AMD Phenom II X4 810 and X3 720 BE Processors - HotHardware

AMD Phenom II X4 810 and X3 720 BE Processors

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As you saw on the previous page, the new Socket AM3 Phenom II X4 and X3 processors look just like the original Phenoms, or older Athlons for that matter, due to the similar packaging and heat spreader designs.  There are some subtle differences with Socket AM3 processors, however, that we should point out.

 
Socket AM3 Phenom II X3 720 and X4 810 Side by Side

Socket AM3 processors are architected to work with both DDR2 and DDR3 memory, and with Socket AM3 or AM2+ motherboards.  Socket AM2+ processors do not have this ability though, so AMD made some changes to the Socket AM3 pin configuration to prevent AM2+ processors from being plugged into the socket.  Socket AM3 processors have 938 pins, whereas socket AM2 processors have 940, hence two pins have been removed from these new Phenom II processors.  If you look close at the shot above, you'll notice that there are two groups of three and two groups of two pins removed on the underside of the AM3 processors--on AM2+ processors, four groups of two pins are removed.  Keying the processors and sockets this way prevents AM2+ processors from being installed on AM3 motherboards, but allows AM3 processors to be installed on either type of motherboard.

The new Phenom II X3 720 Black Edition and X4 810 are both compatible with DDR2 and DDR3 memory, and support a 2GHz memory controller frequency.  If you remember, the first Phenom II processors we showed you last month supported only a 1.8GHz memory controller frequency.  TDPs are rated for only 95W and each CPU has a total of 512K of L1 cache, 2MB or 1.5MB of L2 cache (512MB per core), and 4MB or 6MB of shared L3 cache.  The X3 720 Black Edition has a full 6MB L3 like earlier Phenom IIs, while the X4 810, and other 800 series Phenom IIs, will have only 4MB of L3.


  
AMD Phenom II X3 720 CPU-Z Details 


  
AMD Phenom II X4 810 CPU-Z Details

To get a closer look into each processor's inner workings, we fired up CPU-Z to take a peek at thier core and cache configurations.  CPU-Z correctly identifies the processors as Phenom IIs, based on the core codenamed "Deneb". As the information shows, the chips are manufactured using AMD's 45nm process technology and our particular samples have a stepping designation of 2 and core revision of RB-C2. The Phenom II X3 720 chip is clocked at 2.8GHz, due to its 14x multiplier and 200MHz base clock, the HT link is running at 2.0GHz, and there is 512K of L1 Data / Instruction cache, 1.5MB of L2 cache (512K per core), and 6MB of shared L3 cache available.  The Phenom II X4 810 chip is clocked at 2.6GHz (13 x 200MHz) also with an HT link running at 2.0GHz and 512K of L1 Data / Instruction cache, but with 2MB of L2 cache (512K per core), and only 4MB of shared L3 cache.
 

Overclocking The Phenom II X3 720 and X4 810
Pedal To The Metal



AMD Phenom II X3 720 Overclocked to 3.6GHz
 


AMD Phenom II X4 810 Overclocked to 3.33GHz

Overlcocking with AMD's Phenom II processors has been interesting to say the least. By now, you all should know about the significant headroom left in these CPUs.  So with that in mind, we set out to overclock them both using a stock AMD PIB cooler and MSI 790GX based motherboard.  With only a bump in CPU core voltage to 1.5v, we were able to take the Phenom II X3 720 Black Edition to 3.6GHz with complete stability.  Remember, Black Edition processors are unlocked, so we were able to achieve this overclock by merely altering the CPU multiplier in the system BIOS.  The Phenon II X4 810 is not a Black Edition processor, so overclocking it required altering of the base HT clock frequency.

Our motherboard wasn't being very cooperative for this test, but with minimal effort we were still able to hit over 3.3GHz.  With some better cooling and more aggressive voltage tweaking, we suspect even higher clock speeds than these will be possible.  This is important to note because these processors are relatively inexpensive and should be attractive to you budget minded overclockers out there. 

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Phenom II X3 720 Overclocked to 3.6GHz for about $145? Sounds rather tasty!

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Super Dave:

Phenom II X3 720 Overclocked to 3.6GHz for about $145? Sounds rather tasty!

Yes. It sounds VERY tasty! Pizza

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Can you get these yet? May have to retire to trusty old Pentium D.

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Yes... this is what I waiting for. Now I can start pricing the new AMD Phenoms with DDR3 support and the related chipset MB's. I am going to put either one of them or a I7 and related system components into a new system. but you couldn't price them against each other until they were actively on the market of course. I think I may still wait for a minute to let the components get totally current driver wise etc.. What graphics implementation do you guys think would be the most advantageous? I was thinking either a 4870 or dual 4850's or maybe an Nvidia card but I want something that will do everything on a best perf. VS. price basis. How soon do you guys think the next GPU will hit?

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What cooler were you using on the chips cause by rights you shouldnt have any trouble with a decent air cooler to hit 4ghz, especially on that triple core. The oc on the 810 is low, nearly all other review sites have that thing running at 3.7-3.8 like they do with the 720be, and a few sites have gotten the 720be to 4ghz on air.

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AMD is on a roll with these Phenom II's, they just need a extreme CPU.

Bring back the FX!!

Phenom II X4 FX 990 3.4 GHz??

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OOO I havent seen a FX series from AMD in some time, the last one i can think of was the 70 or 71 i think....

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Which of Amd,s current offerings as far as performance would be on par with Intels current i7 / 920? And what kind of price range are we looking at!?

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Sadly, none of AMDs current offerings are on par with Intels Core i7.  They finally managed to get up to Core2 level.

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That's because the i7 is totally brand new technology while the AM3's are just AM2+'s with DDR3 support and some changes.

Look at the cost difference too.

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