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Windows 7: Which of these processors would you recommend

22 Aug 2010   #1
kersey

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit
 
 
Which of these processors would you recommend

Hi there,

My desktop of 6 years old has finally died and I think it's time to get a new base unit...I am on a limited budget and have a choice of the following processors.

I'll be using the pc mainly for listening to music, surfing and watching films. I will be doing a bit of gaming but nothing to high end, probably a few football manager games and FIFA.

Which would you guys recommend from those below and what are the pros and cons of each.

Intel Pentium Dual Core E6600 (2x 3.06GHz) 1066, 2mb

AMD Phenom II X2 550 (2x 3.1GHz) 4000MT, 7mb

AMD Athlon II X4 630 (4x 2.8GHz) 4000MT, 2mb


Thanks in advance for any help


My System SpecsSystem Spec
.
22 Aug 2010   #2
osholt

Windows 7 Profesional x86, Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by kersey View Post
Hi there,

My desktop of 6 years old has finally died and I think it's time to get a new base unit...I am on a limited budget and have a choice of the following processors.

I'll be using the pc mainly for listening to music, surfing and watching films. I will be doing a bit of gaming but nothing to high end, probably a few football manager games and FIFA.

Which would you guys recommend from those below and what are the pros and cons of each.

Intel Pentium Dual Core E6600 (2x 3.06GHz) 1066, 2mb

AMD Phenom II X2 550 (2x 3.1GHz) 4000MT, 7mb

AMD Athlon II X4 630 (4x 2.8GHz) 4000MT, 2mb


Thanks in advance for any help
Personally I don't recommend Pentium Processors because they are old technology now (they may still be quite good, I just don't recommend them). I would recommend in your situation an Intel I3 or I5 if that's possible.

I am not a fan of AMD processors but both of those seam to be adequate fo what you want to do.

As a rule of thumb, the more cores, GHz and the larger the cache size the better the processor.

Out of those three I would go for the AMD Quad core.

Oli
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Aug 2010   #3
bobkn

Windows 7 Pro X64 SP1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by osholt View Post
Personally I don't recommend Pentium Processors because they are old technology now (they may still be quite good, I just don't recommend them). I would recommend in your situation an Intel I3 or I5 if that's possible.
The Pentium E6600 is a 45nm chip, introduced in 2010. I don't understand Intel's use of names for marketing purposes, but the Pentium is superior in performance to the old Core 2 Duo E6600 ("Conroe"), mainly because of the Pentium's higher clock. It's not really the old tech that the "Pentium" name suggests.

I admit that Socket 775 is old.

As "Kersey" is looking at AM3 systems (usually DDR3 memory), perhaps s/he should widen his/her search to Socket 1156. (Core I3.) The costs shouldn't be much more. I think that even an I3 530 would outperform the Pentium E6600.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

22 Aug 2010   #4
Mellon Head

Win 7 Pro x64/Win 10 Pro x64 dual boot
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by kersey View Post
Hi there,

My desktop of 6 years old has finally died and I think it's time to get a new base unit...I am on a limited budget and have a choice of the following processors.

I'll be using the pc mainly for listening to music, surfing and watching films. I will be doing a bit of gaming but nothing to high end, probably a few football manager games and FIFA.

Which would you guys recommend from those below and what are the pros and cons of each.

Intel Pentium Dual Core E6600 (2x 3.06GHz) 1066, 2mb

AMD Phenom II X2 550 (2x 3.1GHz) 4000MT, 7mb

AMD Athlon II X4 630 (4x 2.8GHz) 4000MT, 2mb


Thanks in advance for any help
I would pass on the Pentium also, (mostly because I'd have to throw out everything. ), but I would select the Phenom II 550.

The performance of the Phenom die outweighs that of the Athlon. In addition, it has a much larger cache, and a higher clock speed. Clock for clock, you'll get better performance from the Phenom, and by the sound of things, you won't be using anything that could take real advantage of the quad.

If you really have your heart set on a quad, you might consider the Phenom II X4 920, or 925. They don't cost too much more than either of the two AMD chips you are asking about (at least here in Canada/US), and it's a solid chip with better performance than the Athlon 630 because of the large L3 cache, even though it runs at the same clock speed.

I don't really think you'd be sorry with buying any of them, really, but you want to maximize your dollar and try to buy for the future if you can.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Aug 2010   #5
Darician

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 SP1
 
 

The Athlon II I'd say no.

Between the Phenom II and the Pentium Dual-Core E6600, it's a tough call. The Pentium I know is cheaper so if you're looking to save money, go with that. I have a PC with one of those myself and I can tell you they are quite capable little CPUs that are economical yet somewhat powerful (no Core i3 or i5, but still nice). The Phenom II would be an interesting choice although it's a bit more expensive and it would certainly be a decent CPU but you'd have to have the money to shell out for it and if you're going to choose this and you still need to buy RAM for your PC, then I'd just say you should get a Core i3, it's a better value for the money.

