GeForce Now streams lots of games with beautiful graphics and solid frame rates for an affordable monthly fee, but it has room to improve. Ever since Netflix convinced the general population that owning media was out and streaming media was in, gamers have been wondering when they'd get a subscription-based service to call their own.

While the service still needs more titles and better streaming quality for certain games, it's definitely worth your attention, and possibly worth your hard-earned scratch. I didn't test every game on the system, but I played through a good selection of them for at least 15 minutes, and some for a few hours, in order to see how well the service ran in general. First off, the interface is admirably straightforward.

You can scroll down a little farther to organize games by genre Action, Racing, Role-Playing and so forthor even browse curated collections, like all the Batman games or Lego games available on the service. One of the reasons why Netflix, Hulu Plus and Amazon Prime Instant Video are so beloved in the streaming video scene are because they have fantastic selections.

The selection on GeForce Now, by contrast, is either eclectic or haphazard, depending on how much you like what's on offer. Make no mistake: Numerically speaking, launching with almost 70 games is fantastic, but aside from two very notable series, it's not yet a viable replacement for a full library of PC or console games. It has the vast majority of both, and they're all available with a subscription. If you want to play games just to kill time, GeForce Now has plenty; if you want to follow the stories or master the gameplay of your favorite series, you're probably still better off with a traditional console or PC, at least until the selection grows.

The most important question is whether GeForce Now can really stream games at full-HD resolution within seconds of buying them, as advertised, rather than waiting for tedious installations or downloads. The answer is a solid "yes," with only one notable exception.

Whether a game streams at 30 or 60 frames per second, you'll be able to play it in full p with very little buffering and only a few moments of lag or stuttering. The latter three titles ran phenomenally well.

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Each took between 10 and 15 seconds to load, and I observed them running in full-HD resolutions at the frame rates described. Blasting through New York City as a Lego version of Iron Man was as seamless as honing my gun-fu skills against demonic attackers in Devil May Cry's outrageous, fluid spectacle fights.

The Witcher 3, however, proved problematic. Every time I loaded the title up, I found it to be laggy and prone to screen tearing, stuttering, frame-skipping and generally running in such a way as to make it almost unplayable, especially during combat.

This was particularly disappointing, as it should be one of the system's showcase titles: easily the newest and most technologically demanding game that GeForce Now currently has to offer. It's worth noting that I was connected via Ethernet to a 40 Mbps connection and exceeded all recommended parameters for the GeForce Now service, and that The Witcher 3 was the only title that gave me any problems.

However, I am not prepared to say that the problem was on the server side, as Nvidia did not believe that this was a common issue. If you choose to buy The Witcher 3 on GeForce Now, just be aware that it may not run as well as the service's other titles. GeForce Now works very well in generaldoesn't cost very much and has a reasonable selection for a service that's just starting out.

However, if it has a significant drawback, it's that it may not play nicely with your existing setup. To connect as Nvidia recommends, you need fast Internet, an Ethernet connection and a fancy router.

It's cheaper than buying a traditional console or a gaming PC, but you also don't get access to the same number of games, or new games as soon as they launch.

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Nvidia advises users that they need a 10 Mbps connection for bare minimum quality on GeForce Now. For reference, the average American broadband speed is Nvidia also recommends different broadband speeds for better tiers of gaming: 20 Mbps for p at 60 fps, and 50 Mbps for p at 60 fps. Assuming you do have a speedy Internet connection, getting good streaming quality over Wi-Fi is highly dependent on your setup and proximity. If you want to run GeForce Now at peak efficiency, you'll need to hook your Shield device directly to a router or a modem.

If your entertainment center isn't within cable distance of your console, streaming games is probably going to be a distant second in terms of overall experience to downloading them. As far as I can tell, it was not.New hide-away design, great remote, top performance and impressive HD to 4K upscaling make for a killer smart TV box.

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The Nvidia Shield TV is a refined version of the best Android TV box for years, packed with impressive new AI-based upscaling technology and a novel space-saving design. For those unfamiliar with these types of media streaming devices, they in effect add a smart TV experience to older televisions or replace the often terrible or out-of-date smart elements of more modern sets, so that you can use apps such as Amazon Prime Video, BBC iPlayer and Netflix.

