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CES 2014 - 2014 is destined to become the year of the Steam Machine, but it looks like we now know 12 of the companies that Valve is working with to build these new PCs.
We have: Alienware, Falcon Northwest, CyberPowerPC, Origin PC, GIGABYTE, Materiel.net, Webhallen, Alternate, Next, Zotac and Scan Computers and of course, iBuyPower (pictured above). We should expect all of these Steam Machines to be on display at CES 2014 this week, so expect a slew of pictures from us as we see them.
Hewlett-Packard started the 2014 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) by launching the company's first Google Android-powered all-in-one desktop PC for businesses. The Slate 21 Pro has a $399 price tag and includes a 21.5" HD touchscreen (1920x1080), NVIDIA Tegra 4 quad-core CPU, Bluetooth 4.0, 2GB RAM, and a 16GB solid state drive. It runs Android 4.3. Cloud-based apps are used to provide business productivity, and an auto-sync feature to Android smartphones and tables makes it easier to share files.
All apps can be viewed in landscape and portrait mode, thanks to clever back-end changes provided by the No. 2 global PC manufacturer.
Microsoft has plenty to cheer about with PC OEMs showing off Windows 8/8.1 devices, but Android's rise in the mobile and desktop market is concerning. The Google Chrome OS is seeing wider adoption, while OEMs also dabbles bringing Android to the desktop. Meanwhile, AIOs are continuing to increase in popularity among consumers, but there is much work to be done to increase adoption in the business sector.
Ifixit is back with yet another teardown of a high-end electronic device. This week they take on Apple's new Mac Pro, and unlike any other Apple product iFixit has torn down this year, the company praises the repairibility of the Mac Pro.
iFixit says that the Mac Pro uses no proprietary screws, and many of the units hardware can be accessed without the use of any tools whatsoever. One very unique feature of the new Mac Pro is its completely modular design. Each GPU is custom designed to fit in the enclosure and one of the GPU cards even houses the systems SSD Storage. It appears that the only issues iFixit has with the Mac Pro is the lack of expandable external storage, and users must rely on expensive Thunderbolt 2 external devices.
Apple's new, sleek Mac Pro will begin shipping just before the end of the year, on December 30 to be precise. Many people have already slapped down their cards for the new Mac Pro, with some of their cards begin charged, and order statuses changed to "Preparing for Shipment".
Preparing for Shipment would lead us to believe that nothing can be changed now, as it is being prepped to be delivered. There are some users reporting that their delivery dates are stating December 27, so we could see people receiving their new Mac Pro machines a little earlier than December 30, and as a nice, slightly late Christmas present.
Apple is set to release its long awaited next-generation Mac Pro tomorrow, after passing previous release deadlines twice for the new models. The new Mac Pro's have been highly anticipated for quite some time now, and the company's current Mac Pro model is beginning to age.
The new Mac Pro's feature a round cylinder design that is clearly a nod to the company's new "space ship" campus it is building in Cupertino, California. The device will ship with Intel Xeon E5 processors, up to 64GB of RAM and dual AMD Fire Pro video cards. 1TB of storage is provided thanks to a PCIe SSD, and optional HDD-based storage is available. You can own a new Mac Pro as early as tomorrow, for $2,999, just remember not to mistake it for a trash can.
LG will unveil its all-in-one, Google Chrome OS-powered Chromebase, at CES 2014 next month. The LG Chromebase features Google's Chrome OS, a 21.5-inch Full HD IPS-based screen, and much more.
We have an Intel Celeron CPU inside, 2GB of RAM, a 16GB iSSD for storage, HDMI-in, three USB 2.0 ports, one USB 3.0 port, LAN, and a 1.3-megapixel front-facing webcam. There's some built-in speakers, coming in at a whopping 5W. It looks like the Chromebase will be enough for most casual users, but it won't be forming any performance world records.
We'll be hands-on with this Chromebase at CES 2014 in just a few weeks time.
We've just received word that Digital Storm will be unveiling its first Steam Machine at CES 2014 in Las Vegas. Digital Storm is going to be releasing its Steam Machine as a high-end system, as the first liquid-cooled Steam Machine.
It will be a small form factor PC, with a full-sized liquid cooling system, where you can opt the PSU right up to 700W for some serious performance. Both Steam OS and Windows will be on-board, which means you can play virtually any PC game on the market from this new machine. The new Digital Storm Steam Machine will start at $1469, and can be configured with an NVIDIA GeForce GTX Titan.
Something that hasn't been updated for quite sometime was our System Builders Guide, but over the next couple of weeks, we're going to revamp all three of our systems. Today, we've started with our ~$1000 'Sub-lieutenant' PC.
We've decided to add an SSD in by default (which will be featured in all of our PCs), a better CPU, GPU, 16GB of RAM, and much more. This is the first edit we'll do, and we'll continue to keep them more up-to-date going into the future. If you have any suggestions, do let us know, and we'll get them baked into the system specs!
British start-up, PiixL, is showing off its beautiful Jetpack PC, which is a Steam Machine. What makes it stand out from the crowd, is that it has a unique form factor.
It slides behind your TV, so that you'll never see it, making your TV into a Steam TV - awesome, right? We have a thin PC, with an overclocked Intel Core i7 processor, and a decent NVIDIA video card. Because the Jetpack is customizable, we should see some great specifications baked into the Jetpack. The Jetpack will attach to TVs of varying sizes - from 32-inch TVs to 70-inch beasts.
The Jetpack will start at $1000, which is expensive when compared to iBuyPower's Steam Machine, but this thing should have far better specifications, as well as its interesting form factor. We should see the Jetpack take flight in early 2014, and you can bet your bottom dollar we'll be checking it out when it's released.
Leap Motion is a very cool technology, but it has yet to take off like many industry insiders had predicted it would. I feel that this is due to a few factors including the fact that it is hard to just pick up and use. One needs to learn how to use gestures to control their PC.
Today HP announced that it will be expanding Leap Motion integration into 11 of its All-in-One and Desktop PC lines. This list includes HP's Envy Recline, Phoenix and TouchSmart series, and its Pavilion TouchSmart line will come packed with the Leap Motion keyboard. HP has pre-installed the Leap Motion software on all devices bundled with the technology, and includes a few free app demos.