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AMD Hardware Technology

AMD's "Black Box" Athlon 64 X2 6400+ 99

MojoKid writes "Rumors of a new high-end AMD Athlon 64 X2 chip circulated in July, but availability and specifics of the chip were unconfirmed at the time. Now AMD has officially taken the wraps off their new Athlon 64 X2 6400+, a 3.2GHz dual-core chipset to compete with Intel's Core 2 E6750 and E6850 series. HotHardware notes that the new 6400+ is still built on AMD's 90nm fab process and has a single 2-GHz HyperTransport link and 2 MB of on-chip L2 cache (1 MB per core), just like its predecessor the 6000+. The new processor is said to be a 'channel only' offering and will retail at $239 or so, in a black retail box (picture here) without a heatsink."
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AMD's "Black Box" Athlon 64 X2 6400+

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  • by TeknoHog ( 164938 ) on Tuesday August 21, 2007 @09:40AM (#20303697) Homepage Journal
    I for one don't welcome our new global warming overlords.
    • by Dan Ost ( 415913 ) on Tuesday August 21, 2007 @10:27AM (#20304253)
      Even if the max thermal power is high, there might still be energy savings if the idle power consumption is low and/or if the processor can do more computing per Watt than the CPU it's displacing.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Calinous ( 985536 )
        The increase in frequency comes with a bigger increase in power consumption - and the increase in performance is not linear with the increase in frequency.
              As for low idle power, why this would have lower idle power than a similar, lower rating (5000+ let's say) processor?

              This is not for the power efficient minded persons, but for bragging rights.
    • Just wait till I overclock it!!!!
  • Aint Much of a Deal (Score:5, Informative)

    by ExE122 ( 954104 ) * on Tuesday August 21, 2007 @09:42AM (#20303731) Homepage Journal
    Here's how some of the specs and prices (Intels from Pricewatch [pricewatch.com]) compare:

    1.30V 4MB L2
    1.33Ghz FSB

    1.35V 4MB L2
    1.33Ghz FSB

    1.35V 2MB L2
    2.00Ghz HT

    From what I've read, the E6750 actually outperforms [custompc.co.uk] the E6850 since it ran cooler and with less power. So it doesn't look like AMD has a whole lot to offer given the price. Not to mention it doesn't come with a heatsink and fan, something you'd probably have to dish out another $20-50 for.
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      But who does actually use the boxed coolers? Well, maybe those who run semperons or similar but I do hardly believe that those who are buying that kind of processor will use the boxed cooler.
      • by michrech ( 468134 ) on Tuesday August 21, 2007 @11:02AM (#20304785)
        I was using the OEM cooler that came with my x2 5000+, until the fan died. Then I went out and purchased a CoolerMaster OEM style HSF to replace it (only difference was it had an 80mm fan installed instead of the 60 the OEM came with). It was $18 from a local computer store.

        Keeps the CPU somewhere in the 30-45C range, and can barely be heard (the rest of the fans (all two of them!) are 120mm, and quite quiet. There is a variable speed 120mm fan in my PS as well (Thermaltake Modular 500w).

        I think people who go out and buy gigantic, noisy-assed, obnoxious HSF's are just wasting their money.

        But who does actually use the boxed coolers? Well, maybe those who run semperons or similar but I do hardly believe that those who are buying that kind of processor will use the boxed cooler.
        • I used the boxed heatsink & fan that came with my 6750.
          Other than being an AMD, what does this CPU offer anyway? I mean a 200MHz bump is not going to improve performance that much, and now AMD is where Intel was: hot. Heat is bad. I'll be the first to admit that I am in the Intel camp (have been since the 80386DX days), but as someone responsible to their customers I've recommended AMD as a viable alternative to many people. In this case I see no compelling reason to recommend it.
      • I was using the stock cooler that came with my AMD Opteron 165 dual core CPU until recently, and was able to run overclocked to 2.4GHz without any problems. I used it for about a year. The stock cooler wasn't loud, but I wanted silence and so replaced it with a Zalman unit.
      • by Hafnia ( 590482 )
        Why wouldn't they ?
        In my experience the boxed cooler is always capable of keeping the CPU temp within spec at fairly high loads. The only reason for not using it would be noise - and in most modern PC's the graphics card will make to much noise for you to notice anyway.
      • I find they're handy to have around when the aftermarket cooler dies and you want to use your computer. Otherwise, I don't use them unless I'm building something cheap and noise isn't an issue (I don't overclock anymore).
  • by tomstdenis ( 446163 ) <tomstdenis@gAUDENmail.com minus poet> on Tuesday August 21, 2007 @09:46AM (#20303771) Homepage
    What a bargain! Why didn't they just wait till 65nm? The same chip would probably fit in the 90W or less envelope at that size.

