Searching for a sign that quad-core processing is heading to the mainstream? Look no further than Gateway putting PCs based on Intel's Core 2 Quad Q6600 chip on the shelves of major retailers. Best Buy's site lists the $2,100 Gateway FX8020 model, while Circuit City is selling the $2,300 FX8030, which adds a second 500GB hard drive for an even terabyte of storage. In addition to the quad-core 2.4GHz Q6600 chip, both models feature 2GB of 667MHz DDR2 memory, a 512MB ATI Radeon X1950 Crossfire-capable graphics card, and Vista Home Premium. These Gateway systems aren't the first quad-core PCs at retail, but they cost considerably less than Best Buy's $3,500 Velocity Micro ProMagix E2440 system, which uses the higher-end Intel Core 2 Extreme QX6700 processor. While a quad-core PC with a price that hovers near $2,000 may be attractive, we must caution you against a pricey impulse buy. The Radeon X1950 card is powerful but outdated; we suggest holding off until ATI releases its next-gen DirectX 10 cards (coming soon) or selecting a PC with Nvidia's GeForce 8800 GTS card.
Via The Register.