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Hardware mailbag for Sunday

I wrote up some stuff, forgot to upload it, and lost it. I hate when that happens. So I’ll hit the mailbag for this late Sunday post.
From: Robert Bruce Thompson

Good post on AMD/Intel. At this point, the only thing saving Intel is the fact that AMD doesn’t have enough fab to keep up with demand.



I know AMD and IBM have an agreement dating back to their K6 woes, and I really don’t know why AMD doesn’t have IBM manufacture Athlons and/or Durons to supplement their own capacity. There are issues with someone else making your chips like higher ramp-up time and possibly lower yields, and of course lower profits but I have to think the greater market share they’d gain until they can get another fab built would have to make it worthwhile.

I really wonder if the thing standing in the way of that isn’t technical, but rather Jerry Sanders’ “real men have fabs” attitude.

From: Robert Bruce Thompson

Well, perhaps. But his attitude is correct. Consider CPUs. Intel (bunch of fabs) = dominant; AMD (a couple fabs) = far second; everyone else (no fabs) = non-players. Same thing in chipsets. Intel (bunch of fabs) = dominant; VIA (a fab) = far second; SiS, ALi, etc. (no fabs) = non-players. But I agree that AMD should sub out CPUs to IBM, who can make chips with the best of ’em.


But I wonder if that attitude towards fabs is what’s keeping Sanders and AMD from subcontracting; it seems almost as if using someone else would appear as an admission of weakness and he’s not willing to do it. That’s an Intel-like mistake. When opportunity comes, you have to seize it regardless of how it looks short-term.

From: J.H. Ricketson

Subject: More bargains

Dave –

Another link for surplus/overstock bargains:

O have placed one order with them. Completely satisfied, start to finish. Outpost couldn’t have done better. Also, they are in Nevada, which saves me, a Californican, the 8.5% local shopping penalty. They have a good selection of stuff at very good prices.






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