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Turbo Core Equipped Phenom II X4 Chips Sold in Japan

When AMD was giving final touches to its desktop six-core processors, the Phenom II X6 series, there was also talk of a new quad-core processor line based on the same six-core Thuban silicon, but with two cores disabled. The resulting silicon was codenamed "Zosma". Apart from the two "potentially" unlockable cores, Zosma brought to table AMD's Turbo Core technology, which dynamically overclocks two of the four cores beyond the chip's rated speed, while respecting the chip's stock TDP value. The Phenom II X4 960T, one of the first such chips, however, never made it to the market, AMD shelved Zosma.

Market hounds in Japan recently spotted stocks of "Zosma" Phenom II X4 960T Black Edition, thought to have been shelved until now. This quad-core chip with unlocked BClk multipler comes with the part number HD96ZTWFK4DGR, and is sold in PIB (processor in a box) packages. The chip was tested to allow unlocking of the disabled fifth and sixth cores, proving it's based on the Zosma silicon. It comes with a stock clock speed of 3.00 GHz (15x 200 MHz), but can bump clock speeds up to 3.40 GHz (17x 200 MHz). The chip features 512 KB of L2 cache per core, and 6 MB of shared L3 cache.

AMD Introduces Phenom II X6 1100T BE, X2 565 BE, Athlon II X3 455

AMD rolled out three new processors today, the six-core Phenom II X6 1100T Black Edition, Athlon II X3 455, and the Phenom II X2 565 Black Edition. The new flagship of AMD's processor lineup, the Phenom II X6 1100T, is based on the AM3 socket, supporting DDR3 and DDR2 memory on older AM2+ motherboards. It carries a nominal clock speed of 3.30 GHz, is based on the 45 nm "Thuban" silicon, features 512 KB of L2 cache per core, and 6 MB of L3 between all six cores. It features the TurboCore technology, which bumps clock speed by a few hundred MHz when it senses high load. As a Black Edition chip, it features an unlocked bus multiplier. Despite its increased clock speed, the 1100T has a TDP of 125W. This chip goes for US $265.

Next up, is the Phenom II X2 565 Black Edition. Clocked at 3.40 GHz, the X2 565 is based on the Callisto silicon (which is Deneb with two cores locked), featuring 512 KB of cache per core, and 6 MB shared L3 cache. This one has a TDP of 80W, and is priced at US $115. Lastly, there's the Athlon II X3 455, a triple-core chip based on the "Rana" silicon (which is Propus with one core locked), it lacks an L3 cache, but features 512 KB L2 per core. With a TDP of 95W, this one goes for $87.

AMD Readies Faster Phenom II X6 Models, New Fast Quad-Core Chip

After AMD's recent mass-release of Athlon II and Phenom II series processors that included the Phenom II X6 1070T Black Edition priced at around $250, AMD is working on a new flagship processor that's even faster than the Phenom II X6 1090T Black Edition (the current flagship), given the model number Phenom II X6 1100T Black Edition (surprise!), and as always, it's yet another speed-bump. This chip is based on the 45 nm Thuban die, and is clocked a whole 100 MHz faster, at 3.30 GHz, with a Turbo Core frequency of 3.70 GHz. Surprisingly, it retains its TDP rating of 125W. As with every other chip based on this die, it features six cores with 128 KB L1, 512 KB L2 dedicated caches, and 6 MB L3 shared cache, it comes in the AM3 package and is backwards compatible with AM2+, supporting dual-channel DDR3-1333 and DDR2-1066 memory standards.

The 1100T Black Edition isn't the only new Phenom II series member down the line, there's the Phenom II X6 1065T (2.90 GHz, non-BE, 3.40 GHz Turbo); the slower Phenom II X6 1045T (2.50 GHz, non-BE, 3.20 GHz Turbo), and the company's next fastest quad-core chip, the Phenom II X4 975 (3.60 GHz, Deneb). It's not known whether the X4-975 is a Black Edition SKU.

AMD Silently Deems Phenom II X6 1075T a Black Edition Part, Starts Listing in Europe

AMD has expanded its Phenom II X6 market lineup with the Phenom II X6 1075T Black Edition model (model number: HDT75ZFBGRBOX), which has started hitting stores in Europe for as low as 227.35 EUR. Although the 1075T model has stayed in leaks and BIOS support lists ever since the series first surfaced, it is only now that we get to know that it's a Black Edition part. The chip carries a clock speed of 3.00 GHz, and with its unlocked BClk multiplier, helps with overclocking the chip. AMD already has a higher-priced, higher-clocked model, the 3.20 GHz Phenom II X6 1090T, and there's no indication that 1090T will be displaced from its current price point of ~250 EUR.

