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AMD Launches the Dragon Platform

AMD Releases the Dragon, Desktop Platform Technology Provides Users with Soaring Performance for Less Than $900 USD

 

- HP, Dell and Alienware plan "Dragon" platform technology-based desktop PCs -

 

- Dragon platform technology capable of delivering HD gaming and video processing performance that rivals "extreme" PC platforms priced more than twice as high1 -

 

CES, LAS VEGAS -- January 8, 2009 --Empowering consumers to get elite-level computing performance for under $900 U.S. dollars2, AMD (NYSE:AMD) today launched "Dragon" platform technology for desktop PCs featuring the new AMD Phenom™ II X4 processor. Even the most demanding users such as enthusiasts and high-end gamers desire affordable systems capable of delivering HD entertainment, graphic-intensive game play at the highest settings their monitors can handle, as well as quick and easy transfer of video entertainment to and from mobile devices. Dragon platform technology provides the power to do it all by combining AMD's highest-performing CPU, the AMD Phenom II X4 processor, with award winning ATI Radeon™ HD 4800 Series graphics and AMD 7-Series chipsets. And it's offered at an incredible value with Dragon-based systems available for up to $1,200 U.S. dollars less than competing systems that deliver comparable performance.1
Leading global PC manufacturers HP, Dell and Alienware plan to offer Dragon platform technology-based desktop systems in the first quarter of 2009, with Dell offering immediate availability in its Dell XPS desktop line. "The XPS 625 desktop powered by AMD's Dragon platform technology features new AMD Phenom II processors to enable a significant boost in speed for enhanced gaming, as well as the flexibility to enable multi-tasking and HD video capabilities free from delays, stalls and lags," said Arthur Lewis, general manager of Dell Gaming Group. "The XPS 625 gives gamers the unbelievable experience they expect at a price point that won't break the bank."

 

Reviews Celebrate "Dragon" price-performance leadership and headroom
Initial PC hardware review community assessments of Dragon platform technology and the AMD Phenom II X4 processor are notably positive and enthusiastic:

 

"As a result of its exceptional energy efficiency advances and an affordable price/performance ratio, AMD Phenom II X4 deserves our seldom-granted Recommended Buy award." - Tom's Hardware3
"The Phenom II puts AMD back in the running right in the middle of the enthusiast PC market, where price and performance converge in solid value." - Scott Wasson of The Tech Report4
"The new Phenom II X4 920 and 940 are easily the most powerful desktop processors released from AMD to date. We get the feeling these first two Phenom II X4 processors are just the tip of the iceberg." - Marco Chiappetta of HotHardware.com5

 

Massive Headroom
The heart of Dragon platform technology is the AMD Phenom II X4 processor featuring intelligent multi-core technology that automatically provides processing power where it's needed most during multitasking among demanding applications. Offering frequencies up to 3.0 GHz with significant headroom for overclocking,6 AMD Phenom II CPUs give consumers the power to use their favorite productivity, HD gaming and multimedia applications without skipping a beat.

 

"With Dragon platform technology, AMD is changing the desktop industry landscape by offering affordable performance and maximum headroom for gaming, video editing, and other media-intensive tasks," said Leslie Sobon, vice president of product marketing, AMD. "Through our Fusion platform approach, AMD is able to deliver CPUs, GPUs and chipsets that work better together to meet the industry's evolving needs today and well into the future."

 

Beyond HD
ATI Radeon HD 4800 series graphics and AMD 7-series chipsets enable Dragon platform technology to deliver a superior visual experience by giving consumers the ability to enjoy smooth video, brilliant images and immersive games. The platform offers fast DirectX® 10 graphics to improve integrated graphics processor performance, and ATI Radeon HD 4800 series graphics give consumers the ultimate gaming experience, even at the highest game settings on display resolutions beyond HD, limited only by the resolution of their monitors.

 

"AMD is known for bringing fantastic hardware innovations to market in a way that allows consumers to enjoy new experiences and take full advantage of the gaming capabilities that DirectX delivers," said Walt McGraw, director of Windows Gaming for Microsoft. "The new Dragon platform technology is another great example of AMD driving the kind of platform technology robustness and scalability that today's PC users demand."

 

Energy Efficiency
Dragon platform technology enables manufacturers to design and develop PCs that deliver performance when you need it while saving power when you don't. AMD Phenom II CPUs feature AMD Cool'n'Quiet™ 3.0 which automatically provides dramatic power management improvements with minimal performance impact.7 Its efficient multi-core design offers low processor temperatures and quiet fans, even when computing in HD.

 

Free Software Supercharging
Consumers can take performance to the next level with free software from AMD. Download all now at: http://game.amd.com/us-en/drivers_catalyst.aspx.

 