Nvidia is arguably the biggest name in graphics, and also makes mobile chips called Tegra, on which these two Android TV boxes are based.

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The previous Shield was released in and, unlike many other smart TVs and streaming boxes, is being kept fresh with a steady stream of updates, making it the best, most supported Android TV experience available either baked into a TV or in a set-top box. You get one of the most powerful media-streaming boxes available, running the latest version of Android TV and similar long-term software support.

The idea is you hide this small tube behind your TV in series with the cable without taking up any significant space. The remote too has been rethought. Instead of being a thin, touch-sensitive remote, the new version has a triangular profile, takes two standard AAA batteries including rechargeables, has a good weight to it and an assortment of buttons that are backlit when the remote is picked up, including dedicated pause and volume buttons.

A simple, user-friendly design. It works great. Getting around the interface is straightforward with the home, back and up, down, left and right buttons in a ring around the select button. Holding the home button pops up a quick access a list of apps, while double-pressing home takes you to recently used apps like on a smartphone or tablet. Holding the back button brings up quick access to the settings menu, while the menu button in the top right can be customised to launch particular apps, settings or functions.

Alongside direct app support, the Shield TV has Chromecast 4K support built in, which means any app that can be cast from your Android or iPhone, tablet or even computer can be sent to your screen wirelessly, which includes BT Sport but not Apple TV. Press and hold the mic button on the remote to talk to Assistant.

You can control playback in apps, such as playing, pausing or skipping to the next track in Spotify or even a particular time in a song, movie or TV show. You can launch apps, adjust the volume or search for shows, movies or tracks via voice. Then there are all the standard Assistant functions. The only exception I found was an inability to search for images from the web.

Cityscapes look incredibly crisp and detailed, while faces, cars and even wildlife are all significantly improved even compared to basic upscaling. Feed it a modern HD picture and the differences between it and real 4K content are surprisingly hard to spot.

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Only comparing something such as the faces of Will Smith and Martin Lawrence in Bad Boys in proper 4K versus the HD AI-upscaled version can you begin to spot the differences in closeup scenes or when the original picture was a little grainy in low light. But with its redesign as a hide-away tube and with a new, much more user-friendly and smartly designed remote, the new Shield TV is not only the best streaming box for power users, but one of the very best for regular people too — right up there with the Apple TV 4K and Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K.

On most fronts it beats or matches everything else, be it support for the latest Dolby Atmos, Vision and HDR standards, app support or even the built-in 4K Chromecast support. But it is the impressive AI upscaling that is the killer feature. Sky Q review: premium TV at a premium price.

Virgin V6 TV review: jack of all trades, master of none. Samuel Gibbs Consumer technology editor. Wed 26 Feb User-centric design. Topics Android Television reviews.Cyberpunk 's vision of the future is firmly rooted in the '80s, and its design owes everything to the last decade of open world games, but it's still managed to offer me a glimpse of the future—one where most of my gaming might be fuelled by the cloud.

My PC, which I treated myself to when I first joined PC Gamer, has kept me enjoying the most demanding games at the flashiest settings for a while now, but it's starting to hit a few road bumps.

Microsoft Flight Simulator really pushed it beyond the limit, but that's also a game that looks impossibly real, designed to look incredible even years from now. But I'm having to make some sacrifices in other games, too, as well as being locked out of newer features. Typical frugal Scot that I am, I managed to stop myself from splashing out on the first batch of Nvidia's RTX graphics cards, opting to stick with my excellent Ti until more games started taking advantage of all these new bells and whistles.

And now I'm rightly being punished for not hitching my ride to this wagon straight away, as I'm ready to enter the flashy world of ray tracing smack bang in the middle of a shortage.

Cyberpunk is the first game where I've felt like I needed ray tracing to really appreciate what the studio was trying to create. Everyone makes a big deal about how amazing Control looks with ray tracing, but Control looks amazing all the time.

Cyberpunk does not. Night City's got a strong look, but low quality textures and lighting leaves the place often looking flat and dreary.

