First, from Anandtech:
“Speaking of AMD, we [hoped] that Computex 2007 would have been the launch event for Barcelona and Agena. Unfortunately, this will not occur and the best we can hope for at this time is a Barcelona release in the latter part of Q3 at best and Agena following up in late Q4 or possibly sliding to Q1 2008 based on recently received information. . . .”
“In fact, although we have seen DVT level chips running up to 2.3GHz (OC.com’s emphasis), we understand there might be another silicon spin (maybe more) of Barcelona that is due later this month. If this occurs, then current rumors swirling around the trade show floor about the mass availablity of product not occuring until the fourth quarter might just be true. At this time the motherboard/chipset companies are in the process of locking down their designs and optimization of the BIOS for performance is just starting. Our early first looks at application benchmarks show a great deal [of] promise for this processor series but nothing overwhelming or exciting at this point in the game. . . . Let’s just hope the Barcelona/Agena series performance comes up to speed quickly (along with supply) or AMD is going to be in real trouble heading into the critical Q3/Q4 buying season.”
The clincher comes from Cray (thanks to John for pointing this out to me):
Global supercomputer leader Cray Inc. (NASDAQ: CRAY) today announced that due to recent information with respect to the timing of volume parts availability, the company now believes that 2007 revenue associated with quad-core Cray XT4(TM) systems will likely be less than previously anticipated. Cray continues to anticipate deliveries of quad-core Cray XT4 systems and upgrades to begin during the fourth quarter of 2007; however, the timing is such that most or all of the planned acceptances, and associated revenue recognition, will likely be deferred until early 2008.
Cray’s last outlook, dated May 3, 2007, noted that anticipated revenues from quad-core Cray XT4 systems and upgrades were an important factor within the company’s overall revenue plan for the year, and a key risk. While there continues to be a wide range of potential outcomes, total revenue for 2007 is now likely to be at or below $200 million, and consequently, there is an increased probability that the company will not achieve profitability for the year.
“We are disappointed with the implications of this change in timing to our Cray XT4 system rollout schedule and the impact on our 2007 outlook,” stated president and CEO Peter Ungaro. “Two of our most important goals have been to grow and achieve profitability, both of which are now in jeopardy for 2007. We are actively working to achieve the best results possible for 2007 and continue to work to establish the foundation for longer-term sustained profitability and growth.”
The quad-cores Cray is referring to are Barcelonas.
You see, Cray can’t BS this. They told their shareholders that they counted on Barcelona-based systems and upgrades for a big financial boost, and now they’re pretty sure it’s not going to happen, they have to say so or get into deep trouble with folks like the SEC.
Cray’s stock price dropped 15% right after the announcement, so you know Cray wouldn’t have said it if they weren’t pretty sure about it.
Yes, you have AMD statements that they’re not having problems making Barcelonas in their own fabs, but that’s not the issue. The issue is whether or not AMD has Barcelonas ready to be sold, or even shown.
And the answer is obviously no.
Understand one thing from all this. The AMD people don’t know when they’re going to be ready; they can only hope the next spin will do it. If they have items that function up to 2.3GHz now, they’re obviously not too far away from getting something out the door sometime late this year.
But if that something isn’t terribly good, if that something you can’t charge a lot for, all hell is going to break loose.