Ruiz cagy about AMD's 1.3-GHz Athlon
By Jack Robertson
(03/06/01, 04:00:21 PM EST)
SUNNYVALE, Calif. -- The microprocessor market waited eagerly for AMD Tuesday to kick off the next 1.3-GHz speed grade for its Athlon MPU -- but the MPU firm reportedly felt under no such pressure and continued to keep the higher speed chip in the wings.
AMD President Hector Ruiz told a Morgan Stanley Dean Witter investment seminar that the current 1.1-GHz and 1.2-GHz Athlon processors outperformed the Intel Pentium 4 1.5-GHz systems in PC WorldBench 2000 tests. He also cited benchmarks run by Tom's Hardware Guide rating the 1.2-GHz Athlon ahead of Pentium 4 at 1.5-GHz and overclocked at 1.61 GHz.
Dan Scovel, processor analyst with Needham & Co., New York, said as long as AMD's current Athlon processors compete well against the Pentium 4, there is little pressure for the Intel rival to rush out with a new speed grade.
"AMD can sell all the Athlon and Duron processors they can build right now. They only need to introduce a higher speed grade when they see the need. At some point AMD will have to bring out the 1.3-GHz Athlon just to show the market they haven't lost any technology momentum," he said.
Some Intel supporters claimed that the longer AMD waits to bring out its next 1.3-GHz Athlon, the more questions may airse whether it is ready for the market. Others in the AMD camp questioned the marketing hype solely focused on processor clock speed, asserting that overall chip performance is what matters. And both sides cite various benchmark test results to back the rival processors.
An Intel spokesman said he needed more information about the benchmark tests between the two processors that were cited by AMD's Ruiz. "We know that the Pentium 4 is unexcelled in the performance areas for which it has been designed: video streaming, 3D graphics, MP3 and audio streaming, among other functions," he said.
Ruiz did present an updated AMD roadmap that showed its next generation Palomino MPU with clock rates greater than 1.2-GHz will enter production for desktops and mobile this quarter.
A 0.13-micron processor called Thoroughbred will sample in Q4 '01. A value segment version called Appaloosa will sample in Q1 '02.
Ruiz said the first eighth-generation 64-bit Hammer series processor, called ClawHammer for one-or-two-way processors, will sample in Q4 '01 and enter production in the first quarter of 2002.
A 4-to-8-way 64-bit SledgeHammer processor will sample in Q1 '02 and enter production the following quarter, he said.
In flash memory, the AMD chieftain predicted industry sales would slow down in 2001 to a 50% growth rate to $15.1 billion, compared to a 133% jump last year.
Industry flash sales would further slow down to a 20% increase to $18.2 billion in 2002, he added.
Ruiz claimed AMD had a 14.2% global market share in flash , second only to Intel's 23.6% share. AMD flash partner Fujitsu Ltd. had a 11.9% share, he said. Next came Sharp Electronics with 7.9% and Toshiba with 7.6%.
بكل بساطة AMD ترى أنه من السابق لأوانه إنزال المعالج الجديد لأن معالجاتها لا زالت متفوقة