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How did AMD let itself fall so far behind?

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January 18, 2007 5:17:12 PM

Since the time AMD's first Athlon hit the shelves, they were able to win - and keep - the performance crown over arch-enemy Intel. AMD's products were (for the most part) faster, more efficient, less power-hungry, and yet cheaper than Intel's. They won market share accordingly.

But wait: didn't they know Intel would strike back? Didn't they know Intel would pour its massive R&D resources into a new product? Weren't we all sitting here for months and months reading about Intel's fabulous new C2D architecture?

And what did AMD have to counter Intel? Nothing. What wonderful new CPU has AMD been working on over these past 4 years? Zippo. What world-beating product does AMD have up its sleeve? Bupkiss. Suddenly AMD is 1-2 years behind Intel, and it's only going to get worse.

How could this be? They had the superior CPU. They had the advantage. How could they sit there and do nothing knowing that Intel was feverishly working to bury them?

It must be like a nightmare happening in slow motion for AMD, but it's one they brought upon themselves. I'm not an AMD fanboy, but I am a fan of competition. Looks like that will be lacking for the foreseeable future. Kudos to Intel for innovating so aggresively. It's completely beyond me how AMD could not have seen this coming. This topic may (or may not) have played itself to death already in this forum, but I'll post it anyway.

More about : amd fall

January 18, 2007 5:26:27 PM

Quote:
Since the time AMD's first Athlon hit the shelves, they were able to win - and keep - the performance crown over arch-enemy Intel. AMD's products were (for the most part) faster, more efficient, less power-hungry, and yet cheaper than Intel's. They won market share accordingly.

But wait: didn't they know Intel would strike back? Didn't they know Intel would pour its massive R&D resources into a new product? Weren't we all sitting here for months and months reading about Intel's fabulous new C2D architecture?

And what did AMD have to counter Intel? Nothing. What wonderful new CPU has AMD been working on over these past 4 years? Zippo. What world-beating product does AMD have up its sleeve? Bupkiss. Suddenly AMD is 1-2 years behind Intel, and it's only going to get worse.

How could this be? They had the superior CPU. They had the advantage. How could they sit there and do nothing knowing that Intel was feverishly working to bury them?

It must be like a nightmare happening in slow motion for AMD, but it's one they brought upon themselves. I'm not an AMD fanboy, but I am a fan of competition. Looks like that will be lacking for the foreseeable future. Kudos to Intel for innovating so aggresively. It's completely beyond me how AMD could not have seen this coming. This topic may (or may not) have played itself to death already in this forum, but I'll post it anyway.

Hehe...bupkiss. :tongue:

On a serious note, AMD does have a competitor to Core 2 in the works, and it's called K8L. No one's seen it or anything, but hey, apparently it's going to be good. The keyword here is apparently... but let's keep our fingers crossed. An Intel-only market would be a nightmare.
January 18, 2007 5:44:52 PM

Quote:
Since the time AMD's first Athlon hit the shelves, they were able to win - and keep - the performance crown over arch-enemy Intel. AMD's products were (for the most part) faster, more efficient, less power-hungry, and yet cheaper than Intel's. They won market share accordingly.

But wait: didn't they know Intel would strike back? Didn't they know Intel would pour its massive R&D resources into a new product? Weren't we all sitting here for months and months reading about Intel's fabulous new C2D architecture?

And what did AMD have to counter Intel? Nothing. What wonderful new CPU has AMD been working on over these past 4 years? Zippo. What world-beating product does AMD have up its sleeve? Bupkiss. Suddenly AMD is 1-2 years behind Intel, and it's only going to get worse.

How could this be? They had the superior CPU. They had the advantage. How could they sit there and do nothing knowing that Intel was feverishly working to bury them?

It must be like a nightmare happening in slow motion for AMD, but it's one they brought upon themselves. I'm not an AMD fanboy, but I am a fan of competition. Looks like that will be lacking for the foreseeable future. Kudos to Intel for innovating so aggresively. It's completely beyond me how AMD could not have seen this coming. This topic may (or may not) have played itself to death already in this forum, but I'll post it anyway.



Arch-enemy? These are companies not governments or superhoeroes and villains.

Just like nVidia leap frog each other every 6 months CPUs will follow the same rule. Do you think it's easy or cheap to create a new architecture?
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January 18, 2007 5:49:51 PM

Quote:
Do you think it's easy or cheap to create a new architecture?


No of course not, but AMD had several years to accomplish this and (more importantly) they had the advantage over Intel, so why didn't they do it? They could have raked in their $$$ selling ever-tweaked Athlons while working on something new from the ground up. Perhaps their engineers are unionized (<= lame attempt at joke)
January 18, 2007 5:50:27 PM

Quote:
Arch-enemy? These are companies not governments or superhoeroes and villains.


