HP Blackbird 002

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Hewlett-Packard Company
Type Public (NYSEHPQ)
Founded Palo Alto, California (1939)
Headquarters Palo Alto, California, USA
Website www.hp.com
Type Subsidiary of HP
Founded 1991
Headquarters Calgary, Canada
Products Enthusiast Personal Computers
Website www.voodoopc.com

The HP Blackbird 002 was a gaming and high-performance PC built by HP’s Voodoo Business Unit. It launched on September 2007 and won over 10 Editor’s Choice awards, one from C-NET, which gave it a 9.3 out of 10.[1] The chassis was made out of brushed aluminum and it sat on a cast aluminum foot. The elevation provided by the foot opened a sixth side for additional ventilation.


The HP Blackbird 002 was originally a side project of an HP engineer named Tom Szolyga. Tom, a gaming enthusiast, began to build what he thought would be the best gaming PC. He requisitioned components together to form a high-performance system. At the time, HP had no immediate plans for the gaming PC business.

Tom mentioned his project to HP executives Phil McKinney, Todd Bradley, and Paul Campbell during a flight to San Diego for business meetings. By the time the plane landed, a plan had been hatched to secure funding and a support team to further develop the system and eventually bring it to market.

The first iteration of the system was scrapped. The Compaq team in Houston acquired by HP, helped create a new design. During this time, HP acquired Voodoo PC. With additional input from Voodoo PC founder Rahul Sood, the HP Blackbird 002 with Voodoo DNA was launched in September 2007.[2]

The HP Blackbird 002 has been replaced by the HP Firebird 803.

Performance and design[edit]

The Blackbird 002 features an all-aluminum chassis, which is uncommon in big-brand PCs. Every HP Blackbird 002 is configured to the individual’s preference and ships with an open BIOS to allow for user-controlled overclocking.[3]

The Blackbird boasts performance similar to the Falcon Northwest Mach V. If you open the unit you see "VoodooDNA" branding inside the case. The original version featured an ASUS Striker Extreme 680i motherboard which supports Intel processors. It features four slots of DDR2 RAM, in basic configurations of 2 or 4 GB 1066 MHz. Another version featured an EVGA 780i SLI[4] motherboard instead of the Asus Striker 680i.

The motherboard can feature both Nvidia and ATI graphics cards, including Nvidia's SLI. Both Nvidia and ATI options are available with liquid cooling. The Blackbird 002 features flexible RAID capabilities, with five hard drive bays. The system also features two multi-drives, a single bay for a Blu-ray and HD DVD-ROM.

There are three basic configurations: the first is fan cooled, second is CPU liquid cooled, and the third is both CPU and GPU liquid cooled.

Aluminum chassis and foot[edit]

The system’s wedge-shaped aluminum chassis and cast aluminum foot is capable of supporting up to 600 lbs. The wedge-shaped design and fins that line the top and front of the chassis act as a heat sink. The cast aluminum foot allows airflow to pass under the HP Blackbird 002, adding more efficient cooling to the 1.1 kW power supply seated at the base of the chassis.[3]

Liquid cooling and thermals[edit]

The HP Blackbird 002 features full system, "maintenance-free" liquid cooling that draws heat away from the CPU, motherboard, and GPUs.[citation needed] The HP Blackbird 002 is also designed with three thermal chambers that isolate key heat sources, ensuring that cool air reaches all major heat-generating components.[citation needed]

Tool-less architecture[edit]

All of the internal components of the HP Blackbird 002 can be removed and installed without tools via a removable side panel which allows quick and easy access to the interior of the system.[citation needed]

Reviews and awards[edit]


  1. ^ C-NET review
  2. ^ Houston Chronicle
  3. ^ a b HP Blackbird 002 Web site
  4. ^ Future US, Inc. (July 2008). Maximum PC. Future US, Inc. pp. 2–. ISSN 1522-4279. Retrieved 3 June 2012.