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NY A 86897

August 28, 1996

CLA-2-84:RR:NC:MA:110 A 86897


TARIFF NO.: 8471.80.9000; 8524.91.0030

Ms. Deidre J. Dreisbach
Hitachi America, Ltd.
50 Prospect Avenue
Tarrytown, NY 10591-4698

RE: The tariff classification of a graphics accelerator, software, and interface cards from Japan.

Dear Ms. Dreisbach:

In your letter dated August 9, 1996, you requested a tariff classification ruling.

The merchandise under consideration involves a high-end graphics accelerator that is designed to function with a WindowsNT or Windows95 supported computer PC. The graphics accelerator permits 3D graphics to run on a monitor.

The graphics accelerator, in appearance, is a mini-tower configuration, and when shipped, will include an interface card to be inserted onto a PCI bus slot of the host PC, floppy disks containing the software driver, user manuals and cables for connecting the PCI card with the graphics accelerator. The graphics accelerator resides in its own cabinet, and will have applications in flight/maritime/driving/sport simulations as well as architectural, theme park and animation uses.

The principal function of this graphics accelerator appears to be for the creation of 3D graphics to run on a monitor. It receives a series of graphics commands from a host PC, and then generates three dimensional pictures on its frame buffer. A video generator scans this buffer and generates video signals. The video signals represent the accelerator's output. An ordinary video cable connects the accelerator to a color monitor. The video signals travel through the video cable to the monitor. The accelerator is also able to create 2D images to be generated by Windows applications. Some of the components inside of this accelerator includes the following: geometry processor board; rendering manager board; full color memory; anti-alias memory; texture memory; display list memory; and a multi-display connection card.

The graphics accelerator would meet the definition of a "unit" of an ADP system as per Legal Note 5 (B) to Chapter 84 of the HTS. Although performing some adapting or controlling functions, this device appears to be performing primarily signal converting functions to allow a monitor to run 3D graphics. Since the merchandise as shipped, will be repacked in the US based on customer requested configurations, consideration as a retail "set" under GRI-3 (a) would be precluded. Noting Legal Note 4 to Section XVI, this shipment would however meet the definition of a "functional unit". The graphics accelerator, interface board, cable and manuals would thus be classifiable under the heading appropriate to its defined function. The software discs will be separately classifiable noting Legal Note 6 to Chapter 85 of the HTS.

The applicable subheading for the graphics accelerator will be 8471.80.9000, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), which provides for other units of an ADP system . The rate of duty will be 2.2 percent ad valorem.

The applicable subheading for the software disks will be 8524.91.0030, HTS, which provides for prepackaged software for automatic data processing machines, of a kind sold at retail. The rate of duty will be 5.8 cents per square meter of recording surface.

This ruling is being issued under the provisions of Part 177 of the Customs Regulations (19 C.F.R. 177).

A copy of the ruling or the control number indicated above should be provided with the entry documents filed at the time this merchandise is imported. If you have any questions regarding the ruling, contact National Import Specialist Art Brodbeck at 212-466-5490.


Roger J. Silvestri

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