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Chipset combines audio, modem

Rockwell announces a new chipset that includes modem technology as well as sound features.

Paul Festa Staff Writer, CNET News.com
Paul Festa
covers browser development and Web standards.
Paul Festa
Rockwell Semiconductor Systems announced a PCI-based chipset that combines modem technology and audio features.

Dubbed RipTide, the chipset will assume duties normally divided between two separate chips, a consolidation that Rockwell claims saves on cost and power consumption and increases performance.

Rockwell's chipset comes as demand for multimedia chips accelerates along with competition among chipmakers. A recent study by Dataquest predicted a 31 percent increase in audio chip shipments this year.

RipTide supports V.34 (28.8- and 33.6-kbps) and K56flex (56-kbps) modem technologies and Intel's Audio Codec '97 2.0 PC audio specification. Features include dedicated handset and microphone support, 3D sound, and two-line modem capability.

Sample quantities will be available in December, with volume production scheduled for the second quarter of 1998. Cost per item based on purchase of 10,000 units is $36, or $49 with a digital signal processor for accelerated performance.