October 24, 2006 11:59 AM PDT

AMD, Intel trim processor pricing

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Fall is here, and so are processor price cuts.

Advanced Micro Devices earlier this week lowered prices on notebook processors and a few desktop units, mostly to make way for new products.

The TL-60, a dual-core Turion chip for thin notebooks that runs at 2GHz, dropped 26 percent, from $354 to $263. The TL-56, which is a similar chip that runs at 1.8GHz, dropped from $263 to $220. The TL-52, which runs at 1.6GHz, waterfalled from $220 to $184.

On desktops, the Athlon 64 FX-62, a 2.8GHz monster chip for gamers, declined from $827 to $713. AMD posts more of its updated prices here, but it does not list the previous prices.

The price cuts on notebook processors will likely lead to discounts on AMD-based notebooks, if history is any indication. Notebook shipments continue to grow at the expense of desktops, although component shortages may create some supply problems this year.

AMD also said today that it is on track to ship chips produced on its 65-nanometer lines during the quarter. These chips will be faster, smaller and, ultimately, cheaper to produce than chips made on the 90-nanometer line. Intel has been popping out chips on 65-nanomteter factory lines for about a year, which has allowed Intel to put more pricing pressure on AMD.

Intel, meanwhile, made fewer cuts early this week. Most of those it did make were on the Celeron line. The Celeron D 360 for desktops went from $84 to $69, an 18 percent decline, while the Celeron 326, the cheapest chip Intel makes, went from $39 to $34. Intel prices range from $3,692 for an Itanium 2 model number 9050 to $34 for Celerons.

Intel hasn't had a large-scale price cut since the summer, so a broader price cut, along with new products, will likely occur in the relatively near future. PC makers early next year will also release notebooks based on the Santa Rosa platform, which will also usher in faster notebook chips and, in all likelihood, more notebook price cuts.

AMD and Intel used to move almost in lockstep when it came to price cuts, announcing similar cuts on similar products on the same day. The large number of models of chips both companies now sell, however, has altered that pattern.

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price cut, cut, Intel Celeron, notebook computer, pricing

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AMD cutting more than Intel
AMD cutting more than Intel seems to be a reactive response to Core 2 Duo. No wonder the FX-62 chip is declining in price: once the kind of the hill, it has been reduced to a foothill in the shadow of Intel's latest and greatest. Let's hope the improvements keep coming!
Posted by CompEng (201 comments )
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