amd or intel?

ExtraTerrestrial Apes
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Mad Max, let's take your

Mad Max,

let's take your Athlon X2 250 (3.0 GHz) with a projected RAC of 2200 as baseline and see what we get. I've got an i7 920 which needs ~23200s for a 251 credit WU. That's a maximum RAC of 7500. It's running with the stock cooler, so should probably run at 2.67 GHz rather than turbo up to 2.80 GHz. Currently you'd get either the i7 950 (3.06 GHz base) or i7 870 (2.80 GHz base) for the former price of the i7 920, i.e. ~250€/$. With the i7 950 we'd be at RAC 8500. The fastest Athlon II X4 is runs at 3.1 GHz, which would yield an RAC of 4500. The Phenom II X6 1055T would yield RAC 6200, whereas Phenom II X6 1095T would get RAC 7000.

So performance of Intel 4-Core and AMD 6-Core is almost comparable with an advantage for Intel (and the advantage increases once you overclock, since the Intels gain more frequency). Load power consumption is surprisingly good for the AMDs, but I'd still give the nod to Intel: test at Anandtech.

There they use an AMD board which is much more economic than previous offerings, as idle power consumption dropped by ~20W compared to the values one usually sees around the web. Still they can't match the socket 1156 offerings, i.e. the i7 870. i7 950 does add power consumption due to the socket 1366 board and would approximately tie the AMD 6-cores.

So AMD does give you nice entry offerings, but the Intels do more work. If you try to match that performance with more machines it'll probably end up being more expensive, since the CPU price is only a small part of the entire system cost.

Max wrote:
So that the most economical crunch in AMD camp is Athlon II X3/X4 and Phenom II X6

The X4 is much more economical than the X3: e.g. the 2.8 GHz X4 offers 31% more throughput than the X3 3.0 GHz at 12€ higher cost for the cpu, all else being equal. Power draw will increase by 10 - 20W, which should be ~15% for the entire system (depending on components, of course).
The X6 is not such a straight decision, as the entry price is much higher. If I'd build an AMD cruncher now I'd make sure it's an X6 1055T, though.

MrS

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M. Schmitt
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RE: Mad Max, let's take

Message 80922 in response to message 80921

Quote:

Mad Max,

let's take your Athlon X2 250 (3.0 GHz) with a projected RAC of 2200 as baseline and see what we get. I've got an i7 920 which needs ~23200s for a 251 credit WU. That's a maximum RAC of 7500. It's running with the stock cooler, so should probably run at 2.67 GHz rather than turbo up to 2.80 GHz. Currently you'd get either the i7 950 (3.06 GHz base) or i7 870 (2.80 GHz base) for the former price of the i7 920, i.e. ~250€/$. With the i7 950 we'd be at RAC 8500. The fastest Athlon II X4 is runs at 3.1 GHz, which would yield an RAC of 4500. The Phenom II X6 1055T would yield RAC 6200, whereas Phenom II X6 1095T would get RAC 7000.


Just for the facts!
My i7 920 running Linux needs an average of >25ksec for 251 C WUs. The theoretical(unreachable!) max RAC would be ~6920. It's a root-server running with stock frequency. Since a long time the fastest AMD Phenonom II X4 runs with 3.4GHz(black edition with open multiplier), the actual fastest one runs with 3.5GHz(Alternate: 169,90€). My son owns one with 3.2GHz running Windows 7 oced to 3.5 GHz that needs avg. 16866 sec/251 C WUs, resuling in a theoretical RAC of 5143. Socket AM3 boards(max. 140W TDP, onboard GK, positive feedback) you can buy here in Germany for a bit more than 60€. Intel boards with an equal TDP cost a multiple.

Quote:
So performance of Intel 4-Core and AMD 6-Core is almost comparable with an advantage for Intel (and the advantage increases once you overclock, since the Intels gain more frequency). Load power consumption is surprisingly good for the AMDs, but I'd still give the nod to Intel: test at Anandtech.


Not in general, only if you compare Intel CPUs with HT.

