Taiwan's ABIT today lent a hand to the non-Intel x86 world by announcing the first 100MHz Socket 7 AGP motherboard. Formerly, users wanting access to Intel's accelerated graphics port (AGP) capabilities had to go with Intel's own Pentium II and Slot 1 architecture or stick with a 66MHz bus speed on Socket 7 boards.
Based on Acer's ALi Aladdin V chipset, the IT5A will support AMD's K6 3D processor (the first Socket 7 processor to tap 100MHz bus speeds) when it is released in the spring, probably in April or May. ABIT expects volume production of the IT5A board in February.
However, the firm also claimed that even before the K6 3D release users will get advantages because the chipset is faster than other Socket 7 options, AGP graphics cards are supported, and the board "will have official, but not guaranteed support" for 75MHz and 83MHz bus speeds, obviating the need to 'upclock' chips on 66MHz boards. The board also supports synchronous DRAM and a standard 512Kb of L2 cache SRAM.
ABIT expects the 100MHz bus to offer a 10 per cent boost to CPU performance compared to a 66MHz bus.