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Motorola Launches New G4 Processor At 550 MHz

Motorola Launches New G4 Processor At 550 MHz

by , 2:30 PM EDT, September 26th, 2000

Observer Richard Ikeda sent us an alert about a Motorola press release about a new G4 processor. The new unit would reach clock speeds up to 550 MHz. According to Motorola:

Motorola today introduced the second of its fourth-generation G4 PowerPC microprocessor, the MPC7410 with AltiVec technology. Designed for high-performance, high-bandwidth applications, the MPC7410 offers an unrivaled blend of PowerPC performance with low power operation and provides a compelling solution for host processor requirements in next generation networking equipment. Motorola's G4 family of PowerPC microprocessors with AltiVec technology are ideal for network control and storage, telecommunications, high-end embedded, scientific and computing applications.

Contributing to its high performance, Motorola's newest PowerPC microprocessor features clock speeds of up to 550 MHz. To further enrich performance, software can be optimized to utilize the MPC7410's AltiVec technology to help achieve huge gains in performance ideal for signal processing in addition to host processor functionality.

The MPC7410, like the MPC7400, supports full symmetric multiprocessing (SMP) capabilities necessary for designing highly scalable and dense networking systems. Additionally, the MPC7410 implements Motorola's high-bandwidth MPX system bus, capable of achieving data rates up to 6.4 Gigabits/second, which can provide up to 5 times the bus performance over previous generation G3 processors. Also, a unique L2 private memory mode allows system designers the choice of operating the processor's L2 cache as either a fast backside cache or as high-speed system memory, ideal for storing interrupt service routines or critical data structures.

Compatible with the entire PowerPC family of microprocessors dating to 1991, the MPC7410 is the first of Motorola's microprocessors to be manufactured in the HiPerMOS 6 (HiP6) 0.18-micron copper fabrication process. This move to Motorola's most advanced manufacturing process, and the resulting small die size, are part of the reason the MPC7410 has a typical power dissipation of only 6 watts at 550 MHz, making it ideal for high performance embedded systems.

"At 550 MHz, Motorola's new low power MPC7410 microprocessor adds performance and flexibility to its existing G4 family. Viewed in the context of other recent introductions in the networking market, the MPC7410 reveals Motorola's strategy to be a leading one-stop shopping provider for advanced systems," said Max Baron, principal analyst for Cahners In-Stat Group.

The MPC7410 PowerPC microprocessor with AltiVec technology is available in 400, 450, and 500 MHz versions, with 550 MHz versions expected to be available soon. Suggested list pricing is $95, $135, $195 and $230, respectively, in quantities of 10,000 units.

You can read the entire press release and more information at Motorola's site.

The Mac Observer Spin:

Before anybody speculates, we do not know if this new processor upgrade is possibly one for Apple to use or if Apple will use it if it is the case. Thanks to Richard Ikeda for the alert!

Hopefully Apple will move to these processors, though it is possible that there are other developments in the works from IBM or Motorola that will jump past the 550 MHz mark. If these developments are close to fruition, Apple could easily wait until then to make a change. 550 MHz is 10% faster than 500 MHz, but it is still a relatively minor bump. Time will tell, of course.

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