|AMD Phenom II X2 550 BE AM3 Processor|
|Reviews - Featured Reviews: Processors|
|Written by Mathew Williams|
|Tuesday, 02 June 2009|
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AMD Phenom II X2 550 BE AM3
Today at Computex, AMD took the wraps off of two highly anticipated processors: the Athlon II X2 250 and the Phenom II X2 550 Black Edition. Both are based on AMD's 45nm SOI process with the key difference being the amount of L3 cache. The Phenom II X2 550, codenamed Callisto, gets the full 6 MB cache of the Phenom II family and will serve as AMD's new flagship dual-core processor. The Athlon II X2 250, on the other hand, is based on the new native dual-core Regor die that omits the L3 cache completely and targets the mainstream segment. Benchmark Reviews was fortunate to receive samples of both processors and today we can officially share with you our results. In this review, we focus on the Phenom II X2 550 BE HDZ550WGIBOX.
Based on the same 45nm STARS micro-architecture as the rest of the Phenom II family, the X2 550 BE should not only be faster, but also more efficient than AMD's previous 65nm Kuma dual cores. The Athlon X2 7850 that we reviewed back in April, for example, posts a decent 2.8 GHz clock speed and 2 MB L3 cache, but at the cost of a 95W TDP. The new Callisto-based X2 550 BE, however, comes in 300 MHz higher at 3.1 GHz with a 6 MB L3 cache and a TDP of only 80W.
Of course, performance and efficiency do come at a price. In this case, a Phenom II X2 550 BE will set you back $102. That positions it toward the upper-mainstream market, just below the Phenom II X3 family. On the Intel side, its nearest competitors will be the Pentium E5400 and Core 2 Duo E7400. Fortunately, we have an E7400 on hand for comparison. Read on to discover how the X2 550 stacks up against this and several other processors.
About Advanced Micro Devices, Inc (AMD)
"Advanced Micro Devices (NYSE: AMD) is an innovative technology company dedicated to collaborating with customers and partners to ignite the next generation of computing and graphics solutions at work, home, and play.
Over the course of AMD's three decades in business, silicon and software have become the steel and plastic of the worldwide digital economy. Technology companies have become global pacesetters, making technical advances at a prodigious rate - always driving the industry to deliver more and more, faster and faster.
However, "technology for technology's sake" is not the way we do business at AMD. Our history is marked by a commitment to innovation that's truly useful for customers - putting the real needs of people ahead of technical one-upmanship. AMD founder Jerry Sanders has always maintained that "customers should come first, at every stage of a company's activities."
We believe our company history bears that out."