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Should I Upgrade my CPU to an AMD Athlon™ 64 X2 Dual-Core 4800+?

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January 30, 2008 3:48:13 PM

Hello. I Have Compaq Presario SR5023WM Desktop PC and according to Compaq/HP Help Desk my cpu can be upgraded from its AMD Athlon™ 64 3800+ to an AMD Athlon™ 64 X2 Dual-Core 4800+ because thats the maximum my AM2 Socket motherboard will support. I try finding information everywhere whether I would see a performance increase, especially in games which is what I love to do with my PC. I know the Graphics card plays an important part but that is a different subject and I'm aware that i need to upgrade my Graphics card soon. I also will not purchase a new computer for I want to upgrade my components. I need to know if is worth it? How much of a difference in performance? Thanks.

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Note: I already upgraded the memory to 2GB (CORSAIR XMS2 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory) http://www.newegg.com/Product/...x?Item=N82E16820145177 unfortunately, Compaq strip my motherboard to only have two dimm slots so I can't go higher but I notice a diffence in performance. Also, Upgraded the PSU from its 200Watt to 470W unit. Here is the specs link for my computer... http://h10025.www1.hp.com/ewfr...&dlc=en&dlc=en〈=en and here is the motherboard specs according to Compaq...Is for an ASUS Ivy (Asus' website has no details about this board)... http://h10025.www1.hp.com/ewfr...&dlc=en&dlc=en〈=en
January 30, 2008 4:45:30 PM

When you eventually upgrade your graphics card you'll find a 3800+ single core is simply too slow for the new card to perform optimally. My advice would be yes, upgrade the CPU to the 4800+.

The Geforce 8800 GS and GT along with the Radeon HD3850 and 3870 are all great choices for video cards; absolutely the best bang for the buck.
January 30, 2008 5:16:36 PM

KloudSwift said:
Hello. I Have Compaq Presario SR5023WM Desktop PC and according to Compaq/HP Help Desk my cpu can be upgraded from its AMD Athlon™ 64 3800+ to an AMD Athlon™ 64 X2 Dual-Core 4800+ because thats the maximum my AM2 Socket motherboard will support.


You could either have a 2.4 Ghz single-core processor or you could possibly mean that you have a 2.0 Ghz Athlon 64 X2 3800 dual-core processor. I'm assuming you have the single-core processor. This comes with a 512 KB L2 cache.

The X2 4800+ on AM2, assuming you don't go with the energy-efficient version, runs at 2.4 Ghz and has a 2 x 1024 KB L2 cache.

The X2 4800+ will be SLIGHTLY faster than your 3800 at single-threaded applications. The difference comes from the much larger L2 cache. Still, chances are good that you'd need to benchmark to really see much difference. That said, even single-threaded apps will benefit from the operating system's ability to run on one core while your app runs on the other.

The big win, of course, is in multithreaded apps. Here, you will find the 4800+ almost twice as fast as the 3800+. Note, though, that very few games and indeed not much outside of video processing applications really make use of multiple cores at the moment. And chances are good that you aren't often ripping a video while, say, playing a game.

This is changing even as we speak. More apps and more games are being released that take advantage of the extra core. In some cases, this makes a 100% difference. In others, more like 10 - 30%.

So, is it a good upgrade for you? Well, that depends on what you are doing. Personally, I spend much of my time compiling. I'm hoping to pick up an 8-core system in 2008 or early 2009 and I assure you, I will notice the difference. Personally, I think dual-core systems are worth the money. But it depends on what you'll be doing.
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January 30, 2008 11:11:34 PM

yamla said:
You could either have a 2.4 Ghz single-core processor or you could possibly mean that you have a 2.0 Ghz Athlon 64 X2 3800 dual-core processor. I'm assuming you have the single-core processor. This comes with a 512 KB L2 cache.

The X2 4800+ on AM2, assuming you don't go with the energy-efficient version, runs at 2.4 Ghz and has a 2 x 1024 KB L2 cache.

The X2 4800+ will be SLIGHTLY faster than your 3800 at single-threaded applications. The difference comes from the much larger L2 cache. Still, chances are good that you'd need to benchmark to really see much difference. That said, even single-threaded apps will benefit from the operating system's ability to run on one core while your app runs on the other.

The big win, of course, is in multithreaded apps. Here, you will find the 4800+ almost twice as fast as the 3800+. Note, though, that very few games and indeed not much outside of video processing applications really make use of multiple cores at the moment. And chances are good that you aren't often ripping a video while, say, playing a game.

This is changing even as we speak. More apps and more games are being released that take advantage of the extra core. In some cases, this makes a 100% difference. In others, more like 10 - 30%.

So, is it a good upgrade for you? Well, that depends on what you are doing. Personally, I spend much of my time compiling. I'm hoping to pick up an 8-core system in 2008 or early 2009 and I assure you, I will notice the difference. Personally, I think dual-core systems are worth the money. But it depends on what you'll be doing.


