AMD’s Thuban might arrive in three flavors in May

Last November, the rumor mill pinned a May launch time frame on AMD’s Leo desktop platform, which should bring a new chipset and support for six-core Thuban processors. Now, DigiTimes writes that the first Thuban CPUs will also see the light of day that same month.

We can reportedly look forward to three Thuban variants at launch: the Phenom II X6 1035T, Phenom II X6 1055T, and Phenom II X6 1075T. DigiTimes doesn’t quote clock speeds or specifications beyond the fact that the chips will be based on 45-nm process technology. According to some older coverage, however, Thuban will support DDR3 memory and work in existing Socket AM3 and AM2+ motherboards.

Intel, DigiTimes adds, will have its first Gulftown six-core processor out a couple of months earlier, in March. We heard last year that this product will be branded Core i7-980X and run at 3.33GHz with 12MB of L3 cache and a 130W thermal envelope. DigiTimes echoes that name and says the part will be priced upward of $1,000.

Considering AMD’s Phenom II X4 processors don’t do a particularly good job of keeping up with Intel’s quad-core, Hyper-Threading-enabled Core i7s, we wouldn’t be surprised to see six-core Phenom IIs priced quite a bit below $1,000. In fact, if Thuban performs anything like the first Istanbul Opterons, AMD may choose to price it against the quad-core versions of the Core i7.

Comments closed
    • Palek
    • 10 years ago

    q[

    • smilingcrow
    • 10 years ago

    6 cores on a 45nm process for a desktop CPU doesn’t seem attractive. This really cries out for TurboBoost.

    Are people being realistic talking about 3.2 + 3.4GHz for this? I can’t imagine AMD can tweak their 45nm process that much.
    What speeds are the standard voltage Server parts reaching?

      • NeelyCam
      • 10 years ago

      I’m sure a turboboost-like feature would let AMD hike the frequency close to 4GHz on a core or two.

      Of course, then I get to say things like “AMD is always copying Intel’s innovations” as a response to some morons talking smack about QPI and integrated memory controllers.

    • Arag0n
    • 10 years ago

    I have a Phenom 9950 because this processors…

    AM2+ Motherboard able to handle with 6 core processors on the future was my selling point in front of Q6600 or Q9300.

    It would be awesome if i can get one at higher clock speeds, more cache and lower TDP.

    Thats what i like from AMD, cheap systems with good upgrading path once you need the power.

      • internetsandman
      • 10 years ago

      You’re right, but plug a hexa-core CPU into an AM2+ mobo and you’re looking to have massive bottlenecks from both memory and graphics. Chances are for the money you could build a system that would drastically outperform what you currently have

        • OneArmedScissor
        • 10 years ago

        That is all blatantly false.

          • pullmyfoot
          • 10 years ago

          yeah. thats nonsense

          • NeelyCam
          • 10 years ago

          I want to disagree, but I can’t.

        • JumpingJack
        • 10 years ago

        Yeah, too bad QuadFX support was dropped, imagine 12 core drop-in.

        • Arag0n
        • 10 years ago

        well i dont think that looking at memory bandwith comparisions between ddr2 and ddr3. may be a case scenario for some a aplication, but not very common. and i have a pci-e 16x 2.0, can you try tell me whats wrong with that? my motherboard suports 2.6 HT, so 2.4 would be working also. I’m sure i wont get all the peeformance able but what a hell, im also looking for the cheapest path that allows you to run properly urs aplications and ganes for longer time able. im talking about performance on spending, dollar/year.

    • ltcommander.data
    • 10 years ago

    We have Black Edition or BE and e for energy efficient at the end of AMD product names, but what exactly does T stand for? Unless AMD wants to start using their development code names in their marketing? That might actually have merit since the numbers in product names seem to eventually get duplicated in future generations while development code names should be distinct.

      • AMDguy
      • 10 years ago

      T for Thuban?

    • Sahrin
    • 10 years ago

    My recollection is that Hex-cores did OK against Nehalem in everything but bandwidth hungry server applications. Particularly for multi-tasking, this could be a pretty good solution. I wish AMD would do an MCM with 2 Phenom II X4’s though, that would really put them back in the performance race (and also cause them to lose large amounts of money).

      • UberGerbil
      • 10 years ago

      The MCM approach is problematic, however. Assuming they retain socket compatibility, only one of the two dies is directly connected to the memory, creating latency and potential bandwidth issues (especially for the other die). I suppose it might be possible to give each of them a single channel of memory, but that’s unlikely to end well. Of course you could change the socket spec, but then you lose a key selling point and have other issues like motherboard cost/complexity.

