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  1. #1
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    Conroe or AM2 for me?

    Hello all. I posted a thread in the Tech Talk section, but thought maybe I should post one here too. I'm looking to upgrade my "aging" system in like 2 months from now. My current specs.

    Athlon xp-m @ 2.4ghz
    gigabyte nf2-400
    6800gt agp
    2x512mb ddr400

    I'm looking at either AM2 or Conroe. I originally planned to get an Asrock agp/pci-e mobo for S939 and a X2 3800+ but today I decided that wasn't enough of an upgrade for me. Now, I am planning to just wait until the next videocard come out (7950, x1950) for some prices to drop (i'll then decide what vidcard to get. For mobo/cpu following options.

    conroe e6400 (2.13ghz, 2x2) $325cad
    conroe e6600 (2.4ghz, 4x4) $410cad
    +
    msi 975x mobo $235cad

    am2 x2 3800+ $175cad
    am2 x2 4200+ $215cad
    +
    asus m2n-sli $185cad
    msi k9n sli $175cad

    I'm leaning towards e6600 + the MSI mobo. Hopefully, in next 2 months, mobo prices will drop and/or some new mobos will come out for Conroe. But now I'm readint that 64-bit performance for Conroe isn't as good as A64. Is this true? And if it is, how much worse is it. I'm worried since I know Vista comes out soon (early next year?), and I don't plan on having to buy another new rig (mobo+cpu) anytime soon.

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  2. #2
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    Re: Conroe or AM2 for me?

    If you are looking for a budget Dual core then your answer is AMD. If you are looking for great performance at a fraction of the price then Conroe is your answer. What you are comparing above is Performance Vs Budget and that is the choice you will have to make.

    As to Conroes 64-bit performance. AMD 64-bit implementation is much better than Intels. While Conroe outperforms AMD in every 32-bit application by a decent margin, it barley outperforms AMD in 64-bit and it even looses to AMD in some. You can read this review http://www.xbitlabs.com/articles/cpu...duo-64bit.html
    In conclusion
    Quote Originally Posted by X-bit Labs
    As we have expected, nothing serious has happened. CPUs with Intel Core microarchitecture and EM64T technology work normally in 64-bit modes. No dramatic performance drop has been detected in most benchmarks.
    Of course, there are a few applications, when Core 2 Duo work slower in their 64-bit versions than it would in their 32-bit ones. Among them are Windows Media Encoder 9 or 7-zip archiving tool, for instance. However, since the other testing participants have also lost some of their performance in these tasks, the problem is most likely to be not in the microarchitecture. EM64T technology of Core 2 Duo processors has a positive effect on the performance in the majority of applications.
    At the same time I would like to point out that it looks like Athlon 64 processors ensure higher performance increase when switching to 64-bit work mode. The average performance improvement we have seen from Athlon 64 FX-62 equaled 16%, while Core 2 Extreme X6800 demonstrated only 10% average performance boost. This way, there is a certain difference: AMD K8 turns out 6% mode efficient in 64-bit mode than Intel Core. However, this difference cannot compensate for the 20% performance advantage of the Intel Core 2 Duo over the Athlon 64 X2 working at the same clock speed, which we have pointed out in our previous articles. Therefore, we will not change our conclusions about the performance of the new Intel processors even keeping in mind the upcoming launch of 64-bit Windows Vista OS family.

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  3. #3
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    Re: Conroe or AM2 for me?

    f you are looking for a budget Dual core then your answer is AMD. If you are looking for great performance at a fraction of the price then Conroe is your answer. What you are comparing above is Performance Vs Budget and that is the choice you will have to make.
    I think it's pretty clear here that I'm not looking for "budget" seeing as how I'm considering the E6600 as my main option. I'm not poor by any means. I could afford the XE6800 or FX-62 in a heartbeat if I wanted to, but that would be a waste of money. I'm looking at Conroe cause it would give me what I need (a major CPU boost for my older CPU-bound games especially), and if I get a really nice vidcard or say in a year from now I upgrade my vidcard again, I'll be much less CPU-limited.

    I guess I'm mostly asking about that 64-bit Conroe thing. I saw a thread in this section and got kinda worried.

    However, this difference cannot compensate for the 20% performance advantage of the Intel Core 2 Duo over the Athlon 64 X2 working at the same clock speed, which we have pointed out in our previous articles.
    Sounds good. Looks like Conroe E6600 for me. Can't wait for 2 months to pass.

