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Old 03-24-2010, 02:47 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Am3 board or no..?

I am thinking about upgrading my Am2+ board to an Am3.. I was holding off due to the jump to ddr3 memory which with the cost of the board I'm looking at over 300 which I can't really afford, but when I was at the store the other day I was told they have Am3 boards that are ddr2..

I have a Phenom II x3 chip in my am2+ board and was thinking I would get a better performance out of an Am3 board.

would it be worth it to get the board with ddr2? or should I just save my money and get the Am3 DDR3 board plus the ram. ?
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Old 03-24-2010, 02:55 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Am3 board or no..?

Not a worthwhile upgrade. Stick to what you have until you're ready for a complete overhaul.
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Old 03-24-2010, 02:56 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Am3 board or no..?

Hey how's married life Hampton?

I'd say stick with what you have until you have the funds to jump to AM3/DDR3. I don't think you would see a good enough performance increase to justify that kind of spending imo.
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Old 03-24-2010, 06:37 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Am3 board or no..?

Thanks guy's, the married life is the best I have had, yeah I hit the lotto with her.

The honeymoon was pretty sweet, went to the Caribbean for a week. was nice to get warm that time of year.
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Old 03-24-2010, 08:13 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Am3 board or no..?

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Originally Posted by Hampton View Post
but when I was at the store the other day I was told they have Am3 boards that are ddr2..
If it uses DDR2, it's not AM3. It will be AM2+ which is compatible with AM3 CPU's.

One good reason to get AM3 would be that you won't have to get new RAM later when you upgrade.
And you probably won't have to get a new board either; I think Bulldozer will work in AM3 boards, and that's coming out in 2011. Not 100% certain though.

DDR3 won't really give you better performance in most cases.
However, if you're getting a new system, now is about the time when people should be getting DDR3 instead of DDR2.
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Old 03-24-2010, 11:10 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Am3 board or no..?

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Originally Posted by Apokalipse View Post
If it uses DDR2, it's not AM3. It will be AM2+ which is compatible with AM3 CPU's.

One good reason to get AM3 would be that you won't have to get new RAM later when you upgrade.
And you probably won't have to get a new board either; I think Bulldozer will work in AM3 boards, and that's coming out in 2011. Not 100% certain though.

DDR3 won't really give you better performance in most cases.
However, if you're getting a new system, now is about the time when people should be getting DDR3 instead of DDR2.
I heard Bulldozer's going to be using quad channel RAM?
So wouldn't AM3 boards not work for that?
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Old 03-24-2010, 11:16 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Am3 board or no..?

It'll probably work the same as tri-channel ram, optional.
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Old 03-24-2010, 11:21 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Am3 board or no..?

If they do, I'd say it's either only for the server chips, or they'll make an AM3+ socket or something (and still be backwards compatible with AM3)
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Old 03-24-2010, 11:56 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Am3 board or no..?

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Originally Posted by Apokalipse View Post
If it uses DDR2, it's not AM3. It will be AM2+ which is compatible with AM3 CPU's.

One good reason to get AM3 would be that you won't have to get new RAM later when you upgrade.
And you probably won't have to get a new board either; I think Bulldozer will work in AM3 boards, and that's coming out in 2011. Not 100% certain though.

DDR3 won't really give you better performance in most cases.
However, if you're getting a new system, now is about the time when people should be getting DDR3 instead of DDR2.
I would agree, If you were getting a new system right now DDR3 for sure. But probably not worth the upgrade itself, considering what you currently already have. With your DDR2 @ 1066, your not terribly far off DDR3 clocks, and your timings are probably a whole lot better than DDR3. I have read (in the OCZ forums) that the AMD systems seem to like DDR3 at 1333 to 1600MHz, with tight timings, rather than 1600 +, with sloppier timings. Personally if I were in your situation (with the release of bulldozer looming somewhere on the horizon) I would wait for for the newer AMD chipsets i.e. 890's, and new SB's (w/SATA 6Gbp/s & USB3) to mature and become more mainstream(cheaper) and possibly upgrade then, that is, if the bulldozer is indeed an AM3 chip when released. I really wouldnt be surprised if bulldozer used a new socket thou, but I really have no clue.

To make a long story short, deciding when and what to upgrade to (when it comes to computers) is pretty much all speculation, and in the end the decision is all yours! (and your wallets! hehe)

Man, Bulldozer (6 core Thuban, right?) not till 2011?! I would think with Gulftown out, AMD would be pushing a little harder. Although I dont think they really have to worry about to many people switching teams on them, considering the absurd price of Intels top CPU's.

