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  • Lupine - Wednesday, February 16, 2005 - link

    I'm surprised at these results. I'm setting up a new Dell Inspiron 9200 (M 725 @ 1.6GHz/400MHz FSB) and it is schooling both my Barton 2500+ @ 2.2GHz and TBred B 1700+ @ 2.2GHz running Stanford's Folding@Home project (600 point proteins: ~37min per frame for the XP boxes compared to ~34min per frame w/ the laptop).

    So, if it is so weak, what is allowing it to process WUs at such a competitive rate? Sure, that is slower than an A64, but competitive w/ most P4 procs.
  • fitten - Thursday, February 10, 2005 - link

    Something else to remember about the Banias/Dothan line of chips... Agressive power reduction was the #1 goal of the design process. In a 'normal' chip design, not all pipeline stages are the same length, the clock speed it runs at is the speed of the slowest part of the CPU. Since power usage is directly related to the frequency of the switching gates, the Intel engineers actually deliberately slowed down some parts of the chip to match the target release speeds (or get close to them) to reduce power consumption. This is, perhaps, the main reason why the frequencies don't scale so well as some would want them to scale. Reply
  • Visual - Thursday, February 10, 2005 - link

    here's another thought... when the opterons launched initially at ECC DDR266, there were similar comments like "give it unbuffered DDR400 or higher and stay out of its way" :) well, now that we have that, ok it did improve performance a bit. but not hugely. shouldn't help the dothan significantly more too. Reply
  • Visual - Thursday, February 10, 2005 - link

    I like how AMD got beaten by the P-M :) not because im intel fan, just because this will make things more interesting now.

    don't catch flame from this comment :p its my oppinion

    Funny how you picked the game benchmarks btw, its almost as if you wanted to show the P-M lacking behind the A64... from what I've seen it beats A64 in HL2 and CSS, and that's a game you don't skip usually :) so why now?

    Also looks suspicious how in lots of tests where P-M performs well with the A64 clock-for-clock or beats it, there is almost no difference in the 3800+ and 4000+ results... like if L2 isnt all that important, yet L2 is exactly how everyone explains the P-M success

    Maybe we'll see some 2MB L2 A64 "emergency edition" once Dothan gets a decent desktop chipset, just like what intel did to (try to) save P4 from the A64 :)
    actually i'd be happy if Dothan motivates AMD to develop faster L2 cache or something.

    Knowing Intel, i dont expect they'd even try to match AMD's prices with the P-M... and there's a lot of room for AMD to decreace prices, as they're selling with quite a margin now. So for sure the P-M won't be cost-effective compared to A64, not if you don't care for ultra-low power consumption at least.

    also it doesn't look likely Dothan could scale beyond 2.6GHz on current 90nm tech. by the time it gets there, AMD should've launched the 2.8 FX and most likely 3GHz too. so I have no doubts AMD will keep the lead for quite a while... maybe the race to 65nm will be the next turning point, as it seems its going smooth for intel (at least for P-M)

    anyway, even if AMD is better in absolute performance, pricepoint and (arguably) clock-for-clock, you gotta admit it to the P-M, it does quite a punch. fun times are coming :)
  • Zebo - Wednesday, February 09, 2005 - link

    dobwal buy intel if you want mhz, AMD is for performance. Reply
  • dobwal - Wednesday, February 09, 2005 - link

    i wasn't referring to the FX series. Plus you are not understanding the point i was trying to make. Lets take a look at the FX series.

    OPN Model Operating Freq. Package ADAFX55DEI5AS FX55 2600MHz 939-Pin
    ADAFX53DEP5AS FX53 2400MHz 939-Pin
    ADAFX53CEP5AT FX53 2400MHz 940-Pin
    ADAFX51CEP5AT FX51 2200MHz 940-Pin
    ADAFX51CEP5AK FX51 2200MHz 940-Pin

    the first FX51 was release around late third quarter 2003. So in a little over a year the FX series has only increased 400 Mhz. Can you automatically assume that the FX has poor scalability in terms of cpu speed. NO. You know why, because the EE is underperforming and can't touch the FX. AMD has no need to push large scale speed increases out of the FX line, which would do nothing but increase cost with each new stepping it used to boost performance.

