iXBT Labs - Computer Hardware in Detail






iXBT.com Editors' Awards

November 1, 2006

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.

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

October 2006 Awards

Compro VideoMate U900 TV Tuner

Compro VideoMate U500 — Compact USB 2.0 DVB-T Tuner

Compro VideoMate S350

3D Video Cards Awards

A video card can be awarded with Original Design, if the tests revealed the following features distinguishing it from the reference design:

  • Original cooling system, which is more effective at the least possible level of noise
  • Support for extra features, such as Video-In (if it is not provided by the reference design)
  • Other things that are not listed here

It goes without saying that, for example, a PCB color different from the reference design cannot be considered an innovation.

October 2006 Awards

XFX GeForce 7950 GT Extreme 512MB PCI-E

ASUS EN7600GS TOP Silent (GeForce 7600 GS) 512MB PCI-E

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

October 2006 Awards

Internal Card Reader Apacer AE161

Printer Awards

A printer may be awarded with Original Design, if this model...

  • Possesses unique functionality for these days
  • Comes shipped with an outstanding software package
  • Offers something revolutionary new to the market
  • A model of engineering art
  • Other things that are not listed here

October 2006 Awards

HP Photosmart D7363

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.

TV Tuner and Multimedia Video Card Awards

TV-tuner or a multimedia video card can be selected for the Excellent Package award based on these criteria:

  • Original package (retail)
  • Homeware with unique functionality
  • Rich set of extra software
  • Souvenirs or useful/nice knick-knacks in the package
  • Other things that are not listed here

October 2006 Awards

Compro VideoMate U900 TV Tuner

Motherboards Awards

A motherboard merits the Excellent Package award, if it features some of the following bundle elements:

  • Original attractive package
  • Colorful and detailed User's Guides
  • A full set of necessary cables, preferably gathered in a tight bunch (for multi-cored cables)
  • Various brackets to expand functionality (for additional and/or missing FireWire/USB/COM/LPT ports; for audio features of the motherboard, including optical and coaxial digital inputs and outputs; etc)
  • Additional original accessories (USB drives, wireless adapters, etc)
  • A rich set of third-party software (free of charge), proprietary utilities for monitoring, BIOS management, etc
  • Other things

October 2006 Awards

Biostar TForce P965 Deluxe — a Motherboard on Intel P965 Chipset

Music CD Awards

Excellent Package is given to music editions on CD/DVD/DVD-A and SACD with the following peculiarities:

  • A stylish package, for example digipack or a "book". It must not be a standard jewel-case (aka glass).
  • It should be convenient to use — a disc should be easily extractable from a box without any risk of damaging it. That's why envelopes are out of the question — discs are worn out real fast in them.
  • There should be an informative and well-illustrated booklet. The booklet must be printed on enamel-paper with high quality.
  • On the whole, a product must produce a good impression with its appearance and should stand out against its like.

October 2006 Awards

Depeche Mode / A Broken Frame: Collector’s Edition (SACD+DVD)

Control Panels Awards

Excellent Package award is given to control panels with the following features:

  • Convenient installation procedure
  • Usability
  • Rich functions
  • Efficient cooling for HDD, if available

October 2006 Awards

Chieftec Thermal Killer DT6000

Projectors Awards

A projector can be honored with the Excellent Package award, if it comes shipped with additional accessories, which:

  • Help you use all (or most) available functions of the projector (for example when the standard package includes cables for all projector connectors, which let you use the projector with most supported audio and video sources and which allow you to use this projector in countries with different power supply standards).
  • Make it considerably easier to use the projector (for example, a full-featured remote control with a laser pointer, mouse emulation and presentation flow controls; convenient stand/holder, etc)
  • Are not necessary for projector functions, but help reduce possible consumer expenses (for example, a special cap for connectors to make the projector look better so that you don't have to install a cover up box to hide the projector at home; or a bundled Wi-Fi card, which you would have had to buy for non centrino notebooks).

A special note should be made of bundled bags, cases, etc, which make it easier to store and carry the device and all its accessories necessary for operation (cables, remote control, documentation) as well as protect the device from dust and mechanical effects.

A unique bundle does not have a novelty aspect, that is we can award several well-bundled projectors (manufacturers will not provide good bundles for all projectors anyway - the unique aspect will remain), the more criteria this bundle qualifies for, the more deserved the award will be.

October 2006 Awards

LG DX-125 Multimedia Digital Projector

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

November 1, 2006

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