Universal Abit is the successor to the Abit motherboard brand, and Abit has partnered with USI for their manufacturing and engineering expertise. The Abit name will remain as the main identity for products but expect to hear more from Universal Abit as the company transitions itself from strictly IT manufacturing to leading technology design and brand management. The new corporate logo above will be on all products with the color of the square over the "i" representing the product brands. Orange will signify the upcoming multimedia products, green for the corporate brands, and dark green for motherboard products. We certainly would have chosen a color such as red for the motherboard group but overall they are trying to erase the last two years of bad memories for the company.

Abit: Multimedia Products



Abit is entering the growing Media Center PC market with their first products that include the ViiV based IL80-MV motherboard and the iDome digital speaker series.



The IL80-MV micro-ATX motherboard is based on the Intel 945GT and ICH7mDH Express chipsets with support for the Core Duo / Solo (Yonah) processor range. Audio support from the Realtek ALC-882M includes full Dolby Home Studio certification, 7.1 channel output, and Optical S/PDIF in and out connections. HDMI output is fully supported by the on-board Intel GMA-950 graphics system. The system is totally silent and in our brief testing appeared to operate extremely cool in the SilverStone case.



Abit is introducing the iDome DS500 speaker and iDome Sw510 subwoofer to the market later this summer. The iDome speakers support a pure digital audio stream process from input to final output, though you can also use them in analog mode if you so desire. The speakers and subwoofer will be sold separately but the 2.1 system on display consisted of two fairly compact speakers, the subwoofer, and an integrated digital amplifier. The cost for the two speakers will be around US $180 and another US $70 will get you the subwoofer. Both units will work with other manufacturers' products although for the price we recommend buying the set.



The back of the right speaker offers the choice of analog or digital input/output, as does the subwoofer. Each satellite offers 25W/per channel with the subwoofer providing 50W. The subwoofer features a 6.5 inch Super Bass driver featuring DBX technology providing a very deep bass tone with extremely little distortion in our listening tests. The satellites offer an independent 1 inch dome tweeter and 4 inch Neodymium drivers in a high quality case.

The speakers are controlled by a unique uGuru chip that allows for six different sound environments to be selected by the user, allowing you to tweak the processing dependent upon the audio stream being played. These modes consist of Normal, Game, Music, Movie, Rock, and Jazz. We had the chance to listen to these various modes before the show started and were very impressed with the satellites ability to deliver a very clean audio stream in a variety of situations from movie playback to gaming. The highs were clear and bright with the mids being very warm while extending downward to the point where there was noticeable bass response without the subwoofer. However, for games and movies we highly recommend adding the subwoofer.

Index Abit: Intel Motherboards
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  • Gary Key - Saturday, June 10, 2006 - link

    quote:

    Did they really think that people running Crossfire setups wouldn't at least want better-than-onboard sound? That alone is one PCI slot. The onboard sound looks good, but is it that good?


    The on-board sound on this board will be the Realtek ALC-882M that is placed on a riser card. The sound was significantly better audio quality wise than some of the 882m solutions we have heard placed on the motherboard. We also spoke with Abit about utilizing the new Realtek ALC-888 which sounded a generation better to us and that was on a $85 ASRock board the same day. We are hoping the transition to the ALC-888 will be a quick one for most manufacturers as it would suffice for about 90% of the users. The balance will want a X-FI or something else discreet.
    My issue with Abit, the Product Managers agreed, is that the buyer for these boards will typically not only want a discreet sound solution but also a slot for a TV tuner card or a professional audio interface card. PCI is not dead until the multimedia companies move over to PCI-E, it is that simple and until such time, the board should have two if not three PCI slots that are not blocked, take one of the PCI-E x1 slots, combine the lanes, and give us a universal x4 slot if need be to make room but do not block this slot also. We were able to play with the 975x board before the show opened and although it was pre-production, it ran like a banshee. ;-)
    Reply
  • xsilver - Saturday, June 10, 2006 - link

    any indication of what the prices are going to be?
    hopefully prices will stay the same and just replace a 600w one with a 1200w one?

    or if the price is going to be 2x the 600w one, who could afford it??
    Reply
  • Gary Key - Saturday, June 10, 2006 - link

    quote:

    any indication of what the prices are going to be?


    Pricing was not set yet but we would estimate in the $250~$325 range at this time. Yikes.....
    Reply
  • emilyek - Saturday, June 10, 2006 - link

    You'd think 50 engineers could rub their heads together and come up with something decent.

    Have the Thermaltake boys been watching 'Pimp My Ride' or something? The only decent thing in their lineup as shown is the HTPC.
    Reply
  • Xenoid - Saturday, June 10, 2006 - link

    The Thermaltake cases were all very nice (and I'm sure very expensive), but is it just me or do the LAN-style carry cases still look ridiculous? Same with that big box for 2 systems in one..I'd rather just have 2 full-towers..they'd take up a lot less room and cost less too. Reply
  • toyota - Saturday, June 10, 2006 - link

    quote:

    This was the first 7600GS card we noticed with 1024MB of memory. Whether the card can utilize this amount of memory properly is debatable but it was nice to see cards including 1024MB at mainstream pricing.
    what a waste of ram. i guess this means we will start seeing 1 gig on next gen cards that might actually utilise it.
    Reply
  • JarredWalton - Saturday, June 10, 2006 - link

    We've already got the GX2 with 1GB, though granted that's really 2x512MB. Vista may actually be able to use the GPU RAM for lots of other things, though - that's the theory anyway. Imagine, no longer getting the slow background refresh when Windows decides to swap some of that information out of RAM and into the page file.... Reply

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