    The same goes for the Dothan at 2.26Ghz by the end of 2005. What other cpu offers the same level of performance vs. battery life. So why push for performance except to push sales.

    You simply can't determine the scalabiltiy of a cpu based on its roadmap especially when its the performance leader in its market segment and has no current viable competitor or one in the near future.
  • Aileur - Wednesday, February 09, 2005 - link

    Oh and, superpi relies on the fpu to do its calculations, so so much for this fpu is crap trend we have going here.
  • Aileur - Wednesday, February 09, 2005 - link

    Oh and before you start bragging about the better superpi1mb result of the a64

    this is 1 sec better, with 100mhz less, and single channel ram.
  • Aileur - Wednesday, February 09, 2005 - link

    Since you seem to like xtremesystems
    also a 1ghz overclock, also on default voltage

    Id like to see how an a64 would perform on a kt266 (if that were possible)

    Give the pentium m time to mature and all those "OMG HAHA YOU CPUZ IS SO HOT LOLOL!!!1111" will be obsoleet.
  • Zebo - Wednesday, February 09, 2005 - link

    58 "How long has A64 been stuck on 2.4Ghz."

    There not. 2.6 FX-55 been out for months. More importantly AMD does'nt have to release new chips the way they dominate the benchmarks now. Could they? Hell ya.They got a nice buffer going, New FX's hit 3.0 on stock air. Cheap 90nm's are now hitting 2.7 on default Vcore and air. And by air I mean AMD's cheap all aluminum HS with a itty bitty 15mmx70mm fan, not Prescotts copper core screamers.

    T8000- You're clueless. Maybe it's the heat generated by your prescott making your head woozy, I dunno, but have a look here..1800 Mhz to 2800 Mhz on default Vcore stock fan.
  • saratoga - Tuesday, February 08, 2005 - link

    Overall this artical brings up a lot of the points missing in other Dothan reviews. Very nice work. Too many people have looked at a few benchmarks, bashed Intel for the P4, and missed the whole issue here.

    Intel isn't stupid. Its obvious they don't think Dothan will work in its current form as a desktop chip, and thats why they're still sticking with Prescott at the moment, and only bring the P-M over much later in a reworked form with Yohan. Assuming they ever do introduce a desktop chip based on the P-M.

    Also, siginificant scaling out of Dothan seems unlikely. They'll probably get a few more speed grades out of it, but whoever was saying 3GHz was dreaming. Maybe at 65nm, but that sure as heck won't be dothan, and it won't be for a while yet.
  • PrinceGaz - Tuesday, February 08, 2005 - link

    Well put classy, the P-M is a chip that at least in its current form can never be a desktop processor because of severe weaknesses in several areas.

    A faster dual-channel chipset will never make up for its poor FPU performance in heavy-duty applications, something I'd heard about many months ago but hadn't seen reliable benchmarks of until now.

    If you want to do word-processing or browse the web, I'm sure the P-M will be very efficient. If you want to run the sort of spplications that seriously test a processor and are the reason you'd buy it in the first place for a desktop PC, then the P-M falls far short of the mark, in fact it is so far behind at times that it is embarrasing.

    But you don't get anything for nothing, the P-M is great at doing easy stuff very quickly which is what laptops are used ofr mainly; but when the going gets tough, you want a real desktop processor like the A64 to keep things moving.
  • classy - Tuesday, February 08, 2005 - link


    What part don't you understand? The Pentium M has been reviewed all over the net. Out of all the reviews only one reviewer hit 2.8. Everyone else, was similar to Anandtech's results. 2nd I don't no where you been, but every review of an FX55 I have seen it routinely hits 2.8 with no problem. And almost all the lower speeds hit the 2.6-2.7 ballpark. Not mention that a small increase with A64 is much more signifcant than even a modest Intel OC because of the architecture of the A64 cpus. Hey everyone has a favorite cpu, video card, or motherboard maker. But when something is better, its just better. And for anyone to even remotely argue the Pentium M as a challenge to the A64 cpus is a bit silly. This chip reminds me a lot of the old 366@550 celery chips. IF you got a 366 to do 550 it was a great chip because it gave you nice performance for the price. The Pentium M doesn't have a price advantage and is on a platform that is outdated. IF you can overclock it to decent levels it performs pretty good in some aspects but still sucks in many others. The problem is IF. But as I stated ealier IF is out for the evening with MAYBE.
  • LackofVision - Tuesday, February 08, 2005 - link

    I couldn't disagree more with the conclusions in this article.