Based on the 45 nm "Thuban" die, the Phenom II X6 1075T features six cores, with a nominal speed of 3.00 GHz, that can increase by up to 400 MHz with load thanks to the TurboCore feature, the cores have dedicated L2 caches of 512 KB, and share an L3 cache of 6 MB. The chip comes in the AM3 package, and is backwards compatible with AM2+ socket, it supports both DDR3-1333 MHz and DDR2-1066 memory types, with room for higher frequencies. It has a TDP rated at 125W.

AMD Cancels Phenom II X4 960T Quad-Core Processors Based on Thuban Die

In what could come as a bad news to enthusiasts looking forward to the AMD Phenom II X4 960T "Zosma" quad-core processor, AMD has scrapped plans to release it, at least to the retail market. The chip could still be available to OEM vendors designing their desktop products around it. In a circular to the press, an AMD representative said "I've been asked the question about whether there will be a Phenom II X4 960T "Thuban" quad-core by enough individuals, that I think it is a good idea to proactively share the answer to everyone. While there are indeed engineering CPU samples floating around of a 4-core Thuban 960T, I do not expect that processor will be released for general availability. Perhaps it may make its way to OEMs by special request, but that remains to be seen."

Phenom II X4 960T was a certain release from AMD until now. Various motherboard vendors released beta BIOS that could support the chip, and some enthusiasts with access to engineering samples were even successful in unlocking its disabled cores. The prospect of unlocking disabled cores to yield a six-core processor at the price of a typical quad-core processor is what garnered interest among some sections of the enthusiasts. For AMD, the adverse effect Zosma could have on the sales of more expensive Phenom II X6 seems to have outweighed propagating its new Turbo Core technology at more mainstream prices.

Phenom II X4 960T ''Zosma'' Unlock to Phenom II X6

AMD's upcoming series of Phenom II X4 900T series that supports AMD Turbo Core technology, and which are based on the "Zosma" die, have been confirmed to be able to unlock both its manufacturer-disabled cores to work as a six-core processor. Zosma is a "cut-down" version of AMD's Thuban six-core die, where two of its cores are disabled. With the remaining four cores, two can function with increased clock-speeds in boost-state as Turbo cores (3/6 could on the X6 chip).

The core unlocking is said to have been done on an AMD 890GX chipset based motherboard, in the same way disabled cores on Phenom II X3 and X2 chips are unlocked. One of the first models based on Zosma are the Phenom II X4 960T and X4 940T, which operate at 3.30 GHz and 3.00 GHz, respectively. Their Turbo Core speeds are up to 500 MHz over clock speeds, depending on the model. The X4 T-series could form AMD's mainstream processor in the sub-$200 range.

AMD Phenom II X6 PIB Units Pictured, Turbo Core Technology Detailed

Here they are, boxes that carry AMD's first desktop six-core processors, the Phenom II X6. This line of "true six core design" processors from AMD target performance/price sweet-spots in the sub-$300 segment, targeting higher-end Intel Core i5, and even Core i7 series processors from Intel. The Phenom II X6 is based on the 45 nm "Thuban" core, and comes in the socket AM3 package. The processor is said to be backwards-compatible with socket AM2+ on motherboards with a BIOS update. Expreview sourced pictures of three Phenom II X6 processor-in-box (PIB) units, of model 1055T.

AMD Working on Black Edition Phenom II X6 Part

AMD's lineup of six-core desktop processors under the Phenom II X6 banner indeed includes a high-end part. A Bahrain-based etailer disclosed prices of some of the models, which includes a Phenom II X6 1090T Black Edition. This chip operates at 3.20 GHz, with a TDP of 125W. Being a Black Edition part, it sports an unlocked BClk multipler that helps overclocking. AMD plans to sell this chip at US $295. The Phenom II X6 1055T is the other part with a price-tag. This 2.80 GHz chip also has its TDP at 125W, although we've lead to believe that AMD will release a 95W variant, too. The 1055T goes for US $199. Both chips are based on the "Thuban" core, which feature six cores on a monolithic die, with 9 MB of total chip cache (512 KB L2 per core, and 6 MB L3 shared).

