Mobility RADEON 9200
As You Were, Sir
unveiled the RADEON 9800 Pro, it also introduced the RADEON
9600 and RADEON 9200 families. The 9600 is actually a
new design with an improved memory controller and refined
manufacturing process, but the 9200 is little more than a
RADEON 9000 with AGP 8x. If you have already drawn the
parallel between ATI's desktop and mobile naming
conventions, you may have also guessed (correctly) that the
Mobility RADEON 9200 is just a Mobility RADEON
9000 with AGP 8x support, meaning ATI's entire product line
is now in compliance with the faster host interface.
Simply, the 9200 has four pixel pipelines with a single
texture unit per pipe and DirectX 8.1 compatibility.
That last point
is where NVIDIA may swing an advantage. If NVIDIA
follows ATI's example and replicates its desktop products in
mobile space, we expect to see a variant of NV34,
which is a DirectX 9 mainstream part. Feature
sets are important to OEMs, and while ATI may be rocking in
the high-end mobile market it remains to be seen how the
mainstream will play out.
Evolution, My Dear
is a very powerful, very popular platform for the Athlon XP
processor. You'll notice NVIDIA sticks to
Athlon-compatible chipsets, though. This is because
NVIDIA doesn't hold the license necessary to manufacture
chipsets to support the Pentium 4, and thus cannot break
into a market that ATI is currently dabbling in, with
Intel's blessing. But ATI can't claim the same sort of
performance NVIDIA goes after with nForce2. Instead,
with the RADEON 7000M IGP, ATI is keeping its IGP 340M P4
core logic up to date by adding support for the 533MHz front
side bus that Intel first introduced on the desktop.
ATI is also incorporating DDR333 support, which should give
the chipset's integrated graphics solution some extra
bandwidth to play with. Additionally, the 7000M
supports an external AGP 4x slot for a discrete card.
This gives the chipset a lot of flexibility, as illustrated
in the image below. It can either be used with
integrated graphics enabled for value applications, or the
external graphics slot can be filled with the Mobility
RADEON 9600 for a performance combination.
As with its
mobile graphics chips, ATI has enabled power management
support in the chipset itself, which is event driven through
ACPI and Intel's SpeedStep technology. Mainly, it
features clock scaling for a balance between performance and
Benchmarks and Conclusion