The AMD Athlon XP 2000+ processor

Monday, January 7, 2002


While Intel gears up to release the Intel Pentium 4 "Northwood" upon the world market today, many have wondered about AMD's response. As we'll see throughout this article, they haven't been resting on their laurels, and have in fact prepared a new addition to the Athlon XP family - the Athlon XP 2000+ also to be launched today.

Contrary to Intel's "Northwood", the Athlon XP 2000+ has little in the way of new refinements, with the obvious exception of a higher operating frequency. Thus, while the Athlon XP 1900+ operated at 1600MHz, the XP 2000+ will chug along at 1667MHz.


Will this meager increase in clock frequency be enough to keep the Athlon XP in the game?

That's precisely the question we'll be answering today.

To that end, our tests will focus on comparing the XP 2000+ to the Intel P4s, including a 2GHz "Williammette" rendition, and two examples of the new "Northwood" chip operating at 2GHz and 2.2GHz respectively, all of which will be coupled with a DDR-SDRAM memory sub-system.

For more information on the underlying architecture of the AMD Athlon XP, we also invite you to check out Athlon XP 1800+ review.

Some technical details

Still manufactured at 0.18 microns, the Athlon XP processors using the Palomino core will soon be replaced by the new Thoroughbred core processed at 0.13 microns coming from Dresden, Germany Fab 30 in the first quarter of 2002.

The actual die size of the Athlon processors compared to Pentium 4 processors are as following:

Athlon XP Palomino = 128mm2 vs. P4 217mm2

and will become

Athlon XP Thoroughbred = 80mm2 vs. Northwood 145mm2

In short, the AMD Athlon processors will not only keep their smaller die size but as a fact they will even enhance this advantage over the P4.

On a final note, the suggested price of one Athlon XP 2000+ in 1000 units is $339us.

So, without further ado, feel free to follow along with us by clicking on the links below....


Next: Test setup.