Quote:
So AMD does give you nice entry offerings, but the Intels do more work. If you try to match that performance with more machines it'll probably end up being more expensive, since the CPU price is only a small part of the entire system cost.


A 6-core AMD system will do the work of almost everybody fast enough, so I see no need to buy an Intel system for much more money. It is much wiser to invest that money e.g. in a SSD, a raid 5 system etc..

And I wonder about the idle power consumption at anandtech. The AMD CPUs reduce clock to 800MHz so which part shall use up all that power?
Anyway I will get a X6 system in the near future and do my own measurements.

ExtraTerrestrial Apes
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Bot sure what's wrong with

Message 80923 in response to message 80922

Bot sure what's wrong with your i7 920. Mine's just running DDR3-1333 CL9, Linux and stock cooling, so nothing fancy here.

The RAC 5143 of your 3.5 GHz X4 fits nicely to my projection based on Max's data: I'd calculate RAC 5080, but don't have the unrounded value of the RAC 4500 any more.

Regarding mainboards: H55 boards also start at 60€. You even get the full 4 memory slots if you're fine with Asrock. TDP doesn't matter here as all of them can take any of these CPUs. For 70€ you're already at MSI or Asus offerings with 4 slots.

Granted, these will "only" accept the i7 870 rather than the i7 950, but this is excellent value nevertheless: you get 133 MHz base clock less, much higher Turbo modes (bonus for non-BOINC related tasks), lower board costs and lower power consumption.

Quote:
Not in general, only if you compare Intel CPUs with HT.

That's why I didn't bring up the i5 760 as an equally priced alternative to the AMDs - I don't have performance data for that one.

Quote:
A 6-core AMD system will do the work of almost everybody fast enough, so I see no need to buy an Intel system for much more money. It is much wiser to invest that money e.g. in a SSD, a raid 5 system etc..

Well, we're discussing Einstein performance here, aren't we? So "but it's fast enough anyway" doesn't count - in that case we could all continue running our previous systems and have them be fast enough for browsing etc. However, when we discuss price/performance and efficiency at crunching Einstein, then performance does count. If the perfect Einstein-crunching machine is also the best general purpose workstation / surf machine / gaming machine is a totally different question (and the answer is likely to be "no").

And I'm not saying everyone should always buy an i7 or higher. Just pointing out that despite AMDs lower CPU costs the HT-enabled i7 might (and are, in my opinion) still be the most cost effective solution. You pay less for the AMDs, but you also get less work done.

Regarding idle power consumption: sure they're clocked down, get reduced voltage and are put into sleep states. There's still subthreshold leakage though. That's current which flows even though the transistor is not switching, and probably more. Intel only really got this under control with power gating, introduced in the i7: here parts of cores and entire cores are completely cut off the power supply.

MrS

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archae86
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RE: Regarding idle power

Message 80924 in response to message 80923

Quote:

Regarding idle power consumption: sure they're clocked down, get reduced voltage and are put into sleep states. There's still subthreshold leakage though. That's current which flows even though the transistor is not switching, and probably more. Intel only really got this under control with power gating, introduced in the i7: here parts of cores and entire cores are completely cut off the power supply.

MrS

Ah leakage. This was a major change during my thirty years in the industry. When I joined up, nothing leaked worth talking about on a fully healthy chip--you could actually measure the increase in current from the chip acting as a photodetector if you removed a blackout cloth from a probing setup--so nanoamps for a whole chip (CMOS watch chip with 1850 transistors, or CMOS 1K static RAM).

But by five years ago several things leaked severely. Subthreshold was not that big a component, but gate oxide leakage was a major factor (several amperes of it on an idle microprocessor) and so were the diffused junctions.

It is just astonishing to someone from the 1000 nanometer gate oxide era to see modern leakage components.

Also, once Intel finally got serious enough about power consumption to devote scarce process development resources to it in earnest, and to trade away a portion of other highly desirable things in its favor, some other rather important improvements came in (not just the switches mentioned below). Not that we are back down to low standby currents by any means, but we are already well below where we would have been had the process development stayed on the previous general progression.

