ATI’s Next-Generation VPU on Track for Spring, Claims Research Firm

@ 2004/12/08
Research firm Credit Suisse First Boston claimed in a recently released report that ATI Technologies, the world’s major supplier of visual processing units, is on track with introduction of its next-generation graphics processor in Spring, 2005, and said that the risks with major transition of process technology to 90nm are not tremendous.


R520 Taped Out, Yields are Key Risk

“ATI has completed test wafers on 90nm at TSMC and has hit its milestones to date for its next generation R520 product due out in Spring 2005,” CSFB wrote.

In early November a high-ranking source close to ATI Technologies confirmed that the chip known as the R520 had been taped out, which means that the completed design of the processor had been sent to an ATI’s foundry partner.

“Key risk ahead is achieving strong yields on 90nm, a point too early to call but potentially less risky since low-k and copper issues were resolved at 130nm. ATI noted that the next two years will see major architectural jumps (likely Pixel Shader 3.0 in 05 and DX10 for Longhorn in 06), raising the bar but requiring execution as well,” CFSB’s analysts Randy Abrams and Michael Masdea believe.


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