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Doctor Tom checks out embedded chips

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Hardware land reveals a more commercial streak today with almost everyone talking about cash. From memory prices to the swings and roundabouts of the CPU market, we bring you the best bits.

The new and groovy first, and the only non financial slice today: Those busy beavers at Tom's have been to the Embedded Processor Forum in San Jose, and they reckon there's a lot of interesting stuff heading this way.

Your attention is drawn to contributions from Silicon Magic, whose DVine (DRAM Vector Engine) SM2700 processor caught the good doctor's attention. Check it out here.

Planet Hardware has a look at the Intel P3-933/133, the fastest FC-PGA CPU for your money. Match it with Intel's PC133 SDRAM-using i815e mainboard chipset, and Planet reckons you are onto a winner. The review gives the processor a healthy eight out of ten, the only real drawback stated was the price. "Not coronary inducing, but almost," quips Craig Campanaro.

Also considering cost, Anand takes a brief foray into the world of video cards, and concludes that those wishing to upgrade should wait until the GeForce 2 GTS comes down in price. He reckons that since the 32MB cards get cheaper on an almost daily basis, 64MB is bound to as well. Even if you don't need the extra performance now, you can think of it as an investment in future gaming fun.

Anand has a pic on page 8 of his review, but there is a better one at Game PC, who also takes a look at the 64MB offering from Nvidia.

Continuing the cash theme, today is also the day for Sharky's weekly CPU review. Things are odd in the pricing scene: PIII 750's are dropping like stones while Athlon 950's are a bit more expensive. ®

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