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Old 11-15-02, 01:19 AM   #1
ricercar
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Default Why doesn't Athlon nnnn XP = nnnn MHz?

When I returned to the x86 hardware scene this summer, it took me a while to learn that AMD's Athlon 1600 XP was not a 1600 MHz device but instead a 1400 MHz device.

WTF?

So when I read that the nForce2 boards support an Athlon 2800 XP, I realized I have no idea what the CPU clock speed is. (Sure I can look it up in a review, but my point is that I shouldn't have to!) Is there a conversion/proportion/ratio between the XP numeral and MHz, or is it all marketing whimsy?
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Old 11-15-02, 01:23 AM   #2
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its compartive performance to a p4 of same clock speed. so athlon xp would be just as fast, or faster or slower in some cases to a p4 1.6ghz.
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Old 11-15-02, 01:27 AM   #3
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Default it's a pile of marketing

So, my Athlon 1600 XP at 1402 MHz is the equivalent of a Pentium 4 at 1600 MHz. Hrmmmm. OK. The 2800 XP is therefore equivalent of a P4 at 2.8GHz. At least there's a method to the madness.

Thanks for the instant reply. I sometimes forget that I'm not the only person with insomnia.
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Old 11-15-02, 01:48 AM   #4
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It's really called HYPE.
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Old 11-15-02, 03:57 AM   #5
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It's really meaning you don't have to push the MHz to have a better processor. A better-thought, or at least more optimized architecture, is all you need.
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Old 11-15-02, 04:04 AM   #6
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Default Hammer and anvil

The AMD "Hammer" CPU architecture is optimized to directly address main memory, bypassing the northbridge. While this appears to be good for the CPU, doesn't this screw graphics processors, causing an extra level of indirection between AGP and main memory?

Previously the northbridge was interposed between the AGP card and main memory. Won't the Hammer architecture cause an AGP GPU to negotiate with (1) a northbridge and then (2) the Hammer CPU before it can address main memory?

What am I missing? (I thought AMD and NVIDIA were friends.)

Last edited by ricercar; 11-15-02 at 04:11 AM.
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Old 11-15-02, 04:19 AM   #7
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the real question is how often does the graphics card access main memory, and should games ever be programmed so that it does? main memory is just so slow that i don't see why you would ever want to have to transfer data over it.
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Old 11-15-02, 04:25 AM   #8
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I thought textures were stored in the main memory rather than video card memory. If this is valid, then as games grow more demanding, there will be more demands on main memory access.
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Old 11-15-02, 05:38 AM   #9
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Might I add: DOOM 3 BABY!!!!!!!!
"...80Mb of textures..."
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Old 11-15-02, 07:18 AM   #10
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It could easily have a differently optimized AGP architecture, so I doubt its that big a deal.
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Old 11-15-02, 04:25 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally posted by ricercar
I thought textures were stored in the main memory rather than video card memory. If this is valid, then as games grow more demanding, there will be more demands on main memory access.
no, that is what AGP texturing is all about. most games don't use AGP texturing though, because as i mentioned above, it's horrendously slow. just compare the memory bandwidth of a high end video card to the system memory bandwidth. ick.
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Old 11-15-02, 09:06 PM   #12
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Yup, Go AMD!
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