AMD Athlon II X4 620 Review

By on January 4, 2013, 10:56 PM
AMD is launching a new series of affordable quad-core processors today under the Athlon II brand name. Based on the 'Propus' architecture and built using a 45nm design process, the new series is intended to help AMD secure the low-end portion of the market, as Intel's Core i5 750 and LGA1156 platform have clearly made life difficult for them on the mainstream front.
This is essentially the same Deneb architecture that is used by the Phenom II X4 series, except for the L3 cache which has been removed from the Athlon II X4 parts. With models ranging from 2.20GHz through to 2.9GHz on the horizon, AMD has decided to unleash the Athlon II X4 620 first, clocked at 2.6GHz and expected to retail for just $100. The amazingly low price tag puts this chip in a category of its own, as there are currently no quad-core parts competing here. In our review, we will put AMD's budget quad-core processor to the test next to comparable offerings like the Phenom II X2 550 and the older (yet still well-regarded) Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600. Read the complete review.

User Comments: 19

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spikester48661 spikester48661 said:

A good CPU for am2 or am2+ update for higher budget builds.way to go AMD.

LinkedKube LinkedKube, TechSpot Project Baby, said:

Nice review, and nice going amd, make my intel cpus cheaper...thx.

klepto12 klepto12, TechSpot Paladin, said:

super i dont see you needing a new cpu anytime soon lol

klepto12 klepto12, TechSpot Paladin, said:

i like how they keep refering to the 4700 as the e7400 when the 7400 is clocked at 2.8 ghz not 2.6 lol

windmill007 said:

Sorry AMD you lost me back in the Athlon XP days. Do you really save anything going with AMD over Intel since then? I'm just not seeing it.

red1776 red1776, Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe, said:

this is really a weird niche product, no L3 is a tough sell. i am surprised how well it does considering. but an pseudo Athlon/ but really a K-10 phenom I quad with no L3 ??? c'mon AMD, I hope you have a super new architecture in the works soon.cuz i5 is the nail in the coffin if they dont.

red1776 red1776, Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe, said:

Sorry AMD you lost me back in the Athlon XP days. Do you really save anything going with AMD over Intel since then? I'm just not seeing it.

you slept through an entire CPU generation then. AMD took the lead with HT, and has since lost it.....try and keep up Wind LOL

Technochicken Technochicken, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Great review and great CPU. It almost makes me wish I had held off buying my X3. In this review they set it against the X3 720, and it beats it in pretty much everything but gaming.

Steve Steve said:

Thanks for all the great feedback guys and I am happy to hear that most of you enjoyed the review!

Guest said:

Hi, i'm just new here, maybe too late i think to give comment. nice review and belated thanks to techspot beause of them, i already buy p2 955 4 months ago, but i've just read some review at some site, it is true this processor near equal i5 750 in 1920 x 1200 res gaming? maybe this link can help. Just wonder, looks like expensive cpu doesn't help too much in gaming. Better spend more on graphic card. IMO. (My pc mostly use for gaming, maybe not too hardcore but i really impress with this cpu. WOW AMAZING!!!!! i feel like want to buy two of it. Price same with my cpu when first release.)

Guest said:

Been using this CPU for a couple of months on top of 4 gig of ram and a 4850.. nice little rig ive got set up tbh. Im very happy with its performance.. shame about the level 3 cache but you know for 100 quid youve got a decent cpu that keeps the pace with some of the big boys when it comes to gaming and isnt too bad at everything else. Im upgrading to a phenom 2 945 in feb 10 and a dx11 card but for now im very happy with how my system is running.

I use the athlon II for some web development and programming too and it is ok in those areas too.

Id give it personally a 7 out of 10. :)

Guest said:

I was in the process of overclocking my athlon II x4 620 not expecting ACC to unlock 6MB L3, but indeed it did, according to cpu-z and everest i have the propus core, not deneb, but occt tells me its the rana core. AMD confirmed deneb to unlock but its not supposed to exist on propus. clock set at 250x13 for 3.250Ghz, lowered HT and mem so it would stay around 2000 HT and 416 RAM Mhz. Slight volt increase helped stabilize things, i didnt wanna mess with it too much, but if this chip can handle 3.9Ghz then i think im safe where im at now, and the improvements are certainly noticable.

using ASUS m4a785-m board, not top of the line but seems to do its job quite well so far.

