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AMD’s dual-core desktop processors, which are expected to be available this Summer, may be named as the AMD Athlon 64 X2, according to a report from Hexus.net web-site, who said the information was obtained from sources close to Advanced Micro Devices.

The initial breed of dual-core desktop processors will include AMD Athlon 64 X2 4400+, AMD Athlon 64 X2 4600+ and AMD Athlon 64 X2 4800+ with the top model operating at 2.40GHz, higher than the flagship dual-core AMD Opteron processor, which will presumably function at 2.20GHz, and inline with the current AMD Athlon 64 4000+ microprocessor.

The X2 moniker in the AMD Athlon 64 X2 name should tell customers the chip contains two processing engines, however, it is unclear how exactly AMD determines model numbers for its forthcoming chips. The Sunnyvale, California-based chipmaker has always said its model numbers for desktop processors are to show relative performance of its chips compared to AMD Athlon processor with Thunderbird core. Given that dual-core processors may deliver from 0% to 100% performance increase compared to single-core chip at the same speed with the same cache size depending on application, it is unclear how AMD will decide on the model numbers for its desktop products with two processing engines.

AMD’s dual-core desktop processor will have dual-channel DDR memory controller, 1 or 2MB L2 cache (either 512KB or 1MB of cache per core) and will fit into Socket 939 mainboards provided that they were made according to all AMD’s thermal and voltage guidelines and have a BIOS to support dual-core central processing units.

AMD plans to firstly unveil its server-aimed dual-core Opteron processors and then follow with desktop-oriented dual-core Athlon 64 chip in the second half of the year because it believes server applications will benefit from additional core more than desktop software, as server programs are typically tailored for machines running two or more processors. Intel intends to commercially release its desktop Pentium D and Pentium Extreme Edition chips in May, 2005, with dual-engine Xeon processor for servers entering the market in early 2006.

The dual-core server chips of Advanced Micro Devices are possibly slated to be introduced on the 21st of April during the company’s event in New York; some sources suggested that the first desktop dual-core microprocessors from AMD will be on the market by the end of June.

The probable prospective plan of Advanced Micro Devices suggests that AMD will launch AMD Opteron 200- and 800-series dual-core processors at 1.80GHz, 2.0GHz and 2.20GHz with 95W thermal design power (TDP) in the second quarter of 2005.

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