Contradicting rumors of "reverse Hyper-Threading" that have popped up over the past week, AMD is touting developer support for its upcoming 4x4 enthusiast platform. 4x4, which was unveiled earlier this month, will allow enthusiasts to pair up two dual-core Socket AM2 Athlon 64 FX processors on a single motherboard. Coupled with NVIDIA's Quad SLI, users will be able to enjoy four CPU cores and four GPU cores in one very expensive machine.
Four CPU cores won't do much good in an enthusiast system without some serious multithreading support in games, but AMD says software developers like Bioware, Cakewalk, Crytek, Havok, Irrational Games, Midway, NERO and Sony have all been tweaking their apps and games with AMD's multi-core and multi-socket hardware in mind. Crytek, for instance, says its next-gen title Crysis will take advantage of 4x4 systems.
That said, 4x4 may not be that big a drive behind support for more than two CPU cores in games. Intel's Kentsfield quad-core processor is due out as early as Q1 2007, and AMD's own quad-core K8L is also expected next year. Both chips should sell for much less than what's required for a 4x4 system. Considering titles like Crysis are due to ship late this year, it makes sense for game developers to tackle quad-core support now—4x4 or not.
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