Budget CPU Shootout: Clash of the 'ronsby Derek Wilson on December 4, 2003 10:55 AM EST
- Posted in
With new technology constantly being developed and released into the high end market, it is sometimes easy to overlook the slightly less glamorous world of budget microprocessors. It's been a while since we've taken a look at what AMD and Intel have to offer in the area of low cost computing, and our curiosity recently got the better of us.
We were particularly curious about what you could get for $100, and it turns out that there are quite a few CPUs that you can get for less than the price of a motherboard. Currently, the budget market is made up of low end Athlon XP, Celeron, and Duron processors. There aren't any Pentium 4 processors that come in under our $100 price point, but we've included the Pentium 4 1.8A (Northwood) as a reference point for the Celeron processors.
Performance is always being pushed in the high end market, but it is arguably even more important in the low end systems. If we are trying to save money on a computer system, we want our dollar to go as far as possible, so price/performance is the most important factor when determining components to fill a budget box. Just because we want to save money doesn't mean we want to suffer a huge performance loss. With the price of PCs that perform well dropping all the time, it becomes easier for those who haven't yet entered the digital realm to join the party. Of course, the last thing someone wants when they first start up their new computer is to be frustrated by lackluster performance. Hopefully this article will serve to help people make the best possible decision when it comes to budget computing.
These Sub-$100 CPUs serve as decent upgrades for aging systems (e.g. the P3-800 that is barely chugging along) when combined with a new motherboard, but they are also the heart and soul of many of today's sub-$1000 PCs that you'd find in the retail market. Walk into any Best Buy or CompUSA and you'll find tons of PCs selling from $400 - $600. The OEMs making these systems are cutting corners in every way possible, so you had better believe that one of these CPUs we're comparing today will be under the hood. Retail customers should pay close attention to the results of this roundup — they may be even more shocking than expected.
When looking to get the absolute maximum performance out of every dollar spent, overclocking should be considered. We are hoping to address the overclockability of these budget processors in an upcoming article, but for now, we will only be looking at stock speeds.
Before we get to the tests, let's take a look at the processors.
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arejerjejjerjre - Wednesday, January 7, 2004 - linkSomeone said that P4 EE loses to A64 3200+ HAH LOL
arejerjejjerjre - Wednesday, January 7, 2004 - linkTHIS PROVES THAT INTEL IS THE BEST!!!!!!!!
A RESPECTED FINNISH SITE HAS DONE SOME BENCHMARKING ON A64 3000-3400 AND P4 3.2GHZ NORMAL AND EE!!!!!!
LOOK WHAT THE RESULTS ARE!!!!!
Even the P4 3.2GHZ rulez over A64 3200+!!!!
The Extreme Edition rulez quite easily over 3200+ and 3400+!!!
Skandaloes - Saturday, December 13, 2003 - link"so while Intel is quite competitive in the mid-range and high-end segments, their value processors are inexcusably slow compared to AMD."
What are you talking about? Intels mid-range segment, 2.4-2.8GHz P4's, offer the same performance as AMD's value segment Barton processors. You should do a comparison of the 2500+ and 2800+ Athlon XP's and the 2.4C, 2.6C, and 2.8C Intel P4's. I think you would be even more surprised.
The problem is you're comparing the AMD processors to Celeron ones based on their ratings which were meant for P4's. A 2500+ Athlon ($90) has about the same performance as a 2.53GHz P4 ($175) or a 2.4C P4 ($165). A 2800+ ($145) will do almost as well as a 2.8C P4 ($215).
