Now that HP and Voodoo have joined forces, and the Blackbird 002 gaming system has been such a success, the Hewlett Packard booth at CES was as much geared towards gaming as it was towards the digital home and business-class systems.
The hardware enthusiasts among you will be interested in the various Voodoo OMEN rigs and Blackbird 002s on display, as well as the huge racing simulator. Show attendees could sit down and enjoy a race against friends or fellow attendees in a simulator complete with a large LCD and a drag-car inspired bucket seat. The Voodoo OMENs on display featured the company’s traditional super-clean wiring along with SLI and CrossFire graphics configurations. And the latest gold-plated OMEN was also being shown off outfitted with a pair of water-cooled GeForces and Corsair Dominator memory. Not too much to report on the Blackbird 002 front, other than the fact that HP has introduced more hardware options on their configurator website.
Shuttle had a small booth at CES and a related suite at a nearby hotel to showcase their wares. Of course there were a multitude of XPCs on display, including the flamed-out SDXi and another with information regarding a Shuttle-sponsored mod contest. Shuttle’s big news at the show, however, revolved around the newly announced kPC. The Shuttle kPC uses a custom Mini ITX chassis that is outfitted with and Intel 945G-chipset based motherboard, a Celeron 420 processor, a 60 to 80GB hard drive, 512MB of DDR2 RAM, and a 100 watt PSU. The whole package has an MSRP of only $199. And for the DIY-types, Shuttle plans to sell the kPC sans CPU, RAM, and storage for only $99.
In our opinion, Coolermaster had an exceptional CES. Not because of their booth – which was excellent in its own right – but because virtually every company that was showing off PC components used a Coolermaster Cosmos case to put it in. The Cosmos was simply all over the place.
Coolermaster’s booth was loaded with Cosmos cases as well, but alongside Coolermaster’s standard offerings the company showed off a new line of custom cases that are the result of collaboration between Coolermaster and Smooth Creations (the company that paints Shuttle’s SDXi). The CSX cases as they are known feature high quality finishes is a wide range of styles, from flame jobs to reflective diamond patterns. They’re going to be expensive, but CSX cases will certainly be top-of-the-line.
We should also note that Gigabyte partnered with Coolermaster for the game systems on display in the booth. All of the machines on display featured Gigabyte motherboards, including the company’s upcoming X48-based mobo, which we’ll be evaluating in the coming weeks.