      That said, AMD could do a sort of hybrid approach that is something more than an MCM but not quite a monolithic die. This is essentially what (it appears) they’re doing with Magny Cours, which is almost but not exactly two Istanbuls simply packaged together (and note that it uses a socket design that supports four channels of memory so both dies get fed equally)
      §[<http://www.semiaccurate.com/2009/08/24/amd-outs-socket-g34/<]§ Of course (as that article lays out in detail) Magny-Cours is further complicated by the necessities of support 2+S designs.

    • codedivine
    • 10 years ago

    Its funny that AMD is winning the performance/mm2 and performance/watt war in the GPU space but is losing really badly on both of these fronts in the CPU space. The Thuban die will likely be much much larger than a quad-core i7 but likely not be better than it.

      • Game_boy
      • 10 years ago

      But they are profitable. If Fermi’s die size, yield and performance is as rumoured, then it will not be profitable even per die. That is the difference.

      AMD’s prior loss was not due to them selling the Phenom (as in Phenom I ) die for less than it was worth, but fab overhead costs not scaling down with reduced sales.

      • OneArmedScissor
      • 10 years ago

      That depends. Considering that bazillions of cores are typically good for heavily multi-threaded things, in which case, hyper threading is a huge benefit, these are desktop CPUs, where that doesn’t necessarily apply.

      I’m one of those weirdos that does actually need a large amount of processing power, and specifically for a desktop. Six cores of any modern CPU blows four of any other out of the water for me.

      You can bet that tons of people will be all over it when Intel’s only option is $1,000.

        • accord1999
        • 10 years ago

        *[

          • OneArmedScissor
          • 10 years ago

          Those are server CPUs, being compared for server purposes.

          Way to totally miss the point, guys. How many times do I have to say I’m using a desktop, for desktop purposes?

          Hyper threading is totally useless to me and that’s what gives Nehalems the advantage for servers.

            • accord1999
            • 10 years ago

            *[

        • NeelyCam
        • 10 years ago

        You’re one of those weirdos that refuse to look at benchmarking results if it means your favorite company’s products lose.

          • Shining Arcanine
          • 10 years ago

          That is hilarious, yet true.

    • Game_boy
    • 10 years ago

    Anandtech has confirmed these. I think we can consider the model numbers official.

    §[<http://www.anandtech.com/cpuchipsets/showdoc.aspx?i=3726<]§ -- My guess is 2.6/2.8/3.0GHz, based on Istanbul Opterons and the likely clock increases from the months since then and the move to Lisbon tech reducing power. I also guess $235/$275/$350 for prices.

      • NeelyCam
      • 10 years ago

      It’s funny – nothing is considered true until either Anand or Ars Technica says so…

        • Game_boy
        • 10 years ago

        There is a scale of respectability. Official announcements are the most reliable, then the mainstream news sites like TR and Anandtech, then Digitimes which tends to be the official leak channel for motherboard makers and AIBs, then rumour sites. Of these, Semiaccurate is the most consistent and gets a lot of details right without changing their mind every five minutes, Fudzilla does get some stories but changes their mind frequently, and BSN prints nonsense because Theo doesn’t even understand what he’s writing about.

        AMD’s John Fruehe is a good source to clarify details about server products; Xtremesystems has a few good (sanctioned) Intel pre-release pics and benches; some Chinese hardware sites tend to get AMD and Intel procs much earlier than us; and any other leaks tend to get picked up by the aggregators Fudzilla and VR-zone anyway.

        So, yes?

          • NeelyCam
          • 10 years ago

          Yes.

    • Welch
    • 10 years ago

    We are talking about my first new full build for myself (desktop) in over 6 maybe even 7 years.. since my Barton 2600+ build…….. wow, its been that long. Cannot wait for these to release, also hoping to have them within a modest price range.

    I was under the impression that these were to be released in April…. I guess early or sometime in may isn’t that much further down the road. Gives everyone some time to get their taxes back and get the use out of their Phenom II X4’s that they purchased back near release. I almost want to say Intel is jumping the gun shortly after the new year when most people purchased a new system already. I guess they are making attempts at grabbing people like myself who didn’t have the money during Christmas and now are trying to beat AMD to the 6-core punch.

      • Shining Arcanine
      • 10 years ago

      Why not just get an Intel CPU now? It will likely outperform these.

