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The real difference between AMD and Intel...

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July 22, 2010 10:59:18 PM

Hello all...

Now, before I even write the rest of this post, I need to let you all know this: Please keep all responses directed at me. I am not starting this thread as a flaming argument thread. I do not want to know what you are a fanboy of, but want pure statistical information. So please, keep on topic and answer the question to the best of your ability. Thank you. :) 

I want to know if Intel or AMD is better. I know there are a lot of factors to cover, so I will add in some stuff to narrow it down...

On Newegg the Intel Core i7-975 Extreme Quad-Core ( http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... ) is about $1,000. The AMD Phenom II Black Edition Quad-Core ( http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... ) however is only about $180. That is a radical price difference for seemingly similar products. Why is the Intel so expensive, is there some statistic that I missed, or is it just the nametag people are buying?

Which brand is more reliable/durable/have better quality? Which brand runs cooler? Which brand uses less power? Which brand overclocks better? Etc...

I know this depends a lot on the specific CPU, but try to answer generally for the entire brand.

Overall which one should I buy?

Again I do not want fanboy responses. These are serious questions looking for serious answers.



Thank you in advance for your answers. :) 
a c 190 à CPUs
a b À AMD
July 22, 2010 11:04:46 PM

The reason the 975 is soo much more expensive is because intel charges a significant premium for their unlocked multiplier chips, and AMD has nothing that comes near the 975s performance without overclocking. If you have the absolute fastest chip, there is no reason to sell it at a reasonable price if people will buy it when its $1000.

The answer to your second set of questions is, NEITHER. They are both extremely reliable, your average CPU will survive for ~10 years, but you will have replaced it long before then. Their equivalent units use similar amounts of power, intels newer i3's and i5's that are 32nm use less but this only refers to those processors not to the entire intel lineup. Both brands overclock quite well, but overclocking potential varies greatly between CPUs but in general both brands have some that overclock quite well and others that arent great.
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July 22, 2010 11:16:52 PM

It's untrue to say AMD has nothing that matches the 975s performance when the 1090T is very close to it overall and beats it in well threaded apps.

You would need to be an idiot to even consider the 975, for anything at all. Anybody who suggests or advises you pay so much more for a 975 instead of a 1090 should be shot. There are other intel chips that are much better value but are still poor value compared to the AMD chips, especially the 1055T.
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July 22, 2010 11:18:01 PM

well, no CPU company is better than the other, just one cpu is better, or better value than another. Your are likely thinking "Hey, the 975 is a quad at 3.33 GHz, the AMD X4 is a quad at 3.4 GHz, why does the intel cost more?" well to sum it up in 1 word, architecture. The intel i7 lineup has a radically different architecture than the phenom II's. without delving into that much, heres a comparison:

http://www.anandtech.com/bench/Product/102?vs=99

the comparison of the 2 cpus. clock speed and core count are important, but still very little parts of the equation. not all cpu's are created equal.
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July 22, 2010 11:20:42 PM

eyefinity said:
It's untrue to say AMD has nothing that matches the 975s performance when the 1090T is very close to it overall and beats it in well threaded apps.

You would need to be an idiot to even consider the 975, for anything at all. Anybody who suggests or advises you pay so much more for a 975 instead of a 1090 should be shot.


and the 1090T competes with the i7 930 well, i think it OVERALL beats it, however not in gaming and single threaded apps. However, the 1090T wont be able to put up much of a fight against the intel:

http://www.anandtech.com/bench/Product/146?vs=99

it doesnt beat it in performance at all, but it eats its the 975's babies alive when it comes to value.
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July 22, 2010 11:43:37 PM

Those anandtech benchmarks are not indicative of the general performance of the chips, in fact they are the most biased towards intel that you can find.

It's an old argument which others have done to death, but the 1090T beats or equals the 975 in a lot of reviews. Overall I think it's a very little bit slower, but you would be mad to consider the 975 instead of it as the 1090T wins easily in price and power draw levels.

http://www.guru3d.com/article/phenom-ii-x6-1055t-1090t-...

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a c 309 à CPUs
a b å Intel
a b À AMD
July 22, 2010 11:45:14 PM

Killer Carebear said:
Hello all...

Now, before I even write the rest of this post, I need to let you all know this: Please keep all responses directed at me. I am not starting this thread as a flaming argument thread. I do not want to know what you are a fanboy of, but want pure statistical information. So please, keep on topic and answer the question to the best of your ability. Thank you. :) 

I want to know if Intel or AMD is better. I know there are a lot of factors to cover, so I will add in some stuff to narrow it down...

