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chudofsinister
12-03-2003, 04:25 AM
Hey I am not a technical guy, artist in fact. I am putting a new Pc together and I am trying to figure out whats the difference between these two models, the FX is double the price. Whats so special and is it worth shelling out the extra dough?

And just so I am straight the AMD XP 3.2 is not the same as the AMD 64 3.2 is it?

Novakog
12-03-2003, 05:01 AM
By 3.2, you must mean 3200+.

So no, they are not the same. The AMD XP is a 32-bit processor and the AMD 64 is a 64-bit processor, as well as many other differences (partially due to being 64 bit and 32 bit processors). The implication is that they perform equally well on 32-bit programs, although I would bet the AMD 64 is actually faster (and when 64-bit optimized stuff comes out, the AMD XP won't even be able to run them).

Read up some stuff here: http://www.amd.com/us-en/Processors/ProductInformation/0,,30_118_9485_9487%5E9505,00.html

and various other places about the AMD 64 stuff, like here: http://www.pcstats.com/articleview.cfm?articleID=1466

I'll just give you a quick rundown of what (as I think, some1 correct me if I'm wrong) the difference is between 32-bit and 64-bit. In case you didn't know, bit stands for binary digit. The amount of bits a processor "is" is simply how many bits it can process in one clock.

P.S. All programs right now are 32-bit, which both processors run, so don't worry about that.

chudofsinister
12-03-2003, 05:53 AM
very cool, thanks for the info. Yeah I meant 3200. So whats the word then on fx vs regular 64, anyone have one and can comment on it. I have read a couple of different reviews kinda contradicting each other about hype and what not.

loop29
12-03-2003, 01:51 PM
The 64 FX is a desktop version of the Opteron processor. It features a dual channel memory controller and the Athlon 64 only has one channel. The 64 FX has higher clock rates than comparable Opterons, if I remember correct the 64 FX clocks in at 2.2 GHz while the Opteron is only available at 2.0 GHz. Im not sure about connections between processors on the 64 FX, as it is targeted for the desktop market I think it only has one Hypertransport channel for interconnects between processors which indeed would be similar to a 148 Opteron, but it maybe possible that it could have 2 Hypertransport channels, maybe somebody else can give info on that feature.

regards

Thalaxis
12-03-2003, 03:56 PM
Loop29 --

You're right. It's basically an Opteron 14x. The Opterons are now
up to the same speeds as the Athlon64FX.

Novakog --

The "bitness" has next to nothing to do with how many bits a
processor can process at a given time... it refers to the memory
address size, which determines how much memory it can use. For
a 32-bit processor the limit is 4 GB, for 64-bit even though the
Opteron currently only implements 40-bit physical addressing, the
uppter limit is many hundreds of terabytes, and for a full 64-bit
implementation, it's staggeringly huge.

The Athlon64 is generally faster than an AthlonXP, because of a
lot of fairly small under-the-hood improvements + the on-die
memory controller, SSE-2 compatibility, and bigger, faster caches.

MimikOctopus
12-03-2003, 04:15 PM
the fx-51 is basically a Opteron with a single hypertransport, the true opterons have 3. And no its not like a 1 series Opteron, the opterons come in 1,2, and 8 series. The 1 series is a single configuration, the 2 series is setup for dual config, and the 8 series is setup for quad and 8 processor configs. And from what I have hear the opterons can handle up to 256TB of memory per processor.

Thalaxis
12-03-2003, 04:32 PM
Originally posted by MimikOctopus
the fx-51 is basically a Opteron with a single hypertransport, the true opterons have 3. And no its not like a 1 series Opteron, the opterons come in 1,2, and 8 series.


Erm... based on your own description, the AthlonFX-51 is basically
an Opteron 148. It even requires registered memory.

That won't be the case for much longer according to AMD's plans,
though; the Socket 939 version will not require registered
memory, but will still have the same features otherwise.

You're right about the addressable memory... what the Opteron
can use is huge, and what we can feaibly put in an Opteron
system isn't even remotely close :)

MimikOctopus
12-03-2003, 07:01 PM
Originally posted by Thalaxis
Erm... based on your own description, the AthlonFX-51 is basically
an Opteron 148.

