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In order to offer a broad range of 64-bit central processing units to cover mainstream, performance-mainstream and high-end desktop segments with AMD64 offerings, Advanced Micro Devices today quietly rolls out its new AMD Athlon 64 3000+ processor at a substantially lower price-point than any other 64-bit CPUs available today.

The new AMD Athlon 64 chip with 3000+ model number is available for orders now at $218 for quantities starting from 1000 units. Any technical details about the SKU are absent at the moment, just like the press release about the launch. The only thing AMD did was including of the processor’s price and brand-name in the company’s official pricelist.

The unveiling of the chip was not a surprise, however. On Sunday X-bit labs reported about the AMD Athlon 64 3000+ CPUs for sale all around the world. The AMD Athlon 64 3000+ processors available immediately run at 2.00GHz, the same speed as the higher-end Athlon 64 3200+ chip. But the less expensive CPU incorporates only 512KB of level-two cache – only a half of 1MB L2 cache provided by the Athlon 64 3200+. Both AMD64microprocessors incorporate 128KB of L1 cache and one Hyper-Transport link with aggregate bandwidth of 6.40GB/s to communicate with PC I/O. The new 3000+ 64-bit processor builds-in single-channel PC3200 controller.

AMD is also shipping Athlon 64 3000+ chip for desktop replacement notebooks running at 1.80GHz and packing 1MB of L2 cache. The SKU is also quoted at $218 for AMD customers. On the other hand, sources close to AMD recently unleashed the company's intention to ship desktop chips with 512KB of cache, but, presumably, with speeds above 2.00GHz.

64-bit microprocessors priced in $200 range may become rather popular among end-users who are looking for some new and exciting hardware, but cannot easily afford a $400 or $700 CPUs, such as the Athlon 64 3200+ or Athlon 64 FX-51. System integrators should also be happy with the new flavour of AMD64, as their customers may bite those more reasonably priced 64-bit systems.

Officials from Sunnyvale, California-based AMD were not instantionally available for comment.

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