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Written By Amanda Reed

Updated May 2, 2023 8:06 AM

More powerful than the average Hoover, more versatile than the typical Dyson, and tougher than your pet Roomba, a shop vacuum is a must-have for any household. These cleaning tools can suck up almost anything. But shop vacuums aren’t just for cleaning big construction messes. Even the average homeowner should include one in their armory of cleaning supplies. They can take on even the most hard-to-clean areas, like a fireplace or barbecue pit. A cordless shop vacuum is easily transported out to the car to vacuum impossible corners and crevices between the seats and is powerful enough to pick up the dirt, leaves, and even matted-down pet hair littering the floor of your car. Once equipped with the best shop vac, you can attack any mess thrown at you, whether it’s sawdust in the workshop, a mosaic of Goldfish crumbs under the kid’s car seat, or even the two inches of water flooding the basement.

How we chose the best shop vacs

In short, the best shop vac can do just about anything. Sometimes referred to as bucket vacuums, these machines resemble little R2D2s. Used most often in construction, shop vacuums are durable enough to suck up dust, dirt, and most other debris found at a worksite. We looked at reviews, recommendations, conducted user testing, and performed heavy research while on the hunt for the best shop vacuum. We’ve also written plenty about the shop vac’s cousins, like upright vacuums, so we applied some of that knowledge here.

The best shop vacs: Reviews & Recommendations

Bear in mind that durability may come with unwieldiness. You might want to go all out with the most powerful shop vacuum you can find, but if a lightweight, portable shop vac is enough to handle the job, you’ll have an easier time maneuvering—not to mention, storing it when it’s not in use. Bigger might not be better, so tailor your choice to your needs. We chose five of the best shop vacs to crank up your cleaning game and have your space spotless in no time.

Best overall: Bissell MultiClean Wet Dry Vac

Why it made the cut: This vacuum can power through wet or dry messes on multiple surfaces—you can even detail your car with it.

Specs

Capacity: 6 gallons

Weight: 16.1 lbs.

Hose length: 6.5 ft.

Power source: Corded electric

Pros

Two-stage filtration

Blower function

Easy to move

Cons

Loud

If you want a wet-dry shop vacuum that handles anything, the Bissell MultiClean vac covers all the bases. This versatile cleaning tool comes with a variety of features and functions, including a blowing function for clearing leaves or blowing up inflatables, a wet suction tool, and a toolkit of different brushes for vacuuming various surfaces and crevices. The tank is on wheels for easy movement while vacuuming, and its balanced body keeps it from tipping over when it’s pulled. This machine is sleek and easy to use for both small at-home messes and bigger shop cleanups.

Best powerful: Ridgid WD1450 Wet Dry Vac

Why it made the cut: A six-horsepower motor and 14 gallons of storage let you vacuum your entire garage … and then some.

Specs

Capacity: 14 gallons

Weight: 25 lbs.

Hose length: 6.8 ft.

Power source: Corded electric

Pros

Six horsepower motor

Lots of storage capacity

Easy to maneuver

Cons

Expensive

This Ridgid shop vac’s 6-horsepower motor and top-notch dust filters make it one of the most powerful shop vacs on the market. Its 14-gallon tank makes it one of the larger models available, which is great if you have a big job and want to avoid frequent stops to empty the tank. Despite its size, this large shop vacuum is easy to maneuver thanks to its handled tank and a Tug-A-Long hose that stays locked in during use. Another perk? The powerful motor is made with noise-reducing technology, offering a quieter performance than other brands.

Why it made the cut: This little shop vac packs a powerful punch—good things sometimes come in small sizes.

Specs

Capacity: 2.5 gallons

Weight: 5.6 lbs.

Hose length: 4 ft.

Power source: Corded electric

Pros

Wall mountable for storage

Portable

Easy to carry and transport

Cons

Hose length shorter than others on our list

Why it made the cut: No cord or plug? That’s not a problem with this sturdy, compact shop vac.

Specs

Capacity: 2 gallons

Weight: 10.1 lbs

Hose length: 6 ft.

Power source: Battery-powered, cordless

Pros

Washable HEPA filter

Sturdy design

Easy to carry

Cons

Full charge only lasts 20 minutes

This highly rated, battery-powered shop vac is great for car detailing and ideal for travel or minor clean-ups. The design of this vac is different from the typical cylindrical tank—this one is rectangular and looks almost like a toolbox. The body is sturdy and doesn’t tip easily, and the box has a handle for easy carry. It yields a strong suction, and you can expect about 20 minutes of continuous use on one battery before needing to recharge.

Why it made the cut: This powerful, budget-friendly shop vac rivals its pricier counterparts.

Specs

Capacity: 3 gallons

Weight: 8 lbs.

Hose length: 4 ft.

Power source: Corded electric

Pros

Washable and reusable filter

Lots of included accessories

Easy to carry

Cons

No casters to move vacuum around

This Stanley shop vac has a 3-gallon tank and a 3-horsepower motor. With more capacity than mini shop vacs, this vac is performance on a budget. While it may not complete a job as quickly as one of the more expensive models with higher horsepower and a larger tank, this lower-priced option has what it takes to clean up any wet or dry mess.

What to consider when buying the best shop vacs

Shop vacs come in a variety of sizes and efficacy, so the biggest thing to consider is what kind of performance and capacity you’re looking for. Also, consider shop vacuum attachments: different nozzles may be available for cleaning small crevices or for sucking up that flooded basement, or you may need to buy adapters to use the inflation feature (no more manually blowing up giant pool floats!). You can get pretty creative using your shop vac. Here’s what else we recommend when shopping for a shop vac:

Wet dry shop vacs

What really sets shop vacs apart from regular vacuum cleaners is the wet vac feature. Many, if not most, shop vacuums can clear dry and wet messes, which is clutch in some of homeownership’s most difficult-to-handle situations. A wet-dry vac can clean up the jar of applesauce your toddler dropped in the middle of the living room. It can be shoved down the drain in your kitchen sink to retrieve a missing earring. And it can suck up all the water if—shudder—your basement is flooding. A wet-dry shop vac can remove unwanted water from your home, clean out a fish tank, unclog a drain—the list goes on. On top of this feature, many shop vacuums have a blowing function for added versatility—your leaf blower wishes it had that versatility.

Power

Shop vacuums come in a variety of sizes and levels of power, so the biggest thing to consider is what kind of performance and capacity you’re looking for. If you’re purchasing a vac for a construction business, you might want to consider at least a 12-gallon shop vacuum with the capacity to clean up larger, heavier debris.

Wall-mounted shop vacuums are powerful and offer excellent filtration and capacity, although their immobility can hold you back without an extra-long hose and fixtures to stretch your reach. When overall suction strength is your biggest concern, look for a machine with high horsepower.

