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AMD's Triple-Core Phenom X3 Processor Launched 234

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the hey-your-core-is-missing dept.
MojoKid writes "AMD officially launched their triple-core processor offering today with the introduction of the Phenom X3 8750. When AMD first announced plans to introduce tri-core processors late last year, reaction to the news was mixed. Some felt that AMD was simply planning to pass off partially functional Phenom X4 quad-core processors as triple-core products, making lemonade from lemons if you will. Others thought it was a good way for AMD to increase bottom line profits, getting more usable die from a wafer and mitigating yield loss. This is an age-old strategy in the semiconductor space and after all, the graphics guys have been selling GPUs with non-functional units for years. This full performance review and evaluation of the new AMD Phenom X3 8750 Tri-Core processor shows the CPU scales well in a number of standard application benchmarks, in addition to dropping in at a relatively competitive price point."
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AMD's Triple-Core Phenom X3 Processor Launched

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  • by serviscope_minor (664417) on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @12:27PM (#23172994) Journal
    3 cores sounds "wrong" (it should be apower of 2, right?), but with 3 cores, you can connect each core to every other one on an internal bus much more easily than with 4 cores, since you need fewer busses, and they do not need to cross.
    • by deander2 (26173) * <publicNO@SPAMkered.org> on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @12:29PM (#23173024) Homepage
      i believe instead they disable a not-quite-functional core from their quad-processor reject bin.
      • by qortra (591818) on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @12:39PM (#23173164)
        That's what I remembered. Really though, the GP's post still stands; there isn't an amazing reason why we shouldn't have non-integer powers of two as our core count - or odd numbers, or prime numbers (3 is all of the above). I say, bring on the 7 core CPUs! Plus, marketing people might think that "5000" has a better ring to it than "8192".

        The only thing I don't see happening is fractional counts - 7.5 cores (7 full, and one "handicapped"). The OS would then have to learn to avoid the "gimpy" cores for CPU hungry processes.
        • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @12:53PM (#23173352)
          Odd numbers violate my obsessive need for symmetry. Excuse me now while I go and touch the door exactly 12 times.
          • by Zerth (26112) on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @01:27PM (#23173756)
            So trilateral symmetry doesn't cut it for you?

            I suppose it could be worse, you could have some kind of fractional symmetry fetish and only feel normal surrounded by mandelbrot sets and serpenski gaskets.
            • "Pathological monsters!" cried the terrified mathematician
              "Every one of them is a splinter in my eye.
              I hate the Peano Space and the Koch Curve
              I fear the Cantor Ternary Set
              And the Sierpinski Gasket makes me want to cry!"

              But that Mandelbrot Set is one badass fucking fractal!
          • by electrictroy (912290) on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @01:31PM (#23173790)
            Ha ha. ;-) Well I drive a car with only 3 pistons (honda insight). That configuration is rare in the States, but pretty common in the European Union (like the VW Lupo or Polo). The advantage of a 3-piston engine is almost-equal power to 4-bangers, but less rotatin mass to achieve better gasoline/diesel efficiency. In other words, it helps the consumer save money.

            So for me "driving" a 3-core computer would feel pretty normal.

            • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @01:36PM (#23173836)
              The Geo Metro was a pretty popular little car in the USA, and it was a 3-cylinder. They don't make 'em anymore though, since after all, it saved people money.
              • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

                by MikeURL (890801)
                US government policy appears to be that we will be as wasteful as practical. A person who wishes to attribute this to a plan could suggest that this is intended to cushion the blow from peak oil.

                The hypothesis here would be that any reasonable person understands that, at some point, we will achieve the peak of oil production. At that point we'll see declining oil production into the future. Further, it would make sense to achieve peak oil while in a very wasteful and inefficient state. This will ma
                • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

                  by timeOday (582209)
                  I have a competing hypothesis: greed is short-sighted.
                • by Fulcrum of Evil (560260) on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @07:49PM (#23177364)
                  Honestly, that's a stupid strategy that assumes that oil is the only viable energy source. Nuclear power and reasonable urban architecture can make for a sustainable society well into 2500.
                • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

                  by turing_m (1030530)
                  Somehow humanity managed to make it to the industrial revolution without wholesale use of fossil fuel. Beyond the 1800s, many countries still managed to avoid the energy use associated with the industrial revolution. It's not particularly hard, it just takes discipline. Unfortunately discipline for most people is applied by circumstances, not internally.

