Is The Thoroughbred A Mutt? . . .

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Power Consumption for Thoroughbreds Leaked.

Intel Engineer Says Palomino Is A Hybrid of .13 and .18 Micron Technology

You can find the first statement here; the second there.

What do the two statements have to do with each other? The first items seems to indicate the second is true.

How so?

If you compare the power consumption of a Throughbred XP2000+ with that of current XP2000+ (page 23), you see there is little difference between the maximum thermal power of the two.

Thoroughbred: 63.8 watts
Palomino: 70 watts

We see less than a 10% decrease in wattage at the same speed.

If we look at the maximum thermal power of the old Willamette (page 77), as opposed to the new Northwood (p. 93) at 2GHz, we see a much bigger difference.

Northwood: 52.4
Willamette: 75.3

This represents about a 30% decrease in wattage at the same speed.

Quite a difference, isn’t it?

The item mentioned by Ace’s Hardware was reported a few months ago in the Inquirer, and at the time, some “AMD insider” said the following:

” . . . while there were elements of the chip that might incorporate smaller process technology, that would not make any difference to the performance gains AMD could expect from silicon on insulation (SOI) technology and the .13 micron shrink.”

This may be straining too far, but note the word “and” rather than “or.” The statement can be read to mean that AMD needs both SOI and .13 micron to get a good deal more out of the Athlon core.

I would even scoff at that if that were the only piece of evidence, but last November, AMD did a presentation, and this slide showed the expected PR ratings of Athlons (and Hammers) into early 2004. It’s essentially level for the first half of 2002, shows a blip up in August, then (after Barton introduction), resumes a steady path upward.

Also remember that Palomino offered about a 20% reduction in power over the TBird. The Thoroughbred offers another 10%. That comes up to 30%, which is just what Intel got in its shrink.

What Does All This Mean To Me?

The power consumption figures (presuming they’re correct, of course) is yet another indicator (and really the first fairly solid one) that Thoroughbreds aren’t going to do a whole lot better than the current XPs (maybe 200-300Mhz better to begin with, maybe 400-450Mhz later on), and that we’re going to have to wait until at least Barton for that situation to change.

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