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AMD Slot A death threatens stock crunch

Gigabyte denies piles of mobos

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Computex 2000 Motherboard manufacturers are performing a difficult juggling act during the rapid phase out of Slot A in favour of Socket A for the AMD Athlon and are putting pressure on the chip maker to keep on making the parts.

After the release of the Thunderbird Athlon at the beginning of this week, which coincided with the simultaneous release of a large number of third party motherboards using the KT rather than the KX133 chipset, reports circulated at the show that manufacturers felt miffed at the swift demise of Slot A.

Gigabyte denied that it had heaps of manufactured motherboards using the KX-133 chipset, and that it had put pressure on AMD to carry on manufacturing Slot A parts that little bit longer.

Stephen Huang, product manager of Gigabyte's business division, said that the firm had figured out an exit plan to avoid it being stuck with stock. He said "We have worked very closely with AMD".

But he did admit that stocks of Slot A would become very thin on the ground in quarter three and "limited to select system integrators".

AMD said at its Thunderbird announcement that its Dresden plant is up and running. Cartridge-based microprocessors cost around $40 more than Socket A chips and it is unlikely that AMD will respond to pressure to crank up the volume.

No-one from AMD was available to respond to the situation at press time. ®

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