About HCW – BS Free since 1999
hardCOREware.net was launched online in February 2000 by Carl Nelson in Vancouver BC, Canada. The intention was to provide in-depth reviews on PC hardware and accessories without the pandering to hardware companies often seen on ‘hobby sites’ at the time. HCW became known for their tough view on PC hardware, and no-punches-pulled attitude.
HCW has grown a lot over the years. Originally, we would mostly cover cooling products along with some hardware. Today we focus mostly on the hardware that matters to you most: motherboards, processors, video cards, memory, etc. At the same time, we still cover the stuff we think you should know about; new cases, power supplies, and other quirky products that may grab our attention. We also attend the major PC trade shows, such as CES and Computex, as well as bringing you information from factories tours all over the world.
We also cover video games from the unique perspective of someone who needs to know how things work from the inside. Our coverage of video game hardware is unparallelled, and we also provide what we think is the most interesting news on games.
- We were the second site to review the Thermaltake Golden Orb in 2000, helping Thermaltake build to what became one of the largest PC cooling companies in the world. We went on to become the first site to review most of their early cooling products and cases, the good and the bad.
- We first started covering silent PC hardware back in 2002, before most people considered it. Our coverage of Zalman helped launch their initial product line.
- We were the first ones to review Abit’s famous AT7 board, which set the standard for motherboards for years to come.
- In 2003, we reviewed the very first Lanparty motherboard from DFI. It was one of the first to put a lot of focus on aesthetic design of motherboards.
- We were the first to review a wireless batteryless mouse, back in 2004.
- We were among the first to cover the process of building a motherboard, in 2004. Before then, it was rare to see pictures from inside a motherboard factory.
- We were the first site to ever review a dual GPU NVIDIA video card, in 2005.
- We were also the first to review a hybrid motherboard – ECS’ proof of concept board that could run both Intel and AMD processors.
- HCW is hosted at at WiredTree in Chicago.
- The current web design is based on Newsroom by WP Bandit
- The previous two designs were done by Apaja Designs in Finland
- Our first review was of the Creative Labs GeForce DDR, Carl’s personal video card at the time
- First motherboard review: Tyan s1854 Trinity 400 (VIA Apollo Pro 133a)
- First cooler review: Alpha CO-PEP66T Coppermine
- First CPU review: AMD Duron 1100 MHz
- HCW is now fully powered by WordPress for its blog and reviews
Current HCW Staff
Editor in Chief
- Founded hardCOREware.net in 1999
- Favourite games of all time: Final Fantasy 3 (SNES), Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past, Mega Man 2, Half Life, Team Fortress (Quake 1), Street Fighter II
- Location: Hong Kong
- Follow me on Twitter
Former HCW Staff
- Joined HCW writing crew in 2002
- Runs several HCW sponsored LAN events, including Hardcore War and LANsomnia
- Favourite games of all time: Mike Tyson’s Punch Out, Fifa RTWC 98, Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory
- Location: Eastern Canada
- Personal blog:
- Wrote HCW’s custom CMS backend
- Favourite games of all time: Quake 3, Unreal Tournament 2004, Drakan
- Location: Austria
- Personal blog:
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