News

  • Intel Xe graphics card concept

    Intel’s new Xe graphics cards are on track for a 2020 launch

    Updated 04/11/2019

    For the past few years, AMD and NVIDIA have indisputably been the ones leading the charge in the graphics card market, but with chipmaker giant Intel soon stepping into the same arena, this could all be set to change. Since their announcement back in August last year, Intel has been working away on its own discrete graphics card dubbed the Xe DG1. However, because they’ve been keeping these graphics cards very close to their chest, as of this moment, we know very little about what to expect from Intel’s upcoming GPUs. Only that we can’t wait to get our hands on them!

    What do we know about the Xe graphics cards?

    The only thing we really know is that it’s very likely we’ll get to see Intel’s Xe graphics cards coming into the fray sometime in 2020. The actual release date is still under a bit of speculation, with some rumours suggesting we could see it as early as June 2020 and some erring on the side of a release much later in the year. Intel’s Senior Vice President of Architecture, Graphics, and Software and former AMD engineer, Raja Koduri teased the launch only last month with a cryptic tweet of a new personalised number plate that read “THINKXE” and an expiry date of June 2020, which may be grounds enough to support the theory.

    A lot of potential and power

    While we can’t pin down anything exact for the time being in terms of the GPU’s anticipated specs, what is possible is that their top end 512 Xe card could end up outperforming NVIDIA’s RTX 1080 Ti, based on some speculative estimates made by the tech enthusiast community, which gives us an idea of anticipated performance. More recently, there’s also been evidence to suggest that Intel is intent on implementing multi-GPU technology with its Xe GPUs. This could enable people to double up on their graphics cards to achieve more power, while creating an easier upgrade path by splitting the cost over two different purchases. It could also mean that anyone using both Intel CPUs and GPUs in tandem could see even greater benefit, as the graphics card would work with the integrated graphics within the processor to aid more complex tasks.

    It’s alive!

    Last week, Intel’s Senior Director of Discrete Graphics and Visual Technologies Marketing and another former AMD employee, Chris Hook tweeted that the discrete Xe graphics cards are “alive!”, having been officially powered on and now in a functional working state. We’re very excited to hear the new GPUs are currently being tested, and are looking forward to seeing exactly what they can do next year. Adding to the good news, Intel has also confirmed they are on track to release their first 7nm GPU in 2021, something we’re equally anxious to see.

    If you’d like to find out more about Intel’s new discrete Xe graphics cards or discover how you can take advantage of the GPUs within our range of Rack and Mini PCs, please get in touch.

    Posted by: Geoff Undrell
    Posted in: News

  • G2 Digital is heading back to Amsterdam for ISE 2020

    Updated 21/10/2019

    Following our successful trip to Integrated Systems Europe earlier this year, we’re delighted to announce that G2 Digital will be returning to Amsterdam for our second year running as an exhibitor! We had such a fantastic time at the world’s largest AV systems integration show in February that we couldn’t wait to get started on our plans for ISE 2020. As of May 2019, we were also proud to become a member of CEDIA, one of the leading associations for the global audio-visual market, and a co-owner of ISE.

    What to expect

    We’re dialling things up to eleven this year, with an even bigger stand than before in one of the most popular halls at the four-day show. Located in Hall 15 on Stand S282, we’ll be exhibiting among some of the most well-known and respected names in the industry, including technology giant, Google.

    Accompanied once again by our growing range of compact and rack mount PCs, we’ll be giving you the chance to take a rare look ‘under the hood’ of our innovation and gain a better understanding of the build and design process that goes into creating our products. We’re also really looking forward to demoing the impressive high-end graphics capabilities of our brand-new 3U PC for the first time live on the stand. What we’re most excited about, however, is seeing you get better acquainted with our Intel-based Power over Ethernet (PoE) products, the 1U Intel NUC, Fanless NUC, and Bantam. Get ready to discover exactly why PoE is the perfect solution for PC installation.

