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CPU Charts, An ATI Update, And Zotac's Mini-ITX Board

CPU Charts Update And Radeon HD 5000-Series Pricing

I hope that our audience from the US had a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday. Now we’re back to the grind for a month-long sprint in anticipation of several exciting launches at next year’s Consumer Electronics Show. I can’t give much away, but there will be plenty to read about in the first week of 2010.

New CPUs In The 2009 Desktop Charts

First things first. I know that our Graphics Charts are in dire need of an update now that ATI’s Radeon HD 5000-series cards are at least dribbling onto the streets a few at a time (never mind the fact that they’re universally out of stock) and Nvidia has a handful of DirectX 10.1 boards (are those crickets chirping?) in the channel.

The good news, however, is that our 2009 Desktop CPU Charts have been updated to include the following processors (in addition to the models that were already tested):

AMD

Phenom II X2 545 (3 GHz)
Athlon II X2 245 (2.9 GHz)
Athlon II X2 240 (2.8 GHz)
Athlon II X2 235e (2.7 GHz)
Athlon II X3 435 (2.9 GHz)
Athlon II X3 425 (2.7 GHz)
Athlon II X3 405e (2.3 GHz)
Athlon II X3 400e (2.2 GHz)
Phenom X4 9350 (2.0 GHz)
Phenom X4 9150 (1.8 GHz)

Intel

Core i7-950 (3.06 GHz)
Core i7-870 (2.93 GHz)
Core i5-750 (2.66 GHz)

Check out the full list of processors and compared benchmarks on the 2009 Desktop CPU landing page.

An ATI Update

It’s too bad that ATI still seems to be fighting the availability issues that hampered adoption of its Radeon HD 4770—a card that served up solid mainstream performance within a reasonable thermal footprint. I’ve read a number of interviews with ATI seeking an explanation, estimated volume numbers, and guesses as to when the 5000-series boards are going to be more available.

The fact is that none of it matters.

If you're willing to spend $309 on a 5850, keep an eye out tomorrow!

If you want a Radeon HD 5850, 5870, or 5970 this holiday season, you’re going to have a hard time finding one (looks like Newegg is expecting some 5850s tomorrow, at least). And if you do, you’re going to pay more for it than you might have expected after reading my reviews of those three boards. Thus, I’ve updated brief passages in each card’s write-up to reflect today’s pricing. They’re all still super-fast and feature-laden, but the damn things are outright difficult to track down.

Chris Angelini
Chris Angelini is an Editor Emeritus at Tom's Hardware US. He edits hardware reviews and covers high-profile CPU and GPU launches.
  • csuwrx
    Altough love the idea of low idle consumption of 5800 series, I´ll stick with my HD4870X2, still kick ass in games, don't really need more power right now, I'll wait maybe six or eight more months until I go to 5800 series. apart from that congrats to all who can find a brand new HD5800 :D
    Reply
  • tester24
    I was really hoping to see Toms have the i7 860 instead of the 870. Honestly who cares about a $500+ CPU!? Most people would get the 750, 860 or 920 because of their lower price points and their capabilities. 870 not that much better to warrant the higher price point.

    Sure it's stock speed and turboboost is set higher but it's clock range is the same between the 860 and 870, 660Mhz and 670Mhz respectively.

    Now I know a few people will say that if this is true then the performance numbers should be the same but viewing some of the numbers on other sites they are a little different but I would like to see Toms do it because they are a little more thorough.
    Reply
  • one-shot
    I agree. With a lot of games being developed on console and ported to PC, there isn't too much of a reason to upgrade GPUs. I run 2 GTX 260 C216s in SLI and don't regret adding another two months before the launch of the 58XX series.
    Reply
  • cangelini
    tester24I was really hoping to see Toms have the i7 860 instead of the 870. Honestly who cares about a $500+ CPU!? Most people would get the 750, 860 or 920 because of their lower price points and their capabilities. 870 not that much better to warrant the higher price point. Sure it's stock speed and turboboost is set higher but it's clock range is the same between the 860 and 870, 660Mhz and 670Mhz respectively.Now I know a few people will say that if this is true then the performance numbers should be the same but viewing some of the numbers on other sites they are a little different but I would like to see Toms do it because they are a little more thorough.
    I'll pass your feedback on to the team working on charts.
    Reply
  • netsql2
    I'd love a good Mini-ITX build, how cheap can one make a hulu + 3d gaming box + skype w/ Ubuntu 64, blue tooth, wifi-n (no need for dvd/blue ray, just download).
    Reply
  • netsql2
    I'd love a good Mini-ITX build, how cheap can one make a hulu + 3d gaming box + skype w/ Ubuntu 64, blue tooth, wifi-n (no need for dvd/blue ray, just download).
    Reply
  • caamsa
    You all need to add some new games to the charts to keep things fresh.
    Reply
  • I'm waiting for the low-profile 5650/5670 to stick into my HTPC for Dolby Digital TrueHD or DTS HD Master Audio.
    Reply
  • bigght
    ATI/AMD You have dropped the ball again as far as availability issues with your HD5000 graphics and then to make matters worse, you are jacking up the prices on the cards. But without any competition from Nvidia, you can afford to do this, or can you? Long standing ATI supporters have waited for you to address the demand vs supply issue and "mums the word". Lets hope this ploy does not backfire. I am in need of an upgrade for my present ATI card, but hell if I am going to pay for HD5850 graphics card that increases by $$60 since it was released a few months ago.
    Reply
  • bigght you need to relax, ATI did not jack any of the prices up on their cards. The people who are responsible are the vendors who sell the cards, since the supply is low they jack the price up for the demand. Do not misdirect your anger for the price hike at ATI they did nothing but come out with a very competitive and fantastic card with great features.
    Reply