On Newegg the Intel Core i7-975 Extreme Quad-Core ( http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... ) is about $1,000. The AMD Phenom II Black Edition Quad-Core ( http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... ) however is only about $180. That is a radical price difference for seemingly similar products. Why is the Intel so expensive, is there some statistic that I missed, or is it just the nametag people are buying?

Which brand is more reliable/durable/have better quality? Which brand runs cooler? Which brand uses less power? Which brand overclocks better? Etc...

I know this depends a lot on the specific CPU, but try to answer generally for the entire brand.

Overall which one should I buy?

Again I do not want fanboy responses. These are serious questions looking for serious answers.

Re: Intel i7-975 vs AMD Phenom ii BE.

The Intel has hyperthreading which gives the OS 4 more tasks to dispatch.
Intel uses triple channel DDR3 vs. 2
As a rule Intel will do more work per clock cycle than AMD
Both are equally reliable.
Intel can usually overclock higher.
There is always a price premium for the very top products, and Intel charges it.
Is all this worth it? probably no. On a value basis, the AMD is very competitive. The i7-930 will outperform the amd if both are modestly overclocked, making the two brands
a tossup for value.

Which should YOU buy? Look for a cpu that suits YOUR needs and pick the best solution. The answer will depend on what you want out of the cpu.


Thank you in advance for your answers. :) 

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July 22, 2010 11:51:25 PM

eyefinity said:
Those anandtech benchmarks are not indicative of the general performance of the chips, in fact they are the most biased towards intel that you can find.

It's an old argument which others have done to death, but the 1090T beats or equals the 975 in a lot of reviews. Overall I think it's a very little bit slower, but you would be mad to consider the 975 instead of it as the 1090T wins easily in price and power draw levels.

http://www.guru3d.com/article/phenom-ii-x6-1055t-1090t-...


erm, im using an amd cpu and i love it, so this isnt a flame war, im no fanboy of either side, you, well amd? but ive gone thru a 10 page thread arguing the 1090T is OVERALL better than the i7 930. but you dont know what you are talking about when you say the 1090T beats the 975 on performance, it doesnt. not by a long shot.
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July 22, 2010 11:54:25 PM

hahahahaha, right, show me the 1 benchmark the 1090T wins in, ok, hows this:














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July 23, 2010 12:15:49 AM

Wow, a lot of info in a short amount of time. :) 

Do not get too hung up on the 975 vs. the Phenom... it was only one example.
I just wanted to know if one brand truly was better than the other, with no fanboy replies.

I guess I will also add in the availability of motherboards and heatsinks/fans to the criteria list also.

Thanks for your answers so far, and any future ones.
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July 23, 2010 12:29:44 AM

My next build will be bulldozer AMD. I am sick of Intel chips TBH - too much of a premium for something I don't even notice. Unless I am making 100k a year doing video editing etc I am sticking to better value product. Also, AMD has been selling a lot more chips. Hint hint.
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July 23, 2010 12:30:53 AM

No brand is better than the other, as the both co-exist, and dont compete. amd keeps its nose in lower end for the most part (every few years comes out with a new architecture, stays on top for a while until intel steals the concepts) and intel stays on top for the most part. its more or less a split down the $200 mark. sure, amd has 1 good cpu up there, intel has 1 or 2 good cpus below, but its pretty split there. AMD wins for value, Intel wins for performance, AMD wins for motherboard compatibility, Intel wins for motherboard performance, AMD wins for good pricing scheme, intel, well loses hard in that area :lol: 
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July 23, 2010 1:07:02 AM

As I've pretty much noticed, just didn't know if there was something I was not seeing.

And I am guessing it is the same deal with Nvidia vs. ATI...?
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a c 190 à CPUs
a b À AMD
July 23, 2010 1:08:58 AM

Yup, both have their pros and cons but in the end come out about equal.
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Best solution

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July 23, 2010 1:09:16 AM

Personally, I have made the choice of going with an AMD chip. The high-end chips by Intel have their place, but for most users, they will not notice the difference. Some applications, such as photo and video editing will draw on the extra threads and clock speed made available by the highest-end chips, but most games currently are optimized for 4 or fewer cores. AMD definitely delivers more performance for the money, but Intel has no reason to drop the price of it's highest end chips because people will pay that price for them.

AMD has a much better path to upgrade when necessary, many AM2 boards will support all but 2 of AMD's newest processors after their BIOS update, and many AM2+ boards support even those hexa-core chips. Because of everything that Intel places on the CPU, such as the memory controller etc., they are forced to make new sockets and come out with new chips that are significantly less compatible than the AMD counterparts.

