AMD Demos Six-Core Istanbul CPU, Plans 2H Launch

AMD Demos Six-Core Istanbul CPU, Plans 2H Launch

Here recently, all the buzz surrounding AMD has involved its Dragon platform or newly spun The Foundry Company. Needless to say, it's about time we got back to the basics. Advanced Micro Devices has today announced that it recently completed live public demonstrations of its upcoming six-core 45nm AMD Opteron processor, which is currently carrying the codename "Istanbul."

Said chip is scheduled to launch in the second half of 2009, and while we're left to assume that "launch" translates to "ships" (right, AMD?), it should be the "only x86 six-core processor available for two- and four-socket systems and higher" whenever it finally hits the market. For those who weren't around to see it, we're informed that the demonstration involved a live, seamless upgrade of a system based on 45nm Quad-Core AMD Opteron processors to Istanbul processors, which was made possible by Istanbul's innate socket- and thermal-compatibility with currently shipping AMD Opteron processor-based systems. The move, which will undoubtedly please consumers who detest upgrading everything every six months, is said to "reduce qualification times for OEMs and solution providers, while giving end-users the opportunity to upgrade their existing systems."



John Fruehe, director of business development, Server Workstation, had this to say on the promising demo: "Thus far we see impressive performance and performance-per-watt results in our initial 'Istanbul' testing. We expect global OEMs and solution providers to begin shipping systems based on 'Istanbul' in the second half of this year." There's a video of the test just below.


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Wow... looks like AMD might be coming out of the existing slump!

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I think it's a step in the right direction, but I don't think it'll topple Intel's new nehalem server platform. The only thing amd can hope for is higher power efficiency and lower prices.

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Honestly Istanbul is a step in a seemingly right direction, but I honestly think amd has yet to really tap the power of there quad cores -- and I think it has to do with there microcode more than anything else. If you compare the phenom arch. to the nehleam(sp?) arch. Aside from QPI vs HT theres not a lot of difference. The major hinderance you find is in the L3 cache's and throwing more cores at a problem is essentially masking it.

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to be honest I would prefer to see an increase in performance per core rather then just throwing more cores on a single processor. While multicores has it's advantages how many applications really utilize more then 4 cores as it is.

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The problem with adding more performance per core is that you have to program to it, where as if you just add more cores then the OS (which should be multi-thread aware in its scheduling algorithms) should be able to take advantage of all the cores without adding development work -- I think thats the idea behind "throwing hardware" at a perceived problem, not a great idea but a quick fix. I think as long as pricing stays reasonable (i.e. price vs performance), just like buying a 4-cylinder vs a straight-6/v6 would be then amd is on a seemingly productive track, they just have to fine tune it as I said above. Just my 2 cents....

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true to a point if the multiple cores and share the workload or you come up with something like the smart cache technology.

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Step in the right direction, we'll see the results soon enough.

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