If you thought the desktop computer was dead, think again.
Hardware startup Xi3 says it's on a mission to "change the way computers are built, serviced and upgraded," by eliminating obsolescence and stuffing as much into a tiny, gorgeous little cube as it can. Welcome to modular computing at its cutest.
Xi3 wants the X7A to be powered by a new Quad-Core 64-bit, x86-based processor running at up to 3.2GHz, integrated with up to 384 graphics shader cores and 8GB of DDR3 RAM. This, says the firm, should make it completely capable of handling graphics-rich computer games like Crysis 2 with ease.
The X7A should also be able to run up to three high-definition monitors simultaneously, will boast four USB 3.0/2.0 ports, four eSATAp ports, four USB 2.0 ports, a 10/100/1000 Ethernet port, with up to 1TB of super-fast solid-state storage inside. All in a similar tiny chassis the size of a softball measuring 4.27x3.65x3.65-inches and running on just 40Watts of electricity or less.
Xi3 says it plans to begin shipping the X7A in early 2013 for around $1,000 a unit, at least half the price of its bigger desktop rivals.
Meanwhile, the entry-level X3A will be powered by a Dual-Core 64-bit, x86-based 1.65GHz chip and 4GB of DDR3 RAM, with 32GB of solid-state storage (upgradeable to 1TB), able to support two high-definition displays simultaneously and sporting two USB 3.0/2.0 ports, four eSATAp ports, four USB 2.0 ports, and a 10/100/1000 Ethernet port.
That 4.27x3.56x3.656-inch cube will apparently only require 18 Watts of power to run and is slated to begin shipping in early 2013 at prices starting at under $500.
With upcoming I/O Boards that feature new components/connectors, Xi3 believes its little modular computer cubes could enjoy between six to 10 years of life, instead of the paltry three to five of traditional desktop PCs, making them a compelling buy for the price.
Interested? Want to know more? Check out the video below and if you’re suitably impressed (as I am) head on over to the KickStarter page and pledge an amount
A pledge of $3 gets you a place on Xi3’s fan appreciation page and monthly newsletter, while $33 gets you a founder autographed t-shirt. $253 gets you a spot at a group dinner of 100 or fewer guests with Xi3 Founder and CEO, Jason Sullivan, held in Salt Lake City, Utah, while $499 snags the current Xi3 model. $503 and $603 pledges receive X3A models with Windows 7 /Windows 8 installed on them and varying specs a full week before general distribution, while a pledge of $1,103 bags an X7A model.
If you’re feeling particularly generous, however, a pledge of $9993 will net you a X7A housed in a special gold or platinum coated chassis with delivery two weeks prior to general availability. Worth its weight in gold? What do you think?