    ISE just gets better

    Host to 1,300 exhibitors and over 81,000 visitors in 2019, we have no doubt that ISE 2020 will be the biggest and best event to date. We’re thrilled to be heading back to the RAI Amsterdam and can’t wait to show off what our incredible line-up of PCs can do. Registration for the event is now open, so if you would like to join us from 11th – 14th February 2020, contact us and we’ll share our unique code with you to register for free as a G2 guest!

    Posted by: Geoff Undrell
    Posted in: News

  • Our new 3U PC is purpose-built for PCI expansion

    Updated 30/09/2019

    After our announcement back in July that the new 3U PC was on its way, we can officially confirm that it is now available to purchase. We’re thrilled to finally welcome the unit into our product family, where it has taken its rightful place as the first of our 3U units.

    The perfect PC for PCI expansion

    3U PC 3 Dual PCIeWe’ve designed the 3U PC to be as versatile as possible, meaning it’s ideal for PCIe expansion. And because our units are used for all kinds of different applications across various industries, we’ve allowed for even greater flexibility by offering two variants of the unit, with horizontal and vertical PCIe slots respectively. This makes it so much easier to enjoy the benefit of multiple graphics (GFX) cards inside a single rack mount PC.

    Our horizontal model rises the PCI card through 90 degrees, enabling 2x consumer GFX cards 3U Redundant PSU 7 PCIto fit comfortably into the machine thanks to 5x full height single bays. Importantly, any GFX cards with power connectors built into the top edge, like NVIDIA GTX, can be used without compromising on the height of the unit – something which is typically difficult to achieve in 19” Rack units. By comparison, the vertical model of the 3U PC offers 7x full height single bays, allowing up to 3x professional GPUs to be fitted, whether Quadro or AMD.

    Here’s what you can expect from our latest PC:

    • 448(W)x457(D)x133(H)mm
    • 2x 3.5″ or up to 6x 2.5″ hot swappable SSD/HDD bays
    • Up to 7x PCIe x16 slots
    • Dual Socket AMD EPYC or Intel Xeon CPU Support
    • Rubber mounted internal cooling fan(s)
    • Optional 800W Redundant Power Supply
    • Optional water-cooling functionality

    Get it while it’s hot!

    We can’t wait to show you what our 3U PC can do. It’s got a load of PCIe potential to look forward to, so if you would like to find out how you can make the most out of your graphics cards by getting your hands on the new unit, get in touch with one of the team.

    Posted by: Geoff Undrell
    Posted in: News, Products

  • AMD Ryzen 9 3900X

    AMD’s 3900X CPU sets a new standard for performance

    Updated 24/09/2019

    Titan chipmaker AMD’s 3rd generation Ryzen 9 3900X processor has got us very excited indeed. Since its official release on 24th July, the fast and furious CPU has already proven incredibly popular – so much so, in fact, that the overwhelming demand has meant that AMD is currently experiencing a chip shortage. It’s no wonder too – AMD is claiming that the 3900X is the world’s most advanced processor, with more speed, memory, and bandwidth than its predecessors, which is why we can’t wait to get it into our PCs.

    A powerful processor straight out of the box

    The 7nm desktop CPU is part of AMD’s Zen 2 architecture, and boasts 12 cores and 24 threads, seemingly leaps and bounds ahead of Intel’s flagship i9-9900K, which is still using a 14nm process and has 8 cores and 16 threads by comparison. And although the Ryzen 3900X’s boost clock speed is only 4.6GHz, a whole 0.4GHz less than the Intel chip, it seems that this isn’t a massive loss, as its performance is hugely impressive regardless.

    The revolutionary Ryzen chip promises some seriously awesome specs:

    • 12 cores, 24 threads
    • 4.6GHz Boost Clock
    • 3.8GHz Base Clock
    • 64MB L3 cache
    • 105W TDP
    • PCIe Gen 4 support

    The CPU that can handle anything you throw at it

    Thanks to its exceptional multi-core performance, the 3900X seamlessly handles multitasking, making it the ideal chip for demanding media applications such as video production that require a powerful, high-performing processor. It even works better when it’s working harder, needing less power when running intensive tasks than the i9-9900K. It does, though, typically consume more when left to its own devices.

