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Is the P4 really *slower*?
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ZagiFlyer
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 19, 2002 1:51 am    Post subject: Is the P4 really *slower*? Reply with quote

/. sited an article about how Intel, HP and Gateway are being sued by users who claim that the P4 isn't any faster/better than the PIII, and they are just "Megahetrz Marketing".

Is this apparent lack of speed/power from the PIII to the P4 due to the fact that other distros and operating systems are not optimized for the P4?

Stated another way, clock-cycle for clock-cycle would a PIII at the same clock speed as a P4 keep up if the OS has P4 optimizations (a la GCC 3.2)?

Are hardware manufacturers and resellers being sued because software companies don't provide any means of optimizing their code?

(and why did people switch from roman to arabic numerals all of a sudden? Why don't we write P3 or PIV?)

What do you think?
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Dolio
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 19, 2002 4:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, don't quote me on any of this but:

As I recall, when Pentium 4s were released, the thing was that they'd scale to way higher MHz ratings than P3s would. Athlon Tbirds and P3s were at about the same MHz levels, but P3s weren't keeping up with the Athlons in performance.

Then Intel released the P4s, and they went to way higher MHz ratings than Athlons (What are they up to now? 2.5 GHz? Or more?). This let Intel's fastest Pentium 4 beat AMD's fastest Athlon (in some cases at least), simply because P4s could run a lot faster.

However, you'll recall that, later, Intel released the Tutalin P3s, which let them scale to higher MHz than before. As I recall, the demo Tutalin P3 at Tom's Hardware beat the fastest P4 at the time in several benchmarks (if those mean anything to you).

Also, as I recall, if you read benchmarks of initial P4s against Athlons of the time, people generally agreed that, for example, P4's floating point unit was kind of crappy. The slower Athlons would smack the P4s around at stuff that required a good fpu. I think the idea was that once people started using sse2 stuff, P4s would fare better. P4's would only gain a lead if sse2 was used, and also because they could run significantly faster than Athlons and P3s (Athlons are still running in the 1.5 GHz area, right? They just have names like 2200+ to confuse :)). So I guess your point could have some validity.

However, I suspect that if you could crank a P3 or Athlon to run at 2.6 GHz, you'd get better performance than P4, in certain benchmarks (They'd probably have trouble with memory intensive stuff, depending on how you overclocked them (133 MHz bus on the Athlon isn't really great for that aspect, not sure about the P3)), at least. I haven't been reading a lot recently, but as I remember, people generally agree that P4 was designed for high MHz, not necessarily for high performance/MHz (and that was identified pretty quickly at the start).

Now, is that grounds to sue? I'm not really sure (but we live in a very litigous society).

P.S.: I'm using P3. :)
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pjp
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 19, 2002 4:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Moved from Gentoo Chat to Off The Wall. Nothing Gentoo related in the original post.

See this post in the AMD vs. Intel thread for some info.
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Dolio
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 19, 2002 5:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Did a few minutes more research. Here's a link to a Tom's Hardware review of the new thorougbred Athlon core (right at the start of the benchmarks):

http://www6.tomshardware.com/cpu/02q2/020610/thoroughbred-14.html

I also looked at newegg. An Athlon XP 2200+ (the fastest one currently), runs at 1800 MHz. The fastest P4 was at 2.53 GHz. The fastest P3 was at 1.3 GHz, I think (note, there are no P3 benchmarks, and you'd probably be hardpressed to find any that weren't really old. Here
are some where a Tualatin (misspelled in my original post. Apologies) 1266 man-handles a P4 1800, but that's probably an old P4 1800 (not Northwood, which could well make a difference)).

So, anyway, the point is that P4s are rarely, if ever, 50% faster than an Athlon XP 2200+ (although AMD's rating system smooths the differences out more). The demoed Tualatin 1266 seemed to be holding its own/beating the demoed Thunderbird 1400, so if you extrapolate that any, you'd get the equivalent to an Athlon XP 2200+ would be a Tutalin running at about 2 GHz. So for Intel to claim the same performance/MHz on P4 as P3, a P4 at 2.5 GHz would have to run approximately 25% faster than a Athlon XP 2200+.

Remember, though,
Quote:
There are three kinds of lies. Lies, damned lies, and benchmarks
and I'm sure someone could produce statistics to refute my claims, so take all my bs with a grain of salt. :)

Cheers.
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MacMasta
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 19, 2002 5:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Everything I've read, and it's been quite a bit, has come down to this:

Per Mhz, the P3 (just barely) and the Athlons (esp. the XP) are considerably better than the P4, in everything except sse2. When the app supports (and can actually find a use for) sse2, then P4's got them all whipped.

Of course, the P4 is running at vastly higher Mhz than anything else right now - so that may make up for it being a dog.
My machine at work (winxp - shudder) is running a 1.7 ghz p4, and it's plenty fast.
But all the machines in my house, with the exception of my laptop (Dell doesn't offer AMD parts - too bad) is running an athlon. And I love them.

~Mac~
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kerframil
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 20, 2002 6:48 pm    Post subject: The whole shebang Reply with quote

This guy knows what he's talking about:

http://www.emulators.com/pentium4.htm
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