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Phenom x6 or x4 Wait or Buy?

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November 5, 2010 3:31:26 PM

I am trying to decide on whether or not to wait for the 95w phenom x6s to come out (which it appears they will only go to OEMS, like HP or Dell) or just bite the bullet and go for the 125w. I mostly do video encoding/converting, some gaming (HL2, WiC, CnC3, etc), and virtualization (running two or three VMs at once). I am eying the prices of the 1090t and 1055t on NewEgg's website all week and thinking dang, for $229 for the 1090t that's not bad, ditto for the $179.00 for the 1055t.

Problem is, this will be my last CPU upgrade for my mobo, since it is an AM2+/AM3 with 8GB of DDR2 800 OCZ ram. Right now I am sporting a Phenom x4 6150e (1.8ghz per core). I was originally thinking of just cheaping out with an Athlon II x4 640 or Phenom II x4 (95w/945), but the idea of getting a Phenom II x6 is very appealing, because this upgrade will be the last CPU upgrade for my current build. The other problems are:

1. I am broke at the moment, thanks to a divorce :heink: 

2. I have a 430d (430watt) antec earthwatts psu. According to the PSU calculator from outervision, I had a 351 watt PSU as the recommended wattage. Funny thing is everytime I compared my current system setup to the calculator, my system was 100 to 150 watts less in power utilization at full load (calc says 250 wat rec, actual 140 wat @ load).

Note: I am trying to get out of debt and want to get a good deal on my final CPU upgrade. This system will probably be used for the next 5 years (with only the occasional GPU/HD or SSD upgrades).

So with that in mind, what are your thoughts?

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a b à CPUs
November 5, 2010 4:24:27 PM

How about consider the Phenom II X4 940 BE CPU.It's performance is better than a Athlon II X4 640 or even a 645 and is less expensive since the 940 has 6 mb of L3 cache and the Athlon II's have no L3 cache.The OEM version is available at newegg.Sure the AM2+ 940 has a higher TDP than the AM3 Phenom II X4 945 125 watts vs 95 watts and lacks the DDR3 controller (which you don't need since you use DDR2 memory) but it is an unlocked BE CPU and is very inexpensive.
At least consider it if your motherboard supports it.It says $96 at newegg.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Benchmarks here

http://www.anandtech.com/bench/Product/80?vs=188

http://www.anandtech.com/bench/Product/80?vs=146

It would be a substantial upgrade to a very slow early Phenom CPU.
However it would be quite an obsolete system and so would a 6 core Phenom II after 5 years from now.Bang per buck the OEM 940 is a great deal.Doesn't come with a heatsink and fan though.
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a c 81 à CPUs
November 5, 2010 4:52:54 PM

If you feel 229$ is quite good (which actually it is) for the 1090T and if you can afford it, then surely go for it.. It'll keep you hooked up for very many years to come.. Be sure to check if it is supported by your motherboard first.. In case of any BIOS upgrades required, make sure you do it before purchasing and installing the CPU..
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a b à CPUs
November 5, 2010 5:17:54 PM

The Phenom X6 is still in its early years..I put my hand on the X6.I have seen alot of Phenom X6 benchmarks and they kinda of tell me..WOW alot of cores but they are still trying to even properly distribute the effiecency and the workrate of all cores.I do sometimes even see that their X4 beats their X6 by a mile.If this is your last upgrade for 5 years i suggest take sometime to think about everything..
GoodLuck on your Upgrade.
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November 5, 2010 5:25:26 PM

My motherboard does support it (ECS 780GM-A Ultra v1.0). I have also updated the bios to support the x6 phenom IIs.

@jj463rd - thanks for pointing that 940be out, but I prefer retail box CPUs for their 3 years warranty. I do agree with you though 5 years is definitely a long system-life-cycle, but I believe it can be done. I had built a gaming system when the first Athlon 64s came out (socket 754) and it is finally meeting the point where there are no more upgrades worth getting for it (other than a DX10.1 gpu for its final upgrade), that system was built back in 2003; it is now my mom's computer, and yes I am impressed by it.

My biggest concern is do I really need 6 cores or should I just get a quad for what I do, and save some dough. The other concern is the TDP, my motherboard can handle a 140w TDP cpu, but I am wondering if the 6 core CPU is too much for the PSU (I just don't trust the online calculator, kill-a-watt is known to be off due to the active PFC of my PSU). 95w TDP seems to be a safe bet, but I would hate to miss out on getting a better CPU for the money.


Here are my full system specs:
PSU - Antec 430d Earthwatts PSU (430 watts)
CPU - Phenom 9150e x4 (1.8ghz)
RAM - 8GB DDR2 800 OCZ
HD - WD 320GB 7200 SATAII
GPU - Radeon 5550 512MB DDR3
1x Blu-ray burner
1x Hauppauge DVR-1250 TV tuner
1x USB 1TB external WD HD
1x USB bluetooth adaptor
1x USB wireless 802.11n adapter
1x USB wireless gamepad
ECS 780GM-A Ultra (Black Edition) Motherboard w/ latest bios version
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a c 81 à CPUs
November 5, 2010 5:51:40 PM

Your PSU will handle the X6 1090T along with the other components just fine.. Your system as a whole, won't need in excess of 300W (assuming stock condition).. Now the reason i suggested the X6 is because of the virtual machines.. Its always 'more cores the better' for such type of tasks.. Other than that, you've video encoding and decoding requirements which too love a high core count..
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November 12, 2010 2:02:29 PM

Best answer selected by technofox.
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a b à CPUs
November 12, 2010 4:20:27 PM

This topic has been closed by Maziar
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