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

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News Posted: Wed, Feb 25 2009 8:47 AM

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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rapid1 replied on Wed, Feb 25 2009 12:18 PM

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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dizowned replied on Sat, Mar 14 2009 4:48 AM

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.

It's not custom unless your the only one who can boot it.

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nelsoncp21 replied on Sat, Mar 14 2009 11:30 AM

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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dizowned replied on Sat, Mar 14 2009 8:04 PM

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....

It's not custom unless your the only one who can boot it.

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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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diemos replied on Wed, Mar 25 2009 4:33 PM

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

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