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Zzozzach

First impressions

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Okay, so I found the February edition of PC & Tech Authority at my local Coles today and snapped it up. I had a quick browse through it after getting home and here are my first (very) brief impressions:

 

1. Where's the Atomic content hiding? The way David made it sound initially, the Atomic content would have its own dedicated section that was easily identified. Apart from the green label for 'Atomic Game Lab' there isn't anything else that I could see.

 

2. Ashton and Dan are still here! I easily spotted their mugs pictures on my first flip-through. w00t!

 

3. The 'Letters' page has a 'Top Site Comments' section. Will POTM also feature? It would be a great way to entice PC&TA readers to the visit the forums....maybe even join?

 

I'll comment further after I've had a better chance to read through things more thoroughly.

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Ooh, point form - handy!

 

1. We felt that having an Atomic 'section; would do the mag, and the content, a dis-service. A magazine needs good flow to work, so if we had two sections for news, two review sections... it just wouldn't work. So, instead, the Atomic content is organically spread around the magazine. All the news, including game and mod news, is up front, as are Ashton and Dan's columns. Game content is in the Labs section, as it's basically review content, along with Engine Room, as it seems the best spot for it. And Dan's IO is in our In Depth Computing section, because that just seems to make sense. WHat's more, there are things like cooler reviews, and other stuff, that wouldn't normally find their way into PC&TA, in the Labs section. All up, there's about 20 pages of 'Atomic' content.

 

2. They're essential parts of the Atomic mix. We've also still got Nathan Lawrence doing Engine Room, Luke Millanta will pop up with security stuff now and then, and I've got Zeb working on some serious Atomic-grade features over the next 12 months.

 

3. POTM, as you can tell, is bit of a work-in-progress at the moment. I'd like to get it back in the mag (and going again!), but the fit is a tough one.

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3. POTM, as you can tell, is bit of a work-in-progress at the moment. I'd like to get it back in the mag (and going again!), but the fit is a tough one.

Thought you'd forgotten!

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I think it'll be easier to just chalk up the last couple to a very BUSY BLOODY TIME, and start fresh this year :)

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Woohoo! I got my first of the new (improved?) sub today...just as well I didn't buy it in the newsagents yesterday! (Wasn't exactly sure when we would be getting our first of the blend).

 

Haven't gone too far into it...my main tech desire at the moment revolves around getting a new smartphone, so I skipped to that section, only to be disappointed in my first glance at the Nokia 920 review...

 

But anyway, I am looking forward to spending some quality time with the mag when circumstance permits

 

Overall am just stoked to see the/a mag live on!!!

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I think it'll be easier to just chalk up the last couple to a very BUSY BLOODY TIME, and start fresh this year :)

Rockin.

 

 

Still waiting for my sub copy to arrive, mixed emotions, but ultimately can't wait to check it out!

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Hmmm. Disappointment mainly.

 

To me, I can't see enough to distinguish it from APC. It's not atomic. The layout is... bland. I'm still reading the content, but my first impression is that I've picked up just about any computing magazine available.

 

Not convinced yet.

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Well, there are far more handsome people in PC & Tech Authority. PFt!

 

Something we need to be very careful about with the mag, and I know this won't suit everyone, is that it is one of the most established, most well-known brands in the country. And it is very successful - under the last editor it picked up mag of the year at the last ITJ awards, and that's no mean feat. At the same time, we do want to slowly get some more edgy stuff in there. But to do that in one issue would be... a bad idea.

 

It's a work in progress, but I'm also very aware even then that it won't be every one's cup of tea.

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All righty, then....time for more in-depth comments. [With more bullet points! Just for you, David!]

 

1. The layout. I agree with Chaos.Lady that the layout is not exactly what I was hoping for. It's all very same-samey with other computing titles. However, I freely admit that I'm coming from Atomic, which had a very unusual style and layout, and to expect that to be fully translated would be nonsense. David says they're working on the layout and it will be a gradual process; I'm happy to be patient and see what happens.

 

2. Content. Now that I've had a chance to read a smattering of articles I have to say I am pleased. Not overly impressed, but certainly pleased. There is a good mix of the familiar alongside new stuff, which I believe [dare I say it?] is complimentary with eachother. I found it particularly amusing that Dan Rutter's article on why the future is unpredictable was directly in front of the article showcasing companies who are trying to influence the future in predictable ways. See? Complimentary.

