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Why cpu get more cores than speed

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November 8, 2009 5:14:59 PM

I'm a little out of it and I had a question, why do they just keep adding more cores to the CPU's instead of making them faster?? I remember when we hit 1gig then 2 and we held steady at 3 and now we just get more cores? correct me if I'm wrong but is-ant the idea of more cores for more multitasking? and if you play a graphic intense game that is all you will be doing, so why do you need to do more thing at once, you need more speed right?

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a b à CPUs
November 8, 2009 5:25:25 PM

more cores = more multitasking = more jobs that your cpu can handle...
more speed = more heat = bigger heatsink
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November 8, 2009 5:33:40 PM

why more multitasking, you play more then one game at once? and they don't seem to be any faster than 3ghz actually slower? like 1.5 on duel core and 2 on quad, how is that faster for those of us that don't multitask and have no need to?
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a c 198 à CPUs
November 8, 2009 5:35:50 PM

Cause they hit a wall and this is the next viable option.
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November 8, 2009 5:40:23 PM

is there any game or software that can even utilize multi cores? they just have to come out with new stuff to get our money even new OS just to force us to upgrade even if we don't need to.
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a b à CPUs
November 8, 2009 5:49:01 PM

italian said:
why more multitasking, you play more then one game at once? and they don't seem to be any faster than 3ghz actually slower? like 1.5 on duel core and 2 on quad, how is that faster for those of us that don't multitask and have no need to?


Most games made today are capable of using more than 1 core (in fact most games these day require dual cores).

Now the reason why we haven't gone faster is because the stuff we make out of cpus cant handle over 4.5 ghz with out LN2. Scenes LN2 dangerous stuff to handle and it's expensive to make, it not the best idea for people to use.

Now if manufactures could make cpus out of these chips http://www.tomshardware.com/news/ibm-500ghz-chip,2992.h...
then we be already at 350+ ghz. although there difficult to produce in mass. (3 year old article)
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a c 190 à CPUs
November 8, 2009 5:52:14 PM

Multiple cores and higher speed each have their advantages an disadvantages.

Higher speed generally requires higher voltage which puts out significantly more heat.

More cores also puts out more heat but without extra voltage which can shorten the lifespan of a transistor.

Rarely when you play a modern game is there only a single thread running. Windows has background tasks that run, if you have a chat program running thats its own thread, and most games are atleast 2 threads.

Even if you are only running 2 threads a dual core will perform better than a single core that runs twice as fast, a good chunk of a CPU's time is wasted in context switching(going from one thread to another) the less context switching that has to occur the faster everything will run. A single core wastes a ton of time if it needs to perform a few instructions on a lot of items, they do better performing a lot of instructions on a single item.

Open up task manager and go to the performance tab, you will see that there arent a ton of processes, however there are significantly more threads than processes, modern programs try to spread their workload out a bit to get a boost from multiple cores since single cores are rare now.
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a b à CPUs
November 8, 2009 5:52:38 PM

italian said:
why more multitasking, you play more then one game at once? and they don't seem to be any faster than 3ghz actually slower? like 1.5 on duel core and 2 on quad, how is that faster for those of us that don't multitask and have no need to?


You need to do some more reading. The days of high clockspeed single core CPU's are numbered. It's not technologically viable to invest in upping the clocks any more, due to physical limitations. Heat dissipation becomes a real problem. The gain you get for that extra bit of speed is minimal compared to the effort required to reach it.

Thus, the focus has moved from single to multiple cores. By writing software that takes advantage of multiple processors, you can speed up tasks significantly. Any benchmark will tell you that multicore CPU's outperform even high-clock single cores in the majority of applications. We will soon get to the point where an app that cannot use more than one core is considered poorly designed.

Besides, modern CPU's are actually very capable of reaching high clocks. Imagine what you could achieve with 4x3GHz as opposed to 1x3GHz.

There aren't as many multi-core aware games and apps as there could or should be, but that's where the technology is headed. You have to live with it.
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November 8, 2009 5:52:46 PM

there are also improvements in architecture along the way....an i7 with only one core enabled will blow away an older single core running at the same speed. Most people are not only gamers. If you are only a gamer you would probably just buy a console. But to answer your question, in modern gaming rigs the processor is rarely the determining factor in overall performance. Any of the high end CPUs can be overclocked to over 3.6ghz, and test have repeatedly shown that once you go beyond that point, its all about your video cards. In fact, the higher the resolution, the more work is offloaded to the gpu....and if you are gaming at lower resolutions your cpu is more of a deciding factor, but even mainstream cpus can keep up at those resolutions. So your really can't expect the chip makers to address a problem that does not exist. More and more apps and games are being made to utilize multiple cores and threads... so in these, even if you are just running one program at a time, you will see significant benefits from multiple core processors.
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November 8, 2009 6:16:36 PM

I can see your points about more cores now. the hole reason I was asking is I play some local LAN parties and I'm the only one that doesn't have a duel or quad core yet ( money is tight now) and I'm still play the same games as them. the last one we played was call of duty 4 and I play it just fine and that game requires a duel core?

my computer:
ASUS M2N4-SLI Nvidia nforce 500 SLI
AMD Athlon 64 3700
XFX 7900 GT X2 in SLI
Corsair xms2 ddr2 1GB x4
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November 8, 2009 6:28:03 PM

Thank you guys, this is the best conversation about computer with out teasing. they are trying to keep me form the LAN parties because I don't have a faster PC, they think I'm slowing them down. I think they are just sore looses with to much of mom and dad money lol
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a b à CPUs
November 8, 2009 6:30:54 PM

You won't slow down their LAN unless you're the one hosting, their settings has it to match the speed of the slowest computer, or you have a really bad connection....

I think?
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November 8, 2009 6:43:34 PM

they have a computer set for hosting and know one plays on it, there is a network cable hanging at a free spot you just set up and plug in and set everything to auto. my network card is on the motherboard, 10/100/1000 that is the standard right.
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November 8, 2009 10:55:29 PM

You'd probably get a lot more performance if you overclock, that 3700 is likely holding back your 7800GTs
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