updated 09:45 am EDT, Tue October 17, 2006
ATI Radeon X1950 Pro
Having already introduced its high-end X1950 technology, ATI on Tuesday announced a mainstream video card in the line which also marks the introduction of a new feature. The X1950 Pro is ATI's first graphics chip to include the company's CrossFire multi-card circuitry inside the main processor; previous cards required a separate chip and a dedicated video port, forcing users to buy a special master card. The X1950 Pro only requires included bridge cables similar to NVIDIA's SLI.
The X1950 Pro is also targeted at the mid-range, says ATI, and is scaled down accordingly: its core speed is 575MHz instead of the XTX variant's 650MHz and has had its pixel pipelines reduced to 36 from 48. While not as quick, this has the benefit of producing a single-slot card that should fit into smaller cases and run quietly. The 256MB X1950 Pro is expected to ship today for $200 from ATI itself; other vendors such as Sapphire are also participating in the launch with varying prices.