AMD Announces "Fusion" CPU/GPU Program
Anh Tuan Huynh
October 25, 2006 4:46 AM
comment(s) - last by
The future of CPU/GPU computing
completion of AMD’s acquisition of ATI
, AMD has announced its working on new CPU/GPU silicon that integrates the CPU and graphics processor into a single unit. The upcoming silicon is currently codenamed
and is expected in the late 2008 or early 2009 time frame. AMD claims Fusion will bring:
AMD intends to design Fusion processors to provide step-function increases in performance-per-watt relative to today’s CPU-only architectures, and to provide the best customer experience in a world increasingly reliant upon 3D graphics, digital media and high-performance computing. With Fusion processors, AMD will continue to promote an open platform and encourage companies throughout the ecosystem to create innovative new co-processing solutions aimed at further optimizing specific workloads. AMD-powered Fusion platforms will continue to fully support high-end discrete graphics, physics accelerators, and other PCI Express-based solutions to meet the ever-increasing needs of the most demanding enthusiast end-users.
AMD expects to integrate
for all its product categories including laptops, desktops, workstation, servers and consumer electronics products. Judging by the inclusion of PCI Express support, it would appear the integrated GPU is more of a value solution—similar to Intel’s cancelled
processor. It is unknown if AMD will retain the current Athlon and Opteron names with the launch of
. This isn't too surprising as
AMD and ATI previously promised unified product development including vague mentions of hybrid CPU and GPU products.
AMD also previously announced its
open architecture as well.
In addition to
, AMD expects to ship integrated platforms with ATI chipsets in 2007. The platforms are expected empower commercial clients, notebooks, gaming and media computing. AMD expects users will benefit from greater battery life on the next-generation Turion platforms and greater enhancements with AMD Live! systems.
reported on ATI's chipset roadmap which outlined various integrated graphics and enthusiast products.
With the development of
and upcoming integrated AMD platforms, it is unknown what will happen to NVIDIA’s chipset business, which currently relies mainly on AMD chipset sales.
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Profit vs Performance
10/25/2006 11:38:51 AM
This is actually a very good move for AMD since right now Intel is the GPU king. They sell more GPUs than all the other manufacturers combined. Granted the GPUs are not worth the silicon they are printed on, but if AMD can break into this market with a low cost and low power solution then they will have an opportunity to increase their market share.
The majority of the laptops sold today are IGP solutions. I think only 2% at most are non IGP solutions. AMD has a very large untapped market that they have an opportunity to grab just like they did with the server market. The only nice thing is that ATI knows how to make video cards and hopefully these new Fusion processors will be able to run DX10 without any major issues compared to the Intel solution.
I doubt that this will be the only processor that AMD creates since they are definitely an enthusiast company. It might be interesting to see if the graphics cards would get faster by adding some processing power to your normal GPU.
"We don't know how to make a $500 computer that's not a piece of junk." -- Apple CEO Steve Jobs
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