Intel Pentium 4 3.2GHz - The Real Slim Shadyby Anand Lal Shimpi on June 23, 2003 11:23 PM EST
- Posted in
FSB Scaling - The Athlon XP
The Athlon XP 3200+ is based on AMD's 0.13-micron Barton core (see our review for a full description of the Barton core) and runs at a clock speed of 2.20GHz. The first thing to keep in mind that at 2.20GHz the Athlon XP 3200+ still carries a lower clock speed than the short lived Thoroughbred-B based Athlon XP 2800+ (2.25GHz). Although the 3200+ only holds a 34MHz clock speed advantage over the 3000+, AMD has moved to a 200MHz DDR FSB for the chip (effectively 400MHz).
Alongside the chip, NVIDIA has revealed that they've been certifying the nForce2 chipsets for use with the faster FSB for quite some time and thus re-badged them as nForce2 Ultra 400 in order to indicate support for the FSB.
So how much of a boost do we see from increasing the FSB on the Barton core to 400MHz? First be sure to read our explanation of why a faster FSB results in better performance here, then take a look at the following tests:
The 400MHz FSB provides a 0 - 7% improvement in performance for the Athlon XP at 2.20GHz, with the average being a 3.2% increase. While we'd normally say that the benefits of a higher FSB frequency will best be realized as the processor reaches higher clock speeds, but with AMD keen on replacing the Athlon XP with the Athlon 64, we'd say the move to a 400MHz FSB wasn't absolutely necessary.