iXBT Labs - Computer Hardware in Detail






iXBT.com Editors' Awards

Striving to bring recognition to manufacturers of high-technology equipment, the iXBT.com editorial team decided to institute three awards:

Reviewed by iXBT.com

The Reviewed by iXBT.com award recognizes the products, which have gone through the iXBT.com lab tests. This award is presented to a manufacturer, whose products were tested in our lab, got reviewed, and their reviews are published on the iXBT.com web site, in the iXBT.com magazine, or on the Digit-Life.com web site.

Original Design

Modern IT market is flooded with clones. Life-cycle of a product became shorter, so most manufacturers do not spend their time and resources on their own designs. Instead, they often follow the so called "reference design", changing only the name of the product and the package appearance. That's why in order to encourage efforts of the manufacturers who create innovative products different from reference designs, the editorial team of iXBT.com institutes the Original Design award.

This award can be honored to a product with an original design, which is essentially different from the reference design. The product must be tested in the iXBT.com lab and then have a review (concerning the test results) published on the iXBT.com web site, in the iXBT.com magazine, or on the Digit-Life.com web site.

The Original Design award can be selected only once a month and must provide links to the reviews of the awarded products.

ProAudio Accessories Awards

A product can be awarded with Original Design, in case:

  • It features technical innovations that contribute to significant improvements in performance and usability during audio mastering and subsequent audio processing
  • Other things that are not listed here

July 2006 Awards

Novation Remote 25SL MIDI keyboard — it's a unique solution in its kind thanks to its integrated controllers and Automap technology.

Motherboards Awards

A motherboard gets the Original Design award for one or a combination of the following design features:

  • Passive (or active, but only if necessary!) cooling system for overheated motherboard elements
  • Indication system for computer failures at startup
  • Good PCB layout, which does not hamper assemblage and upgrade
  • On-board buttons to power on or restart a computer, to reset CMOS, etc. — any feature that facilitates express-tests or repairs
  • Other things

We award only useful elements of design in our opinion: so, a stylish (or a monstrous) chipset cooler cannot be considered useful, if this chipset does not require mandatory active cooling. And the attractive design will not be awarded, if it offers no other advantages except for its good looks.

Of course, the above list does not contain all possible options (a lot of things cannot be foreseen at all) for a motherboard to get the award. Read the reviews of awarded models to find out the details and perhaps get acquainted with innovations on the market.

July 2006 Awards

ASUS M2N32-SLI Deluxe — a Motherboard on NVIDIA nForce 590 SLI (Socket AM2)

External Storage Devices Awards

A flash drive, an external hard disk, or any other similar device can be honored with the Original Design award, if it features:

  • High extra functionality not to the damage of the main characteristics
  • Essentially new data storage technologies or the ones noticeably different from the popular options used in standard storage devices
  • Record speed characteristics, noticeably faster than those in competitors, or the capacity considerably exceeding the average values
  • New promising interfaces to connect to computers
  • Being a model of design (appearance, compact size, or ergonomics) not to the damage of its speed and capacity characteristics
  • Other things that are not listed here

July 2006 Awards

Apacer MegaSteno AM230

Pretec 15 in 1

Silicon Power 17 in 1

TV Tuner and Multimedia Video Card Awards

TV tuner or a multimedia video card can be honored with the Original Design award, if it demonstrates the following distinctive features:

  • Original hardware solutions aimed to improve the sound and image quality
  • Hardware implementation of extra unique features, which are not directly connected with audio and video
  • Original design
  • Other things that are not listed here

July 2006 Awards

Compro VideoMate V550 — a functional stand-alone TV Tuner of an unusual design supporting 1600x1200 video output

Excellent Package

It's always pleasant to buy a product and find out that the package includes additional equipment, software, games, souvenirs, etc. It's nice to think that the product you bought is well worth its price, and it's twice as nice to buy a well-bundled product at a moderate price. In practice, some manufacturers tend to save on every item, even if the inclusion of this item into the product package raises the price by less than 10%. Thus, the editorial team of iXBT.com institutes the Excellent Package award to bring recognition to those manufacturers, who offer nice boxes with excellent package content (the product plus useful accessories) instead of featureless boxes with minimal package content (CD with drivers).

This award can be presented to a product with an original box and unique package content. The product must be tested in the iXBT.com lab, and the results of these tests must be published in a review on the iXBT.com web site, the iXBT.com magazine, or the Digit-Life.com web site.

The Excellent Package award can be selected only once a month and must refer to the awarded product reviews.

3D Video Cards Awards

A video card can be awarded with Excellent Package, if the tests demonstrated the following features distinguishing it from the other products on the market at that moment:

  • Original package (retail)
  • Rich software set, utilities and other homeware
  • Various bonuses: souvenirs or useful/nice knick-knacks
  • Other things that are not listed here

July 2006 Awards

ASUS EN7600GT Silent 256MB PCI-E


Additional information

The same award cannot be given to a product more than once.

A product can get several different awards.

Printed award certificates can be provided by written request via e-mail: pr@ixbt.com

August 11, 2006

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