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AMD Announces Phenom Brand

First processors available this summer

May 14, 2007 - Today, AMD announced the branding of the upcoming K10 Quad-Core (and Dual-Core) processor families. All high-end desktop products will carry de Phenom name. For now, mid-range, low-end, mobile, and server lines will keep the current Athlon, Sempron, Turion, and Opteron names, respectively.

AMD explicitly calls the new CPUs "native" and "true" Quad-Core processors, emphasizing that all four cores sit on a single die. The current Intel Quad-Core CPUs are in fact two Dual-Cores on separate dies, brought together in a single package (Dual-Chip Module, DCM). The two are glued together using the existing SMP facilities (Symmetric Multi-Processing).

Phenom X2, X4, and FX

The Phenom X2 and Phenom X4 names will be used for Dual-Core and Quad-Core desktop processors, respectively. Quad-Core and double Quad-Core configurations aimed at enthousiasts, tweakers, and gamers will be named Phenom FX.

Family name Codename Market
Phenom Agena mainstream
Sempron low-end
Turion Griffin mobile
Phenom FX Agena FX power
Opteron Barcelona server

The four cores share access to the memory controller and HyperTransport 3.0 bus via AMD's existing Direct Connect Architecture. New is the level 3 cache (L3). The Phenom X4 and X2 processors will fit Socket AM2+, providing an upgrade path to current owners of Socket AM2 systems as well. The Opteron DP/MP and high-end Phenom FX processors stick with Socket F(+), doing the same for current Opteron and Athlon Quad FX owners.

The double Quad-Cores (Octa-Cores, OctaFather?) consist of two Quad-Core processors in two separate sockets, interconnected via the Dual Socket Direct Connect (DSDC) Architecture we already know from the QuadFather systems. While doing the Phenom announcement, AMD demonstrated the very first of these configurations, codenamed FASN8 (pronounced "fascinate").

The first new CPUs are expected this summer.

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