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AMD Phenom X3 Triple Core CPU

By: Cameron Johnson | AMD CPUs & APUs in CPUs, Chipsets & SoCs | Posted: Apr 22, 2008 4:00 am

Final Thoughts


AMD may have had a few hurdles with the K10 architecture in the beginning, but so far we have found it to be a good replacement for the K8, and it's about time too. AMD has fallen behind Intel quite a bit since the Core 2 architecture managed to wrangle the performance crown from AMD two years ago. Since then, AMD has tried to keep up with Athlon 64 X2, but it simply can't. Its architecture can't handle what Intel has designed its Core series to do.


Now AMD has managed to follow in some regards what Intel has managed to do. However, K10 is still a direct descendant of the K8, and from this comes a few of the inherent weaknesses in design, making it slower than Core 2 on a clock-for-clock basis as well as its limited core speeds. So far we have only managed to see official parts hitting 2.5GHz, and while overclocking has given us 2.7GHz, this has been done with voltage increases. AMD's design will soon have to switch to 45nm processes to survive.


Phenom, while being a good processor is in no way a replacement for the Core 2. If you're still after the highest performance you can get, Core 2 is the choice for now. However, if you're after a more affordable option with an upgrade pathway for quite some time, Phenom is what you're after. If you're an AMD Athlon 64 X2 user with an AM2 board, a Phenom X3 will slot in with a BIOS update to recognize it; you won't get the benefits of HT3 but you will get a triple core or quad core processor without having to change board, memory and graphics card.


The X3 series of Phenom is a more affordable option, making it a perfect choice to replace Athlon 64 X2s, pushing them back towards the Sempron market area. In all, the X3 fills a good void for AMD and will be a definite hit for from our prospective.


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