I think arch-enemy would be a fair description. Intel, AMD. Coke, Pepsi. Inspector Gadget, Dr. Claw.
January 18, 2007 6:05:50 PM

Yeah, David should have polished that stone before he hit Goliath.
January 18, 2007 6:25:17 PM

Quote:
Arch-enemy? These are companies not governments or superhoeroes and villains.


Jerry Sanders begs to differ. No one hates intel more than him. And despite Hector now being in charge, Sanders still plays a big role over there.

Quote:
Just like nVidia leap frog each other every 6 months CPUs will follow the same rule. Do you think it's easy or cheap to create a new architecture?


The only problem with that statement is AMD has been (essentially) using the same core since June 2005... over 18 months now. The only updates have been a new socket, ddr-2 support, and 65nm. None of which have significantly improved performance. I'm worried the Athlon line is going to turn into another "Pentium 4" line.

Still... to be fair, it took intel just as long to make core 2 as it's taking AMD to make K8L. When K8L arrives, I believe it'll be awesome. However, AMD's going to be in a little trouble fiscally until then. We've already seen what Core 2 did to Q4 for AMD...
January 18, 2007 6:28:11 PM

I think, they just happen to get complacent with the K8 architecture. Just like Intel did with the Netburts, and it came back to bite them in the butt. It is the same situation almost.
January 18, 2007 6:38:25 PM

Intel has had the lead for a few months, oppose to AMD who had the lead for a few years. It seems like everyone is ready to put the nail in the coffin of AMD
January 18, 2007 6:46:06 PM

Back in the day intel used the megahurtz strategy to put the kybosh on a surging amd more than once.

Now, its large L2's to increase performance and Intel flexing manufacturing capacity muscle. Sure the new core of the new cpu from intel is better than the previous pentium but its the increased L2 that gives it the gas to pass amd.

Its a smart strategy move by Intel. Fabs take longer to build than processors do to tweak (generally but not always mind you).

AMD can't just pop up the L2 or add a bunch of L3 to compensate or they'd lose to much manufacturing capacity and lose to much market share(what they are really after in the long run).

In fact amd last year made a strategic desicion to NOT follow intel by transitioning from 2mg to 1mg L2(512k per core) on their main desktop line. This allowed them a smaller die otherwise and thus more manufacturing capacity. Side note: the extra space, % wise, on the die the 2mg L2 versions costs amd seems very excessive compared to intel. Hope they're addressing that one.

Extra tweaking time and adding L3 to the next gen are signs, to me at least, that they are having to redouble their efforts due to the fact that even the 2mg L2 version of the core2 is a beating them...not across the board but enough to put a halt (& possible reversal) to their market share gains going forward.

It a tough outlook but not as tough as some think. In a bit of irony, one of the old Intel fan boy arguements against amd, when amd chips ruled, is now a reality keeping AMD orders flowing when most suspected they'd be half dead: There is no killer app on intels side right now. There is no game or process or whatever, for mainstreet desktops mind you, that amd chips can't do well ... ie would really push the avg joe non-techie to 'must have' Intel chips.
January 18, 2007 6:52:59 PM

Quote:
Back in the day intel used the megahurtz strategy to put the kybosh on a surging amd more than once.

Now, its large L2's to increase performance and Intel flexing manufacturing capacity muscle. Sure the new core of the new cpu from intel is better than the previous pentium but its the increased L2 that gives it the gas to pass amd.

Its a smart strategy move by Intel. Fabs take longer to build than processors do to tweak (generally but not always mind you).

AMD can't just pop up the L2 or add a bunch of L3 to compensate or they'd lose to much manufacturing capacity and lose to much market share(what they are really after in the long run).

In fact amd last year made a strategic desicion to NOT follow intel by transitioning from 2mg to 1mg L2(512k per core) on their main desktop line. This allowed them a smaller die otherwise and thus more manufacturing capacity. Side note: the extra space, % wise, on the die the 2mg L2 versions costs amd seems very excessive compared to intel. Hope they're addressing that one.

Extra tweaking time and adding L3 to the next gen are signs, to me at least, that they are having to redouble their efforts due to the fact that even the 2mg L2 version of the core2 is a beating them...not across the board but enough to put a halt (& possible reversal) to their market share gains going forward.

It a tough outlook but not as tough as some think. In a bit of irony, one of the old Intel fan boy arguements against amd, when amd chips ruled, is now a reality keeping AMD orders flowing when most suspected they'd be half dead: There is no killer app on intels side right now. There is no game or process or whatever, for mainstreet desktops mind you, that amd chips can't do well ... ie would really push the avg joe non-techie to 'must have' Intel chips.


