Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Core Microarchitecture

In summary:
Core is very complicated. It is theoretically capable of executing 4 instructions simultaneously, for which it has been designed a set of features to try to keep those numerous execution units busy.

It will be very difficult to improve the architecture itself (no integrated memory controller ever, nor Hyper Transport), so despite its name, it isn't a new architecture in the revolutionary sense the Hammer/Opteron still is, nor it is conceived to last for a generation.

As soon as 64bit benchmarks come out, look for the comparison between the speed of the same programs compiled at 32 and 64 bits. If the performance at 64 bits is not better than 20% faster, equal, or even slower, then Core is dead at 64 bits, Intel won't ever be able to overhaul the arch. for 64 bits. But be prepared to see a jump of over 40% speed improvement compared to 32 bits.

Chances are that it will be difficult and costly to manufacture, do not expect it to be available in market dominating quantities before 2007

You can also expect the Grand Masters to come with a Grand Slam that could make look Core as primitive and obsolete as we look at pentiumIIIs today.