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Intel also talks "Sandy Bridge" and "Tunnel Creek."

The poor global economy of the last year meant that profits were down for just about every major computer manufacturer and hardware maker in the industry. Consumers and corporations held onto tight funds rather than spending on upgrades and new computers. One of the few bright spots was in cheap consumer devices like netbooks and server processors where power savings offset the cost of the upgrade for some companies.

With the worst of the economic crisis hopefully over, consumers and businesses are starting to spend again on computers. Surprisingly, many consumers and corporations are buying in the higher-end range of the market rather than the low-end with netbooks. With the increased spending in the higher-end market Intel has boomed. The company posted its earnings figured yesterday and reported a massive jump in profit of over 400% compared to the same month in 2009.

Profit at Intel was a massive $2.4 billion or 43 cents per share. The exact growth percentage was 433% reports 
CNET News. The 43 cents per share earnings significantly eclipsed what analysts expected Intel to post at 38 cents per share. Q1 2010 revenue was $10.3 billion, a 44% increase from Q1 2009. CEO Paul Otellini stated that it was the best quarter ever for Intel.

Analyst Doug Freedman from Broadpoint AmTech said, "Consumer and corporate are spending more on horsepower. They're buying high-priced machines in a time that you would think budgets would be tight."

The big factor in the whopping profits for the quarter was in mobile processor revenue. There were massive shortages of Intel's new 2010 line of Core processors due to demand from computer builders that are just now easing. With shortages, Intel was still able to turn record profits.

Profit reports were not all Intel had up its sleeves this week. The company has also announced a new Atom-based SoC codenamed
Tunnel Creek. Tunnel Creek is aimed at IP phones, printers, and in-vehicle infotainment systems for cars and trucks. The new SoC integrates an Atom processor core, memory controller hub, graphics engine, and video engine into one highly integrated chip. The first mass use of the new SoC will be Chinese carmaker HawTai. The company will use the new SoC in an in dash infotainment system in some of its vehicles.

"Intel is committed to focus our technologies on innovative new applications in China," said Doug Davis, corporate vice president and general manager of Intel's embedded and communications group. "We're cooperating closely with local companies in China to provide smarter and better connected computing solutions for cars, homes, businesses that provide infrastructure to power a more mobile and faster Internet experience." 

The new SoC will allow companies to create PCI Express compliant devices that directly connect to the chip for the first time. Intel claims that this feature will increase flexibility for embedded applications.

Intel also shared some of its vision for the future this week. Intel talked a bit about its next generation
Sandy Bridge processors set for production late in 2010. The new processors will be constructed with the second-generation Intel Hi-K 32nm process technology. The processors will also be the first to support Intel Advanced Vector Extension (Intel AVX) instructions. Sandy Bridge will also support Intel AES New instructions.

Intel AVX accelerates the trend towards floating point intensive computation in general applications like 3D modeling and scientific simulation. Intel AES-NI is a set of software instructions that accelerates encryption and decryption.
Sandy Bridge will also have Intel's sixth generation graphics core with acceleration for floating point, video, and other processor intensive applications.

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Sandy Bridge
By Etern205 on 4/14/2010 11:18:42 AM , Rating: 1
Looks like Intel is already shipping samples and end users are getting screwed...again.
More info on Sandy Bridge

RE: Sandy Bridge
By redbone75 on 4/14/2010 12:11:04 PM , Rating: 2
How are end users getting screwed? Don't see anything in the article except this:
As we know, the first Sandy Bridge CPUs are built around LGA 1155, compatible with Intel's next-generation 6 series chipsets. So, upgrading to Sandy Bridge will require the purchase of a new motherboard.

This doesn't quite make sense.

RE: Sandy Bridge
By aegisofrime on 4/14/2010 12:38:49 PM , Rating: 2
I agree, it doesn't make sense. 1155 is one pin less than 1156. Obvious, I know, but I'm pointing out the similarities between AM2+/AM3 and 1155/1156.

Changing sockets at Sandy Bridge will make 1156 one of the shortest lived sockets ever.

RE: Sandy Bridge
By Mitch101 on 4/15/2010 10:02:29 AM , Rating: 2
Its a nice perk with AMD having the ability to pull out a dual chip and slap in a possible quad or six core cpu especially when it seem to be going with more cores today over speed. Problem is the software is lagging so far behind the hardware.

When Bulldozer does arrive I would expect to need a new mobo.

RE: Sandy Bridge
By Targon on 4/16/2010 8:15:10 AM , Rating: 2
AMD may not be increasing clock speeds right now, but six core 3.2GHz chips that use the same 125 watts as their current 3.2GHz and 3.4GHz quad cores is fairly impressive considering 32nm isn't there yet.

