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 Post subject: Upgrading an Athlon 64 3200+ to a dual core...
PostPosted: Tue Oct 06, 2009 7:02 am 
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Joined: Mon Jun 20, 2005 7:08 am
Posts: 43
Location: Perth, Australia
Hi everyone,

I have an old quiet PC that I'd like to add a little more grunt to by upgrading the CPU to a dual core.

The current single core Athlon 64 3200+ idles at around 30° with the fan at 50%. Under load it rises up to 40°, at which point the fan speeds up to 75%. The temperature then levels out at around 41 - 42°.

Now to my question... What do you think would be the fastest Athlon 64 X2 I'd be able to run in this system without making any changes to the current CPU cooling setup?

Here's a list of the options...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_AM ... hlon_64_X2

I understand that what ever I go with will run hotter (obviously) and I don't mind if the fan needs to run at 100% under load. I just want to avoid getting an CPU that's going to push things to far, overheat and crash :(

FYI, my current system is as follows...

PSU : Antec Phantom 350W
MB : Gigabyte GA-K8NPRO-SLI
CPU : AMD Athlon64 3200+ S939 (Venice)
HSF: Scythe NCU-2005 + Nexus 120mm Real Silent fan
RAM: Corsair 2GB PC3200
GPU : 2 x Gigabyte 7600GT (SLI)
HD : Samsung 1TB

Any help here would be greatly appreciated.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Oct 06, 2009 11:14 am 
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Joined: Tue Aug 04, 2009 7:03 am
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Location: Brooklyn, NY
The big thing to keep in mind is that you have a 939 socket mother board. New X2 chips for 939 socket haven't been sold in years, so you'll be looking for used chips.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Oct 06, 2009 2:04 pm 
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Well, first of all, all of the 939 Athlon 64 X2s were either Manchester or Toledo cores, which all had 89W or 110W TDPs. The fastest 89W versions are the 2.2 GHz 4200+ and some 4400+ models, with the former having 512KBx2 cache, and the latter having 1MBx2 cache. The 2.4 GHz 4600+ and 4800+ models have 110W TDPs, but could be undervolted somewhat (though I'm guessing not by much, as my S754 Venice 3400+ can only be undervolted to 1.35V from 1.40V stock), so a similar 0.05V undervolt on a 110W model would yield a ~100W TDP. With the fan, I think your NCU-2005 shouldn't have any trouble keeping one within safe limits under load.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Oct 07, 2009 11:09 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jun 20, 2005 7:08 am
Posts: 43
Location: Perth, Australia
b_rubenstein wrote:
you'll be looking for used chips.


Used is fine. In fact its preferable. I'm only considering doing this because these chips can now be acquired cheaply second-hand.

RedAE102 wrote:
Well, first of all, all of the 939 Athlon 64 X2s were either Manchester or Toledo cores, which all had 89W or 110W TDPs. <snip>


Thanks for the insight. What you've said makes sense, but I'm still not really sure which CPU I should go with. Sticking to one with a TDP of 89W sounds like a good starting point, but I guess what I'd really like is some temperature / power consumption data specific to each CPU to help me compare them.

If anyone knows where I can find this sort of data, or if anyone has tried a similar upgrade themselves, I'd be interested to know.

In the mean time I'll get stuck in to some googling...


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Oct 08, 2009 12:36 am 
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Posts: 165
Location: Riga
RedAE102 wrote:
my S754 Venice 3400+ can only be undervolted to 1.35V from 1.40V stock

you mean - at stock speed?
Any Athlon can be undervolted to 1.1V 1GHz.
X2 would draw then about 18W at load (I measured some time ago).
A bad chip draws twice what a good one of the same model does.
s939 X2 must be really cheap to consider over a newer+MB.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Oct 08, 2009 6:54 am 
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Joined: Thu Sep 07, 2006 11:20 pm
Posts: 861
Location: Poland
Cheap 939 X2 chips? On the contrary - at least from what I see on the local auction service. Them 939 X2 Toledos and Manchesters still fetch v good prices to sellers. Yes they do. More expensive than AM2 CPUs. Also, DDR1 mems are, from what I see (and I do track it) up to 3x more spensive than DDR2. 3 x, three times, I mean it. Of course, things coudl be different in other locations, but I guess price relations are pretty much the same everywhere.
Now, that's my personal view here, but I'd rather try to sell the stuff and use the cash to get some C2D or PDC setup. More powah, lower energy use, still more options to upgrade...
Sound like a major operation but you only need to change 3 items here, no big deal.
Again - that's how I see it, given local prices (which might as well have similar relations in your place...)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Oct 08, 2009 8:41 am 
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Joined: Wed Apr 30, 2003 2:02 pm
Posts: 68
Location: The Netherlands
I'm with kater.
The faster 939 dual cores go for about $100 or more on ebay.
For a few dollars more you can get a new motherboard, CPU and Ram that is much faster and much lower power.

That's what i would do probably. The old system would go to a friend or relative. In my experience there is always someone that needs an upgrade :lol:


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Oct 08, 2009 8:45 am 
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sipitai wrote:
b_rubenstein wrote:
you'll be looking for used chips.


