So just why do we feel the Athlon XP 2400+ represents the best value in the Athlon XP lineup. All you have to do is take a look at AMD's official processor pricing:
|AMD's Official Processor Pricing
As you can see, officially AMD is only charging $10 more for the Athlon XP 2400+ than the 2200+, and the XP 2100+ is only $9 less than that at $174. And once you consider the XP 2200+'s 1.8GHz core, it's pretty safe to say that you're getting a lot more bang for your buck by going with the Athlon XP 2400+, than with any of the higher rated Athlon XP processors.
While we know this doesn't reflect the street prices you see online or at your local offline retailer, this is the best data we have as the Athlon XP 2400+ and XP 2600+ haven't hit the retail market yet. It remains to be seen if the Athlon XP 2400+ will be priced this competitively with its predecessors when it initially arrives on store shelves, but based on AMD's history, once supplies of the XP 2400+ are plentiful, pricing on the chip will be very aggressive. Complicating the situation are Intel's recent price cuts. As of today, the Pentium 4 2.4GHz is now priced at $193. When the Athlon XP 2400+ was originally launched, this was a $400 processor. Therefore, we wouldn't be surprised if AMD stepped in and cut prices again to account for this move.
According to officials at AMD, shipments have commenced on the XP 2400+ with availability set for later this month. Typically when AMD has released a new processor availability was immediate, but for the Athlon XP 2400+ this isn't the case. It has been two weeks since the chip began sampling, so we're hoping CPUs will begin hitting store shelves in the next few weeks.
We were able to hit the same clock speed with our Athlon XP 2400+ as we did with the Athlon XP 2600+: 2,304MHz. This time, we needed 1.9V of juice to get it to run with complete reliability. Lower voltages worked as well, but applications would crash from time to time. Rather than stick with the 144MHz bus we utilized in the Athlon XP 2600+ review, we decided to crank the bus up to 153MHz and set the multiplier for 15.0x. This resulted in a final clock speed of 2295MHz, but with the bus running 6% faster we were able to achieve better performance results. In fact, we broke the 300 fps mark in Quake 3!