Tech of the Year: Gaming!

Hey guys, this is Austin! Welcome to tech of the year where we take a look at some of the coolest gear out there Kicking things off we have the Xbox one Elite controller

While there weren't exactly a ton of people complaining about the normal Xbox one controller, the Elite takes it up a notch by bringing customizability into the mix You can swap out the thumb sticks with three different options and that makes a surprisingly big difference There are also a pair of D-Pads: the standard option and a faster version which is better suited for things like fighting games Around back you can add up to four paddles, which can be remapped to nearly any button on the controller This is mostly useful for situations where you want to press a face button without taking your thumbs off the sticks

On top of that you can customize basically everything in software, including remapping buttons and even going as granular as adjusting the acceleration and actuation of the sticks and triggers Everything can be saved to a pair of profiles on the controller, you can switch between as well as save that on the Xbox for tons of other games On top of all the customizability the controller is really well built It feels premium The swappable parts all attach with starting magnets and everything you might need comes in a dope carrying case

Things feel a bit tighter than the standard controller and you can even flip up the stops for the triggers, which can be helpful for shooters Making things even better is that the Elite controller works on a PC too Which is really nice for games that are better designed for controller input It might be pricey, but this is easily one of the best controllers ever No wonder they're basically sold out everywhere

Something that's a bit easier to find is the new Nintendo 3DS XL While portable consoles aren't as popular as they used to be, no one told Nintendo and they released an updated version of the 3DS earlier this year It brings it solidly into 2015 with much improved 3D, which was always a bit of a weak spot on the original 3DS It uses face tracking this time to adjust the effect on the fly which works way better I basically let the 3D off on the earlier models but with the new 3DS it feels more natural and I get to appreciate the cool effects that I've been missing in games over the years

Speaking of, the game library has gotten really good on the 3DS There are a ton of fun titles like Super Smash that work way better than you would expect And classic handheld titles like Pokemon are right at home here In addition to Amiibo support, the new 3DS is also quite a bit faster than the last gen You'll notice it in menus along with some games like Smash are optimized to load much quicker

It might not be hugely exciting, but it's hard to argue that the new 3DS XL isn't one of the best handheld game consoles out there While NVIDIA has been making graphics cards for a long time and they've experimented with hardware like this Shield tablet, 2015 is a year they got serious with the Shield Android TV This is a hybrid set-top box and game console, but with a controller included in the box, it's basically ready to go It runs Android TV, which means you'll have a mix of games there are originally for Android, on with a few more intense titles that are designed specifically for the Shield You've also got streaming options with GeForce now, but the selection of games that run natively has improved a lot over the last few months and it keeps getting better

It's rocking some pretty powerful specs too, with an 8 core Tegra X1 processor and a smaller version of a desktop Geforce GPU Streaming boxes like the Apple TV have added games but there's really nothing that can touch the Shield, beyond something like an Xbox, Playstation or PC There's no doubt that the consoles are more powerful, but not only is the Shield smaller and quieter, but it does have a big advantage: 4K support There are quite a few video apps available including Googlecast and Android TV, along with the Tegra X1 make sure everything stays nice and smooth As gaming spreads to more and more devices, I really think Nvidia is onto something with the Shield

On top of my tech of the year gaming picks I also teamed up with my friend Marques from MKBHD, John from TLD and Jud from UrAvgConsumer to round up our favorite phones, tablets and headphones, which you should absolutely go check out Anyway guys, thank you so much for watching and I will catch you in the next one

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