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Written by Hank Tolman   
Tuesday, 21 September 2010
Table of Contents: Page Index
Features and Specifications
Closer Look: Athlon-II X4-640
Testing and Results
EVEREST Benchmark Tests
Passmark PerformanceTest
PCMark Vantage Benchmark Tests
SiSoftware Sandra
Cinebench R11.5 Benchmarks
Video Game Benchmarks
AMD Athlon-II X4 Final Thoughts
ADX645WFGMBOX Conclusion

AMD Athlon-II X4 Final Thoughts

With the Athlon-II series of processors, AMD has clamped down on the entry-level CPU market with an iron grip. Built without any L3 cache at all, these processors are cheap. The Athlon-II X4 series brought quad-core processing to the sub-$100 level for the first time. Everyday computer users confined to a tight budget, which really characterizes the vast majority of users, can now afford to enter in to the world of quad-cores that many of us had only dreamed of before now. With a price so enticing, it is normal to doubt the quality and performance that could possibly come out of such a product. As we have seen clearly in our testing, however, those doubts are unfounded. The Athlon-II X4-645 easily competes with processors that are much more expensive.

In our testing, the i5-655K was the Intel processor most competitive with the Athlon-II X4-645 and it comes at a price nearly $75 more expensive than the $122 X4-645. The X4-645 is also a quad-core, compared to the dual-core i5-655K. The latter also has an unlocked multiplier similar to AMDs black edition CPUs making it a more likely candidate for overclocking. For me, however, the first and final comparison after the benchmarks have shown the numbers has to be price. When I see two processors competing so closely for dominance in each test, it comes down to cost, and the Athlon-II X4-645 has that in the bag. The only real disconcerting thought about the price of the Athlon-II X4-645 is the fact that it will now cost about $23 more than its predecessor while providing an average increase in performance of only about 3%. If anything can detract from the value of the X4-645, it's the X4-640.


Our gaming tests, as well as the rest of our benchmarks, show conclusively that the Athlon-II X4-645 is a processor that can do just about anything pretty well. It certainly isn't the best CPU available in any single event, but it will do any of the jobs we tested it for with good level of proficiency. Even without the L3 cache available on higher priced CPUs, the Athlon-II X4-645 offers the performance necessary to get the job done. A few weeks ago my little brother called me up to ask me some questions about the specifications of a new computer he wanted to buy. He had been using a laptop for quite a while and, now that he was getting into some of the newer games, wanted to get a desktop to allow him to play them with high quality graphics. He will be using his computer for other purposes as well, but the most resource intensive use will be for gaming. He doesn't have a lot of room in his budget for what would normally be considered a powerhouse gaming computer, so he asked me how he could bring the cost down. I told him immediately that he should buy an Athlon-II quad-core processor. The X4-645 had obviously not been released yet, so I told him to buy the X4-640. He paired the Athlon-II with a NVIDIA GTX460 and many other budget minded parts and hasn't had any complaints about the performance.


For our readers, I have the same suggestion. If you are looking for a way to save money but still get a lot of power, you should consider an Athlon-II X4-645 and the results you have seen from the benchmark testing we have conducted. Don't be afraid that you won't be able to play video games; your GPU will determine that. These Athlon-II quad-cores are the cheapest quad-cores available and offer plenty of bang for the buck. The overclocking isn't disappointing either. As an Intel user for most of my life, testing the Athlon-II series of processors has really allowed me a new perspective. I don't know how many of you remember when the first Pentium processors were being released by Intel but I was a computer technician back then. I had to send back AMD CPUs more than twice as often as Intel CPUs at that time. That really skewed my view of AMD processors and it wasn't until very recently that I started using them again. I am not disappointed at all that I did.



# You can wait 3 months...BernardP 2010-09-21 04:37
... and the 945 will drop to 99$ when the 3.2 Ghz Athlon II X4 950 is released. But 3 months from now, Sandy Bridge will be almost amongst us, pushing down the price of all AMD processors.
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# Thanks for the in depthCharlee 2010-10-16 06:23
After reading your in depth review on this processor, makes me feel that I've made the right choice. I placed in an order at for my very much needed rig and was going for the X4 640 when they ( sent me a "shellshocker" (newsletter with offers) and noticed the x4 645...for $120, needless to say, I was not willing to go over $100 on my budget for a CPU, I finally came to the conclusion that I was getting the Athlon II X4 645 for only $108!! I what da hell why not 3.0 Ghz vs. 3.1 Ghz and a little extra (AMD-V) , that the 640 doesn't seem to have in the specs, i figured...why not? So, right now...? I'm anxious to setup my new rig with the AMD Athlon II X4 645!!
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# Just out of Curosity...ADI 2011-01-30 01:00
Great article i must say... n thanks to mr. tolman. But sir there is a question which i have i dunno how correct i am in asking this but which one is better Athlon X4 645 or Phenom II X4 955 BE. X4 645 is prices at around $110 and X4 955 BE at around $150 but i was just comparing the scores of few benchmarks from different articles on benchmark reviews and found both the processor's performance is almost the same or sometimes X4 645 beating the X4 955 BE... I dunno if anyone has noticed this earlier or my observation is wrong.

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