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Dell Inc., the world’s largest maker of personal computers, said Tuesday it has sold all its limited edition XPS 600 Renegade systems that packed the top-of-the range offerings from Intel Corp., Nvidia Corp., innovative physics accelerators from Ageia and cost around $10 000.

“We sold out [Dell XPS 600 Renegade systems] in 3 days. The XPS 600 Renegade was a great example of Dell’s ability to deliver cutting edge technologies to gamers, and we’re committed to making these technologies – such as physics accelerators and quad SLI – more broadly available over time,” said Liem Nguyen, a spokesman for Dell.

The Dell XPS 600 Renegade was equipped with Intel Pentium Extreme Edition dual-core processor overclocked to 4.26GHz, 2GB of PC2-5400 (667MHz) memory, specially designed graphics cards each carrying two NVIDIA GeForce 7900 graphics processors with 512MB of memory per chip (2GB in total), Western Digital Raptor hard disk drives, Ageia PhysX accelerator for physics effects and so on. Dell sold the system for roughly $10 000, an unprecedented price of a desktop PC for gaming.

Dell did not disclose how many systems featuring overclocked Pentium Extreme Edition processor as well as Nvidia’s quad SLI technology it has sold, however, it emphasized, that the systems were custom-painted and came with autograph of Michael Dell, the founder of the company.

Nvidia quad SLI technology uses special GeForce 7900 GX2 graphics cards, each of which has two GeForce 7900-series graphics processors. Quad SLI allows to turn on 32x antialiasing, the maximum level possible today, or to play the latest games in 2560x1600 resolution. Even though quad SLI may not mean the highest performance possible, users buying systems featuring four GeForce 7900 GPUs may expect better graphics quality than those who use one or two graphics cards.


Comments currently: 15
Discussion started: 04/25/06 10:56:06 AM
Latest comment: 04/28/06 07:33:54 AM
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Is Dell really that desperate that they need to overclock to sell gaming PCs? That's a really sad statement about their company and Intel, and will not help their reputation at all. How can you trust a company that overclocks processors? Maybe Dell has enough reputation to avoid a lot of damage, but I can already see at least a few people put off by this latest gimmick.

To give some background to the youngsters (aka clueless), back in the bad old days, overclocking was what knock off companies did with processors. They'd buy say, 16 MHz 386s and run them at 20 MHz in their computers to save money, without ever telling anyone. These companies did not enjoy a good reputation and were considered second rate.

To sell a few machines, it seems strange Dell would risk this, unless they are not really overclocked and Intel sent them specially rated processors. This seems very unlikely though.

What it probably means is Dell cherry-picked the best EEs they got and used them in these machines. A little thought will tell you that this lowers the chances of buying other EE machines from Dell that overclock well, since they cherry picked the best ones for these, leaving the lesser ones for the normal machines. It is also a slap in the face of Intel, whose processors are so pathetic they need to be overclocked even by large companies to be competitive.

It's a bad idea that blossoms in a foul way no matter how you look at it.

0 0 [Posted by:  | Date: 04/25/06 10:56:06 AM]
- collapse thread

I dont see anything inherently wrong with selling machines with overclocked processors. As long as teh same standards of stability and reliability are met, and there are no deceptions going on then there are only benefits to be gained for the moderate enthusiast who does not wish to put in the effort to do the overclocking themselves.

True that Intel processors recently havent been tp performers, but just because a company sellse overclocked machinces does not mean they are trying to compensate for some kind of deficiency in the processor itself. After all Falcon Northwest, Voodoo, and others sell machines with factory overclocked AMD processors in them. Does this mean that AMD processors suck, and need to be overclocked to make them competative? Of course not.

As to binning the processors, whats wrong with taking the cream of the crop and putting them in more enthusiast oriented machines, and putting the less overclockable processors in more "normal" machines? More then like the people who buy "normal" machines are not going to engage in any high degree of overclocking if at all to begin with.

