Gigabyte are more well known for their motherboards than anything else. It came as a surprise to me that they had their own line of video cards, network equipment, Broadband connections (DSL and cable modems) and yes, even high end storage solutions. This truly is a diversified company.
Gigabyte did start pretty late in the video card sector, some would say too late. Focusing on the TNT2 and above video cards was a hard task to sell considering most of us were too wrapped up with ASUS, Diamond and Hercules at this time. Gigabyte's nVidia line extended all the way to the Geforce 3. Not having much success selling nVidia cards, the company decided to scrap their nVidia line and go with one of the other two major 3D vendors, ATi or Kyro. After months of research and testing each of the two prospective company's offerings, Gigabyte settled on ATi for their 3D power. Since this decision Gigabyte have produced over seven separate cards based on different ATi chips and supporting many different features.
Today, thanks to Gigabyte themselves, we have in our hands the AP64D-H Radeon 8500 flagship 3D card from the Gigabyte labs. Let's take a look.