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Declining to follow the price cut plan

DailyTech revealed last week ATI's new pricing strategy to compete with NVIDIA's GTS 250 rebrand, also known as the 9800 GTX+.

The ATI Radeon HD 4850 512MB was to drop to $129, while the Radeon HD 4870 512MB was scheduled to be cut to $149. This was supposed to be accomplished primarily through the use of mail-in rebates, which ATI would help offset.

Most of the board partners took up the offer on the 4850. However, due to several factors converging at once, the 4850 can now be picked up for around $120 at several e-tailers, albeit with the mail-in rebate.

The story with the 4870 is something else entirely. The Radeon HD 4870 512MB was supposed to drop to $149 with a mail-in rebate, but some of ATI's graphics card partners are resisting this as they feel that since the card outperforms the GTX 260, it should compete against that card. They instead are positioning the 1GB version of the 4850 against the 1GB version of the GTS 250 at the $149 price point.

One of our sources in Taiwan told us: "The ATI lineup is very strong, and we feel the 4850 should go against the GTS 250 and the 4870 against the GTX 260".

ATI has been very aggressive with its pricing, with lower prices and higher performance in the same segments as its nemesis NVIDIA. This has led to declining revenues for board manufacturers, already hard hit by lower demand due to the global recession.



GTX 280

ATI Radeon 4870

GTX 260 Core 216

ATI Radeon HD 4850

GTS 250

Stream Processors






Texture Address / Filtering

80 / 80




64 / 64







Core Clock






Memory Clock


900MHz GDDR5 (3600MHz eff)


993MHz GDDR3 (1986MHz eff)


Memory Bus Width






Frame Buffer






Transistor Count






Price Point






Comments     Threshold

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By Spivonious on 3/11/2009 1:14:30 PM , Rating: 2
Why do the board makers care if ATI is paying out rebates? Wouldn't their net profit remain the same or higher?

RE: Huh?
By dagamer34 on 3/11/2009 1:20:32 PM , Rating: 3
Read the article a bit more closely. ATI will offset the price drops, not completely pay for them, thus decreased revenues.

RE: Huh?
By quiksilvr on 3/11/2009 2:07:11 PM , Rating: 3
Though I understand that these prices are unusually low: THAT'S CALLED BEING COMPETITIVE. Why would you want to price your cards to fight against an inferior card in the first place? Their slogan should be "better performance for a better price during bad times"

RE: Huh?
By aj28 on 3/11/2009 2:22:53 PM , Rating: 5
The whole point their AIB partners are trying to make is that the price doesn't need to be that low because they're selling just fine anyway, and are already cheaper than the competition. Dropping it any lower is not being competitive, it's being dumb, and it's not a sustainable way to run a company, especially in bad times.

On the other hand, I think the primary motivator for ATi trying to drive the price to unreasonably low levels is to effectively buy back the market share they've lost over the past few years. Even fanboys won't buy their brand of choice if they can get comparable or better performance at a 20% or greater discount. If ATi can improve their image and win back the market then they will compete better in the coming generation, and I think they know that.

RE: Huh?
By Reclaimer77 on 3/11/09, Rating: -1
RE: Huh?
By Martimus on 3/11/2009 3:17:51 PM , Rating: 5
The card isn't being priced against the GTX 260, it is being priced against the GTS 250, which is inferior to the HD 4870 in nearly every way.

That is what the board partners are complaining about. They want to price it the same as the GTX 260, which has approximately equal performance, while ATi wants to price the HD4870 at the GTS 250 price range.

RE: Huh?
By Reclaimer77 on 3/11/09, Rating: -1
RE: Huh?
By Pakman333 on 3/11/2009 3:58:17 PM , Rating: 3
"The ATI Radeon HD 4850 512MB will drop to $129, and is designed to compete at the same price point as NVIDIA's GTS 250 512MB version."

RE: Huh?
By Cypherdude1 on 3/15/2009 8:26:23 AM , Rating: 2
I like ATI over nVidia because ATI has better support for their drivers. I am currently using an older Radeon video card with s-video out. I use it to see DVD's ported to my TV. The picture is amazing, very clear. Even if you sit a foot in front of the TV, you cannot see any artifacts, ghosting, nothing. I cannot get over just how clear the picture is. Also, the picture is centered nearly perfectly on the TV. There's no over or under scan. I often pause the movie, switch to FireFox, and access the 'Net right on the TV. My previous nVidia card was never like this.

