AMD’s Reveals Details On Next GPU Architecture

Sabeeh Qureshi
Jun 17, 2011
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Looks like AMD’s GPU architecture is taking a new turn. Away from the fixed number of shaders and DirectX driven models, AMD is now focusing more on the GPU’s role in terms of helping out in the CPU’s central processing rather than accelerating GPGPU based applications. Here’s an extract from TechReport’s side:

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At the Fusion Developer Summit, AMD detailed its future GPU architecture, revealing that in the future, the next AMD GPU architecture will apparently have full support for C, C++, and other high-level languages. Making that possible has involved some re-architecting of the main processing units inside the GPU, which will now be “scalar coprocessors” (similar to the vector supercomputers of the 1980s, Demers said). The new units will mix and match elements of multiple instruction, multiple data (MIMD); multiple instruction, single data; and simultaneous multi-threading (SMT) designs. Gone will be the very long instruction word (VLIW) architecture of past AMD GPU architectures.



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Thus, soon, scalar co-processors will combine elements of MIMD (multiple-instruction multiple-data,) SIMD (single-instruction multiple data), and SMT (simultaneous multithreading). AMD will ditch the VLIW model that has been in use for several of AMD’s past GPU architectures. While AMD’s GPU model will break from the shackles of development that is pegged to that of DirectX, it doesn’t believe that APIs such as DirectX and OpenGL will be discarded. Game developers can still continue to develop for these APIs, and C++ support is more for general purpose compute applications. That does, however, create a window for game developers to venture out of the API-based development model (specifically DirectX).

Nvidia Cuda after effects? May be.


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