All original Athlon 64s were based off the Clawhammer core; 130nm SOI with 1MB L2 cache. The recent Athlon 64 3000+ was also based on the ClawHammer core, but with half the L2 cache disabled. These Clawhammer (also known as Model 4) Athlons will undergo significant change sometime in the next few weeks. In a nutshell, Clawhammer cores will all be replaced by Newcastle cores (130nm SOI, 512KB L2 cache). The future Newcastle based Athlon 64s are also known as "Model C" Athlons.

Socket-754 Roadmap Update for 2004
Core Clock Speed Cache Size Release Date
AMD Athlon 64 3400+
Newcastle
2.4GHz
512KB
Q2 '04
AMD Athlon 64 3400+
ClawHammer
2.2GHz
1MB
Already Available
AMD Athlon 64 3200+
Newcastle
2.2GHz
512KB
Q2 '04
AMD Athlon 64 3200+
ClawHammer
2.0GHz
1MB
Already Available
AMD Athlon 64 3000+
Newcastle
2.0GHz
512KB
Q2 '04
AMD Athlon 64 3000+
ClawHammer (Half L2 Disabled)
2.0GHz
512KB
Already Available

Even though the new 3200+ and 3400+ will benifit from the 200MHz upgrade on the Newcastle core, the 50% smaller cache size has many negative implications; content creation and encoding may suffer. We did not find any mention of the Athlon 64 2800+ transitioning to the new Newcastle core, or confirmation as to whether or not the upcoming 3700+ will utilize the Newcastle core. Since the newest 3400+ receives an extra 200MHz boost in clockspeed, it is almost certain the 3700+ will debut with a 2.6GHz or higher core if it based off the 512KB L2 Newcastle core.

Here is a quick update on what the new SKU changes will look like.

Socket-754 SKU Updates for 2004
Old SKU New SKU
AMD Athlon 64 3400+
ADA3400AEP5AR
ADA3400AEP4AX
AMD Athlon 64 3200+
ADA3200AEP5AR
ADA3200AEP4AX
AMD Athlon 64 3000+
ADA3000AEP4AR
ADA3000AEP4AX

This may affect some motherboards since they may not be able to detect the new Model C Athlon 64s without a BIOS update. The CPU core ID will change from F4A to FC0 with the new processors.

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  • KristopherKubicki - Friday, April 16, 2004 - link

    mkruer: The PR rating doesnt change - they take away half the cache, and increase the clock by 200MHz.

    Kristopher
    Reply
  • Pumpkinierre - Friday, April 16, 2004 - link

    The loss of cache would only matter if you're using the cpu for server use- the heritage of clawhammer from opteron (sledgehammer). The performance difference between the 3000+ and 3200+ was negligible. However clockspeed increase is more desirable as it improves alu and fpu as well as lowering the memory controller latency yet more. Unfortunately it doesnt do the same to system RAM but if the adjustable lower end multipliers are still there on Newcastle, lowering of the multiplier should allow an even bigger boost to the system memory speed and hence latency, than the lower speed clawhammer cores. Naturally good mobo and RAM are required.

    Reply
  • mkruer - Friday, April 16, 2004 - link

    Hum something seems amiss. The core gets a revision looses ½ the cache and the PR rating goes down 200? I though the entire idea was for the core revision to cut the cache in ½ and keep the rating? Clock for clock wasn’t the Newcastle suppose to be faster? Reply
  • Sudder - Friday, April 16, 2004 - link

    > and encoding may suffer.

    I don't think so, since encoding is very clock dependent - in fact I think anything in 32bit won't be a big problem.
    64bit however could be a different story, since the bigger variables need the double ammount of cache (512k Cache @ 64bit = ca. 256 Cache @ 32bit)

    Sudder
    Reply
  • clemedia - Friday, April 16, 2004 - link

    Why do you say "the 50% smaller cache size has many negative implications; content creation and encoding may suffer."

    When in your Athlon64 3000+ article the 3000+ was only about 3% slower in CC and about 4% in encoding than the similarly clocked 3200+? I would think the 10% increase (2.0 -> 2.2) should be able to more than offset the perf. decrease.

    Can't please everybody all the time can ya? hehe.
    Reply
  • PorBleemo - Friday, April 16, 2004 - link

    Well it can't be expanded. And if 64-Bit is really assisted by the additional 512Kb of cache (because of the need to trigger the extra registers) you can't add it back on easily. Beyond that I can't think of anything.

    -Por
    Reply
  • Brickster - Friday, April 16, 2004 - link

    "the 50% smaller cache size has many negative implications."

    And those would be?

    Thanks,
    Brickster
    Reply
  • PorBleemo - Friday, April 16, 2004 - link

    Another thing not mentioned is that Clawhammer has more effecient Cool N' Quiet because of less leaking.

    -Por
    Reply

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