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Gaming Performance Comparison

Recommended System Requirements
Game Core i7-880 Quad 3.06GHz Athlon 64 X2 Dual Core 3600+
Cyberpunk 2077 18% 405%
Assassins Creed: Valhalla 59% 580%
Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War 14% 389%
FIFA 21 10% 372%
Watch Dogs Legion 59% 580%
Microsoft Flight Simulator 34% 472%
World of Warcraft: Shadowlands 84% 685%
Grand Theft Auto VI 94% 730%
Godfall 128% 875%
Genshin Impact 11% 282%

In terms of overall gaming performance, the Intel Core i7-880 Quad 3.06GHz is massively better than the AMD Athlon 64 X2 Dual Core 3600+ when it comes to running the latest games. This also means it will be less likely to bottleneck more powerful GPUs, allowing them to achieve more of their gaming performance potential.

The Core i7-880 Quad was released over three years more recently than the Athlon 64 X2, and so the Core i7-880 Quad is likely to have far better levels of support, and will be much more optimized and ultimately superior to the Athlon 64 X2 when running the latest games.

The Core i7-880 Quad has 2 more cores than the Athlon 64 X2. With 4 cores, the Core i7-880 Quad is much less likely to struggle with the latest games, or bottleneck high-end graphics cards when running them.

The Core i7-880 Quad has 6 more threads than the Athlon 64 X2. The Athlon 64 X2 has one thread per physical core, whereas the Core i7-880 Quad uses hyperthreading and has 2 logical threads per physical core.

Multiple threads are useful for improving the performance of multi-threaded applications. Additional cores and their accompanying thread will always be beneficial for multi-threaded applications. Hyperthreading will be beneficial for applications optimized for it, but it may slow others down. For games, the number of threads is largely irrelevant, as long as you have at least 2 cores (preferably 4), and hyperthreading can sometimes even hit performance.

More important for gaming than the number of cores and threads is the clock rate. Problematically, unless the two CPUs are from the same family, this can only serve as a general guide and nothing like an exact comparison, because the clock cycles per instruction (CPI) will vary so much.

The Core i7-880 Quad and Athlon 64 X2 are not from the same family of CPUs, so their clock speeds are by no means directly comparable. Bear in mind, then, that while the Core i7-880 Quad has a 1.16 GHz faster frequency, this is not always an indicator that it will be superior in performance, despite frequency being crucial when trying to avoid GPU bottlenecking. In this case, however, the difference is probably a good indicator that the Core i7-880 Quad is superior.

Aside from the clock rate, the next-most important CPU features for PC game performance are L2 and L3 cache size. Faster than RAM, the more cache available, the more data that can be stored for lightning-fast retrieval. L1 Cache is not usually an issue anymore for gaming, with most high-end CPUs eking out about the same L1 performance, and L2 is more important than L3 - but L3 is still important if you want to reach the highest levels of performance. Bear in mind that although it is better to have a larger cache, the larger it is, the higher the latency, so a balance has to be struck.

The Core i7-880 Quad and the Athlon 64 X2 have the same L2 cache size, but the Athlon 64 X2 does not appear to have an L3 cache, so the Core i7-880 Quad definitely wins out in this area.

The maximum Thermal Design Power is the power in Watts that the CPU will consume in the worst case scenario. The lithography is the semiconductor manufacturing technology being used to create the CPU - the smaller this is, the more transistors that can be fit into the CPU, and the closer the connections. For both the lithography and the TDP, it is the lower the better, because a lower number means a lower amount of power is necessary to run the CPU, and consequently a lower amount of heat is produced.

The Athlon 64 X2 has a 30 Watt lower Maximum TDP than the Core i7-880 Quad. However, the Core i7-880 Quad was created with a 20 nm smaller manufacturing technology. Overall, by taking both into account, the Core i7-880 Quad is likely the CPU with the lower heat production and power requirements, but there really isn't much in it.

CPU Core Details

CPU CodenameLynnfieldBrisbane
MoBo SocketLGA 1156/Socket HSocket AM2
Notebook CPUnono
Release Date30 May 201002 Jan 2007
CPU LinkGD LinkGD Link
Approved

CPU Technical Specifications

CPU Cores4vs2
CPU Threads8vs2
Clock Speed3.06 GHzvs1.9 GHz
Turbo Frequency3.73 GHzvs-
Max TDP95 Wvs65 W
Lithography45 nmvs65 nm
Bit Width64 Bitvs64 Bit
Max Temperature73°Cvs72°C
Virtualization Technologynovsno
Comparison

CPU Cache and Memory

L1 Cache Size256 KBvs256 KB
L2 Cache Size1024 KBvs1024 KB
L3 Cache Size8 MBvs-
Max Memory Size-vs-
Memory Channels-vs2
ECC Memory Supportnovsno
Comparison

CPU Graphics

Graphics
Base GPU Frequency-vs-
Max GPU Frequency-vs-
DirectX-vs-
Displays Supported-vs-
Comparison

CPU Package and Version Specifications

Package Size-vs-
Revision-vs-
PCIe Revision-vs-
PCIe Configurations-vs-

Gaming Performance Value

Performance Value

CPU Mini Review

Mini ReviewCore i7-880 Quad 3.06GHz is a high-end CPU based on the 45nm, Nehalem architecture.

It offers 4 Physical Cores (8 Logical), initially clocked at 3.06GHz, which may go up to 3.73GHz and 8MB of L3 Cache.
Among its many features, HyperThreading, Turbo Boost and Virtualization are activated.

The processor DOES NOT integrated any graphics and has a rated board TDP of 95W.

Its performance is very good and sufficient for any of today's games.
Athlon 64 X2 Dual Core 3600+ is a middle-class Processor based on the 65nm K8 micro-architecture.

It offers 2 Physical Cores (2 Logical), clocked at 1.9GHz and 2MB of L2 Cache.
Among its many features, Virtualization is activated.

The processor DOES NOT integrated any graphics. and has a rated board TDP of 65W.

Its performance is below the average and so most demanding games will not run optimally.