$129 for a top-of-the-line PCIe video card is also amazing. That's an incredible price.

{UPDATE} I just read the reviews for the 4850 and I'm disappointed. Apparently the 4850 runs HOT:

RE: Huh?
By lexluthermiester on 3/16/2009 12:28:39 PM , Rating: 2
I like ATI over nVidia because ATI has better support for their drivers.

I'm going to have to disagree with that. The very reason I switched from ATI to Nvidia was because of the pain in the back-side drivers ATI started pumping out in 2006. Nvidia's drivers are entirely easier to use. I've installed and used ATI cards in client's machines and nothing has changed over the past few years. Properly configuring Nvidia drivers takes half the time.

Now allow me to qualify myself. I never use standard mode configurations. I always access the advanced modes in driver settings. ATI's drivers require more non-essential programs running and this annoys me to no end.

RE: Huh?
By Sagath on 3/11/2009 4:01:49 PM , Rating: 5
False: Dated Mar 2, 2009

and Dated Mar 3, 2009

So if anything, ATi knew about the existence of the GTS250 before they announced the price drop. Hell, most people have been reading about the 'new' 250 on forums for 6+ weeks. The price drops was suprising, but not unforseen.

RE: Huh?
By MrPoletski on 3/12/2009 10:19:15 AM , Rating: 4
exactly, coz GPU manufacturers have no idea what the competition might be releasing in the near future... not

RE: Huh?
By afkrotch on 3/11/2009 4:09:47 PM , Rating: 3
Nvidia should drop the price on the GTS 250, then lower the price of the GTX 260 to match the HD 4870. It's a win win for the consumer.

RE: Huh?
By lagitup on 3/11/2009 8:30:00 PM , Rating: 3
I don't think nVidia can afford it, with the gt200's die size and whatnot, else they probably would've done that already; what company would let their competitor outmaneuver if they had another option?

RE: Huh?
By murphyslabrat on 3/12/2009 1:03:08 AM , Rating: 5

RE: Huh?
By Spectator on 3/12/2009 4:43:13 AM , Rating: 3
Intel with its SSD's also :P

RE: Huh?
By SiliconDoc on 3/13/09, Rating: -1
RE: Huh?
By Targon on 3/13/2009 8:13:21 AM , Rating: 3
I think you need to look at things from a different perspective than the official numbers that come out, because "creative accounting" can often come into play.

If you look at what has happened to the economy, stock prices have dropped so far that things like how much was paid for something can be very confusing. If you bought a house three years ago for $400,000, and it is currently worth $250,000, the current value has dropped by a lot, and as such, you have lost money. The ATI purchase was done during a better economic time(globally), so when times are bad, claiming losses is a standard practice to help with the balance sheet.

The Radeon 4000 series has been selling VERY well, but the declines in the economy have hurt every company. Claiming more losses from what has been a done deal for a while does not mean AMD is not making money on the GPU business. If anything, the chipset business is the only part of AMD that has not been looking up in the past two months.

The Phenom 2 looks fairly popular these days, and the Radeon graphics products are also doing well. Why we don't see more systems with AMD 780 and 790 chipsets is the only area where NVIDIA is holding a clear lead, and is something I would love to hear some talk about. Why are so many systems sold with a Geforce 6150LE chipset on them compared to a 780G chipset?

RE: Huh?
By SiliconDoc on 3/13/09, Rating: -1
RE: Huh?
By aharris on 3/13/2009 2:55:31 PM , Rating: 1
RANDOMLY capitalized WORDS really HELPS your POINT hit ITS mark.

RE: Huh?
By meepstone on 3/12/2009 6:54:20 PM , Rating: 2
ive seen benchmarks, the 4870 is better, not by a lot but its better and its cheaper. cant beat facts though. all you have to do is google it.

RE: Huh?
By SiliconDoc on 3/13/09, Rating: -1
RE: Huh?
By aharris on 3/13/2009 2:57:20 PM , Rating: 3
"Hey kids, today we're going to learn how to spot an internet poster with an agenda!"

