Aggressive Intel Quad-core Price Cuts Before “Barcelona”

AMD is expected to ship its native quad-core desktop CPUs, now dubbed K10, in Q3 2007.  Intel guidance already states the company will accelerate the ongoing price war through Q3 2007 — a price war that has already taken its toll on AMD and Intel profits. 

The AMD-Intel price war peaked just after Intel launched its Core 2 Duo architecture; AMD aggressively cut prices on its Athlon 64 products the day after the Intel Core 2 Duo desktop launch. Intel will return the favor just in time for AMD’s next-generation processors.

Intel Core 2 Quad
Frequency L2 Cache
FSB Q3’07
QX6800 2.93 GHz 8MB 1066 MHz
Q6700 2.66 GHz 8MB 1066 MHz
Q6600 2.40 GHz 8MB 1066 MHz

Intel has scrapped plans for the quad-core 2.13 GHz Core 2 Quad Q6400, but instead added plans for a quad-core 2.66 GHz Q6700.  However, Intel’s guidance will cut the price of the Q6600 and the Q6700 dramatically — Intel will cut the price of the Q6600 to a more discounted price than the Q6400 was ever expected to launch at.

The Q6600, launched last month, sells in quantities of 1000 for $851.  By mid-April Intel guidance suggests this processor will already price down to $530.  The next price cuts, labeled “Q3 2007” will coincide with any launch events for the AMD quad-core products.

In addition, Intel has added a 2.93 GHz quad-core Extreme processor, scheduled for a $999 launch.  The 2.66 GHz quad-core Extreme processor, QX6700, will phase out before Q3 2007, as it is effectively replaced by the Q6700 processor.