AMD Unveils 40nm Mobility Radeon HD 4800 Series

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News Posted: Fri, Feb 27 2009 6:51 PM

Back during the Consumer Electronics Show this past January, AMD announced a host of new Mobility Radeon GPUs in the ATI Radeon HD 4600 and HD 4800 families. And today, from the CeBIT trade show in Germany, AMD is announcing a few more additions to their mobile GPU line-up, the Mobility Radeon HD 4860 and HD 4830.

The Mobility Radeon HD 4860 and HD 4830 are not based on a brand new architecture, but one aspect that makes them standout from all of AMD's other mobile GPUs is that they are manufactured using a more advanced 40nm process.

 

  

Making the transition to a 40nm manufacturing process, allowed AMD to engineer a chip comprised of nearly the same number of transistors as the previous generation 55nm parts, but at a measurably smaller die size. The new 40nm ATI Mobility Radeon HD 4860 and HD 4830 GPUs also consume less power than their 55nm counterparts, while offering similar or better performance than the previous generation.

The specifications and features of AMD's current ATI Mobility Radeon GPU line-up are listed in the table above. As you can see, the new 40nm variants are comprised of roughly 826M transistors and are equipped with 640 stream processors. DDR3, GDDR3, or GDDR5 memory types can be used with the new chips, and they utilize a 128-bit wide memory interface. The new Mobility Radeon HD 4860 and HD 4830 also feature multiple DisplayPort interfaces (with audio support), and like their desktop counterparts, they support ATI's multi-GPU CrossFireX technology as well.

No design wins have been announced just yet, but the chips are pin compatible with the previous generation 55nm parts, so implementing the Mobility Radeon HD 4860 and HD 4830 into existing designs should require minimal effort on the part of notebook manufacturers.

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When will they be available to laptop manufacturers?

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turtle replied on Tue, Mar 10 2009 2:08 AM

*Note - Tell AMD they need to fix that press kit, rv770 has 956 (965?) million transistors. Everyone is posting this chart, and it's just wrong.

137mm2. Not too shabby.

I appreciate AMD throwing in the dimensions of the chip in the comparison picture. Props for the engineering openness. It helps one realize:

rv740: 826M, 137mm2 40nm

rv730: 514M, 146mm2 55nm

That's roughly a 1.7x increase in transistor density over rv730, 1.6x over rv770. That's pretty impressive considering 40nm is not ever close to 60% of 55nm, closer to 70%, and that would lead to ~1.4x increase. AMD shader units must have some damn-tight packed transistors.

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turtle replied on Tue, Mar 10 2009 4:13 AM

Not to mention, we can deduce 8 rops is similar in transistor count to 160sp and 24 TMUs, as this would be the difference between the changes in rv730-rv740 and rv670-rv770; transistor difference is similar.

This would mean if rv870 added ~300M transistors to rv770, we would see an increase of 480sp and 24 TMUs @40nm. Or, if they increase it the same transistor percentage and decreases the die size similarly to rv740 from rv730...They all point the same way. Will the 1280/64 rv870 please stand up?

The plot thickens...

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