ATI R420 to ship late Q1 2004
Taiwanese sources claim
What could well be ATI's final AGP 8x graphics chip, codenamed 'R420', is due to go into volume production next March.
So claim Taiwanese industry sources, cited  by local news site DigiTimes.
The R420 will be manufactured by TSMC at 130nm using low-k dielectric insulation. The chip itself will contain 160 million transistors - almost 22 per cent more than Intel's 'Prescott', surprisingly - and supports G-DDR 3.
It's been expected for some time that R420 would ship in Q1 2004. Though, like Nvidia's upcoming NV40, initial forecasts put it release ahead of Christmas 2003.
Earlier this month ATI President and COO Dave Orton said the company would support 32-bit pixel shader precision  "pretty soon", and it's widely held that he was referring to the launch of R420. ®