18 Facts About Cyrix


Cyrix Corporation was a microprocessor developer that was founded in 1988 in Richardson, Texas, as a specialist supplier of floating point units for 286 and 386 microprocessors.

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In 1992, Cyrix introduced its own i386 compatible processors, the 486SLC and 486DLC.

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Combination of these events led Cyrix to begin losing money, and the company merged with National Semiconductor on 11 November 1997.

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In 1995, with its Pentium clone not yet ready to ship, Cyrix repeated its own history and released the Cyrix Cx5x86, which plugged into a 3.

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Cyrix 5x86 was a cost-reduced version of the flagship 6x86 (M1).

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The Cyrix MII, based on the 6x86MX design, was little more than a name change intended to help the chip compete better with the Pentium II.

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In 1996, Cyrix released the MediaGX CPU, which integrated all of the major discrete components of a PC, including sound and video, onto one chip.

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Cyrix had always been a fabless company: Cyrix designed and sold their own chips, but contracted the actual semiconductor manufacturing to an outside foundry.

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In 1994, following a series of disagreements with TI, and production difficulties at SGS Thomson, Cyrix turned to IBM Microelectronics, whose production technology rivaled that of Intel.

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Unlike AMD, Cyrix had never manufactured or sold Intel designs under a negotiated license.

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Cyrix's designs were the result of meticulous in-house reverse engineering, and often made significant advances in the technology while still being socket compatible with Intel's products.

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Cyrix was found to never have infringed any patent held by Intel.

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Cyrix was free to have their products manufactured by any manufacturer that had a cross-license with Intel, which included SGS Thomson, IBM, and others.

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Intel and Cyrix now had full and free access to each others' patents.

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The IBM manufacturing agreement remained for a while longer, but Cyrix eventually switched all their production over to National's plant.

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Cyrix's failure is described by Glenn Henry, CEO of Centaur Technology, thus: "Cyrix had a good product, but they got bought by a 'big smokestack' company and they got bloated.

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When VIA bought Cyrix, they had 400, and we had 60, and we were turning out more product.

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Cyrix became concerned about the potential name conflict, and contacted the film production company.

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