One of the world’s largest manufacturers of computer components and hardware – Asustek Computer – has unveiled what it calls XG Station, an external adapter that boosts 3D graphics performance on notebooks as well as adds Dolby audio to mobile computers. Practically, the XG Station is the foundation for world’s first external graphics card.
Asus’ XG Station is an adaptor with PCI Express x16 slot for graphics cards and 5.1-channel audio logic inside which connects to notebooks using Express Card interface as well as USB 2.0. The device also comes with a screen that can display certain important parameters, such as system master volume, graphics chip’s clock-speed and temperature, frames per second information, fan speed and so on.
Users who have notebooks with Express Card slot and with relatively low-performance integrated graphics core - which is common in small form-factor notebooks - will need to acquire a PCI Express x16 graphics card, Asus XG Station and, when everything is properly installed, enjoy the benefits of a desktop-class graphics processor and 5.1 Dolby audio.
The XG Station is currently scheduled to be released at the beginning of Q2 2007. A full package will include the XG Station graphics docking station, one Asus EN7900GS graphics card and assorted accessories.
Currently it is unknown whether Asus XG Station is compatible with any graphics card or its compatibility will be limited to certain models due to power and heat restrictions. Pricing of the XG Station itself as well as XG Station with Asus EN7900GS remains unknown.