Chuck in ray tracing lighting and reflections, though, and the city and characters start to come to life. At times the difference is subtle, but in other places it's like night and day. None of which I can actually experience on my PC. If it was just ray tracing I was missing out on, I could probably ignore it, but Cyberpunk's also very demanding and not especially optimised. To get a steady 60 fps at p, I have to go all the way down to the low preset, and the actually-not-especially-impressive performance gain isn't worth using my other monitor and dropping it down to p.

Either way, I'm having to cut a lot of corners just to get a reasonable framerate. Unable to summon a out of thin air, I started eyeing up GeForce Now. What's one more added to the pile? The service is a little different from the likes of Stadia, as you're playing games that you've purchased on stores like Steam and GOG, and then accessing your library using GeForce Now, which then assigns you a rig to play on over the cloud.

And it works surprisingly well. Which might be an insurmountable one. It needs to be steady more than it needs to be fast, and Nvidia recommends 25 Mbps for p at 60fps, though in my experience you'll want to at least double that. A wired connection is the way to go, though wireless via a 5GHz is viable.

Not recommended for Cyberpunkthough. Right now, the biggest hook is getting access to all the RTX magic without a card. In Cyberpunk 's case, that means ray tracing shadows, lighting and reflections, as well as various DLSS settings that will help you find the right balance between performance and fidelity.We may earn a commission if you click a deal and buy an item.

This is how we make money. The Nvidia Shield TV is among the very best premium Android streaming boxes thanks to support for Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos, while still offering users the capability to stream 4K content from popular streaming services.

Add in its incredible Stadia-rivalling cloud-streaming gaming potential, and this becomes a no-brainer box for gamers. Subscribe to our newsletter. Nvidia also made sure to remove the perception the Shield TV is exclusively for gamers by ditching the mini console design at least for the entry-level model and redesigning the remote so it no longer looks out of place in the living room.

But is that enough for to be champion of the TV streaming boxes? Related: Best Streaming Sites. Previous editions of the Shield TV looked like a miniature Xbox.

The Nvidia Shield TV is a small, slender black cylinder. The Nvidia Shield TV remote has also seen a massive design overhaul, now looking far more approachable and accessible to non-gamers. The microphone button remains here too, so you can bring up Google Assistant to take you to your favourite TV show without faffing with menus. Google Assistant is reasonably accurate, but its functionality is limited with Shield TV.

Google Assistant also refused to acknowledge the existence of GeForce Now, so I had to open up all my games manually — first-world problems ey? These may sound insignificant on paper, but every one of these features helps to eradicate all the faff and stress when settling down to watch TV. The remote also uses 2x AAA batteries provided in the box which apparently last six months of use before requiring replacements. This is a welcome change from using disc, batteries which were an absolute pain to replace, so kudos to Nvidia for listening to customer feedback.

In terms of upgrades from the previous generation Shield TV, the controller redesign is certainly among the best. The Shield gamepad no longer comes bundled with the Shield TV. Instead, Nvidia has allowed you to hook up your own Bluetooth controllers, which includes pads from both the PS4 and Xbox One, or even your old Shield controller.

Related: Best TVs The new iteration goes several steps further, also enabling support for Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos. Dolby Vision is a high dynamic range HDR video format, which helps to increase the range of colours displayed on screen while also boosting the brightness, resulting in a drastically improved picture.

Dolby Atmos, meanwhile, is a surround-sound technology which proves to be a big step up from what you get with 5. The major improvement here is that sound occupies a more vertical space, as its blasted from the ceiling and floor and gives the illusion that a whirring helicopter or roaring dinosaur is directly above you.

Another limitation for Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos is the hardware required. This technology allows you to convert p and p content to 4K, making images look sharper and more detailed.

Nvidia demonstrated the power of AI upscaling with an episode of Game of Thrones. Since only season one currently supports 4K, it was a marvel to see the larger pixel count finally give Westeros the extra shine it truly merits. With AI enhanced, the medieval clothing suddenly looked more textured, while background scenery looked noticeably less blurry.

It actually made Lord of the Rings look worse, with the artificial intelligence making the film look more grainy. I found animated films to be one of the biggest benefactors of AI upscaling, with the likes of Shrek and Coco looking significantly sharper.

