Intel’s Next-Generation Processors to Support SSE4

Intel Touts New Instruction Sets for Upcoming Chips

by Anton Shilov
10/02/2006 | 04:15 AM

Intel Corp.’s central processing units (CPUs) due to be released in the second half of next-year will not only be made using 45nm process technology, but will also incorporate 50 new instructions that will boost performance of multimedia and web applications.

 

During Intel Developer Forum Fall 2006 the world’s largest chipmaker revealed plans for more than 50 new SSE4 instructions, extending the Intel 64 instruction set architecture [formerly called IA32e – X-bit labs] “to better take advantage of Intel’s next-generation 45nm silicon manufacturing process and expand the performance and capabilities of Intel Architecture.”

Intel said that products, which code-names are presumably Wolfdale, Penryn, Yorkfield/Bloomfield as well as server chips, made using 45nm process technology will first appear in 2007 and will benefit a variety of applications, including those involving graphics, video encoding and processing, 3D imaging, gaming, web servers and application servers. The new chips will be based on the Core 2 micro-architecture.

Intel was originally expected to launch dual-core Wolfdale (for desktops) and dual-core Penryn (for laptops) processors made using 45nm process technology in 2008, according to earlier information. However, considering the recent progress with 65nm product shipments and ongoing progress with 45nm development, the company seemingly speeds up its roadmap. In addition to 45nm dual-core chips in 2007, there are rumours about single-die quad-core chip made using 45nm process technology in the Q3 2007.

Typically Advanced Micro Devices licenses Intel’s streaming SIMD extensions (SSE) instruction sets to include them into its own microprocessors, however, it is unclear whether AMD will be able to include SSE4 technology into CPUs that are scheduled for introduction in 2007. It is also unknown when software makers plan to incorporate support for SSE4 into their products, thus providing execution speed-up for systems equipped with Intel’s 45nm CPUs.