Actually AMD is going to throw a ton of L3 cache on their processors. It's going to kill their manufacturing capacity, but apparently it's what they need to do for Barcelona to work well.
January 18, 2007 6:54:48 PM

"How could this be? They had the superior CPU. They had the advantage. How could they sit there and do nothing knowing that Intel was feverishly working to bury them?"


Its easy, when you are at the top, you focus on making your current product a little better and a little cheaper... not changing a good thing. It is hard to see competition beeting you when you feel you can't be beeten.

I don't know all that much about CPU architecture, but I do know business management strategy.

Let me ask you, did you think that the Core 2 Duo's would dominate the market as they are right now back when they first announced that they were working on it? I bet AMD thought it was going to be another power hungry overheating whore like the rest of the line up. Intel has been working on this a long time, it will take AMD a little time to pull up their granny panties and respond.

I could be way off base as I have no idea what kind of resources and man-power goes into producing a processor... but thats my 2 cents.
January 18, 2007 6:58:44 PM

Quote:
Arch-enemy? These are companies not governments or superhoeroes and villains.


I think arch-enemy would be a fair description. Intel, AMD. Coke, Pepsi. Inspector Gadget, Dr. Claw.

I disagree. If more people put a posiive spin on the COMPETITION, maybe there wouldn't be flame wars here.

I have never heard of Coke called Pepsi's "Arch-Enemy." These are just CPU companies not the voice of morality or justice.
January 18, 2007 7:05:32 PM

Even though AMD is gonna release K8L 'soon' *snigger* intel has penryn coming.

Some people even think that penryn will be available before K8L.

How embarassing it would be for AMD if intel were manufacturing and making available 45nm processors before they got K8L ready...
January 18, 2007 7:19:30 PM

I, for one, believe Intel will come out with 45nm before AMD brings out something new. And it's going to be funny!
January 18, 2007 7:22:26 PM

Quote:
Since the time AMD's first Athlon hit the shelves, they were able to win - and keep - the performance crown over arch-enemy Intel. AMD's products were (for the most part) faster, more efficient, less power-hungry, and yet cheaper than Intel's. They won market share accordingly.

But wait: didn't they know Intel would strike back? Didn't they know Intel would pour its massive R&D resources into a new product? Weren't we all sitting here for months and months reading about Intel's fabulous new C2D architecture?

And what did AMD have to counter Intel? Nothing. What wonderful new CPU has AMD been working on over these past 4 years? Zippo. What world-beating product does AMD have up its sleeve? Bupkiss. Suddenly AMD is 1-2 years behind Intel, and it's only going to get worse.

How could this be? They had the superior CPU. They had the advantage. How could they sit there and do nothing knowing that Intel was feverishly working to bury them?

It must be like a nightmare happening in slow motion for AMD, but it's one they brought upon themselves. I'm not an AMD fanboy, but I am a fan of competition. Looks like that will be lacking for the foreseeable future. Kudos to Intel for innovating so aggresively. It's completely beyond me how AMD could not have seen this coming. This topic may (or may not) have played itself to death already in this forum, but I'll post it anyway.

Dude, this is just BS. Why did Intel take years to beat AMD? They were the kings and AMD came in and kicked their arses for years on end.

Well, the answer is: you can't just pull remarkably fast/cheap CPUs out of your a$$. It's not like AMD could have seen Intel coming up with the Core architecture and said "oops, guess we have to double our performance next month to really smash Intel". These things take time, and it's only natural for Intel to take the performance crown back from time to time... they will probably end up trading blows like nVidia and ATI. Large organizations aren't generally known for their agility.

Anyway, try to be mature about things. :D 
January 18, 2007 7:26:45 PM

Quote:
Arch-enemy? These are companies not governments or superhoeroes and villains.


I think arch-enemy would be a fair description. Intel, AMD. Coke, Pepsi. Inspector Gadget, Dr. Claw.

I disagree. If more people put a posiive spin on the COMPETITION, maybe there wouldn't be flame wars here.

I have never heard of Coke called Pepsi's "Arch-Enemy." These are just CPU companies not the voice of morality or justice.
For the first time ever, I do kind of agree with you here Baron. I think people get too emotional over these corporations. But, if you've ever worked for an organization in direct competition with another organization, you'll know that the corporate culture is what breeds this kind of "super hero vs arch enemy" point of view. I used to work in IT for a home improvement store, and when you worked there you pretty much say "home depot is the devil". So, I can see where these people are coming from at least. :D 
January 18, 2007 7:30:11 PM

I think you guys need to think about this logically. If your company only had a market cap of 9.83 billion and you were going up against a company with 119.83 billion in market cap, it is inevitable that you are going to loose somewhere.

