AMD Processors

Processors, being the core of any PC, are one item that is worth scrutinizing when it comes time to make a purchase or upgrade. Currently, AMD still holds the price:performance crown when compared to offerings from their only real competitor, Intel. In cases where video encoding performance is not the deciding factor for your purchase, AMD takes the cake and maintains very solid gaming and desktop application performance.

This week, there are two chips from AMD worth considering. The first is the Athlon XP 2600+. Prices for AMD's Athlon XP lineup have been something of a rollercoaster ride lately with the price changes that AMD has been making to help introduce their A64 offerings. Nonetheless, the AXP still remains a good choice for most users. More than enough power for office and productivity applications, along with enough horsepower for gaming, the Athlon XP 2600+ from MWave is this week's best option for 32-bit purchases. This chip is also based on the same Barton core as the famed 2500+, which means that it overclocks very well too when paired with a quality motherboard.

If you're itching to try out the 64-bit edition of Windows XP, or just want to future-proof your rig for a bit longer, the Athlon 64 3200+ (Newcastle) continues its worthiness. The Newcastle version gains the top spot due to its lower price point. The smaller cache, 512KB vs. 1MB on the Clawhammer, is ofset very well by the added clock speed which is 2.2GHz. Even though it uses a socket 754 interface, this does not mean that it is obsolete yet. Socket 754 still has a good bit of time left in the marketplace and as long as the prices remain as low as they are now, or lower, it should be considered as an option when shopping around. With prices this low, there aren't too many reasons why, aside from A64 vs. AXP price-only comparisons, not to pick one up.



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  • AdamRader - Sunday, September 05, 2004 - link

    #1: #2 hit it right on the nose. Given the options, NewCastle is the one I would recommend. Coincidentally, this is the same chip that I use on my primary workstation.

    #3: I'm not sure if that can be done with the way the CMS is built, but I will certainly pass this on to Jason to see if it's feasible.
    Reply
  • alm4rr - Saturday, September 04, 2004 - link

    Can you move the price guide to under the link to go to the next section? It's just a lot to scroll through when reading the article for info (instead of looking for price info).

    Thx
    Reply
  • JarredWalton - Saturday, September 04, 2004 - link

    I purchased the Newcastle 3200+ 2.2 GHz a few weeks back, for two reasons. First, the improved clock speed is generally better than the improved cache size. Two, it was about $35 cheaper than the Clawhammer. For that price, I picked up a Zalman CNPS7000a heatsink/fan and overclocked my 3200+ to 2.42 GHz without any difficulty. I don't know about Adam, but I would go with the Newcastle cores for most setups, given the price difference. Not to mention the Clawhammer cores seem to be on the way out (hence the price difference). Reply
  • l3ored - Saturday, September 04, 2004 - link

    which a64 3200 are you recomending? newcastle or clawhammer? Reply

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