- 4000 MHz
- 45nm Propus 95W
- 4 x 512KB L2 Cache
The $99 Quad Core 01/22/2010
This review is from: AMD Athlon II X4 620 Propus Quad-Core 2.6 GHz Socket AM3 95W ADX620WFGIBOX Processor
Four cores allow multithreading and multitasking at the magical $99 price point.
Plenty of overclocking potential with the stock fan -- yes, the stock HSF. Heat was not a limiting factor for me. I was able to get to 3.15 GHz at the stock voltage.
I read some of the other complaints about the quality of the included HSF and I have to say they're a bit silly. The fan looks like most other stock jobbies, but it kept an overclock of 20% below 55 deg C at the hottest full loads. (The spec for this CPU is 71 deg C.) This HSF is more than adequate, even for overclocking.
I wasn't able to run over 3.2 GHz with stability in hours-long Prime95 tests, even with added voltage.
Claims to high OC's "with no extra voltage" aren't as impressive as they sound, because the stock voltage here is close to the max allowed for the chip (1.38, with the spec max at 1.42). Power-conscious users might consider undervolting this CPU if running at stock speeds.
The lack of L3 cache (which was nowhere to be found, even after setting mobo ACC setting to "unleashed") can hobble performance on some tasks. Everyday office computing isn't affected, but a few of the benchmarks and distributed computing tasks I run show significant deficits versus some of the Intel Core 2 PCs I have.
AMD is offering a lot of choices and it's pretty cool to have a quad-core available for $99. The lack of L3 cache keeps this CPU cheap and running cool. Still, one might expect the user who can truly use 4 cores to also have a need for a large cache, leaving this chip in a strange niche -- or even just gee-whiz status. Builders with specific needs might instead research task benchmarks and consider X2 or X3 chips that run at higher speeds and/or with larger caches.
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