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Intel Hardware

Intel To Redesign PC With "Grantsdale" Chip 309

Posted by CowboyNeal
from the a-whole-new-bus-is-coming dept.
MarkRH writes "Over at ExtremeTech, we tracked down some Intel roadmaps that discuss "Grantsdale", Intel's most important chipset in nearly a decade. Grantsdale brings PCI Express to the PC, so get ready to toss out your motherboard, AGP graphics card, and maybe a host of other components, too. Also check out our articles on the "Tejas" microprocessor, Intel's first CPU to forego pins (check out the waffle iron socket!), as well as the real reason Banias saves so much power."
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Intel To Redesign PC With "Grantsdale" Chip

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  • by tommy (12973) on Friday February 28, 2003 @01:48AM (#5403888) Homepage
    I beg to differ. My 10MHz Intel 286 had no pins. It looked like this [tcocd.de].
  • transemta crusoe? (Score:4, Informative)

    by TerraFrost (611855) on Friday February 28, 2003 @01:53AM (#5403909)
    it'll be interesting to see how the "Tejas" processor compares to the Transmeta Crusoe - currently, the least power intensive x86 compatable cpu out there...

    also... if you're currious about PCI Express, this link seems to be pretty... informative:
    http://www.intel.com/technology/pciexpress/

    and is anyone else disappointed that the new "Grantsdale" chipset isn't supporting rambus ram!? i know i am :(

  • Re:Why NewCard? (Score:4, Informative)

    by Apple Acolyte (517892) on Friday February 28, 2003 @02:05AM (#5403952)
    KiahZero opined: I don't understand why revamped PC-cards are being pushed for desktop computing.

    The parent makes it seem as if PCI Express only defines the standard for new generation PC Cards. It doesn't simply do that; otherwise it would be nearly worthless as the next generation successor to PCI. Take a look at relevant quotes from the PCI-SIG [pcisig.com]:

    The "Mini PCI Express Electromechanical specification, an alternate for the existing Mini PCI form factor specification, is being completed for membership review and is expected to be finalized for publication in the first quarter of 2003."

    "IBM is excited about the PCI Express architecture because of its compatibility with the past and its high-bandwidth options for the future," said Peter Hortensius, Vice President of Development, IBM Personal Computing Division. "IBM embraces open industry standards and provides innovation on top of them, and PCI Express presents outstanding opportunities for solving real customer problems."

    Mini-PCI Express, then, is a spec in its infancy that is designed to replace the previous generation PC Card. It should make future laptops far more expandable, which is a great thing. And PCI Express is one of multiple candidates for desktop expansion. Yet, it seems that PCI Express is going to be backward compatible with important specs, and that it seemingly has industry support. I just wanted to make sure everyone understands the PCI card isn't going to be replaced by the PC Card.

  • PCI Express FAQ (Score:5, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 28, 2003 @02:08AM (#5403968)
    PCI Express FAQ here. [pcisig.com]

    Quick summary: Formerly known as 3GIO, Software compatibility. Point-to-point instead of bus. 1 to 32 bits wide @ 2Gbps per bit = 16 GB/sec max (vs. 1-4 GB/sec for regular PCI; this is about AGP16X)
  • by marhar (66825) on Friday February 28, 2003 @02:11AM (#5403979) Homepage
    ... and is the word from which Texas is derived.
  • Re:transemta crusoe? (Score:3, Informative)

    by istartedi (132515) on Friday February 28, 2003 @02:56AM (#5404145) Journal

    Crusoe is their old chip. I think you want to compare it with Astro, coming out RSN.

  • by Clay Pigeon -TPF-VS- (624050) on Friday February 28, 2003 @03:10AM (#5404189) Journal
    I am. The HT consortium needs to get its act together to offer some viable competition to PCI express in terms of cards and peripherals. HT is free to use while mobo and card makers will have to pay liscencing fees for pci express, driving up component prices and possibly adding to tech market stagnation (assuming the tech market doesnt turn around by h2 04, god forbid).
  • by Clay Pigeon -TPF-VS- (624050) on Friday February 28, 2003 @03:18AM (#5404229) Journal
    Um the Ti 4200 8x is a NV28 chip. The controversial GeForce FX 5800 and 5800 Ultra use the NV30 chip.
  • by Jordy (440) <(moc.pacons) (ta) (nadroj)> on Friday February 28, 2003 @03:26AM (#5404265) Homepage
    That is known as CLCC packaging. It was used for a couple versions of the Intel 80186 (made by AMD), Siemens 80286, Intel 80286 (made by AMD) and AMD 80286.

    In addition, slot-based packaging (SEP, Slot-A, etc.) all used gold fingers just like PCI cards.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 28, 2003 @03:42AM (#5404323)
    I guess you must either be fairly young (16) or must be fairly new to the internals of computers.