    Coming to G2 products soon

    We’re hoping to see stock restraints for the Ryzen 3900X subside by the 1st week of October, so are very much looking forward to seeing what they can do when paired with our line-up of Rack and Mini PCs. If you would like to find out more about how you can get your hands on AMD’s exciting 3rd gen chip within our machines, please get in touch with the team.

    Posted by: Geoff Undrell
    Posted in: News

  • AV Awards Finalist

    AV Awards finalist for the second year running!

    Updated 14/08/2019

    We’re absolutely delighted to have been shortlisted for the AV Awards 2019’s coveted Manufacturer of the Year award! This is our second year running as a finalist, after our 2U Nano was a contender for Production Product of the Year in 2018. It’s brilliant to once again be recognised for the innovation, dedication, and ingenuity that goes into creating our PCs, especially when the other ‘shortlisters’ are such esteemed names in the industry.

    G2 at Judging Day

    For the very first time this year, our submission involved more than a written account of what we do and how we do it. In addition to this, we were selected from more than 70 entries in our category and invited to attend a Judging Day in Canary Wharf. Here, our Managing Director, Chris Hollidge was asked to give a presentation and further demonstrate our credentials as a worthy winner, taking questions from a panel of industry experts along the way. His efforts must have impressed as we’re now one of ten finalists in the running for Manufacturer of the Year.

    It would mean the world to win

    It’s a massive honour for us to simply be shortlisted for this award, particularly in a category with such outstanding nominees, and if we were to win it would be an incredible achievement. We’re really looking forward to the awards night itself, which will take place at Battersea Evolution in London this November, and cannot wait to toast the winner regardless of who takes away the trophy. Best of luck to all finalists – we’re elated to join you!

    Posted by: Geoff Undrell
    Posted in: News

  • 3U PC front

    Get ready to meet our brand-new unit: the 3U PC

    Updated 09/07/2019

    We’re excited to officially reveal that we have a brand-new rackmount unit in the works – the 3U PC. The very first 3U computer to join our ever-expanding line-up of Mini and Rack PCs, we’ve created the 3U PC in response to an increasing demand for multi GPU configurations.

    Why are multiple GPU slots so hard to come by?

    The fundamental issue with consumer grade GPUs, while cost effective, is that they come built with power connectors on their top edge. This means they are generally very tall, and difficult to fit into more compact, space-sensitive PCs, restricting the number of graphics cards that can be deployed in a single unit. By comparison, the power connectors on ‘professional’ cards can be found on the back of the GPU rather than the top edge, thereby only affecting case depth, which is a much easier challenge to negotiate.

    Enter the 3U PC

    Our new 3U PC was designed to alleviate the issues associated with multiple GPU slots. As the need for PCs with a smaller height but sufficient room for more expansion cards continues to grow, our 3U case allows professional GPUs to be mounted vertically, making it possible for customers to add several to their unit.

    Available in two variants, the 3U PC takes both pro and consumer cards into consideration. The first variant will offer 7x full height single bays able to fit up to 3x dual-width NVIDIA RTX or AMD professional graphics cards. The second variant rises the bays through 90 degrees, offering 5x full height single bays able to fit up to 2x dual-width NVIDIA RTX/GTX consumer graphics cards.

    3U PC rear alternate variant3U PC rear variant

    But that’s not all there is to get excited about – the 3U PC is bursting with other brilliant features:

    • 425(W) x 547(D) x 133(H) mm
    • 4x 3.5” or 8x 2.5” hot swap bays
    • Dual Socket AMD EPYC or Intel Xeon CPU Support
    • Water-cooling functionality (optional)
    • Redundant power supply (optional)
    • DVD/Blu-ray Bay (Optional)

    Proving three’s not a crowd

    We can confirm that the 3U PC has now been fully designed and is currently awaiting initial production samples, but we don’t anticipate it’ll be very long before the new unit joins our family of compact and rackmount PCs. We anticipate availability in around 5 weeks’ time, so watch this space for any updates on how you can get your hands on one.

