In addition to the Mini PC, which generated a whirlwind at Computex Taipei 2005, AOpen showcases its full series of "eGeneration" and "Metropolitan" PCs. The "eGeneration" PCs features trendy, stylish, and modern exterior designs which look more like luxurious consumer electronic products than those of the conventional PCs. These XC Cube products are not only designed to meet the aesthetic principles, but also ergonomic product concepts.
Despite XC Cube’s compact size, users can expand the system simply by adding an "Expander" to a mini Cube. The size of a Cube mini plus an "Expander" is still very compact, which is the equivalent of an XC Cube. In case a user wants to add more peripherals to an XC Cube, s/he can add one more "Expander", which gives XC Cube models nearly "unlimited expansion capability" and convenience.
The mini Cube, regular Cube, and tower Cube are referred to as the "white three brothers" in Japan, and take the lion’s share of the market for such products in Japan, according to Chiang.
Some of the most competitive Cube models are displayed at the event. One of such models is MZ855-II, according to Marcelo Yang, channel manager of AOpen. The 855-II is a mini XC Cube built with Intel’s mobile CPU and chipset. "The special design of 855-II allows us to install a hard drive of ‘ordinary size’ and a slim optic storage device into its housing," Yang states. "Prices of the MZ855-II are very competitive," he adds.
The "Metropolitan" Model
The MZ series has dimensions of 106 x 320 x 200 mm, and weighs only 2.6 kilograms. The size of an MZ model is only one fourth of a regular PC. Its small size or form factor fits particularly well in the modern metropolitan life. The model can be installed with Intel Pentium M 533 MHz processor and 915/ICH-6 chipsets. It can be installed with DDR2 memory modules, expandable to 2 GB.
High Definition Audio and Video Functions
The system comes with built-in VGA card, logics that supports 7.1-surround sound digital audio interface, three IEEE 1394 connectors, and six USB 2.0 ports.
The product also provides powerful gaming functions and interface for processing various video signals. The MZ series also provide a number of AGP and PCI expansion slots for future system expansion.
The other models displayed at the event include TZ661-II, 915 Cube, and the company’s “Four Value Solutions” models. The Four Value Solutions are Gaming, AV (audio & video), SilenTek, and Thermal Solutions.
Next Generation SilenTek
Many innovative product concepts are introduced at the event. Nearly all the models showcased at the annual event are designed with AOpen’s next-generation proprietary SilenTek technology, that allows the XC Cube run at 22 to 24 dB, which is almost inaudible to human ears.
eGeneration Thermal Technology
Another second-generation technology showcased at the event is the company’s unique thermal technology. In order to develop next-generation thermal reduction technology, AOpen installed a wind tunnel at its laboratory. Nearly all system cooling components, CPU coolers, and cooling fan mechanism go through its thermal laboratory which was certified by a Japanese thermal lab.
Many of the company’s systems are built with airflow re-direction mechanisms or fan guides that re-route the direction of airflow so that the heat is ventilated in a more efficient way. A CPU cooler is designed in a way similar to the airflow design of turbo engines. Better heat ventilation effect is also achieved through innovative housing design. Hot airflow can be exhausted through the ventilation slits designed on the sides of the XC Cube.