A list of code-names of future Advanced Micro Devices graphics processing units (GPUs) for desktops and notebooks have emerged in hardware diagnostic programs designed to identify various computer components. Judging by the number of names, AMD has a lot to reveal in the coming months or quarters.
While Advanced Micro Devices is pretty keen on releasing code-names of its future application processing units (APUs) and central processing units (CPUs), the company is usually tight-lipped about code-names of its graphics processing units for some reason. While the company did reveal that its future desktop GPU family is code-named Sea Islands, whereas the new breed of laptop GPUs is code-named Solar System, it never has revealed actual code-names.
According to 3DCenter.org web-site, HWinfo information and diagnostic tools can already recognize AMD’s future graphics processors, which means that AMD itself has submitted identification numbers and code-names of the GPUs to developers of appropriate software.
As it appears, Southern Islands family consists of five graphics solutions: Oland, Bonaire, Hainan, Curacao and Aruba. At present, exact positioning of each solution is unclear, but they are written in ascending order (e.g., Oland is entry-level chip, Curacao is highest-performing chip, Aruba is dual-chip flagship solution) based on information that has been published in Wikipedia.
The Solar System family of GPUs for mobile computers will naturally feature only four code-names: Mars, Sun, Neptune and Venus. Official positioning of the chips remains a mystery.
AMD keeps silent about its new families of graphics processors. The only thing currently known for sure is that the majority of new chips will be made using 28nm process technology and will not be re-branded 40nm GPUs. Unfortunately, it is unknown what micro-architecture – GCN or GCN2 – will power the new graphics solutions.
AMD did not comment on the news-story.
Tags: AMD, ATI, Radeon, Southern Islands, Solar System, Oland, Bonaire, Hainan, Curacao, Aruba, Mars, Sun, Neptune, Venus, 28nm
Comments currently: 3
Discussion started: 01/08/13 08:15:51 PM
Latest comment: 01/09/13 03:02:59 AM
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The 28nm process now is very mature and volume ramp for discrete and IGP graphics should not be of concern (especailly with Global Foundries NY FAB 8 now online).
So it would not make sense to not bring the latest graphics core design to both mobile and desktop in the same cycle (which yes has been the case for previous cycles but my belief is that was due to limitation of cutting edge node process for discrete desktop that needed to be sold at a premium to cover the higher wafer cost).
GCN2 mobile will be a Q2 release to coincide with Temash and Kibini.
vanakkuty: I was hoping you could give me your thoughts on the influence Jim Kellers recent arrival is having on AMD microprocessor designs? Is he focussing just on fresh ground up designs only or is he also getting his hands dirty with tweaking the K11's ?
01/08/13 08:15:51 PM]
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Yes your analysis is right, the entire solar system graphics line up is sea islands which AMD themselves call as 2nd generation GCN
. But it will not be given the moniker GCN2. I am beginning to think that came from the press? Not sure, I can dig on that further.
But to prove the point here is a slide from AMD's CES presentation in Hi-Def
As for your question on Jim Keller. This is bit difficult for me to comment on because that information if confidential. What I can tell you is 'yes' he is hard at work on some designs with his team of Fellows and their subordinates of MTSes.
But I can say a few things, and there is no harm in telling this because anyone who works in this industry realizes these things without even having insider info on any company to be honest. All really general ways of how things happen which is why none of this is earth shatteringly scoop info. :D
Jim Keller definitely did not have the chance to influence Steamroller designs, they were already locked and in various stages of development. Even if there are changes, they are the ones that were heatedly debated, discussed and finally signed off late by people who were in charge well ahead of Keller's arrival.
01/08/13 08:43:26 PM]
it's nice to see that amd is retiring the 40nm from it's next gen gpu lineup it's been around since the radeon 5xxx series.
01/09/13 03:02:59 AM]
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