                  In hindsight, expenditure of that energy on infrastructure that would last and be useful for a thousand years seems much more sensible than spending it on t
              • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

                There's lots of new 3-cylinder cars driving around (at least here in Europe), first that comes to mind are the Citroen C1/Peugeot 107/Toyota Aygo (which are the same cars). But there's probably some more... There's 5-cylinder ones as well btw (Focus ST for example). And one of my friends' car has a 12-valve engine, 4 cylinder with 3 valves/cylinder... ;-)
            • by camperslo (704715)
              Ha ha. ;-) Well I drive a car with only 3 pistons

              Well a machine running an AMD triple-core, loaded with PrOn and using 3-phase power should be really popular with trisexuals. Taking gaming to another level?
            • by qortra (591818)

              almost-equal power to 4-bangers

              Whoah there. The Insights were definitely cool, but at 67 horsepower, they aren't even close to moderately powered 4 cylinder engines. Four cylinder engines are in some really fast cars. Consider the Subaru WRX STI, the Dodge Neon SRT-4, or the Lotus Elise.

              In the case of the Insight, my understanding is the the hybrid design supplements for the shortcomings of the combustion engine, so it might feel peppier than a 3 cylinder usually would.

              Along the same lines, give the Acura Vigor a look. Mid 90s

          • by pclminion (145572) on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @01:35PM (#23173826)
            A pentagon is not symmetrical? You have a strange definition of symmetry.
          • by eln (21727) on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @02:55PM (#23174730) Homepage
            Your reply contains 21 words. Please remove one. Thank you.
        • by zogger (617870) on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @01:42PM (#23173896) Homepage Journal
          PS3 uses the CELL processor [wikipedia.org] built with 8 cores and one is disabled, leaving you with 7 cores-one for the OS and 6 for games/apps. And it will boot and run a linux image, yellowdog [terrasoftsolutions.com], which is a ported centos. So there ya go, you can buy one if you want one. There's more exact specs at the links, that is a basic and probably sort of flawed summary.
          • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

            by tabrisnet (722816)
            This is oversimplifying the situation. the Cell is actually an asymmetrical multi processer solution, in that not all of the cores are identical. the Cell architecture consists of one central POWER (PPC?) core, and then 7 (physically 8, one disabled) SPEs. The SPEs are basically a minimal processor able to handle primarily SIMD math, and very limited logic. No branch prediction either.
          • by qortra (591818)
            And best of all, you don't have to worry about minutiae like hardware video acceleration [xbox-scene.com]! Only standard definition videos for us in Linux, please!
        • by dannycim (442761)

          ... The only thing I don't see happening is fractional counts - 7.5 cores (7 full, and one "handicapped"). The OS would then have to learn to avoid the "gimpy" cores for CPU hungry processes.

          The Cell processor can be said to be 7.5. One Power-based processor and 8 SPE units, with one of them disabled (higher yields).

          See wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cell_(microprocessor) [wikipedia.org]

          • by qortra (591818)

            The Cell processor can be said to be 7.5.

            Given how you have described the processor, attaching the "7.5" quality is probably misleading. You really shouldn't combine processors of different architectures into the same number. Even if you should combine them, I'm not sure that it would be fair to quantify the Power processor has half of an SPE - from what I've read, they actually have very similar performance. Also, while I did leave it unsaid, I assumed that we were talking about cores operating in an SMP environment. Different architectures,

      • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @01:12PM (#23173548)
        AMD have stated before that they intend to also build native triple-core processors.

        And as the GP states,

        you can connect each core to every other one on an internal bus much more easily than with 4 cores
        The beauty of it (from an engineering point of view) is that every core has been designed with 3 HT links. One goes to the memory, and two connect to other cores. So really, in a four-core system, there is an additional latency because information needs two hops to reach all of the cores. Three cores is the max AMD can do while still keeping latency at its lowest.

