So on my last blog post I mentioned how AMD isn’t sleeping, and how it had released a low-power version of their Athlon64 CPU, the 2000+ to go head-to-head with Intel’s Atom processor. Well as it turns out, Intel certainly hadn’t given its last word on the subject.
Perhaps in the light of AMD’s move on the low-end market, Intel decided that the release of the dual-core version of the Atom processor, the Atom 330, will occur sooner than expected.
Our sources tell us that this chip will run at the frequency of 1.6Ghz and it will have a total L2 cache of 1Mb (512Kb per core) and it will run on the same 533Mhz bus as its single-core counterpart (N270). It is expected that the Atom 330 will be significantly faster than the Atom 230 which was trampled by Via’s Nano according to a review by Ars Technica.
It is also worth mentioning that both cores on Atom 330 will have the HyperThreading technology and as a result, the operating system will have 4 virtual cores at its disposal. It needs to be noted that this HT technology was dropped in the Core platform and it’s now being brought back to life on both the Atom and Nehalem architectures. Rumour went that this technology was dropped because it was ineffective and in some cases it would even draw more power than a dual-CPU solution, so we can only hope that Intel knows what they are doing.
So you thought AMD was dead? Well that is not what this review by Tom’s Hardware shows us. It is true that the Core 2 platform has smashed the competition from AMD on pretty much every front of the market, but this tide might be about to turn.
With the recent outbreak of netbook computers like the Asus Eee PC, it leaves us to wonder where the big bucks might be coming from in the near future. Perhaps with this in mind, AMD downclocked and undervolted its Athlon64 segment to start headbutting with Intel’s Atom architecture. Truth to be told, they apparently succeeded on creating a platform that outperforms Atom on efficiency, where as by efficiency we understand processing capacity over power consumed. Actually, the Athlon64 2000+ runs at lower a frequency than Intel’s counterpart, but as we have seen in the past, when it comes to getting the most out of the same frequency, AMD is on top due to their more efficient architecture. This said, not only the A64 runs at a lower frequency, but it also does outperform Intel’s Atom CPU.
Personally, on a time where the dillema is what Intel CPU to choose rather than to choose between Intel and AMD, and being on a stalemate because of it, I think this is nothing but good news. Not only for AMD themselves but for the market in general, because we all know what happens when companies monopolize markets, right?