Archive for the ‘Audio Drivers’ Category

Creative Drivers

Originally founded in 1981, Creative Technology is a global leading manufacturer of digital entertainment products for the PC and internet markets. Creative Labs, its American division, was formed in 1988, followed by the opening of a European branch in 1993 and then an Asian division in 1999. For decades, its innovative products have revolutionized how users around the world interact with their computers.

Since the launch of its highly successful Sound Blaster sound card product line in 1989, Creative has been setting standards in the industry, leveraging cutting edge audio technology and a huge customer base to expand the PDE (Personal Digital Entertainment) market. While Sound Blaster started it all, the company is perhaps best known for its popular line of Zen digital audio players. The Creative Zen is an award-winning series and largely credited for ushering in the trend of MP3 players. This multipurpose device actually predates Apple’s popular iPod.

Today, Creative is a widely known as a global leader and innovator in the audio and PDE market. It solutions provide end-users with a complete digital entertainment experience from high quality hardware, software programs and services. Creative is enhancing the power of the PC with a versatile range of compatible MP3 players, multimedia speakers, headphones, portable media centers, web and digital cameras, graphics solutions and computer peripherals. Creative products and solutions are delivered to customers and system integrators through an international network that consists of traditional marketing channels, original equipment channels and the web.

This company has accomplished many industry milestones, but don’t expect them to slow down just yet. The Creative Zen is still in the stage of evolution, while other amazing lines are sure to be introduced in the very new future. A leading name in the PDE sector, Creative aims to further establish its high-quality brands for years to come.

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Realtek Drivers

Headquartered in the Silicon Valley of Taiwan, Realtek Semiconductor Corp. is a leading provider of computer components, network devices and multimedia products. The company designs, manufactures and sells a wide range of products that are mainly categorized in two divisions: Communications Network ICs and Computer Peripheral and Multimedia ICs. Some of the products in its line of network solutions include network interface controllers, traditional Ethernet controllers, network switch controllers and gateway controllers, among others. Realtek currently has approximately 900 employees, more than 700 of them well versed in the research and development field.

Realtek was founded in 1987 and listed on the Taiwan Stock Exchange in 1998. One of its early successes was the RTL8139 series of Ethernet controllers released in the late 1990s, a line that dominated the market for many years. These products fell into the peripheral and multimedia category, consisting of traditional audio codecs, high definition codecs, clock generators, card reader controllers and LCD controllers. The most notable Realtek controllers were the 10/100M Ethernet line, having a global market share of 70% in 2003. Its AC97 audio codecs also claimed 50% of the market. Today, its ALC850 and RTL8139 are favorites on the OEM market, offering standard features and low prices. In Asia, the RTL8139 Realtek NIC is often referred to as a crab card, alluding to the crab-like appearance of the company logo.

Realtek has announced on numerous occasions that it would dedicate its R&D resources and expertise to other areas in the future. Some of the markets the company is considering include digital television, along with more advanced wireless technologies such as UWB (Ultra Wide Band) and the proposed 802.11n standard. It appears as if Realtek is gearing up for the highly anticipated myriad of concepts and applications that have been proposed to advance existing and newly emerging technologies.

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VIA Drivers

VIA Technologies is a fabless semiconductor company headquartered in Taipei, Taiwan. The company supplies the highly efficient x86 processor platforms that power the personal computer, client, embedded and ultra mobile markets. Its main product line consists of motherboard chipsets, memory and CPUs, energy-saving solutions that provide enhanced connectivity for an array of computing, networking, communications and multimedia platforms. Best known for its awarding line of VIA chipsets, the company also produces audio and network controllers, low-power processors and chipsets for CD/DVD writers. Over the years, VIA has achieved international reach with state of the art production facilities throughout North America, Europe and Asia. Its client base includes global leading OEMs, system integrators and consumers around the world.

VIA was officially established in 1987 from the Symphony Company, a computer company based in the Silicon Valley of Taiwan. The founder, Wen Chi Chen, was an Intel employee before joining Symphony, where he still presides as CEO. In the late 1990s, the manufacturer focused on diversifying its core logic solutions and has since acquired a number of subsidiaries. Some of its most notable acquisitions include a CPU division, a sound division and a graphics division acquired from S3 Graphics. With Taiwan’s manufacturing sector constantly increasing the level of integration and functionality in chipset products, these divisions have helped VIA remain afloat in the competitive core logic market.

Coupled with the S3 Graphics merger, the company has been able to hold onto a respectable share of the PC graphics market due to the efficiency of their VIA graphics cards. In 2008, the company announced the launch of official 2D accelerated drivers for Linux chipsets with 3D accelerated drivers in the works. Just releasing the VX855 Media System Processor, a fully integrated all-on-one chip designed for mobile PC systems, VIA looks to take its innovative ways into another decade of success.

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Cirrus Logic Drivers

Established in 1984, Cirrus Logic is a fabless semiconductor company that specializes in analog and mixed-signal integrated circuits for a wide range of industrial and consumer markets. Headquartered in Austin, Texas, Cirrus has more than 900 patents for a line of approximately 600 products to serve well over 3,000 end-users across the world. Its technologies are relied on by industry-leading names such as Harman International, Panasonic, Pioneer, Philips, Samsung and Sony.

In the early, 1990s, Cirrus was a leading manufacturer of affordable PC graphics chips. Its Microsoft Windows 2D GUI accelerators were highly acclaimed as some of the fastest and most affordable on the market, outperforming VGA-chips from competitors like Western Digital, Trident Microsystems and Oak Technologies. The Cirrus graphics chip, the GD5422, supported hardware acceleration for 8-bit and 16-bit color, making it one of the lowest-priced VGA controllers to offer support for both. In the mid to late 1990s, it was one of a handful of companies to deliver a VGA controller for 3dfx’s Voodoo Rush 3D-accelerator card. To the current day, Cirrus chipsets help to power a number of notebook and desktop PCs.

The Cirrus product line is quite extensive and robust. Aside from a broad range of integrated circuits targeted at industrial and consumer markets, it also features high–precision ICs for automotive entertainment applications and electrical solutions in digital power meters and seismic systems. Cirrus audio processors and converters can be found in a number of professional consumer products including home-theater receivers, portable media players, television sets and set-top hardware. There was a time when the company designed and marketed hard disk controller chips, modem controllers, CD drive controller chips, PC graphics chips and PC soundcard controllers. A highly successful portfolio of Cirrus ICs and processors has made this company one of the most recognizable names in the industry.

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