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AMD's Athlon Stepping Improvements

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March 20, 2008 6:49:06 PM

While processor architectures are typically available for years, AMD and Intel typically offer improved steppings throughout a product's lifecycle. We looked at the history of the Athlon 64 X2 5000.

http://www.tomshardware.com/2008/03/20/amd_athlon_stepping_improvements/index.html
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March 20, 2008 7:52:24 PM

Interesting article. What I'd really like to see though is the difference between the old chips with 2x1MB cache and the new ones with 2x512KB cache. Also found it interesting that the power consumption ddin't improve going from 90nm to 65nm. I guess AMD had really mastered that 90nm process.
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a b À AMD
March 20, 2008 9:03:41 PM

or their 65nm doesnt work 'properly' :/ 
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March 20, 2008 9:05:45 PM

No overclocking or temperature comparison? I was interested in that, and it's the only reason I started reading it in the first place. I only hope you include these things in the Intel article - since they are so crucial to the enthusiast community (which makes up the majority of the daily readers of this site).

Edit: also no mention of the difference in operating voltage between 90 & 65nm parts (1.184/1.184 & 1.328/1.344, respectively from the CPU-Z shots). Why the .14-.16 voltage bump when you're going to a smaller manufacturing tech? How did the 90nm stepping cut so much power when it's running at the same voltage as the original?
March 20, 2008 11:37:00 PM

Well power consumption pretty much tells you about temperature.

I was quite surprised that the 65nm process did not help with power consumption at all.
March 20, 2008 11:44:41 PM

So basically the 65nm saves some power at idle.

What I think would have made this article worthwhile would be to overclock them. I hope they do so, because I have a feeling the 90nm products would clock far higher.
March 21, 2008 1:13:43 AM

I wouldnt hold my breathe on overclock giving a huge preformance gain until they get away from there current architecture, and bring something out that is really worth buying.
March 21, 2008 4:03:56 AM

Why on earth would you not talk about overclocking in an article about stepping? I didn't even know what steppings were until I started overclocking.
March 21, 2008 4:29:04 AM

The only upside I can see is the use of 1066 RAM. No power changes, 65nm, and a loss of Cache.
If THG has these procs, OC em till they beg for mercy! Then tell me about temps, and voltage.
March 21, 2008 5:10:24 AM

Hmm are they faster than Intels models? Dont think so. Thanks for playing. When is amd gonna get their act together? Geez Athlon 64's used to rock...
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March 22, 2008 1:32:26 AM

Yeah, I'm trying to decide whether to wait for K10 dual core or not. I wish they would just release them already.
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March 22, 2008 2:01:24 PM

I plan on building in May so I don't think I can get the 45nm parts. If none of the 65nm Phenoms look good, I'll just get a 45W 4850e (2.5GHz).
April 4, 2008 4:02:47 AM

Is it just me or each 65nm stepping requires higher voltage for the same speed? That is just weird.
May 26, 2008 3:47:20 PM



This article misses on the most obvious question - voltage!!!! Why are the 65nm parts not lower voltage - and what are the procs capable of - undervolt / overclock????

Any idiot can tell you that an x2-5000 will all be the same!!! Thats why they have the same model number!! My windsor 90nm F2 stepping dual core runs stable with a slight overclock at 1.10 volts core. Is 65 any better?? No idea after reading this article.
May 26, 2008 10:05:24 PM

Then do some investigating on your own, dont be lazy and try to get other people to do it for you, that way your not a parrot, instead you will be informed.
!