AMD Releases Vision Notebook, Desktop Chips

With an emphasis on multimedia processing capabilities, AMD announced a complete refresh of its desktop and notebook platforms based on Vision technology, which claims to offer long battery life and better graphics processing capability.

Processor specialist Advanced Micro Devices announced the release of the company's latest 2010 Mainstream and Ultrathin notebook platforms, along with a desktop platform. AMD's emphasis for these platforms seems to be on improving the multimedia experience: The company is claiming a Vision-based system with AMD discrete graphics scored 50 percent better than a comparable Intel-based system with Nvidia discrete graphics, which translates to 20 percent faster photo processing in Photoshop Elements 8 and 37 percent faster DVD transfers.

The company said systems featuring these notebook and desktop platforms with Vision technology from AMD would be available beginning this week and through the end of the year from original equipment manufacturers and PC manufacturers and vendors such as Acer, Asus, Dell, HP, Lenovo, MSI and Toshiba. The Mainstream Notebook CPUs come paired with GPUs including the ATI Radeon HD 4500 for DirectX 11 support, or Radeon 4200.

"With Vision Technology from AMD, we are finally connecting how people use their PCs with the way people purchase them," said Nigel Dessau, senior vice president and chief marketing officer of AMD. "Today, after little more than 200 days in market, our partners are introducing more Vision-based PCs than ever before; a testament to both the competitiveness of AMD platform technology and the simplified marketing approach."

As AMD and Intel battle for market share, Intel continues to lead a graphics market that is poised for significant growth in 2010, growing its share to 45.49 percent during the first quarter-up from 43.5 percent the quarter before. Earlier this month, Nvidia's mobile-specific GTX 480M chip, based on the company's new Fermi GPU architecture, was leaked online. The company's PolyMorph Engine, a scalable geometry processing engine built from the ground up for DirectX 11 tessellation, also includes high-speed 32x anti-aliasing smooth edges for improved visual quality.

"In 2009, 96 million people worldwide bought PCs for entertainment purposes. The AMD 2010 Mainstream Notebook Platform lets consumers enjoy their movies, music and games in stunning color and clarity, seamlessly connect with friends on social networks, and edit videos and photos," the company boasted. "The 2010 Ultrathin Notebook Platform makes it possible for consumers to enjoy a full-featured PC experience, including HD playback, in sleek and affordable notebooks that can deliver up to eight hours of battery life."

As the market for high-performance and energy-efficient processing platforms increases, companies such as Intel are also branching out into markets such as smartphones and tablet computers. Last week, Intel unveiled its newest Atom processor-based platform, which the company said provides significantly lower power consumption and prepares Intel to target a range of computing devices, including high-end smartphones, tablets and other mobile handheld products. The platform includes the Intel Atom Processor Z6xx Series Family (formerly the Lincroft system-on-chip (SoC)), the Intel Platform Controller Hub MP20 (formerly Langwell) and a dedicated Mixed Signal IC (MSIC), formerly Briertown.