SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. Intel Corp. has a significant, if temporary, edge over archrival Advanced Micro Devices based on news and papers emerging here Monday (Feb. 8) at the International Solid State Circuits Conference (ISSCC).
Intel described at ISSCC its first 32nm server processor to use six cores. Meanwhile AMD discussed a new core it will use in its first processor to combine x86 and graphics cores called Llano.
Separately, Intel announced Monday its long-delayed Itanium 9300. It is Intel's first Itanium chip to use the company's QuickPath Interconnect letting OEMs link eight multicore processors with additional logic. To date, AMD has been limited to linking four chips in a symmetric multiprocessing system without the need for extra chips.
Intel's Westmere EP is a 32nm server CPU using six dual-threaded cores linked to DDR3 memory. It leapfrogs AMD's existing 45nm Istanbul server chip, launched in June that uses six single-threaded cores and links to DDR2 memory.
Intel said it will roll out in 90 days an eight-core server chip, Nehalem EX, made in a 45nm process. AMD is expected to respond later this year with a 12-core CPU called Magny Cours. It will put two six-core die in a package that links to DDR3 memory.
Intel's six"core Westmere packs 1.17 billion transistors, uses a 12 MByte shared L3 cache and supports low-voltage DDR3 memory. Intel's ISSCC paper describes a new anti-resonance feature in Intel's QuickPath Interconnect that lowers jitter on the chip.