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AMD Hardware

AMD Launches New Processor Socket Despite Poor Economy 215

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the damn-the-torpedoes-full-speed-ahead dept.
arcticstoat writes to tell us that despite a poor economic climate, AMD is moving forward with a new processor socket launch, although they are trying to make it as upgrade-friendly as possible. "As you probably already know from the AM3 motherboards that have already been announced, AM3 is AMD's first foray into DDR3 memory support. As Phenom CPUs have integrated memory controllers, it's more accurate to say that it's the new range of Phenom II CPUs (see below) that are DDR3-compatible. However, the new DDR3-compatible Phenom II range is also compatible with DDR2 memory. As the new CPUs and the new AM3 socket are pin-compatible with the current AM2+ socket, you can put a new AM3-compatible CPU into an existing AM2+ motherboard. This means that you can upgrade your CPU now without needing to change your motherboard or buy pricey new DDR3 memory."
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AMD Launches New Processor Socket Despite Poor Economy

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  • by von_rick (944421) on Monday February 09, 2009 @06:09PM (#26790815) Homepage
    If your competitor has a better marketshare and also a better line of processors, it would be a suicide to not release a competitive product when the economy is staggering. Withholding the technology while waiting for the economy to improve can make the gap between them and Intel even wider.
    • by faloi (738831) on Monday February 09, 2009 @06:13PM (#26790887)
      Not to mention that the money has already been spent for R&D. Spending the money for R&D, then sitting on it because the time isn't perfect is, as you mentioned, the best way to increase the gap. And have the added bonus of being out cash on something that won't sell.
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by hannson (1369413)

      What exactly is the gap between Intel and AMDs CPUs?
       
        (I'm not trolling or trying to start a flamewar, just curious)

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by von_rick (944421)
        Search engine to the rescue [letmegoogl...foryou.com]

        There's lot to consider when you decide which CPU to go for, and then there is their market performance.

      • by aliquis (678370) <dospam@gmail.com> on Monday February 09, 2009 @06:29PM (#26791125) Homepage

        AMD is competitive at the low and middle end as long as you don't overclock the middle end CPUs.
        (If you include the price of the motherboard and don't care about overclocking a low- or midrange AMD system will be cheaper.)

        AMD don't have as high end CPUs as Intel and the ones which are closest don't overclock as good or use as little power.

        Though then I'd say you shouldn't overclock anyway and AMD chipsets have used less power making the two when used in a complete system rather comparable.

        Also AMD used to have an advantage in memory bandwidth and when using multiple CPUs.

        Information may be slightly outdated but all of it is probably true, Intel may have catched up in memory bandwidth performance with their latest CPUs since they have put the memory controller within the CPU themself to.

        • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

          by Anonymous Coward

          That's not actually true, AMD give realistic power draw estimates but real world testing has shown that the AMD parts now use less power. One must also take into account that AMD has been integrating a significant part of northbridge into the CPU die for some years now.

        • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

          by Anonymous Coward

          In addition to having competitive low-end and mid-range CPUs, AMD is the clear performance leader in virtualization applications.

        • Lots of cores (Score:3, Insightful)

          by DrYak (748999)

          Information may be slightly outdated but all of it is probably true, Intel may have catched up in memory bandwidth performance with their latest CPUs since they have put the memory controller within the CPU themself to.

          AMD's Hypertransport has interesting extensions to help cache coherency and currently scales very well with lots of cores and lots of physical CPUs.
          (Opteron can be used in motherboard with 4 or 8 slots).

          Intel's Quickpath is currently more a generation 1 interconnect. That's probably why they have only announced platforms with lots of cores and cpu packages only for later on.
          (The first CPUs announced, as far as I've read, are only to be used in 2 socket configurations).

          Thus if you want to run a server which

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by aliquis (678370)

        For notebooks I have no idea how total system power usage looks, AMDs chipsets provide better integrated graphics than Intel do however. And I guess I would go for someone better though still crappy graphics when somewhat faster / more power efficient CPU (if Intel really is.)

        Afaik AMD don't have an alternative to Atom, I may be wrong though.

        Also Intel notebook with Nvidia chipset may compare better to AMD.

        • For notebooks I have no idea how total system power usage looks, AMDs chipsets provide better integrated graphics than Intel do however. And I guess I would go for someone better though still crappy graphics when somewhat faster / more power efficient CPU (if Intel really is.)

