AMD Bulldozer, Brazos and Llano Will Completely Replace Athlon, Phenom by Q2 2012

Advanced Micro Devices seems to be planning extremely rapid transition of its desktop microprocessors to 32nm silicon-on-insulator fabrication process, a person with knowledge of the matter said. By the second quarter of 2012 virtually all AMD processors will be made using 32nm SOI technology and be based on new designs.

At present the absolute majority of desktop microprocessors shipped by Advanced Micro Devices are AMD Athlon II and AMD Phenom II chips in AM3 form-factor. But already in a little bit more than a year from now all the desktop chips that AMD will sell will be made using 32nm SOI process technology and will rely on code-named Bulldozer, Brazos and Llano designs, the source indicated.

Approximately 20% of AMD's desktop microprocessors in Q2 2012 will be in AM3+ form-factor and will belong to the FX family of chips, which is based on Bulldozer micro-architecture. About 10% of desktop chips will come in FT1 ball-grid-array form-factor and will therefore be based on Brazos design. The remaining 70% will be Llano accelerated processing units with two or four x86 cores as well as a Radeon HD 6000-class graphics engine in FM1 form-factor.

It is remarkable that after a number of delays AMD seems to have rather ambitious plans for the 32nm ramp. By contrast, it usually takes years for Intel Corp., the much larger rival of AMD, to transit to one micro-architecture to another or from one technology process for another.