While it’s been obvious AMDs big focus has been on their APUs for the last few years. Even so in the background they have still been making a few waves with the FX line of CPUs, the main one being the launch of the 5GHz CPU a little over a year ago. Just when we thought they may have forgotten about the enthusiasts they are actually introducing a few new CPUs to the FX lineup and making changes to the overall pricing structure to better place their CPUs to compete with Intel’s introductions over the summer. Today I’m going to mainly be focusing on the newly introduced FX-8370 and the lower wattage FX-9370E, but AMD did send along the FX-9370 and the FX-9590 so we can see how the new CPUs perform in relation to their bigger brothers.

Product Name: AMD FX-8370 FX-8370e FX-9370 and FX-9590

Review Sample Provided by: AMD

Written by: Wes

Pictures by: Wes

 

Specifications

 

AMD FX-8370

AMD FX-8370E

AMD FX-8320E

x86 Piledriver Cores

8

8

8

Core Clock

Up to 4.0/4.3GHz

Up to 3.3/4.3GHz

Up to 3.2/4.0GHz

L2 Cache

8MB

8MB

8MB

Shared L3 Cache

8MB

8MB

8MB

Memory Support

Up to 1866MHz w/ AMP

Up to 1866MHz w/ AMP

Up to 1866MHz w/ AMP

Typical TDP

125W

95W

95W

Motherboard Socket

AM3+

AM3+

AM3+

Chipset Compatibility

990FX, 990X, 980G, 970

990FX, 990X, 980G, 970

990FX, 990X, 980G, 970

Unlocked CPU

Multiplier

Yes

Yes

Yes

SEP

$199.99

$199.99

$146.99

As I mentioned in the opening, the new CPUs are basically just a refresh, that means they are still running on the Piledriver architecture that was introduced a few years ago now. While that news might not be the most encouraging, its isn’t all bad. With a little time they have been able to get better yields and start dropping pricing across their entire lineup. Considering the fact that from a gamers perspective there are very few games that really take advantage of the highest end CPUs this means CPUs that are more than capable of handling all of your games are easier to get. On top of that with Intel only last week introducing their first 8 core CPUs that range from a costly $583 to a wallet melting $99, AMD is still the cheapest option in the 8 core market. All of the FX CPUs have 8 cores and they range from an MSRP of $147 to $290, the $290 being the FX-9590 with water cooling bundled in with it.

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As you can see above, the high power FX-9590 pulls an impressive 220 watts. The new 8370 is a little better with it only requiring the same 125 watts that the 8350 also pulled. The new 8370e is more impressive with its 95 watt TDP though. Before you couldn’t find a CPU higher than the FX-8100 with that low of a power requirement and that was with its 2.8GHz  clock speed. The new FX-8370e bumps things up to 3.3 with an impressive 4.3 turbo clock speed. The base clock of the FX-8370e is actually higher than the FX-8100’s 3.1 turbo clock speed. AMD also introduced the FX-8320e that also pulls a lower wattage and has a better price point, hopefully we will be able to check it out in the future as well. 

They all still run on the 990FX chipset and as usual there aren’t any changes in the socket that will require you to pick up a new motherboard should you decide to upgrade to one of the new CPUs,  they run on AM3+ so if you have that you are good to go. The chipset has all of the necessities with things like the capability to have 14 USB ports but USB 3.0 will require another controller.

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Photos

Along with the new 8370 and 8370 AMD included an FX-9590 and FX-9370w/water. Both the FX-9590 and FX-9370 are available with the 120mm water cooling kit. Getting the CPU bundled with the water cooling bumps the price up slightly by $63 for the 9370 and $64 for the 9590. The water cooling is an off the shelf Cooler Master Seidon 120M, I had the chance to check out the 240mm model of this last year if you are interested in seeing how it performed.

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While the outside of the box is covered in AMD FX art, the inside really isn’t any different than a standard Seidon water cooling kit, with the exception of the AMD CPU box tucked into the corner.

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You get two 120mm fans for a push pull configuration, all of the needed brackets, and then the single 120mm radiator closed loop system.

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With this being a bundled kit, they only included the AMD brackets, no surprises there!

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Because the FX-9370 came in its retail packaging it also came with its documentation and a nice AMD FX case sticker as well.

