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Episode II: Attack of the Chipsets - Intel 845E and 845G for 533 MHz FSB and DDR-SDRAM

82801DB: ICH4 With USB 2.0

Intel calls its south bridge component ICH (I/O controller hub). The model used by the 845E and 845G chipsets is called "ICH4", or "82801DB". The only, but highly important new feature is the inclusion if a new USB controller. As we mentioned above, "ICH4" supports the USB 2.0 standard, allowing a bandwidth of up to 480 MB/s, which is 40 times faster than USB 1.1. Within the next year, USB 2.0 will become the dominant interface for external devices; scanners, printers, portable hard drives and even network adapters will be using USB 2.0 in the future.

Intel also uses the ICH4 to prepare the way for Gigabit-Ethernet. It's normal for chipsets to have an integrated interface plus control unit for a network controller. It enables motherboard makers to optionally equip their products with a LAN controller chip, so the customer saves the expense for a network card. Intel also offers a suitable network controller for the ICH4 that has a transfer rate of 1 Gbit/s, the 82854 GB (see photo).

The 82854GC supports 10/100/1000 MBit/s, and it can be used with all Intel chipsets based on ICH4 up till now (845E, 845G, E7500).

Previously available: the 82550EY. This supports 10 and 100 Mbit/s. It can also be used with the new chipsets.