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  • Hitachi Debuts High-End Mainframes Targeted at Japan
  • July 15, 1998 (TOKYO) -- Hitachi Ltd. announced the M Parallel Series in its super-mainframe and large-scale mainframe lines on July 7.
    The new products are the MP5800E super mainframe and MP5600E large-scale mainframe.

    Along with the announcement, the company presented future product plans for its mainframe line.

    MP5800E has been selling a similar product under the Skyline brand in the United States. Due to higher demand of super-mainframes there, Hitachi conducted sales operations in the United States before Japan.

    The MP5600E uses the latest CMOS processors to enhance performance to two times that of conventional models. The performance per processor is about 110-120 million instructions per second (MIPS).

    There are a total of 11 models due to be supplied with a one-way to eight-way architecture.

    The minimal monthly charge for the MP5800E is 45.19 million yen (US$318,000), and the MP5600E is 13.40 million yen (US$93,700) per month as a minimal price offer. The former model is scheduled to be delivered in the fourth quarter of 1998, and the latter model in the first quarter in 1999.

    Hitachi's target for both overseas and domestic sales of all MP5800 Series models in units of processors is to reach 3,500 IPs (instruction processors) in four years starting in 1995, when its first model was delivered. Sales of the MP5600 Series are to reach 4,000 IPs in the four years starting in 1997.

    As of the end of June 1998, sales of the MP5800 Series were about 2,800 IPs, while that of the MP5600 Series were 1,800 IPs. Hitachi initially had set the sales target of the MP5800 Series at 2,000 IPs in the four-year term. However, that was revised upward to 3,500 IPs because sales exceeded the initial target.

    Hitachi also discussed its future mainframe product strategy. Specifically the next generation of mainframes under development is scheduled to be issued around the year 2000, while the company also advances current projects such as Advanced CMOS ECL (ACE), developed with bipolar and CMOS technologies, and CMOS.

    The company is going to reinforce the following technical and business issues: (1) address expansion corresponding to 64-bits, (2) adoption of Gigabit Ethernet as well as fiber channels, (3) the embedding of a secure communications function, (4) promotion of availability, and (5) provision of data warehousing and online analytical processing tools.

    As to whether bipolar technology development should be continued, "Hitachi still recognizes a potential advantage over the bipolar technology, which can be more easily applied to some products than CMOS technology. Therefore ACE machines are positioned at a higher level than CMOS machines, and ACE performance is being enhanced by combining both technologies," said Katsuro Wakai, general manager of Hitachi's general purpose computer division.

    "The performance gap between ACE and CMOS is getting closer, even though ACE once showed performance three to five times better than CMOS. But ACE can still has performance roughly twice that of CMOS, " Wakai added. "As for a concrete example of technical development, Hitachi is advancing a demonstration test of chips used in a processor module of the MP5800 by applying copper interconnections to them."

    More information is available in English at: http://www.hitachi.co.jp/New/cnews/E/980707B.html

    (BizTech Editorial Dept.)

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    Updated: Tue Jul 14 16:04:02 1998