        I'm not exactly sure if this is how the demoted quad-cores will work as well, but I imagine it wouldn't be too hard to reconfigure the fourth HT bridge (on the disabled core) to act as a short-circuit.
        • Incorrect. (Score:5, Informative)

          by Visaris (553352) on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @04:05PM (#23175440) Journal
          The beauty of it (from an engineering point of view) is that every core has been designed with 3 HT links. One goes to the memory, and two connect to other cores. So really, in a four-core system, there is an additional latency because information needs two hops to reach all of the cores. Three cores is the max AMD can do while still keeping latency at its lowest.

          AMD's cores (the compute engines inside a single chip package) are NOT connected by HT links. HT links are used for communication with devices OUTSIDE of the chip package, and run at a clockspeed much less than that of the core clock.

          AMD's cores are connected by a full speed crossbar switch, much, MUCH faster than HT. Most people really don't get that HT is chip-to-chip or chip-to-chipset, and that AMD has a fullspeed crossbar in the die. To say it one more time: AMD's cores within the same chip are connected at full CPU speed, and every core is exactly two hops to another: core-to-switch-to-core.
      • by cyfer2000 (548592)
        Does this bring up uneven heating problem?
      • 486sx (Score:3, Interesting)

        by turgid (580780)

        i believe instead they disable a not-quite-functional core from their quad-processor reject bin.

        Ah, good old intel trick.

        Back in the day, the 486 had a built in FPU (maths co-processor) which was expensive. The 486 could execute integer instructions about twice as fast at the same clock speed as the 386 (which didn't have a maths co-processor built in).

        So, to compete with Apple, Atari (Falcon) and Acorn (Archimedes), intel launched the 486SX, which was a 486 with the broken maths co-processor disabled.

    • by Sciros (986030)
      The XBox 360 has a triple-core CPU, and that was one of the earliest multi-core (certainly of those over 2 cores) processors on the market I think. So, it never sounded wrong to me ^^
      • by EvilRyry (1025309) on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @01:46PM (#23173954) Journal
        Maybe the first one you've heard about, but IBM has been doing multicore CPUs for years. From their website...

        POWER4 - released in 2001, POWER4 is the first commercial multicore system with 2 cores per chip, and 8 cores per socket.
        • by Sciros (986030)
          Well I assumed it wasn't the first-ever. I was speaking more in terms of the mainstream consumer market. The 360's is indeed based on PowerPC and obviously wasn't IBM's first foray into multiple cores.
    • by Lord Ender (156273) on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @01:37PM (#23173856) Homepage
      "with 3 cores, you can connect each core to every other one"

      We call this formation the "flux capacitor."
  • by Anonymous Coward
    For what it's worth, TR reached very different conclusions after more extensive testing against more relevant competition--Intel's 45nm chips, like the Core 2 Duo E7200, E8400, and Q9300.

    http://techreport.com/articles.x/14606
  • Too bad it's not a ternary processor [wikipedia.org] as well, that would be quite an interesting product. [slashdot.org]
  • by CajunArson (465943) on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @12:38PM (#23173152) Journal
    The idea of reviving quad cores with 1 bad core is nice, but AMD is also playing a dangerous game. It is only in AMD's interest to sell triple core CPUs when the only alternative would be to throw the (large and expensive) die out since it can't work as a quad core. However, if these things became too popular AMD would be faced with the situation of either starving the market, or taking quad cores that actually DO work and intentionally blowing the fuses to make them triple cores.
          I think this might explain the pretty lackluster clockspeeds. Phenom has never clocked well, but when you can buy a 2.5Ghz quad core for not much more than the top of the line 2.4Ghz triple core, it's pretty clear AMD wants to unload these things, but not to make any big waves about it. If anything the triple cores ought to clock much higher and have substantially better power usage... but that is not the case.
    • by MBCook (132727) <foobarsoft@foobarsoft.com> on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @01:00PM (#23173442) Homepage

      Everyone already does that. That's one of the reasons that Celerons used to be so popular with the overclocker crowd. When Intel didn't have enough of one kind of Celeron but had too many of another, they would mark down the faster chips or disable some cache on a P3.

      Due to yields, if you buy a slow processor there is a good chance that it is capable of running quite a bit faster. When you buy a top of the line processor, that's much less likely.

      GPU makers have been known to do the same thing. I remember when you could flash a low end card (one of the GeForce 4s?) to be a more expensive one (more shaders) and you might end up with a working card (wasn't disabled due to errors, just to 'meet quota').

