AMD demolishes Intel in the value sector

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Postby Aussie » Sat Dec 06, 2003 2:14 am

Actually, they save quite a lot by keeping the cache at 128kb. Cache memory is very expensive, especially larger caches. More cache takes up more space which means less cpu's per wafer.


While your statement is basically true this does not apply in the case of the Celeron and the reason is this.

The cache on most processors is divided into blocks and in the case of the Pentium 4 there are four blocks of 128Kb each making a total of 512Kb. If during the manufacturing process one or more of those blocks fails Intel then disables those blocks and any others to bring the cache down to one block of 128Kb to make the processor into a Celeron.

This enables them to get some return for a die that would have otherwise been scrapped. AMD is doing the same thing with the Barton core however they appear to have two options with a die that has some failed cache. If only one or two blocks have failed they make that CPU a Thornton with 256Kb cache but if two or more blocks have failed they make that CPU a Duron with 64Kb cache.

So both companies are saving money, or at least making money that they otherwise wouldn't have, from these "reduced cache" processors but not exactly for the reasons you gave.


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Postby dharbert » Sat Dec 06, 2003 2:59 am

If during the manufacturing process one or more of those blocks fails Intel then disables those blocks and any others to bring the cache down to one block of 128Kb to make the processor into a Celeron.


Interesting take on it. I didn't know that. So the Celeron is, in all respects, a crippled P4.
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Postby Aussie » Sat Dec 06, 2003 3:45 am

So the Celeron is, in all respects, a crippled P4.


Exactly. The AMD Thornton is also a "crippled" Barton.

Intel also cripples the Celeron further by limiting the CPU to a lower FSB which thankfully AMD hasn't done with the Thornton or the new Duron.


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Postby Aussie » Sat Dec 06, 2003 6:04 am

only problem I have ever had with AMD is that the processors can just be damaged so easily.


There is no doubt that the AMD CPU's can be damaged if you handle them incorrectly just as there is no doubt that the heatspreader used on Intel CPU's avoids this problem altogether. I would guess that it is mainly thermal considerations preventing AMD from adopting this same remedy for the Athlon and I base this theory on the fact that the Opteron & AMD64 are the coolest running of all the AMD processors and they are the first AMD processors to adopt this remedy. I am guessing that the improved thermal qualities of the SOI process has allowed AMD to adopt this remedy despite its obvious thermal inefficiencies.

I have fitted, removed & refitted hundreds of socket A heatsinks yet I have only ever chipped one die. In this particular case I blame the particular heatsink I was using and I my failure to apply the extra care needed under the circumstances.

The worst socket A heatsinks for this problem are those that will not sit flat on the die with only the back clip in place and also have a high clamping pressure. Unless you push the heatsink down by hand until it sits parallel to the die BEFORE you start applying pressure to the front clip you risk damaging the back edge of the die because that is what the heatsink is pivoting on as it rotates to the parallel position.

You can rotate the heatsink by hand without applying much downward pressure but if the rotation occurs while strong downward force is being applied during the attachment of the front clip die chipping can occur.

Basically you just need to hold the heatsink in a position consistent with its final fitted position while you attach the last clip.


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Postby Black Wolf » Sat Dec 06, 2003 10:35 am

Tolemac wrote:Just think about all the poor schlubs who picked up cheap pre-built systems with Celerons in them thinking that they got a deal. :roll:


Exactly, At our computer store when somone sees the cheaper priced celeron system they jump up in down with joy since it so much cheaper then the P4, but thats when you have to go insales mode and try to sell them the P4 because in the end you know the cu will be happier, btw are store is a Intel fan so we have to upsell them, but of course we can order in AMD's.
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Postby len444 » Sat Dec 06, 2003 4:56 pm

btw are store is a Intel fan...


i would assume that you meant our where you have are? don't take this wrong- like no malice dood! :P
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Postby Black Wolf » Sat Dec 06, 2003 5:01 pm

Len444 wrote:
btw are store is a Intel fan...


i would assume that you meant our where you have are? don't take this wrong- like no malice dood! :P


Yeah our, not are, bloody grammer.
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Postby firenurse4 » Mon Dec 08, 2003 1:58 am

lshawelu wrote:Benchmarking these two processors is like racing a Dodge Neon and a Ford Focus.


/triva mode on

Actually, they do race them and the 4 cyl Saturns and have quite a following. And back in my younger days my 4 cly Chevy Monza beat out a tricked out AMC Matador (8cyl) in a road rally we had. My lower center of gravity was more of an advantage then his 8 cyl was on the twisting roads we were on :lol: .

/trivia mode off
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Postby Mr T » Mon Dec 08, 2003 4:26 am

Interesting.... Odd how we sell a lot more Durons than any other chip, at least 8 a week... The next most popular chip appears to be the XP2000, then the 2400... The XP3000 is slowly taking off now as well... P4 sales are a rarity, we just about never sell OEM or retail boxed on their own, always with a system and have never been asked or sold a P4 celeron.... 8O
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Postby trophyhunter_1 » Tue Dec 09, 2003 4:24 am

I like the fans for Intel chips better, but I'm not sure the heatspreader on die is a good idea. I was working on a celeron based system this weekend and the heatspreader had baked itself to the heatsink. Had to pull and pray to get it off.

It came right out of the ZIF with the lever down, bent a couple pins.

Then I had to pry the chip off the heatsink, before I could install it in the the new mobo it was going in. Not alot of fun, when your worried about damaging somebodies chip.

By the way I showed the duron 1.6 benches vs celeron to the person who owned the celery system I was working on, they were not to happy with intel when the saw it. She said her next PC will definately be an AMD based machine.
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