    Anyone who can't see the promise of a desktop processor design based on the banias in't going beyond just looking at the numbers. Especially when you start thinking down the road about dual core's and the heat and performance bottlenecks associated with them.

    So because the banias can't outperform the p4 or athlon64 in every benchmark, when hamstrung by an outdated chipset, and designed primarily for low power usage, the processor won't be competitive when running on a modern subsystem with a re tuning of the core design to make it more suited to the desktop?

    Nothing like comparing apples to oranges and then drawing a conclusion on what a pear tastes like.
  • jamawass - Tuesday, February 08, 2005 - link

    I doubt it, Intel makes huge profits by putting a price premium for mobile processors. They won't jeopardize this for a few enthusiasts. Reply
  • KristopherKubicki - Tuesday, February 08, 2005 - link

    FrostAWOL, #51: What's your point? Those HP blade servers run Pentium Ms and there is no mention of Pentium 4 anywhere.

  • HardwareD00d - Tuesday, February 08, 2005 - link

    Pentium M = Yawn

  • T8000 - Tuesday, February 08, 2005 - link

    Since it is very rare to see an A64 CPU overclock above the available speeds without subzero cooling, the comparision would likely be between a 2.4 or maybe 2.6 Ghz A64 and a 2.8 Ghz P-M.

    Also, P-M CPU's with higher multipliers usually overclock better due to the limited FSB possibilities of the i855 chipset. This could explain why Anand did not reach 2.8 Ghz in this review.
  • dobwal - Tuesday, February 08, 2005 - link

    While i think that this is a good article. Allowing us to see the performance of the dothan in its current state against desktop cpus. Some of the conclusions that are made by the author don't take account of alot factors.

    1. "The problem is that in the transition to the desktop world, its competitors get much more powerful, while the Pentium M is forced to live within its mobile constraints."

    How can this statement be valid. The mobile constraints on the Dothan is never really removed. Nothing is really done to try to make the mobile dothan mimick a (possible) desktop variation of itself. Do you really think there is a chance for a official desktop dothan running at 2.4 with DDR 333 in single channel with 533 FSB. How about re-running these benchmarks along with a 3.2Ghz P4 with DDR 333 (single channel) and a FSB speed of 533.

    2. "The fundamental issue is that although the Pentium M is surprisingly competitive with the Athlon 64 on a clock for clock basis, the Pentium M's architecture can't scale to the same clock speeds that the Athlon 64 can. The fact of the matter is that while the Pentium M will hit 2.26GHz by the end of 2005, the Athlon 64 will be on its way to 3.0GHz and beyond."

    The fact of the matter is you are comparing the scalability of the king of mobile chips vs. the scalability of the king of desktop chip and making an assumption without taking account of all the factors involved. The fact is we do not know the scalability of the dothan without its mobile constraints. Even more so, we don't know the true scalability of the mobile Dothan. What other mobile cpu offers the same level of performance vs. battery life.

    Its more profitable for a company to retard performance increases of its cpu if there is no other cpu that can offer the same level of performance currently or in the near future. Revisions or new steppings increase cost.

    AMD is in the same boat with the A64.
    How long has A64 been stuck on 2.4Ghz. Most of the latest PR number increases with relation to A64 have come from HT increases, dual channel and moving from 754 to 939. Imagine the scenario of where the Prescott worked as intended and the Tejas was around the corner. Do you think that the A64 would be still at 2.4Ghz or more like 3.0 or 3.2Ghz.

    While some of the conclusions could be seen as true under the circumstances of Intel never officially introducing the dothan to the desktop world. Where all we get are mobile Dothans on chipsets with desktop features.

