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Ageia's PhysX cards are here
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Thu Jul 20, 2006 12:46 pm Reply and quote this post
Another Card other than your Graphics card...
A physics card is an expansion card for computers, similar to a graphics card but which is used to process physics interactions as opposed to graphics. By taking over the processing of these effects, the CPU can use more of its power for other tasks. A physics card is centered around a physics processing unit, similar to the graphics processing unit on a graphics card, and also contains RAM for use in its processes. The first physics card created was the PhysX by AGEIA, released in 2006.

Ageia announced the launch of its PhysX Accelerator cards today, citing immediate availability in systems from Alienware, Dell, and Falcon Northwest. The PCI card, which, as of this writing, we found available from Dell only, is designed to bolster the physics calculations of supporting games. While no current games have the required software built in to take advantage of the new hardware, Ageia's press release said that more than 100 titles are currently in development from game makers such as UbiSoft, Cryptic Studios, NCSoft, Epic Games, and Sega. Ageia also announced that Asus and BFG will be selling the card as a stand-alone product. It didn't specify an MSRP, but adding the card on a Dell XPS 600 is currently a $249 upgrade.

We're excited about the possibilities of physics acceleration. The demo videos on Ageia's Web site are particularly dramatic (check out Hanger of Doom). But it remains to be seen how the cards will impact overall game performance, how broadly developers will code their games to take advantage of the PhysX card, as well as how the PhysX cards will compare against the GPU-accelerated Havok FX support announced earlier in the week.

Contributed by Editorial Team, Executive Management Team
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