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S3 Unveils Quiet Graphics Chip

TAIPEI, Taiwan — Putting its focus on the sound of silence, S3 Graphics is rolling out its next low-power graphics chip designed for desktop PC systems and entertainment consoles.

The DeltaChrome S8 ULP graphics processor is capable of running a full suite of 3D applications while keeping its cool, according to S3, which is a subsidiary of Taiwan's Via Technologies. That means no fans, and no noise.

S3 is promoting the chip at this week's Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. The chip operates at less than 2.5 watts, and features an eight-pipeline DirectX 9.0 processor. It also includes HDTV component video output, with resolutions from 480i to 1080p, which is helping to inaugurate a new niche in HDTV gaming.

Not to be outdone, Taiwan-based XGI Technology Inc is also pushing its line of Volari graphics processors at CES this week. Recent design wins in the notebook PC market with Dell Corp and Taiwan's Elitegroup Computer have given the company a much-needed profile boost.

It's most recent release, the Volari Z7, is taking aim at the server, thin client and embedded markets. It includes a 2D graphics engine, supports a PCI interface along with the DDR, DDRII and GDDRIII memory specifications, ranging from 8- to 128-MB memory combinations and 16-or 32-bit bus bandwidth.

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