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AMD Phenom-II X4-975 BE CPU HDZ975FBGMBOX E-mail
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Written by Hank Tolman   
Tuesday, 04 January 2011
Table of Contents: Page Index
Features and Specifications
Closer Look: Phenom-II X4-975BE
Testing and Results
AIDA64 Extreme Edition v1.1 Benchmark Tests
Passmark PerformanceTest
PCMark Vantage Benchmark Tests
SiSoftware Sandra
Cinebench R11.5 Benchmarks
Street Fighter IV Benchmark
Video Transcoding Tests
AMD Phenom-II X4-975BE Final Thoughts
AMD Phenom-II X4-975 BE Conclusion

AMD Phenom-II X4-975BE Final Thoughts

Intel has thrown down the gauntlet with the Sandy Bridge release. Gaming performance wasn't exactly a focus here, since the extreme gaming market is a lot smaller than the up-and-coming media centered market. With smartphones and tablets making such a splash in the market, media transcoding is becoming more popular than ever. Unfortunately, as we have shown in our tests, the Phenom-II X4-975BE lacks the performance necessary to compete with the Intel Core i5-2500K Sandy Bridge CPU in these areas.

In my recent experience, I have been disappointed by the Core i5 CPUs and very impressed with the performance of the AMD CPUs for their price. A Phenom-II X4 Black Edition processor would have no problem competing with a similarly priced Core i5 CPU. In fact, a much less expensive Athlon-II X4 processor would be able to compete with a old Core i5 CPU. This is simply not the case anymore.

The ball is in AMD's court now. Intel has released their Sandy Bridge platform and proven that they can give the performance necessary to compete in the mainstream market. AMD's stranglehold on the entry-level market might be in jeopardy as well depending on the performance of the lower end Core i3 Sandy Bridge processors. It's about time for AMD to come up with something new, and I don't mean another series of CPU releases that are just 100MHz speed bumps over their predecessors.

Sometime this year, possibly very soon, AMD will announce the release of their APU, the Brazos chips. These will be the AMD processors that have an integrated GPU on the same die as the CPU. The only problem is, everything we have heard from AMD about the Brazos chips is that they are targeted for low-end mobile platforms. That doesn't give us much hope for a new battle for power in the enthusiast or even mainstream computer market. The money, however, is moving toward mobility. Netbooks, tablets, smartphones, etc. That is where the money is at. I can't say I would be too surprised to see AMD move away from the trying their hand at the enthusiast end, but it would be very a sad day to say the least.

In many ways, with the Sandy Bridge release, Intel has left the door wide open for AMD to come down and sweep away the enthusiast market. Even if they only release a platform that is just comparable, or slightly below, the Sandy Bridge high-end performance, all they have to do is allow for overclocking and they will have a distinct advantage. With all the restrictions on overclocking in the Sandy Bridge platform, AMD should take note of the disgruntlement of the high-end enthusiast market. AMD had brought overclocking to masses with their low-end CPUs. The Athlon-II series was great at overclocking and had a lot of headroom. To make things nicer, they were very inexpensive CPUs, so it didn't cost an arm and a leg to start overclocking, like it will now with the Sandy Bridge CPUs.

The bottom line is, AMD needs to do something, and they need to do something big. I don't think Brazos is what the computer gaming and enthusiast market is looking for. I get that software has a long way to go to be able to take advantage of all the hardware power we have now, but I think it will come along. When that happens, all this new Graphical Power will be wasted if we don't get some more high-end, performance based hardware.



# RE: AMD Phenom-II X4-975 BE CPU HDZ975FBK4DGMDoug 2011-01-04 05:10
Yep. I concur and here is a little testing I did while reading your article:
CPU CPU Clock Motherboard Chipset Memory CL-RCD-RP-RAS Score
4x Core i7 920 HT 3800 MHz Gigabyte GA-X58A-UD5 v2 X58 Triple DDR3-1448 8-8-8-24 CR2
This is a Bloomfield chip.

