With availability of the GeForce Go 7700 graphics processing unit (GPU), NVIDIA has beat ATI Technologies to the punch in the 80-nanometer manufacturing process. The GeForce Go 7700 is the first notebook GPU manufactured using 80nm process technology at Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC), graphics card makers indicated, adding that ATI plans to implement 80nm manufacturing process for all its GPUs by the third quarter of this year.
The NVIDIA GeForce Go 7700 (G73M-B1 core) features 12 pixel shader units, five vertex shaders and GDDR3 memory. Following the chip, NVIDIA will introduce a new desktop GPU—the GeForce 7650 GS (G73-B1 core)—manufactured on a 80nm process at the end of September, the makers said. Currently, all of NVIDIA's 80nm process production takes place at TSMC, the makers added.
A June 16 article cited Edward Chou, marketing director of ATI Technologies Asia-Pacific division, as noting that ATI's scheduled timeframe for a complete migration to 80nm production would come without delay. By 2007, ATI expects to start implementing a 65nm production node, in an attempt to bring better cost efficiency, Chou stated in the report.
NVIDIA, which had adopted a more conservative attitude in accordance with the company's manufacturing process technology roadmap and related strategies, responded with action, some graphics card makers said.
Graphics card makers, who have reviewed ATI's latest roadmap, revealed that the launch of the ATI Radeon X1950 Pro (RV570 core) and Radeon X1650 XT GPUs will take place on October 17.
Aside from TSMC, United Microelectronics Corporation (UMC) is mainly responsible for NVIDIA's GoForce handheld GPU production at present, according to sources. TSMC currently handles most of NVIDIA's GeForce 7100 GS production (codenamed GF-7100GS-N-A2) using 0.11-micron process technology at its Fab 12 and Fab 14, whereas Chartered Semiconductor manufactures a small volume of the GeForce 7100 GS GPU (codenamed GF-7100GS-N-B2) at its Fab 6 and Fab 7, indicated the sources.
According to the source referring to Intel's server roadmap, the company is going to update its CPU notation to make it more clear. The new markings will include "energy class", so users will be able to understand what chassis a processor requires. The notation will take effect along with the rollout of quad-core Xeons based on Covertown core.
Speaking of this Xeon 5300 series, 'X' prefix will mean 120W TDP "energy class". The first product will be the Xeon X5355 (2.66 GHz, 4MB x 2 L2, 1333 MHz FSB). At the moment of announcement it will be priced $1.172.
The middle-range price segment will be offered 3 E-class models which means 80W TDP: Xeon E5310 (1.6 GHz, 4MB x 2 L2, 1066 MHz FSB), E5320 (1.83 GHz, 4MB x 2 L2, 1066 MHz FSB) and E5345 (2.33 GHz, 4MB x 2 L2, 1333 MHz FSB). These will be priced $455, $690 and $851, respectively.
Also interesting are low-voltage Covertown-based processors. In Q1'2007 the company promises to release Xeon L5310. While being similar to E5310 with its 1.6 GHz, 4MB x 2 L2 and 1066 MHz FSB, the low-voltage solution will have 50W TDP or 12.5W per core. Pricing for this one hasn't been announced yet.
ASUSTeK Computer Inc. today introduced the world's first wireless music Skype phone, the AiGuru S1. With 802.11b+g support, the AiGuru S1 enables Skype calls without wire constraints, meaning users are free to roam around their homes while chatting. Unlike conventional wireless Skype phones based on Bluetooth technology, the AiGuru S1 provides superior wireless signal quality and larger signal coverage. It doesn't matter where the computer is located, users of the AiGuru S1 is no longer tied down next to their PCs or notebooks.
The AiGure S1 comes equipped with a speaker that turns it into an MP3 player. Access and stream songs stored in the PC via Wi-Fi connection for wireless music enjoyment. It also includes remote controller functions and Microsoft Media Player support, allowing users to manage music library, and play, stop, pause and skip songs without being right next to the computer.
