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The Different Types of PC Chipsets

The types of PC chipsets, the graphics processing unit (GPU) “brains” that power 3D video cards, out there don’t really have many differences. Although chipset makers want you to believe theirs are superior, all chipsets are largely created equal. The two major players in the PC video card chipset battle are

  • NVIDIA: The cutting-edge crew at NVIDIA has produced some of the fastest video cards for the PC in recent years.

  • ATI: Advanced Micro Devices produces popular video chipsets. Typically, ATI video cards are somewhat cheaper than NVIDIA cards, and many motherboard manufacturers build ATI video hardware directly onto their products.

Here’s the payoff for you, the consumer: The latest offerings from either of these companies deliver more performance than PC gamers are likely to need for at least a year. NVIDIA has even appealed directly to the PC game development community in an attempt to help develop games that use all the hardware power featured on the cards. (Ahh, for once, hardware that doesn’t suddenly turn outdated in six months. Sassy.)

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