AMD Offers Triple-Core Athlon II Chips

Advanced Micro Devices unveils its first three-core Athlon II PC chips, part of a larger rollout of Athlon II processors that are designed to offer higher performance and lower power consumption. AMD rival Intel has dual- and quad-core PC chips, but no triple-core offering.

Advanced Micro Devices is rolling out its first triple-core Athlon processors for PCs.

The four Athlon II X3 triple-core chips were among eight new processors that AMD unveiled Oct. 20 in an effort to bulk up its offerings for PCs and smaller form factor devices, including all-in-one desktops.

The new Athlon II X3 chips mean AMD can offer systems makers such as Dell, Acer and Hewlett-Packard products at a price point between its dual- and quad-core processors.

The chips come with power envelopes that range between 45 watts and 95 watts, and speeds of between 2.2GHz and 2.9GHz.

Price per 1,000 units shipped ranges from $76 to $102.

The chips also are a way for AMD to differentiate its offerings from those of rival Intel, which offers dual- and quad-core PC processors, but no triple-core chips.

AMD officials said they see the ability to offer a wide range of chips for multiple sizes of PCs as an important step, given the release Oct. 22 by Microsoft of its new Windows 7 operating system, which has features designed for smaller form factors.

In addition to the triple-core processors, AMD also rolled out two new quad-core Athlon II processors and two more dual-core chips, all designed to offer high performance and low power consumption.