Phenom peeks its head out in e-tail world

AMD's Phenom processors officially launched on the 19th along with the 790FX chipset, completing the introduction of AMD's "Spider" platform. While Radeon HD 3800-series graphics cards and 790FX motherboards were out and available at launch, Phenoms have so far been strikingly absent from online retailers like Newegg. However, we've noticed that one of the two new Phenom chips, the 9500 model, has become available at TigerDirect. It's the only chip that seems to be available just yet, judging by results from our price search engine and listings on major e-tailers.

The Phenom 9500 is the slower of the two Phenom chips. It's clocked at 2.2GHz and features 512KB of L2 cache per core, 2MB of L3 cache per chip, HyperTransport 3.0, and a 95W thermal envelope. AMD's official price list names a price of $251 for the processor, but TigerDirect is selling it for $279.99—roughly the same price as that of Intel's Core 2 Quad Q6600. Considering the lackluster overall performance of even the 2.3GHz Phenom 9600 compared to the Q6600, the 9500 isn't exactly an enticing choice. However, its availability suggests the Phenom rollout may turn out to be more timely than that of AMD's Barcelona Opterons.

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