Samsung Semiconductor Incorporated has just announced that
the company has started mass producing its GDDR4 memory for graphics
cards. GDDR4 is now JEDEC sanctioned and commercially “ready” for video
card manufacturers. GDDR4 is the memory successor to GDDR3 -- both of
which are unrelated to the JEDEC DDR3 memory standard.
The new GDDR4 memory has a data transfer rate around 2.4Gbps on a 32-bit
bus. Samsung is shipping the new 80nm memory in 512Mb configurations,
which is likely configured in 16x32 layouts. Samsung also claims that
this 2.4Gbps GDDR4 showed a 45% power savings when compared to 2.0Gbps
GDD3. The reduction in power is clearly a welcomed trend.
"We're delighted that we'll be able to use GDDR4 from Samsung in our
latest graphics cards,"."Samsung's timely introduction will increase
the performance of our upcoming products and ultimately improve the gaming
experience for our users,” claimed Joe Macri, ATI Senior Director of Engineering.
ATI is expected to launch its R580+ graphics card before
the end of the year. This card is essentially the R580 (Radeon X1900)
ASIC with GDDR4 memory – which was built into the R520 and R580 design from the
start. NVIDIA has GDDR4 on its roadmap for the next generation GPUs
scheduled for sampling this fall as well.
Samsung isn’t the only player in the GDDR4 market: Hynix just announced the
company would completely refocus its DRAM efforts specifically on graphics
memory. More importantly, Hynix has already announced its GDDR4 is
running at 2.9Gbps – a feat Samsung would have to best if it is to stay the
number one DRAM supplier.