          In my experience Intel is dominating in the notebook business. I prefer AMD but the notebooks out there using them are either:
          1) based on Sempron (slowish but low powered)
          2) based on older X2 core (good performance but runs hot and suc

          • by subsolar2 (147428) on Monday February 09, 2009 @07:09PM (#26791629)

            AMD has the Geode LX and NX lines.
            Geode LX [amd.com] is very low powered and the highest clock speed (I've seen) is 566Mhz.
            Geode NX [amd.com] is targeted directly at the Atom. Although I have yet to see any of these out in the wild.
            I've only ever found a Geode in the wild clocked as high as 500Mhz (see the ALIX boards [mini-box.com])

            Actually the Geode is a dead end processor, AMD already has stated they are disconinuing it.

            AMD recently announced a new processor "Conesus" that is intended for netbooks and UMPC.
            http://gizmodo.com/5086703/amds-upcoming-conesus-netbook-chip-wont-stoop-to-mid-levels

      • by WEqR0lDRR6I (1452367) on Monday February 09, 2009 @06:53PM (#26791463)
        This is probably something not many people care about, but...It's a hell of a lot easier and cheaper to find an Athlon64 motherboard that supports(and actually does ECC) ECC memory. Think $50-$100 for an Athlon64 motherboard that does this, versus $200-$300+(original Asus Maximus Formula, Asus P5E WS Pro) for a Core 2 motherboard(has to have an X38 northbridge, unless you want to give up PCIe x16 with a server chipset). I don't think the currently released Core i7 processors with built-in memory controllers support ECC *at all*.

        (PS to trolls: Unbuffered ECC memory is only marginally more expensive than unbuffered non-ECC, though it usually has a small latency penalty. Registered/FB-DIMMs ECC on the other hand are Quite Expensive)
        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          Literally all socket AM2/AM2+ motherboards support unbuffered ECC memory, because the memory bus connects the memory slots directly to the CPU socket, therefore the CPU is the only thing dictating what type of memory is supported. And because all AM2/AM2+ Athlon processors support ECC memory, all AM2/AM2+ motherboards support ECC memory.
      • by stuffman64 (208233) <stuffman@gmail . c om> on Monday February 09, 2009 @07:45PM (#26792003) Homepage

        Core i7 940 -> $564.99 + about $250 for mobo = $800+
        Phenom II 940 -> $224 + about $150 for mobo = about $375

        Core i7 needs DDR3, Phenom II 940 runs DD2 (note that the 940 is an AM2+ part, not AM3 so it doesn't support DDR3). DDR3 is somewhere around 50% more expensive than DDR2 (though falling).

        For me, the fact that the i7 is only about 10-20% faster than the Phenom for more than twice the cost, it's simply not worth considering for me. Then again, I do most of my gaming on consoles.

        • For me, the fact that the i7 is only about 10-20% faster than the Phenom for more than twice the cost, it's simply not worth considering for me. Then again, I do most of my gaming on consoles

          Not to mention the fact most games bottleneck at the graphics card, and not the CPU. So that 10%-20% faster CPU isn't guaranteed to give you 10%-20% increase in FPS. Phenom II is definitely the way to go if you want the best gang for your buck, imo.

          • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

            by whoop (194)

            But then you lose the "I spent $X,000 on my superawesomeness gaming rig" pissing contests when you play those games online...

            • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

              by X0563511 (793323)

              "Starting now, there's going to be a lot less talking and a lot more killing."

              "Less smack, more thwack"

              I could come up with more ways to say it, but you get the point.

          • by Kneo24 (688412)
            It's not always about FPS gain. As a PC gamer I consider other aspects as well. For example, how well it can handle local hosting when I need to (for example L4D, where my PC can handle local hosting far far better than a good portion of the servers I've played on). Or how it handles processor intensive actions inside a game. Things along these lines are important too. Yeah, the GPU might be the bottleneck for FPS, but I don't expect my CPU to churn out graphics, I expect my CPU to do CPU specific tasks. Be
          • by wigle (676212)
            I've heard the bang-for-your-buck argument in favor of Phenom II, but I don't think it holds up when you consider that an i7 (920) setup is only $300-$400 more, will last much longer than a Phenom II, and presently blows it out of the water in CPU-intensive tasks (especially when OC'd). When you spread that money over two or three years, in the long run its a better deal to just upgrade to the X58 chipset.
            • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

              by Spit (23158)

              Do you think a current i7 would compare to what you will buy for $300 in two years' time? In three years a laptop would be faster.

        • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

          by UnknownSoldier (67820)

          Yeah, was looking at the Core i7 earlier today and noticed they are pricey.

          Think this is a better bang for the buck...

          Gigabyte GA-MA74GM-S2H $64.90
          AMD Athlon64 X2 5200+ Retail (Socket AM2) $59.99
          Rosewill R363-M-BK Micro ATX Black Ultra High Gloss Finished Computer Case with
          400W ATX $59.99
          CORSAIR XMS2 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2
          6400) $44.99
          BFG Tech BFGE98512GTE GeForce 9800 GT 512MB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0
          x16 $134.99

          Total: $364.86

          Missing: Hard Drive, DVD,

          • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

            by InvisiBill (706958)

            An i7 920 will crush an X2 5200+ in CPU-intensive tasks. http://www.guru3d.com/article/intel-core-i7-920-and-965-review/15 [guru3d.com] shows a software-based rendering benchmark. The i7's are up in the 11's and 12's, while my X2 6000+ was in the 4's.

            The i7 system will definitely cost more, as there aren't really any budget X58 motherboards and the CPUs and DDR3 are still brand-new, top-of-the-line parts (and thus get a price premium). However, I just got an EVGA tri-SLI board, i7 920, and 6GB of DDR3-1866 for $570 + S

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by hairyfeet (841228)

        Basically Intel is giving AMD a righteous spanking when it comes to performance. Now that they have tossed Netburst for core(which while there wasn't anything wrong with Netburst speed wise they were space heaters) the performance has shot WAY up, which leaves AMD having to constantly lowball on price to make up the difference. After all, who wants to pay more for a slower chip?

        It actually reminds me of the old days /breaks out rocking chair/ when AMD and Cyrix were the "good enough" CPUs that you bought wh

        • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

          by tirefire (724526)
          Your distrust of AMD chips is well-founded; some of the older chips didn't cope so well with a failed heatsink/fan: http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/hot-spot,365-6.html [tomshardware.com] Modern AMD chips are fine, though. And why the Sempron bashing? My first PC was a cheapo $500 box I built for games. It had a $90 Sempron 64 that beat the pants off of the netburst Celerons out there in games like Doom 3, Far Cry, Half-Life 2, that kind of thing.
    • by poetmatt (793785) on Monday February 09, 2009 @07:03PM (#26791579) Journal

      In addition the fact that it's cheaper for them to make this than the previous version as well, they have every reason to stay competitive.

      Who writes this "poor economy" crap?

      Many companies are doing just fine through this downturn, it's just a mental state of consumers that has changed, and probably not for the long run either as consumers tend to have about the memory of a goldfish when it comes to taking corrective action financially.

      We're just slowly deflating back to where we were before this hyperinflation the last few years has brought.

      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by synaptik (125)

        it's just a mental state of consumers that has changed... We're just slowly deflating back to where we were before this hyperinflation the last few years has brought.

        I reserve the right to remind you that you said that.

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          Ah, it's nice to see an appropriate level of pessimism. Judging from the last few times something like this happened to the economy it could take up to 15 years before growth and employment returns to "normal". Though our level of debt is much worse than at any time in history, so even that estimate might be too optimistic.
      • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

        by UnknownSoldier (67820)

        > Who writes this "poor economy" crap?

        When you're reading to pull your head out of the sand and stop ignoring facts... The Dept of Labor [speaker.gov] for one.

        --
        Stop Racism. Support the HUMAN Race.

        • by lgw (121541)

          Wow a politician carefully contructs a chart to show that politicians should have more power - never saw that coming! Sure, the data's from the Dept of labor, but interpretation is everything. Here in Silly Valley, for example, turnover is quite high (many job losses), but there are plenty of new jobs to move to. So far, it's nothing like the "laid off means at least 6 months looking" dot-bust days.

          Fearmongering only makes things worse. It's pathetic enough that we've spent over 1.5 trillion on unneeded

  • strange (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Lord Ender (156273) on Monday February 09, 2009 @06:12PM (#26790865) Homepage

    This means that you can upgrade your CPU now without needing to change your motherboard or buy pricey new DDR3 memory.

