The more over-the-top an image that a product requires, the less valuable it seems to me

I could be completely wrong, but I'm always suspicious when I hear the Monster Truck Announcer Voice or That Announcer Guy from the Movies in a radio spot (or booth babes pitching a technology product at a convention). So when I see a network card initially priced @ $279 and a website that's a glitz and Flash to promote... a NIC, even a Killer NIC, I get suspicious. Maybe I'm just a caveman from one of those horrible car insurance commercials and maybe I only play online games through my Xbox (which doesn't seem to have a user-serviceable NIC anyway), but... A network card that has more RAM and processing power than all of the first five computers that I owned combined?! Who needs that? Kids these days, I tell ya'. Don't get me started on walking to school uphill in the snow, either. The horror!

Seriously, though. How much "poor gaming performance" is due to my local network latency or packet processing overhead by comparison with how much is crappy rendering software in the game, screw-ups down the ISP's cable that I have no control of or overloaded servers hosting the game at the cheapskate game publisher's NOC? For that much scratch, I could almost buy my wife and kids their own 360 and never have to share again! Heh.

What do YOU think? Kewl n00b hardware – or – scam? Is there a difference?

Comments (4)

  1. SpoonsJTD says:

    I don’t know the Windows OS architecture well enough to know how a PCI card can allow the OS to offload the ‘network stack’ like it claims, but I could see this being useful for people with slightly dated hardware trying to keep up without replacing their motherboard (and then CPU and graphics card as a result), although the savings I would think would be minimal. I do agree, though, that so much of your game latency is out of your PC’s control, that I don’t see how this would provide a major boost for rigs that are already close to max’d.

    Seriously, game rigs are to the current and next higher generation what hot rods were to past generations. This seems more like a bragging rights product than a really significant performance booster.

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