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65nm Athlons Debut With Lower Power Consumption

kdawson posted more than 7 years ago | from the less-of-the-same dept.

AMD 151

TheRaindog writes "AMD has finally rolled out Athlon 64 X2 processors based on 65nm process technology, and The Tech Report has an interesting look at their energy usage and overclocking potential compared to current 90nm models. The new 65nm chips consume less power at idle and under load than their 90nm counterparts, and appear to have plenty of headroom for overclocking. An Athlon 64 X2 5000+ that normally runs at 2.4 GHz was taken all the way up to 2.9 GHz with standard air cooling and only a marginal voltage boost, suggesting that we may see faster chips from AMD soon."

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penis (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17324446)

fris prost!!

HTPC (4, Interesting)

tedgyz (515156) | more than 7 years ago | (#17324480)

The little gem in this story is the Athlon 64 X2 3800+ EE SFF 2.0GHz. At 35W, that sounds like a perfect CPU choice for a super-silent HTPC.

Re:HTPC (1)

Gothmolly (148874) | more than 7 years ago | (#17324566)

If your HTPC needs that much processing power from its CPU, you're doing it wrong.

Re:HTPC (2, Informative)

Mayhem178 (920970) | more than 7 years ago | (#17324596)

What, your HTPC can't render Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within on the fly? Lame. ;)

Okay, no, seriously. I have an Athlon X2 3800, and it runs deathly quiet for any operation I've thrown at it. Considering that the machine I have it in is my primary gaming PC, I'd say that's noteworthy. And I've never noticed any great amount of heat production, either.

Re:HTPC (4, Insightful)

Neon Spiral Injector (21234) | more than 7 years ago | (#17324664)

How do you suggest that one decode 1080i H.264 transport streams with AC3 5.1 audio? This processor may be slightly more than required, but not by much.

Re:HTPC (1)

Noehre (16438) | more than 7 years ago | (#17324978)

Why would you decode the AC3? Use passthrough.

Re:HTPC (4, Interesting)

Neon Spiral Injector (21234) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325084)

OK, I'll give you that. But the HD H.264 requires a huge ammount of CPU to decode. My current dual 1.6 GHz Opteron system can't do it in real time. Doesn't even come close.

So I was thinking the same thing about this new chip. It sounds pretty close to what I was wanting.

Re:HTPC (1)

eno2001 (527078) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325198)

What OS and software are you using? I'm able to do it fine on a P4 (with HT) that I bought in 2002 with Gentoo Linux. DV in from an 1080i Sony Handycam and it works great. I also can easily play back 1080i video files. I've got a WMF file in 1080i and it looks great and plays without hassle or even making the CPU break a sweat using Xine.

Re:HTPC (1)

Tack (4642) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325324)

GP is talking about h264.

Re:HTPC (1)

networkBoy (774728) | more than 7 years ago | (#17328672)

3.4Ghz Prescott, 1Gb 533DDR2 no issue with h264 1080p decode, encode at about 20% of realtime.
one up:
PIII 550 512meg PC100 and a PCI Vertex FPGA, no issue with decode and encode 1080p both (just) at real time, wiggle the mouse and there may be jitter.
Next up
Spartan FPGA in a PCIe socket with a core2DuoEE with 4Gb ram, should be capable of 1080p encode at 4x realtime. (just need money :-)
-nB

Re:HTPC (2, Informative)

Neon Spiral Injector (21234) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325358)

It is just this specific codec, any ffmpeg based player in either Linux or Windows just dies on 1080i H.264. 720p H.264 is fine, as is 1080i MPEG2. I also have some 1080p WMVs that play fine.

Re:HTPC (1)

eno2001 (527078) | more than 7 years ago | (#17326392)

Hmmm... H.264 Quicktime files in Cinelerra seem to work OK from the DV I pull in. But I create them myself, so I can't say for non-Cinelerra generated content. And only Cinelerra seems to be able to play them back, not Xine. But that wouldn't seem to be a CPU issue. It seems more like a codec problem.

Re:HTPC (2, Interesting)

Neon Spiral Injector (21234) | more than 7 years ago | (#17326598)

Quicktime only seems to use a subset of the features of H.264. I can easily create videos that play fine with ffmpeg, but are a corrupted mess with the Quicktime player.

Re:HTPC (1)

ben there... (946946) | more than 7 years ago | (#17327422)

Quicktime only seems to use a subset of the features of H.264.

Yeah, it's capable of the Baseline profile and partially supports the Main profile. Quicktime doesn't support any of the following:
  • CABAC
  • Bidirectional prediction
  • Macroblock partitions
  • Weighted prediction
  • Deblocking

You can turn those off in Nero Recode's Standard-AVC profile to make a Quicktime compatible video, or follow this guide [doom9.org] for encoding with x264.

