Xbox 360's 'Xenon' CPU die-shrink to 65nm delayed until mid 2007

65nm Xbox 360 CPUs delayed until mid-2007

Monica Chen, Taipei; Rodney Chan, [Tuesday 26 December


According to industry sources, plans to produce CPUs for the Microsoft Xbox 360 game console on 65nm at Chartered Semiconductor Manufacturing will be pushed back until the middle of 2007, at least one quarter behind the original schedule.

Microsoft Taiwan declined to comment on the news, while Chartered also declined to comment, stating it did not comment on the production schedule of any of its customers.

In April 2006, Chartered announced that it had signed an agreement with Microsoft to manufacture CPUs for the Xbox 360 console on 65nm Silicon-on-Insulator (SOI) technology starting in the first quarter of


Chartered is already a major foundry partner for producing Microsoft's Xbox 360 CPUs on 90nm technology.

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65nm Xbox 360 CPU refresh delayed until mid-2007?

Posted Dec 26th 2006 1:29PM by Paul Miller Filed under: Gaming Bad news for those potential Xbox fanboys out there waiting for a cooler and less power-hungry Xbox before they spring for that nifty white box: DigiTimes is reporting that Microsoft's upcoming 65nm processors -- the current 360s are running those oh-so-2005 90nm chips

-- have been delayed, and won't be making it off the production line until mid-2007, at least a quarter after current projections. Of course, the main source of noise on the box is really the disc drive, and we hope this doesn't mean Microsoft will hold off much longer on a price cut (no, not that price cut) but we really wouldn't mind a little bit of modern processor tech in this thing, so we'll hope Chartered Semiconductor Manufacturing, Microsoft's partner in chip-building crime, will pull through on this one and deliver those 65nm chips right on schedule.

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Microsoft Xbox 360 Console Cost Reduction Delayed - Rumour. Chartered Postpones Mass Production of 65nm Processor for Xbox 360

Category: Multimedia

by Anton Shilov

[ 12/26/2006 | 10:12 AM ]

Chartered Semiconductor, a leading contract semiconductor manufacturer, may postpone the beginning of mass production of central processing units (CPUs) for the Xbox 360 game console from Microsoft at thinner process technology. If the information is correct, Microsoft will be unable to decrease manufacturing cost of the console.

Sources with knowledge of the matter reportedly revealed to DigiTimes web-site that Chartered plans to produce CPUs for Microsoft Xbox 360 game console using 65nm fabrication process only in the middle of 2007, which is, at least, a quarter behind the original production schedule.

Both Chartered and Microsoft announced in April, 2006, that the former will manufacture the 65nm version of Xbox 360 three-core microprocessor based on the PowerPC architecture in Q1 2007.

Currently Chartered and IBM produce Xbox 360 microprocessors using 90nm fabrication process and while yields of the chip have increased greatly since the initiation of production, 65nm process technology would allow to further cut down the cost of the processor, which would provide further opportunities to reduce the cost of the console itself.

According to iSuppli's most recent analysis, the premium version of the Xbox 360 game machine equipped with hard disk drive has a manufacturing and materials total of $323.30, based on an updated estimate using costs in the fourth quarter of 2006. This total is $75.70 less than the $399 suggested retail price of the Xbox 360. A year ago the total bill of materials (BOM) cost for the Xbox 360 Premium, including hard disk, the DVD drive, enclosures, the Radio Frequency (RF) receiver board, power supply, wireless controller, cables, literature, and packaging, reached $525, well above the retail price of $399.

Microsoft Xbox 360 console is based around triple-core microprocessor developed by IBM, high-definition visual processing unit designed by ATI Technologies featuring unified shader architecture, I/O controller engineered by SiS and some other key components. The gaming machine provides a broad set of multimedia capabilities, including high-definition movies and TV programs downloads in addition to games. Microsoft Xbox 360 core without hard drive is currently priced at $299, whereas the model featuring 20GB HDD and wireless controller has recommended price of $399 in Europe and the U.S. Microsoft also offers HD DVD add-on drive for the console for $199.

Chartered and Microsoft did not comment on the news-story.

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Sources: 65nm Xbox 360 CPUs Delayed Until Mid-2007 By: C=E9sar A. Berardini - "Cesar" Dec. 26th, 2006 8:33 am

Industry sources have revealed to DigiTimes that plans to manufacture the Xbox 360 three-core CPU using a 65-nanometer manufacturing technology have been pushed back until the middle of 2007.

Back in April, Microsoft signed an agreement with Chartered, one of the world's top dedicated semiconductor foundries, for the manufacturing of a 65-nanometer version of the Xbox 360 CPU using Silicon-on-Insulator (SOI) semiconductor technology. Production was expected to begin in the first quarter of 2007.

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"cooler and less power-hungry"? I doubt it. They'll just clock it up to improve performance, negating most of the energy savings they would have gotten otherwise.

Joe Seigh

When you get lemons, you make lemonade.
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Joe Seigh

I think that's unlikely; part of the joy of programming consoles is that the specification is completely fixed, things like clock speeds included. Sony went through several revisions of the Playstation 2, which started off as two large 180nm ASICs and is now a single 90nm, without changing clock speeds at all.


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Thomas Womack

No they won't do that. The purpose of making the chip on a smaller process, shrinking it down, is to get the same performance but running cooler and using less electricity, getting higher yields / more chips that work / less defective chips / reducing cost of the CPU and thus the whole console, allowing for easier pricecuts to the MSRP. They won't even increase the performance because that's not what they do with consoles. every console as the same specifications.

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That's old-think. Modern consoles (Nintendo excluded, by definition) aren't clock limited. Only an idiot would do timing loops these days.

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