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Sood, right, working with the HP team on the Misto touch interface
Six months after HP absorbed the boutique vendor Voodoo PC, the company sheds some light on its eventual plans

Late last week Hewlett-Packard showcased the fruits of its Voodoo PC acquisition and the HP Labs development team. 

"It became clear that there has been work going on even prior to the Voodoo acquisition and now the wheels are spinning freely, and things are anything but status quo," said HP Global Gaming Chief Technology Officer and DailyTech Blogger Rahul Sood.

Much of HP's showcase included technology derived from HP Labs projects.  HP's Misto project, for example, integrates a 50" touch screen into a coffee table.  The interface is designed as a proof-of-concept for gamers, but Sood isn't discounting its usefulness for other applications.

"Well, we have been exploring all types of technologies which pertain to gaming, including handheld, display, interface, and many others.  We have enough intellectual property within HP to wallpaper the building," states Sood.  "These research scientists within HP Labs are absolute geniuses, they have some interesting projects yet to be unveiled.  The interesting thing is many of the projects they are working on are not specific to gaming - we have recognized these areas and the creative juices are flowing."

Voodoo PC built its niche on the no-expense-spared ultra enthusiasts.  Although HP is a bit more grounded when it comes to catering to the masses, Voodoo's influence in HP Labs is more than apparent.  In particular, HP demonstrated its nine-projector interface capable of displaying images bright enough to see outside in full daylight.  HP's interlacing technology has shown up on other projector based projects; at the Consumer Electronics Show last January the company demonstrated its immersive driving simulator using multiple projectors interlaced together.

However, six months after HP's acquisition of Voodoo, the company still has not shipped an official HP-Voodoo collaborated PC yet.  HP continues to build Voodoo's boutique PCs, mid-range PCs under the Hewlett-Packard brand and entry level products under the Compaq brand. The company still lacks a direct competitor to Dell's XPS line. 

"We recognized that there is a gap between HP and Voodoo – and we believe this gap is significant enough that we need to jump into the sandbox and draw the line. We never said anything about creating a fourth brand but there is indeed speculation."

Sood closes, "As I said at the event in San Francisco, our funnel is full of ideas; you’ll see some new stuff as early as this year."

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RE: VoodooPC
By garethcoker on 4/10/2007 9:00:03 PM , Rating: 2
How do you know??? Have you done a system comparison?? I doubt it.

Voodoo's engineers really know what they're doing, and the speed of the systems are VERY fast. Why do you think they ship the benchmarks for every system??

I used my Voodoo LAPTOP for music composition and production for 3 years at a UK music conservatoire. I was ridiculed for not using a Mac, but my end result was just as good as the other people on my course. During that time, it never broke down, I never had any problems etc.. Only recently, when coffee was spilt on my laptop did I have to call tech support - and they sent me a 17 page document on how to disassemble my laptop (my warranty had expired, and I wasn't willing to ship my laptop - essential for my current work - from Japan to Canada) - and gave me precise clear detailed instructions - on their toll-free support line.

Just when you make statements like:
because at least with Alienware when it costs a lot you're getting quite a lot of performance from the machine you purchase.

I just want to see some proof!!....

RE: VoodooPC
By joex444 on 4/10/2007 11:08:14 PM , Rating: 3
Oh man, either your humor is wicked dry or you're a moron.

I just checked out Voodoo PC's prices, and ah, for $6600 you can get essentially what I built for $1200. Yea, the Voodoo has a more powerful processor and watercooling, so adding back the difference, you can build it for under $2500. Now, you're paying $6600 for <$2500 worth of parts that PERFORM exactly the same.

If there's any doubt in your mind that Voodoo PC isn't building computers but instead designing them, just visit their website. They ask you what color you want for the case before you pick out the parts that make the computer.

There is no way you can justify buying a Voodoo PC, it's very much akin, as a consumer, to purchasing a Hummer H1 and driving it by yourself to the grocery store.

RE: VoodooPC
By garethcoker on 4/10/07, Rating: 0
RE: VoodooPC
By ATC on 4/11/2007 12:09:09 AM , Rating: 2
I agree that for some it may make sense.