Guest said:

Propus has no L3 installed. Period. ACC doesn't unlock

Propus because there's no L3 anywhere on cpu to unlock.

You are either on crack or seeing things:P

Only the Deneb core unlocks because it was a salvaged batch with on board L3 disabled.

Hope this ends the bs.

red1776 red1776, Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe, said:

there are a number of 'reports' around that claim that there is L3 to be unlocked on the X4 6xx Athlon II's. Mysteriously however, it cant be found under the microscope.

Guest said:

I GOT THE ATHLON II X4 620 ON CLEARANCE AT FRYS ELECTRONICS, FOR $ was a steal, and this cpu is nothing to sneeze at....runs way better than my socket 939...

athlonfx said:

I have the athlon II x4 630@2.8Ghz, 8 gb ram, 2xGts 250 and i out run my friend that have the phenom II x3 be 720@2.8ghz, 8 gb ram, radeon 4770.. and my computer was cheaper :) amd rules!

Guest said:

Very nice review - clear, concise and accurate.

I really like this CPU range, including the power draw and things like decent overclocking headroom and unlocking extra core's (as long as you have a 710 Southbridge or better). A lot of people are comparing it to Core i5, which isn't a bad thing at all considering how well it performs and how much it costs. It's clearly able to keep up with and in some cases, exceed the performance of Core 2.

These Athlon II x 4 parts cater for the majority of users, who don't need i5 or i7..and they do it brilliantly in my opinion. If you take a $100 CPU the AMD chips win hands down, and if you look at the platform solution, AMD walks away with a flawless victory: compatibility, longevity, ease of installation, performance (HD media right off the chipset) and cost..just can't touch it.

Parts like this bring the fun back into computing, and for the masses instead of the few people who have the money and the desire to go out and blow their money on something they don't even need most of the time. All this from a CPU that is, effectively, a generation behind Intel's flagship products. David sleighs Golliath, so to speak, by working smarter, not faster. Whether you love these parts or hate as a consumer wins.

Thank you.

Guest said:

i know this is a very old article but i can not stop to notice that a E7400consumes almost the same as Q6600 ? what the hack? there is some (many) thing wrong with your charts !

how can a E7400 be in the top in power consumption? what were you using, a tri-phase megawatt wattmeter with 500% error rate?

Wild9 said:

red1776 said:

there are a number of 'reports' around that claim that there is L3 to be unlocked on the X4 6xx Athlon II's. Mysteriously however, it cant be found under the microscope.

It's all down to which core you have: 'Deneb' core contains a disabled 6MB L3 cache, whereas 'Propus' core does not.

In order to unlock the disabled cache you need a suitable motherboard chipset. A couple of clicks later and you have a Phenom II x4.

But even if you end up with Propus and not Deneb, this CPU is still in my opinion one of the greatest testaments to AMD's staff. A quad-core for peanuts, and one that clocks incredibly well. A CPU that draws less power under load than the nearest competitor. A CPU that will swallow up thread-optimized games (eg GTA IV), yet still leave you enough in the bank to get a kick-ass GPU. A CPU that will fit in AM3 and most older AM2+ boards.

There's no doubt that with 2nd-Gen Intel Sandy Bridge, AMD Athlon/Phenom II is now resigned to competing on price. But look at the value, performance and backwards-compatibility. I cannot afford to keep buying expensive Intel processors, and then keep worrying about swapping sockets. Yes, 2nd-gen SB is awesome (even the i3), but AMD's offerings are more than enough for my needs, with plenty of grunt left over. The way this Athlon overclocks for me is just staggering, especially when one considers I am using a stock cooler. This is the kind of hardware that empowers millions of PC users world-wide, and encourages software developers to write proper code. AMD rocks.

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