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There isn’t much to be said about the CPUs as well. No socket changes mean the only thing that sets each CPU apart is the name etched into the top. We still have the pins built into the CPU rather than the motherboard and the same head spreader as on all AMD CPUs over the past few years.

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Our Test Procedures and Test Benches

Our CPU Test Benches for each CPU tested

AMD Socket AM3+

Asrock Fatal1ty 990FX Professional

Kingston HyperX 128GB SSD

Kingston HyperX 8GB 1600MHz DDR3 RAM

Noctua NH-U14S heatsink

Cooler Master V1000 Power Supply

Nvidia GTX 780 Video Card

Microcool Banchetto 101 Test bench

Intel Socket 2011v3 (Haswell-E)

Asus X99-Deluxe

Corsair Vengeance LPX 2666MHz DDR4 4x4GB

OCZ Vector 150 120GB SSD

Western Digital Velociraptor 600GB HDD (for steam)

Thermaltake Grand 850W PSU

Noctua NH-U12S heatsink

Nvidia GTX 780 Video Card

Dimastech Test Bench

AMD Socket FM2+

Asus A88-Pro

Kingston HyperX 128GB SSD

Kingston HyperX 8GB 1600MHz DDR3 RAM

Noctua NH-U14S heatsink

Cooler Master V1000 Power Supply

Nvidia GTX 780 Video Card

Microcool Banchetto 101 Test bench

AMD Socket FM2

Asus F2 A85-V Pro

OCZ Agility 3 120GB SSD

Kingston HyperX 8GB 1600MHz DDR3 RAM

Noctua NH-U14S heatsink

Cooler Master V1000 Power Supply

Nvidia GTX 780 Video Card

Microcool Banchetto 101 Test bench

Intel Socket 1150 (Devil’s Canyon)

Asus Z97-A

Kingston HyperX 3000k 240GB SSD

Kingston HyperX 8GB 1600MHz DDR3 RAM

Noctua NH-U12S heatsink

Cooler Master V1000 Power Supply

Nvidia GTX 780 Video Card

Microcool Banchetto 101 Test bench

Intel Socket 1150 (Haswell)

MSI Z87-G45 Gaming

Kingston HyperX 128GB SSD

Kingston HyperX 8GB 1600MHz DDR3 RAM

Noctua NH-U12S heatsink

Cooler Master V1000 Power Supply

Nvidia GTX 780 Video Card

Microcool Banchetto 101 Test bench

Intel Socket 1155 (Ivy Bridge)

Crucial Ballistix Tracer Ram 1600Mhz 2x2Gb

Intel DZ77GA-70K

OCZ Agility 3 120Gb SSD

Noctua NH-C14 heatsink

Cooler Master Silent Pro M 850Watt PSU

Two Nvidia GTX580’s for SLI testing

Microcool Banchetto 101 Test bench

Intel Socket 2011 (Sandy Bridge-E)

Intel DX79SI Motherboard

Kingston HyperX DDR3 1600MHz Quad Channel Ram

Two Kingston HyperX SATA 3 SSD’s in RAID 0

Intel Active Thermal Solution RTS2011LC Water-cooling

Cooler Master Silent PRO Gold 1200w PSU

Nvidia GTX 780 Video Card

Highspeedpc Test Bench

Intel Socket 1155 (Sandy Bridge)

Crucial Ballistix Tracer Ram 1600Mhz 2x2Gb

FATAL1TY P67 Profess1onal Series Motherboard

OCZ Agility 60Gb SSD

Noctua NH-C14 heatsink

Cooler Master Silent Pro M 850Watt PSU

Sapphire HD6970 BF:BC2 Edition for AMD testing

Two Nvidia GTX580’s for SLI testing

Microcool Banchetto 101 Test bench

Intel Socket 1366

Gigabyte G-1 Assassin Gaming Motherboard

EVGA Classified GTX580 Video card

Cooler Master HAFX Nvidia Edition Case

Crucial Ballistix Tracer DDR3 Ram 1600MHz

Cool-It Water-cooling

Cooler Master Silent PRO Gold 1200w PSU

Western Digital SiliconEdge Blue SSD

CPU Testing Procedures

Bioshock Infinite

Adrenaline Action Benchmark Tool on the “Xtreme” quality setting.

Tomb Raider

Adrenaline Action Benchmark Tool on the “Xtreme” quality setting.

Hitman: Absolution

Adrenaline Action Benchmark Tool on the “Xtreme” quality setting.

