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Close to the Metal Ep. 25: The best and worst of computing in 2016

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2016 hasn’t been a great year for many people. But on the bright side, it’s been a good year for PC enthusiasts. We’ve seen the introduction of new video cards from Nvidia, the proliferation of both 4K and ultra-wide monitors, tons of awesome games to test our hardware, lower prices on many core components, and great systems from Microsoft, of all companies.

And that only begins to cover it. While it’s true that big PC manufacturers aren’t shipping as many computers as they once did, it’s hard to feel disappointed with this delicious buffet of advancements. That it remains satisfying is surprising for what it lacks. The most glaring omission is, of course, new desktop processors. While AMD and Intel had a few releases in 2016, neither put out chips based on a new architecture.

More: The best laptops you can buy right now

Of course, there were a few disappointments in 2016, as well. This year was one that, in the broadest sense, showed technology has deeply impacted our lives in ways we’d never have guessed. Those disappointments leaked over to more practical concerns, too. Fans of certain major brands expressed widespread dismay about new releases, and PC security remains a topic that is on the minds of everyone involved in consumer tech – or, if it isn’t, it should be.

On this week’s episode of Close to the Metal, we’ll discuss all the glorious and not-so-great things that happened this year, swapping best and worst picks, with a bit of argument in between. There’s plenty to choose from, but only the very best – and worst – will make the cut.

Close to the Metal is a podcast from Digital Trends that focuses on the geekier side of life. It tackles the topics PC enthusiasts argue over in language everyone can understand. Please subscribe, share, and send your questions to podcast@digitaltrends.com. We broadcast the show live on YouTube every Tuesday at 1pm EST/10am PST.