The performance of this new processor is several percent to 20% higher compared to Intel's 65nm processors, the Tech Report concludes. The site also praises the chip for its improved energy efficiency. At idle the QX9650 uses 34W less electricity than a Core 2 Extreme QX6850 and under load this increases to 74W less!
Something reviewers also noticed is that the chip overclocks really well, this could mean that if AMD outperforms Intel with the upcoming Phenom processors or comes "a bit too close" the firm may quickly launch higher-rated 45nm iterations.
HardOCP has somewhat the same conclusion:
That all said, Penryn and its SSE4 performance enhancing abilities look to hold a some deep value if our TMPGEnc 4.0 Xpress benchmarks are a peek at what is on the horizon. If we can see SSE4 consistently utilized to that extent, it will give the Penryn a set of teeth via specialized SSE4 software. You guys out there that encode video that have been waiting to “jump” into a new machine or upgrade. Now is the time to go get you a Penryn.