Quicktime also obviously doesn't support High profile. A full list of the features it supports is here [wikipedia.org] .

Re:HTPC (1)

scottnews (237707) | more than 7 years ago | (#17326324)

He is not talking about WMF. H.264 encoded files. My AthlonXP 2500+ can handle WMF. H.264 is a different story. The industry is barely getting smooth playback with Core 2 Duo x6800 and high end nVidia cards:

http://www.anandtech.com/video/showdoc.aspx?i=2890 &p=4 [anandtech.com]

Re:HTPC (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17326012)

Trying to decode h.264 purely in software is a bit of a losing proposition at the moment, just like when MPEG-1 and MPEG-2 first came out. (CPUs always seemed fast enough for decoding MPEG-4, though.)

Instead of throwing massive general CPU power at the problem, modern GPUs (like, GF6+) can accelerate enough of the h.264 decoding tasks to greatly alleviate the burden on the CPU. However, driver support on, say, Linux sucks. I'm not sure how well XvMC is working right now in getting any sort of speed-up on h.264 on Linux. The situation's much better on Windows.

(Incidentally, my captcha word this time was "torrents." Not exactly what I'd think you'd get from pulling from a dictionary. Where do they get these things, /. comments?)

Re:HTPC (1)

ben there... (946946) | more than 7 years ago | (#17327230)

My current dual 1.6 GHz Opteron system can't do it in real time. Doesn't even come close.

CoreAVC's requirements for 1080p24 [coreavc.com] are:
# 2.8 GHz Pentium 4 or faster processor
# At least 1GB of RAM
# 256MB or greater video card

So if you have a good video card, I don't see why your dual Opteron couldn't do it with CoreAVC. Quicktime is a different story though. But Quicktime has the worst performance of practically any H.264 player/decoder.

Re:HTPC (1)

zten (576209) | more than 7 years ago | (#17327832)

Most of the people having problems with realtime H.264 software decoding are using ffmpeg, which simply doesn't do it well (yet). CoreAVC is a faster decoder, but non-free. The other option on Windows-based systems is to use hardware decoding with Radeon X1000 series or whatever the comparable nVidia part is, but I believe software support is limited to Windows Media Player for both the ATI and nVidia solutions.

Re:HTPC (1)

Fweeky (41046) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325160)

Use GPU-accelerated decoding, ala PureVideo [nvidia.com] . Not that I wouldn't also want the CPU power to do it too.

Re:HTPC (1)

MBGMorden (803437) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325222)

You've got a point there. If you're watching Xvid bittorrent files any 1ghz machine will do, but my last computer upgrade (from an Athlon XP 2100 to a Sempron 3400) was done specifically because hte Athlon XP was choking down to a crawl on Apple's HD movie trailers. Even the 3400 stutters a bit on the really high res stuff, but it does ok on 720p so I don't worry about it too much.

Sempron (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17325512)

You do know that you bought a crippled processor, right? The Sempron is the alternative to a Celeron. If you bought a real processor like an Athlon 64 or Athlon XP for slightly more (or a lower clocked one for less $$$ and still more performance) you probably wouldn't have it skip much.

Re:Sempron (1)

MBGMorden (803437) | more than 7 years ago | (#17327238)

I research my purchases very well. No Athlon XP made can hold a candle to the Sempron 3400. It's in no way a crippled processor - it just has less L2 cache than the Athlon 64's (and if that's crippling then Athlon 64's a cripple compared to Athlon X2's because they have fewer cores. Both are crippled compared to Opteron's due to their lower L2 cache. Any particular processor is crippled compared to a processor with higher mhz, etc).

Bottom line, it was a significant upgrade for me for a low investment cost, and it's a good processor. The fact that it's not fast enough to play 1080p content doesn't mean it's broken - there are a whole lot of good processors out there (some Athlon 64's included) that can't play that video without skipping.

Re:Sempron (2, Interesting)

Endo13 (1000782) | more than 7 years ago | (#17327532)

Obvious troll, but I'll bite. The 32-bit Sempron is nothing more or less than the continuation of the old 32-bit Athlon XP CPU line, and Semprons carrying the same numerical designation as their old Athlon XP counterparts have exactly the same specs. Why they changed the name I'm not exactly sure, but it's still the exact same CPU. Celerons on the other hand are just Pentiums without most of the L2 cache, which makes them heavily crippled since the P4 with its long pipeline depends very much on their on-die cache.

