The Opteron 6200 "Interlagos" chips will offer up to 16 cores as well as improved performance and energy efficiency over the current 12-core processor, according to company officials.
Devices has begun shipping the 16-core "Interlagos" Opteron server chip, the
first of its processors based on the new "Bulldozer" architecture.
announced Sept. 7 that initial production of Interlagos
-known now as the Opteron 6200 Series-began in August, and
will start appearing in servers in the fourth quarter.
a monumental moment for the industry as this first Bulldozer core represents
the beginning of unprecedented performance scaling for x86 CPUs," Rick
Bergman, senior vice president and general manager of AMD Products Group, said
in a statement. "The flexible new Bulldozer architecture will give Web and
data center customers the scalability they need to handle emerging cloud and
Interlagos shipments will be used in large supercomputer installations that
already are being built, according to AMD.
of Interlagos continues what has been a busy year for AMD, which in January launched
its first Fusion accelerated processing units (APUs), which offer integrated
graphics and CPUs on a single piece of silicon. The new Bulldozer chips
continue AMD's drumbeat of greater performance and energy efficiency.
chip family will offer from 12 to 16 cores and will target servers with two to
four sockets. Meanwhile, the upcoming Bulldozer-based "Valencia" Opteron chips
will hold six to eight cores and will be aimed at one- to two-socket servers.
In addition, AMD officials also are prepping "Zambezi," a quad-core
Bulldozer-based chip for high-end desktop systems.
have touted new capabilities in the Bulldozer-based Opterons that will enable
them to offer as much as 50 percent more throughput than the current 12-core
Opterons while remaining within the same power envelope. In addition, a
redesigned memory controller will offer 30 percent more memory performance and
a flexible 256-bit floating-point unit, according to the company.
also have created a number of capabilities designed to increase the energy
efficiency of the chips. Among those is a feature called TDP Power Cap
, which will enable users to set the TDP (thermal design
power) of their chips. That capability will allow enterprises to customize
their processors to meet power and workload demands.
capability, called Application Power Management, will manage the power budget
and resources of the chip, including pushing power to specific cores when
needed to keep them below the TDP setting, according to company officials.
touting the performance and energy-efficiency gains, have said that the
Bulldozer chips will be the most significant advancement in server technology
in more than a decade. They also have said they expect the technology to help
keep the momentum AMD has generated this year since the release of the first
interview with eWEEK
in June, Nathan
Brookwood, principal analyst at Insight 64, said businesses are continuing to
look for ways to squeeze more performance out of their systems without driving
up power consumption and costs. Given that, an enterprise's decision between AMD's
Opterons and rival Intel's Xeon chips will come down to a key metric.
it will depend on the performance-per-watt in the Bulldozer versus the
performance-per-watt in [Intel's] 'Westmere' and 'Sandy Bridge' [Xeons],"
Brookwood said. "Performance-per-watt is what people are always going to
road map is calling for "Sepang," a successor to Valencia that will offer up to
10 Bulldozer cores that is due out in 2012. Interlagos will be followed next
year by "Terramar," which AMD officials have said will have as many as 20