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AMD's plans for 2000

With Intel once again starting to put pressure on AMD in the high end CPU market, we decided to find out what AMD has in the pipeline. First off the K6-3 is now officially dead, there are still some parts in the distribution channel, but AMD is no longer producting K6-3's of any speed.

Q1 2000

The K6-2+ will replace the K6-3 as AMD's low end chip. Starting out at 533MHz, this .18mu part will continue to hold down the low end Super 7 market. One interesting note is that the 533MHz K6-2+ uses a 97MHz FSB (97Mhz X 5.5), not the 133MHz that was initially thought. We do not yet know if all K6-2+'s will use this FSB. This means that the current crop of Super 7 motherboards will not officially support the K6-2+, although we expect all parts to easily run at a 100MHz FSB.

AMD also expects to be sampling processors based on the enhanced K75 core (Spitfire, Thunderbird and Mustang)

Q2 2000

Spitfire - AMD's Celeron killer. Based on a .18 mu Aluminun fabrication process, Spitfire will reside in a "Socket A" package, rather than the current "Slot A". Spitfire will be based on an enhanced K75 core, thus bringing along enhanced 3D Now! and all the other tweaks of the Athlon. With onboard fullspeed cache, you have the same design as the PPGA Celeron, but alot faster.

Thunderbird - Officially refered to as the "Professional Athlon", T-Bird is also based on a .18mu Aluminum fabrication process, but differ's from Spitfire in that it will have a much larger L2 cache (512K expected). T-Bird is also the last AMD chip that will reside in a "Slot A" package, quickly shifting to "Socket A".

Q3 2000

Thunderbird - Will switch over to a Copper .18 micron fabrication process, as well, the "Slot A" variants will be quickly phased out infavor of "Socket A".

Mustang - Officially known as the "Athlon Ultra", Mustang is a Copper .18micron part with up to a 2MB, on-die L2 cache. Because Mustang is a server part, it must have lots of bandwidth. Thus Mustang will support a 133MHz DDR FSB (effectivly 266Mhz) and 400MHz DDR RDRAM delivering 2.1GB of available bandwidth. It has been commolny thought that VIA's KX133 would be the chipset to use with Mustang, but it was reported today by Ace's Hardware that the KX133 does infact not support a 133MHz DDR FSB, leaving the AMD760 as the only chipset capable of running Mustang.

Andrew Oliver
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