Taking pride of place on the AOpen stand was the new XC Cube system. This little box of tricks is trying to take the small form factor AV box to a new level. Like many other SFF boxes on show, this one can play audio and video without having to boot into Windows, making it a far more useful living room media PC.

AOpen is also building on the success of its award winning DRW8800 DVD writer. On show was a new drive boasting DVD+R Dual Layer support as well as 16-speed write capability for single layer DVD+R discs. There were both internal and external examples of this drive on show. AOpen doesn’t have a firm release date for the drive yet, but let’s hope it doesn’t take too long.

Also on show was a super-slim external DVD writer. This rather fetching device comes with changeable colour panels to match whatever machine you connect it to. As far as performance goes you’ll get eight-speed writing on DVD+R/-R and four-speed writing on DVD+RW/-RW.

Last but not least, AOpen was showing an array of BTX based cases and PCs. The BTX form factor should start to roll out in the next couple of months, with the main advantages being better cooling, lower noise and easier build.


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