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-   -   Socket A to no longer continue? (http://www.aoaforums.com/forum/amd-motherboards-and-cpus/27335-socket-a-to-no-longer-continue.html)

cadaveca 10th October, 2004 06:13 AM

Socket A to no longer continue?
 
I had relayed this info after talking to the Gigabyte guy in July, when he told me that Gigabyte will no longer be making boards after this quarter for Athlons. Gizmo reported in the "News You Can Use" just a short while ago that the inquirer had news of this recently. Seems the new push is about to begin again, and 64-bit computing will become king.

Is this a smart move, or a classic oversight?

Thoughts?

Gizmo 11th October, 2004 12:24 AM

Seems to me like it is a smart move, if the 64-bit strategy is really the future (I think it is).

Consider:
1) AMD currently has Socket A, Socket 754, and Socket 939 for the desktop market. IMHO, this is about two sockets too many, but considering that Socket 754 and Socket A are both covering the budget segment, there DEFINITELY is no justification for at least one of them. It makes costs higher for mobo vendors who have to support the various form factors.
2) Semprons are available as both Socket A and Socket 754. We already know that Semprons are lobotomized Athlon-64 chips. This means that there is a lot of silicon on the socket A Sempron that is not being used (specifically the 64-bit stuff, but more to the point, the memory interface controller). So, AMD is spending money on silicon that it has to disable (I doubt very many chips are so badly messed up that BOTH memory controllers are trash). Then, chipset vendors have to spend money on silicon to provide the functionality that has been disabled in the Sempron. This drives up costs all the way around, for no benefit to ANYONE.

cadaveca 11th October, 2004 02:14 AM

Do you think that this means Longhorn will be released shortly?
How about the socketA to continue, but labeled as sempron? This would be a bold move in the industry...high-end:64-bit/pci-e, low-end:32bit/pci-agp? What does this mean for the software industry?

Gizmo 11th October, 2004 02:22 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by cadaveca
Do you think that this means Longhorn will be released shortly?
How about the socketA to continue, but labeled as sempron? This would be a bold move in the industry...high-end:64-bit/pci-e, low-end:32bit/pci-agp? What does this mean for the software industry?

For the software industry as a whole, I don't see that it makes a lot of difference. People that need 64-bit capability will write software for it, and the rest of us will continue writing to the lowest practical platform. For most of us, that means Pentium Pro architecture. For the bottom-feeders (the people who specialize in writing the $5 software packs) that means 486s. I don't think that will change much. At most, it means that people writing for 486s as their low end will be able to write for Pentiums, which makes little practical difference.

As I indicated above, I really don't see Sempron surviving as a socket a product for more than a short period of time (MAYBE another year) and only as a transitional product. If AMD's manufacturing process is so crappy that they can justify selling a socket a Sempron in order to improve their yields, then they've got serious problems. More likely, they have to actually castrate the memory controllers on some Semprons to turn them into socket a chips. That represents a net loss for AMD, because they can get more money for socket 754 chips than they can for socket a. It represents a net loss for mobo manufactures, because they have to support two budget form factors. Worst case, they actually end up splitting their market evenly between the two forms, which results in higher costs for both platforms than if only one dominated (economies of scale).

'Course, this is all guesswork on my part, and I COULD be wrong. :)

Repo Man 11th October, 2004 09:00 AM

To clear any confusion, the Socket A Sempron is just a renamed Athlon XP. It is to replace the Duron.

No matter how you slice it though, Socket A is on its way to join Socket 7, Socket 370, and all of the other obsolete CPU interfaces.

It'll probably be sometime before I replace my Socket A with anything else though.

Maelstrom2160 11th October, 2004 12:40 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Repo Man
To clear any confusion, the Socket A Sempron is just a renamed Athlon XP. It is to replace the Duron.

No matter how you slice it though, Socket A is on its way to join Socket 7, Socket 370, and all of the other obsolete CPU interfaces.

It'll probably be sometime before I replace my Socket A with anything else though.

I doubt i'll change CPU for a while either, UNLESS a decent revision of the amd 64 chip comes out that will give me 5.5+Ghz and only costs me around about £100

brian770 11th October, 2004 09:40 PM

i also think the socket a is fairly dead. i think that another year probably will be the end of life for it, by then the 64 bit chips will be widely enough accepted to drop the A. i cant wait for it, everything socket A will be or should be dirt cheep! should be realy cheep to make a few folders.

deryl88 12th October, 2004 06:31 AM

The thing that attracted me to AMD was the fact that it had only 1 socket platform, Socket A. The slot A platform had just been discontinued. It made things so easy when I built my first PC.

I see the move away from socket A, a good thing. I believe AMD is planning to do with the socket 939 what they did with the Socket A. One socket for all Proc. This will alleviate alot of confusion when purchasing a processor and allows for a clear upgrade path with minimal hassle.

Personally, I'm waiting for the second generation (I dont like to buy first generation products because of potential bugs) of Athlon 64 Motherboards with DDR2 and PCIexpress.(whenever that happens) It will still be awhile before the socket A totally disappears, and the socket 939 will be well established before it goes.

Repo Man 12th October, 2004 08:57 AM

Intel have left their customers high and dry so many times it is hard to keep count.

Virtually everytime they come out with a new processor, they have a new slot or socket. I've read informed speculation that they abandoned Socket 7 to avoid having to compete head to head with AMD.

But not only does Intel want to avoid a common CPU interface, they also sell chipsets. So if customers have to buy a new motherboard to upgrade, when all they really wanted to do was upgrade their CPU, that's just fine with Intel.

Socket A has spanned from 600 MHz to over 2 GHz. They obviously left themselves some room to grow with the 462 pin socket. And that has been good news for us. Even older boards have been able to stay close to state of the art because, though not officially supported, much newer and more powerful AMD CPUs would often work in them.

The one that really got me with Intel was when they went from Socket 423 to 478. The P4 wasn't even a year old! If you wanted to upgrade, buy a new motherboard (or maybe a 478 to 423 adapter).

It is the arrogance of being the dominant player. And I detest arrogance.


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