Adjustable joystick offers versatility, comfort for...

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June 28, 1999|By Gareth Branwyn

Adjustable joystick offers versatility, comfort for gamers

Saitek's futuristic-looking Cyborg Stick 2000 joystick ($29.99) is a pleasure to use. Designed with comfort and versatility in mind, the 2000 works well for either left-handed or right-handed gamers. It allows you to adjust for hand size, thumb angle, thumb length, and throttle placement (left or right side).

The Cyborg Stick 2000 has four analog buttons (three fire buttons and a trigger), a throttle, and a four-way hat switch. The only drawback to the Stick is that you must rely on your software to assign functions to the buttons.

The Cyborg works with any PC that has a free game port. You can download a driver online that will allow it to work with a Linux system.

This is beautifully designed game gear, with a rubberized finish and heavy-duty components. The Cyborg Stick 2000 is worth the price.

Information: 800-452-4377 or www.saitek.com

Upgrade your old Mac with self-installed cards

If you have an old Mac or Mac clone, you're probably sick of hearing about the awesome new PowerMac G3s. If you're not willing or able to buy a new machine, you can still get in on the fun. Newer Technologies has an impressive line of G3 cards that can give Macs a much-needed silicon transfusion.

Newer Tech's MAXpowr G3 upgrades work with many flavors of old PCI-based Macs, Motorola's StarMax, Umax's SuperMac, and PowerComputing's Mac clones. Their Web site lists which computers can be upgraded, which upgrade card you'll need, and what "backside cache" options are available to further improve performance. Upgrade prices range from $349 to $1,499 (for the latest top-of-the-line 466MHz G3).

Installation is fairly straightforward. But if you're squeamish about upgrading your RAM chips, forget about upgrading your processor. Some computer models require taking out components.

A word of caution. Some computers need a PCI-based video card as well as the processor upgrade.

I got the 400MHz card and was annoyed to discover (after reading through the manual all the way to the troubleshooting page) that my PowerComputing 120 has its video circuitry on the motherboard and therefore requires a new video card. It would be nice if they made this clear before you buy.

Information: 316-943-0222 or on the Web at www.newertech.com

Check out reviews of these and other gadgets at Street Tech (www.streettech.com)

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