Instead of buying my brother a CPU I decided to upgrade mine and give him my X2 250. I'm not sure if I will be able to notice an improvement over my x2 250, but I couldn't resist the retail box for $67.49 (it would have cost me $50 with a heatsink fan for a decent cpu for him, so I spent $20 more bucks). I could have bought a Phenom II X2 550 (Non-BE) for $10 more than the X3 440.
I did this because I have a BIOSTAR TA785 A2+ on the way and it's supposed to be able to unlock cores. I figured with my luck It's better to have 3 cores instead of 2 in case I can't unlock anything. From my research I was led to believe this was smart, and also saw the 440 out perform the 550 in almost every benchmark (when stock), What do you think?
It's an okay choice if you're not unlocking. Tom's did an article before on testing the importance of the L3 cache (Athlon's don't have it, Phenom's do), and they did find that it was worth a bit of performance.
The Athlon X3 is an okay choice, it performs well enough for most tasks. Even unlocking is a gamble as you may or may not be able to unlock 1 or 2 cores.
Damn, if I would of known about the l3 cache I might of just ordered the processor for my brother, the x2 7550 (with l3 cache) for $40 and kept me x2 250. Do you think I'm even going to notice an improvement between the x3 440 and the x2 250?
thanks dokk, and everyone else! I can't wait to get the motherboard and processor in the mail, i will definitely post any benchmark differences, as well let u know my luck with the unlocking. Now I need to start researching unlocking, because I know absolutely squat about it!