Sleeping Dogs

Adrenaline Action Benchmark Tool on the “Xtreme” quality setting.

3DMark Fire Strike

Physics Score – Performance benchmark

wPrime

1024M and 32M

X264 HD Benchmark

Pass 1 and Pass 2

Cinebench

CPU and CPU (Single Core results)

Passmark 8

CPU Mark Score

PCMark 7

Full benchmark Suite

Power Usage

Idle and load testing using a Kill-A-Watt and Wprime to put the cpu under load

PCMark 8

Home test is run both with and without OpenCL

 


CPU Performance

As usual I ran through our CPU benchmarks on all four of the FX CPUs to see how they would compare to the previous CPUs tested. To make following things a little easier I color coded all four CPUs the following colors.

FX-9590 Orange

FX-9370 Green

FX-8370 Blue

FX-8370e Yellow

To start things off I ran the CPUs through X264 HD to see how well they would perform. Not surprisingly the FX-9590 was the fastest out of the four but what really interested me was how they compare to the Intel CPUs. The 9590out performed the 4770k in the second pass showing that sometimes having four extra cores can come in handy. The 8370 came in closer to the older 3770k and the 8370e performed a lot slower, pulling numbers close to the old 2500k.

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Cinebench is always my favorite benchmark because it allows me to see both single and multi core performance next to each other. As a whole single core performance was lower than I would have liked. This wasn’t a big shock considering that these are all based on an older architecture. For perspective the 4.7/5.0GHz FX-9590 pulled a 1.18 on the single core benchmark. The Intel i7-4790K pulled nearly doubled the number with a 2.05. The eight core i7-5960X was a little closer with a 1.51 at a much lower clock speed. Even so, over on the multiple core test all four of the CPUs show a large improvement over the AMD APUs, putting them up near the 4770K. If you plan on running any of these CPUs you might want to make sure your programs and games are optimized for multiple cores.

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The Passmark 8 benchmark runs through multiple individual CPU tests and averages out a score. Between the 9590 and the 8370e the AMD CPUs hit a wide range of performance here. At best the FX-9590 performed right on par with the slightly dated 3770K but frankly the FX-9370 and FX-8370 weren’t far behind. The lower powered FX-8370e took a hit once again pulling numbers lower than some of the APUs and Intel CPUs from a few years ago.

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PCMark 7 and 8 are both even more general. These tests take into consideration other chipset factors like memory bandwidth and storage performance on top of overall CPU performance. In PCMark 7 the FX-9590 almost tied with the dated but still fast i7-3960X. The higher end Intel CPUs still topped the charts as expected but the FX CPUs are still hanging in there, near where Intel’s i5’s would be performance wise. In PCMark 8 I was disappointed with the FX CPUs performance in the OpenCL testing, but they did well in the conventional testing, all four outperformed the new i7-5960X!

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For pure number crunching the high clock speeds of the FX-9590 and FX-9370 really impressed me. They bested the new i7-4790 with its amped up clocks. When compared to the 6 and 8 core CPUs though they still are down near the bottom with only the extremely old i7-980X performing slower. Once again the FX-8370e took a fairly big hit in performance compared to the higher wattage FX-8370. Overall all four are still on the top half of our charts, especially when compared to the AMD APUs.

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For 3Dmark we start to get a peek at what the FX CPUs might do in gaming situations. They fall about right where they should price wise when compared to the Intel CPUs. Even so I would have hoped to see the extra cores and extreme clock speeds at least give the latest four core CPUs a fight.

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While the FX CPUs didn’t blow away any of the Intel CPUs, they did still manage to show what I have talked about in the past. In a LOT of games your CPU performance isn’t going to make a huge difference in FPS. In most cases you will see a drop of 5-6 FPS when going with a noticeably slower CPU. The exception to this are notorious CPU intensive games like Civilization for example.

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Cooling and Power

Frankly, I had an idea of how all four of the FX CPUs would perform in the standard performance testing. What I really had no idea about was what to expect from them in both power usage and also temperatures. They range from the lower wattage FX-8370e all the way to the extreme clock speeds of the FX-9590. Because of that the only thing I did expect was a wide range of results. Without a doubt I got that. For starters on the power usage charge the FX-9590 topped the charts both at idle and under load but it was actually fairly close to what Intel was seeing two years ago with the i7-3970X. The newer Intel CPUs have improved on that greatly though, especially on the idle side of things. The FX-9590 actually pulls more at idle than the i7-4790K did under load! On the other end of the spectrum though, the FX-8370e did very well on the load side in comparison to the other CPUs. At idle it could use a little improvement, but it is a nice contrast to the other FX CPUs. They remind me of big gas guzzling cars that are willing to get the highest clock speed possible at the cost of fuel consumption.

