The big news today (and for quite some time) isn’t found in any website article. It’s found in this forum thread
Succinctly, the thread is about someone who has an E stepping socket 939 chip (a 3800+).
What can he do with it? He can get close to 3GHz with it with air cooling and little more than default voltage. Getting to 3GHz stably itself is proving to be a bit more of a challenge, but the testing done was not push-the-envelope.
This is about the level of improvement we were expecting from the chips.
Just as importantly, the person with this chip indicated that we ought to see these kinds of chips for sale in early April.
I’m not going to say “Get ready to spend money in three weeks.” It’s just one test, and performance may not be typical, especially for lower-rated E stepping chips. There’s been some signs that AMD has been binning to some degree.
However, I will say it is time for folks who’ve been (quite understandably) drowsing a bit to wake up and start getting really interested in what’s going on again.
Some may wait a bit to make sure the latest platforms and/or video cards are 100% (especially for SLI).
Others may get sticker shock after pricing a socket 939 system, and may wait to see what a Sempron (or other socket 754) system might get them.
Nonetheless, we’re shifting from “I’ll buy this some day,” to “I’ll buy this some day soon.”
Things are going to liven up around here.