Size

Shop vacuums aren’t just for big industrial messes. A small shop vac can be a lifesaver for smaller jobs, like crumbs and pet hair. These lightweight micromachines come as small as 1.5 gallons.

The one caveat to mini shop vacs is that the size and weight may come at the expense of suction, as the small body doesn’t allow for a more powerful motor. We looked for a model that brings the most power in relation to its small size.

Battery-powered vs. electric

While most shop vacuums are electric, battery-powered vacs are also available. The electric shop vacs will provide more power for a longer duration of time. Still, a battery-powered vac has the upside of being portable and usable even when you don’t have access to a reliable power source.

On the downside, the batteries don’t last very long, and you’ll be stopping to recharge frequently. Electric shop vacuums will be better for long jobs, like clearing out a flooded basement, but a battery-powered vac is perfect for a quick and easy pickup. Some users recommend them for cleaning up during a long road trip.

Budget

Shop vacuums are by nature powerful and versatile, so even a less expensive model will complete a job better than a regular vacuum. The mini vacs are the least expensive models, but you can get a more mid-sized shop vac with a larger tank and more powerful motor at a reasonable price.

A mid-sized shop vacuum, even a cheaper model, ensures you’re ready for whatever small disaster hits your home. For minor floods, clogs, home workshop messes, spills, or pet cleanup (have you ever wished for an easier way to clean the kids’ hamster cage?), a simple budget shop vac will have your home spotless.

FAQs Q: How much does a shop vac cost?

The best shop vacs can start at around $30 and reach all the way into the $200 range, depending on their features and capabilities.

Q: What’s the difference between a shop vac and a regular vacuum?

It’s safe to say you don’t want to suck up scraps of wood, nails, screws, pieces of metal, or water with a regular vacuum. Not only does a regular vacuum lack the power to suck up big pieces adequately, but it’s also likely too small and delicate for heavy debris. The shop vac’s powerful motor and its larger, tougher hose are made to handle those nuts and bolts, and its tank can take in water. On the other hand, the regular vacuum is only made for reasonable amounts of dirt, dust, and crumbs in the home.

Q: Can you use a shop vac as a regular vacuum?

You can use a shop vac as a regular vacuum, and accessories and attachments are available to make that easier. However, a regular upright vacuum is easier to move across floors and rugs to clean up day-to-day dust and dirt. While you can substitute the regular vacuum for a shop vacuum in a pinch, they’re best left for the bigger messes that a regular vacuum can’t handle.

Q: Which shop vacuum has the strongest suction?

The suction on a shop vac relies on the strength of its motor. The strongest shop vacs have roughly 5-6.5 peak horsepower. Factoring in some other features, like the quality of the air filters and the size of the tank, sets these vacs apart from each other. The aforementioned Ridgid WD1450 and the Craftsman 12007 are notably among the shop vacs with the strongest suction at 6.5 HP and boast 14-16 gallon tanks, making them the strongest shop vacuums for big jobs.

Final thoughts on the best shop vacs

A shop vacuum is a versatile piece of equipment—the cleaning equipment you never knew you needed. They provide a quick and easy way to clean up the messes you once thought were impossible. Make a list of the features that are most important to you—Do you want them to be portable? Is power the biggest factor? Do you need a shop vac for a car?—and determine which is the best shop vac for you. It’s hard to go wrong, and many affordable options are available. This is a purchase you won’t regret. Happy cleaning!

Why trust us

Popular Science started writing about technology more than 150 years ago. There was no such thing as “gadget writing” when we published our first issue in 1872, but if there was, our mission to demystify the world of innovation for everyday readers means we would have been all over it. Here in the present, PopSci is fully committed to helping readers navigate the increasingly intimidating array of devices on the market right now.

Our writers and editors have combined decades of experience covering and reviewing consumer electronics. We each have our own obsessive specialties—from high-end audio to video games to cameras and beyond—but when we’re reviewing devices outside of our immediate wheelhouses, we do our best to seek out trustworthy voices and opinions to help guide people to the very best recommendations. We know we don’t know everything, but we’re excited to live through the analysis paralysis that internet shopping can spur so readers don’t have to.

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The Best Midi Keyboards Of 2023

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Written By Adam Douglas

Updated Jan 28, 2023 8:59 AM

Paired with a decent computer, an audio interface, and maybe a set of studio monitors or mixing headphones, a MIDI keyboard can mean you’re in (show?) business. The right keyboard lets you input all those notes and chords that are going to set the world on fire. Don’t start popping corks yet, though, as you still need to choose the kind of MIDI keyboard that’s best for you. It’s a little more complicated than just getting any old thing with piano keys and plugging it into your computer. The world of MIDI controller keyboards is a broad one, with more variables than a badly planned high school science fair project. How many keys do you need? What kind of connectivity is best for you? How much money do you have to spend? You’ll need to consider all of these (and more) before you can start collecting royalty checks from all your future hits. Don’t worry, however, because we break it all down for you. Here are our picks for the best MIDI keyboards.

How we picked the best MIDI keyboard

There is a bewildering number of MIDI keyboards on the market, with options that range in key number, size, and weight to ones offering more esoteric extras, like CV/gate connectivity for interfacing with modular synthesizers. Some are for general use while others have been designed to work best with specific digital audio workstations (DAWs) and music production software. What all of them offer, however, is compatibility with MIDI, or Musical Instrument Digital Interface—an industry-standard connection/communications protocol that converts interactions with the keyboard into instructions for compatible computers, musical instruments, and other outboard processors/sound modules.

We looked at all of these options when hammering out our list of the best MIDI keyboards. To narrow down our top controllers for each category, we made use of our own experience as experts in the field—specifically, I’ve spent three decades as both a professional musician and writer for top music technology publications, including Attack Magazine, Computer Music, MusicTech, chúng tôi chúng tôi and more. In addition, we drew on the opinions of our peers and factored in critical consensus, user impressions, as well as the use cases of famous music producers and composers.

The best MIDI keyboards: Reviews & Recommendations

Because MIDI keyboards don’t make any sound themselves it can be tempting to scrimp on one and put that money toward something else in the studio (maybe you’re eyeing a fine new monitor to make your session look as sweet as it sounds). But when you consider that your MIDI keyboard will likely be the center of your studio or live rig, that you’re going to be putting your hands on it more than any other piece of gear you own, you start to see why investment is worth it. So, as the price often will determine not only quality but the number of options, it can be helpful to start with a budget and then work from there, with any additional necessities like knobs and sliders following suit. No matter your budget, though, you can be confident that all of the keyboards on this list are worthy of your hard-earned cash.

Best overall: Native Instruments Komplete Kontrol S88

Why it made the cut: A full keybed plus smart DAW and computer integration means you’ll finally take your eyes away from the computer and focus on the music.