But the 14x series Opterons make use of all 3 hypertransports while the fx-51 only uses a single one. But beyond that I do believe they are identicle, in fact they are the 2 hypertransports are disabled on fx-51.

chudofsinister
12-03-2003, 07:06 PM
Thanks for all the responses, I will admit I don't know what most of you are talking about. Again basically all I want to know is, is the 64fx worth paying the price over the regular 64 for working in 3d apps.

Thalaxis
12-03-2003, 07:19 PM
Originally posted by chudofsinister
Thanks for all the responses, I will admit I don't know what most of you are talking about. Again basically all I want to know is, is the 64fx worth paying the price over the regular 64 for working in 3d apps.


It is definitely faster... and for OpenGL-related stuff, it's 2nd to
none. The extra money is paying for more than just an extra two
hundred MHz, it's getting you an extra memory channel.

Hopefully, it won't be long before the Socket 939 version will be
available... without the requirement for registered memory, the
price for the memory to go with the AthlonFX will drop significantly,
and it will even be a bit faster to boot (registered memory is by its
nature slightly slower than unregistered).

Mimik -- The Opteron 148 has the ccHT ports disabled as well. It's
to keep people from using the cheaper 1xx series in dual configs,
which allows them to charge a premium for the 2xx series. The
Socket 939 version will not be the same, though.

Novakog
12-03-2003, 09:38 PM
Originally posted by Thalaxis
Loop29 --

You're right. It's basically an Opteron 14x. The Opterons are now
up to the same speeds as the Athlon64FX.

Novakog --

The "bitness" has next to nothing to do with how many bits a
processor can process at a given time... it refers to the memory
address size, which determines how much memory it can use. For
a 32-bit processor the limit is 4 GB, for 64-bit even though the
Opteron currently only implements 40-bit physical addressing, the
uppter limit is many hundreds of terabytes, and for a full 64-bit
implementation, it's staggeringly huge.


I know you're right because 2^32 bits is 4 gigabytes, and 2^64 is 16 terabytes I think, but I recall hearing somewhere that AMD or someone said "There are two basic ways to increase processor speed [i.e. instructions per second]. The first is to increase the clock speed, and the second way is to increase the instructions per clock, which is what the AMD 64 and Opteron do." I remember now, you're right, but I recall that 64-bit processors have some increase of how many bits it can process at a given time, and also that 64-bit processors are better for floating point numbers (because, obviously, they can deal with more "digits")....

Well, anyway, chipset technology is way out of my knowledge, so correct me again and I'll shutup ;) .

Thalaxis
12-04-2003, 05:56 PM
What 64-bit processors can do that 32-bit ones cannot is access
more memory.

In the case of AMD64, the 32-bit implementation hampers the
integer performance, because of the requirement that the K8 run
32-bit x86 code natively. The integer side of x86 is 32-bit.

For most users though, the increased performance in the K8 is a
result of higher per-clock performance, because the K8 is a more
balanced design than the K7. The K7 was a badass core in need
of more more data, the K8 is the answer: it can feed the core
better than the K7's front-end could.

Razorwolf
12-04-2003, 08:32 PM
What about AMD Athlon XP1800+ @ 2000 Mhz vs. Opteron shiznit 64-bit @ 2000 Mhz?

What's the difference?

Thalaxis
12-04-2003, 08:53 PM
The easy and over-simplfified version: think of the Opteron as an
AthlonXP on steroids + side order of 64-bit support.

That's not entirely accurate, as the 64-bit support is actually
native and not an ancillary thing, it's just that you don't gain any
benefit from it unless you're running 64-bit native code.

But generally speaking, an Opteron or Athlon64FX at the same
clock speed as an AthlonXP will be faster with the same code,
plus it gains some extra benefit from SSE2 optimization for code
that uses SSE2.

The same will actually hold for the Athlon64, the only difference
being that it will hit its memory ceiling sooner... at least for now.
By the end of the year (probably sooner), Athlon64's will all have
support for dual memory channels.

I hope that helps!

