Gigabyte AM3+ motherboard confirms '5GHz FX series processors'

Remember the 5GHz AMD "Centurion" processor that was rumored to be in the works? A Gigabyte motherboard spotted at Computex appears to confirm the existence of the ultra-high-end AMD chip. According to Sweclockers, the description accompanying Gigabyte's GA-990FXA-UD7 mentions support for "next generation of AM3+ 5GHz FX series processors."

There will apparently be more than one of these chips. Sweclockers says the top model will be dubbed FX-9000 and will clock AMD's existing Vishera core to 4.8GHz with a 5GHz Turbo peak. Accompanying the FX-9000 will be the FX-8770, which will have lower clock speeds, according to Sweclockers.

The real kicker is the 220W TDP reportedly attached to both chips. AMD's top Vishera-based CPU, the FX-8350, has a TDP of only 125W. The step up to 220W is huge, and I have to wonder just how many Socket AM3+ motherboards can even deliver that much power reliably. At least the GA-990FXA-UD7 seems to be up to snuff; Gigabyte says the board's 10-phase power solution offers "AMD high-TDP CPU support."

AMD is expected to unveil the new FX chips at the E3 gaming show next week, so we shouldn't have to wait too long for official confirmation. It will be interesting to see if the rumored $795 price tag is accurate. That's nearly a 400% increase over the FX-8350, whose 4.2GHz Turbo speed is only 16% lower than the Centurion chip's purported peak frequency. Products like the FX-9000 are more about image than they are about value, though. Just ask the thousand-dollar Core i7-3970X.

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