AMD tablet chip details leaked

AMD has been telling the world+dog about its new tablet-specific Z-Series processors and has been leaking details of its Hondo chip to the Turks.

In a press conference on Friday, AMD was talking about the dual-core Z-01, with a 5.9-Watt TDP but was quiet about Hondo.

The chipmaker also tried to get everyone excited about its “branding plans” for its A-Series “Llano” processor for notebooks which are shipping this month, and previewed new APUs that it plans to release later in 2011.

The announcement was a follow up to the Fusion APUs that were announced in January which come with single- or dual- Bobcat cores. These E-Series and C-Series products were followed up by G-Series versions for embedded devices. They integrate CPUs with “discrete-level” GPUs on one chip.

What makes the Z-Series interesting is that they are designed for tablets.They are similar to the E-Series, C-Series, and G-Series, with the same Bobcat cores and 45nm process.

The Z-01 has 1.0GHz clock speed, two Bobcat cores, Radeon HD6250 graphics, with 80 GPU cores and 5.9-Watt TDP. It is not clear what AMD has done to lower power consumption.

AMD seems to be tying its fortunes more to Microsoft pushing the Z-01’s DirectX graphics, Internet Explorer 9 acceleration, and compatibility with Adobe Flash 10.2.

What AMD is doing to see off the Android hoards is to push software that allows the launching Android apps directly from the Windows desktop. AMD dusted off Rosen Sharma, CEO of BlueStacks, on stage to demonstrate his “lightweight, optimised, soft hypervisor” that will initially focus on x86 Windows hosts.

However AMD has leaked some info on its upcoming Hondo APU, the successor to the brand new Desna APU designed specifically for tablet devices.

The leak came from  a Turkish site, donanimhaber  which claims that the new Hondo chip will be based on a revised and power optimised Bobcat core and is aimed at Windows 8 devices.

Hondo will deliver superior power efficiency and AMD claims its “app power” with FCH is about 2W and the TDP is under 4.5W. This is a significant improvement over Desna, rated at 4W in app power, with a 5.9W TDP. The new chip will stick to the 40nm process.

It is all part of AMD’s Brazos-T platform and it will feature a new Hudson M2T fusion controller hub. The new Hudson M2T is a redesigned Hudson M3 with a power optimised I/O feature set and SDIO support for Wi-Fi. It is smaller than the Hudson M1 (A50M) currently used in the Brazos platform and AMD has done away with some features deemed unnecessary for tablets, thus reducing power consumption to less than 1 watt.

Hondo will be slower with two cores clocked at 1GHz and the same HD 6250 graphics core ticking at 276MHz. This should be good enough for the tablet market. Hondo will be replaced by Samara chips sometime in 2013.