AMD really has Intel beat in all price segment. The Value segment is completely obvious, and that's because AMD offers mid-range performance processors at value prices. The Athlon 64's control the high performance sector already, and the 3000+ should extend that advantage into the upper mid-range segment. The 3200+ costs about $20 less than a 3.2GHz P4 when configured, and the FX-51 is as fast or at least nearly as fast as the extreme edition for $200-$300 less. It's simple really. AMD offers faster processors for less in every price segment, not just the value one.
arejerjejjerjre - Saturday, December 13, 2003 - linkI am not going to post anymore its pointless you wouldn't believe me anyway!
arejerjejjerjre - Thursday, December 11, 2003 - linkBy the way Celeron 2GHZ performed better in raw calculations (Pifast 3.3) than Pentium 4 1.8A
Basis for claims about celerons low performance was that it was not good in raw calculations! It's better than you think!
arejerjejjerjre - Thursday, December 11, 2003 - linkYou would probably have a heart attack if I could prove to you that the review is wrong!
arejerjejjerjre - Thursday, December 11, 2003 - linkHow will I prove it? You wouldn't believe anything! You'd have to see for your self that's the problem!!
Celeron has a different potential with different setting I meant!! And my test's used low end parts if you meant that!!!
Noone reads magazines anymore :)
Hard proof is hard to get! Like I said! And even if I had you on my side what does it matter? Still noone else wouldn't believe what I say!
Yes it's true I just spitted out what I have said crappy text,bad english and all that! :)
Review got me quite angry because the truth is far from what the article says.
I cant stop thinking thats my problem! What's yours? If you do not even consider something to be truth you are in denial but that's not me whos in denial then!! :)
JAGedlion - Wednesday, December 10, 2003 - linkyou know someone's in denial when they start to spam the boards like arejerjejjerjre. Seriously, if that isn't spamming, what is? At least the spam in my e-mail comes with pr0n, with arejerjejjerjre its just filled with the same old crap over and over.
arejerjejjerjre, just think for a sec, I'm only asking for one second, so I am hoping that you can comply.
Yes, some things will do better when on different platforms, that is rather obviouse... So whats your point? This is anandtech, not amdzone or w/e, and as such, they are successful if and only if they are reliable. Who buys a magazine and reads it through (real reading, not liek a comic book) knowing its all crap? Just as always, you have to learn to pick your battles. arejerjejjerjre, you started off at a disadvantage because the article strongly says the opposite of what you claim, and I grant you, that makes your job even harder. But to say they lied? Come on. Admit that they are right first, then say what you want. I will belive you saying that the celerons potential was not revealed, but realize, it was not only compared to durons. It was compared to XP's. These are full fledged chips, it makes sense that they would perform better, just like the worst viper outperforms the best tercel. Second, just stop with your proclamations about the unreliability of AMD procs, try to prove your point, not bash another's. Just the same, your idea of calling people liars is also moot. Compare the palimno to the throughough bred, in paper, not in what you could do. Performance increase may not have been much for you, btu there is no doubt it is a core designed to perform better. I'm not saying your right or wrong, but you need to work on your debate skills. Lastly, these are budget chips. The key word there is budget. 50% off the price of the chip isn't a little. Add to that the fact that amd mobo's are generaly less expensive and you see that for all of Intels capability in higher end systems, little can be said for their low end element.
arejerjejjerjre - Wednesday, December 10, 2003 - linkI only seen a duron run at 40 Celsius :) nothing else!
Palomino 1700+ 60 C
Thoroughbred 1700+/1800+ 50 C
Duron 1300mhz 70 C the case was quite small! :)
All the other cpus had big tower cases and good cooling!
And intels stock cooling is silent too!!
arejerjejjerjre - Wednesday, December 10, 2003 - linkJustly if you got the money you should try and test it yourself that much better choice then to trust these reviews! Of Course if your afraid of what the results might be...
Moronbasher what I said about the scores going high in 3dmark01 and not in quake 3 is completely true!! Hard to believe though I didn't believe it my self first!!!
And again Intels stock cooling has allways been quite efficient enough my 2.4C is running at 42 degrees celsius!!!
Hmm my friend had maxtor 80gb in serial ata! So that is the problem then but I've seen in some people say in nforce forums that they had had corruption with other harddrives not just maxtor!
Yes VIA had had driver problems big time! But their chipset has workt greatly! And the performance difference between nforce 2 and via kt400a isnt much!