AMD has launched its new Shanghai quad-core Opteron processors today, promising substantial performance gains and reduced power consumption.
The new Opteron processors promise up to 35-percent more performance, with a decrease of up to 35-percent in power consumption at idle when compared to the the previous Opteron processors based on Barcelona. For some, the Barcelona platform was a bit disappointing as it generally paled in comparison to the similar offerings from Intel. With this new boost in speed and efficiency though, AMD hopes its new Opteron processors, based on Shanghai, can reclaim some of the former glory that it once had.
AMD had kick-started the launch by announcing immediate widespread availability of the the quad-core Opteron processors, with global OEMs expected to be offering enterprise and SMB customers a selection of more than 25 systems by the end of the year. Sun Microsystems, HP, Dell and IBM will be offering systems based on the new AMD Opteron processors, with shipping expected to begin as early as this month. According to John Fowler, an executive vice president at Sun Microsystems, “... with generation-to-generation platform continuity, customers can be confident the new systems will fit seamlessly into existing AMD Opteron deployments.“.
New quad-core Opteron processors with a 75-watt ACP will be available immediately, ranging in speeds from 2.3 to 2.7 GHz. The new processors feature a 6 MB L3 cache size, DDR2-800 memory support and AMD’s new Smart Fetch technology, which reduces power consumption by allowing cores to enter a “halt” state at idle times. The new processors fit into existing Socket 1207 architecture that will also be used in the upcoming Istanbul processors, which are the next generation of AMD Opteron processors. In Q1 2009, AMD is expected to release its quad-core Opteron HE (55-watt) and SE (105-watt) processors.
AMD also mentions it will be releasing new processors for the desktop PC market in Q1 2009; the platform is codenamed Dragon. This new platform is said to optimize performance by combining the performance of the new 45 nm AMD Phenom II X4 quad-core processors with the AMD 700 Series chipsets and ATI Radeon HD 4000 series graphics.