AMD Hopes to Leapfrog Pentium
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And you thought they were conceding the speed race to the Pentium 4 until the Hammer shipped...
AMD says the third anniversary of its Athlon CPU calls for a real jump in performance, so Intel's archrival has introduced 0.13-micron-process Athlon XP "Thoroughbred" processors with model-number performance ratings of 2400+ (2.0GHz) and 2600+ (2.133GHz), the latter striding past the current desktop champion 2.53GHz Pentium 4 as well as AMD's previously fastest Athlon XP 2200+ (1.8GHz).
Produced at AMD's fab in Dresden, Germany, the new Athlon XP "model 8" processors include 128K of Level 1 and 256K of Level 2 cache and a 266MHz (2.1GB/sec) system bus -- the same as previous models, postponing the 333MHz bus and 512K Level 2 "Barton" core anticipated by AMD fans. They use the same Socket A infrastructure as previous Athlons.
The Athlon XP 2400+ and 2600+ are priced at $193 and $297 respectively in 1,000-unit quantities. The company says it's shipping the new CPUs to PC makers now, with system availability expected in September.