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AMD Bumps Up Socket AM2 Launch Date 234

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the scrambling-the-alert-five dept.
Thrill-Ki1l writes "According to DailyTech AMD has moved up the launch date for their new socket AM2 processors. The manufacturers of the new AM2 chipsets and motherboards have their hardware ready to ship early so AMD decided to launch the chips 2 weeks early. The new launch date is May 23rd."
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AMD Bumps Up Socket AM2 Launch Date

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  • condolences (Score:2, Insightful)

    by caffeinemessiah (918089) on Sunday April 23, 2006 @10:39PM (#15187507) Journal
    to everyone who just dropped a ton of cash building a brand new athlon x2 socket 939 systems...my condolences. at least this will bring the price of the higher-end athlon x2s down for the rest of us...yay!
  • summary (Score:5, Insightful)

    by The_GURU_Stud (955937) on Sunday April 23, 2006 @10:40PM (#15187509)
    what should also be on the summary is that it was bumped up to coincide with Intel's paper launch.
  • Re:condolences (Score:3, Insightful)

    by mrchaotica (681592) * on Sunday April 23, 2006 @10:43PM (#15187520)
    You would hope anyone building a system would have done their research and would have known that new chips were coming.
  • by Bin Naden (910327) on Sunday April 23, 2006 @10:51PM (#15187542)
    Is it really worth it to be an AMD processor with a DDR2 memory controller? Sure this meant a lot for the intel architecture but from what I understood the AMD architecture will not gain a lot from this memory speed increase. Also, the latency on the memory will likely also increase which might cancel all gains made from the increased speed. Therefore, I'm waiting and seeing before I get me one of those.
  • Re:condolences (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Bob_Robertson (454888) on Sunday April 23, 2006 @10:56PM (#15187561) Homepage
    Actually, the release of new hardware should drop the price of dual and quad 939 motherboards to buyable levels, as well as the dual core 939 CPUs.

    It's not like the 939 performance has dropped, only that the bleeding edge has cut another swath. Let them go, and enjoy the savings!

    Bob-

  • Re:Why bother? (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 23, 2006 @11:01PM (#15187575)
    I think I'm going to have to agree with that. From my first experiences with the Pentium M, even though I generally go with AMD for my systems, I really had to give them some large amount of credit for the Pentium M. So far its the last intel CPU I've used in anything that wasn't acquired by me for free. So I actually am almost excited about a wide-scale transition to that architecture for desktops. As much as they've shown they can compete very very well, AMD might be a little behind on this one.
  • by Z0mb1eman (629653) on Sunday April 23, 2006 @11:04PM (#15187587) Homepage
    Y'know... I used to reason along the same lines. After 10 years of building/upgrading my own computer, however, I realized one thing:

    Not once has it made sense to upgrade the processor. Every time it would've provided only a small gain compared to the expense and hassle. I've upgraded the RAM, hard drives, and video card several times - but by the time I felt I needed a better processor, it made more sense to replace the entire motherboard and go with a new generation (or build a new box entirely).

    To each his own, of course. But in the future I'm going to worry about the upgrade paths a motherboard offers for the RAM, drives, or video - and not the CPU, because I know I'll never bother.

    Then again, so far I've mostly had AMD boxes, so maybe there is some truth to what you say. :)
  • Re:fake? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Bin Naden (910327) on Sunday April 23, 2006 @11:04PM (#15187588)
    This is what we call a paper release as pioneered by IBM in the good old days. When the competitors threaten to release a better product then yours, you claim that you are developing an even better product than them in order to prevent consumers from switching to the competitor. The actual release date doesn't matter, all that matters is that consumers anticipate that you will have an awesome product coming along that they will want to save money for. And as IBM proved, you don't even have to release the product. You might just want to do this in order to cause your competitor financial hardships.
  • by stone2020 (123807) on Sunday April 23, 2006 @11:30PM (#15187666)
    So you think you are going to be able to put a new Intel Conroe chip in your current motherboard? You hear that? That's Intel laughing all the way to the bank.
  • Re:condolences (Score:4, Insightful)

    by toddestan (632714) on Monday April 24, 2006 @12:03AM (#15187768)
    Actually, I feel sorry for the people who built 754 systems back in the day. It seemed that AMD moved onto Socket 939 pretty quickly after that one.

