Print 75 comment(s) - last by JumpingJack.. on Dec 7 at 2:41 AM

AMD memo leaked to DailyTech shows Phenom availability

AMD and Intel have historically traded the title of the best performing CPUs. Recently, however, the battle has been largely one-sided with Intel taking the volume and performance crown.

AMD hopes to change that with the release of its new Phenom processors. MSI was the first mainboard manufacturer to announce an RD790 mainboard, the K9A2 Platinum, for the quad-core and tri-core Phenom's. Mainboards from ASUS and Gigabyte based on RD790 were announced in October and also support Phenom quad-core processors.

More details of the AMD platform launch that included the Phenom, the RD790 chipset and the RV670 graphics processor surfaced early in November. DailyTech reported early in November 2007 on the pricing structure of the Phenom processors ranging from about $280 to $330 USD. 

An AMD internal memos hows the AMD Phenom 9700, 2.4 GHz processor is slated for mid-December availability. Allocation for the Phenom 9600 running at 2.3GHz has been pushed back to a Q1 2008 date.

The Tech Report, in an interview with AMD's desktop product marketing manager Michael Saucier, confirmed an erratum for all Phenom processors that will cause the system to hang due to an L3 cache miss.  The Tech Report claims this fix will degrade performance as much at 10%.

The mainboard favored by AMD, the MSI K9A2 Platinum is impossible to get currently since it is out of stock. MSI confirmed to DailyTech that this board will start shipping again next week, and that the board itself is not with any defect, but just in high demand and low availability.

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RE: Waiting for a K9A2 Platinum!
By JumpingJack on 12/4/2007 11:43:06 PM , Rating: 1
Ohhhh, man, I hope you don't end up buggered (literally), you do realize that most everyone is reporting lockup and stability problems, and this is with just one graphics card.

RE: Waiting for a K9A2 Platinum!
By Clauzii on 12/5/2007 12:02:45 AM , Rating: 2
Seriously ???


RE: Waiting for a K9A2 Platinum!
By JumpingJack on 12/5/2007 1:28:28 AM , Rating: 1,1697,2226939...
Stability is an equally important axis in computer performance, and the story isn't particularly robust yet. Earlier, we noted the inability of the platform to run Adobe After Effects CS3. In our game testing, the Supreme Commander benchmark crashed several times, while Quake Wars: Enemy Territory locked up once. Thermal issues didn't seem to be the culprit here. It's very likely another BIOS update or two for the motherboard will be needed to fix these issues.

The spider platform looks good overall if you ignore some bugs they have right now.
the processor we did have had a number of issues that added up.
AMD's Phenom Processor falls short of expectations and needs to have the bugs worked out with higher clock frequencies.
AMD's plan to release an unlocked version of the Phenom 9600 may help tip the scales in the 9600's favor for some folks, but I suspect they won't find much overclocking headroom in those chips. In fact, our 2.6GHz engineering sample wasn't 100% stable, which is why you won't find any overclocking results in this review.
(of course this is an engineering sample)
Now the other part of the Spider project ... really impressive is the new AMD 790FX chipset we tested. Surely we had a number of bugs
(This guy was happy witht he platform, sorely disppointed in the CPU)

From the forums:
I've been play with it for a couple days now, and not have gotten it completely stable

But the biggest one, the one that will eat their lunch... is here:

They had to stop shipping Barcelona because of it ... no tier 1 OEM has shipped one, not a single box, with a dual socket Barcey/Opteron quad.

AMD's quad-core "Barcelona" Opterons have been notably difficult to find since their introduction two months ago, and The Tech Report has learned that a chip-level problem has impacted the supply of these chips to both server OEMs and distribution channel customers.

OEM vendors are steering people away from this chip:
If you call an OEM today to get an AMD quad-core powered system, you’re
likely to get a pitch for an Intel system or an AMD dual-core chip. Why? Quad-core Opterons, those formerly known as Barcelona chips, are in short supply.

RE: Waiting for a K9A2 Platinum!
By Clauzii on 12/5/2007 4:20:48 PM , Rating: 2
"So overall I'm not at all disappointed by AMD Phenom at all. It's just that we were all expecting a little more." -

So, what he says is that a updated Phenom performs well, but the speed is behind, compared to Intel. But viewed by price/performance, Phenoms aren't that bad.

I'm confident that AMD will get the problems with Phenoms solved. Also needing motherboard BIOS updates incl. some new micro code. OK, the Phenoms gets slower (VERY bad indeed!) but at least it can run :-/

I referred to the DFI motherboard btw. regarding links, not the Phenom :)

But thanks for that comprehensive list anyway. Pretty much sums up the Phenoms 'phenomenon' :)

RE: Waiting for a K9A2 Platinum!
By Clauzii on 12/5/2007 4:23:42 PM , Rating: 2
Ahh, I reffered to the DFI AND HD3870. my bad..

By JumpingJack on 12/6/2007 1:24:32 AM , Rating: 1
Well, I thought you were challenging the assertion that I stated it is a bit buggy.

I have not doubt these will iron out, but it has been a while since a major product launch where I have seen such a large number of 'stability is a problem' statements, not that it never happened... in those cases, I also recommend people to wait if asked.

RE: Waiting for a K9A2 Platinum!
By Clauzii on 12/5/2007 12:14:46 AM , Rating: 2
Seems like most are ok when they use ATIs Driver Cleaner and THEN installs the cards, 2 at a time if You'd wish.

No big deal...

RE: Waiting for a K9A2 Platinum!
By Martimus on 12/5/2007 1:02:42 PM , Rating: 2
Really? I haven't had any issues yet, but then I have only had it for a week. I guess I should look up these issues to see if I can curb them. So far I have heard more about of issues with the 8800GT locking up or completely dying (, but they have been out longer, so of course I would hear more about those problems.

By JumpingJack on 12/7/2007 2:41:53 AM , Rating: 2
Consider yourself lucky then I suspect, I linked several sites above that reported problems from glitches to simply not being able to run some software.

Of course, not all the glitches are CPU related, far from it... but AMD is trying to sell the platform here, and the OP was looking to build this platform, he should be aware that it is still buggy ... most of which will likely get squashed with BIOS and driver updates as many are likely chipset and GPU related as well.

"I'd be pissed too, but you didn't have to go all Minority Report on his ass!" -- Jon Stewart on police raiding Gizmodo editor Jason Chen's home
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