With most content though, I really had to squint to see the difference. Elsewhere, the Shield TV retains the same high quality of its predecessors. With even Disney Plus confirmed, its future proofed for entrainment too. The interface remains the same as previously too. Related: Apple TV 4K review.By Dave James T And the comparison seems to make sense, though on closer inspection it might seem to be over-selling what GeForce NOW actually offers its subscribers, though is also guilty of not covering the impressive technical achievement and the extras it offers.

The servers render and encode each game frame, sending them out to the user with minimal latency and reacts to the inputs sent back from the client SHIELD device in your hand.

Nvidia Shield Review: Tegra 4-Powered Handheld Gaming

These powerful servers are situated around the world to ensure a decent connection wherever you're accessing the service from. Currently there are only around fifty games in that section, though Nvidia has been adding to it on a fairly regular basis throughout the beta and remain committed to boosting the content its subscribers gain access to.

If Nvidia notices few people are actually bothering to play those games it will take them off the server, never to be seen again. That will be a pain if you're one of the few playing those little-used titles….

Part of the service allows you access to a store with premium games you can buy and stream instantly. Currently there are only eight games on offer to actually buy in the UK, though many of them come with digital download keys. The Witcher 3, for example, comes with a download code for GOG.

It's a nice feature which actually gives you something to own locally as well as for streaming, negating the feeling you're paying full price almost for renting a game.

But the downside for this is that saves aren't able to be synchronised over GeForce NOW and the local machine you might download the game to. For something the size of Witcher 3 you're not going to want to play two entirely separate saves, so one's just going to fall by the wayside. Probably the streamer All that technological wizardry though ought to remain invisible to the gamer at the other end of the interweb tubes.

The holy grail is for a streamed service to look and feel like it's being played on a local device. There is inevitably some latency to the game stream, somewhere in the region of ms, but that isn't a million miles away from what you get with a controller and a local games console.

Things weren't quite so good with Witcher 3, however. That makes it feel a little more jerky and I also experienced some skipped frames too.

Given that it's a title Nvidia is asking a fair chunk of cash to buy and stream The Witcher 3 on its service that's a bit of a disappointment.

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It's also a little odd that there can be such a difference in the streaming of different games across the same connection. Without the wired connection the service generally hits a lower level of streaming fidelity, and even with a compatible 5GHz router and a speedy net connection I was getting a lot of missed frames, stuttering and occasionally complete drops in connection. GeForce NOW will keep your game running for a few minutes if you do get disconnected, so you will have time to jump back in and save your game to the cloud if the worst does happen.

The whole 'Netflix for games' thing makes you think of a vast repository of titles to gorge on, but in reality the currently restricted Membership Games catalogue of fifty titles doesn't feel like enough to warrant a regular sub.

If it was committed to putting big games onto the access list as they were released that would be fine, but for such premium content you're being asked to pay again to purchase access and then pay a regular subscription to keep that access open. The digital download key somewhat negates those issues, and Nvidia will keep hold of your saves for five years even if you let your membership lapse in between. Spend that much on Steam every month and you'll soon put together a very healthy PC gaming library, especially around sales time.

As a more-than-casual gamer you're probably already going to have a local gaming system, whether it's PC or console, on which you play games in your home.

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And that's where GeForce NOW has to live because it needs a wired network connection or the power of a 5GHz router to deliver the necessary experience. That in turn means you're not going to be able to access the service over a mobile signal - a la Netflix - if you want to game on the go.

The restriction surrounding compatible devices is also a source of frustration. There are tablets and set-top boxes with the sort of hardware to run GeForce NOW, even if it has to be a cut-down p version of the stream.

There is a decent variety of titles on the Membership Games catalogue, with options for different genres, but it doesn't seem a large enough pool of gaming goodness to make you desperate to part with the cash on a regular basis. Though admittedly I live in a well-connected city and the experience may not be quite so slick out in the sticks….Despite a janky interface and some atrocious catalogue holes, GeForce Now is a genuinely exciting service.