    Though I really feel for anyone who has a Socket 423 Pentium IV system. Very short lived standard (1.3-2.0Ghz), expensive rambus memory, 100Mhz bus ("quad pumped" to 400Mhz), and really odd CPU coolers that screw into the motherboard that are virtually impossible to get replacements for.
  • Re:condolences (Score:2, Insightful)

    by caspper69 (548511) on Monday April 24, 2006 @12:10AM (#15187799)
    Exactly. I once held off on buying a dual-cpu motherboard because I didn't think the (south)chipset was up to snuff. How stupid. Here was a motherboard with 3 PCI-X(66) and 1 PCI-X(133) (in addition to two PCI32 slots and two PCIe x16 slots). I was upset because the USB host controller only supported USB1.1. Completely neglecting the fact that I could buy a trivially inexpensive add-in card and get the same functionality with minimal effort. People always look to the latest and greatest, but fail to ask one simple question: "What is it buying ME?"

    If it's not a huge increase in speed, then you have to understand that legacy platforms will continue to be supported for a good deal of time into the future. Never wait. Who cares? I know there are individual (and technologically sound) reasons why you would, but reviews have stated for ages that AM2 doesn't deliver any boost, and until DDR2-800 is available may not offer any tangible benefit whatsoever.

    So what's wrong with buying a nice dual or (drool) quad core desktop with socket 940 processors? You can (at this very instant) buy a quad core with dual x16 SLI and all the integrated platform goodies for about $400. If you wait until AM2 feeds down the pipe, it'll drop by 30%. My questions is this: if this lower priced platform still allows expandability with the peripherals you desire, and still supports (into the forseeable future) any new processor revisions, then what's the problem??

    There isn't one. Take care (power) bargain shoppers!
  • by Entropius (188861) on Monday April 24, 2006 @12:12AM (#15187803)
    I've heard power consumption cited as one advantage of DDR-2 over DDR. On laptops that idle around a dozen watts, even a few hundred milliwatts in the memory subsystem can be a signficant change.
  • Re:Wow! (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Ajehals (947354) <a.halsall@pirateparty.org.uk> on Monday April 24, 2006 @12:16AM (#15187813) Homepage Journal
    Yeah, cause Vistas coming early... No.. wait.. Sorry
  • Why, exactly? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Weaselmancer (533834) on Monday April 24, 2006 @12:20AM (#15187827)

    You would hope anyone building a system would have done their research and would have known that new chips were coming.

    Putting aside that new chips are always coming up, why would this matter?

    Only reason I can think of is that you're suggesting that you might want to put a faster cpu in later on. Is that it? If so...is that a really common thing to do? Because it seems kinda....well, dumb to me. You unplug your existing cpu and stick it in a box. Then buy another one that's only a few percent faster. Then unplug that 3 months later...and stick it in a box. Seems like a waste of money to me.

    Every time I've done an upgrade, it's been a whole system upgrade. And then, I only do it every 5 years or so. Is there really a need to stay on the bleeding edge all the time that I'm missing?

  • by billcopc (196330) <vrillco@yahoo.com> on Monday April 24, 2006 @12:28AM (#15187852) Homepage
    Amen! As a shop tech I hate Intel for NOT diversifying their sockets. For the most part, each chipset is tied to a specific series of processors. It doesn't matter that it fits in a socket 478, if the chipset doesn't like the CPU it's not gonna boot PERIOD. Instead we have to worry about families like Prescott, Northwood, Willamette.. or even worse their friggin product numbers that you have to break down to figure out the speed and features of the cpu. Try telling a relative on the phone to buy a Pentium 672.. much easier to say "Get an Athlon 4000!".

    Excluding old sketchy motherboards (ECS, Gigabyte), you can pretty much stick any Socket-A AMD on any board. Same thing with the 939, even the early boards will run fine with a screaming new dual-core.

    As for the upgrading issues, it's very rare that you'll swap just a CPU, unless you bought a crappy CPU to begin with. Most people who want to future-proof their PC will buy the best kit they can afford and make it last. They won't get a budget CPU that they know will be obsolete within a year or two. We're still in a young computing age where everything is in great flux. Perhaps in another decade or two, computers will have reached a point where things have stabilized and one set of mainboard, ram and power supply can last through several generations of processors. For now, that's just a penny pincher's absurd dream.
  • Re:condolences (Score:4, Insightful)

    by buswolley (591500) on Monday April 24, 2006 @03:09AM (#15188239) Journal
    I just built an AMD 64 3800+ X2. I researched for quite a while, and was completly aware of the new socket. This does not bother me.

    1)I can't really imagine anytime soon when I will need more power than I have with this system.

