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Alpha EV7 in January 2003

Without any rush and rumours the message about the release of the new Alpha EV7 chip arrived. According to the specified data, the new processor will be announced in January 2003, that just slightly differs from the initial roadmap (stating the late 2002).

The next one, EV79, is expected in 12 months only, because now HP works with the Alpha line in the "support mode", saving HP hundreds million dollars and enabling to focus on the IA64 support. As you remember, Hewlett-Packard (and Compaq Ė in June 2001) has already announced the gradual reduction of the Alpha project along with PA-RISC processors and smooth moving to the Intel Itanium platform. Currently Alpha and PA-RISC solutions bring about $5 billions a year, but already in 2002 the Alpha market is expected to reduce by at least $200 million. The smaller this market will be, the less investments will be made, and finally HP will only support already existing systems. This is expected to happen in about 2004, and Alpha systems will be supported until at least 2006.

Well, nobody doubted that "Itanium wins" after Intel has purchased the intellectual rights for the Alpha platform. Itís surpring that any new Alphas are being released at all. But as we speak of the Alpha EV7, itís worth remembering some details about it.


According to the provisional data, EV7 will initially feature the 1.2GHz clock. The new core is expected to have 1.75Mb of 7-level L2 cache with error correction, and the FSB will provide up to 19.2Gb/s bandwidth. Besides, the core will also feature a couple of RDRAM controllers.

These are the details known about the Alpha family for now:





Processor
EV68C
EV68C
EV7
EV79
Specifications
Clock, GHz
1
1.25
1.2
1.6-1.7
Max. energy consumption, W
65
75
155
120
Crystal size, sq.mm
125
125
400
300
Process technology
Vdd, V
1.65
1.65
1,65
1.2
CMOS, micron
0.18
0.18
0.18
0.13-SOI
Package
FC/LGA
FC/LGA
FC/LGA
FC/LGA
Pin number
675
675
1443
1443
Release
Samples availability
March 2000
March 2000
April 2001
Q3 2003
Volume shipments
April 2001
December 2001
Q1 2003
H1 2004

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