Cannibal Corpse
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Really want to build a Intel

Really want to build a Intel chruncher..Any thoughts, suggestions, comments are more than welcomed and the posible RAC of this rig.

Intel Core i7 875K Unlocked 2.93GHz LGA 1156 Boxed Processor( intel turbo to 3.6) $249.99
Asus P7P55D-E Premium LGA 1156 P55 ATX Motherboard $271.97
A-Data 4GB (2 x 2GB) DDR3-2000 (PC3-16000) X Series Dual Channel Memory Kit $149.99 x2 $300.00
BFG Technologies EX1200 1200W ATX 12V / EPS 12V Modular Power Supply $219.99
Antec Dark Fleet 35 (DF-35) Mid-Tower ATX Case $114.99
Swiftech Apogee XT Intel Water Block (1156) $79.99
Swiftech H20-220-APEX ULTIMA Extreme CPU Liquid Cooling Kit ( good pump, dual 120 rad fans) $159.99
Logisys 3.5" Aluminum Dual-Fan Hard Drive Cooler $15.99
Western Digital VelociRaptor WD3000GLFSRTL 300GB 10,000 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive $199.99..optional
Western Digital Caviar Black WD1002FAEX 1TB 7,200 RPM SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive - OEM $99.99
PNY GeForce GTX 465 1024MB GDDR5 PCIe 2.0 x16 Video Card $219.99 after rebate savings [details] $249.99
I wish I could afford a GTX 480, so I was wondering if I skimp on say the board or the cheap HHD, or just 4gb of ram and up that latter. Or just a latter upgrade to the GTX 480.
This is all from my local Micro-Center store. Total with out VelociRaptor,
$2426.00. Very do-able. Please any feed back....Thanks

DO WHAT THO WILL SHALL BE THE WHOLE OF THE LAW.
PROUD MEMBER OF THE CARL SAGAN TEAM.

mikey
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RE: Really want to build a

Message 80926 in response to message 80925

Quote:
Really want to build a Intel chruncher..Any thoughts, suggestions, comments are more than welcomed and the posible RAC of this rig.

Intel Core i7 875K Unlocked 2.93GHz LGA 1156 Boxed Processor( intel turbo to 3.6) $249.99
Asus P7P55D-E Premium LGA 1156 P55 ATX Motherboard $271.97
A-Data 4GB (2 x 2GB) DDR3-2000 (PC3-16000) X Series Dual Channel Memory Kit $149.99 x2 $300.00
BFG Technologies EX1200 1200W ATX 12V / EPS 12V Modular Power Supply $219.99
Antec Dark Fleet 35 (DF-35) Mid-Tower ATX Case $114.99
Swiftech Apogee XT Intel Water Block (1156) $79.99
Swiftech H20-220-APEX ULTIMA Extreme CPU Liquid Cooling Kit ( good pump, dual 120 rad fans) $159.99
Logisys 3.5" Aluminum Dual-Fan Hard Drive Cooler $15.99
Western Digital VelociRaptor WD3000GLFSRTL 300GB 10,000 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive $199.99..optional
Western Digital Caviar Black WD1002FAEX 1TB 7,200 RPM SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive - OEM $99.99
PNY GeForce GTX 465 1024MB GDDR5 PCIe 2.0 x16 Video Card $219.99 after rebate savings [details] $249.99
I wish I could afford a GTX 480, so I was wondering if I skimp on say the board or the cheap HHD, or just 4gb of ram and up that latter. Or just a latter upgrade to the GTX 480.
This is all from my local Micro-Center store. Total with out VelociRaptor,
$2426.00. Very do-able. Please any feed back....Thanks

The ram is the only problem I see and its problem is how much of it...you are getting an i7 which is a quad core that can be an 8 core cruncher. If each core of the 8 cores uses 512 meg of memory for the workunit you will run out of memory in no time at all and be swapping the unit to the hard drive, making it really slow, by comparison. You also don't say what OS you are going to be getting, I would recommend 64bit Win7 and then upping the memory to 8 gig. If you bought the 1tb hard drive now and the Velociraptor later on it might work. Also if you make sure the board you do get has multiple pci-e slots you could add the 480 later on as a 2nd gpu, or buy the 480 later on and build a separate machine with it, maybe not quite as powerful and more a gpu cruncher than a cpu and gpu cruncher. A nice older model quad core would keep it fed nicely and let that 480 chomp all the units it can handle. Just my thoughts.

