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Thread: AMD CPU Ratings vs. Intel Clock speed

  1. #16
    Ultimate Member Rugor's Avatar
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    Hmmmmm that's not really a question that can be answered without restating it.

    If AMD could make a 3.2GHz Athlon with HyperThreading it would outperform anything Intel has on the desktop right now. AMD's IPC is enough higher that clock speed parity would not be a good thing for Intel.

    However, the current Athlons wouldn't do 3.2GHz because that's faster than that architecture can be pushed. Most designs end up having hard ceilings (much like the Coppermine PIII which could never really be made reliable at 1.13GHz) and 3.2GHz is above the Athlons. There may be ways to get one up to 3GHz with high voltages and exotic cooling but it's unlikely to be practical. As to Hyperthreading, AMD could implement it, they not only have extensive cross-licensing deals with Intel but also have there own patents in the area. However, there would be much less point doing it on an Athlon than a P4.

    The P4 has a very long pipeline which is subject to stalls, which is what happens when you get a bubble with no data in it passing down the pipeline. Remember if the CPU isn't fed with data properly that empty clock cycle will propagate all the way down the pipeline, and it takes a P4 20 cycles to get data from one end of the pipe to the other. Hyperthreading is a way of having two threads going so if you get a bubble it just feeds data from the other thread to keep the pipelines full. Now the Athlon has shorter pipes and less trouble keeping them full, so it woudn't benefit as much from Hyperthreading as a P4.

    Also the Athlon has more execution units than P4 so it can do more in parallel and catch up from a stall more quickly. Anyway, the end result is the way to get good performance from a P4 is to keep the pipes full all the time, and hyperthreading is one way to help do that.

    This is partially why AMD did implement SSE2 on the Athlon64 and Opteron but not hyperthreading, they could take more advantage from one than the other.
    "Dude you're getting a Dell." Obscure curse from the early 21st Century, ascribed to a minor demon-spirit known as "Stephen?" [sp].

  2. #17
    Member DaveLeclerc's Avatar
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    well said Rugor!

  3. #18
    Member Karifan's Avatar
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    My fault, the only cpu from AMD's A64 that uses PR as compared to actual mhz is the A64 3200.
    All others are Opterons which use a non standard naming convention and the FX which also uses non standard naming convention.

    good explanation of cpu architectures Rugor.
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  4. #19
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    the only reason i would buy a p4 is that is has HT and a "large amount" of FSB. 800 FSB lets ur pc work faster instead of the maximum that AMD can give you (200). and 200 FSB is rather a test with AMD cpus cause normally they work better with 166 (as i see it). so if ud ask me, and if u had money i would go for one of these p4 with 800 fsb and ht
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  5. #20
    Ultimate Member Rugor's Avatar
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    A high FSB helps feed more data to the processor and avoid Pipeline stalls. Intel's architecture needs more FSB bandwidth than AMD's.

    Top end Athlon XPs use a 200MHz DDR FSB for an effective data rate of 400MHz. P4s use a 200MHz QDR FSB for an effective data rate of 800MHz, so the difference isn't as extreme as you were portraying it. Then when you factor in that AMD has about 2/3 the clockspeed of Intel, and because of differences in architecture needs less raw bandwidth anyway you get a relatively different picture. Remember the Athlon has a much shorter pipeline than P4 (12 vs 20 stages) and so needs less data to keep the pipes full. A top end AXP needs about 60% as much data to fill the pipes, and has about 50% of the total bandwidth of the P4, which adjusted for clock speed means it has about 66% as much bandwidth per clock. So unlesss absolute raw bandwidth is what matters the Athlon can usually compete fairly well. It's other factors that really affect performance differences more than simple bandwidth.

    Yes there are some applications which thrive on bandwidth, and they do do better on P4. Others thrive on raw FPU and do better on Athlons. For most computing purposes the bandwidth issue is not as big a deal as some other factors, even when it isn't artificially inflated.
    Last edited by Rugor; 12-03-2003 at 05:51 PM.
    "Dude you're getting a Dell." Obscure curse from the early 21st Century, ascribed to a minor demon-spirit known as "Stephen?" [sp].

