PCMCIA graphics cards

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justfei

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I heard that there used to be PCMCIA graphics cards on the market sometime ago, but somehow it has been discontinued. i thought itd be great if it was still on the market. im not sure whether it is just a rumour or not but one of the guys at my computer store said that they may be introducing it again perhaps?

ive tried googlin and searching and i cant seem to find much on these pcmcia graphics cards. does anyone know what models there are or specs sheets of the different types of cards and their compatibility with different laptop models?
 

alwrmc

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I've never heard of PCMCIA video cards but ASUS has a new device that accepts real video cards (PCI express only) externally. I believe it comes with a card already installed. Try their website. Rather expensive but if it does have a video card already installed then that should ease the pain. Now would the rest of the laptop be up to/worth the expense?
 
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justfei said:
I heard that there used to be PCMCIA graphics cards on the market sometime ago, but somehow it has been discontinued.
I do remember seeing a few CardBus (32-bit PCMCIA) video cards a few years ago. The compatibility was awful, and drivers were a pain in the *** to install and configure.

Since the arrival of USB 2.0, several USB-attached video cards have arrived. (effectively a USB 2.0 to PCI bridge & a cheap PCI video chip, all in a small package) Perhaps one of these will fit your needs? I've heard the compatability is pretty good., but have not personally used any.

Here's a review of one, found after a quick Google search:
http://www.everythingusb.com/tritton_see2_usb_2.0_svga_adapter.html


A. Woolf
 

justfei

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Hello awoolf!

Thanks for the replies! Yup, I've just managed to find so old reviews on the pcmcia graphics cards. Mostly, there were a lot of compatibility issues and usually the laptop manufacturer had to support that certain card or something or rather.

I checked out the link to the review you gave and it did help! Thanks! Now I'm gonna try and check out more on these USB video chips. However, is the processing of the video slower than a normal pcmcia video card since it is via USB?

Thanks again!
 
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justfei said:
...is the processing of the video slower than a normal pcmcia video card since it is via USB?
PCMCIA (16-bit) is ISA based = 8 Mbytes/sec (IIRC)
CardBus (PCMCIA 32-bit) is effectively a 32bit 33MHz PCI slot = 133 Mbytes/sec
USB 2.0 = 480Mbits/sec (60 Mbytes/sec)

So, yes, a USB 2.0 video card will probably be slower than an equivalent CardBus card. But, either way, you're not going to be able to run 3D games or intense graphics.

A. Woolf
 
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Jan 24, 2007
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Hi, thanks to a few referrals I got from you guys. I found out this thread about USB video card.

The Tritton USB 2.0 video card is an obsolete product and perhaps just a proof of concept at best instead of something of a true 2D video card people are expecting. For one thing, the Tritton can't output at very high res with enough refresh rates for multimedia applications (eg. DVD playback)

If you are really serious about an external USB video card, I would look into IOGear USB Video Card powered by DisplayLink - the company behind the development of the first true USB video chipset. I can't promise anything, but DisplayLink is pretty confident of their chipset. They eventually want their chipset to evolve into a true USB thin client.

http://www.everythingusb.com/iogear_external_video_card.html
http://www.everythingusb.com/displaylink.html

Good luck on your search. (y)

Ian
Everything USB
 

justfei

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Mar 15, 2005
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hey thanks, the IO gear usb card looks quite impressive. im gonna check up more about it plus a cardbus based docking station.

thanks for the replies!
 
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