Bulldozer or Bulldust?

I’ve been eagerly following reports of the progress of AMDs upcoming CPUs codenamed “Bulldozer”. Bulldozer is a completely new architecture, developed from scratch and is regarded by many industry experts as being both revolutionary and innovative in design. AMD themselves claim to have achieved significant improvements with respect to performance per watt. Considering the rapidly rising cost of electricity in this country, this could turn out to be an important factor in future purchasing decisions as lower powered devices will become more attractive to the end user.

The Bulldozer design has been released to the public and the main specifications are

-          Consists of blocks of Dual core x86 processors which AMD has termed “Modules”.

-          Up to 8Mb of shared L3 cache.

-          Native support for DDR3-1866Mhz Memory.

-          Each module will operate at between 0.8 – 1.3 Volts.

-          Will reach Clock speeds of 3.5Ghz or higher.

-          Will have a Turbo boost mode for all cores of 500Mhz.

-          Will require new socket AM3+ motherboards, i.e. not compatible with existing AMD motherboard platforms.

-          Power usage 10-125 Watts

Current speculation is that the Bulldozer architecture should provide performance figures 50% faster than its current flagship 6 core “Thuban” based CPUs.

AMD has recently announced that it will be showcasing the new Bulldozer architecture at CeBit in Hannover in early March this year.

I for one, am certainly hoping for Bulldozer to be a roaring success, and to challenge the new Intel Sandy Bridge architecture for the CPU performance crown in much the same way as Athlon 64 did to Pentium 4 all those years ago. No, I am not an AMD Fanboy, in fact all of my current PCs at home are running on Intel  based platforms, but I do firmly believe that there is nothing better for consumers than good healthy competition driving technological advancement.

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