In the 10 months since the release of the first true high performance "value" video card, this segment of the market has been met with unimagined success. The June release of NVIDIA's GeForce2 MX marked the first time that a video card producer choose to release a new product for those with a budget as opposed to pushing last generation's products on these people. The GeForce2 MX quickly become one of NVIDIA's most popular products, offering 3D gaming performance while also adding in workstation graphics traits such as dual display support.
It was not long before we saw other video card producers try and beat NVIDIA at their own game. Soon after the GeForce2 MX's release, ATI announced the Radeon SDR, a card which featured good 3D support for those on a budget, but lacked the dual display functionality of the GeForce2 MX. ATI recently addressed this market with their Radeon VE card which offers limited 3D performance but supports dual display configurations. Also setting its sights upon the GeForce2 MX's workstation qualities was Matrox's G450, which, like the Radeon VE, is targeted not at the 3D gamer but the workstation owner. With these solutions costing less and outperforming NVIDIA's TwinView dual display support (see our Dual Display Comparison), it was clear that NVIDIA had to do something with the GeForce2 MX line in order to keep it competitive.
NVIDIA's solution was to segment the GeForce2 MX line into two distinct parts: the GeForce2 MX 200 and the GeForce2 MX 400. Although the GeForce2 MX 200 is NVIDIA's answer to ATI's Radeon VE and Matrox's G450, NVIDIA took this opportunity to revamp the "high-end" MX chip as well. Calling it the GeForce2 MX 400, it will be replacing the current GeForce2 MX that we have grown so accustomed to. Today we look at the new MX, the GeForce2 MX 400.