    However, these benchmarks can't prove or disprove the viability of a dothan that was devised by Intel to be a desktop competitor.
  • classy - Tuesday, February 08, 2005 - link


    IF Intel does this. IF Intel does that. Unfortunately IF left with MAYBE and they went to the movies to see the new #1 movie from Intel, Could Have, But Didn't, starring Mr Dothan CPU. :)
  • bob661 - Tuesday, February 08, 2005 - link

    The only problem with this chip is that the marketing is oriented towards the mobile market and therefore not a direct competitor to the A64. It would be nice if it was. It might bring some cats out of the bag on the AMD side. Competition in the marketplace is good for us all. Reply
  • jvrobert - Tuesday, February 08, 2005 - link

    Really, AMDroids, get a grip. You're all excited because the AMD chips beat a mobile processor pretty handily, and because you are making some silly assumption that the Pentium-M in its current form is Intel's "last chance".

    First, Intel doesn't need a last chance. They make enough money to make AMD look like a Mexico City taco stand. So enough of those delusions of grandeur.

    But on a technical front, if Intel ramps the clockspeed up to the 2.8 range (easy), and releases a desktop class chipset for the Pentium M it would match or exceed any current chip. And these are _basic_ steps. What if they made more improvements?
  • jvrobert - Tuesday, February 08, 2005 - link

  • bob661 - Tuesday, February 08, 2005 - link

    You are a rock. The point of the article was to compare the P-M to desktop CPU's because most of us here wanted to know it will perform. And you know what? It performed very nicely.
  • classy - Tuesday, February 08, 2005 - link

    I just can't help but to laugh at some folks. Its a nice chip but clearly not in the A64 ballpark. Its that simple. As far as the 2.8 oc, that was only accomplished in one reveiw. All the reviews show the same thing you have oc so it can it compete. What's interesting though is most of these Intel fanboys don't want to see a comparison of an oc'ed A64 vs a Dothan. Smoke city :) Reply
  • FrostAWOL - Tuesday, February 08, 2005 - link

    IF the Pentium-M and P4 are electrically incompatible then someone please explain this:

    HP Blade system Pentium-M with Serverworks GC-SL chipset

  • jae63 - Tuesday, February 08, 2005 - link

    Great review & of interest to those of us with HTPCs. Too bad the price point is so steep.

    One minor correction on page 11:
    "The Pentium M does a bit better in the document creation tests, as they are mostly using applications that will fit within the CPU's cache. However, the introduction of a voice recognition program into the test stresses the Pentium M's floating point performance, which does hamper its abilities here."

    Actually NaturallySpeaking uses almost no floating point but is very memory intensive. The performance hit that you are seeing is because it uses a lot of memory bandwidth and its dataset doesn't fit in the L2 cache.

    Here's some support for my statement, by the main architect of NaturallySpeaking, Joel Gould:
  • segagenesis - Tuesday, February 08, 2005 - link

    #43 - I think you have the right idea here. This processor is not meant to be performance busting but rather a low energy alternative to current heat factories present inside every P4 machine. I would love to have this in a HTPC machine myself but the cost is still too damn high. Hopefully higher production will bring the cost down. Reply
  • Aileur - Tuesday, February 08, 2005 - link

    I guess the pentium M isnt ready (yet) for a full featured gaming machine, but with that kind of power, passively cooled, it would make for one hell of an htpc. Reply
  • PrinceGaz - Tuesday, February 08, 2005 - link

    #45- It was not an unfair review, on the contrary it seemed very well done. The reason the P-M was compared with fast P4 and A64's is because they cost about the same.

    Maybe someone else buys your computers for you, but most of us here have to spend our own money on them so cost is the best way to decide what to compare it with.
  • bluesdoggy - Tuesday, February 08, 2005 - link the mobile world, the Pentium 4 and Athlon 64 are often castrated or limited either by low clock speeds...

    Mommy, is that processor a steer?
  • valnar - Tuesday, February 08, 2005 - link

    As usual, an unfair review. Comparing a 2.0Ghz 400FSB laptop CPU against 3.0Ghz desktop heatmonsters? Of course it won't beat them. But look at how well it does, and probably would do (if reviewed correctly) against Pentium 4 2.4-2.8Ghz CPU's. Considering the ultralow power it needs and lack of heat it generates, this WILL be the hot (err... cool) ticket for Shuttle XPC's and the like in the near future. For anyone who doesn't need the fastest processor at the moment, the Banias designers did a fantastic job.
  • EODetroit - Tuesday, February 08, 2005 - link

    Great article, its about time that you did this one. And you compared both P-M motherboards on the market, I don't remember the other web sites doing that.

