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Old June 11th, 2004, 04:07 PM   #1
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PC hardware benchmarks?

Can anyone recommend an up-to-date site that provides benchmarks, or similar quantitative data, that allow comparison of the various P4, Athlon64 and Opteron systems for digital media editing/encoding?

Thanks.
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Old June 16th, 2004, 03:41 AM   #2
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Hi Graham,

Your best bet is to probably do a google search. Or by Computer Video magazine.

I remember seeing a review in CV where they pitted a G4 apple, against the Athlon 64 and the P4 3.0GHz systems. When I'm at home I'll try and dig out the review, and tell you what issue it was in.

Cheers,
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Old June 17th, 2004, 10:54 AM   #3
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do a google search on "overlcokers au" thre is a whole forum dedicated to tweaking your machine :)
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Old June 17th, 2004, 03:28 PM   #4
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Peter I take it you mean 'overclockers'?
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Old June 17th, 2004, 08:53 PM   #5
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Thanks guys. I realize the info is indeed all out there in scattered form - google-able etc - but I was hoping there might be an updated version of something like this:

http://www6.tomshardware.com/cpu/20030217/cpu_charts-26.html
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Old June 17th, 2004, 09:26 PM   #6
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anandtech.com and xbitlabs.com are usually good for benchmarks, but their methodology isn't always the best, they're wrong sometimes, and what they benchmark usually has little to do with video editing (except for the main concept encoder test).

2- What exactly are you trying to do? I know you are looking for benchmarks, but you must be looking at benchmarks for a reason.
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Old June 17th, 2004, 09:51 PM   #7
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Hi Glenn,

I currently have an overclocked Barton 2500XP+ used for editing and rendering DV, and MPEG2 for DVD.

Just bought an HDV camera which needs quite a bit more grunt, (in fact Cineform's Aspect HD package which I'm considering currently doesnt run on Athlon XP). Cineform recommends 3GHz P4 as 'minimum spec', and dual Opteron as 'preferable'.

Since there's a considerable price gap between those two options I'm wanting to get a feel for likely cost:benefit of some intermediate-price alternatives (single Opteron, 3.4GHz P4, Athlon64 etc).
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Old June 18th, 2004, 12:46 AM   #8
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Tech Report seems to be on top of the latest info.

Latest benchamrks of current AMD vs. Intel shows pretty much an even playing field, with AMD having a number of near future advantages that Intel does not.

http://techreport.com/reviews/2004q2/opteron-x50/index.x?pg=1

Faster at MPEG encoding, Faster in 3DS Max, excellent memory bandwidth.

And this is without a NUMA aware OS or the benefits of 64 bit.

WinXP 64 gives AMD an even greater advantage.

Considering the similar cost and performance parity, there is littel reason not to go 64 bit.
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Old June 18th, 2004, 05:03 AM   #9
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Actually, there are reasons not to go 64-bit right now, but not to buy a processor that is capable of 64-bit. First amoung the reasons of not going 64-bit is that XP has not been released as a 64-bit OS. Yes, you can run the beta, but MS does not officially support it. Second is that any current 32-bit applications may run slower on a 64-bit OS because there is an extra application layer that has to convert all of the 32-bit addresses into 64-bit addresses (thunking).

XP 64 may be released this winter and Intel is releasing the 800MHz bus Xeon, Nacoma, which should be on the streets in August. There are interesting times going with the new processors and motherboard chipsets that may again level the playing field between the Xeon and Opteron.
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Old June 18th, 2004, 11:56 AM   #10
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<<<-- Originally posted by George Ellis : Actually, there are reasons not to go 64-bit right now, but not to buy a processor that is capable of 64-bit. First amoung the reasons of not going 64-bit is that XP has not been released as a 64-bit OS. Yes, you can run the beta, but MS does not officially support it. Second is that any current 32-bit applications may run slower on a 64-bit OS because there is an extra application layer that has to convert all of the 32-bit addresses into 64-bit addresses (thunking).-->>>


That is absolutely incorrect. Applications do NOT run slower on 64 bit and there is no conversion of 32 to 64 bit invvolved at all. Although your assessment would be correct for Itanium processors, which cannot run 32 bit apps without some interpolation.

Opteron and Athlon 64 bit processors run 32 or 64 bit applications natively.

The fact is, there is EVERY reason to buy 64 bit now. Changes in the general architecture and design of the 64 bit chips makes for a superior 32 bit design.
A lot of studios run Linux, and there are 64 bit Linux distro's for Opteron.

WinXP 64 does have a hard street date, and it is coming up well before the end of the year.

In almost all 3D animation applications, Opteron is faster than Xeon or P4, including the EE edition of the P4.

As well as MPEG encoding, Audio applications, Mental Ray and quite a few other applications.


