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Intel RoadMap with P4 Stats To Boot 79

Anand reader writes "In the Intel Desktop CPU & Chipset Roadmap, AnandTech details the Intel roadmap before the Pentium 4 hits the streets next week. The article includes the desktop CPU and chipset strategy. They discuss and answer the questions. Does the Pentium 4 have a chance or is it doomed from the start? What will become of the Pentium III? And will Intel ever speed up the Celeron's FSB? and more including analysis of Intel's current 2000/2001 roadmap." Also see their official P4 stats and benchmarks.
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Intel RoadMap with P4 Stats To Boot

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  • Pentium4 does of course have a place. In x86 servers, for example, Intel chips will hold >90% of the market. This is because AMD chips are not fully compatible with Intel - I have entrusted servers to AMD in the past, and they've been awful. [Perhaps an AMD-compiled version of Windows would be good.]

    In terms of corporate, companies will continue to buy Intel for similar reasons (reliability). Pentium 4 will take the place of previous Intel chips as prices fall, as has happened in the past, and Intel will simply stop producing P-III.

    The heatsink/motherboard/memory issues are red herrings - these things have happened in the past - slot 1/socket 7, memory chips have changed, etc. It just takes time for these things to happen, but happen it will, and in 2 years will be having a similar conversation about P5, albeit with an even smaller market share for Intel.

    In the home, however, Intel is dead - but we knew that already - they're unable to compete on price, and that's all that matters to users, who know nothing of chipsets, heatsinks and processor cores.

  • by abdulwahid ( 214915 ) on Monday November 20, 2000 @03:55AM (#613191) Homepage
    they are currently the two highest clocked x86 CPUs available

    Since when were high performance Intel chips available? Someone at Intel has managed to redfine "available". Does available mean we can go down to our local h/w shop and buy it? Available in the Intel sense means that some h/w review companies might get hold of some if they are sponsored by Intel.

    Intel should look at AMD...they have the fastest available chips!
  • by matth ( 22742 )
    Why would you want a Pentium 4? You need like a pound of heat sink, and you need to get a new case... cause the MB won't fit in what you have now. Sorry I'll stick with my P III - 800mhz :)

  • In the home, however, Intel is dead

    I'm not too sure about this. Remeber that "in the home" is not necessarily the same as "in the home of a slashdot reader". With the P4 Itel will have faster sounding chips - and a lot of people - especially when buying things to impress children or workmates who may be as equally uninformed will go for the faster sounding chip. It's the educated and people who buy from sepcialist vendors who end up buying the Athlon and Duron chips.

    The only way I can see for Interl to be dead in the home is if PC vendors stop using Intel chips in the home environment - and let's face it, if that happens Intel will just make it financially more acceptable for those vendors to turn back to Intel.

  • by samadhi ( 140608 ) on Monday November 20, 2000 @04:01AM (#613194)
    A review has been posted on Tom's Hardware with benchmarks comparing performance verses the Athlon and PIII.

    Some of these the P4 performs excellently in, however AMD still have a few tricks up their sleeve in other benchmarks equalling or surpassing the P4 clocked up to 1.7GHz.
  • Price watch lists vendors for the P4 1.5Ghz unit here [] and some claim to have stock. Prices range from $1097 to $1198.
  • In the home people by $699 pcs. That means AMD.
  • Anand sez: None of the information contained in this article is provided by Intel and the following roadmap may not hold true. Let's just call it a set of "informed" guesses at what we think Intel will be doing in the next year.

    Anand may (or may not) have a good idea what's going on because he's been following these things professionally for a while, but even so.. don't take his word for Intel's word.
  • by jfunk ( 33224 )
    AMD incompatible? Not good for servers?

    I've been using AMD forever and I never had trouble using them in servers. They're rock solid for me.

    Perhaps an AMD-compiled version of Windows would be good.

    Oh, I get it, you're using Windows on servers. No wonder you're having stability problems.

    I would never imagine using Windows on a server, I don't even have it on my desktop.

    Besides, do you think I'm going to listen to FUD from someone whose login name is buttfucker2000?

  • Intel and Microsoft have mutual optimization exclusivity suport. So AMD will never be good on M$. There even was an issue of 95/98 not BOOTING on AMD CPUs, and heard this coworker say "Yeah, AMD sucks bigtime"... This is what M$ corporate users think.

    But on *nix (BSD, Linux, etc) AMD works great and will probably beat the hell out of intel, and remember the Internet server arena is not yet sominated like desktop and internal servers.

    Maybe the guys who got M$ sourcecode should give it to AMD to let them optimize as Intel does ;) Well there is always IDA! []

  • All of my servers so far (3, 1 of them high-traffic) are using AMD chips, and I've never had a problem with them, and that's without recompiling everything with AMD optimized CFLAGS.

