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Matrox Launches The G550

G550 Spec Sheet

The main features of the G550 are not remarkable; they're solid, as you can see from the list below.

  • 0.18 micron technology
  • 64 bit Double Data Rate (DDR) external bus to frame buffer memory (SDRAM)
  • Only goes up to 32 MB frame buffer
  • Support for AGP 1X, 2X and 4X
  • Integrated TV encoder
  • Dual integrated CRTC controllers
  • Dual integrated RAMDACs - 360 MHz primary and 230 MHz secondary

There is the 64 bit DDR SDRAM 32 MB frame buffer upper limit which helps to position the product at the lower end of the price spectrum. The G550's DualHead feature is a pretty strong point in favor of Matrox, raising this product above the ordinary. You get one DVI-I output, and one HD-15 output on the bracket with adaptors to convert DTI to HD-15 to composite or S-video.

So, dual RAMDACs and dual displays seem to be the linchpin of the G550's 2D feature set. The 360 MHz primary RAMDAC can output a maximum resolution of 2048x1536 at 32 bpp color depth on analog monitors or flat panels, and in dual screen mode you can pump out upto 1600x1280 pixels at 32 bpp on a secondary analog screen. That should be enough for most dual screen users. With digital flat panels you can get 1280x1024 at 32 bpp on both screens, and the G550 does support dual digital flat panels without any need for external gizmos. In addition, 2D performance, if consistent with past Matrox' performance, should be high so, the G550 should be capable of pushing a lot of pixels around both displays.