    You stated that the P-M won't scale, and that's the reason this isn't Intel's desktop future. One thing though... Intel's other desktop CPUs aren't going to scale much this year either. In fact, on a percentage basis, the P-M might actually scale more this year than the various P4-Kiln edition CPUs after all.

    Combine that with a mobile-915 chipset for the desktop, and therefore the elimination of the huge memory bottlenecks (and hopefully a little more voltage adjustments) and all of the sudden we may see all those Losses and Ties turn into Ties and Wins.

    Whatever happens, don't be the last enthusiast site to review the mobile-915 desktop motherboards when they arrive, like you were with this. We need a trusted source to know what to buy.
  • mickyb - Tuesday, February 08, 2005 - link

    The performance per watt is awesome. Great for SFF. The article is good, but until there is a newer chipset for this CPU, we won't be able to determine a final performance ruling. I am dissappointed in the lack of desktop MB offerings. This will be the challenger to the MAC mini in near future. Someone will be putting laptop components in a box and call it done.

    I found a couple of things interesting. Taking the memory out of play, it seems the A64 is still better optimized. L1 cache of Northwood is pretty impressive. AMD has an opportunity to improve performance just by improving the L2 cache latency.

    I really don't think the Pentium-M limits are around 2.6 GHz by the end of the year. At 22W, this could probably reach higher speeds. I think the upper limit that Intel is publishing is in context of a laptop and the cooling challenges in that platform. If you put a chip in a DT, then it is a different story.
  • AtaStrumf - Tuesday, February 08, 2005 - link

    A great article! Another Anand classic :-)

    I'd just like you to add an Athlon XP 3200 to the lineup and at least one more Newcastle (which is just the most popular A64 at the moment ;-) May I suggest a 3000+ 2,0 GHz/512/1CH? With just one dot on the graph extrapolating anything becomes a nightmare :-(

    As for P-M it's one hell of a CPU considering it's limitations and we just can't stop wondering what it could become if Intel decided to remove them. Sonoma will party answer that question, but unfortunately the ultra low voltage cap will still remain, so we may never really know.

    On the other hand I think an A64 will still be a nice enough desktop CPU so we really have no need for P-M on the desktop side of things. With Lancaster-Turion supposedly on S754 we may be in for a very nice successor to 2500+ Mobile, so to hell with P-M >;-)
  • bob661 - Tuesday, February 08, 2005 - link

    C'mon guys. These tests aren't showing that the P-M is crap, just not what we originally thought it was. I am surprised as hell at these results. For a laptop CPU, it still kicks ass. And with two A64 and three AXP machines, I am no Intel fanboy. Reply
  • paulsiu - Tuesday, February 08, 2005 - link

    For folks who want to have a mobile chip lower power solution, why not just go to the mobile Athlon 64? The CPU performance should be about the same as their desktop counterpart (at least the socket 754 version) and you can often use the same motherboard as the desktop.

    The Pentium Mobile idea seems nice, but I can't imagine spending $300 on a board that contains outdated technology.

  • MIDIman - Tuesday, February 08, 2005 - link

    Superb article.

    Granted, this is a "desktop" review, but I think the P-M is a completely different world from the P4-775 and A64, and I'm not entiely sure how people can compare them. This was built to be a portable solution and has been moved to desktop. Put that into account, and you have an extremely capable system that is silent, passive, and can be extremely small (matx here, but ITX is out there). I'm just trying to figure out why I didn't just read a Sonoma-based review, since it is out and being made (i.e. Dell's new 6000 laptop), or at least a 2.2ghz Dothan.

    I think Sonoma will bridge a bit of this performance gap, but consdering that these types of chipsets and CPUs will always be low voltage, I think we'll always see places where its performance is maybe not up to par, but well worth every penny for small and silent with desktop performance. THey'll only get smaller and faster, and IMHO, this is pretty damn close to desktop performance.
  • muddocktor - Tuesday, February 08, 2005 - link

    I agree withpost #36 about the benchmarks seemingly being picked to go for the P-M's weaknesses, but I guess that's how you get article hits. ;) I do fully agree that the present motherboards and chipsets they use hold back the perfromnace quite a bit; it might be a different story when the new mobile 915 chipset mATX boards come out for desktop use though.