RE: Huh?
By ninjaquick on 3/19/2009 10:15:10 AM , Rating: 1
Cuz apparently you totally need more THAN 512 ram to run at your stated LOW framerates... wait a SECOND... HMM, if i understand what youre saying correctly then the NVIDA card must really SUCK, i mean, IT has A "whopping" 8** megs of ram, but loses out AT the higher RESOLUTIONS?

last i checked, a <5 FPS difference at like 50 to 60 fps is hardly noticeable. so i really dont give a rats ass about that. if the two cards basically average to the same rate then it boils down to how it decodes movies and if its loud. not to mention the price, which should go without saying, but i assume your brain couldnt figure that one out.

go die in a fire, no one wants you here.

RE: Huh?
By inperfectdarkness on 3/12/2009 9:34:50 PM , Rating: 3
well put.

this is PRECISELY why the Wii hasn't dropped in price.

RE: Huh?
By scrapsma54 on 3/18/2009 2:10:08 PM , Rating: 2
Ati seems to be doing pretty good now that they are putting out decent products.

RE: Huh?
By afkrotch on 3/11/2009 2:50:28 PM , Rating: 3
Why would you want to price your cards to fight against an inferior card in the first place?

Cause then it looks better that's why. If you put your card next to one that's similiar, they'll pick randomly. A mail-in rebate is just a big cop-out. Either drop the price or don't drop it.

RE: Huh?
By tallcool1 on 3/11/2009 5:03:36 PM , Rating: 3
In regards to mail in rebates, yea I agree, however, as you know, people will buy based on the price with the rebate, but not everybody gets thier rebates in. This gives the manufacturer the opportunity to turn a better profit versus a straight out price cut.

RE: Huh?
By rcc on 3/12/2009 4:47:42 PM , Rating: 2
When I did a stint at a major electronics retailer, the estimate from manufacturers was that 90% of people didn't collect their rebates.

RE: Huh?
By SiliconDoc on 3/13/09, Rating: -1
RE: Huh?
By bankerdude on 3/11/2009 1:23:06 PM , Rating: 2
I think there are two different points being made in the article. 1. The card partners are resisting the opportunity to sell the product with a rebate (subsidized by ATI), and 2. The board manufacturers are hurt when they produce and sell a lower margin ATI board versus a higher margin Nvidia board.

RE: Huh?
By Operandi on 3/11/2009 2:05:35 PM , Rating: 4
Just because the nVidia board is more expensive doesn't mean it has higher profit margins for the board manufactures.

Someone can correct me if I'm wrong but I believe the AMD (ATI, whatever) GPUs are smaller both in manufacturing process as well as physical transistor count which would make them cheaper to produce than nVidia's GPUs (260 on up at least).

RE: Huh?
By afkrotch on 3/11/09, Rating: 0
RE: Huh?
By GodisanAtheist on 3/11/2009 3:58:03 PM , Rating: 4
Just because the actual gpu is larger, doesn't mean it costs more. If ATI's smaller gpu only had 50% yield and Nvidia's larger gpu had 100% yield, I can guarantee that Nvidia's would be cheaper to product.

-This is true, but given the smaller size and reduced complexity of the ATI GPU (if sheer transistor counts = complexity) and the fact that both GPU's are being produced at TSMC, I'd give the nod to ATI on this one.

All things being equal though, it doesn't look like either company is having any serious troubles as far as we know, although ATI can get ~2x the number of cores per wafer (given relative die sizes).

RE: Huh?
By afkrotch on 3/11/09, Rating: 0
RE: Huh?
By Targon on 3/11/2009 9:39:01 PM , Rating: 3
You have to look at it from the overall company perspective, not just how well the products are selling.

If AMD is able to produce an excessive number of 4870 GPUs, in order to avoid excess inventory, they need to sell more. Considering that AMD as a whole has been having a really rough time due to the economy, and until the Phenom 2, having parts that were not terribly competitive to the Core 2 series of processors, AMD needs money.

So, get more 4870 based cards sold. Even if the profit per card is less, the higher volume would more than make up for the lost profits per unit. It is sort of like selling 100 units at $10 each, or sell 1000 units at $9 each. AMD has not been in the position to sell products for top dollar, so their entire business plan revolves around selling more and more products.

Then, you also have to figure there is brand loyalty that builds up over time. If you have been buying a Geforce card for the past four generations, you will be more inclined to stick with NVIDIA. If AMD can get more people to buy a Radeon, and can stay competitive, those people will buy Radeon products going forward if they are happy with the product. So, AMD is thinking ahead on this one.

The whole idea of rebates is really annoying in general, because of all the complaints about rebate processing. You have the receipt, you have the product, with the box, you fax or send it over, and still end up without the promised rebate money. AMD could drop the price by 10 percent across the board and it would have the same overall effect that the rebates would have, without giving customers the headache.

