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Best Gaming CPUs For The Money: January '10
Jan 18, 2010 - in Reviews
December was a somewhat slow month in the CPU world, but January promises to inject a great deal of excitement into the sector with some major announcements. We discuss some of the potential changes and make our recommendations in this month's article.
Experiment: Comparing Four Quad-Core Architectures At 2.8 GHz
Jan 14, 2010 - in Reviews
AMD has the Athlon II X4 and the Phenom II X4. Intel offers Core 2 Quad, Core i5, and Core i7. They all have different characteristics and performance, but what’s the performance and efficiency ranking if all are operated at identical clock speeds?
Efficiency Explored: What's The Perfect Clock Rate For Your Core i5?
Jan 11, 2010 - in Reviews
Intel’s Lynnfield-based LGA 1156 mid-range processors turned out to be screamers with lots of overclocking headroom and attractive price points. We put spurs to the Core i5-750 to find the clock speed at which it delivers maximum power efficiency.
PCI Express And CrossFire Scaling: Is P55 Good Enough?
Jan 7, 2010 - in Reviews
Surprised by the tiny performance difference between our top-two System Builder Marathon machines, we decided to find out if the P55 platform really is good enough for several of AMD’s best graphics cards. How does it stack up against the venerable X58?
Clarkdale's Efficiency: Core i5-661 Versus Core 2, Athlon II, And Phenom II
Jan 4, 2010 - in Reviews
The new dual-core Clarkdale CPUs from Intel are here, and they deliver impressive performance. Today, we look at how Core i5-661 compares to AMD’s Athlon II X2 and Phenom II X2 on the 785G platform. Who’s king of the ring from an efficiency standpoint?
Intel’s Mobile Core i5 And Core i3: Arrandale Is For The Rest Of Us
Jan 3, 2010 - in Reviews
We've already given you a first-look at Intel's Calpella platform in the Mobile Core i7-920XM. Now the company is filling out its next-gen mobile lineup with its Arrandale-based CPUs sporting 32nm dual-core processors and 45nm graphics controllers.
Intel Core i5-661: Clarkdale Rings The Death Knell Of Core 2
Jan 3, 2010 - in Reviews
After knocking out the high-end and mid-range with its Bloomfield- and Lynnfield-based processors, Intel is looking for blood in the entry-level space. But that's AMD's turf. Does a Core i5-661 have what it takes to best AMD's Phenom II X4? Let's dig in!
Experiment: Does Intel’s Turbo Boost Trump Overclocking?
Dec 28, 2009 - in Reviews
Now that the Core i5 and Core i7 CPUs include Turbo Boost technology, automatically increasing clock rate when there's thermal headroom to spare, is it still worthwhile for enthusiasts to overclock? We run our updated 2010 benchmark suite to find out.
Intel’s Atom D510 And NM10 Express: Down The Pine Trail With D510MO
Dec 20, 2009 - in Reviews
Intel's Atom processor family showed promise when it launched back in 2008, but it certainly wasn't an ideal desktop platform. Atom is back with an integrated memory controller, on-die graphics, and a new two-chip configuration. But is it any better?
Best Gaming CPUs For The Money: December '09
Dec 16, 2009 - in Reviews
This holiday season doesn't bring any major processor launches our way, but a handful of price changes do shift some of our sub-$150 recommendations. Come check out the latest Best Gaming CPUs For The Money column for December's hierarchy of top values.
Best Gaming CPUs For The Money: November '09
Nov 22, 2009 - in Reviews
Welcome to another edition of our Best Gaming CPUs for the Money. This month we have a handful of AMD-based processor introductions to factor into our recommendations. Moreover, Intel's Core i5-750 finds itself back on the list for new system builders.
AMD Phenom II X4 965 BE: Same Speed, Less Power
Nov 4, 2009 - in Reviews
Today AMD is introducing a revision of its flagship Phenom II X4 965 processor rated at 125W, replacing the 140W part, as well as a new 3.1 version of its Overdrive overclocking software. We take a quick look at both to see what advantages they offer.
Overclocked On Air: Intel's Core i5-750
Oct 28, 2009 - in Reviews
Intel's new quad-core i5 and i7 CPUs for LGA 1156 deliver plenty of performance and impressive efficiency. But how far can they be overclocked? We take the entry-level model Core i5-750 as far as it'll go with a modest air cooler and benchmark it.
Does Turbo Boost Help Or Hurt Core i5/i7's Power Efficiency?
Oct 23, 2009 - in Reviews
Intel’s LGA 1156 processors serve up terrific new levels of performance to the mainstream. Now it’s time to look at how efficiency changed from Core 2 Quad to Core i5/i7. We found Turbo Boost technology to be a potential issue, despite its clear value.
Athlon II X3 435: AMD's Three-Core, 2.9 GHz, $87 Triple-Threat
Oct 19, 2009 - in Reviews
Today AMD introduces what might turn out to be the ideal budget CPU, with three cores for multi-threading, a relatively high 2.9 GHz clock speed, and an impressive sub-$90 price tag. How does it stand up to the rest of the company's Athlon and Phenom IIs?
