Sparkling delivery for graphics cards

Sparkling delivery for graphics cards

Distributor Australia IT will scoop the pool for NVIDIA's new range of graphics cards next week when it offers the set two weeks before competitors.

Continuing its power-user push, the distributor would have the GeForce 6600 series in stock from Monday, managing director, Michael Lau, said. The first-to-market claim is a result of the company's partnership with Sparkle Computer, an NVIDIA certified VGA board manufacturer based in Taiwan.

Sparkle's reduced size (67 office and 1200 factory staff) compared with other vendors, and its sole focus on NVIDIA enabled the company to manufacture products ahead of the market, sales manager, Kevin Wang, said.

"Bigger companies have to integrate that work with other product lines," he said.

Lau had also verified the lead time with other partners.

"We have another partner, Albatron, and they said it'll be a month before they'll have stock," he said.

"We're not saying we'll have test models or samples next week, we'll have the full product."

The new GeForce series consists of the 6600 chipset, in 128MB and 256MB models with DVI and HDTV standard and 300MHz clock speed, and the 6600 GT chipset, a 128MB GDDR3 card with a clock speed of 500Mhz.

The 6600 GT would be the higher priced model that would test the market, Lau said.

"We've got 40 [GTs] arriving this week, and I have just booked 40 more for Wednesday," he said.

The cards will particularly appeal to gamers eyeing a number of major releases in the leadup to Christmas. Upcoming titles such as Splinter Cell: Chaos Theory, Far Cry, and Dark Age of Camelot, among others, will all benefit from the 6600 series' DirectX 9.0c Shader Model 3.0 support.

Despite being distributed exclusively by Australia IT for the last five years, Sparkle's cards have a low profile in Australia. However, the vendor and distributor hope being first to market will increase brand awareness.

Despite the early availability, Australia IT would not charge a premium for the 6600 series, Lau said.

"That's not our company philosophy," he said.

Major resellers of the Sparkle cards will be Perth wholesaler, Direct Memory Access, and Multimedia Technology.

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