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The ASUS XG Station is connected via a dongle to the notebook ExpressCard interface
ASUS introduces the world's first external graphics card for notebook users

ASUS today introduced a dedicated external graphics card for laptops -- the XG Station. The XG Station is an external graphics card that allows laptop users to enjoy high end graphics performance while plugged in. As the XG Station is an external graphics it can be unplugged when portability is needed.

The XG Station connects to any notebook’s ExpressCard slot and provides a PCI Express x16 slot for graphics cards. Since ASUS has opted to equip the XG Station with a standard PCI Express x16 slot, the station can be equipped with any PCI Express based graphics card: AMD, NVIDIA or even Matrox. ASUS launched the default XG Station with an NVIDIA 7900GS powered graphics card.

The XG Station is powered externally.  A separate power brick plugs directly into the adaptor.

An integrated LCD display and control also grace the XG Station. The display is customizable and can display information such as frame rate, fan speed, GPU temperature and more while the control knob can change various settings of the XG Station such as the core and memory clocks.

Expect ASUS to release the XG Station in Q2'07 this year. Pricing of the XG Station is unknown at the moment.

The XG Station adaptor only interfaces with ExpressCard interfaces at the moment, but will work with with PCIe ExpressCard interfaces installed in a desktop PC.

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By vdig on 1/8/2007 1:03:21 PM , Rating: 2
Core 2 Duo does exist in the laptop markets, so CPU is not a problem. Memory can reach desktop sizes of 2-4 GB as well. I have 2 GB myself. Sound card? There is Creative's portable line. Only big problems are the power and the video card. Don't expect gaming laptops to be powered for long on a battery. That is what the AC adapter is for.

Finally, this new device helps alleviate the dilemma of not having room in the laptop for a gaming grade video card solution. Heck, if you wanted a GeForce 8800 board for a laptop, this is the only way to go (for now). Portability will hurt a bit, but it is by far lighter than lugging a full blown desktop rig. Nice for playing at a hotel or at out of town locations.

By borowki on 1/8/2007 1:46:09 PM , Rating: 2
Judging by the picture, I doubt you can use a dual slot card in the thing. Heat issues clearly will be worse in a small enclosure.

The claim of performance at "factor of nine over integrated solutions" give you an idea of what to expect. Nine times three, four frames a second is not a lot.

By vdig on 1/8/2007 3:29:36 PM , Rating: 2
3x9 is 27 fps.
4x9 is 36 fps.
I would assume this is with the video card that comes with the kit. At any rate, the difference between 3, 4 fps to 27-36 fps is the difference between Oblivion screenshot slide shows and actually playing the game. I think people can survive with 25-30 frames. Further, we do not know the true power of the dark si... er, the XG Station. Could be better with different cards. I just hope it is capable of even better, or that there is an even better version coming for beefier cards. My brother, who can really benefit from this, is a real graphics nut.

For now, I will say this:

Stay tuned to this channel (DailyTech) for further developments ;)

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