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PC Market Update

CPU price drops occurred on 12/11. Intel dropped their prices an average of 11% and AMD matched.

P4s are just around the corner although not before Christmas as Intel missed their December deadline. They are getting a better than expected yield on the P4s and quantity shipments are in the stream. P4’s were expected to be introduced at speeds of 1.4GHz and 1.5GHz, but now it looks like 1.3GHz and up. The bad news is that the P4s will only ship the RDRAM (Rambus RAM) version and the DDR and SDRAM versions are not expected until 3rd quarter. That means that you are going to have to pay big money for RDRAM if you want the P4.

Intel’s current processors are the Celerons from 600 to 766MHz. Pentium 3s are available from 600Mhz to 1GHz. Rumor has it that Intel is introducing a 100MHz Celeron early next year. As you probably know, the Celerons currently run at 66 MHz and the P3s run at 100 and 133 MHz.

AMD announced last month that their new 760 chipset will support DDR (double-data-rate) RAM, but announced this month that they have delayed this new chipset. DDR RAM is available in limited quantities with better availability in early 2001. AMD also announced the 266 MHz Front Side Bus Athlons that will be available at speeds of 1GHz, 1.13GHz and 1.2GHz. We should start to see these processors in early 2001 as well.

AMD released their 800MHz Duron processor last month and the 1.2GHz Athlon processor.

Intel will launch an 815EP chipset early 2001. This is the same as their 815E chipset, but without onboard video.

Microsoft will launch another version of their Windows OS, codenamed Whistler, which is expected to ship by the end of the year. This will be the follow-on to both 2000 and ME and will be released in a personal and business version. Beta release 1 shipped a couple of weeks ago.

Jeff Leist is President and co-owner of Microworx Direct, Inc. ( ), a Rochester computer reseller. <JL

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