AMD Phenom X4 9350e and 9950 BE Debut - HotHardware

AMD Phenom X4 9350e and 9950 BE Debut

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As you saw on the previous page, the new Phenom X4 9950 Black Edition and Phenom X4 9350e physically look just like all current Phenom processors. They utilizes the same packaging and 940-pin Socket AM2+ configuration.


 
Details from CPU-Z with the Phenom X4 9350e

 
Details from CPU-Z with the Phenom X4 9950


We recieved Phenom X4 9950 Black Edition and X4 9350e processors for testing, hence the two sets of CPU-Z screen shots above.  As you can see, CPU-Z correctly identifies and outlines the Phenom X4 9950's X4 9350e's inner workings, save for the missing "e" in the 9350e's name.  The processors are based on the Agena core with socket AM2+ packaging.  They are clocked at 2.6GHz (13 x 200MHz) and 2.0GHz (10 x 200MHz) respectively.  Both chips are reported as stepping ‘DR-B3’ and they both support all of the instructions sets listed in the aptly names "instructions" section of CPU-Z.  The processors' 2MB L2 cache configuration (512KB per core) is 16-way set associative, but their 2MB of shared L3-cache is 32-way set associative.  With the exception of their clock speeds and power ratings mentioned on the previous page, technically, nothing else has changed with these new chips since the introduction of the first B3-Phenoms.

Overclocking The Phenom X4 9950
Pedal To The Metal

We know many of you are wondering just how much clock speed headroom these new Phenoms have left under their hoods, so we spent some time overclocking our chips using a Gigabyte 790FX-chipset based motherboard.  Because the Phenom X4 9950 is a "Black Edition" processor, its multiplier is unlocked and can be increased for east overclocking.  The X4 9350e, however could only be overclocked by altering the HT frequency, which requires much more work.



Phenom X4 9950 Overclocked to 3.1GHz


By altering its multiplier and increasing the CPU voltage to 1.45v, we were able to take our Phenom X4 9950 to an respectable 3.1GHz using nothing but a stock AMD PIB cooler.  Higher frequencies were possible, but we couldn't keep the system 100% stable, so we backed things down to 3.1GHz.  While running at that speed, we re-ran some tests and also monitored core temperatures and found that the chip never broke the 60ºC mark, and hovered around 58ºC under load  - at least according to AMD's Overdrive software.  That is one heck of an overclock and relatively cool temperatures for a Phenom in our opinion.  If the majority of chips have the same amount of headroom as ours, we suspect the 9950 Black Edition will be appealing to AMD CPU enthusiasts looking for the best the company has to offer.

As for the X4 9350e, we couldn't stabilize our system with any HT reference clock above 277MHz, which resulted in a respectable overclock to 2.77GHz.  To acheive that speed, however, we had to drop the HT link and memory controller multipliers, as you can see in the CPU-Z screenshot to the left.

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Wow, that 9950 is power hungry.  Eek.  They gotta get that down.  Not bad performance, but it's still the same architecture so it's gonna lag behind Intel in many things.

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I don't really like re-releases of a same core just with "higher clocks" -- if its the same architecture why not just release it with the rest of the series?

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Yeah but at least there getting more up to speed. I hate to say it but even as an AMD enthusiast who's thinking about building a new system I don't know. The power is no issue I'm looking at either the HYPER 885 or 1200 watt unit for power so thats no issue at all. However Intel is supposed to release a totally new CPU in the next 6 months. With the last 2 years of results in processor output and the performance variables I might have to just go intel and DDR3.

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rapid, perhaps youd be interested in uying my 1250 watt psu?

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I have faith in AMD -- look what just happened between ATI and nVidia! I believe DAMIT is just starting to get their feet under them from the merger way back and beginning to make headway....its only a matter of time

I say this as no fanboi of either AMD or Intel -- just as a guy hoping for good competition

 

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 Hey guys, I have been tweaking some Phenoms and I have found some interesting stuff. Amd phenom is performing better on higher resolutions given the same video card. Would you guys mind testing this for me ? It would really be helpful.  In particular the 9950 even though the 9850 would still be good if that is all you have access to.

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 I am bumping this. I am suprised no one is as curious as me.

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