    One glaring weakness in this comprehensive test though is the utter lack of numbers on system power usage and noise. If I were deploying a whole bunch of new systems for a corporation, I would give serious thought to a P-M setup even though the initial outlay would be more than a comparable P4 setup due to the decreased wattage used by the P-M system and the resultant heat from operation being much less, leading to lower environmental costs. Face it, in typical office applications the P-M is more than powerful enough for 90% of the users for the forseeable future and if your company has hundred or thousands of computers, the power saving should more than compensate for the higher pricetag of aquiring the P-M systems.

    Anand, when the new mobos based on the mobile 915 chipset come out, you need to revisit Dothan and it's performance.
  • msva124 - Tuesday, February 08, 2005 - link

    What were people expecting out of the pentium m? I have always multiplied the Mhz by 1.5 and used that number as the speed rating. So for instance the 2.0Ghz Dothan would be 3000+. The benchmarks confirm this - with the exception of one or two tests, it met or exceeded the performance of the Athlon 64 3000+.

    Whenever it was discussed as a desktop alternative I always assumed the implication was that this would be way off in the future, once clock speeds were ramped up.
  • fitten - Tuesday, February 08, 2005 - link

    Also, it's interesting that there are many benchmarks chosen which are known to stress the weaknesses of the Pentium-M... not that it isn't interesting information. For example, there seems to be a whole lot of FPU intensive benchmarks (around 15 or so, all of which the Pentium-M should lose handily - known before they are even run) so kind of just hammering the point home I guess.

    Anyway, the Dothans held up pretty well from what I can see... Most of the time (except for the notable FPU intensive and memory bandwidth intensive benchmarks), the Dothan compares quite well with Athlon64s of the same clock speed that have the advantage of dual channel memory.
  • fitten - Tuesday, February 08, 2005 - link

    The other interesting thing about the Athlon64 vs. Dothan comparison is that even with dual channel memory bandwidth on the Athlon64's side, the single channel memory bandwidth of the Dothan still keeps it very close in many of the benchmarks and can even beat the dual channel Athlon64s at 400MHz higher clock in some.

    Anyway, the Pentium-M family is a good start. Some tweaking here and there (improved FPU with better FPU performance and maybe another FPU execution unit, improved memory subsystem to make good use of dual channel) and it will be at least as good as the Athlon64s across the board.

    I own three Athlon64 desktops, two AthlonXP desktops, and two Pentium-M laptops and the laptops are by no means "slow" at doing work.
  • KristopherKubicki - Tuesday, February 08, 2005 - link

    teutonicknight: We purposely don't change our test platform too often. Even though we are using a slightly older version of Premiere, it is the same version we have used in our other processor analyses.

    Hope that helps,

  • kmmatney - Tuesday, February 08, 2005 - link

    There's also a Celeron version that would have been intersting to review. The small L2 cache should hurt the performance, though. I think the celeron version using something like 7 Watts. It would make no sense to put a celeron-M in such an expensive motherboard, though. Reply
  • Slaimus - Tuesday, February 08, 2005 - link

    I think this indirectly shows how AMD needs to update its caching architecture on the K8. They basically carried over the K7 caches, which is just too slow when paired with its memory controller. Instead of being as large as possible (as evidenced by the exclusive caches) at the expense of latency, the K8 needs faster caches. The memory bandwith of L2 vs system memory is only about 2 to 1 on the K8, which is to say the L2 cache is not helping the system memory much. Reply
  • sandorski - Monday, February 07, 2005 - link

    I think the Pentium M mythos can now be laid to rest. Reply
  • mjz5 - Monday, February 07, 2005 - link

    to #29:

    your 2800 is the 754 pin.

    the 3000+ reviewed is the 939 pin which is 1.8. the 3000+ for the 754 is 2.0 ghz
  • kristof007 - Monday, February 07, 2005 - link

    I don't know if anyone else noticed but the charts are a bit off. My A64 2800+ is running at a stock 1.8 ghz .. while in the review the A64 3000+ is running at 1.8 ... weird! Reply
  • knitecrow - Monday, February 07, 2005 - link


    1) Intel and AMD measure TDP differently... and TDP is not the same as actual power dissipation. The actual dissipation of 90nm A64 is pretty darn good.

