It's always nice to have the very latest technology. For example, take a look at the performance of the Intel Core 2 Extreme QX9770 and you'll probably want one: it has no current peer.
The problem in recommending any ultra-high-end hardware lies with price. The QX9770 will retail for around £750 when it's launched in Q1 2008, and we noted that you could buy a decent PC for that sum and still have some cash left over for festive cheer.
Both AMD and Intel have decent microprocessor architectures that extend through the low end of the market, though. The question is, we suppose, just how low can you go and still keep much of AMD's K8 and Intel's Core largely intact, and would buying el-cheapo models offer significant overclocking headroom, based as they are on designs that ship at much, much faster speeds.
To that end, HEXUS obtained a couple of off-the-shelf retail processors costing around £50. We tell you whether that sum buys you adequate performance, just how well those processors overclock, and how they compare to an Intel Core 2 Duo E6750 - the processor of choice at over double the price.
It's budget vs. budget, then. Find out if AMD can win at the value end of the market...