'Intel Claws Back Desktop PC and Notebook Market Share From AMD for the First Time in Three Years' - Tom's

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UsandThem

Elite Member
Super Moderator
May 4, 2000
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It's best to laugh, but really we should be crying.

Imagine if there are thousands of people worldwide who act in this manner.

Of course there are going to be shortages and along with those, higher prices, as the costs of returned product is simply shifted to the consumers....
I don't agree with it for sure, but there's not much that can be done to people buying so many of them (either for flipping or constantly returning them because they don't "meet expectations").

I guess I can laugh about it more than letting it upset me since I'm not in the market for any computer upgrades, so I'm standing on the sidelines during all of these component shortages. If I was trying to grab one of these AMD CPUs, I likely would have been much grumpier when I saw the number of CPUs they purchased over a few months.
 

Kocicak

Senior member
Jan 17, 2019
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I picked up 5 of them, returned 4, kept 1 - 5600X. Retailer lured me in picking the first one by sending me the promo code by mistake early. I felt obliged to pick the CPU up. That started my buying, testing and playing spree. BTW I have not used or resold the codes. My moral standards are very, very high. :)
 

UsandThem

Elite Member
Super Moderator
May 4, 2000
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I picked up 5 of them, returned 4, kept 1 - 5600X. Retailer lured me in picking the first one by sending me the promo code by mistake early. I felt obliged to pick the CPU up. That started my buying, testing and playing spree. BTW I have not used or resold the codes. My moral standards are very, very high. :)
I don't see how you aren't banned by many retailers over there. If I owned one of those stores, I'd be like the CPU nazi (a play on the Seinfeld soup nazi episode for those who are too young to get the reference), and as soon as you walked in would say "No CPU for you!" and send you on your way. ;)

If a person returned as many products as you do to retailers like Newegg, Amazon, Best Buy, B&H Photo, they would be blacklisted from returning anything. The amount of CPUs you return is honestly mind boggling.
 

Kocicak

Senior member
Jan 17, 2019
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Well, if the average margin on purchases is say 7%, and mine is 5% due to some products that I return, the retailer is still happy that I buy from them. Do not worry about that so much. BTW my returned CPUs most likely eneded up in the PCs that they produce. So my idea about lowering average margin may not be correct.
 

UsandThem

Elite Member
Super Moderator
May 4, 2000
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Do not worry about that so much.
Yeah, I think most of us would agree with that statement at this point. For me, I would feel like a huge dirtbag by doing what you do. However, I came from having nothing when I was young, so I can actually appreciate what I work hard for to buy.

It will be fine until one day when it isn't. I guess until then, you can continue to test out multiple CPUs, and let them eat the losses. As long as you sleep good at night, right? ;)
 
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Kedas

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Dec 6, 2018
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The console release should have come at least a half year later, that would have been much better for AMD's market share and the consoles could have had Zen3 cores, but after the facts it's easy to say what should have been done.
 

Doug S

Golden Member
Feb 8, 2020
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Apple signed up for a guaranteed amount of wafers, and it appears AMD weren't as confident with demand for their product, to do something similar.
Not only signed up for a guaranteed number of wafers, they paid in advance. Apple is reportedly working with TSMC on getting the 2nm node ready. Not sure what form that takes (though I wouldn't be shocked if Apple has hired a few process engineers to work with TSMC on site to make sure their chip architects have the earliest / most current information about the characteristics of upcoming processes)
 

Doug S

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Feb 8, 2020
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I don't really follow Apple products, but it appears not everything is going smoothly in that regard (although AMD is harder hit than Apple in whatever their shortages/production issues are).
https://www.notebookcheck.net/TSMC-cannot-meet-the-entire-Apple-M1-order-volume-Samsung-could-jump-to-the-rescue.503905.0.html
I don't buy that article because the author is obviously clueless - just because Samsung has a "5nm" process doesn't mean that Apple can have them make M1s. They would need to tweak the design for Samsung's process, tape it out, etc. - you're talking a minimum of a year lead time to do something like that so they would have had to plan in advance. It isn't something you can just decide to do.

Since iPhone 12 is selling better than expected (well better than Wall Street expected at least, who knows what Apple expected) and those figures were from before the Chinese New Year, if there is a shortage of M1 it may be down to a problem of deciding between running A14 wafers to fully supply iPhone production and M1 wafers to fully supply ARM Mac production. Since iPhone is their biggest product, it is obviously going to get the wafers if such a decision has to be made.

