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#1 cmdline

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Posted 27 October 2009 - 10:00 PM

I am building a new system and I could use some help picking a processor. I am looking at either the:

AMD Phenom II X3 720 2.8GHz 3 x 512KB L2 Cache 6MB L3 Cache Socket AM3 95W Triple-Core Black Processor
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx...N82E16819103649

or

AMD Athlon II X4 630 Propus 2.8GHz 4 x 512KB L2 Cache Socket AM3 95W Quad-Core Processor
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx...N82E16819103704

I plan on running Win 7 with 4gb. Mem, and using the system for my programming classes, and some lite gaming. Eventually I want to do some experimenting with setting up virtual pcs and possibly learning Linux. Virtual machines and multitasking might prefer having the extra core. Having the large L3 cache available will not hurt either. Reading the reviews: both processors have their advantages. One chip review says you can unlock the fourth core, the other chip you can unlock the missing cache. Any tips or suggestions would be appreciated.

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#2 the_patriot11

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Posted 27 October 2009 - 10:31 PM

you really cant unlock the fourth core in a triple core, to my knowledge because it is physically disabled. same with an L3 cache. having the L3 cache is nice, and the unlocked multiplier with the x3 can make for bookoo overclocking, the fourch core can be nice. heres the catch though, your software has to be able to support multi core software. In reality, both me and my dad run virtual machines with linux/windows with dual core setups (mine AMD athlon x2 6000+ my dads Athlon x2 7750) without a hitch, or any slow down whatsoever. with virtual machine, a good Dual core or above will do you fine, having lots of memory is probably more important, I would say at least 4 gigs, if not more. as far as the CPU I think Id go with the triple core phenom. it has better architecture, level 3 cache, and an unlocked multiplier. I dont recomend overclocking but its always nice to have the ability to. You cant unlock the fourth core, I believe thats an urban myth, or at very least, extremely difficult to do, but hey its still one more core then most software these days can use. though if you can squeeze out another 30 bucks this http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx...N82E16819103656 CPU will do you several times better. its a black edition quad with a level 3 cache. dont have to worry about unlocking a fourth core or the like.

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Primary system: Motherboard: ASUS M4A89GTD PRO/USB3, Processor: AMD Phenom II x4 945, Memory: 16 gigs of Patriot G2 DDR3 1600, Video: AMD Sapphire Nitro R9 380, Storage: 1 WD 500 gig HD, 1 Hitachi 500 gig HD, and Power supply: Coolermaster 750 watt, OS: Windows 10 64 bit. 

Media Center: Motherboard: Gigabyte mp61p-S3, Processor: AMD Athlon 64 x2 6000+, Memory: 6 gigs Patriot DDR2 800, Video: Gigabyte GeForce GT730, Storage: 500 gig Hitachi, PSU: Seasonic M1211 620W full modular, OS: Windows 10.

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#3 DJBPace07

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Posted 28 October 2009 - 12:13 AM

You can overclock the fourth core with an appropriate BIOS, but those are few and far between. The Phenom II 720 is based off the Phenom II quad-core design and has all the features associated with the line. It is also Black Edition. The Athlon II is based off the Phenom II, but has been modifed, at the hardware level, to be more cost effective to lower budget customers. I would stick to the Phenom II CPU's if you want to do anything requiring raw CPU power, like encoding or playing games.

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