 

3. The Atomic Game Lab. Now I'm feeling more at home; the pages look different but the words are the same. I'm so glad you managed to retain the Atomic logo somewhere, even if it is a different shade of green. Win!

 

4. Advertising. Is it just me or are the ads a tiny bit more hard-core than they used to be in PC&TA? There seems to be more components and high-end peripherals than previously. If so, that's a good move in the right direction.

 

5. The A-List. Again, I'm not sure but is that Kitlog I see sneaking onto the end of the A-List? I don't recall the list ever having PC components before, and the categories (High-End vs. Budget) are the same as Kitlog's. Nice.

 

6. How-tos. I haven't had a chance to delve into these yet, but I like seeing these kinds of articles again. I was sorry to see them go from Atomic, I always felt they were some of the best value-added content, so it's something more to look forward to each month. Another win there.

 

7. The drinks coaster. I've got plenty of these already so I don't need any more, thanks anyway for the offer. Oh wait...you call that a 'DVD' instead? Oops, my bad. Is this some kind of Retro Computing thing happening here? I'd take a look at it but I can't be bothered hunting around on my laptop for the eject button on the optical drive.... On a more serious note, I know the DVD takes considerable resources in both planning and putting it together, I just think these would be better spent on adding more content to the magazine. These days any software you stick on a DVD will be a month or two out of date before someone even installs it, and will likely need an immediate update applied (usually a download of the complete program anyway. Hello, iTunes??). Maybe a couple of pages in the magazine with links to the latest versions would suffice instead. The only DVD I'd really, really want to see is the one you're going to put together with all the Atomic issues in PDF format. you remember that one? Pretty please?

 

8. The tech mix. This is one of the biggest....adjustments....that I'll need to make. Gone is the focus on hard-core gaming and tech, now I'll have to sift through mobile phone and printer reviews to get to the good stuff. Don't get me wrong, the reviews are well written and meaningful, and I have been known to buy a magazine just read a review roundup, but that's not why I bought Atomic. Atomic was my 'fix' of tech without the filler you find in other magazines. Oh well, even watered down a bit the salient bits are still there, I'll just have to learn to tune out the noise.

 

All-in-all I think this is better than I expected. I was trying to put on a brave face when the announcement was first made but I honestly wasn't expecting a whole lot. I figured there'd be some gratuitous tacking-on of something not generic PC&TA and then labelled 'Atomic'. Even though I'm not completely bowled over it certainly looks promising. At least one thumbs-up from me. Oh, and a smiley :)

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I think it'll be easier to just chalk up the last couple to a very BUSY BLOODY TIME, and start fresh this year :)

I was hoping my enormous contributions to the world would have gained me a Superhero title last Christmas, but since that didn't happen I'm just going to start being sarcastic at every chance and derail threads to talk about things that have no interest to anyone but me and stoned Maine Coon cats.

 

 

'

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only things i can think of to add:

1. please can you add some linux gaming stuff

2. the A-list is terrible and outdated (htc wildfire, no nexus 4, still has the 6850, the budget motherboard and cpu had a mix-up last i checked(could find my copy today))

3. Could we have some pc modding?

4. I need the atomicpdf's, why are there none but the torrent copies?

5. wasn't there something about a free digital version?

 

I think it'll be easier to just chalk up the last couple to a very BUSY BLOODY TIME, and start fresh this year :)

I was hoping my enormous contributions to the world would have gained me a Superhero title last Christmas, but since that didn't happen I'm just going to start being sarcastic at every chance and derail threads to talk about things that have no interest to anyone but me and stoned Maine Coon cats.

 

 

'

 

just to help you, how do you get the hero/superhero levels?

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Okay, I'll try and address both Zzozzach and noskcaj's points in one go...

 

Zzozz

1. Something to consider here: I preferred Atomic's design, too, and it's content mix, but while Atomic's been on a downward trend, PCA's on an upward one at the moment. There are a lot of reasons for that, but one thing we don't want to do now is risk alienating our established audience. It's all about baby-steps.

 

2. Glad you dig it. When we finished that issue, John and I were really pleased with the flow and mix of content.

 

3. :D

 

4. Some of those ads were ones that had been booked in advance for Atomic - we often book months, if not a year ahead. So we offered those advertisers space in PCA. I'm hoping they'll continue, and see the value in this new proposition.

 

5. Man, the A-List. I hated it when I first worked on PCA, and I hate it now. But it too is a work in progress - we want to streamline it a lot, and bring in more KitLog stuff to boot.

