The K5: AMD's Very Own Processor
In 1996, AMD released its fifth-generation processor, the K5. Compared to Intel’s Pentium, the K5 was technically more advanced, though it did have some faults. It’s especially interesting because of its RISC-based internal architecture that decoded x86 instructions into micro-instructions before executing them. The K5 had difficulty reaching high clock speeds and its FPU was a little weak. Still, in normal use, the K5 was a better performer than the Pentium and its PR was not just hype—a K5 clocked at 100 MHz was sold as a PR133 chip, meaning that AMD considered it as being equivalent in performance to a 133 MHz Pentium.
|Code name||SSA/5, 5k86|
|Maximum memory||4,096 MB|
|L1 cache||16 KB + 8 KB|
|L2 cache||motherboard (FSB frequency)|
|Clock frequency||75-133 MHz (PR75 - PR200)|
|Fabrication process||500 - 350 nm|
|Number of transistors||4.3 million|
|Power consumption||11-16 W|
|Die surface area||251 - 181 mm²|
|Connector||Socket 5 or 7|
The use of the PR resulted in such oddities as a K5 PR90 and PR120 running at the same frequency (90 MHz) and a PR100 and PR133 both clocked at 100 MHz. Notice also that the CPU package informed buyers that a heat sink and fan were required—at that time, the use of such cooling devices was not yet common practice.
Where the intel article seemed to overshadow intel's little victories, this article seems to gloss over AMD innovation (though i'll admit that i didn't recall the bit about the Intel chip, either the pentium or pentium pro, that gave incorrect values for mathmatical equations)
Both articles really need alot more detail added. As i've actually ranted about the history i'm reffering to in the comments section of the intel article as well as many other's i won't re-hash it.
This is like viasat history - only more specific and technical
AMD 486 @120 Mhz was making my friends that bought an early Pentium red with envy.
Someone gave me a AMD K5 system.
Thanks for the article.
I have quite a few chips from both makers, including the AMD 40MHz 386, and an Intel 386 & 387 33MHz cpu's, which are quite scarce...