RE: Huh?
By SiliconDoc on 3/13/09, Rating: -1
RE: Huh?
By GodisanAtheist on 3/13/2009 2:01:24 PM , Rating: 2
Because the corporate heads saw a hole in their line-up and realized they could make more money selling crippled 4870 cores in a lower bracket than they could sell fully functional cores at full price?

Just because its the same die with fewer SPs doesn't mean it was a yield problem, they could intentionally be crippling cores. If I'm not mistaken that's exactly what AMD was doing with the Phenom II x4's as x3's a little while ago (not even burning off parts of the chip there).

All ATI R7xx cards are actually made with 900 SPs, but only 800 are ever activated when the card is shipped out. The processor is built with huge amounts of redundancy, so it ultimately doesn't matter if they get a core with 890 sp's or 810 sp's, cause only 800 are ever actually going to be activated. As you can imagine this works wonders for yields...

RE: Huh?
By Etsp on 3/11/2009 5:57:48 PM , Rating: 2
If all other variables are equal, yes, a larger core costs more.

Let's say we have two platters that are equal in cost, and are similar in every way. On one of them we produce the larger nvidia chip, on the other we produce the smaller ATI chip. Which platter is cheaper? Neither. Their costs are about the same. But, since the ATI chip is smaller, we can fit more of them on the platter, so we have more of the ATI chip than we do of the nvidia chip.

So, for the same cost, we have made more ATI chips than nvidia chips.

On top of that, we have the fact that the ATI chips will have less wasted platter space because of yields. If these two platters have a similar number of defects, it stands to reason that the two platters would have a similar number of defective chips. So, the nvidia and ATI platters have a similar number of defective chips, but the ATI platter has more chips in total. This means that the platter with the smaller ATI chips on it has better yields

(Of course, GPU's and CPU's usually have some redundant circuits to help improve yields, but lets ignore that for the sake of having less variables in this example...)

So, if all else is equal, the smaller ATI chip is cheaper to produce, AND has better yields.

The ATI RV770 has 956,000,000 Transistors.
The nvidia GT200 has 1,400,000,000 Transistors. The ATI chip is about 2/3 the size of the nvidia chip, so ATI produces about 30% more chips per platter. This difference is HUGE.

RE: Huh?
By Alexstarfire on 3/12/2009 6:42:10 PM , Rating: 2
Well no one is denying what you said. The problem is that in real life it's not like what you said at all. A straight 30% better yield is great, but if it takes 2 chips to compete with one nVidia chip then nVidia still wins. It would actually make the nVidia chip about 27% smaller if 2 of the ATI chips are needed. BTW, even though it's 30% smaller the yield difference could be bigger or smaller depending on wafer dimensions.

I'm not sure if you were talking about the GTX260 vs the HD4870 or GTX280 vs HD4870 though. I'm talking more about the latter.

RE: Huh?
By SiliconDoc on 3/13/09, Rating: -1
RE: Huh?
By Etsp on 3/14/2009 12:14:10 AM , Rating: 3
ATI is in a good position for the near future. You make references to a past fiscal year, before this core was released, and presume that those numbers imply the success, and/or profitability of this chip? Talk about foolishness...

Not to mention the fact that nothing in my entire post was even closely related to any rumor, or comment made by ATI/AMD, or even any press release, advertisement or any other form of marketing for that matter. It was conjecture based on the analysis of how silicon chips are made, and the given transistor counts of these cores. My entire post made no mention of profits, which was the focus of your attacks. Only costs.

I made no mention of the price point at which these cores are being sold because it was irrelevant to my statement. My whole point was that a smaller core is cheaper to produce when all other factors are equal.
You seem to think that this statement makes me an ATI fanboy... This is not the case, had the roles been reversed, and NVIDIA had been the one with the smaller chip, my post would have been almost identical.

On a side note, I must mention your incoherent diarrhea of the keyboard is quite distracting from the points you try to make. Try to get some help with that.

RE: Huh?
By meepstone on 3/12/2009 6:56:11 PM , Rating: 2
why bother bringing up an argument on pure speculation, rather pointless.

RE: Huh?
By glitchc on 3/18/2009 10:55:15 AM , Rating: 2
Just because the actual gpu is larger, doesn't mean it costs more.

