Earlier this week AMD announced the Phenom II X6 processors that are designed to offer "unbeatable" performance thanks to its six physical processing cores while not being priced too high. However, should you not be interested in the latest high-end CPUs, there still is a plethora of lower-end AMD parts on the market. One of AMD's low-priced offerings is the Athlon II X3 425, which is a triple-core AM3 processor that can easily overclock past 3GHz and is priced to sell at around $70 USD.
The AMD Athlon II X3 425 is based upon the Rana core, which is like the popular AMD Kuma CPUs but without L3 cache. The Athlon II X3 425 is an AM3 socket CPU that has three cores clocked at 2.7GHz with a 4000MHz Hyper Transport bus, 512KB of L2 cache per core, and is manufactured on a 45nm process. The Athlon II X3 425 and similar Rana CPUs launched last October and have a TDP of 95 Watts and support the usual Athlon II / Phenom II features like AMD-V, Cool 'n' Quiet, and Live!. The Athlon II X3 is much like the Athlon II X4 CPUs based upon the Propus core, but with the fourth core disabled -- though in some configurations the core can actually be re-enabled.
The AMD Athlon II X3 425 was not a Phoronix review sample but was actually a CPU that we had to purchase. The CPU can be obtained in OEM or retail versions, with the retail model including a stock heatsink fan, the installation manual, an AMD Athlon II X3 sticker, and the AM3 processor itself. The Athlon II X3 425 processor is based by AMD with a three-year warranty.