ATI Technologies and Nvidia will both launch new-generation AGP8X chips in the second quarter aiming to sustain their market shares before they start marketing chips supporting PCI Express standards, according to sources familiar with the roadmaps of the two companies. The two new chips are ATI's R420 and Nvidia's NV40. Both chips were highlighted at CeBIT 2004 held in Hannover, Germany, this week. The two chips will be the last generation mainstream AGP8X chips before the PCI Express chips take the reins, said the sources.
The launches of the two chips are important for ATI and Nvidia to enforce their current market positions because Intel's new chipsets supporting the PCI Express technology will not be available until the end of the second quarter, undermining the chance for PCI Express to become mainstream before the end of this year, the sources said. The NV40 will have eight physical pipelines, but they can act like 16, according to the sources. According to information available on several websites, ATI's R420 will feature 12 working pipelines, with a possible maximum of 16.
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News source: DigiTimes