Date Joined: 12/20/07
Pros: Much faster than my Phenom Agena 9600 2.3 Ghz(with TLB Fix thru BIOS). All comparisons are with the above mentioned processor.
Went from 50 fps to 120 fps on Half Life 2: Lost Coast.
Improved AMD Overdrive benchmark score went from 6721 to 7354.
A program I made for parallel gaussian matrix inversion ran at 30% faster on average than the old processor.
It is incredibly easy and fun to overclock this processor using AMD Overdrive, without a thought, I overclocked to 2.7 no prob, and though I'm not much of an overclocker, just these 200 Mhz more brought in significant gains on parallel applications, I brought it back down to standard specs though after running a few intensive apps though, 2.5 ghz is more than enough for me.
Cons: It runs hotter than the Agena, but not by much, stays at around 53 deg. celsius on idle and about 60 higher under load, it has a good fan... Works very well. The increased heat is expected as it uses more power than the Agena.
Overall Review: MSI K9A2 Platinum
4 Gigs G-Skill DDR2 PC8500 @ 1066(5-5-5-15)
2 HD 2600 XT's In Crossfire: Pertains to the HL2 Lost Coast Benchmark.
Pros: GDDR5...Incredible memory bandwidth
800 Stream Processors.
Easy to install, easily connected the two additional six pin power connectors.
Playing at 1680x1050 Resolution...I can play Crysis on Max Settings 4xFSAA (40-20 FPS with about 30 on average). Call of Duty 4 Max Settings 4xFSAA, Vertical Sync Enabled, very stable at 60 FPS, the lowest I've seen the FPS drop was to 50.
Cons: Runs hot (76-80 Deg. Celsius) on default fan speed settings(28%)...Be sure to change the fan speed settings using the XML Catalyst profile method (Search Google: 4870 fan speed xml). I changed the fan speed to run at 40%. Now my card's idle temp is 53-Celsius and the temp of the card under load is 65-Celsius, most people will not notice probably the increase in noise with the case panel on, until the drivers fix the automatic fan speed control I'm afraid this is the only easy solution.
Overall Review: My System:
MSI K9A2 Platinum w/ AMD Phenom 9850 2.5 Ghz Quad Core
4 Gigs DDR2 1066(5-5-5-15) G-Skill Dual Channel
22 Inch Gateway LCD Monitor at 1680x1050
Pros: Works flawlessly on auto-detected timings in my K9A2 Platinum with Phenom 9600.
They look nice, and stay cool, even under high load.
Timings(automatically set by the mobo):
5-7-7-20-33(from CPU-Z) (Kinda spacious, but stability was the top priority on my machine so I left them this way.)
Memory bandwidth test on my system using all stock settings with my equipment: Phenom 9600 seated on K9A2 Platinum Bios 1.3 with this memory running at 1066 and the timings mentioned above. SiSoftware Sandra Reported 8.5 Gigabytes per second of memory bandwidth.
Cons: Had to tell the bios to use the FSB:DRAM ration of 1:2.66 to get it to run in 1066 but I had to do this with the other ram I bought for my mobo.
Overall Review: Its ram, its fast, it works. I'm sticking with G.Skill from now on.
Pros: I have owned this processor for 3 months. It is very very stable, even when OC'd...Ahem...From what I've heard...(warranty!) Using the stock fan, one can easily overclock it to 2.7 GHZ without heat problems by adjusting the fsb in BIOS. This processor will not outdo the top of the line Intel Core 2 Extreme that's out right now, but will provide a low cost alternative for those who want of available Ghz for threads to play with.
Cons: All the negative press errata 298 is getting, made me suspect the processor instead of the ram for some initial stability problems. I investigated, found out the problem was my ram, and now with my replacement(new ram specs in other "thoughts section"), have not had even one system crash since then (check your ram first people!).
Overall Review: My Relevant Equipment in Summary!
MSI K9A2 Platinum(5/5)
AMD Phenom 9600 Agena(5/5)
Crucial Ballistix 1066 2.2V (1/5) -Caused me about a month of headaches, they would work, then they wouldn't, not worth the time). So I bought these babies:
G-Skill 1066 2 sticks with 2 Gigs each; Fast and passed 13 Hour Memtest at 2.1 Volts @ 1066 Speed. 8.5 Gigs per second bandwidth as report by SiSoftsandra. All of the memory numbers here were obtained with the memory at what my k9a2 plat autodetected them at: 5-7-7-20-33 2T(CPU-Z)
OCZ-GamerXStream 700 Watt: I'm no expert on PSU's, so I won't rate this.
Hope this helps.
Pros: The processor is solid. I have had no trouble now that I have the updated bios. I had problems at first with BSOD's but I believe that was more related to the crummy memory I had, it was random BSOD's which doesn't fit the profile of the high utilization described in the errata. Furthermore, multitasking with this baby is incredible, Running Crysis on the desktop, while serving music and video to my PS3, while burning a DVD, no-problem, and browsing the web, no sweat, system remains responsive with only 2 gigs of ram.
Cons: The large negative press regarding the Translation Lookaside Buffer Errata has received so much ado that it made me suspect the CPU first rather than the memory I had bought, in the end, it turned out that my memory was the problem, replaced memory, stability problems went out the window.
Overall Review: Can't wait until the 3.00 Ghz comes out, this system is amazing. AMD Phenom Agena 9600 on a MSI k9a2 platinum with 2 ATI Visiontek HD 2600 XT's in Crossfire, had 2 Gigs of Crucial Ballistix, but one of them was bad, so I'm about to have 4 Gigs of G.Skill 1066 Mhz Ram. Hopefull things will be much better now that I know the rest of the system is in good order.
Pros: Graphics are amazing, at 1080p on 42'' widescreen. Textures, lighting and environmental ambiance are immersing, You will feel like you are in Damascus, Jerusalem, etc...Crowd interaction is lifelike, A.I. is very impressive except for hiding spots(they would know to look behind a curtain!)
Character control is easy, jumping is intuitive and very fun and easy, the best jumping system I've seen in a game, including grabbing back on after falling, hopping, etc...
I enjoyed the game 5/5 eggs. I was hooked from beginning to end, replay value is 2 out of 5 eggs as once you are through with the story once through, leaves little else to do.
Cons: Choppy, low priority background rendering threads give an impression of low frames while higher priority up-front rendering stays smooth, gives an odd sensation that the system is slow, but, not really.
The the game was not optimized for the PS3 so some of the vistas you encounter out on the road or on high viewpoints result in poor frame-rates for a PS3 game. In any case, I wish it were that the PS3 version had been more optimized than it was, the programmers are being very lazy in their adoption of its superior hardware.
Overall Review: The ending...Bah! What a tease! It sets you up to be ready for the next installment.