The Hottest Products of CES 2011

EVGA GeForce X2, Corsair SP 2500, G1-Killer

GIGABYTE G1-Killer Motherboards:
GIGABYTE showed off an array of high-end motherboards targeted squarely at hardcore gamers at CES. GIGABYTE’s G1-Killer line of motherboards as they are known sport a number of features and aesthetic touches that not only set them apart from more generic boards, but address specific wants of many gamers.

The G1 Killer line of boards will initially consist of three X58-Express based products for Socket 1366 Intel Core i7 processors. The boards sport a black and green color scheme meant to conjure images of military equipment, with heatsinks that are designed to look like the clip and barrel of an assault rifle. In addition to the unique aesthetics, integrated Creative Labs X-Fi 20k2 audio processors (except for the G1.Guerilla) provide high-end integrated audio. And integrated Killer 2100 network controllers provide better ping times and throughput than other el-cheapo integrated NICs.


The GIGABYTE G1.Assassin, G1.Sniper, and G1.Guerrilla. And Mat With A Gaggle of Hotties.

Other accoutrements include a ton of USB 3.0 and 2.0 ports, amplified front panel audio outputs, and easy 1-touch overclocking controls, among numerous other features. All of the G1.Killer boards also sport GIGABYTE's Ultra Durable 3 technology, which means they're outfitted with Japanese Solid Capacitors, 2x Copper PCBs, and Ferrite core chokes with higher energy efficiency compared to more common iron core chokes and Lower RDS(on) MOSFETs for reduced power consumption and heat output. We should also note that the audio channels use Nichicon MUSE ES series and MW series Bi-Polarized audio capacitors on each channel--Nichicon MUSE caps are typically reserved for high-end audio components.

Corsair Gaming Audio Series SP2500 High-power 2.1 PC Speaker System:
Corsair had an excellent set of PC speakers on display at their booth that is sure to be a hit with enthusiasts that don’t have the room for a true multi-channel speaker setup. The Corsair Gaming Audio Series SP2500 High-power 2.1 PC Speaker System offers exceptional sound quality and sports a number of features that help set them apart from basic, amplified PC speakers.

Let’s start with the satellites. Each satellite speaker features a 3” midrange driver and a custom-designed 1” ferrofluid-cooled, silk dome tweeter. And each driver in the satellites is paired to its own Class-D amplifier. In addition, the system uses dynamic digital crossovers, so the midrange driver and tweeter are fed only the frequencies they are designed to reproduce, at power levels they are designed to handle. The combination of dedicated amplifiers with digital crossovers results in excellent reproduction and virtually any volume level.

Corsair Gaming Audio Series SP2500 High-power 2.1 PC Speaker System

Click To Enlarge

Moving on to the subwoofer, the relatively large sub enclosure uses a fourth-order closed bandpass design with a tuned port and an 8” driver. The design limits frequency response somewhat, but helps minimize distortion. In the less-than-optimal environment of the show, the bass coming from the Corsair Gaming Audio Series SP2500 system was impressive.

The Corsair Gaming Audio Series SP2500 speakers also include a control pod with a small color LCD. In addition to altering the volume (obviously), the control pod can dynamically adjust the DSP programs and EQ curves for late night listening, environment simulation, and optimal enjoyment of games and movies, etc.

Total output of the system is rated at 232 watts, measured via the FTC “RMS” method. Corsair states the wattages are the result of sine wave continuous average power output measurements and not “peak” or maximum power output, which can sometimes be misleading.

EVGA's Unnamed Dual-GeForce GPU Powered Graphics Card:
EVGA had a very interesting video card tucked away in a remote corner of their suite at the Wynn Hotel; a dual-GeForce GPU powered behemoth that’s mostly likely being prepped to do battle with AMD’s upcoming “Antilles” product, otherwise known as the Radeon HD 6990.

Details were scarce regarding this dual-GPU powerhouse, and a couple of reps from NVIDIA wouldn’t even acknowledge its existence, but there are some details we can glean just by checking out the pics.

Click To Enlarge

The card you see pictured here will most likely be a new member of the GeForce GTX 500 series, but exactly which GPUs are used on the card was not disclosed. Considering the fact that there are only two 8-pin power connectors on the card and that only four memory chips per GPU are visible on the PCB, it suggests a 256-bit memory interface and power requirements far lower than pair of GeForce GTX 570s. There are also far fewer surface mounted components behind each GPU than a typical GF110-based card, so we’re going to guess that this card features an as-yet-unreleased GPU in the GeForce 500 series that will likely replace the GF104 currently used by the GeForce GTX 460. If you remember, the GF104 used on the GTX460 doesn’t have its full complement of shaders enabled, so it’s likely NVIDIA is prepping a revision of the chip that can reach its full potential—as the company did with the GF110, which was basically a revamped GF100.

The card features a custom designed 3-fan cooler and its output configuration can accommodate up to four displays. And since this is essentially SLI on a single-card, NVIDIA 3D Vision Surround implementations should be possible. So when can we expect to see it hit the streets? The EVGA contact told us it would be available before March. We’re hoping to have more details on this puppy in the coming weeks.

Related content