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November 16, 1993


By CBR Staff Writer

NEC Corp’s NEC Electronics Inc yesterday outlined its plans for the MIPS Technologies Inc R-series RISC product line that it fabricates, saying that it is working on a 100MHz version of the low-power VR4200, and planning a RISC Architecture Bus Bridge Interface Technology – RAB2IT- two-chip set, and system design kits for the VR4200 based on the already-announced Advanced RISC Computing chip set and the RAB2IT chip set. It also lifted the veil on its plans for the T5 next generation MIPS architecture.The VR4200-100 is a 100MHz internal version of the 3.3V RISC, and is aimed at high-end Windows NT desktops, laptops and notebook systems. The VR4200-100 will exceed the performance of the top Intel Corp chip for portables, the 80486 DX2, by over 70%, the company claims. RAB2IT is claimed to boost performance of VR-Series-based Windows NT systems with a two-chip set featuring an input-output device that works with a standard memory controller for normal DRAMs and synchronous DRAMs, or with a Rambus memory controller. It also runs at 3.3V, and will be formally announced in first half 1994. The T5 is expected to be in production by the first half of 1995 and NEC aims to maintain the fastest VR-Series chip at a nearly 2:1 processing speed advantage over the leading Intel chip – noting that the current top-end VR4400SC-150 will outperform the Pentium 60 processor at 1.96:1, and maintain between 20% and 50% performance advantage over any other microprocessor running Windows NT – it claims that in Windows NT 32-bit applications benchmarks, VR4400SC-150 systems outperformed the Alpha 150 by over 30%. The company also introduced the MR4401-75, the first MIPS RISC multi-chip module, which is expected to deliver over 96% higher performance than the Pentium 60 processor. It incorporates NEC’s 150MHz 64-bit VR4400SC microprocessor and 10 1M-bit static RAMs as secondary cache on a single module. It can be implemented in existing MIPS R4000PC or R4400PC systems and offers support for multiprocessing functions. It is available at 3.3V in a 179-pin ceramic pin-grid array and is pin-compatible with NEC’s VR4000PC and VR4400PC microprocessors. Samples cost $3,000, now and volume is set for September 1994.

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