Excerpt: It’s almost been a year since we reviewed the HP Blackbird 002 gaming PC, featured on our 2007 Holiday Gift Guide. In June of this year, HP revved up it’s engines and released the new Blackbird 002 Exhilaration Edition, featuring the latest NVIDIA GTX 280 graphics. How does it perform compared to the previous model? Read on to find out.
Pros: Crysis-capable., Latest and greatest components., Easy to upgrade.
Cons: Not the performance boost we were hoping for.
Excerpt: A short while after Dell purchased Alienware late last year, news broke that Hewlett Packard had acquired boutique system vendor Voodoo PC. Voodoo PC is best known for their high performance gaming PC's that feature custom cases, some with lavish paint jobs, unique cooling solutions, and impeccable wiring jobs. We evaluated a Voodoo Omen some time back and found it to be an excellent product. If you check out the Omen, you'll see why HP was interested in Voodoo.
Pros: Customizable, Extreme Performance, Unique Case Design, Easy to Work On, Low Maintenance
Conclusion: When Alienware bought Dell we weren’t sure what would happen. As it turns out, nothing really changed for Alienware, and Dell released the XPS 710, which is a decent machine but nothing too ground-breaking. With the Blackbird, we now know that HP is taking a “no holds barred” approach to PC design, and is clearly letting the Voodoo team do whatever they want, and that’s fantastic.
Pros: Incredible design inside and out; blistering performance; cool and quiet
Cons: Price tag matches performance; out-of-the-box issues
Summary: And while we applaud the company’s decision to enable CrossFire on an nForce motherboard, our experience has been that Nvidia’s GeForce 8800 GTX and 8800 Ultra are both faster than the Radeon HD 2900 XT (although the GTX’s edge evaporates when running Vista). Buy this machine and you won’t care which camp wins the next skirmish in the GPU wars because you’ll be covered either way—as rightly you should be.
Pros: Awesome design using standard components; CrossFire running on nForce.
Summary: Harrods: olde worlde purveyor of boutique toys or masters of the massive mark-up? Your answer to that question could well decide your thoughts on the Knightsbridge store’s latest exclusive: HP’s top-range gaming PC, the BlackBird 002. Naturally, the BlackBird is a hulking behemoth of a machine, capable of dispensing double hernias to unwary delivery men. But it’s not short on subtlety either.