    Other than starving CIS majors, who barely earn enough money from their university's computer lab to pay for Ramen Noodles, who does that? IT professionals would just buy all the hardware together because their time is worth more than their money, and everybody else just buys entire new computers. This could only appeal to a handful of small-budget kids.

    • Re:strange (Score:5, Insightful)

      by mewshi_nya (1394329) on Monday February 09, 2009 @06:13PM (#26790889)

      Or a lot of small-budget husbands :P

      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by Lord Ender (156273)

        OK, I'm not married, but recently when I was at the computer store, I overheard this scrawny guy on the phone with his wife begging her for permission to get the 2G instead of the 1G RAM upgrade. His whiny, pathetic, groveling demeanor over a $20 difference in price, and his futile attempts to explain to her why 2G is better than 1G, made me absolutely want to vomit. I'm not married, but I vowed that day to either divorce or kill myself if I ever find myself to be such a pathetic, spineless loser.

        So my advi

        • Re:strange (Score:5, Insightful)

          by Fulcrum of Evil (560260) on Monday February 09, 2009 @06:37PM (#26791229)

          So my advice to the married chumps out there is to keep a separate bank account for discretionary purchases which your wives have neither control of nor access to. Life without self-respect (and gadgets) is not worth living.

          Seconded. One of the best things you can do is establish the idea of a slush fund for both sides of the relationship; fighting over money is one of the more common reasons for divorce.

        • Re:strange (Score:4, Insightful)

          by Facegarden (967477) on Monday February 09, 2009 @06:37PM (#26791235)

          So my advice to the married chumps out there is to keep a separate bank account for discretionary purchases which your wives have neither control of nor access to. Life without self-respect (and gadgets) is not worth living.

          Or... marry someone who isn't a total shite and respects your interests.
          -Taylor

          • Re:strange (Score:4, Insightful)

            by Abreu (173023) on Monday February 09, 2009 @08:55PM (#26792659)

            Or... marry someone who isn't a total shite and respects your interests.
            -Taylor

            This.

            There's no way you are going to be able to successfully "hide" income from your partner.

            You need to be able to sit down and talk about priorities and expenses without it devolving into a shouting match or having one of the parties become an unhappy invertebrate...

        • Re:strange (Score:4, Funny)

          by Chris Burke (6130) on Monday February 09, 2009 @06:43PM (#26791327) Homepage

          Life without self-respect (and gadgets) is not worth living.

          Dude! Way to totally reverse priorities. Did it occur to you that maybe she's the one with the high-paying job, and all that groveling got him better hardware than he could have bought if his was the only income?

          Okay that probably wasn't the case, I'm just sayin', if I had to choose between self-respect and gadgets... "Honey, please?! I took out the trash last night and everything!"

          • by deraj123 (1225722)

            I'm just sayin', if I had to choose between self-respect and gadgets... "Honey, please?! I took out the trash last night and everything!"

            Well that's your decision. Just please have the decency to not do your groveling in public - it embarrasses the rest of us.

          • by dlevitan (132062)

            Life without self-respect (and gadgets) is not worth living.

            Dude! Way to totally reverse priorities. Did it occur to you that maybe she's the one with the high-paying job, and all that groveling got him better hardware than he could have bought if his was the only income?

            Should it matter? In my opinion, if you're married, then it doesn't matter who makes the money, you're in it together. By that reasoning, should a parent who stays home with the children not be able to buy anything at all since they don't earn anything? Granted, I think that any major purchase or decision should be made together, and a $1k purchase is usually considered major, but one person shouldn't be begging the other for anything. That kind of relationship is not sustainable and not healthy for anyone.

            • by Chris Burke (6130)

              Should it matter? In my opinion, if you're married, then it doesn't matter who makes the money, you're in it together. By that reasoning, should a parent who stays home with the children not be able to buy anything at all since they don't earn anything? Granted, I think that any major purchase or decision should be made together, and a $1k purchase is usually considered major, but one person shouldn't be begging the other for anything. That kind of relationship is not sustainable and not healthy for anyone.

