What You Might Not Know About ATI Graphics Cards

ATI Technologies was a semiconductor tech company based in Canada and produced a variety of chips used by other manufacturers in their graphics cards. Video cards are used as an attachment card for a motherboard to handle displaying images onto your screen. When selecting an ATI video card, there are different styles and designs available.

How can you select an ATI graphics card?
  • Motherboard slot: You will want to review your motherboard or manual to see what types of ports are available for graphics use. Some of the common types used are AGP, PCI, and PCI Express.
  • Select a memory type: Similar to the RAM used by the CPU, there will be memory for the graphics chip to process images. Some of the common types available include DDR and GDDR types.
  • Choose a brand: Several manufacturers produce ATI based brands, including EVGA, MSI, GIGABYTE, and other companies. You can also select from some generic and unbranded models.
  • Choose a model: This selection will determine the chipset used in the video card. The models will vary on the processing speed of the GPU.
What is a low profile graphics card?

There are two main types of low profile video cards. The single slot design will be featured on motherboards that need to use multiple PCIe slots without taking up more than one slot worth of space. Other low profile models feature a shorter length of card. These are typically a double slotted model designed to be used in smaller cases where extra space is needed.

What are the different types of ATI video cards?
  • DisplayPort: This type of connector comes in two sizes. The mini DisplayPort size is the same shape as a Thunderbolt port. DisplayPort has 20 pins and can support resolutions of up to 4k with a 60Hz refresh rate.
  • HDMI: HDMI connectors can come in three different sizes. HDMI ports use 19 pins in the connector and carries the video and audio signal to the screen.
  • DVI: DVI connectors allow you to connect to a variety of flat screen digital monitors. Some DVI types have a splitter that allows you to send the video signal across two monitors for an expanded work area.
  • VGA: This type of connection allows the computer to output onto an analog monitor.
  • S-Video: Some TVs will have an S-Video connection, and this port allows you to connect the computer to a TV.
What types of GPU cooling types are available?
  • Liquid: This type has a waterblock, tubing, radiator, pump, and other components to pump coolant to and from the GPU for cooling.
  • Fan: This type mounts one or more fans onto the GPU card to blow air away from the card.
  • Silent: This type features radiator fins and pipes that work with the case fans to move the heat away from the cards.