So, how fast can these processors go? It turns out that AMD's binning, which filters out these high leakages parts, works in favor of the extreme overclocker. Pushing approximately 1.75 V to the CPU, we were able to hit 6.4 GHz. Could the processor hit even higher frequencies? We are pretty sure it could with even more voltage and better cooling. We did not try more than 1.75 V on this chip for fear that we'd cut its already-destined-to-be-short life even shorter, or even kill it on the bench. We have a lot more tests that still need to be run and a dead CPU doesn't perform well.
Is it possible that your retail Phenom II X4 955 Black Edition processor might perform as well or better than one of these TWKR chips? The simple answer is, yes. The chances are fairly slim, though. With the TWKR, extreme overclockers know that the chip they have in their hand has all the attributes of an exceptional performer.
The speed that can be achieved by one of these processors is neither guaranteed nor predictable. Just like retail processors, the overclocking headroom on each chip will vary. At its default settings, the TWKR boots at 2 GHz (10 x 200 MHz). Under more traditional cooling methods (air, water, phase change, and cascade), the TWKR will probably perform similar to retail Phenom II Black Edition offerings. Indeed, the Phenom II X4 42 BE TWKR is designed to shine under extreme sub-zero cooling with LN2 and LHe.