Performance at Root of Chip Price War?


On the day AMD's David Schwarzbach was quoted by as saying the chipmaker would not cut prices on its current products, reports were circulating that AMD would dramatically cut prices on its Athlon 64 desktop line.


Of course, the chip market is volatile, and cost is king in the commoditized PC market. So there's nothing surprising about yet another price war between AMD and Intel, which is aggressively rolling out its Core 2 Duo 64-bit desktop package.


But we must note that reports of a possible AMD price cut coincided tightly with rumors that Core 2 Duo is the clear winner in the first wave of benchmarking tests pitting it against Athlon 64 X2 systems. Results have been embargoed until today, and the market eagerly awaits the release of tests at Tom's Hardware.


As the huge demands of Windows Vista loom on the next PC refresh horizon, performance may not be the main differentiator in the desktop market. But it may well be a big enough factor to affect price dramatically.

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