AMD makes Athlon II X4 official, intros two models


— 11:31 PM on September 15, 2009

Over a week has passed since we saw an Athlon II X4 620 processor quietly make its way onto Newegg's listings. As it turns out, that appearance was a tad premature. AMD has only now announced the processor together with a slightly faster budget quad-core offering, the Athlon II X4 630.

Here's how specifications and official pricing break down:

Processor Speed L2 cache HT TDP Price
Athlon II X4 630 2.8GHz 2MB 4000MHz 95W $122
Athlon II X4 620 2.6GHz 2MB 4000MHz 95W $99

Both processors fit into AM3 sockets and support DDR3 memory speeds of up to 1,333MHz, as well. The $99 price tag on the X4 620 is especially interesting, because it brings quad cores even below triple-core Phenom II territory. Intel's cheapest quad-core CPU, the 2.33GHz Core 2 Quad Q8200, remains priced at $150.

The Propus die. Source: AMD.

AMD is basing these two new processors on a new silicon die, Propus, which has four cores, no L3 cache, and a 169-mm² area. The smaller die ought to be cheaper to produce than the Phenom II series' Deneb core, which features 6MB of L3 cache and a larger 258-mm² die.

Interestingly, however, AMD tells us some Athlon II X4s will in fact be based on Deneb dice with their L3 caches disabled. The company will do this for supply flexibility reasons, so output can be better matched with demand, and also to bin out bad apples with faulty L3 caches. That explains last month's story about L3 cache unlocking on an Athlon II X4.

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