Tuesday, February 24th 2009

Motherboard Vendors Confirm Phenom II X3 Core Unlock, Luck Needed

The ability to unlock the disabled core on Phenom II X3 processor draws parallels with the days when one could soft-mod a NV40-based GeForce 6800 XT to higher models. An article by Korean website Playwares made waves on the internet yesterday, which suggested a very easy method to unlock the disabled core on Phenom II X3. Several users have been able to verify and confirm the method works. While Playwares used a Biostar-made motherboard, people with ACC-supportive motherboards from several makes have been able to get the mod to work. Motherboard vendors performed their own testing to confirm this method, and have had some success so far.

The success of this mod however, depends on a few factors:
  • The disabled core AMD notes to be "unstable", should be fit-enough to be at least enabled and working
  • The motherboard should support the Advanced Clock Calibration feature, which currently only motherboards with AMD's SB750 southbridge chip support
  • The Phenom II X3 processor should belong to the 0904 manufacturing batch, these should be some of the initial batches of the processor, and may still be found with retailers


Considering AMD doesn't have an AM3-socket CPU featuring 6 MB of L3 cache out in the market yet, this opens up a good opportunity to get a taste of Phenom II X4 AM3 chips at a lesser price, but then again, you might need some luck to get the chip belonging to the right batch.


Source: VR-Zone
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17 Comments on Motherboard Vendors Confirm Phenom II X3 Core Unlock, Luck Needed

#1
MAXLD
"draws parallels with the days when one could soft-mod a NV40-based GeForce 6800 XT to higher models"

How about the king of them all... the gold mine of softmods... ATi 9500 to 9700 "pipemania"? Those were the days...
Maybe the "softmod fever" is back, this time in cpu style... and AMD really could use this type of advantage to close the gap.
Posted on Reply
#2
PVTCaboose1337
Graphical Hacker
This is so awesome. People who bought Phenom II X3's got a really good deal!
Posted on Reply
#3
xfire
One core can bring the remaining down.
Posted on Reply
#4
r9
He did not unlock the core I don`t think it is even lock. He just put in the board and as most things in bios ACC was set to auto. And boom x4. And why is this possible only on crappy boards :D
Posted on Reply
#5
r9
xfire said:
One core can bring the remaining down.
It is not a war scenario :roll:
If it not working properly you just set ACC to disable and again three core party.
Posted on Reply
#6
btarunr
Editor & Senior Moderator
r9 said:
And why is this possible only on crappy boards :D
The one VR-Zone tested it on is far from crappy.
Posted on Reply
#7
Haytch
Excellent news for those able.
Posted on Reply
#8
mdm-adph
Maybe it's just the conspiracy theorist in me, but could this possibly have been... *gasp* not a complete secret to AMD?

I mean, anything that gets hype and buzz surrounding their new processors is good for them, and considering since the amount of people that will actually be able to unlock that fourth core and get more for their money is going to be very small, AMD isn't really losing much.
Posted on Reply
#9
ShadowFold
OK, does anyone know how to mess with bios code? I was thinking maybe if you change the device ID or whatever in the bios to read Kuma's, Tolimen and these PII 700's as having 4 cores, making them think they are Agena and Deneb.
I will upload my bios and test this out if anyone wants to help.
Posted on Reply
#10
xfire
r9 said:
It is not a war scenario :roll:
If it not working properly you just set ACC to disable and again three core party.
Lets say that the promblem with the third core is overheating or voltage leakages. Guess it depends on the batch.
Posted on Reply
#11
Tau
PVTCaboose1337 said:
This is so awesome. People who bought Phenom II X3's got a really good deal!
How would this be a good thing?

This is bad news, i mean its bad news if you own a tripple core, but wanting to re enable the defective core.... what part of that says good idea?

:shadedshu

AMD needs to get their ducks in a row IMO.
Posted on Reply
#12
btarunr
Editor & Senior Moderator
Tau said:
This is bad news, i mean its bad news if you own a tripple core, but wanting to re enable the defective core.... what part of that says good idea?
The part where you're getting a $220 chip for $170.

The disabled core needn't necessarily be defective. AMD can convert normal Deneb dice to Heka, if its demand is good enough. The modded quad-core X3 at ~3.2 GHz (fixed multiplier) was found to be Prime95 stable.
Posted on Reply
#13
Baum
how much is it in total?

Board + CPU (wich was used here) ? i may consider that
Posted on Reply
#14
suraswami
btarunr said:
The part where you're getting a $220 chip for $170.

The disabled core needn't necessarily be defective. AMD can convert normal Deneb dice to Heka, if its demand is good enough. The modded quad-core X3 at ~3.2 GHz (fixed multiplier) was found to be Prime95 stable.
One more thing, it might be stable with Prime95 but not always stable with all the programs and scenarios, thats the reason AMD might have disabled one core. Thorough testing will show this. Again its pure luck.

anyway this is fun.

Like Overclocking now OverCoring :rockout:

Thanks bta for posting new updates. Keep it coming.
Posted on Reply
#15
suraswami
Baum said:
how much is it in total?

Board + CPU (wich was used here) ? i may consider that
$250+
Posted on Reply
#16
Unregistered
A question, must the CPU also be an "ES"/Engineering Sample aswell?
I might have found someone in Sweden who has one for sale in that case (and he doesn't know anything of this!!!).
Posted on Edit | Reply
#17
1Kurgan1
The Knife in your Back
xfire said:
Lets say that the promblem with the third core is overheating or voltage leakages. Guess it depends on the batch.
4th core you mean? Either way if thats the problem you turn it off. A proc overheating to the point of turning off the comp once isn't going to kill the entire proc. And thats what temp monitoring is for, if your trying to enable a core that was disabled from the factory and your not using all the monitoring software you can, then thats your fault.
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