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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.

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 vs Athlon 64
By Targon on 6/9/2006 7:57:16 AM , Rating: 2
The reason to buy an Athlon 64 FX processor is because it's unlocked for overclocking, not "only" because it's the fastest Athlon 64 out there. That is why it costs extra, because it can be clocked faster. To compare price, you would need to take an unlocked Conroe(which Intel won't be selling).

To be fair then, if you want to look at price vs. performance, then going with an Athlon 64 X2 5000+ in the comparison would be a fair comparison. Or compare and overclock an Athlon 64 FX-62 to an overclocked Conroe and see where the two chips top out in terms of clock speed and performance. Also, the two chips should be fully stable, not "we were able to boot into Windows XP" as the way to test stability.

We also will need to see how long it will take before people can buy Conroe based machines, because AMD could very well come up with a processor in the short term that can compete well. An Athlon 64 X2 with 4 megs of cache might be enough for the Athlon 64 to catch up in terms of performance, and wouldn't require waiting for K8L to be ready. It might cut into the bottom line, but the ONLY reason Intel has managed to stay competitive to this point and move ahead with Conroe is due to more cache on the processor.

More cache doesn't mean Conroe has a better architecture. AMD has a better architecture, but needs more cache to compete with Conroe.

RE: Conroe vs Athlon 64
By zsdersw on 6/9/2006 9:15:48 AM , Rating: 1
AMD has a better architecture, but needs more cache to compete with Conroe.

Wrong. If AMD has a better architecture (now, not when K8L comes out) why are they adding many of the same things (for K8L) that Conroe brings to the table? Typically you only copy something if it's better than what you currently have; making it worth copying in the first place.

RE: Conroe vs Athlon 64
By zsdersw on 6/9/2006 9:26:52 AM , Rating: 2
That is why it costs extra, because it can be clocked faster.

Not really. It's priced at $1000 because AMD wants to make money by capitalizing on the willingness of enthusiasts to spend *anything* to have the fastest thing around. (well, the fastest thing around before Conroe, anyway)

RE: Conroe vs Athlon 64
By Master Kenobi on 6/9/2006 9:44:49 AM , Rating: 2
Agreed. And I do believe we already went around the block on the whole caching issue and it was made crystal clear that the AMD chips gain nothing from DDR2 and very very little from increased on die cache. Seems to be an intel thing that increased cache helps the architecture. Let's see if I can find a linky for everyone...... Yea I give up no linky, someone might be able to help me out with the link please? :P

RE: Conroe vs Athlon 64
By deeznuts on 6/9/2006 12:36:27 PM , Rating: 2
The Conroe XE will be unlocked.

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