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Commodore is back in the game!

Commodore is back in the game!

Plain and simple, or crazy art adornment: It's completely your choice.

For those of you old enough to remember the Commodore 64, you will no doubt have fond memories of the level of gaming prestige and history it attained before unfortunately declaring bankruptcy in 1994.

While there have been several attempts to re-launch the classic brand, it’s taken until now for us to see the future for Commodore. That future is in building Gaming PCs.

Now, before you roll your eyes and sigh, realise that Commodore’s gaming machines are far from ordinary and follow the same ethos of old: “computers for the masses not classes”. During a meeting with the company, Commodore’s reps constantly reassured me that the brand was all about value and choice, instead of the general trend in the industry at the moment which is to charge a premium for so-called “gaming” hardware.

Whilst everyone would love to own a Vadim custom PC, Commodore has designed and built machines that are not only full of detailed features like:
  • A choice of case “skins” that are “burnt” onto the surface giving a thoroughly professional and resistant surface, as well as an entirely unique design
  • A completely custom built case for Commodore, with recessed logos in the panels.
  • A door that will open 270 degrees so you can’t break it
  • Commodore logo feet, side fan hole and PSU
  • A custom built, high quality PSU with custom cooling and cable lengths to fit the hardware exactly
  • Large, slow moving fans for low noise but with plenty of cooling
  • The ability to use the USB / Firewire / front sound ports and close the door
  • Sound insulation on the sides and roof
  • It has a full two-year warranty for parts and service
  • Comes with a Commodore branded monitor (tipped to be made by Samsung), gaming keyboard and mouse
  • Comes preloaded with 50 classic Commodore 64 games and an emulator!
Even though the PCs are still in the development stage, the attention to detail is just phenomenal. Commodore is obviously very excited and despite some dubious claims like “Our cooling is so good the exhaust fan pushes out a lower than ambient temperature”, it still looks like a fantastic product.

There are four models to choose from, up from the basic E6320 Intel Core 2 Duo with nForce 650i SLI motherboard and 2GB of Corsair memory and a GeForce 7900 GS, up to QX6700, nForce 680i SLI, 4GB Corsair Dominator, 2x 150GB Raptors in RAID 0, Creative X-Fi sound and a pair of GeForce 8800 GTXs in SLI.

The PCs only come with Vista, and I was reassured this was the right decision for the future, despite Nvidia’s recent problems with its Vista drivers.

The skinning process is entirely unique, in that you can’t peel it off because it’s not a sticker. However, the skins can still be produced from any high quality digital picture. The case can have any sort of design you want: whether it be game associated like a WoW case, or something neat so that you don’t trash your living room, or something the same colour as your company logo for example. What makes it even tastier is that a plain case will be exactly the same price as a custom skinned one!

In the future, we could also see some limited runs that are signed and stamped for authenticity, so you could literally purchase a bit of gaming history.

I know you’re dying to know how much, but since these are still in the design stage Commodore couldn’t give us a firm pricing range just yet. We were simply told “not too much”. Considering how fast Commodore is progressing though, by the time we get one in for review in the near future, we will know the full story and have the retail version reviewed exactly as you can buy it.

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12 Comments

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DougEdey 17th March 2007, 09:15 Quote
Not sure if it's just the pictures, but the case you took pictures off just looks tacky IMHO.
r4tch3t 17th March 2007, 09:38 Quote
Look out, people will start getting incredibly tacky cases. However there is also the possibility of absolutely awesome cases as well.
I think its great they are making gaming computers that are affordable and not overpriced.
zr_ox 17th March 2007, 11:46 Quote
As retro as it seems I cant see it working.

Commodore did a great thing for gaming back in the day, but times have changed.

You cannot survive on name alone, and those cases just look cheap. Customized PSU's have been around for a while, as have Case Skinz. I'm sure there will be a super high premium for these which will inevitably mean fewer sales.

The Commodore generation are no longer "Enthusiasts", I know loads of old Commodore geeks and when I tell them how much I spend on a PC case they laugh, so whats the chance that they will pay for one of these :( ?
DXR_13KE 17th March 2007, 16:11 Quote
very very interesting..... it would be awesome that these computers are cheap and game worthy.
l0cke 17th March 2007, 16:45 Quote
That black one looks sweet, but all of the others look like junk :(
Woodstock 17th March 2007, 21:45 Quote
The ability to use the USB / Firewire / front sound ports and close the door - hardly hard to do just placed on the side or top
Nexxo 17th March 2007, 21:59 Quote
I want the Space Invaders one.
Bindibadgi 18th March 2007, 20:22 Quote
They aren't just skins like you can stick on, they are actually hard coated onto the surface so it's hardwearing and without air bubbles. They WONT be a premium, I was assured of that.

The cases are a little generic looking from the outside but there's going to be loads of designs available to chose from. When you look closer there's been a load of thought put into them.

The whole judgement comes down to cost but what I saw was actually pretty impressive and a nice change to alienware, Dell XPS or voodoo's. You have to be in the mind set for wanting a whole PC for gaming, not look at it from a built your own perspective.
DougEdey 18th March 2007, 20:28 Quote
The problem is that from my point of view, case skins don't look any different to these, I saw some of the official press shots in high detail from other websites and they just look like wallpapers. There's not really anything extra special about them.

In a market which is quickly getting a large number of "high end" builders they all seem to be duplicating each others work.

Whereas Falcon NW in the US (and now Kustom) have their custom airbrush service which is far nicer then these "pseudo skins".

Sorry, but that's all they are, they aren't real skins, but they aren't not skins. A skin is easy to duplicate.
Autobot 18th March 2007, 23:59 Quote
So....they are nothing more than a PC with an emulator? I can't help but to say...WTF? I expected something a little more revolutionary from this.
Krikkit 19th March 2007, 01:29 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Autobot
So....they are nothing more than a PC with an emulator? I can't help but to say...WTF? I expected something a little more revolutionary from this.
But they don't need to do anything more than this; they're selling well-built, customizable PC's for gamers who don't want to build their own system. The fact that they have an emulator with them is only a bonus imho - it's a gimmick to get people to buy it, and frankly, it'd work for me if I wanted one.

I like the idea, and it's nice to see a legendary brand being resurrected, even if it's a far cry from their original glory. :)
Skutbag 19th March 2007, 13:15 Quote
Questions: Where's the tape player? Do you have that brilliant screaming noise when loading stuff up? (Or was that the amstrad?) Do you have to type L-O-A-D to boot stuff up? What about the lovely sky blue starting screen? Can you program BASIC straight into the starting screen? Oh the memories.

It's a bit novel but my Dad bought a C64 when I was about 4 and I'm pretty sure he never expressed any interesting in 'pimping it out with some dome rims' etc. So yeah, the people who used and loved commodore probably aren't the one who are interested in the products they're making now.

The burnt-on invincible paint skins is a good idea though.
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