Transmeta to add SSE3 support to Efficeon

— 2:41 AM on October 7, 2004

AMD isn't the only chip manufacturer talking about upcoming support for SSE3. Transmeta will apparently launch an SSE3-equipped version of its Efficeon TM8800 processor before the end of the year. The new chip will apparently reach 2GHz.

Transmeta's move to add the extra x86 instructions to its own chips was probably rather easier than it was for AMD. Efficeon essentially emulates the x86 ISA in software coded for its native 256-bit VLIW core. Adding SSE 3 will have simply involved modifying that emulation layer.
Transmeta chips are rare in the wild, at least in enthusiast circles, but even the current TM8800 looks like a feisty little number. Fabbed using 90-nano process tech, the chip has an integrated DDR400 memory controller, AGP 4X interface, 400MHz HyperTransport system bus, and 1MB of L2 cache. It's available with clock speeds up to 1.6GHz and even supports Data Execution Protection (DEP) under Windows XP Service Pack 2. Sounds like great Mini ITX fare to me.
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