Smart MP, Physical Changes and the Morgan
This content was originally featured on Amdmb.com and has been converted to PC Perspective’s website. Some color changes and flaws may appear.The physical look of the Athlon MP processor has changed slightly, but you would have to be an AMD enthusiast to notice. So…. I am sure all you did!
AMD Athlon Thunderbird
AMD Athlon MP
The most notable change is the change in core size. Increasing from 120 mm^2 to 128^2, the Athlon MP also increases from 37 million transistors to 37.5 million transistors. Something that crossed my mind while writing this was that those of you who have been using shims will have to carefully gauge the new size of the core and its contact with even the non-conductive shims. Also, if you look closely at the two pictures above, you’ll there are a lot of extra LX bridges and diodes on the top of the processor. You will need to be extra careful with those shims!
Also, current HSFs are 100% compatible with the new Athlon MP and Athlon 4 processors. In fact, you may even find that the heatsinks are more stable on the new processor than the old, with the increased surface area. There should be a decrease, even if slight, on the number of ‘chipped’ Athlon MP cores.
Just so we are on the same page, everything that I am stating here about the Athlon MP processor, including the data prefetch and TLB enhancements, as well as core size and features also applies to the upcoming Duron based on the Morgan core. Still, the only difference between the Duron and Athlon will be the amount of L2 cache on the chip.
Below is a table from the AMD Press Presentation, summarizing the features and benefits of the AMD Athlon MP processor. The only thing you’ll see that we haven’t covered is the Smart MP technology, which is more a feature of the 760-MP chipset, and will be covered later in the article.