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  1. #1
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    AM2 not looking so hot

    Anand's taken a sneak peak at a dual core AM2 processor and compared it to its Socket 939 brother:

    http://www.anandtech.com/cpuchipsets...oc.aspx?i=2738

    Even using DDR2-800 there was barely a cigarette paper between the two.

    IMHO it's not worth upgrading to AM2 if you've got a decent 939 chip already. Even more so if the rumours of a possible AM3 socket (and DDR3 support) next year are true. If Conroe is a good as they say then AMD won't have an answer until 2007 anyway.

  2. #2
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    Re: AM2 not looking so hot

    I would not say it is looking bad, though.

    the K8 is NOT a bandwidth starved CPU. DDR2 isn't going to help because it doesn't resolve a bottleneck. DDR2 does allow more data to be put in when the time comes, though. The K8L core is said to have more execution units, thus will demand more data.

    I would not be surprised if DDR3 were able to work on AM2, at least on a core that supports it (obviously not out yet). Electrically, the two are very similar. AMD isn't changing sockets because they want to. The DDR to DDR2 changeover really did necessitate it due to the significant differences.
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  3. #3
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    Re: AM2 not looking so hot

    Well here's hoping K8L does the trick.

  4. #4
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    Re: AM2 not looking so hot

    Quote Originally Posted by steven975
    I would not be surprised if DDR3 were able to work on AM2.....
    you heard that rumor too?

  5. #5
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    Re: AM2 not looking so hot

    I've never really understood the rationale of am2, i.e., it will require ddr2 and it won't be compatible with 939. Thus, the consumer must go out and buy a new mobo and new memory (and apparently new cooling solutions as well to fit on the am2 socket) but get NO performance increase??!! That makes no sense.

    Ya gotta wonder what AMD has up its sleeve, whether ddr3 will indeed work with am2 at some point, or higher rated ddr2 will significantly improve performance, or it will improve significantly a particular type of performance that is not apparent right now. Otherwise, am2 is going to be the biggest yawn and AMD will be the recipient of lots and lots of scathing ridicule in the many forums and blogs across cyberspace and lots of AMD users will seriously reconsider Intel cpus.
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  6. #6
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    Re: AM2 not looking so hot

    My guess is it will be the same as the original socket 754 64's that we all bought into. About a year later the 939's came out (X2) and that blew the single channel 754's out of the water. I have a feeling we will be hearing more from AMD than just AM2.

  7. #7
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    Re: AM2 not looking so hot

    To me, AM2 is simply a vehicle for the introduction of DDR2. Not really a significant performance gain as DDR2's higher theoretical throughput is partially offset by increased latency.

  8. #8
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    Re: AM2 not looking so hot

    exactly. in fact even with ddr2-800 the actual bandwidth is not much higher than with ddr400 due to this.

    why are you guys so upset? why do you have to buy a new motherboard? why would you, if you get no benefit. Like BWM said, it is truly for the introduction of DDR2 and to move the platform forward. While the K8 core probably won't benefit, the K8L most likely will.
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  9. #9
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    Re: AM2 not looking so hot

    Quote Originally Posted by BWM
    To me, AM2 is simply a vehicle for the introduction of DDR2. Not really a significant performance gain as DDR2's higher theoretical throughput is partially offset by increased latency.
    Who cares about ddr2? If AMD2 + ddr2 is going to yield no performance gain, then why introduce it at all? AMD et al expects people to give up their tried and true system and spend money and set up a new cpu + mobo + memory + cooling solution, and for no performance gain? That's just plain nuts, on so many levels. There's got to be more to AM2 than meets the eye, that perhaps the real gains will come later with better memory, better processors. But given all the hurrahs with conroe, AM2 initially could be the thud heard round the world.
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  10. #10
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    Re: AM2 not looking so hot

    The AM2 sells popcorn and cola just like Hollywood ...........ok better than TV? Ill pass on this movie. Ill know more if I can make the microsoft and AMD convention in MAY.

  11. #11
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    Re: AM2 not looking so hot

    Quote Originally Posted by alex666
    Who cares about ddr2? If AMD2 + ddr2 is going to yield no performance gain, then why introduce it at all? AMD et al expects people to give up their tried and true system and spend money and set up a new cpu + mobo + memory + cooling solution, and for no performance gain? That's just plain nuts, on so many levels. There's got to be more to AM2 than meets the eye, that perhaps the real gains will come later with better memory, better processors. But given all the hurrahs with conroe, AM2 initially could be the thud heard round the world.
    Memory performance is up 35%.

    For most platforms, that would be a very significant upgrade. However, the current A64s are rarely limited by the performance of the memory subsystem. Usually, the processor is just crunching data as fast as it can, never having to wait on the memory to give it more data to crunch. However, as the A64 gets faster at crunching data it will have to wait on the memory subsystem more and more. Whether it's more cores, more execution units, or simply a higher clock rate, as the A64 gets faster the real life performance difference between S939 and AM2 will grow.

    By the way, you should notice how the largest performance gains are seen in multithreaded applications.

    In addition to all that, DDR2 is simply superior technology on a lot of levels. For one thing, it's cheaper to produce.

  12. #12
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    Re: AM2 not looking so hot

    I wonder how those bandwidth and latency numbers compare to an Intel running DDR800? It's conceivable that the advantage of the on-chip memory controller could be reduced down to almost nothing considering the very high latency inherent in DDR2. Here's an example with hypothetical numbers:

    DDR1 Latency in clock cycles w/chipset: 16

    DDR1 Latency in clock cycles w/on-chip: 10

    = 37.5% Faster

    DDR2 Latency in clock cycles w/chipset: 26

    DDR2 Latency in clock cycles w/on-chip: 20

    = ~23% Faster

    Well, I guess that's not reducing the advantage down to "almost nothing", but you can clearly see how the advantage will certainly be reduced.

  13. #13
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    Re: AM2 not looking so hot

    I heard the AM2 socket will support quad-core processors...something socket 939 and DDR1 hasn't the bandwidth to work with.
    This signature is only here to provide a break between my post and the bottom bar and buttons...

  14. #14
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    Re: AM2 not looking so hot

    My days of throwing money around just for the sake of higher benchmark numbers have long since past. If it isn't going to make the kind of difference that I can see and feel just sitting at the keyboard using the system as usual, then I won't plunk down the bucks for it. I don't believe first generation AM2 and DDR2 will provide that.

  15. #15
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    Re: AM2 not looking so hot

    Quote Originally Posted by BWM
    My days of throwing money around just for the sake of higher benchmark numbers have long since past.
    I'm starting to feel the same way which is unusual. I said I would be upgrading to AM2 right away and now I'm not so sure anymore. If I won't then FX60 here I come but only after the price drops and it should when Intel releases Conroe.
    Last edited by solofly; 04-12-2006 at 10:42 AM.

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