AMD to intro 400MHz Barton bus
DigiTimes is reporting that AMD will launch Barton processors with a 400MHz system bus in May to tide us all over until the Athlon 64's September launch. Though AMD will be sticking to the Socket A platform, chipsets will apparently need to be revamped to support the faster bus:
Most first-tier motherboard makers have decided to develop products for the new processors. Chipset designers VIA Technologies and Silicon Integrated Systems (SiS) have also said that they will release supporting products in April. VIA’s latest K7-based KT400A chipsets are sampling now and are scheduled to hit the market in March. However, the chipset only supports the 333MHz FSB standard.
Based on our own testing, it looks like even the nForce2 will need some tweaking to be totally stable with a 400MHz front side bus.
At the very least, a set of new chipsets and a faster front side bus will give motherboard manufacturers something new to sell during the summer while their Hammer products are either redesigned or gather dust in anticipation of AMD's September launch. Still, I have to wonder if any enthusiasts will jump at 400MHz bus Bartons with Hammer only months away, especially if a motherboard upgrade is required.