S3 graphics cards return to US market

Fremont (CA) - Via has begun selling S3 graphics cards to American users. The Gammachrome series cards will be sold through the S3 Graphics website.

With the sale of S3's graphics business to Via Technologies about five years ago, the firm's graphics cards almost instantly disappeared from the American market. According to Via, demand for S3 graphics cards in North America has been growing "especially for the latest PCI Express 3D graphics and especially video and HDTV solutions."

S3 graphics cards went on sale through the S3 Graphics website at a newly established "GStore" online shop. Currently the store offers only one card, the Gammachrome S18. The 256 MByte card is PCI Express-based, support DirectX 9.0, HDTV at up to 1080p and a programmable video engine. The maximum resolution offered is 2048x1536 at 32-bit color depth. The card integrates outputs for CRT monitors, DVI-I interfaces, S-Video and native HDTV through a dongle. The S18 is priced at $150.

"The launch of the GStore coupled with the introduction of S3 Graphics-branded retail PCI Express graphics boards marks a major milestone in our history," said Gerry Liu vice president of Marketing at S3 Graphics. "Opening the GStore with products that we have designed and manufactured not only assures the level of quality that we demand, it gets us closer to the end user in our home market."