Our sack of press announcements is bursting at the seams this week with news from Adata, BitFenix, Lian Li, Razer, and Shuttle:
- Adata launches USB 3.0 and SATA II dual interface N004. I'll be the first to say it: N004 might not be the most glamorous name for a product. This 2.5" external solid-state drive seems to get a few other things right, though. Highlights include capacities of up to 256GB, a sequential write speeds as high as 170MB/s, a brushed aluminum shell, and as icing on the cake, both USB 3.0 and 300MB/s Serial ATA interfaces.
- Innovative E-ATX full tower set to shake up the world of PC chassis design. Here's another product we saw at Computex that's just now coming out. Fresh from of Taiwanese start-up BitFenix, the Colossus Extended-ATX chassis is laced with colored lights and features BitFenix's proprietary "SoftTouch Surface Treatment," which has a smooth, rubbery feel. You'll want to hit the press release for all the details, but this $169 case has a pretty complete set of features, from dual 230-mm and triple 140-mm fan emplacements to dual USB 3.0 ports and a lockable compartment at the top. Look for the Colossus in stores next month.
- Another Lian Li Mini-Q Series – PC-Q11. Lian Li's latest bite-sized enclosure takes Mini-ITX or Mini-DTX motherboards and full-sized ATX power supplies. It features a 140-mm front-mounted fan, and Lian Li has attempted to keep vibration to a minimum using 1.5-mm aluminum alloy panels and rubber-padded case stands. Not a bad candidate for a home theater PC, especially since throwing in a full-sized PSU could save you a few bucks.
- Razer BlackWidow mechanical gaming keyboard available worldwide from September 2010. We've seen a number of gamer-oriented mechanical keyboards in the past, but they tend to use Cherry MX Black key switches that require a lot of pressure to actuate. Razer appears to disagree with that design choice, alleging that "most professional gamers eschew such marketing gimmicks for regular membrane keyboards."
Instead, the BlackWidow has a "uniquely tactile mechanical key architecture that provides each key on the keyboard with a crisp response and tactile feedback similar to a mouse click." Interesting. Razer has also implemented macro recording and five special gaming keys. The BlackWidow will become available next month for $79.99.
- Shuttle ups the ante with ultimate slim PC available now at online retailers in the U.S. The 1.5"-thick Shuttle XS35 is an interesting animal, with an edgy enclosure design, a dual-core Atom D510 processor, next-gen Nvidia Ion discrete graphics, and an optional DVD drive. Newegg already carries two variants of the system priced at $290 and $240, although both eschew the Nvidia GPU for Intel integrated graphics.
Maybe it's just the clicky keyboard geek in me talking, but I'd sure like to get my hands on one of those new Razer mechanical keyboards. The premise of light, mouse click-like key actuation speeding up typing and gaming is definitely worth putting to the test.