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Amd Phenom II X4 940 or Intel Core 2 Quad Q9400

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July 28, 2009 3:40:24 PM

As the title says, I'm going to upgrade for a quad core cpu, and i was wondering which one of these 2 is the fastest in games like gta iv and far cry 2(cpu hungry games) and in video rendering? i'm an intel fan but i've heard that the phenom 2's are pretty close to the core 2 quad Q9xxx series, both cost the same so which one is the best? tnx in advance

More about : amd phenom 940 intel core quad q9400

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July 28, 2009 3:48:28 PM

they pretty much trade blows. I would think overclocked the 9400 would outshine the 940. If the upgrade isnt a huge rush in about 3 weeks or so there will be a new batch of cpus, which should lower the price of current tech.

http://anandtech.com/bench/default.aspx?p=76&p2=80
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July 28, 2009 3:54:19 PM

OCing only the intel one and not the other amd is not a fair comparison....

and yes i5s are due to arrive soon so hold off on this would be a smart idea.
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July 28, 2009 4:27:30 PM

Reynod explained some issues with overclocking a q9400 :-

Quote:
The Q9400 may also overclock quite well but your starting at 333 on the FSB ... means you will need good RAM and a good motherboard to push it as far. A 400Mhz FSB will give you 3.2Ghz ... might be hard to get much further.

Getting a Q9400 to 3.6Ghz means a massive OC of around 450Mhz on the FSB ... good luck with that one ... Iv'e got one Corsair stick that will go there !!!


In short, its going to cost you a lot more in expensive components, that is why you don't see a whole lot of Q9400's at 3.6ghz or above.

The 940 BE will reach 3.6ghz with ease and 3.8ghz at a push on just about any motherboard/ram combo.

If both could reach 3.8ghz, the Q9400 would probably be a very tiny bit faster overall, faster in apps but slower in gaming. Considering the difficulties involved in getting a good OC out of a q9400, I'd definitely give the overclocking points to the phenom instead.
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July 28, 2009 5:16:35 PM

ok thanks for the fast reply's guys :) 
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July 28, 2009 5:24:27 PM

hmm about that, can you simply put some dividers in or is that a performance killer with non IMC stuff?

I remember people back in A64 running 300 * 8 instead of a larger multi of like x10 or what nots, as this way, you have smaller increments on the end OC and can tune your system. But that is with IMC, and I haven't tried it on my I7 (I have with my A64, and it works just as well for my chip as the normal way of raising HT base OC, the extra like 15 Mhz wasn't worth putting up a huge divider on DDR1 ram atm)
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July 28, 2009 6:15:48 PM

Normally you can lower the multiplier on intels, but that means raising the FSB even higher. The main issue is finding a mobo that goes above 450 or so, there aren't a whole lot on the cheap side for sure.

The reason the BE phenom's overclock so easily is you simply just up the multiplier from 15x to 18-18.5x and that's pretty much an overclock of .6 to .8ghz right there.

Although the q9400 would be slightly better clock for clock, it's highly unlikely you would get a q9400 to the same clock speed as a phenom II 940. It's doable yes, but highly unlikely you would spend so much on the other components required to do it.

Here is the thread i was talking about - http://www.tomshardware.co.uk/forum/page-260148_10_0.ht...

Hard to believe the Q6600 is still hanging in there, what a cpu that was. If I was buying intel with a view to overclocking I'd take a Q6600 before a Q9400.
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July 29, 2009 12:17:20 PM

i mean socket 939 a64s lol, not the new Ph IIs.

upping multi is the easiest way, but only the best from intel and (during the 939 days) amd has it, so people began to play with other methods, like the low multi + high fsb with big memory and chipset divider approach, this way, they can't really kill overclocking unless they kill of large memory dividers (there was rumors of intel and amd doing a low multi high fsb chip, and intel def did it with the q9400 and other quad cores several years later that basically forces your hand on this, and needs good mobo and ram to pull this off)
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July 29, 2009 5:34:32 PM

I'd take the Phenom II X4 940, you shoudl be able to hit 3.4Ghz stock voltage/stock heatsink without problems. With a good aftermarket cooler you'll get the 3.6-3.8 easily that people are talking about.
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July 29, 2009 7:30:40 PM

i have both AMD 940 & Q9400 @ 3.6GHz and Q9400 is little bit faster in video rendering but in everyday office/home usage, won't even notice the difference between the two. Q9400 runs way cooler than the AMD PII 940. Both @ 3.6GHz with Xiggy S1283V: Q9400 idles 38-40c loads 57-59c & AMD 940 idles 47-49c loads 72c in 4 hours of OCCT. Both system has same case, psu, hsf, case fans, ram, gpu & hard drives.