Specs

Keys: 88 full-size weighted keys

Connectivity: USB 2.0, MIDI in/out, 2 pedal controller inputs

Compatibility: Mac/PC

Pros

Fully weighted hammer-action keys

Two high-res color displays

DAW integration

Cons

Modern music production is all about the DAW, or the digital audio workstation. Because of this, we tend to keep our eyes trained on the computer monitor, for better or for worse. German company Native Instruments thinks this is for the worse and so has designed a series of MIDI keyboards that encourage you to look away from the computer and interact more with the keyboard itself. Called Komplete Kontrol, they range from the small to the large, with our pick for best overall MIDI keyboard, the S88, at the top of the line.

Komplete Kontrol S88 is not cheap but as a fully featured MIDI controller with a piano-like keybed, it’s just begging to be the centerpiece of your home studio. For musicians who like the functionality but don’t need all the keys, look to the Komplete Kontrol S49 or Kontrol S61 for the same extras without the extra octaves.

Best modular: Joué Music Instruments Joué Play

Why it made the cut: This controller marries good looks and build quality with a creatively inspiring approach to MIDI control.

Specs

Keys: Varies depending on module

Connectivity: USB-C

Compatibility: Mac/PC/iPad

Pros

Swappable controller modules

Gorgeous build and design

Creatively inspiring

Cons

Bundled app has limited editing

MPE requires Pro (paid) firmware upgrade

Modern music creation is more than just playing notes on a keyboard—drums, effects, and unique articulation are all part of the experience. With that in mind, wouldn’t it be nice if there was a controller that you could adjust to fit the situation? Joué Play, a MIDI keyboard controller by French boutique company Joué Music Instruments, fits this bill perfectly. 

Best for beginners: Akai Pro MPK mini mk3

Specs

Keys: 25 mini keys

Connectivity: USB 2.0, sustain pedal input

Compatibility: Mac/PC

Pros

Cons

Mini keys could be better

For those not in the know, Akai Pro is the company behind the MPC line of hardware samplers, a series of grooveboxes that laid down the blueprint for hip-hop and other genres of music. What does this have to do with a MIDI keyboard? The MPK mini mk3 (the best-selling MIDI keyboard in the world, according to Akai Pro) borrows some of that MPC hardware magic and pairs it with MPC Beats, the DAW version of the music-making operating system inside the machines. For around $100, you’re making music with the best of them.

While the action on the keys could be better, for this price you’re getting a lot of controller for not much money. It’s hard to not recommend it more strongly for many, not just as the best beginner MIDI keyboard.

Best weighted keyboard: M-Audio Hammer 88

Why it made the cut: Grand piano action for around $500.

Specs

Keys: 88 full-size weighted keys

Connectivity: USB 2.0, MIDI out, 3 pedal ports

Compatibility: Mac/PC

Pros

Gorgeous weighted piano feel

Affordable price

Music rest

Cons

Lacks additional controls

There are music producers and then there are musicians. While those in the former category want all manner of control with their MIDI keyboard, the latter really care about just one thing: the keys. If you’re primarily a keyboardist and your means of expression is your instrument, you want a MIDI keyboard that will provide a piano-like experience. You want M-Audio’s Hammer 88.

A well-made keyboard with a minimal aesthetic, Hammer 88 offers seven octaves of velocity-sensitive and weighted keys. They have a substantial, almost acoustic feel to them and piano players will take to them instantly. Part of the piano experience is using the pedals, so Hammer 88 provides three pedal ports: one each for sustain, soft, and expression. There’s even a music rest included.

While M-Audio’s keyboard doesn’t offer a lot in terms of hands-on control—no arrays of encoders or sliders here—it does make concessions to modern synth players, with pitch and modulation wheels, as well as two basic selection buttons. A bundled application allows users to set up splits and other configurations.

Best small keyboard: Arturia KeyStep Pro

Why it made the cut: A plethora of control options elevate this Swiss army knife of a MIDI keyboard.

Specs

Keys: 37 slim keys

Connectivity: 4 x CV/gate/modulation output sets, 8 drum gate outputs, 1 MIDI in, 2 MIDI outs, USB, clock synchronization in/out, metronome line out, sustain port

Compatibility: Mac/PC

Pros

4 sequencer lanes

Analog and digital drum triggering

DAW control mode

Cons

White color may turn some off

Most of the MIDI keyboards on this list are designed to work in tandem with computers. Yet there’s a growing movement of musicians breaking away from the screen and going DAWless. This includes modular synthesizer users, for whom experimentation, free from the rigid structure of a computer-based sequencer, is key. If this sounds like you, you need Arturia’s Keystep Pro.

A 37-key controller, the Keystep Pro combines sequencing and MIDI note triggering into one device. It has four sequencer lanes with one doubling as a drum programmer. Sequencing here goes beyond just note on/off, but also includes gate length, note offset, velocity, and more. Think of it as a box of tools to experiment with notes and patterns. The Keysetp Pro can transmit control information via MIDI over USB or five-pin DIN MIDI cable, or through control voltages—the language of modular and vintage synths. Of course, Arturia’s MIDI keyboard can also work with a DAW, with a customizable controller mode for mapping to soft synths and other applications.

Because it does so much, the Keystep Pro is a little pricey for a MIDI keyboard with mini keys. Should you want something similarly unconventional but with a friendlier price tag, Roli’s Lumi Keys and Keith McMillen’s QuNexus Red are inspiring alternatives.

Best for Ableton: Novation Launchkey MK III 61

Why it made the cut: It’s the most, well, able-bodied controller for everything the Ableton power user needs.

Specs

Keys: 61 full-size keys

Connectivity: USB, MIDI out, sustain pedal port

Compatibility: Mac/PC

Pros

Effortless Ableton integration

Plenty of knobs, sliders, and buttons

Excellent price

Cons

Non-Ableton users may feel left out

Despite what some may argue, all DAWs are not the same. Sure, they’ll all get you to the same place—a (hopefully) finished song—but the way they transport you there can often be very different. A case in point is Ableton Live. With its two views and focus on clips and live performance, it does things very differently than, say, ProTools. Wouldn’t it make sense to have a MIDI keyboard that was made just for Ableton?

Novation has been making Ableton-focused MIDI keyboards and controllers for almost a decade now and the Launchkey MK III series is the culmination of this experience, with 25-, 37-, 49-, and 61-key models available. The flagship model, the MK III 61, is our pick for the best MIDI keyboard for Ableton.

As you’d expect, the Launchkey MK III 61 integrates fluidly with Live, so much so that using the controller becomes second nature. Clip launching, view changing, recording, even mixing can all be handled right from the keyboard, with the plethora of knobs and sliders making this easy to do. It has a host of additional, non-DAW functionality as well, with scale and chord modes and a deep arpeggiator to aid in your creativity. The full-size keys feel nice as well, particularly for the price point, which is shockingly low for a device like this.

