Mainboard and graphics cards maker Albatron Technology on Monday unveiled a device that lets conventional AGP 8x graphics cards to operate with PCI Express bus. The manufacturer claims that the new product allows easy and affordable upgrade path for those who would like to upgrade to a new PCI Express platform, but keep their AGP 8x graphics card.
Albatron’s ATOP(AGP-to-PCI Express) bridge card is based on an AGP-to-PEG x16 bridge-chip, but Albatron itself does not declare which one. Currently graphics chips designers ATI Technologies and NVIDIA Corp. supply their
Graphics card should be plugged into AGP 8x slot located on the top edge of the ATOP and then the whole construction should be installed into a computer with PCI Express x16 bus. Albatron notes that a special bracket should be used for ATOP and an AGP 8x graphics card.
It is unclear whether ATOP allows installing full-profile AGP 8x graphics card, or only lets using low-profile AGP 8x graphics cards due to computer cases space constraints. In case full-profile graphics cards cannot be used with ATOP, the market the device may address will be limited to a relatively small install base of low-profile graphics cards.
While the initial breed of PCI Express-supporting platforms sometimes did not provide any performance benefits over AGP-supporting computers, current PCI Express mainboards for Intel and AMD processors support certain exclusive capabilities, such as dual-core processors and powerful overclocking tools for computer enthusiasts.
Pricing and availability details were not released.