AMD obviously knew that they were going to be overtaken. They probably took their profits and reinvested it into those new fabs that are announced so they can make more processors. Even if you had the best product out there, if you are constrained by manufacturing capability, then it's all a moot point.

I'm sure their plan was to increase market share as far as they could and try to hold on. Of course they'll lose some market share, but out of all this, they will have new FABs ready in the future when they release a competitive architect.
January 18, 2007 7:36:32 PM

Quote:
I think you guys need to think about this logically. If your company only had a market cap of 9.83 billion and you were going up against a company with 119.83 billion in market cap, it is inevitable that you are going to loose somewhere.

AMD obviously knew that they were going to be overtaken. They probably took their profits and reinvested it into those new fabs that are announced so they can make more processors. Even if you had the best product out there, if you are constrained by manufacturing capability, then it's all a moot point.

I'm sure their plan was to increase market share as far as they could and try to hold on. Of course they'll lose some market share, but out of all this, they will have new FABs ready in the future when they release a competitive architect.


Absolutely. While their CPUs haven't been tops for a few months, AMD has been growing tremendously as a company regardless. I love when people say AMD is on its last leg, like they haven't been in far worse spots before.
January 18, 2007 7:57:07 PM

However they really are falling behind.
Their roadmaps not showing things to be too good atm whereas intel have Penryn this year, Nehalem within the next 2 years then Gesher 2 years after that.
And Gesher is supposed to be an integrated CPU/GPU a la AMD Fusion.

*Woop 100h post*
January 18, 2007 8:03:10 PM

Quote:
Dude, this is just BS. Why did Intel take years to beat AMD? They were the kings and AMD came in and kicked their arses for years on end.

Well, the answer is: you can't just pull remarkably fast/cheap CPUs out of your a$$. It's not like AMD could have seen Intel coming up with the Core architecture and said "oops, guess we have to double our performance next month to really smash Intel". These things take time, and it's only natural for Intel to take the performance crown back from time to time... they will probably end up trading blows like nVidia and ATI. Large organizations aren't generally known for their agility.

Anyway, try to be mature about things. :D 
It certainly seemed like that's what Intel did with Conroe at the spring IDF. That's why so many didn't believe it, or thought the benchmarks were fixed, etc.
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a b À AMD
January 18, 2007 8:03:33 PM

I swear to god I'm getting sick and tired of hearing this crap. AMD has NOT been sitting on their butts just letting the money roll in. They have NOT been rolling around naked in a bed of money laughing their heads off.

Quote:
And what did AMD have to counter Intel? Nothing. What wonderful new CPU has AMD been working on over these past 4 years?


THEY'VE BEEN MAKING K7s AND K8s!

For the last four years they have been making the athlons. They've shrunk from 180nm, to 130nm, down to 90nm, and are currently working on 65nm. They went from slot A, to Sockets 462/A, 754, 939/940, to AM2. They have added IMC, changed L2 cache sizes, added instructions (SSE2, SSE3, etc) and have been making many improvements to their cores. Why do you Vern still like to bitch about how little they've done??? (ohhh, "not" vern... sorry.)

I'm sure they saw C2D coming like the rest of us. I'm sure they are working on new CPUs. Give them a chance to create something new. As others have pointed out, Intel ran with NB a lot longer then they should have, lets give AMD awhile to see what they can come up with.

P.S. Lets not forget that AMD is in Dell machines now, have bought ATI, developed Hypertransports, etc. These are hardly the actions of a company sitting around doing nothing. They have existed and competed with Intel since the days of the 286, I doubt they are going away any time soon.
January 18, 2007 8:05:38 PM

Quote:
However they really are falling behind.
Their roadmaps not showing things to be too good atm whereas intel have Penryn this year, Nehalem within the next 2 years then Gesher 2 years after that.
And Gesher is supposed to be an integrated CPU/GPU a la AMD Fusion.

*Woop 100h post*



Nice of you to discount their upcoming architecture and platform shifts without seeing a single benchmark. Very narrow sighted, sir. Penryn is just a process shrink with an extra goody or two tossed in. While I expect it to allow for some very good clockspeed scaling and further energy efficiency, I don't expect miracles. Don't expect Core 2 all over again.
January 18, 2007 8:15:17 PM

And for all you pessimistics out there, who wants another Intel monopoly? :evil: 
January 18, 2007 8:17:26 PM

Quote:
And for all you pessimistics out there, who wants another Intel monopoly? :evil: 
Not wanting an Intel monopoly isn't going to change AMD's troubles.
January 18, 2007 8:18:08 PM

Quote:
AMD has NOT been sitting on their butts just letting the money roll in. They have NOT been rolling around naked in a bed of money laughing their heads off.

