AMD's first round of FX desktop processors -- built on Bulldozer architecture -- couldn't score a knockout punch against Intel's competing CPUs, but the company is getting close to going another round with its old foe. Pre-order pricing for the next-generation FX series -- dubbed "Vishera" and based on Piledriver architecture -- has appeared online for four different processors.
Enthusiasts will be most interested in the FX-8350, which has eight cores running at 4GHz (or 4.2GHz in Turbo mode) and is priced at $253. Another eight-core chip, the FX-8320, comes in slightly cheaper at $242, but its cores each run at 3.5GHz (4GHz Turbo).
For buyers looking to spend under $200, the six-core FX-6300 is $175 and features cores running at 3.5GHz or 4.1GHz in Turbo mode. Rounding out the initial Vishera offering, the quad-core FX-4300 offers 3.8GHz base clock speed and 4GHz Turbo mode for $131. Not surprisingly, these two processors require less power than their eight-core siblings: 95W versus 125W.
AMD claims that the new Piledriver cores will provide about a 10- to 15-percent performance boost over Bulldozer. Each new FX chip offers 8MB of L3 cache -- save for the FX-4300, which only provides 4MB -- and all are unlocked for easier overclocking.
The new processors will face off with Intel's Core i5 and Core i3 Ivy Bridge processors, all of which retail for under $250. AMD's new eight-core chips will need to prove that they are worth the extra money over the likes of the Core i5-3570K. Likewise, the FX-4300 will need to outperform the similarly priced Core i3-3220.
While we don't know the exact launch date for these new chips, indications are that we should start seeing them next month. Are you waiting for the new Vishera processors to buy or build your next system, or do you think Ivy Bridge CPUs will offer superior performance? Let us know your thougts in the Talkback section below.