Print 33 comment(s) - last by CloudFire.. on Dec 28 at 6:55 AM

HP Firebird PC 803  (Source: Engadget)
HP's new Firebird gets leaked and looks pretty sweet

Voodoo was a long time player in the boutique gaming PC industry and when it was purchased by HP many gaming enthusiasts figured that Voodoo would be gelded. However, the gaming company continued making some interesting desktop and laptop gaming machines.

The first Voodoo and HP system to come from the purchase was called the HP Blackbird 002. It was an interesting rig with a price tag that was higher than most were willing to spend. Add the cost to the fact that you could build the rig for much less than HP and Voodoo were asking for it and the machine was scorned by many gamers and computer enthusiasts.

Engadget has posted up some details on the next Voodoo DNA infused computer to come out of HP. The machine is called the HP Firebird PC 803 and looks like a much larger version of the Eee Box to my eyes. To save space most of the internal components are turned on their side, making for a chassis that is thinner on the front than typical computers.

Crammed inside the attractive case is an Intel Core 2 Quad Q9550 2.83 GHz CPU, NVIDIA nForce 760i SLI chipset, 4GB of RAM, dual NVIDIA 9800S video cards, Wi-Fi, and dual 320GB HDDs. A Blu-ray player is also integrated to make the machine a capable HTPC as well.

One interesting feature of the Firebird is that it uses an external power supply to allow for the thin form factor. That also helps reduce the heat produced inside the chassis. Perhaps the most important specification of the system is still unknown -- the price. Anything with Voodoo's name on it isn’t cheap, so don’t expect a bargain, but it should be considerably cheaper than the Blackbird 002.

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By wideout on 12/23/2008 2:17:01 PM , Rating: 2
I do admit I don't have the money to buy PC made by the Falcon NW's and the Voodoo PC's of the world. But I sure like looking and drooling at them and fantasizing what I would do if I came into a possession of one those aesthetically pleasing machines.

However, this thing leaves little to be desired. In my humble opinion, it is more reminiscent of a giant router than a HTPC, PC, or standard home theater equipment. It doesn't have aesthetic looks, amazing performance, or a combination of both. I’d much rather see them fiddle around with a slightly large chassis to either improve performance or looks.

RE: Ho-Hum
By Screwballl on 12/23/2008 2:20:29 PM , Rating: 2
This is being released for the non-tech types... to make them think they are getting "massive power in a small package"... when once again the typical computer builder can get the same parts and pieces (aside from case and PSU) for much cheaper, based on the numbers, I would say well under $1000.

RE: Ho-Hum
By kristof007 on 12/23/08, Rating: 0
RE: Ho-Hum
By afkrotch on 12/23/2008 3:00:13 PM , Rating: 2
Lol, another person who doesn't know prices. All that can easily be had for under $1000.

The problem is, the specs on the homebuilt will be better of course, since they aren't using these special made OEM items.

No 760i chipset or 9800S cards. If those aren't typos, they aren't available for your average consumer. Anyways, something I priced out, which of course you can swap to cheaper parts.

Intel Core 2 Quad Q9550 2.83 ghz
Asus P5N-T Deluxe 780i SLI mobo
Corsair Dominator DDR2-1066 4 GB
Antec NeoPower 650 Blue PSU
two EVGA Geforce 9800GT
two WD SE 500 gig hdds (same price as 320 gb)
Raidmax xB case

$1125.91 (at Newegg)

I went with good parts, cause I hate to skimp and go ultra cheap (cept the case, cause it's a case). Anyone system builder knows that you can easily drop the price below $1000, while putting in a copy of XP/Vista too.

RE: Ho-Hum
By GodLovesPunk on 12/23/2008 3:05:41 PM , Rating: 2
Was about to do the same thing.. Can easily build a better computer than the Voodoo for under $1000

RE: Ho-Hum
By afkrotch on 12/23/2008 3:07:48 PM , Rating: 2
Lol, forgot to add in a blu-ray drive. Guess you can always drop the mobo for something that's not $200.

RE: Ho-Hum
By Alpha4 on 12/23/2008 4:18:37 PM , Rating: 2
At the time of writing this comment, a Blu-Ray rom can be had for as low as $89.00 plus shipping:


RE: Ho-Hum
By Screwballl on 12/23/2008 9:27:13 PM , Rating: 2
RE: Ho-Hum
By eye smite on 12/23/2008 7:51:16 PM , Rating: 2
Still, for those that can't or don't know how to build a machine it's a tempting offer. Looks like a nice machine. Would I buy one? No. lol

RE: Ho-Hum
By Screwballl on 12/23/2008 9:31:26 PM , Rating: 2
A quad core CPU and dual 9800 GFX cards under $1,000? Really?

Yes... BUT they said 9800S which no doubt will be weaker than a GT, probably lower than a GS. Think along the lines of a 9600GT or so. A simple build from newegg (someone built a better system for $1,100 in this same parent thread).

This all boils down to the build vs buy... 99% of the time it is better to build if you have the knowledge and capability.

RE: Ho-Hum
By headbox on 12/24/2008 5:48:29 AM , Rating: 3
...and 99% of people don't have the knowledge and capability.

RE: Ho-Hum
By afkrotch on 12/24/2008 10:14:25 AM , Rating: 1
It's hardly rocket chemistry here. Anyone can build a comp, it's that they don't want to spend the 10 mins to learn about it.