While I'll probably never own a Voodoo PC unless I won the lottery, I know two family friends who own them and I have to admit they do look and perform great.

Yes, they use mostly off-the-shelf parts but their cooling and case-innards are generally custom designed. That allows them to have their PCs (both notebooks and especially desktops) to be almost silent while being aggressively overclocked.

Their line does not generally compete directly with Alienware but Alienware's ALX line instead which, incidentally, is also ridiculously expensive.

To each his/her own. No sense it blasting people who can comfortably afford stuff like that. We see it every day with Hummers, $2000 Louis Vuitton bags etc etc…

RE: VoodooPC
By Zelvek on 4/11/07, Rating: 0
RE: VoodooPC
By garethcoker on 4/11/2007 8:05:54 AM , Rating: 2
Define 'knowledge of PC'... I had a discussion about this same thing the other day.

I didn't know that people bought computers to learn about the hardware. People use computers to use the software contained on them, and you'll probably find that 95% of users want that. I have an EXCELLENT knowledge of the software that I use and the equipment that I need to make the most of that software. And no - it's not for word-processing, it's for music composition/production etc.etc. - and we're not talking Garageband, we're talking ProTools, Cubase, Sibelius, Finale and so on...

I admit, that perhaps writing these opinions on a site such as Dailytech opens me up to being shot down in flames.

Just because your PC has worked for you doesn't mean shit about its capabilities compared to computers build with the same parts by someone else.

What about the reviews well... everywhere. The only computer that seems to regularly come cose is Falcon-NW.

Speaking of Falcon-NW, and other boutique companies - Biohazard etc., I would hope you have the same opinion on all of them. Falcon are actually more expensive than Voodoo!

Finally, the building the PC thing - I live in Japan - if I was in England - it would be a different story, but I'm not, and I'm far from fluent (but capable) in Japanese.

RE: VoodooPC
By Zelvek on 4/11/2007 3:04:26 PM , Rating: 3
If you don't know how to assemble a pc and install an os (you just stick the dam disk in and do as it says step for step. Then your knowledge on a PC has to be limited so you know how to run your software well that puts you in the boat of all the other ID10T users out there. Just cause you can use it does not mean you know almost anything about it.

I know that your not doing word but the point of that comment was that just because a pc does what you wan does not mean that everything else is bellow it.
SO Voodoo beats other OEMs in all the reviews but if you understood those numbers that they throw at you you would know that 6 fps for a few extra thousand dollars is crazy.,1697,2059877...
Yes in that review the voodoo wins but they are simple looking at raw power if the voodoo is 0.001% better it will win. They don't compare value at all. check out the Gateway or the cyberpower in that review they both cost $4000 ($1700 less than the voodoo) and they are a fraction behind in performance. The difference in those PCs is so small you wouldn't notice.

My problem with voodoo and yes the other boutique oems is that people who buy them are uninformed they read a review and see that voodoo has the most power yet they don't know what the numbers they are reading mean they don't know that that the difference in power is minuscule. These reviews also seldom take in to account the stability of the system.

As I said else where I have serviced two Voodoos in the past (not so few because of their reliability but cause so few people own them) both of these voodoos suffered from cooling issues. The first was a laptop a little over a year old and out of warranty. The fans and heatsink were filled with some dust and hair and because it had beet so aggressively OCed by voodoo it was overheating; similar laptops that I've serviced in the past (not oced) had no problems running with this amount of dust/hair in the fans/heatsink. The second was my friends desktop which was water cooled the problem with it was that the water block on his cpu was lose he had had his voodoo for about two years he had never moved it and he had never opened the case.

How does living in Japan limit you from building a pc?

RE: VoodooPC
By garethcoker on 4/11/2007 6:36:34 PM , Rating: 1
That statement at the top of this post is ridiculous - referring to all the other 'idiot' users.

I never said I couldn't install an OS.

You'll find it takes a great deal of knowledge to run music programming software and get the most of it. And then of course there is the software within the software. (VSTi, VSTFX and so on...)