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  4. #4
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    Re: Conroe or AM2 for me?

    qquestion is,do you really need it? also,why spend 185 buckers for the mobo lol?
    id go amd(3800),but thats me
    dan

    add a couple 120mm fans overhead to drop temps by 10+ celsiusD.S.C-12(2)-disclaimer : whatever u do with your hardware/software is your
    responsibility, which i dont hold if u break anything

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  5. #5
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    Re: Conroe or AM2 for me?

    Yea I do need it. See I really want this proc upgrade for my racing games like GTR2 and GT Legends and others such as this. These games are MUCH more CPU bound than any other modern games (i.e. FEAR, BF2, Oblivion, so on). And I have the money. Might as well spend it. From the looks of it, Conroe has huge performance increase with better GPUs like Crossfire X1900XT's, so if I get like a X1900XT now, maybe add another later or whatever, the point is, somewhere between now and/or next time I get an even better card, CPU will be at the very least better now and way more in the future than an A64.

    The only problem really is I know for SURE that Intel will require a new mobo for whatever new proc that comes out, so I'll get this one and overclock it well and stick it with it for a long time hopefully.

    The thing is, the X2 3800+ (single core 2.0ghz for games basically), won't really provide a serious upgrade over my Athlon XP-M @ 2.4ghz, not for the games I want anyway.

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  6. #6
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    Re: Conroe or AM2 for me?

    one other thing to consider is that upgradability is a big question mark on Conroe, and Intel changes their sockets and/or VRM profiles often. Yes, LGA775 is and will be the current socket a while, but it is already in its THIRD version I belive. They changed it the first time for dual core, and again for conroe. Also, even if quad core works, the implementation is said to be not that good and it will choke on the FSB, even if it is 1333Mhz (which is doubtable).

    AM2 is upgradable to Quad core, K8L, and AM3. K8L will be a good bit better than K8 as it has more execution units (double in some cases). Also, the 4*4 platform will enable you to use Dual CPUs, something Intel will likely never come out with in the consumer market as a suitable chipset does not exist. Even if one comes out, the scaling to 2 CPUs performance-wise likely won't be much. With 4*4 it will likely be about that of Opteron...or damn good.

    Just something to think about. And, with 64bit performance already being pretty close clock for clock, it looks like K8L will clean Conroe's clock in Vista's 64bit environment. Don't get me wrong, Conroe is damn good, but the upgradability will make me think twice about spending $600 (US) on a cpu/board. Also bear in mind that 4MB Conroes will be selling above sticker for several months due to low availability.
    Last edited by steven975; 08-17-2006 at 12:11 AM.
    Q6600
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  7. #7
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    Re: Conroe or AM2 for me?

    The 4MB Conroe is $410cad here. The 2mb one is $325cad. Seems pretty reasonable. I have no problem with spending that much.

    I think you're looking too much into it with the 4*4 and Quad core and so on. I'm pretty loaded in money right now and the extra $200cad is more than worth it from the way I see it.

    This paragraph right here furthers my decision to most likely go for Conroe instead of AM2.

    AMD K8 turns out 6% mode efficient in 64-bit mode than Intel Core. However, this difference cannot compensate for the 20% performance advantage of the Intel Core 2 Duo over the Athlon 64 X2 working at the same clock speed, which we have pointed out in our previous articles.
    Anyway, if you read, I already mentioned in my last post about the upgradeability thing. I know for a fact that Intel will change the socket and that I'd have to get a new mobo for whatever new generation of proc's that comes out. I'm ok with that, at least for now. Maybe my opinion will change in the next 2 months. I'll wait and see, but for now, my mind is set for that e6600 4x4.

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  8. #8
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    Re: Conroe or AM2 for me?

    then get it and fold that puppy
    Low Speed, High Drag!
    Formerly a team 734 Folding Frog. (Might start up again soon)

  9. #9
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    Re: Conroe or AM2 for me?

    im kinda concerned that AMD would lose money because of Conroe

  10. #10
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    Re: Conroe or AM2 for me?

    Don't worry about it. I own AMD stock (and won't buy intel stuff) but Conroe currently is a paper tiger that was rushed to market before there was a production base or inventories to support it.
    AMD plans selling 10M x2's (up from around 2 the first 2 qu) from now to the end of the year, conroe will make 7 milion total. (dMost AMD x2 production is Opteron,high profit) By the time Conroe gets cranked up good things will be coming out from AMD.


