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Last modified: Tuesday, January 06, 2004 

A small piece of semiconducting material (usually silicon) on which an integrated circuit is embedded. A typical chip is less than ¼-square inches and can contain millions of electronic components (transistors). Computers consist of many chips placed on electronic boards called printed circuit boards.

There are different types of chips. For example, CPU chips (also called microprocessors) contain an entire processing unit, whereas memory chips contain blank memory.

Chips come in a variety of packages. The three most common are:

  • DIPs : Dual in-line packages are the traditional buglike chips that have anywhere from 8 to 40 legs, evenly divided in two rows.
  • PGAs : Pin-grid arrays are square chips in which the pins are arranged in concentric squares.
  • SIPs : Single in-line packages are chips that have just one row of legs in a straight line like a comb.
  • In addition to these types of chips, there are also single in-line memory modules (SIMMs), which consist of up to nine chips packaged as a single unit.

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    Sponsored listings

    Digi-Key: Search for Integrated Circuits - Broad-line distributor web site features real-time stock status and pricing, online ordering, RFQ, technical support, product datasheets and photos.

    Ambassador Components: Chips - Electronic component supplier of obsolete components and semiconductors. Includes chips.

    American Electronic Resource: Integrated Circuits - Distributor of electronic components, including integrated circuits. Offers online part search for all manufacturers and hard to find parts.

    For pages about chip . Also check out the following links!

    Related Links

    Hardware Central 
    Detailed test reports on the latest desktop and laptop computers. Plus news on trend-setting products just coming into the pipeline.

    Semiconductor Industry Association Web site 
    Contains links to an overview on semiconductors, industry news, worker safety and environment, chip stats, trade, research and technology, publications, and members and related organizations.

    Your PC's Second Most Important Silicon: The Chipset 
    If the CPU is the brain of a personal computer, the motherboard is its nervous system.

    Absolutely Fab-ulous: Changes in CPU Manufacturing
    Bigger wafers, smaller dies, new technologies. A November 2002 article from CPU Planet.

    ATM Chip Web database
    Home page for The ATM Chip Database of the World Wide Web. It contains more than 130 descriptions of ATM chips (integrated circuits). You can search this database by keyword, vendor or product.

    Chip Directory
    This directory lists chips numerically and by function. It also includes lists of worldwide manufacturers and distributors, related books and magazines, and other sites.

    Chip Directory
    Provides access to chip information by number, function or manufacturer and links to CD-ROMS, magazines, FAQs, and other chip related Web sites.

    Chip Shots microprocessor photographs
    Hosts a large collection of full-color photomicrographs of several of the most popular microprocessors.

    Comparison of Pentium Pro P6 and the P5 chip
    Contains a detailed, illustrated comparision of the Pentium Pro P6 and P5 chips in the areas of performance, specifications, and manufacturers of motherboards.

    CPU processor market - article
    This April 1997 Byte Magazine article reviews the latest choices in CPUs from Intel, Cyrix and AMD.

    Intel's single-chip PC peripheral hub controller
    This Intel press release, from November 1, 1996, describes a new single-chip hub controller that will enable plug and play convenience of Universal Serial Bus PCs.

    Physical Chip Characteristics
    Describes the different physical characteristics of chips. These are factors related to the design and manufacture of the physical chip itself, and have a direct impact on the chips' size, performance, power consumption, heat generation and price. This page is from "The PC Guide."

    The ChipList
    This is The ChipList, by Aad Offerman, which answers questions about the differences between chips that are available for PC's and compatibles.

    Sponsored listings

    Microsemi Corporation: Integrated Circuits - Specializes in system-engineered integrated circuits.

    IDI: Integrated Circuits (ICs) - Offers electronic components such as integrated circuits for production testing.

    Nu Horizons Electronics: System-On-Chip (SoC) - Supplies System-On-Chip (SoC) products from Oki Semiconductor and Sharp. Computer Chips - Provides database of suppliers for computer chips. Includes catalogs, technical information, and supplier contact information. Chip Capacitors - Provides database of suppliers for Chip Capacitors. Browse catalogs and view technical information.

    related categories


    Integrated Circuits (ICs)


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