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AMD Phenom II X6 1090T 3.2GHz Socket AM3 6-Core Processor Review
AMD Phenom II X6 1090T 3.2GHz Socket AM3 6-Core Processor Review - PCSTATS
The first ever six-core socket AM3 processor from AMD has arrived to directly compete against Intel's robust Core i7 9-series 'Nehalem' chips. Code named 'Thuban', the new 3.2GHz AMD Phenom II X6 1090T processor introduces with it a dynamic overclocking technology called TurboCore.
 95% Rating:   
Filed under: CPU / Processors Published:  Author: 
External Mfg. Website: AMD May 01 2010   J. Apong  
Home > Reviews > CPU / Processors > AMD Phenom II X6 1090T

Six-Core Overclocking - Breaking New Records

Overclocking Results
Stock Max. OC
Processor Speed: 3.2 GHz 4.025 GHz
Multiplier / Bus Speed: 16x
If you're new to Overclocking and not sure what to do, check out these two excellent Guides for some pointers:
Overclocking the CPU and Memory
Overclocking the Videocard

PCSTATS has overclocked a great many single core AMD processors, and within the last couple years everything from dual-core to triple-core, right on through to quad-core chips. Those experiences have shown us that it's not too difficult to overclock an AMD chip to within 4.0GHz... it's getting past that hurdle into 4.2GHz territory where significant challenges remain.

Of all the AMD CPUs we've tested for our readers, overclocking AMD's Black Edition processors has been the most fun.

Because Black Edition chips ship multiplier unlocked, the clock speed of the processor can be increased by adjusting the clock multiplier alone while bus speeds are left at or near 200MHz. Bus speeds tend to be a limiting factor on most motherboards, so overclocking via multiplier adjustments brings about a flexibility that's otherwise absent from mainstream CPUs families.

In the case of the Phenom II X6 1090T processor we're testing in this review, the TurboCore feature boosts core speed to 3.6GHz when 1-to-3 cores are fully loaded. Bus speed remains at 200MHz when this occurs, so for TurboCore to function AMD had to leave the CPU multipler unlocked. Yet AMD doesn't advertise this fact by tacking a "Black Edition" moniker after the 1090T model number. This decision will likely lead to confusion later on as AMD reps PCSTATS spoke with have indicated the company will introduce future TurboCore processors under the Black Edition branding.

To address any lingering questions, the AMD Phenom II X6 1090T processor that PCSTATS tested for this review was fully multiplier unlocked.... we're just not entirely sure if it's a AMD Phenom II X6 1090T or AMD Phenom II X6 1090T Black Edition processor. AMD was less than specific when pressed for a clarification. The default 16x multiplier couldn't be set as high as 31.5x, though in our overclocking tests the best workable setting we managed was 2/3rds that high.

Pre-Overclocking Warm up

Before overclocking began the Corsair CM3X2G1600C9DHX memory was set to run in DDR3-800 MHz mode from its default of DDR3-1033. For the best overclocking results you need high quality memory - Corsair's DDR3 RAM has been a part of the PCSTATS CPU test platform years because it's fast and takes to overclocking like a champ. Dropping the memory speed helps ensure the RAM won't be holding the CPU back as bus speeds increase. The standard AMD reference AVC Z7U7414001 heatsink was used for cooling. For the latest and greatest cooling solutions have a look at PCSTATS' sister website, Frostytech.com.

Overclocking 3.2-to-3.9GHz!

The 6-core AMD Phenom II X6 1090T has a default 16x multiplier for an overall clock speed of 16x 200MHz = 3.2GHz. That's pretty fast, but with TurboCore three of the six cores will automatically overclock to 18x 200MHz = 3.6GHz when certain load situations occur. So really, you don't need to do anything - the PII X6 1090T overclocks itself from the get go when the CPU-load demands!

.... but what fun is that? Okay, let's getting down to business.

The multiplier on the AMD Phenom II X6 1090T was overclockable from 16x as far as 20x without any POST issues, but at 20x the test computer BSOD'd while loading Windows. In the end PCSTATS had to settle for a maximum multiplier overclock of 19.5x which resulted in a clock speed of 3.9GHz. At this speed WPrime will complete it's calculations in 7.113 seconds, SuperPi to 8M in a time of 3:49.836!

With the CPU multiplier rolled back to 16x, PCSTATS set out to overclock the Phenom II X6 1090T by bus speed alone. Starting from 200MHz, the bus speed was rapidly increased to 223MHz, 231MHz... 240... and 245MHz before the computer crashed with a dull thud. After some fiddling, PCSTATS settled on a moderate overclock of to the bus speed of 240Hz, resulting in a processor clock speed overclock to 3.84GHz.

Bus + Multiplier Overclocking

For the final round of overclocking fun the bus speed was reset to 200MHz and CPU multiplier back down to 16x, then both were slowly increased towards the established maximums (multiplier 19.5x and Bus 240MHz). It didn't take very long before Phenom II X6 1090T processor was running on a 225MHz Bus and 17.5x multiplier, for a maximum CPU overclock to 4.025 GHz.

Overclocking milage always varies, but for a 6-core processor PCSTATS is pretty happy with the results we've seen here.

