16-bit computing

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16-bit computing

CPUs that process 16 bits as a single unit, compared to 8, 32 or 64. The first personal computers in the late 1970s used 8-bit CPUs but migrated to 16 bits with the IBM PC in 1981. In the mid-1980s, PCs jumped to 32 bits with the Intel 386, and the Mac debuted with the 32-bit Motorola 68000 CPU. See 8088, 386 and 68000.

The 16-bit CPUs are still used as embedded processors in myriad products that do not require the higher speed. However, over the years, a lot of design effort went into 32-bit CPUs, making them faster, more efficient, smaller and less expensive and competitive with 16-bit CPUs for numerous embedded applications. See 8-bit computing, 32-bit computing and bit specifications.


References in periodicals archive ?
There's a sweet spot between 16-bit and 3 2-bit processors," says Scott Lynch, operations manager, DSP 0peration--8 & 16 Bit Div.
The Calabasas-based developer of entertainment software for the likes of Nintendo Gameboy and Sega Genesis had hemorrhaged money in the industry's transition from 8-bit to 16-bit game consoles, and a floundering THQ toy division was pushing the firm's bottom line even further into the red.
NASDAQ: MPRS), today announced that it is restructuring its worldwide operations to focus on its core personal computer entertainment software business, and to place additional emphasis on its entry into the 16-bit video game business.
Designed to increase the portability of patient and industrial monitors and improve the performance and throughput of automated test equipment (ATE) and data acquisition systems, Analog Devices' AD7980 1-MSPS (mega-sample per second) 16-bit ADC consumes 80 percent less power and board space than the closest competing 16-bit ADC in its class.
With this line, Sharp provides four unique microcontrollers with the performance of 32-bit ARM7TDMI-S cores, yet requiring only 16-bit designed circuit boards and memory devices, saving in system design costs.
Casey Williams still checks out the demos on the 16-bit Genesis at Game Dude, but the Van Nuys 15-year-old said he isn't spending his video game dollars on Sega anymore.
It's a simple equation -- combine seven years of experience in this business, with four months of learning in the 16-bit market and a value-driven pricing strategy, and the result is, undoubtedly, continued leadership from Nintendo," said Peter Main, vice president, marketing, Nintendo of America Inc.
NASDAQ:MCHP), a leading provider of microcontroller and analog semiconductors, today announced that 16 members of its 16-bit PIC24 microcontroller (MCU) family and 13 members of its dsPIC33 16-bit digital signal controller (DSC) family are now shipping in volume.
NASDAQ: MCHP), a leading provider of microcontroller and analog semiconductors, today announced that its dsPIC(R) digital signal controllers (DSCs) and PIC24H microcontrollers (MCUs) are the world's first 16-bit devices with advanced security features that allow multiple parties in a collaborative system design to share the memory, interrupts and peripherals of a single chip without compromising their intellectual property (IP).
Its subsidiary, Arena Entertainment, publishes software for personal computers and Sega's 16-bit Genesis system in the U.
The DT3034 offers 16-bit measurements on up to 32 single-ended or 16 differential channels with a sampling rate of 500 kHz.
16-bit ADC Module Extends Turbolinear(TM) Technology Portfolio -- Ideal for High-Speed and High-Performance Signal Processing in Communications and Industrial Applications