AMD has added a new CPU to its Athlon family today in the form of a Black Edition desktop part. The X2 7850 BE comes in as an affordable option at just under $70, but will get you a very decent 2.8GHz dual-core unit that’s actually a rebadged 65nm Phenom X4 processor with two cores disabled. The architecture choice also means it supports HyperTransport 3 technology and has 1MB of L2 cache (512KB per core) and 2MB of shared L3 cache.

This was the second piece of low-cost hardware AMD announced yesterday, along with the Radeon HD 4770 graphics card. Glancing over several performance reviews, you can see the company has put together a CPU and GPU pair that offer modest performance for a pretty low price tag. Clearly, they are responding to current market conditions and hope to offer the best value option in the mainstream sector – something they largely lost out on when Intel began pushing out Core 2 and later dual-core Celerons.