ATi has a monopoly!

Discussion in 'Games' started by invaLPsion, Jul 24, 2004.

  1. invaLPsion macrumors 65816

    invaLPsion

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    Jan 2, 2004
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    The Northlands
    #1
    Doesn't it bother anyone that the only company that makes graphics cards for mac that can be purchased is ATi. Sure, it's good for us, but it creates a monopoly for ATi of the mac retail market. They can charge whatever price they want and we be forced to buy. Just look:

    ATi Radeon 9000 w/128MB VRAM: Mac- $159 PC- $120
    ATi Radeon 9200 (PCI) w/128MB of VRAM: Mac- $129 PC- $90
    ATi Radeon 9800 pro w/128MB of VRAM: Mac- $299 PC- $220
    ATi Radeon 9800 pro w/256MB of VRAM: Mac- $350 PC- $275

    Why can't ATi charge lower prices? I say, in order to drive the prices down and make a profit, Apple should order some Nvidia chipsets and make Apple brand graphics cards. I'd buy one... :)
     
  2. applekid macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2003
    #2
    What is it? About $30 to $80 more to pay for the Mac BIOS/firmware development? Meh, I suppose they could be cheaper. On the high-end cards, they should definitely find a way to drop prices a little more. The low-end cards are fine for me, if I was in the market for those low-end cards.

    However, I would love to see one of those nVidia card manufacturers enter the Mac market. It would add to the graphics card competition on the Mac and hopefully drop the prices. The prices aren't too bad even when you look at the PC market. We lack variety, and that's we never see those really cheap low-end cards that you can still get by with. For example, there's no retail 9600 XT or Pro or even a retail 9700 XT or Pro. It'd be a nice addition, but I doubt we'll ever see any.
     
  3. JOD8FY macrumors 6502a

    JOD8FY

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    #3
    You can't purchase a NVIDIA card for your mac? I have a NVIDIA card in my PB, so there are cards that NVIDIA makes for the mac. How do their prices compare?

    JOD8FY
     
  4. invaLPsion thread starter macrumors 65816

    invaLPsion

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    #4
    No, Nvidia does not make retail graphics cards for mac. They only make the graphics chipsets that come installed with your mac.
     
  5. LoadRunner macrumors member

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    Dec 20, 2003
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    Manhaton Beach California
    #5
    Apple is a licensed nvidea retailer. Selling their own special version of the cards. Apple sells their version of the gefroce 4 ti for 399. Apple's version of the NVIDIA GeForce 6800 Ultra DDL apple sells for 599. I think any one could become a linces/buy chips from nvidea, and build/sell their own version of an nvidea card for os x. But you would probable have to build your own drivers.
     
  6. 7on macrumors 601

    7on

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    Dress Rosa
    #6
    I'm sure the drivers are a part of the OS.

    Also the ATI cards need ADC for Apple monitors. Which is why I'm excited at the thought of the new Apple monitors using DVI instead of ADC. Might cut the ATI card costs to drop the ADC connector.
     
  7. JzzTrump22 macrumors 65816

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    New York
    #7
    I agree that ATI has to lower their prices. Especially the high end cards. It's a little rediculous.
     
  8. Nermal Moderator

    Nermal

    Staff Member

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    New Zealand
    #8
    nVidia makes the chips, Apple makes the cards.

    nVidia supplies the driver source code to Apple, who then packages it up with the OS.

    However, I agree that one of the "PC" card makers should start making Apple cards. Start sending emails to Leadtek, Gainward, Powercolour, etc. :)
     
  9. Macmaniac macrumors 68040

    Macmaniac

    #9
    Maybe with these new monitors from Apple ATI will be able to shift their mac strategy away from having to conform with ADC, and being able to make their best PC graphics chips available at a better price;)
     
  10. wide macrumors 6502a

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    NYC
    #10
    It's not a monopoly if ATi just wants higher profit margins for the small Mac market. Plenty of other companies could (and should) make graphics cards for Macs.
     
  11. invaLPsion thread starter macrumors 65816

    invaLPsion

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    #11
    They could... but don't....

    Which is why ATi has a "monopoly." They have no competitors in selling retail graphics cards to the mac market.

    This is fine, but they could lower their prices to conform with the PC industry ($30 - $100 lower) or make a wider selection of graphics cards to choose from.
     
