Gaming at CES: We Have Arrived
Sal Thomas / Jan 8th, 2016 No Comments
If there’s one thing we learned about CES this year, it’s that gaming has arrived. No longer are gamers seen as the nerdy, slouchy couch potatoes of technology, and gaming industry booths are no longer relegated to a tiny corner in the back of the convention center. No, this year it became clear that gaming is the future, and the industry is at the forefront of technology.
eSports had a major presence at CES 2016, culminating in a live event directly from the show floor. Turner Sports and WME/IMG hosted the “Road to Vegas” CS:GO tournament final, with Optic Gaming winning $35,000 and an invitation to participate in the newly founded ELEAGUE.
In case you don’t quite understand the magnitude of this, you must know that Turner Sports is also featured on the little TV networks known as TBS and TNT — Inside the NBA was even broadcast live from CES this year. What that could mean for eSports is a fully distributed national television platform on which gaming will be seen. TBS plans to air live matches on 20 Friday nights in 2016. Could an exclusive gaming channel be next? One can dream, right?
Speaking of CS:GO, while I am not a pro (no where near it from seeing Optic Gaming and Lounge Gaming going at it), I did get to feel like a pro with the new mice I played with at CES. Both Logitech and SteelSeries announced new professional level mice that will be released soon. Logitech showed off the G502 Proteus Spectrum (something about the word Proteus makes me shiver in a good way), while SteelSeries brought the Rival 700. Each mouse looks and feels amazing (we’ll have more on them soon).
If professional gaming and crazy customizable mice aren’t enough to get you going, maybe Corsair’s offerings are more up your alley. Did you get the 110-in. Samsung 4K TV for Christmas? Yeah, neither did we, but maybe you got a smaller 55 or 60-in. 4K television. If you’re a gamer, you probably thought, “this is awesome, but I don’t have any games to play in 4K.” Corsair is delivering the ability to enjoy 4K gaming in the living room with the Bulldog and its Lapdog companion.
With the footprint of one and a half Xbox Ones, you can enjoy true 4K gaming at 60 fps, depending on how you configure the Bulldog. With the ability to choose graphics cards and other important features, this little guy can go from a puppy to a full-grown pitbull in a matter of minutes. With the Lapdog, you have a full command center on your lap with mouse and keyboard and the ability to use the built in USB hub if you want to use a console controller instead.
While we all love to look at pretty things, that is only half the equation. Everybody knows that good audio makes everything better. If audio is what you are looking for, then might we suggest what Mad Catz brought to CES. The Tritton Katana HD 7.1 Wireless Gaming Headset is not your ordinary gaming headset that does simulated 5.1 or 7.1 audio. The Tritton takes advantage of HDMI in order to give you true 7.1 uncompressed audio by pulling audio from an HDMI passthrough and transmitting it to the headset. If you have multiple consoles hooked up, you can grab an HDMI switcher and have one killer headset for all of your consoles or have everything plugged into your A/V receiver and then through the headset’s passthrough. I was thoroughly amazed at how these sounded.
Another big player in audio is Kingston. The HyperX line delivers some of the best gaming headsets available, but Kingston is on a mission to beat themselves with an even better headset. With the Revolver headset, Kingston handled all design aspects in house, and the quality from what I briefly saw has improved greatly. The 50mm drivers are pretty much standard, but they are angled to give you a wider sound stage. There will be two versions of the Revolver, one being a standard stereo version and the other featuring USB 7.1 Dolby.
CES: For the Gamers
This year at CES has truly shown us just how important gamers are in the tech industry. With that said, I want to take this time to thank all of you who come here and support us. Without you, we wouldn’t be here, so thank you. I would also like to send a special thank you to all the good people of these companies that have given us the opportunity to review the products that they work hard on. Without these companies working hard for us, who knows where our community would be.
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tags: ces , CES 2016 , Corsair Bulldog , Corsair Lapdog , Kingston Revolver , opinion