- First twelve years
- Technology exchange agreement with Intel
- Acquisition of ATI
- List of CEOs
- CPUs and APUs
- Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. Common Stock (AMD) Historical Data
- IPO file extension
- When did amd file for ipo
- Get the Latest from CoinDesk
- Initial Public Offering (IPO)
- J. Crew's Madewell brand files for IPO, will use proceeds for debt
- Graphics products and GPUs
- AMD Industries Ltd. (IPO)
- Related Symbols
- Table of Contents
- Crypto Unicorn Bitmain Weighs $18 Billion IPO, One of World’s Largest
"AMD" redirects here. For other uses, see AMD (disambiguation).
American multinational semiconductor company
Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. (AMD) is an American multinationalsemiconductor company based in Santa Clara, California that develops computer processors and related technologies for business and consumer markets.
While initially it manufactured its own processors, the company later outsourced its manufacturing, a practice known as going fabless, after GlobalFoundries was spun off in 2009.
AMD's main products include microprocessors, motherboardchipsets, embedded processors and graphics processors for servers, workstations, personal computers and embedded system applications.
AMD is the second-largest supplier and only significant rival to Intel in the market for x86-based microprocessors. Since acquiring ATI in 2006, AMD and its competitor Nvidia have maintained a duopoly in the discrete graphics processing unit (GPU) market.
First twelve years
Advanced Micro Devices was formally incorporated on May 1, 1969, by Jerry Sanders, along with seven of his colleagues from Fairchild Semiconductor. Sanders, an electrical engineer who was the director of marketing at Fairchild, had, like many Fairchild executives, grown frustrated with the increasing lack of support, opportunity, and flexibility within the company, and decided to leave to start his own semiconductor company. The previous year Robert Noyce, who had developed the first silicon integrated circuit in 1959 at Fairchild, had left Fairchild together with Gordon Moore and founded the semiconductor company Intel in July 1968.
In September 1969, AMD moved from its temporary location in Santa Clara to Sunnyvale, California. To immediately secure a customer base, AMD initially became a second source supplier of microchips designed by Fairchild and National Semiconductor. AMD first focused on producing logic chips. The company guaranteed quality control to United States Military Standard, an advantage in the early computer industry since unreliability in microchips was a distinct problem that customers – including computer manufacturers, the telecommunications industry, and instrument manufacturers – wanted to avoid.
In November 1969, the company manufactured its first product, the Am9300, a 4-bitMSIshift register, which began selling in 1970. Also in 1970, AMD produced its first proprietary product, the Am2501 logic counter, which was highly successful. Its best-selling product in 1971 was the Am2505, the fastest multiplier available.
In 1971, AMD entered the RAM chip market, beginning with the Am3101, a 64-bit bipolar RAM. That year AMD also greatly increased the sales volume of its linear integrated circuits, and by year end the company's total annual sales reached US$4.6 million.
AMD went public in September 1972. The company was a second source for Intel MOS/LSI circuits by 1973, with products such as Am14/1506 and Am14/1507, dual 100-bit dynamic shift registers. By 1975, AMD was producing 212 products – of which 49 were proprietary, including the Am9102 (a staticN-channel 1024-bit RAM) and three low-power SchottkyMSI circuits: Am25LS07, Am25LS08, and Am25LS09.
Intel had created the first microprocessor, its 4-bit 4004, in 1971. By 1975, AMD entered the microprocessor market with the Am9080, a reverse-engineered clone of the Intel 8080, and the Am2900bit-slice microprocessor family. When Intel began installing microcode in its microprocessors in 1976, it entered into a cross-licensing agreement with AMD, granting AMD a copyright license to the microcode in its microprocessors and peripherals, effective October 1976.
