Our review is a little delayed however today we have our review of the Athlon64 FX-55 and A64 4000+.
The FX-55 is essentially the same chip as the FX-53, the only difference being the move from 2.4ghz to 2.6ghz (through a multiplier change from 12x to 13x). The core is still based on the 0.13 process, 0.9 is for a future chip as is dual core. Also as the FX-55 and FX-53 are based on the same design all of the features of the A64 remain such as the HT speed sitting at 1000mhz and the additional virus protection that the chip provides (in conjunction with XP SP2) is also still enabled. Support for the FX-55 should happen out of the box on most socket 939 motherboards, our MSI 6702 motherboard for example doesn’t even need a bios update to the original retail bios to support the new chip, just plug n play. This is also the case for other boards such as the Gigabyte GA-K8NSNXP-939.
The screenshots below show the tech specs of the two CPU’s as shown by CPUz.
Those of you with good memories will notice that the 4000+ features the full 1mb cache that was featured on the FX-53, because its also clocked at 2400mhz it’s the same speed as the FX-53 was…essentially what your looking at is a renamed FX-53 with locked multipliers. Other than the clockspeed the 4000+ has one difference from the FX-55, it runs on a slightly lower voltage (1.573v to 1.515v).
Before we look at the performance compared to the FX-53 its worth noting that AMD have provided us with some test results which show the FX-55 will perform roughly 8% faster than the A64 4000+ and 15% faster than a P4 3.4ghz EE overall (Office use/gaming and Digital Media). Looking at gaming specifically, in a selection of games released in the past couple of years the performance difference between the 4000+ and FX-55 is around 7%.
MSI K8TNeo2-FIR (Via based) Motherboard with
Windows XP SP2
+ all critical updates
Sisoft Sandra 2004
The test system was built from scratch, a format of the hard drive was performed (NTFS) and then Windows XP was installed (inc Sp2). Following the completion of the install the Hyperion drivers were installed. Then the Windows Update Critical Updates were installed. Following a reboot the Catalyst drivers were installed. Next the benchmarking tools were installed and finally the hard drive was de-fragmented. For all tests the Catalyst drivers were set to best image quality.
Good Benchmarking Practice:
Next: Synthetic Tests