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HyperTransport Release 2.0 Specification officially announced

SimpleTech introduces 160GB and 250GB SimpleDrives

Philips unveils Nexperia Mobile Display Module

SimpleTech offers 8GB ProX CompactFlash... for mere $5999

Polaroid x530: the digital compact camera on 4.5-megapixel Foveon X3 sensor

HyperTransport Release 2.0 Specification officially announced

HyperTransport Technology Consortium today announced a major new release of the HyperTransport Release 2.0 Specification, so we can finally publish its exact information.

Now we know for sure that the new HyperTransport 2.0 supports three more bus speeds: the existing 1.6 Giga Transfers/second (GT/s) of Release 1.1 Specification is extended by 2.0, 2.4, 2.8 GT/s at respective dual-data rate clocks at 1.0GHz, 1.2GHz, 1.4GHz delivering a maximum aggregate bandwidth of 22.4 GB/s (on 32-bit duplex bus). Of course, the electrical protocols of HyperTransport 2.0 are compatible to the previous releases.

Another key innovation is the mapping to PCI Express added to already existing support of PCI and PCI-X. Judging by the fact that companies like Alliance Semiconductor, AMD, and PLX Technologies already ship HyperTransport-to-PCI-X bridges, I guess HyperTransport-to—PCI Express solutions won´t take long as well.

The HT 2.0 innovations base on the frequency correction technology combined with receiver part sensivity improvements. The developers believe that all this won´t require major hardware changes and won´t result in higher energy consumption.

SimpleTech introduces 160GB and 250GB SimpleDrives

Besides the 8GB CF Type II cards, SimpleTech introduced its new 160GB and 250GB external SimpleDrive hard disks that will also be showcased at PMA 2004. Models will be supplied with StorageSync backup software.

Featuring USB 2.0 interface, 7200rpm devices naturally provide 480Mbps throughput. The models support Plug-and-Play, hot swap, and have Kensington security lock slots preventing unauthorized access. The aluminium fanless bodies are claimed to provide enough heat dissipation.

The MSRP of 160GB model is $220, while 250GB is offered for $370.

Brief specs:

  • 480Mbps throughput (USB 2.0), 400Mbps (FireWire)
  • 7200rpm
  • 8MB buffer
  • 13.9x22.5x3.4cm size
  • Vertical or horizontal installation
  • Bundled along with software CD, cabling, power adapter

Therefore, the complete line of company´s external hard drives now includes SimpleDrive External series, SimpleDrive Deluxe External series (USB/FireWire), SimpleDrive Portable series, and SimpleDrive Deluxe Portable series starting from 120GB.

Philips unveils Nexperia Mobile Display Module

Philips unveiled a new digital camera & processor module for mobile handsets — Nexperia Mobile Display Module.

Nexperia Mobile Display Module features Nexperia processor (PNX4000; doesn´t have integrated RAM unlike PNX1500 on the photo) as well as the single-chip TFT LCD driver (PCF8881). It supports real time JPEG encoding, MMS, and image scaling. Sized 36x41x5.4mm, the module consumes 20-30% less energy than similar discrete solutions.

Nexperia Mobile Display Module is expected to be showcased at 3GSM World Congress on February 23-26 in Cannes.

SimpleTech offers 8GB ProX CompactFlash... for mere $5999

SimpleTech announced its new 8GB CompactFlash Type II cards added to the existing 2GB, 4GB and 5GB ProX CompactFlash Type I distinguished by up to 10MB/s write performance.

Such a high data density became available due to SimpleTech´s proprietary IC Tower technology of multi-layer NAND chip layout. In its turn, the high write performance of CompactFlash ProX solutions became possible with the new Xcell controller.

The new Flash cards will be first showcased at PMA 2004 that will be held on February 12-15 in Las Vegas. Samples of 2GB, 4GB, and 5GB ProX CompactFlash Type I and 8GB ProX CompactFlash Type II will be available in Q1, while the volume shipments are scheduled to Q2 2004. No exact pricing information has been disclosed, but supposedly 8GB card will cost $5999.

Polaroid x530: the digital compact camera on 4.5-megapixel Foveon X3 sensor

Such an interesting news for all who follow the evolution and implementation of Foveon sensors: today the company announced that the new x530 digital compact camera released under the Polaroid brand will be equipped with the 4.5MP Foveon X3 sensor. As far as I know, before we could see Foveon solutions only in higher-class Sigma SD9/SD10 DSLR products.

Polaroid x530, expected in June 2004 for about $399, should provide a nice opportunity to test benefits and drawbacks of Foveon X3. The model will be produced by World Wide Licenses Ltd. (subsidiary of The Character Group PLC) in Hong Kong. It will support JPEG, RAW, and 640x480 VGA movies @ 24 fps. More specs include:

  • 1/1.8" Foveon X3 CMOS
  • 4.7 total megapixels, 1440x1088 x 3 layers (1.5R, 1.5G, 1.5B)
  • 4.5 effective megapixels, 1420x1060 x 3 layers (1.5R, 1.5G, 1.5B)
  • 5µm pixel pitch
  • 7.1x5.3mm sensor size, 8.8mm diagonal
  • 4:3 aspect ratio
  • Max. image size at up to 7 fps is 1420x1060 x 3 layers; at 30 fps — 640x480 x 3 layers (VPS)

We also know that Polaroid x530 will be supplied with the recently announced X3 Fill Light software.

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