In 1977, AMD entered into a joint venture with Siemens, a German engineering conglomerate wishing to enhance its technology expertise and enter the U.S.
market. Siemens purchased 20% of AMD's stock, giving AMD an infusion of cash to increase its product lines. That year the two companies also jointly established Advanced Micro Computers, located in Silicon Valley and in Germany, giving AMD an opportunity to enter the microcomputer development and manufacturing field, in particular based on AMD's second-source ZilogZ8000 microprocessors. When the two companies' vision for Advanced Micro Computers diverged, AMD bought out Siemens' stake in the U.S.
division in 1979. AMD closed its Advanced Micro Computers subsidiary in late 1981, after switching focus to manufacturing second-source Intel x86 microprocessors.
Total sales in fiscal year 1978 topped $100 million, and in 1979, AMD debuted on the New York Stock Exchange. In 1979, production also began in AMD's new semiconductor fab in Austin, Texas; the company already had overseas assembly facilities in Penang and Manila, and it began construction on a semiconductor fab in San Antonio in 1981. In 1980, AMD began supplying semiconductor products for telecommunications, an industry undergoing rapid expansion and innovation.
Technology exchange agreement with Intel
Intel had introduced the first x86 microprocessors in 1978. In 1981, IBM created its PC, and wanted Intel's x86 processors, but only under the condition that Intel also provide a second-source manufacturer for its patented x86 microprocessors. Intel and AMD entered into a 10-year technology exchange agreement, first signed in October 1981 and formally executed in February 1982. The terms of the agreement were that each company could acquire the right to become a second-source manufacturer of semiconductor products developed by the other; that is, each party could "earn" the right to manufacture and sell a product developed by the other, if agreed to, by exchanging the manufacturing rights to a product of equivalent technical complexity.
The technical information and licenses needed to make and sell a part would be exchanged for a royalty to the developing company. The 1982 agreement also extended the 1976 AMD–Intel cross-licensing agreement through 1995. The agreement included the right to invoke arbitration of disagreements, and after five years the right of either party to end the agreement with one year's notice. The main result of the 1982 agreement was that AMD became a second-source manufacturer of Intel's x86 microprocessors and related chips, and Intel provided AMD with database tapes for its 8086, 80186, and 80286 chips.
Beginning in 1982, AMD began volume-producing second-source Intel-licensed 8086, 8088, 80186, and 80188 processors, and by 1984 its own Am286 clone of Intel's 80286 processor, for the rapidly growing market of IBM PCs and IBM clones. It also continued its successful concentration on proprietary bipolar chips. In 1983, it introduced INT.STD.1000, the highest manufacturing quality standard in the industry.
The company continued to spend greatly on research and development, and in addition to other breakthrough products, created the world's first 512K EPROM in 1984. That year AMD was listed in the book The 100 Best Companies to Work for in America, and based on 1984 income it made the Fortune 500 list for the first time in 1985.
By mid-1985, however, the microchip market experienced a severe downturn, mainly due to long-term aggressive trade practices (dumping) from Japan, but also due to a crowded and non-innovative chip market in the U.S. AMD rode out the mid-1980s crisis by aggressively innovating and modernizing, devising the Liberty Chip program of designing and manufacturing one new chip or chip set per week for 52 weeks in fiscal year 1986, and by heavily lobbying the U.S.
government until sanctions and restrictions were put in place to prevent predatory Japanese pricing. During this time period, AMD withdrew from the DRAM market, and at the same time made some headway into the CMOS market, which it had lagged in entering, having focused instead on bipolar chips.
AMD had some success in the mid-1980s with the AMD7910 and AMD7911 "World Chip" FSK modem, one of the first multi-standard devices that covered both Bell and CCITT tones at up to 1200 baud half duplex or 300/300 full duplex. Beginning in 1986, AMD embraced the perceived shift toward RISC with their own AMD Am29000 (29k) processor; the 29k survived as an embedded processor. The company also increased its EPROM memory market share in the late 1980s. Throughout the 1980s, AMD was a second-source supplier of Intel x86 processors.
