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Thursday, December 11, 2003, 10:00 am PT (01:00 pm ET)

IBM PowerPC 750VX finalized, sources say

IBM's PowerPC 750VX microprocessor has been finalized, sources told AppleInsider last week, though a few errata still need to be addressed. The chip is widely rumored for adoption by Apple Computer's iBook consumer portable line sometime next year.

According to information obtained by AppleInsider, the microprocessor will utilize the same L2 cache as the forthcoming PowerPC 750FX, but will allow for up to 4MB of L3 cache. The chip is said to sport a 400Mhz DDR front side bus and include the same implementation of AltiVec used in the PowerPC 970.

Clock-speeds should initially reach 1.8GHz mark before greatly surpassing the 2GHz milestone with its successor: the PowerPC 750VXe. According to previous reports,the 750VX G3 variant will also boast additional pipeline stages, and advanced power management features.

The chip is tentatively scheduled for an introduction in quarter 3 (Q3) of 2004, though it is unclear if this date pertains to Q3 of the 2004 calendar year or Apple's fiscal Q3.

Rumors of the chips specifications began to surface shortly after Apple pulled the plug on its adoption the Motorola's PowerPC G5. Sources recently sited a relationship-terminating, 3-strike at bat with Apple Computer that began in 1999 with Motorola's inability to exceed 500MHz. In 2001 troubles continued with Motorola's failure to obtain speeds of 1GHz (which was followed by the subsequent cancellation of the PowerPC 7500 G5). The partnership between the two parties was reportedly capped-off this year with the semiconductor developer's unsuccessful delivery of its 1.5GHz PowerPC 7457 chip desired by Apple for its PowerBook product-line.