    Also, Intel in the home is all but dead. Users who don't know much about computers will get whatever they heard of - and that's usually Intel. Even if they had no technical merits at all, they'd continue (just like Microsoft - and unlike M$, Intel actually has some advantages, such as SMP support).
  • by onion2k ( 203094 ) on Monday November 20, 2000 @04:24AM (#613201) Homepage
    For the most part AMD certainly seemed to have topped the Pentium 4 chip on those benchmark tests. This seems to be a bit weird, but..

    At CPU speeds more than about 1GHz theres little to choose between the various options on clock speed alone. At these speeds the chips are limited by memory bandwidth, code optimization, and instruction sizes. Once a CPU is going faster than the maximum memory throughput of the RAM then any increase in clock speed is going to go to waste. As the article mentions, the code that was run on the P4 wasn't optimized for it at all. This is another limiting factor. If you optimize code for a 286 instruction set and then run it on an Athlon it won't go as fast as it possibly could. And thirdly, AMD have some instructions that do more than those on the P4, thus appearing to go quicker.

    Until memory technology, compilers, and applications start really using the new parts of the P4 chips then there'll not be any quantum leaps forward in 'speed'. But once they do expect benchmarks like these to look very different. (Mind you, by that time AMD should have some new toy out, and the field will be level once again).
  • > I've been using AMD forever and I never had trouble using them in servers. They're rock solid for me.

    *You* had no troubles. I, for one, had many troubles with AMD (Cache disabled on K7M mobo with default BIOS, random crashes with more than 128Mb of memory on Gigabyte mobo)

    The fact it worked seamlessly for you don't imply that anyone that had problem is a liar. Maybe you are just smarter than us when it come down to motherboard choices, or you have a better luck factor...


  • "With the P4 Itel will have faster sounding chips - and a lot of people - especially when buying things to impress children or workmates who may be as equally uninformed will go for the faster sounding chip." Faster sounding chips at a 400% price premium? People don't by SGI Onyx's to impress their friends either. Until the P4 drops SERIOUSLY in price it is no contender for the home market at all. As I heard someone somewhere say: For the price of one complete P4 system, why not get three or four AMD Duron systems and run them in a Beowulf cluster?
  • by oingoboingo ( 179159 ) on Monday November 20, 2000 @04:34AM (#613204)
    i don't really follow compiler technology, but a lot of the speed improvements in the K7 and P4 look like they will depend on compiler specific optimizations. i'm sure the Intel provided C/C++ compiler will properly support all the new SIMD instructions in the P4, as will Visual C++ probably...but does gcc/egcs?

    are linux users missing out on a big chunk of the potential performance available in the newer CPUs because their compilers are more tuned to cross platform availability than to x86 specific optimization, or do the GNU compilers already do a good job of supporting 3DNow! and SIMD?

    i don't know...someone please tell me.
  • As a computer buyer, I couldn't care less about the details of the coming lineup from Intel. Both price/performance and absolute performance are going to continue to improve, but when I come to buy my next computer, I'll have a look at what's available *then*. Trying to pick the optimal time for a computer purchase by reading roadmaps like these is like chasing the rainbow.

    As a software developer, I don't care a great deal either, as the ABI isn't going to change. Games developers might care slightly, but even they are probably more interested in what video cards are likely to be mainstream in one or two years time as.

    If I was involved in the computer hardware business, particularly, say, the memory business, this might be somewhat interesting, but these articles are not written for that audience.

    Similarly If I was interested in guess what Intel's and AMD's stock was going to do, I might be interested in this article - but then again there are myriad other factors likely to impinge on their stock price, and it's not written for a financial analyst either.

    So could somebody explain to me who seriously reads this stuff anymore?

  • Uhmm .. that looks a lot like memory problems ...
    either wrong timing (try 3-3-3 ;), wrong information in the SPD, or simply bad ram.

    C't (the german magazine) recently had a test on SDRAMS ... IIRC about 90-95% were faulty .. (like wrong timings in SPD, etc)

