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AMD's Athlon XP 2600+: AMD Bites Back
Author : Martyn Date : 21st August 2002

3DVelocity wish to thank AMD for providing this CPU for our review.

...Product Athlon XP 2600+
...Manufacturer AMD
...Supplier AMD
...Price TBC




Part One: Introduction

It's hard to deny AMD's performance lead has been smashed of late. The yields and increased performance of the Pentium 4 CPU's have really affected public perception of the AMD illusion of invincibility. But we always knew more was to come from this exciting company and today the 2400+ and 2600+ are released, have these new CPU's handed a lead back to AMD or is it too little too late...

Part Two: Thoroughbred Troubles?

When we looked at the first .13 part from AMD, Wayne noted that all was certainly not perfect with AMD's new CPU's. Heat output appeared to have increased and performance was clearly in line with a standard speed bumped XP part. It was little secret that the Thoroughbred launch didn't go quite as planned. AMD have revised the design of these new CPU's and promise a better CPU all round. Let's look at our XP table and see how far we have come thus far.

CPU Speed  
Core Speed 
Core Voltage 
Athlon XP 2600+ 266 2.13 GHz 16x 1.65v
Athlon XP 2400+ 266 2.00 GHz 15x 1.65v
Athlon XP 2200+
1.80 GHz 13.5x 1.65V
Athlon XP 2100+
1.73 GHz 13.0x 1.60V
Athlon XP 2000+
1.67 GHz 12.5x 1.60V
Athlon XP 1900+
1.60 GHz 12.0x 1.50V
Athlon XP 1800+
1.53 GHz 11.5x 1.50V
Athlon XP 1700+
1.47 GHz 11.0x 1.50V

The first thing I assume you you all notice is that huge 16x mulit' for the top grade CPU. Certainly motherboard compatibility will be an issue again as indeed it has been for most recent CPU releases. AMD should have a full compatibility listing available from their site soon.

So why are these Thoroughbreds any different to the initial batch? To explain AMD have sent this statement over:

"How'd AMD turn up the juice?":

AMD continually strives to deliver the performance customers want. AMD has successfully implemented a process change for the "Thoroughbred" processor core that involved adding an additional layer of metal to reduce resistance and capacitance. AMD has also engineered additional decoupling capacitors to reduce electro magnetic interference. Finally, AMD always takes an active approach to rebalance and improve speed paths throughout the processor core design.'

Do note however the additional layer of metal is NOT the rumored P4 esq. heatspreaders. As far as I am aware all heatspreader equipped images on the 'net are, thus far, totally fake.
Certainly AMD have always improved steppings and overall designs in the past so we have every confidence that these new CPU's really are improved greatly.


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