Thursday, April 17, 2008

Nehalem chipset won't do SLI

Image no Image

Jensen, look what you did

Bosnian people tends to say don’t play with fire if you are not a fireman and Jensen Huang is everything but a fireman.

We learned that Intel is really upset with a little green thing called Nvidia and that the chipset that will support Nehalem CPUs codenamed Bloomfield won't support SLI.

This is not big news as traditionally the X38 and X48 high end chipset in its reference boards didn't support SLI, and yet again Intel was fine.

First generation Nehalem won't do SLI, but it will support Crossfire as Intel likes AMD more than Nvidia, which is kind of an awkward situation.

If there is a mechanism for Intel to remove Nvidia from its chipset list for future products, this is highly likely to happen. Just remember the Nforce 680i where Intel intentionally forgot to tell Nvidia that it changed the Yorkfield 45nm quad cores and the final score is that Nforce 680i doesn’t run with 45nm quad cores.

This cost Nvidia a lot of money as it decided to swap all Nforce 680i reference designed boards for 780i and this happened when Intel was rather cold to Nvidia. It also caused an upset in the market, as not all of Nvidia's partners got in on the upgrade scheme.

Well, Nvidia wanted a fight and a fight is what they're going to get.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Microsoft fanboys fight for XP

Microsoft fanboys are gearing up for a fight as the outfit threatens to pull the plug on Windows XP.

According to the Sydney Morning Herald, Fanboys have papered the Internet with blog posts, cartoons and petitions. They say that XP was better than Vista, which has hefty hardware requirements, is slower than an asthmatic turtle on its way up a hill towards a turtle soup convention. It is to software compatibility what Robert Mugabe is to economic strategy. 

Since January the Save XP Web petition, has gathered more than 100,000 signatures and thousands of comments, mostly from die-hard XP users who want Microsoft to keep selling it until the next version of Windows is released, currently targeted for 2010. Redmond has extended the XP deadline once, but it shows no signs it will do so again and is refusing to talk to the Save XP Website organizers.

Phenom 9950 to dissipate 140W

We’ve learned that soon-to-launch Phenom 9950 will dissipate 140W. The motherboard manufacturers are currently testing their boards to see if they can take it, but most of the boards that can cope with 125W will be able to take care of 140W.

Once you overclock your 125W TDB Phenom 9850 your TDP jumps up anyway, and the board that will let Phenom 9850 overclock will also take good care of Phenom 9950.

Phenom 9950 will be the last quad-core consumer CPU with the highest clock manufactured in 65nm and the next step will come as soon as AMD gets the 45nm parts ready.

As we reported previously, the 45nm Deneb and later Propus quad-cores are aiming for 2.8GHz and faster speeds, but don’t be surprised if you see K10.5 Deneb at some lower frequencies, as with 45nm AMD should get much better TDP than with its current 65nm Phenom parts.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Nvidia's VP says the CPU is dead


Nvidia's CEO goes frontal against Intel

There are no more lies and no more cold war between Intel and Nvidia. Surprisingly, Nvidia just started a full-scale frontal attack on the biggest semiconductor company in the world that we all know as Intel.

Nvidia’s fearsome Jensen Huang, the CEO of the company (also known as the Borg queen), told analysts during its recent analyst days that, “Intel is false. They have crossed the line, they're saying false things."

Huang continued with the following, "They (Intel) said Nvidia is going to be dead. Their graphics are good, but we'll put graphics into the CPU and there is no place for them to stick it." He went on to compare Intel’s current Core 2 platform with the next-gen processors and said that it would be “nothing else but putting more transistors [on it] instead of thinking of a solution.”

"People don't buy Nvidia products because they have to, because they're allowed to. They buy our stuff because they want to. They're overwhelmed by the value and the benefit we bring," Huang noted.

"This team [Nvidia] is like a Ferrari team. We know how to bring visual technology to life. We bring 20-30-40x the performance advantage and 27x the price/performance ratio". Even if Intel was able to deliver a 10-fold performance increase, the company would still not be able to reach catch up with Nvidia and AMD in the discrete space, Huang said.

Jensen is known as a very passionate, brilliant and arrogant guy but going against Intel on a frontal full scale might be the worst thing that they ever decided. Nvidia went from close to $40 to current $19.88 which means that the company has to do something to fix this but this is simply too much.

In addition to this super ultra bold comments from Nvidia’s CEO, Nvidia’s Vice President also commented to some of its customers that “the war has just started that will likely be written about for years and which will affect everyone who owns a PC. Everyone.”

He continues “Basically the CPU is dead. Yes, that processor you see advertised everywhere from Intel. It runs out of steam. The fact is that it no longer makes anything run faster. You don’t need a fast one anymore. ”

He also says that Intel is panicking and that AMD is in trouble because you don’t need faster CPUs. Last time we checked AMD was in trouble for being incredibly late with K10 and for the bug that ruined its sales of heavily under clocked CPUs, but maybe Nvidia knows better.

