptop: Lenovo Y510P; Intel i7-4700MQ 2,400MHz (3,295MHz with Turbo), SLI/2x Nvidia GT 755M, 16GB DDR3 RAM, & 500gb SSD [+Crucial MX200]
Thoughts; Basically, having the desktop PC is like being able to breath again. I cannot overstate how much having a proper rig has reduced my stress and improved my workflow.
- Desktop PC: Custom Built (myself); NZXT H440 case, i5 6600K, 16gb 3200MHz DDR4, 500GB SSD + 4TB Hitachi HD, & RX460 4GB GFX card.
- Laptop: Dell XPS 15; Intel i7-4712HQ 2,300MHz, Nvidia GT 750M, 16GB DDR RAM, & 500gb SSD [+Crucial MX200]
Thoughts; I went with basically the same rig as mine in terms of specs because who doesn’t want to be matchy-matchy? I did opt for the weaker RX460 because she isn’t going to do anything particularly graphic intensive. Frankly, her rig is ridiculously overpowered for what she does on it, but it’s worth it just to know that the answer is always, yes: it can handle it (whatever that may be).
- Cans: Beyderdynamic DT 990 Pro (Black Edition)
- Dac/Amp: Still the HRT Headstreamer.
Thoughts; My Focals suffered catastrophic failure (I will write about this in a separate article) and I replaced them with the Beyderdynamic DT 990 Pro (Black Edition). Extremely happy. Comfort is out of this world and the sound signature features a friendly V curve without being boomy. Super nice having open headphones once again. If you read this same section last year, you will know how happy I was the upgrade to the Focals. Oh how my dreams have been trampled. :( The Beyers however are an even better upgrade so whilst I lost the farm I did get a kingdom… or something to that effect.
- In Ear: Sony ear buds
Peripherals & Misc
- Mouse (for Desktop PC): Mionix Naos 3200
- Keyboard: Razer Deathstalker Keyboard
- Display: LG 34″ Ultrawide Display
- Mouse (for Laptop): HP x4500
- Cellphone: Moto X Play
- Camera: Olympus XZ-1
- e-Reader: Kindle Paperwhite
Thoughts; I don’t have a mechanical keyboard – the reason being that I have become so accustomed to typing on a Chiclet board that it’s hard for me to go back. My Mionix is still going strong. No real inclination to upgrade until it goes kaboom. We shall see though. On another note, 34″ ultrawide is the way to go people. I cannot imagine a world without such glorious screen real estate.
- Mouse (for Desktop PC): Logitech M500
- Keyboard: Logitech K120
- Display: Dell U2515H 25″ Display
- Mouse (for Laptop): Logitech G700s
- Cellphone: Moto E (2nd Generation)
- Camera: Canon 5D MK II, Canon EF 50 mm f/1.8 II, Canon EF 24 mm f/1.4 II
- Portable Camera: Sony A5000
Thoughts; Elise wanted a smaller screen and admittedly, hers is a very high quality one. Not much has changed for Elise besides the new tech for her new PC, with the exception of 1 new lens for the 5D mII. Horrifically expensive, but she tells me it’s worth it, and we did get it for a good price (second hand market is excellent here).
- Laptop: Lenovo X230
Thoughts; Super solid performer for miscellaneous business use. Really nice to have a backup that’s so meaty (i7, 16gb of ram and a Samsung 750 PRO SSD to boot) lying around.
Conclusion & Predictions
Well, new rigs for both of us means we are pretty much done with our tech. I reckon once we move again we will buy a whole new set up and keep the current PCs as our Bournemouth office computers. I definitely see a larger 38″ ultrawide monitor in my future. The workflow improvement is worth the upgrade in itself. 4 windows side by side? Yes please.
As for 2017, with the exception of possibly upgrading our phones, we don’t think we have much else to buy.
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