Re:HTPC (1)

NerveGas (168686) | more than 7 years ago | (#17326350)

Maybe he wants to play PC video games on his HD big-screen. If I had an HD big-screen, I'd certainly play a few games on it. :-)

steve

Re:HTPC (1)

pinkfloydhomer (999075) | more than 7 years ago | (#17326472)

Eh, no. Ever heard of FFDShow? Lanzcos scaling and other scaling algorithms? Noise reduction algorithms? Sharpening algorithms? Proper MPEG decoding (without chroma bug) etc.? Of course, Avivo and PureVideo do exist, but not all like them (or use them, for instance under Linux). A setup as the one described above _will_ use a lot of CPU power. And that's only for DVD. Playing HD on an old, slow computer is not always, well... possible. /David

Re:HTPC (2, Interesting)

javilon (99157) | more than 7 years ago | (#17324838)

Do you know of any video player that will be capable of taking advantage of two processors?

As far as I know mplayer doesn't, xine doesn't and vlc doesn't.

Re:HTPC (5, Funny)

Ultra64 (318705) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325068)

right, because it's totally impossible for a computer to run more than one program at a time.
it's too bad video playing couldn't happen on one cpu while video compression happened on another.
someone should invent that. it could be called "Sametime Many Programs" or "SMP" for short.

SMP (0, Troll)

Gr8Apes (679165) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325180)

Try "Symmetric Multiprocessing" [wikipedia.org]

Re:SMP (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17325272)

Whooosh....!

OT (3, Funny)

Spaceman40 (565797) | more than 7 years ago | (#17326384)

We really need a "Whoosh" mod.

Re:HTPC (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17326870)

Symmetric Multi Processing, perhaps? :p

Re:HTPC (1)

tlhIngan (30335) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325554)

Do you know of any video player that will be capable of taking advantage of two processors?

As far as I know mplayer doesn't, xine doesn't and vlc doesn't.


If VLC doesn't, then something VERY strange is going on.

In Windows, I use VLC to test out video playback (because it's the only way I can be sure that stuff like FairUse4WM and QTFairUse actually work!). I've decoded 1080p (1440x1080 - strangely, it displays properly on a 1920x1080 panel...) video that consumes about 18-30% CPU (via Windows Task Manager). I have quad proc (2x Core2Duo Xeons), and could swear there were three threads running simultaneously. (VLC actually spawns 18 threads!). I would think one was the OS taking data from VLC via DirectX and shoving it to the display driver to the screen (and managing everything else), while two were decoding video (~50-70% on one processor) and audio (~20% on another processor). The OS stuff seems to consume barely 5-10% of the third processor, and the fourth just remains idle. (At least someone had a clue in the XP scheduler...).

Using Windows Media Player and videocard accellerations, total CPU utilization barely tops 15% (usually less than 10%).

Ditto with QuickTime HD video - the QuickTime Player seems to use videocard accellerations to keep CPU utilization down. (Modern videocards often have H.264 and VC-1 (WMV9) accelleration blocks on them...)

Re:HTPC (1)

pclminion (145572) | more than 7 years ago | (#17327564)

Do you know of any video player that will be capable of taking advantage of two processors?

Kind of a funny question. The only reason a person would ask is if a single processor in their machine was too slow to play a video on its own. I've never heard of that. Otherwise, what's the point in using both processors to decode video? Only one processor is required, and the other processor of your SMP system will take care of any other processes that need to run. Splitting a task that requires less than 100% CPU between multiple CPUs is silly.

Imagine a task where you have to drag a 3 ton boulder, and you have two pickup trucks. Either truck is capable of hauling the rock on its own, but for some reason you decide to tie BOTH trucks to the boulder. Okay... Maybe there's less "strain" on the engines in that case, but why do it that way when you can drag the boulder with ONE truck and have the other truck completely available for some other purpose?

Re:HTPC (1)

Spoke (6112) | more than 7 years ago | (#17329106)

Do you know of any video player that will be capable of taking advantage of two processors?
On the mythtv mailing lists, a number of people have reported better performance (smoother playback, fewer hiccups) when playing HD content when using a dual-core processor. Now, this isn't because the player itself can take advantage of multiple CPUs, but because the player uses a good amount of CPU and so does X. Having two cores lets you dedicate a processor to both processes giving you more headroom.

Having another core is especially important if it's mixed frontend/backend system where the backend may be recording other shows or doing commercial flagging or downloading program schedules or whatever else it may need to do.

So just because the player can't utilize multiple processors doesn't mean that the system won't benefit from having them.

Re:HTPC (0)

epine (68316) | more than 7 years ago | (#17330080)


Ya, sure, it might be if AMD wasn't charging more for this part than a spec-identical laptop equivalent (likely to be the same core bonded out to a different package). How many of these is AMD selling at this price point for this application? At present, only slightly more than the cold-fusion powered equivalent they accidentally left out of their last product catalog.

