Sun ups low-end UltraSparc processors for Sun Blades

Sun Microsystems Inc. is phasing out its 900MHz Sun Blade 2000 high-end workstation with a faster-processor model, but the upgrade will not affect the Unix machine’s entry-level price, the company said Tuesday.

The new Sun Blade 2000 model will feature a 1.015GHz UltraSparc III Cu processor, and cost, in an entry single-processor configuration, US$10,995, the same entry price that the 900MHz processor model carries, the company said. The workstation is also available in a dual processor configuration.

The Sun Blade 2000’s high-end model carries a higher entry price and features a 1.05GHz UltraSparc III processor.

The 1.015GHz processor has been shipping in Sun’s Sun Fire 280R rack server for about a month and a half, but this marks its first appearance in a workstation, said Brian Healy, group marketing manager for client and technical market products at Sun.

Current Sun Blade 2000 or Sun Blade 1000 users with slower processors will find it easy to upgrade to the 1.015GHz processor, since the processors on the Sun Blade 2000 are contained in modules, and can be easily swapped, Healy said. The 1.015GHz processor will be available as an upgrade option for US$5,750, he said.

The 1.015GHz processor is available worldwide as of Tuesday, through Sun’s Web site or through Sun resellers, Healy said.