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  (Source: HEXUS)
AMD has a new chip in the works to tackle the MID/netbook market

Intel and AMD have been fierce rivals for many years. Intel almost always had the upper hand over AMD until the launch of AMD's K8 architecture which saw the Sunnyvale, California-based company basking in the spotlight (and in enthusiast praise). Intel shoved AMD into the backseat with the launch of its Core architecture and AMD has been pretty much stuck in that position ever since.

While AMD may be having problems tackling Intel in the high-end desktop and notebook markets, the company is looking to go toe-to-toe with Intel in the emerging Mobile Internet Device (MID) and netbooks/nettop market. Intel is currently having a lot of success with its Atom processor which will be in short supply until the end of Q3 2008.

AMD is countering with a low-power AMD64-based CPU design of its own according to leaked slides obtained by Eee PC News. The unnamed processor features an integrated memory controller, 16-lane 800MHz HyperTransport link, 256KB of L2 cache, and a 1GHz core clock.

Considering that this new chip is to be used in low-power applications, power consumption is a critical talking point. Intel's Atom N270 -- the most popular Atom variant for netbooks -- features a 2.5W TDP at 1.6GHz. However, we can't forget the i945GSE Northbridge which adds another 4W -- more than the Atom processor itself.

AMD’s new processor, however, has an 8W TDP for the processor with its integrated Northbridge/memory controller at 1.0GHz. Although performance figures obviously aren't available at this time, it would be interesting to see how AMD's 1.0GHz processor would do against Intel's in-order 1.6GHz Atom N270.

Intel and AMD have both been in the news in recent weeks -- mostly for squabbles between the two companies. Intel recently got slapped with a $25M fine for anticompetitive practices in South Korea. Shortly after, the Federal Trade Commission opened up a formal investigation into allegations of anticompetitive behavior in the U.S. market.

Finally, AMD and NVIDIA have taken Intel to task over its refusal to release specifications on its open host controller for USB 3.0. Intel countered that it would provide the details once the spec is finished and that the company had invested “gazillions of dollars and bazillions of engineering man hours” in developing the open host controller.



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Nasty 1.5W
By jordanclock on 6/17/2008 5:36:00 PM , Rating: 2
Many people are pointing out that the performance of AMDs new CPU may negate the extra power draw, but I think you are all missing the point: When it comes to platforms like this, power usage is first priority. The AMD chip might be able to complete things faster, but for the kind of use such a platform would see (Streaming video or VoIP comes to mind.), you're looking at constant usage.

This kind of chip definitely has a place in ultra-lower power usage PCs, like the Eee Box. Something where the extra performance will be worth a couple of watts, but where the point of diminishing returns on performance is pretty low. The Eee Box demonstrated that the Atom is fine for such tasks, but there is still a lot of room for improvement. Improvement that AMD may be able to provide.




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