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 Post subject: Should I switch from AMD's Phenom II for Intel's Haswel?
PostPosted: Sat Apr 20, 2013 4:17 pm 
8086
8086

Joined: Thu May 01, 2008 12:59 pm
Posts: 21
This is difficult, feeling strangely similar to cheating on a girlfriend, as I've been an exclusive AMD loyalist since I built my first PC in 2000. AMD's heyday has long ago evaporated and they're content with offering a better price/performance ratio than Intel for CPU's. Though this holds true for Intel's Core i7 3960X which costs an insane $1K, I understand that an Intel Core i7 4770 (Haswel) will be available for $380. Since AMD's best CPU, the FX-8350 is only competitive with Intel Core i5's, this deflates AMD's price/performance ratio argument. I'm conflicted. Do I stay with my girlfriend, who's gotten a love handle and frumpy, or go for the long-legged cheerleader? Help. According to Anand Lal Shimpi, AMD's Piledriver does best in multi-threaded applications, edging Core i5 and even Core i7, but gets trounced in single threaded applications. I'm a gamer and games are single threaded. If it were just that simple, but Intel's road map points to BGA and then upgrading options will bottleneck; going for the sexy cheerleader will come with all sort of caveats. I want to upgrade from my long-in-the-tooth Phenom II 965 BE, but I also want a good long term strategy. Will games become multi-threaded? Again, please help :? . Thank you all.


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 Post subject: Re: Should I switch from AMD's Phenom II for Intel's Haswel?
PostPosted: Sat Apr 20, 2013 4:21 pm 
Smithfield
Smithfield

Joined: Sun Jun 18, 2006 7:37 pm
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Current games? No. Games coming out in a few years? Considering that they'll be targeting a 8-core AMD chip, wouldn't surprise me.


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 Post subject: Re: Should I switch from AMD's Phenom II for Intel's Haswel?
PostPosted: Sat Apr 20, 2013 5:56 pm 
8086
8086

Joined: Thu May 01, 2008 12:59 pm
Posts: 21
I'll ask gamers in Steam's forum what they hear about games becoming multi-threaded before I make my upgrade decisions. Thank you for your reply.


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 Post subject: Re: Should I switch from AMD's Phenom II for Intel's Haswel?
PostPosted: Sun Apr 21, 2013 9:45 am 
Mr. Late Night
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A lot of folks assume that since AMD's chip is going to be in the new XBox & PlayStation consoles that all/most games are going to be coded to take advantage of those CPUs and they won't work as well on Intel CPUs. I would have to disagree with that sentiment and I would say that there is a very high likelihood that games will conttinue to focus more on single thread performance as opposed to multi-threading if nothing more than the simple reason that there are more Intel i5/i7 CPUs out on the market and in use than AMD CPUs.


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 Post subject: Re: Should I switch from AMD's Phenom II for Intel's Haswel?
PostPosted: Sun Apr 21, 2013 10:44 am 
Smithfield
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Joined: Sun Jun 18, 2006 7:37 pm
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I think that's a misconception right there. It's not that games will take advantage of AMD chips, but multiple cores. AMD is an x86 processor down to its core. Any exclusive AMD instructions is probably very specific and in many cases won't be useful for games. Even if they optimize for the GPU, it won't cripple the game on NVIDIA GPUs. You can actually run all of AMD's DX11 demos on NVIDIA GPUs with no problem.

But the biggest thing of concern is whether or not the game is capable of even scaling up for multiple cores. The minimum requirement for a lot of PC's is a dual-core processor, which means that they may just optimize for that instead of scaling it up. I believe the only game that actually scaled with multiple cores is Supreme Commander. But the hope is that since everyone is now using x86 and multiple cores, that we'll finally see proper scaling.


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 Post subject: Re: Should I switch from AMD's Phenom II for Intel's Haswel?
PostPosted: Sun Apr 21, 2013 2:19 pm 
Mr. Late Night
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Multiple cores have been common for a good 2-3 years now, at least in terms in desktop computers as a lot of folks have been purchasing various OEM PCs and getting an i5 packed in the deal the majority of the time. Hell, even consoles have had the ability to handle multiple threads for quite some time with the XBox 360's mutli-core IBM Power5 custom chip and the Cell CPU that was in the PS3. What I've been seeing is games taking greater advantage of GPUs than they have of CPUs for the most part with the exception here and there.

So, as to not to completely de-rail this thread, to the op:

I'd wait to see how Haswell compares when it's actually released versus preliminary benchmarks now so that'll be a couple of months. Insofar as Intel going with BGA based system that rumor has been debunked multiple times on multiple sites and Intel themselves have stated that they do not plan on making Haswell or any CPU in the near term BGA only based. Is it possible in the future? I suppose but I highly doubt it since that will present all kinds of logistical issues to motherboard manufacturers especially since Intel is getting out of the motherboard game themselves.


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