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HP to Acquire Voodoo PC 85

mytrip writes to mention a News.com article outlining HP's acquisition of Voodoo PC, the high-end gaming computer maker. Following Dell's purchase of Alienware this past March, it would seem that the big computer assemblers are gearing up for a gaming skirmish. "In the weeks prior to that acquisition, Rahul Sood predicted the looming deal after having similar acquisition-related conversations with Dell Chairman Michael Dell, he later revealed on his blog. Rahul Sood will become chief technologist in HP's game division, and Ravi Sood will take on the role of chief strategist, Rahul Sood wrote on the blog. Voodoo will maintain a presence in Calgary, Alberta, where the company is currently headquartered. The deal is expected to close in November, HP said in a press release."
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HP to Acquire Voodoo PC

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  • um... (Score:1, Funny)

    by racebit ( 959234 )
    all your gaming pc's are belong to us
    • It is NOT PC's! It is PCs! What makes people think they can use an apostrophe when the noun doesn't actually possess anything? It is just a plural!
      • by racebit ( 959234 )
        Fine...PeeCee...better? Btw...contrary to common belief, it does NOT mean Personal Computer, rather, Pathetic Crap.

        Pardon my english, but this is /. If you would like to gripe about proper english usage, then you have come to the wrong place bud.
  • Wow! (Score:2, Funny)

    by ubrgeek ( 679399 )
    Good thing no one tried to leak this story ahead of time ;)
    • I read an op/ed piece about the leak, saying the CEO wasn't the one at fault, it was the leaker who is responsible for the whole mess by forcing the CEO to spy on the board.

      So two wrongs make a right, now? It's kind of like saying that Hitler wasn't the real problem, the problem was that the Jewish people weren't kind enough to disappear for him, which really, now that I think about it, would have saved everyone a bunch of grief.

      Disclaimer: Before anyone flies off the handle, I don't really think that a
    • but before they could finish the leak, they were overcome with inexplicable sharp, stabbing pains in their neck, chest and stomach.
  • are they gonna make like difficult for the Voodoo purchasers as much as the made life difficult for the Compaq purchasers, who now have to deal with HorrablyPathetic tech support?

    Hmm. Who's that leave for Gateway to purchase? Falcon?
    • I pray not. If I were to ever purchase an over priced computer it would be a Falcon. Their paint jobs are just ridiculous, and the care they take on the inside of the case is just fabulous.
    • Re:so... (Score:4, Informative)

      by felis_panthera ( 160944 ) <{moc.liamg} {ta} {arehtnap.silef}> on Friday September 29, 2006 @09:38AM (#16244867) Homepage
      Here's the word from your man on the inside...

      No.... at least for the time being our tech support is remaining in house... as are our production and service departments... we are now a division of HP, but we are retaining a good deal of our autonomy as we are technically classified as Research and Development...
    • by jcgf ( 688310 )
      are they gonna make like difficult for the Voodoo purchasers as much as the made life difficult for the Compaq purchasers, who now have to deal with HorrablyPathetic tech support?

      Tech support isn't your God given right anymore.

      • true, but I tend to avoid manufacturers that have horrible tech support. It may not be my God given right, but it is my discerning consumer earned right.
        • by jcgf ( 688310 )
          The post was a joke refering to HP's former ceo's comment about jobs not being american's god given right. I didn't think someone would actually reply.
      • the best way to get actual "tech support" (and not need to start praying to #Higher Power) for your new system

        1 buy the following from a local computer shop
        A: an oem copy of XP
        B: a nice large hard drive
        C: a copy of Ghost (or similar drive imaging util)
  • But I don't think I'll be buying from them. Real enthusiasts build their own. ;) Still, I look forward to seeing what they come up with and at what price. Especially in the laptops.
    • At least this is a sign that the mainstream computer makers are taking gaming a little more seriously. I happen to prefer gaming on my PC than on a game platform like XBox or PS3, but then again, I prefer games like Half Life 2 and Eve-Online. I appreciate being able to have one big gizmo on my desk for playing games and making a living. Playing on PCs also gives me the capability to upgrade my hardware (and software) to improve my gaming experience rather than just having to wait for the XBOX 720 to com
    • I wouldn't say that's 100% true. Sure enthusiasts build their own, but take this parallel: Car enthusiasts don't always (just) have a really nice hot rod; sometimes they have a Ferrari/Bentley/Lamborghini too...I can build my own, and still enjoy a computer built by a company such as Alienware, Voodoo PC and Falcon NW.
  • by buying a computer manufactuer than is even more over priced and has customer service issues.

