In case it wasn’t completely obvious already that Toshiba had a thing for AMD’s latest line of notebook processors, here’s all the confirmation you need. Tosh has just made official that the next-generation of Athlon, Turion and Turion Ultra CPUs will be “available throughout” its Satellite lineup. If you’re hunting specifics, we’re talkin’ about the P300D, A300D, M300D, U400D, L300D and L350D series — all of which are scheduled to go on sale sometime this summer from a variety of fine retailers.
Well, would you look at this? Toshiba’s Puma-equipped Satellite A305 hasn’t even left the floor of Computex and it has already been benchmarked. Kudos to NotebookReview for snagging some quality hands-on / testing time with the 15.4-incher, which came stocked with a 2.1GHz CPU, 2GB of DDR2 RAM, a 320GB hard drive, dual-layer DVD writer, 1.3-megapixel camera and Windows Vista Home Premium. You know you can’t wait for all the dirty details and pics to boot, so head on down to the read link and save yourself a trip to Taipei.
We’ve been hearing about ATI’s external graphics schemes for years, but apparently XGP is finally ready to go. The platform houses an external graphics card — ATI-branded, of course — which connects to your laptop via a proprietary 4.0Gbps PCIe 2.0 connector. The new tech is being initially launched with AMD’s new ATI Mobility Radeon HD 3800, which can work in a multi-GPU CrossFireX configuration with your laptop’s internal graphics card. The first out of the gate with the tech is Fujitsu’s AMILO Sa 3650, which packages a Mobility Radeon HD 3870 cardbut there’s still no word pricing or exactly when or where this all is shipping. XGP also supports some extra USB 2.0 ports, Blu-ray decoding, and outputs over HDMI with integrated audio and DVI, powering up to four displays.
AMD’s on a roll at Computex, and it’s keeping the stream alive with two more decently important announcements. First off, the company is making the ATI Mobility Radeon HD 3800 official, which is said to “triple top-of-the-line graphics performance in comparison to the previous generation ATI Mobility Radeon GPUs.” The unit also enables laptop makers to include CrossFireX technology for the first time, so yeah, there’s that. Moving on, we’ve got the low down on its PowerXpress technology, which enables users to “double or triple the performance of the integrated graphics processor when plugged into a wall socket or extend their battery life by over an hour while on the go.” In actuality, it’s a variant of ATI Hybrid Graphics Technology for lappies, giving folks the option to switch between a Mobility Radeon HD 3400 series GPU and an integrated AMD M780G without the need for a reboot. If your eyebrows just perked up, you can snag said tech on select Fujitsu-Siemens machines right now. All the gory details are linked below — enjoy!
Read - ATI Mobility Radeon HD 3800 gets official
Read - ATI PowerXpress shipping on select Fujitsu-Siemens laptops
Aside from the obvious PR blitz, we can’t really figure out what AMD is doing here. You see, its AMD LIVE! Home Cinema platform was actually introduced way back in January of 2007, yet it seems pretty confident that this stuff is brand new at Computex. Whatever the case, we can now assume that a new aspect has been added in to “enable solution providers to address the growing home entertainment arena through a consistent, highly-capable design.” The package also supports Phenom X4 9000 / X3 8000 CPUs and ATI Radeon HD graphics, and it’s obviously designed to be used on HTPCs, mini-towers and otherwise vanilla desktops. If you’re interested in wading through the mess that is the press release about this “new” technology, be our guest via the read link below.
Microsoft Windows Vista Home Premium SP1
Most of you have probably seen that Windows released Service Pack 1 for Vista not long ago, along with a release of SP3 for XP users. I decided that it was time to finally make the leap to Vista, it’s been in the plans for a long time, especially since I used it during the Beta and really loved it! I still waited for SP1 to come out just because back when I was using it in the Beta some companies such as Logitech still hadn’t gotten around to making any drivers for it… so I figured some maturity time was in order.
One thing that really does bother me a LOT about this purchase is that Microsoft is no longer including the copy of the 64bit Operating System with your purchase! They dropped the price by $10 and send only the 32bit Windows Vista Operating System with your purchase, then if you want the 64bit version of Windows Vista you’ve got to go online and order it for $10. To me this is backwards thinking on Windows part, I see the merit in it that the 32bit Vista works on any processor and the 64bit edition needs to be run on a 64bit processor… but honestly who doesn’t have a 64bit CPU now? And if you don’t why are you trying to install Vista in the first place?!?!
I still really like the operating system none-the-less and have run into very few problems so far… actually a lot of problems I was having (such as with the newer versions of Opera) have gone away… I’m with a lot of enthusiasts who say that if you’re having problems with Vista it’s because your computer is a piece of crap and you need to throw it off a building. Seriously Microsoft Windows Vista ran smoothly on my comp when I was doing the Beta and back then all I had was a 2.2ghz Dual Core AMD, 2 gigs of RAM, and an ATI x1600 video card… games were pretty darn slow, but really still playable, though some like Company of Heroes needed to be lowered in resolution and settings. Now with a 2.6ghz (OCed to 2.9) Dual Core AMD, 4 gigs of RAM, and an ATI HD 3850 I’ve had absolutely no major glitches with Vista to date… of course I’ve only been running it for a few days so I’ll get back to you on what I think of ReadyBoost, and whatever else pops up as it comes up.
AMD puts its processor lineup back on track
Hark! The long awaited B3 stepping of AMD’s Opteron and Phenom finally made its way to system integrators this week.
AMD made it virtually impossible to obtain any K10-based Opteron processors after the TLB bug caught the world’s attention last December. Desktop Phenom processors continued to ship, though the BIOS workaround for the TLB race condition severely hampered performance on some benchmarks.
The vendor who obtained the B3 sample photographed (right) couldn’t be more ecstatic. “There’s been no Opterons since November. We’ve even been shipping Socket F Opterons to fill AMD orders. This is a big deal,” he tells DailyTech.
“Pre-production” Opterons sent to Torrent search engine IsoHunt last February were later revealed as gray-market B2 stepped processors, which AMD tracked to October 2007 samples.
In addition to fixing the TLB race condition, AMD will finally increase the core frequency of the Opteron series on the B3 stepping. After the initial OEM orders are filled, channel vendors like Newegg and TigerDirect will carry the new Opterons in frequencies ranging from 1.8 GHz to 2.4 GHz. Vendor estimates put this e-tailer ship date in early April.
AMD roadmaps also indicate the Phenom and Opteron lines will reach 2.6 GHz before this Fall on the new B3 stepping. In 2009 both lines will transition from the 65nm to the 45nm process node, codenamed Shanghai, with additional SKUs at higher clock frequencies.
B3 Opterons can be easily identified by the “GH” as opposed to “GD” at the end of the product number. With the exception of Phenom and Opteron SE processors, AMD emphasizes to DailyTech that no vendor should be selling or distributing “GD,” and customers who obtain these older B2 steppings should contact their local AMD distributor.