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AMD introduces new Phenom chips

The vendor's first triple-core chips provide another option to mainstream PC buyers

Advanced Micro Devices on Thursday announced new Phenom chips, including quad-core chips and its first triple-core processors for desktop PCs.

The company’s triple-core Phenom X3 8000 series processors provide an option to mainstream PC buyers who don’t want to spend on a quad-core processor but are looking for more performance than a dual-core processor, said Pat Moorhead, vice-president of advanced marketing at AMD.

The chips could be used for high-definition video playback, casual mainstream gaming and productivity applications, Moorhead said.

The company’s first triple-core processors include the Phenom X3 8400, which runs at 2.1GHz, and the Phenom X3 8600, which runs at 2.3GHz. Both will come with 1.5MB of L2 cache and 2MB of L3 cache.

AMD also launched three Phenom quad-core processors on Thursday — the Phenom X4 9750, which runs at 2.4Ghz; the Phenom X4 9850, which runs at 2.5GHz; and the Phenom 9100e, a low-voltage quad-core processor that runs at 1.8GHz and has a 65-watt power envelope during maximum usage. All the processors contain 2MB of L2 cache and 2MB of L3 cache.

PC makers will ship products with the quad-core processors in the second quarter, AMD said.

The triple-core processors are already shipping in volume to PC makers, AMD said. U.S. vendor ZT Systems will list PCs with the new triple-core Phenoms on Monday, with other “major OEMs” and system vendors shipping products next quarter, AMD said. Many major vendors, including Dell and Hewlett-Packard, have already hinted at including the processors in desktops.