    "The significant problems we face cannot be solved at the same level of thinking we were at when we created them."
    - Albert Einstein (1879-1955)

  11. #11
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    Re: Conroe or AM2 for me?

    yes, intel is well established, amd will never put them out of buisness, vice versa amd has now driven enough wedge into thier coffers that intel wont do the same either, amd is around to stay, they both know it and that was the threshold that needed to be crossed, from this point on both companies will be trying to lead that cutting edge and expect it to be much like a yo yo from here on out

    The same thing happened with Nvidia and ATI, Im very interested to see where this AMD/ATI adventure goes now I have always been one to lean towards ATI so for me Im really hoping for something special coming out of thier sleeve

    I have been saying this lately these days IMHO I dont think you can really go wrong with either, so yea man, if that conroe really looks like a winner to you go for it. At these crazy lowball prices these days why not?

    Good luck with your build.

    Cheers
    J
    Low Speed, High Drag!
    Formerly a team 734 Folding Frog. (Might start up again soon)

  12. #12
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    Re: Conroe or AM2 for me?

    The best thing you can do (and what I did) for Oblivion is get a x1900xt. Period. The architecture of that card is particularly well suited for that game, and it's the only single card solution that does HDR +AA, and consistently maintains outdoor FPS above 20 with high settings.

    Beyond that, the CPU you get is largely irrelevant. Anything A64 above 2.0 GHZ (dual or single), P4 above 3.0GHZ, or the new Conroe's should be fine.

    Spend your money on a quality GPU, and use the rest of the budget for CPU/mobo.

    In conclusion:

    Get an AM2 dual core setup with good GPU rather than COnroe setup with average GPU. If you can afford the best of both worlds, go for it. Filthy rich Albertans
    Last edited by mr_raider; 08-17-2006 at 10:24 AM.

  13. #13
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    Re: Conroe or AM2 for me?

    Well actually I can afford the best of both worlds. I figure might as well spend $400 + $230 on cpu/mobo now and like not upgrade it for a long time if it's sooo good. I can also stick like a x1950 or whatever comes out in september/october, or maybe just get a single x1900xt and add another later or something, I'll see.

    I'm a really strong advocate for less spending on CPU, more on GPU, but I really want a huge performance increase in my racing sims which are much more CPU bound than other games, and the Conroe E6600 which at least as fast as FX-62 is just too good of a deal to pass up.

    And as for all that quad-core and K8L and stuff, if it's really the next holy grail and all that, I'll just give my Conroe to my dad a year from now and I'll go AMD again (if they come out with something much more better).

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  14. #14
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    Re: Conroe or AM2 for me?

    Hey, if you've got money crawling out your you know what, then just buy yourself something insane like seen here: Biohazard Computer Systems ANNIHILATION

    Not saying to buy that system, but build one to specs Getting this thing with SKT AM2 will ensure Quad core CPU's wheras there hasn't really been a lot of press on Intel's version of 4x4.

    Just think. 4x4 CPU and 4x4 GPU, way over 4GB addressable ram, you'd be set for a good six months! (LOL)

  15. #15
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    Re: Conroe or AM2 for me?

    Honestly, I don't really care about future speculation. If AMD does come out with something 10 times better in 6 to 12 months from now, I'll give the Conroe to my dad. When is this quad-core coming out. Whatever I'm buying, I will be buying in a month or two from now, whenever the new video cards are supposed to be coming out so that maybe some price drops on X1900XT or the new ones, and some price drops on mobos or some new mobos coming out.

    Getting this thing with SKT AM2 will ensure Quad core CPU's wheras there hasn't really been a lot of press on Intel's version of 4x4.
    How much truth is there to is and what do you mean on the 4x4 thing? You mean not much press on Conroe E6600 which is 4mb cache by 4mb cache or what.

    AM2 is upgradable to Quad core, K8L, and AM3. K8L will be a good bit better than K8 as it has more execution units (double in some cases). Also, the 4*4 platform will enable you to use Dual CPUs, something Intel will likely never come out with in the consumer market as a suitable chipset does not exist. Even if one comes out, the scaling to 2 CPUs performance-wise likely won't be much. With 4*4 it will likely be about that of Opteron...or damn good.
    Can someone explain to me what this means to me as a consumer and how much speculation/truth/timeline we're talking here.

    I'm not an Intel fan by any means, but this E6600 (or the E6400) seem just too good to pass up. There's still like 2 months till I buy something, so I may change my mind in that time if something happens. What's all this stuff about K8L and Quad core. When do they come out.

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