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VIA PM880

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VIA PM880 - Delivering the Hi-Def™ Visual Experience to the Intel® Pentium® 4 Processor Platform

Optimized to deliver a great Hi-Def™ visual experience when playing digital video content, the VIA PM880 IGP chipset meets the requirements of rapidly emerging markets for HDTV-ready Media Center PCs and small form factor/low profile PCs, as well as mainstream multimedia PCs.

The VIA Chrome® Pro IGP graphics core features a robust 2D/3D graphics engine and the revolutionary Chromotion CE Video Display Engine, raising the bar for digital entertainment support on PC systems. The PM880 is able to deliver the Hi-Def experience via a comprehensive range of display devices, supporting outputs to CRT, LCD, standard definition TV and HDTV up to 1080p resolution*.

The Chromotion CE Video Display Engine employs a multi-faceted approach to displaying multimedia content, implementing a number of advanced tools at every stage of video processing. These include integrated MPEG-2 decoding, for flawless digital video playback with ultra-low CPU-utilization, and advanced rendering tools such as Adaptive De-Interlacing and Video Deblocking, which ensure clearer playback of digital content on all display devices.

Leveraging an advanced shared memory architecture, the VIA Chrome® Pro graphics core ensures optimal performance for all multimedia, entertainment, and productivity applications. With an internal data flow equivalent to the latest AGP 8X graphics cards, a 200MHz 2D/3D graphics engine features dedicated 128-bit data paths for pixel data flow and texture/command access.

The VIA PM880 leverages the acclaimed DualStream64™ memory controller to provide lightening fast access to up to 8GB of Dual Channel DDR400 memory for optimal system performance. The PM880 also features an Accelerated Graphics Port (AGP) 8X controller, and the high speed Ultra V-Link interface for combination with VIA's feature-packed VT8237R Plus South Bridge.

In combination with the VIA VT8237R Plus South Bridge, the PM880 offers a comprehensive range of integrated storage, multimedia and connectivity options, including native Serial ATA and V-RAID, with support for RAID 0, RAID 1 and RAID 0+1** arrays, as well as support for VIA Vinyl Audio, and high-throughput Gigabit Ethernet with the VIA Velocity controller.


Features of VIA PM880

Features
VIA PM880
North Bridge  
Processor Support Intel® Pentium® 4
Hyper Threading Support Yes
Front Side Bus 800MHz
Memory Channel DualStream64 Dual Channel
Memory Support DDR400
Max Memory 16GB
AGP Support AGP 8X
North/South Bridge Link Ultra V-Link (1 GB / Sec)
Graphics Core VIA Chrome® Pro
Video Acceleration Yes
Dual Monitor Support Yes
Video De-blocking Yes
Hardware Display Rotation Yes
Video Capture Ports Yes
CRT RGB Interface 350MHz

Benefits of VIA PM880

Chromotion CE Video Display Engine
MPEG2 Decoder - Fully compatible with all popular digital video playback software including WinDVD, PowerDVD, and Windows Media Player, the integrated hardware MPEG-2 decoder enables flawless 30 frames per second playback of digital video, while freeing the processor for other tasks.

The decoder engine incorporates MPEG-1 and MPEG-2 variable length decoding (VLD), de-Quantization, inverse scan, iDCT and hardware-assisted Motion Compensation. By off-loading these tasks to the chipset hardware CPU utilization is greatly reduced, meaning the processing power of the CPU can be allocated for other tasks such as audio decoding, subpicture decoding, decryption and navigation.

Figure 1: Power DVD 5.0 - CPU Usage

Adaptive De-Interlacing - In order to play digital video content on a TV display it must be converted (in real time) from an interlaced to a progressive format. VIA Chrome® Pro utilizes the intelligent Adaptive De-interlace Technique (ADT) to analyze each pixel and determine how best to display it on progressive format monitors for the best possible effect. The most common methods of De-Interlacing are Bob and Weave.

The Bob process is an effective De-Interlacing method for areas of video that represent motion, but is not ideal for areas of video with no motion.

Note the blurred appearance of the spectators in the background, while the car is displayed clearly.

Figure 2: Video Playback utilizing Bob De-Interlacing

The Weave process is more suited for video with little or no motion, but is not suitable for areas of video with motion.

Note the blurred appearance of the car, while the spectators in the background are displayed clearly.

Figure 3: Video Playback utilizing Weave De-Interlacing

VIA Chrome® Pro's Advanced De-Interlacing Technique (ADT) combines Bob and Weave processes, examining every pixel of each field and determining whether to Bob, or Weave with the past field, or to Weave with the future field.

