IDF summary report
NGMA is Pentium 3
I stated repeatedly that Intel NGMA is Bob Colwell's Pentium 3. A lot of Intel fans strongly opposed such a notion and insisted that NGMA would be all new from ground up.
I was 100% positive, because I know this: it is impossible for the Israeli amateurs to do some radical new stuff out of no where, they simply don't have the track record for ground breaking work.
Now it's all confirmed, the Core architecture (NGMA, Merom/Conroe/Woodcrest) is 95.5% Bob Colwell Pentium 3, plus 4% Bob Colwell list of todos when he left Intel, and probably 0.5% Israeli patchwork.
Look at those minute improvements: smarter cache, larger cache, better chipset, faster bus, grouping a couple of adjacent instructions when doable, Intel deeper sleep, tweaking a few SSE instructions, issuing 4 instructions per clock....I am trying to put all I remember here, but none of them is mildly interesting stuff. AMD would not even mention such minor improvements with their core revisions.
One thing that shocked me was that Anand reported that with the NGMA core, all SSE instructions are executed in one clock cycle instead of 14 clock cycles. I thought how could that be possible? Did Intel Israel invent a special 1 stage SSE unit? It turned out the cheerleader was too eager to cheer. It was all hoax.
It's bad that Intel Israel bragged so much for so little. And it's not good that they willfully failed to mention Bob Colwell the American, but instead took every credit of the Pentium 3 Israeli edition as all new.
Conroe Performance is a hoax
There is simply no way a 2.66GHZ Conroe can be 20% faster than a 2.8GHZ AMD64. Woodcrest is 10-20% slower than Opteron 280. INTEL had to use a 3GHZ Woodcrest to pit against a 2.4GHZ Opteron 280. Woodcrest is pretty much identical to Conroe, both are based on Merom.
NGMA/Core/Merom/Conroe/Woodcrest is 32 bit
One thing I observed was that there was no demonstration or even indication of AMD64 compability of the NGMA chips during IDF. No Windows Vista demos, no Linux 64 bit demos, no CPU-Z screen capture indicating the presence of x86_64. In HP's demo of the DL 380 with two Woodcrest processors, there was only 2GB of memory, odd for a server of this calibre.
If the Cores were 64 bit capable, it would be unthinkable for Intel to not demonstrate this capability, which is critical for Windows Vista and enterprise computing. The fact there was zero sign of AMD64 capability means all NGMA chips as of today are 32 bit only.
While AMD's grand masters grew up with 64 bit, the Israeli amateurs don't even understand there is a need for it.
The dire situation for Intel
I predict that Merom/Conroe/Woodcrest will be delayed. Intel will struggle to get AMD64 compatibility figured out. One way is resort to emulation, but there will be 10-20% performance degradation, as we can see from current EM64T benchmarks. AMD64 runs 10-40% faster in 64 bit mode.
There will be no IMC, no CSI, no true multi-core for INTEL in the forseeable future.
On desktop and mobile, AMD's preemptive strikes in May and June will be many steps and many months ahead of Intel's.
On servers, Woodcrest/Bensley will be stuck at 2P level for a long long time. In the end, Intel may pay big money to IBM to get the Hurricane chipset so they can get 4P working, but the cost will be very high. On cost alone, there is no way for Intel to compete against AMD64, which can do glueless ccNUMA up to 16P.
The biggest problem for Intel is, time has already run out. With FAB36 converted into 65nm, AMD will be able to supply 50% of the global PC market by 1Q07.
Intel is and will be five generations behind AMD64, IDF reconfirmed that.