Next up, PCSTATS has several round of benchmarks to test the Phenom II X6's multi-threading capabilities and how it stacks up against dual, triple and quad-core CPUs!

Prelude to Benchmarks/ Test System Specs

Over the following page we'll be running AMD's 3.2/3.6GHz six-core Phenom II X6 1090T processor (socket AM3) though PCSTATS standard set of gaming, productivity, and multi-threaded processor benchmarks. There are a wide variety of gaming and synthetic benchmarks here to illustrate what kind of performance boost users can expect from the latest quad-core socket AM3 AMD processor. Please take a moment to look over PCSTATS test system configurations before moving on to the individual benchmark results on the next several pages.

PCSTATS Test System Configurations
test system reference system #1 reference system #2 reference system #3 reference system #4
processor: amd phenom ii x6 1090t amd Phenom II X4 965 Black Edition
AMD Phenom II X4 910e Black Edition
AMD Phenom II X2 555 Black Edition
AMD Athlon II X4 635
AMD Athlon II X4 620
AMD Athlon II X3 435
AMD Athlon II X2 240e

Intel Core i5 750

Intel Core i7 920 Intel Core 2 Duo E8400
CPU Process Technology: 45nm 45nm 45nm 45nm 45nm
Socket: Socket AM3 Socket AM3 Socket LGA1156 Socket LGA1366 Socket LGA775
Clock Speed: 16x 200MHz = 3.2 GHz, Turbo Core @ 3.6GHz (1090T)

17x 200MHz = 3.4 GHz (965 BE)
13x 200MHz = 2.6 GHz (910e)
16.0x 200MHz = 3.2 GHz (555BE)
14.5x 200MHz = 2.9 GHz (AIIX4 635)
13x 200MHz = 2.6 GHz (AIIX4 620)
14.5x 200MHz = 2.9 GHz (AIIX3 435) 14x 200 MHz = 2.8 GHz (AIIX2 240e)

20x 133MHz = 2.66 GHz 20x 133MHz = 2.67 GHz 9x 333MHz = 3.0 GHz
Motherboard: MSI 890FXA-GD70 (AMD 890FX) Gigabyte GA-MA790FXT-UD5P (AMD 790FX) Gigabyte GA-P55-UD6 (Intel P55)
MSI X58 Platinum (X58 Express)

MSI X48 Platinum (X48 Express)


(Geforce GTS250)

(Geforce 8800GTS)

2x2GB Corsair XMS3-1600C9 DDR3

2x2GB Corsair XMS3-1600C8 DDR3 3x2GB Corsair TR3X6G1600C8D DDR3

2x1GB Patriot PDC32G1600LLK DDR3

Hard Drive:

74GB Western Digital Raptor WD740

Optical Drive:


Power Supply:

PC Power & Cooling TurboCool 750W


Athlon64 Reference Heatsink

Intel Reference 1156 Heatsink Intel Reference 1366 Heatsink Intel Reference 775 Heatsink
Operating System:

Microsoft Windows 7 Ultimate (32-bit)


Microsoft Windows 7 Ultimate
AMD Catalyst 10.3b
nVIDIA Forceware 195.62

Microsoft Windows 7 Ultimate
AMD Catalyst 9.12
nVIDIA Forceware 195.62

Microsoft Windows 7 Ultimate
nVIDIA Forceware 190.62

Microsoft Windows 7 Ultimate
Intel INF
nVIDIA Forceware 182.08

Microsoft Windows 7 Ultimate
Intel INF
nVIDIA Forceware 169.25

System Benchmarks:
SYSmark 2007
PCMark Vantage
SiSoft Sandra 2009

Calculation B/M:
Super Pi 1.5
wPrime 2.0
ScienceMark 2.3
Bibble 5

Rendering B/M:
Cinebench R10
POV-Ray 3.7

Gaming B/M:
3DMark Vantage

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Contents of Article: AMD Phenom II X6 1090T
 Pg 1.  AMD Phenom II X6 1090T 3.2GHz Socket AM3 6-Core Processor Review
 Pg 2.  TurboCore - AMD gets dynamic frequency adjustment
 Pg 3.  TurboCore Impact on System Power Draw
 Pg 4.  — Six-Core Overclocking - Breaking New Records
 Pg 5.  CPU System Benchmarks: Sysmark 2007
 Pg 6.  CPU System Benchmarks: PCMark Vantage
 Pg 7.  CPU Synthetic Benchmarks: SiSoft Sandra Processor
 Pg 8.  CPU Synthetic Benchmarks: SiSoft Sandra Memory
 Pg 9.  CPU Calculation Benchmarks: Super Pi
 Pg 10.  CPU Calculation Benchmarks: wPrime2.0
 Pg 11.  CPU Calculation Benchmarks: ScienceMark2.3, WinRAR
 Pg 12.  CPU Rendering Benchmarks: Cinebench R10, Bibble 5
 Pg 13.  CPU Rendering Benchmarks: POV-Ray 3.7, SPECviewPerf 10
 Pg 14.  CPU Synthetic Gaming Benchmarks: 3DMark Vantage, 3DMark 06
 Pg 15.  CPU Gaming Benchmarks: Crysis
 Pg 16.  CPU Gaming Benchmarks: FEAR
 Pg 17.  TurboCore for single-threads, Six cores for multi-threads

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