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Sempron 140 Gets Second Core Unlocked

We love getting more chip for our money. That's why we're into overclocking. But an even more interesting way to get more performance for free than overclocking is to unlocking extra cores.

We've seen core unlocking from the AMD Phenom II X2 and X3, but now it seems someone has figured out that the Sempron 140 can also be unlocked to restore it an Athlon II X2 state. Both chips are based on the same silicon, but the Sempron has one of its cores disabled.

If this feat is easily replicated, this could be the cheapest and most full-featured dua core processor for $40. Even better if you can overclock it too (which that same modder did, going from 2.7 GHz to 3.7 GHz).

Read more at Tech Report.

Marcus Yam
Marcus Yam served as Tom's Hardware News Director during 2008-2014. He entered tech media in the late 90s and fondly remembers the days when an overclocked Celeron 300A and Voodoo2 SLI comprised a gaming rig with the ultimate street cred.
  • Jerky_san
    If you can do that and keep the power envelope the same that would be amazing..
    Reply
  • Prescott_666
    Which motherboards can unlock the second core on a Sempron 140? Any of the AM3 785s?
    Reply
  • hellwig
    As with anything, don't count on this working with your sempron.

    However, according to the site, they used a 790GX with ACC. I would think you could get a cheaper motherboard, and buy a Athlon X2 you know will work properly with both cores enabled. Seriously, who's going to spend money on a 790GX but buy a $40 Sempron and hope they can get both cores working?
    Reply
  • ahslan
    ^that is true...if you could do this with a cheap board, that would be awesome...not sure if cheap boards have this feature...
    Reply
  • mtyermom
    Like Hellwig said, it's nice as a proof of concept, but for the same money you can get guaranteed and reliable dual core performance for the same money.
    Reply
  • hillarymakesmecry
    Can I unlock/overlock the sempron in my craptacular cheapo HP laptop?
    Reply
  • anamaniac
    Or you could say, screw saving money, Iz want a i7 please!
    Reply
  • theholylancer
    some one needs to try it with the cheapo SB 710 boards.
    Reply
  • Reliable? Wouldn't be surprised if some of the Sempron's were binned out because of a defective core...even a core that might "mostly work", but fail some more obscure test case. I wouldn't use this on a PC where reliability is a consideration.
    Reply
  • Shadow703793
    hellwigAs with anything, don't count on this working with your sempron.However, according to the site, they used a 790GX with ACC. I would think you could get a cheaper motherboard, and buy a Athlon X2 you know will work properly with both cores enabled. Seriously, who's going to spend money on a 790GX but buy a $40 Sempron and hope they can get both cores working?Agreed. It does seem a bit pointless to spend all that money on a board and then just drop a $40 CPU to it. However, if it's just for the experience (and bragging rights) then this makes sense.
    Reply