But on two less-than-stellar connections, the service was barely operational. Thankfully, you can make your own mind up on that — you can try GeForce Now for free before deciding to subscribe. Nvidia GeForce Now Review. Nvidia hops in the stream. Nvidia GeForce Now is as exciting as it is poorly marketed. In that time, Google launched its Stadia service and Microsoft xCloud opened its own beta. But GeForce Now might not need mindshare to win out over its competitors. Instead, GeForce Now connects to your existing digital game libraries to verify if you own the games you want to play.

But it also means only select games are supported. When you find a game you want to play, you click a button to add it to your library. GeForce then asks you to confirm that you own the game. Then a new dialogue box appears, establishing your connection to the GeForce servers. GeForce opens what looks like a virtualized desktop, complete with a virtualized window of Steam, Epic Games Store or whatever client you own the game at.

In this case, I finally finished authenticating everything and had to wait about 5 minutes for an available rig to play Destiny 2. Finally, after what seemed like an eternity, I was able to start a game. When I opened certain games, the controller inputs stopped working altogether despite the games technically providing gamepad support. For example, if you select The Witcher 3 in GeForce Now and launch into the virtualized Steam page, but then decide you want to play Cuphead instead, you have to fully exit out of the virtual machine and re-launch Cuphead from GeForce Now.

From a user experience standpoint, things could definitely be streamlined. Heck, I had a great experience in one room of my house, and a slipshod experience in another. Nvidia recommends a minimum of 15 mbps for 60fps at p or 30 mbps for p, and suggests connecting via Ethernet for the best experience. In testing, sometimes you need a fair bit more than that. When I checked, I was rocking Under those conditions, the quality of my experience depended just as much on my internet speeds as which game I was playing.

Less resource-intensive games, like Cuphead, played perfectly. Despite the game requiring lightning-fast reflexes, I was able to make my way easily through several boss fights.However, the lack of a bundled controller while retaining the previous generation's price point harms the deal overall. We're spoiled for choice when it comes to inexpensive streaming devices.

From Fire TV Cubes to Roku streaming sticksif all you're after is the latest shows streamed without fuss, you can do so without spending all that much money. But what if you're after a bit more 'oomph' from the gadgets serving your TV?

It does offer less value for money than previous models however, despite a spec bump. We're big fans of the Nvidia Shield TV Pro — but is it the essential upgrade over earlier models that it could be? That gets you the console itself, a new-and-improved remote control which we'll discuss in detail shortly and access to 20 great if ageing PC games that can be streamed over the internet as part of the GeForce Now service, which you can expand upon with your own purchases.

With improved internal hardware and some new features which we'll get to in a second, it'd be a fantastic deal… were it not previously outdone by Nvidia's own Nvidia Shield TV Gaming Edition pack.

That offered the last-gen box, last-gen remote and the mic-packing Nvidia Shield Controller, which is now sold separately, for roughly the same price. If you've got the money, the Shield TV is hard to beat. Around the back you'll find two USB 3. Wi-Fi is built-in The only cable included in the box, however, is for the power. The RAM remains unchanged then, but we've seen other Shield models with as much as GB of on-board storage, so a little more here would have been appreciated.

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Still, the two USB ports make adding external storage a cinch, not to mention plugging in a wired controller or keyboard and mouse. What's really changed then is the processor — the first major upgrade to the Shield TV range since it was introduced in It offers rows of content, based on your installed apps.

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The top row is an overview of your most regularly-used apps, with the rows that follow offering rich artwork and content recommendation snippets based on what the associated app offers. All of this can be re-organised or hidden as you see fit. However, an Android TV interface revamp is said to be on the cards, and the Shield TV Pro will see any benefits that update eventually brings with it.

Plus, Google Chromecast is built-in here, so any Chromecast-supporting mobile app that you want to throw up onto the big screen via the Shield will be supported here.

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As such, the Shield TV Pro is an effective smart home hub, as well as being a media player and gaming box. Shield TV already supports plenty of HDR formats, but it now also can play back Dolby Vision content, a premium format that tweaks brightness and contrast levels using frame-by-frame metadata.

The second of the big additions is a new AI image upscaler that can be toggled on or off at the push of a button.