Triple Core vs Quad Core?

I'm building my friend a budget computer less than 400.00 dollars. Basically we got everything except the motherboard. We are looking at AMD Phenom 9850 Black Edition 2.5GHz and the MD Athlon II X3 445 Rana 3.1GHz since they are cheap and in the same pricing range. My friend play computer games like World of Warcraft, Silkroad, etc. the Quad-Core is 10 dollars cheaper than the Triple-Core. In fact I know that Triple Core is a Quad Core with a core disable. I know I have to unlock it with a motherboard bios or something. What is your thought?

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  • C-Man
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    The triple-core Athlon II X3 445 is much better for gaming, even if the last core doesn't successfully unlock (there's never any guarantee).

    The original Phenom X4 series of CPUs were weak performers overall... Not very competitive against Intel's Core 2 Duo and Quad. Phenom II was greatly improved, offering great bang/buck.

    The vast majority of games aren't heavily multi-threaded, so they don't run any better on quad cores than dual cores of the same clock speed. A few utilize more than two cores, but for them a triple core is enough, because it's clock speed that really matters. In this case, the Phenom X4 9850 is only 2.5Ghz compared to 3.1Ghz for the Athlon II X3 445. And for gaming, clock speed is king, NOT the number of cores.

    Here's how the 3.0Ghz Athlon II X3 440 compares:

    http://www.anandtech.com/bench/Product/119?vs=29

    As you can see the quad is better for video editing and 3D rendering applications, but in games (bottom of the page) the X3 440 has a clear advantage, about 4-5 fps better on average. And the 445 is even faster.

    Here's the take from Tom's Hardware:

    http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/athlon-ii-x3-4...

  • 1 decade ago

    Go with the Quad-Core. He will benefit from the extra core. Also, if he is not utilizing all the cores now, he will in the future so he can "grow into" the Quad. Also, the Quad gives him more choices for processor upgrades in the future (cheaper than getting another MOBO and processor in the future). I have a Quad and rarely use more than 45% of total processing power. It would be higher with a Tri-Core. As you can guess, a Quad will handle the gaming a lot better.

  • Jack
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago

    phenom 1 vs athlon 2 is a hard comparrison

    i would personally go for the athlon 2

    also you have to buy a asus motherboard with a core unlocker facility to attempt too unlock the fourth core. also its down to luck whether youw ill unlock the fourth core and if the system will be stable

  • 1 decade ago

    its 10 dollars, so just get the quad, and overclock it (the 9850 is a BE so it will be cake)

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  • Anonymous
    7 years ago

    triple core is much better............

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