AMD Phenom X4 9750 Quad Core CPU Review

by AkG     |     August 26, 2008


Overclocking locked Phenoms is not as easy as overclocking so called Black Edition Phenoms as you can only adjust the HT speed, HT Mulplier and various voltages. In either case, while not exactly difficult it is more involved as the built in memory controller can in some cases be the limiting factor (requiring voltage increases of its own). After working with this 9750 we were able to get a 2hr Prime 95 stable overclock of 2.83Ghz.

To achieve this we had to lower HT multiplier quite a bit but we have a hunch this issue is more motherboard related than CPU as the DFI wanted to auto default the HT to 5x even at stock speed. All in all we were able to get a 430MHz speed increase or just about 18% overclock. For such an early architecture this is certainly not a terrible achievement.

Over the years we as an overclocking community have become spoiled and expect to get massive overclocks from our processors; this increased level of expectation is partially AMDs fault with their mature k8 architecture. However, it is mainly because of the highly refined C2D line of Intel processors which were amazing right from the get go for their jaw dropping overclocking ability. As stated, 2.83GHz is not bad and we were satisfied with this result.

To see how much of an improvement this would have over stock scores we reran some of our benchmarks to get a feel for what the future may have in store for the K10 Phenom line. This is what we found out.

As you can see Overclocking the Phenom results in a mixed bag of performance boosts. Some benchmarks return only 17-19% increase for our 18% overclock while others net a nearly doubling of scores.

To us this really underscores how uneven and unrefined the 9750s are. Please donít get us wrong, they have horsepower to burn but they are still not as elegant as the K8 was. We look forward with anticipation to seeing what this processor can develop into, but for right now even overclocking nets less than ideal performance gains.

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