    Samba Information HQ
  • The reason you were having trouble is because you used a good processor on a slightly *ahem* crappy motherboard. Nowadays there are some pretty goodmotherboars available for the AMD processors. In other words, don't blame AMD for the that crappy VIA chipset...
  • I'm sometimes wondergin why should we upgrade our computing power ?
    In practice, I usually play the same old games... mostly Starcraft (yes, not so old...). And a P166 is really enough for it...
    I've also a small server, running apache, postgres, proftpd, exim and bind on a debian 2.2 and serving 3 small web sites... These are not big sites with 100+ hits a day... but my cable modem internet connexion won't allow such a trafic...
    And that server is a 486DX2-66 with 32Mb Ram. And it has much free CPU time available... No need to upgrade it... he's able to hold the full bandwidth I've with my internet connexion.
    So, why should I upgrade my system ? To play those full 3D games ? Most of them make me seasick !!! To play full movie adventure games ? I'm playing the adventures from the if-archive (text-mode only) and spend much more time solving these adventures than these full graphical one...
    All is done to have you buy these P4, then the P5,... Not because YOU need them... but because Intel and such needs your money !!!
    And when you try to run one of these old programs you'd enjoyed several years ago, you get a message "your computer is too fast" or the game is simply unplayable because it's too fast.
    So, I'll leave these computing-power hungry people buying these machines and remain with my good old P233... bought when Pentium I were disappearing...
  • by Shadow99_1 ( 86250 ) <.moc.liamg. .ta. .99wodahseht.> on Monday November 20, 2000 @04:46AM (#613209)
    Well now if AMD had ever had a optimized compiler this might make more sense to me, but their are currently (their is at least one in the works though) no compilers that compile to an athlon. All current compilers compile to P3 standards. The benches do prove 1 thing though: the athlon emulates a P3 better than a P4 does. I think that alone says something...
  • by Barkboy ( 232739 )
    I think AMD is going the right way to start trying to produce SMP for everyday consumers. As later on in the future, Parallel processing will become more and more important. I expect to see some exciting development come from this. Where I work, the standard Desktop is a SGI 330 with dual 733 or 800 PIII's, and I eagerly await the Dual Athlons!
  • Doesn't P4 have something like 40+ errata?
    Intel have had a really bad time lately, errata-wise, while AMD have done really well with their Athlons.

    Ofcourse there are mobo's, RAM, etc. but with those you have to make wise choices and can be unfortunate, with either brand of CPU.

    In the CPU business you can have one poor generation, while the next one turn out really good - or the other way around.

  • a lot of discussion yesterday (about a somewhat related topic) on the clock speed being elevated to the actual performance and how users will probably just go after what "looks" faster...

    just b/c AMD has a faster chip for right now does NOT mean that they are going to win out in desktop market share. Like everyone is saying a lot of the code isn't P4 optimized and it is showing...

    I really think that people are going to stick to Intel for now. It may not be the P4 but it will still be Intel. The CeleronII's are fast enough for what most people need (and are in the correct price range).

    I honestly believe that most people are going to buy whatever comes in their systems from "such and such a store". If Intel can market this damn chip correctly (and I am sure that they are looking to b/c of the major fact that marketing made the push for the higher clock speed in the first place) it is going to be the bigger winner like always.

    Just my worthless .02
  • Up till WinNT/98SE your statement was correct. Have you recently tried running Win2000/ME on an Athlon/Duron? You'd be amazed...
  • Id buy an Onyx to impress my mates... If I could afford the power bill...
  • > Uhmm .. that looks a lot like memory problems ...

    I don't know. I tried almost any RAM combination on that motherboard: every 128Mb or 2x64Mb I used worked (I tried about 6 different 128Mb, 100Mh and 133Mh)

    As soon as I put 2x128 or 128+64, then the machine crashes after a few minutes of work (ie: between 1 and 10 minutes). It never crashed with only 128Mb of ram (had uptimes of 15 days doing seti@home computations)

    When I first got the machine, it only supported 64Mb (I wanted to do a 128Mb machines). Brought it back to the vendor. He said it was the processor (was skeptic, but what can I do ?). He gave it back with a 650 in it working with 128Mb. A few weeks later, I wanted to go to 256Mb. No way.

    I suspect the motherboard. Maybe I should play with timings (but I already lost soo much time with this puppy). I want to try a 256Mb ram in it one of those days...


  • Newsflash: In a recent interview with an anonymous AMD-spokesperson, the phrases "we are currently working on optimizing our processors for every type of software imaginable. Regrettably, there's too much software available to do it all at once of course, but we have just recentlyd completed work on optimizing our hardware with a wide range of often used programs", was heard. When asked what kind of software was going to perform better in the future the answer was: "Why, benchmark programs of course."

    Note to moderators: just because you like something doesn't mean you can't joke about it...
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Um, if users don't know or care what they are buying, it's far more likly that they will end up with an Athlon or Duron, at least here in the UK. Almost all of the big-name brands are selling 90% of their desktop systems with AMD CPU's, and advertise the fact with an AMD Logo on the broucher. AMD is almost as well know as Intel here, and AMD managed it all without dancing weirdo's in cleanroom suits.
  • Look at the bottom of the Q3 test page [].
    In 640x480 we have :
    Athlon 1,2GHz -> 170 (fps/GHz=141.66)
    P4 1,5GHz -> 191 (fps/GHz=127.33)
    Winner: AMD

    In 1024x768, we have :
    Athlon 1,2GHz -> 100 (fps/GHz=83.33)
    P4 1,5GHz -> 101 (fps/GHz=67.33)
    Winner: AMD

  • GCC doesn't, but ld from GNU Binutils 2.9 and above should support 3dnow! extentions. You might want to check out PGCC, [], it optimizes quite well for non-Intel processors (I've used it with Cyrix and AMD processors on NetBSD).

