Samsung has announced that it has begun mass production of the industry's first 8-Gigabit Graphics DRAM. The new memory chips, built on Samsung's 20nm process technology, will be supplied to the makers of graphics cards, games consoles, laptops and supercomputer makers says the firm. It expects the demand for premium high-bandwidth graphics memory to "rapidly increase," and says that these new GDDR5 memory chips offer "a performance boost that will take the consumer graphics experience to the next level with a 8Gbps data rate".
The new 8Gb chips complete Samsung's lineup of 20nm GDDR5 on the mass production lines, to complement its existing 4Gb and 6Gb densities. Just two of the new chips will be required to kit out a device with 2GB of GDDR5 memory. Compared to its existing 4Gb GDDR5 DRAM the new memory ups the transfer rate from 7Gbps to 8Gbps. Samsung also states that this new DRAM is over four times faster than the commonly used DDR3 DRAM often paired with laptop installed GPUs.
In addition to an edge in performance, Samsung's 8Gb GDDR5 DRAM, thanks to its higher density, could allow board and systems makers to cut costs. As mentioned above, just two of the chips are enough to make up 2GB of memory capacity on a device. For games console makers like Sony, which currently uses sixteen 4Gb GDDR5 chips in its PS4, a halving of required chips could cut down on its manufacturing costs while adding a bit of a speed boost to the system.
While Samsung might be the first to start mass production of 8Gb GDDR5, Micron is also "seeing good progress," with its own similar chips. We heard that Micron started to ship engineering samples of the chips out to partners, earlier this week.