Best budget: Nektar SE25

Why it made the cut: It’s lightweight, eminently usable, and so cheap it’s practically an impulse purchase.

Specs

Keys: 25 mini keys

Connectivity: Mini USB

Compatibility: Mac/PC/iOS

Pros

Very cheap

Extremely lightweight

Useful functionality

Cons

No knobs or sliders

Not everyone needs an all-singing, all-dancing MIDI keyboard. Sometimes, a small budget keyboard fits the bill perfectly. Whether that’s because you’re working with limited studio space or you want to take your music production on the road, tiny is sometimes just fine. Tiny and cheap is even better, and tiny, cheap, and quality is the budget musician’s trifecta.

MIDI controller company Nektar offers a range of controllers but we’re particularly smitten with the SE25, a two-octave MIDI keyboard that manages to be just about everything you need in not a lot of space—and for an attractive price. At only 33.5cm x 10cm x 2.1cm, it’s not much bigger than the 25-key MIDI controller itself. This makes it perfect for plopping down on a desk with a laptop and getting to work. It’s also astonishingly lightweight, with its 400 grams and bus power making it a no-brainer for on-the-go production.

While it doesn’t have any knobs or sliders (there’s no room!), it does have six buttons that, when pressed in certain combinations, give you access to a surprisingly large amount of control, from MIDI channel changes and note harmonizations to basic DAW integration.

This all adds up to a budget MIDI keyboard that is worth a look—and a play.

Things to consider when shopping for the best MIDI keyboards

Because of the wide variety of models on the market, all with different feature sets, it’s best to first decide how you plan to use your MIDI keyboard. This will largely depend on your playing style, as well as possibly genre. A lo-fi hip-hop producer will have very different needs than a concert pianist, for example. 

First, consider the keys. How many do you need? A full piano keyboard has 88 keys (key count can also be expressed in the number of octaves). Keys come in different sizes too, from full-size down to mini. There’s also key weight. Weighted keys will give you more of a piano feel—necessary for a jazz pianist, not so much for an EDM producer. 

Is portability important? A MIDI keyboard that can function on the go will have a different feature set than one meant to hold down the studio fort. Finally, your budget will determine how far from basic you can get. An 88-key keyboard with knobs, sliders and plenty of connectivity could cost as much as a new synthesizer—or more!

What is a MIDI keyboard?

It can be helpful to define just what a MIDI keyboard is. Think of a MIDI keyboard as a silent synthesizer. It has piano-type keys and possibly other controls but it doesn’t produce sound on its own. It interfaces with a computer, device, or another electronic instrument via MIDI and allows the user to play the destination instrument’s sounds remotely. Additional controls like knobs or sliders send control information to the instrument at the other end. This is useful for changing the timbre of a sound, such as opening and closing a low-pass filter, or for adjusting the volume on a virtual mixer. Additional controls can include transport buttons for starting and stopping playback on a DAW, sequencers for generating musical passages independent of a DAW, and buttons for triggering drums or other samples. MIDI keyboards can be as complex and full-featured as you need them to be, or, conversely, as simple.

Do I really need a MIDI keyboard?

While a MIDI keyboard can certainly aid in music composition, it isn’t strictly necessary. Most DAWs will allow you to trigger notes via a QWERTY keyboard. You can also draw them directly into the MIDI sequencer section of your DAW, which might even be the preferred method of note input for some producers. But for many—and especially for pianists playing classical or jazz music—this is nothing but cumbersome and frustrating. The piano keyboard hasn’t changed much in function in hundreds of years and there’s a reason for that. It’s an effective way to get musical ideas from your head, through your fingers, and out into the world. You might be able to get by without a MIDI keyboard but it’s certainly a whole lot more fun with one.

FAQs Q: How many keys should a MIDI keyboard have?

The number of keys a MIDI keyboard should have depends entirely on how you plan to use it. A full-size piano has 88 keys, or seven octaves and an additional three keys below bottom C. If you are a piano player or want a MIDI keyboard to learn to play piano, this is what you should be aiming for. Most synthesizers have 61 keys or five octaves, making this something of a standard MIDI keyboard size for electronic musicians and producers. Small and portable MIDI keyboards can go down to as low as 25 keys or two octaves. While this is fine for a portable device, it could be restrictive for day-to-day use, especially if you like to play two-handed chords.

Q: Can you use a MIDI keyboard without a computer?

The majority of MIDI keyboards are made to interface with a computer via USB. These may even draw power through USB, meaning it may not work as a standalone controller. There are some, however, that will play nicely with other instruments or even iOS devices. These provide their own power and have different connectivity options, such as five-pin DIN MIDI ports for connecting to synthesizers and drum machines and CV/gate for interfacing with modular gear and older electronic instruments. For iOS devices, you’ll need a MIDI keyboard that doesn’t draw too much current as well as a lightning adapter. A powered USB hub could be an option for working with higher-draw MIDI keyboards.

Q: Can I use a synthesizer as a MIDI keyboard?

If you already have a synthesizer or two, you could probably use one as a MIDI keyboard. Provided it has MIDI, it will at the very least trigger notes and transmit basic performance data, like pitch bends. For example, we use a vintage Roland Alpha Juno-2 as a keyboard controller as we like the action on the keys. However, it doesn’t have any knobs or sliders, so is not a perfect solution. Synthesizer manufacturers recognize that musicians may want to use their instruments for this purpose and so may include control modes in their synths. This is not ubiquitous, however. Synthesizer technology has changed a lot over the five decades they’ve been around, so older models may not offer full compatibility with modern DAWs. MIDI keyboards are designed with modern control and functionality in mind and so are still the best bet.

Final word on selecting the best MIDI keyboards

While we’ve focused on things like budget, performance, and options in this list, any instrument or device in your studio should contribute to the ultimate goal of making music. So, beyond everything else, you should go with the MIDI keyboard that is most creatively inspiring to you. Whether that means flashy colors, a minimal aesthetic, or one that has every bell and whistle imaginable depends entirely on your circumstances. Your MIDI keyboard will be the musical conduit that connects your imagination to reality. Make sure that it fulfills that function, too.

The Best Air Fryers Of 2023

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Written By Stacey Ritzen

Updated Apr 28, 2023 12:37 PM

Air fryers are all the rage these days because of their ability to simulate deep frying without having to actually submerge food in oil, as a standard deep fryer would, giving people the ability to enjoy healthier fried food right at home. These small kitchen appliances are essentially small convection ovens, which work by radiating heat from the cooking chamber and using a fan to circulate the hot air around the food. Air fryers also typically cook food faster. Though they vary, the best air fryers may reduce cooking time by 20 percent or more when compared to traditional ovens.

