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VIA to leave chipset market

VIA to leave chipset market

VIA has decided to leave the third-party motherboard chipset market to AMD and Intel and to concentrate on CPUs.

The competition in the motherboard chipset market just took a hit with the news that VIA has decided to bow out.

Custom PC reports that the manufacturer has made the decision to concentrate its efforts on making its own low-power CPUs rather than chipsets for other manufacturers' processors.

Vice president of corporate marketing in Taiwan Richard Brown told Custom PC that the company has had this in mind for a while, with the company deciding to move into CPU manufacturing “because we believed that ultimately the third party chipset market would disappear, and we would need to have the capability to provide a complete platform.

Brown goes on to point out that the vast majority of Intel processors use Intel chipsets on the motherboard, and now that AMD own ATI it has taken responsibility for its own motherboard chipsets as well. With rumours doing the rounds recently that Nvidia was to exit the motherboard chipset market – rumours the company flatly denies – the news from VIA, while disappointing, is perhaps not that surprising.

With new projects like the ultra-low power Nano – launched as a direct competitor to the popular Atom line from rival Intel – to sink its teeth into, perhaps the move from chipset hardware aimed firmly at the budget end of the market has come at an auspicious time. Still, it's always sad to see a competitor leave a market – especially one that is becoming more and more like a duopoly.

Does anyone here remember VIA chipset motherboards fondly, or did you always opt for a more upmarket brand when building your PCs? Share your thoughts over in the forums.

15 Comments

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Paradigm Shifter 12th August 2008, 10:02 Quote
So we're left with Intel chipsets for Intel processors, AMD chipsets for AMD processors, and nVidia uncomfortably sandwiched between the two. :(
mclean007 12th August 2008, 10:38 Quote
When did VIA last build a decent chipset for LGA775 / AM2 anyway?
LeMaltor 12th August 2008, 10:45 Quote
What do you mean by "decent", they were always cheap and usable :p
cjoyce1980 12th August 2008, 10:45 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by mclean007
When did VIA last build a decent chipset for LGA775 / AM2 anyway?

thats not then point, anyway back in the AMD K7 day, some of there motherboards overclocked extreme well and performed just as well as there nvidia counterparts
mclean007 12th August 2008, 10:54 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by LeMaltor
What do you mean by "decent", they were always cheap and usable :p
Well, put it this way - if you were in the market for a new motherboard today, would you consider buying a VIA chipset board for your Core 2 Duo / Quad or your Athlon X2? Or would you be looking at Intel, nVidia and AMD exclusively? A quick look on www.scan.co.uk doesn't turn up ANY boards for these chips based on VIA chipsets, so my point is, while more competition is generally good for the consumer, why is it news that VIA has dropped out of the market of producing chipsets for Intel/AMD chips? I thought they had done so ages ago.
Quote:
Originally Posted by cjoyce1980
thats not then point, anyway back in the AMD K7 day, some of there motherboards overclocked extreme well and performed just as well as there nvidia counterparts
So then it is exactly the point - K7 was aeons ago and they haven't produced anything of note since. They may as well have dropped out of the "mainstream" motherboard market 5 years ago and concentrated on their own integrated products.
Timmy_the_tortoise 12th August 2008, 11:20 Quote
Shame.. I always loved VIA, being the champion of the underdog that I am.
Meanmotion 12th August 2008, 11:25 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by mclean007

why is it news that VIA has dropped out of the market of producing chipsets for Intel/AMD chips? I thought they had done so ages ago.

It's news because it is now official. For all any of us know, VIA could've been working on new chipsets to arrive in the coming months but they've now ruled that out. I'd say that's news worthy.

Edit: Oops, quoted wrong bit. Fixed.
lamboman 12th August 2008, 11:28 Quote
Shame, but it really is about time. Nobody is buying their chipsets anymore, and they are often having compatibility issues...
DXR_13KE 12th August 2008, 12:49 Quote
i consider their chipsets to be a peace of crap.... thank God they are out of the picture.
TreeDude 12th August 2008, 13:35 Quote
I have a KT600 on my Athlon XP that has never given me an issue (still being used as a low end gaming rig for my gf). I also had an Asrock with a PT880 so I could use a C2D with an AGP card. Had great experiences with both. I must admit VIA has never been high end, but I always saw them as being solid chipsets.
BlackMage23 12th August 2008, 14:03 Quote
Ah, I remember when VIA were the kings of motherboard chipsets. It was after the Nforce 2 came out that VIA started to slip from the top spot.
Redbeaver 12th August 2008, 14:26 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by DXR_13KE
i consider their chipsets to be a peace of crap.... thank God they are out of the picture.

i wonder how long uve been working with computer...
Quote:
Originally Posted by BlackMage23
Ah, I remember when VIA were the kings of motherboard chipsets. It was after the Nforce 2 came out that VIA started to slip from the top spot.

yup, the KT133, 100 (could be wrong with the names) was substantially beating the crap out of Intel or the maturing Nvidia chipset less than a decade ago. overclocking a Duron or original Athlon was VIA territory.

sad to leave them go.

personally i prefer them to let go the CPU market and focus on chipset instead. but hey..... :)
clete 12th August 2008, 16:21 Quote
This is truly sad- as competition continues to dwindle in the Mobo and Chipset markets. I can remember back to the good ole 386 days when VEGA brand motherboards with Symphony chipsets were consider top drawer. Symphony was the company that evolved into VIA. We've lost dzens of Mobo makers in the past 10 years, and now the chipset industry is down to almost no independents. Prices will go up, technological innovation will go down. Off the top of my head I can remember these now dead chipsets manufacturers:

OPTI
VIA
ETEQ
CONTAQ
FOREX
UMC
ULI

I am sure there are others. The maturation of the the component industry is a double-edged sword for enthusiasts.
Furymouse 12th August 2008, 17:02 Quote
I'm still only using VIA chipsets. Via 800 on my main rig and a kt333 on my server. I loved them for their stability. The 800 is about three years old and the 333 is around six and they are still plugging away all happy like. I went the VIA route after I becam the early adopter of the rev. 1 Asus A7N8X Deluxe mobo with the Nforce chip. Now that was utter crap. Went thru three different boards and to much money to want to think about. Then I got my Soyo via 333 and have been happy ever since :)
pendragon 12th August 2008, 17:55 Quote
`tis a shame. I'm still running an AOpen board using their KT line of chipsets. :( Ah well, best of luck to them.. looks like they make a killer small CPU anyway.. hopefully they can keep it up
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