AMD's Opteron 250 vs. Intel's Xeon 3.6 GHz in a Workstation Duel of the Elite

One, Two, Four... Or How About Eight CPUs?

Overview of model numbers and HT channels

The way the Opteron processors are named is only confusing at first glance. If you look closely you will detect an easily comprehensible system, which first and foremost determines the number of HyperTransport channels. We will deliberately dispense with the "HT" abbreviation here, to prevent any confusion with Intel's HyperThreading.

Every HyperTransport channel is designed to be bi-directional and works with 16 bits. A 200 MHz speed (quad-pumped, the clock speed adds up to 800 MHz) yields a bandwidth of 3.2 GB/s - or 1.6 GB/s per direction. The channels are used to respond to either an I/O device (e.g. PCI-X bridge, AGP) or another Opteron processor. Each Opteron basically has a dual-channel memory controller.

Swipe to scroll horizontally
Header Cell - Column 0 Opteron 100 SeriesOpteron 200 SeriesOpteron 800 Series
HyperTransport channels2x 200 MHz quad-pumped3x 200 MHz quad-pumped4x 200 MHz quad-pumped
Total bandwidth I/O6.4 GB/s9.6 GB/s12.8 GB/s
ApplicationsSingle-processorSingle-processorDual-processorSingle-processorDual-processorMulti-Processor( up to 8)

A system with two Opteron processors.

A 4-way system.

This is what an eight- or multi-processor system looks like. However, this is intended exclusively for the server world.

  • bgd73
    hey thanks for this. There is errors in the test, especially in memory speed of xeons, in fact, it is ridiculous. I am going for older 7525 chipset in CEB motherboard...these machines are just getting started. I be sure to go for HT. thanks.