AMD has announced this week that it intends to ship its latest 8-core FX series chips for less that $200 (£124) when they go on sale, because the company just ruddy loves desktop PC users and wants to reward them with affordable, overclockable hardware.

Well, sort of. The chips will ship at the $200 price point on orders of over 1,000 units or more, so may be a little more costly for the average user - but still. A quick look at the performance potential of the FX-8 series chips makes them a real option for PC enthusiasts looking to squeeze every last drop of power out of their rig, whatever the eventual cost.

Both the FX-8350 and FX-8320 chips are based on the new Piledriver CPU cores, meaning their base clock speed is 4.2GHz. But PC enthusiasts laugh in the face of 4.2GHz. They look at 4.2GHz and say "pah!".

So as client desktop products AMD's corporate vice president Leslie Sobon notes, the new line can be clocked to up to 5GHz with off-the-shelf cooling solutions - so those wacky mad scientist-types who have advanced air cooling installed can probably get even more power out of the chip.

And PC maker Maingear, which already offers new desktop builds with the AMD FX chip, said the 8-core can be clocked to 5.0GHz for less than any other processor, meaning assembling a monster PC tower is now more affordable.

"The new chips are faster and cheaper than earlier FX-series chips based on the Bulldozer microarchitecture," said PC World's Agam Shah. "The new chips are about 15 per cent faster than predecessors."

The manufacturer must be hoping the latest FX chips will revitalise flagging trade - last week the company announced that revenue for the Computing Solutions unit that works on such chips was down 28 per cent year-on-year in the third quarter.ADNFCR-1220-ID-801475534-ADNFCR
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