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AMD to ship dual-core Athlon 64 chip by end of year

Single-core chip to remain highest performer, though

Chip maker AMD plans to ship a dual-core version of its 64bit Athlon 64 microprocessor for desktop and mobile PCs during the second half of this year, although the chips won't be targeted at the high end of the market.

Dual-core microprocessors contain two processor cores on a single piece of silicon, giving desktop and mobile PCs improved multitasking and multimedia capabilities compared to PCs based on single-core processors.

This means users can burn a DVD on their PC while simultaneously encoding high-resolution videos and running a security application in the background, it said.

Despite these advantages, AMD said its high-end desktop processor will remain a single-core chip – the Athlon 64 FX – even after the introduction of the dual-core Athlon 64.

"The AMD Athlon 64 FX processor will continue to be the gamers' PC [processor] of choice," AMD said in a presentation detailing the dual-core Athlon 64.

The dual-core Athlon 64 processors will be produced using a 90-nanometer chip-manufacturing process, AMD said.

The chips will be pin-compatible with the motherboard socket that is used with single-core versions of the Athlon 64, it said. Further details were not made available.


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