Nvidia believes that Intel attacks Nvidia because it is panicking, as Nvidia has a chip that it calls GPU that needs to be faster and faster. We agree faster GPUs will run games faster and get more details and life like stuff but you still needs a CPU and many other chips in order to make the GPU work and perform.

There will be more let us just gather a few more things about this first attack. I am sure that Intel works hard on its counterattack and it probably won’t take any prisoners.

Nvidia + VIA = True


Rather unexpected

Although the rumors have been circulating for a couple of weeks now, with various suggestions about Nvidia and VIA having been in talks about a possible buyout from Nvidia's side, it now seems that Nvidia has decided to support VIA's upcoming CN/Isaiah CPU with a new chipset.

Nvidia revealed the new chipset during its financial analyst meeting yesterday and the new platform is referred to as "The World's Most Affordable Vista Premium PC." The pictured prototype board appears to be a VIA product and doesn't actually have a Nvidia chipset on it.

Regardless of this, there are some interesting things to point out here. First of all, Nvidia is listing the board to have 1+8 cores, as Nvidia likes to call its Shader processors for cores now, meaning that the integrated GPU will have 8 Shaders. The combination of the VIA CN processor and the Nvidia IGP chipset should be good for up to 36 GFLOPS, which is compared to an unspecified Intel Celeron processor and Intel's 945G chipset which is meant to produce a mere 6.4 GFLOPS in comparison, although the 945G chipset uses the ICH7 (not ICH4 as per the picture below).

Nvidia is also touting features such as Vista Premium support, Blu-ray playback and DX10. All this should still set you back less than US$45, that being the CPU and the chipset, not the entire board. The platform is meant to compete with Intel's low-cost PC platform and more specifically the Atom processor.

We're not sure how power efficient this new Nvidia chipset will be and it would be a major concern if this platform would end up in a notebook design, as battery life is still a key factor in any mobile product. However, as a desktop platform, this could be a very interesting product, especially for the low cost HTPC market. Now we just need some Linux HDMI support and the sub $200 HTPC is here.

There was no word on availability, although Digitimes mentioned early 2009, but this seems a little bit too far away to be a realistic launch date.


AMDs eight-core is a native one -Montreal

We were surprised to learn that despite the rumors going around, AMD's eight-core CPU is actually a native one. AMD can do native octa-core just as well as Intel can with its Nehalem, and the codename for this eight-core monster is Montreal. This comes from a highly ranked source at AMD.
So, Montreal is not just two Shanghai quad-cores stitched together, it's a native octa-core 45nm part. This makes sense for servers initially and eventually it will also launch for the ultra high-end gaming market.
Of course, this all happens in 2009.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Next Nvidia card is D10U-30

Still DDR3

Nvidia plans to release a new card in Q2 2008 codenamed D10U-30 and the new card will come up with 1024MB of DDR3 memory. This is the chip that comes before GT200, and GT200 should be out in Q3 or early Q4.

The board will have quite nasty heat dissipation, as we’ve learned that Nvidia warned its partners to expect approximately 225 to 250W dissipation from the card. This information leads us to believe that this is yet another dual chip card.

We still don’t know that much about it, but we have confirmed its existence. We wonder if it is 55nm G92 shrink behind this card.

Geforce 9500GT reviewed

ImageFaster than 8600GT

Geforce 9500GT
specifications are finally out. The new Nvidia entry level card works at 550MHz, Shaders work at 1375MHz and memory at 1600MHz. The card still uses 128 bit memory interface, but the good news is that it performs better than the 8600GT.

Of course, we are talking about the fastest version of 9500GT with DDR3 memory, but it’s still quite an impressive number.

The Chinese review site promises 31FPS in Crysis at 1024x768 with no effects on, but probably at some modest quality settings. The card scores impressive 5853 in 3Dmark06.

To make it easier to understand, the Geforce 9500GT is a halved 9600GT. This means less performance and features, but at a much lower price.

ATI plans Mobility 3870 X2

ImageAnd 3850 X2, M88

computing will finally get some decent Crossfire graphics from AMD. Codenamed M88, AMD plans to launch a product that is very similar, if not the same, to a desktop RV670 chip.

The M88 will enable two very interesting products that will bring the Crossfire on the notebooks. The first and slowest will end up branded as ATI Mobility Radeon HD 3850 X2, and this baby is definitely based on two derived RV670PRO cores. The second one, ATI Mobility Radeon HD 3870 X2, is faster and reaches higher frequencies based on two derived RV670XT.

We have a feeling that mobile guys will use the same chips, as RV670 already has the power play part that takes care of careful energy spending on a GPU.

Since M88 is a 55nm product, ATI should have better thermals than Nvidia’s 8700MGT in SLI. We also expect a mobile 9 series sooner than later.