In 1991, it introduced its own 386-compatible Am386, an AMD-designed chip. Creating its own chips, AMD began to compete directly with Intel.
AMD had a large and successful flash memory business, even during the dotcom bust. In 2003, to divest some manufacturing and aid its overall cash flow, which was under duress from aggressive microprocessor competition from Intel, AMD spun off its flash memory business and manufacturing into Spansion, a joint venture with Fujitsu, which had been co-manufacturing flash memory with AMD since 1993. AMD divested itself of Spansion in December 2005, in order to focus on the microprocessor market, and Spansion went public in an IPO.
Acquisition of ATI
AMD announced the acquisition of the graphics processor company ATI Technologies on July 24, 2006.
AMD paid $4.3 billion in cash and 58 million shares of its stock, for a total of approximately $5.4 billion.
The transaction completed on October 25, 2006. On August 30, 2010, AMD announced that it would retire the ATI brand name for its graphics chipsets in favor of the AMD brand name.
In October 2008, AMD announced plans to spin off manufacturing operations in the form of a multibillion-dollar joint venture with Advanced Technology Investment Co., an investment company formed by the government of Abu Dhabi.
The new venture is called GlobalFoundries Inc. The partnership and spin-off gave AMD an infusion of cash and allowed AMD to focus solely on chip design. To assure the Abu Dhabi investors of the new venture's success, CEO Hector Ruiz stepped down as CEO of AMD in July 2008, while remaining Executive Chairman, in preparation for becoming Chairman of Global Foundries in March 2009. President and COO Dirk Meyer became AMD's CEO. Recessionary losses necessitated AMD cutting 1,100 jobs in 2009.
In August 2011, AMD announced that former Lenovo executive Rory Read would be joining the company as CEO, replacing Meyer. AMD announced in November 2011 plans to lay off more than 10% (1,400) of its employees from across all divisions worldwide. In October 2012, it announced plans to lay off an additional 15% of its workforce to reduce costs in the face of declining sales revenue.
AMD acquired the low-power server manufacturer SeaMicro in early 2012, with an eye to bringing out an ARM architecture server chip.
On October 8, 2014, AMD announced that Rory Read had stepped down after three years as president and chief executive officer. He was succeeded by Lisa Su, a key lieutenant who had been serving as chief operating officer since June.
On October 16, 2014, AMD announced a new restructuring plan along with its Q3 results.
Effective July 1, 2014, AMD reorganized into two business groups: Computing and Graphics, which primarily includes desktop and notebook processors and chipsets, discrete GPUs, and professional graphics; and Enterprise, Embedded and Semi-Custom, which primarily includes server and embedded processors, dense servers, semi-custom SoC products (including solutions for gaming consoles), engineering services, and royalties.
As part of this restructuring, AMD announced that 7% of its global workforce would be laid off by the end of 2014.
List of CEOs
- Jerry Sanders, 1969–2002 (founder, electrical engineer)
- Hector Ruiz, 2002–2008 (electrical engineer)
- Dirk Meyer, 2008–2011 (computer engineer)
- Rory Read, 2011–2014 (information systems)
- Lisa Su, 2014–present (electrical engineer)
CPUs and APUs
See also: List of AMD microprocessors
IBM PC and the x86 architecture
Main articles: Am286, Am386, Am486, and Am5x86
In February 1982, AMD signed a contract with Intel, becoming a licensed second-source manufacturer of 8086 and 8088 processors.
IBM wanted to use the Intel 8088 in its IBM PC, but IBM's policy at the time was to require at least two sources for its chips. AMD later produced the Am286 under the same arrangement. In 1984, Intel, in order to shore up its advantage in the marketplace, internally decided to no longer cooperate with AMD in supplying product information, and delayed and eventually refused to convey the technical details of the Intel 80386 to AMD. In 1987, AMD invoked arbitration over the issue, and Intel reacted by cancelling the 1982 technological-exchange agreement altogether. After three years of testimony, AMD eventually won in arbitration in 1992, but Intel disputed this decision.
