Mumbai: Advanced Micro Devices Inc. (AMD) has launched a new line of computer processors that use less power - the AMD Athlon 64 X2 dual-core desktop processors - marking its transition into 65 nanometre (nm) process technology.
The new chip is essentially a rehash of an existing chip design, the Athlon 64 FX for desktop computers; AMD shrank it to make it more energy-efficient. The chips have circuitry that is only 65 nm wide, or about 1,000 times thinner than a human hair. AMD's current chips are made with 90 nm circuitry.
The move to 65 nm process technology would enable AMD to produce more processors on a 300 mm wafer for increased production capacity, while continuing to aggressively scale performance and reduce power consumption. By mid-2007, AMD expects to be fully converted to 65 nm production.
AMD plans to bring out original operating systems for Microsoft Windows Vista with 65 nm AMD Athlon 64 X2 dual-core processors immediately, and beginning the first quarter of 2007, include Acer, Dell, Founder, Gateway, HP, Lenovo, Packard Bell, and TongFang, as well as leading system builders worldwide.
AMD's 65 nm silicon insulator technology takes full advantage of its 90 nm high-performance technology - both in scalability and power efficiency. The move to 65 nm also allows for reductions in line widths, which enable AMD to produce more processors on a 300 mm wafer. The new 65 nm processes follow a technology agreement with IBM.
The company has priced the new AMD Athlon 64 dual-core processors 5000+, 4800+, 4400+, and 4000+ at $301, $271, $214, and $169, respectively.
AMD said the development of the new manufacturing techniques would help it compete with rival Intel Corporation, which has been using the advanced chip-making process for over a year now.
The company said it will soon roll out lower power chips for laptops and the server computers that run business networks, as well as a mix of low-power, high-performance processors.
"We are leading with energy-efficient versions and taking benefits of the technology entirely in power because that's what our customers want - lower power," said Nick Kepler, AMD's vice president of logic technology development.
Kepler said AMD planned to make chips on 45 nanometre technology by the middle of 2008, with 32 nanometer chips to follow less than two years after that.