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AMD reveals nine new Opteron processors using 'Piledriver' core

Advanced Micro Devices has introduced nine new Opteron processors using the chip maker's new "Piledriver" core for entry-level and mid-range servers and workstations.

The new Opteron 4300 Series and Opteron 3300 Series products deliver as much as 15 per cent lower power consumption and 24 per cent better performance-per-watt as the previous generation of Opteron chips, according to AMD.

"The Piledriver core architecture shared by the AMD Opteron 4300 and 3300 Series processors provides optimized performance, power, and price for today's customer," Suresh Gopalakrishnan, general manager of AMD's Server business unit, said in a statement. "These new processors are ideal for cloud providers, Web hosters and small and medium business who want to address their space and power constraints."

The Opteron 4300 Series includes six new processors with core counts of between four and eight. The fastest processor in the 4300 Series has a 3.4-GHz base clock but can throttle up to 3.8GHz with AMD's Turbo CORE technology, while the lowest power draw in the lineup is 35 watts.

AMD is calling its 4300 Series chips "the only x86 processors to support ultra-low voltage 1.25v memory."

The three new parts making up the Opteron 3300 Series max out at a 2.8GHz base frequency for the eight-core processor, which can be revved up to 3.8GHz with Turbo CORE, AMD said. Two new quad-core Opteron chips round out the 3300 Series, one of which boasts a power draw of just 25 watts.

Processors in the 4300 Series and 3300 Series offer AMD-P power management tools and the company's AMD-V virtualization technology, while featuring two memory channels with up to 1866 MHz memory support.

The 4300 Series supports up to six DIMMs per CPU for up to 192GB of memory per processor, while the 3300 Series can handle up to four DIMMs to deliver 32GB of memory per part, AMD said. You're getting a pair of x16 HyperTransport (HT3) links delivering up to 6.4GT/s per link with the Opteron 4300 Series and one x16 HT3 link capable of transferring data at up to 5.2GT/s with the 3300 Series.

Patrick Moorhead, principal analyst for Moor Insights & Strategy, pegged the new server chips as a "major boost when compared with AMD's prior Opteron offering," adding that "these products can also be viewed as a value play versus [Intel's] Xeon" server and workstation processors.

Here's the pricing breakdown for AMD's new Opteron processors:

Opteron 4300 Series

  • Opteron 4386 (eight-core): $348 (£216)
  • Opteron 4376 HE (eight-core): $501 (£311)
  • Opteron 4340 (six-core): $348 (£216)
  • Opteron 4334 (six-core): $191 (£119)
  • Opteron 4332 HE (six-core): $415 (£258)
  • Opteron 4310 EE (quad-core): $415 (£258)

Opteron 3300 Series

  • Opteron 3380 (eight-core): $229 (£142)
  • Opteron 3350 (quad-core): $125 (£78)
  • Opteron 3320 (quad-core): $174 (£108)