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AGP Is Dead, Almost


Taipei (Taiwan) - You knew it was coming. Four years after the introduction of the first PCI Express chipset, Intel’s 925X, the accelerated graphics port (AGP) is finally running out of steam and products using AGP are very scarce.

If you are still running graphics cards through an AGP interface, you already have to look hard to find any options on the market. When PCI Express became more popular, AGP cards went primarily into cheap PCs and emerging markets. However, that changed sometime last year when Eastern Europe, Russia, CIS and China stopped buying AGP cards and moved on to PCI Express as well. This means there is just the upgrade market for several countries and states in Europe and North America left, which is not large enough to justify new products.

Last year in August, add-in board companies saw AGP finally losing substantial product-mix share and it was only a matter of time when these manufacturers would stop introducing new AGP parts. As it stands right now, the Radeon 3850 appears to be the final AGP "high-end" part on the market.

So, if you are looking to upgrade your ancient, but still kicking AGP system, your options just shrunk to GeCube’s dual-slot overclocked and Sapphire’s single-slot 3850 512 MB cards. We were told heard that the best selling AGP parts are still Radeon 2600XT cards and it remains to be seen how the Radeon 3850 last. If you own an AGP rig, time is slowly running out.

AGP was developed by Intel as a bus designed to replace PCI in graphics applications. AGP was introduced in 1997 with a bandwidth 266 MB/s. AGP 8x topped out at 2133 MB/s.