In addition to health and convenience, air fryers also shine when it comes to versatility. When the uninitiated think of air frying, they may conjure images of perfectly crisped tater tots and appetizers from the freezer section of your local grocery store. But there’s so much more than that. Air fryers are also great for cooking main dishes, from whole chickens and steaks to fresh vegetables and tofu, depending on the size of the fryer. You also absolutely cannot do better for reheating tricky leftovers such as pizza and french fries than the different types of best air fryers.

Air fryers can perfectly cook such a wide variety of food because most models have temperature and timer adjustments that allow more precise cooking, in addition to other intelligent features that vary by model. If you’re feeling overwhelmed just thinking about these options, we’ve compiled our best air fryer reviews to help you narrow down what’s on the market today. Let’s get frying!

How we chose the best air fryers for convenience and flavor—without the grease

Though prices have dipped in recent years from when air fryers first began growing in popularity, the downside is that now the market is more inundated with options than ever before. As such, it can be challenging to determine at face value what constitutes the real deal and what is just a cheap imitation.

The best air fryers: Reviews & Recommendations

Why it made the cut: Customize and save up to a dozen of your favorite settings for each of the 10 one-touch cooking presets on the bright, easy-to-read LED display.

Specs

Capacity: 5.8 quarts

Weight: 12.3 pounds

Dimensions: 11.78 x 13.87 x 12 inches

Pros

12 different cooking functions

Personalized shake reminders

Nonstick square basket

Cons 

Nonstick coating wears off eventually

Operation could be quieter

The COSORI 12-in-1 Air Fryer is all about practical touches, which is why it was named one of the 2023 iF Product Design Awards winners. Enjoy the same crispy, delicious foods with up to 85 percent less fat using any one of 12 different cooking functions. In addition, the digital LED display and touch panel allow you to customize and save your favorite settings, which are angled toward you, so you won’t have to bend down to operate the machine. 

This device also comes with other helpful features, such as personalized shake reminders, which allow you to add an optional reminder to any cooking preset to flip or shake foods halfway through cooking. Learn to cook over 100 recipes with the included recipe guide, which is perfect for those still learning the ropes of air frying.

The removable nonstick square baskets are designed to fit a variety of foods and are also dishwasher safe, PFOA-free, and BPA-free. However, a few users noticed that the non-stick coating starts to wear off after regular use, so you may want to handle and wash with extra care. Another slight downside is that the air fryer can be loud. But thankfully, it doesn’t take long to cook your favorite healthy and delicious meals, so any noise will always be kept to a minimum.

Why it made the cut: If you’ve got a hungry family and need to fill some plates but have a lot already on your plate, the DualZone Technology of this Ninja Foodi air fryer lets you prepare multiple parts of a meal simultaneously.

Specs

Capacity: 8- or 10-quart models

Weight: 17.86 pounds – 19.8 pounds

Dimensions: 13.86 x 15.63 x 12.4 inches – 13.9 x 17.1 x 12.8 inches

Pros

DualZone technology allows two independent baskets to operate simultaneously

Match Cook lets you double the capacity of a single food

6 cooking functions

Easy to clean

Cons 

Takes up sizable countertop real estate, plus requires room to vent

No shake/flip reminder, and no automatic pause when drawer removed

Sometimes you want to prepare a balanced meal but with minimal juggling. And with the Ninja Foodi air fryer, you can cook both your protein and vegetables, or multiple sides, or simply enough fries to feed an army, all within one countertop contraption. With two easy-to-clean nonstick baskets (each a 4-quart or 5-quart capacity, depending on model), the Ninja Foodi can whip up its rapid heaters and cyclonic fans so you can whip up dinner, faster with less fuss.

Featuring a temperature range of 105- to 450-degrees Fahrenheit and six selectable programs (Air Fry, Air Broil, Roast, Bake, Reheat, and Dehydrate), this 1690 watts air fryer can handle any menu. Admittedly, every air fryer takes some getting used to in order to find the perfect temp and time configuration to maximize crispiness. And if you want to make sure a single-drawer air fryer finishes its cycle at the exact same time as something you’re simultaneously cooking in the oven, well, that’s an extra challenge. The Foodi works to take some of that guesswork out of the equation with Smart Finish, which intelligently synchronizes the two drawers, even if they’re operating different modes. This means you no longer have to have something sit while you back-to-back cook two foods.

Deeper than they are wide, the drawers do require learning optimal positioning for airflow. But you’ll quickly be surprised by the combinations you’re crafting. Nuggets and fries, sure. Reheating last night’s fava bean falafel on top of a frozen piece of Trader Joe’s garlic naan, all under four minutes? Even more exciting. Both the baskets and crisper plates are dishwasher-safe, adding to the ease of this appliance, though handwashing will prolong the life of components. Pro tip: To avoid overcooking (because who wants dry fries), reduce the recommended temperature by 25 degrees and the time by 1/3. Also, leaving room behind the Foodi is a must for venting, otherwise your wall can be discolored/damaged by hot exhaust.

Why it made the cut: With 11 functions, including air fry, broil, roast, rotisserie, toast, the limitations of what you can do with this multipurpose gadget are up to your imagination.

Specs

Capacity: 8 quarts

Weight: 26.1 pounds

Dimensions: 15.35 x 12.57 x 14.78 inches

Pros

Impressive 11-in-1 functionality

Customizable cooking programs

Evencrisp technology uses 95 percent less oil

Cons 

Large size makes it difficult to store

Dual lids are also cumbersome

Minimalists will love the Instant Pot Pro Crisp 11-in-1 Electric Pressure Cooker, which allows you to replace up to 11 kitchen appliances so you can air fry, pressure cook, slow cook, steam, sauté, sous vide, roast, broil, dehydrate, and more with just one machine. Though, with the size of this beast, you may need to get rid of some other gadgets just to make room for it on your counter. To dictate your favorite recipes, it also comes with five fully programmable settings.

Two interchangeable lids make it easy to switch between the pressure cooker and air fryer functions. However, the extra lid can be cumbersome to store, but it delivers all the crunch and tenderness of deep-frying with 95 percent less oil using Evencrisp technology.

For all your cooking needs, the pot also comes with standard includes accessories such as a stainless-steel multi-use steam rack, a nonstick multi-level air fryer basket with a stainless dehydrating/broiling tray, and a heat-resistant protective pad and storage cover. So you and your family will sleep well at night knowing that the safety features protect against overheating, steam, splashing, and more. If you’re loyal to the Instant Pot brand but want a dedicated air fryer, the Instant Vortex Plus 6-Quart 6-in-1 is also recommended.

Best for most: Ninja 4-Quart Air Fryer

Why it made the cut: Choose between four programmable cooking functions to air fry, roast, reheat, and dehydrate a wide variety of different foods on a budget.

