Number Nine Launches 'Ticket To Ride(TM) IV,' Its Fourth and Most Powerful 128-bit 3D/2D/Video Graphics Chip Number Nine Delivers Advanced, Single Chip 3D/2D/MPEG Coprocessor



    LEXINGTON, Mass., May 26 /PRNewswire/ -- Number Nine Visual Technology
 Corp. (Nasdaq:   NINE) today announced and demonstrated its fourth generation,
 128-bit fully integrated 3D, 2D and MPEG graphics coprocessor -- "Ticket To
 Ride(TM) IV."  Ticket to Ride IV delivers almost a three-fold performance
 increase over the prior generation Ticket To Ride processor, which powered the
 Revolution(TM) 3D, the most award-winning graphics accelerator in Number
 Nine's 16-year history.
     Ticket To Ride IV continues the company's commitment to the development of
 powerful graphics technology for Windows 95, Windows 98, Windows NT and
 Macintosh personal computers -- designed for the most demanding corporate, 3D
 and multimedia graphics users -- including support for HDTV resolutions up to
 1920x1080.  Newly implemented features include; an Intelligent Resource
 Processor (IRP), a Programmable Latency Memory Controller (PLMC), and an
 integrated 250MHz RAM DAC.
     "Ticket To Ride IV is one of the most powerful, fully integrated, graphics
 controllers on the market," said Andy Najda, chief executive officer and
 founder of Number Nine Visual Technology.  "This processor allows Number Nine
 and OEM vendors to design world-class, high-performance 3D/Video and 2D
 graphics accelerator boards at very competitive price points.  Graphics boards
 designed with Ticket To Ride IV should please the most demanding corporate, 3D
 and multimedia graphics users in any market or industry."
     Dr. Jon Peddie, President of the market research firm Jon Peddie
 Associates of Tiburon, California said, "The market for 3D controllers is in
 an explosive stage and we're forecasting over 70 million units will be shipped
 this year.  Number Nine was the first to bring out a 128-bit controller with
 the Imagine(TM) 128 in 1994.  This is their fourth generation 128-bit part and
 their experience shows.  The new Programmable Latency Memory Controller, and
 10-level of detail mip-mapping with tri-linear filtering is world-class
 technology."
     Using a graphics accelerator powered by the Ticket To Ride IV, business
 professionals will be able to view massive spreadsheets on high performance
 monitors.  Engineers will be able to manipulate complex 3D models in real
 time.  Desktop artists will gain the horsepower needed to smoothly scroll
 large, true-color images as they work, without waiting for screens to refresh.
     Outside of business hours, Ticket To Ride IV sports the video processing
 power needed to watch high-detail, full-motion MPEG-II video.  It also
 delivers high-end 3D gaming capabilities supporting higher resolutions and
 frame rates than most existing 3D gaming cards.
     Utilizing Number Nine's proprietary 128-bit WideBus(TM) technology,
 graphics data is channeled by the newly implemented Intelligent Resource
 Processor (IRP) through multiple 128-bit wide data highways into two separate,
 yet integrated and tightly coupled 128-bit graphics engines - one for 2D, one
 for 3D/Video.  Utilizing a 128-bit wide, 250 MHz. integrated DAC (digital to
 analog converter), Ticket To Ride IV enables lower cost, yet powerful graphics
 solutions to be built that support today's highest performance monitors at
 
 resolutions up to 1920 x 1200 - at very high refresh rates.
 
     2 Gigabytes per second onboard processing and full AGP 2X support
     Ticket To Ride IV is ideal for today's fastest Pentium(R) II CPUs.  Ticket
 To Ride IV frees the host CPU of graphics processing tasks, allowing it to
 concentrate on recalculating spreadsheets and spell-checking documents.  This
 approach speeds system performance.  With full AGP 2X support, graphic
 instructions are transferred from the host, via the AGP bus, at speeds up to
 533 megabytes a second.  Once onboard, large amounts of 3D texture data can be
 stored locally in up to 32 MB of onboard graphics memory, efficiently
 processed at speeds in excess of two gigabytes a second.
 
     New -- Programmable latency memory controller moves data up to 25 percent
 faster
     Ticket To Ride IV is one of the only graphic chips on the market today to
 support a Programmable Latency Memory Controller (PLMC).  Using the PLMC,
 graphics accelerators can be designed to transfer data up to 25 percent faster
 using standard SGRAM graphics memory.  This approach differs from graphics
 processors designed with fixed memory latency (the initial time required to
 set up the memory to receive data).  The PLMC reduces the time required to
 setup the memory for each and every data transfer.
 
     New -- Powerful 128-bit integrated DAC supports 1920x1200
     Ticket To Ride IV supports resolutions up to 1920 x 1200 (HDTV) at 65K
 colors at refresh rates up to 83 Hz. or 16.8 million colors (32-bits/pixel) at
 resolutions to 1600 x 1200 at up to 92 Hz. -- using as little as 8MB of
 low-cost SGRAM.  The graphics chip processes eight 16-bit pixels per
 instruction cycle, then streams the digital data along multiple 128-bit wide
 data highways to a pair of color lookup tables.  These color lookup tables
 process data in parallel, converting it into analog data with the integrated
 Palette DAC (digital to analog converter), running at a blazing 250 MHz.  True
 hardware zooming is also supported, allowing users to instantly zoom in and
 out within any application -- on demand.  With the chip's 128-bit processors,
 wide data paths, advanced memory controller and high-speed integrated DAC, low
 cost, single ported graphics memory can be used to support today's most
 demanding monitors.
 
