You Aren’t Dual Core Unless You Live Dual Core . . .
Posted Jun 10, 2005

Also in the long-awaited but soon-to-arrive category, by all appearances, is Dual Core. Alienware, for one, seems poised to take the plunge alongside mass-market rival Dell. Alienware and Dell are vastly different types of companies, of course, even though both are in the PC-building/system integration business. Alienware has identified two discrete vertical markets and made excellent use of their many points of intersection.

Their roots are in the high-end gaming market, and they continue to target that market with pinpoint precision, most recently with their limited-edition Star Wars PC, announced just in time for Revenge of the Sith (seems like you can't swing a dead Wookie without hitting a Star Wars product tie-in these days). On the outside of the case you've got either Light Side or Dark Side ("sinister Imperial case design" et al.); on the inside, AMD 64 processing and NVIDIA SLI graphics acceleration.

Of course, what Alienware figured out some time ago was that pro video producers, while not necessarily as easily lured by such gamer trappings (however cool), are looking for the same sort of power in their PCs. Alienware was operating from the AMD booth at NAB, and wooing videographers with Opteron-based AMD 64 power in their newest MJ-12 7500a workstation, which looks like a monster of a system for hi-def video editing and sophisticated effects processing. Built with its own brand of sleek space-age design, including a new flexible chassis for cooler performance, the system boasts dual PCI Express graphics, and support for NVIDIA Quadro SLI graphics and SATA II for faster data transfer. Who's to say if Dual Core will be the processing engine that truly revolutionizes edit-bay workflow the way hyperthreading and mainstream dual-processing nearly did; the good news is, we won't have to wait long to find out one way or the other. The products that will play out the Dual Core hand are arriving fast.