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Compaq Extends Professional Workstation AP Line to New Levels of Performance and Expandability.

HOUSTON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Aug. 31, 1998--

Price/Performance Leaders Now Include New Highly Expandable AP500

and Faster Processor, Graphics Controller and Disk Drive Options

Editors' Summary

--Professional Workstation AP500. New highly expandable, rack-mountable minitower workstation with support for single and dual 450 MHz Pentium II processors, new PowerStorm 300 graphics and 10,000 rpm hard drives.

--450 MHz Pentium II. The Professional Workstation AP200 and AP400 are also now offered with Intel's new 450 MHz Pentium II processor with 100 MHz front side bus for the ultimate in CPU performance.

--New PowerStorm 300 graphics controller. Compaq's first internally developed 3D graphics controller debuts on the AP400 and AP500.

--New Storage features. Compaq now offers 10,000 rpm Wide-Ultra SCSI hard drives on the AP500.

Compaq Computer Corporation (NYSE:CPQ) announced worldwide today enhancements to the company's AP line of Professional Workstations to extend the products' industry-leading price/performance and value. The AP500 debuts Intel's 450 MHz Pentium II processor in the Professional Workstation line and the company's first internally developed 3D graphics controller, the PowerStorm 300. Additional enhancements include the availability of 450 MHz Pentium II processors on the Professional Workstation AP400 and AP200 and the PowerStorm 300 as a standard feature in the AP400.

"Compaq's Professional Workstation AP line provides the best balance between performance and affordability available on the market today, and these enhancements will extend that leadership," said Les Crudele, Vice President and General Manager, Workstation Division, Compaq. "We believe that this mix of high-performance features and high-value pricing in the AP line will enable us to reach a broader market of workstation users in the computer-aided design, digital content creation, electronic design automation, financial and other markets and help us achieve our goal of leadership in the overall Windows NT-based workstation market."

Professional Workstation AP500

The new Professional Workstation AP500 offers new levels of expandability and features to deliver no-compromise workstation capabilities in the AP line at very competitive prices. Starting at approximately $2,820(1), the AP500 provides up to two 450 MHz Pentium II processors with 100 MHz front side bus, up to 1 GB of 100 MHz ECC registered SDRAM, robust 2D and 3D graphics capabilities and a choice of Wide-Ultra SCSI or Ultra ATA hard drives with internal storage capacity up to 72.8 GB.

Additionally, the AP500 is the first member of Compaq's AP line to be rack-mountable. This capability enables customers to link multiple workstations together in "clusters," which dramatically reduce processing time for the most resource intensive applications, such as analysis, rendering and simulation.

The AP500 offers easy expandability with five open slots and four open bays. Its toolless entry minitower chassis is easy to upgrade and service with a slide-out system board and removable drive bays. This easy-to-maintain design, coupled with Compaq Intelligent Manageability features, minimizes the AP500's total cost of ownership.

PowerStorm Unleashed

The AP500 is the first Professional Workstation to incorporate the new PowerStorm 300 graphics controller, Compaq's first internally developed 3D graphics solution. Based on the REALimage 2100 graphics chipset from Evans & Sutherland, the PowerStorm 300 provides the high performance needed for many demanding engineering and graphics design applications - delivering up to 4 million primitives per second and rendering filtered, MIP-mapped and textured polygons at sustained rates of up to 90 million pixels per second.

The PowerStorm 300 provides 15 MB of frame buffer memory and 16 MB of texture memory on the card to support high resolutions and greater realism in designs. This onboard memory, coupled with AGP support, enables CAD and 3D graphics design professionals to interactively design and manipulate large models and complex, textured designs.

In addition, the PowerStorm 300 also supports dual-display capability with the addition of a second PowerStorm 300 card. With dual displays, graphics and CAD designers have the screen real estate to view more of their design simultaneously or to open more toolbars for increased productivity.

Enhanced Storage Options

Because technical and creative professionals require fast, high-capacity storage capabilities, the AP500 offers new, larger and higher performance storage options. These options include new 10,000 rpm Wide-Ultra SCSI hard drives with a 4 GB drive standard and a 9 GB drive as an option. The AP500 also supports 7,200 rpm Wide-Ultra SCSI drives (4 GB, 9 GB, and 18 GB) and Ultra ATA hard drives (6 GB and 8 GB) in 5,400 rpm configurations. These larger and faster hard drives enable increased application performance, especially on disk intensive applications.

Pricing and Availability

The Professional Workstation AP500 is available and shipping today - starting at approximately $2,820 (U.S.) -- with 400 and 450 MHz Pentium II processors, up to 1 GB of 100 MHz SDRAM, an ELSA GLoria Synergy+ graphics controller, 6.4 GB Ultra ATA or 4.3 GB Wide-Ultra SCSI hard drive, integrated Compaq Fast Ethernet NIC, 32X MAX CD-ROM, three-button mouse and preinstalled Windows NT Workstation 4.0. A configuration with the PowerStorm 300 graphics controller will be available early in the fourth quarter.

New Features for AP400 and AP200

Compaq has incorporated many of the new features in the AP500 into the existing products in Compaq's AP line, the Professional Workstation AP400 and AP200. For instance, the AP400 and AP200 now offer single or dual (AP400 only) 450 MHz Pentium II processors. In addition, the PowerStorm 300 graphics controller will be available as an option early in the fourth quarter. For more information on these and other Professional Workstation products, see our Web site at the following URL:

Company Background

Founded in 1982, Compaq Computer Corporation is a Fortune Global 100 company. Compaq is the second largest computer company in the world and the largest global supplier of personal computers. Compaq develops and markets hardware, software, solutions, and services, including industry-leading enterprise computing solutions, fault-tolerant business-critical solutions, networking and communication products, commercial desktop and portable products and consumer PCs. The company is an industry leader in environmentally friendly programs and business practices.

Compaq products are sold and supported in more than 100 countries through a network of authorized Compaq marketing partners. Customer support and information about Compaq and its products are available at

Compaq, Registered U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. Product names mentioned herein may be trademarks and/or registered trademarks of their respective companies.

(1) All pricing listed herein is U.S. estimated selling prices. Actual dealer prices may vary.

CONTACT: Compaq Computer Corporation

Gary Frazier, 281-927-8647


Shandwick International

Adam Mersky, 617-536-0470
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Publication:Business Wire
Date:Aug 31, 1998
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