American Metal: The BOXX Chassis Story

By John Vondrak

When I set out to make a short film on the BOXX workstation chassis, it was at the behest of BOXX product marketing manager Chris Morley. Chris wanted the world to know that we design and build our own workstations right here in Austin, Texas. I liked the idea since I, like most BOXX users, appreciate the look of our machines. Our friend Daniel Simon, the noted concept designer (TRON:Legacy, Captain America: The First Avenger, Oblivion), producer and author, (Cosmic Motors, The Timeless Racer) refers to our systems as “industrial, like a real piece of machinery— elegant, heavy-duty machinery.” That sums it up. You don’t buy a BOXX to send emails or play video games. You buy it to go to work.

Animators, VFX artists, filmmakers, video editors, architects, engineers, product designers, and other hard working people go to work with their BOXX every day. They marvel at the speed and performance of their workstation and are grateful that if they ever need them, legendary BOXX Technical Support (also located at our headquarters in Austin) is ready to assist. But what many BOXXers may not always recognize is that some hard working people, just like them, design and build the chassis that accommodates the multiple professional GPUs, liquid cooling, and other innovative features that make a BOXX workstation the unique machine that it is.

And that’s what ended up taking this film in a slightly different direction.

The more I spoke to our engineers in BOXXlabs and the metal fabricators at the shop that stamps, cuts, and assembles the array of metal parts that become the BOXX chassis, I saw this as an American story. It’s no secret that for decades, U.S. industry has taken a hit as manufacturing has moved overseas to produce cheaper goods. Our mass-market, tier one competitors have been part of that trend. But at BOXX, our systems are “Made in the U.S.A.” and that declaration is more than a slogan. In the process of designing our chassis, our expert engineers, like many of you, rely on SolidWorks, Autodesk Inventor, Creo, and other professional applications. They provide the metal fabricators with precise 3D CAD models in order to produce quality parts necessary to assemble the state-of-the-art chassis. Those chassis then arrive at BOXX HQ where the best production team in the computer industry assembles the components for each custom-configured solution (but that’s a video for another day).

So take a few moments to watch the film, and the next time you boot up your BOXX workstation, we hope you appreciate the design and construction of the chassis. The longer you consider it (and the enterprise-class components inside), we’re confident that you’ll see that it is indeed “a real piece of machinery.”

And just maybe, like those of us at BOXX, you’ll discover that American manufacturing is ready for a comeback.

Up To $1995 Off AMD FirePro Graphics – Ends Sept. 30th!

                       AMD FirePro Offer

Get Up to $1995 off with your first FirePro purchase! -Ends Sept. 30th!

Take advantage of this limited-time offer from AMD, now extended to September 30th. If you are currently considering a workstation from BOXX and are looking for a high performance, professional-grade card, then you can apply for a special 50% off  a qualified AMD FirePro workstation card purchase. All you need to do is apply for the offer with AMD before making the purchase. Please, follow the three steps outlined below. Continue reading

BOXX’s “Mac Pro? No.” Breaks 100K Views on Youtube!

If you haven’t had a chance to see it, you’re missing out on a humorous take-down of the new Mac Pro.

The good folks at Apple say the new Mac Pro was “built for creativity on an epic scale.”

But was it built for you?

In the world premiere of this lighthearted commercial, Nate can’t wait to show off his “real professional workstation.” But watch what happens when his friend Drew challenges Nate’s definition of the term. Be sure to stick around for the conclusion!

BOXX Technical Support – Supporting You, Not Just Your PC

Tiered, Scripted Support Does Not Cut It For The Creative Professional

Companies use a lot of words to describe their technical support: fanatical, friendly, knowledgeable. But in reality, we know that in the PC business, most technical support is none of these things. Surely you’ve experienced the headache: the endless “press 1 for this, press 2 for that, please hold” automated answering services with long wait times, and outsourced support that sticks to the script regardless of what you tell them (even if you know their script by heart and try to give them all their answers at once, just hoping to abbreviate the mind-numbing call as much as possible). And when the voice at the other end reaches the conclusion of the script and realizes they can’t help you, they pass you on to the next level where you start all over again. “And whom am I speaking with? What’s your serial number? What’s your problem? Oh, you’ll have to talk to your software vendor about that.” Frankly, outsourced, script-driven, tiered support simply cannot assist the creative professional when they are experiencing issues inside their workflow. The purpose-built custom workstations that BOXX produces (and others attempt to emulate) are complicated enough. But when you install the software our users need to make their living, like Autodesk 3D Studio Max, Maya, Revit or Navisworks, and Dassault Systèmes SolidWorks and CATiA, load them up with plug-ins, setup network rendering, and/or introduce complimentary programs for GPU rendering with V-Ray, Octane Render, or any other non-native application, and things get hairy very fast. At what point is it a hardware issue? Could it be outdated software? Drivers? Failing memory? Better figure it out fast because you have a deadline! Continue reading

Exclusive AMD FirePro Offer Ends 6/30/2014

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Get Up to 50% off with your first FirePro purchase! -Ends June 30th!

Take advantage of this limited-time offer from AMD. If you are currently considering a workstation from BOXX and are looking for a high performance, professional-grade card, then you can apply for a special 50% discount on your first AMD FirePro workstation card purchase. All you need to do is apply for the discount with AMD before making the purchase. Please, follow the three steps outlined below. Continue reading