Looking good, but how will it fare against Nvidia?As the AMD revealed roadmap says, there will be a soon to come next generation chipset codenamed RS780 that is aimed by AMD to target the consumer and the commercial desktop platforms. This chipset was designed by engineers working with ATI's chipset division, but since the merging of the two companies, it is all about AMD now
One interesting feature of the RS780 chipset is the fact that it integrates a complete graphics solution and it may very well cover the low end of the AM2 and AM2+ platforms too. As the AM2+ platform will have pretty powerful processors in their own right, the lower end of that platform (graphics wise) probably means systems without the need for a dedicated discrete video card.
Just like most other new chips with graphics functions, the RS780 will come with DirectX 10 support and a number of other features like AMD's Universal Video Decoder, or UVD, technology for hardware acceleration, DisplayPort, DVI and HDMI support and an integrated audio controller for "simultaneous audio and video output over HDMI" according to the news site DailyTech null.
For users that like dual display setups, the RS780 come prepared as it combines two independent display controllers as well as an independent frame buffer for those manufacturers that will wish to use a dedicated video memory. The RS780 will feature a full x16 PCIe version 2.0 for users in need of more 3D performance and a number of lesser PCIe 2.0 lanes for add-on expansion cards.
The truly new thing in the RS780 is the Southbridge, named SB700 that only supports PCI as all PCIe support was moved to the Northbridge for faster access and increased data bandwidth. The SB700 Southbridge also supports a number of 12 USB 2.0 ports and for backwards compatibility, two USB 1.1 ports. When it comes to storage, SB700 can control up to six SATA 2 interfaces that can be merged into a RAID array (0, 1 and 10 supported). The aging IDE standard is supported too, but in AMD's conception the IDE port is a double duty one: a typical PATA interface and as a connector for HyperFlash, AMD's response to Intel's Turbo Memory. "RS780 for commercial platform has one minor difference compared to the consumer platform. AMD designates a Broadcom BCM5761 managed NIC controller for the commercial platforms. The managed NIC allows for remote management, similar to Intels AMT technology. AMD also recommends a TPM 1.2 module for greater security", according to DailyTech.