TSMC 40nm problems ‘have been solved’ – sources

Written by Tim Smalley

June 3, 2009 // 6:12 a.m.

Tags: #40nm #computex-2009 #fixed #issues #problems #rv740 #tsmc #yield

COMPUTEX 2009: We have learned that TSMC has been working hard to fix the serious issues it has with its current 40nm process technology.

The problems have really hurt AMD and its partners in particular, as they are unable to satisfy demand for the ATI Radeon HD 4770 – sources close to AMD told us last week that only 40,000 chips have been shipped to partners.

Several sources close to AMD have told us that RV740 is currently yielding at around 20 percent, with one source saying that it was actually below this figure. While discussing AMD’s and Nvidia’s plans for later this year, one source told us that there will be another spin of TSMC’s process which “fixes the [yield] issues.

The source went onto tell us that TSMC expects to start shipping GPUs based on its ‘remixed’ 40nm process later this quarter, which suggests that the 4770’s current availability woes are unlikely to disappear in a matter of weeks – the pressures may not disappear until September at a worst case based on the information we’ve received.

It also puts our minds at rest regarding both AMD’s and Nvidia’s next-generation GPU launch schedules, as the two rivals are both planning to release their new products in late October to coincide with the Windows 7 launch.

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