ATI Radeon HD3850 and HD3870 Cards Are Quiet As a Mouse

The Radeon HD3850 will be coming to market soon and will feature a single-slot cooling setup that only outputs 31 dBA.

The cooler on this card is much quieter than the 8600GTS and 8800GT video cards from Nvidia.

ATI will also be debuting the HD3870 which will have a dual-slot cooling setup that outputs 34dBA.

These two cards output significantly less noise than the 2900XT and the 8800GT. Just for comparison the 8800GT ouputs about 43dBA.

I’m excited for these upcoming graphics cards, it’s nice to know that ATI is actually competing with Nvidia. Everyone likes a quiet computer and hopefully this will help push computers quieter and quieter.

If you’d like to see some pictures of the upcoming cards you can find them here and here.

AMD Phenom Launch Details -Update

AMD is allegedly getting ready to launch the Phenom processor on November 19th. Some pricing for a few of the processors have already began leaking online.

The AMD Phenom X4 9500 which has a 95-watt thermal envelope and a 2.2GHz operating frequency should be priced at $280 (retail). The Phenom X4 9600 which runs at 2.3GHz with 512KB of L2 cache per core will be priced at $320 (retail). The final offering is the AMD Phenom X4 9700 will be priced at $330 and has an operating frequency of 2.4GHz and has a 125-watt thermal envelope.

The 9700 was originally going to be clocked at 2.6GHz and before you get worried about how stable the chip is, DailyTech suggests that the sudden decrease may have something to do with “creative marketing plans.”

AMD has also shown off 3.0GHz Phenom processors in the past but according to the roadmap we won’t be seeing Phenom processors with that kind of operating frequency until 2008.

UPDATE: DigiTimes suggests that the reason for the lack of 2.6GHz at launch may be to do with problems transitioning from 90nm to 65nm and that we may only see two Phenom CPUs at launch, those being the 2.2GHz and 2.3GHz models.

DigiTimes also goes on to say that the 2.4GHz 9700 model won’t be coming out until December.

AMD Announces 45-Watt CPUs

AMD has announced new 45-Watt energy efficient processors.

AMD Athlon X2 BE-2400 2.3GHz priced at $104
AMD Athlon LE-1620 2.4GHz priced at $53
AMD Athlon LE-1600 2.2GHz priced at $47
AMD Sempron LE-1250 2.2GHz priced at $53
AMD Sempron LE-1200 2.1GHz priced at $48
AMD Sempron LE-1100 1.9GHz priced at $37
(pricing in 1,000 units for processor-in-box)

I think that this along with the 3-core processors from AMD are all examples of how they really are trying. I’m not sure exactly whether or not 45W desktop processors will really help them but I think that the few that are tech savvy enough to really think about how much power your processor uses would be interested in the processors.

AMD Set To Launch 3-Core CPUs in Q1 ’08

AMD is planning to launch a three-core processor family in the first quarter of next year. The processors will be 65nm Agena based processors with one of the 4 cores disabled. There will be two models at launch, Phenom 7700 clocked at 2.5GHz with 512KB of L2 cache per core and 2MB of L3 cache, the second is the Phenom 7600 clocked at 2.3GHz also having 512KB of L2 cache per core and 2MB of L3 cache.

The processors should be launching around March and later on we will begin to see three-core 45nm processors.

I think that AMD is smart to have this type of game plan, the marketing possibilities of a 3-core processor would be pretty amazing. I think that just the name “tri-core” just sounds really cool. I love the fact that AMD is taking a more interesting approach to making processors, I also think that if AMD can take the momentum of having a “true quad-core” processor and run with it, they will start to catch up with Intel.


AMD Cuts Prices on Desktop CPUs

AMD must be feeling quite a bit of pressure from Intel and have decided to cut prices of their desktop CPUs again. The price cuts are between 5-28% depending on the model.

Here is a rundown of the new pricing (for 1000-unit tray quantities)

$220 – Athlon 64 X2 6400+
$167 – Athlon 64 X2 6000+
$146 – Athlon 64 X2 5600+
$125 – Athlon 64 X2 5200+
$136 – Athlon 64 X2 5000+ Black Edition
$115 – Athlon 64 X2 5000+
$104 – Athlon 64 X2 4800+
$89 – Athlon 64 X2 4400+
$78 – Athlon 64 X2 4200+
$68 – Athlon 64 X2 4000+
$58 – Athlon 64 4000+
$50 – Athlon 64 3800+
$45 – Athlon 64 3500+

As of writing this you can pick up a dual core Athlon 64 4000+ on for $70, INCREDIBLE.

AMD isn’t looking so good, the Athlon processors are seeming quite ancient next to the Core 2 Duos from Intel. I’m really hoping that the Phenom will put up a better fight. I’ve always loved AMD and I used to say that I would never buy a computer with an Intel processor in it, I have since purchased a Mac and because of the Core 2 Duos I’ve realized that that was a stupid thing to say. I would love to go back to AMD but I won’t unless they start to kick it up a notch.