  • People have started to often ask that question and while I agree that for many purposes this kind of power is not needed, I also see many purposes where it is a blessing with some extra "muscles".
    I often compile large C/C++ or Java projects (also non-job related) and when compiling a project takes 10+ minutes, a faster CPU or a new disk is a blessing :-)
    I am sure people could come up with many other use-cases for fast machines.
    For people not needing to live on the edge, a cheap Duron is really not that bad when talking price/performance.
    The reason we get faster CPU's is competition. When Intel were alone on the market, prices were high and technology progress were slower.
  • > Nowadays there are some pretty goodmotherboars available for the AMD processors. In other words, don't blame AMD for the that crappy VIA chipset...

    The discussion is slipping a bit there. The original comment was a guy saying that he had 'entrusted servers to AMD in the past, and they've been awful'. Someone replied he was 'using AMD forever and I never had trouble using them'. I pointed that I had problem too.

    All those discussionas are about things of the past. At the time I bought those AMD systems, there was not much avalaible mobos (at least in France). Everyone I tried gave me headaches.

    It is no longer the case, but in those time using AMD implied a lot potential problems.

    (Sure, I could have waited a bit before switching to AMDs, but I wanted to stop paying the intel tax as soon as possible. The reason of it was the CPUID. Someone implementing such a feature don't deserve my money anymore)


  • Look at the UT test [] :
    The new P4 even gets poorer performances than the P3...
  • And since you're willing to pay for a P4, you're not really intent on keeping it that way, are you?
  • The order of things

    Pentium I
    Pentium II
    Pentium III
    Pentium IV
    ,........ wait, that's to difficult, they won't understand. Pentium 4 is better.

    Mark []
    "Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former."
  • by Global-Lightning ( 166494 ) on Monday November 20, 2000 @05:11AM (#613225)
    The Celeron is dead meat against the Duron, even with a the extremely belated FSB increase to 100mhz.
    As the Celeron increases speed, it begins to cut into the middle of the P3 range. P3 won't go beyond 1.133 Ghz to compete against the P4.

    Wouldn't it be cheaper to discontinue the Celerons, and instead readjust the costing of existing P3's? The bulk of the savings would come from the back-end, such as avoiding retooling the Celeron lines and logistical support for two product families versus three. They could also realign Celeron production facilities into P3 or P4 production.

  • many situations REQUIRE as much power as you can throw at them. Next time you watch a Sci fi movie, think about how much processing is required to produce the special fx. if an Artist had to wait 2mins for a screen to refresh, said artist would get upset and then beat the crap out of said screen... while YOU may not need performance, others Do. Im in a situation where if a computer doesn't have 512Mb ram, then its useless. Anyway, just opening your mind.
  • What I was trying to say is, if you're going to advise people on what to buy, you should base your advice not on how things were, but on how things are the moment the hardware is going to be purchased. That's the only moment that really matters. The past is hardly worth mentioning, the future questionable at best.
  • What instructions does the Athlon have that "do more" than instructions in the P4? 3DNow (even the extended version in the Athlon) should be roughly comparable to SSE, and since the P4 has SSE2, it should have approximately the same capabilities.
    As for memory technologies, the P4 was designed for Rambus memory, and that's what they're using in these benchmarks.
    There is also (AFAIK) no compiler that has real support for optimising code for the Athlon, at least not comparable to Intel's compilers, which do support the P4 (although there probably aren't very many apps compiled for the P4 available yet :). The P4 will probably benefit more from compiler support, though.
  • I don't think any C/C++ compilers support SIMD (whether 3DNow, SSE or something else). Possibly on Cray vector computers, but I don't think even they do, at least not without special extensions. Fortran compilers, OTOH, have had support for that kind of stuff on vector computers for a long time, and that technology has probably been adapted for use with at least SSE, since Intel has a pretty good compiler team. Compaq's Visual Fortran compiler may support it, but their web site doesn't actually say it does.
    If you want to use 3DNow or SSE in assembly, however, that is supported with recent binutils.
  • So could somebody explain to me who seriously reads this stuff anymore?

    People who are just curious about what might be available a year or two from now. I don't think anyone tries to plan in detail their upgrade for two years from now, though it is nice to be able to see that maybe six months from now there will probably be a new feature available that makes it worth waiting the six months before upgrading to have (eg. DDR).

    But even aside from that, people are just plain curious. I know I am. Reading it and finding out that there should be 2 GHz CPUs a year from now excites me. Imagining the power that could feasibly be available and affordable (I'm talking roadmaps in general, not necessarily Intel :) ) excites me. I am a PC enthusiast. I like roadmaps.

