Lucid Logix Demos 3D Graphics Game Changer at IDF

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News Posted: Wed, Sep 23 2009 11:40 PM
This just in.  Can we say that here?  Sure we can... At IDF today we had the opportunity to stop by the technology showcase booth of Lucid Logix.  If you recall, over a year ago, the fabless semiconductor start-up promised to set the graphics industry on its ear by bringing to market  PCI Express switching technology that would allow multi-graphics card installations of any variety, mixing and matching different graphics cards based on similar graphics processors or multiple cards based on very different GPUs, from both NVIDIA and AMD-ATI in system simultaneously.

Today Lucid has brought their new leading-edge technology to fruition on a motherboard built by MSI that employs their new chip and was up and running for all to see.  Employing a mutli-GPU load-balancing algorithm called "Object Division Rendering" (GPUs tackle different objects on the same frame simultaneously), Lucid's Hydra engine intelligently optimizes workloads in system amongst all graphics processors, regardless of make or model.  The demo we saw below didn't afford us the ability to check frame rates or see load balancing in action, but we'll take their word for it...

Lucid's Hydra chip is hiding under the blue stylized heat sink next to the #1 PCIe graphics slot...

With a 48-lane PCI Express switch implementation and a 32-bit Tensilica RISC core engine to manage workloads and serve as sort of a GPU Traffic Cop, the technology is interesting and impressive to be sure.  We look forward to testing an evaluation system based on MSI's "Big Bang" Intel P55 chipset-based motherboard and a Lucid Hydra engine on-board.  We'll keep you posted with more details very soon.

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Techgage had a great, little intro on this just recently. The tech will be released next month.


The three most important features of this technology:

1. Almost perfect scaling

2. Can use any number of cards (no maximum as in SLI or CrossFire)

3. Can mix and match different cards (ATI and Nvidia)

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realneil replied on Thu, Sep 24 2009 11:54 AM

It's a nice touch being able to mix and not-match video cards but they work anyway.

I prefer to buy one powerful card and make do with that though.

I can see where this idea will fly, especially with people who may need the benefits of multiple proprietary technologies offered by the two big graphics giants all on one whoop-ass computer.

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Lev_Astov replied on Thu, Sep 24 2009 12:32 PM

This is so awesome! I'm really glad to hear they managed to pull this off. Now I just can't wait to see you guys test it so I can see how well it scales. Also, I will be needing much larger motherboards to play with. No more of this piddly three or four PCIe slot business. I'm gonna need at least eight to feel satisfied now!

><((((">Lev Astov

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Wow, they didn't take very long to completely sell out everywhere.  So'k though, I wasn't planning to upgrade until around Christmas time anyway.

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