AMD has finally shipped the first batch of its x86
processors based on the Bulldozer architecture, but don’t get too excited yet as they’re destined for servers and
workstations, with desktop and laptop versions still under wraps.
Last August AMD unveiled the details of its CPU designs, including the
Bulldozer architecture, that adds the ability to process two threads
simultaneously, somewhat akin to Intel’s Hyper-Threading technology.
Long seen as a viable rival for Intel’s Sandy Bridge
silicon, AMD has been fairly slow to get the processors to OEMs and only today
has announced the first shipment of Bulldozer processors.
As we said the initial shipment is aimed at servers and
workstations and is codenamed Interlagos. The 16-core models are
enterprise-level chips designed for scalability.
Speaking at the launch of the first Bulldozer chips, Rick
Bergman, senior vice president and general manager of AMD’s Products Group,
said: “This first Bulldozer core represents the beginning of unprecedented performance
scaling for x86 CPUs. The Bulldozer architecture will give web and datacentre
customers the scalability they need to handle emerging cloud and virtualisation
The delay in getting the consumer-level Bulldozer processors
to market is a pity, as it could have heralded a very competitive market place
with Intel’s Sandy
Bridge and, we assume, a win for consumers.
No official date for the shipment of the 8-core desktop
Bulldozer-based CPUs – codenamed Zambezi – has
been announced but it is expected to ship in Q4. Any later and it may well be
too late to make any significant impact on the market.