Phenom II X4 965 BE revision C3 review -
AMD Phenom II X4 965BE revision C3 with 125W TDP -- the quest for power efficiency.
AMD today is updating their most high-end processor to a new revision, the Phenom II X4 965 BE processor with stepping C3 -- and this new model is all about energy efficiency.
This processor has the same high clock frequency as its predecessor, yes... 3400 MHz. By releasing the 965BE, AMD brings their flagship processor to the table and as such, AMD has definitely earned their stripes with Phenom II.
Now as you guys know all too well, typically new revisions bring along very small subtle changes and corrections, however in the case of the C3 Phenom II X4 965 BE AMD definitely changed a thing or two in order to make their best processor even better.
This new SKU can be found located under product code HDZ965FBK4DGM, with the M indicating the new C3 revision.
The revised Phenom II X4 965 BE processor has not only a much better TDP (peak Wattage at 125W coming down from 140W) but overall much better power management thanks to the fact that hardware C1E is now implemented in the CPU, allowing the processor to throttle down. And that makes it an interesting change as it does allow for faster switching of power states, making it more efficient. Typically with such a feature enforced it could mean lower performance a little, but... with a proper BIOS AMD claims there's no real impact on performance -- and after testing it we concur.
Another, and thus third change, is what AMD calls Heavy load support for DDR3-1333. With proper BIOS implementation, the memory controller will now support up to 4x DDR3 DIMMs at 1333MHz which apparently was an issue on the last revision.
So here we have the Phenom II X4 965BE revision C3 processor priced at a roughly 200 USD. You can pop this processor into, for example, an 80 USD AMD 785 chipset based motherboard, pop in some DDR3 memory for a few tenners and get pretty staggering performance, while your entire PC build remains really affordable. In fact, we'll do just that today.
Well, we'll be looking into the overall performance of the product as we'll compare it amongst others to the 'older' 140W model, suffice to say we weren't disappointed. We'll go through the paces of explaining the entire CPU, power states and consumption and obviously a nice benchmark session to confirm that this way better energy efficient processor is not at all slower.
AMDs current Deneb core over the past year and a half has been optimized and fine-tuned in many ways. As such, and honestly completely unneeded, AMD did decide to make their fastest Phenom II X4 processor even a slight bit faster, yes today they release their Phenom II X4 980 Black Edition processor, which clocks in at chill 3.7 GHz at default.
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