AMD Opteron 248 vs. Intel Xeon 2.8: 2-way Web Servers go Head to Headby Anand Lal Shimpi & Jason Clark on December 17, 2003 9:15 AM EST
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- IT Computing
Final WordsWhat gave the Athlon MP its performance advantage was AMD’s short-pipeline, high IPC (Instructions Per Clock) architecture. What we saw at the beginning of the Athlon MP vs. Xeon matches back in 2001 was that AMD was trouncing Intel without even breaking a sweat. However, as the Xeon ramped up in clock speed, the performance gap and later the advantage began to shift towards Intel.
With the Opteron, we are seeing an even more devastating advantage for AMD because, this time around, AMD isn’t only relying on a higher IPC core to gain the upper hand. The Opteron’s on-die memory controller is one of the biggest assets that the CPU has in the server environment, and as you can see by the performance results we’ve shown here today, it is an asset that is more valuable than the Xeon’s Hyper-Threading.
The choice today is clear. In 2-way configurations, the Opteron is a much more powerful and capable web server than Intel’s Xeon. But the performance tests are nowhere near over. We’ve been playing around with AMD’s 4-way Opteron 848 machines for months now and are not far away from bringing you the first head-to-head comparison between the Opteron 848 and a 4-way Intel Xeon MP system. AMD has been praising their Opteron architecture for MP scalability, and soon, we’ll be putting their claims to the test.
The true test that remains, however, is a test comparing AMD’s Opteron to Intel’s Itanium 2. Intel was not very receptive to the idea of doing a head-to-head; not out of a fear of losing, but out of a desire not to lend AMD any credibility by showing that the Opteron is indeed a competitor to the Itanium 2. While we do believe that the Itanium 2 in its 128-way configurations is definitely out of the Opteron’s league, in the 2-way and 4-way configurations that we are interested in comparing, the two are absolutely competitors.
Whether Intel is looking to supply us with an Itanium 2 system or not, we will make that comparison. It seems that if these web server results are any early indication, AMD has more than enough credibility with the Opteron to at least step up to bat with the Itanium 2 pitching.