Passmark 7
CPU Mark: 7884
Memory Mark: 3263
Street Fighter IV: 8934
AVI: 84
MP4: 34

And note that although the 975BE @ 4Ghz comes close to the stock 920 in Queen, it's still about 6% slower and in Photoworxx a full 30%+ slower. That at 4Ghz the best of AMD can only muster what a now lowly 920 can do at 2.66Ghz is pretty sad.
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# SAD You say??Toeringsandthong 2011-02-03 04:42
Hers some food for thought ! whats sad is paying alot more for 920 when you dont have too ! think about it fanboy !
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# RE: AMD Phenom-II X4-975 BEMack 2011-01-04 07:50
Nice review. Thanks for the comparison CPU choices as well.
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# RE: AMD Phenom-II X4-975 BE CPU HDZ975FBK4DGMAthlonite 2011-01-04 18:28
pretty much this CPU has been put out there for us AM2+ users who don't want to OC or don't want x6 10xx CPU's but would like a little more power.... I can't see why any serious upgrader would buy this right before the release of bulldozer based CPU's
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# RE: RE: AMD Phenom-II X4-975 BE CPU HDZ975FBK4DGMAthlonite 2011-01-04 18:35
Oh and I cant believe that my #ty old PII x4 940BE @ 3.4GHz beat out the x4 840 in every test in AIDA64
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# It should beat the 840Hank 2011-01-05 07:35
The X4-840 isn't really a Phenom-II Chip, it's an Athlon-II with the name Phenom-II. The 840 doesn't have any L3 cache and is built on a Propus die. Also, at $102, its a lot cheaper than any of the Phenom-II X4 processors. That your X4-940BE beats it isn't all that surprising.

Feel free to read my review of the Phenom-II X4-840 as well --
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# RE: AMD Phenom-II X4-975 BE CPU HDZ975FBK4DGMnormal 2011-01-05 00:44
I'm very sorry to read this article and still the author is so bent on Intel that he passes the fact that the new Intel chip can't even run on Linux.AMD still does.You so called Intel superchip is'n't that far in front of the 975BE.Only in the encryption it's got some advantages thanks to a lot of compiler tricks.But in plain battlefield Intel sucks big time.Even in the game it loses to an old phenom 2 architecture.Don't teint the truth by using words. Intel sucks!!!!!!!AMD rules!!!!!
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# Read the articleHank 2011-01-05 07:37
If you would have read the article, you would see that I said I preferred the Phenom-II X4-975BE as a gaming CPU over the i5-2500K. Also, the margins were anywhere from 8% to 35% without counting the AES test. I also stated that prior to the Sandy Bridge release, I preferred the ATHLON-II series over the i5 chips. Read the article next time, not just the last page.
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# 975 BE for now, Bulldozer later...nt300 2011-01-05 07:50
There's no bias within this article as some of you may think. Anyway great review and a very good upgrade path for people wanting to stick to the AM2+ and AM3 platforms. I am waiting for Bulldozer, though I would get this chip just to buy me some time in between, but it has to be dirt cheap $$$...
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# MotherboardJosé Luiz 2011-03-06 06:22
I believe the 975 AMD processor is excellent, I would buy one but can not find the motherboard for this processor. Unfortunately, there is the motherboard for this processor on the market.
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# RE: MotherboardOrville 2011-03-06 08:45
You can use any AM3 motherboard for this processor. There are many models available.
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# 975BE BESTGodless 2011-10-05 03:39
I think its good to buy this 3.6 GHZ CPU because it runs like hell ^^ its better than a dream ^^
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# RE: 975BE BESTAthlonite 2011-10-05 06:18
Really you'd spend the extra over an x4 965 or an 955 for that matter

965 + 300MHz OC = stock 975BE and it's the same deneb die you only going to get out of a 975BE what would be attainable from an 965 + a descent cooler
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