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back to article AMD rides Bulldozers into the x86 server chip war

Advanced Micro Devices was expected to launch its "Interlagos" Opteron 6200 server processors about now in conjunction with the SC11 supercomputing conference in Seattle. But what wasn't known was that AMD was going to kick out the entry eight-core "Valencia" Opteron 4200 processors now, too, rather than do a two-step launch. …

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Gimp

I hope the opteron version performs

After seeing the disappointing results of the desktop bulldozer parts i sure hope these Opterons can perform well, for AMD's sake...

I've been a loyal and dedicated AMD user tried and true, since the day the first Athlon dropped in 1999, but here lately its getting harder and harder to stand behind these chips when intel keeps pushing out chips that are just killing AMD.

I've always been one to support the underdog, but they've got to give us diehard fans something to work with...

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Bronze badge

I too hope it performs

and I too use AMD in the majority of my systems. On the other hand I haven't been to upset by AMD being out-performed by Intel recently because the AMD CPUs are still more than fast enough for what I am doing and they cost so much less!

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Anonymous Coward

I also rate AMD's chipsets better than Intel's, with better drivers and features at a fraction of the price.

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kb
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While its true

That if you want absolute top performance you go Intel, frankly that 30% gain comes at an 80% to as high as 150% markup when all the parts are added up, such as boards. and don't forget to get ALL the features on an Intel CPU you often have to buy the most expensive chips as Intel cripples the lower SKUs, whereas ALL AMD chips support the features, from the lowest C50 netbook chips up to the biggest Opteron.

personally I'd say where AMD has the big winner (and where the CEO seems to agree as he has slowed down the desktop output to crank up the mobile) is in the Brazos line with chips like Zacate and Ontario. I've been selling netbooks and laptops based on Zacate as fast as i can get them through the door and the customers love the things and with good reason. great performance and 6 hours of HD video on a single charge in a machine that weighs less than 4 pounds for the lappy and just 3 pounds for the netbook. I was impressed enough i put my money where my mouth was and sold my MSI wind for a Zacate EEE and i see why they love it, it is a wonderful chip.

The only real problem AMD has ATM IMHO is they can't seem to keep up with the demands for the mobile chips! you go to any PC retail site like tigerdirect or Newegg and you'll see the OEMs are using the Brazos chips in EVERYTHING, from netbooks and laptops to all in ones and HTPCs, the things are everywhere. and on the server front I know a few admins and they've told me they went AMD because the bang for the buck was nicer. with AMD they were able to load their servers with more RAM and faster SSDs at the same price compared to Intel and when you are running heavily threaded loads the AMDs do the job well enough for the price.

So i say stick with AMD, but maybe hang back on Bulldozer. it looks like another Phenom I where they'll need a rev to get the kinks worked out. stick with Deneb and Thuban on the desktop and go Brazos of Phenom II Quad on the laptop and by the time those get long in the tooth the chip after Piledriver, where they will have switched to the vector based GPU (which will seriously kick up FP performance) will be out and the prices will be nicer. On the server magny cours is a great bargain and for most loads works quite well at a very cheap price.

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Arch not suited to current Desktop

From what I can make out, Bulldozer is a server chip and was just not really suited to the desktop unless you are a real power users using all of the chips resources with lots of threads and apps running at the same time.

Now in the server this could be a real throughput monster although at the expense of single threaded performance, but not quite so bad as the Sun T2 processor.

But it will only really come into its own on a highly utilized server where hyperthreading on an intel chips stops showing its advantage.

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Pound for Pound

I've just priced up some Supermicro AMD blades (Supermicro being very on the ball with getting new tech to market in thier boxes).

Basically, I can buy a blade with four 16 bulldozer core 2.3ghz 6276's for the pricee of a single (non E-series!) 10 core Xeon.

For workloads that benefit from lots of cores/threads, and which don't incur licening that makes it worth spending top dollar to max out per-socket performance (some VMware or SQL situations I expect) these chips will definately be worth investigating carefully.

They're going to be awesome for VDI in genreral and cloud VSP reseller scenario's in particular - lots of 'fast-enough' cores you can allocate, and strong memory

It seems Bulldozer was always going to be a server chip. Makes you wonder why they bothered with a retail/consumer version at all!

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Anonymous Coward

Bulldozer architecture definitely for server use

Let's hope that some good engineers at AMD can re-work the BD and Piledriver cores for proper desktop performance as the opteron 6200 and 4200 look impressive.

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LOVE AMD

I have standing behind the AMD in early days and keep improving performance solving bugs as possible and share them with others. Even more than that I but specifications for pcs and servers I included AMD CPU as a condition in order to accept any offer from suppliers.

I hope Opteron6200 bulldozer regain the slogan back to AMD

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