    If you would like to learn more about the 3U PC, or any of our other products, please get in touch with one of the team.

    Posted by: Geoff Undrell
    Posted in: News, Products

  • Intel i9-9900KS

    Meet Intel’s powerhouse processor, the i9-9900KS

    Updated 02/07/2019

    Officially announced at Computex 2019, Intel recently unveiled its latest 9th gen processor, the i9-9900KS, and boy, is it a powerhouse. The new chip’s capabilities are already blowing its impressive predecessor, the i9-9900K, out of the water, given the fact that it’s optimised to run every one of its 8 cores at a Turbo frequency of 5GHz straight out of the box. By comparison, Intel’s current flagship i9-9900K can only hit 5GHz on a single core with a Turbo speed that’s a whole 300MHz slower.

    What’s the difference?

    Beyond the startling ability to achieve 5GHz all-core Turbo, with claims that this speed can be reached consistently in any scenario, there isn’t an overwhelming difference between the i9-9900KS and the i9-9900K. A “special edition” variant, the i9-9900KS is set to deliver 5GHz during both single and multi-core workloads, and has a base frequency of 4GHz in contrast to the i9-9900K’s 3.6GHz, but still uses a 14nm++ process as well as the same silicon, only better binned. Maintaining both 16MB of L3 cache and UHD 630 graphics, the new CPU is also ready for the same motherboards as its older cousin, but does include a small firmware update.

    Still speculating

    Intel surprisingly didn’t offer much more information at Computex than had already been previously revealed about the i9-9900KS. We’re still yet to know a definitive price point or its thermal design power (TDP), although based on the performance and power consumption of the i9-9900K, we’re pretty certain that the chip will get seriously hot and require a lot of power. Following our successful implementation of water-cooling functionality in a recent customer project that involved overclocking the i9-9900K, we anticipate that similar measures will need to be employed to ensure the i9-9900KS doesn’t cause your machine to overheat.

    The i9-9900KS is due to launch in Q4 of this year, so we should see more information about it emerging over the next few months. In the meantime, if you would like to learn more about the CPU or when this will become available in our line-up of products, please speak to one of the team.

    Posted by: Geoff Undrell
    Posted in: News

  • CEDIA member

    G2 Digital is now an official CEDIA member!

    Updated 21/05/2019

    Following our successful debut as an exhibitor at Integrated Systems Europe back in February, we’re now thrilled to confirm that we will be returning to Amsterdam for a second year, and this time as an official member of CEDIA, one of the event’s main sponsors.

    Our CEDIA membership

    With almost 3700 member companies worldwide, CEDIA is the leading global authority for the home technology industry. Becoming a CEDIA member is a great accolade for G2, recognising the specialised rackmounted products we manufacture for residential solutions. From control PCs used for access points or even media servers in bigger properties that augment entertainment systems and lighting displays, we have a comprehensive line-up of technology solutions for use in the home.

    Excited for the future

    As an official CEDIA Trade Supplier Member, we enjoy a wealth of benefits that will no doubt have advantages for our customers in the long run. We’re already very excited for our second appearance at ISE, and with CEDIA’s support behind us are now looking to take our presence at next year’s show to the next level. “We’re proud to have gained CEDIA membership in readiness for ISE 2020,” commented our MD, Chris Hollidge. “Being a member of such a well-respected community is a fantastic acknowledgment of our growing residential business and how we’re helping our customers benefit from home technology.”

    To find out more about what our CEDIA membership means or to learn more about our plans for ISE 2020, get in touch with one of the team.

    Posted by: Geoff Undrell
    Posted in: News

  • What the F? Where are the graphics in Intel ‘F’ processors?

    Updated 25/04/2019

    Intel’s 9th generation Core i5 processors are regarded as some of the most popular CPUs in the world, able to offer incredible performance with the added bonus of integrated graphics capabilities. It would have been safe to assume, therefore, that future releases would be along very similar lines, but Intel has recently thrown a bit of a curveball by revealing the ‘F-series’, a re-worked variation of their existing i5 processors, only this time with graphics removed.

