Nvidia, Intel target corporates with multi-screen rigs

Quadro NVS 280 now, Grantsdale chipset in Q2

Anticipating growing demand for corporate PCs, Nvidia yesterday announced a multi-monitor display card even as it emerged that Intel's upcoming 'Grantsdale' chipset may support up to four screens simultaneously.

Multi-monitor rigs are much loved by members the financial services community and other corporates. Nvidia's Quadro NVS 280 is a PCI card aimed at just such users. It doesn't offer the 3D graphics capabilities the company is best known for, focusing instead on 2D performance.

The card can support two displays on its own, but in conjunction with other add in boards it can power up to 16 flat panel screens, courtesy of Nvidia's clever nView software. Windows can be spread across any connected screen and aligned to a grid to make efficient positioning easier. Hidden windows can be quickly pulled to the fore, and others made transparent to reduce screen clutter. The software also supports multiple virtual desktops.

The NVS 280 is available now from a wide range of Nvidia's add-in card vendor partners.

Intel's Grantsdale chipset, specifically the version that will ship as the i915G, will also support multiple monitors when it ships next quarter, a Xbit Labs report claims, citing sources close to the company.

It had been thought that the i915G would support two displays, but said sources suggest the chipset can handle four, provided there's a dual-head AGP add-in graphics card it can talk to. This feature comes courtesy of the chipset's third-generation Extreme Graphics engine. ®