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CES: AMD announces details of Puma platform

AMD laptop platform to boast hybrid graphics

AMD today revealed details of its next-generation Puma platform for notebook PCs. AMD Puma is designed to maximise battery life despite the heavy graphics performance demanded by the Windows Vista OS.

A future Puma platform capability will include support for ATI Hybrid Graphics Technology with ATI PowerXpress, allowing users to switch between an integrated graphics card and a discrete graphics card based on a system's multimedia requirement. AMD will launch this technology toward the end of the year.

The combination of the CPU and graphics processing unit capabilities in the Puma platform is one more step towards achieving Fusion, a platform that merges a CPU and graphics processing unit on a single piece of silicon, Shutter said. The Fusion platform is aimed for release in 2009. The company last year launched the 'Spider' platform, which combines the company's Phenom quad-core process, graphics cards and chipsets in one package.

Laptops based on the Puma platform will be able to handle high-definition HD-DVD and Blu-ray movie playback through its Avivo HD technology, which offloads the processing of high-definition data decoding from the CPU to the graphics processing unit, Shutter said. The low CPU utilisation allows a laptop to perform better.

The CPU has 2MB of on-board cache, an upgrade from earlier Turion Rev G processors, which had 1MB of cache, Shutter said. The system also throttles down bandwidth between cores based on system usage and performance to increase a laptop's battery life.

Boot times and program launch times in Puma laptops will improve with on-board flash technology called HyperFlash, Shutter said. The flash technology will store important bits of information needed to boot a system quicker, reducing lag time usually associated with reading data from hard drives. It will be available on the board, or as a separate modules for motherboards.

Shutter didn't reveal further details about Turion Ultra's initial clock speeds.


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