AMD Fusion for Gaming8 -- Easy-to-use program that, with a single click, automatically suspends resource consuming background tasks to focus more system performance on gaming.
AMD OverDrive™9 -- Highly-customizable utility with greater functionality that can help power-users take system performance even further, with advanced over-clocking controls that can be turned on and off with a single click.
ATI Catalyst™ with ATI Stream technology -- Version 8.12 and later automatically merges the power of the CPU and GPU to enable a growing number of applications, such as ArcSoft TotalMedia™ Theater and CyberLink PowerDirector 7, to run dramatically faster than when using the CPU alone.
ATI Video Converter -- With the latest Catalyst Driver 8.12, the new ATI Video Converter utilizes the graphics processor and ATI Stream technology to quickly and easily convert your videos to play on portable entertainment devices much faster than converting video using a microprocessor alone.
AMD Fusion Media Explorer Beta -- Simplifies the entertainment experiencing by enabling a simple but powerful way for consumers to interact with their music, photos, movies, TV and social media on their PC. This utility offers one-button postings of photos to Facebook™ accounts as well as automatic related media searches when the system is online, plus much more.
Elite Performance for Less Money
End users can experience high-end performance with Dragon platform technology from AMD, all while spending approximately $1,200 U.S. dollars less than competitive offerings.10 Dragon platform technology consisting of the new AMD Phenom II X4 processor, ATI Radeon™ HD 4870 1GB graphics card, the AMD 790GX motherboard and 4 GB of DDR2-1066 memory can be purchased for approximately $900 USD. By comparison, a competitive platform consisting of an Intel Core i7 3.2 GHz, x58 motherboard, 3 GB of DDR3-1333 memory and the same GPU can be purchased for just over $2100.11 Both platforms run the most demanding PC games like Crysis™ at elite performance levels, and deliver comparable Crysis benchmark frame rates at an average of 38 frames per second.12

 

Availability and Phenom II Processor Pricing
Consumers can expect to see systems featuring Dragon platform technology from leading system builders and OEMs in the first quarter of 2009. In addition to Dragon platform technology-based offerings from AMD's OEM partners, PC enthusiasts who enjoy building their own systems can search "Dragon" on popular e-tail sites such as newegg.com and tigerdirect.com to find special promotions on this new desktop PC platform.

 

In addition to Dragon platform technology, individual AMD Phenom II X4 processors will be available from AMD channel e-tailers at launch:

 

AMD Phenom II X4 940 Black Edition processor - (3.0GHz) - $275 MSRP
AMD Phenom II X4 920 processor - (2.8GHz) - $235 MSRP
For additional processor pricing details, please visit http://www.amd.com/pricing.

 

About AMD
Advanced Micro Devices (NYSE: AMD) is an innovative technology company dedicated to collaborating with customers and partners to ignite the next generation of computing and graphics solutions at work, home and play. For more information, visit http://www.amd.com.

 

©2009, Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. AMD, the AMD Arrow logo, ATI, the ATI logo, AMD Cool'n'Quiet, AMD OverDrive, AMD Phenom, Catalyst, Radeon, and combinations thereof, are trademarks of Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. Other names are for informational purposes only and may be trademarks of their respective owners.

 

1 Intel System: Intel x58 motherboard BOXDX58SO, Intel i7 Extreme Edition 965, 3x 1GB sticks of Corsair DDR3, 1GB Sapphire ATI Radeon HD 4870, 300GB Western Digital VelociRaptor = Total: $2130 AMD System: GIGABYTE GA-MA790GP-DS4H motherboard, AMD Phenom II X4 940 Black Edition processor, 4x 1GB Corsair Dominator DDR2 1066, 1GB Sapphire ATI Radeon HD 4870, 300GB Western Digital VelociRaptor = Total: $895. According to newegg.com, December 30th, 2008 (projected pricing for AMD Phenom II X4 processors)

 

2 AMD System: GIGABYTE GA-MA790GP-DS4H motherboard, AMD Phenom II X4 940 Black Edition processor, 4x 1GB Corsair Dominator DDR2 1066, 1GB Sapphire ATI Radeon HD 4870, 300GB Western Digital VelociRaptor = Total: $895. According to newegg.com, December 30th, 2008 (projected pricing for AMD Phenom II X4 processors)

 

3 Full product review is available here: http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/phenom-ii-940,2114.html/
4 Full product review is available here: http://techreport.com/articles.x/16147
5 Full product review is available here: http://hothardware.com/Articles/Enter-The-Dragon-AMD-Phenom-II-X4-940/

 

6 AMD warranty does not cover damage done by overclocking, even when overclocking is enabled using AMD OverDrive™ software.

 

7 The 45nm AMD Phenom™ II X4 940 125W processors with AMD Cool'n'Quiet™ 3.0 consumes up to 50% less power at idle when compared with the 65nm AMD Phenom™ X4 9950 125W with AMD Cool'n'Quiet™ 2.0. Testing was conducted on AMD internal reference platforms (configuration below)

 

System Configuration

 

SYSTEM: AMD internal reference motherboard(Shiner)
CHIPSET: RS780 / SB700 Chipset
BIOS: MS9A04-4
CPU: 45nm AMD Phenom™ II processors rev. C2G 3.0; (DDR2, Power Features)
MEMORY: DDR2-800 2X1024MB
Video driver: ATI Catalyst™ 8.9
O/S: Windows Vista SP-1
Other: C1E Enabled, L3PwrSavEn Enabled;

 

8 This utility may disable security/antivirus software, or adversely affect your system. Review accompanying documentation carefully before installing.
9 AMD warranty does not cover damage done by overclocking, even when overclocking is enabled using AMD OverDrive™ software.
10 Intel System: Intel x58 motherboard BOXDX58SO, Intel i7 Extreme Edition 965, 3x 1GB sticks of Corsair DDR3, 1GB Sapphire ATI Radeon HD 4870, 300GB Western Digital VelociRaptor = Total: $2130 AMD System: GIGABYTE GA-MA790GP-DS4H motherboard, AMD Phenom II X4 940 Black Edition processor, 4x 1GB Corsair Dominator DDR2 1066, 1GB Sapphire ATI Radeon HD 4870, 300GB Western Digital VelociRaptor = Total: $895. According to newegg.com, December 30th, 2008 (projected pricing for AMD Phenom II X4 processors)

 

11 These prices are according to newegg.com from December 30th, 2008.
12 Crysis benchmark run at 1680x1050 resolution with all settings set to high.

 

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