The Bottom Line
- Strong Multitasking Performance
- Good Gaming Performance
- Somewhat Expensive
- Limited Overclocking Likely Due to Testing Platform
- AMD Athlon 64 X2 Manchester Dual Core
- 2.0GHz Operating Frequency
- 1GHz Front Side (Hyper Transport) Bus
- 512KB Cache Per Core
- Support for SSE3 Instructions
- 64-Bit Extensions
- 1.35-1.4V Operation
- 90nm Process
Guide Review - AMD Athlon 64 X2 3800+
9/19/05 – AMD has made some huge performance gains with their new Athlon 64 X2 line of processors that feature two cores, but their prices have made them less than affordable for the average consumer. After several months from the initial product launch and the price pressures from Intel's Pentium D line, AMD has released the AMD Athlon 64 X2 3800+ as a lower cost alternative.
Testing of the Athlon 64 X2 3800+ was conducted using a Shuttle SN25P SFF kit and a pair of OCZ ValueVX 512MB PC3200 DDR. There were some initial problems running the SN25P and X2 processors that were corrected in an updated Y version BIOS.
Performance of the 3800+ processor was quite good for most applications. It is particularly strong in multimedia or multitasking applications that really benefit from the dual core configuration. Even though each core runs at a slower speed than an equivalent single core Athlon 64 processor, performance was still good for single threaded applications including gaming where it significantly outperforms the Pentium D.
Overclocking is not officially supported by the manufacturers and will void any warranties, but this doesn't stop people from getting extra performance out of their processors. During testing, the X2 3800+ was not able to be pushed very far past its specification of 2.0 GHz. The highest stable clock speed achieved was 2.2GHz and was likely limited by the SN25P testing platform.