    What are the reasons for this?

    In short, the main motivation for removing graphics is production time. It’s cheaper and quicker to produce standalone CPUs without the integration of graphics. With the well-publicised shortage of Intel processors still taking effect, the move to the ‘F-series’ will enable Intel to better meet the incredible level of demand for their products, while also allowing them to more easily expand their existing chip line-up going forward.

    What does this all mean?

    One obvious implication for those choosing to use to any of the latest ‘F-series’ processors is that you will now have to pair this with a separate GPU. There is an upside, however – without the unwanted influence of additional graphics built into your Intel processor, you can expect a better level of performance at a reduced cost.

    Minus the need for graphics, we anticipate the new 9th generation CPUs will become far more readily available over the coming months once they’ve officially launched. And with the latest Intel i5 CPUs now at a more competitive price and able to meet demand faster, this will mean that the impact Intel’s chip shortage had on our product prices and lead times should soon subside and expectations return to normal.

    If you’d like more information on the latest range of 9th generation Intel Core i5 processors, the ‘F-series’, and how you can enjoy your CPU without built-in graphics in one of our Rack or Mini PCs, please get in touch.

    Posted by: Geoff Undrell
    Posted in: News

  • Intel CPU shortage

    The impact of Intel’s chip shortage is almost behind us

    Updated 20/03/2019

    In both Q3 and Q4 of 2018, overwhelming demand for Intel’s 14nm processors meant that both consumers and suppliers of products reliant on Intel chips were faced with considerable stock constraints. Now well into 2019, we’re still feeling the effects of the CPU shortage, which only looks set to continue into the next quarter. This does sadly mean that both the prices and lead times of our products are still being impacted, but we are doing everything we can to alleviate this issue for our customers. This may even influence previously issued quotes, so if you have recently received a quote from us for any upcoming projects that involve an Intel chip, please contact us for an updated quote.

    Why is there a chip shortage?

    Intel’s chip shortage is down to a number of different factors surrounding the supply of their 14nm 8th generation processors. Due in large part to a record demand for the CPUs, as well as a delay in the 10nm manufacturing process, this resulted in a significant supply gap in the latter half of 2018 which has since rolled over into 2019. This is likely to be augmented in Q2 ‘19 by an anticipated demand for Chromebooks containing Intel’s lower-end CPUs, which may mean their i3 processors could overtake the highly sought-after i5 quad-core Kaby Lake-R chips as the hardest to get your hands on.

    Things are looking up for Q3 ‘19

    According to DigiTimes research, however, the worst of the shortage may be over by Q3 of this year. Acknowledging that their shift in capacity for high-end processors was one of the causes behind the chip shortage, Intel has been taking steps to address the problem and it’s now predicted that we’ll see a new 14nm capacity expansion of around 25%, which will supposedly mean the end of the issue for good. Likewise, with the data centre boom seemingly almost over, things could be looking up for the supply of Intel’s chips as we move further into 2019.

    It’s always darkest before the dawn

    We’re hoping that the shortage won’t last much longer and are working to ensure this has a minimal impact on our customers’ orders. If you would like to better understand how Intel’s chip shortage will affect the prices and lead times of your G2 order, please get in touch.

    Posted by: Geoff Undrell
    Posted in: News, Products

  • Fanless NUC

    ISE saw the launch of our new Fanless NUC

    Updated 28/02/2019

    The exhilarating atmosphere of Integrated Systems Europe 2019 not only provided the platform for our debut as an exhibitor, but also the official launch of our brand-new Fanless NUC. Having recognised a gap in the market for a fanless variant of the extremely popular Intel NUC as well as a growing demand for this within the audio-visual industry, we’ve built a solution that provides AV and digital professionals with greater flexibility than ever before.