  12. Nermal Moderator

    Nermal

    Staff Member

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    #12
    So now we all need to decide which "PC-only" video card company to bombard with email :rolleyes:
     
  13. osprey76 macrumors 6502

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    May 3, 2004
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    Oklahoma City, OK
    #13
    As "PC" video cards with flashed ROMs have shown us, there is not a reason to have a Mac specific card other than the ADC connector. Now that Apple has gone to the standard DVI port (with extra tails for the other stuff; why didn't they do it that way before?) the non-standard ports can be dropped and there should be no physical difference between a Mac card and a PC card. That is, unless ATI feels compelled to support dual-DVI links for Apple's 30" monitor. Even then, there are other monitors coming out that require this link and it's a standard, not proprietary Apple.
     
  14. Nermal Moderator

    Nermal

    Staff Member

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    #14
    I emailed Abit, Albatron and AOpen (the first 3 companies on nVidia's list of card makers). So far Abit and AOpen have replied, saying no. The guy from AOpen said that nVidia won't provide them with a Mac driver.
     
  15. invaLPsion thread starter macrumors 65816

    invaLPsion

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    #15
    Ahhhhh...

    Nice try though. Good to see the initiative taken. :)
     
  16. applekid macrumors 68020

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    Jul 3, 2003
    #16
    Well, it's a start I suppose?
     
  17. mkaake macrumors 65816

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    mi
    #17
    oh that's nothing. when i still had my beige, i wanted to buy a card for that - for those of you who don't know, the only retail pci vid card that would work on a mac until recently (believe they brought the 9200 to PCI? haven't been keeping too much track), it would cost you 120 or 129 bucks to buy the radeon 7000... which wasn't even that great of a card. in the mean time, the pc versions of it sold for dirt cheap, usually around 30 or less. same card - many people have sucessfully flashed the cards, but ati just charged a lot more because it was the only card available to those who needed a PCI vid card.
     
  18. FelixDerKater macrumors 68000

    FelixDerKater

    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2002
    #18
    The market for upgrade graphics cards on the Mac is too small to make it economical for any of the nVidia card makers. Just like the ATI cards, you would expect to pay a farily good premium for them if they did exist.
     
  19. FelixDerKater macrumors 68000

    FelixDerKater

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    Apr 12, 2002
    #19
    You're right on that point, and Apple wants to be the sole supplier of those cards. They'd be perfectly happy stealing more money from you by making you buy a new Mac as opposed to upgrading components.
     
  20. bigandy macrumors G3

    bigandy

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2004
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    Murka
    #20
    i completely agree with all of you on the motives for getting more manufacturers into the mac graphics card market, but here's one point of thought:

    macs are super-stable machines, and they need to be for most of their markets. one of the main reasons for the difference in stability between macos and windows *aarrghh bad word bad word!* is that apple has complete control over both operating system and hardware.

    if this was to change, there would be a few outcomes, including macos becoming less and less stable the more cheap cards flood on to the market, using badly written drivers, if apple continue to write drivers and keep them embedded in macos for stability it could become bloated and sluggish carrying all the drivers nessacary to support these cards.

    just look at windows for the perfect example of this situation! ok the hardware is cheaper but with apple you're paying for a kick-ass, stable, reliable OS and computer that's light years ahead of the rest. and you can't say that about windows.
     
  21. Nermal Moderator

    Nermal

    Staff Member

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    #21
    I asked nVidia directly, and they tell me that there's nothing stopping other companies from making Mac cards.

    It's possible that AOpen misunderstood my email, or that I misunderstood them. Their reply was "due the nVidia the VGA vendor don't provide the driver for MAC OS".

    I'd expect that nVidia's response is the correct one, so there may still be hope :)
     
  22. Nermal Moderator

    Nermal

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    #22
    That shouldn't be an issue. If the third-party cards comply with nVidia's references, then one driver should power all the different cards equally.
     
  23. applekid macrumors 68020

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    Jul 3, 2003
    #23
    Send an e-mail again and this time, attach nVidia's reply.
     
  24. BrianKonarsMac macrumors 65816

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    Apr 28, 2004
    #24
    it's not exactly a monoply if nobody else WANTS to be in the market. basically you're just bitching over price, but you don't realize they are TECHNICALLY DIFFERENT CARDS, ATi has to do a production for Mac only cards, thus increased price. you're lucky they aren't 2x the price.
     
  25. Daveman Deluxe macrumors 68000

    Daveman Deluxe

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    Location:
    Corvallis, Oregon
    #25
    It's a monopoly regardless of whether anybody else wants to be in the market. If there's a market with a single supplier, it's a monopoly. Now, it's only a natural monopoly if the cost of production is higher than the price if another firm enters the market. If that is not true, but the firm in the market blocks competition (a lá Microsoft) or the government blocks competition in that market, that's not a natural monopoly. Most economists agree that natural monopolies, when they occur, are good for consumers (compare the utilities industries pre-regulation to post-regulation), while unnatural monopolies are bad for consumers (look at Microsoft).
     

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