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Advanced Micro Devices, the world’s second largest developer of x86 microprocessors, said last week that it had started shipments of its six-core AMD Opteron “Istanbul” processors for revenue.

Patrick Patla, vice president and general manager of server and workstation business at AMD confirmed last week that the company had started to ship six-core AMD Opteron chips for revenue. The chipmaker expects server makers, including Cray, Dell, HP, IBM and Sun Microsystems, to start supplying machines equipped with new chips later this month. The company claims that it does not have immediate plans to promote its six-core chips on the workstation or desktop markets.

AMD’s six-core Opteron processors code-named Istanbul feature 6MB of L3 cache, 3MB of L2 cache, dual-channel DDR2 memory controller and are compatible with socket F infrastructure. One tangible improvement over the quad-core Shanghai processors that the Istanbul chips have (besides increased amount of cores) is HyperTransport Assist feature, which works the same way as Intel’s snoop filter inside high-end chipsets for Intel Xeon processors (keeps cache coherency traffic between the two sockets from appearing on the external bus). AMD’s Istanbul processor is made using 45nm process technology. At present AMD ships six-core AMD Opteron chips for 2-way and 4-way/8-way servers with with 2.20GHz, 2.40GHz and 2.60GHz clock-speed and 75W thermal envelope.

Drop-in compatibility of Istanbul processors with existing infrastructure allows makers of current-generation servers to install higher-performance chips into existing machines and increase their performance-per-watt without any substantial investments into development. AMD promises 30% more performance in the same power envelope for its six-core.

In April AMD said it would provides discounts to those, who upgrades their existing servers to new processors, such as six-core AMD Opteron “Istanbul” or quad-core AMD Opteron “Shanghai”.

“Based on close collaboration with our customers, we believe there is a clear value shift changing the economics of the server market. The new six- core AMD Opteron processor meets the increasing need for a combination of low total cost of ownership, superior performance-per-watt and scalability. Simply put, Six-Core AMD Opteron processors deliver top-line performance that’s bottom-line efficient,” said Patrick Patla.

AMD begins to ship its Istanbul processors around eight months after Intel Corp. initiated shipments of its six-core Intel Xeon “Dunnington” 7400-series chip. It is hard to say whether AMD’s Istanbul will allow the company to fight back market share in the multi-processor servers space, the new six-core chip from AMD will help the company to more successfully compete against Intel Corp.’s Xeon 5500 “Nehalem” chip aimed at dual-processor servers that only has four computing engines.

Tags: AMD, Opteron, Istanbul, 45nm

Discussion

Comments currently: 1
Discussion started: 06/01/09 02:53:15 PM
Latest comment: 06/01/09 02:53:15 PM

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"The company claims that it does not have immediate plans to promote its six-core chips on the workstation or desktop markets."

I thin AMD can't afford to sell the Istanbul CPUs on the DESKTOP prices nor can it compete on the workstation market where Nehalems are very competitive.

On the big RACKS , AMD has a way, at least to sustain its market share because of the fact that 30% improvement with only 10% investment is great for any company that wants more performance for its servers. And any company with a Shanghai/Barcelona server can just buy and install the Istanbul CPUs .

If a server with Barcelona CPUs gets the Istanbul treatment, I think the performance can be roughly double .
0 0 [Posted by: East17  | Date: 06/01/09 02:53:15 PM]
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