Orchid Technology


Orchid Technology was a privately-held company founded by Le Nhon Bui in 1982.[1][2][3]

Orchid Technology
TypePrivate Company
Founded1982; 40 years ago (1982)
FounderLe Nhon Bui
Defunct1994 (1994)
FateAcquired by Micronics Computers, Inc.
    • Fahrenheit Video3D graphics accelerator
    • GameWave 32 capture card
    • Kelvin 64 graphics accelerator
    • PCNet 1mbs LAN card
    • ProDesigner IIS graphics card
    • Righteous 3D graphics accelerator
    • SoundWave 32 capture card
    • Vidiola capture card
Orchid ProDesigner IIS graphics card


1982 to 1984Edit

The company's original flagship product was its PCNet card, a 1 megabit-per-second LAN (networking) card for IBM PCs and clones.[4] Notably, the acronym LAN (Local Area Networking) is the Vietnamese word for "Orchid". Hence, the origin of the company name.

After this successful product, the company embarked on introducing high-performance add-in cards, most notably the LIM (Lotus, Intel Microsoft standard) which extended DOS out to 1M, Multi-purpose network cards that included RAM, clock, serial printer ports and Network COAX TCP-IP capabilities. Orchid developed its own operating system as well as one of the first 5 OEM's of Novell. Other products included PC Turbo, TinyTurbo and TurboVGA enhancement cards that included 186 and 286 processors. As the operating systems took on more resources Orchid made a switch back to its roots as PC board manufacturer.

1984 to 1986Edit

From 1984 to 1986 the company switched to an Autocad video board manufacturer. Later, a variety of memory and video cards were introduced.

After 1988Edit

In 1988, Orchid started designing and selling back-plane motherboards under the Privilege Systems Division. However, Orchid could not garner any significant market-share due to stiff competition from motherboard makers Micronics Computers, Inc., Mylex Corporation and American Megatrends Inc.(AMI), the original motherboard brand names in the industry.


In August 1994, Orchid Technology was acquired by motherboard maker Micronics Computers, Inc.[5] Orchid sold their products through Direct to Fortune companies, OEMs, System Integrators and National Distributors such as Gates/FA, Techdata, Ingram and Micro D.

Graphic CardsEdit

Righteous 3D using 3dfx Voodoo

Orchid was known for its Righteous 3D,[6] Fahrenheit Video3D[7] and Kelvin 64[8] graphics accelerators. They also manufactured an array of multimedia products including SoundWave 32 and GameWave 32 and the award-winning Vidiola line of digital capture and playback systems.

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Sector 5: Computing : Orchid Technology Inc., Page 155, Stoy Hayward Unlisted Securities Market Year Book, Contributor:Cecil Parkinson, Publisher:Springer, 1990, ISBN 1349112852, 9781349112852
  2. ^ Add-on Boards compete for slot space, By Stephen Outing, InfoWorld, 2 Dec 1985, Page 26, ...says Le Nhon Bui, president of Orchid Technology, a Fremont, California, board maker. Orchid was one of the early pioneers in LAN technology...
  3. ^ Advert: Orchid Technology, PC Mag, Aug-Oct 1982, Page 203
  4. ^ Getting Hooked On PCnet, By Ron Jeffries, PC Mag, Nov 1983, Page 107
  5. ^ Micronics merges with Orchid in an $11 million deal, By Tom Quinlan, InfoWorld, 20 Jun 1994, Page 39
  6. ^ "Orchid Righteous 3D - Hardware museum". hw-museum.cz. Retrieved 2021-06-28.
  7. ^ "FAHRENHEIT VIDEO 3D". th99.infania.net. Retrieved 2021-06-28.
  8. ^ "Kelvin User's Manual for models: Kelvin EZKelvin 64" (PDF). www.elhvb.com.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)