AMD Phenom II X6 Series Clock Speeds Revealed

AMD's much talked about six-core processors, the Phenom II X6 series, consists of three models for what we know in good detail: model numbers 1075T, 1055T, and 1035T at the bottom. But what remained a mystery were their clock speeds. A leak by one of the motherboard manufacturers who recently released supportive BIOS updates reveals the clock speed for the entry-level Phenom II X6 1035T to be 2.60 GHz, that of the 1055T to be 2.80 GHz, and of the high-end 1075T to be 3.00 GHz. As revealed earlier, the 1035T has a TDP of 95W, while the 1055T has both 125W and 95W variants in the making, and the 1075T has a TDP of 125W.

With so many motherboard vendors specifically designing their upcoming products to be ready for "140W TDP", it isn't hard to guess that there could be a higher-end part in the making, which is probably clocked even higher, and comes with the Black Edition branding. All Phenom II X6 processors are based on the "Thuban" core, a port of the Istanbul six-core architecture to the AM3 package. There are six cores with dedicated 512 KB of L2 caches and a shared 6 MB L3 cache (total cache being 9 MB). The new chip will be announced in the weeks to come.

AMD Phenom II X6 'Thuban' and Phenom II X4 'Zosma' Tabled on Roadmaps

A list of new Phenom II series processors were tabled in a company road map. The road map confirms AMD's naming scheme for the Phenom II X6 brand, and also sheds light on a new line of quad-core processors. In the second quarter of this year, AMD will introduce Phenom II X6 six-core models 1075T, 1055T, and 1035T. While the 1075T has a TDP of 125W, the 1055T comes in 125W and 95W variants (likely one following the other), and 1035T is the slowest model with 95W TDP. All Phenom II X6 models are based on the Thuban core (a desktop, socket AM3 implementation of the Istanbul die). Each of the six cores has 128 KB of L1, 512 KB L2 caches, and a 6 MB L3 cache is shared between all cores. The HyperTransport 3.0 interconnect operates at 4.8 GT/s.

The new line of quad-core processors here, is the Phenom II X4 900T series. The first member in this series is the Phenom II X4 960T. These processors are created using Thuban dies by disabling two cores. It helps AMD salvage its foundry produce with minor defects, and also target lower price points. The resulting die is codenamed "Zosma". Zosma in X4 960T has a TDP of 95W. Probably it has a lower clock speed than the "Deneb" Phenom II X4 965, but is placed in the same league, in terms of performance. One of its biggest "unintentional" unique selling points is that since it's based on a die that has six physical cores, some customers could get lucky by unlocking them to a six-core processor, at a much lower price-point. Even as several motherboard manufacturers have innovated ways to unlock disabled cores, and are advertising their unlocking features, it is not guaranteed that a Zosma would unlock into Thuban, just as Callisto/Heka to Deneb unlocking doesn't always work out. Going by AMD's road map, these processors will be released some time in May.

Phenom II X6 to Get C-State Performance Boost Feature

AMD's upcoming six-core desktop processor, the Phenom II X6, will introduce a new feature to the Phenom II series, currently known as "C-state performance boost". The feature gives the processor control over individual cores' power states, and the ability to gate power down completely a core. The remaining active core(s), will then be overclocked beyond the normal clock speeds, so that low-power operation with reduced parallel computing load goes on with much lesser energy consumption.

Features such as C-state performance boost and 'power-gating' is relatively new for AMD processors. The two were originally expected to be introduced with AMD's 32 nm "Llano" Fusion APUs. AMD's Phenom II X6 is expected to be released in May 2010, its architecture is derived from the six-core "Istanbul" Opteron processors, albeit in the socket AM3 package that supports dual-channel DDR3 memory. There are as many as four models in the works for an initial release. Known details of these can be found here.

Phenom II X6 Series Details Surface, Slated for May 2010

AMD's upcoming six-core desktop processor, codenamed "Thuban" is on course for a May 2010, suggests a report. The series is likely to receive the brand name Phenom II X6. There are four models planned for release within Q2, 2010. The Thuban core is AMD's desktop implementation of the Istanbul core, in the socket AM3 package, supporting dual-channel DDR3 memory. It is a monolithic multi-core design with six x86-64 cores, each with 128 KB of L1, 512 KB of L2 cache, and a 6 MB L3 cache shared between the six cores. Just as with K10 dual, triple, and quad core processors where AMD used a HyperTransport interface clock speed of 1800 MHz (3600 MT/s), or 2000 MHz (4000 MT/s), the new processor will take advantage of HyperTransport 3.x interface, with a HT speed of 2400 MHz (4800 MT/s). Thuban will be built on GlobalFoundaries' 45 nm node.

