AMD Duron 1.2GHz Review
By Vince Freeman :
December 13, 2001
The Athlon XP may be the fastest desktop CPU available and anticipation may be high for the Pentium 4 Northwood, but sometimes it's easy to forget that the value CPU market has undergone significant changes as well. AMD was the first to offer a full 1 GHz of power in a value-oriented CPU, which was followed by Intel and their Celeron 1 GHz. Since then, both companies have traded blows, with Intel recently taking the core speed advantage with their Tualatin-based Celeron 1.2 GHz.
It is obvious that AMD needed to bring their own 1.2 GHz value CPU to the table and that's exactly what they did with the Duron 1.2 GHz. Long forgotten are the usual "50 MHz increments" of the previous Duron line and AMD is now pushing fast with a full 100 MHz increase with each new Duron release. This follows Intel's lead and serves notice to system buyers and OEM dealers to boot. Although AMD was likely taken to the 1.2 GHz altar by the quick Celeron release, this still spells good news for value system buys and potential system upgrades as well.
It is still quite amazing that we are referring to 1.2 GHz processors as value-oriented or entry-level, since both the Celeron and Duron 1.2 GHz are powerful CPUs in their own rights. Even with the Pentium 4 and Athlon XP moving higher on the speed chart, this rapid increase to Celeron and Duron core speeds has served to blur the lines a bit between what defines performance and entry-level hardware. We'll take a close look at exactly how fast the new Duron 1.2 GHz really is, as well examining exactly how it may differ from previous releases.