      This is normal. If they didn't do this, people would have to buy the faster chips which would cause their price to drop.

      • by Otter (3800) on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @01:26PM (#23173726) Journal
        Everyone already does that. That's one of the reasons that Celerons used to be so popular with the overclocker crowd. When Intel didn't have enough of one kind of Celeron but had too many of another, they would mark down the faster chips or disable some cache on a P3.

        That may have happened, but usually when chips are marked down it's because they didn't perform within specs in the higher slot. The fact that they don't show obvious problems in the hands of an overclocker doesn't mean they didn't meet the maker's QC cutoffs.

        • by MBCook (132727)

          Right. It's rare that chips perform massively above their spec, or are disabled just for fun. Most of the time it's because they won't perform at that higher speed or have some other error (some bad cache). OCers do other mods to try to make things more stable (like run extra voltage through the chip, stronger cooling, etc). Without those changes the chips won't run faster without crashing noticeably often.

          I was just trying to point out that this isn't something new that AMD invented to screw with people.

      • by PitaBred (632671)
        That's only when it gets later into manufacturing, and if AMD could clock things higher, they would. They are really hurting going against Intel right now, and any benefit would be amazing. In short, I wouldn't count on any AMD chips overclocking very well in the short term.
    • by menace3society (768451) on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @01:19PM (#23173638)
      It seems to me it'd be a tough row to hoe, marketing-wise. Places like Marshall's and Kohl's have conditioned customers to expect slightly-flawed merchandise and deep discounts, not minor discounts. If it's true that they aren't substantially more efficient than quad cores, then (under the assumption that energy is increasingly the greatest cost) there's not a terribly good reason for anyone to buy one.

      Personally, I would sell them at dual-core prices and get rid of the whole lot pronto.
      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by cheese_boy (118027)
        Places like Marshall's and Kohl's have conditioned customers to expect slightly-flawed merchandise and deep discounts,

        That is somewhat accurate for Marshall's but not for Kohl's. (Marshall's uses over-stocked / past-season merchandise - not so much flawed things)
        Kohl's is pretty much a normal department store. They have decent prices, but nothing I would call 'deep discounts'. And they don't have 'slightly flawed merchandise' as a mainstay of their store. For those not familiar with Kohl's, it is trying
    • Didn't the Pentium IV teach you this? Faster clocks just burn up unnecessary power. Better to speed up with parallelizing circuitry that you can turn off when not in use. Note in the reviews that their slower chip outbenchmarked faster chips from Intel.
      Dangerous game? Prices are tweaked up and down to stimulate demand for various products. When you have to compete, you have to make tough decisions about products. AMD has been in business for a long time competing against bigger established chipmakers
  • Pricing... (Score:5, Informative)

    by heteromonomer (698504) on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @12:39PM (#23173160)
    Looks like AMD's marketing and sales dept isn't being very smart here, pricing them the way they are. X3 chips are $20 cheaper than X4, and $5 cheaper than 2.2 GHz X4s. And with those benchmarks they are definitely not competitive against intel's 2-core and 4-core offerings. Come on guys! If you don't let go of some of the margins and price them aggressively against Intel you're going to die.
    • by alcmaeon (684971) on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @01:17PM (#23173626)

      I agree, if they were smart they would have called it the "Trinity" chip, stuck a cross logo on the box, and sold it to the same Christian Fundamentalists who read the Lost Behind novels.

      A failed core goes from being a sign of bad engineering, to a sign from God.

      • A failed core goes from being a sign of bad engineering, to a sign from God.

        Even better - engrave an image of the Virgin Mary onto the defective core. That way you can appeal to the catholics as well as the baptists.
      • by Minwee (522556) <dcr@neverwhen.org> on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @01:56PM (#23174044) Homepage

        ...Christian Fundamentalists who read the Lost Behind novels.

        That's Left Behind. Lost Behind is the less successful spin-off where we discover that everybody who was carried off by the Rapture just got sent to a tropical island filled with Polar Bears.

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by niko9 (315647)
        ...and sold it to the same Christian Fundamentalists who read the Lost Behind novels.

        I find that Christian Fundamentalists have no trouble finding their behinds since they spend a good portion of their
        day with theirs heads up in it.