Thus as long as Dell is upfront that these machines are overclocked, and stability and reliablility remain the same, then I see nothing wrong with this. The fact that they are overclocking Intel processors to make the machine more competative speaks more selling to the rich moderate enthusiast who wants the speed, without the work, and the fact that Dell is an Intel only house, and less to do with trying to make Intel processors more competative with AMD. Especially since many vendors sell machines with overclocked AMD chips.
0 0 [Posted by:  | Date: 04/25/06 12:46:32 PM]
You mention Dell in the same sentence as Falcon Northwest? Are you kidding?

Can you have ever seen IBM of the past overclocking CPUs? Good grief, they were so safe with their computers they added extra interleaving and wait states. In fact they were underclocking 33 MHz 486s at 25 MHz in a lot of machines.

For nothing companies like you mention to overclock means nothing, they are not huge corporate entities that sell to huge corporate entities. Big companies overclocking is really, really strange, in fact it is unheard of. Compaq never did, IBM never did, HP never did, etc... Voodo is not quite in that league.

With regards to reliability,you can't get the same reliability from an overclocked processor than you could if the processor were clocked lower. It might work fine now, but they age faster. If Intel is not willing to guarantee a processor at a certain speed, and they make it, why should I trust a company that does not make them? They may work fine for now, but they will not last as long. The only question is, even with a shorten life, will that last longer than their useful life. I wouldn't want to take that chance on a 10K machine.

If these processors could perform adequately they would not find it necessary to overclock them. Dell had to overclock because everyone knows the Athlon 64 FX series is faster than the fastest normally clocked Pentium 4 EE, and you can not sell a machine for $10,000 with a second rate processor. Everyone would say, yeah, it's a cool machine, but the processor sucks and would look to AMD based. Overclocked like that, it creates uncertainty as to which really is the faster processor.

You are confused about what is a "normal" machine. Someone buying ANY EE edition Pentium 4 is not a buying a "normal" computer, they are paying for an extremely expensive processor and without question a high-end machine. Except, they are getting the lower grade parts in these machines. If I were buying an EE based machine, I would not even consider buying from Dell now. I'd buy from someone else that wasn't using their best processor in a "signature" series that was grossly overpriced and used parts I didn't need.

If Dell introduced this computer from Alienware, a second-rate company with no business relevance, I would not have been so shocked by it. You can expect this type of stuff from those companies, but from a company that sells corporate, it's inappropriate.

I would bet Intel is embarrassed by this. They desperately need to get Conroe out and put all this nonsense behind them.
0 0 [Posted by:  | Date: 04/25/06 08:24:20 PM]
I wasent putting Dell in the same league as Falcon Northwest and Voodoo, I was mearly pointing out that there are other companies that sell machines with overclocked processors. In addition to that those machines with overclocked processors are usually AMD processors.

Besides, so what if Dell has opened up a new product catagory aimed at gaming enthusiast. Your acting like they are turning all of their machines from buisness class to average joe $400 machines into machines with overccloked processors. Just because they add another category of computer sales to their product lineup doesnt mean the other product line ups are somehow infected.

If IBM suddenly decided tommarow to add a new product line aimed at gaming enthusiast to their products, I wouldnt suddenly think that their server line has suddenly gone down in quality, and I wouldnt think less of IBM. I would think that they are trying to branch out and further difersify their product line, and tap into a high margin market.

If Dell wants to try to take on the likes of Voodoo and Falcon Northwest, more power to them. Do I think they are anywhere near as good in the enthusiast space? No. Are they killing themselves in the enthusiast space by useing only Intel processors? Yes. Hopefully sooner or later they will learn their lesson.

Of course none of this has anything to do with selling machines with overclocked proccesors. Like I said before other companines sell great enthusiast machines with overclocked AMD processors.

Just because they are selling machines with overclocked processors doesnt not mean desperation, or compensation for some defficiency. It just means that there is a market for machines that are overclocked from the factory, instead of hand tuned by the buyer. The buyer is paying for conviniece, and a factory warrented overclock that you couldnt get if you did it on yoru own. For the moderate enthusiast, who doesnt want to, or doesnt know how do do it themselves, and has lots of cash to burn, machiens with overclcoked cps, and gpus, are good buys.

