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AMD introduces sixth-generation AMD-K6 MMX processor; fastest processor for Windows computing ships in volume to PC manufacturers.

SUNNYVALE, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--April 2, 1997--AMD today announced it has begun shipments of its sixth-generation AMD-K6 MMX (MultiMedia EXtensions) A set of 57 additional instructions built into the Pentium MMX chip for improved multimedia and modem performance by performing mathematical operations on multiple sets of data at the same time (see SIMD).  processor, the personal computer industry's highest performance Microsoft Windows See Windows.

(operating system) Microsoft Windows - Microsoft's proprietary window system and user interface software released in 1985 to run on top of MS-DOS. Widely criticised for being too slow (hence "Windoze", "Microsloth Windows") on the machines available then.
 compatible x86 microprocessor.

"With today's announcement AMD (Advanced Micro Devices, Inc., Sunnyvale, CA, A major manufacturer of semiconductor devices including x86-compatible CPUs, embedded processors, flash memories, programmable logic devices and networking chips.  has changed the competitive landscape of the PC industry," said W.J. Sanders III, chairman and chief executive officer of AMD.

"Today marks the return of competition in Windows compatible processors. We have already shipped thousands of units and are ramping production in order to ship hundreds of thousands of AMD-K6 devices this quarter and millions more during the balance of the year," said Sanders.

Equipped with x86 instruction set multimedia extensions (1) See MMX.

(2) A multimedia add-on package from Microsoft for Windows 3.1, which did not have native support for audio and video. The extensions included support for audio, video, animation playback, MIDI, the joystick and RIFF file format.
 (MMX), the AMD-K6 processor is the fastest x86 processor for desktop computers. This processor brings sixth-generation performance and MMX capability using the optimum performance provided by the existing, low-cost Socket 7 infrastructure.

"Today, for the first time in the history of the PC, systems manufacturers, resellers and end users have a choice at the leading edge of a new generation of performance with multimedia capability," said Sanders.

The Superior Engine for Windows Computing

Based on tests using the industry-standard Ziff-Davis Winstone 97 benchmark, the AMD-K6 processor provides the best Windows-based performance of any PC processor. This performance stems from AMD's advanced, six-issue RISC RISC
 in full Reduced Instruction Set Computing

Computer architecture that uses a limited number of instructions. RISC became popular in microprocessors in the 1980s.
86 superscalar A CPU architecture that allows more than one instruction to be executed in one clock cycle. See pipeline processing.

(architecture) superscalar - A superscalar architecture is a uniprocessor that can execute two or more scalar operations in parallel.
 microarchitecture. (See the AMD-K6 processor editorial backgrounder for additional design details).

Winstone 97 tests show that a system based on the highest performance AMD-K6 processor delivers superior performance to a comparably configured system based on the fastest available Pentium Pro The sixth generation of the Intel x86 family of CPU chips. The term may refer to the chip or to a PC that uses it. Introduced in 1995 as the successor to the Pentium, models from 150 MHz to 200 MHz were released.  processor when running either the Windows NT (Windows New Technology) A 32-bit operating system from Microsoft for Intel x86 CPUs. NT is the core technology in Windows 2000 and Windows XP (see Windows). Available in separate client and server versions, it includes built-in networking and preemptive multitasking.  or Windows 95 operating system operating system (OS)

Software that controls the operation of a computer, directs the input and output of data, keeps track of files, and controls the processing of computer programs.
. (See attachment for complete Winstone 97 scores and system configurations).

AMD-K6 family members introduced today include products at clock frequencies of 233, 200 and 166 MHz (MegaHertZ) One million cycles per second. It is used to measure the transmission speed of electronic devices, including channels, buses and the computer's internal clock. A one-megahertz clock (1 MHz) means some number of bits (16, 32, 64, etc. .

"The AMD-K6 processor is smaller, faster, easier to use, more energy efficient and less expensive than Pentium Pro, making it the superior engine for Windows computing," said Sanders. "It will enable systems manufacturers and resellers to deliver differentiated, high-performance, MMX-capable desktop systems at affordable prices and expand the market. Competition is good."

Socket 7 Compatibility for the Optimum Desktop Solution

More than any other available sixth-generation processor, the AMD-K6 processor is designed to enhance the affordability of high-performance, MMX-capable personal computers. It was designed to be compatible with the Socket 7 environment because Socket 7 is the industry's optimum-performance desktop PC design platform.

