“They’ve taken an enthusiast-class quad-core part and paired it with a mainstream motherboard,” Whitman said. “And not all motherboard manufacturers have tweaked their boards to support a 125-watt TDP.” Whitman says that AMD’s 790 chipset–not the 780–should be paired with the 9750 and 9850 processors and that a number of motherboard makers are already doing this.
“We’ve never made claims that 780G motherboards are enthusiast-class motherboards,” Whitman said.Really? The answer on this is that the USER screwed up by trying to pair one of your processors with one of your motherboards? Unless there was some direct distinction between these supposedly “high-end” $200 processors and the supposed “low-end” $180 CPUs and what was supported and where, AMD has some serious egg on the face they need to clean up.
The inability to use high-end quad-core AMD processors on some motherboards may be symptomatic of a larger challenge. AMD is finding it difficult to compete head-on with Intel quad-core offerings in the consumer segment. Hewlett-Packard and Gateway, for instance, offer desktops with only the lower-performance Phenom chips, such as the 9100e (1.8GHz) and 9600 (2.3GHz). Neither HP nor Gateway offer desktops with higher-performance 9750 (2.4GHz) or 9850 (2.5GHz) Phenoms.
Meanwhile, Intel-based systems from these companies–though usually more expensive–come with quad-core chips ranging up to a 2.83GHz Q9550.
Whitman says there’s a reason for this. First-tier PC makers “are not necessarily interested in building the fastest AMD-based quad-core systems, but are more interested in price.” He expects wider adoption of the high-end Phenom chips with system builders and game-enthusiast PC makers.