    Personally, I'm happy with my E6600, which bangs along just fine at 2.4GHz and can easily outperform any Athlon at a similar speed [or at least match it].

    • AMD's 65nm processors are cheaper to produce and not as power hungry, but are not as fast as the 90nm counterparts.
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by Slaimus ( 697294 )
      AMD does not make 2x1MB cache 65nm chips, so the Opterons and higher end X2s are all 90nm.
  • by DigiShaman ( 671371 ) on Tuesday August 21, 2007 @09:47AM (#20303791) Homepage
    Everyone knows that all the 3l337 users are holding out for AMD/Intel offerings that feature flashing LEDs!

    BlackBox edition....phuuullease
    • Actually... (Score:5, Funny)

      by Chineseyes ( 691744 ) on Tuesday August 21, 2007 @10:23AM (#20304201)
      I was holding out for a version that comes with interchangeable heatsink attachments.

      A Hibachi Heatsink attachment for frying up some pork fried rice in the evenings.
      A Space heater attachment as a fireplace replacement on those cold winter nights.
      A blow dryer/curler attachment for the modern day multi tasking lady who needs to look sexy and code at the same time.
      A heating pad attachment for the elderly developer whose bad back needs comfort after years of poor seating posture in WoW.....coding sessions.
      • Green computing!

        You could use it for camping. Run it outside via an extension cord and sit around the CPU warming your hands over it while singing "Kumbaya".
      • by cibyr ( 898667 )

        A Space heater attachment as a fireplace replacement on those cold winter nights.
        I kept my college room warm last winter by running Distributed Climate Prediction on my boxen... it worked alarmingly well, and I loved the irony of warming my room by predicting global warming :D
    • There were some memory modules that had LEDs on them. Here would be an example (review):
      http://www.ocinside.de/go_e.html?http://www.ocinsi de.de/html/results/crucial_ballistix_1gb_pc4000.ht ml [ocinside.de]
  • So I'll still be limited by my Internet connection, HD, or video card, but my CPU core runs some smidgen faster than before? Yawn. Wake me when I get a 16-way on 1 die, or a 10 watt version of the slightly slower model.
  • Taken the wraps off? (Score:3, Informative)

    by Barny ( 103770 ) <bakadamage-slashdot@yahoo.com> on Tuesday August 21, 2007 @09:52AM (#20303841) Journal
    Wtf? These [auspcmarket.com.au] have been available for about a week.... in Australia.

    Maybe America is getting behind the times?
    • by ExE122 ( 954104 ) * on Tuesday August 21, 2007 @10:04AM (#20303971) Homepage Journal
      Yeah, we like to test our products on Australians to make sure they're not harmful to Americans =P.

      Seriously though, America always is behind in technology because there's a lot more red tape, restrictions, and beurocracy involved in American patents. I'm guessing 85% of it is so American lawyers and businessmen can get richer... the other 15% may indeed be for liability.

      But if you really wanna see just how behind on the times we are, check out the cell phone technology in Japan or Singapore. I guess they don't have the Verizonopoly over there... They've had a wider range of way cooler phones for as long as I can remember. You usually don't see any of their newest features hit the American markets until at least 6 months later...

      I guess that's also the case with computer processors.

      • by Hoi Polloi ( 522990 ) on Tuesday August 21, 2007 @11:06AM (#20304845) Journal
        Supposedly the real reason isn't some conspiracy of lawyers and evil bureaucrats but that Americans aren't as eager to jump on the latest and greatest as they are in parts of Asia. Dense countries like Singapore, Hong Kong, and Japan have a more flexible mom & pop system of small electronics stores and a population that is eager to dump the device they have for the flavor of the month. In the US you have much larger and less flexible chains that prefer products with proven potential and a population that prefers low prices over technical innovation so we hold onto them longer. Bleeding edge enthusiasts may dispute this (they are overrepresented on slashdot) but the population in general in the US follows this trend.

