Asus Xtreme Gaming Summit post got quite a response, and what’s more, there were some terrific ideas – if you’re interested in motherboards, the entire thread is well worth a read, with some really smart ideas about how motherboard design could be improved.
Both ourselves and Asus have been over the posts, and can announce the first five winners of the competition. Read on to find out which lucky bit-tech
readers will be heading to the event on the 28th of August in London, and of course, snagging themselves some choice hardware to boot
Winner 1: Spiny
Some great suggestions in his post but best of all were those centred on the BIOS:
"An automated overclocking utility at the BIOS level with a built in soak test... Internet enable TurboV to share successfull hardware & overclock settings."
Like many of the bit-tech
and CPC staff, I've had more than my fill of automatic overclocking systems and generally tend to give them a wide berth, but a built-in test for stability would go a long way to addressing the issues they've had in the past. Best of all though is the idea of internet enabling TurboV so you can share overclocked settings - frankly, this sounds terrific.
Winner 2: ffjason
Forumite ffjason went for suggesting improving the quality of current overclocking software: "Forget the fancy 'cool' looking interfaces which companies think overclockers want. Instead focus on getting a clear and detailed interface which is simple to use. Clarify what the settings mean with detailed help tips.
"I've loaded up a few "overclocking" utilities which look cool but I actually found that the settings I wanted were too hard to find in the limited interface. Stick with the basics. If the users want to add skins allow them too! Please don't scare off new users by making the interface so far away from a standard window style that they don't know where to start and don't just list all the options you can change. A new user is going to have no idea what the CPU PLL or DRAM voltage settings do or why they would want to change them.
Winner 3: andrew8200m
One area that was frequently mentioned were the board's power connectors. Reader andrew8200m hit the nail on the head when he said:
"Right angled 24pin and 8pin connectors on the motherboard to aid cable management."
He then added another suggestion, which, while complex, sounds very interesting: "6-pin and 8-pin PCI-E connectors embedded into the motherboard so the graphics card runs entirely from the motherboard reducing cable clutter inside the PC. This is similar to having the 24-pin ATX connector on the board."
Winner 4: Xtrafresh
Xtrafresh summed up the creativity of the community with a massive post that included many great ideas. Particularly interesting was the idea of "fan connectors on the underside of the board, at the edge, angled. Of all the cables running through the PC, fan cables are most fiddly and they're often installed dead last, and at that time there's just no more places to route the cable."
He then added the idea of building in a fan controller: "Just line up three or four fanheaders, and a row of pinouts for tempsensors, connect to a little controller chip, and make the whole thing accessible through Windows."
Finally, he asked for some more "crazy form factors. I would LOVE a round motherboard that could be the base for a sweet HTPC or a really long and thin motherboard with the RAM mounted on the back and length-wise placed PCIe slots. The crazier, the better!
Some of the ideas from this competition I can see happening - some, like the round motherboard, might remain here on the bit-tech
Winner 5: Rocket_Knight64
Rocket_Knight64 is the finally winner of week 1,and like Xtrafresh, focussed first on fan and cooling control.
"Fully programmable fan control linked to components internal sensors for all fan headers would be an absolute godsend. But it also has to have the software to back it up.... Maybe even have one fan header specified for pump control? With the extra space the P55 affords it would be the perfect thing to fill the Northbridge’s place. The RoG boards already have temp probe jacks as well so it would fit well.
The rest of his post contained some smart ideas as well:
"No onboard audio on high end boards: Supply a discount voucher for a Xonar instead (with a bigger discount for higher end cards). They are far superior to onboard and anyone who buys a high end motherboard is probably a gamer and has their own anyway."
And there's something to be learning from Apple:
"An Apps store' for Express Gate... Express Gate was a feature with huge potential for HTPC’s but flopped because of the closed platform and limited functionality. Maybe an iPhone ‘apps store’ style certification process could be made to develop the platform while alleviating the security risks?"
That's it for week 1 - congratulations to the winners, we'll be in touch shortly with details about the prize. Meanwhile, if you haven't yet won, don't despair - with tomorrow's blog post we'll be giving away another five tickets to the event!