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Another long legal dispute followed, ending in 1994 when the Supreme Court of California sided with the arbitrator and AMD.
In 1990, Intel also countersued AMD, renegotiating AMD's right to use derivatives of Intel's microcode for its cloned processors. In the face of uncertainty during the legal dispute, AMD was forced to develop clean-room designed versions of Intel code for its x386 and x486 processors, the former long after Intel had released its own x386 in 1985. In March 1991, AMD released the Am386, its clone of the Intel 386 processor. By October of the same year it had sold one million units.
In 1993, AMD introduced the first of the Am486 family of processors, which proved popular with a large number of original equipment manufacturers, including Compaq, which signed an exclusive agreement using the Am486. Another Am486-based processor, the Am5x86, was released in November 1995 and continued AMD's success as a fast, cost-effective processor.
Finally, in an agreement effective 1996, AMD received the rights to the microcode in Intel's x386 and x486 processor families, but not the rights to the microcode in the following generations of processors.
K5, K6, Athlon, Duron, and Sempron
Main articles: AMD K5, AMD K6, Athlon, Duron, and Sempron
AMD's first in-house x86 processor was the K5, which was launched in 1996. The "K" was a reference to Kryptonite.
(In comic books, the only substance which could harm Superman was Kryptonite. This is a reference to Intel's hegemony over the market, i.e., an anthropomorphization of them as Superman.) The numeral "5" refers to the fifth generation of x86 processors; rival Intel had previously introduced its line of fifth-generation x86 processors as Pentium because the U.S.
Trademark and Patent Office had ruled that mere numbers could not be trademarked.
In 1996, AMD purchased NexGen, specifically for the rights to their Nx series of x86-compatible processors.
AMD gave the NexGen design team their own building, left them alone, and gave them time and money to rework the Nx686. The result was the K6 processor, introduced in 1997. Although the K6 was based on Socket 7, variants such as K6-3/450 were faster than Intel's Pentium II (sixth-generation processor).
The K7 was AMD's seventh-generation x86 processor, making its debut on June 23, 1999, under the brand name Athlon. Unlike previous AMD processors, it could not be used on the same motherboards as Intel's, due to licensing issues surrounding Intel's Slot 1 connector, and instead used a Slot A connector, referenced to the Alpha processor bus.
The Duron was a lower-cost and limited version of the Athlon (64KB instead of 256KB L2 cache) in a 462-pin socketed PGA (socket A) or soldered directly onto the motherboard. Sempron was released as a lower-cost Athlon XP, replacing Duron in the socket A PGA era. It has since been migrated upward to all new sockets, up to AM3.
On October 9, 2001, the Athlon XP was released.
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On February 10, 2003, the Athlon XP with 512KB L2 Cache was released.
Athlon 64, Opteron and Phenom
Main articles: Athlon 64, Opteron, and Phenom (processor)
The K8 was a major revision of the K7 architecture, released in 2003, with the most notable features being the addition of a 64-bit extension to the x86 instruction set (called x86-64, AMD64, or x64), the incorporation of an on-chip memory controller, and the implementation of an extremely high performance point-to-point interconnect called HyperTransport, as part of the Direct Connect Architecture.
The technology was initially launched as the Opteron server-oriented processor on April 22, 2003. Shortly thereafter it was incorporated into a product for desktop PCs, branded Athlon 64.
On April 21, 2005, AMD released the first dual coreOpteron, an x86-based server CPU. A month later, AMD released the Athlon 64 X2, the first desktop-based dual core processor family. In May 2007, AMD abandoned the string "64" in its dual-core desktop product branding, becoming Athlon X2, downplaying the significance of 64-bit computing in its processors.
