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Sharky Extreme : News From Inside The Industry November 24, 2007


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    February 15, 2005

    Both enterprise server and high-performance workstation shoppers have more powerful CPU choices, now that both Intel Corp. and AMD have beefed up their 64-bit processor lines. AMD has introduced the fastest versions to date of its two- and four-way X86 chips: The Opteron 252 and Opteron 852, with 1,000-unit OEM prices of $851 and $1,514 respectively, each run at 2.6GHz, with 1MB of Level 2 cache and a 128-bit ECC DDR memory controller built into the processor. The 940-pin, 90-nanometer-process SOI designs also boast a faster 1GHz (up from 800MHz) HyperTransport bus and support for SSE3 software instructions and are rated at 93 watts of thermal design power. The Opteron 252 and 852 will ship to vendors within 30 days; a 2.6GHz Opteron 152 for single-processor workstations and entry-level servers ($637) will be available April 30.

    Intel's newest Xeon processors combine speeds ranging from 3.0GHz to 3.6GHz, with volume prices from $316 to $851. Formerly codenamed "Irwindale," these 800MHz-bus CPUs combine a larger 2MB Level 2 cache -- which Intel says boosts performance by up to 18 percent -- with support for DDR-2/400 memory and for 64-bit as well as 32-bit operating systems and software, using Intel's EM64T scheme (which more or less duplicates the AMD64 instruction set of its rival's Opteron and Athlon 64). Intel plans to introduce Pentium 4 6xx desktop processors with EM64T shortly. Within 90 days, Intel says, it'll ship Xeon MP "Potomac" processors with up to 8MB of Level 3 cache, as well as "Cranford" Xeon MPs with 1MB of L2 designed to support entry-level, four-way server platforms using Intel's forthcoming "Twin Castle" E8500 chipset.

    The latter is optimized for dual-core Xeon processors, which Intel says it'll be seeding with software developers and end users later this year. Dual-core desktop Pentium 4 and P4 Extreme Edition CPUs are promised for the second quarter. AMD is publicly demonstrating dual-core Opteron processors, due in mid-2005, that will drop into the same 940-pin socket as existing 90-nanometer Opterons. The company promises AMD64 dual-core CPUs for the client market in the second half of this year.

    Related Links: AMD and Intel


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