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 Post subject: How to compare AMD to Intel
PostPosted: Tue Oct 23, 2012 9:17 pm 
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I'm not even sure if my question can be answered properly but I'll give it a shot.

A lot of people say to just buy an Intel processor when building a new rig because they're just that good. All right, I can understand that. But I've been an AMD fan because I'm on a very tight budget.

My present processor is an Athlon II X4 640. AM3 socket, 3.0GHz, L1 cache is 4x128KB, L2 cache is 4x512KB, no L3 cache. $84.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 6819103871

When I look at Intel's quad-core offerings, the cheapest I can find is an i5-3330. LGA1155 socket, L3 cache of 6MB. $189.99!
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 6819116781
More than twice the price of an AMD quad-core.

If I stick to price, for $84.99 I can get an Intel Pentium G870 Sandy Bridge 3.1GHz LGA 1155. But it's only dual-core. L2 Cache is 2 x 256KB, and L3 Cache is 3MB.

The bottom line for me is this: How can I best compare one AMD or Intel proc against each other? Can an i5 dual-core be equal in performance to an AMD quad-core for approximately the same amount of money? Because if I go by something as simple as the number of cores, I'll never be able to afford Intel procs.


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 Post subject: Re: How to compare AMD to Intel
PostPosted: Tue Oct 23, 2012 11:05 pm 
Smithfield
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AMD is doing something similar that Intel did a long time ago. While Intel made the Megahertz Myth (that faster speed automatically means better performance), AMD is doing More Cores = More Performance. While this is true to a certain degree, for most consumer tasks, AMD performs worse than Intel. Also since the two companies take different approaches, you cannot do a direct comparison. To that end, the only way you can compare is with benchmark scores.

But here's something to put a dent that more cores automatically means more performance: http://www.anandtech.com/bench/Product/700?vs=677 How can a dual core processor keep up and even beat a quad core processor in some tests? Simple: AMD has poor instructions per clock (IPC) performance.

If you want to see a sadder tale: http://www.anandtech.com/bench/Product/188?vs=702 - The Core i5 I found here smokes the Athlon II X4.

Single core IPC performance is the underlying factor in how well a CPU performs. Which is something neither Intel or AMD will show you because, well, it's not rigid and it depends on what you're running.

And for one more trick, here's the Athlon II X4 against a Pentium G850 (dual-core), both sell for the same price: http://www.anandtech.com/bench/Product/188?vs=404

So yes, go find benchmark scores. Don't assume from raw specs that one processor is better than the other.


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 Post subject: Re: How to compare AMD to Intel
PostPosted: Wed Oct 24, 2012 6:49 pm 
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That's exactly the sort of info I was looking for. Thank you for that. It's a huge help. :D


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 Post subject: Re: How to compare AMD to Intel
PostPosted: Thu Oct 25, 2012 6:02 am 
Clawhammer
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If you need to get granular, you can pit proc to proc here.



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 Post subject: Re: How to compare AMD to Intel
PostPosted: Thu Oct 25, 2012 12:03 pm 
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Sadly, unless you're looking at a low-end gaming setup, Intel really is the cheapest way to go from just about every perspective.

AMD's A10-5800K is the one hold-out IMO, with the integrated graphics capable (before overclocking) of driving modern games like Battlefield 3 with playable frame rates & at low to medium quality settings at 1280x720. At the same time, it can drive older games like World of Warcraft Cataclysm at up to 1920x1080 smoothly at decent quality, all while holding your total system power requirements down under 150 Watts. But for pure CPU processing power, the 5800K APU is only on par with (at best) or slightly behind the dual-core Intel i3-3220 which is priced the same but uses less wattage.


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