Archived from groups: alt.comp.hardware.homebuilt (More info?)
" Which processor would be better/faster in most situations? Athlon 64
3800+ or dual-core X2 3800+? "
For years, motherboards and software supporting multiple processors have
been available for servers and high-end CAD and video-editing desktop
systems. Much of the software they utilise supports SMP (Symmetric
Multiprocessing), which uses these multiple processors to perform tasks
faster than a single processor can.
Average desktop systems have so far been running software that, for the
most part, doesn't support SMP. We've come to a crossroads though, as
CPU manufacturers are struggling with the economics, viability and
physical restraints of producing faster processors. As dual-core
desktop processors become mainstream from now, software developers will
begin to add SMP support for the large majority of their new projects.
Perhaps in two years time every new piece of software will support SMP,
including all new games, but until then the world isn't blessed with
SMP-supported software that is useful to the average home user.
Windows XP Professional supports SMP, whilst XP Home hasn't up until
now. That was one of the selling points for XP Pro, but given the
mainstream introduction of dual-core processors I'm wondering if
Microsoft will feel pressured into doing something about XP Home.
Anyway, with an SMP-enabled operating system you can have two seperate
pieces of software running simultaneously without them both fighting
each other for the utilization of one processor. An X2 system will boot
faster and run faster in situations where the operating system can
utilise both cores for seperate executions, but benchmarks for non-SMP
supported software will still be higher with the single-core 3800+
Read the reviews of the X2 series and you'll hopefully understand a