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AM2+ with BIOS update not as fast as real AM3?

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March 7, 2011 2:37:44 AM

I have this older AM2/AM2+ motherboard http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I updated the BIOS to AM3 a while back so i could use my Phenom II X4 955 CPU. Everything worked fine and pretty much everything improved performance wise.

Now here is my question... I was just informed that doing the BIOS update from AM2+ to AM3 wont yield the same CPU performance as having an actual AM3 motherboard would. Is there any truth in this? I ask because i'm upgrading my video card soon (getting one of the overclocked 560 ti models) and i don't want to have a bottleneck. My CPU is at stock 3.2ghz speeds and i don't really feel comfortable about overclocking it. I'm just paranoid now that i need to get an AM3 motherboard with this video card to make sure my CPU is performing at the rate it's supposed too.
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March 7, 2011 3:03:47 AM

Any differences are going to be so slight as to not be noticeable. You will not have a bottleneck -- that CPU and GPU are at about the same level, even if the CPU is on an AM2+ board.
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March 7, 2011 3:06:55 AM

the hyper transport speed (bus) is the same in am2+ only difference between am3 and am2+ is am3 uses ddr3 ram and am2+ uses ddr2. so very minimal speed differences, not noticeable at all in real world processes.
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March 7, 2011 3:17:39 AM

No, it's noticeable, but certainly small. For one, you won't have the same memory bandwidth. DDR3 1333 or 1600 will give a bit more bandwidth than DDR2 1066. Also, when you put an AM3 chip into an AM2+ motherboard it drops the HT link speed. Even so if you're worried about the HT link you can manually raise it just to the point it's still stable.

If you already have an AM2+ board it's not worth the expense to go to an AM3 board (which would also need new DDR3 RAM) solely for the small increase in performance. As for overclocking the CPU it's pretty easy with the 955 BE as all you have to do is raise the multiplier and watch your temps. Don't overclock with the stock cooler though -_-, make sure you get a good CPU cooler if you would like to overclock
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March 7, 2011 3:22:05 AM

megamanx00 said:
No, it's noticeable, but certainly small. For one, you won't have the same memory bandwidth. DDR3 1333 or 1600 will give a bit more bandwidth than DDR2 1066. Also, when you put an AM3 chip into an AM2+ motherboard it drops the HT link speed. Even so if you're worried about the HT link you can manually raise it just to the point it's still stable.

If you already have an AM2+ board it's not worth the expense to go to an AM3 board (which would also need new DDR3 RAM) solely for the small increase in performance. As for overclocking the CPU it's pretty easy with the 955 BE as all you have to do is raise the multiplier and watch your temps. Don't overclock with the stock cooler though -_-, make sure you get a good CPU cooler if you would like to overclock


I have the Hyper 212+ with 2 fans in a push pull config. So i guess i should overclock anyways huh lol? I have a good case for air cooling too. Looking at HWMonitor my CPU is at 31 degrees :p 

Also thanks for the help with the AM2+/AM3 question everyone. I'm gonna just keep my current mobo :D 
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