Bigfoot Network's Killer Xeno network interface cards are designed for online gamers

Summary:Bigfoot Networks targeted a niche, but growing, market segment when it released its network interface card (NIC) for gamers, appropriately called Killer, a couple of years back. Since then, gamers' demands for features like lag-free chatting have only increased, though so, too, has networking technology.

Bigfoot Networks targeted a niche, but growing, market segment when it released its network interface card (NIC) for gamers, appropriately called Killer, a couple of years back. Since then, gamers' demands for features like lag-free chatting have only increased, though so, too, has networking technology. So Bigfoot today announced at the Game Developers Conference the next generation of, erm, Killer: the Killer Xeno series.

Xeno comes in two flavors: Pro and Ultra, with the biggest difference between the two being that Ultra has twice the onboard memory (256MB) than the Pro. Both featured a new networking processor as well as integrated audio to help improve the in-game chatting experience. They also sport a new form factor, now requiring an open PCI Express slot whereas the first-generation Killer cards needed only a PCI slot. Along with improved bandwidth control, the additional memory and new interface (and its superior throughput) promise reduced latency that can impact both game play and real-time trash talking.

The Xeno Pro is slated to cost $129.99 and be available from gaming PC company (well, subsidiary of Dell) Alienware and component maker EVGA in April. The Xeno Ultra, which also features an on-card LED display for call, game, and network info, will be on sale the following month from online tech retailers. For you hardcore fraggers, is this add-on worth the price? Let us know in the TalkBack section.

Topics: Mobility, Networking

About

Sean Portnoy started his tech writing career at ZDNet nearly a decade ago. He then spent several years as an editor at Computer Shopper magazine, most recently serving as online executive editor. He received a B.A. from Brown University and an M.A. from the University of Southern California.

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