Inroduction:

I believe the above picture sums up Comdex very well. I took this photo Wednesday at noon just outside the front door. With empty sidewalks and only one person around, this picture details the overall size of the show -- small. The weather was sunny with temperatures around 70 degrees, but that didn't help the attendance at all.

Here is a shot of the AT&T Wireless, Dell, and Microsoft booths. As you can clearly see, the Comdex 2003 floor was pretty open with very few new products shown when this photo was taken Tuesday afternoon. The one good thing about the low attendance was that the people who came were able to see everything in a timely manner and had the opportunity to receive personal attention from the company representatives on the floor.

We were suprised to see Enermax had a pretty large section at Comdex 2003 showing off many of their new cases and power supplies. Again, notice the sparse crowds in this shot.

Zalman was also at the show with two booths and had their fanless watercooler on display. I never honestly realized how large this cooler was until I got a chance to stand next to it. That's about it from the floor of Comdex. I was able to walk the entire floor in under an hour and didn't really see anything that impressed me. The majority of the four days I spent at Comdex was spent in privately arranged meetings that were held in various hotels around the Vegas Strip.

nVidia Press Conference:

We were invited by nVidia to attend the official press conference for the release of the NVIDIA® GeForce™ FX Go5700 mobile GPU. The Go5700 consumes less power than the Go5600 and also comes with PowerMizer 4.0 featuring NVIDIA SmartDimmer which is an intelligent power management method for extending battery life. On top of all this there is a significant performance jump from the Go5600! Less power consumption and increased performance is a very good thing.

nVidia nVidia invited representatives from both EPIC and Electronic Arts, who were on hand to endorse the new graphics solution. The above image shows live game play footage from Unreal Tournament 2004, but we also got the chance to see Medal of Honor: Pacific Assault. We later had the chance to play UT2004 on an Alienware laptop featuring the GeForce FX Go 5700 and the game play was excellent. We were told by nVidia that laptops featuring the Go 5700 should arrive on store shelves in early Janurary 2004.

ABIT:

ABIT was on hand showing off their motherboards and video cards. On display was also some systems running off their Guru overclocking technology along with their new server lines that have come out recently.

They had their SFF "Digidice" up and running and it looks a bit different from when we last saw it at QuakeCon 2003. They also claimed to have the “world’s fastest computer” running on an Abit IC7-G with an Intel P4 EE 3.2 GHz processor, but we heard this claim from a few companies while at Comdex 2003.

Albatron:

Albatron was on hand showing off their newest nVidia FX video cards along with their full motherboard line for both AMD and Intel processors.

DFI and ASUS:

DFI was in Vegas to promote their newly revised LAN Party 2 series of motherboards. DFI has made some significant changes on their i875 LAN Party board by actually changing the layout to aid in better overclocking. They have also tweaked the Revesion B boards BIOS's. We noted that the DFI Canterwood board now goes up to 2.9 Volts for the memory. Looks like DFI is aiming to please the enthusiast community and we will be showing you how these new boards perform shortly.

AOpen:

AOpen was on hand showing off their very large line of products. They showcased the newest nVidia 5950 GPU's running dawn demos and also their full optical drive, case, speaker, motherboard, laptop, and video card lines.

ASUS:

ASUS had more people on hand than any other company we covered. It was their first time to Comdex, so they wanted to give all their invited guests the best show and indeed they did. Above we caught Diana from ASUS playing some UT on their "Dream Machine" featuring all ASUS parts and an Intel EE processor. It is always good seeing people from a company using their own products!

ASUS carries both nVidia and ATI graphics card solutions, which were both on display. The above right image shows ASUS's new heat sink design with their name built in. Pretty nifty, but when you install the card the text is upside down. They should be correcting this shortly.

Conclusion:

Comdex itself was nothing exciting. We didn't get to see many new products and not much was being given away or shown off. The days of free drinks and 250,000+ people are long gone. Everyone on the street thought that Comdex might not be back again. Feedback from the companies was mostly about CES which is upcoming in Janurary 2003. The cab drivers were upset at how few people were there, but it was nice being able to have a cab in under five minutes.

I am currently planning my next trip to Vegas for the CES show in January 2004! Until then I hope you enjoyed our coverage and the quick look behind the scenes.