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Performance-Showdown between Athlon and Pentium III

Office Application Benchmark Results

I used BAPCo's SYSMark98 again, a benchmark that I like better and better the more I run it. Office application performance already used to be the strength of K6-2 and K6-3, but you had to rely on a Super7-platform that wasn't always stable. At the same time, AMD was finally not able to reach the same high clock speeds as Intel's Pentium III. These times have changed. Athlon was designed for high clock speeds, leaving Pentium III considerably behind. The Athlon-platforms, as few as there are right now, have proven reliable and stable in our lab-tests, and Athlon's office application performance continues to be significantly ahead of the Pentium III at the same clock speed.

The scaling of Sysmark98 under Windows98 is pretty much identical as under Windows NT, only that the NT-scores are higher, as we know for a long while. NT is a real operating system while Windows98 is still the toy-OS. This might finally change with Windows2000, thanks almighty Microsoft! Up to 650 MHz both CPUs scale close to perfectly linearly, above that the Athlon scores may be impacted by the hard drive speed, less likely the memory bus speed. It's interesting to note that the gradient of Athlon and Pentium III is identical. Pentium III at 650 MHz can pass Athlon at 550 but not even reach Athlon 600.