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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






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RE: Keep it up ATI, I mean AMD
By TA152H on 3/11/2009 4:18:09 PM , Rating: -1
So, you think a product that can't compete with its competitors previous generation is a competitive product? Good grief, maybe you should buy some GM stock, they're a VERY competitive company by those standards.

The reality is, the Phenom II is roughly the same size and transistor count as the i7, and it gets RAPED by it. It's not even close. The design is clearly superior, and greatly so.

On top of this, Intel has much better manufacturing technology, and this coupled with a vastly superior design leaves AMD pretty poor indeed. So poor, in fact, that they can't even price close to Intel's previous generation processors at the same clock speed. Instead, they have to price much lower, and compete with Intel's low end stuff.

This is not competitive. This is worse than AMD has ever been. Even in the cloning days, AMD was one generation behind Intel, but at least the generation they were making was better than Intel's previous generation (i.e. AMD 486s hit clock speeds Intel 486s never did, the 386 they made was more power efficient than the Intel 386, and higher clock speeds, the K6 was better than the Pentium, etc...). The only mitigating factor is the generations are closer in terms of timing than they were, but in terms of product, the Phenom II is only favorable when compared to AMD's hideously bad previous products. Compared to Intel processors, they can't even approach matching Intel's last generation on the desktop. On top of this, they're moving back the timing for the Bulldozer, which is clearly a product they need.

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.

"I want people to see my movies in the best formats possible. For [Paramount] to deny people who have Blu-ray sucks!" -- Movie Director Michael Bay

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