Athlon II X3 435: AMD's Three-Core, 2.9 GHz, $87 Triple-Threat

Today AMD introduces what might turn out to be the ideal budget CPU, with three cores for multi-threading, a relatively high 2.9 GHz clock speed, and an impressive sub-$90 price tag. How does it stand up to the rest of the company's Athlon and Phenom IIs?

After the launch of the Athlon II X2 and Athlon II X4 CPUs, it would be difficult to feign surprise at the introduction of the new Athlon II X3. We all knew it was coming, we even mentioned the upcoming X3 flavor of Athlon II in our Athlon II X4 620 launch story.

While the shock and awe might have been spoiled, the Athlon II X3 certainly isn't. AMD's vanguard model is the Athlon II X3 435, and it combines two very compelling components: a relatively high clock speed of 2.9 GHz (that's 100 MHz faster than the top-of-the-line Phenom II X3 720 Black Edition), and a relatively low MSRP of $87.

AMD already has the sub-$120 CPU market sewn up with a glut of Athlon IIs and Phenom II X2s and X3s, but at under $90, does the new Athlon II X3 435 offer the best value in the bunch? Let's find out.

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  • piesquared
    how come no Intel chips to compare to? Intel wasn't willing to throw any money your way when they are being beaten senseless? Or is the new FTC ruling causing problems...
  • jimishtar
    me like it :)
  • sniker
    hmm i assume the cores line in the table on page 2 is just typo's right?

    CPU Cores: 3 2 2 2

    shouldn.t they all have 3 cores?
  • Anonymous
    "Even when overclocked to 3.77 GHz, the Athlon II X3 435 cannot quite match the minimum frame rate of the Athlon II X4 620"

    Am I seeing things, or do the graphs contradict this statement???
    During AVG scan:
    Athlon II 435 @3.77ghz (31/7)
    Athlon II 620 (30/6)

    I think the numbers do to. Dodge review...
  • wild9
    Thanks for the info on the e range..very useful.
  • wild9
    Intel has scheduled the release of its low-end Core i3 early next year, a processor based on its new Nehalem architecture, and it remains to be seen how competitive the Athlon II will be against this new threat

    But look at the timing..AMD has it's foot in the door, and not just with CPU's. Match an Athlon II x3 or x4 with a nice Radeon or two and bingo..high performance/low cost PC. Intel might even have a better product but AMD has parts available now, it isn't resting on it's feet waiting for the competition, it's making competition. I reckon by next year we might just be seeing a similar review, only with 6 cores, 45watt devices that once again show their worth.

    Me personally, I'd go with that Quad core, mabe even an 'e' version depending on how it clocks. Can't really fault anything here and you still get the option to upgrade without having to spend loads of money on a new motherboard.
  • pete3867
    12 months ago I remember people saying amd is dead etc , well ,they aint out of the woods yet but bloody hell they are certainly heading in the right direction .They are appealing to the masses , and right now I think intel is on the back foot
  • LePhuronn
    Intel's up against some competition in the budget to mid-range sector and NVIDIA's pulled out of everything that counts on the gaming front until they can get GT300 sorted out.

    Now is the perfect time for AMD to regroup, get some (more) quality bits out of the door and make some cash while they're competitive (Intel) or have no competition (NVIDIA).
  • seamusmac

    there is no Intel Chipset in this review because they don't need to do one, we already know how it compares to the Phenom 3 720, people can just check the graphs and figure it out.
  • will_chellam
    c'mon, sort out the details tom's..... it's hard to have that much confidence in the actual results when the 2D photoshop CS4 benchmark has MPEG2 to H.264 in the subtitle.
  • wild9
    Looks like someone's playing silly boogers again, with the comment ratings..last time I checked mine where the only one's not rated and most if not all of the others were positive; this leads one to perhaps assume that the person responsible simply flagged all comments as negative hence the one's with 1 positive are now neutrul and mine are negative. must feel really big having done that, especially when you neg'd a comment simply thanking THG for the time and effort they put into providing us with this information. Tell your life so sad that you only register accounts to do that, or do you have the gonad's to come on here like everyone else and voice your opinion. Come, come..don't be shy and stupid all your life.
  • Anonymous
    Why no comparison with Intel Core i5? A price performance metrics could clear up this. I guess future articles will bring some light.
  • army_ant7
    Um... Hello. I was just wondering why it says in the comparison list that the other X3 processors have only 2 cores...
  • alan1302
    Would you not be better off with the AMD Athlon II X4 620 and then clock it to the same as the X3 as you would then have the advantage of an extra core and they are of a similar price?
  • Anonymous
    well i have a amd triple 2.9 have opened it up its now a quad and running fine at 3.88 what a saving then