AMD Will Release ‘Homemade’ Fusion Chips

The news of the combined CPU and GPU chips from AMD has been slow in coming, and many thought the company might outsource actual production of the chips, due mostly to capacity issues. Chartered Semiconductor has been handling some of the current load of CPUs for AMD.

This morning it has announced that the Fusion chips (the AMD moniker) will be fabricated at the AMD plant in Dresden, Germany. The process will also be a challenge because the current graphics processors (think ATi) are built on a CMOS (Complementary Metal Oxide Semiconductor) process, whereas the CPUs from AMD are SOI (Silicon On Insulator). The Fusion chips will have the Phenom cores as their basis.  In comparison, CMOS is primitive, yet much easier to obtain high yield quantities.

AMD representatives stated that there might possibly be an outsourcing of lower end models, with the implication that all higher end models would be AMD from start to finish, allowing greater control over quality and yields.

Fabrication may be more difficult, but cooling will be simplified, as will power needs. One socket, no waiting, will be very good for the budget desktop and Home Theater PC markets. The combination chip could possibly yield a computer with one fan in total, pulling air from the front of the case, over the disk drives and memory, then the Fusion chip heatsink, and out the rear of the case. With the efficiency seen in some of the latest AMD CPUs, that DTX form factor may work out after all.

information on Fusion processor
announcement on PCWorld

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[tags] AMD, processors, CPU, GPU, ATi, Dresden-Germany fabrication, DTX form factor [/tags]