VIA got their big break a few years ago when Intel failed to deliver the best chipsets to the market for the Pentium III. For the couple of years following, VIA enjoyed tremendous gains in market share which slowed down courtesy of NVIDIA's entry into the chipset market and Intel's lawsuit preventing VIA from producing Pentium 4 chipsets. Although the legal issues have since been resolved, VIA took it upon themselves to transition away from being known as just a chipset manufacturer and towards becoming a platform leader.

Since then we have seen VIA dabble in CPUs, audio and more recently – systems. For the past two years VIA has been talking about building more than just PCs, and just before this Fall's Consumer Electronics Show (CES) VIA began drumming up hype for a possible entry into the gaming console market.

At the start of CES the veil was lifted and VIA's first attempt at a game console stood in the lime light. The internals are all VIA with the system put together and sold by Apex. With many questions remaining about how the console works, we spent some time with both Apex and VIA to shed some more light on the new endeavor.

Introducing the ApeXtreme
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  • pluty - Monday, December 27, 2004 - link

    why is it, that when playing madden 2004-5, you can't use plays you've chosen for your personal playbook in the coaching mode, and you can only use the chicago bears playbook. I like to call my plays and watch the computer run them. any suggestions?
  • franguinho - Thursday, January 22, 2004 - link

    its an interesting idea but poorly implemented IMO... id much rather buy a gamepad and half decent graphics card and play PC games on an actual PC... (which in fact is what i do).
  • yanon - Tuesday, January 20, 2004 - link

    I think this thing can become a hit if someone hack this and turned it into an all-purpose player which supports divx/xvid/rmvb, multi-regions dvd (with region-free installed), moderate pc gaming, TiVo, digital audio player (with winamp installed), digital photography, and web browser.
  • othercents - Thursday, January 15, 2004 - link

    Check out this website about the Discover technology behind the ApeXtreme.

    There are supposed to be higher end consoles available at the same time as Apex releases theirs. Some of the consoles are P4 3.0ghz with GeforceFX video cards. So there should not be any problem playing any game released today and since they are going to be upgradable you should be able to play newer games also.

    For those who don't want to use their Main TV, I would just like to remind you that most homes have at least 3 or 4 TVs. I actually have a Wall Projector just for my game consoles and movies and then a regular TV for every day use.

  • quanta - Tuesday, January 13, 2004 - link

    I would rather build my mini-ITX PC cubes. As I recall, VIA CPUs have even worse floating point perforance than K6, which make important differences for every 3D game made since Quake I. Although many graphics operations are handled by video cards, CPU floating point processing are still being used for things like 3D audio, game physics engine, and AI. Unfortunately, the C3 still have extra weak FPU, cutting down potential frame rate on (almost) every game.
  • Idoxash - Monday, January 12, 2004 - link

    Great idea and really kewl if they can get other console gaming companys to make some games useing that much poweful gpu. However the cost is high. You can build a much faster system for that cost if you wanted to play just PC games. It looks as if this thing can hook to a monitor? Such as a computer one if so thatya be better then a TV at least.

    HRM, Good luck to VIA and Apex all I can say!

  • HammerFan - Sunday, January 11, 2004 - link

    5 posts in a row... damn :P
  • tw1164 - Sunday, January 11, 2004 - link

    I like the idea, but the price is a little high. You can get a new dell for that price, but alot faster. I see this device quickly falling behind in games.
  • KillaKilla - Sunday, January 11, 2004 - link

    Is CES already covered in the Day One report? I'd a thunk there'd be more there... damn.
  • Abraxas - Sunday, January 11, 2004 - link

    if they can get the price down, it looks like a good bet for a divx player :) any other divx capable dvd players on the market? this looks like the best ive seen.

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