Whether the processor is Intel or AMD has nothing to do with the purpose behind selling machines with overclocked cpus.

As to speed binning proccessors, its no differnt than speed binning gpus, that are then sold as graphics cards that come factory overclocked, or binning ram chips for use in enthusiast grade ram; all of which come with a price premium.

In the end selling machines with overclocked processors does nothing to embarrass Intel, or Dell, no more than selling machines with overclocked processors embarras AMD and Voodoo/Flacon. What embarrases Intel and Dell is Intel processors losing on performance and putting out more heat, and Dell only using Intel processors inspite of these issuses.
0 0 [Posted by:  | Date: 04/25/06 09:39:38 PM]
It is clear you don't work for a big company IT department based on your remarks.

The fact that a company like Dell would overclock, at all, shows they do not respect reliability and are half rate. Big corporate companies are really sensitive to perceived unreliability, and IBM was NEVER stupid enough to do that. Actually, no other big company was. Someone making these machines approved lowering reliability, which overclocking ALWAYS does since it ALWAYS shortens the lifespan, and if that person is the CEO, it is a bad reflection on everything else they sell. It's just not corporate.

They could have competed with those companies easily by selling these machines through Alienware. Putting the Dell name on an overclocked machine hurts their reputation.

This machine is a good buy for someone? Overclocking is a child's game these days, it takes no talent, no knowledge, nothing. Back when you'd have to unsolder crystals and sometimes memory on the motherboard, make sure the cards you used could run at the speed, and switch out the BIOS, it took some skill. Any idiot can do it now. Plus, this $10,000 machine represents an extremely poor value, and is not a good deal for anyone. It will be obsolete in a few months, and 10K for a soon obsolete machine is a lot of cash to spend.

Your point of view is understandable, but clearly shows you do not understand how big businesses work. If you ever mentioned overclocking to an IT department, they'll look at you like your a brainless twit (I know, I did it back in the Celeron 300a days, which was a really easy, safe and painless overclock :P) and it is a huge taboo. Big companies like Dell are not supposed to do it, and it will hurt their reputation, if people find out.

It is a huge embarrassment for Intel, since up until now Dell didn't feel they had to do this to be competitive. Do you think Intel will like it when these processors die prematurely and people get angry at Intel for it? You think they'll overclock Conroes when they come out?

If Intel felt these processors were capable of running reliably, over time, at speeds so high, they would have released them at that speed bin. They are pretty close to the max speeds enthusiast sites can reach with these processors, which means they are very close to the edge. One reason processor makers do not sell processors right at their highest speed is they will not last long. There are two reasons, they decay faster from the greater temperature variations, and also they have much less slack on the line to give up. Dell sacrificed reliability because they couldn't match the performance of the Athlon 64 without doing so. That's embarrassing for both Intel and Dell. Overclocking at all is embarrassing for a big company. You've got a small company, hobbyist perspective so clearly this isn't making sense to you, but I'll try something else ...

Has IBM ever done it? Forget your irrelevant speculation about if they did and how you'd feel. Have they? Did Compaq ever do it? Did or does HP? Has even Apple ever done it? Do you understand that big companies have not done this? Forget little companies, I would have no problem with Alienware releasing this. I am talking big corporations that sell to other big corporations, and sell a lot based on reputation. They just don't do this stuff. Except for Dell. They are so desperate they were willing to risk tarnishing their reputation. It's crazy.

Now, there is a possibility that Intel sent them special versions of the chips that they approved at those speeds, and were not available to other companies. I can not say for sure that this is not true. If it is true, than none of what I am saying is pertinent, since Intel approved these processor at these speeds (they may be from the new process and it has not been widely implemented yet, so they have only limited numbers). I doubt this is the case, but it is always possible.

0 0 [Posted by:  | Date: 04/26/06 10:49:05 AM]

For $10K there ought to be more RAM than that.
0 0 [Posted by:  | Date: 04/25/06 12:01:17 PM]

Wow, they sold all 3 of them, amazing... :D
0 0 [Posted by:  | Date: 04/26/06 05:15:31 AM]


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