AMD's First 'Fusion' Chip on Track
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AMD has certainly not let the Barcelona problems happen twice. It has delivered all of its processors on time or even earlier than anticipated. It's also on track with "Fusion," the processor that combines a CPU and GPU on one die. The company laid out the details at the ISSCC show, Hardware Central has the details.
Advanced Micro Devices opened the International Solid-State Circuits Conference (ISSCC) with a disclosure of its first chip under the "Fusion" banner, a project that introduces a new core design along with the graphics processing it acquired with ATI Technologies in 2006.
AMD (NYSE: AMD) is sure doing a lot with this chip: it is integrating the GPU cores, shrinking the die with 32-nanometer-process engineering, and making the leap to high-K metal gate (HKMG) transistor technology. All of this will show up with a desktop chip codenamed "Llano" and its notebook counterpart, "Sabine."
The one thing not being done is incorporating the new "Bulldozer" core design, which will be AMD's first major redesign since the 64-bit Athlon core came out in 2003. Since Fusion uses the old Phenom II core, there is no Level 3 cache to unify all the cores. Each has its own separate Level 2 cache.
The Fusion series introduces a new modular design methodology that AMD calls M-Space, which is meant to give the multiple cores in the CPU greater flexibility to operate independently.