Even as Intel introduces its latest consumer PC processor with six cores inside, its main rival AMD is making history in another part of the industry. The company announced today that it has launched the Opteron 6200 family of processors; previously known by its code name Interlagos, it is the first ever processor to support up to 16 cores on one chip.
Sorry, this won't be going in your PC gaming motherboard for some time. The Opteron is made specifically for server operations, although it is based on the Bulldozer design that AMD launched with a six core processor earlier this year. AMD says this new Opteron chip will give servers better performance compared to Intel's Xeon X5670 processor, up to 84 percent
Servers and supercomputers will be released with these new chips inside in the coming weeks from companies like Acer, HP, Dell, IBM and others. News.com reports that Cray will have AMD's Opteron 6200 processors inside a new supercomputer, the National Science Foundation's Blue Waters project. That machine will have over 235 cabinets made by Cray with the new AMD processor running things inside.
Even if a PC gamer managed to get themselves one of these new Opteron 6200 processors, its not likely that it would gain much in terms of performance. The reason is that there are no PC games that could take full advantage of the 16 cores; but you can bet that game developers are already thinking about the possibilities.