Report: More AMD processor lineup shakeups due next year

AMD already shook up its price list last month, when it removed all but a handful of Phenom II processors and made up for it with a bunch of new Athlon IIs with two, three, and four cores. Now, DigiTimes writes that further shakeups are in store.

Of the processors remaining in AMD’s price list, we’ll reportedly see the end of the Phenom II X4 945 this quarter, while the X4 965, the current top of the line, will be discontinued in the first quarter of next year. AMD will follow up by replacing the Phenom II X4 955 with a 95W model in the second quarter.

Interestingly, however, DigiTimes writes of new low-end Phenom II processors coming next year. Word is that you can expect Phenom II X4 820, X3 740, and X2 555 processors to launch in the first half of 2010, presumably succeeding the old X4 810, X3 720, and X2 550 with higher clock speeds.

Similarly, DigiTimes says you can expect AMD to replace the Athlon II X4 620 and X3 425 with faster offerings, the Athlon II X4 640 and possibly an Athlon II X3 445. (To be fair, the report actually mentions a 95W Athlon II X2 445, but Athlon II X2 chips have 200-series model numbers and 65W thermal envelopes, so that looks like a typo to us.)

Comments closed
    • boomshine
    • 10 years ago

    “we’ll reportedly see the end of the Phenom II X4 945 this quarter”

    i thought they’re just going to release the C3 revision of this processor THIS quarter?

    hmmm…

    • jdaven
    • 10 years ago

    Looks like AMD is just going to optimize the K10.5 process through 2010 adding higher clocks, lower TDP on current models and releasing a 6 core version (albiet at 2.8 GHz according to other rumors). This should be enough to keep them competitive in the sub-$300 market but just barely. I’m pretty sure a 6 core 2.8 GHz Phenom II X6 could beat most of the low end Core i7’s.

      • AlvinTheNerd
      • 10 years ago

      Depends on the application.

      For example: I need to run MCNP (a code that simulates neutron and particle transport in nuclear reactors and radioactive sources) a lot. For this application, mainstream with ECC memory works, I just need a lot of cores.

      After a lot of testing, the best processor for the money was an Athlon II. And now I have a beowulf cluster of 5 Athlon II’s, 1 Phenom 965, and a Core 2 9650. (long story about the last two)

      The Phenom works the best of the three.

      • shaq_mobile
      • 10 years ago

      its also (as always) important to keep in mind ones priorities. ive owned a e5200/amd4850 system, X3 720/4890, x4 955/gtx275. aside from gaming and playing HD content at the same time, i cant for the life of me tell the difference in performance in any game except WoW (and only then, in dalaran there was a 50% increase in frames between the first system and the last two, but does it even matter in such a situation?). benchmarks are fine and dandy, but the hardest part about building a computer is remembering to BE PRACTICAL. you arent going to notice a 5% increase in performance. if youre frames go from 40 to 42 you arent going to notice. its certainly not worth $150 in rapidly depreciating technology. my e5200/4850 was a shrewd but excellent purchase.

        • OneArmedScissor
        • 10 years ago

        Thank you sir. Benchmarks are benchmarks.

        The most important thing is bang for your buck. As of right now, AMD are walking all over Intel there, and as interesting of a proposition it may be, Westmere isn’t changing that.

      • jomama
      • 10 years ago

      Why doesn’t AMD introduce their own form of Turboboost to their Phenom line. After all, why run 4-6 cores at 3GHz or more, if the app will run faster using just 1 or 2 cores at 4GHz. TR has an article today about how this benefits their new laptop processors, and TB is also a feature on their skt-1156 processors. I am kinda miffed that my skt 1366 systems don’t support TB. They run at 130W TDP and are outperformed by their similar clocked younger 700 and 800 series siblings, which are rated 95W, because of TB. I know AMD has offered dynamic overclocking in the past and that their current line of Phenom based Opterons support independent power plains to control the voltage on each core. So why doesn’t AMD have TB – it makes perfect sense for desktop/laptop multi-core cpu’s.

        • shank15217
        • 10 years ago

        You are right and this is probably a way of improving performance that AMD is looking into for their future desktop processors. Remember AMD has split power planes in their Operon line and does support core shutdown per core. AMD will reintroduce a better version probably with their fiorino platform in 2010. This feature and SMT will definitely improve AMDs competitiveness in all markets against Intel.

