AMD Athlon at heart of Microsoft X-Box spec
AMD Dresden builds Gigapixel-designed chipset
Upstart graphics firm Gigapixel has beaten off S3, Nvidia, ATI and other big-name rivals to win the contract to design the graphics chipset for Microsoft's X-Box. And it in turn has awarded the contract to build the chipset to AMD. An AMD Athlon CPU, a hard drive, DVD ROM and a modified version of Windows will form the other major components of the X-Box, according to sources cited by the IT Network. The Gigapixel graphics chipset in combination with the Athlon CPU will, apparently, provide the X-Box with enough power to exceed the performance of the Sony PlayStation 2 by six to eight times. Moreover, the Microsoft console will be less expensive and likely to be compatible with existing Windows applications. Bill Gates is scheduled to introduce X-Box at the upcoming Games Developer Conference in the US next month. The X-Box is meant to be a direct competitor to Sony's PlayStation 2 which is scheduled to be launched in Japan on 4 March. Gigapixel is a graphics IP company: it licenses only the technology and does not manufacture the chipset. The graphics chip will be manufactured by AMD at its new fabrication plant in Dresden. The same plant is currently producing Athlon CPUs using a 0.18 micron process. ® Related Stories Microsoft's X-Box PlayStation 2 killer spec. leaks out Joy of Cex claims Microsoft X-Box sneak peak Microsoft's X-Box PlayStation 2 killer resurfaces Microsoft readies x86, Nvidia-based rival to PlayStation The IT Network is carrying a review of the 850MHz Athlon, the fastest to hit the high street so far.