AM2/Core 2 Duo Latency and Memory Bandwidth

The introduction of AM2 merely increased the AMD latency advantage. AM2 latency was slightly lower than DDR latency on AMD.

Memory Latency Comparison - Conroe & AM2

However, Core 2 Duo did what most believed was impossible in Latency. One of AMD's advantages is the on-processor memory controller, which Intel has avoided. It should not be possible to use a Memory Controller in the chipset on the motherboard instead and achieve lower latency. Intel developed read-ahead technologies that don't really break this rule, but to the system, in some situations, the Intel Core 2 Duo appears to have lower latency than AM2, and the memory controller functions as if it were lower latency.

Memory Bandwidth

The other part of the memory performance equation is memory bandwidth, and here you may be surprised, based on Conroe's performance lead, to see the changes Core 2 Duo has brought. Results are the average of ALU/FPU results on Sandra 2007 Standard (Buffered) memory performance test. We used the same memory on all three systems, and the fastest memory timings possible were used at each memory speed.


The results are not a mistake. In standard memory bandwidth, Core 2 Duo has lower memory bandwidth than either AM2 or Intel NetBurst. It is almost as if the tables have turned around. AMD had lower bandwidth with DDR than Intel NetBurst, and the Athlon64 outperformed Intel NetBurst. Now Conroe has the poorest Memory Bandwidth of any of the three processors, yet Conroe has a very large performance lead. It appears Conroe, with shallower pipes and an optimized read-ahead memory controller to lower apparent latency, makes best use of the memory bandwidth available.

Perhaps the most interesting statistics are that the huge increases in memory bandwidth brought by AM2 make almost no difference in AM2 performance compared to the earlier DDR-based Athlon64. With this perspective let's take a closer look at DDR2 memory performance on AM2 and Core 2 Duo. This will include as close to an apples-to-apples comparison of Core 2 Duo and AM2 as we can create.

DDR/NetBurst Memory Bandwidth and Latency Memory Test Configuration
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  • drebo - Tuesday, July 25, 2006 - link

    Excuse me, but the E6400 wasn't even IN the benchmarks Anandtech ran, but by extrapolation(considering the E6700 did not beat out the 5000+ by a large margin), it cannot perform better than the 5000+.

    And, in the majority of benchmarks, such as the ones http://www.anandtech.com/cpuchipsets/showdoc.aspx?...">here, which are benchmarks that have traditionally favored Intel processors in the past, the AMD chips do not fall as you paint them. They fall as I have painted them. The 4200+ outperforms the E6300 in ALL of them...and costs LESS. The 5000+ matches performance in 2/3 of them with the E6600. And costs LESS.

    Sorry, but this isn't about which company is better or provides a better product. This is about which company provides a better product at a better price. We all know the X6800 is the best desktop processor available. NO ONE is disputing that. The dispute is that review sites are proclaiming that the Core 2 Duos are god's gift to Intel and that Athlon64s are completely worthless now, which is NOT the case.

    In the $1k processor range, sure, Core 2 Duo is the king...but AMD doesn't have a processor in that range anymore. There is no competition to the X6800 anymore. At every other price point, however, the Athlon64 X2 processors are extremely competative.
    Reply
  • coldpower27 - Tuesday, July 25, 2006 - link

    Take a look at these benchmarks show the E6400 in them, and for the most part it beats out the 4600+

    http://xbitlabs.com/articles/cpu/display/core2duo-...">http://xbitlabs.com/articles/cpu/display/core2duo-...
    Reply
  • coldpower27 - Tuesday, July 25, 2006 - link

    Oh please, you looked at 1 page of benchmark to make your conclusion??

    Did you just look at 3D Rendering to draq your conclusions?

    What about the encoding and gaming performance? Did you look at those?
    Reply
  • IntelUser2000 - Wednesday, July 26, 2006 - link

    quote:

    Oh please, you looked at 1 page of benchmark to make your conclusion??

    Did you just look at 3D Rendering to draq your conclusions?

    What about the encoding and gaming performance? Did you look at those?


    It is obvious you haven't seen both of my posts fully. Please do. Core 2 Duo outperforms.

