DFI - New Products And The First Surprise Of The Trip!
We were able to spend some time with DFI, a company that many folks don't know too much about. We spent time talking to the DFI team about their plans, and, boy, do they have a couple of special surprises in store for you! While they don't plan to announce much prior to Computex, they did release the news that they have signed on with ATI to produce video cards based on the Radeon 7500 and 8500 chipsets. This was quite a surprise to us, as we had not seen any of the final production boards.
As you can see in the above picture, the cards will all have a red-colored board. The 8500 at the far end of this picture was being shown in its pre-production state, but the final board will be red, also. DFI expects that most of the Radeon models should be availiable soon. Some are already shipping. DFI assured us that we will have the DFI 8500 for testing in our labs as soon as its ready. It will be very interesting to see if there is any performance difference between the ATI Radeon 8500 (I guess we should start calling it the ATI reference design) and the DFI 8500.
DFI also showed us the AD70E, which they consider their new flagship board. The new board is based on the KT266A chipset from Via, which includes DFI's new Thermal Guardian technology. So, this is the second board we have seen that specifically addresses possible CPU thermal issues. Although we didn't get to see the board running, the specifications look impressive.