Used is fine. In fact its preferable. I'm only considering doing this because these chips can now be acquired cheaply second-hand.


You must be kidding. I have an old computer with a socket 939 Sempron 3200+ CPU that I was planning on upgrading for HTPC use. The socket 939 dual-cores (Opteron and Athlon X2) I was eyeing on eBay were close to $200. Seeing I also needed to pony up some dough for more DDR SDRAM, building new ended up being cheaper, not to mention better bang for the buck.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Oct 08, 2009 8:31 pm 
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Location: Perth, Australia
Don't worry. I have no intention of paying a premium for a 4 year old CPU.

If what I'm looking for can't be found for a reasonable price, I'll either give it a miss or go with your suggestions and get a better CPU + MB + RAM combo.

That said the bit of searching I did seemed to indicate the X2 3800+ could be had for as low as $30 - $40AUD, and the X2 4200+ could be had for as low as $40 - $50AUD.

Are those prices reasonable?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Oct 09, 2009 4:42 am 
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Location: Brooklyn, NY
A lot of the X2 939 chips were very common and now cheap used. Some, like the 4400+ with the 1 meg cache were rare and now cost quite a bit.

If you can find a X2 3800+ cheap, just get that. If you have to upgrade anything else, then it isn't worth it.


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 Post subject: Obsolete system?
PostPosted: Fri Oct 09, 2009 12:53 pm 
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Location: Sydney, Australia
sipitai wrote:
That said the bit of searching I did seemed to indicate the X2 3800+ could be had for as low as $30 - $40AUD, and the X2 4200+ could be had for as low as $40 - $50AUD.

Are those prices reasonable?

If you can get them at that price fair enough but I sold a DC 4800+ x2 on eBay a year or so ago and funded a faster Intel CPU, MB & Memory combo with the proceeds (see sig). I may even have had a few bucks left over.

Personally I wouldn't throw any more money into an s939 system.

Mine is still running as a spare/test box with its original SC 3200+ but I can see some caps on the MB starting to bulge etc so am just waiting for it to cark it.

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WHS: Antec LS-100, GA-MA74GM-S2H, LE-1250, 2x2Gb XMS DDR2, 7Tb
HTPC: Antec NSK2480B, MA78GPM-DS2H & Athlon 64 X2 4850e


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Dec 22, 2009 8:49 am 
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Location: Perth, Australia
I ended up buying a X2 3800+ for $50 AUD including postage.

It only raised the idle / load temperatures by maybe 5 degrees or so, while almost doubling performance in applications / games that support dual core.

Its been running for a month or so now without any problems.

If anyone else has the same idea I'd say go for it :)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Dec 24, 2009 7:55 am 
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Location: Phoenix, AZ
Klusu wrote:
RedAE102 wrote:
my S754 Venice 3400+ can only be undervolted to 1.35V from 1.40V stock

you mean - at stock speed?
Any Athlon can be undervolted to 1.1V 1GHz.
X2 would draw then about 18W at load (I measured some time ago).
A bad chip draws twice what a good one of the same model does.
s939 X2 must be really cheap to consider over a newer+MB.


I'm afraid this is not accurate. I've had 3 chips for my S939 board over the years, each with very different abilities:

San Diego 3500+: Happily ran at 1.1v at full, stock 2.2ghz
Venice 3500+: Causes random lockups at anything below 1.35v
Opteron 185: Happily ran slightly O/C (2.75ghz) at 1.275v

One motherboard, 3 different chips, 3 different experiences as far as how low they could go at stock speed. Obviously the San Diego core was best for undervolting, but the Opteron was far and away the outright fastest. Sadly my current chip is the Venice, as I sold my 185 on ebay over the summer when I needed the money. The lack of ability to undervolt is a bummer, but the dual cores use so much power that I'm still at far lower heat and power consumption than even my undervolted 185.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Dec 24, 2009 10:48 am 
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Location: Riga
I don't see what is not accurate.
I have had 7 s939 processors.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Dec 24, 2009 11:39 am 
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Location: Plymouth, MI
My Socket-939 X2 4400 only goes down to 1.35V. It's a 110W part so blaaah. It's in my wife's machine which is the biggest power hog we have.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Dec 25, 2009 3:15 pm 
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I was referring to the stock *full* speed. My E3 Venice 3400+ runs 800MHz-1.2 GHz with 1.1V, but could really run lower if it would respond to voltage requests below 1.1V. It also runs the full 2.4 GHz at 1.35V. My friend has an older HP notebook with a S939 E4 Manchester 3200+ (that's not a typo, it's a 15" notebook with a desktop 2.0 GHz Socket 939 processor), and it had the same 1.1V minimum as my Venice.

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Desktop: Athlon II X2 250 | MSI 785GT-E63 | Scythe Ninja | 6GB DDR2-800 | 2xWD6400AAKS & HD154UI | HIS HD4670 512MB | Solo | S12-330 | Win7 Pro x64
HTPC: Athlon II X2 245 | GB MA785GM-US2H | AC Alpine64 Pro | 2GB DDR2-800 | WD5000AAJS | NSK4480 | EA-380 | Win7 HP x86


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