Note the crisp, clear appearance of both the car and the spectators in the background.

Figure 4: Video Playback utilizing VIA Chrome® Pro's Advanced De Interlacing Technique

Video Deblocking - VIA Chrome® Pro features Hardware Video De-blocking, reducing the appearance of pixel 'blocks' in real time when displaying highly compressed video streams.

Figure 5: Image Improvement with Hardware Video Deblocking

Comprehensive Range of Hi-Def Outputs - The VIA Chrome® Pro features a comprehensive range of video outputs through the Chromotion CE Video Display engine, offering a breathtaking visual experience for the latest HDTV formats up to 1080p, such as Microsoft's® WMV HD. In combination with a 1080p HDTV compatible TV-Out or DVI encoder chip, Chrome® Pro supports all HDTV formats including the latest 1080p displays, and also integrates a DVI flat panel interface . For systems with an integrated display, the VIA Chrome® Pro provides a DFP interface that supports single or dual channel LVDS encoders. A dedicated interface is also provided for TV Encoders to standard NTSC or PAL TV displays.

VIA Chrome® Pro IGP Graphics Core
With an internal data flow equivalent to that offered by the latest AGP 8X graphics cards, VIA Chrome® Pro has separate 128-bit data paths for pixel data flow and texture/command access.

The 128-bit 2D graphics engine enables acceleration of high quality graphics features, allowing all productivity applications to run with the best appearance possible while not sacrificing system performance. The 128-bit 3D graphics engines features dual pixel rendering pipes for advanced 3D rendering, and is capable of two textures per pass with a triangle rate up to 4.5 million triangles per second, a pixel rate up to 200 million pixels per second, and a texel bilinear fill rate up to 400 million texels per second.

Advanced Memory Controller
VIA's acclaimed FastStream64 memory controller enables lightening fast memory access speeds and optimal system performance, supporting up to 8GB of DDR266, 333, or 400 memory.

High Performance CPU Interface
The PM800 chipset supports connections to the latest Intel® Pentium® 4 Processors supporting 800MHz FSB and Hyper-Threading technology, including Prescott core based processors.

Unified VIA Hyperion 4in1 Drivers
VIA's unified approach to drivers has been established for eight generations of chipsets, allowing end users to benefit from seamless hardware and software compatibility.

*Requires connection to a 1080p HDTV compatible TV-Out or DVI encoder chip

**RAID Level 0+1 requires four SATA drives; support for the two additional drives can only be implemented with two external SATA ports enabled through a SATALite PHY.


Block Diagram

Key Features

» Full support for the latest Intel® Pentium® 4 Processors
» Supports 400/533/800MHz Front Side Bus Settings
» Supports up to 8GB DDR266/333/400 SDRAM
» Ultra V-Link 1066 MB/sec high bandwidth North/South Bridge interconnect
» Full Featured Accelerated Graphics Port (AGP) compliant with 8X/4X transfer modes
» Integrated VIA Chrome® Pro Graphics
» Optimized Unified Memory Architecture (UMA)
» 200MHz Graphics Engine Clock with separated 128-bit data paths
» 128-bit 2D and 3D Graphics Engine
» Chromotion CE Video Display Engine
   - MPEG-2 Decoder
   - Video Deblocking
   - Adaptive De-Interlace
   - Full HDTV support up to 1080p
» Two 8-bit Video Capture Ports
» Three 12-bit Digital Video Ports for connection to TV out, Video Capture In, and external TMDS transmitter
» Full Software support including Microsoft DirectX 7.0, 8.0, 9.0 and Open GL support
» Support for VIA Vinyl Gold 8-channel Audio controller & integrated VIA Vinyl 6-channel Audio
» Serial ATA support for up to 4 devices
» Integrated V-RAID with RAID 0, RAID 1, RAID 0+1**, and JBOD (SATA) support
» Parallel ATA133/100/66 support for up to 4 devices
» Support for up to 8 USB 2.0/USB 1.1 ports
» Support for VIA Velocity Gigabit Ethernet companion controller & Integrated 10/100 Fast Ethernet
» Advanced System Power Management Support


Resources

VIA P4 Series chipset comparison chart / Download .pdf version
VIA PM880 press release
Delivering the Hi-Def™ Visual Experience
A VIA white paper discussing the advanced feature sets of the VIA / S3 Chrome® Pro IGP graphics core. » Learn more ...
VIA PM880 image kit

Tech Support

If you should have problems or questions setting up or running your VIA product, we offer comprehensive technical support here and you can find the latest device drivers, as well as helpful forums to discuss and solve your problems.


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