More Push Towards Multicore Evolution


Just a quick note today. I’ve been reading several articles the last couple of weeks about how AMD plans to use ATI and in all of them they keep pointing to how Intel has failed to fully bring video and the CPU together.

AMD keeps telling people that their plan is to integrate these two elements into one chip. It would seem to me that if you have an AMD processor with an ATI X1950 series integrated into it that you wouldn’t need a stand-alone video card.

AMD also has a pretty strong background in audio having built their own audio engine (Interwave) a number of years back.

The more I think about the evidence and the way it’s lining up the more I’m convinced that our future has no add-on cards in it and that’s good for everyone except the add-on card manufacturers.

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  1. Except that it’s always cheaper to throw in a new NIC when the one built into the system board dies, ditto for audio, serial ports, etc. I don’t see add-ons going away.

  2. Only low-end machines can benefit from CPU-GPU integration. CPUs and GPUs are both complex enough to occupy a chip of the maximum economical size.

    The way chip manufacture works, chips twice as large cost around four times as much to make. So combining the CPU and the GPU would double the total cost of those two functions.

    Even at the low end, previous attempts to merge CPUs with graphics engines and other peripherals have been terrible failures.

    Maybe someone will make such a part, but believe me, you won’t care.

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  3. Guys, I hear what you’re saying. The problem is that the people I’m speaking to within the industry are saying the opposite and the little hints that keep sneaking out imply otherwise.

    I was just as skeptical about this myself and still wonder how realistic it would be. Just today I ran into an AMD whitepaper talking about how their 4-core processor will be able to handle tasks previously considered beyond the scope of being CPU-bound.

    AMD seems to believe that Intel has simply screwed up previous attempts to merge the two.

    Also, the Xbox 360 seems to suggest that this can happen and still be something the market would care about and their commentary at Gamefest underscored pushing this even further in the future.

    The technical world is filled with previous examples of efforts that failed miserably only to later find the right solution. DVR functionality has been around for literally decades but no one made it stick until TiVo came on the scene to do it “right”, for example.

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