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AMD Launches Fusion at CES

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Calling it "a new class of accelerated processor that combines more compute capabilities than any processor in the history of computing," AMD launches its Fusion family of Accelerated Processing Units.

AMD FusionThese APUs incorporate – in a single die design – multi-core CPU (x86) technology, a discrete-level graphics and parallel processing engine for DirectX 11, a dedicated high-def video acceleration block, and a high-speed bus (speeds data across the differing types of processor cores within the design).

No word in the press release mentions this as the ultimate "fusion" from AMD's acquisition of ATI in 2006 (the brand was subsumed into AMD last year).

“We believe that AMD Fusion processors are, quite simply, the greatest advancement in processing since the introduction of the x86 architecture more than forty years ago,” says Rick Bergman, senior VP/GM, AMD Products Group. “In one major step, we enable users to experience HD everywhere as well as personal supercomputing capabilities in notebooks that can deliver all-day battery life. It’s a new category, a new approach, and opens up exciting new experiences for consumers.”

Three characteristics to note with AMD Fusion: more video resources, faster processing (AMD labels this "personal supercomputing"), and longer battery life.

More video resources: The AMD Fusion products are the first to integrate powerful DirectX 11 graphics directly onto the processor (DirectX 11 is a key feature of Windows 7 and allows better performing games and faster computing.) The VISION Engine from AMD brings a set of capabilities to all AMD Fusion APU-powered PCs, like DirectX 11-capable graphics. A PC equipped with the VISION Engine and software from AMD partners is supposed to make internet browsing faster (an application-like experience), vivid 1080p HD video playback (even standard definition video looks high-definition), 2D content able to be converted into stereoscopic 3D, even the most graphics-intensive websites load quickly; manipulating HD content is fast and easy; and 3D gaming at HD resolutions is fast and life-like.

AMD Fusion Art"Personal Supercomputing:" Fusion unleashes software developers previously held back by the independent processing by separate CPUs and GPUs. AMD Fusion APUs allow developers to take full advantage of the parallel processing power of a GPU (more than 500 GFLOPs for the upcoming A-Series “Llano” APU) so apps can run simultaneously and faster than previous designs in the same class.

AllDay™ Power: AMD claims Fusion technology enables all-day battery life-- 10 hours or more. The 2011 low power platform (codenamed “Brazos”) enhances everyday computing experience and is available now in two APU variations: E-Series and C-Series. These APUs feature the new x86 CPU core codenamed “Bobcat”. “Bobcat” is AMD’s first new x86 core since 2003 and was designed from the ground up to deliver mobile performance.

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