By no means is a Phenom-based Athlon X2 a revolutionary leap forward for AMD, since the release of a new generation of Athlon X2 processors following Intel's numbering scheme was really a long time in coming as the company adapted its newer, more advanced technology for the job. In that way, the new product is by no means really new, but it is based on a proven design--more precisely the Phenom's 65 nm Agena core. However, AMD decided not to call the new product Phenom X2 (most likely to keep a distance between the Athlon family and the Phenom product line, which offers superior performance).
Athlon X2 7000-Series: Made Better By Phenom
Thanks to the advantages of the 65 nm Phenom design, the Athlon X2 7750 Black Edition is faster per clock than its predecessor, the Athlon 64 X2. The processors come with the latest dual-channel DDR2-1066 memory controller, 2 x 512 KB L2 cache and a shared L3 cache. They also introduce the SSE 4.1 instruction set of the Phenom into the Athlon world. And the processors can be dropped into existing socket AM2/AM2+ systems as soon as a suitable BIOS update is available.
A Small Power Advantage
We found that there are some changes in power consumption as well. While the system idle power is slightly higher on the new Ahtlon X2 7000 series (a few Watts increase), the peak power actually decreased by 10-20 W. If we relate these power savings to the performance we saw, the Athlon X2 7750 BE has to be compared with the Athlon 64 X2 5400+, which it beats in most of the benchmarks except gaming.
Improved Performance Per Clock, But No Performance Improvement
Despite its more efficient architecture, the Athlon X2 7000 cannot make up for the clock speed difference separating it from some of the previous-generation Athlon X2s (500 MHz, in the case of the Athlon 64 X2 6400+), although there are some benchmarks in which the new 7000-series performs better: DivX 6.8.3, Mainconcept 1.5.1, and Adobe Premiere Pro CS3. In the synthetic benchmarks as well as the gaming benchmarks, it does lose out to the 6400+. If you're looking for higher performance, you'll have to go for faster clock speeds, more cores, or a Core 2-based configuration
For Upgrade Users, Only
Not everyone wants or can afford to buy a new system every few years, and luckily, the Athlon X2 7000-series provides an excellent option to upgrade existing socket AM2 powered systems. We have to qualify the statement made earlier about the new Athlons being suitable for folks looking to upgrade. More accurately, this one's a play exclusively for the folks looking to stretch their existing systems out until the next generation platforms hit the market by the middle of 2009, hopefully with integrated USB 3.0.
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AMD is competing with Core 2 Duo? Why don't they try to compete with core i7? Oh wait, they can't compete with core i7 being 2 years behind. But AMD FTW against Core 2 Duo 2 years later!!!
I'd upgrade to the 6400+BE before I'd upgrade to the 7000 series.Reply
Wow, only 80 bucks to upgrade a four whole fps over my 5400 x2....lemme rush right out, not !Reply
Curnel_DI'd upgrade to the 6400+BE before I'd upgrade to the 7000 series.Now the 6000 is just under $80 (same price as the 7750BE) and the 6400 is hard to find.Reply
I am building my first gaming computer from the ground up, proudly starting with the 7750 Black Edition.
would like to have seen some overclockability tests but otherwise great article. good to see amd has released kuma (finally) to become slightly more competetiveReply
notice the memory used is 800mzh not 1066mhz, also why would they use different video cards? the drivers used arnt even up to date... test should be run with alike hardware and software(or as close to alike as possible) or its not to be taken seriously.Reply
Naw-yinotice the memory used is 800mzh not 1066mhz, test should be run with alike hardware and software(or as close to alike as possible) or its not to be taken seriously.Reply
Naw, I'll ask Patrick to answer the memory questions. However, if you read the Test Setup page, you'll see that only one graphics card was used. Also, given the mainstream nature of these graphics cards versus the very high-end graphics card, there is no way in a million years that the WHQL driver used would have any effect on the outcome of these benchmarks.Reply
Naw, ran the memory question past our German team and updated the piece. Same modules were run at 1066 and CAS 5. Thanks for the catch. Hope that answers all of your questions. If there's anything else, please let me know!Reply