          • Prion
          • 10 years ago

          Didn’t Phenom (the first) have independent clocking of cores as part of its enhanced Cool N’ Quiet features? Wasn’t the feature a massive failure due to lack of chipset, OS, etc. support causing the processor to get stuck in the wrong power states, misschedule threads and so forth?

            • shank15217
            • 10 years ago

            Yes the first Phenom actually were able to shutdown core independently and yes it was a massive failure due to implementation. AMD is back on the drawing board, obviously they have a lot to fix, however dont assume AMD hasn’t addressed power issues in their processors. Their power now implementation was far better than Intel’s first and second speed step. Intel has leapfrogged them in this category at the moment.

        • OneArmedScissor
        • 10 years ago

        It’s called Overdrive, and it’s not new, either…

      • flip-mode
      • 10 years ago

      Sub $150 maybe.

        • jdaven
        • 10 years ago

        That may be sarcasm but in all seriousness, AMD won’t be selling a six core CPU below $150. Get real.

          • NeelyCam
          • 10 years ago

          Um… $99 for X4 sounds like $25 for each core. I could see AMD trying to do that in order to compete with i5-750. Or, with Clarkdale’s for that matter.

          Bottom line: AMD cpus are too expensive to make for the amount of money they bring in. End game is near.

          Westmere will put an end to this AMD silliness.

    • Xenolith
    • 10 years ago

    Looking forward to that i7 competitor! May be waiting a long time…

      • UberGerbil
      • 10 years ago

      Just in time to compete with the i9, perhaps….

      • OneArmedScissor
      • 10 years ago

      Define “competitive.” Core i7s have a few fancy features, but they’re not exactly mind blowingly more powerful than significantly cheaper Phenom IIs – if at all, depending on the application.

      I think it’s important to separate what truly works, and what looks better. That depends a lot on what it is you’re doing. There are a lot more “budget” options available today, and they’re a lot more effective than even in the very recent past.

        • anotherengineer
        • 10 years ago

        +1

        When I was looking for my build I was considering the i7, not the new i5 & I7 socket since they werent out yet.

        I only surf the net, use acad a bit and play cs:s, so looking through prices and benchies for what I would be doing with it

        §[<http://www.techreport.com/discussions.x/17874<]§ I picked up a 955BE, which outperfomed an i7 920 in hl2, which is as close to css as I could find, the mobo was 200 cheaper, the cpu at the time was 150 cheaper, and the ram was 150 cheaper, so 500 bucks not including the 13% tax here, pricing was when I was reviewing everything.

        • wira020
        • 10 years ago

        Well, Phenom IIs usually trail behind in gaming benchmarks only by less than 10 fps… other than that… only in synthetics does the i7 really shines… and that was only due to the hyperthreading i guess.. other than that, i think it’s safe to say that Phenom II is worth considering when building high ends systems for todays usage.. i mean really…

          • OneArmedScissor
          • 10 years ago

          It’s questionable if Core i7s are actually better in games.

          There are certainly people who make demanding use of top notch components, just for games. Those people would definitely want the fastest CPU they can get their hands on, even if it costs more.

          However, basically no one does extensive tests of realistic resolutions combined with high settings…and look what happened to the entire Nehalem family in the Lynnfield review at TR, when they thought to try that out:

          §[<http://www.techreport.com/r.x/core-i5-i7/farcry2-scaling.gif<]§ What no specs and general purpose benchmarks tell you is that Phenom IIs very regularly have high minimum and average FPS in such a case. The architecture itself should have a lot more impact on that than how "powerful" the CPU itself is, even if the specs you can measure suggest otherwise. Case in point, despite the "slow" L3 cache of Phenom IIs compared to Core i7, they still seem to have very little inherent lag when moving important information in and out, in the case of games, specifically. Core 2s also still do very well, even though they have what /[

    • flip-mode
    • 10 years ago

    Hard to get excited about any of that. If the X4-955 is still a BE and just shaves 30 watts off, well, that’s definitely good, but not exactly exciting.

    I guess anything that makes for a more attractive business CPU is good, and that seems to be all these changes could hope to effect.

      • AlvinTheNerd
      • 10 years ago

      Go try and find a Phenom II X4 in a major OEM computer.

      Having enthusiast processors are great, but the money is in the OEM contracts. I think the focus on lower TDP instead of faster Ghz is in response to the demands of the OEM’s.