On the contrary, that is precisely why it will cost more. Given the NRE costs are amortized over the high quantity of chips produced, the Die Yield becomes the primary benchmark of cost.

Take a look at the following formula:

Die Yield = Wafer Yield x (1 + (Defects per unit area x Die Area)/a)^-a

Assuming a is constant, the defects per unit is fixed for a particular process, and is not dependent on the design of the chip. So if both AMD and NVidia are using a 65nm process from TSMC (for example), their defect rate is the same. Given that the wafer yield is also tied to the process, the only variable left is the Die Area, which is why larger dies typically experience lower yields (all other things being equal, of course, as stated above).

If ATI's smaller gpu only had 50% yield and Nvidia's larger gpu had 100% yield, I can guarantee that Nvidia's would be cheaper to product.

Sure, but if they're both produced on an identical process, it is physically impossible for the larger die to achieve better yields than the smaller one.

Keep it up ATI, I mean AMD
By Jay2tall on 3/11/2009 2:40:42 PM , Rating: 5
I have to admit, even I was drawn to the 4870 card. I think AMD is on the right track with it's video solutions. I mean the 38xx series was not all that great. The last good ATI card I had was the x1900xtx. Now the 4870. Nvidia always seems to have a handle on their graphics, however they always charge an arm and a leg. Look at the 260 and 280's when they first came out. RIDICULOUSLY overpriced. Then AMD slapped them in the face with the 48xx series. Everyone loved them and Nvidia had to bring their prices way down. AMD is a competitor on the graphics world, now maybe they can get their act together with their CPU's.

RE: Keep it up ATI, I mean AMD
By rudolphna on 3/11/2009 3:27:17 PM , Rating: 2
I have the answer to your last question/point. AMD Phenom II

RE: Keep it up ATI, I mean AMD
By Reclaimer77 on 3/11/2009 3:34:07 PM , Rating: 2
Phenom II can't compete with the i7 so it's not a high end "competitor".

RE: Keep it up ATI, I mean AMD
By GodisanAtheist on 3/11/2009 4:05:14 PM , Rating: 5
AMD's entire strategy (both CPUs and GPUs) seems to revolve around the "sell more of X for less $" rather than the tried and true "sell a few of y for a ton of $".

ATI didn't even try for the single card top spot and it worked brilliantly for them. Unfortunately AMD has a much tougher competitor in the CPU ring that they have no chance in hell of undercutting.

RE: Keep it up ATI, I mean AMD
By afkrotch on 3/11/2009 4:14:24 PM , Rating: 1
Huh? AMD wants to make money, but it has to lower prices to be able to compete. Remember when AMD was on top? They sure as hell kept their prices way the hell up there. Most ppl didn't buy an X2 cause they were ridiculously priced. Whenever AMD can, they will rape you. No different than Intel or Nvidia will. They are companies out to make money.

RE: Keep it up ATI, I mean AMD
By GodisanAtheist on 3/11/2009 8:30:48 PM , Rating: 2
I don't disagree with any of that, yet at the same time it doesn't invalidate anything I said.

Regardless of reason, AMD's strategy is "capture the middle ground". Would they douche it up if they were top dog? Yeah, they probably would, but I don't see what that has to do with my post.

RE: Keep it up ATI, I mean AMD
By afkrotch on 3/11/2009 11:35:21 PM , Rating: 2
I don't think their strategy is to capture just the middle ground. I think there strategy is to make middle groud gpus and get users to do crossfire to get to the higher ground.

This has multiple effects. Their lineup is simplier. As they have less different GPUs to produce, they don't have production issues (like they did in the past). Less R&D. Cause of all that, operating costs go down, so profits rise.

RE: Keep it up ATI, I mean AMD
By tigen on 3/11/2009 8:32:01 PM , Rating: 3
It's not "rape" if you're voluntarily getting something in exchange.

RE: Keep it up ATI, I mean AMD
By RMSe17 on 3/11/2009 5:13:57 PM , Rating: 3
Sure it is.. i7 can't compete with C2D Q's when it comes to gaming once you add OC into the equation. i7 outputs a lot of heat, and it's motherboards run insanely expensive...

RE: Keep it up ATI, I mean AMD
By Pryde on 3/12/2009 12:06:57 AM , Rating: 5
You can get a i7 Mobo for $200, hardly expensive for enthusiast and gaming between Core 2, i7 and Ph2 is negligible, they all perform well. Not like there is a game you can't play with a Core 2 or Ph2 but can suddenly with a i7.

