NVidia has announced a worldwide Scaleable Link Interface (SLI) certification and logo programme targeting system builders and components manufacturers.
The recently launched SLI technology allows two PCI Express graphics cards to be linked in the same PC for greater performance.
SLI comprises a communication protocol embedded in the graphics processing unit (GPU), a high-speed digital interface between the two cards, and software to handle dynamic load balancing, advanced rendering and compositing.
An SLI-ready system will allow two nVidia GeForce 6600 GT, or higher, cards to be hooked up in the same chassis.
The certification process will include testing and analysis, according to nVidia. For system builders, nVidia will check thermal measurements and ensure additional shock, power, and vibration tests are conducted on components, including hard drives, fans, and power supplies.
NVidia is providing performance tools and a complete SLI development system for application developers. It claimed this will allow them to take advantage of additional detail and resolutions not previously available to single GPU systems.
There will be two logos on offer. The "nVidia SLI Ready" logo can be used with components such as SLI-based graphics cards and SLI-capable motherboards, while the "nVidia SLI" logo will be used on systems that have pre-installed SLI-based graphics cards and motherboards.
"This certification and logo programme helps end-users looking to purchase or build this new class of PC make the right choice of components and companies," said Ujesh Desai, general manager of desktop products at nVidia.
Elan Raja, director of enthusiast PC builder Scan Computers UK, said: "NVidia hasn't just raised the performance bar with SLI, it has sent it into orbit. We've been stunned by the results we're seeing. We think customers will be too."
System builders Alienware, Paradigit, Falcon Northwest and Voodoo PC are also among the early adopters of the SLI programme. Motherboard manufacturers include Abit, DFI, MSI Computer, Gigabyte, AsusTek, Epox and Iwill.
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