        • Welch
        • 10 years ago

        I think your missing the point again Shinning….. I’d like to have a 6-Core processor because I am anticipating the full on utilization of Multi-threaded apps where more cores is better than less regardless of clock speed. Not impressed with the company Intel as a whole either, to many skeletons in their closet ATM and I’d rather give my money to AMD.

        • BaronMatrix
        • 10 years ago

        Not everyone likes getting their CPUs from convicted criminals who would undermine the efforts of a non-profit organization.

      • NeelyCam
      • 10 years ago

      They’re not trying – they /[

        • Welch
        • 10 years ago

        Yeah they ARE beating them to it… just not sure if it will make any difference though. Generally the longer a company has tech out that its competition doesn’t have a direct competition to it leads to them making more money as they almost have a monopoly on it. Take for instance ATI’s 5xxx series… DX11 and awesome performance, only downside is the price due to (supposedly) a lack of being able to make them fast enough. The longer and longer Nvidia takes to release its Fermi based GPU’s the more money that goes into ATI’s pockets. Depends on how attractive the Intel 6-cores are when they release and how much longer it takes AMD to release them. Anything over a month and a half is way to long… might be close. We will see.

        Then again thats the point of places like TR… to get pre-release stuff ASAP and to give people a comprehensive review of the hardware so they know to wait for it or not.

    • clhensle
    • 10 years ago

    Reply fail.

    • codedivine
    • 10 years ago

    Looking forward to these processors for the type of work I do (heavy number crunching including GPUs).

    • khands
    • 10 years ago

    I have a feeling the bottom end one will be, I won’t expect less than about $225 though, likely closer to $280

    I know I hit reply, /[

    • sweatshopking
    • 10 years ago

    i would buy a phenom 2 x6 if it was less than 300$ish

      • toyota
      • 10 years ago

      hopefully that would not be for gaming.

        • clhensle
        • 10 years ago

        If the clock speed is the same, I would see no problem with getting one for gaming, nice to have extra cores to handle background stuff, like ripping a DVD while gaming.

        I want to buy one for gaming… well, my game server, but I doubt I really need it yet. It currently has a Phenom II BE 3.2 w/ 4gb DDR3 1600. I run about 16 servers (TF2, L4D(2), CS, etc), and only use about 1% cpu per server, and about 6-10% per L4D server. I have never seen it go over 25% usage, even with 2 16slot L4D2 servers full, but it is sitting on 3 out of 4gb of Ram usage. I think I am going to wait until these chips are older and cheap and upgrade my server to 8gb and 6 core, maybe a nice sandforce SSD too.

          • djgandy
          • 10 years ago

          I think you need faster hard drives if you want to do a data intensive task.

            • Sahrin
            • 10 years ago

            There are people who build their own systems who only have one drive? I have six, and I’m adding more.

          • toyota
          • 10 years ago

          its not going to be clocked as high as their fastest quad core though. throw in higher prices and higher power consumption(compared to quad with same clocks) and the faster quad core would make more sense if gaming is the main concern.

            • Arag0n
            • 10 years ago

            in near future with dx11 multithreadeable I wouldn’t bet on the useless of 6 vs 4 cores.

            note: GTA IV, uses 86% of CPU on benching mode at my computer (4 cores), so It’s not as hard to belive that 6 cores would benefit the game.

      • khands
      • 10 years ago

      I have a feeling the bottom end one will be, I won’t expect less than about $225 though, likely closer to $280

        • Welch
        • 10 years ago

        I’d say your just about right Khands. With the lower clocked 6-core at 225.00 it would fit perfectly into their pricing scheme if the x4’s remain at the current priced. 189.99 for the 965 (or 185.00)… add on a 40.00 premium for an additional 2 cores and chances are the entry level one is going to be clocked probably the same as the 965… 6×3.4 for 225.00 ish… sounds about right, and then right barely sub 300.00. I’d be shocked if their top end one was anymore than 300.00.

          • khands
          • 10 years ago

          I don’t think the bottom line will be clocked at 3.4, not unless they get some major power efficiency stuff going on, it’s still based on the Phenom 2. I’m thinking 2.6-2.8 for the bottom line, 2.9-3.2 for the mid, and about 3.2-3.4 for the high end. Of course, I’m considering stock, not OC’d.

      • Kurotetsu
      • 10 years ago

      Since these are leveled against Core i7 chips I could see these being slightly north of $300 even if they only equal LGA1366 chips. Being able to instantly upgrade to Core i7 performance with no need to buy an entirely new system (well, assuming you already have an AM2+ system, people still cruising with AM2 would probably be rightfully screwed) would add a lot of value.

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This