AMD chipset roadmap signals new southbridges, DDR 3
Greater emphasis on integrated parts too
AMD's going to be shaking up its chipset offerings this quarter, if an allegedly leaked roadmap slide is the real deal. The timeline stretches out into 2009 and highlights the increasing dominance of integrated parts.
Later this quarter, AMD will revamp its enthusiast-oriented 790FX chipset, launched in November 2007, with its anticipated SB750 southbridge. A new, performance-segment chipset, the 790GX, will also use the SB750.
The SB750 delivers what AMD calls "Advanced Clock Calibration" which can "enable greater performance tuning margin for the AMD Phenom Black Edition CPUs... The optimal gain can be seen in configurations that use high-end CPU cooling solution in combination with elevated CPU core voltage value."
At the end of the quarter, the integrated 780G chipset will be relaunched - the inclusion of the SB750 will, as per the 790FX, be the differentiating factor.
The revamp will push the IGP to the peak of the mainstream desktop segment. By Q2 2009, when it's successor, the 'RS880' is set to ship with the SB800 southbridge on board, IGPs look set to command the market, from the performance segment down. Only enthusiasts are going to want discrete chipsets, it would seem from the roadmap slide, posted on Spanish-language site ChileHardware.
A new incarnation of the 'RD790' chipset will oust the RD790-based 790FX in Q1 2009. It too will use SB750, but the change will accommodate DDR 3-supporting AMD CPUs presumably due to debut in the same timeframe. RS880 will support DDR 3, as will the 'RD890', the follow-up to RD790, which will also use the SB800.
Looks like DDR2's days are numbered.
The upcoming Nehalem CPUs from Intel (bet you they'll eventually be named Core 3) will also sport internalized DDR3 memory controllers. With this announcement, the transition has clearly begun across the board.