    Besides, if noone read them, it would be AnandTech's problem, not yours. They wouldn't be getting their ad revenue, and would probably stop making roadmap articles pretty quick. There's always someone for just about every article here on Slashdot who says "What a worthless waste of time! Who cares?". Just because you may not, doesn't mean noone else does. So, in summary, lighten up.
  • "The machine should wait on the human" not "the
    human should wait on the machine."
  • > What I was trying to say is, if you're going to advise people on what to buy, you should base your advice not on how things were, but on how things are the moment the hardware is going to be purchased. That's the only moment that really matters. The past is hardly worth mentioning, the future questionable at best.

    You are right. It definitely wasn't an buy advice. I hope that there is no slashdot reader stupid enough to buy an Intel today (other than the moderators, of course)...


  • Actually, I believe they compile to a Pentium-II at best, a Pentium-Pro more likely and only a P5, probably. Microsoft's C compiler defaults to "a blend between P5 and P-Pro". And I'm sure the quantity of Intel based programs compiled with Microsoft's compiler dwarves and second comers.
  • e_id=15000196 The large scope of the benchmarks was a welcome surprise...
  • by Patrik Nordebo ( 170 ) on Monday November 20, 2000 @05:39AM (#613235)
    Wow, I was wrong, the Intel C++ compiler does do automatic vectorisation of code, which supposedly gives significant speedups for the P4.
    I doubt any compiler supports 3DNow, though, since AMD doesn't do in-house compilers. Though I guess they may have cooperated with, say, Metrowerks, to get 3DNow optimisations in their compiler.
  • I'm pretty sure *some* compiler supports 3DNow, because there are applications that use those instructions. Some MP3 players and FPS games to name some.
  • Can anyone confirm how we know for sure that the Pentium 4 core clock really runs at 1.4Ghz/1.5Ghz and it's not just a marketing numbers game? Does anyone outside of Intel actually do / know how to do tests to verify these numbers? Given that it's a completely new architecture, surely it's easy to stick 1.4Ghz on the bottom-end chip and then get away with pumping up the Ghz over the next few years.
  • Ace's hardware Pentium 4 review []
    Linpack, a buttload of different game engines (11 or so), povray, truespace and C++ compiling

    Hardocp []
    sisoft, q3, ZD benchmarks

  • by edremy ( 36408 ) on Monday November 20, 2000 @06:22AM (#613239) Journal
    There's always a use for more CPU. You need to go find it.

    For example, I got an Athlon-750 a few months back. What's that good for, other than playing Quake at 100FPS?

    Shortly afterwards, my grandmother-in-law commented how badly one of her pictures had faded. My wife mentioned that you could computer enhance them...

    I've now got a stack of photos by my desk at home. I've bought more memory and a better printer, but the Athlon-750 seems slow when playing with 60MB picture files.

    I'm busy generating some molecular model animations at work right now. More CPU would be great- I've had to cut down the number of points to get models to build quickly while testing code. I got irritated when working on a lab with Mathematica and found that some of the Eigensystem commands took forever.

    There's always a use for more CPU. And, of course, Unreal is liquid smooth...


  • Um, is this thing on?

    I'm only angry cause I need a little love!

    You think your big time?
  • by Patrik Nordebo ( 170 ) on Monday November 20, 2000 @06:33AM (#613241)
    AMD has provided libraries containing 3DNow code for various applications, and there are quite a number of people who write 3DNow! assembly for at least games and video card drivers. This probably gives you a lot better performance than a compiler that automatically generates SIMD code from C/C++, assuming you're clever enough, though it incurs a significant extra expense.
  • People keeps talking about real world performance
    of this chip, but I can't seem to find
    any benchmarks on how well the P4 does
    seti, rc5 and various other "real world apps"!

  • ...because they've upped the memory bandwidth soooo much. I've seen some performance numbers from Intel's optimized BLAS (Basic Linear Algebra Subroutines) for the P4, and they are stellar. In particular the FLOP rate for matrix-vector products (just one here guys, no reuse of the matrix or vector at a nearby, cache useful step) which our code spends 90+% of its time doing, has quintupled. And since I've verified Intel's P3 matvec numbers, I tend to be hopeful about their P4 numbers.

  • And how is this an AMD problem?

    Is the motherboard/memory/fan/power supply AMD certified?

  • [] is my P4 review. Another pre-release processor, more pictures, much discussion of RDRAM and multiprocessing and the upcoming 0.13 micron versions and comparative performance and all that jazz.

    My contribution to the fray: Damn, but the P4 sucked for [] :-)!

  • In the home, however, Intel is dead - but we knew that already - they're unable to compete on price

    Intel has 95% of the market for sub-$1000 PC's (compared to less than 50% two years ago).
  • The only "trick" AMD has is better performance with legacy X87 FP code. When those programs are rcompiled with SSE2, the P4 will be considerably faster.
  • You are joking, right?
  • by Junks Jerzey ( 54586 ) on Monday November 20, 2000 @07:36AM (#613249)
    In response to these kind of articles, someone usually posts about how they don't know what to do with all their current processor speed, and they're not sure what the benefit of upgrading is. Usually they get shouted down by people citing "video compression," "3D modeling," and "solving systems of equations with tens of thousands of unknowns."

