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What about a third option?

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 
I think Nvidia and AMD are too focused on trying to one up each other and because of that, the cards between the two of them are pretty much the same. They focus too much on being better in 1 area and neither of them care about any other potential areas of interest. There might be some differences here and there, but you can basically get the same thing out of both of their cards for the most part. If I buy the flagship AMD card and the flagship Nvidia card, I will be able to run Far Cry 3 just fine. (I am currently playing that right now)

What if there was a third option out there? What if there was a company that used a different design and implementation altogether? For example, what if this third company made part of the GPU inside their card dedicated only to antialiasing? Maybe then we would be able to have max antialiasing with no or very little impact on performance? It just seems that AMD and Nvidia are too focused on waving their GPU... you know whats... around and they make basically the same thing every year. My 7870 is pretty much the same thing as the R9 270. If there was a third company out there forcing them to innovate more, then maybe they wouldn't just rebrand their cards every year. I know that making a new card every year can't be easy, and technology does not change that drastically after 1 year, but honestly, if you can crossfire the 7000 series cards with these new ones, then why the hell do we even need the new line of cards in the first place? To be honest, I don't know one person who actually NEEDED to go from a GTX 680 to a 780. There is not one game that I can think of that sucks on a 680 but is fantastic on a 780. Maybe some games perform better, sure, but not $600 better. It just seems that AMD and Nvidia are losing their inspiration and drive to produce DIFFERENT cards. Too many people are trying to get to that 60 FPS on FRAPS and that seems like the only thing they care about. Although, I really can't think of anything else a graphics card can be used for, but I know there has to be something because it's 2014 and the Japanese are building computers that do things for you... you know... those kinds of things. What if the new thing was just a great piece of tuning software? At least a third option, even if it fails in the end, will force these guys to stop playing a slap fight with each other for a bit.
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Zen
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post #2 of 4
Technically speaking the Intel 1150 chips have a gpu in them and are the current 3rd option. They even greatly outnumber the nvidia and AMD/Radeon graphics due to the amount of laptops and small format PC’s that ship with only the integrated Intel graphics installed. This amazing thing is the amount of ground Intel has gained with an integrated GPU. In terms of performance it will play games but as you say it does not get to that sweet spot of high performance of any kind. As hard as Intel has tried and as many gains as they have made in performance the development pace NVIDiA and AMD/ATI are have been at wipes them out at the high performance Open GL/CL and Direct X development. But this is just talking games. Matrox still makes high end workstation cards but they don’t really game at all. If all you want is a 3rd competitor in high end gaming market someone would need to develop hardware that processes Directx11 and current Open GL/CL language at a cost competitive and performance competitive rate to the stream type processing GPU/s Nvidia and AMD are currently selling. A company that prior to ps4 could have done it would be Sony as the had some pretty good custom gpu architecture going for several years but they never seemed to want to get into that as the pc game industry has always been the little unwanted step-brother to their PS /whatever line. Also Nintendo could try to do it but their gpu’s have not been outstanding performance in years. Currently both use version of GPU’s from AMD for their Consoles and Microsoft has always outsourced their gpu to someone else with established processes.

I guess what im trying to say is that this could be done but the amount of investment return may not be worth it as doing so would likely be very expensive to develop, and produce the 1st version at a performance level people expect. Next you would have to do what Nvidia and AMD do and continue to develop the process over time improving performance in terms of efficiency and raw throughput at expected levels to get the monetary return to invest in the next version’s development.
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post #3 of 4
Thread Starter 
So they would need to have a lot of start up cash since development would cost a lot. So basically the only competitor would be an already well known tech company. It looks like Intel is the best bet here, but they don't seem to be interested since their focus is on average consumers instead of enthusiasts in this department. They know that enthusiasts are not going to buy their integrated chips for the graphics capabilities. But, if Intel wanted to branch out, they have the track record, brand recognition, and capital. The thing is that it seems like the video card market works on very thin profit margins and it might not be worth their time or energy. Is this what I should take away from your comment?
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post #4 of 4
For the most part that is correct. Intel actually used to make Discrete AGP video cards but they were always the performance dog and no one bought them for gaming.

Technically the Larrabee from intel was an attempt at getting into the high performance GPU market to compete. But by the end of its development cycle its performance was not matching the same performance per watt they were getting on their soc chip integrated gpu’s and after looking at at the money they were spending compared to the diminishing returns they would get competing with their own integrated GPU the project was virtually canceled. Eventually a lot of their research and development for this went into the Xeon Phi (Intel Many Integrated Core Architecture) server co processors. Im not saying intel could not make another run at high end GPU’s but as you say the competitive cost appears to have small margins. Also Intel typically likes to fab and source their products themselves. This would lead to their GPU’s being shipped, sold and sourced to distributers not through many vendor companies but through one. This leads to most of their product models being identical as far as quality, boxing customer use standpoint.

Nvidia and AMD use multiple vendors for their GPU’s each shipping some times very similar products like an NVIDIA Titan or 690 even though you might have different names on the box such as EVGA, MSI. Also those vendors like to make custom variants of the products. It would appear that a vendor getting into High End GPU would want to partner with the likes of MSI, PNY, Saphire and the other vendors that make and assemble GPU cards where Intel would prefer that their customer only sees the Intel name involved in their products even if ASUS or someone else actually fabs the product.

I would love to see someone come along and buck the 2 race pony some but you would want what ever they do to be very compatible with the gaming environment which NVIDIA and AMD develop for.
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12 Thread i7x
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Windows 10 Pro 64Bit Samsung U28E590D Vizio 22" M220VA Vizio 22" E220VA 
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