LucidLogix brings mix and match graphics to PCs

LucidLogix, the fabless Israeli semiconductor company, has begun an aggressive push to get mix-and-match graphics cards into PCs, using its HydraLogix (née Hydra Engine) technology.

The original idea of dusting off your old graphics card and adding extra performance to your current gaming rig by mixing and matching different GPU vendors and generations sounded good - really good - but it only really panned out on paper.

In reality, you had to spring for a new (MSI) motherboard with an embedded Hydra chip... so any cost saving you might have made went out the window. It's no surprise that adoption has been slow, at best.

While LucidLogix hoped to have motherboard makers flock to its sales office with its initial strategy, its new plan has cunningly puts the ball in the court of graphics card makers - a good move, if you ask us. Graphics cards makers are vastly more voracious than your tame mobo maker and are willing to try just about anything once.

Which brings us to the kit itself. The aptly-named Unity graphics board architecture brings together a single GPU from any vendor, and a Hydra 200 chip on the same board - removing any need for consumers to buy an entire new motherboard just so they don’t have to bin their old graphics card. The tactic is to future-proof your PC’s graphics performance by enabling you to be able to add any type of new graphics card in the future.

Lucid promises an increase in performance of up to 80 per cent with Hydra chips on board. LucidLogix intends to sell as many HydraLogix 200 chips as it can to graphics card maker,s while focusing on optimising the software end of business (the thorny bit), leaving the engineering to the guys who physically design the card. The company reckons that cards based on this architecture will be on sale for less than $200 by Christmas.

The first of this new breed of cards will be the PowerColor Evolution, an HD 5770-based card, which will sport 1GB GDDR5, 850MHz core and 1.2GHz memory. Unofficially the card has been in the works for a couple of months already, but it’s far enough along for the company to come forward and discuss it.