Expanding 5nm production may not be possible for TSMC. They have only so many EUV scanners, and not just on N5 production (and maybe even on N7+, if that node is still offered) They will have some dedicated to N5P production - the line(s) for it have to already be in place given it enters mass production pretty soon. More EUV hardware will be dedicated to N3 - risk production should begin soon which means they will need at least one line fully outfitted.

If the rumors are true that Intel has canceled some EUV orders from ASML to go to TSMC in exchange for dedicated 3nm capacity things might be a little less tight there. Unless of course Intel is willing/able to consume all wafer starts on the new line(s) TSMC is able to build thanks to the extra EUV scanners.
 

chrisjames61

Senior member
Dec 31, 2013
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I picked up 5 of them, returned 4, kept 1 - 5600X. Retailer lured me in picking the first one by sending me the promo code by mistake early. I felt obliged to pick the CPU up. That started my buying, testing and playing spree. BTW I have not used or resold the codes. My moral standards are very, very high. :)
Man, I could never do that with a clear conscience. Legal or not.
 

Pneumothorax

Golden Member
Nov 4, 2002
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AMD shipped 4.5 million PS5 SoCs in Q3. Add to that another 2-3 Million XSX|S. On top of that Sony is still suffering from shortage and they expect to ship another 3 million in Q1.
Thats where the market share loss came from. (~32K wafers for Sony and 22-26K Wafers for MS, MS chip is bigger), Basically total available wafers for 2 months
Amd would've been better off NOT being the supplier for the consoles. I'm pretty sure they're making much more per 5XXX chip than the severely discounted rates they're selling for Sony/MS. If all those dies went for 5XXX chips, AMD would've been steamrolling marketshare. As it is, my brother in law has been able to score a 3090FE to replace his 970 from BB and is currently running it with an overclocked 2600K (yes you heard that right!) He can't find a 5600x/5800x in stock at MSRP. He's going to get RocketLake if he's unable to get a Zen 3 in the next couple of weeks....
 

Kocicak

Senior member
Jan 17, 2019
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Amd would've been better off NOT being the supplier for the consoles. I'm pretty sure they're making much more per 5XXX chip than the severely discounted rates they're selling for Sony/MS.
I believe that being the console supplier is a long term partnership and secured revenue. Whether is would be better to be able to supply more 5000 CPUs now is in the longer term view not relevant in my opinion.
 

ThatBuzzkiller

Golden Member
Nov 14, 2014
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I believe that being the console supplier is a long term partnership and secured revenue. Whether is would be better to be able to supply more 5000 CPUs now is in the longer term view not relevant in my opinion.
There's more to a business than just profit since politics is valuable as well. Scoring political points among console vendors has value for AMD since it improves their overall condition even if it doesn't improve their profit. Sure some opportunity is lost but it's more than made up by getting free developer and industry support for both their CPUs & GPUs ...
 
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Gideon

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Nov 27, 2007
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There's more to a business than just profit since politics is valuable as well. Scoring political points among console vendors has value for AMD since it improves their overall condition even if it doesn't improve their profit. Sure some opportunity is lost but it's more than made up by getting free developer and industry support for both their CPUs & GPUs ...
Yes, this is IMO particularily well visible when benchmarking recent games built with current-gen consoles in mind:

FPS differences RX 6000 vs. RTX 3000
Game (3,840 × 2,160)6800 XT vs. 30806800 vs. 3070
Assassin's Creed: Valhalla106%114%
COD Black Ops: Cold War99%113%
Dirt 5120%124%
Mafia: Definitive Edition83%99%
Serious Sam 4103%113%
Star Wars: Squadrons106%117%
Watch Dogs: Legion105%115%
Wins AMD / Nvidia5/26/1
3080 and 3070 normalized to 100 percent

No way Dirt, Valhalla, or SW Squadrons would show as strong results on AMD cards if it weren't for consoles. Most of the developers probably would not have bothered partnering with AMD on these titles. And this trend should only get stronger for a while (at least till the next-gen GPUs are out).
 

jpiniero

Lifer
Oct 1, 2010
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Amd would've been better off NOT being the supplier for the consoles. I'm pretty sure they're making much more per 5XXX chip than the severely discounted rates they're selling for Sony/MS. If all those dies went for 5XXX chips, AMD would've been steamrolling marketshare. As it is, my brother in law has been able to score a 3090FE to replace his 970 from BB and is currently running it with an overclocked 2600K (yes you heard that right!) He can't find a 5600x/5800x in stock at MSRP. He's going to get RocketLake if he's unable to get a Zen 3 in the next couple of weeks....
Sony and MS basically paid for the RDNA2 R&D plus they would pay for the TSMC wafers up front. That's worth a lot to AMD.
 
