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Dell, one of the world’s largest maker of personal computers, recently ordered PCI Express x16 graphics cards from its main graphics cards supplier Microstar International, according to a report.

The move underlines the importance of PCI Express ramp for Dell as well as ability of graphics companies to supply graphics chips for the new interface. Both ATI and NVIDIA said they are on-track to ramp graphics cards with next-generation PCI Express interface as soon as the market requires.

A report over DigiTimes claims that MSI had landed orders from Dell to make a batch of graphics cards with PCI Express x16 connector for Dell’s new lineups of personal computers due to be available in the late June, 2004.

It is not clear whether MSI plans to produce NVIDIA- or ATI-based graphics cards with PCI Express support. Historically Microstar International preferred to build NVIDIA GeForce products, however, recently the company jumped on ATI’s bandwagon. Furthermore, Dell is also putting a lot of attention at ATI’s graphics offerings these days.

MSI is one of the world’s largest graphics cards and mainboard makers. The company manufactures graphics cards for companies like Dell and Medion and is one of the largest customers of NVIDIA Corporation – the main rival of ATI Technologies. Thanks to success of NVIDIA in late nineties and in 2000 – 2001, MSI managed to increase its production of graphics cards practically tenfold from 1.60 million in 2000 to 11.5 million units in 2002. The company also supplies mainboards for HP and Dell, including platforms based on NVIDIA nForce-series of chipsets to the former.

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