What is it with people thinking that because a manufacturer slaps a part number on a spec. sheet that these parts are automatically worthy targets of discussion/salivation? How many stupid benchmarks have I had to endure which included some hand-crafted astrobuck Intel part with a 300W TDP just to prove that, by some spare-no-fiberglass Formula One cost-benefit conceit, that Intel *still* had a bigger Jones?

I'm sure that the dunce cap originated to spare unwary villagers or strangers from burning blood over the guy who seems not to know how to avoid giving offense. They use a similar system in prisons with the psycho jersey. Well, the AMD 90nm SFF wears the silly cap, while almost every version of the Pentium 4 EE would be wearing the psycho jersey. If only we could make it stick to the point where this kind of sentiment was averted in the first place.

It some hit some kind of adolescent nerve that the big boys are holding back on the good stuff. We know the good stuff is out there, we can never get any. Why the male brain so slow to clue into the relationship between hot and high maintenance?

As these reviews go, this one was tolerable. I got quite annoyed at the point where they are (finally) computing watt-seconds (ever heard of my good friend Joules?) but then fail to note that major workloads, such as the ever-obscure gaming niche, are not task bound workloads with completion time based on rendering X number of frames. However, if I was running a CPU-bound web host dishing out complex pages rendered in PHP, I'd be looking at that number very closely. How many other scenarios are there were faster compute doesn't end up implying more idle? Searching for ET? I thought so.

It's a question of cores (5, Funny)

BadAnalogyGuy (945258) | more than 7 years ago | (#17324498)

If you have only one core, you need to rely on the OS to not get in the way of running processes during task switches. With more than one core, processes can be split amongst the cores so that they do not need to be interrupted all the time by the OS timer interrupt handler. The more cores you have, the better you can scale up, even if the cores themselves are slower than a competing single core chip.

It's like driving down the highway in your train vs riding the rails in your Audi. Sure, you can try to drive the car on the train tracks for a while, but eventually the springs will break and your tires will pop and you end up walking to your final destination. But if you took the train, you'd probably tear up the road and it would take a while since you couldn't get much traction with the large metal wheels, but since you're carrying a whole lot of stuff in the train cars being pulled behind you, your bandwidth / time ratio is very favorable.

As someone once said... (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17324552)

A bad analogy is like a leaky screwdriver.

Re:As someone once said... (1, Funny)

rbanffy (584143) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325206)

wish I had modpoints...

Re:It's a question of cores (3, Interesting)

KingArthur10 (679328) | more than 7 years ago | (#17324628)

Concerning your analogy: I was thinking more along the lines that a train runs on a single track and sometimes has to be held up for another train to use the same track. They have some track switching, but most operations are serial. A car on the highway might not be allowed to go as fast as a train, but it's got four lanes to maneuver through. A bunch of cars will reach their destinations faster than a bunch of trains because the trains have to share single tracks often.

Re:It's a question of cores (1)

dodobh (65811) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325250)

Which is why most places have two lines. And compared to a train carrying a thousand people, even the four lane highway is very inefficient.

Re:It's a question of cores (1)

Overly Critical Guy (663429) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325336)

Take a look at his name before you respond to his analogy.

Re:It's a question of cores (1)

OneSmartFellow (716217) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325342)

Except that the memory access is still the stumbling block. When each process gets dedicated memory, then we'll really get good performance, but, it seems that is not a high priority for most MoBo manufacturers these days

Re:It's a question of cores (1)

DaveWick79 (939388) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325918)

So if you can't buy gas, neither the train nor the cars move very quickly. It's starting to come together... :)

Re:It's a question of cores (1)

ultranova (717540) | more than 7 years ago | (#17326200)

So if you can't buy gas, neither the train nor the cars move very quickly. It's starting to come together... :)

Except that trains use wood, electricity or diesel oil as their power source. I've never heard anyone suggest they'd run on gas. Or did you mean water vapour, AKA steam ? But steam cars weren't very fast...

Re:It's a question of cores (1)

Rod Beauvex (832040) | more than 7 years ago | (#17326740)

I've seen one do 88... :D

Re:It's a question of cores (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 7 years ago | (#17327022)

There are gasoline-powered train engines, although they are usually restricted to doing pulling tasks in the yard.

Re:It's a question of cores (1)

networkBoy (774728) | more than 7 years ago | (#17329030)

Mostly because to get the same torque as a diesel they are gorssly inefficent. The flip side is that they don't need a half hour (or more in cold areas) to warm up to operating temperature.
-nB

Re:It's a question of cores (1)

quizzicus (891184) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325832)

Your ideas are intriguing to me and I wish to subscribe to your newsletter.

