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Chip, English is Chip; chipset is Chipset. The chip generally refers to the carrier of the integrated circuit, and is also the result of the design, manufacture, packaging, and testing of the integrated circuit. It is usually an independent whole that can be used immediately. The terms "chip" and "integrated circuit" are often used together. For example, in the usual discussion topics, integrated circuit design and chip design mean the same thing, and chip industry, integrated circuit industry, and IC industry often also mean the same thing. In fact, these two words are related and different. Integrated circuit entities often exist in the form of chips, because the narrowly defined integrated circuit emphasizes the circuit itself, such as a phase-shift oscillator formed by connecting only five components together. When it is still presented on the drawing, we It can also be called an integrated circuit. When we want to use this small integrated circuit for application, it must be a separate physical object or embedded in a larger integrated circuit, relying on the chip to perform its function; the integrated circuit is more Emphasis is placed on circuit design and layout. Chips emphasize circuit integration, production and packaging. The broad integrated circuit, when it comes to industries (different from other industries), can also contain various meanings related to chips.

Chips also have their own unique features. In a broad sense, as long as they are semiconductor wafers manufactured using microfabrication methods, they can be called chips, and they do not necessarily have circuits inside. Such as semiconductor light source chips; such as mechanical chips, such as MEMS gyroscopes; or biological chips such as DNA chips. In communication and information technology, when the scope is limited to silicon integrated circuits, the intersection of chips and integrated circuits is the "circuit on silicon wafer". Chipsets are a series of interrelated chip combinations. They are interdependent and can play a greater role when combined, such as the processor and North-South bridge chipset in computers, and the RF, baseband and power management chipsets in mobile phones. .

Computer chip

If you compare the central processing unit CPU to the heart of the entire computer system, then the chipset on the motherboard is the torso of the entire body. For the motherboard, the chipset almost determines the function of this motherboard, which in turn affects the performance of the entire computer system. The chipset is the soul of the motherboard.

Chipset is the core component of the motherboard. According to the different arrangement position on the motherboard, it is usually divided into north bridge chip and south bridge chip. The North Bridge chip provides support for CPU type and main frequency, memory type and maximum capacity, ISA/PCI/AGP slot, ECC error correction, etc. The South Bridge chip provides support for KBC (Keyboard Controller), RTC (Real Time Clock Controller), USB (Universal Serial Bus), Ultra DMA/33 (66) EIDE data transmission method and ACPI (Advanced Energy Management), etc. . Among them, the north bridge chip plays a leading role, also known as the host bridge (Host Bridge).

The identification of the chipset is also very easy. Take the Intel440BX chipset as an example. Its north bridge chip is the Intel 82443BX chip, which is usually located near the CPU socket on the motherboard. Due to the high heat generation of the chip, this chip A heat sink is installed on it. The South Bridge chip is located near the ISA and PCI slots, and the chip name is Intel 82371EB. The arrangement position of other chipsets is basically the same. For different chipsets, there are also gaps in performance.


In addition to the most common north-south bridge structure, the chipset is moving towards a more advanced accelerated hub architecture. Intel’s 8xx series chipset is a representative of this type of chipset, which incorporates some subsystems such as IDE interfaces, sound effects, MODEM and USB are directly connected to the main chip, which can provide a bandwidth twice as wide as the PCI bus, reaching 266MB/s. In addition, SiS635/SiS735 is also a newcomer to this type of chipset. In addition to supporting the latest DDR266, DDR200 and PC133 SDRAM specifications, it also supports quad-speed AGP graphics card interface and Fast Write function, IDE ATA33/66/100, and built-in 3D stereo sound, high-speed data transmission function including 56K data communication (Modem), Fast Ethernet, 1M/10M Home PNA, etc.