Audio Encoding

Lame was compiled from source without optimizations. We only ran ./configure and make, without any flags. We realize that some people would like to verify our binaries and sample files for their own benchmarks. In order to save bandwidth and prevent copyright infractions, we will provide our test files and binaries under limited circumstances to serious inquiries. We ran lame on a 700MB .wav file using the command equivalent to the one below:

# lame sample.wav -b 192 -m s -h >/dev/null

Encoding time, lower is better.

lame 1.96


Although POV-RAY is limited in application (particularly when compared against Mental Ray), it does provide a free open source solution for basic rendering. POV-Ray 3.50c was our choice of render engine for this benchmark. For benchmark specifics, we run the exact benchmark as specified by the POV-Ray official site. We use the precompiled RPM for this test.

Render Time in Seconds, less is better.

POV-Ray 3.05c

POV-Ray does not have multithread support, so we were not surprised to see the HyperThreading configuration slowing down to the configuration without HT. We see the Athlon 64 processor pull way ahead; render tasks are extremely CPU and memory dependant. With the memory controller on the CPU, Athlon 64 becomes the stronger offering in this situation.


To throw in some rudimentary tests for GZip, we used the included GZip 1.3.5 to compress the .wav file from the benchmark above. We do not want to limit our I/O on writing to the hard drive, so the operation is performed as below:

# time gzip -c sample.wav > /dev/null

Gzip 1.3.5

Intel wins their first bout of the analysis, albeit not by much. We will find a recurring pattern later on with integer based calculations and the Nocona Xeon processor. The entire Prescott family of Intel CPUs received a dedicated integer multiplier rather than continually using the floating point multiplier. This becomes extremely useful in some of our other benchmarks.

Database Performance

We will run the standard SQL-bench suite included with RPM MySQL 4.0.20d.

MySQL 4.0.20d - Test-Select

MySQL 4.0.20d - Test-Insert

Of all our benchmarks, the SQL-bench becomes the most baffling. The extremely threaded database application performs particularly poorly with HyperThreading enabled. The Althon 64 outperforms Intel again in this benchmark, and a lot of it is almost certainly accredited to the on die memory controller again.
Update: We copied the 32-bit marks from our benchmark in previous testing instead of the 64-bit. You can view the previous articles here from a month ago. The graphs have also been updated.
Index Synthetic Benchmarks
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  • snorre - Wednesday, August 11, 2004 - link

    "202 - Posted on Aug 10, 2004 at 7:51 PM by KristopherKubicki
    I have made changes to the article that were suggested; i fixed the broken makefile, i even did another article on my vacation with an opteron 150 to be posted within the next 24 hours."

    24 hours have passed now, so where's the proper review you promised?!
  • SDA - Wednesday, August 11, 2004 - link

    Easy there, ss284. Try not to get the froth on your keyboard.

    Really, there's no foul play involved. It's just a series of poorly conducted benchmarks. People wouldn't've liked seeing a Xeon beat an A64 to begin with, and now that it's shown that the benchmarks are meaningless poor Kris is getting torn apart. Everyone makes mistakes... I'd advise just taking this review down before it festers, myself, but that's just my opinion.
  • ss284 - Wednesday, August 11, 2004 - link

    Oh dang is that an AMD logo I see on anandtech's site? OH NOES! AMD IS PAYING OFF ANANDTECH! TIME TO START TALKING OUT OF MY ASS!

    Jesus christ will people stop accusing intel of paying him off? Muks75, you're an utterly useless and pathetic moron. Its pretty obvious you havent taken a look at anything between pages 1 and 13. Try reading the entire discussion before posting your useless crap here.

  • muks75 - Wednesday, August 11, 2004 - link

    Seems like Intel is paying for the advertisements here. I am disappointed with AT, for such a pathetic comparison. And Kristopher, your post saying it did "pretty good for 500$ less" is the lamest excuse to defend the utterly useless comparison you have done.
  • MrEMan - Wednesday, August 11, 2004 - link

    #232 stated:

    "I praise AMD for bringing 64bit cpu's to the home user but any business in their right mind would never purchase a clone/emulator cpu as of AMD.".

    Based on your comments, I guess most Intel-only businesses must not be in their "right minds".

    As for X86-64, AMD is the innovator, and Intel is the cloner. It is the Itanium (which is the emulator of the two CPUs) which is most likely going to die or at the very least be severly as far as sales go. As a reminder, many of the Athlon64/Opteron engineers worked on the DEC Alpha, which has a great reputation.

    The articles I have read stated that board manufacturers really dislike BTX and that DDR2 will be implemented by AMD when there is an actual performance reason to do so (now the only thing that DDR2 increases is the cost).

    As a reminder, you are getting much greater performance (per $) out of your Intel-based systems because AMD is forcing them to cut their huge profit margins and actually get back to competing based on value (performance per $) delivered.

    As for the review, I totally agree with those who stated that the article should have been pulled mainly because the conclusion has not been corrected since it was based on BS testing methods.

    I will be curious to see what Anand's view of this fiasco is when he returns.
  • Macro2 - Wednesday, August 11, 2004 - link

    It appears to be about some bogus benchmarks, particularly John The Ripper. The program looks to Intel in the code. We've seen that trick before in benchmarks so no wonder a lot of people are skeptical.

    ALSO, the REMOTE location of the Intel server. Which, for some strange reason has never been dilvulged, yet we are supposed to take the word of the person in front of the "remote server"?
  • chaosengine - Wednesday, August 11, 2004 - link

    Intel has the knack to intoduce System packages much before they are market ready....

    Rambus & i820 are few things that went haywire.... If they try to rush things like this DDR2 will be just where RAMBUS the dustbin
  • Viditor - Wednesday, August 11, 2004 - link

    porkster - "any business in their right mind would never purchase a clone/emulator cpu as of AMD"

    I disagree. I think Intel made the smart move in copying AMD's x86-64. While obviously their first chips will perform at a substantially lower level, I'm confident that they will have some excellent designs out by 2006.

    "I'm a programmer and also want future ready items like PCIe, BTX design, DDR2"

    Huh? What does one have to do with the other?
    As to being "future ready", BTX looks to be nearing an early retirement...DDR2 is more expensive without any appreciable gains yet...and PCIe has not shown any improvements yet (though it will be much more important to a platform that doesn't have Hypertransport...)
  • allnighter - Wednesday, August 11, 2004 - link

    to 236:
    He he, he's probably not a programmer. What does BTX have to do with programming. It's just a form factor, and some are arguing that the only reason it's been brought to the market is to make sure that components are rearranged in a way that will ensure Prescotts and other new chips get good enough airflow inide a case cause they're too runnig too hot.
  • Locutus4657 - Wednesday, August 11, 2004 - link

    #232: Your comments about not wanting an AMD chip because you are a programmer confuses me. I am also a programmer and I bought my A64 3000+ because of that. A64's excel in our work evironment e.g. Code Compiliation, Web Serving, Database serving etc.... Why would you choose an inferior product? How does PCIe help you write better code?

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