Which for desktop - Phenom II 940 BE, or Xeon E5472?

I have an unusual requirement for my desktop - I need at least one PCIe x16 and one PCI-x slot. I happen to have a spare Xeon E5472 sitting around, so I am considering a Dell T7400 motherboard and some 800 mhz DDR2 FB-DIMMs. I have an Apple Xserve with this cpu running Linux (Centos 5) and in my basic testing (running lame on a big wav file) it is about 2x the performance of my E8400.

However, I want to consider another option - there is an AMD AM2+ board that I can use (A3N-WS). It looks like the Phenom II 940 is perhaps the best CPU for it, but the best it can do is DDR2 1066 memory. I don't have one handy to benchmark - how does this compare to the Xeon E5472 (or e8400)? I'm guessing that it will lose.

In additional to some gaming, I do multi-threaded compiling and mp3/mp4 encoding so I can definitely use more power.


p.s. Is it safe to say that an Asus P6T-WS board with a good i7 will crush either of these 2 choices?
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  1. if you have the money to build a core i7 computer it will be a lot quicker. if you gave some more insight to how much you want to spend we could help you more. also whether your upgrading your full comp or just cpu/mobo/ram
    i cant say much on xeons.
    if you get a phenom II 940 you would be better off getting an am3 socket mobo.
  2. $$ is definitely important! I didn't see any AM3 boards with a PCI-X socket, but if one is out there I will consider it.

    It looks like the E5472 is similar to the 940; the Dell T7400 boards go for $150 or less sometimes, and $260 for 8GB of 800 mhz FB-DIMMs. Memory is definitely the killer here.
  3. Is there a specific need for PCI-X?
    The difference between FB-DIMMs and normal DDR2 isn't really that much for only 8GB of memory, especially with 2*4GB, in which the DDR2 may actually be faster.

    Out of the 2, Id pick the 940, you have 2 more threads, and clock for clock/core, the difference between Deneb and Woldale is only about 15%, so the 940 is actually better in cases.

    However, check if the Mobo supports AM3? The 955/1055T/90T are nice choices.
  4. mid to high end am3 boards have at least 1 16x pci express slot. most have 2 or more for crossfirex solutions. have a look @ these. (mobo/cpu/ram)
    do you plan to overclock or not? if so a 955 black edition would be better.
    should you need more ram perhaps 2x those crucial ram sticks
    ddr3 will definitely be faster than ddr2 so consider socket am3.
    if others have better suggestions feel free to correct my choices.
  5. scrice said:
    mid to high end am3 boards have at least 1 16x pci express slot.

    Unfortunately, I haven't found one yet that has a PCI-X slot.

  6. i did a bit more research into pci-x and sorry i thought it was the same.
    do you have a specific video card or what? to go into this slot.
    specify what it is and im sure me or someone else could help you out.
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