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Thursday, 19 August 2010 09:54

ATI's 28nm to be built in GF and TSMC

Written by Fuad Abazovic
ati_logo2009

Two of a kind chips
This year will still be the year of 40nm chips and only next year will we see some 28nm chips. Both Nvidia and ATI are planning to launch its next, next generation at some point in late 2011.

We've learned that ATI is working on two different chips in 28nm, one for its long time partner TSMC and one for its upcoming star, the one and only Globalfoundries.

Globalfoundries has a hard task, as this chip has to be successful and it's the perfect opportunity to make some money in the complex GPU market. In case ATI's chip proves successful, Nvidia should most likely also sign to make its future chips at this fab.

Globalfoundries also misses an opportunity with the Ontario chip, AMD’s first 40nm as this will be done by TSMC. The reason is simple, Globalfoundries doesn’t have a 40nm high end process that would fit the needs of complex CPU and GPU design.

ATI’s graphics development team has a tougher task to develop two GPUs for two fabs, and we’ve learned from the past that you do need to adjust a chip design for a specific fab - one design for UMC and one for TSMC, which will be the case with Globalfoundries design.

The first 28nm GPU from Globalfoundries is expected in late 2011 but we expect to see some prototypes and wafers earlier.


Last modified on Thursday, 19 August 2010 11:49
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Comments  

 
-2 #1 yourma2000 2010-08-19 12:28
AMD say their flagship 28nm chip will be available in Q1 2011
 
 
0 #2 East17 2010-08-19 13:48
So they are both skipping 32nm ? I've known about this a long time but I've never thought they'd really do it. It's quite difficult for them to jump from 40nm to 28nm and difficult for the fabs too. Well, if they manage to pull this one off, good for us. If they don't, then AMD/ATi is only going downhill :(
 
 
+4 #3 ezodagrom 2010-08-19 14:07
Quoting yourma2000:
AMD say their flagship 28nm chip will be available in Q1 2011



Wrong, that's going to be their flagship 40nm refresh, the HD6000 series.
 
 
+2 #4 kartikkg 2010-08-19 14:43
hmmm a line in the article says that the chips have to be customized for two labs differently meaning a little more confusion for the customers from which lab their product is and a lot lot more for review sites to point at! if at all they make the lab name available on the product!
 
 
+7 #5 The_Countess 2010-08-19 14:52
Quoting East17:
So they are both skipping 32nm ?


TSMC isn't going to make any 32nm at all, for anybody. and GF isn't ready yet with a bulk process on 32nm, not soon enough to also include time to design chips anyway.

so ATI has no choice but to skip directly to 28nm.
Nvidia of course is in the same predicament, with the difference that they are betting on 1 horse(TSMC) as far as we know.

ATI therefore has the best papers to succeed at 28nm, even without considering their considerable design advantage the last 2 generations.
 
 
-3 #6 Nerdfighter 2010-08-19 18:25
ATI will release 2 different 28nm GPU-families. The first one is codenamed "Northern Islands", which is basically a shrunk version of Southern Islands, with a new architecture. The other one is codenamed "Hecatonchires", which is going to feature MIMD-shaders. It's also rumored that Hecatonchires will have a modular design.
 
 
-3 #7 Jurassic1024 2010-08-19 22:33
Quoting The_Countess:
Quoting East17:
So they are both skipping 32nm ?



nVIDIA of course is in the same predicament, with the difference that they are betting on 1 horse(TSMC) as far as we know.


WE?! After reading the article, how were you not able to also mention GF? It blows my mind. Do you often read articles then reword them to make them your own?

On a side note: TSMC has announced they will skip 22nm and instead use 20nm due to better performance to cost ratio.

The most obvious route isn't always the best one.
 
 
+3 #8 Alexko 2010-08-20 00:09
Quoting Jurassic1024:
WE?! After reading the article, how were you not able to also mention GF? It blows my mind. Do you often read articles then reword them to make them your own?

On a side note: TSMC has announced they will skip 22nm and instead use 20nm due to better performance to cost ratio.

The most obvious route isn't always the best one.


Jen-Hsun Huang has made it pretty clear that he doesn't intend to use GloFo. I think his exact words were "Our strategy is TSMC.[...] GlobalFoundries is AMD's foundry, right?".
 
 
+1 #9 The_Countess 2010-08-20 11:02
Quoting Jurassic1024:
WE?! After reading the article, how were you not able to also mention GF?


I did mention GF... I also assumed people had read the article and didn't need me to mention ATI is going to use GF and TSMC...

it was also implied when i mentioned nvidia is betting on a single horse(thereby implying their competition is betting on at least 2)

I'm not sure what else you want me to do. assume less intelligence in the people who read the comments here?

maybe you were confused as to which "both" east17 or i meant? well both the boths(nvidia/ATI and tsmc/GF) are skipping 32nm.
 
 
0 #10 azrael 2010-08-23 09:07
Can't really see how GloFo will have a harder task at doing 28nm than TSMC (as implied in the artice). Remember TSMC has (had?) severe difficulties even pulling off 40nm.
 

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