Details of AMD's Phenom II desktop chips keep leaking out

Details of AMD's Phenom II desktop chips keep leaking out

Summary: AMD will announce its second-generation Phenom quad-core chips at the big Consumer Electronics Show in January. But at the current rate at which the company is leaking information about its first 45nm desktop processors, there may not be much left to say by the time they get to Vegas.

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AMD will announce its second-generation Phenom quad-core chips at the big Consumer Electronics Show in January. But at the current rate at which the company is leaking information about its first 45nm desktop processors, there may not be much left to say by the time they get to Vegas.

A week ago, AMD released the server version of the new processor, code-named Shanghai, at speed ranging from 2.3- to 2.7GHz. At the time, AMD also announced it would release the Deneb desktop chips, now called Phenom II X4, as part of a new high-end platform called Dragon in January. Though they gave few details, it seemed logical that the Phenom II X4s would reach at least 2.7GHz.

Almost immediately word of a 3GHz Phenom II X4 began makings its way around the Web. The hardware site EXPreview.com went a step further reporting that AMD would release the 2.8GHz Phenom II X4 920 and 3.0GHz Phenom II X4 940 on January 8. The site even posted what appear to be performance numbers for the new Dragon platform provided by AMD. Then in an interview with a PC enthusiast site in Australia, an AMD manager confirmed that one of the first chips will run at 3GHz.

Finally, yesterday AMD hosted a reviewer's workshop where it demonstrated that the Phenom II X4 can be over-clocked to 4GHz with standard air cooling (some sites suggested it reached speeds above 6GHz but this required special cooling). Channel Web has a nice summary of accounts from the various hardware sites and comments from AMD.

Of course, Intel has been manufacturing chips at 45nm for some time, and recently released its new Core i7 desktop processor, which it is billing as the "fastest processor on the planet." The first chips include the 3.2GHz Core i7-965 Extreme Edition ($999), 2.93GHz Core i7- 940 ($562) and 2.66GHz Core i7- 920 ($284). Initial reviews of Core i7-based PCs have been very good, and it will be very tough for AMD to make up all that ground in performance in a single leap. But it is starting to look like Phenom II X4 could make at least make things interesting again.

AMD Dragon Platform

Topics: Processors, Hardware, Networking

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11 comments
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  • Intriguing

    I am definately intrigued by those performance figures. If AMD can pull it off it may just be my next platform of choice. I have been looking for a decent quad core rig to replace my current dual core, and didn't want to go the ddr3/expensive mobo route of core i7.

    However, I will hold back my judgement until I see some third party, reputable reviews of said processors. At the very least however, it's giving AMD some much needed PR coverage, even if it puts more pressure on the company to pull off something spectacular with the Dragon platform.
    Alan Burns
  • RE: Details of AMD's Phenom II desktop chips keep leaking out

    Its looking like a Phenom X4 socket AM3 Computing platform could be mine just in time for my tax refund. I love my X2 but my older motherboard has a 3GB memory limitation and now that I am running 64bit 4 - 8GB is looking very appealing. I will wait for the AM3 DDR3 platform with the upgraded Hypertransport 3.0 Long live AMD
    bobiroc
  • RE: Details of AMD's Phenom II desktop chips keep leaking out

    AMD does it again, AMD still rules!
    Pyrotech_z
  • A New Hope

    I love AMD, but man this chip better be damn good or at least easily OC. The nice things about this platform is the 48xx series integrated graphics. A nice onboard solution for those light/mid-weight gamers, who might actually want to run some higher resolutions with their monitors.
    fortierj
  • Yeah, about that...

    These chips might match the performance of Core 2 Quad
    Q9000 series, but the Core i7 is still going to be the
    performance champ for a while.

    And just to let you know, I am an AMD Fanboy when it comes
    to the PC side of things.
    nix_hed
    • i7 performance champ

      i7 is the performance champ, in server environments only. As has been beaten to death on this site and others, the whimpy L2 Cache of the i7 chips makes it a subpar gaming chip to the Core2Extreme CPUs - so in other words, intels old chips are still the best for gaming. Hopefully the Phenom II FX will dethrone the QX9770 as the halo gamers chip. All these high end CPU manufacturers are sticking i7 into their desktops because its new and fast, but in truth, only folk that do video editing or other similar programs with heavy parallelism will benefit. This is why the QX9770 is still $1400 or so while the i7 965 is only $1000.

      Just thought I'd try to prevent some misinformation from spreading. Intel is pushing the i7 to everyone as the greatest chip out there. It isn't. It IS the best for SPECIFIC applications, but not for everything. You gotta figure out what you are going to use your PC primarily for.


      "The views expressed here are mine and do not reflect the official opinion of my employer or the organization through which the Internet was accessed."
      gnesterenko
  • RE: Details of AMD's Phenom II desktop chips keep leaking out

    "I am an AMD Fanboy when it comes
    to the PC side of things" Why have Intel fanbois recently started calling themselves Amd Fanboys? I bet its so they can spout garbage and not get slapped in the face by people that actually know what they're writing about.
    This chips Server version has already been confirmed to be over 50%~75% faster then the current Phenom x4's. The Phenom 9950 is only 15% slower then the Q9650 (Server version chips still blow xenons out of the water btw). If the Deneb is 50%~75% faster under server environments, I'm pretty sure it's a butt load faster then a Intel Q9650...
    The Phenom II's are much more then a die shrink like intel fools might make you believe. I'm getting me a AMD chip since its going to be around $250~$300. The Core i7 will be around $550~$700 with the extreme @ $999
    outpostprime
    • Core I7 going for $300

      ..at newegg.
      deanders
  • RE: Details of AMD's Phenom II desktop chips keep leaking out

    I go with AMD processors for two reasons. One, I have not been disappointed with their producst. Two, I love the benefits of competition. Intel's strong processors and position forces AMD to improve while having AMD (and others) nipping at their heels forces Intel stay at the top of their game. Competition also keep prices reasonable.

    Personally, I don't overclock my PCs. I really like my dual-core AMD because of price, power, and wattage (low). I am hoping that these new quad-cores follow suit. I would love to build a quad-core system. Even 2.8 GHz would be awesome for my personal use. So the two remaining factors for me is cost and wattage (I like low).
    dedrizen
  • AMD is still in the race...

    It's nice to see some good news from AMD.
    For a long time it has been looking like they would go broke.

    I used to have AMD based systems.
    But when I did my last upgrade cycle and needed a machine capable of doing video, I went Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600. Lower power & temperature than its Athlon predecessors, it has been all good.

    But I would say this puts AMD back in the hunt.
    Wild Biker Bill
  • RE: Details of AMD's Phenom II desktop chips keep leaking out

    I would not use intel if you paid me, AMD good on you boys/girls. Intel have been the nasty Corporation for years using underhand practices to break AMD I just hope this is the first step back to the fore-front of technology. AMD are King. Shame they own Ati as nVidia are my favourite there. Shit I'm on the underdogs side each way here. Goodbye cruel world of ATI and Intel.
    Horus418