MadMax
12-05-2003, 12:14 AM
Originally posted by chudofsinister
Thanks for all the responses, I will admit I don't know what most of you are talking about. Again basically all I want to know is, is the 64fx worth paying the price over the regular 64 for working in 3d apps.

The simple answer is if you want blazing fast, go for the FX.

It is worth every penny.

AS to your original question, both are 64 bit chips, the A64 designed for the "low end" or desktop crowd, the FX for the Pro crowd.

Between the 2, FX is faster in more ways than one. Besides being clocked higher, the FX has architectural differences that give it more performance, like dual channel memory controller.

Razorwolf
12-05-2003, 11:24 AM
I seriously believe a prometheia cooled 1800+ DLT3C overclocked to 2,6 Ghz is faster then those Athlon 64s.. and if isn't faster it shurely is a better value.

milkyman
12-05-2003, 03:19 PM
(and when 64-bit optimized stuff comes out, the AMD XP won't even be able to run them).

are you sure? do you even know what your talking about here?

Razorwolf
12-05-2003, 04:11 PM
The switch to 64-bit is going to take a looong time.
I'm not shure it's faster; I assume so.

By the time 64-bit is standard your little $600 processor costs $50.

MadMax
12-05-2003, 04:16 PM
Originally posted by Razorwolf
The switch to 64-bit is going to take a looong time.
I'm not shure it's faster; I assume so.

By the time 64-bit is standard your little $600 processor costs $50.


A lot of misconceptions there.

64 bit is a lot faster NOW without waiting for a 64 bit OS.

I've already heard of a number of graphics type apps announce plans to port software to AMD's x86-64. Ulead was among them. Loooong time? doubtful.

That kind of argument goes right back to the days of "you don't need more than 640k"

So since you are so opposed to the price of the FX at 700.00, how do you feel about Intel's slower than FX, P4 Expensive Edition at over 1,000.00?

Thalaxis
12-05-2003, 04:28 PM
I think that in this industry (not the mainstream), Max is right
about 64-bit support... once the last major barrier is removed
(by MS releasing XP64), there should be announcements out the
wazoo. Search for GregHess' SIGGRAPH report, one of the things
that he mentioned is the huge amount of interest that there is in
Opteron.

Especially since XP64 will include NUMA optimizations. That's really
where the Opteron's bigget win will be, I think.

Milkyman -- it's quite true; the AMD64 instruction set is quite
different from the x86 instruction set. It's a superset, with one
exception -- it doesn't support x86 real mode, so the truly ancient
stuff that ran in dos only won't work, but that's it. The AthlonXP
doesn't have SSE2, 64-bit GPRs, or 16 SSE/SSE2 registers, which
are part of the AMD64 instruction set.

Razorwolf
12-05-2003, 05:40 PM
I'm talking mainstream, the people without money.. you know.
If you have the money, go ahead.

CgFX
12-05-2003, 05:57 PM
I thought it was going to take a while but now I don't think so. I saw a nForce3 based Shuttle (small form factor) barebones PC for $350. So for under $1000 you can build a 64 bit computer for your kitchen or bathroom.

MadMax
12-05-2003, 06:01 PM
Originally posted by Razorwolf
I'm talking mainstream, the people without money.. you know.
If you have the money, go ahead.

what's your budget? a 99.00 e-machine?

Thalaxis
12-05-2003, 06:07 PM
For the content creation market and the hardcore gamer market,
I think 64-bit will be here in a matter months... depending on MS
and their XP64 release.

For everyone else... 32-bit is already overkill, so it's going to be a
while before they even care, and even a high-end AthlonXP is
more than powerful enough, so again it's going to be a while
before they start to care.

And it's not like Intel's going to take this lying down, and it's not
like AMD's just going to sit around butt-slapping themselves, so
the competition will continue, to the benefit of the end users.

I don't think that the 64-bit transition is as far off as Intel would
like us to believe it is, though. I think Intel is off by a few years.

Razorwolf
12-05-2003, 07:44 PM
Originally posted by MadMax
what's your budget? a 99.00 e-machine?

1000 euros for a system with good gpu and 5.1, leet case etc..

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