I know dozens - literally dozens - of composers who use computers. None of them built their PCs, they all know incredible amounts about the software.

Just because you can build a PC doesn't make you special - you do after all fix them for a living - therefore - of course you should know how to put them together!!!

I write music for a living, why should I know how to build a PC?

Your statement about idiot users is quite insulting to the millions of people who spend hours using computers every day to create professional products but don't know how to build one.

I'm sure if I wanted to, I could build a PC. But then - if I wanted to learn other things that I can't do, I could learn about them as well. The fact is - if everyone was always learning - no-one would get anything done....

I understand your issue about Voodoo's price, but at the end of the day, you're not going to sway the users who buy Voodoo - because at this level of expenditure - we're not thinking about price.

Living Japan doesn't limit me I suppose, but it does make it harder. Plus I have a job, I work weekends, and I try to go out with my friends. To be honest - I don't find the idea of building a PC particularly exciting, just like some other people wouldn't find adding EQ and compression to a music mix exciting.

RE: VoodooPC
By Zelvek on 4/12/2007 12:53:40 AM , Rating: 2
I'm sorry that you think I was calling you an idiot on the whole (ID10T is from a PC joke U5ER=ID10T Error; in other words when a user has a problem with their computer due to his/her computer illiteracy) so I was in effect saying that your PC skills are lacking. Yet again you try to use the defense that you know computers because you can run software but that really doesn't mean much of anything just cause you can drive a car and do donuts doesn't mean you know how it works.

It is true that I don't know how to use music compilation software. However the argument here is about the financial value of a voodoo PC and my ability to use a programs interface does not in any way reflect my ability to interpret that value. Similarly as has already been stated in the previous paragraph your ability to run a program is no way to establish your knowledge of a computer. If you were to tell me you know how to run visual studio it might but that would be because computer programing requires a sound knowledge of computer workings, making music does not.

I'm not telling you you have to build the computer yourself. What I'm saying is that if you had the extent of computer knowledge required to build one I would be able to take your claims with some greater seriousness. Since however you have previously stated that you don't even have that knowledge I cannot see how you could understand what is needed to properly define a voodoo PCs value.

I realize that voodoo pcs have some of the best performance ratings out there (though only by a hair and sometimes in a negative value) but very few of those reviews suggest you actually buy one because of the horrible value.,1759,1722203,
Here is one such review from a very well known and trusted source for reviews that clearly states "you don't get what you pay for",1759,2002385,
here is another one were the voodoo only scores a 3 out of 5 that is fairly sad for the supposed "Ferrari" of computers.
Here is a review from Cnet were the omen scored a 6.9 out of 10 and the reviewer says the system is only for people with deep wallets. the system also suffers performance drawbacks from an improper pairing of ram thats not what I would expect a professional system builder especially one charging this much to charge. the review also compares the omen to other systems "What's ultimately troubling is that among competing high-end systems, such as the ABS Ultimate M6, the Omen doesn't score as well. The ABS posted an identical score, and its CPU isn't overclocked at all--and it's also about half the cost."

So as I have said voodoo pcs don't have a good value.

RE: VoodooPC
By garethcoker on 4/12/2007 2:05:52 AM , Rating: 1
The only recent review is the 909. It's funny how you've only managed to find negative reviews. I can understand that your point might be that there shouldn't be any problems at this price point. It's a fair point, but to provide a balanced argument you could at least find some good reviews. Yes, they all mention the price, but also, they all mention the performance - even if you think the differences are marginal, most of the differences you're talking about, are actually against other OC'ed systems that to be honest - you'd probably still find expensive anyway...

Some 'other' reviews....

But we could go on forever trading reviews...

You are now talking about the 'extent' of computer knowledge required to build a computer. I thought you said it was easy.....

Who are you to decide the value of a VoodooPC. Value for money is almost always subjective. Anyway - most of us agree that Voodoo's are expensive, but as buyers, we think we're getting a good-value product. Seriously, why don't you register on the forums and see the cross-section of people that buy a Voodoo. These people that use them REALLY know their stuff.

