The FX-64 Lives! (AMD Athlon 64 X2 6000+)


The Cat is Finally Out of the Bag - X2 6000+

The Cat is Finally Out of the Bag - X2 6000+

AMD's Athlon 64 X2 series has seen a proliferation of many new models in the last two months, bringing customers many more options to build their new system upon. Expanding both on the low and high-end scales of their successful dual-core processor series, AMD now has a vast (and confusing) lineup to fulfill almost every price point to configure a computer system. Focusing on the high-end, there have been some silent additions to the lineup such as the Athlon 64 X2 5200+ late last year, and just earlier this month, we saw speedier models such as the Athlon 64 X2 5400+ and X2 5600+. Today, AMD hits another milestone with the Athlon 64 X2 6000+ model - their first 3GHz dual-core processor (discounting the earlier launched FX-74 for the pseudo quad-core platform).

6000+ is an impressive sounding model number, but for all intents, the processor model numbers carry little meaning these days, but it still does a dandy job to bamboozle the less-informed. The Athlon 64 X2 6000+ is equipped with 2MB of full speed L2 cache and based on the Windsor core, this 3GHz processor is essentially the rumored Athlon 64 FX-64, which we 'previewed' to readers over half a year back . So yes, the FX-64 is alive and kicking finally, but with the start of the Quad FX platform, only processors for this platform bear the FX nomenclature and the stand-alone dual-core processors fall under the Athlon 64 X2 lineup - which is a good thing in our opinion to do away with the differentiated naming scheme for their fastest model.

AMD's High-end Dual-Core (Socket AM2) Processor Details
Processor Model / Processor Characteristics Clock Speed L2 Cache Max TDP (W) Price
AMD Athlon 64 X2 6000+ 3.0GHz 1MB x 2 89 US$464
AMD Athlon 64 FX-62 2.8GHz 1MB x 2 125 US$713
AMD Athlon 64 X2 5600+ 2.8GHz 1MB x 2 89 US$326
AMD Athlon 64 X2 5400+ 2.8GHz 512KB x 2 89 US$267
AMD Athlon 64 X2 5200+ 2.6GHz 1MB x 2 89 US$232
AMD Athlon 64 X2 5000+ 2.6GHz 512KB x 2 65 US$222
AMD Athlon 64 X2 5000+ 2.6GHz 512KB x 2 89 US$222

So what crazy wattage can we expect out of the new Athlon 64 X2 6000+ processor? Fear not as AMD has been fine-tuning the manufacturing process and of course tweaking the processors with various steppings along the way. The result? The Athlon 64 X2 6000+ shares the same 125W TDP as the Athlon 64 FX-62 processor. In fact, the FX-62 is now available in an 89W TDP variant which is known as the Athlon 64 X2 5600+. While we don't have the X2 5600+ at hand to try our hand to verify AMD's claims, we do have the X2 6000+, which is the highlight today and will be under close scrutiny with the FX-62 and Intel's stable of Core 2 Duo processors.

High-End Dual-Core Processors Compared
Processor Name AMD Athlon 64 X2 AMD Athlon 64 FX Core 2 Extreme (dual-core) Core 2 Duo
Processor Model 6000+ FX-62 X6800 E6600, E6700
Processor Frequency 3.0GHz 2.8GHz 2.93GHz 2.40GHz, 2.67GHz
No. of Cores 2 2 2 2
Front Side Bus (MHz) - - 1066 1066
HyperTransport Bus 1GHz (2000MT/s) 1GHz (2000MT/s) - -
L1 Cache (data + instruction) (64KB + 64KB) x 2 (64KB + 64KB) x 2 (32KB + 32KB) x 2 (32KB + 32KB) x 2
L2 Cache 1MB x 2 1MB x 2 4MB 4MB
Memory Controller Integrated Dual Channel (up to DDR2-800) Integrated Dual Channel (up to DDR2-800) External Dual Channel (up to DDR2-800) External Dual Channel (up to DDR2-800)
VID (V) 1.35 - 1.40 1.35 - 1.40 0.85 - 1.3625 0.85 - 1.3625
Icc (max) (A) 90.4 90.4 90 75
TDP (W) 125 125 75 65
Execute Disable Bit Yes Yes Yes Yes
Intel EM64T / AMD64 Yes Yes Yes Yes
Enhanced Intel SpeedStep Technology (EIST) / AMD Cool 'n' Quiet Yes Yes Yes Yes
Virtualization Technology Yes Yes Yes Yes
Packaging AM2 AM2 LGA775 LGA775
Process Technology 90nm SOI 90nm SOI 65nm 65nm
Processor Codename Windsor Windsor Conroe Conroe
Die Size 230mm² 230mm² 143mm² 143mm²
No. of Transistors 227.4 million 227.4 million 291 million 291 million