(I understand that I can’t get AMD in a Mac but I occassionally build systems for family members and currently I would suggest Intel, but I would rather select AMD, AMD just needs to get a bit better at it)

AMD Launches Second “Black Edition” CPU

AMD has launched there second “Black Edition” processor, the Athlon 64 X2 5000+. The processor is quite a bit cheaper then the 6400+ Black Edition processor that launched last month, it is priced at $136 in distributor-volume 1,000-unit quantities.

This is the first processor in its class shipped by AMD that has a customizable clock multiplier, “which enables amateurs and value-conscious enthusiasts to maximize the performance of their desktop computers,” AMD said.

I think that the “Black Edition” processors are obviously just a marketing gimmick that won’t last too long. Although I do think that the unlocked multiplier is great for hardcore and casual overclockers alike.

AMD Leaks New Graphics Card Models

It’s always funny when a company leaks its own products before they come out. In this case the release notes of the most recent graphics card drivers list these cards as being supported:

Radeon HD 2900 Pro

Radeon HD 2350 Series

Radeon HD 2600 X2 Series

Well, these cards aren’t out yet. theInquirer says this about the story:

“We can fairly easily guess what the first two are – low-clocked 2900 XT, low-clocked 2400 – but what the 2600 X2 constitutes we’re really not sure. A higher-clocked version of the 2600, or even the much-rumoured CrossFire-on-a-card version?”

It seems that this is about the time that new graphics cards start to come to light, graphics cards are getting much more powerful for the money you pay for them which is great for consumers like me that enjoy playing games occasionally but don’t need to have all of the eye candy.

AMD Barcelona Launch Day

Expect to see a lot of news about AMD’s Barcelona processor. Today, the information given to all of the media is no longer embargoed.

Check out some of the early news at the following:
PC Perspective – AMD Barcelona Opteron Processor Launch Is Upon Us
PC Perspective – AMD Introduces the World’s Most Advanced x86 Processor
AnandTech: AMD Phenom Preview: Barcelona Desktop Benchmarks
AnandTech: AMD’s Quad-Core Barcelona: Defending New Territory

The processor is clocked at 2.0GHz and is showing about a 20% improvement over K8. This is just a taste of what we should expect later on this year on the desktop with AMD Phenom. Phenom will be even faster then these chips, it will be clocked at around 2.5GHz. I’m personally excited, and really hoping that this will compete with Intel a little bit better then the older Opteron and Athlon processors.

Update: Here is some more links to Barcelona news:
Extremetech – AMD’s ‘Barcelona” Chips Claim Performance Advantages
Arstechnica – Barcelona’s out, and the “reviews” are… out
Cnet – AMD’s Barcelona not a savior, yet

AMD Prices Barcelona Chips

AMD’s Barcelona chips should be showing up on Sep. 10th. These new Quad-Core chips should be quite a bit faster then the previous Opteron chips.

The pricing is as follows:
2350, 2.0 GHz, 95W, $372
2347, 1.9GHz, 95W, $312
2347 HE, 1.9GHz, 68W, $372
2346 HE, 1.8GHz, 68W, $251
2344 HE, 1.7GHz, 68W, $206
8350, 2.0GHz, 95W, $1004
8347, 1.9GHz, 95W, $774
8347 HE, 1.9GHz, 68W, $861
8346 HE, 1.8GHz, 68W, $688

I have high hopes for these chips, they will really give us a taste of what to expect from the Phenom processors coming out later this year. I just hope that Intel’s Tigerton doesn’t out perform it.

Barcelona Reaches 30,000+ in 3DMark06

theInquirer was able to have some time with a Barcelona chip recently. It was paired with 4GB of memory and two Radeon HD 2900XT. The chip ran at 2.5GHz stock and they overclocked it to 3GHz. The two Radeon cards were overclocked to 830MHz for the core and 900MHz for the memory.

When they ran 3DMark06 on the system without an overclock they were able to score 23,768. After the overclocked it came to 30,031.

Barcelona is coming out to be quite the performer and I can’t wait for the chip to come out. I’m, of course, more excited about Phenom a month or two afterwards but Barcelona is going to tell us what to expect from Phenom.

Another thing found out by theInquirer is that AMD Barcelona has a few GB/s of memory bandwidth more then any Intel offering which is GREAT. Especially since Barcelona is on DDR2-800 and is still faster then any DDR3 offering. AMD seems to be smart in this transition from DDR2 to DDR3 like they were with the transition from DDR to DDR2. DDR3 doesn’t yet have any advantage over DDR2 except for the marketing benefits of having a larger number in its name.


AMD Phenom Logo

Back in June I showed you all a picture of the Phenom Logo, well it was quite small and was a sticker on the side of a Indy car. But this time I have the actual logo. What will be slapped on every box that has a Phenom processor on it. Get used to it because I have a feeling you will see it everywhere right after the processor ships in a few months.