        • derFunkenstein
        • 10 years ago

        There was one in an HP this weekend in Best Buy’s ad. It wasn’t a 900-series, though, it was an 840, I believe.

        • flip-mode
        • 10 years ago

        That’s pretty much what I said, except I said “business CPU” instead of OEM. That’s why I said 30 watts less on a BE, while good, is not necessarily exciting.

      • wira020
      • 10 years ago

      Doesnt that also means less thermal thus improve overclockability… and in the same time reduce power usage?… 30watts sounds like alot… but i dont really know for sure how TDP works.. thats just my general idea on TDP tho…

        • OneArmedScissor
        • 10 years ago

        Yes, it does, but probably only 200 MHz or so. New steppings never turn out to be as exciting as the sweeping product line changes imply.

          • wira020
          • 10 years ago

          Vendors in my country will be happy at this kind of things… even when the price stays the same from manufacturer.. after new stepping, revision or new launch, there’s always a hefty premium…

    • dpaus
    • 10 years ago

    Hmmm, it’s not clear from the article what’s replacing the 965 – I’m expecting it to be a 3.2 GHz quad in a 95W envelope. And good news about the timing of the 2.8 GHz hex-core (?), hopefully it will quickly be ramped up in speed (and, yes, we really do need it!)

      • AlvinTheNerd
      • 10 years ago

      What I have heard rumors of is there will be a 125W 965. But it is possible that AMD will simply go X6 beyond 955.

        • OneArmedScissor
        • 10 years ago

        I don’t believe the 126w 965 is a rumor. It’s guaranteed to happen when they move completely to the new stepping (which they are about to.) What’s not 100% guaranteed is whether or not we see a Phenom II 975 any time soon, even though it would allow for it.

        We’re going to be waiting a loooooong time for X6s, though, just as we’ll be waiting for 6 core desktop CPUs from Intel. I don’t think either one is due until halfway through 2010.

          • AlvinTheNerd
          • 10 years ago

          Opteron X6 are already being sold. AMD can pretty much release a Phenom X6 whenever they want. I think they are just waiting for the next stepping. That and there are very few places six cores can be used in the desktop space.

            • OneArmedScissor
            • 10 years ago

            The next stepping is now, not half a year away, but they’re still waiting that long.

            I think the hold up is the fact that they may be dumping the current 6-core Istanbuls all together, as they’re about to come out with the 8-core and 12-core Opterons, which use a completely different socket and are redesigned to save power and operate more efficiently in multi-socket systems.

            The 6-core Opteron was never meant to be a single-socket CPU, either.

      • Waco
      • 10 years ago

      It should be sexacore…but apparently that sounds too naughty for us.

        • khands
        • 10 years ago

        What’s better than two chicks at the same time? Try 6

        AMD /[

          • shaq_mobile
          • 10 years ago

          was that supposed to read like a commercial? if it was, thats an awesome commercial!

            • khands
            • 10 years ago

            Yes, that’s exactly what I was going for.

      • jomama
      • 10 years ago

      AMD needs to develope their own form of Turbo Boost for their Phenom parts at least. After all what is the point of making 4 cores run at 3+ GHz when the app is only able to use 1 or 2 cores. TR has an article today about how TB is beneficial to Intel’s laptop parts. I know AMD has intro’d dynamic overclocking in the past so I am not sure why they don’t have something like that now. Turboboost has been one of the best new innovations for multi-core cpu’s – its available on Intel’s Skt-1156 processors.

      I was kind of miffed that Intel left TB off as a feature of their current 900 series I7 proccessors which run at 130W TDPs and are outperformed in many generic desktop applications by their younger 800 and 700 series siblings which are rated 95W. The additional performance comes from TB’s ability to dynamicly increase the clock speed on 1, 2, or 3 cores, depeinding on the app, well beyond base speed of the cpu when all four cores are used. I have a I7 965 and 920 and I was planning to upgrade the 965 when 32nm hex-cores come out, but I am not sure how much I want do that now if those parts don’t support Turboboost.

      I know AMD listed having multiple power plains to adjust the voltage on individual cores on their Phenom-based Opterons. So why not do this as Intel has, for their desktop parts. This along with more power-efficient steppings should allow them to producing better performing parts (at least when not all of the cores are needed for the app) that can be run at lower base speeds to save power. Since AMD’s Phenom II parts are all derived from the same native quad-core design, it would make sense that they could do TB across the whole Phenom line – possibly in future models including their new Hex-core.

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This