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Once again we hit the full spectrum. With the FX-9590 and FX-9370 I expected nothing less though. The fact is AMD likes to bundle them both with a full water cooling kit because they really do need the best possible cooling. Running both of them on air is possible, but you better have a bigger heatsink than the already large Noctua NH-U14S used in my testing. The FX-8370 and the FX-8370e helped cool things down with numbers that compare well with Intel’s offerings. The FX-8370e even ran 4 degrees cooler than the new low 5960X.

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Overclocking

Right out of the hole I knew that barking up the overclocking tree with the FX-9590 and FX-9370 wouldn’t get me very far, I could tell just from my temperature testing that they were already running on a very fine line. I did toy with them a little bit but frankly couldn’t get anything worth calling home about, any substantial overclocks pushed them into temperatures that would require MUCH better cooling. I focused my testing on the FX-8370, at a much lower price and with a lower base clock speed it has the potential to be a bit of an overclocker, assuming AMD doesn’t bin them to much when trying to find FX-9590 chips.

Going off of the higher cost CPUs I jumped right into things with a bump in voltage and a jump to x23 on the CPU multiplier to try to get 4.6GHz. This went smoothly so I continued to bump it up until I couldn’t go any higher. In the end I was able to push the FX-8370 up to a respectful 4.889 without pushing the voltage any higher than my initial settings. Without better cooling, I didn’t want to push it farther on the voltage as it would only add more to the heat. Given the right cooling you could without a doubt match the more expensive FX-9590 if not more. Going beyond that people have already reached a new world clock speed record with a mind blowing 8.7GHz!

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Overall and Final Verdict

Let’s not beat around the bush, I think we would all like to see the FX CPUs perform a little faster overall. No one likes a bully or a monopoly and all of us want to see AMD step up and put up a heck of a fight with the boys in blue. If you came into this review expecting to see that, I’m sorry. All four CPUs performed better than I expected them too, they are running on a two year old architecture trying to compete with Intel’s latest.

While they might not be able to take out the $999 CPUs, what I am most interested in is how they compare to similarly priced CPUs from Intel. With an MSRP of $226 for the most expensive (FX-9590) and $199 for the lowest priced (FX-8370) they are priced near the I5-4670 and i5-4570. What is important to note that Intel doesn’t have a CPU anywhere near this for an eight or even six core CPU. This is where I see AMD really setting themselves apart. You might not get the raw horsepower on a per CPU level, but if you run VMs or do a lot of multi-threaded computing I think the FX CPUs are up your ally.  Even when gaming they still have more than enough power to push anything out on the market today assuming you pair it with a high end GPU. So all of the AMD purists don’t have to jump ship just yet!

To me more than anything else this small refresh means that AMD hasn’t forgotten the enthusiasts and gamers. If anything, I feel like this might be a renewed interest in pushing that market forward. On our call with AMD they mentioned that the plan is for this refresh to help pay for tomorrows research. What they mean by that is designing CPUs to compete with Intel isn’t cheap, refreshing this lineup with pricing that fits the completion and the new CPUs should help them fund the research to put out the next big thing in the FX lineup. For that, I can’t wait! 

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Author Bio
garfi3ld
Author: garfi3ldWebsite: https://lanoc.org
Editor-in-chief
You might call him obsessed or just a hardcore geek. Wes's obsession with gaming hardware and gadgets isn't anything new, he could be found taking things apart even as a child. When not poking around in PC's he can be found playing League of Legends, Awesomenauts, or Civilization 5 or watching a wide variety of TV shows and Movies. A car guy at heart, the same things that draw him into tweaking cars apply when building good looking fast computers. If you are interested in writing for Wes here at LanOC you can reach out to him directly using our contact form.

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garfi3ld's Avatar
garfi3ld replied the topic: #35605 04 Sep 2014 17:42
AMD fans can rejoice, there are finally new options from their FX line of CPUs. The question is how do they perform? Check out the review to find out!

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