Taipei - Via announced the availability of the first PCI Express chipset for the Athlon 64 and Opteron, and upcoming Sempron platform. The K8T890 comes with asynchronous bus architecture, implementation of HyperTransport and single PCI Express x16 graphics support.
AMD buyers now have an option to upgrade or equip their new systems with PCI Express components. At least Via believes that many enthusiasts have delayed their upgrade decision due to the unavailability of such a solution: The K8T890 now offers the first opportunity to replace PCI and AGP buses.
The chipset's main features include connections to up to four PCI x1 peripherals, which extend to six, if the chipset is combined with the Southbridge VT8251, as well as support for single PCI Express x16 graphics. An asynchronous bus architecture allows easier tweaking of the CPU; the firm's Hyper8 technology provides an implementation of a HyperTransport link between the CPU and the chipset.
The VT8251 comes with four SATA ports, high definition audio as well as Via's Gigabit Ethernet support.
Via hopes that especially advanced users and owners of entry level servers will find the improvements serious enough to consider a purchase.
The upcoming K8T890Pro, which will target Athlon 64, Sempron, Opteron, and Dual-Opteron systems, will feature "Dual GFX Express Graphics" and offer dual x8 connectivity for two PCI Express graphic cards and support. The K8T890Pro will be available in the fourth quarter of this year.