VIA C3 1.0GHz - Introduction and History - Part 1
VIA C3 1.0GHz - Introduction and History - Part 2Introduction and History - Part 2Around the same time as the Media Gxi was released, Cyrix needed to introduce a new processor into the market to counteract Intel's new Pentium with MMX technology which had come out and taken the crown away from Cyrix for having the fastest CPU. Cyrix took their existing Cyrix 6x86 CPU and increased the L1 cache from 16KB to 64KB, giving it the largest L1 cache of any CPU on the market. Along with the extra L1 cache, Cyrix added MMX technology to the CPU to increase the CPUs potential and renamed it as the 6x86MX. The 6x86MX came in speeds of 133MHz up to 233MHz (PR166 to PR266). The PR266 CPU was the first CPU to utilize the 83MHz FSB, which created more problems for Cyrix due to PCI and AGP compatibility problems with the two busses running well out of spec. Even with these new specifications, the 6x86MX could not compete with the Intel Pentium MMX and Pentium 2 CPUs from Intel, nor could it outperform AMD's K6 and K6-2 line of CPU.In April 1998, Cyrix took its 6x86MX CPU and changed its FSB options over to 66MHz and 100MHz, which reduced the compatibility problems with most PCI and AGP expansion cards. The die size also shrunk form 0.35 micron to 0.25 micron but this was to be the last CPU the Cyrix company would actually produce as one company.Later in 1998, rumors were spreading that through a cross-licensing agreement with National Semiconductor, Cyrix would be releasing a new CPU based on the P6 bus in the Slot 1 format. These rumors appeared to be true until late in 1998 when the Taiwanese chipset manufacturer known as VIA purchased the Cyrix company from National Semiconductor. The plans for the Slot 1 processor fell through and VIA staff took over as head of the Cyrix name.It took a while for VIA to actually get the production of CPUs out, but it finally did happen with the first of a new line of processor known as the VIA Cyrix 3. The first of the VIA Cyrix 3 family was code-named Joshua and the same engineers who worked on the original Cyrix CPUs built this new chip. The Joshua CPU was the first processor from VIA and Cyrix to be based on the Socket 370 PPGA format. When released to hardware review sites to test, the Joshua core performed very poorly and even failed some tests. VIA took the Joshua core and totally scrapped it.In 1999, VIA acquired Centaur, the makers of the Winchip CPU line. When the Centaur designers began, they took the Winchip 3 processor and changed it around to work on the Socket 370 platform and reduced the die size to 0.18 micron; this new core was code-named Samuel. The Samuel, like the Joshua, didn't include any L2 cache, which again hampered the performance of the CPU. After the Samuel core performed well below any standards that would be accepted, even for value processor, VIA took the Samuel core and added 64KB L2 cache, this greatly increased the performance of the CPU and shrank the die again to 0.15 micron making it the worlds first 0.15 micron CPU. This gave birth to the VIA C3 based on the Samuel2 core.VIA's recent improvements into the 0.13 micron die led to the release of the Ezra core. This was used for 866MHz, 900MHz, 966MHz core CPUs. Now with higher speeds and Tualatin motherboard support, VIA has released a new addition to the C3 family; the Ezra T. This new processor debuts at 1GHz. Let's see how well it fares.
VIA C3 1.0GHz - OverviewThe VIA C3 CPU is designed for the value PC. It supports all major x86 decode instructions which we see in current Intel and AMD processors. This new CPU is aimed for Internet, office and very light gaming. Featuring a highly efficient Dynamic Power Caching Architecture, the VIA C3 processor provides the optimum balance of performance and low power consumption for Information PCs, notebooks and Information Appliances while retaining the flexibility and upgradability afforded by full plug-in compatibility with the Socket 370 interface. Running at speeds of 500MHz to 1.0GHz, the VIA C3 processor is primed to optimize your Internet computing experience with enhanced features such as a 128KB full-speed Level 1 cache, 64KB full speed Level 2 cache and a 100/133MHz Front Side Bus. Multimedia performance is further boosted by the processor's support for 3DNow! and MMX technology.The VIA C3 processor was designed by VIA's Centaur Technology Team located in Austin, Texas and is built using a state-of-the-art 0.15 micron fabrication process which maximizes processor core speeds while minimizing power consumption. The VIA C3 processor uses a core voltage of 1.5v which allows the VIA C3 CPU to run virtually cold. Now with the Ezra T core we see VIA reduce the CPU core to 0.13 micron and a low power profile of 1.35v making this CPU run even cooler at higher clock speeds than its previous C3 brothers. The VIA C3 CPUs can be run in a system without the need for a fan on the processor which means you can have your computer running in virtual silence. Because of this, the VIA C3 has become a viable mobile solution due to its low power consumption and excellent heat dissipation.Ezra T core processors have started at 1.0GHz and will continue to grow until further developments in fabrication become available. Below is a table with the current VIA C3 lineups compared to the AMD Duron CPU so you can get a perspective of their designs.