Further updates involved improvements to the microarchitecture, and a shift of target market from mainstream desktop systems to value dual-core desktop systems. In 2008, AMD started to release dual-core Sempron processors exclusively in China, branded as the Sempron 2000 series, with lower HyperTransport speed and smaller L2 cache. Thus AMD completed its dual-core product portfolio for each market segment.
After K8 came K10.
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In September 2007, AMD released the first server Opteron K10 processors, followed in November by the Phenom processor for desktop. K10 processors came in dual-core, triple-core, and quad-core versions, with all cores on a single die.
AMD released a new platform, codenamed "Spider", which utilized the new Phenom processor, as well as an R770 GPU and a 790 GX/FX chipset from the AMD 700 chipset series. However, AMD built the Spider at 65nm, which was uncompetitive with Intel's smaller and more power-efficient 45nm.
In January 2009, AMD released a new processor line dubbed Phenom II, a refresh of the original Phenom built using the 45 nm process. AMD's new platform, codenamed "Dragon", utilized the new Phenom II processor, and an ATI R770 GPU from the R700 GPU family, as well as a 790 GX/FX chipset from the AMD 700 chipset series. The Phenom II came in dual-core, triple-core and quad-core variants, all using the same die, with cores disabled for the triple-core and dual-core versions.
The Phenom II resolved issues that the original Phenom had, including a low clock speed, a small L3 cache and a Cool'n'Quiet bug that decreased performance. The Phenom II cost less but was not performance-competitive with Intel's mid-to-high-range Core 2 Quads. The Phenom II also enhanced its predecessor's memory controller, allowing it to use DDR3 in a new native socket AM3, while maintaining backwards compatibility with AM2+, the socket used for the Phenom, and allowing the use of the DDR2 memory that was used with the platform.
In April 2010, AMD released a new Phenom II hexa-core (6-core) processor codenamed "Thuban". This was a totally new die based on the hexa-core "Istanbul" Opteron processor. It included AMD's "turbo core" technology, which allows the processor to automatically switch from 6 cores to 3 faster cores when more pure speed is needed.
The Magny Cours and Lisbon server parts were released in 2010. The Magny Cours part came in 8 to 12 cores and the Lisbon part in 4 and 6 core parts. Magny Cours is focused on performance while the Lisbon part is focused on high performance per watt.
Magny Cours is an MCM (multi-chip module) with two hexa-core "Istanbul" Opteron parts. This will use a new G34 socket for dual and quad socket processors and thus will be marketed as Opteron 61xx series processors. Lisbon uses C32 socket certified for dual socket use or single socket use only and thus will be marketed as Opteron 41xx processors.
Both will be built on a 45 nm SOI process.
Fusion becomes the AMD APU
Main articles: AMD APU and AMD mobile platform
Following AMD's 2006 acquisition of Canadian graphics company ATI Technologies, an initiative codenamed Fusion was announced to integrate a CPU and GPU together on some of AMD's microprocessors, including a built in PCI Express link to accommodate separate PCI Express peripherals, eliminating the northbridge chip from the motherboard.
The initiative intended to move some of the processing originally done on the CPU (e.g.
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floating-point unit operations) to the GPU, which is better optimized for some calculations. The Fusion was later renamed to the AMD APU (Accelerated Processing Unit).
Llano was AMD's first APU built for laptops.
Llano was the second APU released, targeted at the mainstream market. Incorporating a CPU and GPU on the same die, as well as northbridge functions, and using "Socket FM1" with DDR3 memory. The CPU part of the processor was based on the Phenom II "Deneb" processor.
AMD suffered an unexpected decrease in revenue based on production problems for the Llano.
High-power, high-performance Bulldozer cores
Main articles: Bulldozer microarchitecture, Piledriver microarchitecture, Steamroller microarchitecture, and Excavator microarchitecture
Bulldozer was AMD's microarchitecture codename for server and desktop AMD FX processors first released on October 12, 2011.
This family 15h microarchitecture is the successor to the family 10h (K10) microarchitecture design. Bulldozer was a clean-sheet design, not a development of earlier processors. The core was specifically aimed at 10–125 WTDP computing products.