A simple search on google and everything you'd need is there. Hell, I used google to help me replace a clutch cable on my car.

It's not that they don't have the knowledge or capability. It's that they are way too lazy to bother doing it. Giving excuses of "it's a hassle, I don't know, blah blah blah."

RE: Ho-Hum
By CloudFire on 12/28/2008 6:41:07 AM , Rating: 2
building one from scratch can be researched online, but then they run into a technical problem which can be software or hardware related and they would be screwed. it takes alot more to figure and trouble shoot a computer and what parts to buy then to just slap random parts together and expect it to work well. i figured you spent 10 mins on google and are now a computer pro.

RE: Ho-Hum
By edborden on 12/23/2008 2:33:09 PM , Rating: 2
Anyone catch Rahul's rant on his blog calling this the next level of innovation for the gaming PC industry? I think it's the most hypocritical nonsense this year. Blogged:

RE: Ho-Hum
By wideout on 12/23/2008 3:22:28 PM , Rating: 4
Do you remember when you use to game with a 200MHz Pentium with 32 MB of Ram? You remember that if you wanted top tier gaming performance you would buy a $149 Voodoo graphics card? Can't really do that anymore.

I think he has a valid point. When you have to start calculating the power used from your PC as a factor in your budget, you have to start thinking something needs to change with PC Gaming.

RE: Ho-Hum
By noirsoft on 12/24/2008 1:40:08 AM , Rating: 3
By the time a Voodoo card was $149 it was far from top-tier. The fact is, top-tier video cards have always been in the $300 to $500 range. I paid that much for a 4 meg video card 15 years ago, and again every few years up to when I bought my 7900GX2. I've finally decided that mid-end cards are "good enough" and doubt I will spend that much again.

Furthermore, top-of-the-line PCs used to cost in the $3k to $5k range, even if you built them yourself. It's only in the past few years that you could build a top machine for under $2k. For computers, there are no "good old days" it was always slower and more expensive.

RE: Ho-Hum
By ICE1966 on 12/26/2008 3:55:04 AM , Rating: 2
this is a system that I may order after Christmas. It's from Falcon Northwest.

ICON Exotix - Single Color
ICON Standard Solid
Silverstone 1200Watt Strider - Modular
Asus M3A32-MVP Deluxe
AMD Phenom 9950 4x 2.6Ghz Black Editions
AMD CPU Cooler
8GB (4X2GB) 800MHZ DDR2
2x ATI HD4870X2 2GB DDR5
CL X-Fi Titanium Fatality Champion PCIE
Raid 0+1 - Requires 4 Identical Drives
VelociRaptor 300GB 10KRPM 16MB Cache
VelociRaptor 300GB 10KRPM 16MB Cache
VelociRaptor 300GB 10KRPM 16MB Cache
VelociRaptor 300GB 10KRPM 16MB Cache
LG Blu-Ray-RW/HD-Rom/DVD+-RWwith Power
LG Blu-Ray-RW/HD-Rom/DVD+-RWwith Power
Ultra Flash Media & Floppy Drive
Windows Vista Home Premium - 64 Bit
Logitech Gaming G-15
Logitech G9 Laser Mouse
Samsung 30 - 2560x1600
Logitech Z-5500 Digital 5.1
Creative Labs Fatal1ty Headset
Monster Power 800HP
Falcon Northwest T-Shirt (XXL)
Falcon Northwest Mouse Pad

Known issues with this configuration: None

System Price: $ 9,283.00

Price with UPS Ground $ 9,565.08
Price with UPS 2-Day $ 9,869.52
Price with UPS Overnight $10,191.16
Price with USPS Service to Military $10,143.00

I will look at Voodoo also. I may give Alienware a look also. The people at Falcon were really cool when I talked to them about 2 weeks ago.

I may just build a system myself, but it would be nice to have this one. You only live once, why not push it.

RE: Ho-Hum
By CloudFire on 12/28/2008 6:52:54 AM , Rating: 2
that is an EPIC waste of money. it's your money and your call. you give me 5g's, and i will build a computer that is faster than what your are buying there. let me show u a few areas that are obsolete

1. AMD 9950 BE? i would go with an i7 940, OC it, and it will smoke the 9950.

2. 8GB ddr2 800mhz? i'll go with either 6 or 12gbs of DDR3 ram.

3. Logitech G9 - epic waste of money. this is an uncomfortable mouse to use and no one is ever going to use it's max. DPI. a G5 is a much better deal/experience to use.

4.why are you running raid 0-1? if you want speed, might as well get an SSD drive as your main drive for OS/programs and a 1tb drive for storage.

5. creative labs fatality headset - waste of money. they use fatality's name to slap on a heavier $$$$$$ tag, which you have.

6. Logitech Z-5500. great sound system, i have it. but they are probably overcharging you for it when you can buy it for around 175-200$ at other retailers yourself.

7. and finally you don't need a 4870x2 x2. there are only a few games out there that can't be run well with very high settings at your reso. ie. crysis/GTA IV.

and best of all, if you even buy this computer, it'll be outdated within 6 months or so. ATI's HD 58xx series is coming out next year, so i rather be looking forward to that.

“So far we have not seen a single Android device that does not infringe on our patents." -- Microsoft General Counsel Brad Smith
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