PC Expo 2001 New York Coverage!
Big Technology In The Big Apple

By, Dave Altavilla
June 29, 2001

We here at HotHardware certainly don't get a chance to go to enough of the industry's major trade shows.  That's why when one is actually held in our back yard, like this year's PC Expo, we show up there with bells on.  Well, OK maybe sans the bells but you get the idea, we're all over it.



Our first stop was a meeting with AMD in there top secret conference room in the lower level of the Javits Center.  We spent about an hour or so with two Marketing Managers from their Commercial Systems Group.  The AMD 760 Multi-Processing chipset and the Athlon MP processor, were center stage for AMD at this show.  Both of our AMD hosts were wearing AMD logo golf shirts with the words "AMD Means Business" embroidered on them. 


Athlon MP Dual Processor Web Server
Using Tyan's 760 Based Motherboard


This is a very true statement.  AMD's Multi-Processing platform looks to be a solid contender in the Enterprise space.  We were shown benchmark after benchmark score in their presentation, of Athlon MP systems exceeding Pentium III SMP solutions by a significant margin, in most all tests.



For sure the numbers were compelling but perhaps even more impressive was the fact that the Athlon family of processors would scale in performance all the way up to AMD's 64 bit Hammer Processor line, while staying in the same Socket A footprint.  Sledge Hammer and Claw Hammer will have different sockets obviously due to an entirely new design.  However, it looks like good ol' socket A has a few more years of legs behind it.  This was something we all wish Intel would take notes on for sure.


Next we were shown a couple of performance demos on an Athlon DDR based system versus a Pentium 4/ RAMBUS combo.  




This setup pitted a 1.4GHz. Athlon DDR based system against a 1.7GHz. P4 RAMBUS system.  They were running a 3DStudioMax benchmark rendering a cartoon soldier character in 3D modeling.  The 1.4GHz. T-Bird finished in 55 second and the P4 brought up the rear at 76 seconds.  It goes to show you that more MHz./GHz. doesn't make a processor necessarily fasters across the board.  However, since we weren't in control of the actual benchmark and test systems, we'll just take the number for face value and see for ourselves in the HotHardware Labs.






Our good friends at Maxtor were showing off their latest in BIG drive technology.  In the top left shot (below), is Maxtor's 100Gig 536DX drive.  This is a 5400 RPM model but we were told the 7200 RPM versions were an inevitability.  Also, a big play for Maxtor in this show was their recent announcement of breaking the 137Gig barrier that is a limitation of the ATA interface we are all using in modern PCs today.   




In the right hand shot, are Maxtor's Atlas 10KII and 10K III drives.  What's this?  Wasn't the Atlas 10K line a Quantum product?  You bet and since Maxtor bought Quantum, they have integrated this fabulous workstation product into their portfolio.  We'll have reviews posted of both the 536DX and Atlas 10K III, in the months ahead.  However, we'll get you salivating a little now and mention the words "4.5ms  access", for the Atlas 10K III.  ;-)




One very impressive notable, in the left hand shot above, was the size of the higher capacity, faster, smaller 10KIII versus its 10KII brethren.  Stacked on top of the 10KII in this shot, the 10KIII jams a whopping 18.4Gigs on a platter, so it has a considerably lower profile.  Yes, yes... we know.  You want one...  Finally, in the right hand shot above is Maxtor's hot new Firewire infused 60Gig external drive.  This model was shown streaming an MPEG-2 video to its PC host machine, with not even the slightest hint of a drop frame or stuttering.  Professional A/V types rejoice, this drive has you written all over it.







Intel, Transmeta, Transcend and More!