VIA is still up for a fight against nForce2 by coming up with the KT600 Northbridge and the VT8237 Southbridge. It features FastStream64™ Memory Controller Technology, a weapon against the 128 bit Dual Channel interface of the Nforce 2.


Introduction:

VIA
had been holding the performance crown on the AMD
platform with its “KT” series chipsets until about
half a year ago when Nvidia’s Nforce 2 hit the
market. The Nforce 2 had VIA beaten both in terms
of performance and features. For the next few
months, VIA had remained relatively low profile.
VIA, however, proved that it is still up for a
fight by coming up with the KT600 Northbridge and
the VT8237 Southbridge recently.

It
offers official support for 200MHz FSB and
features FastStream64™ Memory Controller
Technology, a weapon against the 128 bit Dual
Channel interface of the Nforce 2. Although still
running 64 bit on the memory, the FastStream64
DDR400 Memory Controller on the VIA Apollo KT600
interweaves with the 400MHz Front Side Bus to
greatly reducing data latency.

The
new Southbridge from VIA, the VT8237 features a
dual channel Serial ATA controller, providing
direct support for two Serial ATA devices at a
bandwidth of 150MB/s per port and its unique
SATAlite™ interface expands support for two
additional SATA devices through an optional
external Serial ATA PHY. Featuring support for
RAID 0, RAID 1, and RAID 0+1, the native VIA RAID
controller optimizes system performance by
ensuring the highest disk data transfer rates and
provides the most advanced fault tolerant solution
for optimum data integrity. It also comes with a
user friendly software configuration program for
easy disk array set up in all the latest
Microsoft® Windows® and Linux environments, and
supports both Serial ATA and Parallel ATA
standards.


Specifications

Here
is the table listing the features of the KT600
compared to the KT400A.


Features


VIA Apollo KT600


VIA Apollo KT400A

North Bridge  
Processor SupportAMD
Athlon™ XP
AMD
Athlon™ XP
Front Side Bus
266/333/400MHz

266/333MHz
Memory Bus
266/333/400MHz

266/333/400MHz
AGP Support
AGP4X/8X

AGP4X/8X
Memory Type
DDR266/333/400

DDR266/333/400
Max. Memory
4.0GB

4.0GB
South Bridge
VT8237

VT8235CE
North/South Bridge Link8X
V-Link (533MB/sec)
8X
V-Link (533MB/sec)
Integrated AudioVIA
Vinyl Six-TRAC six- channel AC’97 audio
VIA
Vinyl Six-TRAC six- channel AC’97 audio
Integrated Modem
MC’97

MC’97
Integrated Network
Controller
VIA
MAC 10/100 Ethernet
VIA
MAC 10/100 Ethernet
PCI Devices/Slots6
slots
6
slots
IDE
Dual Channel Serial ATA directly supports two SATA devices
SATAlite™ interface expands support for two additional SATA
devices through optional external Serial ATA PHY Dual
Channel Parallel ATA (up to 4 devices)

Parallel ATA (up to 4 devices)
VIA RAID
RAID 0, RAID 1, and RAID 0+1Supports SATA and ATA-133
standards
 
USB8
ports
6
ports
Super I/OLPC
Super I/O
LPC
Super I/O
IO APICYesYes
Power Management
ACPI/APM/PCI/PM

ACPI/APM/PCI/PM

 


Key Features
· Supports full range of AMD Athlon™ XP processors
· 266/333/400MHz FSB settings
· Supports up to 4.0GB DDR266/333/400 SDRAM
· Support for AGP 4X/8X
· 8X V-Link 533MB/s high bandwidth North/South
Bridge interconnect
· Integrated VIA Vinyl™ Six-TRAC six-channel AC’97
audio
· Serial ATA support for up to 4 devices
· RAID 0, RAID 1, and RAID 0+1 support, including
Disk Striping and Disk Mirroring
· V-RAID Software Configuration Program (supports
Windows® & Linux)
· Parallel ATA 33/66/100/133 support for up to 4
devices
· Support for up to 8 USB 2.0/USB 1.1 ports, UHCI
compliant
· Integrated MC’97 Modem
· Integrated 10/100 Fast Ethernet MAC
· Advanced power management capabilities including
ACPI/OnNow
· 664-pin BGA North Bridge
· 539-pin BGA VT8237 South Bridge