Intel's 80-core prototype draws less than 100W

— 12:19 AM on January 18, 2007

When Intel announced at IDF last fall that it had built a prototype 80-core processor, the news might have conjured up images of a chip with the power requirements of a small city. In reality, the Teraflop chip's cores aren't conventional x86 units, and its die size is 302.5mm²—only around 17mm² more than Kentsfield. Intel R&D strategist Manny Vara has now told EE Times about the chip's actual power draw, and it's actually less than 100W. For reference, the Core 2 Extreme QX6700 has a power rating of 130W, and the Core 2 Duo line is rated for 65W.

Of course, the 80-core chip is still a prototype that "lacks some necessary functionality," and Intel doesn't expect to start selling such processors for another five to eight years. In the meantime, Vara says we might see "different flavors" of quad-core chips that have "more complex cores along with simpler cores."

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