Tech Dissonance: ATI and NVIDIA: jealous lovers?


— 12:02 AM on February 28, 2003

NVIDIA'S GEFORCE FX delays have left a lot of graphics card manufacturers in a bit of a bind. A short supply of GeForce FX 5800 Ultras has forced manufacturers to offer these cards as special edition products in only limited quantities, if they're even offering Ultras at all. Manufacturers will, of course, have non-Ultra GeForce FX products, the first of which should trickle onto the market in early March. Unfortunately, it looks like those cards could be too little, too late in the face of ATI's full court press of Radeon 9500, 9700, and upcoming R350-based products, and there's not much that NVIDIA's graphics card partners can do about it.

Or is there?

Any smart investor should know that a well-diversified portfolio is the key to success, but it doesn't look like any graphics card manufacturers have a diverse portfolio when it comes to their graphics card lineups. Sure Asus offers a wide range of GeForce4 Ti and MX-based graphics cards, but they aren't making any Radeons. Likewise, Gigabyte has a full spread of Radeon 9x00 graphics, but not even the hint of a GeForce. In fact, not one of NVIDIA's graphics partners offered Radeon 9x00-based products to hedge themselves against NVIDIA's GeForce FX delays, and none of ATI's partners is offering graphics cards based on NVIDIA's upcoming chips to hedge against NV31/34/35 outperforming ATI's current and next Radeons. Why? Let's find out.

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