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  • The Intel-AMD battle in the performance market is always interesting to follow, as the new Athlon and Pentium 4 releases continue to raise the processor bar higher and higher. This is great for those with thick wallets or a hankering to fiddle with upgrading their PC, but let's not forget the value segment and the pressure AMD is continuing to exert with their popular Duron CPU.

    The latest entry from AMD is the Duron 950 MHz, which followed right on the heels of the Athlon 1.4 GHz release. While certainly not as powerful as the flagship Athlon, the Duron is a surprisingly fast processor, especially for one with such a low price. This certainly can't bode well for Intel, which relies on its aging Celeron, and some mid-range Pentium III processors, to hold back the Duron value challenge.

    The price-performance of the Duron is astounding, and is just about the best overall CPU value of any of the Intel or AMD products. If you combine it high price-performance with the Intel's apparent orphaning of it Celeron and Pentium III lines, and you can see the Athlon 950 has simply AMD extended their influence even more in the area of entry-level systems. After all, with the Celeron languishing at a top-end of 800 MHz there doesn't seem to really be overriding need for AMD to keep releasing faster and faster Durons.

    Thankfully for us, AMD continues to do so, and further solidifies the Duron as the processor of choice in the value market. It wasn't that long ago that "value" and "poor performance" were interchangeable terms, but the AMD Duron has proven this old adage quite wrong.

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