"From an OEM perspective or a channel perspective, we have everybody on the new platform, so that when the new processors come up there are fewer things that have to happen to get the product to market," Fruehe said. "Meanwhile, our competitors will have to go through product transition that AMD had to go through last year. We've done a lot of the heavy lifting in the platform, and our competition didn't have to do that last year. They got some benefit out of that, but they'll have to do that this year."
AMD says the Opteron 6100 series is geared toward Web serving, cloud computing and virtualization for verticals including financial services, database operation and high-performance computing.
Fruehe said servers running AMD's new chips outperform systems based on Intel's Intel Xeon processors in several key benchmark tests including SPECint_rate2006, SPECfp_rate2006, and TPC-C Value. He also said AMD's server products offer superior pricing compared to comparable Intel offerings.
"We're priced extremely well relative to the competition," Fruehe said. "AMD's top end 2P Opteron 6100 processors are 8 to 10 times less expensive than Intel's top-end 2P Xeon X56 top processors, and they're about 10 to 30 percent faster. Across the board, if you stack up Intel's Xeon line and AMD's Opteron line you find better value from AMD -- a lower price and better performance processor-to-processor."
In addition, Fruehe said AMD's Opteron line offers improved memory through-put and its 8-core processors actually provide 1.5 megabytes of cache per core, while the 12-core processors feature 1 megabyte cache per core, making the 8-core chips suited to certain compute-intensive applications. Fruehe said the 12-core chips also include lower clock speeds, but releasing both 8-core and 12-core options at the same time allows AMD to cover both corners of the market.
Fruehe also said AMD's Bulldozer APU core architecture, part of the AMD Fusion integrated graphics platform that launched last month, is on track to go into production in late Q2 and appear in the market in Q3 after having been sampled in Q4' 2010. Fruehe said AMD will sell Bulldozer products to system builders prior to the launch.
Based on the Bulldozer architecture, AMD's 16-core Interlagos APU and 8-core Valencia APU will offer a 50 percent improvement in memory throughput and a 50 percent improvement in compute throughput, according to AMD. Fruehe said those enhancements are due in part to the inclusion of more cores on the same 32-nm die, amounting to 33 percent more cores available at the same thermal and power ranges. In addition, each Bulldozer-based product will feature a 256-bit floating point and an AMD Turbo core with a performance boost of up to 500 MHz, Fruehe said.
Next: AMD's Product Timeframe And Pricing