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Frontpage Slideshow | Copyright © 2006-2010 orks, a business unit of Nuevvo Webware Ltd.
Friday, 20 August 2010 13:14

Phenom II X6 in the lab - 6 System cost & Conclusion

Written by Eliot Kucharik

amd_phenom_x6_front_small recommended08_75 
Review: Affordable Hexa-Cores

System Cost:

We have put together all the prices except PSU, Case and Drives, While the MSI 785GM-E65 is not any more available we changed it to the MSI 785GM-E51 which also supports X6 CPUs, the Intel 1156 CPUs uses an ASRock H55M Pro (a tad more expensive compared to the non-Pro version) and the i7-975 got an MSI X58 Platinum. All systems with 4GB DDR3 memory clocked at 1333MHz regardsless of the X58 triple memory support. Because the X4-620 is not any longer available we changed the CPU to the X4-635 and upped the 620 scores 11% to reflect the increased clock of the 635.

amd_phenom_x6_cost

Conslusion:

Do we really need six Cores? That depands on what you want to do with your computer. For people into rendering, video encoding more CPU cores won't hurt. For gamers it's just not that important, because most games are limited to three threads. So while gamers may not benefit of more cores they might benefit from the Turbo-Core function which is similar to Intel's Turbo Boost.

The really amazing thing is the quite low power-consuption of the six Cores. There is not much difference in power drain with the X4 CPUs but clearly AMD gives Intel a run for its money. As usual the AMD CPUs are a tad slower clock by clock and due to limitations of mostly not AMD optimized codebase. In the latest FCC ruling against Intel, it come to light that Intel might have slowed the competition on purpose, which is not a nice thing to do. Would we use later software version of the x264 codec AMD would have beaten an Intel i7-975, but as you know to retest every platfrom and CPU takes lots time.

The cheaper 1055T is direct competition for the i5-750/760 CPUs. Nowadays you can get a boxed 1055T for €174,- which is just a tad more expensive then a i5-750. The Black Edition 1090T which is unlocked is available for €252,- which is quite a bargain as an i7-950 costs double.

We were impressed with the new six-cores and if you planning upgrading your system you can't do anything wrong using them. Especially the Phenom II X6 1055T can only be recommended for its excellent price/performance ratio for a high-end CPU.

recommended-2010

(Page 6 of 6)
Last modified on Friday, 20 August 2010 12:30
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Comments  

 
+7 #1 anno 2010-08-20 20:42
Excellent review. :) It was very good to see the system cost and cost per performance graphs, when so many other review site ignore that aspect all together. And that while it's one of the key factors in deciding what to buy.

The conclusion was to be expected, and is in all honesty already fairly well known.

In some cases additional cores benefit games too though:

http://i34.tinypic.com/344e4c4.jpg

This will likely hold more and more true in the future - at least, when the graphics card isn't a bottleneck.
 
 
+6 #2 blandead 2010-08-20 21:06
"Would we use later software version of the x264 codec AMD would have beaten an Intel i7-975, but as you know to retest every platfrom and CPU takes lots time."

I hope people didn't overlook this comment. Just goes to show you when more programs are optimized to use all 6-cores, how much better these processors can be even compared to the i7-975
 
 
+9 #3 Bl0bb3r 2010-08-20 22:17
Nope blandead, it's not just about the programs themselves but the compiler.

This just shows that when using GNU C Compiler, both AMD and Intel platforms can perform good. But when using some intel compiler, it will actually reduce the performance of the competition. And guess what, most benchmarks are compiled exactly in that compiler.
 
 
+2 #4 blandead 2010-08-21 20:28
I'm sure there are other factors, but nonetheless if a program is optimized to use all 6 cores it brings huge improvements to these chips over any quad core. what i said was not wrong, if you wanna add more info go ahead, but my logic holds true.
 
 
0 #5 Peter Ong 2010-08-22 04:36
Does database server, Java EE apps benefited from 6 cores? Thanks in advance for anyone casting some light here.
 
 
+1 #6 blandead 2010-08-22 06:22
database server would surely benefit I do not know about Java EE
 
 
0 #7 Jaberwocky 2010-08-22 10:30
Err Chaps.It's all in the cache.I run a 1055T o/clocked to 3.4 Ghz.It's the 6MB cache that is limiting.A baseline for Rendering a scene with just 2 core enabled works out at 100%, so if you enable all 6 cores it should speed the rendering to 300%.IE 3X as fast.Wrong.It actually renders at around 230%.Implying that once the 6MB cache is distributed amongst all 6 cores ,it becomes the bottleneck.If AMD could work on this and double the amount of on board cache then they would have a performer on their hands.
 
 
+5 #8 anno 2010-08-22 12:09
Jaberwocky, it could be that you're right, but that's not necessarily true. There are more resources shared between the cores, for instance the memory interface and northbridge and hypertransport switch. Even with double the cache you will never see 100% scaling in chips, that's practically impossible. You don't see it with Gulftown either, which by the way has less cache per core too, seeing as Intel uses inclusive caches.

Of course I'm sure you understand that Thuban is already quite large and increasing its size would reduce yields, and so making it more expensive than you'd expect. It's all trade offs. :)
 
 
-1 #9 Bl0bb3r 2010-08-22 15:36
Quoting blandead:
I'm sure there are other factors, but nonetheless if a program is optimized to use all 6 cores it brings huge improvements to these chips over any quad core. what i said was not wrong, if you wanna add more info go ahead, but my logic holds true.


Yes, in theory.. but in reality things are quite different. You can optimize all you want, a rigged compiler will screw with those optimizations anyway.
 

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