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Test Setup And Benchmarks

AMD Athlon II X2 / Phenom II X2 And Low-Power CPU Bonanza
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Never let it be said that we don't take your feedback to heart! Although it means the power and performance numbers in this story won't be comparable to any of our past reviews, enough readers asked to see AMD processors tested on AMD platforms and with AMD graphics cards that we're abiding in this piece. 

Also, because the dual-core CPUs are value-oriented in nature, we're using a Gigabyte motherboard based on AMD's 770 chipset, which sells for about $85 bucks online. In exchange, we're also testing with Intel's DG45ID motherboard, which sells for a bit more, but still amounts to what we consider a fair comparison. You should be able to find inexpensive P45 boards online as well, which would take memory running at up to 1,333 MT/s (thus giving the Intel solutions more bandwidth than what our DDR2-equipped G45 platform can deliver).

Test Hardware
Processors
AMD Athlon II X2 250 (Regor) 3.0 GHz, Socket AM3, 4 GT/s HyperTransport, Power-savings enabled

AMD Phenom II X2 550 (Callisto) 3.1 GHz, Socket AM3, 4 GT/s HyperTransport, 6 MB L3, Power-savings enabled

AMD Phenom II X3 705e (Heka) 2.5 GHz, Socket AM3, 4 GT/s HyperTransport, 6 MB L3, Power-savings enabled

AMD Phenom II X4 905e (Deneb) 2.5 GHz, Socket AM3, 4 GT/s HyperTransport, 6 MB L3, Power-savings enabled

Intel Core 2 Quad Q8400 (Yorkfield-4M) 2.66 GHz, LGA 775, 1,333 MT/s FSB, 4 MB L2, Power-savings enabled

Intel Pentium E6300 (Wolfdale-2M) 2.8 GHz, LGA 775, 1,066 MT/s FSB, 2 MB L2, Power-savings enabled
Motherboards
Gigabyte MA770T-UD3P (Socket AM3) 770/SB710

Intel DG45ID (LGA 775) G45/ICH10R, BIOS 0101

ASRock M3A790GXH/128M (Socket AM3) 790GX/SB750, BIOS 1.10
Memory
Corsair 4 GB (2 x 2 GB) DDR3-1600 8-8-8-24 @ DDR3-1333

Corsair 4 GB (2 x 2 GB) DDR2-1066 5-5-5 @ DDR2-800
Hard Drive
Western Digital VelociRaptor WD3000GLFS 300 GB 10,000 RPM SATA 3 Gb/s
Graphics
HIS Radeon HD 4890 1 GB
Power Supply
Cooler Master UCP 1100W
System Software And Drivers
Operating System
Windows Vista Ultimate Edition x64, Service Pack 1
DirectX
DirectX 10
Platform Driver
Catalyst 9.5

Intel INF Chipset Update Utility 9.1.0.1012
Graphics Driver
Catalyst 9.5


Phenom II X2 550 BEPhenom II X2 550 BEAnd the competition: Pentium E6300And the competition: Pentium E6300

Benchmarks and Settings

3D Games

Stalker: Clear Sky

Quality settings set to high, 1920x1200/1680x1050, Benchmark tool, average of all four scenarios

Far Cry 2

Quality settings set to high, 1920x1200/1680x1050, latest Steam version, in-game benchmark (Ranch medium).

Left 4 Dead

Quality settings set to max, 1920x1200/1680x1050, latest Steam version, timed demo.

H.A.W.X.

High Quality Setting, vsync off, 1680x1050/1920x1200, DirectX 10, Ambient Occlusion: High, Patch 1.2

Grand Theft Auto 4
Quality settings set to high, Anisotropic filtering: "High," 1920x1200/1680x1050, Patch 1.3, Built-in benchmark.

Audio Encoding

iTunes

Version: 8.1.0.52, Audio CD ("Terminator II" SE), 53 min., Default format AAC

Lame MP3

Version: 3.98 (64-bit), Audio CD ""Terminator II" SE, 53 min, wave to MP3, 160 Kb/s

Video Encoding

TMPEG 4.6

Version: 4.5.1.254, Import File: "Terminator II" SE DVD (5 Minutes), Resolution: 720x576 (PAL) 16:9

DivX 6.8.5

Encoding mode: Insane Quality, Enhanced Multi-Threading, Enabled using SSE4, Quarter-pixel search

XviD 1.2.1

Display encoding status=off

Mainconcept Reference 1.6.1

MPEG2 to MPEG2 (H.264), MainConcept H.264/AVC Codec, 28 sec HDTV 1920x1080 (MPEG2), Audio: MPEG2 (44.1 KHz, 2 Channel, 16-Bit, 224 Kb/s), Mode: PAL (25 FPS), Profile: Tom’s Hardware Settings for Qct-Core

Applications

Autodesk 3ds Max 2009 (64-bit)

Version: 2009, Rendering Dragon Image at 1920x1080 (HDTV)

WinRAR 3.90 Beta 1

Version 3.90 Beta 1, Benchmark: THG-Workload (334 MB)

WinZip 12

Version 12, Compression=Best, Benchmark: THG-Workload (334 MB)

Synthetic Benchmarks and Settings

3DMark Vantage

Version: 1.02, GPU and CPU scores

PCMark Vantage

Version: 1.00, System, Memory, Hard Disk Drive benchmarks, Windows Media Player 10.00.00.3646

SiSoftware Sandra 2009 SP3

CPU Test=CPU Arithmetic/MultiMedia, Memory Test=Bandwidth Benchmark

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