We have already pointed out multiple times that in the ideological fight between the two micro-processors giants Intel always focuses on its superiority when it comes to mastering new production technologies. AMD tries to object by saying that the new production process alone doesn’t bring any advantages and it is all about progressive architecture. No matter what arguments both parties have at their disposal, we all understand very well that an ideal CPU should combine progressive architecture with progressive technological process. The first ensures high performance, while the latter promises high production yields, low production cost and low power consumption. Note that AMD still lacks production capacities, so they are really rushing to start manufacturing more compact 45nm CPUs as soon as possible.
Knowing very well how important it is to master 45nm process, yesterday in California, USA AMD representatives demonstrated an actual 300mm silicon wafer containing 45nm semiconductor chips. They were very brief about the architecture of these chips: SRAM memory and some logic. Actually, this is practically ready raw material for production of 45nm processors.
The wafer was produced on Dresden Fab 36. This gives us to understand that this will be the first fab to get involved into 45nm wafers manufacturing process. They should start wafer mass production in the end of 2007, when Intel threatens to start shipping the first 45nm CPUs. AMD is going to begin shipping 45nm processors by the middle of 2008, according to our colleagues from TG Daily site.
HardOCP reports that at the same event AMD demonstrated single- and dual-processor systems built around Opteron Barcelona (K10) processors. They didn’t mention any of the system specs, but demonstrated Spiderman 3 movie trailer encoding into H.264 format with 1080p quality. On a dual-processor system this process was going on almost in real-time. The processor and chipset heatsinks were hardly getting warm at all. And that was about it on the new CPUs. This demonstration is evidently just a small episode of a more massive campaign, so stay tuned for more news.