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Preliminary results from around the web

Computex so far has been full of announcements and interesting product showings. One of the biggest demonstrations at the show this year however, is Core 2 from Intel -- previously known as Conroe. The CPU is herald to be the next start from Intel to take back the performance crown from AMD. Interestingly enough, Core 2's release is not far away at all. In fact, DailyTech has received word that Intel has just decided to release Core 2 processors as early as July.

The following are some of the available reviews on Core 2 Extreme from Computex. Most of the reviews pitted Core 2 Extreme against AMD's latest Athlon FX-62, which itself is a dual-core processor.

FiringSquad tests Core 2 Duo E6600 against Athlon FX-62

From the article: The Athlon 64 FX did hold its own in the memory bandwidth tests, thanks most likely to its integrated memory controller. In real world usage the Core2 system ran Quake 4 faster than the Athlon 64 FX we tested, in some cases by as much as 9%. Looking over the results, you can’t help but be impressed by Core2’s performance results.

AnandTech tests Core 2 Extreme against Athlon FX-62

From the article: The benchmarks we've seen show Conroe as a very strong competitor to the Athlon 64 X2, availability could be what limits how much lost ground Intel can regain before AMD has a chance to respond with K8L. While performance here is extremely strong, we also haven't even touched on the overclockability of Conroe; from what we've seen, hitting above 3.5GHz on the highest end parts isn't too far fetched on air cooling alone.

ExtremeTech tests Core 2 Extreme against Athlon FX-62

From the article: It is too early to pass final muster, and we weren't able to run our full benchmark suite. Until we can get our hands on motherboards and CPUs in our own labs, using our own gear, we can't give Core 2 our stamp of approval. But we're certainly encouraged. All this assumes Intel can really deliver both in volume and on time.

TweakTown
benchmarks every Core 2 Duo chip above 2.4GHz

From the article: Intel’s Conroe design makes their older Pentium chips look very, very ordinary. At times, the X6800 is able to beat the Pentium 4 631 clocked at 3GHz by as much as 180%. As far as gaming performance goes, Intel is looking very strong and as we have predicated and told many people at the Computex show throughout the week, Intel is looking like they will be the gamer CPU of choice in H2 2006 and all of 2007. The Core 2 Extreme clocked at 2.93GHz was able to beat the AMD Athlon FX-62 on average by 15% in our gaming benchmarks.

Results from the above tests are showing that at this time, Core 2 Extreme shows higher performance numbers than AMD's Athlon FX-62. Keep in mind that the official launch of Core 2 processors is still a bit away and the Athlon FX-62 is based on an architecture that has been out for quite some time now. Intel's pricing of the fastest Core 2 Extreme X6800 (2.93GHz with 4MB of cache) is expected to launch at $999. Availability will also be a key component in Core 2's ultimate success.


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Conroe has weaknesses
By Anemone on 6/8/2006 9:33:04 PM , Rating: 3
Two less heralded powers of the A64's were their multitasking ability and the ability to keep constant with the framerates. Not many tests watched this last ability, but as we all know going 150fps is all fine and good but if every minute and a half you drop to 20fps, the expletives start flying. I don't know if anyone will get to test this on Conroe but that will be interesting to know if it can keep the speed up and not just peak the highest.

The other thing I noticed on multitasking (the Extremetech article) the A64 seems to still top even the EE speed Conroe and that could be telling. I'm not going to speculate just yet as to why, but even the old dual core P4's did better and that wasn't really a good sign.

Last point is that at higher res, which seems to becoming more common in gaming, the A64 seems to have not problem keeping pace.

Conroe is good, but just as we suspected, not exactly the end all and be all of cpu's.

:)




RE: Conroe has weaknesses
By xtremejack on 6/8/2006 9:51:24 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
but as we all know going 150fps is all fine and good but if every minute and a half you drop to 20fps, the expletives start flying


If you noticed the Anand's benchmarks on FEAR, Conroe has 50% higher minimum framerate than FX62.

quote:
Last point is that at higher res, which seems to becoming more common in gaming, the A64 seems to have not problem keeping pace.


As you increase res, you increasingly take the CPUs out of equation and bring the graphics subsystem under stress. With one GPU, the CPUs' performances draw closer. Even at Anand's the benches were done with one GPU. For one GPU, it probably does not matter which CPU you use. They will probably get framerates nearabout each other. But when you put in SLI and Crossfire, the CPUs get their chance to flex muscles. This is when you may notice wider gaps.

So, in the end the more GPUs you add, the more CPU-limited you get, and in these situations Conroe could do even better. Same is seen as very low res like 640x480 which is normally the simplest way to bench CPU performance in games.


RE: Conroe has weaknesses
By OddTSi on 6/9/2006 1:21:41 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
The other thing I noticed on multitasking (the Extremetech article) the A64 seems to still top even the EE speed Conroe and that could be telling. I'm not going to speculate just yet as to why, but even the old dual core P4's did better and that wasn't really a good sign.

What are you talking about? The Core2 beats the A64 flat out. I think you're thinking those tests are "lower is better" or something.

In the first test: http://common.ziffdavisinternet.com/util_get_image...
The 2.93GHz Core 2 Extreme beats the A64 by 49.8% and 18.9%. The 3.2GHz one beats the A64 by 63.8% and 31.7%.
In the second test:http://common.ziffdavisinternet.com/util_get_image...
The 2.93GHz beats the A64 by 24.7%, 19.2%, 64.4%, and 14.5%. The 3.2GHz beats it by 34%, 34.4%, 78.5%, and 27.1%.

Unless you and I are looking at the wrong multithreaded tests (hard to see how since they're the only two posted in that article) then the A64 doesn't even come close to "topping" the Conroe.


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