Technical Review of AMDâ??s X2 560 Black Edition Chip
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Technical Review of AMDâ??s X2 560 Black Edition Chip

AMD's new dual core Phenom II X2 560 chipset is a cheap but good choice for ordinary public.

With the increase popularity of six-core chips like Intel’s i7-980X or quad-core chips available with some high-end laptops and desktops, low cost dual-core chips are easily neglected. Low cost dual-core processors such as Intel’s i3-530 or the black edition of Phenom II X2 560, are as good as others if you donot run upper end image creation, rendering or simulation programs. Even though multi-core chips are on high demand, majority of the general programs and utilities can run with single core only. Thus, unless you frequently use upper end softwares like Ansys, hypermesh etc., a low budget, dual-core chip can serve the purpose without detoriating the working speed. The Phenom II X2 560 is compatible with the older motherboard AM2+ and also with DDR2 RAM. It also works fine with the next version of the motherboards and RAM (AM3 & DDR3). Thus, it gives the flexibility of upgrading the current system or completely assembling one from the scratch in low cost. Because of the new socket designed in all the Intel’s new generation CPUs, it becomes mandatory to replace the motherboards along with the chip.

The main advantage of the Intel chip over AMD is that it supports the Hyper-Threading technology, which has helped Intel in its growth. This technology allows each processor of the CPU to run two programs simultaneously as if running in two different cores and hence the dual-core processor works like a quad-core processor. The basic difference between the Intel chip and Phenom II X2 560 is their clock, i.e., Intel chip clock is 2.93GHz while the X2 560 operates at 3.3GHz. In order to check the performance of these two chips, various tests were carried out.

While converting eleven MP3 tracks to AAC format, the Intel chip lagged 3 seconds behind. But in other cases such as rendering an image or video conversion, it was found that the Intel chip performed better than that of the X2 560. With these numbers, the X2 560 may seem to be poor one compared to the other one, but the AMD chip is slightly cheap and there is an advantage of over-clocking. With this processor termed as “Black Edition”, the over-clocking can be unlocked by experts using AMD’s Overdrive software and can get some extra speed with the X2 560.

Thus, if your work is not to run large programs or more than three stuffs at a time or you are upgrading an existing AM2+ system, you can get good performance with the Phenom II X2 560 especially if you modify its over-clocking. Also, it is cheaper than the quad-core chips with similar performance.


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