AMD is aiming to reduce processor meltdowns and make it easy for integrators to build Athlon and Duron systems, putting together a boxed product for the channel that bundles chips and a recommended fan.
In the past, the most economical way to purchase AMD chips was in tray form. Although the chipmaker did offer box processors, the hefty price difference meant resellers were forced to rely on distributors to break the 1,000-unit lots into more saleable packages.
"The tray form suits the OEM-style business," explained AMD country manager John Robinson. "But in that form it is hard to split, and there is no accompanying fan. It is left to the distributor to break the tray into smaller packages, and it leaves the user to put in a fan."
AMD has a number of recommended fans on its Web site, but mismatches can have dire results.
"It is very important to have the right fan and there's nothing we can do to stop people from using an incorrect fan," Robinson said, adding that the new boxes also include a set of assembly instructions, an element previously unavailable.
The tamper-proof boxes are available for both Duron and Athlon processors, with easy-to-recognise packaging that hangs easily as a display. Robinson has dubbed the product Processor-in-a-Box, or PIB.
"We are particularly focusing on the channel with these products. For anyone who is building systems, from a one-off to 100 machines a month, it is the ideal package. It also has the added benefit of a three-year warranty.
"We have had a boxed product in the past, but it wasn't aesthetically pleasing.
"There was also a price differential [between the tray and boxed product] and that did not make it attractive. The only difference between the cost of this new bundle and the tray price is the cost of the fan."
Over the past 12 months, AMD has made inroads into a number of new markets, including the education and government sectors. It has also stood by its Socket A architecture and will do so "for the remainder of this year at least".