    CPU speed aside, the Pentium 4 introduction is marking the beginning of the end for constant upgrading. It is:

    1. expensive
    2. very power hungry & puts out a lot of heat
    3. the first link in a chain requiring other components to be upgraded (need a new motherboard and power supply; only a matter of time until "Pentium 4 optimized" application start showing up).

    What do were get for all of this? From the benchmarks being posted, the answer is almost nothing. In the best case you get a pointless speed increase in some 3D games, but we're talking about going from Way Too Many Frames Per Second to Way Too Many Frames Per Second Plus A Few More. The increase is buried in a lot of noise.

    Review sites that even bother reviewing the P4 should find themselves another business. This processor has no practical value to anyone.

    I fully expect this to be tagged as flamebait, but there's not much I can do about that.
  • Available here [].

    Wow. 2-3x as fast as Athlon's and P3's running DDR or SDR.
  • by jon_c ( 100593 ) on Monday November 20, 2000 @07:51AM (#613251) Homepage
    Things I use my machine for that you wouldn't want to do on a P166

    - Run Linux and Win2k at the same time in VMware
    - Watch DVD's in software mode.
    - Play MP3s while doing anything else (like browsing the web)
    - Compile any project. While large projects do take longer, even small projects will get anoying if you have to wait longer then 5 seconds.
    - Play 80% of the games that came out this year.
    - Play 100% of the games that come out next year.
    - Get kewl demos from Nvidia and "whip-it-out" in front of my geek friends

    And I'm sure i'm missing something else.
  • Who needs it a P4, let alone anything over 1Ghz?

    IT Managers and ISP's (server end)
    Students (maybe)
    Hardcore Users (gamers and OC tweakers)

    In essense, a relative minority in comparison to the consumer market...

    All in all, what has driven Intel and AMD up to this point, was inexpensive components that appealed to the needs of the general public... And truthfully, for the majority that does mainly web browsing and perhaps DVD/gaming, a 500 Mhz CPU will do quite adequately...

    Especially currently, since the majority is still justifying to themselves just why they bought that $2,000 Pentium 133 based Compaq 4 years ago, and is unlikely to jump on the upgrade bandwagon even moreso...

    Maybe in 2-3 years, when Microsoft releases another next gen Windows product, that requires a minimum of 800 Mhz CPU, 256 megs DDR, and an obscene (ie: 1 gig or higher) install footprint, then we may see the justification for faster CPU's...

    Then again, I had a friend hand down his engineering sample of a PIII 733 to me a month back, and I still can't figure out what to do with all that power... I'm a graphic artist, so it's neet to see Photoshop do somewhat faster than a slug on my old K6-2 300, and emulate UltraHLE Mario64 @30 FPS for gaming...

    But honestly, I cannot see much more viability for Joe Consumer...
  • If PIV has a place in servers, then they should have made it for servers from the beginning, instead of gaming on uniprocessor GTL+ configurations.

    BTW: AMD K7 processors are fully P6 compatible...what you've encountered is a chipset/Windows problem.
    On any real server operating system there is very rare any problems at all.
    AMD had kompability problems wich their pre K6/K5 processor, but that doesn't mean that they still have....wake up!

    AMD and friends has focused on the consumer market, therefore there are no server mobo's available and that is why K7 haven't been SMP enabled.

    And yes businesses will keep on buying Intel....because it is Intel, not because the technology is better or more reliable in any way.

    And yes P3 will dissapear from the market...I'm not even sure that the 1.13Ghz P3 will ever reach the market.

    Well if you're asked to cut down the largest tree in the forrest with a heering, then there is a problem.

    Rambus has become a drag for Intel....which is why they're slowly migrating to DDR, even on the PIV platform. Then you'll be able to insert a decent amount of memory in the system....which you cannot with RAMBUS.

    Intel is not dead in the home....I know of many people that rather than buy a cheaper 900Mhz Duron will buy a 733Mhz Celeron A...
  • by pjrc ( 134994 ) <> on Monday November 20, 2000 @08:07AM (#613254) Homepage Journal
    Does the Pentium 4 have a chance or is it doomed from the start? What will become of the Pentium III?

    Haven't we heard this same old line, over and over again, every time Intel releases a new generation of microprocessor.

    The PPro (now Pentium 3) was doomed to a server nitch market, likewise the original Pentium, and even statements for the 486 and 386. Each one, very expensive and running much hotter than those before it, and so far the story ends up the same every time. You'd think people would get used to the idea of Moore's Law and, come on now, six generations of x86 processors, it's a lot more like clockwork.... but I suppose the ordinary doesn't make for interesting headlines.

  • Anand's got some RC5 benchmarks.

