updated 10:05 am EST, Wed January 2, 2008
Marvell 450Mbps Wi-Fi
Marvell today unveiled a new version of its TopDog wireless chipsets that could dramatically improve the speed of already fast 802.11n Wi-Fi connections. The 11n-450 will use three transmitters and three receivers to achieve a maximum speed of 450 megabits per second. The connection is 50 percent faster than the 300Mbps peak for today's draft spec 802.11n chipsets and results in even more range: the new chip increases range by 160 percent over 300Mbps models and sports about five times more range than the earlier 802.11g standard, Marvell claims. The advancement should allow multiple streaming videos at once over longer ranges.
The chipset is technically compatible with official 802.11n and earlier Wi-Fi standards but includes special features that should improve performance over other chipsets, such as Special Time Block Coding that maintains speed over longer distances. The chipset itself is made on a 90-nanometer process that should consume less power and generate less heat than most earlier wireless hardware.
Marvell plans to ship the new TopDog sometime in the spring and believes it will be used for notebook computers as well as media hubs, game consoles, and network routers; no specific companies have yet announced that they will use the technology.