DanNeely
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He's using two 4gb kits for

Message 80928 in response to message 80926

He's using two 4gb kits for 8gb total; so he total ram isn't a problem but using both banks or ram instead of only one limits your overclocking potential. Also whereever the OP is buying ram from seems to be really gouging.

2x2gb DDR3-2000 kits on newegg are only $100, and a 2x4gb kit can be found for $300.

ahj
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Disputable. Virtual threads

Message 80929 in response to message 80923

Disputable. Virtual threads are no substitute for physical ones. At best HT can deliver a 10-15% peformance increase, at worst, it can actually decrease your net output, depending on the application (i.e. memory intensive apps that soak the bus). E@H seems to tolerate virtual threads, with said 10% in output (this is using my intel atom system, which naturally has greater inefficiencies than nehalem.)

The 95w PII X6 would most definately be the best choice for 95% of DC projects, especially in terms of efficiency. Plus, with the AM3 socket, you have the ability to pop in an X8 bulldozer chip when they come out in Q3 next year. With a 1366 socket based system, you're stuck with current CPUs. The OP may or may not find this an issue, just some food for thought :D

You also say it's cost effective to go with an i7. But what about it is cost effective? In the mid-long term, it will actually be relatively cost ineffective. The i7's will use a decent chunk more of electricity than the X6's, (esp. the 95w ones). I'm assuming of course the machine is to be run 24/7, whereby the i7's will be more expensive to run than the X6's.

mikey
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RE: Disputable. Virtual

Message 80930 in response to message 80929

Quote:
Disputable. Virtual threads are no substitute for physical ones. At best HT can deliver a 10-15% peformance increase, at worst, it can actually decrease your net output, depending on the application (i.e. memory intensive apps that soak the bus). E@H seems to tolerate virtual threads, with said 10% in output (this is using my intel atom system, which naturally has greater inefficiencies than nehalem.)

I totally agree but since I believe it is an increase of 10% per core, not 10% per machine, that can make for a 40% increase over a quad core.

Quote:

The 95w PII X6 would most definately be the best choice for 95% of DC projects, especially in terms of efficiency. Plus, with the AM3 socket, you have the ability to pop in an X8 bulldozer chip when they come out in Q3 next year. With a 1366 socket based system, you're stuck with current CPUs. The OP may or may not find this an issue, just some food for thought :D

You also say it's cost effective to go with an i7. But what about it is cost effective? In the mid-long term, it will actually be relatively cost ineffective. The i7's will use a decent chunk more of electricity than the X6's, (esp. the 95w ones). I'm assuming of course the machine is to be run 24/7, whereby the i7's will be more expensive to run than the X6's.

The guy didn't mention the option of using an AMD chip, but yes some projects benefit from using AMD chips while other projects benefit from Intel chips. And yes generally speaking an X6 would be faster than a quad core machine, it is after all 6 cores instead of 4. And I didn't even consider the electricity use in my response.

Bikeman (Heinz-Bernd Eggenstein)
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RE: I totally agree but

Message 80931 in response to message 80930

Quote:


I totally agree but since I believe it is an increase of 10% per core, not 10% per machine, that can make for a 40% increase over a quad core.

Hmm... this piece of math needs some serious reconsideration :-)

Let's do an example:

Let's assume this 10% performance gain (on the i5/i7 I'm sure it's much higher actually for most apps, but anyway...)

So without HT, let's say a WU needs 3600 sec "per core" ==> 24 WUs per day

A 10% performance increase "per core" means 26.4 WU a day, so 6545 seconds per WU if 2 can be done in parallel on a single core.

So....how many WU per day for a 4 core w/o HT: 4 x 24 WU = 96 WU

How many WU per day for the 4 core w/ HT: well... 4 x 26.4 WU = 105.6

Overall performance gain: 10 % ....not 40%

CU
HB

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