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AMD's Phenom II 920 & 940 Naming Scam

Updated on January 11, 2009

Although any kind-hearted observer has to at least try to give AMD the benefit of the doubt for their attempt to dig themselves out of the hole that the original Phenom launch dug for the company, their marketing plan for their new (and yes, improved) Phenom II has triggered catcalls from all over the industry.

You see, the nice folks at AMD have been able to release a CPU which is price competitive as well as roughly equal in performance to some of the lower and mid range Intel Core 2 Quad processors. That's nice in and as of itself, as after all, only the most vicious of AMD critics (a list I have often populated) would wish the only competitor to Big Blue to vanish from the face of the Earth and leave a very nasty monopoly in its place. But then they had to go and prove once again that they are a company run by total bulls**t artists, by pulling off a bald-faced and completely inexcusable nomenclature scam.

Their highest level Phenom is the 9950. Allowing that they don't want to go into the five figure naming conventions, that would leave them well over 9900 numbers that they could have used for the Phenom II CPUs. But they chose 920 and 940. Why would they want those particular numbers? It's not just that they had painted themselves into a corner by not easily being able to exceed their 9950 number, but because they are trying to obfuscate, deceive, confuse, befuddle, disorient, mystify, perplex, misguide and mislead the buying public in one of the most blatant three-card monte games seen in the technology industry.

Yes, the wonderful marketing department at AMD specifically chose 920 and 940 as the new CPU numbers to make potential customers believe that the new Phenom II processors are the equivalent of Intel's new Core i7 920 and 940. Therefore, whenever a non-technically savvy client looks at the 920 and 940 offerings from both Intel and AMD, they find that the Green Team's CPUs are cheaper and they figure that they can pay less for equivalent performance.

The problem is that Core i7 920 and 940 are in a completely different league and an entire generation ahead of AMD's 920 and 940. The new Phenom II CPUs approximately compete with Intel's Core 2 Quad Q9400 range of processors. The Phenom II 920 and 940, along with the Q9400 range have nowhere near the sheer power of the Core i7 920 and 940 processors. Without getting into arcane benchmark comparisons, it can be confidently stated that although the Phenom II 920 and 940 could be compared to Mazda Miatas, the Core i7 920 and 940 are Ferrari Enzos!

What AMD has done is to name its sporty, modestly performing little convertible with the Ferrari Enzo moniker, and in doing that, it has not only shown that there isn't a single gram of integrity in their entire boardroom, but that as an entire company, the consumer buyer can't trust them as far as they can throw them. And they definitely do deserve to be thrown: Into the slag heap of scammers.

Shame on you, AMD. If I had been stupid enough to buy a Phenom II 920 or 940, I'd be consulting my lawyer by now.

Late Note: Check my first comment below for the legal framework behind the conclusion that AMD's naming scheme is indeed deceptive advertising and quite evidently illegal.


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      bmwmgii 7 years ago

      when amd core i7 equivalent will come .it will best from all intel bullshit .

    • Hal Licino profile image

      Hal Licino 8 years ago from Toronto

      One more reminder to MORONS. If you post comments with expletives or ones that are not family friendly, they will be DELETED. You'd figure you would have caught on by now! Sheesh.

    • Hal Licino profile image

      Hal Licino 9 years ago from Toronto

      Howard, unfortunately I'm only as petty and juvenile as the law of the United States of America. In court cases brought by the Federal Trade Commission the determination has been made that in advertising "words and sentences may be literally and technically true, yet be framed in such a setting as to mislead or deceive" and that if any one interpretation is deceptive then the entire advertisement is deceptive in toto. The Supreme Court has ruled that "advertisement as a whole may be completely misleading although every sentence separately considered is literally true. This may be because things are omitted that should be said, or because advertisements are composed or purposefully printed in such a way as to mislead." The point of whether or not the consumer actually believes the false statement is not relevant, as the Court stated that "the likelihood or propensity of deception is the criterion by which advertising is measured." I've checked various Phenom II 920 and 940 ads and nowhere does it state "The Phenom II 920 and 940 are not equal in performance or equivalent in any way to the Intel Core i7 920 and 940," or any similar disclaimer. Through its dishonest zeal, AMD has left itself wide open for a whopper of a lawsuit, and a most well deserved one. AMD has scammed the public, and it deserves to face the legal consequences like all other scammers.

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      Howard 9 years ago

      I agree with your premise, and the deceptive marketing practice by AMD in this situation. However, the final paragraph is so... petty and juvenile sounding... substituting legal action for research...