AMD answers Conroe with 4x4

Written by Wil Harris

June 5, 2006 | 09:12

Tags: #4x4 #athlon #conroe #ddr2 #fx #hypertransport #opteron

Companies: #amd #intel

AMD has laid out its strategy for taking on Conroe in the gaming desktop space - 4x4.

The new platform, which AMD unveiled to tech press over the weekend, puts two CPU sockets on a single board to support dual Athlon FX processors, effectively making a quad core system.

AMD says that its new, improved HyperTransport technology will allow for swift communication between the two processors. Combined with QuadSLI, AMD believes it will be the ultimate platform for enthusiasts and gamers.

The plan is not only to allow dual Athlon FX processors, but to allow a single FX to be paired with a coprocessor that would be able to handle physics or GPU tasks. This mimics AMD's approach in the server space, where Opteron servers can be paired up with coprocessors for extra power to take on specific tasks.

The 4x4 platform will be paired with unregistered DDR2 memory.

So will this be the platform that takes on Conroe? It seems like a bit of a kneejerk reaction to us. A couple of years ago, we accused Intel of raking out the Extreme (ly hot) Edition purely to counter the Athlon 64 in marketeering terms. The roll out of 4x4 seems to be the exact opposite - a quickly slapped-together answer to Conroe. If the answer to Conroe's power is to make gamers buy two processors instead of one, that's hardly a great answer.

Games barely take advantage of dual-core at the moment - adding two extra cores isn't going to help.

There's some more details on 4x4 and AMD's general strategy over at Ars Technica, which makes for interesting reading. We'll go and glean some more details and keep you updated. In the meantime, give us your thoughts on AMD's strategy over in the forums.
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