Centaur Technology

from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Centaur Technology

legal form Subsidiary of VIA Technologies
founding 1995
Seat Austin , Texas , USA
management G. Glenn Henry
Number of employees <100 (2010)
Branch Semiconductor industry
Website www.centtech.com

Centaur Technology was founded in 1995 as a subsidiary of Integrated Device Technology founded (IDT) with the idea that a small team of microprocessor - engineers PC market in 1000 may develop a low-cost x86 processor for the sub- $. Centaur has been an independent subsidiary of VIA Technologies since mid-1999 . In the past 9 years Centaur developed the smallest x86 processor and delivered 10 different CPUs. Centaur is similar to Cyrix a fabless company (German: fabriklose company ) and also has the CPUs manufactured by IBM and TSMC . Centaur's philosophy is to develop the cheapest and most economical design possible in order to keep production costs and thus the sales price as low as possible.


IDT WinChip series

The first CPUs from Centaur were marketed by IDT under the name WinChip . After the takeover by VIA Technologies , the WinChip series was discontinued and replaced by the Cyrix III and C3.

VIA Cyrix III & C3

In mid-2000, the Centaur Samuel was launched as the VIA Cyrix III . This CPU was basically a WinChip 3 ported to Socket 370 with higher clock rates and better manufacturing technology. In principle, the architecture has remained unchanged since the WinChip C6 and was only changed marginally in the following C3 models. The biggest change came with the Nehemiah as 3DNow! was replaced by SSE . The big plus of the C3 CPUs is the fact that they can be passively cooled relatively easily. The CPUs are therefore mostly used as embedded CPUs ( VIA Eden ) on the EPIA mainboards. These models then require less than 7 W during operation.


In mid-2005 the new Esther (C5J) model came on the market as the VIA C7 (-M) . In addition to supporting SSE3 , this CPU also offers SMP . This model is gradually replacing the C3 CPUs and is also finding its way into the VIA Eden series.

VIA Nano

At the beginning of 2008, the new processor architecture called Isaiah was finally presented. The most important innovations are the support of x86-64 and an enormous improvement of both the ALU and the FPU .


IDT WinChip

  • WinChip C6
  • WinChip 2
  • WinChip 2A
  • WinChip 2B
  • WinChip 3


  • Samuel (C5A)

VIA C3 (-M)

  • Samuel 2 (C5B)
  • Ezra (C5C)
  • Ezra-T (C5N)
  • Nehemiah (C5XL)
  • Nehemiah + (C5P)

VIA C7 (-M)

  • Esther (C5J)
  • Nimda (CJB)
  • Pablo (CKA)

VIA Nano

  • VIA Nano

VIA Eden

  • Samuel 2 (C5B)
  • Nehemiah (C5XL)
  • Nehemiah + (C5P)
  • Esther (C5J)

See also

Web links