To answer the question of which CPU you should buy, it depends on what you are trying to do. Intel's high-end chips are more powerful than AMD's high-end, but if you do not need high-end, AMD will likely have a perfect solution for you at a price that is much easier on your wallet. If you are looking for a specific situation, ask for that specifically, not just a general which is better.

It will be different for every person, since each person places different values on core count, thread count, affordability, overclockability,Clock speed etc., and your priorities may change over time.

In conclusion, for a low-end or middling system, AMD tends to be the way to go, especially if you see yourself upgrading incrementally, as I do. Intel is more for performance enthusiasts and the most high-end applications.

Hope I helped
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July 23, 2010 1:16:16 AM

i think AMD is more of the "peoples cpu" where as intel is more of the "small sliver of enthusiasts and gamers cpu". intel also gets a lot more from dell/hp, they use old Core 2 Duos over AMD products that easily beat them.
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July 23, 2010 1:16:54 AM

Ok.

All of this helped quite a bit.

I do not have a specific situation to tell about, I already have a cheap computer that is fitting my needs for now... Using AMD..., But this info will help a lot for future consideration.

Thanks again for all the info.
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July 23, 2010 1:18:43 AM

any time :) 
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July 23, 2010 1:19:44 AM

Best answer selected by Killer Carebear.
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July 23, 2010 1:25:25 AM

ares1214 said:
No brand is better than the other, as the both co-exist, and dont compete. amd keeps its nose in lower end for the most part (every few years comes out with a new architecture, stays on top for a while until intel steals the concepts) and intel stays on top for the most part. its more or less a split down the $200 mark. sure, amd has 1 good cpu up there, intel has 1 or 2 good cpus below, but its pretty split there. AMD wins for value, Intel wins for performance, AMD wins for motherboard compatibility, Intel wins for motherboard performance, AMD wins for good pricing scheme, intel, well loses hard in that area :lol: 

Co-exist? Nope, Intel and AMD competes head on.

AMD never tried to " keeps its nose in lower end for the most part", Its just the fact that K10 was underfunded and overlooked, causing it to be horribly late, bugged and poorly executed that forced AMD to edge out Intel via pricing.

Remember the days when the K8 FXs where king of performance and what Intel was charging for the P4s?
Its like today's situation, except reversed.


The thing is, who ever comes out with the architecture that can perform quite a bit better that its competitor, they gets to charge the premium and the competitor is forced to go the "sell more cheaper" tactic. When both are pretty much on par with each other, its price war. Its the same with GPUs.

When G80 came out and performed great, while R600 is late and under-deliveed, Nvidia gets to raise the prices of those 8800GTs like crazy while ATI cant drop the prices of 2900XTs quick enough.

Then R800 came out, while Fermis weren't even in sight, ATI gets to raise the MSRP and manage to keep at those levels for 9 months.

So If Bulldozer can beat Sandy bridge like Nehalem does to K10 now, you can expect cheap(er) Intel chips and AMD charging like how Intel is right now. They'll probably also change those sockets in a flash, if it keeps them in the leaders of performance.
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July 23, 2010 1:29:07 AM

i realize about sandy bridge, hopefully AMD has been humbled by its time in the low end :lol:  doubt it though. however, im talking about right NOW. as far as company history, yeah both are in it to win it. but right now, amd's cpus are in the low end, Intels are in the high end, amds happy as intel doesnt interfere much, intels happy as amd doesnt interfere much. When BD comes out, this will likely change.
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July 23, 2010 1:35:14 AM

ares1214 said:
i realize about sandy bridge, hopefully AMD has been humbled by its time in the low end :lol:  doubt it though. however, im talking about right NOW. as far as company history, yeah both are in it to win it. but right now, amd's cpus are in the low end, Intels are in the high end, amds happy as intel doesnt interfere much, intels happy as amd doesnt interfere much. When BD comes out, this will likely change.

The fact is Intel don't want to interfere with AMD in the low-end market because theyre making enough money as it is and some "competition" helps Intels corporate image ALOT.

Besides, the profit margins are much lower for AMD compared to Intel, so it wouldn't make sense for Intel financially to make more Core based "Value Chips" that makes only $10 per die while they could use that capacity to make Nehalems that can make $100 per die as there's plenty of demand.
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July 23, 2010 1:39:06 AM

dont worry i know why they stay in their respective positions, im just saying they do and will stay in their respective positions unless BD or its relatives take the top spot. IMO, amd has the top spot in the market from Q1 2011 to Q3 2011.
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July 23, 2010 1:48:27 AM

ares1214 said:
dont worry i know why they stay in their respective positions, im just saying they do and will stay in their respective positions unless BD or its relatives take the top spot. IMO, amd has the top spot in the market from Q1 2011 to Q3 2011.