        According to this article [msn.com] other reasons include our not using GSM as a standard system, our fragmented carrier market, and our low demand for text messaging and other functions that we can already do on PCs (i.e. web browse).

  • it clearly says "Black Edition" on the box... maybe they mean it's optimized for videos like the Hunchblack of Blotre Blame.
  • by Lumpy ( 12016 ) on Tuesday August 21, 2007 @10:00AM (#20303925) Homepage
    $239 is at 1000 or more quantity. so it's wholesale pricing.

    Newegg will probably retail it at $350 to $390 IF they buy a thousand of them. Most companies dont want to stock that much of a processor as the price drops so fat you are stuck with overpriced stock on hand.

    • by Shohat ( 959481 ) on Tuesday August 21, 2007 @10:42AM (#20304479) Homepage
      I haven't dealt with processors, but I used to own an office supplies/electronics business, and ANYTHING I didn't sell, I simply notified the supplier, and got a full refund, either in merchandise or money (wire/cheque).
      Same goes for most products for a restaurant I used to run. We would buy a lot of milk, and if we had any milk go bad due to low latte sales, we would get a full refund for any milk we didn't use, they would just take the bad milk back. I know this is not the case when dealing imported goods, but not all chips are imported, so maybe some merchants do get compensated for overstocking.
      • Re: (Score:1, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward
        that's far different from PC parts.

        I buy 100 42" tv's at $1300.00 my cost. 10 days later the distributor drops the proce to $800.00 I dont get to send them back and get a credit of $1300.00 each. I get a credit at the price they are selling at.

        No electronics distributors give you any buyback deals on parts or items. If the price drops 3 days after you buy it, then it sucks to be you.

        that's why in electronics you MUST buy the minimum you think you will need and use JIT suppliers so that you never have mo
        • by Barny ( 103770 )
          Actually, if you are dealing direct with intel or amd, and you buy enough (our chain has around 25 stores) they will buy them back and re-sell them to you.
  • Am I the only one that thinks they hired the same people that did the packaging for the iPod? And beyond that, should a computer chip ever have to carry some strange slogan such as at "Black Edition"? Hopefully people wouldn't be looking at two different chips and then go, "Well, this is called 'Black Edition' so, its probably better." Maybe the average computer user would fall for that, but when it comes down to it, the average computer user rarely buys their own chip.

    When's the U2 edition come out?
    • by Nick of NSTime ( 597712 ) on Tuesday August 21, 2007 @10:27AM (#20304247)
      The Ramones Edition is really fast, but it can only process three instructions over and over.
      • Instruction Set for The Ramones Edition
        GO r - Unconditional jumps to the value stored in register r
        IO x,r1,r2 - Performs memory IO. Reads from the memory location x and stores the result in register r1 and writes r2 to x
        LETS r1,r2,r3 - Performs a Less or Equal to Signed comparison between r1 and r2 and stores a 1 in r3 if true and a 0 in r3 if false

        The instructions for the program of a blitzkrieg of NOP goes like this:


        If you have read this far and you still don't get it, here you go [lyricsfreak.com].

    • Am I the only one that thinks they hired the same people that did the packaging for the iPod? And beyond that, should a computer chip ever have to carry some strange slogan such as at "Black Edition"?

      Intel's been doing this for years, and with good results. Finally AMD was squeezed enough to hire some real marketing people. Let's just hope they don't drop this when/if their products are back to being competitive, so they can again put some pressure on Intel (instead of being fscked by the Intel marketing d

  • At least this CPU will have something to wear to AMD's funeral. (I like AMD, but they need to step up their game!)
    • agreed. With their 90nM process, I can replace my gas furnace with this thing and save money!

      It's nothing but a heatbox.
  • This seems to be happening more and more. People love to call chips, chipsets. It may have dual cores, but its two cores on a single chip. The north and south bridge are collectively called a chipset, and you could call multiple SATA/PATA controllers a chipset, but you can not call a processor a chipset.
  • I'm still angry at AMD because of the discontinuation of processors for the socket 939.

  • for upcoming Phenom line ?

No problem is so large it can't be fit in somewhere.