RE: Keep it up ATI, I mean AMD
By The0ne on 3/11/2009 7:58:47 PM , Rating: 2
They're not even in the same segment for any comparisons. Phenom II is for high end, just not your server type high end segments. Sure you can use i7 for non server high end PCs but then you're paying a hella lot more money for your setup.

RE: Keep it up ATI, I mean AMD
By Pryde on 3/12/2009 12:13:33 AM , Rating: 2
The way I see it is Ph2 is for people on a budget while i7 is for people with a large budget, although this could all change with i5. For most people in Desktop area could hardly tell the difference between the two but when it comes to commercial/server area top performance is very important ( along with power consumption, cost etc )

RE: Keep it up ATI, I mean AMD
By Targon on 3/13/2009 8:39:41 AM , Rating: 2
Server performance is often based around communication between processors, not just how fast each processor is. When we see updated Opteron processors based on the Phenom 2 designs, it will be interesting to see how well it competes with the Intel offerings based on the i7 design(whenever they come out).

RE: Keep it up ATI, I mean AMD
By poohbear on 3/12/2009 12:47:33 PM , Rating: 2
who needs to compete w/ the i7??? are they even selling well? we're in a recession man, the vast majority of people are'nt gonna pay $200+ for a mobo then $300+ for a cpu not to mention ddr3 ram. Its entirely a niche product. the phenom 2 comeptes in the mainstream and performs on par w/ the C2D's for less. its a no brainer.

RE: Keep it up ATI, I mean AMD
By CZroe on 3/12/2009 3:38:03 PM , Rating: 2
I wanted an i7 and will likely still get one when I find a hot deal, but you're right... even I ultimately added to the "Atom is cannibalizing the other options" statistic. ;)

I moved across the country and couldn't fit anything else in my motorcycle's (MAGNETIC!) tank-bag, so it's been months on this POS Acer Aspire One netbook with slow 8GBSSD... my brother STILL hasn't mailed me my trusty ol' OC'd Q6600 system with Asus P5N32E-SLI Plus, GTX 280 SLI, Thermalright Ultra-120 Extreme, PC Power & Cooling Turbo-Cool 1KW, 8GB DDR2, Win-x64, etc. If he ever does, I can put off the i7 for a lot longer. ;)

By lexluthermiester on 3/16/2009 12:37:32 PM , Rating: 2
Agreed. However the Phenom2 is a very good CPU and can be overclocked better than anything AMD has released in the past. For the money, PH2 is an excellent option.

RE: Keep it up ATI, I mean AMD
By TA152H on 3/11/09, Rating: -1
RE: Keep it up ATI, I mean AMD
By moriz on 3/16/2009 10:22:24 AM , Rating: 1
i do recall seeing benchmarks that suggest the phenom II's perform pretty similar to mid-high range core 2's, but with better gaming performance. they are also priced similarly to those core 2s.

AMD is not, and really does not need, the top performing parts. what they have going, that neither nvidia nor intel has, is the complete platform: a competitive CPU-motherboard-GPU combo, all sold at competitive prices. the ability to offer a complete system all from their current product lineup is a definite advantage. not only can it offer potential $$$ savings to costumers (OEM and retail), AMD can fully leverage driver/device optimizations so there'll be performance increases if the system uses a full AMD lineup (i think there already is, but i can't confirm).

i think it's no great secret that both nvidia and intel are also trying for the complete package. this is why intel is working on a graphic card, and nvidia is fighting intel bitterly for chipset licenses and pushing CUDA for all its worth. they both know where the wind is blowing, and they both know that AMD is already ahead of them in this regard.

RE: Keep it up ATI, I mean AMD
By just4U on 3/12/2009 1:20:48 AM , Rating: 3
I have to kinda disagree on your point about the 3800 series not being that good. It was infact quite a good series (altho short lived) For Ati to come out with near 8800 class performance so quickly was quite remarkable. That's also when they started to put pressure on Nvidia with their cards being reasonably priced.

GTX 260 price cut?
By Doormat on 3/11/2009 2:40:46 PM , Rating: 3
I saw over at another site today that the GTX260 got a price cut down to $169.