Although if they HAD been doing those things I would have to say props to AMD! ;) 
January 18, 2007 8:29:18 PM

Quote:
Arch-enemy? These are companies not governments or superhoeroes and villains.


I think arch-enemy would be a fair description. Intel, AMD. Coke, Pepsi. Inspector Gadget, Dr. Claw.

I disagree. If more people put a posiive spin on the COMPETITION, maybe there wouldn't be flame wars here.

You whining about the need for a positive spin is about the same as the fat, sweaty guy that lets an SBD go in the elevator while complaining about the perfume the lady next to him is wearing.
January 18, 2007 8:29:44 PM

Well you never know. Magical things happen :wink: Never have had a very good experience with Intel... I don't know, feels sort of 'generic' I guess, anyone else ever have this feeling while operating on an Intel? haha odd question. The only Intel I actually ever liked was the good ol P1 133!! OC to 200 JEEZ!!! WHAT A BREAKTHROUGH! (for me anyway) :D 
January 18, 2007 8:36:12 PM

Quote:
You whining about the need for a positive spin is about the same as the fat, sweaty guy that lets an SBD go in the elevator while complaining about the perfume the lady next to him is wearing.

A more eloquent analogy has never been typed. :D 
January 18, 2007 8:56:03 PM

I'd also like to point out that while the current AMD offerings are the kind of the heap, they aren't bad like prescott was bad. They lost almost every performance crown for a few months, and it looks like they might not get them back for awhile. But at least they aren't churing out presscots :) 

AMD's development process is different from Intel's. More smaller improvement, fewer large improvements, and right now they are more focused on production capacity (ie: selling to Dell and HP) then performance.

Intel has deeply discounted most of it's old P4 processors to put the hurt on AMD and kept the low-end C2Ds pretty low priced as well. Intel has never done this before. They're flexing their market position and capital no make up for not having good products for so long (and needed to sell off a LOT of old inventory) and it's costing them quite a bit of money also. It also may have gotten them into some trouble in Korea, USA, and EU for not playing nice.

Once this price war blows over I'm sure AMD will find a nice $/performance niche for mid-range gaming and workstation desktops (And really that's the market most gamers are in which is how AMD won it's first legion of "enthusiast" customers) just like the good old days of the Thunderbird. Only this time they'll have a good share of the mobile, low-end OEM, and Server markets as well to keep them afloat while they do their R&D and tweaking and whatnot. Fusion, open Torenza Socket, and QFX still have a few fights to slug out, so don't start digging AMD's grave yet. Even if they lose those fights you'll still be seeing Dells and HPs with AMD logos on them popping up everywhere. Oh, and the Geode processor deserves at least some mentioning... there will likely be tens of millions of them floating around in OLPCs in the third world (still trying to figure out how I can get one, I might have to move to china xD).
January 18, 2007 9:17:18 PM

Quote:
Arch-enemy? These are companies not governments or superhoeroes and villains.


I think arch-enemy would be a fair description. Intel, AMD. Coke, Pepsi. Inspector Gadget, Dr. Claw.

I disagree. If more people put a posiive spin on the COMPETITION, maybe there wouldn't be flame wars here.

I have never heard of Coke called Pepsi's "Arch-Enemy." These are just CPU companies not the voice of morality or justice.

By positive spin, do you mean mis-interpreting price fixing to support a personal perspective, or mis-understanding ESD to support poor advice, or improperly applying software code (NUMA) to make it seem as if it will improve a products performance far greater than it actually will, or artificially bolstering obscure metrics to make a product appear better than it actually is, or etc etc etc?
January 18, 2007 10:04:46 PM

Quote:
I swear to god I'm getting sick and tired of hearing this crap. AMD has NOT been sitting on their butts just letting the money roll in. They have NOT been rolling around naked in a bed of money laughing their heads off.

And what did AMD have to counter Intel? Nothing. What wonderful new CPU has AMD been working on over these past 4 years?


THEY'VE BEEN MAKING K7s AND K8s!

For the last four years they have been making the athlons. They've shrunk from 180nm, to 130nm, down to 90nm, and are currently working on 65nm. They went from slot A, to Sockets 462/A, 754, 939/940, to AM2. They have added IMC, changed L2 cache sizes, added instructions (SSE2, SSE3, etc) and have been making many improvements to their cores. Why do you Vern still like to bitch about how little they've done??? (ohhh, "not" vern... sorry.)

I'm sure they saw C2D coming like the rest of us. I'm sure they are working on new CPUs. Give them a chance to create something new. As others have pointed out, Intel ran with NB a lot longer then they should have, lets give AMD awhile to see what they can come up with.

