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AMD notebooks beat Intel to GHz punch

Tweedledum and Tweedledee line up

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Roadmap The race is on with a vengeance with both AMD and Intel lining up in a three-horse race to see which is first to hit 1GHz in the notebook market.

And, according to confidential AMD roadmaps we have seen today, it is set to be a close run thing, with the firm launching its 1GHz Athlon in Q1 next year. Well fancy that.

But before it gets round to engaging in that war, its reduced voltage Duron notebook parts will start sampling in Q3, using the S2K bus interface and a low profile, 462-pin, lidless PGA package, incorporating 192KB of on die cache. Its target is to deliver power of between 18-22W for these babies.

The Athlon 'Corvette', formerly called the Mustang 256, will have a 200MHz S2K bus interface which scales to 266MHz and beyond, and also uses the 462-pin lidless PGA package.

The new S2K protocol will require specific Northbridge support, but will have a maximum temperature of 95 degrees Celsius. So you won't be able to have a proper cup of tea.

The Athlon 1GHz notebook part, as well as its 9xx, 8xx and 700MHz parts, will be targeted at the performance sector of market, with the 9xx parts hitting OEMs (original equipment manufacturers) in Q4. Notebooks in this sector cost between $1500 and $2500.

In the Duron sector (notebooks between $1500 and $2000), we will see the 650MHz mobile Duron and the 600MHz Duron in Q4, with 700MHz Durons arriving in Q1 next year.

Hows about chipsets then? There will be support from Cheapsetzilla (Via) with the Mobile KN chipset, which will have integrated S3 Savage Graphics, and support PC-133/100. It will sample Q3 this year. And then we will have Ali's Napa2 (1646M) chipset, using a 200MHz front side bus (FSB), and using PC-133/100 SDRAM or DDR (double data rate) memory.

There's more of this sort of stuff but that's enough for now, we think.

We said three horse race for 1GHz, right? Well, don't forget good old Transmeta. As we reported from Computex, it is well on target to achieve 1GHz parts and we suspect (but don't know 'cos Transmeta never talks to us) that will have considerably lower wattage than anything Chipzilla or Chimpzilla can pull out of their respective hats. ®

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