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Old 02-16-2010, 07:12 PM   #1
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Default X3 Vs. X4

is there much of a performance boost between triple cored cpus and quad cored cpus?

im trying to keep my build budget low, and theres a price increase of around 80 from the Athlon X3 to the Phenom X4.

i know the PX4 has a L3 cache, but overall performance wise for gaming, what would the difference be?
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Old 02-17-2010, 02:00 PM   #2
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Default Re: X3 Vs. X4

Theres also a Phenom X3?
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Old 02-17-2010, 02:47 PM   #3
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Default Re: X3 Vs. X4

There is?

i havent seen it, but that doesnt mean its not there.
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Old 02-18-2010, 06:28 PM   #4
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Default Re: X3 Vs. X4

Yes, there's a Phenom x3. In both cases, Athlon and Phenom, it's simply an x4 with a locked core.

720 OEM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16819103821

705e Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16819103683

720 Black Edition OEM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16819103652
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Old 02-19-2010, 05:10 AM   #5
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Default Re: X3 Vs. X4

Phenom II cpus are all built on the same architecture, but the X2s and X3s have locked those additional cores (sometimes due to instability but I think it's because it's cheaper than building three separate architectures). Getting the Black Edition of any Phenom II, means those locked cores are now accessible. Certain motherboards and BIOS can unlock them. Easiest one is Asus, which also gives you the option to unlock just one additional core (in the case of of the 550 and 555) in case one of the optional two aren't stable.
If you get a Phenom II X3 BE, you can unlock that fourth core, but you're not guaranteed stability and not every board can do it. Do some research...but I know all the newer Asus mobos do unlock the cores.

And yes, there is a bit of benefit in having an additional core. We're not talking about an extra 50 fps, but an additional 10 fps isn't out of the question depending on what games you're playing. In any case, I'd go with the Phenom II, 720 BE or the 550 BE and then try unlocking.
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Old 02-19-2010, 03:52 PM   #6
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Default Re: X3 Vs. X4

The other thing that multicore CPU's help with is multithreaded games that make heavy use of physics such as L4D2.
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Old 02-20-2010, 03:25 AM   #7
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Default Re: X3 Vs. X4

There are still some applications that cannot use triple cores properly.

tbh, I don't know why people buy them. The x4 version is only a couple dollars more now, and the performance boost is worth it in most cases.
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Old 02-20-2010, 03:40 AM   #8
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Default Re: X3 Vs. X4

^ Wasn't always the case. For a while the 720 were right in the middle of the 550 and 955.

Some things do see a boost from it. Dual-threaded programs can use two cores while the OS takes up the other. I think GTA4 and a couple of other console-native games are actually coded for three cores.
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Old 02-23-2010, 04:30 AM   #9
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Default Re: X3 Vs. X4

Well Dark.

When you do get your rig together, and if your using a Triple Core CPU, with rig specs close to mine, you run 3d mark Vantage an i will to. And will see if there is a big different between quad and triple. At stock clocks ofcourse.
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