AMD Motherboards: Processor Support

Everyone was pleased to hear that the new AMD Venice and San Diego processors would work fine in their Socket 939 motherboards. In many cases, however, a BIOS update is required to support these latest Revision E Athlon 64 chips, which are based on the 90nm manufacturing process and support SSE3 extensions.

Then Venice/San Diego got extended with the Dual-Core X2 processors. The good news is that, once again, any Socket 939 motherboard can theoretically support the new x2 processors with a BIOS upgrade. This was certainly a welcome contrast from the Intel dual-core announcement which required new chipsets and motherboards for dual-core to function. However, since the official launch of X2 at Computex earlier this month, confusion seems to reign as to which boards support Dual-Core processors.

To try to shed some light on the current BIOS revisions and processor compatibility we took a closer look at the state of x2 processor support among motherboards. In many ways the adoption of x2 is faster than we expected, but there are still gaping holes in x2 and Rev. E processor support. Hopefully with this guide and a little research you can find the perfect motherboard home for your new Revision E or x2 Dual-Core Athlon 64 processor.

The Processor Factor


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  • DEMO24 - Tuesday, June 28, 2005 - link

    I know someone with a venice chip, and 4 gigs of ram in a DFI SLI-dr board and hes running 1T. I dunno why yours doesn't work for you. There are specific BIOS dates in the 5/10 form for different kinds of memory. Maybe that would fix it. Reply
  • KeithDust2000 - Tuesday, June 28, 2005 - link

    Wesley, I mean why are there no benchmarks available
    using the new capabilities? I´m very interested in that!
  • Wesley Fink - Tuesday, June 28, 2005 - link

    #24 - The FX57 is also 90mm Rev. E. We mention several times in this article that the new Rev. E memory controller adds additional asynchronous memory speeds to DDR500. This is not just a feature of FX57, but applies to all Rev. E processors including x2.

    The BIOS has to implement the new programming for the additional memory ratios to be available in BIOS.
  • KeithDust2000 - Tuesday, June 28, 2005 - link

    Hi Wesley! What´s up with the 533Mhz Memory support included in the FX-57?

    "The shift to the 90-nm SOI process also means that the FX-57 differs in some small ways from the FX-55. Originally, the FX-55 supported just DDR-400 speeds; the FX-57's memory controller now will interface with DDR-533, and has some other small improvements, Seckler said."

    No one seems to be covering that!?!
  • KeithDust2000 - Tuesday, June 28, 2005 - link

    test Reply
  • OldDummy - Tuesday, June 28, 2005 - link

    nice article, just a good general roundup of topics. well done Reply
  • Myrandex - Tuesday, June 28, 2005 - link

    My motherboard has X2 support but it isn't listed. It is the Giga-Byte K8N Ultra SLi. From the Giga-byte website:
    F3 2005/6/28

    Support Athlon 64x2 dual core CPU
  • Googer - Tuesday, June 28, 2005 - link

    Thanks Wes,
    I have been looking for an article like this one for little while now.
  • matthewfoley - Tuesday, June 28, 2005 - link

    supposedly there is a beta bios out for the MSI K8N neo2 Platinum that has dual core support...
  • matthewfoley - Tuesday, June 28, 2005 - link

    This is an interesting thread on the nF3 dual core topic...

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