Re:It's a question of cores (2, Interesting)

pclminion (145572) | more than 7 years ago | (#17327596)

Concerning the more serious first part of your post, it seems that ideally what you want to do is dedicate one CPU/core to interactive tasks, and another core for batch tasks. That way, the interactive tasks can easily interrupt each other as often as necessary on one CPU, while the other CPU cranks along on the batch tasks with a much longer time quantum without any unnecessary interruptions.

Interesting.. (4, Funny)

joshetc (955226) | more than 7 years ago | (#17324500)

considering my 3800+ X2 runs at 2.8ghz with 1.5V. 2.9ghz really doesnt seem like much for a higher end model.. I'm thinking they will need at least 3.1ghz or so overclocks on air to have much of a chance in most highend enthusiast rigs.

Re:Interesting.. (3, Informative)

gone9teen (958480) | more than 7 years ago | (#17324610)

You do realize, well obviously you don't, the clock speed of a processor means nothing between different models when it comes to performance. A newer 2.0 Core 2 Due processor SMOKES my 3.0 Pentium 4.

Re:Interesting.. (5, Informative)

joshetc (955226) | more than 7 years ago | (#17324730)

Duh, all athlon 64 dual cores to date are clock for clock nearly identical though. This means clock speed does matter. I can't believe you got modded up for making such a shitty assumption on a "geek" website.

Re:Interesting.. (1)

Zaatxe (939368) | more than 7 years ago | (#17326750)

I can't believe you got modded up for making such a shitty assumption on a "geek" website.

Maybe Slashdot's been attracting Digg's readers...

Re:Interesting.. (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17325372)

Whoever modded this non-sequitur "insightful" must be retarded.

Re:Interesting.. (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17325132)

meanwhile core 2 duo systems continue to best AMD's offerings.....

Illegal? (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17324568)

Isn't overclocking illegal these days? Because of DMCA or something...

Overclocking potential should be increased. (1)

ZahnRosen (1040004) | more than 7 years ago | (#17324586)

I simply can't wait to get my hands on one of these and start overclocking. Getting them out the door at 2.9 GHZ should mean there's some overclocking head room left in the chips. Probably not too much, but I'll take what I can get.

Nice but a little slower. Surprise! (3, Interesting)

IPFreely (47576) | more than 7 years ago | (#17324616)

Anand [anandtech.com] has a nice review of these new processors, including performance comparisons.

The surprise is that it was a little slower than it's 90nm counterpart. They chased it down to the cache latency going up from 90nm to the 65nm part.

Other than that, it looks good.

Re:Nice but a little slower. Surprise! (4, Informative)

MrFlibbs (945469) | more than 7 years ago | (#17326422)

According to the AnandTech article you referenced, saying that "it looks good" is a bit of an overstatement. Here are a few quotes from the article:

          "It's clear that these first 65nm chips, while lower power than their 90nm
          counterparts, aren't very good even by AMD's standards."

          "Performance and efficiency are still both Intel's fortes thanks to its Core 2
          lineup, and honestly the only reason to consider Brisbane is if you currently
          have a Socket-AM2 motherboard."

In every single AnandTech benchmark, Intel wins in both raw performance and performance per watt. And if raw power consumption is important to you, the winner was a 90nm AMD SFF part. In no case was a 65nm AMD better at anything.

The article does point out that a mature 90nm process is being compared to an immature 65nm process and thus future steppings are bound to be better. However, this doesn't change the fact that the current crop of AMD 65nm parts are a major disappointment.

A major disappointment for whom? (4, Interesting)

John Jamieson (890438) | more than 7 years ago | (#17327776)

Whenever AMD or Intel moves to a new process, they do not expect much from the first cores(they are happy if they get as many cores from a wafer as they did before-which if my sources are correct, Intel didn't do, and AMD has).
A lot of people forget that when Intel moved to 65nm, the new chips were slower in many ways, and the clock speeds were lower than the top end 90nm P4's.
By industry standards these AMD 65nm chips are a SUCCESS.

My only beef with the 65nm Athlons is that I cannot buy one at newegg, or order one from DELL. In my world, if I cannot order a PC with one, or buy it at newegg, IT IS A PAPER LAUNCH!

timing is everything (0)

licious (932923) | more than 7 years ago | (#17324688)

nice specs, just a few months overdue.

I wouldn't overclock an AMD (0, Troll)

keeboo (724305) | more than 7 years ago | (#17324754)

AMD processors are nice as long as you use them at their nominal clock.
I've had bad experiences overclocking AMD processors (considering extended usage >6 months and at 100% load) with proper refrigeration. Unfortunately those processors tend do break (with no prior warning) eventually. What's a pity, since they overclock well.
There are worse processors in this aspect though, the UltraSPARC (at least the "I" models) may die after few years user nominal clock and standard refrigeration.

