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"Tulsa," "Merom," "Kentsfield" and "Clovertown" moved up

Yesterday during Intel's Q2'06 earnings report, Intel CEO Paul Otellini revealed that Intel has moved up its launch schedule for quad-core processors to Q4 2006 instead of Q1 2007 as originally announced by Intel in roadmaps and public relations.

Otellini claimed "We notified customers that we're pulling in both a desktop and server of the first quad-core processors into the fourth quarter of this year from the first half of 2007."  These two processors, dubbed Kentsfield and Clovertown, respectively, are essentially twin-die packages of Core 2 Duo.

In late May, Intel announced that the company will ship a 3.2GHz Core 2 Extreme processor followed by quad-core Kentsfield in Q1'07Kentsfield has always been slated as an Extreme processor, meaning it will carry a larger price tag than the traditional Core 2 Duo series.  Intel's quad-core server processor, dubbed Clovertown, is virtually identical to Kentsfield but will use the Socket 771 package instead of Socket 775.

Furthermore, Otellini confirmed that quad-core isn't the only processor series moved up.  The CEO confirmed Merom has been moved up and is already shipping to revenue, as was reported by HKEPC (English) several days ago.  Intel's Tulsa processors for Xeon MP are also already shipping to revenue according to Otellini, but the availability of these processors has largely been overshadowed by yesterday's launch of Itanium 2 Montecito and the recent launch of Xeon DP Woodcrest

Typically there is a two to three week lag between revenue shipments and retail availability, so expect to see many of these new "shipping to revenue" processors before the end of the month.


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RE: To combat 4x4 I take it.
By rrsurfer1 on 7/20/2006 12:40:28 PM , Rating: 2
I agree with you on the gaming issue. 4 cores probably won't be much of an improvement over 2. Many games now are somewhat multi-threaded, like the AI runs on one, and the GPU is kept fed on another. But for a game to be utilizing 4 cores at once it'd have to take that multi-threading to another level which would have to be carefully programmed.

That's why I'm thinking AMD's 4x4 design isn't going to translate into real-world performance for the majority of apps and especially not for games.


RE: To combat 4x4 I take it.
By PT2006 on 7/20/2006 12:42:22 PM , Rating: 2
I'd honestly be surprised if 4x4 even really becomes a retail solution. I think the only places you'll see it at is Alienware or Voodoo.


RE: To combat 4x4 I take it.
By TomZ on 7/20/2006 1:14:30 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
I'd honestly be surprised if 4x4 even really becomes a retail solution. I think the only places you'll see it at is Alienware or Voodoo.

I disagree - I think Intel puts all its desktop processors into the retail channel. I can't think of any recent exceptions, can you?

To be sure, this processor will have a price point higher than US$1000, but even there, there is still at least a small market. This has been proved by both AMD and Intel with their recent offerings for this segment.


RE: To combat 4x4 I take it.
By Strunf on 7/20/06, Rating: 0
RE: To combat 4x4 I take it.
By TomZ on 7/20/2006 1:39:31 PM , Rating: 2
Good point; I stand corrected.


RE: To combat 4x4 I take it.
By Griswold on 7/20/2006 2:19:29 PM , Rating: 2
I think they call it 4x4 (4 by 4) due to the SLI support - eventually becoming quad SLI. And if thats not the reason, 4x4 will make sense when you plug quad cores in the sockets at some point... or whatever.


RE: To combat 4x4 I take it.
By Strunf on 7/20/06, Rating: 0
RE: To combat 4x4 I take it.
By Griswold on 7/20/2006 3:26:30 PM , Rating: 2
This is supposed to be some enthusiast shizzle.. they dont care about "electricity bills". Wasnt that what the Intel fanboys used to say about their nuclear furnace?


RE: To combat 4x4 I take it.
By Strunf on 7/20/06, Rating: 0
RE: To combat 4x4 I take it.
By drmo on 7/20/2006 7:10:51 PM , Rating: 2
For those who think that it shouldn't be called "4x4", think about this: how any wheels does a 4x4 vehicle have? I think they are just playing off the image of the tough 4x4 vehicles. It implies that four times the power gets four times the work done (hence 4x4). What kind of marketing is 2x2? That wouldn't imply anything great to me, and could imply there are only 2 processors working.


RE: To combat 4x4 I take it.
By brownba on 7/20/2006 8:23:51 PM , Rating: 2
a 4x4 is a vehicle with 4 wheels and all 4 of those wheels are driven (all-wheel drive).
a 4x2 is a vehicle with 4 wheels and just 2 of those are powered (so either front or rear-wheel drive).



RE: To combat 4x4 I take it.
By drmo on 7/21/2006 5:09:25 PM , Rating: 2
"a 4x4 is a vehicle with 4 wheels and all 4 of those wheels are driven (all-wheel drive).
a 4x2 is a vehicle with 4 wheels and just 2 of those are powered (so either front or rear-wheel drive). "


Exactly, so a 2x2 would be a two processor system, where two processors work to the fullest (not a quad processor system). Of course, on single-threaded apps it would be 2x1. (You could say a P4 + HT would be 2 x 4 from that standpoint.) But really, 4x4 is just a marketing thing, IMO. Most people don't care how many sockets there are, just how much work gets done...


RE: To combat 4x4 I take it.
By Calin on 7/21/2006 9:22:24 AM , Rating: 2
There are plenty of people (plenty = thousands) that could put to good use a 4 core computer - paying $2000 for a processor that runs on a $200 common mainboard would be better than paying two times $1000 or $800 and buying a $500 workstation/server mainboard. The possiblity of upgrade would bring some to it.


RE: To combat 4x4 I take it.
By TK2K on 7/21/2006 5:19:20 PM , Rating: 2
not true at all
look at quad sli, that has really taken off even in the home builder section! it will take off, the question is, how much will it be?


RE: To combat 4x4 I take it.
By Strunf on 7/20/06, Rating: 0
RE: To combat 4x4 I take it.
By epsilonparadox on 7/20/2006 2:14:31 PM , Rating: 2
The Cell has one full functioning general core and the rest are SPEs that can only handle small specific task that must be written into the application code. the 4x4 and kentsfield has 4 full functioning general cores that can handle a multiple various-sized tasks. The Cell is a completely different beast from these two.


RE: To combat 4x4 I take it.
By Calin on 7/21/2006 9:26:33 AM , Rating: 2
The Cell has one common processor (one that is good at running mostly any code). There are another 7 SPE, which are limited in: Out of Order Execution (not available), main memory access (not available IIRC), some instructions. As long as you feed them code optimized to run on them, they can put to shame anything else. If you feed them code that is not optimized, they are a millstone around your neck.

The Core 2 Quad (or whatever) is composed of four identical common processors.


RE: To combat 4x4 I take it.
By Trisped on 7/21/2006 12:03:56 PM , Rating: 2
On the "Multi-Threaded Games" topic:

I don't think most games are truly threaded. Most were just hacked at until it was split into two threads.

Not all games have this limit though, as WarCraft3 creates a thread for every trigger, allowing it to scale to any number of processors.

From what I can tell the real way to thread a game is to put every major job into its own thread. Audio, AI, physics, mapping, preloading, GUI, networking, video, etc. Then, no matter how many cores you have, the game is ready. The problem is the cost of making sure the threads all talk to each other properly.


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