The Same CPU, Reprised
Does the new FX-8370E represent a step forward for AMD’s FX line of processors? Giving a clear answer is somewhat of a challenge. Our test sample performs about the same as its predecessors at similar clock rates, but draws less power doing so. However, we only tested one unit, and it’s always possible that AMD sent us a choice sample. Plus, there is almost certainly variance from one -8370E to the next. And so it's hard to know if the FX-8370E is actually better. Based on our measurements, all we can say is that the CPU in our lab is better than those that came before.
Directly comparing the FX processors in general to the FX-8370E specifically, and then adding Intel's competing models, does give us some clearer answers, though. Nothing changes, which is to say that Intel is still in the lead. It’s plain to see that AMD hasn’t invested in real innovation, at least not in this model. Instead, its recomposes existing ingredients into a somewhat more savory dish.
The AMD FX-8370E isn’t a bad CPU, and it actually provides decent and acceptable performance in certain areas. A comparison to its direct competition does make it abundantly clear that we're dealing with an old architecture demonstrating noticeable weaknesses, though. The only way to sell it at this point is via lower prices.
This is exactly where we encounter our main problem. For the AMD FX-8370E’s performance, an MSRP of $199 is way too high. In Europe, the first vendors have the new processor listed for 190 Euros, and it just doesn’t offer enough performance to warrant that. Locally, you'll find the processor right around $200.
We’d like to revisit our introductory comments about the importance of street pricing. In the end, what we wrote then is the bottom line now. Whether AMD’s FX-8370E makes sense depends on what you pay for it. At $200, we think AMD needs to do some trimming.
Clarification: This article was updated at 6:25 pm ET to clear up confusion about sampling concerns and our editorial stance on AMD’s greater CPU business.