According to our sources, AMD has understood the error of its ways and future processor sockets will be interoperable, at least in the upgrade scheme of things. Owners of Socket AM2 and AM2+ motherboards should have no problems fitting not just current and future K10 quad-core and dual-core processors known as Agena (Phenom X4 GP-7000), Kuma (Phenom X2 GS/GE-6000) and Rana (Athlon X2 BE/LS-2000), but you will also be able to fit 45nm Deneb/Propus/Regor cores from the future (H2'08) that support both DDR2 and DDR3 memory.
The processors of today will not work with motherboards that feature DDR3 supporting Socket AM3, but the other way around should work like a charm. This was done by keeping identical power requirements for the motherboard makers.
We learned that for high-performing motherboards, AMD is requiring that AM2+ motherboards support 125W processors using 95A VRM (Voltage Regulation Module capable of delivering 95 Ampers), and that requirement will not change with AM3 socket. When it comes to the ainstream, cost-effective land - motherboard makers have to provide 89W using 80 Amper current (80A). So, we have three sockets from AMD - AM2, AM2+ and AM3 being physically and electrically identical.
There is also a second version of AM2 socket intended for value segment, the DTX form factor, to be more precise, and that cannot deliver more than 65W using 45 Amper current. This one will fit both 65nm and 45nm K10 processors with low-power markings, the ones around 65W.
Even though AMD is mixing'n'matching right now, judging by the amount of e-mails we have received in the past two years - this policy might prove better than Intel's. That's keeping the same socket, but changing the VRMs to point of zero backwards compatibility. µ
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