Or not at all, you never know.

The "cycle" you mentioned isn't accurate at all IMO, It was only with K8 and Netburst that propelled AMD into the limelight for once. If K10 didn't have that TLB bug and was released around the time when Conroe was released, Intel wouldn't be as comfortable as it is right now.

There could just be the possibility that AMD catch a break and goes on a winning streak while Intel does more NetBursts. 10 years later It might just be AMD whose profit for a quarter is almost Intels revenue for the whole year.
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July 23, 2010 1:55:41 AM

ares1214 said:

I need to tell Chris to start using a different test for 3DS Max. That one is far too quick to render to notice any real differences unless you throw in dual and triple core CPUs, and the scanline renderer doesn't scale as well as mental ray either. I'd prefer it if they used POV-Ray actually, or at least throw it in as an addition. Anandtech usually uses POV-Ray.
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July 23, 2010 2:02:18 AM

Timop said:
Or not at all, you never know.

The "cycle" you mentioned isn't accurate at all IMO, It was only with K8 and Netburst that propelled AMD into the limelight for once. If K10 didn't have that TLB bug and was released around the time when Conroe was released, Intel wouldn't be as comfortable as it is right now.

There could just be the possibility that AMD catch a break and goes on a winning streak while Intel does more NetBursts. 10 years later It might just be AMD whose profit for a quarter is almost Intels revenue for the whole year.


its a lot of "ifs" and "mights" in there, im just saying currently, intel has the high end without much competition, amd has the low end without much competition.
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July 23, 2010 2:09:33 AM

Timop said:
The "cycle" you mentioned isn't accurate at all IMO, It was only with K8 and Netburst that propelled AMD into the limelight for once. If K10 didn't have that TLB bug and was released around the time when Conroe was released, Intel wouldn't be as comfortable as it is right now.

The TLB bug had nothing to do with the success or failure of K10. The only thing it succeeded in doing was generating page hits on news sites.
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July 23, 2010 2:11:21 AM

randomizer said:
The TLB bug had nothing to do with the success or failure of K10. The only thing it succeeded in doing was generating page hits on news sites.

It did bring down its reputation and gave picky reviewers/Intel fanboys something to complain about.
The fix did decrease performance by abit though.
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July 23, 2010 2:21:27 AM

Yes, the fix was the problem. The problem wasn't the problem. It was kind of like the Pentium FDIV bug; bad if you run into it but you won't run into it. AMD and Intel publish hundreds of errata for every CPU generation, most of which are never fixed.
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July 23, 2010 2:33:32 AM

The problem was a problem because AMD's public relations team suck.

Whenever something bad about Nvidia/Intel comes out, they always give out a cleverly written paragraph that pushes the blame to other people and makes you feel bad for Nvidia/Intel, feel like there really isnt a problem and/or the existence problem is perfectly normal.

While with AMD/ATI its like "We do have a problem, and its REALLY BAD. but only 0.005% of the products are affected. Its caused by [insert technical terms], Its perfectly normal and you'll probably never run into it, but if you do youre SCREWED, so were working on a fix as hard as we can that will take out half the performance. Thank you!"
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July 23, 2010 2:38:40 AM

haha, very true :lol: 
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a b À AMD
July 23, 2010 3:16:37 AM

eyefinity said:
Those anandtech benchmarks are not indicative of the general performance of the chips, in fact they are the most biased towards intel that you can find.

It's an old argument which others have done to death, but the 1090T beats or equals the 975 in a lot of reviews. Overall I think it's a very little bit slower, but you would be mad to consider the 975 instead of it as the 1090T wins easily in price and power draw levels.

http://www.guru3d.com/article/phenom-ii-x6-1055t-1090t-...


Nice cherry picking.

I will say this: In pure performance, unless the app is highly multithreaded and well built for true cores, it doesn't beat a i7 975. It matches a i7 930. Thats easily true. It beats price wise

But put the 1090t up against a 980x and its squashed. So on a core per core, its behind. Hence the reason why their pricing is so low. They priced their CPUs near what the knew it could match/beat. They didn't price it because they want you to be happy. Thats the reason why the HD5970 is $700 unlike the HD4870X2 that hit at $400. When they can, they price it higher.

As for power draw, until AMD gets triple channel DDR3 its not easy to truly compare power draws since most websites use triple channel X58 mobos.

And random is pretty much right. K10s failure was elsewhere in the arch. The TLB bug didn't stop it from reaching the clocks needed. I think the arch itself was just bad and thats why the redesigned it in K10.5.
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July 23, 2010 3:31:28 AM

Timop said:
AMD's public relations team suck.


I will not argue with that.
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