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Mystery ATI Crossfire connection revealed

Radeon X1950 PRO and X1650 XT goes two ways
Wed Sep 20 2006, 12:36
BACK HERE, we wondered about some funny connectors we spotted on the R570 reference design, manufactured in ATI's small SMT line in Canada.

Now we have an explanation.

ATI decided to copy Nvidia's idea of wiring its multi-card SLI connectors onto the graphics card. The connectors pictured are ATI's internal connectors with which to connect up more Crossfire boards.

The upcoming RV 570 and RV560 chips and the cards based on them, branded as Radeon X1950 PRO and X1650 XT, will have these internal Crossfire connectors.


ATI clearly got an idea from Nvidia about it, but Nvidia's SLI connector is one way only. It can either send or receive data but cannot send and receive at the same time.

ATI's connector works both ways as it will offer increased bandwidth between multiple cards. It took ATI a year to make the internal connectors. We also heard that the upcoming R600 will use the same marchitecture and two-way Crossfire internal connectors.

Nvidia informed us a year ago that Crossfire needs a higher bandwidth than the PCIe 16X one and that the cards need to be connecter internally or externally. It seems they were right

Internally, with two way lanes, is likely the fastest and most effective way and you will start seeing this in ATI's mainstream or faster cards starting from October the 17th. µ


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