2012 was a busy year for the Kitguru team. We reviewed hundreds of products in the last twelve months, from mainsteam performance memory cards to bank breaking video cards. Today we look back on the last 12 months and pick out the very best hardware to hit our labs.
Having posted close to 7,000 articles since we launched, it might come as a surprise that only a handful of products have ever achieved top marks in the KitGuru Labs. In fact, it took five months of testing to get the first product with a perfect '10' and that was Arctic's MX-4 Thermal Compound. Since then, only a couple of products have managed to score the perfect 10.
For the KitGuru annual awards, getting a great score on a product when it was first reviewed will only go part of the way to securing top spot for the whole year. We will also take into account other products which might have superseded it – maybe with a slightly lower score, but a significantly lower price.
A great example of this was the launch of nVidia's GTX660. Each new card into the KitGuru Lab had an even more impressive cooler/overclock than the previous one – so the lead was being swapped every other day.
In some cases, we have two clear winners: For example, there's no intelligent way to match a high performance Intel chipset board with one designed for an entry level AMD APU, so we've created intelligent sub-categories or sections.
Another thing to note is that, in some cases, the winning product is in KitGuru's Labs – fully tested – but hasn't been published yet. It's rare, but does happen, so we'll let you know when you're getting an ‘insight into the future'.
One thing is for sure, whatever your preferences: If you build a system based on these components – you can't go wrong. For that reason, we've created a brand new award logo for these special products – something worth looking out for!
Enough pre-amble, let's get on with the KitGuru Annual Awards 2012.