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Phenom 9700, AMD's 1st Quad-Core CPU

Overclocking - Still An Engineering Sample?

At the pre-launch press event in Warsaw, AMD gave the tech journalists a chance to work with and benchmark an AMD Phenom system for an entire day. In all, the company provided 42 identical systems. Two incidents stuck out during our testing.

42 systems using AMD's Phenom 9700 processor

During the briefing, AMD informed us that we were allowed to overclock the systems - under the proviso that we didn't raise the processor's core voltage. During the benchmarking itself, we were accompanied by specialists of AMD USA that answered any questions had regarding the specifications of the test systems.

The BIOS message at the press event.

The other novelty for us was the fact that even the BIOS didn't display a product designation for the processor. Back in our lab we tried to uncover some more details. While we were able to read the CPU's internal designation using the CPUID command, all this served to prove was that the processor's name was indeed AMD Engineering Sample.

In all of the years we've been conducting processor tests we have never received an unnamed processor from AMD; even Intel's confidential engineering samples always come with a product name or designator. At any rate, we wish to emphasize once more that our sample CPU was completely stable throughout our testing and did not cause any problems, even when we overclocked it.