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VIDEO CARDS

The Graphics Card
By: McGraw-Hill/Osborne
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  • Rating: 3 stars3 stars3 stars3 stars3 stars / 19
    2004-07-21

    Table of Contents:
  • The Graphics Card
  • APIs, Chipsets, and Cards
  • The Players: ATI and
  • More Players: Matrox, SiS and 3dfx
  • Features: AGP Modes, Dual Display, Anti-Aliasing, Filtering and Programmable Shading
  • Choosing a Graphics Card
  • Installing a Graphics Card
  • Updating the Drivers --
  • Graphics Benchmark Programs
  • Tweaking Features
  • Overclocking a Graphics Card

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    The Graphics Card


    (Page 1 of 11 )

    The graphics card is the pivotal part that differentiates a high-end gaming system from a listless wanna-be. Current 3-D games need not only powerful CPUs, efficient motherboards, and lightning-fast memory, but they also require a kick-ass 3-D processor that crunches the polygons and textures that paint the game world. (From Chen and Durham, Build Your Own High Performance Gamers' Mod PC, by McGraw-Hill/Osborne, 2004, ISBN: 0072229012).

    chenYou’ve got the core of your system built; now it’s time to give it a soul. The graphics card is the pivotal part that differentiates a high-end gaming system from a listless wanna-be. Current 3-D games need not only powerful CPUs, efficient motherboards, and lightning-fast memory, but they also require a kick-ass 3-D processor that crunches the polygons and textures that paint the game world.

    (Editor's Note: Previous chapters covered are:  The Motherboard, Processor and Memory; and The Case and Power Supply. )

    The market for graphics cards, also called video cards, is complex and confusing. You must choose from a wide array of cards based on a number of current-and last-generation chipsets. Most chipset families complicate the matter further by offering cutting-edge, mid-range and budget parts aimed at different market segments. Of course, you’ll want to focus on the highest performance products available, as they’re aimed squarely at performance-hungry gamers.

    Currently, 3-D graphics are ahead of the technology curve. Late-generation products support features that have yet to appear in actual games—and probably won’t appear until late 2003 or early 2004. In addition to feature sets, various graphics cards offer different levels of pure polygon-pumping muscle that directly affects the performance of current 3-D titles.

    This chapter is from Build Your Own High Performance Gamers' Mod PC, by Chen and Durham (McGraw-Hill/Osborne, 2004, ISBN: 0072229012). Check it out at your favorite bookstore today. Buy this book now.

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