AMD has lifted the press ban on its new dual-core desktop processors, and the results look promising. Most sites are reporting that the high end X2 chips from AMD are significantly faster then comparable Intel Extreme Edition offerings. Most new Socket 939 motherboards are compatible with X2 chips right out of the box. Slightly older models will require a flash BIOS update to enable support for the new dual-core CPUs.
The X2 4800+ beats out the Pentium Extreme Edition 840 virtually across the board, even in tests that use four threads to take best advantage of the Extreme Edition 840's Hyper-Threading capabilities. The difference becomes even more pronounced in single-threaded applications, including games, where the Pentium XE 840 is near the bottom of the pack and the X2 4800+ is constantly near the top. The X2 4800+ also consumes considerably less power, both at idle and under load.
The initial lineup for the Athlon 64 X2 is as follows:
AMD Athlon 64 X2 4800+ $1,001 (2.4GHz 1MB L2 Cache Per Core)
AMD Athlon 64 X2 4600+ $803 (2.4GHz 512KB L2 Cache Per Core)
AMD Athlon 64 X2 4400+ $581 (2.2GHz 1MB L2 Cache Per Core)
AMD Athlon 64 X2 4200+ $537 (2.2GHz 512KB L2 Cache Per Core)
View: AMD Home