Probably VoodooPC is a bit OTT for users such as yourself. I mean - you are an expert after all. Fair enough. Yes, I could probably build one myself, but to be honest, I'd just rather buy a Voodoo!!

You may want the last word - but we should probably just accept that this argument will go on forever. The same argument has been going on for ages in the VoodooPC forums. Basically - if you don't like the price, just go elsewhere. For someone who doesn't care for Voodoo so much, you seem to spend an awful lot of time commenting on them...

RE: VoodooPC
By Zelvek on 4/12/2007 4:08:41 AM , Rating: 2
Yes building a pc is easy. My point is if you don't have the basic know how of computers needed to build one then I can hardly see how one can hold your opinion of a computer with any merit.

As someone knowledgeable on the mater I'm saying what I have seen in many reviews (positive and negative) and first hand having a friend that owns one and having serviced a few voodoo pcs there are better alternatives.

I still have yet to read a single review (in other words a unbiased source) that rates the voodoo as having a good value. So far all the reviews you have shown me don't even look a value they just look at the benchmarks and paint job (not really all one should consider when making a purchase).

You say that a voodoo is the equivalent of a Ferrari well if that were the case I should be able to buy all the parts used in a Ferrari and build one my self. You can't though the parts are almost all custom in a Ferrari not the case in a voodoo pc not even close. The only custom parts are the case and paint job. Not to mention there is a crazy amount of engineering and custom design that goes into a Ferrari. Sure voodoo custom engineers the case. But considering the most expensive of similar cases that have also been custom engineered for the enthusiast market cost $800 CND
why does voodoo get to charge thousand more for theirs?

How is value for money subjective all you do is add up the cost of what goes into what you get and then compare it to what you pay if its a few thousand off than its obvious that something aint right.

RE: VoodooPC
By garethcoker on 4/12/2007 5:38:20 AM , Rating: 1
Tell me why is a Louis Vuitton bag more valuable than a bag from well.. in the UK - Marks and Spencer. They both do the same thing.

Many people consider LV bags to be a complete waste of money and not value for money - but people still buy them.

Incidentally - I already said that I wasn't getting a paintjob - never mind..

You mentioned that the reviews I showed you "don't even look at value. That's partly the point I've been trying to make! People who buy VoodooPCs at no point mention the word value. I've already acknowledged that it's expensive. Whether it offers value for money or not, is not really something I consider. I just like them!

My opinion has merit in that I OWN a VoodooPC, and have 'first hand' having experienced satisfactory performance and customer support for two and a half years. Not a single hardware component has broken down, and the only reason I'm getting a desktop is for studio expansion.

With your logic - if I make handmade chocolate with all the ingredients required (and it's not difficult to make handmade choclate), does that necessarily mean it's as good as a Godiva/Leonidas chocolate?

I can cook a nice balanced, nutritious meal. I can also goto the Ritz and have a nice balanced nutritious meal at a much higher price.

The added value in these cases is in the presentation and putting together of the product - and using high-end components and trying to make them blend together in a nice way. They are crude examples - but with your logic, you're saying you'd turn down the high-end examples that I've just given.

So, value is subjective, I personally would not goto the Ritz for an over-priced meal. However, I would buy Godiva chocolates.

I hope this illustrates the point.

RE: VoodooPC
By Zelvek on 4/12/2007 12:19:22 PM , Rating: 2
You mentioned that the reviews I showed you "don't even look at value. That's partly the point I've been trying to make! People who buy Voodoo PCs at no point mention the word value. I've already acknowledged that it's expensive. Whether it offers value for money or not, is not really something I consider. I just like them!

Considering that my initial post was mainly pertaining to value why have you even bothered trying to argue anything when you have just effectively said you have no opinion on the value of a voodoo pc?

My opinion has merit in that I OWN a VoodooPC, and have 'first hand' having experienced satisfactory performance and customer support for two and a half years. Not a single hardware component has broken down, and the only reason I'm getting a desktop is for studio expansion.

