AMD Shows Off “Native” Quad-Core Microprocessor

Advanced Micro Devices Demos Quad-Core Opteron Processor

by Anton Shilov
11/30/2006 | 01:15 PM

Advanced Micro Devices, the world’s second largest producer of x86 microprocessors, on Thursday has demonstrated its first quad-core microprocessor for servers and high-end workstations. The chip features the so-called native quad-core design and is being shown off inline with AMD’s promises, yet, later than the company announced originally.

AMD Quietly Demos Quad-Core Chips

 

The code-name of the new processor, according to media reports, is Barcelona and it is designed for multi-processor servers, which means that a four-socket machine now has the power of sixteen processing engines, an amount that only very high-end machines featured just two-three years ago.

So far there is no much information about the new chip. It is known, however, that the new microprocessor is made using 65nm process technology and is drop-in compatible with mainboards and servers featuring socket F (LGA1207. The chip was reportedly showcased at a meeting with various analysts, but details like core-clock and other peculiarities are currently uncertain.

The demonstration of the quad-core chip from AMD comes as the company’s Quad FX platform failed to meet expectations of the enthusiast community.

AMD’s Quad-Core: Through Thorns to the Stars

AMD is behind its own track in case of quad-core microprocessors. Earlier this year the company planned to demonstrate its quad-core chips on the socket F platforms during the launch of dual-core AMD Opteron processors with DDR2 memory support.

Earlier it was reported that the first quad-core chip from AMD is code-named Deerhound, which will be intended for socket F infrastructure and will have shared level-two cache along with dual-channel registered DDR2 memory controller. The new chip is expected to use the new code-named K8L design, which features some improvements.

According to AMD, K8L includes a quad-core design for servers, workstations and high-end desktops, and a dual-core design intended for mainstream desktop markets. These next-generation processors will be built using AMD’s 65nm Silicon-on-Insulator (SOI) fabrication process, and include a broad range of functionality and micro-architectural improvements, including a new ability to dynamically alter the frequency of each core on the chip to match application workloads and thereby reduce overall power consumption.

AMD believes that Intel’s approach to put two dice on a single slice of substrate to build a quad-core processor - like Intel Corp. did with its Intel Core 2 Quad/Extreme and Intel Xeon 5300-series processors is inefficient and AMD’s “native quad-core” design will provide better performance and scalability for servers.