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Category: Hardware Published on Wednesday, 14 May 2014

Consider this scenario:

You have an "older" computer. You've maxed out the on-board memory (RAM), have installed the latest and greatest video and sound cards and have replaced your old, clunky hard drive with a muti-terrabyte speed demon.

What else is there to do? Remember this word: Accessorize! Adding a new monitor, keyboard or mouse can further enhance that old PC.

The hew MultiSync EA274WMI monitor from NEC ($799) is a bit more expensive than the competition, but you get what you pay for. Its vivid 27-inch display plus adaptability to almost any office environment make it worth every penny.

It, of course, has ports to accommodate everything from older VGA cables to HDMI, DVI and DisplayPort, but that's just the beginning.

The first thing you notice when you take it out of the box are two small sensors just below the LED display. These are human and ambient light sensors that detect your work environment (lighting, etc.) and automatically adjust the display to fit the room. They can also detect movement, putting the monitor to sleep if they don't "see" a human at the keyboard.

In addition, the NEC monitor comes with:

  • Four USB 3.0 ports
  • An adjustable stand that lets you tilt, swivel, raise or lower the monitor
  • Touch-sensitive controls that provide access to tools to adjust everything from brightness to human interface settings
  • ECO mode that can conserve up to 56 percent in power consumption
  • In-Plane Switching (IPS) technology that provides more uniform color reproduction and wider viewing angles than standard monitors
  • ControlSync technology, which allows you to control up to six monitors

The Logitech G502 Proteus Core Tunable Gaming Mouse ($79.99) is one of the most versatile mice we've played with. Everything on the G502 can be customized including the scroll rate, DPI shifting (which can range from extremely precise to lightning fast) and its weight and balance.

You can also customize it using its 11 programmable buttons. Each button can be set to perform a specific function or macro defined by you or selected from a list of profiles included with the mouse software.

The one drawback is that it's designed to fit perfectly in the right hand, which makes using it a bit cumbersome for lefties.

Logitech's G710+ Mechanical Gaming Keyboard ($149.99) features dual-zone lighted keys, six programmable G-keys (for macros), a game mode switch, keys that can control music playback and a built-in USB port.

Although the G710+ was designed for gamers, we found that its highly responsive keys and the backlighting made it easier and more comfortable to use than many other keyboards we've tried. Plus, if you are a hard-core gamer, the keyboard allows you to hold down multiple keys to perform several functions at once.

Of course these are only a few of the peripherals available to enhance that old PC and bring it into the 21st Century.

Attention Facebook users: Check out Michael Berman’s Jocgeek fan page at www.facebook.com/jocgeek, or follow him on Twitter @jocgeek. You can also contact him via email at or through his website at www.jocgeek.com.  Mike's blog can also be found on the Huffington Post website at http://www.huffingtonpost.com/michael-l-berman/.

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Attention Facebook users: Check out Michael Berman's Jocgeek fan page at www.facebook.com/jocgeek, or follow him on Twitter @jocgeek.  You can also contact him via email at jocgeek@earthlink.net.  Mike's blog can also be found on the Huffington Post website at http://www.huffingtonpost.com/michael-l-berman/.