Intel will make the second of two moves to drive the Pentium 4 into the mainstream and low-end of the PC market on Monday when it formally launches its i845 chipset.
The chipset, which tells Rambus to take a hike and picks up PC133 SDRAM instead, has been shipping to the trade for some time now. This enables PC vendors and the mobo makers to build up enough stock to put i845-based machines on the market on official launch day.
Some PC vendors are jumping the gun. Search for the i845 on Dell's Web site and you won't find a thing - look around for Pentium 4 PCs with SDRAM, on the other hand, and you'll find the Dimension 4300 line, based on 1.5, 1.6 and 1.7GHz P4s and with PC133 memory for "lightning speed", and starting at $899.
HP, Gateway and IBM are all believed to have i845-based machines ready to reveal on Monday. ®
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