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VIA's C3 Hits 1 GHz

The VIA C3 In Detail

Here's the obligatory processor diagram.

Compared to an Athlon or Pentium 4, the C3 is quite simple, which explains its benefits.

VIA tried to keep the core as small as possible, which is probably a measure to reduce heat dissipation to a minimum. As a result, the caches are comparatively small: the 64 kB data and instruction cache each (L1), plus the 64 kB L2 cache are less than the main competitors offer.

ProcessorL1 CacheL2 CacheFSB
Intel Celeron16+16 kB128 kB66/100 MHz
Intel Celeron16+16 kB256 kB100 MHz
Intel Pentium III16+16 kB256 kB100/133 MHz
Intel Pentium III16+16 kB512 kB133 MHz
Intel Pentium 48 kB256 kB400 MHz QDR
Intel Pentium 48 kB512 kB400/533 MHz QDR
AMD Duron64+64 kB64 kB200 MHz DDR
AMD Athlon64+64 kB256 kB200/266 MHz DDR
AMD Athlon XP64+64 kB256 kB266 MHz DDR
VIA C364+64 kB64 kB100/133 MHz

As you can see, the C3 is equipped with quite a good amount of L1 cache, while the L2 cache is quite small.

The C3 is available in versions ranging from 800 MHz to 1 GHz, running at either 100 or 133 MHz FSB. Because the clock multiplier is locked, you should pick the right model right from the start. With only 52 mm² die size, the C3 is the smallest x86 processor available and includes both MMX and the 3DNow! Instuction set from AMD. Produced by TSMC in Taiwan in 0.13 µm, it is also one of the most advanced processors available.

For further information about the C3, please check out the C3 Ezra-T data sheet at VIA's website.