AMD claimed dramatic performance-per-watt efficiency improvements in high-performance computing (HPC) applications with Bulldozer cores. While hopes were high that Bulldozer would bring AMD to be performance-competitive with Intel once more, most benchmarks were disappointing. In some cases the new Bulldozer products were slower than the K10 models they were built to replace.
The Piledriver microarchitecture was the 2012 successor to Bulldozer, increasing clock speeds and performance relative to its predecessor. Piledriver would be released in AMD FX, APU, and Opteron product lines. Piledriver was subsequently followed by the Steamroller microarchitecture in 2013.
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Used exclusively in AMD's APUs, Steamroller focused on greater parallelism.
In 2015, the Excavator microarchitecture replaced Piledriver. Expected to be the last microarchitecture of the Bulldozer series, Excavator focused on improved power efficiency.
Low-power Cat cores
Main articles: Bobcat microarchitecture, Jaguar microarchitecture, and Puma microarchitecture
The Bobcat microarchitecture was revealed during a speech from AMD executive vice-president Henri Richard in Computex 2007 and was put into production Q1 2011. Based on the difficulty competing in the x86 market with a single core optimized for the 10–100 W range, AMD had developed a simpler core with a target range of 1–10 watts. In addition, it was believed that the core could migrate into the hand-held space if the power consumption can be reduced to less than 1 W.
Jaguar is a microarchitecture codename for Bobcat's successor, released in 2013, that is used in various APUs from AMD aimed at the low-power/low-cost market. Jaguar and its derivates would go on to be used in the custom APUs of the PlayStation 4,Xbox One,PlayStation 4 Pro,Xbox One S, and Xbox One X. Jaguar would be later followed by the Puma microarchitecture in 2014.
ARM architecture-based designs
In 2012, AMD announced it was working on an ARM architecture products, both as a semi-custom product and server product. The initial server product was announced at the Opteron A1100 in 2014, and 8-core Cortex-A57 based ARMv8-ASoC, and was expected to be followed by an APU incorporating a Graphic Core Next GPU. However, the Opteron A1100 was not released until 2016, with the delay attributed to adding software support. The A1100 was also criticized for not having support from major vendors upon its release.
In 2014, AMD also announced the K12 custom core for release in 2016. While being ARMv8-Ainstruction set architecture compliant, the K12 is expected to be entirely custom designed targeting server, embedded, and semi-custom markets.
While ARM architecture development continued, products based on K12 were subsequently delayed with no release planned, in preference to the development of AMD's x86 based Zen microarchitecture.
Zen based CPUs and APUs
Main articles: Zen (microarchitecture), Zen+, and Zen 2
Zen is a new architecture for x86-64 based Ryzen series CPUs and APUs, introduced in 2017 by AMD and built from the ground up by a team led by Jim Keller, beginning with his arrival in 2012, and taping out before his departure in September 2015.
One of AMD's primary goals with Zen was an IPC increase of at least 40%, however in February 2017 AMD announced that they had actually achieved a 52% increase.[failed verification] Processors made on the Zen architecture are built on the 14 nm FinFET node and have a renewed focus on single-core performance and HSA compatibility. Previous processors from AMD were either built in the 32 nm process ("Bulldozer" and "Piledriver" CPUs) or the 28 nm process ("Steamroller" and "Excavator" APUs).
Because of this, Zen is much more energy efficient. The Zen architecture is the first to encompass CPUs and APUs from AMD built for a single socket (Socket AM4). Also new for this architecture is the implementation of simultaneous multithreading (SMT) technology, something Intel has had for years on some of their processors with their proprietary Hyper-Threading implementation of SMT.
This is a departure from the "Clustered MultiThreading" design introduced with the Bulldozer architecture. Zen also has support for DDR4 memory.
