Top notch hardware for the masses

We’ve grown used to the idea that as far as computing is concerned software is everything, and the machine you use to run it is distinguished only by the amount of memory, the speed of the processor, the size of the hard drive and the number of expansion slots.

Until now, the PCs capable of dealing quickly with high resolution graphics and simulation have been the preserve of specialists and generally out of most users’ price range. But as more of us use simulation and photorealistic applications, the demand for a more cost-effective machine that can handle these applications is needed. Silicon Graphics has made use of the new Intel processor and re-engineered the machine architecture to bring that high level performance into the mainstream.

Silicon Graphics’ IVC (integrated computing architecture) has been designed with the graphics as an integral part of the chip set, and the applications have direct access to the memory. The result is a machine that runs very quickly with masses more band width.

The 320 model has an Intel Pentium II processor, while the 540 model uses an Intel Pentium II Xeon, the primary difference being that the 540 can support multiple processors. The new machines have 128Mb to 1Gb (2Gb for the 540) of 100MHz (50ns) ECC synchronous dynamic RAM (SDRAM) and 256-bit wide memory bus providing 3.2Gb/s graphics memory bandwidth.

The prices quoted for the 320 and 540 machines are under $4000 and under $6000 respectively.

To complement the PCs’ rapid processing power is the Silicon Graphics high resolution, digital flat panel monitor. The 17.3in 1600 by 1024 pixel SuperWide format screen gives astonishing clarity, colour, brightness and contrast. The screens will be manufactured by Mitsubishi Electric.

Silicon Graphics. Tel: 0118 925 7500