     Ready for 4-D and GDI-2K
     Ticket To Ride IV, like its predecessor Ticket to Ride supports
 Microsoft's proposed 4-D/GDI-2K graphics interface standard, previewed at the
 recent Microsoft-sponsored Windows Hardware Developers Conference (WinHec).
 These standards, when implemented, improve the user interface for 2D and 3D
 applications, making it easier for users to work with and navigate around the
 computer. For example, 3D images may be manipulated as whole objects in
 non-rectangular or borderless windows.  Pop-up and pull-down menus fade in and
 out, while application windows become translucent, allowing users to peer
 through foreground application windows on demand.  Simply, 2D applications
 benefit from 3D hardware features that were once reserved for high-end
 engineering applications and advanced 3D games.
 
     World's first 256-bit memory interface and flexible memory configurations
     Most popular graphics processors can support a maximum of only 4 or 8MB of
 graphics memory.  This is not adequate for today's 3D applications, which
 require higher resolutions than those available with game-oriented
 accelerators.  3D applications must also store 3D textures in onboard memory
 for fast, efficient 3D processing.  Additionally, most competing processors
 offer a maximum 64-bit memory to DAC interface, which limits available
 supported resolutions and color depths.  Number Nine's Ticket To Ride IV
 processor is the only mass-market graphics chip to support up to 32MB of
 high-bandwidth, low-latency SGRAM, with an exclusive 128-bit memory interface
 to the DAC. Ticket to Ride IV also supports a 256-bit memory interface when
 using dual ported, interleaved WRAM graphics memory and a 128-bit wide,
 high-speed external Palette DAC for specialized applications.
 
     Advanced Ticket to Ride IV features:
     -- 2.0 GB/second onboard frame buffer bandwidth.
       - Pipelined memory read and writes.
 
     -- Fully combined and integrated 128-bit 3D/Video and 2D Engines.
       - Proprietary 128-bit WideBus Architecture.
 
     -- Programmable Latency Memory Controller allows low cost memory to run up
        to 25 percent faster.
       - SGRAM and WRAM (interlaced and non-interlaced) graphics memory
         interfaces.
       - Support for 8 and 16-Mbit memory allows for low-cost memory
         flexibility.
       - Memory configurations up to 32MB.
 
     -- Integrated 250 MHz. Palette DAC (Digital to Analog Converter).
       - 128-bit CRT Controller.
       - Multiple Color Look-up Tables.
 
     -- Advanced 3D Pipeline:
       - A built-in 3D rendering engine, tightly coupled to an IEEE
         754 floating point 3D rendering setup engine that runs at 430 MFLOPS
         (million floating point operations per second).
       - 3D pixels processed at up to 32-bit color for precision 3D rendering.
       - Precision 32- and 16-bit Z-buffering support processes up to
         16.7 million Z-steps.  This High Precision Z-buffering significantly
         improves 3D imagine quality.  It reduces texture seams and unsightly
         artifacts that are present in 3D games-oriented chips that offer less
         precision.
       - 10 Levels-of-Detail Per-Pixel Mip Mapping.
       - Full-Scene Anti-Aliasing
       - An 8KB on-chip texture cache.
       - Palletized textures at 8, 4, 2 and 1 bpt.
       - Atmospheric effects for specular lighting, interpolated fogging and
         alpha blending.
       - Support for perspective corrected texture mapping with bi-linear and
         tri-linear filtering.
       - Complete DirectX 5.0 and 6.0 support.
       - Optimized Direct3D and OpenGL ICD (Installable Client Driver) support.
 
     -- Full AGP 2X data transfer rates allow for data throughput up to 533 MB
        per second to system memory.
       - 4x increase over PCI transfers.
 
     -- Full-screen, 30 frames per second, MPEG-II playback.
     -- 4,096 x 4,096 fully addressable memory.
 
     Availability
     The Ticket To Ride IV processor will begin sampling in the second quarter
 of 1998 with volume production in the third quarter of 1998.
 
     About Number Nine
     Number Nine Visual Technology Corporation, http://www.nine.com, is a
 leading supplier of high-performance visual technology solutions, including
 video/graphics accelerator subsystems, chips and productivity-enhancing
 software.  Number Nine is one of the first companies to offer its users
 drivers certified by Microsoft's Windows Hardware Quality Labs (WHQL).  The
 company is a pioneer in PC graphics, delivering the first 128-bit graphics
 accelerator, the first 256-color and 16.8 million-color cards, and three
 consecutive lines of 128-bit graphics chips and boards.  Number Nine is a
 publicly-held company headquartered in Lexington, Massachusetts, with research
 and development, sales and/or marketing offices in Munich, Germany and
 Redmond, Washington.
 
     Number Nine, Ticket To Ride, Imagine, WideBus and Revolution are
 trademarks or registered trademarks of Number Nine Visual Technology
 Corporation.  Microsoft and DirectX are registered trademarks of Microsoft
 Corporation.  OpenGL is a registered trademark of Silicon Graphics, Inc.  All
 other trademarks are properties of their respective companies.  All rights
 reserved.
 
     This press release contains "forward-looking statements" as that term is
 defined in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995.  Such
 statements are based on management's current expectations, and are subject to
 a number of factors and uncertainties, which could cause actual results to
 differ materially from those described herein, depending on such factors as
 are described under "Certain Factors That May Affect Future Results of
 Operations" in the Company's Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for its first
 quarter, 1998, ended March 28, 1998, as filed with the Securities and Exchange
 Commission.
 
 

SOURCE Number Nine Visual Technology Corp.
RELATED LINKS
http://www.nine.com

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