Just before the release of Intel’s Core Duo desktop chips, AMD slashed its prices on its dual core cpus to stay competitive. I had been eyeing Intel’s new chips, but couldn’t justify the required full upgrade. I picked up an AMD 64 X2 4200 (dual 2.2ghz) to add to my system for under $200. With Cool N’Quiet enabled, I should use slightly less energy than I did before, with a little more horsepower under the hood.

I really wanted to use the X2 3800 SFF/EE chip, as it burns at a leisurely rate of 35w. Unfortunately, AMD only made those available for the new AM2 socket. Perhaps it was platform technology limited, but it would have been nice to see lower power CPUs available as an upgrade option for the thousands of existing AMD64 platforms.

I’m excited about the possibilities of the ultra low power chips on the horizon. Amazing things have already been done with Intel’s mobile chips, and VIA is doing a decent job on their processor embedded motherboards. I can’t wait to see what they can do with the next generation. Under two pounds, and 20 hours of battery life? Solar charging on the lid? Or maybe we can do away with plugs all together, and just pull strings to charge the battery.

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