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Old 07-09-2010, 04:14 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default phenom ii x3 720 unlocking

So I am trying to unlock the 4th core on my black edition phenom ii x3 720.
I updated my bios, turn on advanced clock calibration and I can manage to run my desktop. But when I load games it crashes moments later.
A few questions I have about unlocking the 4th core...
1. Do you need an aftermarket heatsink if you are not overclocking? (just unlocking the 4th core)
2. What does this mean? Do I have a defective 4th core? or can this be fixed with some tweaking in the bios? (voltage, speed, etc)
3. Why does my processor show as "phenom ii x4 20 processor"
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Old 07-09-2010, 05:04 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: phenom ii x3 720 unlocking

the processor manufactorer doesnt make it easy to unlock cores, cause that means they arnt making as much money because people are buying 3 cores and unlocking the core and getting a quad core. so, to do this, ( i pretty sure ) you need a mother board that is capable of unlocking cores.
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Old 07-09-2010, 06:46 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: phenom ii x3 720 unlocking

And you have to keep in mind, not all of the x3 720s actually have cores that work well enough to be unlocked. They're often disabled for a reason.
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Old 07-15-2010, 05:22 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: phenom ii x3 720 unlocking

Quote:
Originally Posted by new.puree View Post
So I am trying to unlock the 4th core on my black edition phenom ii x3 720.
I updated my bios, turn on advanced clock calibration and I can manage to run my desktop. But when I load games it crashes moments later.
A few questions I have about unlocking the 4th core...
1. Do you need an aftermarket heatsink if you are not overclocking? (just unlocking the 4th core)
2. What does this mean? Do I have a defective 4th core? or can this be fixed with some tweaking in the bios? (voltage, speed, etc)
3. Why does my processor show as "phenom ii x4 20 processor"
You need to remember these chips were sold as tri core because of a manufacturing defect. On certain chips all 4 cores work but on some only 3 are fully functional.

It depends on the chip/mb/bios.

And to answer you're questions.

1. No. The stock heatsync is fine for stock settings
2. As i stated above.
3. I really don't know. When you open task manager how many worker threads do you see?
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Old 07-16-2010, 11:28 PM   #5 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: phenom ii x3 720 unlocking

The reason things like the X3 exist is that manufacturing defects do occur. They only manufacture X4 chips and then each one off the production line gets tested to determine its voltage, max speed and stability, and if any part has a defect. If a chip doesn't pass the full test but only one core is defective, it is disabled with a hardware lock configuration and branded as an X3. This means they still make a profit on what would otherwise be a defective, discarded chip. However, if you consider market demand, many people want the cheaper X3 over the X4 because it is cheaper. If there aren't enough defective chips to fill the X3 quota, they will resort to disabling an otherwise perfectly good core and selling the good chips as X3 to fill the demand. This means it is really a matter of chance whether your unlocked core will work or not. The other possibility is that the 4th core works but only at a lower than stock clock setting or higher voltage.

This is a common practice in the CPU and GPU industry and is very common on GPU's too (you can often unlock shader units on lower model GPU cards).
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