I've never had problems overclocking an Intel processor. Perhaps because they already irradiate lots of heat (and are built with that in mind), those processors seem to have a good resistance to overclocking and, when things are going bad, they tend to become unstable (and more sensitive to temperature) instead of just dying immediately.

Re:I wouldn't overclock an AMD (2, Funny)

vslashg (209560) | more than 7 years ago | (#17324980)

I've had bad experiences overclocking AMD processors (considering extended usage >6 months and at 100% load) with proper refrigeration. Unfortunately those processors tend do break (with no prior warning) eventually. What's a pity, since they overclock well.
They tend to break when overclocked, and yet they overclock "well"?

I don't think that word means what you think it means.

Re:I wouldn't overclock an AMD (0, Troll)

keeboo (724305) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325316)

They tend to break when overclocked, and yet they overclock "well"?
I don't think that word means what you think it means.

Yes, they overclock well until they break.

Next time, try understanding the context.

Re:I wouldn't overclock an AMD (1)

GotenXiao (863190) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325706)

I've been running my S754 Athlon64 2800+ at 400MHz over spec (2200MHz, +/- 50MHz) for over two years. It still whips 3.2GHz P4s into shape.

Re:I wouldn't overclock an AMD (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17326432)

They tend to break when overclocked, and yet they overclock "well"?

I don't think that word means what you think it means.


Perhaps he means 'well' as opposed to 'rare'.

I prefer mine medium.

Re:I wouldn't overclock an AMD (1)

Com2Kid (142006) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325026)

o_O

Nice assumptions there!

For the record, I used to up the vcore on my AMD at home to warm up my back computer room in the winter. A 300mhz speed boost helps as well. (It was a 700mhz Duron, OC'd to 1ghz in the winter, 900 in the summer)

I have always had good luck overclocking AMD chips, but I am running so many laptops now that I am living in an Intel world!

Re:I wouldn't overclock an AMD (1)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 7 years ago | (#17327034)

It depends on the cooling a lot. At home, I used a 1GHz Athlon overclocked to 1.33GHz for about two years, before lending it to a friend, who used it for another three. To my knowledge, it still works, although he's recently upgraded so it's sitting in my hallway now.

Conversely, at work I have a 1GHz Athlon machine running 24/7, but rarely being taxed (it runs my Subversion server and a few other things. Sometimes I to timing tests on it, but not very often). It has got through 3 motherboards and 4 CPUs in three years.

The difference? My home machine had a CoolMaster sounds-like-a-jet-engine fan, which I later replaced with a near-silent Zalman cooler. The ones at work had supplied-by-the-lowest-bidder heatsinks and fans, on both the CPU and the chipset (biggest cause of motherboard death was the fan on the chipset dying and preventing air escaping).

flamebait (-1, Troll)

keeboo (724305) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325376)

I wouldn't overclock an AMD (Score:1, Flamebait)

Nice to see some bigots with moderation points.

"Flamebait" != "I disagree"

Re:flamebait (1)

Zaatxe (939368) | more than 7 years ago | (#17326792)

Nice to see some bigots with moderation points.
"Flamebait" != "I disagree"


But it seems by the modding you got that "Troll" == "I disagree and STFU!"

Re:I wouldn't overclock an AMD (2, Insightful)

dtjohnson (102237) | more than 7 years ago | (#17326910)

I overclocked the very first stepping of the first 500 Mhz Athlon to 700 Mhz and it has been running 24/7 for 6 years. Now, it is finally being replaced with a newer (AMD of course) system and I opened up the case for salvage parts and there...there was the overclocking board still attached to the 'Slot A' CPU and still working perfectly. I'd forgotten it was even there. So there's a 6-year data point on the overclocking/longevity scale.

Re:I wouldn't overclock an AMD (1)

licious (932923) | more than 7 years ago | (#17327610)

I used an Athlon XP-M 2500+ for a long time; it went up to 2.7GHz on just air, I ran it at 2.5GHz and it was rock solid.

Availability? In notebooks? (1)

Qwavel (733416) | more than 7 years ago | (#17324766)


I'm thinking of buying a new notebook. When will these be available?

Lower heat (and performance, ....) (2, Informative)

IYagami (136831) | more than 7 years ago | (#17324778)

...But most of the time irrelevant.

Anandtech has two good reviews here (lower power) [anandtech.com] and here (lower performance) [anandtech.com]

The main reason is the increase of L2 Cache Latency from 12 cycles to 20. But in most of the benchmarks the difference is very low.

