Intel’s New Cheap Chip Impresses

Intel's new budget-friendly enthusiast processor impresses.

Jul 7, 2014 at 1:30PM

Over the last several years, Intel (NASDAQ:INTC) neglected the very low end of the computing market. This enabled competitor Advanced Micro Devices (NASDAQ:AMD) to gain a real foothold in notebooks and cheap desktops. The chip giant finally struck back with the Bay Trail-M and Bay Trail-D platforms for low-cost notebooks and desktops, respectively, and now Intel appears finally ready to fight for lower-end PC gamer dollars as well.

Intel, where have you been?
In the PC enthusiast world, many users like to do what is called overclocking. The idea here is to take a chip rated at a certain speed and then push it to higher speeds. This increases the power consumption of the processor -- often nonlinearly with respect to the performance gained -- but it's a solid option for users looking to eke more performance out of their existing hardware.

Since the release of Intel's Sandy Bridge in 2011, overclocking the company's processors required special "unlocked" chips. No longer could a budget processor be pushed to its extremes -- one needed to pay a premium for that privilege by buying special "K" SKUs that came in i5 and i7 flavors.

While its intent here was to drive up ASPs and mix, the fact that Intel did not offer unlocked processors across the stack gave rival AMD a niche to exploit at the low end.

Enter the Pentium G3258
Alongside Intel's recently launched Devil's Canyon processor (this is a high-end overclocking-focused chip), the company's Pentium G3258 chip became available for sale. This $75 processor sports two Haswell processor cores (with hyperthreading -- a feature that allows one processor core to act as two -- disabled), as well as the obligatory Intel HD graphics block. It's also unlocked.

Tom's Hardware, a leading technology site, was so impressed with this processor's performance and power efficiency that it replaced the AMD Athlon X4 750K with the G3258 as the best gaming CPU for $75 (though the Athlon remains an honorable mention). Legit Reviews, too, wrote favorably on the new part:

If you're looking to build a dedicated LAN gaming machine or Steam Box, the Intel Pentium G3258 is a great option for only ~$60-$65. I found it was able to keep up with the Intel Core i7-4770K in most of the games and even come out ahead when it was overclocked!

Things are looking pretty good for Intel's new chip.

Foolish takeaway
As Intel realizes that over the long term filling its factories with as much company-designed chip volume as possible (and denying that volume to its competitors) is the best course of action, investors are likely to continue to see these types of aggressive moves. The Pentium G3258 in itself isn't going to move the needle for Intel, but a lot of such moves in aggregate could.

Leaked: Apple's next smart device (warning, it may shock you)
Apple recently recruited a secret-development "dream team" to guarantee its newest smart device was kept hidden from the public for as long as possible. But the secret is out, and some early viewers are claiming its everyday impact could trump the iPod, iPhone, and the iPad. In fact, ABI Research predicts 485 million of this type of device will be sold per year. But one small company makes Apple's gadget possible. And its stock price has nearly unlimited room to run for early in-the-know investors. To be one of them, and see Apple's newest smart gizmo, just click here!

Ashraf Eassa owns shares of Intel. The Motley Fool recommends Intel. The Motley Fool owns shares of Intel. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

4 in 5 Americans Are Ignoring Buffett's Warning

Don't be one of them.

Jun 12, 2015 at 5:01PM

Admitting fear is difficult.

So you can imagine how shocked I was to find out Warren Buffett recently told a select number of investors about the cutting-edge technology that's keeping him awake at night.

This past May, The Motley Fool sent 8 of its best stock analysts to Omaha, Nebraska to attend the Berkshire Hathaway annual shareholder meeting. CEO Warren Buffett and Vice Chairman Charlie Munger fielded questions for nearly 6 hours.
The catch was: Attendees weren't allowed to record any of it. No audio. No video. 

Our team of analysts wrote down every single word Buffett and Munger uttered. Over 16,000 words. But only two words stood out to me as I read the detailed transcript of the event: "Real threat."

That's how Buffett responded when asked about this emerging market that is already expected to be worth more than $2 trillion in the U.S. alone. Google has already put some of its best engineers behind the technology powering this trend. 

The amazing thing is, while Buffett may be nervous, the rest of us can invest in this new industry BEFORE the old money realizes what hit them.

KPMG advises we're "on the cusp of revolutionary change" coming much "sooner than you think."

Even one legendary MIT professor had to recant his position that the technology was "beyond the capability of computer science." (He recently confessed to The Wall Street Journal that he's now a believer and amazed "how quickly this technology caught on.")

Yet according to one J.D. Power and Associates survey, only 1 in 5 Americans are even interested in this technology, much less ready to invest in it. Needless to say, you haven't missed your window of opportunity. 

Think about how many amazing technologies you've watched soar to new heights while you kick yourself thinking, "I knew about that technology before everyone was talking about it, but I just sat on my hands." 

Don't let that happen again. This time, it should be your family telling you, "I can't believe you knew about and invested in that technology so early on."

That's why I hope you take just a few minutes to access the exclusive research our team of analysts has put together on this industry and the one stock positioned to capitalize on this major shift.

Click here to learn about this incredible technology before Buffett stops being scared and starts buying!

David Hanson owns shares of Berkshire Hathaway and American Express. The Motley Fool recommends and owns shares of Berkshire Hathaway, Google, and Coca-Cola.We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

©1995-2014 The Motley Fool. All rights reserved. | Privacy/Legal Information

Compare Brokers