If however you're going to be reusing the current RAM you have (assuming DDR2), then the Pentium Dual-Core would be a good choice if you want to save money (or your motherboard's already compatible with it) otherwise, if you're willing to spend a bit more money and your motherboard is not compatible with it already, then a Phenom II would also be a decent choice.

In terms of lowest budget though, the Pentium would be my choice because it's a capable performer that won't break the bank. Depending on the budget you've laid out and planned, you could conceivably save money with the Pentium or step up to an i3. If you do step up to the i3, then you could also set yourself up for easier future upgrades as well.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Aug 2010   #6
stormy13
Microsoft MVP

Win 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Quote:
The performance of the Phenom die outweighs that of the Athlon.
Not as much as you would think,

Bench - CPU - AnandTech :: Your Source for Hardware Analysis and News

If anything the 550 gets soundly beaten by the 630 in most of those, mostly due to anything that is multi-threaded more cores wins out over the L3 cache. Also the Atlon II's are Phenom cores, just without the L3 cache (or if you can find the right stepping, it is just disabled with the possibility of being unlocked. Weren't many and only from the early batches of them, but once unlocked and if stable was identical to the 925).

Quote:
you might consider the Phenom II X4 920, or 925.
The 920 is AM2/AM2+ and DDR2 only, where as the 925 is AM2/AM2+/AM3 and will work with both DDR2 and DDR3. Unless you already have a DDR2 board, then it would be the 925 only. They don't have the 925 in the list bit the 920 is there and the difference again isn't as big as most think,

Bench - CPU - AnandTech :: Your Source for Hardware Analysis and News

Now with all that said a budget would make it easier for making recommendations, as well as what the main use will be.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Aug 2010   #7
Mellon Head

Win 7 Pro x64/Win 10 Pro x64 dual boot
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by stormy13 View Post
Quote:
The performance of the Phenom die outweighs that of the Athlon.
Not as much as you would think,

Bench - CPU - AnandTech :: Your Source for Hardware Analysis and News

If anything the 550 gets soundly beaten by the 630 in most of those, mostly due to anything that is multi-threaded more cores wins out over the L3 cache. Also the Atlon II's are Phenom cores, just without the L3 cache (or if you can find the right stepping, it is just disabled with the possibility of being unlocked. Weren't many and only from the early batches of them, but once unlocked and if stable was identical to the 925).

Quote:
you might consider the Phenom II X4 920, or 925.
The 920 is AM2/AM2+ and DDR2 only, where as the 925 is AM2/AM2+/AM3 and will work with both DDR2 and DDR3. Unless you already have a DDR2 board, then it would be the 925 only. They don't have the 925 in the list bit the 920 is there and the difference again isn't as big as most think,

Bench - CPU - AnandTech :: Your Source for Hardware Analysis and News

Now with all that said a budget would make it easier for making recommendations, as well as what the main use will be.
Good reads, thanks. Perhaps I was a little off base with the Phenom 550/Athlon comparison. It certainly seems that the Athlon wins in multi-threaded apps. I would like to see a comparison between the 925 using DDR3 and the Athlon in question. Since the 920 can only use DDR2 (I mentioned it initially in case the OP had an AM2 board already), I wonder if the use of DDR3 would improve the benchmarks in essentially the same processor?

The OP did say he wasn't going to use the system for anything really heavy, which is why I thought the 550 would be a better fit for him. Looking at those scores, though, I'm changing my vote to the Athlon.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Aug 2010   #8
stormy13
Microsoft MVP

Win 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Would probably be just as close, don't forget the Athlon II's are AM3 and can use DDR3 as well.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Aug 2010   #9
Mellon Head

Win 7 Pro x64/Win 10 Pro x64 dual boot
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by stormy13 View Post
Would probably be just as close, don't forget the Athlon II's are AM3 and can use DDR3 as well.
Yeah, that's why I was thinking it would be a better comparison. The field is equal if they both use DDR3. I forgot to look, was the comparison done with both CPUs running DDR2?

Edit: I just checked, and it doesn't say, so I'm going to assume the the Athlon was using DDR3 for the test vs the 920. I think the 925 would fare better than the 920, but you're right. It would be close.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Aug 2010   #10
kersey

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit
 
 

Thanks for all the advice and info guys.

The spec I'm probably going to go for is below...not building myself though.
The price is 339:

AMD Athlon II X4 635 (4x 2.9GHz) 4000MT, 2mb
Standard AMD CPU Cooler
Case Fans - Standard case fans
Power Supply - 400w Standard
Memory - 2gb Kingston DDR3 1333mhz
Hard Drive - 500gb SATA2 Hard Drive
Dual Layer DVDRW Drive
512mb Nvidia GeForce GT240


What do you reckon??
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Which of these processors would you recommend




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