    2) A microprocessor is not made of Lego... you can't rearrange/tweak parts to make it faster. It takes a lot of time, energy and talent to make changes -- even then it may not work for the best. Prescott anyone?

    Frankly I’ve been waiting for a good review of P-M's actual performance. I really don't trust those "other" sites.
  • k00kie - Monday, February 07, 2005 - link

  • bobsmith1492 - Monday, February 07, 2005 - link

    Granted the T8000 here is an Intel fanboy, but please notice Anand was comparing clock-for-clock. Reply
  • T8000 - Monday, February 07, 2005 - link

    There is one big difference between this review and the reviews where the Pentium M did very well: CLOCKSPEED!

    While others where able to get over 2.8 Ghz with aircooling, Anand got just 2.4 Ghz. This may be a coincidence, but it is the difference between surprisingly good performance and a few % below others.

    As most of the benchmarks where based on the stock 2 Ghz, the difference became even greater.

    So this review just shows that the stock speed Pentium M performs about 30% less with about 30% less clockspeed than overclocked versions.

    A slightly redesigned version with higher voltages is not extremely unlikely to hit at least 3 Ghz. Combining that with a desktop chipset will result in stellar performance, as the benchmark scores in this review (x1.5) indicate.

    But since there is no slightly redesigned version and Intel has no good reason to make one, the current Pentium M desktops will only appeal to overclockers and silent computing people.

    Also, for some reason, Anand found the 90W TDP of the 2.4 Ghz A64 closer to the 20W of the P-M than to the 110W of the 3.8 Ghz P4.
  • CSMR - Monday, February 07, 2005 - link

    That's a very good option Zebo, thanks for posting it. Reply
  • teutonicknight - Monday, February 07, 2005 - link

    One suggestion: Why don't you start using a newer version of Premiere for testing? I personally don't use it, but every that I know who does says before Premiere Pro, the program sucked. I'm sure the render results would be much more realistic and accurate if you used a more up to date version of the program Reply
  • Regs - Monday, February 07, 2005 - link

    I was wondering the same thing too Jeff. If you feed it more bandwidth, it would eliminate the pipeline stalls and maybe give it a chance to reach higher clock speeds. Right? Or is it still prohibited by the shorter pipeline to reach higher clock speeds?

    Longer pipeline = wasted clock cycles. But to me that sounds like the PM should actually scale a lot better with a speed boost. Why exactly does it scale badly compared to a P4? Could it be remedied in anyway with a dual channel memory bus?
  • ozzimark - Monday, February 07, 2005 - link

    there's something wrong with the 3400+ in the spec tests. why is the 3000+ beating it consitantly? Reply
  • Warder45 - Monday, February 07, 2005 - link

    Maybe I missed something but I don't see the reason for all the negitivity in the final words. The 2.4Ghz P-M was very close to the A64 2.4Ghz in many of the tests, 3D rendering seemed to slow it down but that looked like it. With better boards and memory the P-M might best the A64 in a clock for clock match up.

    I do agree the prices are way too high. I think Intel really needs to wake up and smell what they have cooking here. With more support and more aggressive priceing they could easily have a winner in the HTPC and SFF markets.
  • plewis00 - Monday, February 07, 2005 - link

    Surely when someone builds a mainboard with the Sonoma (i915) platform using PCI-E and DDR2-533 then it will change. And I wouldn't have thought that's that far off assuming they don't charge rip-off prices for the technology. It would also be perfect for Shuttle systems where the emphasis is on quietness and coolness rather than so much on performance. Reply
  • Zebo - Monday, February 07, 2005 - link

    So's this one very soon..