        But what I think you were referring to was the Left Behind series of novels: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Left_Behind [wikipedia.org]
      • by AHumbleOpinion (546848) on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @02:04PM (#23174128) Homepage
        A failed core goes from being a sign of bad engineering, to a sign from God.

        That would be manufacturing not engineering, and no one gets 100% yields out of manufacturing. Not even God, look at the defect rate in his creation, human beings.
      • by AHumbleOpinion (546848) on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @02:10PM (#23174182) Homepage
        I agree, if they were smart they would have called it the "Trinity" chip, stuck a cross logo on the box, and sold it to the same Christian Fundamentalists who read the Lost Behind novels. A failed core goes from being a sign of bad engineering, to a sign from God.

        Which god, Jehovah (old testament) or Neo (The Matrix)? Matrix fanbois would probably be a more lucrative market. Use the name Trinity but make the CPU packaging a glossy black instead of matte black.
        • by Belial6 (794905)
          I don't know, when they double the speed of the 333Mhz processors, all of the CPU manufacturers labeled their chips as 667 Mhz. So, there must be some thought given to the the Christian tech sector. Of course, it could just be that they thought there were more Christian CPU buyers than Satanic ones.
          • Re:Jehovah or Neo (Score:5, Informative)

            by AHumbleOpinion (546848) on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @02:46PM (#23174634) Homepage
            I don't know, when they double the speed of the 333Mhz processors, all of the CPU manufacturers labeled their chips as 667 Mhz. So, there must be some thought given to the the Christian tech sector. Of course, it could just be that they thought there were more Christian CPU buyers than Satanic ones.

            The speeds were in reality 333.33... and 666.66..., so simple rounding produces 333 and 667. Perhaps they were merely using better mathematics than when they named the 133 and 266. ;-)
  • Anything... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Abreu (173023) on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @12:41PM (#23173198)
    ...that makes AMD more competitive and sell more processors is a good thing in my book.

    After all, healthy competition keeps them honest, eh?
    • Anything that makes AMD more competitive and sell more processors is a good thing in my book. After all, healthy competition keeps them honest, eh?

      And it is a greener strategy, less waste of resources and energy, so there are public relations and marketing benefits as well.
  • TFA specifies an AM2+ socket. Would I lose any functionality if I swapped out my Athlon X2 for one of these babies (on my AM2 Mboard)?
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by xSacha (1000771)
      Yes, but not much:

      However, due to the lack of support of HyperTransport 3.0 and separated power planes in Socket AM2 motherboards, AM2+ chips will be limited to the specifications of Socket AM2 (HyperTransport 2.0 at the speed of 1 GHz, one power plane for both Cores and IMC).

      Source: Wikipedia
    • Re:AM2+ vs AM2 (Score:4, Informative)

      by soulsteal (104635) <soulstealNO@SPAM3l337.org> on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @01:00PM (#23173440) Homepage
      So sayeth Wikipedia [wikipedia.org]:

      AMD confirmed that AM2 processors will work in AM2+ motherboards and AM2+ processors will work on AM2 motherboards. However, due to the lack of support of HyperTransport 3.0 and separated power planes in Socket AM2 motherboards, AM2+ chips will be limited to the specifications of Socket AM2 (HyperTransport 2.0 at the speed of 1 GHz, one power plane for both Cores and IMC). AM2 chips will not benefit from faster HyperTransport and separated power planes on AM2+ motherboards as they do not support them, AM2+ motherboard then fall back to compatibility mode using AM2 specifications.
  • Isn't the word "competitive" always relative? My real gripe is actually that the actual price point isn't mentioned in the blurb. I am not new enough to Slashdot to ever RTFA, so I rely solely on the misinformation in the blurb and comments.
  • by Vigile (99919) * on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @12:49PM (#23173300)
    • Stolen from the techreport article you posted:

