AMD Phenom 9900 Processor Review - Spider Platform

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AMD Phenom 9900 Processor Review - Spider Platform

Postby Apoptosis » Mon Nov 19, 2007 8:30 am

AMD Phenom 9900 Processor Review - Spider Platform

AMD has finally released their first quad-core desktop processor! It is part of AMD's new performance desktop platform that has become to be known as Spider. The AMD Spider platform consists of the AMD Phenom processor, an ATI Radeon HD 3800 series graphics card and an AMD 7-Series chipset. Read on as we take a look at the 2.6Ghz Phenom 9900 processor!

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Many of our readers might think that the AMD Phenom processor series is late and doesn't bring enough performance to the table and I have to agree with you. AMD needed to have this part out months ago and at 2.6GHz or higher. Hopefully AMD can get these early BIOS bugs worked out, but in reality they shouldn't be early bugs. Phenom has been delayed and the quad-core Barcelona server parts have been out for some time now. I'm frustrated with this launch as I am sure you are. Intel needs competition and AMD hasn't bucked up and brought it to the table with their first true quad-core processor.


Article Title: AMD Phenom 9900 Processor Review - Spider Platform
Articel URL: http://www.legitreviews.com/article/597/1/
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Re: AMD Phenom 9900 Processor Review - Spider Platform

Postby FZ1 » Mon Nov 19, 2007 9:25 am

Cool, I was wondering how this would fare against Intel. It's a shame that chips releasing early have stock clock speeds of 2.2 & 2.3 GHz. Even the 2.6 GHz 9900 which won't be out for a while can't hang with the new Intel chips. What a power hungry chip too. Not good for AMD. ](*,)
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Re: AMD Phenom 9900 Processor Review - Spider Platform

Postby Apoptosis » Mon Nov 19, 2007 9:32 am

FZ1 wrote:Cool, I was wondering how this would fare against Intel. It's a shame that chips releasing early have stock clock speeds of 2.2 & 2.3 GHz. Even the 2.6 GHz 9900 which won't be out for a while can't hang with the new Intel chips. What a power hungry chip too. Not good for AMD. ](*,)


I agree... when I first tested it the idle power didn't seem right... It turns out C'n'Q is disabled in the BIOS by default, so I was running 243W at idle with the Phenom 9900. With C'n'Q enabled in the BIOS it dropped down to 197W, which is better. This is still higher than what I expected though. AMD has always been energy efficient! At load in POV-RAY it bounced around 343-345W, which is high much higher than any of the Intel processors.
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Re: AMD Phenom 9900 Processor Review - Spider Platform

Postby skier » Mon Nov 19, 2007 10:51 am

they have some efficiency problems to work out, but they still ARE putting out revolutionary technology, and you have to love the fact that you can get any AM2/AM2+/AM3 board and slip in a phenom
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Re: AMD Phenom 9900 Processor Review - Spider Platform

Postby Apoptosis » Mon Nov 19, 2007 11:26 am

skierkid450 wrote:they have some efficiency problems to work out, but they still ARE putting out revolutionary technology, and you have to love the fact that you can get any AM2/AM2+/AM3 board and slip in a phenom


The platform is great... It is very flexible with upgrading as you noticed and pointed out. The Radeon 3800 series brings HD and great gaming graphics to mainstream users for under $180 and at low power consumption. The OverDrive utility is going to be awesome for overclocking, temperature checking and finding out what is going on with the system. Two thumbs up to that as it is a cheaper and easier route than NVIDIA's ESA that needs ESA power supplies, cases and cooling to work fully. The Phenom and 7-series motherboards are what need some work. The BIOS on these boards is rough... How many reviews out there used 64-bit Vista? All of the ones I have see used 32-bit. Editor's day all had 2GB of memory with 32-BIT Vista installed, so I wonder if there is something to that. I don't have a board, so I can't say. Many of the reviews like the one Kyle did over at HardOCP used ES samples that came from others in the industry (not AMD). After looking at his page I can't tell if he used 32-bit or 64-bit though. Actually wasn't Forceware 163.99 Windows XP 32-bit?

The motherboard issues need to be worked out in the BIOS ASAP and I wouldn't really call them efficiency problems or maybe you are right. Here is something else I just noticed going over my notes...

