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AMD Announces OpenCL Compatible Teraflop Graphics Card

AMD Announces OpenCL Compatible Teraflop Graphics Card

by , 4:10 PM EDT, June 16th, 2008

At the International Supercomputing Conference in Dresden Germany on Monday, AMD announced its FireStream 9250 graphics card which breaks the one teraflop barrier for single precision computations. The card occupies a single PCI slot and draws 150 watts.

Developers have reported up to a 55x performance increase on financial analysis codes compared to processing on the CPU alone.

"In keeping with its open systems philosophy, AMD has also joined the Khronos Compute Working Group. This working group's goals include developing industry standards for data parallel programming and working with proposed specifications like OpenCL. The OpenCL specification can help provide developers with an easy path to development across multiple platforms," AMD said.

OpenCL is an open standard that Apple has developed that allows developers to treat CPUs and GPUs on equal footing from an API standpoint. As a result, applications will be able to access the computational power of modern GPUs, typically capable of hundreds of gigaflops, in parallel with the CPU.

"An open industry standard programming specification will help drive broad-based support for stream computing technology in mainstream applications," said Rick Bergman, senior vice president and general manager, Graphics Product Group, AMD. "We believe that OpenCL is a step in the right direction and we fully support this effort. AMD intends to ensure that the AMD Stream SDK rapidly evolves to comply with open industry standards as they emerge."

OpenCL is expected to be part of Apple's next OS X release, Snow Leopard, scheduled to ship in about a year, according to Apple.

AMD said that it plans to deliver the FireStream 9250 and the supporting SDK in Q3 2008. It will be priced at US$999.

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