CeBIT 2008: AGP isn't dead

The CeBIT 2008 edition doesn't have much to offer when it comes to new graphic cards. The 9800 GX2 is delayed to March 18 and since there isn't anything new from AMD, we weren't expecting much. Some of the AMD or NVIDIA partners have however taken advantage of this timeout to let the imagination of their engineers or marketing departments run wild.

In the former category, we had the opportunity to get a look at a CrossFire setup from GeCube using two homemade Radeon HD3870 X2 (proprietary cooling system using two quieter fans, a slight factory overclocking - 850/960 instead of 825/900 and a PCB 2 cm shorter). One of the interesting thing with this card is the 4 DVI outputs. The whole thing allows, with the correct drivers (still in beta), the support of up to 8 monitors through a classic motherboard (2 PCI Express slot and not integrated graphic).

One interesting detail: the second card is only powered by one of the two PCI Express 6 pin plug. The reason? GeCube only uses a 1000 W power supply, which, according to them, is insufficient. From what they told us since the PSU's throughput is under 1200 W, using the forth plug would crash the system... all is well.

Regarding useless cards, GeCube displayed a Radeon HD 3870 that had 1 GB of DDR3 and that was already in mass production. It even had an HD 3650 (that has DisplayPort however) equipped with the same amount of memory! "More is better" the manager explained fervently.

Finally, the manufacturer was of one the few to display a full range of AGP cards, from the 3850 512 MB to the 2400. Even thought they told us they wanted to continue launching new AGP cards, they'll logically be increasingly limited to the entry level market, whereas today, a mainstream (3850 512 MB) is still available.

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