Back in August we announced our all new, combined Custom PC and bit-tech awards. While we get plenty of chances to test the latest hardware and games each month, we don’t often get to experience buying, using and maintaining the products as paying customers and so we decided to make the majority of our awards reader voted.
We moved away from giving awards to individual products and decided instead to focus on companies, reasoning that focussing on specific products would fragment people's verdicts, and make the likelihood of a convincing, reliably calculated winner in each category rarer. Asking about companies would also allow the awards voting to more easily factor in tangential, but still important considerations, such as pre- and post-sales support, quality of the manufacturer's website and how people feel about a firm's overall approach to the market. These types of considerations are important, but are difficult for us to factor into product reviews as they focus on a specific piece of kit.
Voting for companies also meant we could create an award to recognise the importance of Modding to both bit-tech and CPC, a category for retailers and one focussing on overclocking.
With the categories decided, we opened a survey and ran it on the site. Over two months, nearly four and a half thousand readers voted for their favourite hardware firms, retailers and game developers.
Left: Thanks to some sponsorship from Sapphire, we didn't have to host the awards at Bindi's house. Right: The awards were made from large slabs of aluminium.
There were eleven awards voted for by you, the readers:
Best Motherboard Manufacturer
Best Graphics Manufacturer
Best Memory Manufacturer
Best PSU Manufacturer
Best Chassis Manufacturer
Best PC & Laptop Manufacturer
Overclocking & Cooling Award
Best Modding Manufacturer
Best PC Game Developer
Best RMA & Service Award
There were also an additional three awards voted for by us, the editorial teams of bit-tech and CPC:
Dream PC Award.
Every year we challenge the world's leading professional PC builders to craft the most technologically advanced, innovative, eye-catching PCs they can. This award is given to the winner of the Dream PCs labs test.
Technical Innovation Award.
This is an award which recognises innovative thinking, interesting ideas and radical design – elements that really move PC technology forward.
Elite Hardware Award.
This award is simple and straightforward – it goes to the most desirable piece of hardware we’ve seen, the bit of kit that we’d be happiest taking home.
We held an awards evening in central London last month to hand out the awards, an event that was generously sponsored by Sapphire. Only one winner was revealed beforehand – the Dream PC award. It went to Scan for a third year running, thanks to its efforts with the astounding Jellyfish.
With only one award known before the night started, the atmosphere was tense as bit-tech editor Tim and CPC editor Alex took the stage to announce the winners...