    The P4 gets 1.98 k/keys (or i it Mkeys? I can't remember). The 1.2MHz Thunderbird gets 4.48, or something like that. The P4 even does for worse than my 600MHz Duron. It's sad, really.
  • This is the real question. It's already a white elephant when you take the RDRAM limitation into account. The P4 isn't even realistically attractive until it does SDRAM or DDR SDRAM. (And when the hell is that Micron/Rambus suit going to go to court, I thought that was this month, give those Rambus lamphreys a boot to the head and let's all move forward, eh?) Adding memory to a P4 purchased this week will be a painful option, so buyers should get what they're going to need at the outset, with whatever subsidy Intel is giving (though IIRC it doesn't go much beyond dropping their chip prices, so beyond a certain amount of RDRAM it'll be bloodletting.)

    Through the reviews I'm reading, including the one at Motle y Fool [], I'd say any immediate buyer is throwing money away , best held in their savings account until the memory, optimization and speed give a better accounting.


  • Oh no - there's got to be a better way
    Say it again
    There's got to be a better way - yeah

    What is it good for?
    P4! has caused unrest
    Among the geeky generation

    Induction then destruction
    Who wants to upgrade?

    P4 - huh
    What is it good for?
    Absolutely nothing
    Say it again

    P4 - huh
    What is it good for?
    Absolutely nothing

    P4 - I despise
    'Cos it means destruction
    Of innocent tournament lives

    P4 means tears
    To thousands of motherboards
    When their circuit traces
    glow from overvoltage
    And lose their power regulator

    I said
    P4 - huh
    It's an enemy of all geekkind
    No point of P4
    'Cos you're a smart man

    Give it to me one time - now
    Give it to me one time - now

    P4 has shattered
    Many young men's dreams
    We've got no place for it today
    They say we must use it to keep our framerates up
    But Lord,
    there's just got to be a better way
    There's just got to be a better way

    It ain't nothing but a heartbreaker
    Friend only to the revenue-maker


    P4 - Good God, now

    Give it to me one time now
    Now now
    What is it good for?

    (sung by Hector Goes to Hollywood...)

  • Unreal Tournament is still technically in the beta stages. Right now it is at version 436, while Q3 is at 1.25. That proves that Id is better at quality control than Epic is. Also, Tim Sweeney never bothered to ditch the original input code from Unreal; he just improved upon it (and not by enough, I might add). In UT, the mouse lags even in local botmatches; in comparison, there is never any input lag in Q3. Also, UT still has the aging Galaxy sound system (which can't handle instrument-based Impulse Tracker modules [the files for the music in UT]; which would've made the music sound a whole lot better). Galaxy is worse than FMOD [], a sound engine which has similar (but even better and more) capabilities to Galaxy. Given the tools, I'd hack Unreal to accept FMOD.

    Furthermore, in the original Unreal, Epic ditched a weapon at the last minute which would've been excellent: a four-barreled shotgun which fires gatling-gun style. To see the weapon, go into the Mesh Editor in Unrealed and take a look at "QuadShotHeld" and "QuadShotPickup". In Unreal1, you can even summon it (console command: summon quadshot), but it won't work since they didn't put in the code.

  • > And how is this an AMD problem?

    > Is the motherboard/memory/fan/power supply AMD certified?

    What do you mean ? (serious question)

    The hardware have been bought from a single vendor. The mobo is a GA-7IX, which is one recommened by AMD. Yes, the fan had a few AMD logos on it. I didn't check the power supply, but I am pretty sure that it is a correct one. I checked many many different memory on it.

    Anyway, I don't put the blame on the processor. AMD is not even mentionned in the post you are replying to. But, well, it is an Athlon-based system that don't work correctly.


  • The important thing to realize here is that the best support you will have for specific hardware platforms will be provided with standard libraries. It's not as if you will be performing some sort of if/then/else construct and the compiler will swap it for some SSE operation. The SSE operations (like 3dnow) are only useful for some very specific algorithms that would otherwise bring your GPU to a crawl.

    What really happens is that you might want to perform some image manipulation or motion compensaion or some mpeg-2 encoding, etc. You would then call a primitive that would have been provided by the hardware vendor. The compiler would likely have little to no knowledge of what you are doing.

    Libraries like direct3d and similar will use these primitives and further distance you from the hardware.

    The "optimizing compiler" could provide you a template with which you can directly use the special instructions if you know enough about your algorithm to be able to effectively use them. Without this very specific guidance, it is very unlikely that a compiler will be able to take advantage of the instructions. Likewise, it is extremely unlikely that average joe programmer (and that includes about 99% of the programmers out there) will ever see the need to use them or will understand enough about what the algorithms they use to be able to use them as effectively as the primitives that the vendors provide.

    gcc supporters will easily be able to extract the primitives from those libraries provided by Intel and amd. Furthermore, with Intel's recent support of FSF and similar efforts, I don't think any of us will need to worry about whether there will be support for SSE2.

