The Japanese PCWatch site posted a summary of their meeting with Daryl Ostrander, AMD’s Vice President for Production and Technology. Their article didn’t contain too much of the new information, however, we still found it very interesting to straighten out certain facts so that you could get a clear picture of the situation in the market.
So, by mid 2007 AMD is planning on increasing their 0.065micron product share to its maximum. According to our Japanese colleagues, by Q3 2007 all AMD processors will be manufactured with 0.065micron technological process. This will be the company’s fastest transition to a new production process within the last 5 years: it will take only 4 quarters. The company will continue shipping Socket754 processors until the end of 2007, Opteron processors for Socket 939 will continue shipping until H2 2008 and they will be based on 0.09micron cores.
AMD will begin manufacturing 0.065micron CPUs next half of the year, however, the actual product announcements will take place only in Q1 2007. The new 0.065micron processors will technologically belong to the third generation that will combine such technologies as DSL (Dual Stress Liner), SMT (Stress Memorization Technology) and Embedded SiGe. The first two are already used for production of 0.09micron processors and allow speeding up the transistor switch speed by about 24% compared with the “pure” 0.09micron technology.
By adding Silicon and Germanium (SiGe) into the 0.065micron technological process, AMD will be able to speed up the transistor response time by 42% compared with the “pure” 0.065micron process. However, it doesn’t really mean that the frequency potential of the 0.065micron processors will also increase by 42%: the actual frequency boost will be lower, of course. AMD can also use this potential to reduce the power consumption of its CPUs, for instance. I believe that AMD will most likely find a balanced solution with optimal frequency and TDP parameters, unless the Conroe success makes them forget about power saving.
It is important that 0.065micron AMD processors will immediately accommodate the new SiGe technology. It is a clear indication that the production yields and the transition to 0.065micron technology are so great that it allows AMD to introduce complex “additives” all at once without wasting the time on polishing off the “naked” 0.065micron process. However, According to AMD representatives there is nothing seriously difficult about shifting from 0.9micron to 0.065micron process: they can use the same methods and equipment.
It is quite possible that 0.065micron AMD processors designed for Socket AM2 will please us with their great overclocking potential, because the 0.09micron technological process has almost completely exhausted its potential.
AMD is going to start manufacturing 0.045micron CPUs in Q1 2008. We should keep in mind that the processor specifications within each production technology keep improving every quarter. In other words, the 0.065micron AMD processor manufactured in the end of 2007 should be much better overclockable than the same 0.065micron CPU made in early 2007.