PDA

View Full Version : What is this?



Vlad
May 22nd, 2006, 05:00 PM
Never saw anything like this before. Intresting. It got pulled from a socket 7 machine that someone abandoned. The heat sink mount busted so as far as I know, it still works. It says 120MHz on it, but I didn't know IBM made socket 7 processors. Know anything about it Mike? Any one have any info in it?


http://home.grics.net/~dddn/proc.jpg

-VK

DimensionDude
May 22nd, 2006, 05:31 PM
I'm thinking that it's the same thing as a Cyrix P150+ and I'm also thinking that IBM and Cyrix were linked somehow but I don't recall what the relationship was right off the top of my head.

Kent

Vlad
May 22nd, 2006, 05:34 PM
Really? Cyrix and IBM? Intresting processor none the less.

Maybe Mike knows something about it......

-VK

DimensionDude
May 22nd, 2006, 05:51 PM
Yep, Cyrix and IBM. A quick Google revealed www.cpu-info.com has a photo of that same processor. Manufacturer listed as Cyrix IBM, introduced in 1996.

Incidentally, my first Pentium-class computer was a Cyrix 6x86 P150+. It was somewhat faster than the 486DX/2 80 that it replaced in some respects, but the 40MHz VLBus on the 486 kicked butt for video speed (with a Tseng Labs ET4000 video card).

Kent

Vlad
May 22nd, 2006, 06:05 PM
It says it's clock speed is 120MHz though, thats wee bit faster than a 486. Maybe, but I couldn't power in the I took it out of. How is it on rarity? I might have to get a socket 7 board to put it on and build a new machine with it.....

-VK

DimensionDude
May 22nd, 2006, 06:20 PM
According to the aforementioned website, Cyrix designed the chip, IBM manufactured it (along with IDT). IBM and IDT paid a royalty to Cyrix to sell the chips with their own names on it.

Don't know about the rarity, seems that they were pretty popular because they had nearly the same performance as an equivalent Pentium but at a much lower cost. The cost factor was why I chose the Cyrix over an Intel. In fact, the previously mentioned 486 was the last Intel CPU that I bought new.

Shoot, I'll have to go read it again, but I'm fairly certain that the 6x86 family will work in a Socket 5 or a Socket 7 provided that the board can be set for the 3.3v core. And, for the P150+, the board has to be set for 120MHz.

One more thing, the Cyrix 6x86 chips are infamous for running hot due to manufacturing methods. Need a good fan and heatsink.

Kent

Vlad
May 22nd, 2006, 06:32 PM
Kewl! Socket 7 was my favorite though. I'd be intrested to build another system for it. I'll need a motherboard though, I don't have any socket 7 mobo's that can function anymore.

Unknown_K
May 22nd, 2006, 08:03 PM
That product line was Cyrix's claim to fame in the 1990's. My first Pentium class chip was the 166+ version that was failry fast in everything but FP. The chip ran so hot that I sent it back and paid the difference to get a real Intel P166 process for my gaming rig. Havn't touched a cyrix chip since then.

CP/M User
May 23rd, 2006, 12:59 AM
I has it a feeling that IBM were developing a processor purely
for their OS/2 Warp v4 Operating System - this would place it
around that period - OS/2 Warp V3 came out in 1994 & V4 a
couple of years after that. V4 required at least a 486 (though
you could run it on a 386DX processor - though your somewhat
limited). Generally I vagerly recall a 486 needing something
like 16Mb RAM to run v4 (minimum) though 32Mb was the go. I
have the feeling that this 686 based processor is designed
purely for. Cause you could perhaps run Win95 & Win98 on it -
but if they don't take full advantage of the processor - you
won't get the full effect. A couple of years latter I rang IBM
who told me that their OS/2 Warp v4 was being mostly used for
businesses & were implenting networking things for it - but
that was about it.

CP/M User.

vbriel
May 23rd, 2006, 03:07 AM
Around the mid '90's is when Cyrix was really trying to get in on the low-end processor market. They used 150+ for a 120mhz processor and they were dogs. At a few computer shows I saw this processor and a some other IBM stuff that was selling higher than generic because it was "big blue". Well, that venture didn't last once people realized they were getting an processor that a 486 could work over. I made the mistake of going cyrix once, just once :/ I still can't believe IBM jumped in with them. Shows you how bad they wanted their name on a CPU.

