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Digital-Daily : CPU & Memory : amd_sempron_am2

AMD Sempron for Socket AM2

AMD Sempron for Socket AM2
Author: Aleksandr Chernoivan
Date: 22.08.2006

> As every new platform is released, the focus is always put on its most efficient part - the top-end processors and chipsets, normally in combination with "extreme" memory modules and powerful 3D accelerators. But will the average user have enough means to buy such a "monster" PC? Most likely not. Also, such a high performance with its increased power consumption is not always needed. When assembling a "workhorse" PC or a multimedia center, which are most frequently assembled and high-end components are not a must, they normally choose something inexpensive, reliable and offering sufficient performance. So today we are talking just about a platform like that.

AMD Sempron AM2

Migrating its CPUs to the new AM2 sockets with its new memory controller able running with DDR2 memory, AMD has not ignored the budget processors. Sempron CPUs have officially acquired a dual-channel memory controller which is able running with the faster DDR2-400/533/667 memory. It's just these processors which soon should come as a replacement for "budget" platforms: the official Socket 754 and unofficial Socket 939.

Let's represent what inherits what as tables:

Sempron Socket AM2

CPU clock speed, GHz
HT speed, MHz
L2, K
Process technology
Dual-channel memory controller
64bit
NX-bit
Cool'n'Quiet
Sempron 3600+
2,0
800
256
90 nm, SOI
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Sempron 3500+
2,0
800
128
90 nm, SOI
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Sempron 3400+
1,8
800
256
90 nm, SOI
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Sempron 3200+
1,8
800
128
90 nm, SOI
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Sempron 3000+
1,6
800
256
90 nm, SOI
Yes
Yes
Yes
None
Sempron 2800+
1,6
800
128
90 nm, SOI
Yes
Yes
Yes
None

Sempron Socket 939

CPU clock speed, GHz
HT speed, MHz
L2, K
Process technology
Dual-channel memory controller
64bit
NX-bit
Cool'n'Quiet
Sempron 3400+
2,0
1000
128
90 nm, SOI
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Sempron 3200+
1,8
1000
256
90 nm, SOI
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Sempron 3000+
1,8
1000
128
90 nm, SOI
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes

Sempron Socket 754

CPU clock speed, GHz
HT speed, MHz
L2, K
Process technology
Dual-channel memory controller
64bit
NX-bit
Cool'n'Quiet
Sempron 3400+
2,0
800
256
90 nm, SOI
None
Yes
Yes
Yes
Sempron 3300+
2,0
800
128
90 nm, SOI
None
Yes
Yes
Yes
Sempron 3100+
1,8
800
256
90 nm/130 nm, SOI
None
Yes
Yes
Yes
Sempron 3000+
1,8
800
128
90 nm, SOI
None
Yes
Yes
Yes
Sempron 2800+
1,6
800
256
90 nm, SOI
None
Yes
Yes
None
Sempron 2600+
1,6
800
128
90 nm, SOI
None
Yes
Yes
None
Sempron 2500+
1,4
800
256
90 nm, SOI
None
Yes
Yes
None

It is easy to note that Socket AM2 CPUs have acquired higher PR ratings with the same clock speed limit. Perhaps these ratings were calculated on the assumption that the faster DDR2 memory will affect the performance positively. But prior to finding out if that is the way in practice, let's look at the exterior of the new CPUs, starting with the package.

Sempron in package

The CPU is shipped in a cardboard package of customary green color. On the side, there is a window through which the buyer can view the CPU and its marking.

Package bundle

Inside the package, we found the following: the CPU, the renewed cooler (with a fastener for AM2), a user's manual, and a logo sticker.

Socket 939 and Socket AM2 - top view
AMD Sempron Socket 939 and Socket AM2: top view

Externally, the renewed processor makes little difference from CPUs of the previous generation. The difference can be seen from only the marking which now looks as SDA3000IAA3CN. The marking can be read as follows: SDA – Sempron for workstations, 3000 – the CPU rating, I – type of the packaging: 940-pin OµPGA (Socket AM2), A – varying supply voltage of the core (probably 1.25-1.35 V), A – the variable maximum admissible temperature, 3 – the L2 cache size 256 K, CN – the Manila core. A more precise data can be displayed with utilities.

Socket 939 and Socket AM2: bottom view
AMD Sempron Socket 939 and Socket AM2: bottom view

The Socket AM2 processor viewed from the bottom is easy to distinguish if we closely examine the positioning of pins. Have you found a redundant pin? On the photo, it is in the bottom-left corner of the right-hand processor.

Here is the complete info summary of the processor being tested produced with the CPU-Z utility.

CPU-Z Sempron AM2

For comparison, we also bring in the info on AMD Sempron for Socket 939.

CPU-Z Sempron 939

Before we run the tests, a few words on the overclocking. Overclocking on the test bench was not in success, because the motherboard did not allow changing the multiplier of the HyperTransport bus. The result proved rather modest – merely 1745 MHz.

Overclocking to 1745 MHz

But on the motherboard ASUS M2N-E the result proved better – the stability limit 2080 MHz with a nominal cooler. It is interesting to note that raising voltage on the core has not resulted in anything – we failed to improve the overclocking, and the CPU was heating up to 63°

Content:

  • Page 1 - AMD Sempron AM2
  • Page 2 - Benchmarking. Final words.




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