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Phenom II X4 945 or Phenom II X3 730?

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July 11, 2011 1:57:18 AM

I'm upgrading and am down to 2 cpu's. I essentially want to run Stacraft2 at a better rate than it currently runs. Some games in can run a bit choppy once the game has a lot going on.

Ninja edit: Sorry, 720 (not 730)

Current Rig:

Chip: AMD 64 X2 Dual Core Processor 5200+ 2.7 Ghz http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


Mobo: ASUS M2N32-SLI Deluxe 590 SLI MCP ATX AMD http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

GPU: ASUS 4870 Radeon 1GB 256-bit GDDR5

Ram: 4 GB DDR2 SDRAM

Hard Drive: 160GB

Power supply: 800W

I want to buy one of these two:

AMD Phenom II X4 945 3.0GHz $110 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

or AMD Phenom II X3 720 Black Edition Heka 2.8 GHz $65 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Tomshardware has them listed near next to each other in cpu hierarchy for performance. Will I see that much of a difference to warrant spending an extra $45 for four cores and an extra .2 GHz? Or is the X3 good enough?

Or, is there something else in that range that will work better?

More about : phenom 945 phenom 730

July 11, 2011 5:14:11 AM

go for a 955
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July 11, 2011 5:35:10 AM

manu 11 said:
go for a 955

His motherboard does not support 955. Its only up to 945 according to his CPU support list.

To OP:
Your motherboard does not have the ability to unlock cores so you will be stuck with triple core if you select 720BE. Your performance gain will be limited since you gain only 1 core + 100MHz speed + 6Mb L3 cache. You may find it not enough for CPU intensive applications.
So I suggest the Phenom 2 X4 945.
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July 11, 2011 11:39:22 AM

Yes for your board it will have to be the 945 sadly, although you could consider swapping your board as they are cheap at the moment...$69
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Then you could buy a 955....$119
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

And a........$49
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

All for under $200 with a rebate plus even less when you sell your old hardware on ebay, the above 3 components would permit you to easily oc the 955 to at least 3.8ghz if not 4.0ghz, which would give you a large upgrade in processing power/grunt. What gpu are you using and at what res do you play?
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July 11, 2011 11:43:17 AM

Agh shoot dont forget new DDR3 memory......$35
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Again DDR3 memory will help with your CPU grunt/power, and still a large if not huge upgrade for you for relatively little money when considering the rebate and money back on your old hardware.
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July 11, 2011 12:51:54 PM

My current GPU is ASUS 4870 Radeon 1GB 256-bit GDDR5. Not great, but it should be able to handle Starcraft II, which is about all I play.

I am definitely going to look into your suggestions. I really like that idea. Do I need to invest in a cpu cooler or will the stock one be fine? I wouldn't plan to overclock at all at this point given the new power.

Thanks so much!!

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July 12, 2011 1:06:34 AM

I'd check in the Asus forums or email them about the AMD Phenom II X4 840 3.2GHz 'Propus'.

It should work on your motherboard without any issues -- the lack of L3 will be beneficial for you when over-clocking (less heat). Something like the CM Hyper TX3 RR 92mm CPU Cooler should work fine if it fits in you case -- that puts you at $120 before $5 rebate.

Rather simple over-clock:

_lock the PCIe to 100MHz
_drop the HT to 4x
_drop the RAMs from 400 to 333
_raise the system clock to 240MHz
_set NB volts at 1.2v
_set the CPU multiplier to 14x

Crank her up and test for stability and temps - 14x240MHz = 3.36GHz You will go higher - LOL. It's a 95w C3 stepping with max volts 1.40v and 71c temps. If you have ddr2 800 it will be running stock speed (3.33x240).

15x240MHz should pretty much be a slam dunk - 15.5 at max volts would not be a surprise if you can keep the temps down. 16x240 might get a little toasty and require 1.425v but a second fan on your cooler for a little push-pull action puts it in play.
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July 12, 2011 3:12:50 AM

What brand, model PSU??

What is the max of your budget? If you can squeeze a few more dollars:

CPU + Mobo combo

It is about as much of an upgrade I would do without doing a total one. The Phenom II x3 720 OC's very easily, and the mobo supports unlocking cores (but you shouldnt bank on it happening)
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July 12, 2011 5:07:57 AM

^$99.99 + $35 on DDR3 RAM is not a few $.

If the OP sticks to his mobo & buy the 945 at $110.00, he solves his problem for the least amount of money & trouble. After all, he just wanted to improve his gaming experience in playing Star craft 2. No need to take risk in unlocking a 720BE as well.
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July 13, 2011 1:39:26 PM

randomkid said:
^$99.99 + $35 on DDR3 RAM is not a few $.

If the OP sticks to his mobo & buy the 945 at $110.00, he solves his problem for the least amount of money & trouble. After all, he just wanted to improve his gaming experience in playing Star craft 2. No need to take risk in unlocking a 720BE as well.


Thanks for the feedback. In that respect, I think they just added the Phenom II X4 955 to the list of supported devices. It is listed as a beta, is that something I should be concerned with? Information here: http://www.asus.com/Motherboards/AMD_AM2/M2NSLI_Deluxe/...

Thank you guys so much.
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July 13, 2011 1:48:07 PM

----->>> 95w
----->>> ninety-five watt
----->>> noventa y cinco vatios

Si ??


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July 13, 2011 2:06:12 PM

Wisecracker said:
----->>> 95w
----->>> ninety-five watt
----->>> noventa y cinco vatios

Si ??


Yes, it is 95W
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July 13, 2011 2:27:46 PM

isobro said:
Thanks for the feedback. In that respect, I think they just added the Phenom II X4 955 to the list of supported devices. It is listed as a beta, is that something I should be concerned with? Information here: http://www.asus.com/Motherboards/AMD_AM2/M2NSLI_Deluxe/...

Thank you guys so much.

Well, even the 945 is beta. Beta just means that it is not official and still subject to fine tuning. You as beta user may experience problems which should be reported so they can fix it in the official release. But I do not think risk will be high. It must have passed a minimum list of tests before being released.
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July 13, 2011 2:33:11 PM

isobro said:
Yes, it is 95W


I found one here for the 'discounted price' of $471.00

AND that's not all! :lol:  We can go lower!

Wait for it ....

It's coming ...

A 95w AMD Phenom II X4 955 Black Edition Deneb 3.2GHz 4 x 512KB L2 Cache 6MB L3 Cache Socket AM3 Quad-Core Processor can be yours for the low low price of ...

$396.56 if you click here!


Yah, see? They are kinda rare. But if you want to go with one, the best deal you will find (if they really have one left) is an OEM 'tray' (meaning it does not come with a fan) for $149


Good luck. Hope you find what you are looking for ...
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July 13, 2011 2:34:52 PM

Great, thanks so much. You all have been so helpful. I think I am going to gofor the 955.
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July 14, 2011 5:58:02 PM

Best answer selected by isobro.
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