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Computex 06 - Allan "Zardon" Campbell

I set forth on Monday morning with my friend and fellow Driver Heaven director Mark Reed to Taipei to Computex. For those of you who don't know, Computex Taipei (formal name: Taipei International Information Technology Show) is a computer expo held annually at the Taipei World Trade Center in Taipei, Taiwan. The first Computex expo held in 1981 started out as a place where small and medium sized businesses in Taiwan's nasscient computer industry could display their products. Today you find a much wider array of companies displaying their current and forthcoming products.

Taipei is, I have to say not a wonderfully exciting place and it tends to rain quite often which would be bearable if it wasn't for the terrible 100% humidity, it makes outdoor excursions rather painful over long distances, but oh the joys of air-conditioned buildings!

For the last few days we have been for the most part involved in meetings with many companies so it was only this afternoon I had a chance to travel around the various booths to chat with other company executives and to oogle the lovely asian ladies. Many of the booths will not hold much of an interest to our readership but there are some that will certainly get the tech juices flowing. So firstly let us take a look at the ATI section.

ATI

Ati had a booth at the Computex building, however the more interesting material was held in a private function room on the lower floor of the luxurious Hyatt Hotel.

For those of you who have never been in this particular hotel, there is a rather strange yet wonderful wooden "ball" right outside where ATI held their private meetings.


a few of the presentation "walls" in the ATI function room

One of the interesting new aspects to ATI technology is the introduction of "physics rendering" which works along similar lines to AGEIGA offerings we are all familar with, however this runs via software. This will certainly appeal to many people as it will not be taking another card slot in the end user's system, with less IRQ conflicts and power drains being a few of the benefits.

ATI's Godfrey Chang took great lengths to run various demonstrations and take us in for a private meeting detailing just how powerful ATI's intrepretation is, however rather than quote ATI figures an indepth analysis will be held in Driver Heaven labs at a later date. The image above left, shows a looping physics demo running on a X1600 series card, ATI claim this to be twice as fast running on the X1600 when compared with AGEIA's solution, and the X1900 series to be up to 9x faster! The "debris" on this demo was running so fast that you can see the camera blurring the image.

ATi were also demonstrating the Imageon range with dual screen and camera. The rendering quality is really excellent and will appeal to many users who value picture quality on their phone. Again we will not be delving into this right now and will instead be testing this shortly in our labs.

Corsair

Corsair had a private function room again in the Hyatt hotel and again we were invited for some refreshments and a chat. Corsair presented their forthcoming addition to the Driver Heaven award winning Nautilus 500 watercooling in the shape of GFX blocks for an SLI solution.

They also demonstrated their forthcoming DDR2 modules running at a shade under 1200mhz with CAS5 timings, and a sandra memtest score showing 11,300! An interesting design aspect is the change from heatspreaders to heatsink for cooling, with an optional fan attachment for extreme overclocking. You can see in the image below the three way fan design heatsink arrangement which is slotted on top of the ram modules totally obscuring them from view.

GEIL

Geil's stand really impressed me with DDR3 on display as well as an amazing heatpipe design for a range of their DDR2 modules. We have some exclusive material coming up shortly via GEIL so keep your eyes posted on Driver Heaven over the next few weeks.

In Win

Some of you may not have heard of "In Win", and indeed until recently their range of chassis design while functional was far from modern or attractive to enthusiast users or case modders. At Computex they had a wide array of chassis design on display ranging from stylish media design to funky gamer based systems.

Above you can see a lovely asian lady playing Need for Speed Most Wanted on one of the custom style gamer system from In Win, and above right, a functional and extremely stylish media center system for those who prefer the minimialist modern look ... lastly a UPS device to match the flamboyant gamers system. We will be looking more indepth at these chassis shortly on Driver Heaven.

Leadtek

Leadtek are renowned for selling some of the sexiest Nvidia hardware and their stand had a wide array of video cards on display as well as many system builds displaying high quality video footage. Strangely enough when we spoke with their representative, they had no GX2 on display.

 

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