Thursday, August 6th 2009

Elpida Enters Graphics Memory Business

Elpida Memory, Inc., a leading global supplier of Dynamic Random Access Memory (DRAM), today announced that it reached an agreement with Germany-based Qimonda AG, which is now in insolvency proceedings, to acquire Qimonda technology licenses and a portion of the design assets related to Graphics Double Data Rate (GDDR), a memory architecture that has a high-speed data interface for graphic processing applications.

Based on the licenses and assets acquired from Qimonda, Elpida will now join the graphics DRAM business and become a memory solutions company with an expanded range of products and services.

Elpida plans to quickly ramp up a full-fledged GDDR business. GDDR technology development will continue at Elpida's recently built Munich Design Center (Elpida Memory Europe GmbH, Munich branch), where nearly 50 engineers and other former Qimonda employees involved in GDDR development work will take up new posts. Shipments of 1-Gigabit GDDR3 and 1-Gigabit GDDR5 products are expected to begin in the first half of CY 2010. The production of both products is considered to be outsourced to Winbond Electronics Corporation, a Taiwanese company that has experience with Qimonda's process technology. Also, following additional development work by a highly qualified team of engineers working jointly in Germany and Japan, Elpida plans to begin mass production of 2-Gigabit GDDR5 at its Hiroshima Plant starting in the second half of CY 2010.

Because of its high-speed data transfer capability, GDDR is well-suited to graphics processing, which makes it a popular engineering solution among makers of advanced game consoles. GDDR technology is also well-established as a graphics solution among high-end desktop and notebook PCs.

Only a limited number of global DRAM vendors are capable of supplying products across multiple business areas, starting with commodity DRAMs and extending to graphics GDDR DRAMs, high-speed XDR DRAMs and Mobile RAM for mobile equipment. By becoming one of the few full-range suppliers, Elpida expects to now play an increasingly important role in the DRAM market.

"Graphics systems now need graphics buffer memory with a data transfer rate of more than 5-Gigabit/sec given the rapidly growing popularity of high-definition format graphics data, 3D graphics and various display formats," said Takao Adachi, Elpida's Chief Technology Officer. "In response to this need we will shortly begin commercial production of GDDR5, for which an even faster data transfer rate of 8-Gigabit/sec may be feasible in the near future. To achieve such high speeds advanced technologies for I/O signal transmission as well as internal high speed circuits are crucial. The important GDDR technologies we have acquired can now contribute not only to Elpida's graphics memory development but also to the improvement of our overall DRAM design technologies."

Elpida's products have received superior evaluations from customers in both the mobile DRAM market, which places emphasis on low power consumption, and the server DRAM market, which values a high degree of memory reliability. With its entry into graphics DRAMs, a market that places a premium on extremely fast speeds, Elpida will now be involved in all areas of the DRAM market. This will enable the company to expand its customer base, improve customer support and establish a considerably stronger business foundation.
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14 Comments on Elpida Enters Graphics Memory Business

#1
PP Mguire
I think ill skip over any cards that have their chips on it.
Posted on Reply
#2
btarunr
Editor & Senior Moderator
Why so?
Posted on Reply
#3
HalfAHertz
Quimonda = Hynix, one of the best GDDR chips out there, and currently the only choice for GDDR5. I remember my Radeon 9550 with Hynix memory - did 50% OC with no effort at all
Posted on Reply
#4
btarunr
Editor & Senior Moderator
by: HalfAHertz
Quimonda = Hynix
Nope. Hyundai = Hynix. Hynix has nothing to do with Qimonda.
Posted on Reply
#5
HalfAHertz
by: btarunr
Nope. Hyundai = Hynix. Hynix has nothing to do with Qimonda.
Damn it you're right that was Infineon I was thinking about...Sorry I was wrong
Posted on Reply
#6
DanishDevil
by: btarunr
Nope. Hyundai = Hynix. Hynix has nothing to do with Qimonda.
Like the cars!?!?
Posted on Reply
#7
human_error
by: DanishDevil
Like the cars!?!?
"This RAM comes with a 70,000 mile warranty"

A lot of the car companies are also involved in electronics in some form or another (especially the korean and japanese ones).
Posted on Reply
#8
PP Mguire
by: btarunr
Why so?
Isnt this the same company that put out the fubard chips on the HyperX and Dominator GTs?
Posted on Reply
#9
btarunr
Editor & Senior Moderator
by: PP Mguire
Isnt this the same company that put out the fubard chips on the HyperX and Dominator GTs?
So? Besides the chips are made by former-Qimonda GDDR division. Nothing to do with poor-quality (≠ faulty) PC DRAM chips.

by: DanishDevil
Like the cars!?!?
Hyundai semiconductor was a well-known name. I don't think it's related to Hyundai the automobile company.
Posted on Reply
#10
PP Mguire
So? If its the same company they can screw this up too.
Posted on Reply
#11
btarunr
Editor & Senior Moderator
by: PP Mguire
So? If its the same company they can screw this up too.
It's not the same people behind GDDR, not the same facilities, not the same engineers. Besides, they screwed up the last time, only to set things right in a matter of a week or two. That's actually a merit.
Posted on Reply
#12
Wile E
Power User
by: btarunr
It's not the same people behind GDDR, not the same facilities, not the same engineers. Besides, they screwed up the last time, only to set things right in a matter of a week or two. That's actually a merit.
Not to mention, just about every company that has been around for long enough has had a bad product line or 2. It happens.
Posted on Reply
#13
Zubasa
by: btarunr

Hyundai semiconductor was a well-known name. I don't think it's related to Hyundai the automobile company.
Well it was related to Hyundai automobile both as a member of the Hyundai Group. :p
Nowaday they are not related whatsoever.
Posted on Reply
#14
WarEagleAU
Bird of Prey
Qimonda has some awesome GDDR memory on cards, Samungs, Qimonda, Infineon/Hynix, best of the best.
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