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November 18, 2005

How about a nice remarked Intel CPU?

Sumner Lemon at InfoWorld:

Shenzhen Chuanghui Electronics Co. isn’t shy about offering re-marked Intel processors for sale: the company is openly selling them through a major Chinese Web site and brags that its re-marked Pentium 4 chips look just like the real thing.

Re-marking is a process whereby a processor is relabeled to look like a chip that offers better performance and has a greater value.

The Chuanghui storefronts describe the re-marked chips as Celeron processors that have been altered to pass as 3.6GHz Pentium 4 processors and assure prospective customers that they look just like the real thing.

The re-marked processors that Chuanghui sells are actually 1.7GHz Celeron chips and are currently available for $78 each, including a motherboard, in quantities of 100 or more, said James Zhan, a company representative named online as a contact for potential buyers.

By comparison, Intel sells the real thing for $401 in 1,000-unit quantities, without a motherboard, according to its most recent price list.

Chuanghui handles the re-marking of the Celeron chips itself, Zhan said. In addition, the company provides buyers with software that masks the identify of the re-marked Celerons from a computer’s BIOS and Microsoft’s Windows XP operating system, fooling the software into believing the chip is actually a 3.6GHz Pentium 4 processor, he said.

Chuanghui began offering re-marked chips one year ago and now sells around 1,000 of them every month, primarily to buyers in Asia and Africa, Zhan said.

Zhan defended Chuanghui’s sale of re-marked chips, saying the company makes no attempt to hide what had been done to the chips or to pass them off as a more valuable processor. “I tell them the truth,” he said.

However, Zhan said Chuanghui has no control over how its customers represent the re-marked chips when they resell them.

Really classy.

Posted at 1:34 pm. Filed under Brands, Companies, Intel, Pentium 4, Thumbs Down

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