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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

240

800

216

800

128

Texture Address / Filtering

80 / 80

40

72/72

40

64 / 64

ROPs

32

16

28

16

16

Core Clock

602MHz

750MHz

576MHz

625MHz

738MHz

Memory Clock

1107MHz

900MHz GDDR5 (3600MHz eff)

999MHz

993MHz GDDR3 (1986MHz eff)

1100MHz

Memory Bus Width

512-bit

256-bit

448-bit

256-bit

256-bit

Frame Buffer

1GB

512MB

896MB

512MB

512MB

Transistor Count

1.4B

956M

1.4B

956M

754M

Price Point

$349

$149

$199

$129

$129



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RE: Huh?
By glitchc on 3/18/2009 10:55:15 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
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).

quote:
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.


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