This is significant because Phenom has a horrendous reputation for sucking too much power, producing too much heat and delivering inadequate performance. The Phenom X4 9950 has power requirements that are very similar to Intel's Core i7 920, but Phenom II is a different proposition, and this brings us to the question of a suitable comparison for the new processor.
AMD states: "We are not focusing on Core i7 as our current competitive target. We feel that this is currently a niche product, likely selling in small volumes in the immediate future. We're targeting the Core 2 Quad products and going for a price/performance comparison whilst highlighting our much better power consumption (idle) and thermal characteristics of the Dragon platform. Also, we have some great overclocking headroom with our Phenom II CPU using our new 45nm process."
The problem is that the official pricing per 1000 units at launch was $275 for the Phenom II X4 940 and $235 for the 920. This worked out at £245 and £210, respectively, with Phenom X4 9950 2.6GHz at £155, which made the Phenom II X4 940 £10 more expensive than Intel’s Core i7 920.
After a flurry of price reductions, the X4 940 is on sale at £195, the X4 920 at £170 and the Phenom X4 9950 at £115, which makes it valid to compare Phenom II with a £170 2.5GHz Core 2 Quad 9300.
We ran tests on three platforms, with Core i7 on an Asus P6T Deluxe motherboard, Phenom and Phenom II on an MSI DKA790GX Platinum, and Core 2 on an Intel DX38BT. Common components were a Radeon HD 4870 X2 graphics card, a 1TB WD Caviar Black hard drive and Windows Vista Ultimate Edition.
Working with Phenom II is a very similar experience to the 65nm Phenom, except that the clock speeds are a little higher, the power draw is a little lower, the heat output is significantly lower and the gentle rush of the cooling fan is quite tolerable.
Re: price comparison
Not to mention the, like, 100 quids difference between the Phenom II and the i7 920. make it 600 quids if we're talking i7 extreme. A valid comparison, price-wise, would be 1 i7 (920) against 2 Phenom II. But now it's not even on the power consumption front anymore. Head hurts.
As per title, this really isn't a valid comparison as the Core i7 platform is DDR3 vs the Phenom 2 on DDR2. The other factor that's been completely ignored is also pretty damn important from both a home and business perspective - total platform cost.
£35 for 2 GB DDR2 1066 vs £100 for 2 GB DD3 1333 makes a difference as does £40 for an AM2 motherboard against £180 for the socket 1366 equivalent. If you factor that into the equation it looks like a much more respectable result. If the cost of setting up the Phenom 2 was £200 more expensive then a like for like comparison would be valid but at present it's apples and oranges.
I like blue and green too!
... but you wouldn't see me reusing them both on the same bar chart. Generally speaking you have a few millions of colors, they ought to be evenly spread throughout the pallet.
@E - Please refrain from using "PII" to describe Phenom II, since it's already been taken by Pentium II.
Paris, because she knows a box of crayons has lots of colors in it. Just don't ask her how many are in a box of 64.