Samsung Introduces Alpha 21264, World's Fastest Microprocessor --
Sets Standards for 64-bit Visual and Enterprise Computing
LAS VEGAS, USA -- April 6, 1998 -- Samsung Semiconductor Inc. (SSI) today
demonstrated its industry-leading microprocessor manufacturing capabilities with
the introduction of its next-generation Alpha 21264 processor family.
Manufactured on Samsung's leading-edge six-metal layer high speed logic process,
Alpha 21264 processors are two to five times faster than any other processors
available for desktop and server computing platforms.
"These Alpha processors provide a new standard for emerging visual computing
applications, such as real-time MPEG II authoring on the desktop, without any
add-in MPEG II hardware," said Y.J. Kim, director of Alpha marketing at Samsung.
The performance of the devices also indicates Samsung's ability to add value
through manufacturing, according to Bert McComas, analyst and principal at
InQuest, Gilbert, AZ. "Samsung is showing that it will carry the torch for Alpha
after the handoff."
"We congratulate Samsung on developing their version of the Alpha 21264
microprocessor," said Dan Casaletto, vice president, Alpha microprocessor
engineering for Digital Equipment Corp. "Samsung's Alpha 21264 microprocessor is
based on Digital's industry-leading Alpha technology and will be manufactured by
Samsung's world-class manufacturing organization."
The new 21264 processors feature motion video instruction sets (MVI) which
enable true visual computing and multimedia performance. MVI, combined with the
sheer performance of the 21264, allows DVD with AC3 playback as well as DVD
recording without the need for add-in hardware, which may cost anywhere from
$5,000 to $20,000 today. The 21264 is also slot compatible with the K7
microprocessor from AMD, giving OEMs a single motherboard solution to cover a
range of price points.
"We're pleased to be part of this new open industry standard platform where OEMs
and end-users can choose any price and performance on the same motherboard
whether their applications are PC applications based on AMD K7 processor or
high-end workstation and enterprise server applications based on Alpha 21264
processors. This platform is two years ahead of IA-64 and is a very cost-
-effective one from which the industry will benefit. This is the only true
scalable and cost effective Implementation for Ultimate Visual and Enterprise
Computing," said Atiq Raza, executive vice president and chief technical officer
of Advanced Micro Devices.
The 21264 platform also allows true real-time video-conferencing in full-screen,
true Digital Studio environment on the desktop and true Web environment. The new
Alpha platform enables a true media server environment as well as real-time
transaction environments needed for today's Windows NT server solutions.
"Alpha is the fastest Windows NT platform on the planet," said Dr. Dae Je Chin,
CEO of Samsung Semicoductor's System LSI Group. "With our strategic partner,
Digital Equipment Corp., we believe we are on the right track to producing and
offering the world's first GigaHertz, 100 SPECint95 / 150 SPECfp95 processors by
the year 2000."
"Our digital artists are excited to create work on the Alpha-based platform to
deliver the best of what Hollywood has to offer in visual effects, content
creation and 3-D photorealism for Hollywood hits now and into the future," said
Grant Boucher, CEO of Station X Studios. Prior to launching Station X, Boucher
managed the team that created the entire 3-D photoreal digital Titanic for the
Oscar winning film of the same name. "By utilizing the 21264 platform, we
believe we can finish films in less than half of the rendering time while at the
same time reducing the hardware budget. There is no substitute when it comes to
Visual Computing. Alpha delivers up to 5 times the performance of any other
architecture and at a significantly lower cost. Alpha platform pricing brings
with it unmatched performance and value in comparison with any other platform.
We are excited to have leading edge semiconductor, chipset, and motherboard
companies such as Samsung and AMD getting behind this platform, and I am seeing
the availability of numerous key applications growing everyday."
KP21264 Processor / Architecture Features
- Out-of-order instruction execution
- 64KB on-chip data and instruction caches
- Powerful branch prediction through intuitive execution
- High bandwidth for high-speed access to level 2 cache memory and system memory
(up to 5GB bandwith for L2-Cache)
- Chipsets supported by more than four leading-edge vendors, uni, dual, quad and
24 or more
- Industry open standard socket - AMD K7 chipset support and Slot A
interchageability on the same motherboard
- Scalable architecture based on cross-bar switch chipset implementations
- Supports Windows NT, UNIX, LINUX and VMS
Product Offerings and Performance
The initial Samsung 21264 processors come in four offerings, initially, with
the following performance:
- KP21264-2.0X, Est. 28 SPECint95 / 42 SPECfp95
- KP21264-2.5X, Est. 33 SPECint95 / 50 SPECfp95
- KP21264-3.0X, Est. 38 SPECint95 / 58 SPECfp95
- KP21264-3.5X, Est. 43 SPECint95 / 64 SPECfp95
KP21264-2.0X delivers about twice the Integer performance of the 500MHz KP21164
processor or Intel's Pentium-II 333MHz processor. Even faster versions of the
KP21264 family will be offered within six months of these initial offerings.
Pricing and Availability
KP21264 processor samples will be available in May 1998 and sample pricing in
Q2/98 will be as follows:
- KP21264-2.0X = $2,500
- KP21264-2.5X = $3,500
- KP21264-3.0X = $4,500
- KP21264-3.5X = $6,500
Samsung's Alpha customers will be introducing systems based on the KP21264
toward the beginning of Q3/98. Dual CPU motherboards will be available from
Samsung for design engineering support.
Samsung Semiconductor is a wholly owned subsidiary of Samsung Electronics, an
$18.8 billion dollar division of the $92.7 billion, Korean-based Samsung Group.
Samsung's Semiconductor Division is the seventh largest semiconductor
manufacturer and the leading producer of memory products in the world. Samsung
Semiconductor's North American headquarters are located in San Jose, Calif.
Samsung was the first company to introduce the 64-Megabit DRAM and the first
fully functional 256-Megabit DRAM in 1994. In November 1996, Samsung had the
world's first working silicon for the 1-Gigabit DRAM. Samsung's System LSI
products include ASICs, microcontrollers, power devices, media products and the
Samsung and the Samsung logo are trademarks of Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd.
Digital and Alpha are trademarks of Digital Equipment Corp.
Pentium II Processor is a trademark of Intel Corp.
Windows NT is a trademark of Microsoft Corp.
All other brand or product names are trademarks and/or registered trademarks of
their respective holders.
Samsung Semiconductor, Inc.
Y.J. Kim, 408/544-4510
B.H. Suh, 82-331-209-4637