After the launch of the Athlon II X2 and Athlon II X4 CPUs, it would be difficult to feign surprise at the introduction of the new Athlon II X3. We all knew it was coming, we even mentioned the upcoming X3 flavor of Athlon II in our Athlon II X4 620 launch story.
While the shock and awe might have been spoiled, the Athlon II X3 certainly isn't. AMD's vanguard model is the Athlon II X3 435, and it combines two very compelling components: a relatively high clock speed of 2.9 GHz (that's 100 MHz faster than the top-of-the-line Phenom II X3 720 Black Edition), and a relatively low MSRP of $87.
AMD already has the sub-$120 CPU market sewn up with a glut of Athlon IIs and Phenom II X2s and X3s, but at under $90, does the new Athlon II X3 435 offer the best value in the bunch? Let's find out.