P.S. Lets not forget that AMD is in Dell machines now, have bought ATI, developed Hypertransports, etc. These are hardly the actions of a company sitting around doing nothing. They have existed and competed with Intel since the days of the 286, I doubt they are going away any time soon.

I agree, AMD has increased their market share in areas other than just enthusiasts. They are doing fine and will come out with something better eventually. Nothing to be worried about.
January 18, 2007 10:06:44 PM

wait... when did AMD buoght ATI again? I think it is around the time Core2 took the performance crown in the reviewers (before the mass availability in public), so here is what I think happened (not that I am a fanboy on either end, but still)

Intel announces Core 2
AMD saw it coming, while keep up the marketing pressure to expand

Core 2 comes to the reviewers, taking the performance crowns

Intel get into the Stock price troubles because the Pentium line are not doing so well as people are waiting for the C2D

intel downsized the engineering dept, AMD handpick the people who got kicked out of Intel

AMD buys ATI hoping to get the technology into AMD to make heterogeneous multicore Proc's

Intel gets out C2Q, gaining further lead on performance
AMD has to have something to come up with in the meantime, hence Quad FX and K8L


remember AMD has a habit of not telling you what it is working on, or how good those things are until very late stages of development
January 18, 2007 10:38:48 PM

Quote:
Since the time AMD's first Athlon hit the shelves, they were able to win - and keep - the performance crown over arch-enemy Intel. AMD's products were (for the most part) faster, more efficient, less power-hungry, and yet cheaper than Intel's. They won market share accordingly.

But wait: didn't they know Intel would strike back? Didn't they know Intel would pour its massive R&D resources into a new product? Weren't we all sitting here for months and months reading about Intel's fabulous new C2D architecture?

And what did AMD have to counter Intel? Nothing. What wonderful new CPU has AMD been working on over these past 4 years? Zippo. What world-beating product does AMD have up its sleeve? Bupkiss. Suddenly AMD is 1-2 years behind Intel, and it's only going to get worse.

How could this be? They had the superior CPU. They had the advantage. How could they sit there and do nothing knowing that Intel was feverishly working to bury them?

It must be like a nightmare happening in slow motion for AMD, but it's one they brought upon themselves. I'm not an AMD fanboy, but I am a fan of competition. Looks like that will be lacking for the foreseeable future. Kudos to Intel for innovating so aggresively. It's completely beyond me how AMD could not have seen this coming. This topic may (or may not) have played itself to death already in this forum, but I'll post it anyway.


How did you let yourself fall so far behind with this thread?
I'm amazed that mods haven't locked this thread yet due to its provoking and flaming nature.
January 18, 2007 11:28:05 PM

I think most people new or suspected this would happen, including AMD.

AMD and Intel are not equal companies. Intel is many times larger than

AMD. Intel has made some blunders along the way and it took awhile to

get the monolithic empire back on track.

AMD happened to do thier homework well and have the right product out

at the right time to take advantage of that.

But alas, they have given the giant incentive to strive forward once again.

They may have annoyed Intel just a little.

Keep up the good work AMD :wink: , we need inovation and competition.
January 18, 2007 11:30:53 PM

basically theyve been falling behind , because theyve been less focused on creating new CPUs , and focusing more on expanding AMD as a company.

For exmaple , first they purchased ATI , bringing 1st party Chipsets and their own GPU's for their CPU's.

Secondly , theyve been Creating deals with Dell and HP , which now they cant even keep up with the big loads of CPU's that these companies are ordering.
January 18, 2007 11:39:21 PM

That's a possibility I guess. They probably felt like they could take a breather, but Intel blindsided them with the Core architecture. I mean, Intel hypes everything up, so why would Core be any different than Netburst?
a c 80 à CPUs
January 18, 2007 11:41:24 PM

This time period is good for consumers dickhead, look at the prices on the market today, Intel needed to put the brakes on AMD somehow, or AMDs top end CPUs would be reaching $2,000.00+ by now, have you been asleep for the past year.

Enjoy the slump cause it won't last long, and it won't take 2yrs as you say for an AMD comeback, AMD and ATIs merger is going to yield some fantastic advancements, so just remember down the road you posted this, when the shoe is on the other foot. :) 
January 18, 2007 11:55:46 PM

This is one of the best thought out posts (woodmans original post) I have seen in a while. It is a valid and legitimate question it is asking. What was AMD doing all this time?

IMHO I doubt it was a lack of resources or the difficulty of making a new CPU. They had years to prepare for the inevitable. The inevitable being Intel would come up with something great sooner or later. It looks like to me AMD was investing R&D money into the wrong thing. Or they sat on their laurels and then bam, boom....splat their arch nemesis kicked them in the arse.

You can flame this thread as much as you want. However the fact remains that someone at AMD screwed up big time somewhere. Kudos goes out to Intel for coming up with C2D, while AMD came up with virtually nothing.