<<<-- XP 64 may be released this winter and Intel is releasing the 800MHz bus Xeon, Nacoma, which should be on the streets in August. There are interesting times going with the new processors and motherboard chipsets that may again level the playing field between the Xeon and Opteron.-->>>

The problem with the Xeon and even with their newer 800mhz FSB is that it is still slower and has a number of design flaws that reduce it's efficiency. First off, even at 800mhz, Intel's bus is still slower than the bus Opteorn uses. Also Xeon has to rely on a separate memory controller which passes it's data to fand from the CPU over this 800mhz bus.

Opteron has an integrated memory controller on the the CPU's die making for less latency.

Opteron's bus is called Hypertransport. A direct link that avoids secondary controllers. It allows memory to operate at CPU speeds. Hypertransport is 800mhz - 1ghz. speed.

In most applications, Opteron is faster. Opteron is slightly faster at MPEG encoding since the 250 models came out last month. On the few tests Intel does win, it isn't by very much. Basically it is a generally level playing field. the choice is not a clear brand X is better. There are now more subtle technical points to consider.

And a final thought on 64 bitness, Intel scrapped almost every 32 bit CPU plan they had in the last month or two so that they could devote all their time and attention on converting Xeon into a copy of the Opteron. See HP's server page on 64 bit Xeons for proof of that. Xeon is using AMD's complete x86-64 implementation, although that is largely due to Microsoft dictating that they would not support two 64 bit branches.

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Old June 18th, 2004, 01:38 PM   #11
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As one of the administrators' of this site I am responsible of remarks posted in the forums. Potentially libelous remarks need to be backed up with a link to an article that provides some authentication to your claims. If this can't be provided, postings may be edited to protect the administrators and wranglers from legal liabilities for false claims.
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Old June 18th, 2004, 02:00 PM   #12
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<<<-- Originally posted by Steve Rogers :
That is absolutely incorrect. Applications do NOT run slower on 64 bit and there is no conversion of 32 to 64 bit invvolved at all. Although your assessment would be correct for Itanium processors, which cannot run 32 bit apps without some interpolation. >>>
This is incorrect. 32-bit applications run in the Windows on Windows subsystem, which handles the address translations.

As for performance, see this review and comparison.

http://www.anandtech.com/systems/showdoc.html?i=1961

WOW Implementation Details including descriptions of the thunking layers
http://msdn.microsoft.com/library/de...plications.asp

<<<WinXP 64 does have a hard street date, and it is coming up well before the end of the year.>>>

There is no hard street date for the OS. It is projected for the end of the year. MS reserves the right to change that.

<<<Opteron's bus is called Hypertransport. A direct link that avoids secondary controllers. It allows memory to operate at CPU speeds. Hypertransport is 800mhz - 1ghz. speed. >>>

While this is true, Hypertranport does not really gain a strong benefit until more than 2 CPUs are added.

***EDITED by GE per wardens note*** ;)

Additional reading -
Why XP 64 will be good (includes NLE benefits)
http://www.microsoft.com/WindowsXP/6.../extended.mspx

Sorry for the threadjack Ed.
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Old June 18th, 2004, 02:22 PM   #13
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Direct quote from the almost 6 month old article you provided a link to:


"It is far too early to reach any conclusions in this area, but there is a lot of driver optimization to be done to make up this kind of delta. With the CPU and memory providing faster 64-bit performance, we have to believe the drivers play a big part in this disappointing gaming performance."


In everything BUT gaming, 64 bit was an improvement, not a detraction.

So I say again, there is no reason not to buy a 64 bit based system.

Even if you only use a 32 bit OS on it, you still get equal or better performance to the top 32 bit CPU's out there at comparable prices.
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Old June 18th, 2004, 09:32 PM   #14
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There is no reason to go 64-bit *right now* except for the slightly elevated price. And I agree totally on Steve with this, the problem is that you won't be exactly getting your money's worth or the true capabilities of your hardware until the software is coded to run in a 64-bit environment natively.

Til then you won't be seeing the REAL numbers that these 64-bit babies should be crunching out. And the optimizations that these new processors have somewhat already addresses the shortcomings of the older processors such as on-chip memory controllers for a bigger bandwidth etc. which is enough reason to go 64-bit. Just reiterating what Steve is saying because I agree with him wholeheartedly.

64-bit is the next logical step to an already aging 32-bit environment.
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Old June 19th, 2004, 12:34 AM   #15
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When 64-bit becomes a reality processors might be 2X faster, in which case it's upgrade time :D

IMO the Pentium is a slightly better buy right now as it generally averages better in benchmarks, like the Main Concept MPEG2 encoder. However, the AMD64 processors are pretty damn close!

If you consider the motherboards, the Intel 865PE side is slightly better bang for the buck than AMD offerings. For example, the Abit IS7 is a nice board.

Both choices are running very close though. I don't think you can really go wrong with either.

2- For pro audio, AMD64 is definitely the better choice. It shows that things really depend on what you do.
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