Final Words

It is very obvious from these tests which line of budget processors is worth the money. When we can find a 1.6GHz Duron for just over half the price of a 2.6GHz Celeron and get better performance consistently in almost every test we ran, the choice is clear.

It's obvious that the long pipeline of the Pentium 4 just can't handle the crippled cache of the Celeron. With more cache misses and pipeline stalls, the processor isn't getting as much useful work done as it is trying constantly to refill the pipeline. We are seeing these results for the same reason we saw the performance gains from the P4 Extreme Edition with its 2MB L3 cache: the pipeline needs to stay full for the P4 to really shine.

The Pentium III based Celerons offered, at one time, acceptable performance. However, it is clear that in the value segment today, Intel has nothing to offer but a high clock speed. AnandTech readers will know to stay away from the Celeron at all costs; however, what is troublesome are the number of retail customers who are faced with the decision between a higher priced 2.6GHz Celeron system and an Athlon XP 2200+. We would highly encourage system vendors like Compaq and eMachines to shift their low-end focus to AMD if their customers are of any importance at all. As we've seen through our extensive benchmarking, the Celeron's performance is truly dismal; so while Intel is quite competitive in the mid-range and high-end segments, their value processors are inexcusably slow compared to AMD.

This review really isn't complete without taking a look at overclocking performance. For enthusiasts who want a lot of performance for a small amount of cash (cache?), pushing a cheap processor beyond its limits is the way to go. Every overclocker remembers the original Celeron processor and its amazing ability to run incredibly fast because of its lack of cache. At this point (however unlikely), such a feature would be the only saving grace of the Celeron line. Of course, even if the Celeron is a good overclocker, it will be very interesting to see how high the Duron can be pushed with its cut cache as well.

The conclusion we can make from all this is that the Duron processor is a solid purchase. If you have the extra 40 to 50 dollars to spend, a Barton processor would be a nice addition to any system for that added dimension of performance to a tightly budgeted system. Hopefully, system builders will take note and start offering better performing systems for an even lower price based on the Duron processor rather than the Celeron. For those who want the cheapest possible system, AMD will give you the best performance every time.

Quake III Arena Performance
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  • vinicastro - Tuesday, December 9, 2003 - link

    I dont' belive in this results. Simply because in others tests the results are very diferent. Note in Quake3 test that the Celeron 2,4 is better than the Celeron 2.6.

    The Celeron 2.6 have 2x cache and 1GHz clock plus the Duron 1.6.

    In others sites tests the Celeron 2.0 is a litte bit slower than an XP 1600. With overclock performs better than XP 1600.

    Also note the huge AMD advertises in the tests pages. Something smell very bad here.
  • arejerjejjerjre - Tuesday, December 9, 2003 - link

    Lol justly!

    It quite obvious that celeron's can do much better even with more lower end parts than that wich was used in the review!

    Compatibility issues with Intel? Never heard of them! Didn't know even that such term existed! :)
    You'd have to fuck it up yourself for it not work!

    And justly I seen too many Amd system's they hardly work at all! All of my friends possess some sort of amd rig and theres allways something not working or not working correctly!
    I think that Nforce chipset's suck! Via works much better! And That's why my mini pc Shuttle has a via chipset inside and duron 700 ;) works quite well most of the time! Shuttles heatpipe cooler is GREAT!
    Thats right I got one Amd based computer! :)
  • Doop - Monday, December 8, 2003 - link

    Intel isn't the perfect when it comes to compatibility. I have crippling problems with the Pentium 4 denormalizing bug that forces a system lock up when I use some audio software. I simply cannot use that software anymore because the work arounds are too time consuming for efficent work flow.

    I seriously regret buying a Pentium 4.

    As for the Celeron...people should be warned that they suck bad. It's funny that people critisize the article because it doesn't compare apples to oranges.

    What I saw was the Duron kicking the Celerons arse. No need to read more into it than that.
  • Quixfire - Monday, December 8, 2003 - link

    Looks like the Athlon XP 2200+ will be my next processor.
  • MoronBasher - Monday, December 8, 2003 - link

    arejerjejjerjre, go to the corner with AMDjihad, and maybe both of you could join the special olympics. Hell, you're both overly qualified.
  • justly - Sunday, December 7, 2003 - link

    It should be blatantly obvious that arejerjejjerjre demonstrates such extreme Intel bias that his comments can only be classified as witless. His presence is only beneficial as a source of humor for the rest of us. His unrelenting and repetitive posts filled with inaccuracy only prove that he is unwilling to accept anything other than his own biased opinion that Intel is superior in all aspects of processor performance even when we have seen this proven wrong time and time again. I do believe Intel has some good products but not to the point that I am blind to the truth, because so does AMD. I think it is obvious to most people that AMD has the best price to performance ratio in all areas except where Intel can compete with a 800MHz FSB and hyperthreading or specific apps (such as encoding) and that is even becomming less apparent when compared to the Athlon 64.
    If I had any problem with this article it would be that Anandtech didnt test using chipsets that are more commonly used with these processors. Since this article is meant to show processor performance not system performance I see no problem not because it showed AMD in a good light but because Anandtech gave BOTH platforms the benifit of a better performing chipset than they probably would get in real life.
  • arejerjejjerjre - Sunday, December 7, 2003 - link

    You are quite wrong about how much the celeron has to offer at least in games I have tested it with low end parts: celeron 2ghz,abit bd7-II,some 333mhz 256mt 32e memory so if that isnt a cheap computer nothing is! (Graphic cards much worse than yours ti4200 :( ) and my celeron performed quite well! Not as well as my 1.8A P4!
    With Celeron 2ghz I got 170 fps in quake 3 and with 1.8A I got 225 fps and with better graphics than that what was used in anandtechs review!

    And the problem with comparing P4 EE with fx51 is that p4 ee is old tech and still quite the best! Amd had to use complete new structure :socket,chipset and other things to get comparable results! When Prescott arrives we will see again that Intel rulez! This same rutine has repeated it self for some time now and never has intel been defeated when they have launched their brand new processor or chipset!
  • Wesley Fink - Sunday, December 7, 2003 - link

    #68&69 - Pentium 4 3.2GHz does indeed beat Barton 3200+, and we have stated that in our own tests. Barton 3200+ performs more on the level of a 2.8 to 3.0 Pentium 4 800FSB and the older performance rating is not very accurate compared to 800FSB Pentium 4 chips.

    However, Athlon64 3200+ is at least the equal of the P4 3.2 and in most cases it is actually faster. As we have stated in our reviews, AMD revised their Performance Rating with the A64 and it is actually a bit conservative. The top enthusiast Athlon64 FX51, which does not carry a Performance Rating, clearly outperforms everything we have tested - including the P4EE.

    This article is about the Bargain CPU's, where Duron/AthlonXP/Barton, the older technology AMD chips, clearly outperform the similarly priced Intel Celeron chips. This is simpler than it first appears and is a result of the differences in architecture. Pentium 4 requires huge bandwidth for best performance, and the Celeron can't deliver that bandwidth. AMD chips don't require the same bandwidth for top performance and do well with what the bargain chips can deliver.
  • arejerjejjerjre - Sunday, December 7, 2003 - link

    And I didnt mean any small site articles!!
  • arejerjejjerjre - Sunday, December 7, 2003 - link

    Theres this one thing I'am curious about!!
    I've seen many articles wich clearly say intel wins amd es p4c 3200 vs barton 3200+ and after a period similar articles appear and they seem to indicate a performance loss in intel based system! Results are clearly being altered!

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