 

6. The current batch of how-tos are a little, well, lower-end specced, but there is some gold in there. And I want to get some Atomic-grade ones going, too, eventually.

 

7. Now this is an interesting debate. If you have a look at the letters page, you'll see that a lot of PCA readers seriously value that coaster. I know it's not a huge pull for Atomic readers, but for many other folks it's an essential proposition. We did some ballpark stuff to see what would happen if we ditched the disk, and trust me... it needs to stay :)

 

8. Hey, even we try to stay away from printer reviews!

 

noskcaj

1. That's a tough one. It's something we'll touch on, via Ashton, but no one in the office is a big Linux gamer. That said, with Valve very keen to push Steam onto Linux, that will change.

 

2. Yes, yes it is.

 

3. It's on the list. I actually want to do some more case painting on a Corsair case I've got in the labs, so that could end up in the mag. But I'm just not sure modding is a big enough thing these days to justify the page space. I'll see what we can do, though.

 

4. Do you mean the Zinio files? PCA's still on Zinio.

 

5. It was meant to be alongside this issue's subs, but our subs guys are throwing hissy-fits so far as I can tell. Hopefully next issue :)

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thanks for the replys hawkeye. a few more things.

1. with hard modding i should have said hardware modding and OCing. some custom water stuff or extream OC stuff would be great.

2. why did you have a pic of a pile of "yolks"(what we call the at cbne, i don't know the real name) from old tv's beside a question about speakers in the current mag?

3. how do i get "hero" status?

4. could you make ashton do something on linux gaming, even a review of steam for linux so far. if he is to lazy i can make something

 

overall though the move has worked well, just kill/update the A-list (take your pick)

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thanks for the replys hawkeye. a few more things.

1. with hard modding i should have said hardware modding and OCing. some custom water stuff or extream OC stuff would be great.

I'd like to slowly introduce some OC stuff into the mag. We had a very basic OC guide a couple of issues back, so yeah, it's on the roadmap.

 

2. why did you have a pic of a pile of "yolks"(what we call the at cbne, i don't know the real name) from old tv's beside a question about speakers in the current mag?

Hey, that was Dan's pic - blame him!

 

3. how do i get "hero" status?

Consistent, excellent contributions to the forums. Check out the FAQ for more deets.

 

4. could you make ashton do something on linux gaming, even a review of steam for linux so far. if he is to lazy i can make something

I could make him, but paying him is the trick :) It's not a matter of laziness, but rather finding room in the budget for it!

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3. how do i get "hero" status?

Consistent, excellent contributions to the forums.

 

NB: Consistent does not mean "post in every thread"

 

Posted Image

 

:P

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Squall, everything i post in i am trying to help. the recomend a gfx card is because no-one resonded to the guys question since. and theWC one is quite old. you have a point however.

hawkeye, dan shall be blamed. in the oc guide you referenced the pic was of an ancient mobo, is that also dan's fault?

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Squall, everything i post in i am trying to help. the recomend a gfx card is because no-one resonded to the guys question since. and theWC one is quite old. you have a point however.

hawkeye, dan shall be blamed. in the oc guide you referenced the pic was of an ancient mobo, is that also dan's fault?

Note the smiley, there.

 

T'was a mere taketh of the piss. :)

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hawkeye, dan shall be blamed. in the oc guide you referenced the pic was of an ancient mobo, is that also dan's fault?

Hey don't diss Dan's photos! If you're a regular reader of his web site or blog you'll know he has the most amazing ability to dig up very interesting pictures to suit the content.

 

Plus, he knows how to snap the odd interesting shot or two; many of his own have featured as wallpapers on my desktop from time-to-time.

 

As far as achieving Hero status, if you go looking for it you'll never get there. Just like real-life heros, you'll only be recognised as one by doing what you normally do...only much better.

 

I forgot to add: thanks for all the comments, David. I know Atomicans can be a noisy bunch, demanding earning more attention than the larger community, but it's damn fine to see you're still an Atomican at heart and keeping us in mind. Keep up the fantastic work!

Edited by Zzozzach

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Well if you ever need a feature article about Android, I can help. :P

 

They should because the article on phones was horrible.

Edited by mudg3

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Well if you ever need a feature article about Android, I can help. :P

 

They should because the article on phone was horrible.

 

I haven't read it, was it about smartphones in general or just the iPhone?

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It was a device round up.

 

from htc one x, lumina 920 SGIII iphone and few other random devices.

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