Shortcuts

Leaked Slide Claims To Spill Details On Next-Gen Bulldozer Processor

rated by 0 users
This post has 7 Replies | 1 Follower

Top 10 Contributor
Posts 26,085
Points 1,183,220
Joined: Sep 2007
ForumsAdministrator
News Posted: Mon, Oct 3 2011 4:39 PM
A slide leaked to occasionally-accurate Turkish website Donahim Haber purports to showcase some of the features of AMD's next-generation Bulldozer core, codenamed 'Piledriver.'  This is the same CPU core the company's upcoming 'Trinity' mobile APU will be based on. Other leaked slides have implied that Trinity will be released more quickly than first anticipated, which makes this information downright timely.



As always, keep in mind that Donahim Haber is a rumor site. The slide, however, is a rumor that makes sense. A 10 percent performance jump from Bulldozer to Piledriver is a reasonable increase for a quick architectural refresh. The chip keeps BD's cache layouts and supports version 3.0 of AMD's Turbo Core!. At a guess, this may be a suite of more-advanced power gating and clocking functionalities--it may be that the primary features of TC 3.0 are aimed at Trinity.

The chip also supports new instructions. FMA3 is an Intel-supported instruction for fused multiply-adds. The current state of FMA3/FMA4 (AMD's version) support is a bit confused, but Bulldozer won't ship with FMA3 support. Adding it to Piledriver could improve performance in certain workloads, once compilers are updated to take advantage of the new capability. This last is essential, and it's part of why Bulldozer's performance may improve over time--several of the chip's features may require compiler support to function optimally. New BMI (bit manipulation instructions) could improve the performance of certain loops or conditions.

The one thing we'd have liked to see that isn't mentioned here is any difference in power consumption between the two chips. Oftentimes, companies are able to optimize die layouts from one generation to the next as a means of reducing power, even on the same process. In this case, power savings translate into higher available clock speeds, and that's an option that could only benefit AMD. The company will be taking its eight-core (and higher) products into battle in the server sector next year, and lower TDPs would give AMD room to compete with current Xeons by increasing clock speeds more aggressively.

Other options are as expected. Piledriver will continue to support DDR3-1866 via dual-channel memory (you'll have to buy a server platform if you want quad-channel RAM), AMD is apparently sticking with the AM3+ platform, and the 9-series chipset (again, according to this rumor) will form the backbone of product support. We'd be surprised if AMD doesn't debut a 10-series chipset along with a second-generation Bulldozer, particularly since the company's Radeon HD 7000 products will supposedly support PCIe 3.0.

Bulldozer is expected to drop in the very near future, with Trinity possibly shipping as early as Q1 2012. No word on Piledriver, but a refresh sometime in H1 2012 would make sense.
  • | Post Points: 95
Top 50 Contributor
Posts 3,236
Points 37,910
Joined: Mar 2010
AKwyn replied on Mon, Oct 3 2011 5:02 PM

A refresh, already??? This thing hasn't even been released yet!

In any case, the 10% x86 performance increase will be greatly appreciated. It may be a bit while before we get apps that support AMD's instructions but when they do, you can bet that the speed on those apps are going to be phenomenal and even though the refresh may not beat the Core i7's (my guess is still going to be toe to to with Intel instead of beating it), it will make the gap between Intel and AMD smaller.

Of course, AMD can only keep up with what they have and Intel does have a really considerable lead over the manufacturing process; however, what we do have is something that should give manufactuers more of a reason to include AMD processors in their systems and if the price is any indication, more of a reason for us to go with AMD.

 

"The future starts with you; now start posting more!"

  • | Post Points: 5
Top 100 Contributor
Posts 1,120
Points 12,940
Joined: Jun 2011
Location: East Coast

"Oh boy, there's that *donani* what ever site again. BD hasn't been out yet and they already have exclusive details on the second gen BD? Anyhow, anyone want to talk rumor , MicroCenter claims BD will go on sale on October 12th, yet Reports on the Lenovo ThinkCentre M77 puts BD for November. This is nuts."

  • | Post Points: 5
Top 100 Contributor
Posts 1,072
Points 11,625
Joined: Jul 2009
Joel H replied on Tue, Oct 4 2011 11:01 AM

Taylor,

If we're talking mainstream PCs, everything is x86 based. Everything. ARM has no presence in the desktop/notebook market.

  • | Post Points: 20
Top 100 Contributor
Posts 1,120
Points 12,940
Joined: Jun 2011
Location: East Coast

"Well, Its official, BD will go live on October 12."

  • | Post Points: 5
Top 50 Contributor
Posts 3,236
Points 37,910
Joined: Mar 2010
AKwyn replied on Tue, Oct 4 2011 4:44 PM

Joel H:

Taylor,

If we're talking mainstream PCs, everything is x86 based. Everything. ARM has no presence in the desktop/notebook market.

I know that, but in the case of AMD's processor. They're using an architecture that does not focus much on x86 performance and instead focuses on a "Bulldozer model" method of doing things from what I can remember. I don't know what apps would take advantage of this method but I'm guessing those apps that do should perform well.

 

"The future starts with you; now start posting more!"

  • | Post Points: 5
Top 10 Contributor
Posts 8,622
Points 103,875
Joined: Apr 2009
Location: Shenandoah Valley, Virginia
MembershipAdministrator
Moderator

Yes, I know. Smile

Dogs are great judges of character, and if your dog doesn't like somebody being around, you shouldn't trust them.

  • | Post Points: 5
Top 100 Contributor
Posts 1,072
Points 11,625
Joined: Jul 2009
Joel H replied on Wed, Oct 5 2011 3:18 PM

Taylor,

Let me help you here.

All modern laptop/desktop processors are x86 processors. AMD's "Bulldozer model" essentially combines two cores' worth of integer execution units into a single processor. This is why I've referred to Bulldozer as being "1.5" cores. It has two separate sets of integer units (like a standard dual-core processor would) but only a single (large) FPU. It also shares all of its L1/L2 caches and its scheduling resources.

All of that "stuff" is separate from x86 compatibility. Long-term, as in, 2-3 years from now, AMD intends to incorporate an x86-compatible GPU into an APU. At that point, the system would be able to use the GPU to run regular x86 programs if the CPU was busy. That's still some time in the future, however, and AMD has to solve some various technical issues to make certain it all plays nicely together.

  • | Post Points: 5
Page 1 of 1 (8 items) | RSS