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AMD notebook chips aim high and low

The new Athlon XP-M 2800+ is the chipmaker's highest-performance notebook processor to date. Also, two low-voltage processors join the company's product lineup.

Advanced Micro Devices on Tuesday opened the throttle on its Athlon XP-M processors for notebooks.

The chipmaker launched three new models, including a new Athlon XP-M 2800+ processor for regular-size notebooks, its highest-performance notebook chip to date.

AMD also introduced two low-voltage processors, the 1900+ and the 2000+, adding to its line of mobile chips for lightweight notebooks. The low-voltage chips are more suitable for the tighter confines of small notebooks because they consume less power--allowing for a smaller battery--and produce less heat, the company has said.

"The addition of these three new mobile AMD processors helps ensure that manufacturers can deliver on-the-go productivity, crisp graphics and extended battery life to their customers," Rich Heye, general manager of AMD's Microprocessor Business Unit, said in a statement.

The company's Athlon XP-M chip family made its debut in March with a dozen chips, including the low-voltage product lines. Mobile chips sell for a premium over desktop chips, providing a revenue boost for chipmakers. The newest Athlon XP-M chips also help AMD defend against rival Intel's Pentium M, which was also launched in March.

Fujitsu PC was one of the first notebook manufacturers to adopt the new low-power AMD chips. The company will add the Athlon XP-M 1900+ chip to models in its LifeBook S2000 family.

Fujitsu said it created the LifeBook S2000, which starts at $1,099, to offer portability at a relatively low price. An S2000 model fitted with the new 1900+ chip, along with a 13.3-inch display, 256MB of RAM and a 30GB hard drive starts at $1,199, according to Fujitsu's Web site. A similar Fujitsu S6000 model with a 1.4GHz Pentium M from Intel starts at $1,549, the site shows.

Another company expected to adopt the new AMD chips is Britain's Time Computers, which plans to offer the Athlon XP-M 2800+, AMD said.

AMD's list price for the new Athlon XP-M 2800+ is $230, a $50 premium over the Athlon XP 2800+ for desktop PCs. The Athlon XP-M 2000+ lists for $134, and the 1900+ processor lists for $123. The chipmaker's list prices reflect processors purchased in 1,000-unit lots. Street prices for AMD's chips usually vary from its list prices.