Advanced Micro Devices has once again redesigned the launch family of its FX-series microprocessors code-named Zambezi so that to make it broader and more competitive, a source with knowledge of the company's plans revealed. However, the company, as reported last week, delayed the launch of the new chips, which are based on highly-anticipated Bulldozer micro-architecture, to October, 2011.
In a bid to improve competitive positions of its FX-series "Zambezi" lineup due to become available in the fourth quarter of this year, AMD decided to broaden it to seven models: four eight-core FX-8100 versions, one FX-6100 flavour and two FX-4100 central processing units, according to a source close to the company, which asked to remain anonymous. The increased amount of SKUs [stock keeping units] will help AMD to better position its models and make them appealing to particular customers with unique needs.
In addition to the model FX-8120 (which will be available in 95W and 125W flavours), which fills the gap between the FX-8100 and FX-8150 and allows AMD to broader the lineup of expensive eight core-chips, AMD also plans to introduce high-speed quad-core FX-4170, which will have default clock-speed of 4.20GHz and will thus offer extreme performance for its price-point.
But while it looks like AMD will offer more Bulldozer-based products this year than originally anticipated, it will start to roll them out only in mid-October, the same source indicated. The reason for the yet another delay of Bulldozer-based offerings is unclear, but AMD is set to begin production of the final versions of Zambezi in early September, which probably means low volumes of the products that will be available in the coming weeks.
A good news for AMD and its customers is that the company is on-track to refresh the lineup of its FX-series in mid-Q1 2012, according to some indications.
AMD Orochi design is the company's next-generation processor for high-end desktop (Zambezi) and server (Valencia) markets. The chip will feature up to eight processing engines, but since it is based on Bulldozer micro-architecture, those cores will be packed into four modules. Every module which will have two independent integer cores (that will share fetch, decode and L2 functionality) with dedicated schedulers, one "Flex FP" floating point unit with two 128-bit FMAC pipes with one FP scheduler. The chip will have up to 8MB L2 cache, shared 8MB L3 cache, new dual-channel DDR3 memory controller and will use HyperTransport 3.1 bus. The Zambezi chips will use new AM3+ form-factor and will require brand new platforms.