RE: GTX 260 price cut?
By Ananke on 3/11/2009 3:56:48 PM , Rating: 2
Nvidia GTX boards are more expensive to produce, since they have more memory tracks /512 and 496 vs 256 on ATI/ and the power circuit is more expensive also. So, board partners make lets say 30% on ATI 4870 and 15-10% on GTX260 now, when the retail price is equal.

On the other hand, when you have demand crisys like nowadays, you have to expand market share,m to offset falling profit margins and keep the nominal margins the same. So ATI marketing doesn't like 4870 being compared to equal GTX 260, they need share growth, i.e. 4870 retail HAS to be cheaper then GTX260, not taking into account the lack of CUDA and more heat with 4870.

Retailers number sales however are significantly down, so they don't care about quantity growth now, they care about percentage profit margin made on each sale. So, RETAILERS don't want new products or cheaper products to compete at present, they want maintaining or increasing current prices.
Status quo will brake at the very moment when new product is introduced, then retail prices will just fall of a cliff :) April.

RE: GTX 260 price cut?
By afkrotch on 3/11/2009 4:19:45 PM , Rating: 1
Seriously, what the hell is this post? It doesn't seem to make all that much sense to me.

RE: GTX 260 price cut?
By Ananke on 3/11/2009 9:11:45 PM , Rating: 2
What I said is that in several weeks Radeon 4870 will be 150 without rebates, as well as GTX 260. Retailers are clogged with inventory of these, and there will be the price war. Retailers are just skimming the sales now, but the situation will change soon.

yeah well
By yacoub on 3/11/09, Rating: 0
RE: yeah well
By rcr on 3/11/2009 3:15:18 PM , Rating: 2
I don't think that the bus width is important, because it says not so much than the real speed of the bus.
The AMD Graphic cards use 256-bit but GDDR5, and the NVIDIA use 512-bit and GDDR3, so i would guess that they have actually the same speed.

RE: yeah well
By Chocobollz on 3/11/09, Rating: 0
RE: yeah well
By mindless1 on 3/11/2009 6:29:21 PM , Rating: 1
That's GTX280, which is already down to $290AR. The equivalent based on past history should come out in 24 months, all it'll take is the next die shrink.

RE: yeah well
By GodisanAtheist on 3/11/09, Rating: 0
RE: yeah well
By mindless1 on 3/11/2009 6:33:00 PM , Rating: 1
Sure, as always they start out with a conservative bus width then later they widen it. If they didn't, we'd all be stuck at 128bit or narrower still.

RE: yeah well
By afkrotch on 3/11/2009 11:40:00 PM , Rating: 3
Pretty much. We'll end up being on 512-bit with GDDR6 or some crap and the cards will be half the size of a regular ATX board.

I noticed...
By therealnickdanger on 3/11/2009 1:48:07 PM , Rating: 2
I was really excited when I heard they were dropping in price. That same week on Newegg, most of the 4870s had dropped to around $150-160 after MIR, but now they are about $20-30 more even after rebates. I chalked it up to demand, but this isn't too surprising either. In due time, prices will fall again... then I will strike! mwhahaha

RE: I noticed...
By nafhan on 3/11/2009 2:04:45 PM , Rating: 2
You can still chalk it up to demand. The board partners are saying there will be sufficient demand for the product at $170-$180 to keep the price at that point instead of $150.

RE: I noticed...
By moriz on 3/11/2009 2:15:35 PM , Rating: 2
not to mention, the 4870 will brutally murder the 9800GTX+ at the same price point, no matter what nvidia decide to call it.

a 1gb 4850 should easily be competitive against the GTS250 at the same price. perhaps AMD just want nvidia to disappear from that price range. after all, the 4890 is just around the corner, and potentially higher yields to make the 4870 cheaper to produce.

ATI 60% to 100% CPU Usage Bug
By SpaceJumper on 3/14/2009 10:44:42 AM , Rating: 2
I don't have much success with ATI HD Cards 3650 or 4850. They seem to constantly drive up the CPU usage and make the computer very slow. There is no fix for this problem from ATI.
Pretty junky products.

By Pakman333 on 3/25/2009 2:28:34 AM , Rating: 2
I think your bug is called "owning an old CPU".

