Stuff i missed: Tube Motherboard
The AX4B-533 is intended primarily for audiophiles, music lovers, and "serious gamers" who want the best possible sound, according to AOpen product manager Al Peng, a self-described "audiophile for more than ten years." Some company engineers derided the concept, but Peng said that their "laughter turned into raves a few months later when we did our first lab demo . . . The reproduced sound was absolutely amazing. It left everyone stunned. What we realized at that moment was how the limitations of typical audio output from a PC as we knew it had come to an end—and what we were pioneering was a way to literally combine the best of two audio worlds, old and new."
Here is the original Aopen press release, a nice articel about the AOpen AX4B-533 Tube Motherboard and a review from neoseeker.
Since this product is not available anymore, i wonder what happened?