    I guess Falcon is next
  • by CastrTroy ( 595695 ) on Friday September 29, 2006 @07:53AM (#16243635) Homepage
    Do you have to buy someone in order to make a good product? I mean, it's not really that hard to make a gaming PC. I guess by buying someone out, they get to use the name, with brings in customers, but I really don't see the big draw. HP is a big enough company that if they put out a real gaming machine, with really good specs for a good price, I'm sure it wouldn't go unnoticed.

    Having said that, what's with all the big companies wanting to get into gaming PCs? That's a very small market, and with all the consoles coming out with HD, I don't see PC gaming getting a larger market (although I don't know if it will shrink). I just checked Voodoo PC, and their cheapest rig starts at $2800. For that price you could buy a PS3, XBox360, and a Wii, oh, and a ton of games, and still come out on top. I realize that there's a few games that are just better on PC (RTS and FPS), but seriously, I don' see a lot of people wanting to spend that much money on a computer.
    • by jimstapleton ( 999106 ) on Friday September 29, 2006 @08:02AM (#16243705) Journal
      I think part of it is, they are adding a new market segment, without having to do the R&D, and while removing a potential competator, in one fell swoop.
    • by Orange Crush ( 934731 ) on Friday September 29, 2006 @08:06AM (#16243741)
      Having said that, what's with all the big companies wanting to get into gaming PCs?

      My guess would be the higher profit margins. The market may be tiny, but it's still got much fatter margins than the cutthroat bargain PC market where Dell is king and manufacturers fight bitterly over every last penny.

      • by CastrTroy ( 595695 ) on Friday September 29, 2006 @08:27AM (#16243943) Homepage
        I think that high profit margins are what they are looking for, but I can't see a real gamer wanting to buy a computer from HP. The gamer crowd would either build their own, or buy from a small company, so that they don't have the same computer as everyone else. A Ferrari isn't "that" much better than a Corvette, but you know that you will get a lot more stares, and be part of an elite group when you buy your Ferrari. People buy these gaming PCs as status symbols. Once it's just another computer from a giant manufacturer, will they still have the same appeal?
        • Maybe they're not after that obsessive minority of fussy gamers? Believe it or not, most REAL gamers are interested in playing games, not in having computers from trendy brands.
    • Having said that, what's with all the big companies wanting to get into gaming PCs? That's a very small market, and with all the consoles coming out with HD, I don't see PC gaming getting a larger market (although I don't know if it will shrink).

      The market can't be all that small. When CompUSA and Best Buy are in the gaming PC business (and they are), you have to realize that these are mass market companies. If they didn't think they'd sell a bunch at their stores, they wouldn't carry them. I predict th

    • I'm pretty sure the niche market for premade gaming rigs is remaining small because most people who want a gaming rig know how to build one for half that price. I checked out some of the stuff on the voodoo website and its obscene.
      • No kidding. I had a friend come to me a few weeks ago after he priced out a computer on Dell for gaming. He didn't tell me what it had. Just wanted me to price one out for him. All the parts came from Newegg (so we weren't even shopping around for the best price) and when we were done he had nearly the exact same machine (with the exception that the one on Newegg included two monitors in the price) and it was $1000 less than Dell. His wife asked if he could get it lower so we went back and started trim
    • by cowbutt ( 21077 )
      HP is a big enough company that if they put out a real gaming machine, with really good specs for a good price, I'm sure it wouldn't go unnoticed.

      ...Possibly unintentionally by HP's business customers too, thus diluting their brand amongst that class of customers: "oh, HP's the company that makes those gaming laptops - we'll drop those from consideration".

      Then again, it doesn't seem to have done Microsoft or Sony any harm...

    • Do you have to buy someone in order to make a good product?
      No, but as MS demonstrated over the years, it's the easy way, not only when killing competition is your goal.

      Having said that, what's with all the big companies wanting to get into gaming PCs?
      Marketing.
    • It's about the brand, not just the hardware. Could HP and Dell build and sell similar machines? Sure. But I think the brands matter to gamers, and buying these companies gives Dell and HP "gamer cred" that would be hard for them to acquire on their own. Alienware retains its own brand and web site (although it now has some Dell flourishes), and it appears Voodoo will as well.

      The issue is whether gamers continue to support Alienware and Voodoo, or come to believe that they've sold out to soul-less conglomera

      • Can huge corporations succeed in gaming culture/counterculture?

        The better question is "Can gaming culture maintain its somewhat counter culture edge?" Gaming is moving mainstream and as it does more "mainstream" people get into it. That is people who are only concerned about being mainstream are going to be the more predominant group. The same can be said of almost any group of people. As it becomes mainstream then you get more people who only care about the appearance rather than the core ideologie
    • I guess by buying someone out, they get to use the name, with brings in customers, but I really don't see the big draw.