          • Dude! Way to totally reverse priorities. Did it occur to you that maybe she's the one with the high-paying job,

            Irrelevant. Would she be groveling for permission to spend $20 extra on a nicer pair of shoes, if he had the high-paying job? No, if she's already buying the shoes, she'll write the check, or swipe the card, and tell you later -- easier to get forgiveness than permission.

            What's more, if it's a high-paying job, $20 is nothing.

            if I had to choose between self-respect and gadgets...

            Your choice.

            I would certainly choose self-respect over marriage, though.

            • by Chris Burke (6130)

              Irrelevant. Would she be groveling for permission to spend $20 extra on a nicer pair of shoes, if he had the high-paying job?

              Ha! And you think those circumstances are the same?

              I would certainly choose self-respect over marriage, though.

              Yes that's pretty much the choice. ;)

              • you think those circumstances are the same?

                Why not?

                Here's how that conversation could have gone:

                "I'm getting the 2 gig version. In fact, you know what? I'm getting the 4 gig version."
                "Honey, we can't..."
                "No, but I can."
                "That's it! You're sleeping on the couch!"
                "On the couch with my new laptop! Sounds good!"

                If she's going to divorce you over twenty fucking dollars, she is not worth it. That's when you say, "Your latte for the next week, or me. Choose."

                I know this will probably come off as advice on how to be an asshole. It's not -- you do want to be

                • by Chris Burke (6130)

                  Why not?

                  Uh cus she's a woman, something you either don't or don't want to understand.

                  By the way, I was joking in my first post, the last one, and this one, but it's a joke based on reality. You think marriage is that simple, you just say "it should be this way" and it is? That's why you aren't. ;)

            • by MightyYar (622222)

              Would she be groveling for permission to spend $20 extra on a nicer pair of shoes

              Nope, she'd say, "They were on sale." And that would be the end of it. If you buy a computer, make sure it is on sale and then brag about how much you "saved", not how much you spent.

        • Re:strange (Score:5, Insightful)

          by onkelonkel (560274) on Monday February 09, 2009 @07:33PM (#26791895)
          Works both ways. You come home with a new CPU & MOBO and install it in the old case when she's not looking; she sneaks a new pair of shoes into the closet and tells you she bought them last christmas on sale when she busts them out.

          Or, you can be adults, and maybe agree on an amount for discretionary spending that doesn't require the others approval.
        • OT, but that's what me and my wife eventually came out to. We have our separate bank accounts so that we can make stupid purchases on our own and not worry the other spouse as much. I can't remember who said it, but the best fiscal advice for married people that I even heard was that both members need to have money that they're not accountable for to the other spouse.
        • by AlXtreme (223728)

          His whiny, pathetic, groveling demeanor over a $20 difference in price, and his futile attempts to explain to her why 2G is better than 1G, made me absolutely want to vomit. I'm not married, but I vowed that day to either divorce or kill myself if I ever find myself to be such a pathetic, spineless loser.

          Hear hear!

          Listen spineless losers: only grovel for 4GB. 2GB isn't enough. If you grovel, do it for something worthwhile.

        • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

          by Namlak (850746)
          How do you know the guy isn't a total loser who's run up $20,000 in credit card debt with all the things he "had to have", essentially forcing his wife to become the authority that keeps him in check? I know of at least three other guys in this situation, two of whom are on their way to their *second* bankruptcies.
        • OK, I'm not married,

          Wow, really? by your response, I never would have guessed.

          Its your response, that repulses me. Life lived for oneself is not worth living. Not that I'm recommending suicide or Marriage for you. But seriously, don't make the purchase of 1 gig of freaking ram the definition of a life worth living. Gadgets suck compared to people.

          • But seriously, don't make the purchase of 1 gig of freaking ram the definition of a life worth living.

            No, it's the groveling. Let me put it in perspective:

            For you, it's a gig of RAM. For her, it's $20. Neither is worth fighting over -- but then, a modern computer with 2 gigs will most likely be quite a lot faster and more useful than one with 1 gig. If that matters to you, she should respect that.

            Let's suppose she's the one with a high-paying job. Probably fair to assume she drinks Starbucks. If you really don't have the $20, she can skip her latte for a few weeks. She doesn't even have to go off caffeine,

        • by MightyYar (622222)

          So my advice to the married chumps out there is to keep a separate bank account for discretionary purchases which your wives have neither control of nor access to. Life without self-respect (and gadgets) is not worth living.

