CES Day 1 - Benjamin "Zeus" Heide

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CES officially kicked off on Monday, January 7 (now yesterday - it's late), and we managed to go through the Sands and meet with a few companies and catch a glimpse at a lot of new products from some familiar companies and some companies that we'd never heard of before.  It's unbelievable how wide the range of products is at this show.  Just when you think you've seen everything in terms of consumer electronics, something up and surprises you.  More on that later.

 

Able Planet 

One of our first stops of the day was at Able Planet, and while I'm sure not many of you have even heard of Able Planet, with their quality and performance headphones now marketed towards gamers, I'm sure you will.

Able Planet
Able Planet Booth
 Magneto
Magneto

 

 

Able Planet has its foundation in as a hearing loss assistance company and they use the same technologies that help deaf people hear to make their sound better.  It's about harmonics and after listening to their Wireless headphones, behind the neck headphones and using their active noise cancelling headphones, I'd have to say that it is far superior to products from Bose and others.  The beautiful thing is that the price point of the high-end noise cancelling headphones is $80 less that Bose.


CoolIT

Out next stop took us by the CoolIT booth.  If you've been a reader of BCCHardware for a while, you've no doubt heard of this company as we've reviewed their Freezone, Eliminator, and MTEC Control Unit.  At the show this year they debuted a few new products and despite some issues at Customs, they managed to get all their gear to the booth by 11:00am on the first day.

Pure
Pure
Freezone Elite
Freezone Elite

 

The "Pure" is a TEC-less water cooling system that come pre-plumbed, filled and ready to go.  This is their entry-level cooling solution and is supposed to hit shelves at $129USD.  I have a feeling that we'll see it online for a little over a hundred in the coming months.  The Freezone Elite is their latest incarnation of the Freezone and has a nice black finish.  It also comes with the MTEC control center for those of you that don't want to go out and add this unit on later.

Chipset Cooling
Chipset Cooling
 Freezone Elite & Chipset
Freezone Elite & Chipset

 

 ATi Crossfire Cooler
ATi Crossfire Cooler
nVidia SLI Cooling
nVidia SLI Cooling

 

In the Gallery we've got many more pictures of CoolIT Hardware so make sure you check it out.

 

Enermax:

Next up, we stopped by the Enermax booth to see what was new and exciting from Enermax.  If you've been an enthusiast for more than a couple years, you've probably had an Enermax Power Supply in your system.  Back in the early days, they were pretty much the only enthusiast oriented PSU company around.  I bought my first 450W PSU from them years ago.

Enermax Case
Enermax Case

 

While they didn't have anything new and exciting to debut in the PSU end of things, there were showcasing their cases and even some of their peripheral input devices like keyboards.  You can find more of this in the gallery.

 

ITX Motherboards

We want our PCs to do more and more, but take up less space, run quieter and integrate with our life.  This is a pretty big demand and often it can require a little motherboard.  As we cruised the show floor in the Sands, I spotted a display of ITX motherboards that caught my eye.

ITX Mobo
ITX Mobo

 

 Four NICs
Four NICs
Intel Powered
Intel Powered

 

Kingmax

DDR3 is the new big thing and even though it's actually not all that big, pretty much every company is getting into DDR3 in order to stay current and show that they are worth considering when building your next performance PC.  Kingmax is not a name you'd associate with High Performance DDR3 here in North America, but they had several enthusiast oriented kits and even have prototypes of their new 2000MHz DDR3 on display.

 2GHz DDR3 from Kingmax
2GHz DDR3 from Kingmax

 

They plan to launch this memory in the near future and we are hoping to get a kit to compare with other DDR3 in a shootout of sorts here soon.  It would be interesting to see how an offering from Kingmax compares to brand name kits like Corsair, Crucial and Super Talent.

 

Barbie and Clean Bums

Barbie even had a present here at the show this year.  After Fujitsu gave me the privilege of sleeping in his Barbie Bed a few nights ago, I couldn't resist the opportunity to show case his favourite new booth.  I'm not sure what Barbie has to do with consumer electronics, but it's here.

Barbie
Barbie

 

Some things you just can't make up.  As we were walking down the show floor, Fujitsu just about lost it behind me.  He was laughing hysterically, and called me back to see what was so funny.  I had to break out my camera and show how much a company loves clean butts.

...and I cannot lie...
...and I cannot lie...

 

This product is apparently an add-on bidet.  It washes you butt and makes it clean.  We all love clean butt.

 

Super Talent

Super Talent has a fairly large booth in the Sands again this year and while a few years ago this company was relatively unknown in the enthusiast segment, they now have a line of memory products that power some of the highest overclocked computers in the world.  Their DDR3 is currently some of the fastest memory available and their line-up is quite impressive.

Memory Lineup
Memory Lineup

 

They are currently shipping DDR3 up to 1866MHz and will have 4GB kits of this memory (2GB / stick) available in the near future.

Super Talent is also into SSD storage and they have a wide variety of SSD drives in their catalogue.  Drives range in size from 8GB to 256GB and are available in form factors from 1.3" units to 3.5" desktop drives.  SSD storage will really change the face of computing and 2008 looks like a year where prices could drop, technology get faster and SSD could actually be practical for many people.

SSD Drives
SSD Drives
 Inside an SSD Drive
Inside an SSD Drive


Super Talent also has a massive array of flash storage products including Flash drives and media players.  We have pictures of these in the gallery for your viewing pleasure.

 Atomic SuperTalent PSU
Atomic Super Talent PSU

One last Super Talent product that we are pretty interested in is their ATOMIC power supplies.  This power supplies have some innovative quality features that should make them rock solid in your system.  We didn't bring down a load tester and our scope so we'll have to wait until we have one of these units on our bench before we can draw any conclusions.  Their initial offerings will be rated up to 700W.

 

Tagan

If you talk about power supplies with enthusiasts for a while, one name that is likely to come up is Tagan.  They make solid, reliable PSUs that are designed from the ground up for performance and stability.  They also have some cases that you'll either love or hate depending on your taste.  We managed to snap a picture of the El Diablo case and their new color-coded modular PSU.

 El Diablo
El Diablo
Tagan PSU
Tagan PSU

 

The El Diablo case has a large, large 36cm fan on the side with a 25cm fan on the front.  These fans thankfully spin quite slowly.  If they didn't you could easily lose a finger or your hardware would get sucked into the blades and be destroyed.

 

Team Memory

The last stop for me of the day was over at the Team memory booth.  Team is another name that doesn't have a huge presence here in Canada or the USA, but they could.  They carry a wide array of Flash, SSD, DDR2 and DDR3 memory.  This year they plan on releasing DDR3 that comes clocked in at an incredible 2133MHz.  It will be a race between a few companies to see who has it available on a retail shelf first.

SATA & IDE SSD
SATA & IDE SSD
"Elite" Lineup
"Elite" Lineup


  2133MHz DDR3
2133MHz DDR3

 

That wraps up my Day 1 coverage.  Tuesday we spend at the LVCC and with some bigger named companies.  You'll have to wait until tonight to see what we saw, and if there are any more clean butt lovers at the LVCC.  In the meantime, make sure you check out our Daily CES Coverage section as well as our Daily updated CES Gallery.