The argument that its not easy to come up with a new processor does not or would not fly in a board room meeting. Try telling that to your boss when you screw up. Your Boss would say stop your whining, shut up and you're fired. Especially since they had years to research something to stay ahead of the competition.

I just find it amazing that someone points out something that any smart business minded person would point out, and then gets flamed and blasted for it. Go figure.
January 19, 2007 12:07:25 AM

well think of it this way , yes intel has pulled ahead of AMD in the CPU department.

But in that time , AMD has gained 1st party chipsets, Graphics cards , and have made 2 deals with another 2 Computer Suppliers which are Dell and HP.

So they might have just thought , lets take a big fall down , and work on expanding our business , then after its established , lets get up then and reap the rewards later.

the money that they could of spent on R&D , would have gone to other little things , like the purchase of ATI , little costs , etc.
January 19, 2007 12:11:07 AM

Can you say "Voodoo"

No, AMD won't let that happen to them.

It's simple, this is what is happening. They each have an agreement between suppliers. When you get faster, we will now wait 6 to 8 months to put our faster chip out. Same with ATI and the Nvidia.

They figure if there are this many suckers upgrading each time a faster, newer processor, graphics card comes about. Why not just be friends about it, and both get a piece of the pie.

So in other words, don't keep on buying the newest greatest things that come out so this won't happen any more!

But being educated, I can't see this happening any time soon! To many suckers out there with money to burn as people are starving on the street.
January 19, 2007 12:15:59 AM

You make AMD and Intel sound like sweethearts. 8O
January 19, 2007 12:21:12 AM

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That's a possibility I guess. They probably felt like they could take a breather, but Intel blindsided them with the Core architecture. I mean, Intel hypes everything up, so why would Core be any different than Netburst?


Heh, this is true. According to intel every product they make is the awesomest ever (so many times I had to convince people that their Celerons would not cut it "but it's Xghz"). How was anyone to know they weren't exaggerating this time? xD
January 19, 2007 1:01:34 AM

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How did you let yourself fall so far behind with this thread?


Yes you're right I haven't been contributing, I was at work this afternoon. Sorry about that.

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I'm amazed that mods haven't locked this thread yet due to its provoking and flaming nature.


I'm amazed you interpret my thread as an attempt to 'flame' AMD. I am merely asking what I thought was an obvious question, I'm not trying to diss AMD. They've done great things and I personally hope they come out with another kick-ass CPU. And soon. :wink:
January 19, 2007 1:03:13 AM

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That's a possibility I guess. They probably felt like they could take a breather, but Intel blindsided them with the Core architecture. I mean, Intel hypes everything up, so why would Core be any different than Netburst?
.... sigh..... I see these questions come up over and over again "how could it happen", "intel blindsided AMD", blah blah blah.... like CPU's are created from a mixture of magic dust and whimsy......

it takes years to develop a new cpu, not days, not months, not a year singular, it takes years plural as in 5+.... and most notably these cpu's follow an evolutionary path and design philosophy, the reason for this is obvious by the way.

the fucking things are exceptionally complicated architecturally, during the design phase manufacturing processes are always improving and that costs money but not only money it requires alot of engineers and alot of luck.

how did AMD beat Intel in the first place.... well let's see they took alot of engineers who were already designing a new kickass cpu, they threw them in with their bundle of engineers and given AMD's limited resources they desgined a new architecture from scratch that hopefully and so far has carried them into the next century likely lasting more than a decade if not considerably longer.... why did AMD do this? they did this because they had to.

what did Intel do... they were getting ready to put P3 to rest they saw the writing on the wall and they wanted to pimp single core processing until the very end, they wanted to do this because it's cheaper to produce, it's simpler and they hoped Netburst was the answer.

Netburst was not the answer, Itanium was not the answer.... so how did Intel ever get beaten by AMD you might wonder?

Intel was beaten by Intel and AMD took 1st place when Intel lost it..... they filled Intel's shoes and offered the right product at the right time when Intel was taking serious risks.... AMD managed this because prior to K7/K8 AMD's manufacturing was pathetic considered by many as unreliable and it's process called jokingly somewhat similiar.

So Intel went with Netburst which was a valid competitor right up until Prescott with K8..... then Intel got fucked..... it was alot harder to make the transition to 90nm production than they ever expected, things didn't work out as planned and it cost Intel alot..... so what was Intel's answer?..... did they re-invent the wheel did they make a deal with the devil and magically create C2D.... no they went back in time and tweaked P3...... and they tweaked it very hard and they tweaked it very fast, throwing all of Intel's might behind it as only Intel can and after 3 years they dropped C2D in our lap spanking AMD in the process.

this isn't blindsiding, this isn't magic.... AMD has this much money and this many engineers, Intel has 5 X that much money and 5 X that many engineers and managed in 3 years to re-introduce a heavily HEAVILY tweaked P3......