      This is exactly it. Both Voodoo and Alienware built up a brand name. Most people don't understand the technical parts of computers, so they rely upon brands. Even before Dell bought Alienware, they started selling crappy, re-branded white boxes at exorbitant prices and people bought them. If you spend a few years building a reputation and you are unscrupulous, you can use that brand to

      • Even before Dell bought Alienware, they started selling crappy, re-branded white boxes at exorbitant prices and people bought them.


        Whitebox != crappy unless you're using Bill & Ted's cheap motherboard of the week.
        • Whitebox != crappy unless you're using Bill & Ted's cheap motherboard of the week.

          Ummm, if I thought that, why would I have said the boxes were both crappy and whiteboxes? Wouldn't that be kind of redundant?

        • I find Bill & Ted's motherboards to be EXCELLENT!
    • Don't forget the cost of a high definition television to go with those consoles, and more than likely some kind of receiver / amp for the audio. Even if you already had them, they're part of the cost of playing console games at the same quality you get on a computer.

      I think consoles are great, and they've come a long way to meet the 'game-ability' of a personal computer, but the PC still plays games the best. With things like updates, patches, add-ons, mods, and hacks, there are so many reasons to play game
      • You don't have to include the cost of the HD TV set if you are comparing to PC gaming, where you typically have a 17 or 19 inch monitor. You can get a "High Def" 17 in TV screen for not too much money. I'd rather game on a 30 in SD tv than a And don't count a receiver/amp for the audio, unless you are going to have something similar for the PC games.

        Having said that, if you want a good gamepad for you PC, go to your local electronics store. They have USB to GC/PS2/XBox adapters so you can use your f
    • I think what they are buying is the customer base and the name. If it's like Alienware & Dell, they will probably appear to be separate, they even said that the most they will offer is purchasing power, it looks like Alienware still has separate marketing, which is a good idea.
    • by olyar ( 591892 )
      When I worked at HP, there was a joke that went around. The HP logo said "HP Invent". Someone put up mock signs saying "HP OEM".
  • Does Voodoo work on Aliens? I thought Voodoo only worked if you believed in it. Personally I think Dell got the better deal, but hey.. it's close.
  • <malcolm in the middle>Why must you destroy everything I love?</malcolm in the middle>

    Come to think of it, most of my best quotes are from that show.

  • Obviously, HP management said "These PCs are for tweakers" and they heard "leakers".

    They thought that they could use Voodoo to find and punish the leakers. I see visions of HP management sticking needles into PCs as we speak: "Oh YEAH - TAKE THAT! AND THAT! AND THAT! BWAHAHAHAAHA!"
  • by Dark Paladin ( 116525 ) <jhummel&johnhummel,net> on Friday September 29, 2006 @08:21AM (#16243863) Homepage
    Now, when you order that VoodooPC, it comes with a free phone tap kit! Fun for the whole family (though unless you're a member of the NSA, make sure you get those warrants first!)
  • I hear that the new machines will have anti-cheating technology built in. With the integrated keylogger, persistent dial modem, and gigabit snitch-on-lan ports, the risk of anyone cheating in online games is a thing of the past. Also included is a one year subscription to a fully customized* client version of a popular identity fraud monitoring service.

  • The reason why most of us gamers choose companies other than Dell/HP/IBM for our rigs (if we even buy prebuilt PCs) is for their components.

    We really don't want some crappy Dell or HP proprietary motherboards or proprietary memory in our PCs (don't even get me started on the onboard video).

    Personally, I usually build my PCs from scratch, but will every once in a while buy a prebuilt PC with the exact components I want.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by NDPTAL85 ( 260093 )
      Onboard video? Are you stupid or something?

      Are you completely and totally unaware they any serious gaming rig from Dell or HP comes with a real dedicated video card?

      I mean are you seriously thinking Dell and HP only sell computers with onboard video? And proprietary memory? WTF?
  • It was a nice run, and good while it lasted. Thankfully the gamers who want a good rig but don't have time to build their own still have Falcon Northwest and a few other companies to fall back on.
  • It seems that we finally have a news story that fits Slashdot business model:

    1) Build a business like Alienware or Voodoo PC that sells high-performance gaming PC's, and sell them at a premium price.
    2) Get bought out by a white box PC manufacturer like HP or Dell.
    3) Profit!

