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In a bid to win benchmarks, reviews and look more competitive in the eyes of end-users, ATI Technologies recommended its partners to overclock graphics cards based on the Radeon X1000-series chips. Potentially, this may allow some of ATI’s partners to earn more money by shipping higher-end products, but for smaller makers such policy may create difficulties.

According to a slide published by HKEPC web-site, which is a part of ATI Technologies’ document seen earlier by X-bit labs, the Markham, Ontario-based graphics chip designer would not limit its partners with recommended clock-speeds for its products and would allow them to overclock Radeon X1000-series graphics chips to the maximum considered by the supplier of the board.

Add-in card partners still have to brand the graphics card according to the branding of the chip (e.g., not based on the clock-speed) and implement an efficient cooling system, as thermally stressed GPUs will not be covered by ATI’s warranty. Additionally, the partners will not be able to lower clock-speeds from those recommended by ATI.

Several partners of ATI Technologies, such as Asustek Computer and Sapphire Technologies, have already launched Radeon X1800-series and Radeon X1900-series graphics cards with increased clock-speeds.

Some of Nvidia Corp.’s partners have been selecting graphics cards and chips with high overclocking potential, tweaked BIOS and shipped at higher price points for years. However, such practices usually cost additional money and efforts and usually inspire demand towards pre-overclocked products, not graphics cards at standard speed. For large makers of graphics cards this is not an issue, as their brand-names are well-known, but smaller makers have to create demand for every specific product either with increased performance, or with low price.  Makers of pre-overclocked components should differentiate their products very clearly in terms of pricing in order to sustain demand for standard versions of their products.

ATI Technologies did not comment on the news-story.

Discussion

Comments currently: 10
Discussion started: 04/04/06 08:24:58 AM
Latest comment: 04/07/06 11:13:30 AM
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1. 
Just switched from an ati 9600 pro to a Vanilla 6800 256mb Evga. Nvidia drivers are so much cleaner and less intrusive for your system.
Overclocking comes later, focus on your standard product first ATI.... I know it will be a while before I will purchase an ATI video card again.
0 0 [Posted by:  | Date: 04/04/06 08:24:58 AM]
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Interesting, I find Nvidia drivers extremely irritating and will never buy another card based on those cards again. They leave me with the feeling I have bought a knock off brand they were so primitive and difficult.

Weird how people can get such different opinions on stuff. I am not saying you are wrong, I just find it very interesting that perspective is so important. I never could figure out why people bought Nvidia, in fact.
0 0 [Posted by:  | Date: 04/04/06 11:11:48 AM]
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The Nvidia is a clean menu based interface, ala Apple Ipod.
The ATI has hundreds of windows and very large cumbersome programs.
If you download the full driver set, you get 2 or 3 large programs, that will run at the same time. Furthermore, having owned the GF, GF2, TI, 9600 PRO and now a 6800 I am glad ot be back with Nvidia. I ran into the fact that I had to tweak my drivers numerous times in order for it to work with certain programs (Call of Duty, CnC generals, some other I can't remember)... Never had any issues with Nvidia.
Also Nvidia cards (comparing the current gen) seem to be faster.
0 0 [Posted by:  | Date: 04/04/06 12:11:33 PM]
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Dutchy,

You may be right about performance, I don't pay any attention to it. A few percent either way don't matter to me in the least, since it doesn't really affect what I run.

I've used ATI forever, pretty much since they were a company. I find their drivers very easy to work with, and find Nvidia's interface convoluted and poorly designed. I have had no trouble with running anything on ATI, but finally threw out my Nvidia card because I kept having problems running things. It wasn't that things wouldn't run at all, but they didn't run correctly and made the computer screwy.

The full driver set doesn't really mean anything to me. The driver is one program, and it installs easily. When you say that, do you really mean the Multimedia Center stuff? If you do, that's not really a fair comparison, since it has a heck of a lot more features than Nvidia offers, from TV to DVD to CDs, to Mpeg playing, etc...

I actually like the way ATI integrates everything, as I typically get the All-In-Wonder cards and don't like having to use different applications for little stuff like playing DVDs or watching TV. I should say I'm not privvy to Nvidia's competing products, as I only got a graphics card and ended up injuring a squirrel with it when I threw it out window.
0 0 [Posted by:  | Date: 04/04/06 07:18:36 PM]
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I have to admitt the AIW cards are really good. However I think that the overal value of a Nvidia card is greater then an ATI card. When I bought the 9600 pro, that card was in that position. However I never really like the cumbersome drivers and graphic glitches that it also provided. Nvidia cards seems to be more streamlined in hardware and software.
Maybe ATIs next gen the 2xxx will convince me again to buy an ATI...
0 0 [Posted by:  | Date: 04/05/06 10:37:23 AM]
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Well, luckily for you, I disagree, and luckily for me, you disagree. It keeps them both in business, which is good.

I don't care about the very best 3D performance, because I don't run those types of applications. I do care about having a working, integrated set of applications like the Multimedia center. I do care about getting my drivers from the company that makes the chips, and I do like getting good performing video cards that don't need a fan (like the 9600).

I do not have any problems with the drivers, I never have. But, I am not saying they never happen, just not with stuff I do. Nvidia made me crazy, and I finally just threw it out. It did some weird distorting that drove me crazy. So, I guess it depends on what one runs.

For 3D games, you could easily be right about Nvidia offering better value. For me, I care about TV, DVD, MP3 stuff more, and the applications that are bundled with it. I also care about how quiet the card is, and I can get good enough cards from ATI that are fanless.

At any rate, it's a good thing both are in business. Matrox and S3 don't impress me as being able to offer any serious competition, at least in the near term, so these two need to keep each other honest. I guess Intel dominates both of them in terms of volume with their integrated stuff, but it's not exactly the same market. Sometimes the competition gets a bit silly with these multiple graphics cards that need 1000 watt power supplies to properly run, but I think, for the most part, it helps more than it hurts.
0 0 [Posted by:  | Date: 04/06/06 12:53:47 AM]
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2. 
nvidia sucks
0 0 [Posted by:  | Date: 04/07/06 02:08:26 AM]
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