Intel Adds Processors, Cuts Core 2 Quad, Xeon Prices

With the Intel Nehalem chip on its way, Intel is cutting the prices of some of its high-end desktop processors and adding some chips into its lineup. The new Intel chips include the Intel Core 2 Quad Q9650 processor for high-end and gaming desktop PCs.

Intel is slashing the prices on some of its high-end desktop PC and server processors and adding some new chips to its portfolio following the release of the chip maker's naming scheme for Nehalem.

The changes to Intel's chip pricing were officially released Aug. 10, and those changes include cutting the price of the high-end Intel Core 2 Quad Q9550 (2.83GHz) by 40 percent from $530 to $316. Intel also added a new Core 2 Quad chip into the mix called the Q9650 (3.0GHz) at a price of $530.

Other additions to the high-end lineup include the Intel Core 2 Quad Q9400 (2.66GHz) at a price of $266. All three of these desktop chips are built on the company's 45-nanometer manufacturing process.

Intel also announced chip price cuts July 20.

The changes to Intel's processor listing come a day after the company released the new branding and naming scheme for the processors that will be built on Intel's forthcoming Nehalem microarchitecture. Since Intel has said that the first of the Nehalem chips - the Core i7 - is destined for high-end PCs and gaming desktops, the changes allow Intel to drop the prices of some its older chips, while freeing up room in its pricing chart for its latest processors.

The Intel Developer Forum will kick off Aug. 19, and much of the discussion there will focus on Nehalem, which will allow Intel to build chips that scale for two to eight cores and have new features such as an integrated memory controller. By bringing the first of the Nehalem chips into the high-end PC space, it allows Intel to showcase the chips in a small, but influential part of the market before entering the mainstream.

The other part of the market that Nehalem processors are likely to show up first is in the single-socket server space, and Intel also made changes to its Xeon lineup. The chip maker added three new models, the Xeon X3370 (3.0GHz), the X3330 (2.66GHz) and the E3120 (3.16GHz). The prices for these chips are $530, $266, and $188 respectively.

Intel also cut the price of its Xeon X3360 (2.83) by 40 percent from $530 to $316. The X3370 now replaces this chip as the high-end of the single-socket server chip lineup.

Finally, Intel added two additional Core 2 Duo desktop chips into the lineup. These additions include the Core 2 Duo E8600 (3.33GHz) for $266 and the E7300 (2.66GHz) for $133.

All the new prices are calculated in 1,000-unit shipments.