    You better hurry up, though, since the only other big PC manufacturers that haven't gone on a gaming PC buying spree yet are IBM/Lenovo and Gateway.
  • Does anyone find it funny that Rahul Sood mocked the Alienware purchase by Dell, and now we have this? I guess his mocking of the "creative" name mix of Dell + Alienware = Dellienware will now bite him in the butt with the newly named HooPoo.
  • They will use these voodoo dolls to threaten any board members who don't go along with future pretexting.
    • by XPACT ( 711220 )
      10+ Mod points Joke of the month !!!!
      Where are the mod points when you need them?!? :-)))
  • Does that make me a crumudgeon?
  • Neon cases? Someone else's $700 video card? Is the game nerd segment of the market really that large? Or is it more of a case where you game nerds haven't realized what a huge margin premium you've been paying for that extra little performance bump?
    • by Xtifr ( 1323 )
      What makes you think the answer isn't "both of the above"? About the only market segment I can think of that displays less acumen and need to justify outrageous prices is the audiophile market. And if you can figure out how to market to both! "Yeah, man, you really need this gold-foil-wrapped video cable at a low, low price of only $400! Without it, your pixels will be rendered 2% less effectively!" :)
  • Voodoo PC has name recognition for being the Lexus of gaming machines. Hence their $2,800 starting price. They've been on the leading edge of the curve for several years. So much that Maximum PC [maximumpc.com] has interviewed them a few times about some of their techniques.

    They lead the pack with everything from IDE cable folding (before rounded IDE cables) to implementing a gaming rig with no active cooling [voodoopc.com]. And they've constantly pushed to the next level by custom-building parts for next-gen rigs. Some of the stuf

    • So you work for them or what?
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by dfghjk ( 711126 )
      "Even now, when everyone is jumping in to the HTPC field, Voodoo is already one step ahead of the curve. Their HTPC has top of the line parts and no fans."

      No fans? The system has both chassis fans and power supply fans. Nothing unique here except the really high price and the custom paint jobs.
      • by e03179 ( 578506 )
        COMPLETELY Fanless and Silent: http://www.voodoopc.com/system/quotekitchen.aspx?p roductID=1048 [voodoopc.com]

        Still expensive, though.
        • by dfghjk ( 711126 )
          That's not the HTPC, that's a giant, floorstanding game machine. This was what was said:

          "Even now, when everyone is jumping in to the HTPC field, Voodoo is already one step ahead of the curve. Their HTPC [voodoopc.com] has top of the line parts and no fans."

          It does, in fact, have fans both in the chassis and in the power supply.

          There have been fanless computers before. If you'd like to pay nearly four grand for a Turion processor and an 80GB drive go right ahead.
    • Breaks your heart?? this is a time for rejoicing.... we're still Voodoo, with all of the bleeding edge developments that has made us great... but for all that time from when Rahul started the company until yesterday, the whole of Voodoo consisted of about 25 people... we were at a plateau of what a company our size could do, we didn't have the R&D resources necessary to get to the next level and grow the company without bastardizing our brand by coming out with a "budget" system... but now our R&D m
  • gateway?
    ibm / Lenovo?
    Sony?
    Toshiba?
  • My shop does warranty work on HP's, and other machines. I know how big a piece of crap box they build, they are truly a proprietary piece of junk. . It will only be a matter of time before HP does the same thing Dell did, and turn a great machine into another proprietary piece of junk.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    HP and Dell's acquisitions of Voodoo and Alienware, respectively, aren't signs of a looming gaming skirmish between companies.

    They're just learning how to build computers fast enough to run Vista.
  • Rahul Sood (the president of Voodoo PC) has been keeping a blog for quite a while, and it's an extremely interesting read. Anyway, he announced the merger on his blog with a long writeup:
    [URL]http://voodoopc.blogspot.com/2006/09/project- vampire-is-about-to-fly_28.html[/URL}

    It's not often you have such a long, frank explenation from a president about the future of their company. Very cool.
  • I heard those VooDoo PCs come with built-in "nano-microphones".
  • Sorry, I don't think we're talking about the same HP. Do you mean Hewlett Packard, the company that sells printer ink cartridges?

    Since when does their business model include selling computers? Wouldn't that just take away from their black, yellow, cyan, and magenta gold?

    - RG>
  • Curious how HP is following Dell's lead in the marketplace. Also ironic that Voodoo's blog commentary about Dell and discussions with Michael were published at the same time as VooDoo was discussing being sold to HP. Perhaps some of the Voodoo comments about Dell were in fact motivated by competitive interest versus any real insight? More importantly, however, at Dell we continue to be about three steps ahead of both VooDoo and HP. They have a ways to go. Six months ago we acquired Alienware, the leader

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