It has some merit but you only know that it has worked for you. Seeing as how this is and argument on value this is hardly enough knowledge to accurately judge a voodoo pc to its other competitors (do you have any experience with them.

With your logic - if I make handmade chocolate with all the ingredients required (and it's not difficult to make handmade choclate), does that necessarily mean it's as good as a Godiva/Leonidas chocolate?

You have neglected the work put in to making those chocolates. Years of tinkering and experience to get just the right taste. I have factored this into the building of a voodoo and as I have said the numbers don't add up.

I can cook a nice balanced, nutritious meal. I can also goto the Ritz and have a nice balanced nutritious meal at a much higher price.

Yet again you fail to factor in the experience and capabilities of the chefs making food at the ritz. If we compare the food at the ritz to a comparable alternative we will see a similar price. This is not quite the case with a voodoo pc.

The added value in these cases is in the presentation and putting together of the product - and using high-end components and trying to make them blend together in a nice way. They are crude examples - but with your logic, you're saying you'd turn down the high-end examples that I've just given.

As I have previously shown many others do the same thing yet charge substantially less.

Tell me why is a Louis Vuitton bag more valuable than a bag from well.. in the UK - Marks and Spencer. They both do the same thing.

Ahh yes just like voodoo pcs people waste money on stupid over priced shit. How is this relevant? so there are other examples of bad value to cost ratio in the world how does this change that ratio the very ratio we are supposed to be talking about?

RE: VoodooPC
By garethcoker on 4/12/2007 7:29:48 PM , Rating: 2
"Overpriced shit..."

That's your opinion. Tens of thousands of people own LV bags.. If not hundreds of thousands - especially in Japan!

Considering that most people consider Voodoo's engineering work to be of high quality - even the bad reviews say this, well, I can't take your above statements about chocolate and the Ritz seriously.

To put an end to this argument.

Do you honestly think that you could replicate the performance of a VoodooPC, and do the paintjob, and do the custom casing, for less? I'd want to see performance figures, and a high-quality paintjob, or a BAM finish, with the interior looking as neat as the exterior, and of course with the same or better performance numbers as a Voodoo.

Of course, you'll say you can, but there's no way you'll prove it to me.

I know you'll want the last word, but I'm signing off on this argument here.

RE: VoodooPC
By Zelvek on 4/12/2007 11:46:36 PM , Rating: 1

RE: VoodooPC
By TomZ on 4/10/2007 11:37:29 PM , Rating: 2
That's funny, since Voodoo neither have the ability to manufacture their own CPUs, GPUs, memory, chipset, etc. They can only configure what already exists in an optimum way, which is something any good engineer or technician can do. The brilliance is in the marketing that they are able to convince people like you that they have done something unique. The only difference between a Voodoo PC and a TomZ PC is that Voodoo has a fancy paint job.

RE: VoodooPC
By sxr7171 on 4/11/2007 12:02:41 AM , Rating: 2
Yeah just like Bose.

RE: VoodooPC
By garethcoker on 4/11/2007 12:59:47 AM , Rating: 1
I suppose there is evidence to back this up???

I'm just going to take one aspect - the internal wiring, show me your internal wiring and let's compare shall we?

After all - you said the paint job was the only difference.....

RE: VoodooPC
By garethcoker on 4/11/2007 1:08:15 AM , Rating: 2
I also don't consider myself a good engineer ot technician!

RE: VoodooPC
By TomZ on 4/11/2007 1:43:33 PM , Rating: 3
1. Lots of "average Joes" put together PCs with super-neat internal wiring. Not exactly rocket science.

2. Neat internal wiring affects your computer performance about as much as having a clean engine compartment affects you car's performance.

RE: VoodooPC
By garethcoker on 4/11/2007 8:25:41 PM , Rating: 2
Fair enough - you make a good point. But I'm yet to actually see or use a computer that rivals anything Voodoo has to offer.

Also - as stated in my post above - I write music for a living, why do I need to know how to build a computer? I don't.

