Matrox's G450 Announcement!

Matrox's G450 Announcement! - Page 1



Matrox G450 - Smaller, Faster and Highly Integrated

By Dave "Davo" Altavilla

  Graphics Chipset vendors are coming out of the woodwork this week, as the WinHEC
conference shifts into high gear.  Not a player to sit on the sidelines, Matrox has taken the wraps off their much rumored G450 chip, an enhanced die shrink version of the G400 with new features, a higher clock speed and faster DDR memory interface. 

The G400 is currently built on a .25 micron process and the new G450 will be set forth in leading edge .18 micron technology, marking the Canada based manufacturer as one of the few to move to this die geometry.  With to lower power consumption and cooler operation, the G450 will most assuredly have a faster core clock.  Although their was no official comment on what clock speeds might be for the G450, with G400MAX clock speeds historically at 150MHz., it could very well be that the G450 approaches 200MHz. or beyond.  However, this is pure speculation at this time.

In addition,  the G450 will support a DDR SDRAM memory interface allowing the chip to be bolstered by as much as a 400MHz. (200MHz. DDR) memory subsystem.  However, we were made aware that the memory bus width will drop down from the current 128 bit wide interface to a 64 bit wide interface.  Although the data pipe will be cut in half between the memory and processor, the aggregated bandwidth of the DDR SDRAM should still be significantly higher. 

Finally, the G450 will integrate a secondary on board RAMDAC which will allow higher resolutions within Matrox's own "Dual Head" technology.  Simultaneous and independent dual 1600X1200 displays will be supported.  This feature will certainly be a hit in the professional sectors, historical Matrox's strong suit, running CAD/CAE, Professional Desk-Top Publishing and Analytical applications.  Slated for May '00 release, the G450 is targeted at the Corporate user with competitive gaming and multimedia features. 

Matrox's hard core gaming based solution, rumored to be called the G800 3D Graphics Processor, is currently target for a late summer release.  More details will follow as they become available.  For further details on the G450, please see the formal press release below.


Matrox shrinks die, integrates components on Matrox G450
Users boost productivity and entertainment value with new 2D/3D, DVD, DVI and DualHead Display graphics chip

Montreal, Canada, April 25, 2000-Matrox Graphics Inc. today announced the new 0.18-micron Matrox G450 2D, 3D and DVD graphics chip.

The Matrox G450 AGP 2X/4X chip leverages a die shrink of the 0.25-micron Matrox G400 chip technology to integrate a digital flat panel transmitter, TV-out encoder, second RAMDAC and 64-bit DDR memory interface. By integrating these components directly on the chip, the company has re-architected its award-winning Matrox G400 graphics technology into a full-featured accelerator that is set to standardize DualHead Display across more markets than ever before. Matrox's exclusive DualHead Display is a state-of-the-market technology that provides immediate and valuable benefits by allowing users to double their display real estate by pairing two display screens (RGB monitor, flat panel or TV) as many as eight different ways.

Display versatility is further enhanced by the Matrox G450's 165 MHz Transmission-Minimized Differential Signaling (TMDS) transmitter, which outputs to a DVI-based digital flat panel at resolutions as high as 1600 x 1200, in 24-bit color. Business professionals currently using high-resolution analog monitors, as well as users who plan to take advantage of increasingly popular digital flat panels, will benefit from the chip's 256-bit DualBus architecture. This well-balanced architecture powers razor-sharp, crystal-clear 2D graphics, even at taxing resolutions as high as 2048 x 1536 at 85 Hz, in 32-bit color on the primary display screen. And with two RAMDACs built directly into the chip, the Matrox G450 ensures a superior-quality analog output signal-not just to one, but to two displays simultaneously.

"The Matrox G450 offers all of the features-2D, DVI and DualHead Display-that make it an ideal solution for the high-end and mainstream corporate markets," said Dan Wood, vice president of technical marketing, Matrox Graphics Inc. "And because it's based on Matrox G400 technology, the Matrox G450 also has the 3D, DVD, EMBM and DualHead gaming features that give this chip such multi-market appeal."

As the most highly integrated discreet graphics chip on the market, the Matrox G450 chip builds on the Matrox G400's 3D, DVD and DualHead Display capabilities to continue providing innovative entertainment solutions. The Matrox G450 supports Microsoft DirectX Environment-Mapped Bump Mapping for stunning visual effects in an ever-growing list of more than two dozen popular games. Equipped with a 3D Rendering Array Processor, this chip also powers a range of 3D gaming features, including stencil buffering, trilinear filtering, alpha-blending, anti-aliased vectors, vertex and table fogging, specular highlights, a 32-bit Z-buffer and more. The Matrox G450 complements 3D performance with pristine-quality video and DVD playback on the PC. In addition to offering the same high quality expected from a hardware DVD player, Matrox has leveraged its DualHead Display technology to further enhance DVD playback. In DualHead DVDMax mode, users can output a DVD stream full-screen to TV while maintaining a fully accessible Windows desktop on the primary display monitor-a feature no other graphics vendor offers.

Matrox is revolutionizing the mainstream PC by including features like DualHead Display in the Matrox G450 at no extra cost to the end-user. From gamers to people who enjoy browsing the Web, anyone can "see more and do more" with features like DualHead Multi-Display, Zoom, DVDMax, TV-Out and Clone. These modes allow users to get more out of their favorite software applications by extending a window or application across two screens, or displaying multiple windows side-by-side, for example. This includes the ability to play DualHead Display-enabled games like Microsoftâ Baseball 2000 head-to-head on two separate display screens; the ability to display a Web page on the primary display while streaming video from that page full-screen to the TV; and the ability to reference email messages on one screen while designing a personal greeting card on the other.

Products based on the Matrox G450 will be available in the second half of 2000.


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