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[In] Why AMD Failed, Another Ex-Employee Confession - Page 11

post #101 of 177
Quote:
Originally Posted by 45nm;15356431 
B2 with rumors of B3 stepping sometime next year possibly in other models of the family that haven't launched yet.

How many Ax steppings were there?
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post #102 of 177
Quote:
Originally Posted by DuckieHo View Post
How many Ax steppings were there?
If I can recall correctly they began with A0 and then proceeded to either A1 or A2. That brings it to 2-3. Those steppings may have been initially on the 45nm Process of Bulldozer and then transitioned to 32nm. Those were likely the 'sampling' steppings that they would have distributed originally in 2009.
post #103 of 177
Quote:
Originally Posted by DuckieHo View Post
How many Ax steppings were there?
A question that is probably more important is how many designs failed simulation tests?
post #104 of 177
Quote:
Originally Posted by hajile View Post
A question that is probably more important is how many designs failed simulation tests?
I thought only designs that get fabbed get steppings?
Number increment is minor revision.
Letter increment is major revision and respin.
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post #105 of 177
Quote:
Originally Posted by GTR Mclaren View Post
since 5 series, amd/ati is crushing nvidia in sales
It's rather obvious at this point that you have some difficulty deciphering facts...

http://jonpeddie.com/press-releases/...-last-quarter/

This Quarter Market Share

AMD - 40.6%
Nvidia - 59.0%
Other - 0.4%

This Quarter Last Year Market Share

AMD - 41.4%
Nvidia - 57.9%
Other - 0.7%
Edited by jlells01 - 10/18/11 at 1:47pm
post #106 of 177
^^^ Ouch.
post #107 of 177
Let's also not bring sales figures of GPUs into this thread. Marketing plays a big role in that. Today's drivers have drastically changed performance compared to reviews published back in December which makes it even harder for the general public to know which is the better and cheaper choice for video cards.


Quote:
Originally Posted by hajile View Post
A couple of notes.

Firstly, I doubt the man was an above-par engineer (edit: I'm not saying he is terrible, just that he is not god's answer to microchip engineering). His current profession is intellectual property lawyer (you know, they type of person that makes money from the patent and copyright laws/lawsuits that are so bad for the general public). Ad hominem aside, I seriously wonder if someone can be both a good lawyer AND a good engineer (note: I'm an EE student looking at the possibility of going into medicine. I realise that I can't be a great EE and a great doctor. the professions are just too different with each being extremely complex and the study of each being the work of many lifetimes).

The next mention is that he quit in 2006-2007. AMD has had major changes since then (also drafts of bulldozer were probably undergoing major revisions at that point).

Next up is computer design. The man is exaggerating when he claims that previous designs were designed exclusively by hand (edit: think about how much time would it take to place even 250 million transistors by hand WITHOUT trying to be efficient. It would take orders of magnitude longer to try making an efficient design. A good analogy is programming. Writing a large program in assembly is inefficient. Instead the program is coded in a higher level language such as C++. Only the mission-critical parts (such as those little loops which execute billions of times) are designed by hand assembly. The rest of the circuit design (a program is a method to rearrange the transistors in an integrated circuit) that is mostly computer designed with humans giving more general directions for most of the program and giving very specific instructions when needed.) and would also be exaggerating when he claims that current designs are made exclusively by computer. Let's assume that his 20% deficiencies and 20% larger size claims are true. It is still faster to have the computer crunch an initial design and then tweak the design for efficiency than to have an engineer spend months making a design that must still be tweaked (probably to a similar extent) to achieve maximum efficiency.

The only chips that could have used this alleged computer only design would be still undesigned chips. He claims that AMD has just been iterating the same architecture since A64. If this were true, the only computer designs that could have possibly been made would be scrapped designs (aside from 45nm bulldozer, all other scrapped designs were K8 or K10), Zacate, and Bulldozer. Bulldozer has design problems. Nothing more to say except that these issues are probably fixable given a revision and new fab. If Zacate is an example of computer design, sign me up for more. The chip is bulk (ie cheap to make) and has 146 fewer pins than atom making motherboards cheaper, smaller (fewer circuits), and faster to make while design of the same mother boards is faster and less error (less to account for). While being cheaper and easier to design for, the power consumption is still better than the latest atom due to the atom's need for a dedicated GPU (the atom IGP sucks). All this aside, saying that the changes from K8 to K10 were "minor revisions" is like saying that the changes from core to Sandybridge were "minor revisions." True, the revisions were incremental, but the changes were major (true quad-core, DDR2, DDR3, 20-30% IPC increase, power management, etc).

I believe that the only accurate statement made by this former lawyer/engineer employee is that the old design team (like old employees everywhere) fought to keep the system "as it has always been" and that the team either disliked or feared changes to "the way we do things."
Who is this ex-engineer and how did you find out who he is? I think that's fairly important for the subject of this thread.
Edited by PoopaScoopa - 10/18/11 at 2:10pm
post #108 of 177
Quote:
Originally Posted by kweechy View Post
Isn't it usually management that's to blame?

I see this type of situation all too often. Armies of less skilled juniors brought in with the hopes that they get the same work done as the highly paid seniors for less money. In the end all that happens is the budget is blown, deadlines are long shot and the product is far inferior. I literally can't name a time where this hasn't been the result.
Wow, didnt know that the old dudes who designed the Athlon 64 and Opteron cpus left. AMD should have done their best to retain them employees.

Quote:
They used to hand place and hand instantiate each cell in the design for maximum efficiency and speed – now they rely on tools which perform 20% worse than humans (in order to save money).
LAWL, I thought tools were suppose to be better.
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post #109 of 177
Amd's zacate/bobcat core is synthesized with those tools
look up bobcat floor plan it's irregular compared to bulldozer
    
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post #110 of 177
Quote:
Originally Posted by iKhan View Post
Anyone feel bad for AMD? I messed around with my buddy about how much of a fail BD is. Now...I'm starting to feel bad for AMD. I'm not a fanboy of AMD nor Intel, I like both, but it seems AMD might not be around in a few years if they keep going like this.
Yeah, this is going to be bad for competition

Not that I believe AMD will go under, but Intel is going to go all price crazy again.
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