News of the day (April 10, 2006)

 3 GHz Opteron
  Posted on 1144702415 by Marc

AMD released their first processors clocked at 3GHz, the Opteron mono-core 256 and 856 respectively intended to bi processors and quad/octo processors configurations. The 256 is priced $851 and doesn't modify the rest of the Opteron 2xx line. The 856 is however launched at $1,514 which was the previous process of the 854 at 2.8 GHz. Prices of the entire line are reduced: the 854 is at $1,165, the 852 at $873 and the 850 at $698.

It is the first time that a new step of frequency is announced first on the Opteron. AMD clearly seems to have to given up the idea to release new high end mono core processors for desktop computers, but keeps this possibility for server and workstation product lines. If we can understand this choice from a sales point of view, from a technical one, it is rather ironic because the Opteron will be the most likely to be confronted to loads that takes advantage of ducal core.

 ATI's demos without vertex texturing
  Posted on 1144679131 by Damien

With the Radeon X1000, ATI missed Vertex texturing and offers an alternative technology called R2VB. Does it make possible in practice to do without the vertex texturing?

> ATI's demo without vertex texturing

 AM2 tested in DDR2-800
  Posted on 1144675577 by Marc

AnandTech has tested the latest F revision of the Athlon 64 Socket AM2. The difference between the Athlon 64 Socket AM2 and Socket 939 is the DDR2 support. Unfortunately, the performances of the first revision (recently reported on Internet) weren't that great.

This time, DDR2-800 is supported and AnandTech compared one A64 X2 with 2 GB of DDR-400 in 2-3-2 and one A64 X2 with 2 GB of DDR2-800 in 4-5-4. DDR2-800 worked with timings of 3-3-3 on Intel's platform but hasn't supported these timings on AMD's platform.

Unlike previous tests, changing for DDR2 doesn't lead to performance reductions except for -0.4% under Business Winstone 2004. Most of the time performance gains were from 1 to 2% but reaches 3.4% for DiVX compression and 5.5% under Quake 4 in SMP.

There is nothing revolutionary…. As the pure bandwidth increases of 36% from 5 GB/s to 6.8 GB/s: we are far from the theoretical figures of DDR2 which are in DDR2-800 of 12.8 GB /s. Of course, we will have to wait for the definitive Socket AM2 to make our mind, but at this stage of development, changes shouldn't be extraordinary.

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