      'I can't help but think this all must have looked different on AMD's roadmap when it was first being put together. I doubt they expected that the fastest Phenom would only run at 2.4GHz and, in doing so, would only just match the Core 2 Quad Q6600--an older product on the way out, replaced by the Core 2 Quad Q9300. That's the reality, though, and it's constrained AMD's pricing so much that the top Phenom quad core is $235. The compression through the rest of the
    • Because I see a lot more superstitious twaddle about "power of two" and a lot less discussion of practical performance implications.
      • You obviously did not read the Tech Report's review then. Yes they mention the 'oddness' of 3 cores, but their tests are quite thorough and they do discuss performace ramifications as well as all the other things you'd expect.
  • Despite all these multiple core CPUs and, high speed I/O devices and 4D accelerating graphic cards, I still get stuck into RAM, bus or DMA bottlenecks.
    Wouldn't it be better to spend some research resources into a new PC architecture with things like crossbars [wikipedia.org] in order to really exploit all those parallel CPU cycles?
    • by skulgnome (1114401) on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @02:27PM (#23174408)
      AMD systems are already radically different from how PCs used to be constructed ten years ago. Memory controller integration (NUMA in a multi-socket configuration) and a non-shared front-side bus come to mind, as does the point-to-point bus used between the processor and the south bridge (HyperTransport).

      Contrast with Intel's "solution" which involves two sets or north and south bridges. Hardly elegant, and fails to expose the NUMA properties that the north bridges mitigate between one another.

      Once AMD gets the clockspeed bit tuned in, I expect Phenoms to hit the high-performance market like a bar of soap in a sock. HPC likes memory bandwidth, but they like low memory latency even more and that's where AMD has Intel by the goolies. (ever wonder why even Athlon X2s hold their own in game benchmarks? doesn't matter how many gigahertz there are in the chip, games have datasets far larger than that 6-meg L2 cache.)
  • The Tech Report has their usual in-depth coverage here: link [techreport.com]
  • Is AMD having fab problems?

    There are real 3-CPU parts. The XBox 360 has one; three PowerPC CPUs share a cache. The chip layout [ibm.com] is four quadrants, three with CPUs and one with the L2 cache.

  • Intel (Score:3, Informative)

    by skiflyer (716312) on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @12:57PM (#23173406)
    Is it just me, or looking at those benchmarks was the clear response to just buy intel since it wins in virtually every category anyway. Or were the intel chips listed not directly comparable? I'm still running my X2-4600+ and am thrilled with the performance... but if I were in the market, those particular charts would all be leading me to the Intel processors.
    • The only reason I'm considering buying a Phenom (the real 4 core deal) is because I'm in the same boat as you, I have a x2-4200+. I can just swap out the processor and not have to worry about buying anything else, and really I don't **need** the horsepower, but I do play with multithreaded scientific programming.

      If I were building a computer from scratch, it'd be a core 2 quad all the way.
    • DDR2 vs DDR3 (Score:2, Interesting)

      by justdrew (706141)
      not a great comparison I felt. they used DDR2 memory on the AMD and DDR3 on the intel. DDR3 ram is so much more costly, that I'd think anyone considering AMD would be comparing against a DDR2 based intel motherboard.
  • Somewhere in my office, I have a vintage system based on an old 486SX, with the disabled/broken math coprocessor. Who here remembers those things? Anyone? Bueller? Bueller?

    I also have a couple laptops with the fully functional coprocessors. They are early tablet PCs with b/w pen-sensitive screens, and actually can do handwriting recognition with a 486DX running at a screaming 25 mhz. I might go downstairs and fire one up just for the nostalgia of it. Last I checked, they still worked.
  • by pclminion (145572) on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @01:32PM (#23173806)
    Who cares? Even if the chip was a failed quad core with one of the cores disabled, why is it bad for AMD to sell them as triple cores? Would you prefer they just melt the silicon back down, wasting time, money, and most importantly, energy? I certainly don't.
  • less heat? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by ILuvRamen (1026668) on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @01:41PM (#23173886)
    It would sound to me like it would run a heck of a lot colder than with 4. I mean it's designed to run at a decent temp with 4 cores running so with 3, it'll be really cold! If you underclock a processor to 75% it barely puts off any heat. Of course the 3 cores will still be maxing so it's different but it should be way cooler anyway. But of course that's a bigger problem than they think. I dunno how they're actually arranged but if 3 corners are hot and one not, plus the fact that it was a bad processor in the first place, these things are gonna fail so fast people are gonna be pissed! You don't heat a damaged straight from the factory chip unevenly!

If a camel is a horse designed by a committee, then a consensus forecast is a camel's behind. -- Edgar R. Fiedler

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