Samsung Electronics, the world’s largest maker of various dynamic random access memory, said on Thursday that it had started mass production of GDDR5 memory chips using 50 nm process technology. The new fabrication process allows the devices to reach unprecedented clock-speeds and trim power consumption.
“Our early 2009 introduction of GDDR5 chips will help us to meet the growing demand for higher performance graphics memory in PCs, graphic cards and game consoles. Because GDDR5 is the fastest and highest performing memory in the world, we’re able to improve the gaming experience with it across all platforms,” said Mueez Deen, director of mobile and graphics memory, Samsung Semiconductor.
The new GDDR5 memory chips are not only capable of working at up to 7GHz clock-speeds, but also use 1.35V voltage, a reduction from 1.425V – 1.575V voltage of currently available GDDR5 memory chips from Samsung. Moreover, the new GDDR5 devices are cheaper to produce: by adopting 50nm class technology, Samsung expects production efficiency to rise 100% over 60nm class technology.
7GHz GDDR5 chips could provide 224GB/s or 448GB/s peak bandwidth when connected to a processor using 256-bit or 512-bit memory bus, respectively. It is unclear which of the forthcoming graphics cards will utilize 7GHz GDDR5 chips, but since both ATI, graphics products group of Advanced Micro Devices, and Nvidia Corp. are projected to release their new high-end graphics solutions later this year, it is definite that high-speed memory will be in demand.
Samsung’s new GDDR5 chips are now available in 32Mb x32 configuration (128MB) and are also configurable as a 64Mb x16 device.
Samsung expects GDDR5 to account for over 20% of the total graphic memory market in 2009. The company also said it plans to expand the 50-nm process technology throughout its graphics memory line-up this year.