Right, I had a really fun time testing amBX. There's no need to make this a long conclusion, it's worth the money you spend on it. Fact remains, no matter how many peripherals you put into the kit, it's really all about the lights, these are the magic maker. And you might think, heck it's only a couple of lights, trust me when I say... it makes a distinction that you cannot grasp until you see it yourself. The rumble pad then, quite fun... but after a while you realize that you won't use it as an armrest so you move it away. It's still fun to notice some vibration here and there though. The ventilators, granted very cool. But not really needed. In fact when used too much or setup hard (configurable by the way) the fans can actually get to a point where they are slightly exasperating. Nope my dear Guru's - the true value and 90% of the fun is to be found in the lights and the actual sound-kit.
Mind boggling - I'm surprised though why amBX has such a hard time penetrating the gamers market and after researching a little I can only conclude, Philips marketing has not exactly been top-notch. Prior to writing this review I did a check on the web. The standalone kits are available for sale in a lot of places. But the fact is, nobody knows about it, what it is or what it does. When I took my searches up a notch, I noticed there are no gamer reviews for kits like the one tested today. That's a pretty big frickin' fail for Philips, as products in the gamers segment surely do not sell themselves. So my word of advice to Philips is simple, get your products actually reviewed.
How did we manage this review then? Well, initially not with the help of Philips. It was in fact Point of View Graphics who noticed that amBX could be an interesting product and wanted to assemble a bundle. The first thing they did was contact me asking if we'd be interested in doing a review. And that's the way to do it.
Point of View is going to launch an amBX kit this very week. They'll offer you the standard amBX Philips kit with 2.1 channel speakers & subwoofer + the lights. However, Philips products do not come cheap, no sir. So the guys and gals at Point of View figured they need a nice bundle to sweeten the deal for you.
So here's what Point of View is offering you, a 125 EUR GeForce 9500 or 9600 GT (optional) graphics card + the kit as described above... and another 50 EUR value... you receive a full version of this week's released Brothers In Arms - Hell's Highway from Ubisoft. This kit, depending on the graphics card, will be offered at 279 EUR for the 9500 GT or 309 EUR with a 9600 GT DDR3. These are prices incl VAT, and based on MSRP meaning they will probably be a little cheaper in e-tail. Not a small sum of money granted, but again... the amBX kit, a graphics card and BIA - Hell's Highway combined do mean reasonable value.
So the final words. Really this a lot of fun. The entire amBX experience is just grand and brings gaming to another level. You have the feeling of being much more in the game and that enhances the gaming experience. If you are not gaming then you can use the kit as a set of lights (PC needs to be on though) and surely it's a lot of fun when you are listening to music combined with your favorite color preset or color animation responding to the actual music.
Yep, this is fun, really fun. It's a very original idea from Philips and it's starting to get broad support. Will it be a success? Well, that's up to you guys, their marketing and their support of course. But if you decide to purchase a kit I can tell you, you'll enjoy it very much.
Thanks go out to Point of View, Philips and of course Ubisoft. The kit was not yet ready, so each partner submitted their own product.
Philips amBX gamers kit review Try to imagine playing a game with physical wind blowing on your face, the room illuminates depending on the game play monitor color tone and your desk starts to rumble in explosions. Philips made it possible with a new technology called amBX and here and now we are going to review it for you. Could this be the next big thing in the gaming experience ?