    Not to long ago, PC motherboards used something called the ISA interface. It originated from IBM XTs and was 8bit. Then they added an extention to it so it could be a 16bit bus as well. This added some additional pins onto the end of the connector BUT was backward compatible with 8bit cards but not forward compatible (you could use an 8bit card in a 16bit slot but not the reverse). Then since that wasn't fast enough, something called the VLB (Vesa Local Bus) was added. It was intended for video cards. It added an extention but was not connected to the 16bit ISA portion but was at the other end of the card. This extention added 32bits. Other things besides video cards came out for VLB including IDE and SCSI controllers. Then they added PCI, which made it so you couldn't use any of your old ISA or VLB cards anymore. Most motherboard manufactures had at least one 16bit ISA slot though, up until maybe a year or so ago. I don't think any new motherboards still have a ISA slot. Well anyway, then the PCI bus wasn't fast enough for graphics, so they optimized PCI for graphics cards and called it AGP (and changed the connector). PCI does have 64bit and 66Mhz capabilities, though you wont really find it on most motherboards until you go to some SMP or "server" motherboards.

    Now they're going to change some stuff again, because the software is hitting its limits until the hardware can go faster. This is NOTHING new. This is what always happens with computers. See thats why you see those stupid jokes about computers going obsolete the second after you bought them.

    You're not missing anything, its just how it goes with computers. Software is hitting the limits with its hardware and the hardware companies need to stay in business so they comp up with new things. Sometimes those new things cause big changes, sometimes they dont. This is NOTHING new. See thats why you see those stupid jokes about computers going obsolete the second after you bought them.
  • Re:My God!! (Score:1, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 28, 2003 @03:55AM (#5404355)
    You wont find any new motherboards with an SDR SDRAM slot, maybe one or two but I highly doubt it.

    If you're going to buy a new motherboard and processor, why not just bite the bullet and buy the PCI/AGP new equivalents of your ISA cards. Unless you have some very special needs (controller for some piece of specialty hardware, etc...), why hold onto your ISA cards so dearly?

    You can buy a cheap but OK sound card for under $20 (anything with a CMI8738). You can buy a GeForce4 420MX for under $70 and if you really try you can get a GF3 Ti200 for like $40. Anything else that you need your ISA slot for, must really be dragging down your system performance.

    Hell I bet an Athlon XP2000 with 256MB of PC2400 memory will be well over noticably faster than your current machine.
    You could find a motherboard, XP2000, and 256MB of PC2400 for about $225 I bet. Then throw in a sound card witha CMI8738 and a GF4 MX420 and you could have a really nice system for under $400 -- shop around and you could probably do it for $350 minus s/h.

  • by be-fan (61476) on Friday February 28, 2003 @05:56AM (#5404645)
    PCI is (in theory) 133 MB/sec. PCI express is from 250MB/sec (2 channel) to 16GB/sec (32 channel). Also, PCI Express is designed to more than replace PCI, it's also designed to replace AGP. Lastly, there are several things bottlenecking on PCI these days. Gigabit ethernet (which Apple ships by default), HDDs that can burst > 80 MB/sec, RAID arrays, IEEE 1394b (400MB/sec!), etc.
  • your old stuff (Score:2, Informative)

    by Ratchet (79516) on Friday February 28, 2003 @08:30AM (#5404973) Homepage
    There's an PCI-X to AGP bridge that vendors can take advantage of to offer AGP ports on PCI-Express motherboards, so you'll likely be able to hang on to that new $500 vidcard you just bought (not that you'll be seeing PCIX anytime soon mind you). Your "old" PCI devices should still work as well.
  • no pins (Score:3, Informative)

    by chunkwhite86 (593696) on Friday February 28, 2003 @12:24PM (#5406612)
    This "waffle iron" design which lacks pins is old news to the DEC/Compaq/HP Alpha processor team. They have been using this packaging for almost a year now in production systems.
  • by illumin8 (148082) on Friday February 28, 2003 @03:49PM (#5408573) Journal
    I think you misinterpreted the numbers. PCI-X is a point-to-point, rather than bus technology. A connection is 1 to 32 bits wide @ 2Gbps per bit.

    So if you're using a measly 2 bit connection sure you might only get 250 MB a second, but if you read the article you'll see that Intel is planning on using a 16-bit wide connection for the graphics card. This would give you 32Gbps, or roughly the same as AGP 8X. There is potential to go much faster by using a 32-bit PCI-X connection. In comparison, the other PCI-X slots on the motherboard for peripherals will be much slower, probably only using 2 bits.

    I fully expect server boards to have multiple 32-bit PCI-X slots for maximum I/O throughput. In addition, we will probably see new technologies for clustering that utilize a PCI-X expansion card as a high speed server-to-server bus.

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