Specs

Capacity: 4 quarts

Weight: 10.58 pounds

Dimensions: 8.5 x 12.1 x 11 inches 

Pros

One-touch control panel

Four programmable cooking functions

Wide temperature range up to 400 degrees

Cons

Cooking area can be difficult to clean

Plastic or chemical smell hard to remove

For straightforward air frying without all the extra bells and whistles, the Ninja 4-Quart Air Fryer lets you choose between four programmable cooking functions: air fry, roast, reheat, and dehydrate. The roast setting is ideal for casseroles and roasted veggies, while the reheat option is optimal for reviving leftover pizza, fries, wings back to crispy perfection. Or choose the dehydrate setting to make homemade dried fruits, veggie chips, and jerky and save even more money.

This air fryer also puts the “fry” in frying, as the four-quart ceramic-coated nonstick basket and crisper plate are the perfect size to cook up to 2 pounds of french fries. With a wide temperature range from 105 to 400 degrees Fahrenheit, you can either gently remove moisture from foods or quickly cook and crisp foods with convection heat on manual settings.

The only design flaw is that the interior cooking area, particularly the rubber tabs on the bottom grate, can be challenging to clean. So it might be a good idea to have a dedicated sponge for cleaning the air fryer. A chemical or plastic smell may linger out of the box, so you should thoroughly wash the basket and all components with warm, soapy water before using.

Why it made the cut: This air fryer’s miniature size and compact shape leave plenty of room on countertops for other small kitchen items and appliances.

Specs

Capacity: 2.75 quarts

Weight: 2 pounds 

Dimensions: 8 x 8 x 5 inches

Pros

Easy-to-use controls

Nonstick frying pan and basket

Uses little to no oil

Cons

Accessories and steamer papers not included

Automatically turns off when finished cooking

Not everyone needs an air fryer big enough to feed a family, which is why this mini-sized GoWISE USA 2.75-Quart Air Fryer is the perfect choice for singles and those who live in small apartments or dorm rooms. With rapid air technology, you can enjoy your favorite fried foods without the extra calories using just a tiny amount of oil or none at all. For healthier eating in no time, choose from seven cooking presets, including fries or chips, meat, shrimp, cake, chicken, steak, and fish.

Easy-to-use controls allow the time and temperature to be set from 175 to 400 degrees, or up to 30 minutes with the push of a button. An alarm will sound when the cooking is finished, and the timer will automatically switch to standby mode. Though some customers wish there was an option to add another minute or two before the fryer stops cooking.

The air fryer also comes with a nonstick, PFOA-free air fry pan and basket with a cool-touch handle and button guard to prevent accidental detachment. Unfortunately, the fryer doesn’t come with many accessories or steamer papers, but you can purchase a kit separately that includes an insert rack, skewers, toasting and warming rack, and more. Prefer a less retro look and a bit more capacity? GoWISE makes many models, such as this 3.7-quart fryer and several 5-quart options that still don’t take up much counter space.

Why it made the cut: With a high-capacity output and durable ​​stainless steel design, this air fryer is perfect for large families and those who frequently entertain guests for dinner.

Specs 

Capacity: 8 quarts

Weight: 16.37 pounds

Dimensions: 13.35 x 15.75 x 13.58 inches

Pros

Durable stainless steel design

Easy-to-use LCD touch screen

Preheating feature saves even more time

Cons

Touchscreen can be finicky

Difficult to change the temperature

The whole family will be eating healthier and cleaner when you’re cooking with the Ultrean 8-Quart Air Fryer, which eliminates the messy oil splatter of traditional frying. It’s also easy to operate with eight standard preset cooking functions that cook everything from french fries and bacon to chicken, fish, steak, and whole roasts. Then, when you’re finished, the detachable air frying rack and basket make cleanup a breeze.

The stainless-steel design also makes it more durable compared to comparable air fryers, while the compact, square shape makes it convenient to store when not in use. This air fryer also comes with a handy preheating function to help you save even more time. Simply press the “P” button and then preheat at 400 degrees for three minutes for even faster cooking.

Though a few users have noted, one minor drawback is that the touch screen display can occasionally be finicky, making it difficult to change the temperature. However, those complaints are definitely exceptions to the rule, as this high-quality air fryer consistently gets high marks from customers across the board.

Things to consider before buying one of the best air fryers Capacity

For the reasons we’ve already laid out, shopping for an air fryer can be daunting. So in deciding which air fryer is the right pick for you and your family, first consider your basic needs for an air fryer. For example, how many people will you be feeding on a regular basis? For obvious reasons, singles and couples can get away with having a standard, smaller quart-capacity air fryer. On the other hand, larger families, particularly kids, may opt for a workhorse that can produce snacks and meals for the whole family daily or multiple times per week.

Uses

Another thing to ask yourself is what type of cooking you plan to do with an air fryer. Likewise, if your main goal is to throw pizza rolls and fries into your air fryer for the big game or movie night, your needs may be different than someone who plans to regularly cook entire meals, main dishes, sides, and veggies with it. As such, the former air fryer user can probably get away with a more budget-friendly air fryer with standard features, whereas the latter may want to invest in a model that also doubles as a pressure cooker or a toaster oven.

Space

Space is another significant consideration, as air fryers tend to take up a not-insignificant amount of real estate on kitchen counters. Do you have somewhere to store an air fryer? However, if you’re considering a combination air fryer, you also may be able to get rid of a few excessive kitchen gadgets, which could be a good trade-off. Heck, you might even end up with even more counter space when all is said and done!

FAQs

There are so many models and features to consider when dealing with air fryers that it can be difficult to even the playing field. That’s why our favorite air fryer is a Ninja model (the brand also makes one of our favorite smart ovens), such as the Ninja DZ201 Foodi 8 Quart 6-in-1 DualZone 2-Basket Air Fryer. In addition to being one of the best-rated air fryers on this list (another Ninja, the Ninja 4-Quart Air Fryer, actually gets the distinction of top air fryer in popularity), the Foodi comes with features making it versatile enough to handle mains, sides, or a combination. However, larger families and those who plan to be using their air fryer heavily may want to consider a higher-capacity model such as the COSORI 12-in-1 Air Fryer or Ultrean 8-Quart Air Fryer. The best air fryers all just depend on how you plan to use them and how many people you’re feeding.

Why trust us

Popular Science started writing about technology more than 150 years ago. There was no such thing as “gadget writing” when we published our first issue in 1872, but if there was, our mission to demystify the world of innovation for everyday readers means we would have been all over it. Here in the present, PopSci is fully committed to helping readers navigate the increasingly intimidating array of devices on the market right now.