Once AMD has made the move to 32nm, I would expect more clock speed increases.

RE: Sandy Bridge
By Mitch101 on 4/16/2010 10:44:35 AM , Rating: 2
I have a Hyper-V box running a dual core 4850e chip and 8gigs of ram. Looking at throwing in a 6 core chip instead of buying cpu, mobo, ram to replace the existing. Should definitely give a boost to my VM's.

RE: Sandy Bridge
By Etern205 on 4/14/2010 12:47:07 PM , Rating: 2
How can it not make sense?

-Intel 915 chipset, first to support socket 775

-Intro on the first dual core (Pentium D)
915 chipset users are screwed as it requires a new chipset (Intel 945)

-Core 2 Duo are out, again end users are screwed as it requires a new chipset (although some mobo makers are able to get it working on the Intel 945)

-Core 2 quad later came and again new chipset as majority of 945/955 are not compatible (except for the 975x)

-Intel 3/4 series chipset last chipset for socket 775

-i7 new socket new board (1366)

-i3/5/7 new socket new board (1156)

-Sandy Bridge: new socket/chipset/board

RE: Sandy Bridge
By Etern205 on 4/14/2010 12:49:50 PM , Rating: 2
maybe author of that site did a typo?

RE: Sandy Bridge
By DanNeely on 4/14/2010 1:23:16 PM , Rating: 4
I don't know about that but I've read that the replacement for the current LGA1366 will be an ~15xx pin model with quad channel DDR3 support.

We know the pin count for the mainstream part hasn't changed significantly; but that doesn't mean that the interconnects to the mobo it needs will also remain essentially unchanged. They might, or they might not. It's also possible that despite the designation change it will function similar to the AM2/AM2+/AM3 sockets where generation N and N-1 hardware are compatible.

We need more information from Intel to be able to comment intelligently on the issue.

RE: Sandy Bridge
By Taft12 on 4/14/2010 12:54:33 PM , Rating: 2
Send them a message and buy AMD. Intel's profit margins are enormous (chipsets are particularly obscene) and your wallet is the only way to voice your displeasure.

RE: Sandy Bridge
By Fox5 on 4/14/2010 12:59:31 PM , Rating: 3
Intel also offers the best performance on the market. Are you just upset that Intel is able to turn a massive profit, while still providing best in class (and rather competitive cost) performance?

RE: Sandy Bridge
By Taft12 on 4/14/2010 4:25:54 PM , Rating: 2
Nope, the best performance and profitability are fine by my - it's overpricing and monopolistic practices are my beefs!

RE: Sandy Bridge
By Etern205 on 4/14/2010 2:08:14 PM , Rating: 2
Rumor said that AMD's hexa core will be like around $2-300.

RE: Sandy Bridge
By zpdixon on 4/15/2010 3:35:05 AM , Rating: 2
It's not a rumor. It's not "will". It is available, today, for $300: Opteron 6128, 8 cores, 2.0 GHz

RE: Sandy Bridge
By ipay on 4/15/2010 2:29:56 PM , Rating: 2
I guess the meaning of "hex" must have changed, because last time I checked it was 6.

The Opteron 6128 is not a desktop processor. It doesn't come with a HSF, it doesn't fit in any desktop motherboards, and 2GHz is slow as molasses compared to Nehalem.

RE: Sandy Bridge
By Etern205 on 4/15/2010 3:11:52 PM , Rating: 2
By now you should know that raw speed isn't the main factor when it comes to performance. Depending on the program if it's multi-threaded or not, the Opty will out perform a opty in terms of cores vs raw speed.

And what do you expect, it's a server cpu and so far most don't include any cooling solutions, but $300 is not a bad deal.

RE: Sandy Bridge
By MrBungle123 on 4/15/2010 11:58:14 AM , Rating: 2
Correct me if I'm wrong but arent intels current chipsets essentially just a hyped up "southbridge" with the "northbridge" and memory controller integrated into the CPU itself? This type of design methodology has allowed AMD to use the same socket across mulitple generations I don't understand why Intel can't do the same... assuming there isn't some electrical reason that its not possible to make a sandybridge chip run in a nehalem socket.

RE: Sandy Bridge
By Targon on 4/16/2010 8:19:19 AM , Rating: 2
This is why so many people feel that Intel keeps screwing over their customers. It SHOULD be possible to use new chips in old motherboards, but Intel forces customers to buy a new chipset for every generation of processor JUST for the motherboard/chipset profits.

"There's no chance that the iPhone is going to get any significant market share. No chance." -- Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer
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