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8. BACK TO THE FUTURE
You’re ready to turn on the Commodore 64x. If you’re wondering where the power button is, it’s the red LED dome on the right-hand side.
1)This little fan can get whiny, so use a $7 Zalman Fan Mate 2 to lower its RPMs.
2)The Zotac Fusion ION‑ITX T Series wraps the GPU, CPU, PSU, MOBO, and heatsink into one nice little attractive package.
3)The slot-fed optical drive can be substituted for a standard tray drive or skipped completely, but it wouldn’t be quite as classy. Now if we could only fit a 5.25-inch floppy in there.
The original Commodore 64 packed a 1MHz MOS 6510 processor, which probably has one hundredth of the power of the CPU in your printer. Next to that, the AMD’s E-350 “Brazos” would appear as magic from the gods. In our world, though, the E350 is pretty far off the power band as you can see from our tests. The E-350’s main weakness is its x86 performance.
The Fusion APU is faster than a dual-core Atom 330, but beefier parts such as Intel’s Core i5-2430M—even with the i5’s low clocks—will leave it in the dust. Where the E-350 in the C64x does well is in 3D performance—its integrated graphics solution has enough power to run older games such as Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare at lower resolutions.
The real beauty of the E-350 is its low temps. At 18 watts for CPU and GPU combined, it really stays cool. In our experience, it’s far cooler than Intel’s own low-voltage 35-watt dual-core Sandy Bridge chips. The E-350 isn’t about blistering performance, but neither is the C64x. It’s about the cool factor of having a retro exterior with modern computer brains.
|Model||Commodore 64x||Giada i50||Giada Ion-100||Zbox Plus Nano XS|
|CPU||1.6GHz AMD E-350||1.2GHz Intel Core i5-430UM||1.3GHz Intel Atom 330 w/ Nvidia Ion||1.6GHz AMD E-450|
|Photoshop CS3 (sec)||445||272||552||423|
|Quake III (fps)||204||87||118||161|
|Quake 4 (fps)||38||9||29||40|
Best scores are bolded.
So that's our new, modern Commodore 64 build. What do you guys think? Let us know in the comments.