Our writers and editors have combined decades of experience covering and reviewing consumer electronics. We each have our own obsessive specialties—from high-end audio to video games to cameras and beyond—but when we’re reviewing devices outside of our immediate wheelhouses, we do our best to seek out trustworthy voices and opinions to help guide people to the very best recommendations. We know we don’t know everything, but we’re excited to live through the analysis paralysis that internet shopping can spur so readers don’t have to.

The 10 Best Pc Games Of E3 2023

E3 2023 is over, and what did we learn? Well, March and April of 2023 are going to be an absolute embarrassment of riches. Four of our favorite games from this show are due to release during that two-month timespan, including heavy hitters like Dying Light 2 and Cyberpunk 2077.

It’s that kind of year though, and I’m not going to complain about 10 games so incredible-looking they eclipse all others. That’s at least 10 games I’m looking forward to playing in the next year or two. If you’re looking for a wider look at the show’s biggest reveals, be sure to check out our roundup of the 41 must-see PC game trailers of E3 2023. These games were the best of the best though. Without further ado…

The Outer Worlds

“The Outer Worlds feels even more like Fallout: New Vegas than I expected.” That’s our headline, and that should tell you all you need to know about why we’re excited. Obsidian’s essentially created a spiritual successor sans-license, with a V.A.T.S. stand-in (Tactical Time Dilation) and the same sort of humor Fallout is known for. But in space!

It’s hard to know how long The Outer Worlds will be or how deep an experience, but our 30-minute demo made it look like one of the most promising games releasing this fall, especially for fans of old-school RPGs, skill checks, and branching quests. Uh…so that’s me, then.

Watch Dogs Legion

I liked Watch Dogs 2—a lot, actually!—but I wouldn’t have expected Watch Dogs Legion to end up on our E3 favorites list. It’s wildly ambitious though. No doubt you’ve already heard about Ubisoft’s “Play As Anyone” tech, which allows you to recruit any character in the game to DedSec’s cause, and then play through the story as them. Want to recruit all the guards at Scotland Yard? You can do that, or stage an uprising from a dance club, or assemble a crack team of grandmas.

Obviously I chose the last option, and it was fascinating to play some fairly standard Watch Dogs missions as an old woman who could barely run or climb, but was very talented at using the word “Buggered.” I have high hopes for the story as well, given the dystopian look of this post-Brexit London. It took an entire console generation, but it looks like Ubisoft might finally capitalize on the promise of that original Watch Dogs demo.

Cyberpunk 2077

I’ll say this, Cyberpunk 2077 looks more and more like an unofficial Johnny Mnemonic sequel every time we see it, and I am into it. Most surprising is the fact it’s due out in April 2023, before the new consoles arrive. I’m amazed it’s that close, and even more amazed it’ll apparently run on an Xbox One/PlayStation 4. Even my beefy GeForce GTX 1080 Ti-equipped PC is already sweating over the prospect of running this game’s luscious open world.

Planet Zoo

Frontier highlighted some of the management and construction features as well though. You’ll be educating your visitors, not simply displaying animals. Staff Paths return from Frontier’s Jurassic World game, and you’ll need to balance the animal’s needs with the zoo’s theme park facade. And expediting that, you’ll have access to Frontier’s amazing construction tools again. Make the best zoo imaginable, or a hellish nightmare where all the animals escape. Your choice.

Dying Light 2

But for 2023 they brought an even more ambitious demo. Every two or three minutes a binary choice popped up, and pressing left or right on the analog stick affecting how the entire mission played out. Stay with your dying friend or chase the escaping attackers? Kill the driver or spare him? And this culminated in the final choice, which saw an entire district of the city emerge from underwater, giving us a new area to explore—and a new zombie type to combat in the process.

It looks incredible, and like Cyberpunk I’m amazed it’s due out next April, before the console generation changeover. It barely seems possible.

Baldur’s Gate III

It’s been a week since we found out about Baldur’s Gate III and I’m still riding high. Nearly two decades after Baldur’s Gate II we’re finally getting a sequel, and it’s developed by Divinity: Original Sin studio Larian, and it involves a Mind Flayer invasion. It’s the best-case scenario as far as I’m concerned, especially since it’s being based off modern Dungeons & Dragons and not the THAC0-ridden version used by the Infinity Engine games.

John Wick Hex

John Wick Hex is the coolest licensed game I’ve played in…forever.

Mike Bithell and Co. are calling it a “Timeline Strategy Game,” a brand-new genre. Every action John Wick takes requires a certain amount of time, and the same goes for his enemies. You’re vying for the upper hand, using quick actions to incapacitate one enemy and then shooting another, returning to the first to finish him off, and hoping you don’t get overwhelmed by the third running in from the doorway. Time pauses after every action, so you have plenty of time to think it over—but it’s even more fun if you act on instinct, keeping the game in pseudo-real time and getting into the flow of it.

Personally I think the most obvious touchstone is Superhot, in that your goal is to kill a lot of people without getting overwhelmed, and the only way to do so is to carefully manipulate the time mechanics. But then…it’s not really Superhot either. Rarely do we see a brand-new type of game demoed at E3, and John Wick Hex is a way more interesting adaptation than some generic John Wick shooter could ever be.

Forza Horizon 4: Lego Speed Champions

It’s cute, and perhaps even better than Forza Horizon 3’s Hot Wheels expansion. Best of all, it’s available right now. I’m looking forward to playing this for my post-E3 wind-down this weekend.

Doom Eternal

Doom Eternal is “More Doom” and that’s all I needed. I didn’t need a single trailer, I didn’t need a single demo. As soon as Bethesda said id was creating a follow-up to the glorious 2024 reboot, I was on-board.

Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines 2

Our E3 demo was more of the same, showcasing another early mission and the various ways it could play out—betraying your contract, murdering or sparing the target, fighting your way through The Jungle or taking the stealthy route. There are a lot of choices to be made, just as you’d expect from a follow-up to the original Bloodlines. And while our demo still looked a bit janky, the promise of this sequel is enough to win my heart. The characters are instantly memorable, be it the ethereal Elfi or the skulking Slugg, and the spot-on recreation of Seattle landmarks is breathtaking.

Here’s 20 minutes of gameplay capture from our E3 2023 demo:

This is another early-2024 release, which along with Watch Dogs, Cyberpunk, and Dying Light 2 means you’d better get a sick note from a hospital, not just your local primary care doctor. Next year’s shaping up to be one of those 1998-caliber years people talk about forever, and that’s before the new consoles launch. E3 might be in its death throes, but it sure chose a great year to go out on.

The Best Running Shoes For Women Of 2023

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Written By Angela Fentor

Updated Jun 12, 2023 7:47 PM

Why you shouldn’t run without running shoes?