  6. #21
    Senior Member Happy Joe's Avatar
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    Thanx for the explanation!
    enjoy!

  7. #22
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    ... so why doesn't Intel work on shortening their pipeline?
    - Avor

  8. #23
    Ultimate Member Rugor's Avatar
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    It's because Intel and AMD went for two radically different strategies in processor design with the Athlon and P4. AMD's goal was to make as powerful an x86 processor as they possibly could, while Intel's goal was to make as fast a processor as they could.

    All else being equal it's easier to get higher clock speeds with a longer pipeline than a shorter one. Remember, the two processors are doing the same thing to data, but one does it in twelve steps to the other's twenty, so the Athlon is doing more each stage. However, the less you do each stage, the faster you can run the processor. Intel bet they could make up for a drop in IPC (Instructions per Clock) if they could just get the clock speed high enough.

    On the whole it worked fairly well, and had the additional benefit of improving saleability by allowing Intel to claim higher clock speeds which look good in the showroom.
    "Dude you're getting a Dell." Obscure curse from the early 21st Century, ascribed to a minor demon-spirit known as "Stephen?" [sp].

  9. #24
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    How fitting a reply as my first posting in SysOpt!!!

    So, nearly 8 years since this thread, what can you all say about the general theme discussed in here?

    Hello everyone!

    I am about to go out to Best Buy and purchase an ASUS With a Phenom II 6 core computer and HD monitor. My current Dell (3000) has run its course, since it cannot support the video demands placed by Windows 7, but all in all, it has been a very dependable machine. I do not do much gaming anymore these days, but do enjoy fast DSL and web surfing.

    Just to go on the record, I know that the latest rumor mill through the grape vine is that Intel is giving-up in "mock lawsuits" in order to keep Advanced Micro Devices in the game, for the alternative is to lose ground worldwide if Intel becomes the only game worldwide (I guess, mechanisms in every country would allow for suing Intel on the grounds of monopoly... ).

    So my question still is....Intel i5/i7 OR AMD Phenom series?

    GerryLP

  10. #25
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    I am using a AMD Phenom II X6 1100T and the onboard video on a MSI GF615M-P33 motherboard.

    I have been very happy with it. Plus a lot cheaper than the Intel would have been. No gaming some video work.

  11. #26
    Ultimate Member Rocketmech's Avatar
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    Intel or AMD , if it works for you why worry about it ? ..my 2 cents anyways..

    I do think a 6 core cpu is a bit over kill for web surfing and email. You would be fine with a dual core , AMD A line or Intel Sandy Bridge . But, if your budget allows for 6 cores, your set if you ever need it and your friends will think it cool.

  12. #27
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    Well, I betrayed my initial gut feeling, and went with the i5. Eli at Bestbuy was fun in explaining the different processors and features as if one would of fast cars. So we discussed from a 1969 Camaro with a 396 engine (an ASUS w/ AMD Penom II X 6 and on board video) to perhaps an M5 (Intel i5 with on-board video and upgraded with a 2 Gig video card [ a modest turbo unit added for fun]) and even to a Porsche (An ASUS with a Phenom II X 8 [I believe] and PNY 5310 video card).

    However, at the end I went for the i5. It was packaged a bit more conveniently with all-in-one flash memory readers, upwards of 8 USB ports with a useful tray at the top of the mini tower, and it came ready to roll or wireless-ready (no adapters to purchase).

    I know that there are bigger, badder wolfs out there with super-machines, and although we all love to see a Lamborghini in the freeway, we all are slaves to the radar gun. My goal is to get a machine that will last me the longest time in fair service, and with the Dell 3,000, it was a pretty good run I got in performance (Do you remember the King-of-the-hill Corvette in 1989? Well it was de-throned until its recent return to power re-incarnated in the 2011 Corvette ZR-1.


    GerryLP

  13. #28
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    Intel 5 cpu is no slow poke and should do the trick for a long time.

    I hate off the shelf computers and go with home built or custom set ups myself.

    The Seattle area has lots of computer outlets, even these folks.
    http://www.cray.com/Products/Products.aspx

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