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The Price of DDR-II . . .

Digitimes reports that the initial price on DDR-II will be double that of regular DDR.

That would mean that 1Gb of RAM in a socket T Prescott system with DDR2 will cost at least $150, probably more like $200 more than a system with 1Gb of DDR.

That would essentially wipe out any price advantage a low-end Prescott would have against a Newcastle socket 939 system.

While the price is not historically unreasonable, we do not live in historically reasonable times when it comes to computer equipment prices. The price difference will be a killer for most mainstream purchasers.

It will probably guarantee that the bulk of any mainstream socket T buys will be in systems that continue to use DDR.

Power and Cases

Two other items may also end up giving potential upgraders grief.

It looks like it will be at least a good idea (if not quite a requirement) for Prescott systems to have an ATX 12V V1.3 compatible power supply. This provides two 12V connections, SATA connections, and a couple other additions.

However, perhaps as early as mid-2004, we’ll start seeing equipment adhering to the BTX standard. This will pretty much mean new cases and new power supplies (for instance, the main power connector in BTX is 24-pins; if you’ve read otherwise elsewhere, that’s outdated material). Here’s a link to the current BTX specs.

If all this makes you Intel fans want to throw up your hands and want to wait for Tejas in 2005 rather than go through all this, that’s . . . quite understandable.

Six Months Down, Twelve To Go

Just about six months ago, we wrote an article entitled “The Big Drought.”

We weren’t kidding, now were we?

Unfortunately, we’re not even halfway through it. A third is more like it (and even that may be a trifle optimistic, though a year from now, you ought to be able to at least see when you can buy something).

I know I must come across like computing’s Kurt Cobain to some at times, but I suspect this is more depressing for some to read than for me to write.

Let me tell you why this troubles me less.

To me, this is like being a baseball writer during the off-season. They’re just not much to say when they aren’t playing the game.

OK, it’s really like being a baseball writer during an off-season when it looks likes next season will be postponed or even cancelled due to a baseball strike. That’s not good news, but the answer to that is not to pretend that everything is OK.

Nor is it something to get terribly depressed about. I know baseball isn’t gone forever. Eventually, the off-season and labor disputes will be over, and players will be playing ball again.

2004 looks like a season where the real ballplayers have gone on strike and instead, we have replacement players (or scabs, take your pick) on the field instead. In this case, though, the owners haven’t lowered the ticket prices; they’ve increased them.

I’m the baseball writer telling you, “Don’t waste your money paying to watch these clowns, save it for when the real players come back,” even though most of the other baseball writers are trying to tell you how great the replacement players are.

What you end up doing really depends on how much patience you have. The more patience, the less disappointment. The less patience, the more likely you’ll end up wishing you had more once normal games resume.

I wish the picture were brighter, but I know it isn’t. However, I also know that the drought will eventually end and rain will come.

A big part of life is learning just that; that you can’t always get what you want the way you want it when you want it.

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