Intel's forthcoming "Montecito" member of the Itanium processor family will consume 100 watts, a significant drop from the 130 watts of current models and an advantage in an era when power consumption is a top enemy. … The change means Itanium will have about 2.5 times the performance per watt of the current Itanium 2 9M model.
This is a big deal, especially in the UK and Europe where power consumption and thermals are factored into customers' server purchase decisions.
"A 100-watt envelope for 1.7 billion transistors–that's a heck of a deal," said Microprocessor Report Editor in Chief Kevin Krewell. "Performance per watt is becoming a more critical metric."
This paper reinforces Krewell's comment about the critical nature of performance per watt.
So could performance-per-watt become a selling point for the next-generation Itanium systems? Heck, if that issue alone helps the OEMs sell 10,000 more Itanium-based systems in 2007, that'd be an unheard of 20%-25% or so growth for Itanium. Until then, we'll have to focus on more pressing matters.