Originally posted by wizard69
Nr9's decleration that there will be no more Hz increases though is problematic.
I'm not defending Nr9, but it's possible and quite believable. I can imagine the situation like this:
When IBM got 2.5GHz chips and realized that they're too hot (they may still be acceptably
hot for IBM, but Steve said he's not buying chips any hotter), this instantly became a limitation #1. IBM engineers then had 2 big headaches: low yields and high power dissipation. They worked on these and managed to improve yields somehow. However, better yields are money today
while better power consumption is money tomorrow
. They tried and tried and tried and yes, they have 3+GHz chips right now, which are either too few for a customer like Apple, or too hot for showmen like Steve, or just too unreliable in the long term. IBM can tweak the process more, of course, to squeeze a couple of MHz without sacrificing the far-from-excellent yields, but... The dual-core version got so much closer during this struggle that it's probably more economically effective to launch PPC970MP now
, than to delay it until they perfect the process so that you can stick a 3.5GHz PPC970FX into a pocket PC.
This does not mean we'll never see a PowerPC running at more than 2.5GHz. This only means that we may see a dual-core before
the painful transition to 90nm culminates in higher clock rates. This only means that IBM engineers may find it easier and quicker to launch a dual-core 970 than to mass-produce any
PPC at, say, 3GHz with their current technology. And this does not mean IBM suddenly stops maturing the process in favour of dual-core designs, because this same process (if I'm not totally off) will help them make faster both single and dual cores until they switch to 65nm. And if they do switch to 65nm in the near future is an 'if'
What do you think?