VIA C3 1.0GHz - Up CloseVIA C3 Up Close and Personal
VIA C3 1.0GHz - Benchmarks - Test System and SandraBenchmarksTest SystemProcessor: VIA C3 1.0GHzMemory: 1x 256MB PC166 KingmaxVideo Card: Onboard Trident Blade (8MB shared Memory)Hard Disk: Seagate Barracuda ATA-3 UDMA 100 7200RPMSoftware Used: SiSoft Sandra 2002, 3DMark2000, 3DMark2001, PCMark 2002 Pro, Quake III Arena, Aquanox, SysMark 2002, Max Payne, Star Trek Voyager Elite Force, Jedi Knight II, Winstone 2001.Synthetic System BenchmarksSiSoft Sandra 2002SiSoft Sandra (the System ANalyser, Diagnostic and Reporting Assistant) 2002 is a synthetic windows benchmark that features different tests used to evaluate different PC subsystems. Our three major tests that we use from the Sandra line are CPU Raw Performance Mark, Multimedia Benchmark and Memory Bandwidth tests. While these tests are Synthetic, they do give an idea of the starting expectations of the system.
VIA C3 1.0GHz - Benchmarks - System ProductivityReal-World System Productivity BenchmarksSysMark 2002SysMark2002 incorporates the following Internet Content Creation and Office Productivity applications:Office Productivity: Microsoft Word 2002, Microsoft Excel 2002, Microsoft PowerPoint 2002, Microsoft Outlook 2002, Microsoft Access 2002, Netscape Communicator 6.0, Dragon Naturally Speaking Preferred v.5, WinZip 8.0, and McAfee Virus Scan 5.13.Internet Content Creation: Adobe Photoshop 6.01, Adobe Premiere 6.0, Microsoft Windows Media Encoder 7.1, Macromedia Dreamweaver 4, and Macromedia Flash 5.
VIA C3 1.0GHz - Benchmarks - MadOnionSynthetic 3D and PC Benchmarks3DMark20003DMark2000 is a synthetic Direct3D benchmark that is compatible with DirectX 7. It takes full advantage of the Geforce2, ATI Radeon and DirectX 7 enhancements. 3DMark2000 has become one of the world's most used benchmark utilities
VIA C3 1.0GHz - Benchmarks - OpenGLReal-World OpenGL BenchmarksQuake III ArenaQuake III Arena is a real-world OpenGL benchmark that we have been using here at TweakTown for quite a while now because it has proven itself to be one of the best gaming benchmarks around to compare a range of different products.
VIA C3 1.0GHz - Benchmarks - D3DReal-World D3D BenchmarksMax PayneMax Payne is a new generation DirectX 7/8 game which is based on Hardware T&L advancements as well as many other features of the Intel Pentium 4 and Athlon XP.
VIA C3 1.0GHz - ConclusionConclusion - Business = YES, Multimedia = NOThe VIA C3 at 1.0GHz is definitely a step towards VIA's goals for a CPU; cheap, reliable and quiet. The VIA C3 is ultimately the quietest PC system available. Requiring no fan but just a passive heatsink and very little power, you can have a single or no fan system. During out testing, we took a 250w Aopen PSU and removed the fan from the unit. We then placed the CPU, HDD and DVD into the system along with the memory. This system stayed stable the throughout the entire test with very little heat being generated at all from the PSU or the internal system.The VIA C3 also has built-in thermal management should you overclock the CPU, and overclockable it is. While the board we had gave us no voltage controls, we were still able to get 1.23GHz out of the CPU; fully stable with a 200RPM fan placed on the CPU cooler and 1.1GHz with passive cooling. To make things even better, at default speeds and voltages you can even run the system without a heatsink for several hours, even when playing games. As VIA demonstrated in a rather unique video, we are happy to confirm this test as a full success.On the end of this long note, VIA has come quite a way in achievement but still has a long way to go. With Intel releasing the Celeron on P4 cores and AMD pushing the Duron to 1.4GHz, VIA is definitely fighting an uphill battle.- ProsStableFanless operationRuns even without heatsinkCheapOverclocks quite well- ConsRather slow, even for value CPUNot suitable for gamesRating - 8/10
PRICING: You can find products similar to this one for sale below.
United States: Find other tech and computer products like this over at Amazon.com
United Kingdom: Find other tech and computer products like this over at Amazon.co.uk
Australia: Find other tech and computer products like this over at Amazon.com.au
Canada: Find other tech and computer products like this over at Amazon.ca
Deutschland: Finde andere Technik- und Computerprodukte wie dieses auf Amazon.de