    2) The price was good.

    3)You can overclock the shit out of them.

    4)I can scan for viruses, rip a cd, and play a top end game concurrently without a glitch or slow down.

    5)It is a stable mature technology(socket 939). I previously made the mistake of purchasing the first edition of a new intel socket, and regretted it for years.

    Let the new sockets, chips and boards work out their chinks before you buy, I say.

  • Re:Why, exactly? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Znork (31774) on Monday April 24, 2006 @03:14AM (#15188249)
    "Then buy another one that's only a few percent faster."

    As far as I can tell, AM2 will be a merge of the desktop sockets, which means you'll eventually have a fairly large range of performances.

    If AM2 reclaims the same kind of staying power that socket A had, this also means you get the capacity to do cascade upgrades once you have a few systems. Stick a new CPU in your desktop? You dont stick the old one in a box, you move it to the server, which gets faster... and your old server CPU can be moved to the media frontend, which also gets faster... etc.

    "Every time I've done an upgrade, it's been a whole system upgrade. And then, I only do it every 5 years or so. Is there really a need to stay on the bleeding edge all the time that I'm missing?"

    Mmm, if that's how you do it, you probably wont benefit, no. In fact, it's far better to _never_ stay on the bleeding edge; bleeding edgers always get hosed by the price/performance ratio, and someone spending half of what you spend every 2.5 years will probably have a higher average performance over time on his systems, and twice as many systems. And again, once you reach the number of systems and component standardization needed for rolling upgrades, that's when you really start getting the payoff...
  • by Lonewolf666 (259450) on Monday April 24, 2006 @04:19AM (#15188370)
    AFAIK DDR2 brings better throughput but at the expense of more latency. For the current AMD chips the overall result seems to be equal, but once you go to more cores I guess the throughput will become more important.
    A few months ago I've read a review of AMD Opteron vs. Intel Xeon dual cores. For one socket, both systems had similar memory bandwidth and while the AMD was faster, the difference was not dramatic. For two sockets (4 cores total), the Xeons still had to make do with the same memory bandwidth because they shared the memory interface, while the Opterons gained a second memory interface because each socket has its own memory controller. In the test results, the two-socket Opterons completely smoked the Xeons. Conclusion:
    When four processor cores have to share a memory interface, it better be a damned fast one.

    Now AMD has announced that they want to introduce four-core processors eventually. Hence the need for plenty of bandwidth.
  • by tomstdenis (446163) <tomstdenisNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Monday April 24, 2006 @06:12AM (#15188666) Homepage
    I fell into this trap when I learned by new 915G ASUS board wouldn't handle an i820 smithfield core.

    Intel may use 775 for everything nowadays (except for Core Solo/Duo btw) but the required chipset changes. To be safe on the Intel camp today you need >=i945 northbridge. But that didn't help all the 915G users like me back in the day.

    Might be safe to point out that unlike Intel at least AMD has multiple vendors of chipsets. So while AMD is going through transitions (hint: So will Intel be when they realize that an FSB for memory is a dumb idea) you're not stuck on one vendor for getting the requisit parts.

    Tom
  • Re:Upgrade Horror (Score:3, Insightful)

    by tomstdenis (446163) <tomstdenisNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Monday April 24, 2006 @06:36AM (#15188739) Homepage
    I don't get this argument.

    First off, the only way DDR2 will suck is if they never hit 800Mhz speeds. Since there is a lot of pressure on this I'm sure the memory manufacturers will keep at it.

    Second, PCI-E replaces AGP [which was around for a long time]. PCI-E is the new standard for a lot of high bandwidth parts including things like network controllers. So while I can imagine in 5 years time we will start hearing about a new bus coming out, PCI-E will still be around. Christ we still have PCI on motherboards and that was introduced in the early 90s [I recall 486 boards with ISA/VLB/PCI slots!!!].

    Third, don't be a fool. Buy what you *need* not what you think will be patchable.

    If you really need two cores with a decent cache get a 4400+, 4800+ or FX-60. Those parts are pretty darn fast. I mean I know people who STILL use P3-MP setups running at 550Mhz today... I'm sure a dual-core 2.2Ghz part will be fast enough to compile or run desktop apps for years to come.

    Just buying AM2 because "it's new" is stupid, unless that is, you're a developer who wants to support all new platforms.

    The trick though is to figure out what you actually need in terms of computing power and topology and buy to that. Otherwise, you'll just waste your money buying stuff you can't use wishing you had something else.

    Tom

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