Rahul Sood Speaks on the Future of Voodoo
April 10, 2007 2:50 PM
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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
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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4/11/2007 3:20:21 AM
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.
4/11/2007 3:53:36 AM
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.
4/11/2007 10:13:16 AM
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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