Athlon II X4 610e & Phenom II X4 910e: 45W & 65W Quad Cores

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FINAL THOUGHTS

Processor Value

To judge performance/value, we gave all our timed benchmarks equal weighting with the top performer, the Core i5-750, given a score of 100 on our performance scale. Similarly, the CPU that delivered the best performance per dollar, the X4 635, was given a score of 100 on the value scale.


Performance and value, sorted by CPU pricing.

On our test suite, the X4 630 and 635 gave us 75~80% performance of the i5-750 but at half the price, confirming that AMD can't be beat when it comes to pure value. The Core i5s were very fast, but also priced high, resulting in a much poorer value score. The two energy efficient X4s are even worse, an undesirable combination of lukewarm performance and high price.

Unfortunately, just as there is no such thing as a free lunch, there is no ideal combination of both value (performance/dollar) and power consumption. The best value processors, the X4 635 and 630 are among the most energy inefficient, while their low power brothers, the X4 610e and X4 910 only offer minor power savings coupled with poor value. The Intel chips fare better in this regard, but keep in mind that we did not factor in motherboard cost. Intel boards typically the cost 20~40% more than comparable AMD boards, driving down their value further.

Athlon II X4 610e & Phenom II X4 910e

The "E" processors total power consumption during our timed benchmarks was only 10% better than the faster 95W and 125W AMD quad cores, and still a ways off from Intel's Core i5s. They are slightly more energy efficient when idle, but the difference is too small to make a real impact in the grand scheme of things. In addition, the price premium attached to these processors makes them rather poor values; equivalent or better performance can be found in the ~$100 Athlon II X4 635. From what we can gather, the only real selling point of these CPUs is the lower operating temperature... but then again, most standard AMD processors undervolt fairly well.

Our thanks to AMD and for Athlon/Phenom II X4 samples used in this review.

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Articles of Related Interest
AMD's 890GX Chipset
Asus P7H55D-M EVO LGA1156 microATX Motherboard
Intel Core i5-661: A 32nm CPU with Integrated Graphics
Athlon II X4 630 & 620: Affordable Quad Cores
Intel's LGA1156 and Lynnfield core
AMD's 785G Chipset Boards: 780G Evolved

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