entirely unexpected, AMD has just announced its new Ultrathin Notebook platform formerly known as Yukon and it holds a few unexpected surprises. AMD launched not only one, but three new processor for the platform of which one is the new Athlon Neo and the other two being Sempron models.
The first Athlon Neo processor is the MV-40 and it's clocked at by today's standard, fairly slow 1.6GHz. The CPU uses a 1,600MHz Hypertransport bus, has 512k of cache and supports 32 and 64-bit operating systems. As this is a 65nm SOI part, it's not as power efficient as Intel's Atom processor, but it's still quite reasonable with a TDP of 15W.
The two Sempron processors are the 200U and 210U, with the first clocked at a mere 1GHz and the second coming in at 1.5GHz. Both feature 256k cache, a 1,600MHz Hypertransport bus speed and support for 32 and 64-bit operating systems. The 210U is rated at 15W while the 200U comes in at 8W.
The new processors measure 27x27mm and are only 2.5mm high. As with Intel's Atom processor, these new AMD processors will not use a socket, as they'll be an integral part of the motherboard. This means that there's no CPU upgrade path, but this is unlikely to be an issue.
The chipset of choice is the M690T which is getting fairly old by now as it only features ATI's Radeon X1250 graphics which isn't exactly cutting edge, even for integrated graphics. It can use Sideband memory and the chipset also supports HDMI and DVI.
What we didn't expect was the announcement that the platform will support the Mobility Radeon HD 3410 discrete graphics solution which will allow the platform to play back 1080p video and maybe even some casual gaming. The Mobility Radeon HD 3410 support DDR2 memory, although it seems to be limited to 64MB. The memory clocks should be around 700MHz with the GPU clocked as high as 500MHz. The addition of a graphics card would reduce the battery life, but for some users the extra performance would be worth the slightly shorter battery life.
AMD is expected to follow up Yukon with the Congo platform in Q2 this year and by then the chipset will be changed to a 780G derived solution which should allow for much better base performance. HP is the first partner to launch a notebook based on the Yukon platform and we'll follow up with a separate story about that notebook shortly.
You can find the official press release here