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* NVIDIA Ceases All Chipset Development, Blames Intel

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Edward78, 9 Oct 2009.

  1. Edward78

    Soldato

    Joined: 19 Oct 2002

    Posts: 5,328

    The future of integrated graphics processors lies somewhere on the dies of future processors, that much is a certainty. However, this creates a big problem for NVIDIA, whose chipset business will be out, of well, business. Beating everybody to the punch, the company announced yesterday that it is ceasing all development on future chipsets, citing unfair business practices from Intel.

    It is often rumoured that NVIDIA has a skunkworks project going on in which they are developing their own x86 processor, combined with an on-die graphics processor. Intel and AMD are working on similar chips, whose arrival would mean the beginning of the end of NVIDIA's chipset business.

    For now we don't know if this project will ever reach the market, but NVIDIA decided that it wouldn't wait for the inevitable and just quit with the chipset business before they make any major investments in research and development. They are ceasing all development on chipsets; there will be no Nehalem or Core i5/i7 chipsets coming out of NVIDIA. Questions about chipsets for AMD were carefully avoided, so it is likely they'll back out of that market too. NVIDIA will continue to make the Ion and 9400M chipsets, but future designs are all off the map now.

    The big problem is Intel's DMI bus. Intel claims that NVIDIA does not have a license to this new bus, effectively making it impossible for NVIDIA to develop chipsets for Nehalem and newer Intel processors. In the pre-Nehalem era, such a license wasn't necessary, but with the newer processor architectures, NVIDIA does need a license. Without the DMI bus, NVIDIA's PCH replacement wouldn't be able to talk to the processor. NVIDIA claims it does have a license, and the matter is currently in court.

    "Because of Intel's improper claims to customers and the market that we aren't licensed to the new DMI bus and its unfair business tactics, it is effectively impossible for us to market chipsets for future CPUs," NVIDIA writes, "So, until we resolve this matter in court next year, we'll postpone further chipset investments for Intel DMI CPUs."

    As Jon Stokes over at Ars points out, while it is of course convenient to place the blame on Intel (and it probably does belong there at least partially) a bigger issue is probably the future of IGPs, as mentioned above. IGPs are moving to the processor die, which means that even if NVIDIA does gain a license, its chipsets would have a lifespan of only a few years, because of the arrival of CPU/GPU combo chips. Add to that the uncertainty of NVIDIA gaining a license at all, and it only makes sense to back out now, before any investments are made into research and development.

    Apple is in an interesting position here. The Cupertino company has more or less standardised on using Intel processors with NVIDIA chipsets (the 9400M), so it will be interesting to see what Apple will use for future Macs. I'm not familiar with Intel's roadmaps, but I find it hard to believe that Intel's IGP offerings will be as competitive performance-wise as NVIDIA's offerings would be, and on top of that, does Intel's roadmap IGPs say anything about OpenCL support?

    I do hope that these tensions between Intel and NVIDIA subside, because I would really welcome NVIDIA entering the x86 market with their own processors with integrated graphics chips. The consumer processor market is dominated by Intel and AMD, and more competition is always welcome in this space. VIA is having troubles getting any serious foothold, so maybe NVIDIA's brand recognition can do the trick here.
     
  2. Antar Bolaeisk

    Sgarrista

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    Location: Saudi Arabia né Donegal

    Well that's a serious blow to the market. Bad for us lot anyways.
     
  3. rypt

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    Location: London

    Cry me a river NV :D
     
  4. Edward78

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    It would be great if Apple switched to AMD, have 100 shares of stock in that. :)
     
  5. nikebee

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    Source would be nice?

    It's not Semi Accurate is it?
     
  6. Tefal

    Capo Crimine

    Joined: 30 Jun 2007

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    Location: Wales

    I'd have more sympathy for "unfair business practices" if they didn't have game (ie battman:aa) deliberately sabotaged for ati hardware.
     
  7. Tefal

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  8. nikebee

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  9. Tute

    Capodecina

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    Yup - seems nVidia doesn't like what it's shovelling.

    There's a rumour going around that they're stopping production of high and mid-end GPUs as well.
     
  10. NickK

    Capodecina

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    It's never a good thing when someone stops doing something.

    Hmm.. So where are they getting their cash to drive the company forward?
     
  11. Edward78

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    Wow, that is a dumb choice for a graphics card company....
     
  12. Dark_Angel

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    Joined: 12 May 2005

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    Most of their sales I think are from the lower end market.

    It's a shame though they are having these issues. :( Less competition is worse for us. :(
     
  13. Edward78

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    Posts: 5,328

    So the graphics cards for home users will be ok? Just no more prof. GPUs?
     
    Last edited: 9 Oct 2009
  14. Glaucus

    Man of Honour

    Joined: 11 Mar 2004

    Posts: 76,645

    well it's only mobo chipsets not gfx cards.

    and it sounds like whining ahead of the court case which will decide if there old license with Intel sands or not.
     
    Last edited: 9 Oct 2009
  15. dangerstat

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    Well there's so much **** flying around at the moment about NV. Some bloke was saying NV is going to quit high end GPUs too, but that was written by someone who hates NV
     
  16. drunkenmaster

    Caporegime

    Joined: 18 Oct 2002

    Posts: 33,190

    No, Charlie broke this news, 13 months ago, and has had 13 months of people telling him he's completely stupid and hates Nvidia for saying this was happening.

    Like he said over a year ago about defective products, only what under two months since the latest company, Sony, admited failing Nvidia cards in 14 of their models and extended their warranty to 4 years to cover any failed Nvidia parts, at supposedly another $100mil write off for Nvidia.

    Yup, that Charlie, wrong wrong wrong wrong wrong.

    Fact is they don't have the licence and have known that for quite some time. AFAIK they won't be producing ION's for much longer either as, from what I understand, Intel are forcing them out by sticking a mem controller on the die of the Atom CPU in the future, mostly to spite Nvidia and make their chipsets incompatible. Intel doesn't like Ion being used to make powerful Atom notebooks that encroach on their higher end models.


    Yup, same bloke who said Nvidia would leave chipset market for this exact reason, 13 months ago now(or maybe a little more). He also didn't remotely come close to saying Nvidia would quit high end GPU's too, he said they would be stopping production on the CURRENT high end GPU's, and not in any way stop production on the next one or R&D on the ones after that.
     
    Last edited: 9 Oct 2009
  17. Edward78

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    Why would a CPU company care about GPUs in notebooks. Why not just stop using Nvidia frin outting that chip in the notebooks/netbooks?
     
  18. Tefal

    Capo Crimine

    Joined: 30 Jun 2007

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    Because intel also make the chipsets and it cuts into their business.

    Which little/no competition they can charge more for thier high end stuff because nvida aren't making better ones.
     
  19. lofz

    Hitman

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    Location: Leicester, UK

    Its a great loss for us gamers. Nvidia have made some awesome chipsets. Where does this leave Sli technology? I know intel boards unofficially support it but its not quite the icing on the cake.

    I'll be holding on to my Core 2 Duo rig whilst this is battled out.

    Does ATI have a license to produce a chipset for i5/i7? Surely this will mean more money for them from the gamers at least?

    Sorry Edit for another question: How will this affect people who like high end PC gaming?
     
    Last edited: 9 Oct 2009
  20. Scania

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    Location: On the road....

    Price drops?