IT‘S EASY TO forget that there are three x86 CPU makers in the market and alongside AMD’s Fusion launch today, VIA has announced its first dual core processor, the VIA Nano X2. We should hopefully get more details about the new CPU at CES, as VIA has been very shy when it comes to sharing any actual specifications of the new processor family.
The press release mentions all the usual stuff such as the fact that it features two out-of-order x86 cores, support for SSE 4, native 64-bit support, virtualization support and the usual stuff you get in VIA processors such as hardware accelerated AES encryption and interestingly pin-to-pin compatibility with older VIA processors which should make is easy for VIA’s partners to bring products to market quickly with the new CPUs.
The Nano X2 will pair up with VIA’s VX900 and VN1000 chipsets. The VN1000 and a dual core CPU should make for an interesting pairing, at least if VIA and S3 can manage to come up with some better drivers than what we’ve seen in the past for the integrated graphics. Early benchmarks has shown that the Nano X2 is a potent CPU and we understand that the final silicon is meant to be a fair bit faster than that used in the previews. In fact, if VIA could get its act together the Nano X2 could pose a potential threat to AMD’s Brazos platform, but we highly doubt that this will happen.
We’re going to get in touch with VIA after CES and see if we can’t get some hands on time with the final 40nm silicon, as the previews were run on processors made at 65nm as shown in the video below.
We’re curious about both the performance of the final silicon and the power efficiency of VIA’s new dual core CPU, a feature that VIA has always been touting as its strong selling point. VIA is expecting devices with the Nano X2 will start shipping in this quarter, so we shouldn’t have to wait too long until we get to see what VIA’s first dual core processor is capable of.S|A
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