SiS had a reasonably sized stand at this years Computex, with various demos available displaying new and upcoming SiS chipsets. SiS has been a leading supplier of value motherboard and graphics chipsets for some time now, but have only just recently decided to try and break into the enthusiast market.
By far the most exciting thing on display at SiS's stand was their SiS648/Xabre demo machines. The SiS648 chipset provides official support for Intel's new 533MHz Pentium 4 processors and features DDR333 support, AGP 8x, USB 2.0, IEEE1394a, 10/100 Ethernet, 6 channel AC97 audio and ATA133 support. This chipset will be competing against the VIA P4X333 chipset and ALi's M1681 chipset, and as soon as review samples become available we'll be sure to have a review/comparison posted.
SiS's new Xabre graphics chipset looks to be a very strong competitor in the value graphics card market. It features AGP 8x, pixel shaders, Frictionless Memory Control architecture (improved memory efficiency), an MPEG video decoder and dual monitor support. AGP8x can provide up to 2.1GB/sec of bandwidth which is very impressive compared to AGP 4x which can only provide up to 1GB/sec. Judging by early performance numbers, the Xabre looks to be a very viable alternative to the GeForce4 MX range as not only does it perform better, but the pixel shaders also suggest better image quality (the GeForce4 MX range does not feature pixel or vertex shaders).
As far as AMD are concerned, SiS also have an AthlonXP chipset soon to be released - called the SiS746. This is the first chipset to support AGP8x for the AMD platform and it supportsDDR333 memory, USB 2.0, IEEE1394a, 10/100 Ethernet, ATA133 and 6-channel AC97 audio. This chipset will be directly competing with VIA's KT333 chipset, however, with the KT400 and Hammer chipsets on the way it just may be a case of too little, too late.
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