Computex Roundup: ASUS, Gigabyte, and MSI
We already detailed ASUS’ Windows 8 and RT tablets, Transformer Book, Transformer AIO, and TAICHI here, but that’s not all ASUS brought to Computex.
On the networking side, there’s the ASUS RT-AC66U router, a dual-band 5G Gigabit WiFi (802.11ac) that purports to triple the performance of 802.11n. It features combined 2.4/5GHz 1.75Gbps bandwidth and includes ASUS AiRadar, ASUSWRT, and IPv6 technology and supports multiple SSIDs and 3G, FTP, DLNA, and printer server capabilities via USB. The router servers as the hub for several ASUS AiCloud services, including Cloud Disk multimedia storage, Smart Access device-to-device file sharing, and Smart Sync, which synchronizes local storage with users’ ASUS WebStorage account.
ASUS’ new graphics cards include four SKUs in the ASUS GT600 line. All four feature ASUS Super Alloy Power technology that promises 15% higher performance, 2.5 times the lifespan, and temperatures 35 degrees cooler than reference NVIDIA cards. The GT640-2GD3 supports up to four monitors, while the other three cards support up to three monitors each, and all can output to 3D HDTV.
For those hungry for Thunderbolt technology, ASUS announced an add-in card called the ThunderboltEX that slots into the company’s P8Z77 and P8H77 motherboards; more details will be available once the device clears certification.
RoG Maximum V Formula
ASUS also sent us some photos of its (clockwise from top L) RoG G75 gaming notebook, RoG Matrix HD7970 graphics card, Maximus V Extreme motherboard (with OC key), Xonar Phoebus soundcard, and RoG Vulcan and Orion gaming headsets.
You already heard all about Gigabyte’s new X11, U2442, and U2440 ultrabooks, but that was just the tip of the iceberg. Gigabyte also outed its 7-series motherboards with Thunderbolt, as well as support for 3rd-generation Intel CPUs and Gigabyte All Digital Power, Gigabyte UEFI DualBIOS, and Gigabyte 3D BIOS on board. The company also debuted workstation-class X79S motherboards, which are geared for high reliability and enterprise-class storage.
On the graphics side, Gigabyte took the wraps off of its GeForce GTX 680 Super Overclock Edition card that features WINDFORCE 5X cooling, Extreme Dual BIOS, GPU Gauntlet Sorting, and Ultra Durable VGA or VGA+.
In terms of peripherals and cases, Gigabyte offered up the Aivia Osmium Mechanical keyboard and Aivia Krypton Dual-chassis gaming mouse; SkyVision WS100 wireless kit for transmitting HD or Blu-ray content from an HDMI device to an HDTV; a new line of Sumo PSUs, featuring the 80 Plus Platinum-certified Sumo Platinum 1250W; and a pair of Sumo cases that support graphics cards up to 330mm, USB 3.0, and six fans.
Smartphones? Yep, Gigabyte did smartphones, too, announcing the GSmart G1342 and G1362. The former is billed as the world’s first Android 4.0 dual-SIM/dual-standby smartphone, and both devices sports 4.3-inch displays, 1.2GHz dual-core CPUs, 512MB of memory, 5MP rear-facing and 0.3MP front-facing cameras.
MSI also unleashed a ton of products at Computex, starting with a pile of notebooks. The company showed off the GT60, GT70, GE60, and GE70 we’ve already told you about, as well as a new line of C-series multimedia notebooks.
The C-series line of notebooks consists of the the CX70, CR70, CX61, CR61, and CR41. Predictably, they’re run Intel “Core i” processors--no word on whether that’s Core i3, Core i5, Core i7, or all three--as well as some high-end NVIDIA graphics. The CX70 and CX61, at least, will rock the NVIDIA GT640M GPU as well as MSI’s GPU boost technology, which dynamically switches between discrete and integrated graphics in order to save battery life. All the C-series notebooks will boast SRS PC sound, USB 3.0 ports, HDMI 1.4a, and Bluetooth 4.0.
All of MSI’s motherboards are built with Military Class III components, and there are several more boards landing soon, including the all-new X79 and Z77 MPower line. Designed for overclocking, the MPower boards are put through stress tests to ensure they can handle all the overclocking users can throw at them.
Not neglecting AMD-based motherboards, MSI announced the A85XA-G65, which supports AMD’s Trinity APU and a Hybrid Digital Power design for stability and fairly granular controls for overclocking voltages. It will also be equipped with the OC Genie II easy overclocking tool.
New MSI graphics cards abound, including cards in the Lightning, Hawk, and Power Edition lines. The company is introducing the HD 7970 Lightning and GTX 680 Lightning, both of which feature an Unlocked Digital Power architecture that includes an Unlocked BIOS and digital PWM chip, as well as the GPU Reactor backplate that is designed to enhance stability when overclocking. The same technology is also present in the HD 7870 Hawk, and MSI’s GTX 670 Power Edition features Triple Overvoltage technology, which is designed to bump up overclocking capabilities to 22.5% over reference designs.
MSI graphics cards’ capabilities are enhanced by the Twin Frozr IV and TransThermal Cooling, which feature Dust Removal technology that spin the fans in reverse briefly on startup to blow out any build-up. Twin Frozr IV also features Propeller Blade, dual temperature-controlled fans, and SuperPipe technologies to balance performance and noise, and the TransThermal design makes it possible to add more fans when necessary.