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AMD's Giuseppe Amato dispels rumors and misinterpreted statements of "Fusion," GPGPU and the company

In an interview with Italian media, AMD Executive Giuseppe Amato, Technical Director of Sales & Marketing EMEA, discussed AMD's current market position and future products.

In the interview, Amato shed more light on the structure of AMD's upcoming Fusion processors. A misconception that Amato noted is that Fusion processors will not only be available in single-chip flavors, but also multi-chip formats. Two Fusion processors linked together would allow for parallel GPUs. He said that AMD has still not solidified the future plans of Fusion yet, but indicated it would be very likely to see a Fusion processor with a GPU and CPU connected through a CrossFire-like interface -- and have a total TDP of less than 120 Watts.

Amato also praised the flexibility of the Fusion processor in the interview and told Hardware Upgrade that it will allow AMD to "integrate a specific number of GPU and CPU cores depending on the customer and the uses for which they will use the chip." 

"AMD isn't just a microprocessor company anymore", he stated. After the acquisition of ATI, "AMD changed from a processor company to a platform company." This is where Fusion ties in. Its high grade of flexibility will combine GPUs and CPUs into one product. Amato believes that Fusion platforms will be able to specifically match the needs of its customers.

AMD's Fusion processors will also be closely tied to GPGPU. Using a GPGPU platform based on Fusion, AMD will be able to offer HPC systems that can do all kinds of work. Code that is more suited for CPUs will be executed on the CPU part of the Fusion processor, while code more efficiently run on a GPGPU will be run on the GPU portion of the processor. To sum it up, AMD's Fusion processors will be able to do a variety of work, allowing them to better meet the needs of AMD's customers.

Amato also dispelled rumors that AMD will be going completely fabless. He blames the source of the rumor as a misinterpretation of a speech Hector Ruiz gave. However, AMD plans to stick to a fab-less manufacturing model for GPU and chipset products.

The full interview can be viewed at Hardware Upgrade.

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By mmarq on 7/18/2007 2:51:05 AM , Rating: 2
What would be even cooler would be if you could combine the GPU chip in Fusion with that of your dedicated GPU card.

You can.

Buy a board with a RD790 chipset from AMD and a ATI card ready for Close_to_Metal with a R580 chip( or a future R650 announced), and them you'll have to wait for A CPU with CTM readiness that i believe all Barcelonas Phenom parts have, has claimed and demonstrated(support for CTM)... the teraflop FASN8 system...

With Intel would be having to buy a chipset ready for CTM or Nvidia tesla, and wait for Intel to deliver a CPU ready for that CTM or Tesla. No roadmaps indicate that for now.

For now the CPUs wont have GPU acceleration, only in 2008 either from AMD(K10.5) or Intel(Nehalem). For now only K10 Phenom i believe can be part of the Stream computing scheme by means of CTM.

But having a chipset(RD790)ready and GPU card(R580) ready wait for a 2008 ready CTM CPU upgrade with GPU acceleration, and in a Crossfire configuration with your PCIe card GPU... that seems to be what they claim...

By mmarq on 7/18/2007 3:58:46 AM , Rating: 2
I forgot to mention.

You'd have to have an OS ready. Vista Ultimate will have upgrade paths, but other versions i believe not. Linux, Solaris, FreeBSD and others will have drivers also.

But than again, it would be needed to modify and recompile applications to take advantage of stream computing. In the Windows arena, besides Games and few little more, it will be quite mute,i'm afraid... for now. For open Source it would be much much more easier... i believe.

Stream computing existe in the world of HPC(high performance computing), big iron Mainframes and Clusters and 'big' workstations, where applications were and are taylor made, and hugely expensive, to take advantage of this capabilities.

There is where AMD was and is positioning its K10 Barcelona in the first place. (server and HPC)

The desktop arena still have to wait a little more for stream computing, for hardware resources and software capable of it, though there are each time more announcements.

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