    This is type of performance increase people would have been crazy about, but somehow its different. Maybe its conspiracy to kill Intel??
    Reply
  • coldpower27 - Wednesday, July 26, 2006 - link

    IntelUser2000.

    Chill. I am reply to drebo in this reply not you. Anandtech comment posting system is just strange.
    Reply
  • IntelUser2000 - Tuesday, July 25, 2006 - link

    quote:

    And, in the majority of benchmarks, such as the ones here, which are benchmarks that have traditionally favored Intel processors in the past, the AMD chips do not fall as you paint them. They fall as I have painted them. The 4200+ outperforms the E6300 in ALL of them...and costs LESS. The 5000+ matches performance in 2/3 of them with the E6600. And costs LESS.


    Please stop being an idiot. If you see Anandtech's benchmarks you can clearly see that E6600 is FASTER overall than FX-62. That's why the saying of $316 FX-62 came about.


    For those that are in denial about the FACT that E6600 with $316 price beats FX-62

    Application Performance using SYSMark 2004 SE
    Average performance: 18.6% in favor of E6600

    Application Performance using PC WorldBench 5
    1.4% advantage of Core 2 Duo E6600

    Application Performance using Winstone 2004
    2.9% advantage of FX-62, E6600 equal or faster than 5000+

    3D Rendering Performance using 3dsmax 7 & CineBench 9.5
    2.7% advantage of FX-62, E6600 faster than 5000+

    Encoding Performance using DivX 6.1, WME9, Quicktime (H.264) & iTunes
    6.0% advantage of E6600

    Overall Gaming Performance
    11.6% advantage of E6600


    Total Performance increase of E6600 over Athlon FX-62
    Core 2 Duo E6600 is 9.9% faster overall than Athlon FX-62!!
    Reply
  • IntelUser2000 - Tuesday, July 25, 2006 - link

    Normally, the kind of performance advantage E6600 gives over the FX-62 would have meant people would have flocked over to E6600 even if it was previous high-end mainstream price for Intel processors, which is $637.

    Stop spreading false info people(anti-intel, and i am saying lightly), cause not only your beloved Athlon 64 X2 5000+ slower than E6600, so is AMD's top end offering, the FX-62!!!

    I remember people saying Core Duo was worth it(yes the Yonah). Based on the logic people are spreading for Core 2 Duo argument, Core Duo wasn't worth it at all. $637 for the top end Core Duo(Yonah), and being barely faster per clock than FX-62 when clocked outrageously high(30% over stock, while FX-62 is at stock), plus expensive motherboards that are hard to find.

    If Core Duo was worth it at all, well... Core 2 Duo is like a dream.
    Reply
  • Accord99 - Tuesday, July 25, 2006 - link

    And the E6300 does better in other tests, such as the Sysmark, video encoding and games. And the E6600 doesn't compete with the 5000+, it competes with the FX-64. Reply
  • drebo - Tuesday, July 25, 2006 - link

    I don't know what benchmarks you're looking at, but they sure as hell aren't posted on any review site I've ever seen.

    I never expected my opinion that AMD is not dead and Intel is not master of all to be popular, but I atleast expected some constructive responses. Yes, Intel has the best performing processor. We know this. No one cares. I'm sure AMD could spin a 3.2ghz FX-70 or something and sell it for $2000. But why bother, for 2% of the population to use? The vast majority of computer users are looking for performance-per-dollar, and there is no difference between Athlon64 X2 processors and Core 2 Duo processors in that ratio...except, of course, motherboard...which tends to cost near to twice as much on the Core 2 Duo side.

    Yes, Intel released a competative platform. We're all very happy with them, and once they're available, it'll be great...but they're hardly a nail in the coffin for AMD. AMD still holds the superior chips for single-core, and performance-per-dollar is just as good as Core 2 Duo, and I can tell you from personal experience, that's what matters.

    Go go objectivity!
    Reply
  • Accord99 - Tuesday, July 25, 2006 - link

    I'm just looking at all the Anandtech benchmarks. It's quite clear the E6300 is faster than the 4200+ overall, while the E6600 is faster than the FX-62 overall.

    So performance/dollar is higher for Conroe, the current motherboards are more expensive but that can be made up from purchasing less high-end memory. And Conroe uses less power.
    Reply

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