    The many fortes of the Fanless NUC

    The result of an extensive research and development project, the Fanless NUC is a high-performing, compact PC ideal for sound-sensitive installations where controlling noise is crucial. Thanks to the removal of the frequently noisy cooling fan, the unit is rendered practically soundless, running almost silently and with a minimal build-up of heat over time. Being fanless, the PC benefits from one less point of failure, reducing the risk of any internal damage and vastly increasing its reliability. At only 180mm deep, it’s a perfect fit for smaller comms cabinets but can also be rackmounted with ease, our uniquely designed chassis and front panels enabling users to rackmount two of the fanless units side-by-side in 1U. A nifty internal 60W power supply also keeps the PC tidy, condensed, and robust.

    Flexible, feature-rich, and fanless

    The Fanless NUC, although compact, is overflowing with great features:

    • Support for latest Intel 8th Generation i7, i5, and i3 NUC motherboards
    • Industrialised 60W 110-230VAC internal power supply
    • Additional multi NIC capability
    • 1 x M.2 (2280) & 1 x 2.5’’ SSD/HDD
    • M.2 Dual Gigabit Ethernet card
    • Wi-Fi connectivity options
    • Optional RS232 port

    Creating a whole wealth of new possibilities for NUC users, the Fanless NUC achieves something few of our competitors are able to offer. With no moving parts and a ruggedised case, it’s portable, resilient, and highly versatile – an excellent choice for any industrial or more challenging applications.

    If you’d like to learn more about the latest addition to our line-up of compact and rackmount PCs and why it’s ideal for AV and digital media professionals, get in touch with the team today.

    Posted by: Geoff Undrell
    Posted in: Development Projects, News, Products

  • Farewell Amsterdam ISE

    Farewell Integrated Systems Europe, until next year!

    Updated 18/02/2019

    February 2019 marked the biggest and best Integrated Systems Europe yet, with a record 81,286 attendees and over 1,300 exhibitors, which included our own debut appearance. It was thrilling to be able to exhibit alongside some of the most well-known names in the AV industry, which included the likes of Epson, Bang and Olufsen, Panasonic, Sony, and many more. The four-day show more than delivered on its promise of a complete and utter audio and visual spectacle – from Hall to Hall, walls of enormous screens, titanic speakers, interactive displays, and ground-breaking technologies amazed and astonished visitors from the moment they stepped through the door.

    Intel Fanless NUCSpotlight on our stand

    Our own stand successfully captured the imaginations of many – our unique range of attractive compact and rackmount PCs took centre stage while a feature wall dedicated to our latest Intel-based product, the Fanless NUC, allowed visitors to see its impressive capabilities in action as it powered our 60” TV screen. If you happened to stop by our stand at ISE, you will have no doubt also seen our Pick ‘N’ Mix wall – something which proved very popular among AV and digital professionals! We were really pleased with the outcome of our first time exhibiting at the event, and wanted to extend our thanks to everyone who took the time to visit us.

    AVTV

    Ready for our close-up

    While at ISE, we were delighted to find out that two of our newest products – the Fanless NUC and the Bantam – had both featured in separate editions of the ISE Daily, the event’s main magazine. We also spent some time with AV Magazine, both at their annual cocktail party, and in front of their cameras filming for AVTV! Our very own director, Chris Hollidge, was interviewed to reveal his insights into why our products are such a great fit for AV integrators and what developments we have on the horizon. Watch the final cut here.

    Things that made us go ‘wow’

    ISE never fails to impress us, and this year was no different. We were blown away by LG’s OLED Falls, an absolutely stunning display of AV magic, as well as Epson’s super-cool Epson Vortex, their interactive projected tunnel application. The best by far, however, was Sony’s gigantic Crystal LED screen. 9.5 meters wide, the screen was so high-definition that for a moment we believed we were actually witnessing a live carnival. It stopped us all in our tracks.

    Sony at ISE

    Bring on 2020

    We had an incredible time in Amsterdam, and are really looking forward to doing it all again next year. We’re already full to the brim with ideas for our future stand and have booked our place at the show in readiness, so if you missed us this time around, there’s always 2020!

    Posted by: Geoff Undrell
    Posted in: News