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KompuKare

Senior member
Jul 28, 2009
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Sony and MS basically paid for the RDNA2 R&D plus they would pay for the TSMC wafers up front. That's worth a lot to AMD.
Or was worth a lot to AMD when they were cash strapped.
While we tend to concentrate on wafers only and some of the bottlenecks might be at packaging etc., the consoles using up to 80% of AMD's TSMC wafers must really be hurting AMD.
Yes, they get some money from consoles but compared to just about anything they produce, consoles have by far the lowest margins.
Did a few rought calculations using a yield calculator:

(Put the spreadsheet on Ehtercalc if anyone wants to play with it: https://ethercalc.net/z5qh0dcxbf)
So no wonder they lost marketshare.
 

jpiniero

Lifer
Oct 1, 2010
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My point is that the consoles should not have impacted what AMD decided to buy for their own products. Beyond TSMC capacity issues of course.

They are AMD wafers in name only because of the x86 licensing agreement.
 
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B-Riz

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Feb 15, 2011
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I recall that back during 2005 when the Athlons 64 X2 were in full force and AMD was dominating Intel, its marketshare was effectively capped to 20% or so due to capacity constrains, as there was no way for AMD to fully cover the market demands for its Processors, so many people ended up purchasing Intel as the second choice just due availability. By the time Fab 36 had just kicked in, Conroe was just months away, causing AMD marketshare and the needs for another fab fell accordingly.
Moral of the history: If you are going to spend billions to dramatically increase your production capacity, make sure that your next product is going to maintain the advantage margins and that your competition doesn't catchs up and go beyond you in a single generation.
I am still salty I could not get a 3800+ X2 for the 939 socket for a decent price. Ended up with C2D E6300 and AsRock 775Dual-VSTA (they still work too!).
 

B-Riz

Golden Member
Feb 15, 2011
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There's more to a business than just profit since politics is valuable as well. Scoring political points among console vendors has value for AMD since it improves their overall condition even if it doesn't improve their profit. Sure some opportunity is lost but it's more than made up by getting free developer and industry support for both their CPUs & GPUs ...
It's amazing how many people miss this and just focus on "AMD is lame for taking console contracts, they can't sell more boxed CPU's because of consoles".

What AMD has gotten to do in conjunction with MS and Sony, is set the standards for gaming. Why is the RX 480 / 580 still relevant? Xbox One X and PS4 Pro as performance targets.

Watch any of the Mark Cerny talks about the hardware, and, they were co-operative partnerships, any good stuff Sony developed / tweaked, flowed back to AMD for AMD to push to PC users.

Does anyone think Windows 10 with AMD cpus would be where it's at without the Xbox partnership? What CPU tech is in the new Xbox's???

AMD gave the consoles the ability to have one company provide commodity off the shelf technology for the price points needed to move the most units.

Intel and nVidia should be a bit sad about missing out on setting standards for gaming in general, look at the mess that pushing ray-tracing has become.
 

B-Riz

Golden Member
Feb 15, 2011
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Or was worth a lot to AMD when they were cash strapped.
While we tend to concentrate on wafers only and some of the bottlenecks might be at packaging etc., the consoles using up to 80% of AMD's TSMC wafers must really be hurting AMD.
Yes, they get some money from consoles but compared to just about anything they produce, consoles have by far the lowest margins.
Did a few rought calculations using a yield calculator:

(Put the spreadsheet on Ehtercalc if anyone wants to play with it: https://ethercalc.net/z5qh0dcxbf)
So no wonder they lost marketshare.
AMD did what Intel did not want to do. Custom silicon (for consoles).

And, these are big picture contracts, millions of units of your cpu's and gpu's are sold, I highly doubt there is any loss involved.

I bet AMD will be in the PS6 and the next Xbox too...

I view it as a shrewd long term industry move, and, it made life easier for Sony and MS to not have to custom design hardware, then provide the tools to make games also. Once console went x86, all the PC game dev tools were open to use. So, in the end, thank the developers for wanting straightforward hardware to develop for, not the Cell Processor Part 2.
 
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