Over the weekend, I'm gonna lap the 940 to see how much the temp will differ.
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July 29, 2009 7:33:26 PM

i would get the Q9400 with asus or gigabyte P45 / ICH10R mb.
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July 30, 2009 4:05:01 AM

AMD would probably be the better option because it has a pretty definite future in terms of upgrading. Overclocking should be about the same for both of them but on socket 775, the furthest you'll get to is a Q9650 while the AMD could reach new architectures.
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July 30, 2009 1:12:29 PM

only if you went with a good AM3 mobo with DDR3, or else if you went cheap the mobo manuf may not put out bios updates for AM3+ or AM4 or w/e they call it and decides its compat with prev gen.
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July 30, 2009 1:26:26 PM

I don't see where AM3 goes on the AMD roadmap.
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July 30, 2009 3:14:28 PM

well, if they keep playing the underdog then they have to offer drop in upgrades, like in the PII/III era when intel was ass raping people with constant socket/slot changes (remember slockets?) and amd comes in with drop-in replacements for them and won over markets and stayed alive and profitable.

That's what I foresee if Intel unleashes i5 in world of hurt, esp the cheapo gfx on die deal for them oems... and do lots of socket changes like they are now rofl.
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July 30, 2009 3:14:45 PM

peanutpc said:
i have both AMD 940 & Q9400 @ 3.6GHz and Q9400 is little bit faster in video rendering but in everyday office/home usage, won't even notice the difference between the two. Q9400 runs way cooler than the AMD PII 940. Both @ 3.6GHz with Xiggy S1283V: Q9400 idles 38-40c loads 57-59c & AMD 940 idles 47-49c loads 72c in 4 hours of OCCT. Both system has same case, psu, hsf, case fans, ram, gpu & hard drives.

Over the weekend, I'm gonna lap the 940 to see how much the temp will differ.


I'd check that phenom heatsink is properly attached. The intel is cooler, but not that much. My 940 ~ 3.6ghz is idling at 36C on a much worse cooler (old 4 heatpipe zalman).
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July 30, 2009 4:27:27 PM

jennyh said:
I'd check that phenom heatsink is properly attached. The intel is cooler, but not that much. My 940 ~ 3.6ghz is idling at 36C on a much worse cooler (old 4 heatpipe zalman).



i already check the heatsink on my 940... when i first got the 940, the surface wasn't flat like others. i got some sandpapers from autozone and i'll be lapping this badboy this friday.
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July 30, 2009 5:59:40 PM

peanutpc said:
i already check the heatsink on my 940... when i first got the 940, the surface wasn't flat like others. i got some sandpapers from autozone and i'll be lapping this badboy this friday.




don't lapp too hard.. ;]
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July 30, 2009 6:17:53 PM

is there ever someone that overlapped and got to the core of the CPU lol? Or at least damage the thing with uneven pressure.

I want to see that roflmao
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July 30, 2009 7:53:34 PM

dna708 said:
AMD would probably be the better option because it has a pretty definite future in terms of upgrading. Overclocking should be about the same for both of them but on socket 775, the furthest you'll get to is a Q9650 while the AMD could reach new architectures.


AMD PII X4 940 is a AM2+ socket so won't have future upgrade option and it only supports DDR2 mem.

If I were to build a budget gaming rig, I would go with Q9400 with P45 board that support DDR3 mem, Giga EP45C-UD3R is a very nice board and it supports both DDR2 & DDR3. Price between high quality 4gb of DDR2 1066 & DDR3 1333/1600 is only $10-20 USD.

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July 30, 2009 8:14:24 PM

i would def go AMD with DDR3 lol, and obviously the cpu and mobo to go with it, I3s will replace C2D very soon in terms of equal performance, and i5s will replace them in the market segment, and i5s will need new socket, and i3s may be a simple rebrand or a rework of C2D to fit on the new socket, which will mean that your upgrade option becomes either nil or cheap low end stuff with C2Q or C2D.

now if i wanted the cheapest no upgrade option, that would be another topic.
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July 30, 2009 8:28:02 PM

peanutpc said:
AMD PII X4 940 is a AM2+ socket so won't have future upgrade option and it only supports DDR2 mem.

If I were to build a budget gaming rig, I would go with Q9400 with P45 board that support DDR3 mem, Giga EP45C-UD3R is a very nice board and it supports both DDR2 & DDR3. Price between high quality 4gb of DDR2 1066 & DDR3 1333/1600 is only $10-20 USD.



I thought AMD said that the AM3 CPU's are compatible with AM2+...
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July 31, 2009 9:42:51 AM

They are!
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July 31, 2009 12:41:51 PM

ram won't be down the road if its DDR2, they won't make the next gen AM3+ (or AM4, depending on their marketing mood) compat with it, DDR3 at the most if they feel like it.
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August 1, 2009 3:04:37 AM

True that.
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September 8, 2009 9:16:41 AM

hey peanut PC how did you go with the old lapping?
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September 25, 2009 2:30:00 PM

Hey guys if i want to overclock my q9400 to 3.2ghz with gigabyte motherboard EG41MF-US2H and PSU 400W,then I guess I will have to set my FSB to 400 MHz and the multiplier to 8x since it is the highest for this motherboard but i don't know how much voltage will i have to increase,so can anyone please help me?
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