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The new chips include AMD's Athlon XP 2100+ for desktop PCs, Mobile Athlon 4 1600+ for notebooks, and Athlon MP 2000+ for servers and workstations.
The desktop XP 2100+ reaches speeds of 1.73GHz, the Mobile Athlon 4 1600+ achieves 1.4GHz and the MP 2000+, which can power systems alone or in pairs, climbs to 1.67GHz speeds.
Hardware manufacturers are keeping pace with AMD by releasing systems based on these new chips almost simultaneously. Compaq, Fujitsu-Siemens and NEC desktop PCs are available now with the XP 2100+ chip.
This vendor support, while not unusual for AMD, shows some early acceptance for the new processors.
"It's showing that they continue to come out with new products," said Dean McCarron, president of Mercury Research. The announcements with original equipment manufacturers show "that they are using the chip, they're not just throwing the part out there," he added.
AMD's new chips will compete with rival Intel's Pentium 4 desktop processor and Pentium III-M and Celeron processors.
The nomenclature that AMD now uses for its chips, an initiative it began last autumn, is designed to give customers a more accurate sense of performance than simply stating the megahertz, said John Rowe, product marketing engineer with AMD's mobile group. The numbers, such as 2100, represent relative performance, instead of the internal clock speed of the chip.
"It's a good way to communicate to the customer what performance they can expect out of the processor they're buying," Rowe said, adding that after a little scepticism in the beginning, the branding seems to be catching on with OEMs and customers.