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Intel Corp yesterday introduced its crucial, and much-awaited AGP Accelerated Graphics Port technology as the 440LX AGPset chipset, a motherboard connection designed to provide graphics accelerators in Pentium II-based systems with a high-speed interface to main memory, avoiding the current PCI bus bottleneck (CI No 3,130). A slew of graphics accelerator companies have already said they’ll offer controllers which plug into AGP, and PC vendors including AST, Micron and HP were amongst the first to announce plans to incorporate the 440LX into new or upgraded Pentium II systems yesterday. Intel expects 440LX to dramatically boost graphics performance while slashing system memory costs. The chipset incorporates a high-speed extension called Quad Port Acceleration, primarily aimed at high-end workstations and is twice as fast as the current 2x version, which has a bandwidth of 512Mbps. Intel has plans in place to further boost AGP to a 10x mode over the next three years. The enhancements will be incorporated into the specification by the fourth quarter of this year. Intel is offering 440LX AGPset motherboards in configurations for home and corporate PC and multiprocessor workstation system designs. The chipset costs from $64 for 1,000- up.

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