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AMD Hardware

AMD's Next-Gen Steamroller CPU Could Deliver Where Bulldozer Fell Short 161

MojoKid writes "Today at the Hot Chips Symposium, AMD CTO Mark Papermaster is taking the wraps off the company's upcoming CPU core, codenamed Steamroller. Steamroller is the third iteration of AMD's Bulldozer architecture and an extremely important part for AMD. Bulldozer, which launched just over a year ago, was a disappointment. The company's second-generation Bulldozer implementation, codenamed Piledriver, offered a number of key changes and was incorporated into the Trinity APU family that debuted last spring. Steamroller is the first refresh of Bulldozer's underlying architecture and may finally deliver the sort of performance and efficiency AMD was aiming for when it built Bulldozer in the first place. Enhancements to Fetch and Decode architecture have been made, as well as increased scheduler efficiency and cache load latency, which combined could bring a claimed 15 percent performance-per-watt performance gain. AMD expects to ship Steamroller sometime in 2013 but wouldn't offer timing detail beyond that."
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AMD's Next-Gen Steamroller CPU Could Deliver Where Bulldozer Fell Short

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  • by Gothmolly ( 148874 ) on Tuesday August 28, 2012 @10:16PM (#41160741)

    Things like hitting the 1GHz mark first, and making a workable 64bit chip that also speaks x86 only get you so far. AMD needs to come up with something cool, else they're doomed to play catch-up.

  • by ArhcAngel ( 247594 ) on Tuesday August 28, 2012 @10:45PM (#41161037)
    Well they definitely need to step up with their current offerings but I will forever be grateful for their 64 bit x86 extensions. If not for that we'd be stuck with Itanium desktops...*SHUDDER*...
  • by tlhIngan ( 30335 ) <slashdot@nOSpam.worf.net> on Wednesday August 29, 2012 @12:40AM (#41161855)

    CPUs don't really drive software development that much. Or else we would have migrated off x86 years ago. If intel can get the same/similar performance without a paradigm shift in development methodology, developers won't bother.

    The migration from x86 has already started, actually - the architecture they're moving to is ARM. (After all, there are more ARM-based SoCs shipped than x86 CPUs - every PC includes one or more ARM cores doing something).

    But on a more user level - tablets, smartphones are becoming the computing platforms of the day, all running ARM processors. Regardless of whether they run iOS or Android. Developers have embraced it and cranking out tons of apps and games and other stuff for this. It's so scary that Intel's investing a lot of money bringing Android to x86 because the writing's on the wall (when more phones and tablets ship than PCs...)

    But x86 won't die - it has a raw performance advantage that ARM has yet to reach, so for computation-heavy operations like databases, it'll be the heavy lifter. Perhaps serving an entire array of ARM frontend webservers.

  • by TeXMaster ( 593524 ) on Wednesday August 29, 2012 @01:34AM (#41162227)

    *Looks around* AAAAAAAnd, how does this AVX-256 compare to OpenCl transcoding of video?

    That's a stupid question. OpenCL by itself does nothing whatsoever to improve video transcoding. OpenCL is an API, so the performance of an OpenCL kernel for video transcoding highly depends on which hardware you're running it on. On Intel CPUs supporting AVX-256, OpenCL kernels will be compiled to use those instructions (if Intel keeps updating its OpenCL SDK), on GPUs and APUs it will use whatever the respective platforms use. What OpenCL does is make it easier to exploit AVX-256, just as it makes it easier to exploit SSE and multiple cores.

The only possible interpretation of any research whatever in the `social sciences' is: some do, some don't. -- Ernest Rutherford