Abit chose not to exhibit on the main show floor, instead taking a suite in one of the other buildings. Inside, there were some interesting new product lines. Obviously Abit was showing off motherboards for Intel’s Socket 775 platform and AMD’s Socket 939.

The Socket 775 boards features a vertical heatsink for the chipset, with a vertically mounted fan. Also present on all the test rigs was a new Abit CPU cooler, which may be bundled with the boards when they hit the retail channel.

Also on display was the complete range of ATI based graphics cards including the X300, X600, X800. Both AGP and PCI Express cards were in evidence, as were retail packaging samples.

Like most Taiwanese component manufacturers, Abit was showing off a media player device. The WMB-1100 is a strange looking beast though. The one on display was finished in read, but it’s not the colour that makes it that bit different, it’s the small colour LCD screen that’s built into the front fascia. Abit said that the reason for the integrated screen was so that you don’t need a TV or monitor to transfer pictures from your camera to the hard disks, or even copy video. But why would you have a device like this without connecting it to a TV?

At the front you’ll find a PC Card slot, a card reader, two USB 2.0 ports, a six-pin FireWire port, S-Video and composite video inputs and stereo audio inputs. Again setting the WMB-1100 apart from the competition is a hinged flap on the top of the chassis. Under here you’ll find the two hard disks surrounded by a heatpipe cooling enclosure. The point of the flap is to make hard disk replacement easy, although hopefully you won’t have to change them too often.

Finally on the Abit stand was the Thecus 2000, which is a small, cube shaped network attached storage system for home and small office environments. The Thecus 2000 certainly looks good with its metallic silver finish and both the drive bays are hot-swapable and lockable. Having recently been subject to a total hard disk crash, I can testify to how useful a device like this could be.


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