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AMD ratchets budget notebooks to 1GHz

The chipmaker unveils a 1GHz mobile Duron processor, and Compaq taps the chip for a Presario 700 laptop PC priced as low as $899.

Advanced Micro Devices has broken the 1GHz mark for low-priced notebooks.

The Sunnyvale, Calif., chipmaker on Monday announced a new 1GHz mobile Duron chip for notebook PCs. The mobile Duron is similar to the company's mobile Athlon 4 chip, but it's manufactured at lower clock speeds and includes a smaller level 2 cache. Its advantage is a lower price.

Competitor Intel's top budget mobile chip, the 933MHz mobile Celeron, was introduced Oct 1.

The new Duron chip helps notebook manufacturers offer a 1GHz notebook for less than $900.

The chip will be available in Compaq Computer's Presario 700 notebook, starting Monday. The notebook, when configured with the 1GHz chip with a 13.3-inch display, starts at $899. That price is $50 less than the price of a notebook with a 1GHz mobile Athlon 4 but otherwise the same configuration. And it's some $300 less than a model with a 1.2GHz Athlon 4.

The new Presario is available directly from Compaq as well as via the Home Shopping Network. It will hit retail outlets early next year, according to AMD.

The new mobile chip lists for $160, according to AMD. It follows the introduction of a 1.2GHz mobile Athlon 4 and 950MHz mobile Duron in early November.