Vince

mbbrutman
May 23rd, 2006, 06:00 AM
Vbriel,

I detect a little mis-information in there.

IBM provided chip foundary capability for Cyrix. As part of being the contract foundary, IBM also resold some of the Cyrix designed chips. It has nothing to do with wanting their name badly on a chip ..

My foggy memory at the time says that Cyrix had several contract foundaries, and IBM was just one of them. If you were in the market for a Cyrix chip at the time, you wanted to get one of the IBM manufactured ones because they were either easier to overclock or they didn't run as hot. (Or both.)

I had one of these beasts in my first Socket 7 system. It ran at 133Mhz, but supposedly ran as fast as a 166Mhz Intel chip. It depended on the benchmark ...

BTW, there is no way that any 486 could 'work over' one of these processors, even at the leisurely rate of 120Mhz actual speed. These are true Pentium class processors, with a 64 bit path to memory (not 32 like on a 486) and dual pipelines.

Unknown_K
May 23rd, 2006, 09:51 AM
Around the mid '90's is when Cyrix was really trying to get in on the low-end processor market. They used 150+ for a 120mhz processor and they were dogs. At a few computer shows I saw this processor and a some other IBM stuff that was selling higher than generic because it was "big blue". Well, that venture didn't last once people realized they were getting an processor that a 486 could work over. I made the mistake of going cyrix once, just once :/ I still can't believe IBM jumped in with them. Shows you how bad they wanted their name on a CPU.

Vince

Actualy the Cyrix chip was the most powerfull out there for a period of time. Any of the cyrix chips would kill any 486 in speed (I jumped from a 486/133 OC to 160 on a VLB system with a Fast video card to a 166+ and a Matrox Millenium and quake performace was 3x as good in software rendering mode).

What killed Cyrix was that they could not compete with the Intel MMX chips that came out after, and by this time 3D gaming was taking off and the Cyrix chips had a very shitty FP unit (which is funny because the 386 FP addon chips cyrix made were very good). They had a window of oportunity and did well but just could not keep the technology edge from Intel. During this time period AMD had the K5 and that flopped bad giving them 3rd place in a 3 horse race.

mryon
May 23rd, 2006, 12:25 PM
ahhh...

I had several flavours of those cpus.
Yeah, they were low end, very inexpensive.

I was a broke university student at the time, I was quite happy when those came around.

True, they were hot like crazy!!!

If I remember correctly, the fpu sucked as compared to Intel CPUs but I could be mis-remembering.

DimensionDude
May 23rd, 2006, 03:44 PM
The fpu on those Cyrix designed chips was deliberately "underpowered." That space on the die was given over so that the integer performance was greatly enhanced. At the time, very few apps leaned heavily on the fpu. That is why anyone who ran a cad/cam station used an Intel processor.

Kent

Chris2005
May 25th, 2006, 04:19 PM
I have a later unit/chip that's rock solid - the Cyrix MII, also socket 7. Can't even identify the mobo, though haven't gone to lengths to do so. Yes, it also categorized itself by an equivalent clock speed, rather then the actual. Yeah, pretty sure they don't print the actual clock speed (233 mhz) on the chip, rather the "equivalent" speed of a standard pMMX chip (266mhz). The things I've used it for haven't been exactly mission critical, but the thing has never given me a problem.
I also have an 486 that's by Cyrix/IBM. Green aluminum heatsink. I had bought it for my original headless 486, a DEC pizza box. The box crapped itself, the chip still runs as far as I know.
That box was groovy as all get out. Back in the mid 90's, I used to make extra cash by selling "workstation monitors" to primarily Mac owners. I used to find them for a song, being that no one knew they were the same (primarily) Sony oem versions re-monnikered as Raster Ops, E-machines, HP, IBM...and the beat goes on. Well, this dopey box would plug right into these monitors, which weren't multisyncers, yet "natively" only supported base VGA. The TI based video system could be programmed to support a number of other hi-res modes, but that was up to the end user, or application software.
Never even ran Win95 in those days...was too cheap. Later "upgraded" to a P166, and bought Win99 outright. Ok, don't tell me I'll have to expain that...