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AMD Phenom II X3 720 Black Edition 45nm Socket AM3 Processor Review

AMD Phenom II X3 720 Black Edition 45nm Socket AM3 Processor Review - PCSTATS
Abstract: Phenom II X3 720 Black Edition processor is one of the first Phenom II processors, and it's got a secret that has PCSTATS very excited.
 78% Rating:   
Filed under: CPU / Processors Published:  Author: 
External Mfg. Website: AMD Feb 28 2009   Julian Apong  
Home > Reviews > CPU / Processors > AMD Phenom II X3 720 Black Edition

Conclusions: World's First Triple-Core CPU

The AMD Phenom II X3 720 Black Edition processor is everything you'd expect from a hybrid: it's got high clock speeds and a low price like a dual-core, but the big cache and multi-threading capabilities of a quad-core. And just like any mixture, it's had to make a few compromises along the way.

In benchmarks PCSTATS found that in single-threaded benchmarks the Intel Core 2 Duo E8400 and E8500 processors were faster than the AMD Phenom II X3 720 Black Edition by a margin of 10-30%. Single-threaded applications still make up the lion's share of computing for most users, and the AMD Phenom II X3 720 Black Edition just can't compete directly with Intel's processors in these tests.

However the story changes in multi-threaded benchmarks, where having a third core starts to make a lot more sense. With each core clocked at 2.8GHz and 6MB of shared L3 cache, the AMD Phenom II X3 720 Black Edition has plenty of computing muscle when you tap all of its capabilities. Now the tables are turned against the Core 2 Duo processors, which subsequently are outperformed by... 10-30%.

The AMD Phenom II X3 720 Black Edition proved to be as good an overclocker as its Black Edition moniker indicated. PCSTATS was able to unlock an extra 875MHz of free performance for a final overclock of 3.675GHz (15x multiplier, 245MHz bus speed), using only the reference cooler and minor voltage tweaks. While PCSTATS doesn't do official benchmarking with overclocked processors, a 3.675GHz AMD Phenom II X3 720 Black Edition processor is more than capable of holding its own against Intel's fastest Core 2 Duo processors.

It's an easy upgrade as well. The socket AM3 version of the AMD Phenom II X3 720 Black Edition that PCSTATS tested today is compatible with DDR3 memory and AM3 motherboards as well as being backwards compatible with DDR2-based socket AM2+ and AM2 motherboards. Just drop the processor into an existing AMD system and it's ready to go.

Overall then this processor is actually a good balance for the types of users who do everyday computing tasks, but also end up doing a fair amount of video encoding, 3D rendering and number crunching as well. It's an excellent overclocker and has both backwards and forwards compatibility. And since the AMD Phenom II X3 720 Black Edition costs just $145 CDN ($130 USD £90 GBP ...compared to $200 for the Core 2 Duo E8400), this triple-core processor is a definite win for AMD and enthusiasts everywhere on a budget.

Find out about this and many other reviews by joining the Weekly PCstats.com Newsletter today! Catch all of PCSTATS latest reviews right here.

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< Previous Page © 2017 PCSTATS.com CPU / Processors News»

 

Contents of Article: AMD Phenom II X3 720 Black Edition
 Pg 1.  AMD Phenom II X3 720 Black Edition 45nm Socket AM3 Processor Review
 Pg 2.  Enter the Dragon (Platform)
 Pg 3.  Socket AM3 and compatibility
 Pg 4.  System Power Draw Tests
 Pg 5.  45nm Overclocking Potential?
 Pg 6.  Test System Specs / Benchmarks: Sysmark, PCMark Vantage
 Pg 7.  32-Bit CPU Synthetic Benchmarks: Sandra 2009 Processor / Memory
 Pg 8.  32-Bit CPU Calculation Benchmarks: Super Pi, wPrime2.0
 Pg 9.  32-Bit CPU Calculation Benchmarks: ScienceMark2, WinRAR
 Pg 10.  32-Bit CPU Rendering Benchmarks: Cinebench R10, Bibble 5
 Pg 11.  32-Bit CPU Rendering Benchmarks: POV-Ray, 3.7, SPECviewPerf 10
 Pg 12.  32-Bit CPU Synthetic Gaming Benchmarks: 3DMark Vantage, 3DMark 06
 Pg 13.  32-Bit CPU Gaming Benchmarks: Crysis, FEAR
 Pg 14.  — Conclusions: World's First Triple-Core CPU

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