AMD Phenom II X6 1090T Reviewajmatson - April 26, 2010
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Recently we saw the first desktop six-core processor reviewed here at OCC, the Intel Core i7 980X and the power that the hex-core's bring to the table. Today we are looking at AMD's offering to the six-core market, the Phenom II X6 1090T processor. The AMD Phenom II series has been strong in the mainstream market and has been providing great computing power at a lower price tag than its competitors. They have been designed to allow you to build a complete system for less then the cost of most single components from other manufacturers. This price to performance ratio has given them a good market share from gamers and enthusiasts not wanting to break the bank just to have cutting edge technology. This is the same case with the Phenom II X6 1090T processor. While the Intel six-core the 980X currently retails for $999, the AMD Phenom II X6 1090T will list for around $300 at launch, meaning that you could buy a whole system for less than the cost of the 980X alone. With a clock speed of 3.2GHz and new features such as AMD Turbo Core technology, the new Phenom II X6 1090T sounds like the CPU that everyone has been waiting for. So how well does it really do? There is only one way to tell, so let's dive in and take a look at the components and get to what everyone wants to really see...
The new AMD Phenom II X6 1090T is AMD's first entry into the six-core processor market. The Phenom II X6 1090T is a socket AM3 processor clocked at 3.2GHz and is manufactured using a 45nm process. The 1090T has a total of 9MB cache which breaks down to 6MB shared L3 cache and 3MB L2 cache, 512KB per core. For memory support, the Phenom II X6 1090T, just as with other Phenom II processors, can support both DDR2 memory up to 1066Mhz and DDR3 memory up to 1333MHz. The processors runs on the HyperTransport 3.0 bus for up to 4,000MT/s full duplex. This particular processor has a maximum TDP of 125 watts and a maximum temperature threshold of 62°C. The voltage required for operation is between 1.125v to a maximum of 1.40v. One new feature that the Phenom II X6 1090T processor brings to the table is called Turbo Core. What Turbo Core does is when the processor is not needing the full power of the six cores, it will shut down half of the cores and then increase the processor speed from the stock of 3.2GHz to an increased speed of 3.6GHz on the remaining three active cores. This gives you a boost in performance when operating at less power and heat. The physical appearance of the Phenom II X6 1090T looks as any other Phenom II processor however; in the die shot below you can see the difference with the additional two cores added to the design.
Now that we have seen the processor, we can take a look at the new chipset designed to carry the CPU forward.