All I know (1)

foniksonik (573572) | more than 7 years ago | (#17324840)

Is that 90nm should be enough for anyone....

Re:All I know (1)

serialdogma (883470) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325322)

AMD disagrees, they think that 90nm is a bit too much for everyone.

Re:All I know (1)

Courageous (228506) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325794)

Mod +1, Attempting to Be Funny

C//

Good news, guys! (4, Funny)

Black Parrot (19622) | more than 7 years ago | (#17324918)

Next time your class stud mentions his 9", you can counter by mentioning that your 6.5" consumes less power and gets the job done faster!

As I was once told... (1)

Valacosa (863657) | more than 7 years ago | (#17326488)

Faster isn't always better. "Efficient" should not be the word one uses to describe your sexual performance.

Obligitory (1)

Rik Sweeney (471717) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325140)

Where's the 64 bit ver...

Oh wait

Re:Obligitory (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17326002)

Where's the 64 bit ver...

Oh wait


That wasn't so much obligatory as it was irritating and stupid.

Take my advice....please (3, Interesting)

OneSmartFellow (716217) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325310)

If you are about to buy a AMD chip, ensure you buy a AM2 version, this is becuase non-AM2 versions do no support low level Hardware Virtualization (which means that XEN - and competitiors - can only operate in a paravirtualization mode)

Re:Take my advice....please (1)

Slashcrap (869349) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325774)

If you are about to buy a AMD chip, ensure you buy a AM2 version, this is becuase non-AM2 versions do no support low level Hardware Virtualization (which means that XEN - and competitiors - can only operate in a paravirtualization mode)

Correct me if I'm wrong (and provide copious evidence since you're telling people how to spend their money), but isn't the current hardware virtualisation support in Intel and AMD chips generally considerably slower than paravirtualisation?

Short explanation, it doesn't virtualise everything. Long explanation, I can't be bothered with right now.

Re:Take my advice....please (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17327716)

Yeah, and if you're going to run another Linux, that's the way to go. But if it's some other OS, most haven't been "xenified" yet.

Re:Take my advice....please (2, Informative)

Courageous (228506) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325858)

This is if you want to run Windows guests. Linux guests are best run paravirtualized for performance reasons. But point well-taken.

C//

Re:Take my advice....please (2, Interesting)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 7 years ago | (#17327154)

True, but only as far as it goes. On x86, you have four protection rings. The hypervisor lives in ring 0, the kernel gets moved to ring 1, and the apps go in ring 3 as usual. When they designed x86-64, AMD 'helpfully' removed rings 1 and 2, so now the kernel and the apps have to share the same ring. They also removed the segmented memory model, so you have to use (more expensive) paged protection mechanisms to protect guests from each other. This makes paravirtualisation more expensive on 64-bit x86 systems than 32-bit ones. If you have a system that supports HVM, you can put the Hypervisor in the special hypervisor mode, use hardware-assistance for shadow page tables, and generally implement paravirtualisation more efficiently.

I can't remember if current releases of Xen do this, but if they don't then they definitely will in the next six months.

Love the testing (1)

Dibblah (645750) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325714)

Okay. Let's test a low power CPU. We need to stick it in a low-power board to get good measurements, of course. Let's ignore that we've got a 6150 with integrated graphics.Then let's stick on a big-ass 7950 which consumes over 70w on it's own at idle.

Is this a mistake in the article, or is this just... Insane?

Nice.

Re:Love the testing (2, Insightful)

GodsMadClown (180543) | more than 7 years ago | (#17326150)

They used the same video card on the Intel test rig too. They're just trying to keep as many components as possible in common between the platforms so that the power draw comparisons are more useful.

Not too complicated really. As to why they chose that particular video card, I don't know, but I'd wager that the reviewer just had it on hand.

Re:Love the testing (1)

lagfest (959022) | more than 7 years ago | (#17326196)

Why is this insane? They are comparing it to other processors, and using the same platform so they can compare the results.

Re:Love the testing (1)

Dibblah (645750) | more than 7 years ago | (#17327066)

It's insane when more than 50% of the power budget is going to the video card, not the CPU they're 'testing'.

Re:Love the testing (1)

lagfest (959022) | more than 7 years ago | (#17327658)

The power consumption of the system in idle state appears to be consistent to +-1%. We don't exactly need 6 decimals of accuracy here.

Re:Love the testing (1)

pclminion (145572) | more than 7 years ago | (#17327628)

Yeah, it seems like a silly way to do it. Why not just put a power sensor on the main ground pin for the CPU (or do they have multiple ground pins?) and measure the power draw of the CPU directly? Come on, these are overclockers and hardware hacker geeks, surely they can do something simple like that.

