Later this year, Nvidia's should bring high-definition video decoding capabilities to Via Nano systems through its Ion 2 platform. However, Via isn't waiting around for that—it's announced the VX855 "Media System Processor," a new all-in-one chipset that can purportedly deliver "smooth playback of high bit-rate 1080p HD video."
The VX855 is designed to accompany Via's Nano, C7, or Eden processors. It supports 800MHz front-side bus speeds, and its memory controller can take up to 4GB of DDR2-800 memory. Also, the built-in Chrome 9 HCM graphics processor can handle "full hardware acceleration" of H.264, MPEG-2, MPEG-4, VC-1, and Windows Media Video 9 video, and Via has tossed in support for eight-channel 32-bit, 192kHz audio. With only a single IDE channel, however, storage options are somewhat more limited.
According to Via, the VX855 squeezes those features into a 27 x 27-mm single-chip package with a teeny 2.3W power envelope—low enough to tolerate fanless operation. Coupled with the Via Nano, the VX855 could make for a nice little netbook platform with good CPU performance and well-rounded multimedia capabilities.