Processor TDP
Phenom 9900 - 2.6GHz - 140W
Phenom 9700 - 2.4Ghz - 125W
Phenom 9600 - 2.3Ghz - 95W
Phenom 9500 - 2.2Ghz - 95W

Going up from 2.3Ghz to 2.6Ghz there is a 45W TDP increase, which is pretty high for going up 300MHz... Think about that for a second... Intel raised the FSB from 1333MHz to 1600MHz and the clock frequency from 3Ghz to 3.2GHz on the new Intel QX9770 from the QX9650... The TDP went up 6W (from 130W to 136W)... AMD's increase here is really high... What will the 2.8Ghz version that is coming out in Q1 2008 be? They are also planning a 3GHz version in the first half of 2008, so that should be interesting...

by the way...

Phenom 9900 is 2.6Ghz with 463 million transistors and has a TDP of 140W
Yorkfield 9770 is 3.2Ghz with 820million transistors and has a TDP of 136W
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Re: AMD Phenom 9900 Processor Review - Spider Platform

Postby Bio-Hazard » Mon Nov 19, 2007 11:33 am

As much as I like (in the past) AMD products, I'm like completely and totally disapointed in their quads overall performance. After all the hype I would have expected at least performance equal to Intels old generation Q6600. AMD had better pull their heads out, if they don't, they might fry their little ears off with those hot little buggers.
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Re: AMD Phenom 9900 Processor Review - Spider Platform

Postby Methious » Mon Nov 19, 2007 12:31 pm

Amazing review, I like how things are laid on the line for what they are, no sugar coating. I'm rather disappointed in the AMD offering but I am wondering if they didn't rush out engineering samples to have something to show in response to Intels quad core offerings. I like their backward compatibility and pricing but they need to work out the kinks before I lay out my cash.
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Re: AMD Phenom 9900 Processor Review - Spider Platform

Postby FZ1 » Mon Nov 19, 2007 12:55 pm

LOL...check out Anandtech's review. They suck. :toimonster:
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Re: AMD Phenom 9900 Processor Review - Spider Platform

Postby HONkUS » Mon Nov 19, 2007 2:42 pm

These results are interesting, but im a bit worried that maybe that Engineering Sample from the review isn't a good idea of the final product. Over at HardOCP they have a 2.3ghz phenom that seems to out perform this 2.6ghz sample.

Here is the link.
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Re: AMD Phenom 9900 Processor Review - Spider Platform

Postby Digital Puppy » Mon Nov 19, 2007 3:43 pm

Nate, did you want to revise your "Is AMD Really a Sinking Ship? AMD Phenom Is Around The Bend" article? Maybe we should have sent a copy to them before the 9900 launch?

I'm extremely disappointed in the performance that Nate showed under 64-bit Windows. Can BIOS fix most of these performance issues? :-k I kinda doubt it.

Did Intel really need to rush a QX9770 out the door? It seems like Intel would've easily beat anything that AMD had to offer for another couple of months without the QX9770 push.
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Re: AMD Phenom 9900 Processor Review - Spider Platform

Postby HONkUS » Mon Nov 19, 2007 4:55 pm

its almost like they are trying to throw the haymaker on AMD before the government comes in to bail AMD out.
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Re: AMD Phenom 9900 Processor Review - Spider Platform

Postby DeusEx » Mon Nov 19, 2007 5:01 pm

amd might offer something different and better in the future b/c of the fact that their chips are different than intel, but atm jesus im getting an intel...
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Re: AMD Phenom 9900 Processor Review - Spider Platform

Postby Zertz » Mon Nov 19, 2007 6:06 pm

Not only they are late to the game, they also lost it.

Pre-order cancelled :?
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Re: AMD Phenom 9900 Processor Review - Spider Platform

Postby top » Mon Nov 19, 2007 7:14 pm

I wonder how much money they have invested in their upcoming processors to be released early next year. If they see the results, and should well know what Intel goes for when it comes to making processors, then they should of held back the release dates again(?) to put in some more time into their new product so they can compete with the owning QX9770.

