AMD Phenom X3 8750 2.4 GHz Triple-Core Processor Review
The long-awaited triple-core processors
It was WAAAAYYYY back in September of 2007 that AMD first posted a press release about the pending release of the first triple-core processors based on the AMD Phenom brand. Of course we all know the story about the Phenom CPU release, its TLB problem that weighed it down and the delay of the revised B3 stepping cores that fixed the major errors that we reviewed just last month. Those steps finally out of the way AMD has given the go-ahead to release the Phenom X3 series of triple-core processors to the masses.
Is it worth making the plunge to a new Phenom X3 though? And where does it fall in the value priced line up from AMD today?
AMD Phenom X3 Processors
The new AMD Phenom X3 processors that are being released today are based on the new B3 stepping of parts (8x50 models) that began shipping last month and as such will exhibit none of the well documented TLB issues the Phenom series was known for early. Internally known as the "Toliman" core, the architecture remains largely the same as well and of course they still use the 940-pin AM2+ socket.
Why would AMD disable a core to make a triple-core part rather than a quad-core? More than likely AMD is simply using this as a way to retain revenue from otherwise useless wafer dies. Say a single die of four cores is tested, three of them work at 2.4 GHz while one of them only will run at 1.2 GHz or not at all, simply because of manufacturing issues that crop up. Rather than throwing that part away AMD is now able to disable that bad section and sell it as one our reviewed Phenom X3 8750 parts.
All three of the X3 8x50 processors launched today fall into the 95 watt TDP scale so obviously they are being forced to bin the processors to reliable reach the 2.4 GHz clock rate. The 65nm process technology parts are using SOI technology and retain a 450 million transistor count on a 285 mm^2 die.