You may be thinking, “Why do I even need to buy a special pair of comfortable running shoes? Can’t I just pop on my old pair of sneakers and get going?” Sure you can, but you will almost certainly regret it. Arch and ankle support are crucial to avoiding serious running injuries—most walking or casual sneakers just aren’t up to snuff when it comes to giving runners support. Added cushions, heel support, and breathable materials will make your runs more enjoyable while ensuring you stay safe. For the competitor in you, here’s how to pick the best running shoes for women.

Things to consider when picking out the best running shoes for women

When choosing the best running shoes for women, there are a few things to consider. For starters, are you looking to do short bursts or long marathon style runs? Do you want a good running shoe that can double up for other types of training, or are you simply looking for one just dedicated to running? Are your feet particularly wide or narrow, or do you have a high or low arch? 

Use our guide to help you narrow down the options and get the best running shoes for you. You’ll be able to hit the ground running and be well on your way to the finish line.

Best for road-running: New Balance Women’s Fresh Foam Roav V1 Sneaker

The chunkier foam heel on these New Balance sneakers makes them ideal for pounding the pavements. Regular road runners need maximum support against a flat, hard surface to protect their knees, and these are well-designed for that. New Balances are definitely one of the more stylish and versatile shoes, and you wouldn’t be out of place wearing these to brunch. We love the black version with the striking raspberry pink heel and lime green base.

These cross country shoes are especially ideal for those looking to run in tough terrain. With a rubber sole and 3-D printed overlays, they are some of the lightest cross-country running shoes for women we’ve tried. For boosted performance, you can add spikes for running cross country. Reviewers noted that they were running some of their fastest times thanks to these high-performance shoes.

People who do cross training know that it’s really important to get stable and comfortable running shoes. PUMA’s Tazon shoes are a solid two-in-one—these pink and black beauties (also available in white and blue) feature in the top 10 best cross training shoes for women on Amazon. Their specially designed heel absorbs impact well. Made from synthetic leather, they are ideal for vegans.

ASICS are known for producing some of the best all round sneakers for both running and general workouts. These gel running sneakers are fan favorites because of their high performance, comfort factor, and durability. These ASICS running shoes are perfect for runners who need that extra level for support or who are recovering from an injury. Their versatility means they would work at the gym, on the road, or on the trails. 

Best budget: Flysocks Slip On Sneakers for Women

You don’t need to sacrifice on function just because you pick up a pair of cheap running shoes. These Flysocks slip-ons have a lightweight and breathable design, and the soft insole keeps you comfortable. The anti-skid grooves on the soles help protect you from twisted ankles, slipping, and impact injuries. At this price, you can own them in almost every color of the rainbow.

FAQs Q: What is the best shoe for running?

The best running shoe for you won’t be the same as your best friend’s. First, start by asking yourself what you need from a running shoe. Are you a regular flat road runner, or are you someone who hits the trails? Do you need extra cushioning, or are you looking for a sleeker shoe? Once you identify this, you’ll be able to get the right pair of sneakers for your needs.

Q: What is the most cushioned women’s running shoe?

Everyone’s feet are shaped differently, so some shoes may feel more comfortable than others depending on whether you’re wide- or narrow-footed. In general, though, look out for running shoes that have added features like heel support, gels, mesh, and foam.

Q: What shoe do podiatrists recommend?

Foot doctors will usually recommend the shoe with the most additional support. Gel-supported shoes or extra foam can make your running experience so much more enjoyable. You’ll prevent nasty injuries and be able to run for a good year with regular use. For even better protection, you can rotate pairs of running sneakers to give them time to bounce back to regular shape. This will ensure you get the longest life out of them.

The final word on the best running shoes for women

Running is one of the best exercises you can do for long-term health. The best thing is that comfortable running shoes are really the only piece of gear you need to invest in. With that said, you’ll want to make sure that you have the proper shoes to run properly. Unsupportive shoes will make running more painful and less enjoyable. Get a pair of the best running shoes for women, and you will be able to reach high levels of performance and fitness.

The Best Gaming Phones Of 2023 So Far

Black Shark 3 / 3 Pro

The Black Shark 3 and 3 Pro are Xiaomi’s bet on the gaming segment. This year, the company took the wraps off two new smartphones with high-end features and unique design.

The Black Shark 3 series is powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 SoC paired with up to 12GB of LPDDR5 RAM. The handset also includes 256GB of onboard UFS 2.0 storage. The Pro variant includes a massive 7.1-inch QHD+ AMOLED panel with 3,120 x 1,440 pixels of resolution and a 90Hz refresh rate. The handset has a 270Hz touch sampling rate, which means better response time while gaming. The handset also comes with a 19:5:9 aspect ratio and supports the MEMC motion compensation technology.

The Shark 3 Pro includes pop-up shoulder buttons. They are one of the major differentials in the design and act as trigger buttons while gaming. Therefore resulting in a true console controller-like experience. The handset packs a 5,000mAh battery with 65W charging support. If you’re not desperate for the fast-charging you can also opt for the 18W output via the magnetic charging dock.

Nubia Red Magic 5G Gizchina News of the week

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The Nubia Red Magic 5G is also powered by the Snapdragon 865 chipset. The handset is paired with up to 16GB of dual-channel LPDDR5 RAM and up to 256GB of UFS 3.0 storage. The handset comes with a unique internal 15,000RPM fan to keep things cool and improve the gaming experience.

iQOO 3

The iQOO 3 features a 6.4-inch Super AMOLED panel. It has a resolution of 1,080 x 2,400 pixels with 409 PPI density and an aspect ratio of 20:9. The handset supports HDR10+ and 180HZ touch-sensing. Unfortunately, the refresh rate remains at 60Hz. Making it the less appealing display among gaming smartphones of 2023.

As the other flagships, the iQOO 3 also features Snapdragon 865 SoC. It comes paired with up to 12GB of LPDDR 5 RAM and 256GB of UFS 3.1 storage. The side features two pressure sensitive areas called “Monster Touch” buttons, thus allowing users to perform multi-finger operations during gameplay and offer better grip and comfort. The smartphone packs a 4,400mAh battery and offers 55W Super FlashCharge Technology.

Are you a fan of mobile games?

We all know that this is just the beginning of 2023. We expect more gaming smartphones to pop-out in the coming months as the mobile gaming segment is becoming increasingly popular. In the near future, we expect Lenovo to unveil its Legion gaming device. It will bring the company’s Legion gaming philosophy to the smartphone market. Asus will also reveal its next ROG phone. Let’s see how the Best Gaming Phones of 2023 list will grow in the coming months.

From console emulators to exclusive mobile games and Battle Royales, the mobile gaming segment is growing by the day. Are you a fan of mobile games? Have a look at our sibling: chúng tôi there you will find everything you need to know if you’re diving in the game scene. Be it a casual gamer, or a fan of competitive games, We got you covered.

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