AMD Raises Athlon64 Prices; Lowers Opterons


The chip maker Monday increased prices for its Althlon 64 desktop processors by about $2 to $3 each, depending on the model. Processors affected include AMD's highest end 4000 series parts.

AMD declined to state a specific reason for the increase. But a spokeswoman offered this observation: "We price products according to the value they deliver." She noted that "more and more OEMs are responding positively to AMD's desktop processors."

AMD, Sunnyvale, Calif., is known to have tight supply in desktop processors. It held a briefing late last month to update the status of its second manufacturing facility, Fab 36, which just started volume shipments. That facility is currently manufacturing Athlon 64 and Sempron processors. AMD executives also said the company has contracted with Singapore-based Chartered Semiconductor Manufacturing to help with manufacturing in the second half of the year if additional supply is needed.

At the same time, AMD cut prices on several of its 800 series dual-core Opteron server CPUs. The steepest cut was a 50 percent reduction in the low-power, 2GHz 846 HE. That processor, which runs at a 55 watt thermal envelope, is now priced at $455.

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Processors that realized a 30 percent price reduction were the 854, 852, 850, 850HE and 848HE.

The prices changes came as AMD announced Tuesday it was shipping its last scheduled single-core Opteron processors. The new models run a 3GHz clock speed and are currently available for two- to eight-way servers. A model for single processor servers is expected to ship within 30 days. The 856, for eight-way servers, is priced at $1,514; the 256, for up to two-way servers, is priced at $851. Pricing for the 156, for single-socket servers, is not yet available.

An AMD spokesperson said that while AMD currently has no plans to offer additional single-core processors in this Opteron line, the models would be available on the market as long as customers needed them.

Sun Microsystems announced today it would be supporting the new single-core Opterons in its Sun Fire line. In addition, AMD said IBM will offer workstations based on the 256 model within 30 days.