AMD on the other hand has been reading the writing on the wall....... and knowing the future isn't solely in CPU's..... it's about convergence it's about platforms....... AMD at the time made CPU's..... focusing all of their resources solely on CPU's is a dead end.... AMD had to become more Intel like, Centrino isn't a processor it's a platform.... it's the homogenous future and console of computers and AMD knows full well they will need the same to compete.

so they bought ATI, a company of engineers lead by engineers that release incredible products late...... now AMD can kick an engineers ass to get things out on time once the merger is sorted and they will have the stellar product, the stellar platform to sell when the time is needed.

big fucking shit Intel has grabbed the speed crown in the enthusiast desktop segment.... a segment representing less than 3% of the market..... yes their are benefits in fat profits off niche products and as C2D filters down the pipeline the advantages will continue to windfall but that is why K8L is on it's way...... despite someone's silly comment that AMD is 2 years behind the reality is more like 8-12 months.

AMD is back where they once were Intel is driving the market and leading the performance..... this despite some of the absurdity I've read is the way it's always been and had AMD chased the performance crown with everything they had would have wound up the loser and out of business in the end..... "the last horse whip manufacturer" if you wish....... and as a side note AMD has 10% more marketshare than they have ever had, they have secured their reputation as a stable and reliable manufacturer of quality product and AMD is actually generating an operating profit year on year which is something that they've rarely done in the company's multi decade history......

Intel is now doing very well, AMD is doing very well and to be honest both should be drooling and wondering how well Apple is doing.......

p.s. K8L is upcoming and is supposed to bring AMD on par with Intel not so much surpass but we should all be hoping it brings them within 5% + or - doesn't matter for the benefit of us all and competition.
January 19, 2007 1:07:36 AM

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Its easy, when you are at the top, you focus on making your current product a little better and a little cheaper... not changing a good thing. It is hard to see competition beeting you when you feel you can't be beeten.


I think you may be right.

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Let me ask you, did you think that the Core 2 Duo's would dominate the market as they are right now back when they first announced that they were working on it? I bet AMD thought it was going to be another power hungry overheating whore like the rest of the line up.


Good point - C2D could very well have sucked - but why wasn't AMD working on a next gen CPU anyway?
January 19, 2007 1:16:00 AM

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Dude, this is just BS. Why did Intel take years to beat AMD? They were the kings and AMD came in and kicked their arses for years on end.

Well, the answer is: you can't just pull remarkably fast/cheap CPUs out of your a$$. It's not like AMD could have seen Intel coming up with the Core architecture and said "oops, guess we have to double our performance next month to really smash Intel".


I respectfully disagree. Of course it takes time to develop a brand new / faster / cheap CPU, but AMD had that time and doesn't t appear to have utilized it. Yes they made innovations in other areas, but they largely seemed to keep tweaking and re-hashing their current - and aging - CPU architecture. I believe they should have seen Intel coming.
January 19, 2007 1:19:15 AM

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I think you guys need to think about this logically. If your company only had a market cap of 9.83 billion and you were going up against a company with 119.83 billion in market cap, it is inevitable that you are going to loose somewhere.

AMD obviously knew that they were going to be overtaken. They probably took their profits and reinvested it into those new fabs that are announced so they can make more processors. Even if you had the best product out there, if you are constrained by manufacturing capability, then it's all a moot point.

I'm sure their plan was to increase market share as far as they could and try to hold on. Of course they'll lose some market share, but out of all this, they will have new FABs ready in the future when they release a competitive architect.


Absolutely. While their CPUs haven't been tops for a few months, AMD has been growing tremendously as a company regardless. I love when people say AMD is on its last leg, like they haven't been in far worse spots before.

Good point. They certainly have done a good job at growing market share, but you have to wonder how did they get this market share? I'd argue it was largely because they had a faster (for most purposes) / cheaper / less-power-hungry CPU than Intel, an asset they can no longer claim - at least at present time.
January 19, 2007 1:21:30 AM

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P.S. Lets not forget that AMD is in Dell machines now, have bought ATI, developed Hypertransports, etc. These are hardly the actions of a company sitting around doing nothing. They have existed and competed with Intel since the days of the 286, I doubt they are going away any time soon.


I'm not trying to imply that AMD is on its last legs. I'm sure it will bring out something kick-ass - eventually...
January 19, 2007 1:22:04 AM

woodman , understand though that AMD has been stretching the K8 artichecture as much as possible, so that they can regain funds for R&D for K8L
!