ATI ships latest mobile graphics chip

M4 a Mobility 128 with AGP 4x

ATI has released its latest notebook-oriented graphics chip, the Mobility M4, which is reckons is the world's first mobile graphics part to support AGP 4x.

And that's pretty much the only advantage it has over its predecessor, the Rage Mobility 128, itself derived from ATI's 128-bit Rage 128 Pro chip.

"There really wouldn't be that much performance difference between the Mobility 128... if you use the M4 in a 2x mode," ATI retail Mac product manager Deanna Perkins admitted yesterday, according to MacCentral.

Still, that does leave it with full motion compensation and MPEG 2 decoding for DVD playback, and support for dual 1600x1200 displays, be they built-in LCDs, external digital LCDs or analog CRTs, though it will also support three displays at lower resolutions. M4 includes 32MB video RAM.

But basically, M4 is for notebook makers who want to put at Mobility 128 and a AGP 4x laptop. One such is Dell, which will be using M4 in its Inspiron 8000 notebook, ATI said. Dell's Inspirons 3700, 4000, 5000e and 7500 series, and various C and CP series Latitudes use the older part, as do notebooks from the likes of Apple, Compaq, Toshiba, IBM and Hewlett-Packard. ®