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Gaming Performance Comparison

Recommended System Requirements
Game Phenom II X4 20 APU A8-3820 Quad-Core
Cyberpunk 2077 75% 77%
Hitman 3 135% 139%
Assassins Creed: Valhalla 135% 139%
Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War 69% 72%
FIFA 21 63% 66%
Grand Theft Auto VI 187% 191%
Far Cry 6 176% 180%
Genshin Impact 32% 34%
Battlefield 6 144% 148%
Resident Evil 8 94% 97%

In terms of overall gaming performance, the AMD Phenom II X4 20 is marginally better than the AMD APU A8-3820 Quad-Core 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 APU A8-3820 Quad-Core was released less than a year after the Phenom II X4, and so they are likely to have similar levels of support, and similarly optimized performance when running the latest games.

Both CPUs exhibit very powerful performance, so it probably isn't worth upgrading from one to the other, as both are capable of running even the most demanding games at the highest settings (assuming they are accompanied by equivalently powerful GPUs).

The Phenom II X4 and the APU A8-3820 Quad-Core both have 4 cores, which is not likely to be a limiting factor for gaming.

Both the AMD Phenom II X4 20 and the AMD APU A8-3820 Quad-Core have the same number of threads. Both CPUs have one thread 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 Phenom II X4 and APU A8-3820 Quad-Core 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 Phenom II X4 has a 0.3 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. As such, we need to look elsewhere for more reliable comparisons.

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 APU A8-3820 Quad-Core has a 2048 KB bigger L2 cache than the Phenom II X4, and although the APU A8-3820 Quad-Core does not appear to have an L3 cache, its larger L2 cache means that it 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 APU A8-3820 Quad-Core has a 30 Watt lower Maximum TDP than the Phenom II X4, and was created with a 13 nm smaller manufacturing technology. What this means is the APU A8-3820 Quad-Core will consume significantly less power and consequently produce less heat, enabling more prolonged computational tasks with fewer adverse effects. This will lower your yearly electricity bill significantly, as well as prevent you from having to invest in extra cooling mechanisms (unless you overclock).

The APU A8-3820 Quad-Core has an on-board GPU, which means that it will be capable of running basic graphics applications (i.e., games) without the need for a dedicated graphics card. The Phenom II X4, however, does not, and you will probably have to look for a dedicated card if you wish to use it at all.

For in-depth GPU comparisons with the Radeon HD 6550D, click on the following GPU overview comparison icon (visible throughout Game-Debate), and choose a GPU from the list to compare against:

On-board GPUs tend to be fairly awful in comparison to dedicated cards from the likes of AMD or Nvidia, but as they are built into the CPU, they also tend to be cheaper and require far less power to run (this makes them a good choice for laptops). We would recommend a dedicated card for running the latest games, but integrated GPUs are improving all the time and casual gamers may find less recent games perform perfectly acceptably.

CPU Core Details

CPU CodenameHekaLlano
MoBo SocketSocket AM2+ / AM3Socket FM1
Notebook CPUnono
Release Date09 Feb 200901 Jan 2012
CPU LinkGD LinkGD Link
Approved

CPU Technical Specifications

CPU Cores4vs4
CPU Threads4vs4
Clock Speed2.8 GHzvs2.5 GHz
Turbo Frequency-vs2.8 GHz
Max TDP95 Wvs65 W
Lithography45 nmvs32 nm
Bit Width64 Bitvs64 Bit
Max Temperature73°Cvs73°C
Virtualization Technologynovsno
Comparison

CPU Cache and Memory

L1 Cache Size512 KBvs256 KB
L2 Cache Size2048 KBvs4096 KB
L3 Cache Size6 MBvs-
Memory Channels-vs2
ECC Memory Supportnovsno
Comparison

CPU Graphics

GraphicsRadeon HD 6550D
Base GPU Frequency-vs600 MHz
Max GPU Frequency-vs-
DirectX-vs11
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 ReviewPhenom II X4 20 is an unlocked Phenom II X3 720.APU A8-3820 Quad-Core is a performance CPU based on the 32nm, Lynx architecture.

It offers 4 Physical Cores (4 Logical), initially clocked at 2.5GHz, which may go up to 2.8GHz and 4MB of L2 Cache.

The processor integrates mildly powerful Graphics called Radeon HD 6550D, with 400 Shader Processing Units, clocked at 600MHz, which share the L2 Cache and system RAM with the processor.
Both the processor and integrated graphics have a rated board TDP of 65W.

It is a powerful Quad Core whose performance is good. It's thus capable of running most applications smoothly without any problem.