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Advanced Micro Devices on Monday officially released three new dual-core processors aimed at servers and workstations. The new chips with improved clock-speeds are already proclaimed to be the world’s leading in terms of performance-per-watt by the manufacturer and are to be adopted by server makers HP and Sun.

“Introducing the next Dual-Core AMD Opteron processor models less than five months after launching the initial Dual-Core AMD Opteron processors shows undeniable technological leadership,” said Marty Seyer, corporate vice president, Commercial Business and Performance Computing, AMD.

The new AMD Opteron processors 180, 280 and 880 operate at 2.40GHz and are aimed at 1P, 2P and MP machines respectively. AMD dual-core Opteron microprocessors integrate 2MB of L2 cache, dual-channel PC3200 memory controller and are designed for 1000MHz HyperTransport bus. The new chips are drop-in compatible with existing Socket 940 and Socket 939 infrastructures.

Typical AMD Opteron processors with two processing engines feature 95W thermal design power. So far the top speed of dual-core Opteron chips has been 2.20GHz, whereas single-core products’ highest performing model operates at 2.80GHz. 

“In terms of performance-per-watt, nothing can touch the Dual-Core AMD Opteron processor. It represents a potential annual savings of $50 000 for a datacenter with 500 two-way systems,” Mr. Seyer added.

HP said it would add the new dual-core AMD Opteron chips into its server and workstation machines featuring AMD64 chips. According to AMD, the Opteron model 880 will be used with the 4P HP ProLiant DL 585 and BL45p while AMD Opteron model 280 will offer customers performance increases in the 2P ProLiant DL385 and DL145 G2, plus the BL25p and BL35p server blades. HP will also match AMD Opteron 280 with the performance-class HP xw9300 workstation that features multi-processing capabilities and support for dual PCI-Express x16 graphics cards. Sun Microsystems also said it would adopt the new processors from AMD the following month.

The dual-core AMD Opteron processor model 880 is priced at $2,649 in 1000-unit quantities and the model 280 is priced at $1,299 in 1000-unit quantities. The dual-core AMD Opteron processor Model 180, for single-processor workstations and servers, is scheduled to be available within 30 days and will be priced at $799 in 1000-unit quantities.

AMD also noted that with the addition of the new dual-core AMD Opteron processor models, the prices of two dual-core processor models within each series overlap with current single-core processors, making the shift to dual-core technology “an easy decision for customers”.

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