          Wow, I'm really lucky... last time my computer broke (it was 5 years old), she went with me to the Apple Store so we could use her student discount to get a new dual G5. That's now 4 years old... hmmmm...

      • by aliquis (678370)

        Reminds me of my cousin, he works in a computer store and his girlfriend wouldn't allow him to get a new computer because she thought he should spend the money on a trip for them (he was like 19 and she 18 so pretty pussy whipped.)
        Anyway, he kept the case, problem solved ;), or well, not the actual problem, be he found a workaround.

    • Re:strange (Score:4, Insightful)

      by Darkness404 (1287218) on Monday February 09, 2009 @06:15PM (#26790925)
      Gamers. Sure, most would rather go out and buy a totally new box, but if someone just wanted to upgrade a CPU, AMD would let them do it. It may seem illogical for hardware vendors to target a small portion of the hardware buying community, but both AMD and Intel are trying their best to get the gamer's money.
    • Not strange at all (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Chris Burke (6130) on Monday February 09, 2009 @06:23PM (#26791051) Homepage

      Other than starving CIS majors, who barely earn enough money from their university's computer lab to pay for Ramen Noodles, who does that? IT professionals would just buy all the hardware together because their time is worth more than their money, and everybody else just buys entire new computers. This could only appeal to a handful of small-budget kids.

      If you don't think in terms of upgrading the processor of the computer sitting on your desk, but instead think of HP updating the processor in their line of AM2-based computers, then you should be able to see that the appeal is basically universal. This way the OEMs can offer refreshed versions of their lines without having to incur the extra expense of DDR3. Obviously they will also make a DDR3 AM3-based line, but the DDR2-based line will be cheaper.

      Backward compatibility and in-place upgrades appeals to far more than a handful of poor hobbyists.

    • Re:strange (Score:5, Interesting)

      by afidel (530433) on Monday February 09, 2009 @06:25PM (#26791073)
      Actually we bought drop in CPU upgrades for our Database server, when you have the time invested in the OS and application installs and QA time not to mention tons of ram it's a very cheap upgrade to just swap out CPU's if you are CPU limited. Spending $5K or so to get 40% better performance out of say $300K is sunk cost is a no brainer. Now that's on the Opteron side not the Phenom side, but again if you do a lot of transcoding it's probably cheaper to buy a new CPU then upgrade the whole rig.
    • by sjames (1099)

      Not necessarily. If you have a nice machine that could go for another year in it's current role if it was just a bit faster, why not drop in the new CPU? Getting an all new machine will take up time as well moving the software and/or configs over.

      Next year when the budget is hopefully better, get a new system sans CPU, and move it over. Put the old one back in the old box and deploy somewhere less demanding.

  • Doesn't matter. (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Jeff DeMaagd (2015) on Monday February 09, 2009 @06:12PM (#26790873) Homepage Journal

    I mean the economy in terms of releasing a product update. If the work is done & ready to go, it's too late to worry about the economy, just ship it. Not only that, product development cycles on these products are long enough that they need to continually invest in R&D regardless of the economy, by the time a just-started project is done, the economy will have rebounded and ready for new product.

    If the world is switching to DDR3, that probably means having a new socket. As such, AMD needs to introduce the new socket when they are ready to.

  • This is great. I'm hurting for a new desktop and was planning on getting an AM2 CPU.

    I still am, but knowing that the AM3 was just around the corner, waiting to knock all the AM2/AM2+ prices down has delayed my plans for a few weeks, and now there's finally an end in sight!

  • by amcdiarmid (856796) <amcdiarm.gmail@com> on Monday February 09, 2009 @06:16PM (#26790935) Journal

    You may be able to put a am3 processor in a am2+ motherboard, but the Register says that am2+ processor in a am3 motherboard will not work. (http://www.reghardware.co.uk/2009/02/09/review_cpu_amd_phenom_ii_am3/page2.html)

    To quote:
    "makes life horribly confusing as the Phenom X4 920 and 925 and the X4 940 and 945 will be identical apart from the processor socket. This means that there is the possibility that some poor so-and-so will buy an AM2+ CPU and an AM3 motherboard when ne'er the twain shall meet." ..
    careful what you buy out there

    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      IIRC the AM3 has fewer pins and is able to plug into
      an AM2+ socket, but AM2+ chips can't plut into an AM3 socket. So, if you buy the wrong one you'll know as soon as you try to plug your AM2+ cpu into your AM3 motherboard...

