ATI in the Crossfire - PC Retail

ATI in the Crossfire

New GPU ready to hit shelves Retail to benefit from gamer upgrades
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by Scott Bicheno

Graphics giant ATI has
announced the launch of its multiple
graphics processing unit system,
known as Crossfire.

The system is ATI?s answer to
Nvidia?s SLI technology, but sports a
number of unique features.

The system requires the use of a
Crossfire motherboard, a special
Crossfire Edition (CE) graphics card
and any X800 or X850 ATI card to
partner it.

The CE card is
effectively a
normal card
plus a
compositing
engine, which
serves to harmonise the
activity of the two cards.

There
are two CE cards, one designed
to work in conjunction with the
X800 series and one for the X850
series. The performance of each CE
card is equivalent to a mid-range card
in its series and they are currently
priced at a $50 premium over the
non-CE card.

The system is compatible with all
games, thanks to its supertiling
technology and is cross
compatible between
different
motherboard and
graphics card manufacturers.

PC Retail spoke to Vijay Sharma,
product marketing manager at ATI, to
find out what all this means for retail.
?For retailers there are two
benefits,? he said. ?They get to offer
their enthusiast gamer customers a
totally new level of
performance. The buyer can
leave the store with two
graphics cards
installed
in one
system
and have
immediate
gratification.

?The other benefit is
the ability to sell their
customers a unique
upgradeability option, with respect
to graphics, that wasn?t available
beforehand. Now you can almost
double your performance where
previously you could only replace the
graphics card. In a sense, the
customer is leveraging an investment
they have already made.?

The Crossfire system should start to
be seen on UK retail shelves from late
June and early July.

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