Socket 7 also is the industry's most cost-effective and widely used PC infrastructure (motherboards, chipsets, and BIOS). More than 80 percent of the approximately 75 million desktop personal computers expected to ship in 1997 will employ the Socket 7 infrastructure.

By working within the robust Socket 7 environment, PC manufacturers and resellers can leverage today's existing, high- volume, low-cost system designs. Because Socket 7 is a proven infrastructure, manufacturers benefit by using the high-performance AMD-K6 processor without the increased research and development costs associated with a new platform. This speeds time to market and provides for more affordable high-performance systems. Socket 7 compatibility will also enable an easier, more cost-effective upgrade path to future high-performance members of the AMD-K6 processor family.

"New platforms from our principal competitor require systems manufacturers to use new motherboard designs that increase their cost structure, allow no flexibility for differentiation, and ultimately provide no new benefit to end users," said Sanders.

AMD is working closely with third-party suppliers to ensure a Socket 7 infrastructure that supports the AMD-K6 processor and successor AMD processors with a wide range of optimized, feature- rich and affordable solutions. Chipset products for the AMD-K6 are available from key members of AMD's FusionPC program, including Acer Labs, ITE ITE Institute of Transportation Engineers
ITE In the Ear
ITE Information Technology Equipment
ITE Initial Teacher Education (UK)
ITE Institute of Technical Education
ITE Institute of Terrestrial Ecology
, National Semiconductor, OPTi, SiS and VIA. BIOS support is provided by leading third-party suppliers, including American Megatrends American Megatrends Incorporated (AMI) is a Georgia, USA based hardware company that creates PC hardware and firmware. It was founded in 1985 by the current chairman and president, S. Shankar. , Inc., Award Software, and Phoenix.

To augment third-party solutions, AMD recently introduced a highly integrated chipset solution, the AMD-640 Chipset, which delivers high performance for Socket 7-compatible processors.

Windows Compatible by Design

AMD, the world's second largest supplier of Windows compatible processors, has supplied nearly one hundred million x86 processors, including 50 million Windows compatible CPUs in the last five years. The AMD-K6 processor, like previous AMD PC processors, is licensed by Microsoft to carry the Designed for Microsoft Windows 95 logo. The processor executes all leading operating systems Operating systems can be categorized by technology, ownership, licensing, working state, usage, and by many other characteristics. In practice, many of these groupings may overlap. , including the Windows 95, Windows NT, Windows 3.x Windows 3.x can refer to either an individual or all of the following versions of Microsoft Windows:
  • Windows 3.0
  • Windows 3.1x
These should not be confused with the first three releases of Windows NT, which were also given "3.x" version numbers, i.e.
 in full Microsoft Disk Operating System

Operating system for personal computers. MS-DOS was based on DOS, developed in 1980 by Seattle Computer Products. Microsoft Corp. bought the rights to DOS in 1981, and released MS-DOS with IBM's PC that year.
, Novell NetWare (operating system, networking) Novell NetWare - Novell, Inc.'s proprietary networking operating system for the IBM PC.

NetWare uses the IPX/SPX, NetBEUI or TCP/IP network protocols. It supports MS-DOS, Microsoft Windows, OS/2, Macintosh and Unix clients.
, OS/2 Warp The client version of the OS/2 operating system. It includes peer-to-peer networking, fax and communications programs, multimedia viewing and editing applications and IBM Works (word processing, spreadsheet, database and other office tools).

Introduced in late 1994 as Version 3.
, Unix, Solaris, and Vines operating systems, as well as 60,000 other software packages and the latest MMX-enabled multimedia applications.

Advanced Process and Interconnection Technology

The 8.8-million-transistor AMD-K6 processor is manufactured using AMD's 0.35-micron, five-layer-metal silicon process technology at AMD's state-of-the-art Fab 25 wafer fabrication Wafer Fabrication is a procedure composed of many repeated sequential processes to produce complete electrical or photonic circuits. Examples include production of radio frequency (RF) amplifiers, LEDs, optical computer components, and CPUs for computers.  facility in Austin, Texas.

The AMD-K6 processor is packaged in a Socket 7-compatible, 321-pin ceramic pin grid array (hardware, processor) Ceramic Pin Grid Array - (CPGA) A form of Pin Grid Array package used by Cyrix III processors.

Compare PPGA and FC-PGA.
 (CPGA (Ceramic PGA) See PGA.

CPGA - Ceramic Pin Grid Array
) packaging using C4 (Controlled Collapse Chip Connection) flip-chip interconnection technology. AMD uses the C4 process with the AMD-K6 processor because of its reliability, performance, and manufacturing advantages.

