Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 18th Sep 2007 19:52 UTC, submitted by Hendra
AMD AMD announced plans to introduce a desktop PC processor with three cores in the first quarter of 2008. The three-core chip will carry the same Phenom brand name that AMD plans to attach to its quad-core desktop chips due to ship to PC companies by the end of this year.
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wafer yields
by daddio on Tue 18th Sep 2007 20:22 UTC
daddio
Member since:
2007-07-14

Hmm. busted quad-core == three core proc. I don't know how I feel about that. I guess the are worse things.

Reply Score: 2

LOL
by Tuishimi on Tue 18th Sep 2007 20:22 UTC
Tuishimi
Member since:
2005-07-06

...so as not to waste the quad cores with one bad core in them.

I can appreciate a business decision like that.

Reply Score: 10

This actually isn't a first
by dbodner on Tue 18th Sep 2007 21:48 UTC
dbodner
Member since:
2007-07-01

Xbox 360's run triple-core PowerPC's

Reply Score: 1

"I have an idea"
by poundsmack on Tue 18th Sep 2007 21:50 UTC
poundsmack
Member since:
2005-07-13

(marketing) Bob: "I have an idea! intel is beating the hell out of us in the dual core run and so far we dont have any definitive benchmarks to support our quad core is reallythat much better."

(marketing manager) Jerry: "Where are you going witht his Bob?"

Bob: "What they don't have, and get ready this is gona blow yor mind, is a 3 core chip!!!"

Jerry: .....

Jerry: ..... "Bob your fired"

Come on the reasoning given in the video is that software now does not fully take advantage of qaud core so let take it down a core. thats just stupid!

they either did one of 2 things. 1, they make a seperate process to make a 3 core chicp. that would wind up costing more money in the long run as haveing 2 running productionlines doing different thigns makes no sence to achieve the same goal.

or 2, they just disabled one core, saving a slight bit of money but over all making a nerffed chip in comparision to their own offereing.....

Now I understand from a marketing perspective as you could market this like crazy "AMD the first to complete the Triforce" (Zelda reference). but seriously in the world of computer hardware your goal is to do 1 or 2 of 2 things. Build a better mouse trap and or be so inovative (and back it properly) that the whole market follows you (or in MS's case vendor lock in "tee hee we dont have ot make it good we own you" ;)

oh well I hope AMD plays their cards right. If this fails AMD's market share in the x86 x86-64 world will only slip further away form them.... good luck AMD

Edited 2007-09-18 21:59

Reply Score: 0

Reminds Me Of...
by jayson.knight on Wed 19th Sep 2007 00:00 UTC
jayson.knight
Member since:
2005-07-06

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0pnrq4M76pM

Except replace the word "Minute" with "Cores" and "Abs" with "Processors"

Reply Score: 2

It's a smart idea.
by Anon on Wed 19th Sep 2007 00:30 UTC
Anon
Member since:
2006-01-02

They can get better processor yields then by simply disabling silicon with busted cores on it.

Either way, this whole core madness is crazy. The difference between 3 and 4 cores for the average user would be negligible at best.

Reply Score: 2

RE: It's a smart idea.
by james_parker on Wed 19th Sep 2007 01:56 UTC in reply to "It's a smart idea."
james_parker Member since:
2005-06-29

The difference between 3 and 4 cores for the average user would be negligible at best.


While this is true for the average user, this is an ideal solution for the cost-sensitive software developer.

With two cores it is relatively easy for a developer to implement a concurrent algorithm that works correctly for two concurrent threads, yet fails miserably for three or more. In contrast, however, those algorithms which work for correctly for three threads almost always (a) work for any number of threads (subject to performance scalability issues), or (b) appear on their face to be specifically limited in the number of concurrent threads which are correctly supported.

With three cores, a developer will be able, much more efficiently, to catch and repair such errors before release. Once such machines are released, I would expect them to be targeted towards developers writing concurrent software.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: It's a smart idea.
by phoudoin on Wed 19th Sep 2007 12:21 UTC in reply to "RE: It's a smart idea."
phoudoin Member since:
2006-06-09

With two cores it is relatively easy for a developer to implement a concurrent algorithm that works correctly for two concurrent threads, yet fails miserably for three or more. In contrast, however, those algorithms which work for correctly for three threads almost always (a) work for any number of threads (subject to performance scalability issues), or (b) appear on their face to be specifically limited in the number of concurrent threads which are correctly supported.


Agreed.

Now the cost effectiveness for the customer of a 3 cores CPU vs a 4 cores remains to be seen, as we don't know yet how AMD will price this Phenom X3 and how it will compare with a Core2 Q6600 for example, which seem to be the best-seller Quad CPU this summer...

