AMD Intros Quad-Core Spider Platform

November 20th, 2007 - 1:53 am ICT by admin  

Power users, get ready. AMD announced on Monday that it is releasing the Spider platform, which it described as the first true quad-core chipset supporting scalable graphics.

The platform includes the AMD Phenom quad-core chip, the ATI Radeon HD 3800 graphics processors with DirectX 10 support, AMD 7-Series chipsets with CrossFireX, and AMD Overdrive software.

The company said that the Spider platform can support three or four graphics processors, providing a “true gaming supercomputer.” Some configurations of the Spider platform, according to AMD, will be able to deliver an estimated two teraflops of processing power. A teraflop is a trillion floating point operations per second.

Spider a ‘Good First Step’

AMD also said that the Spider platform offers several technologies that are designed to be high-performance but use little power. These include the low-power 6-nanometer 7-Series chipsets, the 55-nm Radeon HD 3800 graphics processors, and ATI PowerPlay.

Toni DuBoise, an analyst with industry research firm Current Analysis West, said that Spider is “a good first step for AMD into the quad-core arena for desktops,” but that it is targeted at the high end of the market. It would have benefited AMD more, she said, if it had provided quad-core desktop products for a broader market as it goes into the holiday season.

The benefit of launching first for the higher-end, she noted, is that power gamers are “influencers,” to whom others frequently go for advice about new systems. But she pointed out that it is still too early to evaluate some key aspects of the platform. For instance, comparative performance specifications for the Phenom chip are not yet out.

Intense Competition for AMD

The release of the Spider platform comes at a time of intense competition for AMD. Rival Intel has released a steady stream of powerful new products, including 45-nm processors. AMD is…

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