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Will use south bridge chips in provo chipset

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Taiwanese chipset designer VIA Technologies will formally announce a K7/Athlon chipset on 10 August, a source at the company's Taipei office said today (5.30pm Taipei time). The unnamed chipset will be announced at an AMD press conference in Taipei. According to the VIA source, AMD is already incorporating one of VIA's south bridge chips in a provisional chipset for the Athlon CPU -- used mainly for testing purposes. However, said the VIA source, VIA's new chipset "has many more high-end features than AMD's chipset". The chipset's specs include AGP 4x, PC133 memory, UDMA-66 and a lot of other integrated features, said the source. "It's got the same features as say, the MVP4." The VIA MVP4 chipset includes integrated 2D/3D graphics and AC-97 audio. VIA's Athlon chipset was relatively easy to design, said the source. "Basically all we did was take an upcoming [Intel-compatible] chipset, and just put in an AMD EV-6 front side bus, every other feature is the same." Competing chipset maker, Silicon Integrated Systems (SiS), will "officially announce a solution supporting Athlon sometime in the fourth quarter," said Sylvia Lin, the company's senior corporate marketing manager, today. Acer Labs (AL), Taiwan's third major chipset maker, is also believed to be working on an Athlon chipset -- AL's spokesman was not available for comment today. ®

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