AMD Or Intel: Which $100 Gaming CPU Should You Buy?
Oct 15, 2009 - in Reviews
One hundred dollars seems like nothing for a new CPU, especially with so many new GPUs calling to us. We put the Athlon II X4 620, Phenom II X3 710, Phenom II X2 550, and dual-core Pentium E6500 to the test to find the best performer in today's games.
Mobile Core i7-920XM: Power Is The Price For Better Performance
Oct 14, 2009 - in Reviews
Nehalem has finally gone mobile. But despite the advanced manufacturing that has gone into making Core i7 Mobile more efficient, it's still rated at up to 55W TDP and includes features like Hyper-Threading and Turbo Boost to keep it close to that limit.
Athlon II Or Phenom II: Does Your CPU Need L3 Cache?
Oct 6, 2009 - in Reviews
AMD’s Athlon II X4 represents the first monolithic quad-core die without a shared L3 cache. Today, we're doing a more in-depth comparison between the Athlon II and Phenom II at comparable clock rates in order to reveal the true differences between them.
Best Gaming CPUs For The Money: October '09
Oct 5, 2009 - in Reviews
Welcome back to another installment in our Best Gaming CPUs for the Money column. In this month's list of recommendations, a number of new CPUs shake up the mix. Specifically, Intel's new Core i5-750 and the new Athlon II X4 620 from AMD.
AMD Athlon II X4 620: Quad Core For The Masses At $100
Sep 15, 2009 - in Reviews
AMD introduces the Propus core, an entry-level Athlon II X4 with a $100 price point. We looked at the first model, the 2.6 GHz 620, and put its performance and efficiency to task. It appears that this chip could become a great upgrade option.
In Theory: How Does Lynnfield's On-Die PCI Express Affect Gaming?
Sep 7, 2009 - in Reviews
What effect does integrated PCI Express have on gaming? Is Intel's LGA 1156 interface any better or worse than LGA 1366, with its QPI interface to the PCIe-rich X58 chipset? We run a battery of real world game tests to answer this theoretical question.
Intel Core i5 And Core i7: Intel’s Mainstream Magnum Opus
Sep 7, 2009 - in Reviews
We set off testing Intel's Lynnfield processors with low expectations, but were surprised to find the new LGA 1156-based CPUs are capable of holding their own and then some. Read on for more about Turbo Boost, Hyper-Threading, P55, and our recommendation.
Best Gaming CPUs For The Money: August '09
Sep 1, 2009 - in Reviews
In this, our second installment of the Best Gaming CPUs For The Money, we roll out another batch of recommendations, plus add a couple of other attributes readers wanted to see last time, such as platform longevity and overclockability.
Making Lemonade: Overclocking Your Locked AMD Processor
Aug 27, 2009 - in Reviews
We're spoiled. We know we are. Most of our AMD-oriented overclocking efforts center on unlocked Black Edition CPUs. But what if you're running a standard Phenom II? Today we show you how to get just as much performance from it using three techniques.
Under Core i7's Hood: Comparing The C0 And D0 Steppings
Aug 21, 2009 - in Reviews
You've likely already seen coverage of Intel's C0-based Core i7s compared to the latest stepping, D0. We wanted to do something different, so we compared the Core i7-965 Extreme to the 975 using base performance, power, and overclocking as our metrics.
AMD Phenom II X4 965 Black Edition Review
Aug 12, 2009 - in Reviews
With Intel's LGA 1156 Core i5/i7 launch looming, AMD is looking to strike one more blow against Core 2 Quad before getting compared to the Nehalem micro-architecture at mainstream prices. It's even sweetening the deal with bundle discounts.
Part 2: How Many CPU Cores Do You Need?
Aug 3, 2009 - in Reviews
In part two of this series, we'll address some of the issues raised in part one, such as the effect of shared cache between CPU cores, how the number of cores affects multitasking performance, and comparing the Phenom II to the Core 2 Quad.
Best Gaming CPUs For The Money: July 2009
Jul 28, 2009 - in Reviews
We're building on the popularity of our monthly Best Graphics Cards for the Money article by branching out into CPUs; specifically, the Best Gaming CPUs for the Money. In our first installment, we explain our methods and share initial recommendations.
Guide: Overclocking AMD And Intel CPUs On A Budget
Jul 20, 2009 - in Reviews
Once the territory of savvy enthusiasts, overclocking is now easy enough to entice even first-time builders. We walk through the process with four high-value dual- and quad-core CPUs from AMD and Intel: two Phenom IIs, a Pentium, and a Core 2 Quad.
Intel Shows How A CPU Is Made
Jul 18, 2009 - in Picture Story
Intel released a press kit that visually explains how a CPU is made and reveals all the major steps in a process that normally takes hundreds of stages to complete. Check out the engineering magic!