    ...more than excellent performance wise if Dothan is excellent...power differential hopefully for AMD will be nominal.
  • Sokaku - Monday, February 07, 2005 - link

    While it is true that the A64 has way more bandwidth, I doubt that is the reason why it crushed the P-M in the Professional Applications. I think the real cause is to be found in the P-M's abillity to do FP divisions. The P-III had a pipelined FP unit, however div operations were extremly expensive. My guess would be that Intel haven't thrown much effort into improving on this.
  • CSMR - Monday, February 07, 2005 - link

    The fact is it's an excellent processor for business use (speed, quietness, reliability) and multimedia use (quietness). Anandtech is full of gamers; but there is no denying that using a computer as a media centre is becoming a big thing, or that low-power, quiet operation is necessary. High motherboard prices are because the desktop PM motherboard market is very small. There was a comment in the review that the PM architecture doesn't scale well. I am sure that is so; but what processors do scale well? It's because they don't that everyone is about to go dual-core. Reply
  • bobsmith1492 - Monday, February 07, 2005 - link

    Thanks #12 :P Reply
  • Zebo - Monday, February 07, 2005 - link

    I myself have been guilty of hyping dothan after seeing GAMEPCs "opimistic" review. This should quell that.:D Reply
  • Zebo - Monday, February 07, 2005 - link

    Anand best review I've read here, thanks a lot, nice to see you scribing again..:)

    Seems again, like the tech report review, with a comprehensive test suite such as this one dothan has some collosal performance flaws, and simply can't match up the A64 across board. It looses 30 out of 41 benches at same speed, some huge. 2.0 vs 2.0..

    I posted in CPU forum how turion/lancaster will be 25W.. could this be the end of DOTHANS laptop dominace?
  • Brian23 - Monday, February 07, 2005 - link

    I agree with #10. Reply
  • bobsmith1492 - Monday, February 07, 2005 - link

    Sorry; first time commenting. I couldn't remember my login name before.

    Anyway, my laptop OCs better than that. Granted, it's a 1.7 to begin with, but the FSB will do 125 easily, with the same ram increase to boot - 420 MHz, with processor at 2.125. It will do a tad bit more, but that's enough for a laptop I'd say.
  • bobsmith1492 - Monday, February 07, 2005 - link

    test Reply
  • Kalessian - Monday, February 07, 2005 - link

    #6, Oh yeah? Well, give a P4/A64 an SXGP(Super eXtremely Good Performance) setting and stay out of ITS way!

    Yawn, right now the P-M doesn't impress me at all. Let a CPU built for mobile systems stay in mobile systems until it gets rebuilt for desktops properly.

    Great review, learned a ton :)
  • GnomeCop - Monday, February 07, 2005 - link

    I have a 2.0ghz dothan system, I upgraded from an old 533mhz fsb p4.
    The speed for my work and games are just fine. I have a leadtek GF6800ultra in my system and its the only thing I have to worry about cooling.
    CPU is passively cooled and the system is expremely quiet running on a 359watt psu. By the time I need to upgrade, I will be buying a whole new cpu/mobo/everything anyways.
  • ksherman - Monday, February 07, 2005 - link

    seems like an a really good processor for buisness machines, given the L1 cahe speeds... and not much else (snas uber low power consumption) Reply
  • Jeff7181 - Monday, February 07, 2005 - link

    Give the Dothan a speed bump and some dual channel DDR400 and stay out of it's way... Reply
  • MDme - Monday, February 07, 2005 - link

    well, now we FINALLY have a comprehensive review of the P-M, it's strengths and weaknesses. While the P-M is good. the A64 is still better. Reply
  • Netopia - Monday, February 07, 2005 - link

    Yeah, I was about to say the same as #3.

    Why did you go to the trouble to list what the AthlonXP system would have in it and then not actually test or reference it anywhere in the article?

    I still have a bunch of AXP machines and regularly help others upgrade using XP-M's, so it would be interesting to see these at least included in reviews for a while.
  • CrystalBay - Monday, February 07, 2005 - link

    Hi, I noticed in the testbed an AXP3200/NF2U400 but there are no charts with this setup. Reply
  • Beenthere - Monday, February 07, 2005 - link

    It's a pipe dream for those who wish Intel had their act together. It's already confirmed M don't scale well and is not effective for HD computing. It's performance is really some place between Sempron and A64 but certainly not a suitable competitor to A64 nor FX. Just another Hail Mary for a defunct Intel. Reply
  • coldpower27 - Monday, February 07, 2005 - link

    Hmm, an interesting review on the Pentium M to say the least. Though are 2-2-2-10 timings for the Pentium M the best for this architecture??? Reply

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