Althou it would be awsome if AMD's 6 core came out on AM3 socket, I just cant help think they will create a new socket, etc, just to make people upgrade hardware and milk us for more money. Can you say AMD AM4, DDR4 Tri-Channel, & PCIE 3.0? New CPU + MB + RAM + GPU = Maximum Milkage!!!

The reason I believe this will happen is because I finally upgraded from my 5 yr old Athlon 64 X2 +4400 939, 2Gb DDR 400, PCIE 1.0 7800GTX system to a nice new fairly high end AM3 PhII X4 system, so now that I have finally made the plunge, they will undoubtedly have to change hardware standards!

Sorry for the long post, and somewhat OT!
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Old 03-25-2010, 12:20 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Am3 board or no..?

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I would agree, If you were getting a new system right now DDR3 for sure. But probably not worth the upgrade itself, considering what you currently already have. With your DDR2 @ 1066, your not terribly far off DDR3 clocks, and your timings are probably a whole lot better than DDR3. I have read (in the OCZ forums) that the AMD systems seem to like DDR3 at 1333 to 1600MHz, with tight timings, rather than 1600 +, with sloppier timings.
Generally, yes.
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Originally Posted by Tro1086 View Post
Personally if I were in your situation (with the release of bulldozer looming somewhere on the horizon) I would wait for for the newer AMD chipsets i.e. 890's, and new SB's (w/SATA 6Gbp/s & USB3) to mature and become more mainstream(cheaper) and possibly upgrade then
USB 3.0 and SATA 6GB/s will probably be the biggest differences, and maybe more PCI-E lanes (or PCI-E 3.0 perhaps).

To make a long story short, deciding when and what to upgrade to (when it comes to computers) is pretty much all speculation, and in the end the decision is all yours! (and your wallets! hehe)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tro1086 View Post
Man, Bulldozer (6 core Thuban, right?)
No. Bulldozer is a completely new architecture.
Thuban is Phenom II architecture with 6 cores (and tweaked manufacturing process to get the same TDP's as current quads), and it will be released very soon.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tro1086 View Post
not till 2011?! I would think with Gulftown out, AMD would be pushing a little harder.
They are. Bulldozer is a very major architectural change.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tro1086 View Post
Althou it would be awsome if AMD's 6 core came out on AM3 socket
Thuban is AM3.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tro1086 View Post
I just cant help think they will create a new socket, etc, just to make people upgrade hardware and milk us for more money. Can you say AMD AM4, DDR4 Tri-Channel, & PCIE 3.0? New CPU + MB + RAM + GPU = Maximum Milkage!!!
Actually they'd probably get less sales if they did that.
Making it AM3 compatible allows people to just go out and buy a new CPU, so a lot of people can easily do it.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tro1086 View Post
The reason I believe this will happen is because I finally upgraded from my 5 yr old Athlon 64 X2 +4400 939, 2Gb DDR 400, PCIE 1.0 7800GTX system to a nice new fairly high end AM3 PhII X4 system, so now that I have finally made the plunge, they will undoubtedly have to change hardware standards!
They changed sockets a few times with K8 architecture because of the integrated memory controller.

939 was made to support dual channel DDR (754 simply couldn't do it)

AM2 was made to support DDR2 (because DDR2 is completely incompatible with DDR1)

AM2+ was supposed to be backwards compatible with AM2. And technically it is, although only a small number of motherboard manufacturers made new BIOS's for any of their boards to support the newer CPU's. So that's not really AMD's fault, it's the board manufacturers' fault.

AM3 was something they got right. AMD worked together with JEDEC to make DDR3 pin-compatible with DDR2 (as far as the memory controller goes), so AM3 CPU's work 100% in socket AM2+

Right now, DDR3 is still pretty new and is only just starting to become more common than DDR2 in new systems. so AMD won't have to make a new socket to support a new type of RAM anytime soon (AM4 = DDR4).

As far as quad channel goes, I'm pretty sure it's only made for Opterons, since multi-socket servers would really take advantage of it.

In fact, triple channel on 1366 is really supposed to be for servers aswell, but I guess Intel decided it would be technically easier if they made desktop 1366 boards aswell just to get Nehalem out quicker for desktop users.

Dual channel DDR3 RAM is not really going to bottleneck desktop systems, as evidenced by socket 1156 - and I think tests between dual channel and triple channel on 1366 shows hardly any difference aswell.

So I think Bulldozer on AM3 just makes a lot of sense for AMD.
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