AMD Athlon X4 620
As most enthusiasts can tell you, the Intel Core i7 lineup is a formidable powerhouse of processors. But you will likely also hear in the next breath that they are very expensive. Both statements are true, and I doubt many people can argue those facts. However, there is also a flipside to that equation, that processors exist that offer far better value or performance-for-dollar. While these chips may not garner the same buzz or hype as the flagship Intel chips, they do occupy a large share in the market, and many mainstream users, and even enthusiasts on a tight budget, can benefit.
Typically these cheaper processors have largely been dual core, or even the odd tri-core CPU, but AMD has now made a considerable push into this segment by offering a truly "affordable" quad core chip, the Athlon II X4. Priced around $100 USD, it breaks a psychological barrier that many consumers, AMD is betting, are likely to jump onto the bandwagon and overlook the powerhouse, expensive processors dominated by Intel.
Not since the heyday of the original Athlon has AMD really stuck it to Intel, but this new Athlon II X4 sounds very promising. Sure it’s inexpensive, but what about performance? Is it completely handicapped by the lack of L3 cache that its larger sibling the Phenom II carries? Can the new Athlon Quad overclock any better than recent AMD offerings, and if so, just how far can it go? We’ll answer these questions today, and we promise you, there are some very interesting surprises in store.