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Solid PC mag
Member Name: dfisher
Advantages: Good reviews, too many adverts.
Disadvantages: Too few reviews, too wordy.
PCPRO as of 2005 is the largest selling PC Magazine in the country with over 100000 readers.
PCPRO comes in two versions,a CD edition at £3.99 and a DVD edition at £4.99
PCPRO contains columns written by professionals in the IT industry who comment and ponder on some of the latest news in the IT world. There are many different subjects covered from , home user, business user, Q&A section, Laptop sections, and application sections (comment on programs etc.)
Every edition comes with about 20-30 reviews on various bits of new technology from the latest desktops and laptops to the latest peripherals and software. Each is given a star rating out of five and a recommendation badge if it is a very good product. The reviews are very thorough looking at performance, reliability, design and value for money and the products are well tested by experts. Though PCPRO doesn't contain enough reviews. Others like Computer Shopper feature more up to date items and there are more things reviews on. The only other thing is that the same companies keep appearing in the reveiws and this can seem a bit biased, rarely is anything from a 'new' company not featured before reviewed - so you miss out on some content.
This is where for each edition of the magazine a certain sector is choosen. For example hard disks, or office suites, or computer monitors are examined in depth. Equivatlents from about ten or more companies are tested against each other and comments about features, perfomance and value for money are made. Then these products are graded with a five star system and then an overall winner is picked at the end of the labs piece. The reviews are very in depth but the labs sections seem repetitive. It always seem to be the same items being compared, rarely are computer speakers compared, keyboards, mice etc. It always seems to be HD and printers as well as gaming PCs.
A good cover disc that comes with many full products including utilites, office suites and graphic design items too. Most need internet registration to get a password but a lot of the software is up to date and well worth the £5 anyway. The DVD edition comes with a few more full programs than the CD edition and hence costs a £1 more.
There are so many! The annoying thing is that PCPRO's adverts are splatted across the whole magazine so you have to fish through to find the articles. On top of that, many adverts are printed on card and bound in the magazine making it harder to read. Also PCPRO comes with those irritating inserts that fall out as you read the thing.
A good solid magazine but it feels a bit stale against its competitors. There aren't a wide enough range of reviews from a wider range of companies and some of the columns by IT proffesionals are quite dull. The best part of the magazin eis the reviews and the DVD/CD but for an overall better and more entertaining magazine, I would go for Computer Shopper, which does the same but better.
Summary: Good solid performer if a little stale.