NVIDIA might have thought it was all going to be rosy news over the weekend, what with the announcement of the Lenovo S12 notebook integrating the NVIDIA ION chipset, but not if this story pans out.  Apparently Dell is on the edge of removing NVIDIA from its entire lineup of desktop and notebook PCs.  If true, this could be very bad news for NVIDIA.  The Inquirer believes that NVIDIA’s problems with GPUs in notebooks (and some desktops) forcing vendors like Dell and HP to face some harsh criticism from customers is finally going to bite them where it hurts most: the wallet. 

The story posits that if you search around Dell.com for a new system, fewer and fewer NVIDIA graphics options are showing up though Charlie does indicate several places where NVIDIA’s cards continue to claim a spot.  For notebooks, the length of time for a new design is what is causing the NVIDIA parts to be removed at a slower pace, the article goes on to say.  The NVIDIA options are being replaced with AMD/ATI graphics and even CrossFire in some instances.

Is Dell dropping NVIDIA from all its products? - Graphics Cards  1
A G84 GPU

While I think there is definitely some validity to the author’s observations and remarks, I am hesitant to believe NVIDIA will be gone completely.  Also, the fact that Apple continues to introduce new parts with NVIDIA’s graphics options is a strong sign that other system vendors like Dell and HP won’t leave the market completely and give Apple another potential marketing tactic to use.

This is definitely a story to keep an eye on and I imagine that we’ll be getting a fair dose of contact from the PR inside NVIDIA telling us ALL ABOUT the various options with NVIDIA products.

On the non-AIW desktop side, there isn’t a single Nvidia card in a Dell machine that I could find other than in the XPS line. Gone, poof, almost overnight. The high-end gaming boxes are where Nvidia theoretically should shine. Its image hasn’t been as tarnished among the fanboi set to the degree it has elsewhere.

That said, there are three lines of XPS machines, the 625, the 630, and the 730, each with four sub-models. The 625 line is entirely devoid of Nvidia cards, but Dell offers multiple ATI graphics card configurations, including several versions of CrossfireX. One of the four 630 models has no Nvidia graphics option, two of the remaining ones have more ATI choices than Nvidia options, and the fourth has two from each vendor.

On the top of the heap in the 730 models, where Nvidia has traditionally dominated, one 730 model has no Nvidia option at all while the others offer cards from both graphics vendors about equally. Nvidia is hanging on by its fingernails on the high end, likely because of gaming fanbois more than anything else.