The table below lists out details of the four planned models. The model number of the top part isn't known. Most likely it is a Black Edition part, which comes with an unlocked BClk multiplier. It operates at 2.80 GHz, with a TDP of 140W. A step below is the Phenom II X6 1075T, which has an expected TDP of 125W, the 1055T is a notch below, and 1035T being the cheapest part. The exact clock speeds of the latter three models isn't known as yet. A month ahead of releasing these chips, AMD will announce the AMD 8-series chipset platform, led by 890FX (high-end, best for CrossFireX), 890GX (performance integrated graphics with CrossFire support). The AMD SB800 series southbridge chips will feature native support for SATA 6 Gb/s. Its on-die SATA controller gives out six SATA ports complete with RAID support. Some existing AM3 motherboards based on 7-series chipsets may also support Phenom II X6 with a BIOS update.

AMD to Sample Bulldozer Architecture in 2010, Sets Product Priorities

As part of its Financial Analyst Day for 2009, AMD listed out its priorities for the year ahead, looking into 2010. While the company has lived up to its development targets for this year by releasing a full-fledged lineup of PC and server processors built on the 45 nm process, increasing its market share with graphics products, and releasing the first DirectX 11 compliant (back then referred to as 'next generation') GPU, the year ahead looks equally ambitious for AMD.

AMD set the following product priorities for 2010: to deliver four new winning PC platforms in the first half of 2010, improve battery life of its notebook platform, expand homegrown DirectCompute 11 and OpenCL developer tools, propagate DirectX 11 graphics to notebooks, launch the company's first 12-core Opteron processor, and more interestingly, sample the company's next-generation "Bulldozer" architecture to industry customers, along with sampling the company's first Fusion-design "Bobcat" processor, which integrates the CPU with GPU, along with sampling some of the company's first processors built on the 32 nm manufacturing process.

AMD Updates CPU Schedule

AMD updated its CPU market schedules, looking as far as Q4 2010, across various CPU product lines. The update involves phasing out several existing products, adding replacements, and the addition of new products, according to sources in the motherboard industry. To begin with, several Phenom II X4 900 series quad-core processors will be discontinued. The company has reportedly already stopped taking orders for the Phenom II X4 910 (HDX910WFK4DGI, 2.60 GHz), and the 125W Phenom II X4 945 (HDX945FBK4DGI, 3.00 GHz). The latter perhaps is phased out due to its 95W variant (HDX945WFK4DGM). The company will stop taking orders for the 140W Phenom II X4 965 BE in Q1 2010, perhaps because of its 125W variant, for X4 925 around the same time, and for the X4 955 125W in Q2. The company is planning to release a 95W variant of the X4 955 around that time.

The company will also stop taking orders for several Phenom II X4 800 series, X3 700 series, X2 500 series, and Athlon II X4 600 series, and X3 400 series processors, as Phenom II X4 820, Phenom II X3 740 and Phenom II X2 550 will remain. Q4 2009 will see the introduction of the 3.20 GHz Phenom II X2 555, the new Athlon II X4 640 (3.00 GHz, 95W), and the Athlon II X3 445 (3.10 GHz, 95W) will follow in Q2 2010.

AMD Preparing ''Thuban'' Desktop Six-Core Processor

AMD is planning to create a desktop implementation of its Opteron "Istanbul" monolithic six-core processor. Codenamed "Thuban" (named after a star in the Draco constellation, which means Dragon), the new processor will be based on the socket AM3 package for compatibility with existing and future desktop core logic. It features six cores, 9 MB of total cache (6 x 512 KB L2 + 6 MB L3). Thuban is aimed to make for AMD's high-end desktop processor, as the company prepares to face competition from a near-complete lineup of processors based on the Nehalem/Westmere architectures from Intel. It is expected to be the posterboy for AMD's "Leo" high-end consumer desktop platform that succeeds its current Dragon platform.

Some of the key components that make up AMD Leo platform are the upcoming AMD 890FX and 890GX chipset, companion SB800 series southbridge chips, and members of AMD's Evergreen family of DirectX 11 compliant graphics processors. On the software front, AMD will give its Fusion and Overdrive utilities some big updates. The SB800 series southbridge chips will feature native support for SATA 6 Gb/s and USB 3.0; connectivity is further enhanced by integrated Broadcom MAC Ethernet interfaces. While the Leo platform is expected to launch almost simultaneously with the 8-series chipsets, the six-core Thuban processor on the other hand comes later. It is due only in Q3 2010. Thuban will have come out an year after its enterprise implementation in the form of Opteron "Istanbul".
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