Caller ID, phone book entries, call history, speaker phone for conference calls and answering machine functions are all included in the AiGuru S1. Simply press a few buttons, and all information are shown on the LCD display. In addition, the phone offers dual-channel audio, allowing it to operate without interfering with other computer audio functions. Users can watch DVDs or play games on the PC while making a free long distance call.
Source: ASUSTeK Computer Inc.
Today, SMSC introduced its LAN9131, the industry's first high-performance network multimedia co-processor. Based on RipStream technology, which combines support of multiple high-definition audio/video streams, software protocol stack management and security, this solution delivers time-to-market advantages and reduces development risk for customer designs. Target applications include network-enabled HD TVs, set-top boxes, digital video recorders and home media servers, among others.
The LAN9131 offers support for the interoperability standards and is the only wired Ethernet co-processor solution to currently support Digital Living Network Alliance (DLNA) guidelines.
The LAN9131 leverages the 32-bit ARM926 core to offload the main SoC's high TCP/IP processing burden while supporting multiple HD A/V streams with Fast Ethernet data rates. The main SoC can now partition out CPU intensive networking, interoperability and content-protection functions to the LAN9131 co-processor, allowing the SoC to focus its finite resources on core multimedia and user interface applications.
Additional offloading from the main SoC is achieved through the LAN9131's implementation of two dedicated bi-directional Transport Stream Interfaces (TSIs). This enables the multimedia co-processor to assign both audio and video packets without interfering with the main SoC's system bus. Also, the LAN9131's hardware-based AES-128 function block accelerates Digital Rights Management (DRM) content protection schemes such as Digital Transmission Content Protection over Internet Protocol (DTCP-IP) and Windows Media DRM (WMDRM 10) without burdening the main SoC.
The LAN9131 engineering samples are available today. Qualification samples are expected to be available in December 2006 with mass production samples in the first quarter of calendar 2007.
Plextor LLC announced the availability of the PX-608U ultra-portable DVD±R/RW CD-R/RW multi-drive. The smallest CD/DVD drive ever to be released by Plextor, the PX-608U, measures just 5.43 inches x 6.38 inches x 0.87 inches and weighs less than one pound. The drive is designed for traveling laptop computer users, who can use it as a lightweight, removable storage device.
The PX-608U supports 5X DVD-RAM functionality for removable data storage applications. Unlike other optical media formats, special burning software is not required to write DVD-RAM media on a personal computer. A user simply inserts a blank DVD-RAM disc and the system automatically formats the disc and assigns a drive letter. Users can drag-and-drop files, use the “save as” command, and remove the disc, which can then be read in any PC or desktop player with a drive that supports the DVD-RAM format. The DVD-RAM format offers up to 9.4 GB per double-sided disc.
The PX-608U multi-drive delivers DVD recording speeds of 8X DVD±R on single-layer media, 4X DVD±R on Double-Layer and Dual-Layer (DL) media, and 5X DVD-RAM. The drives also support 8X DVD+RW, 6X DVD-RW, 8X max DVD-ROM, 24X CD-R/RW/ROM. DVD±VR is supported for direct disc recording, while DVD+RW background format eliminates the need to manually format a DVD+RW disc.
The PX-608U features a Hi-Speed USB interface for easy connections to Microsoft Windows-based PCs. Burst data transfer rates of 480 Mbps (USB) allow a user to burn a 4.7 GB DVD+R disc in approximately six minutes. The PX-608U drive features a 2 MB buffer and Buffer Underrun Proof Technology to prevent buffer underrun errors and allow multi-tasking.
The PX-608U drive ships with the Roxio Easy Media Creator 8 software suite for burning video, music, photos, and data to DVD or CD.
Plextor’s PX-608U drive ships to distributors in North and South America on September 25, 2006, with a Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price of $199.99 USD.
Source: Plextor LLC
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