Re:Love the testing (1)

joshetc (955226) | more than 7 years ago | (#17328778)

Because nobody uses JUST a CPU. One of the power saving features of AMD CPUs comes from the integrated memory controller which makes the motherboard not require one reducing overall power consumption.

Re:Love the testing (1)

jelle (14827) | more than 7 years ago | (#17329898)

"(or do they have multiple ground pins?)"

Multiple? More than half the pins on ICs like such CPUs are usually for power, not just to keep the input power stable, but also to prevent 'ground bounce' where the ground goes up from 0v when the chip draws a peak current.

And, hum, 'just' add a 'power sensor'? You can measure strong currents with a coil around the wire, or smaller currents with a small resistor in-line (and then measuring the voltage over the resistor), but both influence the power flowing from/to the chip in an unwanted way, so that's not likely what you want.

Unless you have one of them 'James Brown' power sensors ('can you feel da powa').

something simple like that, yeah...

Where is the article on UNDERVOLTING? (1)

John Jamieson (890438) | more than 7 years ago | (#17327892)

ALL the test sites seem to be preoccupied with overclocking and overvolting.

I cannot help but think there are enough of us interested in undervolting potential that someone should write a blurb about that.

 

35W Sempron (1)

zerOnIne (128186) | more than 7 years ago | (#17328082)

These are nice, but I'm just trying to track down one of the new 35W Semprons that AMD makes (model # SDD*). Unfortunately, nobody carries them at retail. And unless I want to order them in packs of 12, or pay for shipping from Sweden, I seem to be completely out of luck.

A follow-up on L2 cache performance (2, Interesting)

Dr. Damage (123558) | more than 7 years ago | (#17328532)

I have posted an update to my initial look at AMD's 65nm processors here:

http://techreport.com/onearticle.x/11486 [techreport.com]

The update addresses some anomalies in L2 cache performance and raises some possibly related questions about die sizes for the 65nm Athlon 64 X2. It appears this chip is not just a die shrink with the same performance characteristics, after all.

Past mistakes (1)

Duncan3 (10537) | more than 7 years ago | (#17329352)

My current rig is an Athlon 64 3200+, 10k RPM drive, ATI 9800 Pro, 2GB of RAM.

There are 2 HUGE mistakes there. The CPU and the drive. Both are HOT, and hungry hungry for $power.

My next machine I'm looking exclusively at the dual core 35W CPU's, leaning a little to Intel over AMD. For the drive, I'll probably go for a SATA laptop drive, since by 10 min after booting, absolutely everything is in RAM anyway - turns out drive performance is 100% irrelevant.

The 9800 runs all the games I've playyed since (Lineage2, GuildWars, AutoAssault, WoW) at 30+ FPS, so it's good enough for anyone who doesn't live in their parents basement :) That said, go buy a X1900 and run Folding@home!

Finding data on low-power video cards has been a little trickier, noone seems to make anything under 1.21 jigawatts. Even the 9800 is hot stuff.

Sounds alot like a Mac Mini, so clearly Apple has figured out the same stuff, and that may just be the cheapest way to go once they move them to core 2 duo.

Going to take more than low power to draw me back- (1)

purduephotog (218304) | more than 7 years ago | (#17329432)

I'm one of the fortunate 'many' that have had nothing but problems with AMD's x2 chips. Everywhere I turn I see the same problem listed and lamented about in forums- random total hard freezes with the X2 chips running a variety of mobos and configurations.

Some say to disable CnQ, others all USB (like THATS a fix nowadays), while still others recommend a full re-installation of everything and hope it works (doesn't).

I've swapped PSUs, memory, motherboard, drives, RAID cards, firewire cards, keyboard wedges (scanners), USB devices, disabled everything, and I can still get a lockup.

Moral of the story? I'm going back to intel. Yes, they're power hungry, more expensive, and rather not the company I'd like to support, but at least I never had a problem with their chipsets.

(And why are the crashes so annoying? 7 hours+ to rebuild a RAID-5 array everytime the computer freezes. And it still freezes if I remove all components and put in an old video card... but there is NO discernable pattern to it.)

Freeze examples:

Pressing the 'back' button on Firefox.
Getting up to go take a piss while downloading Ubuntu
Compressing a DVD
Ripping a DVD
writing a DVD
(yes I removed all DVD writers from the system and still got a lockup)
3 PSU's (Antec, 2x Ultras) no affect

Mind you I was totally stable when I had an AMD 3000+ chip- but I gave it to my parents when I decided to 'upgrade' and before I knew this hell was going to befall me. Had I known that, I would have shanked the whole system to ebay in parts and hoped they goto the four corners to never again see the light of day...

Conroe Duo Extreme, here I come when you drop to 118$/CPU.
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