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Via offers glimpse of 64-bit “Isaiah” core

Oct 5, 2004 — by LinuxDevices Staff — from the LinuxDevices Archive — views

Via has begun talking about the 64-bit processor core it expects to ship in the first half of 2006. “Isaiah” will feature improved media processing and multi-tasking capabilities, Via says, while retaining typical Centaur processor qualities such as low power and space requirements and built-in security engines.

Centaur Technology is Via's wholly owned processor subsidiary, based in Austin Texas. For a complete history of the company, be sure to read our in-depth interview with founder Glenn Henry.

Eventually, the Isaiah core will succeed “Ezra,” “Samuel,” and “Nehemiah” in Centaur's family of Biblically named cores. For now, though, the core exists only under the engineering codename “CN.”

According to Via, the CN or Isaiah core is optimized for high definition computing and personal electronics devices. It has improved multimedia multitasking thanks to “out-of-order superscalar execution,” useful for simultaneously decrypting and displaying digital media streams, for example.

Besides a 64-bit superscalar core, the Isaiah or CN core will integrate:

  • High-speed FSB (front side bus)
  • “Industry leading” FPU (floating point unit) that can add or multiply in two clock cycles, Via claims
  • Increased cache size
  • High-speed data movement
  • Enhanced version of Via's PadLock Hardware Security Suite

“We have focused on radically improving the media performance without losing sight of low power consumption and efficient use of transistors,” said Henry.

The Isaiah or CN core is expected to sample in the first half of 2006. Additional information about the core will be disclosed later, Via says.

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