Conclusion: Phenom II Is A Great Leap Forward
Compared to AMD’s first quad-core processor, the Phenom, its Phenom II successor offers great improvements, particularly in the area of energy consumption. With all due respect to Intel and the performance milestones it has achieved, the Phenom II offers a better energy consumption profile than either the Core i7 or Core 2 Quad platforms.
In the overall competition, where the first line of attack appears in the price segment between $250 and $400, the AMD Phenom II processors place smack in between the already fading Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600, and the new Core i7 920 CPUs. Above all, a complete Core i7 system costs more than a Phenom II because that Intel configuration requires a high-end motherboard and triple-channel DDR3 memory.
A comparison between the current top-of-the-line AMD Phenom II X4 940 and the Intel Core i7 shows the Intel processor coming out about 22% faster. On the other hand, in comparison with the Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600, the same Phenom II CPU finishes about 10% ahead.
When it comes to system efficiency and energy consumption, if you put a Phenom II X4 940 system head-to-head against a Core 2 Quad Q6600, an AMD system delivers measurably better “performance per watt” figures.
The higher performance available from a Core i7 comes at a higher purchase cost, followed by higher energy consumption costs over a system’s lifetime.
As a result of its exceptional energy efficiency advances and an affordable price/performance ratio, AMD Phenom II X4 deserves our seldom-granted Recommended Buy award.