No doubt that the cost effectiveness for AMD of this Phenom X3 is real: X4 wafers cost will drop.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: It's a smart idea.
by Jondice on Wed 19th Sep 2007 19:59 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: It's a smart idea."
Jondice Member since:
2006-09-20

Am I missing something? If you want to catch bugs in a multithreaded app, can't you simply tune the number of threads being used and test it over a range of active threads? I don't know how you would throttle each thread, which you would probably want to do, but that would be a pretty cool feature.

/have only done a little concurrent programming

Edited 2007-09-19 20:01

Reply Score: 1

pricing
by JrezIN on Wed 19th Sep 2007 01:41 UTC
JrezIN
Member since:
2005-06-29

In the end, that's great news. AMD will have better pricing per wafer and we'll all benefit from it.

Reply Score: 3

Simple solution
by MrAr on Wed 19th Sep 2007 06:03 UTC
MrAr
Member since:
2007-09-19

I guess that if Intel were facing a problem like this one they would just burn another core and sell it as a dual core processor, and they would not have to justify a three core processor (i.e. explain that they are selling a working faulty processor) or have a cheaper processor competing with their hi end four core processors.

Reply Score: 2

Sounds good
by LraiseR on Wed 19th Sep 2007 10:00 UTC
LraiseR
Member since:
2005-07-12

Even if a faulty core is in there, that sounds like a good idea environment-wise. Put something to good use instead of throwing it out.

Reply Score: 2

not a new idea
by yak8998 on Wed 19th Sep 2007 19:15 UTC
yak8998
Member since:
2006-07-28

This isn't surprising. AMD always is behind process/yield wise, so they naturally want to get more wafers out of their process. Intel did (still does?) the same thing with the celerons. They'd just disable the cache on the bad pentiums and sell them as celerons instead

Reply Score: 2

defective core
by RafaelRR on Wed 19th Sep 2007 19:17 UTC
RafaelRR
Member since:
2006-06-20

Phenom X3 = quad-core chip with a defective core disabled.

Intel`s answer:
Intel "wants all the cores on its die to work"

Reply Score: 1

RE: defective core
by Lettherebemorelight on Thu 20th Sep 2007 06:46 UTC in reply to "defective core"
Lettherebemorelight Member since:
2005-07-11

It will take a lot more than simply wanting it to hit 100% yield on quad core chips.

Reply Score: 2

I Wonder
by edwardv on Wed 19th Sep 2007 20:40 UTC
edwardv
Member since:
2007-09-19

If the three core chip is really a four core chip where one of the cores is not working, is it possible that the memory controller, HT bus, and L1, L2 cache that were used by the disabled core can be used to advantage by the remaining cores?

Reply Score: 1

AMD is hosed...
by Luposian on Thu 20th Sep 2007 00:14 UTC
Luposian
Member since:
2005-07-27

As an avid Folding@Home (Team 1971) addict, I was a die-hard AMD loyalist. I never bought Intel. Never would. I always root for the underdogs... AMD and ATI. Always. Forever.

I owned a S939 (Socket 939) AMD Athlon64 X2 4800+ rig and felt that "need" coming on again... "Must... fold... FASTER!" So, I looked to the fastest AMD X2 processor AMD made... the AM2 6000+!

But while I was researching the costs, I was over at NewEgg and saw the Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600 for *UNDER* $300!!! A quad-core CPU that wasn't $500-$1000? Impossible! So I began researching that option and found out from various reviews and tests that the Q6600 (and particularly the G0 SLACR revision), beat the X2 6000+ by a significant margin. In folding, better and faster is all that matters. Brands are irrelevant. And, since the Q6600 runs cooler than the X2 6000+, I'd be saving money on electricity, too!

So I sold my X2 4800+ rig and jumped brands. And, let me tell you this... unless AMD can make their own "Core 2 Quad", I will be going with Intel/nVidia from now on.

From what I've read thus far, AMD is losing their edge (well, they already lost it against the Core 2 Duo, but...) and to have them coming out with a TriCore processor looks to be simply an act of desparation on their part.

AnandTech is where I keep up-to-date on all the latest AMD/Intel goings-on. Now... if only Intel would come out with a dual LGA775 socket motherboard, that supported the Core 2 Quad...

YU-MEH!

Reply Score: 0

How about 5-1
by transputer_guy on Thu 20th Sep 2007 02:48 UTC
transputer_guy
Member since:
2005-07-08

It really might make more sense to design a 5 way core and just assume that the majority of dies have 1 dead core and ship 4 way that way. It complicates things if there is an asymmetry in the design that penalizes some combinations of faults. Now if all 5 worked, I'd still turn one off!

Reply Score: 1