    • by Enleth (947766)

      That's kind of logical - sure, some poor so-and-so could in fact get into some trouble this way, but there's absolutely nothing AMD could do to fix that, save for putting an appropriate notice on the box. I mean, AM3 motherboards will use DDR3 memory (which is different from DDR2 even in terms of physical dimensions and pinout, so you can't put a DDR2 module in a DDR3 slot), but AM2 processors can't talk to DDR3 memory because they were not designed to do that, and AMD can't magically fix all those AM2 proc

  • by Toonol (1057698) on Monday February 09, 2009 @06:19PM (#26791003)
    This is the sort of thing that gets us out of a poor economy.
    • And also due to poor economy, otherwise they wouldn't support cheaper DDR2.
      • by Chris Burke (6130) on Monday February 09, 2009 @06:26PM (#26791093) Homepage

        And also due to poor economy, otherwise they wouldn't support cheaper DDR2.

        I guarantee you they would.

        Even when the economy was good, there was a lot of downward pressure on the prices of computers. Mandating a switch to a more expensive memory tech before the market is ready is a sure way to have it backfire in your face *cough* RAMBUS *cough* Ugh that was some nasty phlegm.

        • by Endo13 (1000782)

          Yeah, speaking of which I had to tell a poor sot today that it's not worth upgrading his memory because it uses Rambus. Heck, for the cost of adding 512 MB he could buy a whole new computer. If they'd used DDR from the start, he could probably be rockin' 1GB RAM now, and be good to go for at least a few more months.

  • Seriously, unless you're building a DB server, memory hasn't been expensive for a while - 2G is $40-50. A new processor is $200+
    • by toddestan (632714)

      It starts getting expensive though if you want to have more than 8GB in your computer. You either have to buy find 4GB sticks at that point ($$$) or a server-class board ($$$). It's actually kind of annoying - DDR2 is crazy cheap, but it starts to get difficult to use more than about 8GB of it, and really difficult to use more than 16GB.

  • by TJ_Phazerhacki (520002) on Monday February 09, 2009 @06:32PM (#26791173) Journal
    Not that I expect any different from /. most days, but who cares if its the middle of a recession? The R&D work on this has been in place for quite a while, and this is actually MORE attractive than an i7 platform right now because you don't need to move up to the new socket for the new chips - they are backwards compatible.

    "Despite a poor economic climate, farmers still harvest crops they planted last year...." - come on....

  • Taking as gospel the non-technical* formulation of Moore's law: processing power doubles every 24 months, then delaying your product even a few weeks puts you behind the performance curve. A 2 week delay comes in at a manageable 1.3% but delay your product 8 weeks, and you are already 5.5% behind your competitor**. In a market with margins in the low single digits, that's the difference between profit and loss.

    Economy or not, you've got to release the product when the engineers say its ready or else it deca

    • Except that actual processor speed went off Moore's curve a while back ... While transistor densities have gone up (mostly) according to schedule, actual processor speed has not.

      Your argument is good, and AFAIK processor makers use it to a certain extent, it's just that the percentages are a bit smaller.

  • The early tests I've seen published indicate almost no improvement for DDR3 over DDR2 in an identical system. A bit lower latency is the only real improvement, and that's tiny. So what gives? How much should DDR3 improve over DDR2, except for the estimated 30% improvement in power requirements?
  • by icepick72 (834363) on Monday February 09, 2009 @11:47PM (#26793307)

    TITLE: AMD Launches New Processor Socket **Despite Poor Economy**

    So we're not supposed to do anything because the economy is bad?! So let's never a thing again because we're ignorant of larger pictures and contexts and variableness in life. What kind of f***ed-up sh** IS THAT! Start tagging sentences with pessimistic endings and implying stuff because we're ignorant a**holes. Let's see ....

    Today I drove to work in the winter despite road salt runoff will affect the lake. I bought a new dog despite the existence of puppy mills. I washed my hands after peeing despite the fact antibacterial soap kills good germs. I sat on a wooden chair despite my ginger ass getting chapped.

    You know what ... I think the title actually had an effect on me despite the fact I found it totally ignorant. What do you think?

I bet the human brain is a kludge. -- Marvin Minsky

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