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Meet AMD's 65nm R600 - the R650

Analysis Making a dynamic product mix
Wed Apr 11 2007, 12:18
WHEN WE FIRST wrote that AMD is working on 65nm R600 chip, half the firm itself did not have an idea of what was going on.

We never wrote that 80nm GPU would be scrapped, but we did state that it would be quickly surplanted by a 65nm part.

Now it seems our old chum Fudzilla has been converted to our point of view and we can now finally go out and say what 65nm R600 is and what will happen with this chip.

In short, AMD's CPU manufacturing strategy will be introduced to the world of GPUs. This should result in more affordable and better performing parts. Even though AMD is not using its own manufacturing facilities or facilities that use AMD's own procedure called APM, some elements of it will be used to get flexible manufacturing with GPUs as well.

First, R600 is going to be more affordable than any GPU part after Radeon 9700Pro and 9800Pro. AMD wants to undercut current high-end price bracket by $100-150, so expect an 8800GTX performing part for the price of 8800GTS. This is not all.

The company is getting the 65nm part on line as soon as possible, as this will enable savings in power well within the 60-100 Watt range, depending on what part are we talking about.

As we already wrote months ago, AMD developed four completely different PCBs and the company wants to cover every possible demand from its partners. We have talked with mid- and high-ranked executives and they told us that AMD plans to bring its customer centric mantra to every aspect of business.

This also means redefining the way graphics and chipset wars are fought. And we have to say that we cannot wait to see the slaughter-fest between AMD, Intel, and Nvidia in 2009. Somehow, we feel that AMD is the best-positioned company, especially if the flexibility that we were told about actually ends up implemented across the board.

If 65nm high-end GPUs end up on boards for $300, $350, to $400 a new era will begin indeed. Some of our AMD sources claim that most price brackets are achievable, the only real limit is yield. If AMD gets great yields from the 65nm R650, company will ship not hundreds of thousands of high-end chips, but rather millions and millions of these chips, bringing prices down and redefining its GPU sales profile. µ


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