Product: AMD Phenom II X6, Asus RoG Crosshair IV Formula
Company: AMD
Authour: James Prior
Editor: Charles Oliver
Date: April 29th, 2010
AMD Phenom II X6, 890FX Review

Thanks to the severe storms that hit the South East USA over the weekend, we're a little late bringing you our look at AMD's newest processor, based on their new Thuban core. Thuban is, and isn't, AMD's answer to Intel's recently released Core i7-980X hexacore processor. Today we're examining the AMD Phenom II X6 1090T, and trying to find where the relevance for this part lies.

The AMD Phenom II X6 1090T is a native hexacore processor, as you may have guess from the 'X6' moniker. Consistent naming allows at-a-glance deciphering of the product; it's a Phenom II (duh), it has six cores, it's at the high end of the product segment (higher numbers mean higher relative performance in the same range of 1000 series processors), and it has Turbo mode.

Turbo mode is the special sauce that AMD has simmered to a boil for the last few months, to give something for everyone in the AMD Phenom II X6 range. The reasons for multi-core are numerous and well pontificated upon across the internet, and the same logic for six cores applies as it did when the first dual cores arrived - it's easier to scale sideways than it is to scale up clockspeeds. The reasons for this are numerous and technical, but it boils down to the old adage: Many hands makes light work.

AMD Phenom II X6 1090T Processor
AMD Phenom II X6 1090T Processor

However, this neglects the current state of applications, many of which are performance bound not by the number of threads (i.e. hands) that they use, but by the speed at which they process - they're frequency limited. Enter Turbo Core. Turbo mode dynamically detects when cpu cores are being unused and boosts up three cores by up to 500Mhz. So the Phenom II X6 is two processors in one - it's a high clock speed triple core and a fast clocked hexacore processor; all in the same power and package rating as existing Phenom II processors.

Phenom II X6 1090T

  • $295 MSRP

  • 125W TDP

  • 45nm 'Thuban' core

  • ~904m Transistors

  • Socket AM2+ and AM3 compatible

  • Support DDR2-1066 and DDR3-1333

  • HyperTransport 3.0

  • Six Cores with 9MB total on-die cache (512KB per core L2, 6MB shared L3)

  • Turbo Core dynamic clock boost: triple core 3.6GHz mode

  • 3.2GHz Black Edition with Unlocked Multiplier

8-series Chipset
8-series Chipset
Accompanying this new Processor launch are new AMD chipsets, including the enthusiast 890FX. Today Rage3D looks at the ASUS Republic of Gamers Crosshair IV Formula motherboard with the AMD Phenom II X6 1090T processor, to see where it fits in the enthusiast market. 

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