  • by Junks Jerzey ( 54586 ) on Monday November 20, 2000 @09:44AM (#613261)
    Pentium 4 previews and reviews leave me with the same funny feeling I get when armchair tech wannabes discuss the architecture of the PlayStation 2. You see lots of buzzwords and mumbo jumbo and speculation, but it's not at all clear why or how any of it is relevant. Do microarchitectural decisions have any real connection with end performance or usability? They often _sound_ like they do, when laid out on the table, but it's so much noise. For example, wouldn't it make more sense to discuss internal architectural decisions inside of performance demanding applications, like C++ compilers and video compressors? It's not like the performance of an application is initimately tied to the processor. With retooling, you could make most any application several hundred percent faster, which is more significant than the 10-15% increases we're seeing from expensive CPU pissing contests. But we never see articles tearing apart the reasons why major applications are so slow, for example.

    In general, these elaborations of the Pentium 4 design sound like so much marketing, like phony tech-oriented car ads you see in Scientific American. Heck, you could make Linux sound like a piece of crap by trotting out the old "microkernels are more modern and beautiful" debate, but is it relevant?
  • just b/c AMD has a faster chip for right now does NOT mean that they are going to win out in desktop market share. Like everyone is saying a lot of the code isn't P4 optimized and it is showing...

    Why does the market share even matter around here? I have an athlon 700. The athlon is not the market share leader. Do I care? Not remotely. I bought an athlon because it was the way to get the most bang for the buck.

    As for what's faster, well, I'm waiting for the AMD 760 chipset to come out, and support DDR SDRAM, because a CPU is meaningless on its own, and it's memory that's holding us back. Well, that and bus bandwidth, and I don't think the 266mhz bus is going to hurt, either.

  • The biggest thing I like about seeing the new, 'Next Gen' that the now older products will hit price reductions.
    I'm working on a PIII 400 now. It's plenty horsepower as is. I'd like a 650, but can't afford it yet (I will never pay over $100 for a CPU). But with each new product announcement, that 650 gets closer to my reach!

  • You miss the whole point. When was the last time a processor came out, brand new, that cost over $1000 dollars that offered no performance gain at all whatsoever even over some chips from that manufacturers previous generation? Do you know how sad that is? Think about that, then consider this:

    I buy a processor for what it can do today. Today, the Pentium 4 is a joke. As you concede at the end of your post, by the time it's a viable option AMD will have something new as well. Their new MMXish feature set will be incorporated on new AMD chips long before many if any applications implement support. So why buy now? In computers, and especially computer hardware, it doesn't make sense to buy something for it's "high-speed performance in the long run." Hardware changes too rapidly for that crap. The setup that you buy to get a P4 today will be obsolete in 8-9 months when Intel moves to a different socket type.

    Idiots will see the clockspeed and think they are top of the line. Truth be told they are paying twice as much for lower to equal performance. It really makes you wonder how much longer Intel is going to be able to keep their rates at about double AMD's before the general public catches on.

    Yes, performance may improve but let's get real. Today, right now, when and where it matters, in the applications that count Intel's flagship is sinking.

  • <sarcasm>
    And we all know how subjective Tom's Hardware is. Truly an unbiased fount of information over there.
  • There's always someone for just about every article here on Slashdot who says "What a worthless waste of time! Who cares?". Just because you may not, doesn't mean noone else does. So, in summary, lighten up.

    I'm not doubting that, but *I* found it boring. Obviously others, like yourself, didn't, and I was frankly curious as to why. Perhaps that's not how the post came out - I'll be more careful next time.

    Reading it and finding out that there should be 2 GHz CPUs a year from now excites me.

    Ah, there's the crux of the matter. It doesn't excite me anymore, for several reasons:

    • I've watched computers get faster every year for the past twenty. It's not exactly a shock that they're going to continue to get faster.
    • In practical terms, I know many of the perceivable slowdowns in my day-to-day computing experiences are either from disk or network I/O. A new CPU isn't going to help with that.
    • Incremental speedups aren't going to add any fundamentally new capabilities to my computing experience, unlike some wacky new peripheral or something.

    Perhaps it's just that I prefer looking at roadmaps from motorcycle manufacturers these days. At least the bikes *look* cool :-)

  • Yes. It looks like being another Pentium Pro.
    But then again, at least the PPro had some use in the server market with its on-die cache (which was something extra-ordinary at the time but put it out of the competition just based on the price).
  • "but (there) are currently no compilers that compile to an athlon"

    This is actually incorrect. There is a compiler for Linux that we use for in house development that does HEAVY athalon optimizations, at least a 10X increase in fpu calculations over gcc. I don't recall the name of it and our main developer is out to lunch, so I can't ask him. Watch this thread for more info.

"The one charm of marriage is that it makes a life of deception a neccessity." - Oscar Wilde