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AMD released the Zen-based high-end Ryzen 7 "Summit Ridge" series CPUs on March 2, 2017, mid-range Ryzen 5 series CPUs on April 11, 2017, and entry level Ryzen 3 series CPUs on July 27, 2017. AMD later released the Epyc line of Zen derived server processors for 1P and 2P systems. In October 2017, AMD released Zen based APUs as Ryzen Mobile, incorporating Vega graphics cores. In January 2018 AMD has announced their new lineup plans, with Ryzen 2. AMD launched CPUs with the 12nm Zen+ microarchitecture in April 2018, following up with the 7nm Zen 2 microarchitecture in June 2019, including an update to the Epyc line with new processors using the Zen 2 microarchitecture in August 2019.
As of 2019, AMD's Ryzen processors are reported to outsell Intel's consumer desktop processors.
Graphics products and GPUs
ATI prior to AMD acquisition
Main article: ATI Technologies
Lee Ka Lau, Francis Lau, Benny Lau, and Kwok Yuen Ho founded ATI in 1985 as Array Technology Inc. Working primarily in the OEM field, ATI produced integrated graphics cards for PC manufacturers such as IBM and Commodore.
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By 1987, ATI had grown into an independent graphics-card retailer, introducing EGA Wonder and VGA Wonder card product lines that year. In the early nineties, they released products able to process graphics without the CPU: in May 1991, the Mach8, in 1992 the Mach32, which offered improved memory bandwidth and GUI acceleration. ATI Technologies Inc. went public in 1993, with shares listed on NASDAQ and on the Toronto Stock Exchange.
In 1994, the Mach64 accelerator debuted, powering the Graphics Xpression and Graphics Pro Turbo, offering hardware support for YUV-to-RGBcolor space conversion in addition to hardware zoom; early techniques of hardware-based video acceleration.
ATI introduced its first combination of 2D and 3D accelerator under the name 3D Rage. This chip was based on the Mach 64, but it featured elemental 3D acceleration.
The ATI Rage line powered almost the entire range of ATI graphics products.
In particular, the Rage Pro was one of the first viable 2D-plus-3D alternatives to 3Dfx's 3D-only Voodoo chipset. 3D acceleration in the Rage line advanced from the basic functionality within the initial 3D Rage to a more advanced DirectX 6.0 accelerator in 1999 Rage 128.
The All-in-Wonder product line, introduced in 1996, was the first combination of integrated graphics chip with TV tuner card and the first chip that enabled display of computer graphics on a TV set. The cards featured 3D acceleration powered by ATI's 3D Rage II, 64-bit 2D performance, TV-quality video acceleration, analog video capture, TV tuner functionality, flicker-free TV-out and stereo TV audio reception.
ATI entered the mobile computing sector by introducing 3D-graphics acceleration to laptops in 1996.
The Mobility product line had to meet requirements different from those of desktop PCs, such as minimized power usage, reduced heat output, TMDS output capabilities for laptop screens, and maximized integration. In 1997, ATI acquired Tseng Labs's graphics assets, which included 40 engineers.
The Radeon line of graphics products was unveiled in 2000.
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The initial Radeon graphics processing unit offered an all-new design with DirectX 7.0 3D acceleration, video acceleration, and 2D acceleration. Technology developed for a specific Radeon generation could be built in varying levels of features and performance in order to provide products suited for the entire market range, from high-end to budget to mobile versions.
In 2000, ATI acquired ArtX, which engineered the Flipper graphics chip used in the Nintendo GameCube game console. They also created a modified version of the chip (codenamed Hollywood) for the successor of the GameCube, the Wii.
Microsoft contracted ATI to design the graphics core (codenamed Xenos) for the Xbox 360
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As the PCB reveals, the layout dates from 1985, whereas the marking on the central chip CW16800-A says "8639" - meaning that chip was manufactured in week 39, 1986. Notice UM6845E CRT controller. This card uses the ISA 8-bit interface.