A Closer Look:
|Series||Athlon II X2||Athlon II X2|
|L1 Cache||2 x 128KB||2 x 128KB|
|L2 Cache||2 x 1MB||2 x 1MB|
|Die Size||45 nm||45 nm|
|Thermal Design Power||65W||65W|
These two chips are almost identical, which is why we’re reviewing them together. They are both running the same Regor core and match on everything else except the operating frequency, which is only a 100MHz difference (not much of a difference). Unless you managed to get a real lemon of a chip, there should be no reason why you can’t overclock the 255 to 260 speeds. Usually when manufacturers like AMD and Intel produce a line of chips, they aim for producing the highest performance line of chip that will be in the series. They do this with the expectation that some chips will have imperfections that won’t enable them to operate at the desired level as the creme de la creme. This doesn’t mean that these imperfect chips are garbage. They may only have something wrong with one of their cores or something more benign. When this happens, the company tests the threshold of the chip and sees what kind of performance it can achieve. They then lock it down to the lower end specification, and that’s how you get other chips in the same series. This is also why you see chips in a line that all have the same core. They are all effectively the same chip with varying levels of imperfections.
Athlon II VS Phenom II:
The Athlon II line of chips was released as a complement to the Phenom II line. The Athlon II is aimed at the entry/mid range while the Phenom II is aimed for the mid/high end range. Unlike some of the dual-core Phenom II’s, which were quad-core chips that were locked down, the Regor cores are native dual-core, meaning you can’t unlock any cores with them. You are stuck with the two cores you are given.
The Athlon II line of chips are also lacking an L3 cache. AMD tries to make up for this by giving the chips a larger L2 cache.