The solution is to upgrade your CPU.

moot arguement
By Totally on 3/11/2009 10:40:27 PM , Rating: 2
now that nvidia have dropped the price of the GTX260 to $169

too bad...
By swizeus on 3/12/2009 5:18:19 AM , Rating: 2
The economy gone bad when AMD finally hold performance point there... if there's no recession AMD might justify the market price since they have great products compare to their nemesis

What's good for the goose...
By knutjb on 3/12/2009 7:10:06 PM , Rating: 2
Nvidia put the screws to ATI when they were having trouble AMD is merely repaying the favor. I like the idea of cheaper prices especially with Nvida recycling old chips. I think it keeps Nvidia honest instead of their history of gouging the wallet. I have bought the same number of Nvidia and ATI/AMD cards so I don't have a horse in the race jus t want a good bang for the buck.

They are making a bit of a mistake..
By just4U on 3/13/2009 10:21:27 AM , Rating: 2
Ok, I am not so sure about this in the United States but here in Canada (and also the UK) the 4870 is quite expensive.. Very recently (last week or two) Nvidia dropped their prices quite nicely on the 260.. so much so that it's now priced under a 512Meg Radeon 4870 "before" rebates. That's a good buy if your not brand loyal as these cards are comparable.

For the 4870 to be a option I believe it has to stay priced below the 260-216. Especially the 512Meg part which is losing steam as the higher memory parts are starting to become a consideration.

By HotFoot on 3/13/2009 12:04:12 PM , Rating: 2
Manufacturers don't set the retail price, though they can suggest it to the OEMs. It seems to me that whatever AMD sells the parts for, the OEMs shouldn't just be pricing them to compete against the nVidia alternative, they should be pricing them to compete against each other. How can company A selling the 4870 decide to artificially leave the price higher and compete against company B selling the same card if the industry isn't in collusion? If the OEMs can afford to sell the card at a lower price because the supplier has reduced their price, then if the market is functioning they will in order to compete with one another. How nVidia's competing products are performing should be irrelevant to the OEMs once AMD has set the price for the GPU.

The solution is simple
By ipay on 3/13/2009 7:30:14 PM , Rating: 2
Reduce prices on the 4870 as planned and AMD creates a new, more powerful GPU in that segment. Then, we ALL win :)

So wait ?
By Reclaimer77 on 3/11/09, Rating: -1
RE: So wait ?
By afkrotch on 3/11/09, Rating: -1
RE: So wait ?
By DigitalFreak on 3/11/2009 3:37:20 PM , Rating: 3
You fit the definition of a fanboy perfectly!

RE: So wait ?
By Reclaimer77 on 3/11/09, Rating: -1
RE: So wait ?
By Targon on 3/13/2009 8:03:39 AM , Rating: 1
The definition of a fanboi is someone who will buy the products of one company and will always jump to the defense of that company, while also bashing competitors.

Saying he will keep buying NVIDIA products as long as NVIDIA keeps making them sure sounds like someone who won't pay attention to what the competition is doing. So, "I buy NVIDIA products and only NVIDIA products", combined with pointing out problems with the competition fits the definition.

There are those who go to extremes and make stupid claims, but it is all a matter of how far you go.

RE: So wait ?
By afkrotch on 3/11/2009 4:01:43 PM , Rating: 1
I've bought ATI cards before. I build machines for others using AMD/ATI products all the time. Whatever fits there budget.

I simply have zero luck with ATI, hence why I don't buy them. Every card I've bought for my self has been an overheater. While others have no probs with them. Hell if I know what the problem is.

I stopped buying ATI when the 6800 series of cards came out. Since then, cards from both sides of the house are competitively priced to each other and provide nearly the same performance. Even now I'm seeing the exact same thing. Cards near the same price with the same performance. Give or take 10 fps for different games, between the different cards, or whatever the hell.

I seem to have better luck with Nvidia. Hence why I buy them for myself.

RE: So wait ?
By Spectator on 3/12/09, Rating: 0
RE: So wait ?
By Targon on 3/13/2009 7:59:07 AM , Rating: 2
Are you kidding? When 30 percent of the Vista BSoD problems were caused by NVIDIA drivers in 2007 and 2008, you complain about ATI/AMD drivers?

Then you have the other problems with NVIDIA drivers which force people to go back to previous versions, as if that is acceptable because people expect that they may have to do that?

Both companies have their problems when it comes to drivers, but at least AMD is releasing new drivers every month instead of making people wait month after month after month.

RE: So wait ?
By SiliconDoc on 3/14/09, Rating: -1
RE: So wait ?
By Pakman333 on 3/16/2009 6:23:02 PM , Rating: 2
"Nice try fanboi - but you're WRONG again. "

Pot, meet SiliconDoc.

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