I understand that most people here are probably just trying to stop me from what they think is 'wasting money'. The fact is, I don't think that it is a waste of money. I'm also brand-loyal.

I think average Joes can probably put together lots of different PCs, less average Joes can put together ones with liquid cooling. And definitely less average Joes can put together PCs with aggressively overclocked parts, that work for years without any problems.

I'm sure you'll point to lots of examples where there have been problems with VoodooPCs - but that's probably the same at any manufacturer, I bet the percentage of PCs that go wrong is actually the same. You just hear about it more because 1) of the price, and 2) because there are so few VoodooPCs in existance.

RE: VoodooPC
By agile on 4/11/2007 3:20:21 AM , Rating: 1
That is not entirely correct there TomZ.

First, let me address the ad hominem attacks. Steve Jobs and Bill Gates both dropped out of college so what is your point? I am pretty sure Rahul has some college; at any rate some people are just born to do certain vocations like Rahul was done for tech.

Yes, Voodoo utilized off the shelf components, but they did things outside of the box too. they were one of the first companies to put watercooling into the mainstream. They were one of the first to offer a HTPC and XBOX media extender. Also, what companies utilized Zalman fanless cases like Vooodoo? No OEM quite had a lineup like Vooodoo. Lastly, their staple - their cases - are the most sublime. They are manufactured by Lian Li but under Vooodoo's own design specs. They have thicker aluminum, better compartmentalization for watercooling, and wider cases for better tubing and wiring routing. Not one Lian Li stock case is better than a Voodoo case.

Not every one builds their own PC, and people who can afford it reap the virtues of having a hand built PC for their choice. With that said, there are other higher value OEMs like Maingear, Hypersonic, and Velocity, but they still are not in Voodoo's realm.

What some of you are failing to see is that no OEM is doing what Voodoo is doing. As far as Dellienware. What fruits has this produced? Not much other than the cannabilization between the XPS and ALX. Off topic - what ever happened to Alienware's Video Array? :-0

Back on topic. Voodoo didn't truly do this for the money. Rahul, and his brother Ravi share a passion for tech and business respectively which is why they are still on board. they will be able to bring you new tech leverage from HP's labs, patents, and proprietary tech. Maingear can't bring it. Hypersonic can't bring it. Velcotiy can't bring it. Dell and Alienware for some reason aren't bringing it. Funnily enough Dell uses a TEC/WC hybrid cooler in their XPS which is from Coolit Systems which is based in Calgary which is where Voodoo is based. Guess what? Voodoo was a Coolit stakeholder so they may have indirectly hepled Dell in this regard.

So when you attack an OEM like Voodoo you are tacitly attacking all other OEMs who in my eyes are objectively lesser.

Well have a wonderful day.

RE: VoodooPC
By Zelvek on 4/11/2007 3:53:36 AM , Rating: 2
I think the point is that a voodoo PC is not worth the $300 in labor you pay for. When you compare the of shelf equivalent parts of a custom to any other oems PC they charge close to nothing in labor.
There are plenty of cases out their just a roomy and high quality as voodoos custom cases check out thermaltakes armor or their mozart or the overpriced yet still cheaper than a voodoo Tia-chi some of these also come with built in water cooling and are very solid my armor weighs over 20 lbs. Check out zalmans Fatal1ty FC-ZE1 or the TNN series of cases that have no fans at all. Koolance also makes some nice cases with integrated water cooling. Of all these cases the most expensive is the Zalman TNN series that sells for about $800 CND so how the hell does Voodoo justify their costs? the point here is that the value of a voodoo just isn't as much as they are charging. Only uninformed fools who don't know better have any excuse to pay that kind of price.

RE: VoodooPC
By TomZ on 4/11/2007 10:13:16 AM , Rating: 2
First, let me address the ad hominem attacks..

You're clearly reading too much into my short post. When did I "attack" Raul? All I'm saying is that the tech is off-the-shelf and the marketing is brilliant.

"What would I do? I'd shut it down and give the money back to the shareholders." -- Michael Dell, after being asked what to do with Apple Computer in 1997
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