It's not like DNF. I'm pretty sure AMD has got their employees working on these kinds of things all the time, so why rush? Oh yeah money problems :|
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Re: AMD Phenom 9900 Processor Review - Spider Platform

Postby Zertz » Mon Nov 19, 2007 9:33 pm

top wrote:I wonder how much money they have invested in their upcoming processors to be released early next year. If they see the results, and should well know what Intel goes for when it comes to making processors, then they should of held back the release dates again(?) to put in some more time into their new product so they can compete with the owning QX9770.

It's not like DNF. I'm pretty sure AMD has got their employees working on these kinds of things all the time, so why rush? Oh yeah money problems :|


Holding back the release date was already done multiple times and look what we have on our hands still. You can't simply re-work an entire architecture after having worked on it for so long, at least AMD can't afford to do so. They needed something as soon as possible to stack up against Core 2 and that's it. The average consumer will still buy Phenom even if it offers sub-par performance compared to Yorksfield.

The real problem is that it looks like AMD can't afford to price their CPUs to be competitive with Intel. I'm not sure how many more employees Intel has compared to AMD, but they certainly have alot more projects going on at the same time. Basically, as soon as DAAMIT comes up with something, Intel or nVidia has something bigger to offer. Yorksfield, G92, Nehalem, D9...

In the end, you've got it right. Money. This is AMD's biggest nightmare.



There's a good point in this though... No Phenom/AM2+ board = more money for a new monitor!
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Re: AMD Phenom 9900 Processor Review - Spider Platform

Postby Apoptosis » Tue Nov 20, 2007 7:46 am

Zertz wrote:The real problem is that it looks like AMD can't afford to price their CPUs to be competitive with Intel. I'm not sure how many more employees Intel has compared to AMD, but they certainly have alot more projects going on at the same time. Basically, as soon as DAAMIT comes up with something, Intel or nVidia has something bigger to offer. Yorksfield, G92, Nehalem, D9...


Intel has roughly ~95,000 and AMD has ~ 11,000 after the AMD/ATI merger
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Re: AMD Phenom 9900 Processor Review - Spider Platform

Postby top » Tue Nov 20, 2007 1:37 pm

Apoptosis wrote:Intel has roughly ~95,000 and AMD has ~ 11,000 after the AMD/ATI merger


Holy crap! That's like comparing number of employees between Microsoft and Shell gas stations!

I'm leaning towards the idea of going with Intel. It's gonna be weird. Been using AMD for a while now.

Plus, obviously if you're going for Intel, you get a Nvidia card or AMD with ATI.
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Re: AMD Phenom 9900 Processor Review - Spider Platform

Postby Zertz » Tue Nov 20, 2007 4:20 pm

Apoptosis wrote:Intel has roughly ~95,000 and AMD has ~ 11,000 after the AMD/ATI merger


Impressive! Assuming roughly 7000 AMD employees work on CPUs (probably less) and Intel maybe like 60000 (once you take out Flash, legal, marketing, etc). Intel has atleast 10 times more people working on different processors! It's quite amazing what AMD has done with K8 or even K10 when you consider those numbers.

top wrote:Plus, obviously if you're going for Intel, you get a Nvidia card or AMD with ATI.


Intel actually does not support SLI, except in their Skulltrail platform. If nVidia wants to sell their chipsets they can't let Intel have the license to use SLI. Anyways, unless you're going Crossfire(X) or SLI, DAAMIT or nVidia doesn't make a difference no matter what chipset you use.
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Re: AMD Phenom 9900 Processor Review - Spider Platform

Postby top » Tue Nov 20, 2007 11:38 pm

Intel = No SLI? Uh Oh! Big No No's!
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Re: AMD Phenom 9900 Processor Review - Spider Platform

Postby ibleet » Tue Nov 20, 2007 11:59 pm

top wrote:Plus, obviously if you're going for Intel, you get a Nvidia card or AMD with ATI.

It wasn't so obvious to me when I chose my current rig. In my mind, I don't link Intel to nVidia nor do I link AMD to ATI. I just pick the one I think best suits my needs at the given time. AMD had a slight lead with motherboards and cpu's, but I liked the 7900GS. For some reason, I didn't even consider an ATI card.

Now that Intel has the lead, I have picked out either an E6750 or Q6600 with an 8800GT...not because its Intel and nVidia, but because these components best suit my needs right now.

Now that you have me thinking, I'm gonna look around and see if this is obvious to everyone else. :lol:
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