C4 technology makes the most of silicon "real estate" by allowing the chip's entire area to be used for I/O (Input/Output) The transfer of data between the CPU and a peripheral device. Every transfer is an output from one device and an input to another. See PC input/output.

I/O - Input/Output
 (Input/Output) connections. With wire-bonding techniques, only the perimeter of the circuit is usually used for I/Os, resulting in larger die size and higher manufacturing cost. C4 technology's use of solder bumps instead of leads also improves the processor's electrical performance because signals travel a shorter distance from the bond pad to the package.

"AMD now has put in place the intellectual property, process technology, manufacturing capacity, design capability and product roadmap to ensure that we can deliver competitive processor solutions that are contemporaneous with those of our principal competitor through the end of this century," Sanders said.

Pricing and Availability

The AMD-K6 MMX processor is available now. The AMD-K6-233 processor is priced at $469; the AMD-K6-200 at $349; and the AMD- K6-166 at $244, each in 1,000-unit quantities.

"With the AMD-K6 processor, systems manufacturers can have it all -- highest performance and lowest price," Sanders concluded.


See: New York Stock Exchange
:AMD) is a global supplier of integrated circuits Integrated circuits

Miniature electronic circuits produced within and upon a single semiconductor crystal, usually silicon. Integrated circuits range in complexity from simple logic circuits and amplifiers, about 1/20 in. (1.
 for the personal and networked computer and communications markets. AMD produces processors, flash memories, programmable logic devices, and products for communications and networking applications. Founded in 1969, AMD is based in Sunnyvale, California, and has sales and manufacturing facilities worldwide. The company had revenues of $2 billion in 1996.

Except for historical information contained herein, the matters discussed in is news release are forward-looking statements regarding AMD microprocessors that involve risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially including the timely development and market acceptance of new products, the impact of competitive products and pricing, the timely development of wafer fabrication process technologies, the effect of changing economic conditions, and such risks and uncertainties detailed from time-to-time in the company's SEC reports.

WORLD WIDE WEB: Press announcements and other information about AMD are available on the Internet via the World Wide Web. Type at the URL URL
 in full Uniform Resource Locator

Address of a resource on the Internet. The resource can be any type of file stored on a server, such as a Web page, a text file, a graphics file, or an application program.

NOTE TO EDITOR: Additional information may be obtained by calling 800/222-9323 or 408/749-5703. Please do NOT use editor contact or corporate telephone numbers for sales information.

AMD-K6, AMD-640 and RISC86, are trademarks of Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. FusionPC is a service mark of Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. AMD, the AMD logo and combinations thereof are trademarks of Advanced Micro Devices, Inc.

Microsoft and Windows are registered trademarks, and Windows NT is a trademark of Microsoft Corporation.

GENERAL NOTICE: Other product names used in this publication are for identification purposes only and may be trademarks of their respective companies. -0-

               AMD-K6 MMX Processor

     The Superior Engine for Windows Computing


         Winstone 97 Benchmark Comparison

     Performance PC: Winstone 97 under Windows 95

Processor   AMD-K6-233   AMD-K6-200   Pentium Pro-  Pentium-200 w/
              MMX           MMX          200        MMX processor
           processor     processor    processor

Score         53.8         51.6          49.2          49.5

  Performance PC: Winstone 97 under Microsoft(R) Windows NT 4.0

Processor  AMD-K6-233   AMD-K6-200   Pentium Pro- Pentium-200 w/
              MMX           MMX          200      MMX processor
           processor     processor    processor

Score         72.2         68.7          69.9          66.0


                     System Configuration

Performance PC Configuration

    -- Base Configuration: Matrox Millenium (4MB) Graphics Adapter,
DPT PM2144UW Caching Controller, SCSI UW Seagate Cheetah 4LP HD,
1024x768x16 bits/pixel
    -- AMD-K6: FIC PA-2011, VP2 Chipset, 512K L2 Cache, 64MB SDRAM
    -- Pentium Pro: Tyan S1661, Intel 440FX Chipset, 256K L2 Cache,
    -- Pentium w/ MMX: Gigabyte GA-586HX, Intel Triton HX Chipset,
512K L2 Cache, 64MB EDO DRAM


David Frink, 408/749-2922


Scott Allen, 408/749-3311

COPYRIGHT 1997 Business Wire
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1997, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

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Publication:Business Wire
Date:Apr 2, 1997
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