What yield for the Cell processor?

According to an interview in Electronic News, manufacturing yields for the IBM / Sony Cell processor might be as low as 10 to 20 percent.

With standard silicon germanium (SiGe) single-core processors, IBM can achieve yields of up to 95%, [IBM VP Tom Reeves] told Electronic News. But “with a chip like the Cell processor,” he then remarked, “you’re lucky to get 10 or 20 percent.”

He implied that because the Cell uses as many as eight identical synergistic processing elements (SPEs), but Sony only requires the use of seven, some production units could, in fact, get away with one core in eight being defective without any impact on the customer.

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