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.