Introduction:

ASUS Version 8.01
The Show Floor

ATI Catalyst 4.8
Semi-Truck Anyone?

For a couple hours every day Intel allowed press and forum attendees to walk through the technology showcase and spend time with the companies who paid to have booths. What was nice about IDF is that the number of people attending the show is under 6,000 including the press, which was an army of 600 key domestic and international story hunters. Although for some this may seem like a large forum, but overall the event was small and private. Everyone that walked the show floor could easily talk with the companies who had booths. So for developers wanting to hold a private one on one conversation with a company they want to partner with this was the ideal place to get your foot in the door. The Intel Technology Showcase is not about having booth babes or radical demo systems. It is about giving developers access to key companies in the industry that they may want to partner with. Lets go ahead and see what the show had on display with focus on what our desktop readers would be interested in.

ASUS Version 8.01
Nvidia's Booth & Green Screen

ATI Catalyst 4.8
SLI & DOOM 3

Nvidia had the just launched Geforce 6600 GT's on display for everyone to take a look at. They also had some Geforce 6800 Ultras running on Supermicro boards supporting the 16X and 8X PCI-E slots. We saw similiar systems down in Dallas for Quakecon 2004, but it is always fun to take one of these demo systems for a spin. The developers at the showcase are not the gamer types, so there was never a long line for these demo machines. Everyone around the booth seemed to enjoy gaming on the SLI systems, but I'm not sure how much was the cards and the huge wide screen LCD displays they were using.

ASUS Version 8.01
ATI Technologies Inc.

ATI Catalyst 4.8
ATI's X600XT AIW

ATI was on hand showing off their X600XT AIW PCI-Express card and also the ATI TV Tuner that is based on the 1x PCI-e slot. THe TV Tuner has full DVI, VGA and HDTV support, but it is only have the option for an HDTV input.

ASUS Version 8.01
Corsair XMS

ATI Catalyst 4.8
Kingston HyperX

Corsair and Kingston were on hand showing off their enthusiast lines of memory. Corsair had a system up and running PC2-5400 Pro modules and was showing a new memory configuator that Corsair will soon have up on their public website. The configuator will help aid consumers in finding which modules will work best for your motherboard/chipset combination. Corsair also had some interesting news on the water cooling side of things though. Turns out that Corsair will no longer be working with Delphi on their future projects.

Kingston had a clear cased demo system running some of their new PC2-5400 HyperX modules. They also had some of their new generation DataTraveler that have read speeds up to 19MB/sec and write speeds of up to 13MB/sec. Their original USB key had a maximum sustained write speed of only 1.5MB/sec, so the new generation is up to 9 times faster than the original. That should be a night and day difference and make a great product even better.

More:

ASUS Version 8.01
Spray Cooling Technology

ATI Catalyst 4.8
1U Server Rack Water Cooling

SprayCool Solutions was on hand showing some of their "spray" products. The above left image was showing the live demonstration and was one of the more impressive things on display on the show floor. This type of sealed cooling will allow companies to run high performance systems without having to install air-conditioning or purification, which in the long run will reducing installation overhead and operating costs.  The also were showing some SprayCool Rack Mount Enclosures that were using low profile water blocks that would fit in 1U rack mount enclosures.

ASUS Version 8.01
AVC's Booth Display

ATI Catalyst 4.8
BTX Cooling Solutions

Asia Vital Components CO., LTD was showing many BTX cooling solutions and had one BTX chassis on display. Their Balanced Technology Extended (BTX) heat sink fan units looked more like what we have been seeing for many months. Nothing new here from AVC since we last saw them over in Taiwan for Computex 2004.

ASUS Version 8.01
CCI's Booth Front

ATI Catalyst 4.8
A Very Unique BTX Cooling Solution

Intel teamed up with Chaun Choung Technology Corp. (CCI), to help develop a cooling solution to handle the socket 775 platforms and continues to work with them today on new designs. CCI is the company that came up with the Intel Radial Curved Bifurcated Fin Heatsink (or RCBFH-3 Reference Design) that we have all seen with the launch of retail Socket T processors. The had several interesting heat sink designs being displayed, but their BTX design looks the most interesting. The solid copper heatsink has a solid base and different sized heat sink "cooling towers" that are used to pull heat away from the processor. CCI also showed us the inside of some current heat pipes that are used on laptops. The level of detail is amazing inside them! There are small "capillaries" on the tubes that help increase the internal surface area and while the design is good for now CCI is planning on making some advances in the design. All this is thanks to Intel, as they have given them funding to do their research. You can safely bet that some in China are hard at work using CAD Design Software to design better heat pipes.

ASUS Version 8.01
Elpida FB-DIMM DDR2 Modules

When walking past the Elpida booth we saw these modules laying out in the open. After picking them up and taking a good look at them we found that they are the pre-production Elpida FB-DIMM samples. The large buffer chipset in the middle is what really makes the module stand out from current DDR2 modules. After asking the memory group about the buffer chip we found out that the chip would put out 3.5-4w when it comes to power dissipation per buffer chip. This chip will also help control the thermal management of the entire module. Meaning it can throttle each DIMM down independently if one gets too hot our is running out of specifications. The FB-DIMM's are for server applications only, so if you are hoping for something like this on the desktop side you are out of luck.

ASUS Version 8.01
Time To Leave The Show

As with all good things the show must come to an end for now, but we will be back next year!