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Advanced Micro Devices will update its lineup of Opteron microprocessors for servers and workstations next week, sources inside the channel said. The improvements include core-clock increase to 2.20GHz as well as support for PC3200 memory by AMD Opteron processors, at least, by some platforms.

The new Opteron processors are expected to be available in models 148, 248 and 848 for systems with 1, 2 or 4/8 processors in that order. The chips will increase the speed to 2.20GHz and gain support of PC3200 DDR SDRAM memory with ECC. By now all AMD Opteron processors supported only PC2700 ECC RAM.

The roll-out of new Socket 940 Opteron CPUs will bring AMD a significant performance boost in workstation and server applications to strengthen the Sunnyvale, California-based chipmaker’s positions in competition with Santa Clara, California-based Intel Corporation.

2.20GHz is a quite high speed for AMD’s 64-bit processors with code-named “Hammer” architecture manufactured using 0.13 micron SOI fabrication process at Fab30 in Dresden, Germany. The initial 64-bit chips from AMD, such as Opteron 140, Opteron 240 and Opteron 840 CPUs, are clocked at 1.40GHz; therefore, a more than 50% speed increase seems to be a significant. Nevertheless, the 2.20GHz is not a true landmark for the company, as Advanced Micro Devices has been shipping its high-end AMD Athlon 64 FX-51 processor clocked at this speed since late September.

It is believed that AMD also plans to shortly unveil its AMD Athlon 64 3400+ processor at 2.20GHz for performance-mainstream PCs as well as bring AMD Athlon 64 FX-53 at stunning 2.40GHz for high-end desktops by holiday season. Last week a server company indicated its intention to ship systems powered by AMD Opteron 250 processors clocked at 2.40GHz early next year.

As a rule, officials from AMD deny to comment on information coming from third-parties in regards future product releases.

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