Thanks for the advice. I have one question..Do you think that I can go higher than the 4800+ been that I upgraded the stock PSU to a 470W? ... http://www.pcpower.com/power-supply/silencer-470-atx.ht.... Possibly goes as high as the X2 6400+.
January 31, 2008 1:09:43 AM

If you have an AM2 socket get a 5000+ and over clock it as far as you mb will allow. They cost about 99usd.
January 31, 2008 2:48:07 AM

Not sure if a compaq would support changing the multiplier. Do a little prying in your bios and see if you can. Also check to see if it allows changing voltages. I somehow doubt it. If you can, it would be worth it to go for the 5000+ Black Edition. If you can't, then grab a 4800+, 5200+, or whatever fits your budget The compaq probably says that it only supports the 4800+ because that was the fastest at the time. A bios update should allow you to use any of the newer AM2 processors. If you want good comparisons between your old CPU and a 4800+ X2 or others, check out the CPU charts on the home page of tomshardware.

http://www23.tomshardware.com/cpu_2007.html?modelx=33&m...
January 31, 2008 3:46:13 AM

I upgraded from a 4200+ to a 6400+ and the difference is astonishing; much greater that I had anticipated. My GPU is an 8800 GTS 320.

Ex: 3D Mark 06 - 7668 with the 4200+, 10024 with the 6400+ (I couldn't believe it broke 10000).

Ex. of pure gaming improvement: Fear settings test (1680x1050, 4xAA,16xAF all settings maxed)

4200+: min fps 28, ave fps 44, max fps 61, 39% 25-40 fps, 61% 40+fps.

6400+ : min fps 44, ave fps 58, max fps 66, 100% above 40 fps.
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January 31, 2008 4:20:57 AM

For all the upgrading you want to do, you're better off buying a new machine. The major drawback will the locked BIOS on the proprietary micro-ATX Compaq mobo, plus no room in that case. I have a Compaq where an FX5200 almost hits the IDE cable on the hard drive.
January 31, 2008 5:36:14 AM

I just picked up a MB/CPU como at Fry's for $159 that had a AMD AM2 6000+ (dual core,2MB L2 per core and 3Ghz stock speed)...after retuning the cheap ECS MB the CPU cost me $111 USD.

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January 31, 2008 5:59:31 AM



A AMD 6400 will slot straight in to your motherboard......


Go for one of these...........

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

For $160 dollars, you cant go wrong and will last you another 2 years or so, ad this with a nvidia 8800gt 512 and your flying.

I have used one in these ( A 6400 in it ) and it breaths new life...

January 31, 2008 6:30:14 AM

I believe you can not use any chip with a multiplier higher than twelve.
A lot of cheap mobos come with a reduced number of placeholders for the multiplier. Placeholders are digital, so 12 would be 1111. It tales up 4 places. 13 is 10001. That's one too many places, so your board would most likely see only 1000. Your chip would run @ 1.8ghz.
There may or little or no advantage for you in changing your chip out to dual core. If none of your games are multithreaded, and you dont use some form of IM in game, there would be no noticeable change in your gaming experience. Depending on your current card, a gfx upgrade may be your best option.
In other words, what gfx card are you using, what game, and online or off?
January 29, 2009 12:31:53 AM

I have the same Mobo/Computer and mine came with a 3600+ X2. I upgraded to a 5600+ X2 w/no probs and am sure the 6400+ will work as well, so shoot for the moon with your proc. I can't say I have seen tremendous improvement in daily apps, although I have seen a bit, games do run smoother and faster tha before and audio/video en/de coding as well as de/compression is much faster (WinRAR etc). So it is worth it.
January 29, 2009 9:05:46 AM

mks - after almost a year, the OP has probably already made his CPU purchase decision...
January 29, 2009 5:25:16 PM

I figured, but btter late than never and I felt an obligation to report the truth for other readers of the thread. I found it through google looking for answers to a different question, so maybe it will help another.
March 24, 2009 12:54:41 AM

MidKnightSecs said:
I figured, but btter late than never and I felt an obligation to report the truth for other readers of the thread. I found it through google looking for answers to a different question, so maybe it will help another.


I just found this thread and basically have the same question - currently running an Athlon 64 3800+ and am considering an Athlon 64 X2 4800 since that seems to be the fastest cpu I can just drop in my motherboard. I have an A8AE-LE (AmberineM) motherboard in an HP system (a1330n). I understand that I may or may not see a difference in performance depending on what I'm running. My question is will the X2 4800 "just work"? All the CPU configuration options are hidden in the BIOS so an upgrade has to plug & play. Also, I wonder if a faster cpu would work? If there's any real work involved I would look to a new motherboard/cpu.
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