Mobile AMD Athlon 4 technology guide

Emulating Intel’s practice of introducing new technology in lower volume market sectors first, AMD’s first deployment of the Palomino core was in their Mobile Athlon 4 processor. At the time it appeared that the Athlon 4 nomenclature had more than a little to do with Intel’s multi-million dollar Pentium 4 marketing campaign. In the event, it was used exclusively for AMD’s mobile CPUs, with the desktop versions of the Palomino adopting the XP branding.

The Mobile Athlon 4 has all the same enhancements as the desktop Palomino core:

  • an improved hardware data prefetch mechanism
  • enhancements to the processor’s data TLB
  • full support for Intel’s SSE instruction set
  • reduced power consumption
  • implementation of a thermal diode to monitor processor temperature.

Like previous CPUs the Mobile Athlon 4 also features AMD’s PowerNow! technology, which allows a processor to dynamically change its clock speed and operating voltage depending on the prevailing application demands. Appropriate BIOS and chipset support is necessary for PowerNow! to be taken advantage of.

By the spring of 2002 the fastest available Mobile Athlon 4 CPU was the Model 1600+.