Intel's next-gen Itanium is looking like a thing of beauty with some impressive specs. The last update to the Itanium line saw a 2-billion transistor chip dubbed Tukwila, which sported a 65nm design, up to 24MB cache, 4-cores and a clock speed of up to 1.73GHz. The 2011 refresh of the Itanium will see a bump up to 8-core, up to 32MB cache, 3.1 billion transistors and a TBA clock speed. The die size has also shrunk from 699m^2 down to 544mm^2.
Poulson also adds a new feature called Intel Instruction Replay Technology, which is said to add a buffer for more quickly recovering from errors, allowing the chip to pick up from the last known good instruction instead of having to completely flush the pipeline. Another feature of Poulson is that it's pin compatible with Tukwila, which means existing Itanium-based customers can just buy the new chip, drop it in and go.